And we wanted a new coffee table, preferably one on wheels.
See, last year for Valentine's Day, we bought ourselves a Wii and Wii Fit. We both really feel like we need to be more in shape, and when it's not walking weather, the Wii is a great way to go. Plus, it's really fun. We're both competitive too, so we can easily "encourage" (read: ridicule) each other to try harder on it. What we had, though, was a big, heavy octagonal glass coffee table, which is not easy to move. I had it from before we were married. In the old place, our living room was formatted differently, and we could work around it. Not so much in this place, cool as the house may otherwise be.
So... yeah. Wheeled coffee table.
I did a quick online search, and found this table, at Restoration Hardware. For about $1,000, with shipping. Huh.
Well, Eric did a search, and he found this.
That right there is the photo that was posted on eBay, of the exact same sort of factory cart that Restoration Hardware uses. We went crazy over it, jumping out of our skin to "win" it (or... y'know... win the right to purchase it, since that's what an auction actually is), and we got it for $305!!!
So we took a road trip out to PA and got it into the Jeep.
And then into our driveway.
It was ours! Mwahahahahaha (can you see me rubbing my hands together like an evil genius here?) hahaha!
Every rusty bit of it! Doesn't look like much, I know. But wait.
First order of business... taking the whole thing apart. Yikes.
Second, getting off as much of the rust as possible, with wire brushes, a wire brush attachment to a drill, and naval jelly.
It was a messy job.
And then we had to prime and paint the iron pieces.
We used an easier method for the nuts and bolts, letting them soak in a bowl of vinegar first.
The wood was in desperate need of sanding. Scraping too, since it looks like somewhere along the line someone painted it with some thick oil paint.
I love the smell of sawdust (sanddust?), but I think I breathed an awful lot of it in. That, combined with the advent of spring and the starting of leaf buds on the trees, gave me a very sneezy time of it.
When we turned it over to sand the bottom, we discovered something pretty cool. Someone had written 7/6/27. We know that these carts were used to transport large items in factories, like furniture, from about 1900 to the 1930s. Could it be that this one was built in 1927?
Anyway, then I stained it. We chose Ipswich Pine. We both have an affinity for reddish-toned wood but wanted something fairly light and natural. It came out darker than we thought it would, but we love it, and it looks great with our other furniture.
We could have sanded it further, or even planed it down smooth, but we really like that it looks so weathered. It's got history. And you can't tell from the photo, but if you touch it, the wood is really soft and smooth from all the sanding we did do.
Once it dried, it came inside, and everything went back on. It took a lot of muscle, so I left it mostly to Eric.
I touched up the flat black enamel paint on the cast iron, and waxed the wood to protect it. So we went from this...
... to this.