"I'm glad I found you, you wonderful you": Antiques and Projects, Part 1
As you can imagine, being a classic film fan, I love buying antiques and practically anything related to Old Hollywood, even things with the smallest association. Call me an old lady (my sister frequently does), but I find old furniture and other items pretty great. They hold up 100 times better than modern stuff, they have history, and they just look better than what’s being produced now—much like classic movies!
Getting an apartment for college this year unleashed the antiquing beast in me. All summer, I was collecting and buying, from something small like a biscuit tin to something bigger like a roll-top desk. I even scored my grandma’s Amana microwave from 1983, complete with a door that opens down like an oven’s and real 1980s air that blasts from the vent while it’s operating. (I can practically feel your jealous gazes.)
Since I have a film blog, and many items relating in some part to films, I thought it would be fun to start a series sharing the fantastic things I’ve found. I’m going to try to keep the items in categories for now—we’ll see how it goes further down the line. So, for my first post, I decided to show some pieces of furniture that are actually relatively modern, but I decorated and turned into something more personal. My mom is pretty crafty, and when my sister moved into her own IU apartment, my mom taught her how to decoupage some used furniture she bought. My sister then passed this furniture on to me and I changed them to suit my style.
The first piece I did was a dresser that originally belonged to my great-grandmother. The first photo is how it looked before anyone touched it, and the second photo is what my sister did to it.
I then re-painted the sides and the handles blue and used scrapbook paper with a 19th century France theme as the background. I had an old magazine about Liz Taylor that was issued after her death, so I cut out some photos of her to decorate the top. The rest of the top and the drawers I decorated with my programs from the Artcraft Theatre.
My next project was a wood coffee table. (I couldn’t find a photo of how my sister had designed it.) My boss had a lot of vintage postcards and other papers that she let me rifle through and I found some really cool stuff. One side of the table I decorated with old ink blotters. I love vintage advertising and these blotters were perfect examples of that.
The second side I put postcards on. Finding these was so exciting—the oldest one is from 1911! The Hollywood one is from the 1950s, and there’s one from a soldier writing to his family during WWII.
This is my Katharine Hepburn side. I was lucky to find a small paperback book on Kate at Goodwill, and although it hurt my heart to tear up a book, this side of the table is my favorite (naturally).
This last side is kind of boring. I ran out of ideas at the time, so I just used scrapbooking paper and left it at that.
That same Liz Taylor magazine had two full pages of old magazine covers she had been on, and each cover was the perfect size to decorate the top.
My last project was a cheaply-made table. My sister didn’t decorate this one at all, but it really needed it. At a yard sale, I found a little Alice in Wonderland book that used to have a small record with it so you could read the story while the record read it aloud. The record was missing, so I took the whole book apart and used all the pages to design the table. Lewis Carroll’s original book is my favorite of all time, and Disney’s version is pretty great, so it worked out nicely.
For the sides, I had the idea to make copies of some of my original sheet music and then age the copies with tea. The songs I picked were “You, Wonderful You” from Summer Stock and “Thinking of You” from Three Little Words.
Stay tuned for part two!