Vintage Find // Farmhouse Office Cabinet

THE FARMHOUSE

The largest piece of furniture at the Farmhouse is the cabinet that sits just inside the office.  It’s 5.5-feet wide and 8-feet tall and built so solidly that it took 3 men to move it from the antique store where I found it.

The Grit and Polish - Office Update Cabinet 3

But before I delve into the cabinet, I wanted to tell you the story behind it.  It’s a tale of serendipity – the stuff of old home lover’s dreams.  And it has made me fall in love with our little hometown even more, because this is the kind of thing that could only happen in a small town.

But back to the cabinet.  The moment I saw it, I had to have it.  Not only was it beautiful (SO beautiful!), but the fir wood looked like it would match perfectly with the Farmhouse’s fir woodwork.  Actually the entire piece – from the crown molding down to the old latches – looked as if it would fit perfectly at our Farmhouse.  So much so, that I had the fleeting feeling that the piece had been made for our Farmhouse.

The Grit and Polish - Office Update Cabinet large

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Office Cupboard 3

But at $1,400 and no immediate need for a pantry cabinet, I couldn’t justify the purchase.  So I sulked away empty handed.

Fast forward two months to our mailbox.  I found a hand-addressed letter there, which turned out to be from a previous resident of the Farmhouse.  She had written to inform us that there was a large cabinet at the local antique store that had originally belonged in our Farmhouse.  Quite obviously, my interest was piqued.  Even if it wasn’t the pantry cabinet that I had fallen in love with, I had to bring whatever piece of furniture she was talking about home.

The former resident went on to explain that the cabinet had originally been in the kitchen and then later moved to a closet.  It had been painted and then stripped.  And in recent years an owner removed the cabinet from the Farmhouse, and placed it on the 3rd story of a local victorian home.  Finally it had been brought in to the antique store to be sold.  And there it sat.

I later found out that the cabinet had been bought while our letter sat in the mail, but thankfully it was returned before they got it out of the store (it turned out to be too big for the buyer’s space).  And there were other interested buyers too.  But serendipity was on my side.  When I went back to the antique store, the store’s owner was delighted to find out that I was the new owner of the Farmhouse – she was familiar with the history of the cabinet – and walked me over to the piece in question.  It was, of course, the pantry cabinet I had fallen in love with all those months ago.  Happy to reunite the cabinet with it’s original home, the store’s owner offered me a discount and I happily brought the cabinet home.

Sweet, sweet serendipity!

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Cupboard 4

To say this piece is solid, is selling it short.  It’s built like no cabinet I’ve ever seen.  The backing is 3/4″ tongue and groove flooring strips (no doubt the same material that still graces our floors) and the sides are at least double that thick.  Even the cabinet doors are an inch thick.  Garrett and his dad had to separate the cabinet’s top from it’s base to get it from the truckin to the Farmhouse and even then, they needed a hand cart.

After a little research, I believe this piece should actually be called a stepback cupboard.  But since I plan to return it to the kitchen where it originally sat (someday….years in the future when we remodel the kitchen), I’m going to keep calling it our pantry cabinet.  In the meantime, I love having it in our office.  It looks and functions great as storage and makes my heart swell every time I see it.

The Grit and Polish - Office Update cabinet hardwareThe Grit and Polish - Office Update cabinet 6The Grit and Polish - Office Update fabric

Well that’s the story behind our beautiful pantry cabinet turned office storage.  I’m so happy to have it back home!  Next week I’ll give you a progress update on the rest of the office including all the sources from this post.  Until then, I hope you have a great week!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. a vintage spool bed.

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Vintage Find // A Jenny Lind Spool Bed

It’s no secret that I have a thing for vintage beds.  There’s just something about them that gets my heart all aflutter.  Vintage beds are undoubtedly my number one Craigslist/vintage/salvage/antique store find and despite already having a hefty collection (see below), I keep adding more.  Garrett would probably say that I just can’t help myself.  But luckily for him, we keep buying old houses, so there’s always a new space for a good vintage bed!

The Grit and Polish - Vintage Beds Collage

bedrooms, clockwise from top left: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

My most recent find is a twin-size spool bed, a style that I’ve long admired.  After eyeing the bed at a local antique store last month (Relic, if you guys are in eastern Washington), I finally told Garrett that we needed it for staging at the flip house.  He begrudgingly picked it up last weekend, but there were certainly no complaints at the price, $89.  In case you were wondering, I’m head over heals in love with this one!

The Grit and Polish - Spool Bed

The spool bed, or Jenny Lind bed as they’re often called, is one of my favorite vintage styles.  The spool detail is so delicate, crafted, and beautiful and these beds can really add a special element to a space.  Even though my spool bed is far from perfect – the foot board was replaced and there’s some damage on the side rails – I’m really happy to be adding it to my collection.  It’ll be the perfect bed for the little girl bedroom at the flip house (and maybe our own little girl’s room at the Farmhouse, someday).

After buying this bed, I did a little research on the ever-popular spool bed style and thought it would be fun to share what I found with you all.  Let’s start with the name.  These beds are referred to as two things: spools for their resemblance to sewing spools and Jenny Lind after the 1800s Swedish opera singer of the same name.  Ms. Lind came to America in 1851 on a much publicized tour and captured the public eye.  She was an “it girl” long before the likes of Beyonce or Adele.  Ms. Lind was said to prefer the colonial-style spool beds during her hotel stays, and the notion stuck.  The spool bed has been referred to as the Jenny Lind bed ever since, as long as it has square solid corners on the headboard (according to Design Sponge).

Originally the spindles were turned using a lathe operated by a foot pedal, which was a slow and laborious process.  Can you imagine how much effort went into each bed?  Talk about an heirloom piece!  Steam power replaced the foot pedal in the first half of the 1800s, making spool beds much easier to “mass” produce.  If you want to know more on spool beds, check out these two articles (here and here).  The first one has some useful tips if you’re trying to date the construction of a spool bed.

Since my Jenny Lind is intended for a girl’s bedroom, I plan to style it with updated florals and traditional feminine details for a modern take on an antique bed.  Maybe it is just the baby girl in my belly, but I can’t get enough of this look!

The Grit and Polish- Spool Bed Style Wrap Up

 

sources: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9

Lots of cozy white textiles, vintage-inspired goods, and floral prints in this bedroom.  Of course, a spool bed would fit equally well in a boy’s room, guest room, or even a master bedroom.  Here are a few of my favorite rooms featuring spool beds from around the internet.

Livinglifemoments Insta Inspiration Domaine Inspiration double twin guest roomjenny lind inspostarbright farm spool bed

sources 1 / 2 / 34 / 5

Showstoppers, right?  Spool beds not only headline those rooms, but they also fit into very different decor styles.  I really can’t get enough!  I’d love to hear if you guys collect antique beds (or maybe just have one or two like a normal person), and if so, what style?!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. finding a vintage bed on Craigslist (my favorite source) for the Dexter guest bedroom.

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