Now I must confess, since I began decorating my art studio with antiques, I have been pining for a wooden vintage card catalog cabinet, but the large ones far exceed my budget. They are crazy hard to find, and when I do, the price (and shipping!) is exorbitant. This one was the perfect size for my desktop; at 24" wide, would fit beside the antique watchmaker's cabinet I found awhile back. From the images in the auction, I could tell it would require some badly-needed TLC - something I was more than willing to provide.
After nervously watching the auction for a week, I was convinced I would be outbid by a sniper at the last second. To my joy, I ended up being the ONLY bidder and got it for a third of what I was willing to spend! Yahoo!
Not only was it packed perfectly, it arrived in only a week from Wisconsin. Believe me; we Canadians can wait a month or more for a box from the US - Customs can hold up shipments forever, but since I got this so cheap, there was also NO duty or fees (which probably explains the fast service)!
It was in good shape overall, so I decided that I would not give this a full restoration... I only wanted to clean it up and keep the vintage look. Here's a shot before I took a scrub pad and mild soap with hot water to it:
It was sticky and gummy and had a musty odor. As I washed the poor thing, the rinse water poured off in a dark brown sludge.... it was coated in grime; what pickers / junkers call "farm fresh" I believe. After just a few minutes of elbow grease, here's a before and after comparison of two drawers. Yep, those ARE brass pulls alright!
It took only two hours to clean it up; I still have to make new labels for the pulls but I couldn't wait to load it up on my work desk:
Before cleaning, I discovered lettering painted on the front, so I was especially careful around what remained:
So of course I had to Google it, and found out that this was, in fact a cabinet from "The Diem and Wing Paper Company of Cincinnati, Ohio". Cool beans! Google also found a current eBay auction for an invoice from this very same company dated 1894, so I just had to Buy It Now:
When it arrives, I am going to frame it over the cabinet (looks around in vain for a few inches of bare wall)
* Sigh *
Well, I will TRY to find room over the cabinet, that is...
I am linking this to: