Thursday, February 11, 2010

Ah, the smell of paint stripper

Some time ago I was having a conversation with 'Uncle Terry'. He is a unique character that has an overabundance of love for his family and will go out of his way to do special things for them. Along with this he is a creator. By trade he is a self-taught cabinet maker and has done this for many years, actually has his own company. Some of his project designs I have seen are extraordinary, and the craftsmanship is top-flight.

We were up in New England on vacation in an old ski lodge hotel and we were discussing the nature of the hotel. He likes to start new and see his work come to life. That gave my pause to think about my own handiwork. Over the years I have built my share of things, decks, furniture and other creative works, but I have also restored the past glories of others. I think this is what I prefer.

Although starting from scratch with or without a blueprint has its fun side, my nature seems to be one of restoration. Too often things are cast aside and discarded because they have outlived their usefulness or are no longer trendy enough for the current world. I find great satisfaction in restoring pieces and giving them new life, bringing them into a new world. But not everything should be restored. Some pieces or buildings have a certain life span which should not be exceeded. Much of this comes from the fact that my skills have evolved from fixing things to save money.

There are many projects I would try if my talents or time permitted. Some things I just can't do. I would love to try my hand at restoring an old automobile but I lack the time, the funds and the expertise for such an endeavor. My current project (other than finishing the bathroom trim for My Beloved) is restoring an 80-some year old (I was told) piece of steel furniture. It is in need of striping and painting. The stripping has been started and is the winter project.

After that as the spring season begins, all the rest of the patio furniture has to be touched up. Never a dull moment for the handiman.

1 comment:

  1. I too enjoy restoring old things, although I stick with wood. Since wee have a small house, I've been told, no more furniture. So, I've been finding smaller items to refinish, picture frames, decor items, stools, etc.