Have you ever seen one of these at an estate sale or antique store? It’s a vintage stamp holder used for organizing rubber stamps, used in an office setting. So cool…it even spins. It has metal pull apart fingers, to grip the handle of the stamps. I can just imagine a fast pace office clerk of yesteryear having one of these on her desk as she spins it around stamping and filing paperwork….so vintage chic!
A few weeks ago, V (my big sis), my mother and myself were out and about junkin’ and antiquing when lo’ and behold I found one. I snapped it up right away, not having a clue what I was going to do with it, especially since I have no need to “stamp and file paper work!”
Then, one night as I reached into a cabinet to retrieve a tiny bottle of glitter for the hundredth time, a light bulb went off….a glitter spinner I would create.
I mean how stinkin’ easy is this….the small bottles of glitter snapped perfectly into the metal grips.
Cute, functional and stylish…I love it when I can re-purpose something from the past and make it into a functional and decorative piece.
With a quick spin, all my glitter is at my finger tips.
I love cooking with fresh herbs and using different spices to really boost the flavor of my food dishes. Let’s face it though….sometimes I just have to go to the pre-mixed seasoning packets. Actually, there are some really good ones in the grocery store that I enjoy using in a pinch. However, I could never find a good place to organize them. I tried wicker baskets, glass jars and wire baskets. But, I never liked the look of any of them or not being able to see at a glance what I had.
Then, my mom and I were having a garage sale and lo and behold, she was selling an old hotel card rack system. Score! I just found my new spice packet organizer. Made of wood, it had a slot for each room number and had the original label identifying the maker. Originally, I have been told it was used either at the check-in desk or in the kitchen for room service orders.
(Of course, I forgot to take a before picture!) but, here it is after we removed every third metal divider. The seasoning packets were too thick to fit between the original slats, so we had to make some adjustments to the number of metal dividers we put back in.
It was a snap to take apart (well, at least it was for me watching Shane do it) and of course I gave it a good spit and shine with Murphy’s Soap and Old English Polish. It really makes a difference on the old wood. In between the wash and polish, I used a dark wood stain pen to color in any chips in the wood. I usually like the look of rustic & beat-up vintage wood; however, some of the chips in the wood were deep gashes and needed to be stained. Shane also cleaned and polished the metal dividers.
The Hotel Card Rack is super heavy duty and I love the way it looks in the pantry…the perfect functional and decorative spice packet organizer!
This funky find came courtesy of Granny Rozell (Shane’s spunky 94 year young grandmother). When we helped her move into a nursing home a few years back, I nabbed this sewing bench, which was filled with vintage sewing goodies (mainly because I cannot resist adding more vintage thread spools to my collection!).
Although I knew that I would not be using it in its present state (no offense to the groovy 1970’s vinyl) I knew that if I stored it long enough I would find a useful place for it. I laugh at that last statement! Our attic, garage and every out of sight nook and cranny of our house is filled with “don’t throw that away, I promise I will find a place for it and re-do it one day” projects!
Sure enough, a year or so later, the light went off in my head. I needed a cool bench/storage something or other to place in our bathroom. Something both functional to store “unsightly” bathroom necessities and an occasional sitting area, while also being visually appealing. Granny Rozell’s sewing bench would be perfect!
Now, to find the perfect fabric to use. Our bathroom is decorated with accents of natural coral and unique seashells. It is painted a beautiful charcoal gray with dark wood accents. I knew I wanted an orange fabric with white or ivory coral pattern and I wanted it that same day—no time to order it and wait for it to ship. Yea right! Well, the fabric fairies at Jo-Ann’s Fabric and Craft Store was smiling down on me. We walked in, I went straight to the cotton duck section (it is in a bathroom, after all) and viola….there was the exact print I had imagined. Hey….sometimes things just work out!
With several tools in hand: a hammer, a screwdriver, a staple gun, a hot glue gun, spray adhesive and some random tools I have no idea what are, we disassembled the entire bench, stripping it down to its cardboard and wood frame shell. I actually liked the gold vinyl trim, so we carefully removed it using a screwdriver to separate the folds and pliers to remove the staples. We also carefully removed the vinyl covering using a staple puller, so we could use it as a template when cutting the new fabric.
Using the original vinyl we took off as a template, I simply laid it on top of my fabric and cut it out. Oh sure, you could measure the actual bench and lid, make a fancy pattern out of paper, pin it carefully to the fabric and then cut, but Hey….just laying it down and cutting works.
Now it was a matter of lining the fabric up on the cardboard and wood base and using a staple gun to attach the fabric, by pulling tight, staple, repeat. We alternated stapling on the top and then the bottom, to get a snug fit. The gold trim I saved from the original piece will cover the staples, but we still stapled close to the edge. When we got to the end, we folded the fabric under and carefully stapled in the fold of the fabric, so the staples would be hidden.
Using spray adhesive, we adhered the original foam padding to the lid, flipped it upside down and centered it onto the back side of the fabric covering and stapled. There are tons of tutorials on how to re-cover furniture, professionally. This probably is not one of them— however, our technique was to staple the corners first, then pulling taunt, we worked our way across the top and bottom as we stapled and then down the sides. Again, we would be covering the interior with a fabric lined cardboard piece, so our staples would not be seen.
To reattach the gold trim, we used small tack nails. Holding the trim open with a screw driver as we went along the edge, Shane would tack the nails in place with a small hammer.
For the interior lining of the lid, I used the same cardboard and re-lined it with a natural cotton fabric I already had on hand. I used the cardboard as a template and cut out the fabric about 1″ larger all the way around and used hot glue to adhere the fabric to the back of the cardboard and attached it to the lids interior with brass upholstery tacks.
Using my 2 BFFs, Old English and Murphy Oil Soap, I gave the wood legs a bath and a shine. At first I thought about painting the legs, but because the natural wood matched the decor in the bathroom already, a spit and polish was all they needed.
Here is the finished product, after attaching the legs and lid. It fit perfectly into the corner of our bathroom…both functional and stylish….just the way I like it!