Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Making Do: Kitchen cabinets

My grandmother was always good at using what she already had around the house - she called it "making do." Raising a family during the depression on my grandfather's salary as a school teacher was no easy feat (high school chemistry, in case you're curious), and often it was the only way necessities were met. The whole idea of customized solutions derives from necessity; she is, after all, the mother of invention.

duhMan and I are wading through the first wave of home ownership: what can we live with and what would scare us in the morning. The list is typical: painting walls, cleaning, replacing fixtures, installing safety devices (detectors, remote garage door openers), did I mention cleaning? The House was built in 1948, so some things have been replaced, others "renewed" (if you've ever seen painted tile, you know what I mean). Items on our list keep changing order due to moving time constraints and the cost of replacements. Case in point: the kitchen cabinets.

They seem to be an early version of the IKEA DIY cabinet sets. Assembling your own furniture is not a new idea (even before particle board book-shelving). In fact, Sears & Roebuck used to sell kits for whole houses. These cabinets had been through one life stained then two painted white (different hardware), and while the materials were holding up, the original assembly parts were showing their age. Our first thought was another repaint and new hardware, but during the pre-paint sanding, they began to look pretty convincing as "distressed cabinetry." I suppose the years of usage helped..... We decided to go with the idea and use the cabinets as is. And after another trip to the Magic Housewares store for new hardware (admittedly not free, but still far cheaper than replacements), here's how they look:

Not bad for making do.

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