Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Rat Dresser Makeover

This is where it all began... The story of Dumped and Discovered.  This is the first piece of furniture that I purchased for our business.

Meet "The Rat Dresser."  (Note: This piece was named before I started giving my treasures more glamorous names like Bertha, Bernadette, and Denny). 

Two years ago, Lola and I went to an antique store in a small town near our house.  While there, the sweet lady at the counter handed us a flier.  It advertised a "yard sale" in an old warehouse.  This was before our thrifting days "officially" started, but we decided to give it a try.  Needless to say... WE WENT CRAZY!  It took three car loads to bring all of our treasures home, and Mr. Dump threatened to call the producers of "Hoarders." 

Most of the pieces have been re-vamped and sold.  But this one.... This one almost didn't make it to the transformation stage.  This one almost got re-dumped.  I just couldn't bring myself to tackle it...  Until now...

This is what it looked like when I bought it...  I turned the top into a chalkboard long ago!  Click here to check it out...

This piece became "The Rat Dresser" for the furry creature that once called the bottom drawer home.  GROSS!!!  Like I said, we didn't know what we were doing back then, so I didn't think to check the drawers first.  All I saw was the $20 price tag!

Mr. Dump fixed this problem pretty quickly by cutting new bases for the drawers.  He didn't mind the task because he got a new jigsaw out of the deal.  While he was having fun, I tackled the sides with every cleaning product I could find.  Then I added a little color by painting the inserts.

You know I love paintable wallpaper.  Since there wasn't enough wood filler in the world to fix the drawer fronts, I decided to use this magical invention. (Again!)

This is what it looked like after a newly sanded top, painted drawer inserts, and my own special chalk paint recipe.  Click here to read about it!

Mr. Dump stained the top and added a few coats of Polyurethane.

The difference between the before and after stages were so insane that we had to take an in-between picture.

And now for the dramatic after...  Here she is sitting beautifully in our foyer.  Mr. Dump and Lola found the cool metal containers during a thrifting excursion while I was teaching - Thanks, guys!

No more furry creatures living here...


A close-up for your viewing pleasure...

This is the beautiful distressing on the sides of the piece.

I am officially in love!  This one is going to stay with me for a very long time.

Happy Junkin'!


Monday, October 8, 2012

Denny - The Man, The Hutch

Cue the music from Sanford and Son.......


Dumped and Discovered is BACK!  We spent a very lovely weekend cleaning items/painting treasures/throwing out our backs, and we loved every minute of it.  Yes, Lola/Laura was in town, bossing us around. Can you tell? :)

Anyway, on to the featured item.  We found this beautiful art deco piece at a barn sale in DC.  When I say barn sale, I really mean BARN SALE.  I mean, there was a dirt road involved.  And we didn't find this piece in the front.  No, siree.  We climbed BEHIND the front row of junk treasures and carefully avoided the huge hole in the floor (yes, we were warned not to go back there, but we are nothing if not rule breakers).  In fact, this piece is named for the man who explicitly asked us NOT to climb back there - Denny.  Ah, Denny and his glorious muffintop.  Said with love, of course.  We adore Denny the man, especially when he gave us Denny the hutch for $50!!!  

Are some of you questioning our sanity right now?  Fair enough.  We may have questioned it ourselves a few times along this journey, particularly when loading and unloading this beast!  But she was worth the work, as you can see below.  Mr. Dump went after her with his FANCY new sprayer and some great gray paint.  For all you wood purists out there, please take my word that Denny needed a little paint on the barn, if you know what I mean.  Shout out to my girl Honey Boo Boo!

For those of you actually reading the words and not just looking at the pretty pictures, we asked Mr. Dump very sweetly to cut a new back for Denny and we loved the original hardware so much that we kept it.  Thankfully, the gorgeous mirror on top remained intact in the trip from DC to Charlotte, so all we had to do was clean that up.  We think she's a beauty!

Here she is in the booth, which has some other finds from our recent junk hunts.  We hope someone takes her home and lets her live in a place with solid flooring.  And no mice.  We will not speak of the mice again.

As an added bonus, here's a lovely cabinet found at an estate sale in DC.  Lola had the turquoise sprayer going, and I didn't want to risk getting a blue camera out of the deal, so I didn't get a before picture.  Sorry, but you've never seen how reckless she is with that thing (we only let her work on the small pieces.  Sad, but true.)

We made some great progress this weekend, so more projects will be shared in the weeks ahead!  I'm going to try to post at least one project a week, so thanks for hanging in there until Summer Sarah returns!

Happy junkin'!


PS Anyone want to buy some well-loved but HUGE plants?  We have to evict some from the house, and thought our lovely readers might want the first shot at them.  Seriously, these things are huge, but really healthy and great listeners when there's no one else in the house.  Here they are, all lined up and waiting for their new homes!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Chicken Wire Hutch

Life is hectic.  I mean H-E-C-T-I-C.  As you all know, I am a teacher in my normal life and a DIY furniture upcycler in my fantasy life.  I started school 5 weeks ago and it has been the hardest start in my teaching career.  I decided to loop with my class this year which ended up being a really good decision.  However, learning a new curriculum and adjusting to all the newness that this year has brought has been difficult.  Now my weekends are spent lesson planning, grading papers, emailing parents, (the list goes on and on...) - and NOT restoring furniture.  I hope all of that is about to change.  Mr. Dump and I are off to buy a new sprayer and I am ready to make time for my second passion.  Since it has been 2 months since my last post (please forgive me...), I'm bringing you a project that is large and in charge!  Take a look at this beauty...

Seriously... Can you say 1970s???  This piece was outdated, boring, and needed a makeover in the worst possible way.

We took all of the hardware off and removed the terrible glass. 

It was a rainy day so we put blankets down in the kitchen (Sorry, Mom! That's what happens when you move out!) and painted away.  It was a tight space, so Mr. Dump and I were constantly fighting over paint brushes, Cool-Whip containers of paint, and room!

This is what it looked like before I started playing with stain.

Take a look at the cabinet doors below...  The one on the top has a layer of stain and the one on the bottom doesn't.  Luckily, I liked the texture that the stain provided, so I decided to stain the entire piece.  We used stain that had polycrylic mixed in, and it provided a really nice protective coat.  Finally, I added cute red knobs, chicken wire, and put the piece back together!

Here is what the top looks like...

And this is the final transformation!

Random question...  If I start a weekly linky party, would any of you link up your projects?  Thoughts?  Suggestions?

As always...

Happy Junkin'!


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Good Grief!

Let me tell you, you are some patient people.  Sarah hasn't written since July 25th (!!!), and yet you continue to faithfully check her blog, hoping for more lovely transformations of furniture.  In fact, there are now 500 of you following her!!!  That's incredible!!!!  Heck, I'm her SISTER and I've just about given up on her.  You guys are incredible.

So where, you might ask, is Ms. Sarah?  Contrary to popular belief, she did not get trapped under a large piece of furniture.  And she did not get a big head when she appeared in Ladies' Home Journal and leave all of her fans in the dust.  I do believe that she is, at this very moment, buried under a pile of 5th grade papers.  Turns out, when you move from teaching the 4th grade to the 5th grade, you have to re-teach yourself all of the 5th grade stuff first!  Remember that show, "Are you Smarter than a 5th Grader?"  It was harder than you thought it would be, right?

Since School Sarah is back in action (as opposed to Summer Sarah, who we all know and love), I'm filling in this evening, just to reassure people that she hasn't suffered some kind of heinous death at the hands of her sander. Also, because I couldn't stand to read about "Blanche" any more.  I'm "Lola," Sarah's big sister, and I serve as the furniture picker/sander/general nag of Dumped and Discovered.  Believe me, I've been nagging her to write for WEEKS now.  I promise you, she has been painting, and we have been shopping, and she WILL start to blog again soon!

In the meantime, can we ask for a favor?  I know,  I know.  It's a lot to ask, especially when there are no pictures to this posting.  But as you all know, Sarah and her fabulous husband are in the process of updating our parents' house, which involves a lot of, um, editing of stuff.  We've worked through most of the house and really, really need to have a yard sale.  The house, however, is pretty far off the beaten path, and it would be hurtful if no one showed up.  Does anyone know of a great community yard sale coming up this fall where we can rent a space (or five?)  Anywhere in the Charlotte area would be fantastic, and any chance to meet fellow Dumped and Discovered fans would be much appreciated!  We are open on dates, but we would absolutely love to get rid of the junk treasures very soon!  Let us know in the comments section if you know of a great place to peddle our wares!  To be clear, it's not really Dumped and Discovered pieces that we're selling, but rather the crap stuff that is taking up room where Dumped and Discovered treasures should be.  Let us know, and bug Sarah about blogging more, okay? 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A Golden Makeover

Meet Blanche.  She is the tall, thin, more risque cousin to Bertha from my earlier post called The Many Shades of Gray.  A little background on Blanche...

My sister (Lola) and I started an annual trip to the Chartreuse and Co. barn/yard sale in DC during the early weeks of summer.  We enjoy looking at the finished pieces, but find more success in the unfinished barn.  Unfortunately, this time we only found several accessories... no major furniture finds.  There is a reason Lola is our number one buyer... Even though we struck out at the initial barn sale, she had her list with Plan B ready to go.  We were on our way to another barn sale nearby!!!  After several twists and turns (and a few "where in the world are we" moments), we drove down the gravel driveway of the sale.  That's where we found this beauty sitting outside the barn with a neon pink tag that said.... Get ready for this.... $10!!!  I snatched the tag off the drawer and basically threw her over my shoulder.  This is what I was looking for!  A great piece for a great price! 

Blanche traveled down the road and back again (up top if you are now singing "Thank you for being a friend").  This Golden Girl had a little plastic surgery on her right drawer because someone took the time to rebuild it - and I'm pretty sure they hate me now for snagging her for $10.  She had some wrinkles on top, but her bones were still very solid.

I mixed a bunch of grays together (I'm pretty sure the real Blanche would have preferred something a little more colorful) until I had the perfect combination...

Then I found new hardware to update her look and give her a little bling...

Now she is sitting back, kicking up her heels, and waiting for someone to bring her home - preferably a strapping young man that doesn't mind a lady with quite a past.

Come on people...Her heart is true, she's a pal and a confidant.

Happy Junkin'!


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Caribbean Upcycle

Mr. Dump and I were headed to the beach a few weeks ago and (like we do on every road trip) did a little junkin' on the way.  It was a typical Saturday morning.  Mr. Dump was at the wheel and I was sitting shotgun with my eyes peeled.  With every neon pink, yellow, or green sign, my head would whip around as I grunted for Mr. Dump to stop.  Depending on how much coffee I've had, we are typically by the signs before I see them.  But not this time.  We were sitting at a light, and there it was - the dark black arrow.  "There, there!" I shouted.  Side note: We were not having much luck on that particular day and I could tell that Mr. Dump was losing steam.  Mr. Dump (who was also very anxious to get to the beach) screeched into the turning lane, hoping this would be our last stop.  After we turned, we kept driving, and driving, and driving until finally THERE SHE WAS!  This beauty was sitting in the front yard...

I HAD to have her and was out of the car before Mr. Dump came to a complete stop.  I have been looking for a piece like this since we started this crazy hobby.  The man running the sale was clearly ready to get out of the heat, open a cold beverage, and get his junk (my treasures) off his yard.  After some brief haggling, we carted this around all week at the beach and brought her home.  I decided to tackle this piece while Mr. Dump was at work.  This is how you manage a heavy piece of furniture by yourself...  (and now we all know why muscle relaxers stay in the front of my medicine cabinet!)

Her top was in pretty good shape.  I had hoped to stain it, but discovered that it was covered with a layer of veneer...

She was pretty grimy from her former life by the sea, so I scrubbed her down and let the sun continue to disinfect her drawers while I went to town on the rest.

Since I couldn't stain the top, I loaded on a layer of primer to give it a little extra protection (plus she was used to wearing sunscreen)...

Then came the hard part...  What color would I use???  I have been trying to use up some of the paint in our garage, so I looked at and thought about every color.  None of them were good enough for this piece.  I had a color in mind, and that color was not in my garage.  Even though I was sweating from head to toe, I made a trip to Lowe's to find the perfect color (and hoped that I wouldn't run into anyone).  The first color that I picked up was the color that I had in mind... Caribbean Splash.... PERFECT for my sunbathing beauty!

Pretty soon I was back to work... I lifted her onto the sawhorses (don't ask me how - I think it was my super-strength determination)... and painted several coats with my sprayer...

After painting the drawers, I had to decide... to distress or not to distress??

Here she is now... Perfectly blue... Perfectly distressed... and Perfectly waiting for a good home...

Her side view...

It's not the beach.... but here she is waiting patiently in our booth...

She seems quite happy with her new life...

Time to go outside and sweat!

Happy Junkin'!


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Half-Bath Makeover

Today, we bring you another installment of your favorite series: Bringing Mom's House into the 21st Century.  We had almost the whole gang here last week.  Mom and Dad came down to organize the attic and move more boxes to Virginia - which was so much fun during a heat wave in Charlotte.  When they left, Laura, Mr. Dump and I were free to tackle the real projects that we wanted to tackle.  Which brings us to the transformation at hand...

This is the half bathroom in the downstairs of Mom and Dad's house.  Twenty or so years ago, it was lovely.  Today, however, NOT SO MUCH (sorry, Mom...)!

The room is located in the center of the house, so there are no windows to let natural light shine in.  It has always been a little on the dark side, and the hunter green and maroon stripes didn't help.  The photo below is the result of the fabulous flash on my camera... It is much darker than this in person....

My dad installed the wallpaper shortly after the house was built.  My dad is somewhat of a perfectionist and this wallpaper was meant to NEVER come down!  It was a little heartbreaking to transform this room because I can still hear Dad's choice words and frustrations while making sure all of the lines connected perfectly.  (I love you, Dad!)   

Here are a few more shots of the bathroom before the magic happened...

Although the paper was never intended to come down, it did start to peel in a couple of spots.  Therefore, we tried to steam the wallpaper off with our handy steamer - we failed.  See our other bathroom transformation (where it worked) here.  The picture below shows our effort and failed attempt at taking down the "I'm never coming off this friggin' wall" paper.

Needless to say, we gave up.  We decided to prime the walls (over the wallpaper) with two coats of extra strength latex Kilz.  Between coats, we spackled a few spots where you could see the seams.  While it dried, we painted the mirror below that I just happened to have in the garage.

We stuck with a neutral color to help the room feel bigger and brighter. We added a couple of cute frames, a homemade towel rack (thanks, Mr. Dump) and voila... Here she is....  Updated and beautiful!

We left a picture that Mom had in the bathroom originally because it reminds her of her three babies - Awww...  However, we did update the frame with a little spray paint.  We also decided not to put the wooden shelves back in to give it a larger feel.  We still need to add a light fixture, change out the faucet, and put new electrical outlets in the walls.  More staging and updates to come! 

Happy Junkin'!