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salt and wood

Re use it or lose it

Tag Archives: re purposed

I built a kids drawing table while attending Richard Crosland’s ‘School of Fine Woodwork.’ A course I will highly recommend to anybody interested in adding layers of insight to their skills. The table was crafted from some rough sawn planks of American Oak. There was a couple of random bits left at the end. This little square was destined for the BBQ. However for sentimental reasons Central Control deemed it could not be burned and was thus converted into this simple little cheese and olives platter! The raw piece had cupped over time adding a satisfying form. The legs are street recovered dowel.


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This was probably a medicine cabinet complete with spilled iodine stains. Guessing from the craftsman’s stamp found under the paint it was put together in either May 1911 or September 1905? By DB? The other mysterious stamp is the ‘HO EC’ on the left side.

I found this in a back lane in Petersham Covered in layers of old paint and full of a colony of insects including Redback Spiders. After some meticulous stick flicking the cabinet was declared non-deadly and mounted on the back of my motorbike with a couple of ocky straps.

Just to be clear this was a rescue mission rather than a sculptural re purposing of accumulated components, as would generally be the intent of the item projects. And thus the character of the piece is more akin to its original intent and crafting some 100+ years ago!

Basically I was able to knock many of the joints apart and give it all a sanding. It still had what are probably the original hinges and screws though the door handle and latch were long gone with the housing rebate the only clue. The inside face of the side walls have multiple shelf slots but only two shelves leading me to guess this is a mass produced component to suit different uses.

The back panel was badly cracked and thus replaced. Where the wood was badly stained for various reasons I spray painted white and set up a contrast with the natural timber grain components. The whole unit seems to be a combination of pine and some sort of White Cedar? I put together an additional component that was fitted into the top rear to stabilize the whole structure and provide a secure mounting area to wall hang the unit. A little extra half shelf was incorporated into this. The white knob was some random street find.

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