Thursday, March 21, 2013

Should I Cheat?

Me and the JunkStalker (my car's new name) took off right at dawn through the wilds of our town, stealthily stalking our junky prey.

Casey's car broke down yesterday (I know, we're cursed!) and she had to have the JunkStalker by around 9:00 a.m. or thereabouts so she could get to her class, so I took off before the sun rose so I could get right back. The sun quickly caught up with me, getting right in my face (which does make for difficult Eastbound driving). A person can only drive West, North and South for so long in a one square mile town.

JunkStalker and I inched our way around the neighborhood in search of fantastical treasure. He was purring like a big cat on the prowl. We snuck up, pounced and came back with a few good morsels.

I think so anyway.

This cabinet was barely peeking out from underneath some less than uninspiring garbage. It was upside down and just enough of a corner of the decorated door was visible, like a cry for help, "Get me outta here!"

I wondered as I passed it. Did it have the stuff that good junkin' treasure is made of? By the time it was in the rearview, I realized it couldn't be left to the fate of the trash truck without at least pulling it out and giving it a once over.

So I drove down a few more streets, up and back and over and around and finally came back to check it out, and luckily managed not to impale myself on the hidden rusty nails sticking out the back. The decorative part looked somewhat less than special, like a decal, a cheap imitation of something old. However, I liked the knobs and figured the mirrored door and the one with the design could become signs. Doors and mirrors are fun to makeover. Worse case, I could just salvage the hardware. Best thing was that it was small enough to fit in the car and I could always throw it away if I wanted. 
Here are the doors up close, after removal. The little door did have a decal, which was partially rubbed off. Much more came off while wiping it down. In the end I scraped it off with a razor blade. The glass is frosted, and the ghost of the decal remained which left it with some attractive character.

The JunkStalker had also sniffed out this gem as it purred its way slowly up and down the shadowy streets. 
Wasn't sure I wanted it at first glance and passed it the first go round too, but the thought of putting it on wheels was enough to make me head back. I took the wrong street, having to pass the same crossing guards I had already waved to before (they are everywhere, and I try not to pass any of them more than once). I'm sure they wonder about me as I inch along, wandering the streets. I worry they'll think me a child stalker. I should probably get a JunkStalker logo on my car to identify myself as a notorious junker and not a notorious kidnapper, which might keep them from calling the cops. 

I made it back to the pile without having a Sheriff's deputy trail me, and I drug this cutie back to my lair on the back patio, where I have to say I felt like quite the eccentric, moving my Thursday piles of junky wood here and there, taking photos and standing to admire my new darlings. I'm not sure I needed this wood spool (quite sure I didn't), but if nothing else, lovesick frog appears happy to claim it.

While out, I also came across something sticking out of a pile of truly beat up furniture. It was upside down, along with a coffee table I didn't need and didn't feel like dealing with. My eyes passed over the upside down coffee table that may have had some veneer over particle board going on (blech!), and latched onto this. If it was another termite infested table, I didn't care, I was gonna take these wheels home with me one way or another. I gave it a good yank from under the other stuff, and while I was perplexed by it, I stuffed it quickly into the back seat. It would get a thorough inspection at home. 

Sweet Casters!

I like to grab and go when I'm picking from people's curbside piles of junk. I don't want to see anyone, because if I don't see them, they don't see me, right? Or so the rationalization goes. I keep my head down, move fast and drive off into the sunrise!

What I got turned out to be this rolling cart, with a drawer. Cute. I didn't even see the drawer until I got home. It was stuck shut, but I fixed it. 


The locking hinges on either side hold broken wood. One side still has another wood piece attached with a regular hinge, and that part is apparently meant to fold over the top, like so:

Obviously there is missing wood that made up the cart top and some more missing from the drop leaf on the right. I'm thinking of just using something from my stash to make a new top for it because trying remake the curved part where it hinges is beyond my skill set, which is too bad because the locking hinges with the spring are quite nice and I love drop leaf tables. 

So now I have decisions to make as is always the case. Oh brother!

Once the cleaning is done, I do a lot of staring and thinking. What to do... what to do. I'll start by painting the cabinet doors and plotting what to paint on the mirrors. The wheels will likely come off of the little pink table on the patio and be handed down to the newest kid on the block, the wood spool. 

As for the rolling cart...I have a feeling this little character with its arms hanging down might be sitting a while. The table top is going to take some figuring. 

To attempt the drop leaves or not? That is the question. I suppose I could make the top without the fancy curved wood, but that would feel like cheating.

Should I cheat and try it, or skip the drop leaf altogether? Let me know what you think or if you have any ideas for this little rolling cutie. I hate to be a cheater but...I don't want this new addition to my junk collection winding up in yet another pile.. You know, the one growing behind my house where abandoned projects, due to indecision or whatever go to wait out their otherwise useful life!

Let me know what you think...!

...and check out the parties at these sweet blogs this week:

Ivy and Elephants
Thursday Favorite Things

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

Furniture Feature Fridays

French Country Cottage

Lavender Garden Cottage


mop it up mondays


  1. You might have better skills than I do, but I think that cart is perfectly adorable, and a great size without a drop leaf. I'd take the drop leaf stuff off, and stick it somewhere for later. Then, I'd make a new top for it out of something else...maybe just plywood covered in zinc or something...and keep it sort of natural and industrial looking. But that's me. Whatever you do, I know it will be great!

  2. Crafty junkstalker! I am loving the rolling cart with the drop leaf sides. Can you put a top on it without removing what remains of the sides? I would let them hang and paint something on them - a graphic or typography. I have been tailed by Public Safety to check if I was dealing. Be careful out there!


  4. I like the wood spool but the table does need some serious TLC. Good luck!

  5. I am clueless on which you should do about the little cart...but you absolutely should paint your car with that junkstalker logo!!! Fun finds you made! I have a trailer full of those cable spools and i'll be watching to see what you do with one!

  6. Your big wooden spool took me back to my single days living in an apartment. Beginning teacher and little money for furnishing an apartment, I had to be creative and frugal. Wooden spools were easy to come by at construction sites, so a few of these came home with me through the years. The made great side tables in the bedroom and living room. Just drop a floor length cloth over the top and no one is the wiser. '-)

  7. Great finds!! I would put a new/old hinged top on the cart so I didn't have to access stuff inside by the drawer. I'm with Donna, the old sides would look kinda cool hanging down.

  8. Revi beat me to the punch line! My first thought was sheet metal bent around a plywood top for the table/cart. I like the warm wood finish just as it is, too.

    I'm sure you've seen the cute book tables made from wood spools. Add that to your never ending project list! It's a disease I tell ya!! Good thing it's too darn cold for garage sales 9 months out of the year here. And no curbside pickup either.

  9. Bliss would turn that cart into an outdoor bar cart - go for it!!!
    You found some great things - and make me LOL every single time you write
    up a post!

  10. Liz
    Ok you scored some great junk. I love that spool. I love that cart too. I would make it into a planting cart. It would be adorable with pots and potting stuff on the top and hang garden tools off the sides. Painting it with a chippy feel oh la la it could be so cute. Whatever you do with it will be great since it already is cute to start with. I love junk stalker and you should have something made up for your car. LoL that would be awesome!!!

  11. Liz....your posts are always so funny to me! I must admit, I am a little envious of all the "trash" you find in your town! I live in a rural area with no curbside pick-up, but I did go trash picking in Tallahassee one time (my daughter lives there). Awesome finds....and I expecially love the little rolling cart!

    Blessings, Vicky
    Life On Willie Mae Lane

  12. I can't get the image of you out of my head! You should get a vinyl sticker for your car- people might even flag you down to give you awesome stuff.
    I'm wondering if your cart will be raspberry and sit underneath the pickle for serving ice cream.
    You are hilarious.

  13. I think you did great for an early morning fast run. Love that cart, how fun is that. Hugs, Marty

  14. Oh sweetie, that cart is adorable. You will have it whipped into shape in no time. I say keep the drop leaf. YOU CAN DO IT! I can only dream of finding free junk. Did nab a fun little table top cabinet today for $10 at a thrift store. Can't wait to give her the one two workover! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  15. Ooo! love the cart and the hardware...the wheels, spool and glass and mirror doors!
    That's ALL of it, right?
    I like Revi's idea...put a new top on the cart, use the hardware some other way... it will be great.
    and... JunkStalker needs a magnetic sign for the door! LOVE IT.


  16. Super Junker..... she swoops in with nary a sound, and off she goes for only crossing guards to spy with their xray eye.

    Good junk and I vote YES on stenciling your car.


  17. Awesome table! I would skip the rounded edges and just put a flat barn wood top on it... great find!
    New follower from

  18. great find, can't wait to see what you do with it!

  19. That is an amazing piece. Is it really termite infested? and if it is how do you make them go away? I think you should find a hobby carpenter, or maybe a high school or tech school shop class make it for you.


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