Going Mad With a Paintbrush

It is two weeks minus one day until MOVING DAY. This means I am panicking and writing long lists. As well as packing and getting rid of half the furniture, I have decided to make my life even more difficult by painting much of the furniture I have left. Reason being I am moving to a tiny white cottage, and if I fill it with large dark furniture it will look even tinier. And right now I have a shed to paint in. Our new cottage has a cottage-sized shed. It looks like a small concrete bunker, and will be full of all the things I can't bear to throw away, and will not be convenient for painting in.

The first furniture I painted were these chests of drawers. I bought them many years ago from a nice old man in town who built chests of drawers in his garage every few weeks when he wanted some extra money to go fishing up at the lakes. I thought he would have a coronary when he lifted them into the van. These drawers will definitely outlive him. They have spent the last ten years in the children's room, getting drawn on and scratched and dented.

When I cleaned them out and packed and threw away their contents, I found these labels that Rosy had added when she was about six or seven:

Pancs, Dressers, Singlet, Scurts, Jamqers (jumpers, that's sweaters, pull-overs, jerseys etc for the non-Australians), and undis.

Then she tried a different spelling for Sckerts. Clearly she had quite a number of them.

Jinse. Classic. I kept the labels of course. They may inform clothes distribution at our new location.

There was lots of tedious sanding, then undercoat, then two coats of enamel, but look how darling they are now.

Then I started in on the two big book cases. The Man built these when I was pregnant with The Girl twenty years ago. They are gorgeous, but dreadfully annoying to paint.

And even though I am tucked up cosily in bed I just popped up to take a photo of the finished product.

Yes, it is a white book case.

And here is today's project. This morning my good friend Oscar and his handy teenage son, and the handy teenage son's best buddy came over with a trailer and took away my very large dining table and chairs, and much later on, after several adventures, they returned with their table in exchange, which is very cute and cottagey and rustically battered. I have known this family for nineteen years, and they have had this table all this time, and it has seen many communal meals and cups of tea, and craft projects, and all the adventures of daily life are inscribed across its surface. So I got to work with a paint stripping product I found in the shed. It is a pink goo that I smeared all over the table, left it on while I ate dinner, then came back to scrape the top, and rub the legs with steel wool. It was quite fun really, more effective on the legs than the top of the table. Anyway, tomorrow I will sand and then oil it, and then I might take a wee break, and just do relaxing things like pack boxes.

Moving is vile, and I can't imagine why I thought it would be a good idea, and I still have an overwhelming daily desire to hide under the covers instead of getting up to face the day, but today, for the first time in a good while, I thought that just maybe it all might come together in time..


GretchenJoanna said…
Beautiful! I marvel at your organization, your spunk, and your hard work.
Linda said…
Well done on every front. I love your white painted chest of drawers and bookcase. They look fabulous!
fran7narf said…
When you finally move in to your tiny cottage you are going to feel a lot lighter in so many ways. Keep at it, you are almost there :)
Jo said…
Thanks for your encouragement, my friends:)
Anonymous said…
Oh well done Jo . You are going swimmingly. Overwhelming as it may be now, you will appreciate it all once you are settled. I too am a great believer in white paint as the cure for all evil. Cheers Wendy/duchess_declutter
Fernglade Farm said…
Hi Jo,

Moving is vile, but then you are also on an adventure, and didn't those crafty Hobbits say something about adventures which were full of equal surprise, joy and discomfit? :-)! I hear you though, I hate moving too. The last place I moved from (which I rented whilst building here) was so poorly made and finished that it took four days to clean - and I certainly didn't get it that way in the beginning. Poopy had been very naughty on the carpet as the carpet cleaners were all too happy to point out to me. But then eventually it was done. I hope you have plans for the new garden?

At least the weather has been nice for a move? Well, yesterday was a bit drizzly here but today was almost perfect.

Painting the furniture was a very good idea for that very reason. Very astute. The many items are looking great too.


Minerva said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hobart Chic said…
I can sympathise. The only good side of moving, is settling into a new location and a clean slate. That, and the forced de-cluttering process I engage in.
golly, you're amazing. bookshelves are one thing, but tables and drawers ... I'd just throw a white table cloth over them. go, jo!!
Jo said…
Wendy, yes, white paint makes everything better:)

Chris, I am totally hobbit-like in my natural preference for the quiet life.

Hobart Chic, it will be wonderful to only unpack those things that I really like. It is very painful moving them out my front door though. I am still waiting to find the person who needs my couch!

e, table cloth! Why didn't I think of that!

Anonymous said…
What amazing work. (But a little self-punishing schedule, though I do see the practicalities of doing it in current house.) You will no longer be able to call yourself vague. We have all seem the massive practical achievements.

You know my views on lists. That is one brilliant list!

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