This story is about a chair. I seem to be drawn to chairs; and in the spirit of a true junker, I happily accept broken chairs. After all the usual projects using backs, legs, and spindles, I find myself left with an abundance of seats with holes. What to do? This particular chair seat is flat but has a large hole at the center back.
The heavy hardwood seat with the hole gave me an idea. It's sturdy enough to use as a base for something....but I want the base to look even heavier than it is so I give it my secret heavy metal finish. (Okay...I promise to share the secret in a future blog).
When there's a hole, find a peg..... Digging through my bin of legs, I find the perfect "peg". The old table leg is round and tapered at the bottom, perfect for the hole, and flat on the top. It's already white and I like the natural distressed look so I just sand it a bit here and there and give it a coat of clear paste wax (Fiddes Supreme in Light).
Now that I have a base and pedestal....I need to make something useful....
I have a little collection of unfinished bird houses that I purchased at an estate sale but you can find them at Michael's or JoAnn's. I pull out my old craft paints and set to work painting the little house. I like things to look a little old and worn so I sand a little here and there and wax it with Fiddes Supreme Wax in Rugger Brown.
Now I have a tiny house sitting on a tall pedestal with a large heavy base....I need visual balance and more recycled parts.....an outdoor dining perch!
Awhile back I purchased a vintage brass chandelier that was missing some parts. I take one of the arms and give it a verdigris finish using a chemical patina solution from Modern Masters and then a coat of spray sealer.
I love using lamp and chandelier parts because the threads are universal and so it's easy to find hardware. Using a short coupling screw as a guide, I drill the appropriate size hole into the wood leg. When I need something to be extra strong, I'll put Jen Weld (a two-part epoxy), in the hole of the leg and then insert the screw. That way, it's more like a welded in bolt and then you just screw on the chandelier arm.
For the birdseed dish, I use a rusted iron bobeche (at least that's what I'm calling it). I give it a coat of spray sealer and use the shortest coupling screw I can find to attach it to the chandelier arm. I like everything to have a finished look so I use a brass cap instead of a nut to attach the bobeche to the chandelier arm. I also give the brass cap the patina treatment.
....as I said, I like everything to have a finished look so I need something for the little holes where the chandelier crystals used to hang. I don't want to use crystals because that's not a re-use and it might scare the birds away which would defeat the purpose. I make a little chalkboard that said "welcome" on one side and "come again" on the other. I attach it with some recycled chain that received the patina finish. I found a little bell from a garage sale purchase of a bird cage. It's a perfect door bell for my new bird house/feeder.
In the spirit of "nothing wasted", I add the tiniest beginnings of a real bird nest to the inside of the house. For those who don't know me, I live in the country and have a large collection of bird nests. I started with one many years ago that my husband rescued out of a rolled up awning he was cleaning. From that day on, everyone brings me the nests they find when cleaning. We have a beam on our back patio that isn't the best place for building but there's always a bird that tries and so during the building season I can go outside almost daily and find the beginnings of a nest on the patio where it wouldn't stay put long enough to be finished. I pick up all the sad little starts and figure someday this will be useful for something....because it's already beautiful!