Settling in and a recent re-do

We made it to California!! Such a long and exhausting process but we are here and very thankful! I have been a very busy bee lately with major unpacking, and sorting, and box-breaking-down-ing that I haven't had much time to do anything inspiring in the furniture re-do department but I do have a small project to share with you. Right before we moved (like two days before) a friend of mine told me that she had an antique sideboard (think gorgeous tall carved legs) that she was trying to get RID of! She doesn't like it...its been in her family for EVER (since that's how old it is) and it doesn't fit anyone's decor style so she asked me if I wanted it. Uh YA I did! Here she is...

I had wanted a vintage sideboard for a really long time and free (and solid, and gorgeous, and durable, and BIRDSEYE MAPLE) is a very good price! Did I mention its Birdseye maple?? Oh I did...ya it is! So here's the thing...even though the finish is gorg it was in less than great shape with tons of scratches/fading/etc. I honestly almost painted it...I had NO idea how to repair birdseye maple and I didn't even want to try. I was planning on painting it gray or white...lots of distressing...yada yada typical stuff..but something inside me said WHAT ARE YOU THINKING? I didn't have a sense of peace or purpose about painting over this gorgeous wood...even though it was less than gorgeous at the moment! So I got on good ol google and researched how to spruce it up. It had a large white stain on the top (like the kind that moisture causes) and I figured that the only way to get it out would be painting over it. Well I was WRONG. Did you know that an old T shirt/plus a low/medium heat iron=wood stain removal powerhouse team?? It does work and it works WONDERS! Water rings, white stains, brown stains...if water caused it...the iron/t-shirt combo gets it out! It takes a while...put on a movie and get comfy because you'll be bored out of your mind. Or do what I did...set the tshirt on the top...the iron FACE down on top of that and walk away for a couple mins. No joke. You'll come back and lift it up and it'll be WAY less noticeable or gone! My spot was really really big so I had to move the iron around about 502 times before it was a ton better but each time I saw improvement. I didn't give up and neither should you!! :) So while the iron was doing its job I decided to go to work on the scratches. I had an old minwax stain pen in Golden oak from some scratched hardwood rental house floors that we repaired before we moved out to insure we got our deposit back (were sneaky ones!) and I started lightly painting the pen tip over those scratches...they made them blend in SO much! It worked wonders! I drained that whole pen on this sideboard! I recommend the pen option if you don't want to re-do a whole piece and just have a scratch to repair that's lighter than the piece...try it! You'll be amazed! So after thoroughly ironing the top and fixing the scratches I took off the gross hardwear and soaked them in white vinegar for about an hour and then cleaned them thoroughly with soap and water and a toothbrush in the grooves. Lo and behold they are BRIGHT GOLD! SWOON! Birdseye maple AND bright gold ring pulls???? I'm in heaven! The stain on the top was made significantly less obvious but I still didn't totally dig it so I decided to leave the base alone and paint wide gray stripes on the top to hide some of the worse areas. I love and adore this piece. It totally "makes" my dining room and I will NEVER sell it!
Here she is after her make-over!

Close up of the gorgeous hardwear!

And here's how that area looks as of today. I put my large book page canvas above it, plus a few fun dining room-ish items on top. I seriously love it!

Oh and I almost forgot...the stripes! I dry-brushed them on to let some of the wood show through!

LOVE! Oh and last but not least...remember that yucky white stain? Well scroll above to the before pic with the adorable pooch in the pic...see that heinous HUGE white stain??? Well here it is today after the iron/tshirt removal miracle...
Yup it pretty much rocks. There was no photo shop involved really worked that well! I'm totally gonna be ironing ALL my unpainted pieces now because goodness knows they've got LOTS of rings to remove! I hope you all are having a FAB week! Thanks for reading this here blog...I adore your comments!!

Linking up to...

southern hospitality
Furniture Feature Fridays
The Shabby Nest


  1. LOVE IT!!!!!! SO glad you made it pretty again!

  2. So glad you decided not to paint it. It is stunning! I am a new follower.

  3. 'It is beautiful= so pretty and great job on getting rid of the stain- I didn't know that trick! Would love for you to come link this up at Feathered Nest Friday! :)

  4. I'm glad that you didn't decide to paint this... that wood is too beautiful to cover up!

  5. Is *does* rock! The stripes are a great disguise to your bad places, but I'm glad you still get to see the beautiful wood!

  6. It is a beautiful piece. Some pieces are not meant to be painted. It is important to be discerning in this craze of painting everything. I paint my share of furniture but I also recognize that paint is not always an improvement. Good job!