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Monday, May 24, 2010

Craigslist Disaster turned French Beauty

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Last August the Fashionista moved into her first apartment. She took most of my home office furniture with her. My office sat empty, save for a desk, for a long time. In early December Santa gave me a whopping $100 for new furnishings.  I scanned my style file for inspiration and decided I wanted a little something like this:

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I became a Craigslist stalker. I know many of you often wonder “How do these people find such great deals on Craiglist?” The answer is: “Patience grasshopper”. As I was on holiday break from school and no design jobs were on my schedule, I would log in three times a day and scour the merchandise listed under the headings “Bookcase” “China Cabinet” and “Hutch”. I did this for 5 weeks. Yes, you read that right ~ 5 weeks. Given my strict budget, I only wanted to spend $25.00. My patience was rewarded.

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That’s right. $25.00 for this beat up beauty who was missing her shelves and two of her glass door fronts.

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But she was heavy and made from solid oak. Groovy detailing man!

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I had to give her a gentle bath with Murphy’s oil soap because she was gross and grimy. Next, all of her hardware and hinges were taken apart and saved. Then every inch of her was primed with water based KILZ. In hindsight I now wish I had used an oil based primer.

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Next, she was painted Sherwin Williams Blue Mist. It is a perfect shade of light gray~blue, often found on French and Swedish antiques. The original back panel on the hutch was warped due to water damage. I decided to replace it with bead board paneling. The paneling was not sold in a size wide enough to cover the entire back so two pieces were joined by a thin strip of molding to cover the seam.

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I also decided to replace the glassless shelves with beadboard to give the bookcase an update.

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Her old hinges were cleaned and reattached, but I purchased new knobs for the doors at Hobby Lobby for $1 each. New glass inserts for the upper doors were cut at Ace Hardware for $4.00 each. She was then moved inside.

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Here is a close up of the doors. After two coats of paint I applied a light layer of “smoke” faux technique glaze by Ralph Lauren and quickly wiped it off. You can see the light glazing that settled into all of the nooks and crannies.

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With the additional purchases of primer, paint, knobs, beadboard and glass the final cost for this transformation was around $80.00. Granted there was also about 20 hours of sweat equity involved.

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Questions? Leave a comment and I will answer any and all on Wednesday’s post which will cover the various accessories that were used to decorate the upper display shelves. Think “cheap”.

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I am in the midst of updating a few other pieces for this room. Reupholstering chairs are possibly next on the list.

Au revior,

Laura

Linking to:

127 comments:

  1. What an awesome transformation! It's beautiful, Laura.

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  2. Wowwwwwwwwwwwww! What an AMAZING bargain!!! And look at her now!! WOW WOW WOW!!! This is just GORGEOUS Laura!! I loveeeeeeeeeee what U have done with her! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)

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  3. Amazing, just amazing. I can't believe this was only $25 - what a transformation! Lori

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  4. Wow!!! You have made it just gorgeous! "Good things come to them that wait"...as the saying goes. ; )
    ~Michele

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  5. 5 weeks ... Holy Cow. that is awesome. I love your finished product! Looks amazing.

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  6. tranformation I believe would be an understatement!
    That is a NEW CREATION.
    It's Stunningly gorgeous!

    xoxo
    bB

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  7. LOVE it! I do that too when trying to find something at the right price on Craigslist! I probably stalk it more than 3 times a day!! I found oil base primer works better, too. Awesome transformation!!

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  8. I love that Laura. The colors are perfect.
    My mom has a cabinet just like that that I've been trying to talk her into letting me paint. She's dead set against it, but I'm going to try to intice her with your picture.

    Great job!

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  9. Great find and wonderful redo. Patience certainly pays off!

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  10. It's gorgeous! I just tackled my first Goodwill find which was a desk for my daughter's apartment. Now, I would like to graduate to something more sophisticated like what you have done here! Thanks for listing how you did it and the colors you use. I just love it!

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  11. WOW! I am so impressed! The redo is ab fab and your budget unbelievable! Well done!

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  12. I love the transformation!! Wow! You did a great job!
    Sandra

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  13. "All things come to those who wait" and you've proven that right, Laura! Your finished project is lovely and I love how you decorated it. Plans for the bottom?

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  14. What an amazing transformation, Laura! I LOVE it! I always go OOOHHH on things like this and my heart wants to also transform, but I know it would never get done with my work schedule. So I just enjoy other's beauties! Suzie

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  15. Oh, Laura, you did such a stunning job. It is so gorgeous. Your patience and hard work created a work of art. I love the glazing. The bead board backing is so perfect. Thanks for sharing.

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  16. INSPIRATIONAL!!!!!
    God bless,
    d

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  17. INCREDIBLE! I am sure you know what this would cost if you went to a fancy little shop and bought it already done? I am jealous.

    Scribbler

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  18. I stalk the Goodwill like you stalk CraigsList! Amazing, amazing, amazing!

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  19. Miraculously beautiful transformation.. I want one too:)

    ~Sonny~

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  20. Wow!
    Patience grasshopper is right!!!
    I paid $140 for my china cabinet/hutch, and it is not nearly as large as yours!
    What a sweet find!
    It is very beautiful and yummy!
    I think I need to do some glazing on mine- it sure looks nice.
    Thank you for sharing it with us- it inspires!
    Blessings to you!

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  21. Wow, you are amazing! And way more patient than I am. :)

    Thanks for stopping by for New Friend Friday! I'm now your newest follower. Can't wait to see what you do next!

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  22. Beautiful job! Who would ever know what it was in it's former life!

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  23. That looks so good!!! WOW! What a steal!

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  24. I love it. What a super find after so much patience. Love the color and your displays inside. Who carries Ralph Lauren glazes now that Home Depot discontinued it?

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  25. Wow! You did good...really good! Great patience and price! My mouth dropped to the table when I read you got that beauty for $25.00! I love your transformation. It is absolutely beautiful :)
    Wendy

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  26. You ended up with a beautiful piece of furniture! Can't wait to see the rest of your office transformation. You've inspired me to try my hand at a big job like this one.

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  27. Woo Hoo, Laura! Oh, your cabinet is gorgeous! Do you know what you would pay for a piece like this in one of those high end furniture stores? Oh, my, what a bargain and your perseverance paid off! I love Craigslist and you really can find bargains if you're patient.
    I love the beadboard at the back and you've dressed her up so prettily!
    Man, you're good!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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  28. What a treasure you found! Beautiful~

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  29. Oh my heck! This is amazing. You did a great job.

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  30. Wow, Talented Laura, I am SO impressed with the renovation! I can't wait for your totes to arrive this week, I hope they will be perfect with the new office...

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  31. W O W
    You rule! Congratulations! I love that tote, too!
    K A Y

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  32. Wow!! This is stunning!! Patience is definitely rewarded that's for sure. Saw your link on the Girl Creative and am following you now. Would love for you to stop by and say hello. :)

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  33. OMG! It is gorgeous! I am so impressed...but not surprised. :)

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  34. Laura, this piece is just stuning. You did a ton of work and it turned out beautiful. The beadboard is a fabulous addition and the color is perfect. Good for you. A great job. Hugs, Marty

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  35. It's gorgeous! All your work and patience really paid off. I like the new shelves better than the glass ones, too.

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  36. I LOVE HER!!!! You did a great job! :)

    ~Liz

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  37. Laura that looks fantastic! Thanks for stopping over, it is always nice to see what others are up to.

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  38. WOW! What a transformation! You should win an award! It turned out beautifully!

    Well done!

    Enjoy!
    Cathy

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  39. Ooh la la. Very pretty. I am wondering, though, why you wish you had used an oil primer? Do you think it would have covered easier for you or given you a different finish? I ask because in the photos the finish looks great.
    Pam

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  40. This was indeed a "Sweet Find".. and your persistence paid off! Also your labor!
    Great Job, it's Beautiful!

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  41. You're a lady after my own heart. :) I'm a craigslist stalker too. My end tables are from there and I got em' for 10 bucks each! woo hoo....and solid wood! :-) Love what you did with the china cabinet...looks amazing!
    I bet that buggar is heavy!
    have a great week my friend!
    Melissa

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  42. I have been craiglist stalking for awhile for find just like yours..haven't gotten lucky yet, but I am not giving up! Love yours and all the details. Have you've done a post on accessorizing..I have the hardest time with this and would love some help! :)

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  43. I have a question...why do you wish you had used an oil based primer? I am about to tackle a large furniture project and I wondered. And if you had, would you have also used oil based paint? Thanks! Lisa~

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  44. You've done an amazing transformation here! Thanks for sharing the process!

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  45. Awesome, Laura! The color is fabulous & the reno is exquisite.

    Have a lovely week.
    TTFN ~ Hugs, Marydon

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  46. Gorgeous! I always wonder what the person who sold it would think when they see what a gifted person has transformed their junk into!

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  47. Laura! I am so impressed!
    What a deal... what a transformation!
    Did you paint with a paint brush?

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  48. Your patience was rewarded. I love beadboard, too. It looks great but I'm afraid it would be filled with a lot more papers and clutter at my office--how do you keep it spare?

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  49. Wow! What a steal! I have been hunting for one too for MONTHS! No such luck yet. Love the redo. It is fab!

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  50. What a terrific makeover! It looks amazing and you are quite patient and talented. :)

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  51. wow that is beautiful! I recently did an entertainment credenza...and I love saying credenza!
    http://chambersmade.blogspot.com/2010/04/credenzajust-rolls-off-tongue.html
    and then I just made this old world map thingy...
    http://chambersmade.blogspot.com/2010/05/making-old-new-and-new-old.html

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  52. NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    unreal!!! this is beyond fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! love the beadboard - that's a great touch.
    Joni

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  53. I am loving this!! The color, the size, everything! Beautiful job!
    I'm loving your beautiful blog too!

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  54. Holly cow or should I say Holly Craigslist:-) You did an amazing job making this ugly duckling turn into a piece of beauty. I think it will be a timeless piece in your home for years to come. Good job and I applaud your hard work. Now I have a 3 piece set of BR furniture from the late 60s and you have inspired me to redo the furniture now instead of using it for firewood:-)
    Joyce

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  55. That is just fantastic and it sickens me what you talented girls can do with a 25 dollar find. Resourcefulness becomes you. :D

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  56. Absolutely beautiful!! I'm so very impressed...will probably feature it on my blog and will let you know when I do! Thanks for stopping by! -shaunna :)

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  57. That is such a beautiful piece! It's transformation was sooo beautiful!

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  58. It looks wonderful and what a deal you got. I can't wait to see the rest of the room. Thanks for sharing.
    Sandy

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  59. Congratulations, that is truly a transformation!!!

    Carol

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  60. Your cabinet turned out beautifully!

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  61. Hi Laura,

    Just wanted to say thanks for linking up your bookcase to Modern Craftswoman Monday. I have mentioned it, along with some other entries, in a post that will publish tomorrow morning. Drop by if you have time. Rory

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  62. Hi Laura!!!!
    You did an amazing job on that piece!!!!WAY TO GO!!!!!
    My daughter and I have been on the hunt for an older /vintage dresser, so maybe we should try craigslist!!!!!
    That is way to cool!!!!
    Love the color!!!!
    hugs,
    jamie
    any thought about our lunch date????

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  63. It looks great. What a deal! Did you paint it by hand or did you spray the paint on?

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  64. Great transformation! I love the bead board!!

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  65. wow wow wow!!! that is a BEAUTIFUL transformation!! Love the colors you chose, and your patience surely was rewarded.

    xoxo

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  66. Oh Laura - your patience and hard work paid off! It's beautiful! Great transformation. I love the beadboard back and paint technique. So pretty! My daughter also wants to take my office furniture to her new place. lol Guess I'll be scouring CL too! Thanks for the inspiration and for sharing in the DIY Project Parade! :)

    Roeshel

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  67. Girl, you are tenacious, aren't you? And you got what you were looking for. So your efforts were handsomely rewarded. It is lovely, and will add panache to your room. Empty no more!
    Brenda

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  68. WOW - what a transformation. I felt like I was a Craigslist stalker looking for desks for the kids. Just when I was about to give up and buy new, I hit paydirt!

    It looks amazing!

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  69. First off it's such a lovely solid piece with beautiful hardware. So great eye and amazing price. You did it to perfection IMO. Thanks for stopping by. Jane.

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  70. Great eye to find the beauty with lovely wood and hardware at such a price. And then spot-on redo. Wow. Enjoy it!!! Thanks for stopping by. Jane F

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  71. You definitely have a great eye. That likely would have been one I would have passed over. It looks great!

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  72. $25...WHOA! Looks GREAT!!!! Thanks for joining us for Anything Related ~Bridgette

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  73. What a great hutch. You did a fantastic job with it. It is just beautiful.

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  74. well grasshopper.... YOU DONE GOOD! :)

    i don't know much about paint types so i was wondering when you said that

    " i wished i would have used oil based"

    what would have been the difference in outcome? i can never figure out what paint types to use or even use with one another for what effect i am after?

    thank you for sharing this amazing piece!

    shell

    gypsylemonade.blogspot.com

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  75. I see your patience paid off in a very big way. Mission accomplished on a great redo! Don't you love it that Ace cuts glass for so cheap? Yeah!

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  76. Wow, your bookcase/china cabinet turned out fabulous. Congrats on all of your hard work paying off. If your items on display are cheap, you could fool me. It all looks lovely.
    All that work is so worthwhile.

    Hugs, Jeanne

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  77. Love what you did with the dud. I have an old entertainment center that I may tackle after your inspiration piece. Please enter me for the beautiful tote giveaway.

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  78. OH my gosh $25.00 for this piece was a steal...lol...u turned it into a beautiful piece..love it.
    I wonder if I could do that to my grandmothers old bedroom suit. Have to think about it.
    Thanks for sharing
    Maggie

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  79. Amazing what $25 will buy! I love it. You my dear did a great job.
    ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

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  80. Incredible transformation, I adore it!

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  81. Amazing! Your hard work certainly paid off, it is a beauty!

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  82. Beautiful! Can't believe you only paid 25 bucks!

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  83. I also stalk Craigslist daily - several times a day. I've also been on the look-out for a hutch. The best I've been able to find is a $25 dollar hutch from the 70's - and believe me, I've searched plenty - which there is nothing wrong with them - and is what I will probably purchase, but where are this other things hidden???

    I am constantly amazed at how others can find these gorgeous pieces of furniture for next to nothing

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  84. This is just stunning! I can hardly believe that your gorgeous hutch is teh same one as the "before" shot! what vision you have! I love using Ralph's smoke glaze, too! I am wondering why you said you wish that you had used an oil based primer? Do you like oil based better? I have only worked with water based paints, not sure what the difference is. thanks for sharing!

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  85. Wow, what a stunning piece, The most beautiful lines ever! I wouldn't dare even SAY the J word near this beauty. :)

    Thanks for linking it up to Junk SNS!
    FJ Donna
    http://funkyjunkinteriors.blogspot.com/

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  86. This is amazing! You did such a wonderful job. I am inspired to find an ugly duckling hutch and turn it into a beauty like yours. I will be linking to this beauty!

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  87. It couldn't look more charming, Laura. Thanks for the tip on the SW paint color.

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  88. That is an absolutely fantastic transformation. Your patience was rewarded. xx

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  89. I know how much hard work you have put into this, well done for persevering. You have an heirloom there!

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  90. Your patience and hard work were well worth it! It looks beautiful and has great character.

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  91. Craigslist stalking is one of my favorite activities too! This is completely gorgeous!
    xoxo, Cat @ www.BudgetBlonde.com

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  92. Wow!! Thanks for the lesson on becoming a stalker...I see that that is a necessity for the great finds!

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  93. When can you find one for me?? :)

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  94. What a stunner! I absolutely love it ... I'd love an identical one in my home! Great job. :)

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  95. Wow - that is breathtaking!!! So beautiful! You did an excellent job!

    Will you come link it up over at the CSi Project? We are having a "hardware Store" challenge this week with Kate from centsational Girl as our guest judge. I think she would really love your project!

    www.thecsiproject.com

    XOXO
    Jen

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  96. Wow I can't believe you found that for only $25, that is a steal! It turned out beautifully. Saw you over at the CSI project.

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  97. Beautiful transformation. I am currently stalking Craigs List for an accent table and chair. They have to show up eventually. :-)

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  98. Amazing!!!...and $25...you're my hero! ha!

    I have to admit that I am coveting it just a little. : )

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  99. Oh my! What a heck of a steal! I go to Craigslist at least 10 times a day, lol...I'm looking for something along those lines for my scrapbooking space. I'm starting to lose patience though. I've been looking for a month!

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  100. WoW!! Somehow I missed this post!! Glad I scrolled back through and found it. I've been soooo busy lately I hardly have time to blog. I thought I was keeping up a little though!! Lvoe what you have done with this cupboard. It is so fun to take something old and worn out and make it new and fun again.
    If you dont' want to tackle the job of reupholstering I have found that slipcovers are fun and relatively easy to make!

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  101. Such a beautiful transformation!

    Thanks so much for linking up to The CSI Project's hardware Store Challenge! We hope you will come back next week for the Martha Stewart-inspired challenge -- The MS Craft Department are our guest judges!!!

    XOXO
    Jen

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  102. Amazing. This is inspiring. Thanks for showing us how you did everything.

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  103. what can i say but 'wow'?

    Rose
    http://www.FineCraftGuild.com

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  104. What a find!! This piece is gorgeous!! I'm inspired to look for something similar that I could use in my living room!

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  105. You've truly created a family heirloom! I don't think I'd have the patience, well, maybe after seeing what a fantastic job you've done.

    Just wanted to let you know I highlighted your wonderful piece in my post today - thanks for the inspiration!

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  106. Laura it looks amazing and so high end! I am glad you could share it with us!

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  107. It looks great, what a transformation!

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  108. We love it! Funny we just did a furniture makeover search and found you. We also did a craigslist hutch makeover. We paid $75.00, but it was well worth it.We really needed a place to put our pretty plates and other goodies we've been collecting ;). Stop by and let us know what you think.
    Laura and Michele

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  109. Such a beautiful job! I have one of those I just relocated to my lower level. I shall be eying it differently .... if I only had the nerve! That puppy was over $2500 new! I just don't think I have the guts!

    Ellen

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  110. You should totally win for best piece of furniture on a dime. That is incredible!
    April from HomeHinges.com

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  111. Bravo! Great job :o) But please lose the Reader's Digests :o(

    I love to browse a new friends titles and RD are so uncool :o( Please go to the thrift shops or used bookshops and buy books that you really would like to read. This will say so much more about who you are and they are a great conversation starter....but Reader's Digests will turn the air very cool. Hope this helps?

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