Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Family Trunk

Remember the table I took from country to beachy?  You can read all about it here.  Well, my friend's mother was so impressed with the table she wanted to know if I could paint a trunk she had.  This is the end result:

But this is what how it looked when they dropped it off.  Just a plain ol' cedar trunk that was not very pretty!  My friend is so sweet, she drops it off and says:  "take your time and work your magic!"  As most of of you know, those are my DREAM words!  I did ask a few questions just to get an idea of what color I should use, I mean I most certainly didn't want to paint it sage green if the rest her home was done in hot pinks and fluorescent orange (although I really couldn't imagine my friend's mother decorating her home with these colors, but hey, you never know, I haven't seen her since we were in high school a VERY long time ago and you know people change over the years...) 

So the trunk sat under my carport for a while so I could come up with a plan of action.  As people were coming and going to pick up and drop off things soooooo many of them would say "you're going to paint a cedar trunk???"  you know like cedar is some kind of magical wood and I was going to destroy all of its magical ability by painting it, and I was soooooo glad to be able to blame it on tell people that it belonged to someone else and that THEY were the ones who wanted me to paint it.  But truth be known, I agreed with my friend's mother, that thang was just homely and it needed help!

So one day I get started.  I had asked my friend if it would be okay to change the legs and after getting the "hey, that's a GREAT idea" I ran to my favorite store Lowe's (yes, most girls like Macy's or Sak's, I prefer Lowe's, Home Depot and Hobby Lobby).  Got our girl some new legs and started painting.  I painted her a pretty mossy green.  Then I got stuck.  I had wanted to do one of those neat graphic transfers where it looks like a label off an old crate, but I just couldn't get my printer to cooperate.  (I will figure that out one day!)  So instead I did a graphic transfer using freezer paper and printed out the wreath.  After applying the wreath I created a stencil for the "B". 

Then I distressed her and added lots of dark wax.

Here's a side view.  (be sure to click on any of the pictures to get a larger view)

And a top view.

And check out those new legs!  aren't they much cuter than her old ones????  Wish I could go to Lowe's and get me some new legs...  long skinny ones!

So when I'm all done I text my friend.  THEN she tells me the story behind the trunk.  It was a wedding gift to her mother in 1957 from her in-laws. Over the years her mother stored the most wonderful treasures in it.  My friend and her sisters used to love to dig through the trunk going through all the wonderful things her mother stored there, the dance recital costumes, the Brownie uniform, baby blankets. That trunk held all those wonderful memories for all those years.  None of them ever knew that their mother had NEVER liked the look of the trunk until my friend found out this year.  She was was shocked because her mother had never said anything, she had never wanted to hurt her in-laws feelings so she had kept it all these years, all the while disliking the look. (ya know that's a really long time to keep something you think is ugly around the house, just sayin')  After hearing the story I was glad that I couldn't get the other graphic transfer to work, I think it was meant to have a "B" on there to stand for their family name.  I tell everyone that God guides my hands and my ideas, this is a prime example!  He knew what needed to be there! 
Well, after hearing this story I was scared to death!  What if her mother hated what I had done???  After all these years she was finally doing something about that homely trunk and what if I had just screwed it up royally?????  Thankfully, she LOVED it! YAAAAYYYY!!!! I can quit holding my breath and breathe now!  
She has refilled it with all the magical things her family loves!  You see the magic wasn't in the wood, it was what was inside the wood that held the magic and that is something I could never change...
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  1. I have talent for finding fabulous pieces with fabulous prices but lack the talent you have to achieve the vision I see for each one. Ergo, I have a LOT of "projects" cluttering my space. lol! You are making great use of the gift God has given you (ps: I though I recognized Emaline's name ~ tell Marni her (old) pharmacist said hello)

  2. Why thank you Connie! After many years of not recognizing my gift, I now do my best to put it to good use. I will be happy to pass along your message to Marni and if you are local I'll be happy to help you with your "projects." Best wishes for a blessed new year!