This is what I had to start out with. Man, I can't even imagine who had this decor to begin with!
The four drawers missing were actually painted the same color as the top of the drawers.
It was ghastly!
Did I also mention that I had to scrape and sand TONS of hardened melted wax off the top. This piece must have been as a former seance prop!
After it was cleaned up, the whole darn thing got a few coats in ASCP's "Olive".
I first thought to paint the drawers in 3 different contrasting colors and then sand through revealing each color. It all changed when I got an image of this in my head:
That's what I ended up hand drawing and painting onto the front and top of the drawers.
After painting them, I knew that the bottom drawer tracks needed to be replaced. No big deal, I just hopped on over to Lowe's and picked up a couple of 16" undermount drawer slides for about $5.00 a piece. I had to glue 2 shims each end of the drawer slides for each drawer. It was actually an ordeal since every time I got one positioned and glued, my new Yorkie, Tazo, kept going behind me and pulling one off and taking off through the house with it! I have never seen him so bloody obsessed with a piece of wood! I even tried covering them so he wouldn't see them, but as soon as I turned my back, he would pull the coverings off and grab a shim and go! Needless to say, he got banished to the kitchen for awhile till I finished.
Last thing I needed was explaining to the vet the "hows and whys" Tazo got wood glued to his lips!
So I wait 24 hours for the wood glue to dry and begin hand painting the front. Everything is going great as I'm working from top to bottom. I get to the bottom drawers that I have to remove in order to paint the frame. I pull on the right one and it's kinda of snug coming out because of the new drawer tracks being on ball bearings and all - no problem though.
Until I take that last tug to get it out.
Suddenly the WHOLE stinking back of the drawer (which remember, is made of that cheap MDF/fiberboard crap!), complete breaks apart. I sit and stare..... stare some more. turn my head back forth...... stare a bit more and.......
decide it's a *challenge* from God, since I really haven't had one yet in this department.
No, I do not throw the piece out - I persevere!
I finish painting the drawers, but decided to wait and deal with my newfound challenge the next day.
Now, I've never made drawer parts before, but that doesn't stop me. I pick apart in my head all the ways to do this while grabbing some spare wood in my workshop and head to the table saw. After lowering the blade way low, I make a series of cuts so that the bottom of the drawer will cleanly fit into the back. Took a whole 20 minutes and I had a new board back!
Slapped that sucker in and we were back in business!
Time to let her set for another 24 hours.
After reinstalling the undermount tracks again, it was time to wax and sand it. Again, I started from top to bottom and I got to the bottom drawers.....
You hear the music building suspense here
I pulled out the left bottom drawer this time and it comes out and UP.
"What the heck is it NOW!"
The entire drawer and its' tracks are sitting in my lap. Apparently, the screws that came with the tracks weren't exactly long enough to go through the track, through the shim, and into the frame.
I needed longer screws now.
This means now I have to remove both bottom drawers, remove the existing screws holding the shims and a track down and replace them with longer screws. Simple.... right?
Oh heck freaking no!
Once I removed the screws, the dang shims came up with them because the glue attached itself to both the shim and the old screw and they all came up together.
Time to put Tazo back into the kitchen.
I re-glue the shims back down, use the drill to get the front screws in, but the drill is too big to put the back ones in, so those have to be screwed down by hand. Now the position and the fact that there is NO WAY to go in above the screws because a board is blocking my access, now means that I have to lay down and slowly and methodically screw the back screws in.
The wood on the frame is thick, the screw is a inch and half long, and it literally takes 45 minutes to get each one in without stripping the phillips head on the dang thing! My neck and shoulder were killing me by the time I was done. Yes, I did try the socket wrench, and no it didn't work either.
But dog-gone-it, I did it!
Luckily I had less hassles with the reclaimed hardward I painted for the piece.
I finally finished up the wax, sanding, and buffing, tagged her and was ready to GET HER OUT OF HERE!
Considering the two migraines she produced, she ended up looking pretty sharp. Especially after I added some colorful accent paper to the inside of the drawers.
Yeah, Tazo tried to eat that stuff too while I was cutting it. He went back into the kitchen again.
Lesson learned here is that I will NEVER deal with another piece made with MDF. As my husband said to me over lunch one day,
"You broke your own rule in not working with only solid wood pieces."
He was so right and that kept playing in my head throughout the endeavor.
So folks, once you make rules for yourself in this business....
DON'T BREAK EM!
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