Antique Sewing table Gets Cleaned and Restored
It feels like ages since I’ve written a DIY post! That four part series on money was fun, but I’ve missed photographing and writing about projects, so without further ado, I would like to introduce you to my latest and greatest garage sale find:
You won’t believe what I stole this sweet thing for. I was driving down a side road deep in Illinois farmland when I came upon this garage sale. Not really having time, I made a last minute decision to stop. Pulling up I could see mounds of junk and wasn’t too hopeful, but then, there sat this lovely sewing table. When I asked the man said he’d give it to me for $20!!!
Now, I don’t know what the actual value of these is, but it has to be more than that. Regardless of its value, I’ve been wanting one so badly because of how cool they look!
Once I got home I couldn’t wait to explore and investigate this piece. I was absolutely giddy to find the drawers were full of little treasures that I can only sit and dream of what they were meant to be used for: white ribbon to adorn a wedding dress, buttons to replace the ones that continually break off the strong husband’s shirts as he works, bits of lace to make doilies for the dining room table for the guests that come over, pins to hold a quilt together for a new baby…*sigh. I love old furniture.
Dreaming aside, the old thing had to be cleaned up if it was going to take up residence in our house and I knew just the stuff to make that happen! Murphy’s soap is oil based and excellent on wood and smells wonderful. Just a capful in some hot water is all you need to really get the sheen back on old pieces like this.
As I was cleaning, I removed the drawers, which wasn’t an easy task due to the shift the wood had made through the years. Some gentle taps with a hammer put the drawer supports mostly back into place. I don’t plan to use the drawers, so it’s ok if they don’t slide easily.
This is before adjusting it. You can see where its detached in the bottom right corner.
Now, those lovely cast iron legs were just covered in cobwebs and a bit rusty in places.
I went back and forth on this, but eventually decided to give them a fresh coat of black Rustoleum* spray paint mostly because I know our little one will be exploring around those legs.
Now with it all cleaned up, of course I had to rearrange the furniture so that this lovely table gets center stage in our living room.
This is a great upgrade from what used to be here: a very contemporary cubby cabinet that was dark and not my style at all.
The French flair chairs work better over here anyway. It makes me think of Jane Austen movies where they have all these little sitting areas in each room. I often go through the mail here and it’s quite comfortable.
I do have to note that I my rag may have been a bit too wet when I cleaned the drawer fronts because they got white water stain all over them. Whoops.
I’m so excited to have found this little piece of history. I wonder if the woman who worked at it years ago to sew and repair her families clothes would be glad that it is so appreciated now. Regardless of its past, this antique sewing table is one of the best garage sale finds for a steal of $20.
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