Sunshine vs. Screens



Sunshine vs. Screens.

Sunshine and being outdoors vs. air conditioning and staying indoors.

Sometimes the pull to be outside is just too much to resist, no matter how hot it might be outside. That’s the position I found myself in this week. As I gazed out my office window at the sunshine and blue skies, I thought about this sideboard I bought months ago on Facebook Marketplace for just $40.


Incredibly, there was still a label on the back of the sideboard, so I did a little research on the piece.


I discovered that the New England Furniture Co existed between 1881 – 1904.  They originally specialized in bedroom furniture but switched to sideboards and buffets in the mid-1890’s. In 1903 it introduced a boxy line of sideboards with exaggerated pegged mortise joints and also introduced a new design logo. That logo is not on the label on my piece, so my best detective work tells me that this piece was built between 1895 – 1902. The joints reinforce that deduction.


I couldn’t resist the sunshine anymore, so I shut off my computer, grabbed my tools and headed outside.

As I disassembled the cabinet, I took pictures of the screws and hardware. I’ve come to realize that no matter how confident I am about reassembling a piece, days later things aren’t quite as clear as I thought they were.


For being approximately 124 years old, this piece was in great condition. The top needed a lot of work though.


After repairing holes and cracks, I sanded and then cleaned the piece.

I stained the top and did some dry brushing with white paint. I painted the bottom, using Fusion Mineral Paint, put a decor transfer on the side (I forgot where I bought it), found some brass screw caps to cover the screws on the side pieces, and bought a new door knob at Hobby Lobby.


So this little beauty has found a home at the top of our stairs. On the top of this piece,  I’ll showcase a vacation photo album along with a souvenir we brought back from that trip. (In this case, however, this beautiful Japanese doll was gifted to me by a dear friend.) We’ll store travel-related items in the drawers, along with other travel albums, allowing for easy album swapping whenever I’d like.


So …. this is what I do when I just cannot resist going outside into the fresh air. It’s physical, creative, and a lot of fun.

What do you do when the sunshine is calling you?

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Comments (6)

  1. Carol Detwiler

    Holy Moley! I kept saying “wow” – “wow” You got that for $40. The details were amazing. And so is the finished product!!

    June 7, 2024 at 4:59 am
    • Yes! $40. The seller said it had been in their family for “ages.” But it didn’t fit their decor and they just wanted to find a home for it. Where we live, vintage/antique pieces sell for next to nothing. Lucky me! 🙂 Thank you for your compliment. ;)===

      June 7, 2024 at 5:41 am
  2. Zanne Blanton

    I have my grandmother’s & wish I could share a photo with your. The top, its sides & backing are all marble.

    June 7, 2024 at 11:48 am
  3. gypsymonkeyscrap

    The piece turned out beautifully! I have a few antique pieces that were my grandmother’s that I hope to someday refurbish to their original beauty. Until then, I sit back and watch the miracles that others perform (I’m scared to ruin the pieces).

    June 8, 2024 at 8:54 am
    • How fortunate you are to have some of your grandmother’s pieces. I would sit back and watch too, making sure of what I wanted to do with them before starting. I refurbish pieces that are pretty much junk. Real antiques, I would definitely do differently. Restore, not necessarily repurpose.

      June 8, 2024 at 10:28 am
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