Tuesday, February 14, 2012

#1 Auction Rule..........


OK Jan, here's the story:
(at risk of a little personal embarrassment)

I wasn't planning on going to the little auction that I sometimes go to,
and at the last minute thought....housework or auction??
I am so out of here!!!
So against my better judgement, and going against my number one rule...
I didn't preview anything, and yes, still got a bidders card.
A bit into the auction all of the sudden I hear the auctioneer say
"pie safe"!!! What???
Something I have always wanted.
From where I was sitting it looked pretty good,
punched tin sides, screen doors on the front.....yum!!
When he asked for $50 I shot up my card.
$50 for an antique pie safe...are you kidding??
Happy dance!!!
The fact that no one else seemed to be bidding should have been a clue to me.

I only live ten minutes from the auction, so I went and paid for it
and told them I would be back tomorrow with my truck to 
pick it up.  
The next day I go back to help the guy load it up and got my
first good look at my "treasure".
First of all it pretty much had only three legs.
One of the legs was all but gone from rot, and the other three
weren't all that much better.
Trying to act like I knew that all along, no big deal......
I proceeded to help load it into the truck.
When we attempted to lay it on its back, the back
 totally fell apart.
It was one of those pieces of furniture where the back sort of all fits together?
 I am sure there's a name
for that type of construction, but I don't know what it is.
And I am sure it works good, before termites have had their way
with pretty much the whole piece.
I thanked the guy for helping me, couldn't even look at him,
 and got the heck out of there.


So, I'm driving home, and in my mind i'm  going........
well, I can probably get something for the punched tin,
(this was when I still rented space at antique store) 
I can take the doors off and sell them, the knobs were cute,
get the picture?
But the first order of business was to get it into the garage
and well hidden under a blanket with something piled
on top of it so my husband wouldn't see it.

The first chance I had I gave it a good cleaning.
I decided it was pretty far gone but maybe I could use it for storage?
IF I could get it put back together that is.
So.......first I cut the legs almost totally off.
Not that I had a choice......
Then I got out the nail gun and piece by piece nailed it back together.
But there was a lot of rot and termite damage. A lot!!!
Ok..... I can do this, right?
Off to Lowes for some wood rot filler junk.
I had never worked with this before and I really don't want to again.
I got the areas filled in, let it dry and tried to sand it.
Yeah, right.
Sort of lumpy and bumpy and yuck!! And hard!
Deciding that this was just going into the garage to hold supplies, I decided to throw a coat of
paint on it . I mixed up some mistints I had bought cheap
at Lowes, and started painting it.
Somewhere in the middle of painting it......(fumes??)
I decided that if it was going to hold my supplies
for making memory jugs, maybe it should look like one as well?

So all the places where the lumpy filler was,
I just covered with stuff I had been saving for art projects.

And actually, I don't think it turned out too bad.
It has sort of grown on me.
And by the way.....that pie safe is now rock solid!
I need to repaint it this summer, I never expected it to end up in the house so
it still has the paint I made from mixing several colors together. 
What color would you paint it?
A darker gray? Black?

I tell myself it's a piece of folk art, but then I say that
about my rubber band ball too......lol

So there you go Jan, that's the story .
(I put a link to Jans blog , Gracies' Cottage, up above.
Jan's an antique
dealer that probably always previews........
and has the best "stuff")



  1. OK. Here's what I want to know about - the termite filler stuff. Are you sure you got everything? I read somewhere that they have a 3 year cycle or something - and lie in various stages inside the wood, etc. I passed up a pretty neat piece of furniture once 'cause I the little "wood bore" holes all over it (not to mention some fresh saw dust). I didn't want to bring it into the house or anywhere near other wood pieces....I sure wish I could find out whether or not there is a true CURE.

    ALL THAT TO SAY, you did wonders with your pie safe. What a clever idea to cover up the rough places!

  2. It is a little piece of folk art...and folk lore! I'd sand it, go over it with a stain and then wax the heck outta that baby.
    Remind me to tell you about the time I thought I was buying a fabulous quilt for $15, but brought home a power drill instead. Going to auctions can be tricky!

  3. OMG, Gayle, you are sooooo freakin' creative! I love the pie safe and the story that goes with it. Did I tell you that my grandmother used to make my grandfather sit on his hands at auctions because He would bid on ANYTHING?

  4. Sounds like the type of "deal" I got several years ago when I bought an antique Mexican wooden chest...was really nice till I noticed, once I got it home, it was bottomless! How did that happen??? Like you, I found a way to restore it or rather, attach a bottom to it and now it used to store old VHS tapes...hmmm, perhaps the Universe is trying to tell me something!!?? LOL

    Anyway, you did a fab job...ya made lemonade!! LOL


  5. What an amazing transformation, I love how you've made a feature of covering the damage rather than trying to disguise it. That pie safe rocks!
    Over here they tend to be metal, I use one to store my plant pots in the garden! x

  6. I loved this story... you have a gift to tell stories... and I love what you did with that pie safe... and kinda like the color as it is... black could be nice too..

  7. You have such an enormous amount of creative energy. Me, I would have taken it to the dump after taking the tin off. What did you end up doing with the tin? It looks great and I also like the color it is now. The only other color I'd go with would be not a color, but a stain if it would work with the wood. This is a great story!

  8. Oh I love it!! You made the best of a situation, you learned a lesson (well, maybe learned the same one we have to keep learning!) and you have a great story and piece of folk art to go with it! What's not to love!! Maybe you just need to add a little grungy gold paint here and there...... :)

  9. Oh you're too funny! But the best part of a piece like this is that now it has a great back end Story!!! And isn't that what makes Vintage or Antique pieces the most desirable anyway... the History and Stories that go along with the piece! Modern stuff is so boring by comparison... so even though your Pie Safe had "issues"... who among us doesn't after a long Life!? *Winks... okay, maybe that's just me? LOL* I feel kinda like the description of that old Pie Safe in fact... legs giving out, in need of being put back together and restored to former Glory, in need of a good make-over... looking good from a distance... yep, that piece and I have a lot in common in fact! *Smiles*

    Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

  10. i LOVE how you can make lemonade out of lemons! gr8 story! it makes me feel less silly about the lenghts i go to to patch up antique/vintage clothing just to wear it! ;), & the fact that you "hide" things & that you do the "oh what? that old thing? Ive had thats for ages".... brilliant!

  11. Oh yeah, now yer talkin to me...lol, for 50 bucks, it would've been mine too!!! LOVE the idea with the stuff stuck to it...uh oh, yer makin my wheels turn again...and I love that color of gray, good choice, for one thing, it really makes the wood of the other pieces POP!!!

    Recycling at it's finest!

  12. lol that's funny i have made a few mistakes like that ! i think i would of got it any whey its cool !i saw some memory jugs today and thought of you one had small doll parts on it and was on a pottery pitcher the other one was on a canning jar i liked the one with the doll parts they were asking two hundred each i like what you did on the pie safe !

  13. i think its fantastic! i love what you did with it! nice work friend! I have something down here that seems like it might go with some of your decor i have seen you post so if you get a chance swing by and i will show you. its like a hanger thingy you can attach a quilt or decorative rug to to hang on the wall. if you dont want it i will toss it in the auction! xoxo jennette

  14. What a great post. I love the story and the transformation ... absolutely stunning!

    Have a lovely Sunday!
    Gaby xo

  15. What a great story and now is one for the family archives!!! I love it...and you did such a nice recovery too...I love the idea of findings in the corner...I will have to remember that...I can see that black...of course I love to paint things black...looks classic LOL....

    Have a great day Gayle :)

  16. Hey Gayle, I gave you an award... more info on my blog! Big Hugs to you! :)))

  17. Oh my gosh...this is wonderful. I saw the finished version before coming here and I love it even more. Especially all of the ephemera you added to it. What a totally fabulous mind you have!!! And I got a good chuckle out of you hiding it in the garage. I used to go to the auction house and stop at the dump on the way home to get rid of the things in the box lots or that I didn't preview that I kinda wish now I'd saved. Oh well. Once my friend went with me and thought I was TOTally insane but as I explained to her, I just couldn't let my hubby see what I'd bought!!!