Thursday, September 1, 2011

Travel Trunk Table

While I was visiting with Ms. Terri from over at In the Blue House on the Hill, we were talking about crafty things, and I mentioned a foot locker that I have absolutely full of vintage polyester.  Yes... I really do save anything.  These are scraps left over from my step-gramma's clothes-making.  She used to make her own clothes to wear to work, because she had to dress nice, but couldn't afford to go buy expensive clothes.  I was trying out idea for what to do with all that 1970's scariness (because boy some of those patterns and color combinations are *wild*, and polyester really isn't a pleasant feeling fabric.  Kind of scratchy, and plasticy.).

Ms. Terri by-passed the fabric and went straight at the trunk with her train of thought.
It's a pretty awesome trunk.  I love old stuff, because it always has more personality than new stuff.  There are scratches, and dents, and tarnished places that make it more individual than just going to the store and buying something that is just like what everyone else already has.  Old stuff has stories, too.  Even if I can't use it in its current incarnation, I save old stuff until I can figure out a way to give it a new purpose as something else or part of something else.  Trunks are always handy, though.  They're storage with attitude.  You can leave a trunk stuffed full of junk anywhere in the house, and it looks like decoration.  Try that with a cardboard box some time.  It just doesn't have the same appeal.

Anyway... sorry about that.  I kinda got sidetracked.  So where was I?  Visiting Terri... right.

She suggested I turn the trunk into a coffee table.  She even gave me finials for feets!

But you can't have a  cool, banged up old travel trunk with raw feets.  The feets need some character, too.  (these were happily dinged and scratched already, so I didn't feel the need to beat them up).

But they did need staining.

The curtain hangers were stained with the exact same stain.  The finials just seemed to take the stain way better.  I like it!

Then, I got to thinking about the water rings left by cold drinks, the leather-ish (probably vinyl) material covering the trunk, and the particle board underneath.  Some form of water protection would probably be a good idea.  I don't want my table getting all mushy and the top falling in.

So out comes the polyurethane.

In heavy doses!  I must've put 1/4 inch on there.  It drooled down the sides and back some, so I went ahead and polyurethaned the whole lid.. you know, just to keep it from looking too sloppy.  

 I drilled some pilot holes a little smaller than the screws coming out of the finials and screwed them into place.

Then, I got some of the scraps from B's curtain hangers to screw onto the tips of the screws so I won't accidentally cut myself on the tips when I reach into the trunk for something.

And there we go.  A coffee table/trunk :-)  It's awesome!

Please ignore the clutter.  I am still unpacking and organizing, but it's the perfect height for setting drinks and controllers on, and the inside has just enough room for the blankets I had folded on the backs of the couch and love seat, and the two travel pillows that the Pup and B use when they nap in the afternoons.


  1. Lovely absolutely lovely. See what happens when you get two frugal women and their junk together? lol
    Can't wait to see what you and Katie come up with this next week. There's another girl with a use what you got and come up with something fantastic mentality.


  2. OOOPPPPSSSS! I got to post a comment. Yea!

  3. I know! I'm looking forward to seeing her, and seeing what ideas she can come up with for my junk lol. ;-) Maybe a few new projects will be in the works with a little bit of Katie-bug flair :-D

  4. Good morning
    the new trunk looks wonderful! Terri does have the best ideas.
    The double knit scraps are great for all kinds of sewing projects, quilts or pillows, I even saw a sofa slipcover made from several double knit prints.
    I am sure you will come up with something great.

  5. Thanks Rhonda :-) I've actually started some crazy quilt pillows for the couches. I hadn't thought about slip covers, though.


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