Saturday, October 2, 2010

Doors Re-Purposed

Unused doors just aren't safe around our house. Then again, maybe they are safe--from uselessness. My sweet husband just can't bear to leave them lying without purpose, and we haven't oodles of money, so if a door isn't useful vertically, we press it into service horizontally. We're getting pretty good at this trick.

When we moved into this house, there were two doors lying about and two that had to come down. The ones we removed had closed off the laundry closet. Unfortunately they didn't work with my front loading washer, so away they went. With $30.00 of Ikea trestles, one of them became my desk at which I type this very moment.

In an example of how things just work out sometimes, I'll tell you that I meant to purchase either white or natural trestles. When the box was opened, they were black. I was about to have my usual traumatic disappointment--the Ikea store is two and half hours away--when I decided to let it go in order to have some kind of desk. It turns out that the black trestles and the natural door work well together because the same assortment of tones are present in the floor. It looks like we meant to do that. Again. I love it when that happens. I'd still love to have a white desk and chair, to further brighten all our woodsiness, but this works for now. Maybe someday I can afford the Pottery Barn desk assembly of my dreams or get crafty with a cheap file cabinet and paint. Until then, ca marche!

One of the doors hanging around was a duplicate of our front door, which puzzled us at first. The former owner cleared that mystery up. It seems that she ordered and painted a new, more energy efficient door but couldn't bring herself to take down the old solid wood door. She has a weakness for wood obviously. She was the one who made the stair railing from cedar
posts (well, one was pine) dragged off her grandfather's land and built the cabinets and island, which used to be a hutch until she put it back together again differently. I think she's my Shop Girl hero.

Anyway, that colorful door, resting on yet more Ikea trestles, is now D's desk. He loves it.

Someday, when he's not looking,
I'll take off the hardware.

The daddy of all the doors, abandoned down in the basement, was a hulking antique pine number, 1 3/4 inches thick with mortise-and-tenon joinery and that lovely honey color pine takes on with age. I agreed with Dave that it was far too impressive not to use somehow. A little measuring verified that it was the perfect size to become a dining room table, which we needed. A local Amish woodworker (who also avowed that it was an impressive door) added a skirt and legs for a quite reasonable price of $180.00, and we ordered glass for roughly the same amount. We've ended up with a unique table for about $400.00 that, if bought, would far exceed that price, if only by virtue of sheer heft.

Mr. Amish Carpenter did a little mortise-and-tenon action, too.

That leaves one last door hanging around downstairs. We haven't any further horizontal needs up here right now, but we haven't even gotten around to setting up the shop, where it's languishing. It just might make a handy work table someday.

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