Saturday, January 5, 2013

ABOUT Me, and how Deb's "Projects" Furniture Rehab came to be.

I will apologize in advance. This is a little lengthy.  HOPE YOU ENJOY!!!

I was born in the small town of Ardmore, Tennessee. At seventeen my Mom became a widow, with a one month old baby, Me, to raise. My Dad passed away tragically in a gun accident. I then lived with my Grandparents in the small community of Cashpoint, Tennessee, until I was six years old. My Mom remarried and we became a family of His, Mine and Ours. Never to be called that, we were (Family), Mom, Dad, brother and sisters.
  After Mom remarried, and I moved in with Step Dad and Step Sister, I was the oldest, ten months older. (Yea! She likes to remind me I'm the oldest) . My step sister and I started with something in common. We had both lost a parent as babies, and had lived with our grandparents.  We lived and grew up in Elkmont, Alabama.  Now when I say grew up, you are soon going to find out how quick I grew up. But, that will come later.
  We were taught to work hard and stay busy. That is something that has stayed with me. I just can not imagine being board. Something that I've instilled in my own children. Tell my mom you were board and real quick you would get a sock drawer emptied right in front of you and told to organize. (Yep!) I STOL that ole lesson from her! Those lessons taught me there is always something to do.
   I attended, Elkmont High School, Elkmont, Alabama. I was always, always outgoing. Started piano lessons in fifth grade. After a fire destroyed the elementary building, lessons were no longer given. I had had two months of lessons. Loving it the way I did, I taught myself to play. I always loved to play and sing, I was always in school and church choirs. I could belt it! ( QUIET a ham!) I was soloist in several musical plays. At that time not a shy bone in my body. I was elected class favorite in sixth grade and won the title, queen of  Elkmont Elementary.
    In High school, I became a little shyer. BOYS!!! They can have that affect. Yet! I was still outgoing in my own way. I played the piano and sang in all girl gospel quartets. I started to sew at age twelve. I was amazed with a sewing machine. My Mom and Grandmother had sewn. I started right away to sew all my own clothes. My favorite subject in High School was Home Economics. I took cooking and sewing and decorating and even painting. I love to cook. I took every year of it I could. Did a little modeling of my self made clothing.. Won a few awards for them. Often my teachers would stop me to ask if  I made the outfit I was wearing. One of my teachers convinced me to enter a beauty pageant. I won two.
   At fifteen years of age. I met my better half. The man I refer to as Mr. Fix It. We met at church. We had attended church together most all of our lives.  He was older than I and of course didn't start to notice me until then. I was dating one of his best friends. Well when things were not working out so well there. In steps my now better half.
    Needless to say, I didn't finish High School. In 1973 a law was passed in the state of Alabama that allowed married students to attend school. In December of 1973, at sixteen years old, I was the third married student to attend the school. That did not set real well with some of the teachers at that time.
     Now fiat strikes! Not once but twice. My new husband and I were involved in not one, but two car accidents. Blessed, we walked away unharmed with only a few scratches. Both cars were totaled. The people that hit us had no insurance, at the time the only thing our insurance would do was pay off the loans we had on those cars. School became the least of my worries, after all I thought I was grown and new everything.
     Skip now to 1975! THIS IS WHERE GROWING UP FAST STEPS IN !!! Steve, my husband, and the man I refer to as Mr. Fix It, have our first child, a beautiful baby girl. We loved being parents! Soooo two years later we had another beautiful baby girl, and two years after that, a son. Well, although we were young, we had our family. Or so we thought! SURPRISE! Two years after my son was born we were expecting another child. A daughter.
     Being a stay at home mom of four children, money was tight!  I MEAN REAL TIGHT! This is when I started to refinish furniture. I had learned to refinish furniture very young. My Mom and Dad worked part time at a auction house on weekends. Dad would buy antiques, refinish and sell them. Immediately I started to like helping him refinish them. At twelve years old, He taught me how to remove the old paints, how to sand with the grain of the wood , what stains and paints to use. I loved it!!! I was so proud when a piece I had helped to refinish would sell at a profit. This was soon to become very handy, when furnishing my new homes (We bought and sold several homes). I could buy furniture and fill my homes with refinished furniture, CHEEP! You might say, I always had a thing for buying cheep. I dressed my children with homemade, consignment sale, and yard sale clothing. I was often asked how I could afford to dress that many children in designer clothing.  At the time my children made me promise not to tell. Now they do the same! LOL! I taught them well!
   Now to skip even further. I have two Dauchounds  LOVE my furbabies. The four children are married. We have seven of the most beautiful, wonderful, gorgeous grand babies ever!!! Mr. Fix It, is retired, not by choice, but because the plant he had worked at for thirty years had closed down. While looking at other options, he developed severe pain in his neck and back, loosing control of his right arm and hand. Results: Severe nerve damage, bone spur es, ruptured disk, resulting in a steel rode and bones being replaced with cadaver bones in his neck. Two years later he suffered a severe heat stoke. We are sooo blessed that at the time of the heat stoke a friend was with him that knew CPR. For a brief minute or two, there was no life. Because they were in a field with no address. Ambulance drivers could not find them. Let me tell you, today, life takes on a whole new meaning. Somewhere during all this time: Stress was taking its toll on me. (Dr's have explained to me) Strong mind but stress has taken its tole on your body.
     I developed vertigo and started to have severe panic attacks. Things that never bothered me at all would make me sick. ie: I can not watch home movies. The movement makes me physically sick. I can not drive in towns with lots of traffic. The moving vehicles appear not to stop and appear to be coming at me. Dr's have tried med to no avail. I do not like being jonked out the way meds made me feel. For a while I became very depressed.  I had always been so independent. At thirty five years old. I had decided to go back to school. Got my high school education. Even took some college classes after that. Became a certified counselor. Which I did for six years, helping to put our children through college. Later opened and ran a consignment shop. Closed shortly afterward to help my daughters with two of my grandchildren, dx with CP and Autism.
  Now let me add. I have never been a feel sorry for myself  type person. I do not like drama, any shape form or fashion. I have always tried to look on the bright side of everything. Love to laugh, even at myself.  You will often see that in my post. SO! I made a decision to start doing things I loved, things that had a calming affect on me. I started to remodel our home, with the help of my sweet husband of course. Slowly, DIYing ourselves. Well, you know I needed new furniture, and as I explained before I'm cheep! LOL!
 NOW! This is how Deb's "Projects" Furniture Rehab came to be:

I saw this old dresser in a rubbish pile, about to be burned, I pulled it out to refinished it. Yea as I've shared before my daughter almost disowned me, yet has this in her own home now. My daughters knowing how many pieces I had done through the years, gave me the vision for " Deb's "Projects" Furniture Rehab " They began to encourage me and suggested that I start to refinish and sell some of my "Projects".  By the way that's what they called them. Because, I had once worked as a counselor, one of my daughters said needs rehab! Thus Deb's "Projects" Furniture Rehab.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

What to do? Decisions, Decisions, Decisions.

 Don't know about you, but I really sweat over how I'm going to finish a lot of  my projects. There are times when I see a piece, an know just how I want it. So often I start on them and they become something totally different than I imagined.

Take this piece for instance:

 It was going to be a low sheen black. What changed? I often tell people, I allow my furniture to speak to me.  While reaching for my paint, I moved the paint can, picked it up, and looked at it. Wah Lah! This was to be my color, Ce Ce Caldwell's Young Kansas Wheat. Was it the furniture that spoke to me? Hhmmm. Not sure this time. Maybe the color  spoke to me.

I decided to modernize it a bit with a faux wood grain on the top. The top was a rendering candidate for a well needed makeover. It's finished was exhausted, with many stains and water marks.
Once painted, her bottom half was just a little plain. I like my furniture to have that extra, WOW, something to make it pop. I decided to give it a wax glaze. I first gave it a coat of clear wax, then added a glaze made from Howard's walnut color paste wax.

Well next you will see how I went just a tad overboard. I decided to paint the door inserts a faux wood also... That was past WOW, way, way to busy. Good thing being, its just paint!

The next step was fix it. I was using chalk paint, the great thing about chalk paint is... no prep work. I just painted over it. Added a little extra walnut wax to the carvings instead. Now there ya go that's better. I wanted to keep the original pulls. Gave them a good cleaning and some paint.

Now for the end results... Sooo much better!   What inspires you?               

Friday, September 7, 2012

A little vision, A lot of inspiration

The minute I saw this dusty piece that was being stored out of site, I knew I had to save it. I had a vision. With its exhausted finish and exhibited wear. It was a rendering candidate as one of my many projects.

My Inspiration: Beautiful fall colors! Those colors that you look at, an get the over all feeling that God, himself, just took out his paint brush.

I started the transformation of my vision with a good cleaning. Mr. Fix It then sanded the carvings and scratches from the top to exhibit a beautiful, colorful wood grain. Oh! I could never cover those beautiful colors. I gave them an ever so light pecan stain. Leaving the splendor of the colorful wood grain exposed. Sealed it with several coats of polycrylic for durability.

Being inspired by God's masterpiece, I chose Ce Ce Callwells, Cottonwood Sienna as my color. Adding to the one of a kind look, a pecan glaze. Other features include, bun feet and autumn green/ brown glass drawer pulls.

 As I began to paint, my thoughts were taken away to crisp mornings and cool afternoons. Mugs of warm apple cider, and the smell of  apple and pumpkin pie. To a time of the sound of the leaves, crunching underneath my footsteps.

Being so inspired, opened the eyes to my heart. I began to ponder on many of God's glorious masterpieces. The bright color of the sun, the blue of the Sky's. The gray of the clouds, the rainbow after the rains.

Can you tell? I really became excited about this piece. The style and the function lends itself well for use as a statement piece for an entryway, living room, den, or functional for a bedroom. Serves as a wonderful conversation piece. Before I knew it I was dragging it around to take photos.

This piece is now available for purchase. It's my hope that this piece will inspire you, and your hearts will be open to God's many masterpieces.

Thank you for reading this! Wishing all of you, many blessings! ~Deb.~

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Answer to most ask question: Where do you find your furniture?

Answer: Here There and Younder ! I know that's not much of an answer so I will go further and explain. I am constantly on the look out for furniture to rehab. Mr. Fix It compairs me to that of a bloodhound snooping out pieces. Here would be just a few of the places I find my treasures.

I picked this set of for $30.00! Yes! You read it right! $30.00! I broke out in a sweat when the sweet lady said, "I'll take $30.00 dollars. $30.00 a piece. I was excited!!! NO! She meant $30.00 for both pieces. It was all I could do to hold my composure.


Dumps: Yes, Dumps
I saw this piece on top of a pile of  garbage that was about to be  haled off to a dump. (This one almost caused my daughter to disown me!)  Yes, it was a mess. But solid wood. Best of all Free!!! My favorite. Sanding and sanding and sanding some more. She became quiet a beauty. And just guess who became the new owner? The daughter that almost disowned me.

Word of Mouth:
Let your friends and family know that you are looking for pieces to refinish. Ask them to be on the lookout also. I received a message from a friend. She saw the dresser on a swap and shop page for $10.00. Of course this lady was making a quick call and off to pick it up with paint in my hair. A call from another friend alerted me to the set of ladder back chairs for $30.00. I'm racing off to a thrift store with bed head!!!

Thrift Stores:
I frequent so often, they know me by name. I often have them tell me they've got some nice stuff in and when they are putting it out. After all, I'm probably there best customer! My advice is frequent often. Some days I come home with nothing others I come home with a truck load.

Swap n Shop ( Or whatever its called in your area)
The dresser, top left, was listed in a swap and shop.  During my pick up, I ask if she might have any more items she would be interested in selling. (Doesn't hurt to ask)  I came home with an entire set. Once you purchase from someone, let them know what you are doing. I often have people that sold me one piece contact me with something else.

Craigs List:
My advice here, DO NOT, commit to buy sight unseen, and never ever pick up alone. Unfortunately there is some crazies out there. I bought this piece sight unseen, just a picture, which must have been an earlier one. Mr. Fix It had to completely rebuild it. It was in really bad shape and must have been stored in a barn. It sure smelled like it. Took me forever to get rid of the smell. After months cleaning and a lot of hard work, she did turn out a beauty.

Second Hand Stores:
I had my eye on this pretty set for a while. It was priced a little higher than I was willing to pay. I kept an eye on it, checking each time I went to see if it had sold. The day I walked in and saw it was half price. I really had to contain myself not to do the moon walk right in the middle of the store. (I was afraid Mr. Fix It might crawl underneath something.) if I did.

Where do you find your treasures?