Thursday, June 30, 2005

The Frankenstein Hutch

As some of you may know, I'm really in to salvage and used materials. I think you get a better bang for you buck, and with my budget I can use all the bang I can get with every buck I spend. Anyway, here are some before shots of my latest creation. With any luck it will be finished and assembled in the kitchen in about a month.

This is the bottom half. My neighbor 2 houses down was going to throw it away. Their house is 1928 and I think this was original to the house. It had been in their garage and was pretty nasty. Yesterday I sanded it down and painted it with the same Honied White I painted the trim. I also had to add the trim piece at the bottom to hide the toe kick. it is in great shape. All mortise and tenon construction and made out of fir. The inside will be painted dark green with paint left over from another project.

There are the drawers. The old hardware was shot (see below) so I removed it, filled the holes, and then repainted the fronts. The insides will also be painted a dark green. Two of the drawers have neat wooden dividers.

The 2 big bottom cabinets were lined with metal (zinc?) but they were ruined when someone left some cans of something in them and the rusted. Bummer.

The is the original hardware, also rusted. They do not seem to be brass, but a thin tin or something. They had a shiny finish, possibly chrome, maybe nickel. I'm not sure exactly when chrome replaced nickel as the metal of choice for plating things.

This will be the top half. It came out of my house and was used as part of the wall that divided the kitchen and the bathroom that was added. Judging from the trim on it and the style of the glass front doors (next picture) it is from the 1890s. There are 2 more drawers on the bottom and then 2 big glass front doors for the top part. I will need to strip the paint, fill some nail holes, and then repaint. It shouldn't be too bad because it was originally shellacked and that is fairly easy to strip. This is made of redwood.

Here are the glass front doors. I am missing one pane, but the other three are nice wavy glass with little bubbles and flaws. Very cool!

This is some 1x6 crown molding I salvaged from exterior of the 1922 addition I removed last fall. This will go around the top of it. I have about 30 feet of this molding so I will also use it around other cabinets.

This is the "new" hardware. The 2 large pulls will go on the drawers on top half of the hutch, and 5 smaller ones will go on the 5 drawers of the bottom half. It is weird that I bought these 7 pulls in 3 different transactions, but they all have the same pattern. It must have been popular at the time. The little cabinet latch (there will be 3 on the hutch) is a restored antique I bought from Ed Donaldson Hardware (~Drool~). I bought a matching set of 10 so all the cabinets in the kitchen will have them. It is interesting that the restored antiques where actually a few dollars less than high quality reproductions.

When the whole thing is put together it will be about 5.5-feet wide and a little over 9-feet tall. It will have cost me about $120.00 for an antique "Victorian" hutch.


heather said...

Once more you amaze me with your awsome talent to tranform trash into true works of art. I am soooo jealous.

Patricia W said...

Sure wish I had stuff like that laying around to make things with. Even if I did I doubt I could piece it together so well. The drawer pulls are truly awesome and I can't wait to see it finished!

Jocelyn said...

That is going to be one amazing kitchen- a total time warp in a good way of course. The hardware is beautiful. And are you calling the drawers "draws" on porpoise?
(sorry I couldn't resist)

Greg said...


"draws"?!?! I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. Perhaps you should read it again.

Beside, spelling is such a pane in the ass.

Trissa said...

A great idea- I admire your vision and patience. Salvage is great, especially when all the pieces come together.

Karen said...

Really cool cabinet. I like the way you hid the toe kick. You could probably clean up that rust in the metal bins with a wire brush attachment on a drill then brush on some navel jelly for the corners,wash it clean dry thoroughly, prime and paint with spray paint (do all this outside with the appropiate mask of course) Sell the bin pulls on Ebay if you're not gonna use em. I'd buy them.
Love your blog.

Beth said...

This is FANtastic. Love how you're salvaging all the pieces. I can't even imagine how much I'd pay for something like this at the salvage yard -- way more than $120!

lynette said...

I love it, looking forward to seeing photos when you get it all in place