Tuesday, 12 February 2013

My new bits and bobs box restoration- Part 2

As I said before, the box arrived when I away. This was truly frustrating. I knew that there would be a huge amount of work to do to get it looking fabulous before I could start using it. I also one of those people who just has to get stuck in.

I got home. I did pause briefly to say hello to my Matey before attacking the packaging with my scissors and fell in love all over again. This was lucky as it is is HEAVY! Quite a bit heavier than I had expected. Heavier in fact than chests I have that are two to three times it's size. I presumed it was pine I suspect now it may be oak. I am no wood expert so answers on a postcard if you know better.

A bit of a look at it and I can see that is it made out of something else. I have no idea what though. The joints are dovetailed and I am sure that they are original. The only thing I can guess at is that it may have housed something mechanical as there are three air holes in the bottom. Maybe a gramophone?

The tray clearly a later edition and is beautifully made out of plywood and stained to match the main wood of the box. I may paint this later. I think that a good contrast is better than an bad match.

The first job was to rip off the frankly revolting padded top. Under the nasty brown was a rather pretty (50s?) floral fabric. In the interests of waste not want not I rescued what I could.

Under the floral fabric was a decrepit eiderdown. Bit nasty if truth be told. I kept it to see if anything could be salvaged but realised 24 hours later it was truly horrible and I needed it to leave my house taking it's dead skin cells with it. (yuck!)

Taking the old nails off proved impossible in some cases. Even my Matey couldn't shift them, and has a nasty looking cut to prove it. In the end if they just wouldn't budge I hammered them in as far as possible. As I am going to re-cover it anyway the top doesn't have to look perfect.

Finally I removed all the fixings and it was sanding time! I am anti taking off the patina of anything old but the front had clearly had some water damage so was never going to look good with just a bit of polishing.  As a compromise I put a very fine sandpaper on my little sander and took the top layer of grime off. A bit of liberon wax and it went from this:

To this:

Just the rest of the box to sand and a lot of elbow grease and polishing to do.

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