Half the fun of my job is in finding the pieces that I paint. Sometimes we come by items easily and other times we really have to dig and hunt for the treasures we bring back to Bungalow 47. This particular buffet was from one of our “digging” excursions.
A few weeks ago Jill and I received a call from one of our pickers, who said he was working a house that was full of stuff he thought we would like. The key words there were “full” and “stuff.” We were out the door like a shot! As soon as we arrived, we realized that this was going to take a while and that yes, we were indeed going to get our hands dirty. We cruised the main floor first and found a few nice pieces of furniture then headed to the basement.
WOW! So much to go through, and even with all of the layers of dirt it was still fun picking through treasures from a time gone by. After we had made our piles and were getting ready to head out, I came across a couple of boxes full of letters. They were letters from a husband to his wife while serving in the army. Suddenly all of the “stuff” we had just piled up came to life for me. I’m always aware that the things we acquire for the store have already lived another life, that’s part of the beauty in them. However, after seeing this house and then finding these letters, the history of those items became more real than ever before. What fun it was going to be to revive these treasures for their next life.
First things first, I starting washing the pieces. After getting through the years of dirt and grime, I decided that milk paint would be an excellent option to work with on this buffet. Milk paint without the bonder would peel so nicely, giving it a beautiful time worn romantic chippy peely look. So, I selected a couple of new colors from our Bungalow 47 line and got to work. Milk paint is the perfect touch to allow the original finish to bleed and peek through, merging the old and new in this romantic chippy peely effect.
Then, keeping true to the romantic theme of the buffet I pulled out a few of the letters from the box and used them to line the drawers. The body of the letters are of simple every day things. Lists of things needed and details of what was going on there on the base. Drawings of the coffee pot with instructions of how to use it, pay stubs, etc. While each one varied, the thing that always remained consistent was his “I love you sweetie. With love, Loran XXXXX.” They were just your average everyday love letters, but written so sweetly that it only seemed right that those letters and a piece of this couple who shared their lives together should remain inside the buffet as a permanent part of where it came from.
This poem that he wrote about her in the late 1960’s is now a permanent lining of one of the drawers. What a treasure!
WHAT HAPPENED TO ME
I saw a girl in a park one day, then in a dream.
I know what I’ll do, I’ll make her my queen.
Now that was a long time ago,
You’ll have to believe me because it’s so.
This girl I saw, oh what a sight,
Her eyes were so blue and they sparkle so bright.
I’ll tell you if I may,
That girl is my wife to this very day.
Thanks for stopping by,