As seen on: Lovely Crafty Home Blog March 30/2011
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Before I show you this joint creation, I wanted to give you a little history..... though, if you just want the nitty-gritty, scroll down to the pictures... I'll *try* not to be offended ;-)
Once upon a time, a few generations ago, a young man married the love of his life. Since the man was handy, he built her a wardrobe and a vanity, and the ever-important kitchen table. The table was used for years and years, until it was considered too old, and having the resources to buy another table, that is just what the man and his wife did.
Years passed, and the couple's three children grew. The table was sad, all alone in the garage, with the other abandoned furniture. It missed the laughter of the family, the warmth of a hot bowl on its surface and the hub-bub of being right in the middle of the kitchen!
One day, the couple's oldest son got married. He didn't have a table for his apartment. "Take the old one in the garage" his father said. And so, the son took the table and brought it home to his bride. But, alas! the table was too big for their tiny apartment! What to do? The son had a brilliant idea - he would trim down the base and give the table a new top, and that is just what he did.
The table was happy again! The son and his wife were young, and energetic, and had a dog! The table was having more fun than it had seen in years! Eventually, the son and his wife moved into a bigger house, and had children of their own. The table was too small for a family of four - the family bought a new table!
"Oh no!" thought the table. It didn't want to go back to a garage! As it was picked up, the table groaned and sighed.
And then, the son's wife lightly sanded the table, and painted it blue. She put it in her family room and the table was happy again! Everyday, the little children would sit next to it while they played and watched TV. It could feel the warmth from the wood stove. And, sometimes, the family still ate off of it.
Many years passed, and the old man who had built the table and his wife both passed away. The young couple's two children grew and moved out of their parent's house and the couple bought a new house. There was no place for the table anymore - it was considered too old, too plain. It was just "that old table".
The table feared it would be sent to the trash heap. "Oh! The horror!" it cringed as it was picked up and moved. "My life is over."
To the table's surprise, it was placed in the wife's garden shed. It was surrounded by all the other cabinets and tables that had been collected over the years, the things that weren't posh enough to be in the house, the things that had been waiting years and years to be fixed. "Oh, well", it thought as the wife laid her pots and potting soil on top of it, "At least I am still useful for something".
Years passed and the old, blue table accepted its fate in the garden shed. It wasn't like being in the house, but the wife loved her garden and so the table had company often. It could even hear the laughter from the couple's grandchildren when they came to visit and played outside the shed door.
Then one day, in the middle of an ordinary day, the son came into the garage with his daughter (all grown up now, and the mother of the two boys the table liked to listen to). They were looking for something. "You could take that there, " said the man, "My father made it, and we cut it down when we got married. The legs are solid - he made them by hand - but you would have to replace the top".
The table dared not hope that they spoke of him. But then, it felt that all-too-familiar grip of human hands as they picked it up. The daughter said she was excited - she didn't know her grandfather had made the table. She was thrilled. The man and his daughter worked together to cut the table down. "I am so small now", thought the table, "what can I possibly be good for?"
It was given a new hard wood top. "Heavy", thought the table, "but I can handle it". And it was given fancy scroll decals on its sides, and a towel bar. One of the boys even came in and helped drill holes to keep it together. "This is looking good", thought the table, it always liked children.
The daughter brought the table home, and painted it red. She oiled the hard wood top. The table couldn't wait to get back in the kitchen and be useful again!
But when it got there, the kitchen was big! And there was already a table, much bigger than it was now, and it had four chairs and was obviously being used! The table was confused, "What is going on here?" it thought. "Am I to be cut down and painted only to be put in a shed again?" Was it to be put out in the cold, on the back deck? It didn't want that - it had never been left out in the cold before. A garage would be better than that! The table waited for the feel of hands gripping him, to take it outdoors again....
Instead, it felt hands lifting his legs, each one, one by one. The daughter screwed wheels into the bottom of each leg. Then, she pushed the little, red table into the centre of her kitchen, in the middle of the fridge, stove & sink. She chopped the vegetables there, made lunches, placed a bowl of fruit on its top. The children played nearby, and ran past it everyday. The table was in the middle of all the activities and felt the warmth from the pots cooking on the stove each night. It realised it wasn't a table anymore, it was an island. And the island was happy.
And, the little island finally knew it was treasured by this family, that it was a part of their history. And it couldn't wait to find out which of the boys would claim it when they grew up!
Drum roll please.... dah-da-dahhh - Voila, my "new" kitchen island:
Dad and I cut it down a while back, and I then sanded it lightly (I didn't want to loose the well-loved look) and painted a colonial red. Dad had cut it down years ago, and the top he had used wasn't strong enough to use for an island, so we used the top from an old chemistry lab bench - we even left the hole where the gas pipe came up through it:
The top was sanded with a belt sander and then oiled with 4 coats of hemp oil (creates a surface you can eat off of as it is non-toxic). Each leg is just a little bit different from the one next to it as my grandfather handmade them.
I LOVE this island!!!!! Thanks Dad!