Saturday, 27 October 2007

Someone else's trash is...

Well, still trash. But it can become treasure with a little effort. I used to laugh at people who'd enthusiastically rummage through my council clean-up pile five minutes after we'd finish lugging it onto the street (do these people have the council's booking sheets or something? How do they know?) And then, one day walking past someone else's, Steve and I saw this chair.

BEFORE: The chair's third look since moving into the Graham household

We stopped for a few seconds while I checked its potential and then walked on. I basically wanted it but refused to be the one to steal it. So in the cover of darkness, my husband, my hero, went back and grabbed it for me.
It was originally a dark wood frame with velvet green seat. After a while, I decided I'd paint it gold with a pinkish jacquard fabric seat. I don't quite know why I figured gold would be a good idea, but I had fun with the spraycan (turning the grass gold in the process!) and then staple-gunned the fabric on. It looked a bit cheap, so sat covered in clothes in our bedroom for around six months before I painted it white while trying to use up the excess from Zak's shelves. I think I just made it look worse, so I went back to my original plan that got lost somewhere in my goldrush phase: to paint it glossy black with a black and white fabric. And here is the result.

AFTER: A lick of glossy paint and cool black and white fabric can do wonders
Now I love it and it sits proudly in my loungeroom. Not that it can really be used for a seat... the springs aren't in the best condition, but for the cost of the fabric (US$7.95 - I already had the black paint) I think it's a great little feature.
My other attempt at a council clean-up raid wasn't as successful. A lounge frame I thought would make a brilliant daybed for my deck literally fell apart when Steve tried to move it so I could start staining it. And this was after I spent DAYS sanding it back. I guess that's why they put it in the chuck pile! I've since gone back to giggling at the people who pull up with their trailers as soon as the junk hits the sidewalk and wonder what on earth they're going to do with a three-legged chair, a Roman blind that's been slashed from a broken window and an ant-infested fridge with broken drawers, shelves and virtually no side as the only way we could get it onto the street was to push it 150metres along the gravel ground!
Just in case anyone cares, I'll attempt to caption things like we do in the magazine. So... Madison fabric in Black/White, US$7.95/yard, from www.fabric.com (awesome site - particulaly if you love Amy Butler as it's really cheap). Living with Deborah Hutton Easy Art Timber Frames, $7.99 (small) and $10.99 (large), from Kmart. The large print I left as bought, the smaller ones I filled myself.


4 comments:

Dani & Mezza said...

Awesome Belinda!!! I love the high gloss. Definatley not an item on which to store yesterdays laundry. I haven't gotten into sanding yet. We went and picked up a $10 desk (its perfect by the way) and then jumped straight back on ebay determined to find MORE bargains. At the moment I'm looking for a coat/hat/umbrella stand but I got out-bid while I was cooking dinner!
BTW, does the council have a specific council pick up day or do you get so many individual pickups a year?
Also, in the mag under "Handy Woman" you refer to tthe "Southern Opportunity Shop". Where abouts it that exactly and which charity does it support?
Hehe lots of questions tonight... one more before I go: I am missing Issuee Sept'05 & Nov'05 and magshop doesn't have copies that old. Is there any other way to source them. I've scoured ebay and found a few I was missing but these seem so hard to find. I think the Sept'05 is your first issue, am I correct?
Anyway, love the chair, love that you laughed at everyone like I did until I found a jewel and realised they were laughing at everyone else because they found a jem. I'm a full supporter of renew & reuse. April 07 was my fave because of the revamp special. I almost bid on the exact same ladder 5 min ago because of the article.
Haha enjoy the rest of your weekend and hopefully I'll be able to update tomorrow with some pics of me covered in saw dust. In the meantime I made my very first cushion!

belinda graham said...

Hey Dani - thanks! Bummer about outbid - how dare they! ok, answers:
1. we get several cleanups a year; you just call up and they tell you the day.
2. Not sure about that shop - which issue is it in? I'll ask our genius chief sub at work next week who knows all things stores and get back to you.
3. Sept 05 was the launch issue and is really, really hard to find. In our whole office, only the ed and me have copies! They were really hard to come by from the start and are like gold. So unless you're really lucky on ebay, I don't think you'll be able to find one unfort. November 05 should have been available on magshop back issues, but i did notice the other day they had a lot of "sold outs" stamped on them, so maybe that's one of them? Only other suggestion is to try libraries? We don't even have a stockpile at work unfort. So sorry!!!

Dani & Mezza said...

Thanks Belinda,
Damn about the mags, I'll just keep my eyes peeled. It burns me up to think of all the people who buy mags and then throw them in the trash after they read them.
The Southern Oppertunity Shop was meantioned a few times but mainly in the April 07 issue.
I'm over the coat rack... look what I just found!!!
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ANTIQUE-ARM-CHAIR-needs-restoration_W0QQitemZ150174902422QQihZ005QQcategoryZ149246QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
I can even use the pattern featured in April's issue.
http://realliving.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=230418
I think I'm in love... again :D

Dani & Mezza said...

oh and thanks for the fabric link. I'm lusting after an Amy pattern to make a bedspread. Great to find an affordable link.