I subscribe to ebay feeds. I plug in search words like "vintage typewriter," "card catalog," "apothecary cabinet," etc. When something new gets posted that fits those categories I get an e-mail. 99.9% of the time, I delete the e-mail without even looking at it. It's a time thing. It's almost always a money thing. Those are popular ebay items and sell for big dollars. I'm searching for the random-it-slipped-between-the-cracks-item that perhaps has a misspelled word or is for local pick-up that hasn't been seen. Those items have the potential to be cheap!
Earlier this month, I got one of my regular ebay emails for this cabinet. Why I just happened to look at that e-mail I shall never know. 59 drawers, solid wood, nearly all of the hardware was intact and in good shape. Over 100 inches long and 42 inches tall. For local pick-up in Big Bear City.
I got a little excited. The starting bid was at $400 with a buy it now option for $1,200. In just one day, it had 12 watchers. I made contact with the buyer to get some more info and ended up just watching it for the week.
On the last day of the auction, I crawled out of bed early to see if it had any bids. None.
I got to the shop to check again. Still no bids with only an hour to go.
I set my alarm on my phone for 5 minutes before the end of the auction so that I wouldn't forget about it. Good thing, too because I would have forgotten if my alarm wasn't set.
With 5 minutes out, there were still no bids so I placed the first bid and then just sat and stared at the computer waiting to see what happens.
As you can guess, I won the auction for the opening bid price! Score!
Since it was local pick-up, we scheduled a mini-trip up to Big Bear over Veterans Day and tried to get some family time in.
We did the Alpine Slide and went to the Snow Play area. Big Bear is fun. You should visit sometime.
When we got to the house to pick it up I thought there was no way we were going to be able to load it in the truck. I couldn't even get it to budge.
We took all 59 drawers out and my husband and I hefted it onto the back of the truck. It didn't fit. We had to lift it and set it on top of the tail gate and put all 59 drawers back in it to get it home.
Once we got it home, my daughter helped me take out all 59 drawers (again) and remove the hardware.
My original plan was to leave the piece in its original finish. BUT, when I saw it in person it was just too tired and weepy to leave as-is. Not the kind of tired that hemp oil was going to revive. So, it needed to be painted.
I used Milk Paint on this one. 1/2 cup Eulalies Sky with 1/4 cup Kitchen Scale and 1/4 cup Ironstone. I had plenty for all of the drawers and part of the framework.
The framework got a straight coat of Ironstone. There was only one coat of paint on the whole thing!
I stripped down the top and used Annie Sloan Dark Wax to stain it so that the coloring between the revealed wood under the chippy finish and the top matched. (On a side note, when you use milk paint and are going for that chippy look, be sure that if you stain the top that you use a color that matches the finish on the base. If your top is dark but the base color where the paint chips is a blonde oak, the end result is not very authentic looking piece).
The insets on the side have the same Eulalies Sky mix as the drawers.
And the drawers got new hardware. Each drawer will hold our stock of hardware! Which means, I won't be selling this piece of furniture. :) It also means I can get more knobs and a much bigger variety of knobs!
The top showcases Michelle E. Black's image transfer art as well as all of the image transfer supplies!
It's refreshing to have a permanent display piece!
And, it looks much larger in person than in a picture!
I think I might be scoping out ebay a bit more often for furniture!