I’m planning on having a few days off next week to catch up on housework. I’ve an overflowing laundry basket, which fills up overnight as if by magic (if only my bank account were the same!) and the house is very, very untidy. But first I have furniture to finish. I promised myself time off after Christmas, but then work got busy and I got stuck into painting. But I really do need to knuckle down and give the house a ‘top to bottom’. I decided to have a day or 2 off last week, but took one look at what there was to do in the house and decided that working was the easiest option! I dare say that if the weather turns much colder, housework won’t seem quite so bad.

I finished painting the oak dresser today and may get it waxed tomorrow, depending on whether the sharp frost lifts. If the weather gets very cold, waxing is very difficult because the wax is too solid to spread. There’s also the painting of the big pine dresser, which has so far been knot blocked and primed. I used Annie Sloan ‘Duck Egg Blue’ on the oak dresser and plan to paint the pine dresser in ‘Old Ochre’. With the help of my husband, we may get the pine dresser finished by Tuesday.

I might even get chance to do a bit more to the mahogany sideboard, which has had a handle repair today. Progress is slow, but I’m getting there with it. It’s a quirky item in some ways. I bought it at auction, so know nothing of its history. At some point in the last 100 years, someone has drilled circular holes in the back of it. They are about 2 inches in diameter and I can only assume that they were put there to allow air into the inside cupboards – perhaps to keep linens fresh? My husband’s theory, that it was a Victorian battery chicken farm just didn’t stack up – there weren’t any bird droppings to be found. One of the fancy handles had also been put on back to front, with the ornate brass drop handle facing towards the dresser? It must have always been like that because the handle was soldered onto a matching escutcheon.

There are 3 large furniture items due to go off to their new homes next week, so I shall have a little more space to work with. I should have refurbished a neighbour’s item weeks ago, but time ran away from me. It’s a lovely antique pine workbench that has been sat, for donkey’s years, in the coach house where I’m currently storing some of my finished items. I looked it over again when I was moving my furniture over there. It looks great as it is, so I don’t plan on stripping away all of its history, but it does need just a bit of tidying up to make a kitchen island or perhaps a groovy console table. I love working on quirky items, they bring new challenges and I learn so much from them.

 Well I did manage to get the oak dresser waxed once the frosts had cleared. Here it is.

carved oak dresser in duck egg blue