I took off running (actually driving) and made time, aiming for the side of town where the trash trucks may not yet have plundered MY potential treasure trove.
I was in luck. The streets were laden with fresh rejects awaiting a picker's eye to spot and rescue them.
Unfortunately my back seat couldn't hold all I wanted to add to my stockpile, so I had to hightail it home after loading up the first time. I took armfuls of new, unfinished wood from the underside of a bunkbed as well as the head boards, a basket with handles, a tray, some weathered fence posts...
...the drawers for a dresser, which was unfortunately no where to be seen itself.
The trash truck was closing in, so I had to rush. There was also a great 9 drawer, late 60's early 70's dresser about 4 apartments down from the pile I was plundering, and it was standing on it's head hoping I would take notice and stop to perform a sort of 911 rescue and recovery on it. Well, believe me, I noticed, and I really wanted to help it out, unfortunately there was no way to get that sweet thing in the car. It was long, lean and drawer-rich, with enough detail to have some real fun with. It would have been a dream to redo, but alas, my car's backseat has its limits.
Sometimes a girl could use a second set of hands to help with the heavy lifting. Mainly I just want someone along to share in the shame when the hefty load won't fit after struggling with it, because an audience tends to show up, watching with amusement, intrigue and that quizzical look that says they are trying to comprehend what exactly I would want that for and what kind of desperation I must be in to dig through other people's garbage piles. When you have to send it back to the curb to await the trash men, it's a real bummer, an epic fail...sheer shame. I prefer to have someone with me at such moments to deflect all that. You feel a bit less visible if someone else is there to absorb some of the onlooker stares.
I should certainly have loved to have had that piece. I hate missing out on large old dressers! I'm having picker's remorse about it. It plagued me all day yesterday. Another one bites the dust. After all, it would have been free.
Distressed Donna's words about getting a truck still ring in my head weekly as the discards, shabby gems and timeworn classics lie unplucked from their resting places. I SHOULD start scounting the road for old trucks for sale. If we're gonna open a shop, I'm not going to be able to afford passing up fantastical free stuff just because my back seat is limited.
On another note, last I left you on Saturday, I had regretfully driven away from a French door that I was unable to get into my car. Well, I'm happy to report that I went back by while returning to a yard sale for these leaded glass sidelights...
...and the French door was still there! Note: Lynette said the sidelights were definitely worth the asking price, and that we should have them, so I hightailed it back and was able to get the woman (hesitantly) to go down on her price! Woohoo! Leaded glass and heavy wood, and they were under 7 feet and fit in my car, end to end. While they look pretty spectacular in the light of this photograph, the brown is just not cutting it and the intent is to paint them white. The green patina of the leading would look great with a distressed white finish. Meanwhile, Lynette was able to come to my rescue in regard to the French door, and we loaded that baby up and delivered it to her storehouse of goodies. I was happy to see she had a fantastic stash going of her own!
So aside from these roadside junkfest finds, we have had quite the busy time adding to our stockpile today. I headed out yesterday morning on an impromptu trip to check the curbside in a neighboring town. It was 8 a.m. and my goal was to be home by 8:30 so I could start right in working my projects for a full day of glorious results. Along the way, I encountered a wreck of a 3 drawer chest I couldn't fit in my car. I snagged the drawers (only two of them had hardware, but I loved it) and texted Lynette to see if she was going to be out and about. It was early. I sent the text and drove on. As I went, I started finding other "too big for the backseat" things, texting my finds to her as I went. Then I started to head home, stopping to pick up a really weathered (but über cool) chair that I had spotted the evening before but hadn't picked up at the time because I was in a rush. Luckily, I still had room for a chair.
It was National Empty Chair Day yesterday, so it worked out perfectly that I got this one. It sat out in the front yard all day.
Check out this glorious shabby detail:
Hurray! Lynette to the rescue! We met up, and after she got the dresser and a pallet and unloaded them at my house, we took off to see what else awaited.
The three drawer chest dressed up in a gaudy outfit, yes, but we can fix that.
Check out that leg!
It turned out we found quite a bit, and we loaded Lynette's car with tons of wood drawers, furniture legs, three clay pots, a yard stick. Then we spotted a huge, 2 column white shelving unit that would be perfect in our shop. However, there was no way it would fit in her car, so we drove on and spotted these amazing wood folding chairs.
We've never seen any like them (and of course I didn't get a shot of the detail, so you can't tell how cool they are - they have a delicate cutout design on the seat backs, and the chairs are padded). We were so excited. Then, we spotted an old boat, like a dingy, about 8 or 10 ft. long, kinda weathered. We had to drive on with remorse hanging over us because we couldn't fit it in.
As you can imagine, after acquiring all of this, there has been a lot of hauling, cleaning, sanding, and along the way, a few stops at places like Dunkin Donuts' drive through, a consignment shop and Goodwill. Needless to say I wasn't home by 8:30. Try 12:30. We scored the goods, though, and the loss of time only ramped up my work ethic.
Lynette and I each took charge of some of the finds. The good news was that I had two sweet college students who were off school and they offered their free time to work projects with me. I set them to work scraping the drawers of the three drawer chest. They sat out in the heat and got it done!
The layers of paint were elastic-like and peeled somewhat easily in places; it had to come off. That took a while. While they did that, I glued and clamped the phone table that was bowing and did the same to one of the dresser drawers. There weren't enough clamps, so I used a heavy metal pot filled with rocks and plants to assist me. Hey, whatever works!
Then I scraped and sanded the top of the dresser, sanded the drawers after the girls were done, picked up mushy avocados that had fallen from my tree, got stung by a wasp, and on and on. All in a day's work.
Time does not allow me to tell of the glories of the day before and the final touches that I'm pleased to say were put on the vanity I got a week ago. I also worked with the drawer fronts I salvaged and started another new project with plates that I got at Goodwill. There is fabric ready to go for another project, and all the while that was going on over the weekend, Casey was busy with some design work of her own in her bedroom. My fingers are crumpled from the scraping and sanding, the sewing and the painting and waxing. My back is crying out for rest.
I'll pick up there next time and show you the progress we've made.
For now, it's time to stop trying to outrun the trash man. I have to get back to the paying job.
I'll be sharing this at:
Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Nifty Thrifty Sunday @ Nifty Thrifty Things
Sunday Show Off @ Twigg Studios
Creative Things Thursday @ The Vintage Farmhouse
Cowgirl Up @ Cedar Hill Ranch
Wow Us Wednesdays @ Savvy Southern Style
Be Inspired @ Elizabeth & Co.