Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Catharsis Through Furniture

Sometimes the best therapy comes in the most surprising forms. In an earlier post I mentioned getting a headboard and foot board for $20 - an Asians absolute delight. Originally we were going to stain some side boards but when I finished with one, the knots in the wood were too obvious to match the head and foot board. Painting everything became the next best option.

I've always admired painted furniture but have never had the gumption to do it. My excuse was that it wasn't really me, but the real reason was fear. Funny how such a small word has the power to incapacitate you. I was fearful of making a mistake and worst of all, that i might be stuck with it. But having very little options, I began the process anyhow. I must admit I put it off for an hour or two. The idea of sanding beautifully stained wood was akin to making war on a piece of art for me. Once I began there was no turning back and I found myself thinking of why it was such a difficult thing for me.

In all my dusty pondering I decided it had alot to do with growing up and feeling like a mistake was the worst thing possible. And yet I've taught children how many scientific discoveries were first mistakes - things never intended and yet learned from that benefited humanity. The tragedy in a mistake is not that it is made, but so much more that it isn't turned in to knowledge and then wisdom.

My thoughts then wandered to antiqued furniture. The flaws are considered beautiful - a sign of usefulness and love. I guess I could either be a perfect item on display, never used or touched or be one that gets a good scratch or ding but has a 'lived'.

Pictures of before ...

.... middle ....

... after ....

So here I am vicariously living through my $20 headboard and finding it a rather enjoyable experience. More than anything I think I'm learning to be more forgiving - like how paint is. Between that and the Lord something beautiful can be made! Wouldn't it be neat to see pictures of me in the before/middle/after!


  1. It's GORGEOUS!!! Great job! I recognize that horse that it's leaning on :)

  2. Well, if you turn out anything like the headboard, it's gonna be a gorgeous result!

    WV - hancoque

  3. knockoffwood.blogspot.com

    it is the best blog for woodworking out there. i LOVE it. have you peeked at it yet? there are many opportunities for catharsis and everything is super duper affordable yet also sturdy.