There were many reasons I was dissatisfied with my bedside table. First, its colour: orange.
Not even a subtle orange. Second, it has no drawer. I must either leave my book on the top (which would be fine if I could constrain myself to two books) or I must reach down awkwardly while on the edge of sleep and open the door and throw the book onto the half-shelf within (or as you can see in the photo, simply throw them on the floor). Third, with a square base and a monolithic stature it has a utilitarian oomph which is not to my liking.
Fortunately, my taste in furniture tends towards peasant rather than palace. When I last persuaded K-man to visit the local junk emporium, we came across this:
This is the most poorly-made piece of furniture I have ever encountered, and that includes Swedish flat-pack specials I incompetently put together myself. It seems to be made predominantly from waste wood by a person who hated their job. In places where surely – surely – a nail would have been better, glue has been used and did not stick properly. Someone made a bad decision to try polishing this turd, and attached a piece of spare dowelling rod to the outside.
This little cupboard was very cheap, and I have vision. And my vision couldn’t withstand more morning orange.
Yesterday the sun shone, and in our house that means embarking on a stupid project outside using power tools. Hurrah!
K-man had to shore up the flimsy construction, and wrench off the stupid dowelling. Then I got busy with the power-sander. A short time later, I looked up from my cup of tea and realised this might not turn out too badly after all.
When all the black shit – I know not what it was – came off, the little cupboard grew a personality. There was an interlude when I got a bit too busy with the power-sander and the bottom piece of wood holding the door up broke off, but what’s a husband for if not to clean up after his wife’s manic sanding experiments?
Then it was time to paint. As we know, paint is a shit piece of furniture’s best friend. It covers a multitude of sins and can turn something horrible into something you can stand to look at without crying. I do believe, however, that the trend should be reserved for crap pieces otherwise beyond rescue. All those people painting over beautiful woodgrain because of fashion are nuts. Especially if they do stupid shit like two-tone blue and pink and then sand down one layer of paint to display the nonsense. I have seen more overpriced ruined chests of drawers than I can bear because people think that shit adds value. Hell no, you just ruined a decent piece of furniture. What is it with these people?
Sorry – that rant has been inside me for a long time and it needed to come out. Obviously, I would never paint something pink and blue two-tone. I would simply use whatever left-overs I had available in the garage. Which turned out to be Farrow and Ball New White.
Of course, every insect for miles around stuck itself in the paint. But progress was made and soon it was time to wax the top.
I was very surprised and pleased with how well this turned out. You would never guess the top was plywood, or that it cost only around £20 and a few hours of my time. Check out the sanded and waxed top:
Here it is in situ:
A full year after K-man accidentally sold our bedside tables on ebay for a song, I finally have a book-drawer and no orange.
That’s our new carpet you can see in the photo. What a revelation! More about that another time.