Living Room: “Big Betsy” {Settle In September}

When we moved into this new home, I wanted to get rid of all of our old furniture. We’ve had our furniture for almost a decade. We got them when we were first married. They’ve been loved on through our first 3 kids and although they are still small, I wanted to sell these pieces before they weren’t worth anything 😉
Big Betsy BEFOREMy hubs was okay with this until I sold them all so quickly we were sitting on lawn chairs. Among the fun transition time, I found “Big Betsy” on an online garage sale. I thought it was a pretty good deal until I sent my hubby and his buddy to retrieve my find and they returned with the clunker including but not limited to a handle missing, another handle that looked like they got it off the bottom of the ocean from the titanic, and 2 bullet holes. YEP. You read that right. GUNSHOT HOLES.

First, I ask Matt if the wife seemed…okay. Any bruises etc. lol She was said to be in ‘good condition’. After my concern for her well-being, I ask if he requested a discount after discovering its condition. Like a good hubby, he didn’t question my agreed upon purchase price and simply handed over the cash and heaved this amazingly heavy solid wood junker into the back of a truck and brought her home to me. She sat in the garage for a week until we were completely moved and I had a lil time to love on her. I laughed every time I saw her. I wish I’d gotten better before pictures for you.

When I finally got started, the process didn’t really take that long. About two days with the assistance of a painting pro friend, my handy hoss husband and a rain delay.

  • I removed all the handles and soaked them in a white vinegar and backing soda mixture in the sink overnight. I don’t think that much time was necessary…I just forgot about them.
    Remove handles & Wiped down Drawers
  • I removed all the drawers and wiped them down Really Well. Gross.
  • I taped off the drawers so only the fronts were exposed. I did this for a couple reasons: I thought other people projects looked cool with some of the original wood showing and it would take less paint. 😉
  • My friend and I toted all the drawers into the back yard onto a giant plastic drop cloth we had left from painting the kids rooms. We had to place logs on the corners of the plastic to make sure they wouldn’t blow around as well as place logs inside the drawers slightly so they would stay face-up for easy painting. This literally took less than 30 minutes. Read HERE for my silly non-pro tips for spray-painting.
  • When I realized this project was trucking right along, I hurried into the garage to glob some wood puddy into the big gun hole that went through the middle of the left side, through a drawer, and out the back. I only filled the giant side hole and left the drawer, back, and smaller side gunshot hole.
  • After I remembered the handles the next day, I hook a magic eraser and very easily wiped each handle off as best as I could. They cleaned up pretty nicely. I considered saving myself the paint cost and leaving them this color…
    clean handles with water, vinigar, and baking soda
  • until the titanic handle refused to come as clean as the rest of them.
    Handles cleaned with water, vinagar, and baking soda then wiped with a magic errasor
  • I took all my newly clean handles into the backyard on broken down cardboard boxes and spray painted them white.
    spray painting old nasty handles from a dresser to save money rather than replacing
  • I chose to start with the backs an only did a light coat.
  • My hubby was getting ready to head to his office so ask him to through the same plastic drop cloth over his dad’s dolly and but the bones of “Big Betsy” onto the dolly. He was a bit skeptical but this way my pregnant-self could roll it out of the garage, into the driveway and back in if it started to rain or if it was taking too long and I didn’t want to be THAT neighbor.
  • I used my amazing palm sander to tackle the top of the bones where it looked like someone had taken a very angry, not-declawed cat by the torso and drug it up and down the center of the dresser to add precious claw marks deep into the top. Sweet huh? I chose not to fill it with the wood puddy simply because I’m lazy and impatient. Using the puddy on the gunshot hole was the first time I’d ever used the stuff and wasn’t confident my mad skills would work as well on the TOP of this piece.
  • While the dust settled, I returned to the backyard where I flipped all my handles over so the fronts were showing. I also flipped the handle piece up as if they were hanging upside down on the dresser. I put a thin coat while they were in this position
  • Going through the house feeling like a traveling crazy, I went back to the bones in the front yard and washed her down really well with hot water, rolled her into the side yard, took a deep breath, and then started spraying. It took about 3 cans of my fancy dancy gray paint to cover her. Again, if I wasn’t impacient, I would have gone to buy one more can for that extra coat…but I didn’t.
    placed heavy furntiture on a drop clothe covered dolly for easy transportation into the yard & back into the garage and then spray painted
  • Did I mention it sprinkled for 1/2 a second while I wasn't in the front yard? Yeah...
    sprinkled on the piece in between spray paint coat one and two
  • Making the treck again, I went back to the handles and flipped the handle pieced downward in their natural hanging position. I did that so my final top coats of paint where on the side that would be showing 99% of the time.I let the handles dry for about 45 minutes- an hour. It was super hot outside so it didn’t take long with them basting in the sun. While they were drying I distressed the drawers and wiped them down.
    distressed edges with a palm sander for a deeper distressed lookclose up of fresh handles and distressed paint job
  • While the bones dried for hours while my husband and I put all the handles back on.
  • When the bones were dry I distressed it, wiped it down, and the hubs toted inside the house for me. Adding the drawers felt like such a success!
    Big Betsy's Facelift Complete
  • The last think I did before loading her down with my craft supplies was add that foam-ish shelf/drawer liner to each drawer. Not all of them cleaned up perfectly and this would keep things in place as we opened and closed the drawers so often.
    lined drawers with foam drawer liner cut to size to cover stains as well as to keep items in place

I love the end product!!! I originally thought I would put board games in “Big Betsy” but after discovering her quirks I also realized the drawers were extremely shallow. Each one might have held a single board game box. After much thought, I decided to swap the “craft closet” and what I thought would be the “gaming shelf”. I love the swap. It works so much better. Tomorrow I’ll share with you my embracing confession of craft crap hoarding and all things organization in our living room. Those include the throw blankets, movies, games, and craft supply storage.

find other post in this series HERE

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