How to Make Vintage Christmas Centerpieces

Last Christmas I made some fabulous Christmas planters with vintage kitchen utensils. I decided to try some this year with some different vintage items.

I found these amazing vintage tins and thought they would look just as great as Christmas centerpieces! I just love the red and green pop of color and the graphics! (These vintage Christmas centerpieces are available now in my shop!)

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Rescuing a Piece of History

Have you ever had one of those moments in life when you wanted to be a blessing to someone but in the process you actually felt like you were the one that was blessed? That’s how it happened in this story. It actually almost didn’t happen except for what I believe was “divine intervention”.

My husband and I decided we wanted to buy an antique cash register. We just loved the artistry and the detailed craftsmanship. We found one on Craig’s List and made arrangements to meet and purchase it. Only to find out when we arrived that the seller had already sold it to someone else who had come earlier. At the moment we were angry at the injustice, but turned back to Craig’s List in search of another.

Enter our friend into the story. A dear friend we would have never met had we not been double crossed by a creeper on Craig’s List. As it turned out, our friend worked his whole life for National Cash Register Company, as a cash register repairman. And as a side business, also restored and sold these beautiful registers. At one point in his career, he had an inventory of 900 antique cash registers.

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Our very first cash register

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Easy to Make Vintage Christmas Wreaths

These vintage Christmas wreaths are available now in my shop!

I have always loved this gorgeous, red metal go cart wheel. I’ve had it for quite awhile and although it’s a great architectural salvage piece as is, it occurred to me that it would look amazing as a Christmas wreath! And actually, you can make these fabulous farmhouse Christmas wreaths with just about any vintage wagon wheel.

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How to Display Vintage Paper Advertisements

I’ve always loved picking vintage advertising, but the signs can often be so expensive. I recently found these vintage paper advertisements taken from newspapers and magazines and had an idea about how to display them on the wall, given that their odd sizes make it hard to frame. Besides, I like this rustic idea better!

I decided I would attach them with mod podge on a rustic piece of wood. Now, it would be so easy to just grab a pre-made, blank, vintage-inspired wooden sign from the craft store (which you can do!).

However, other than greenery/floral and drawer hardware, I prefer to work with authentic vintage materials only.

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How to Re-purpose Sewing Machine Drawers into a Table

[buy this barn wood table now in my shop!]

Sometimes you find a sewing machine that cannot be saved, but still has some good parts to it! That’s what happened with this set of sewing machine drawers. I had seen in these in the past be re-purposed into a table.

The woodwork on these drawers is incredible. I imagined putting some sort of table top on it (the one pictured is from the sewing machine but not salvageable) and table legs on the underside. I found the perfect set of hairpin legs with L brackets that fit perfectly.

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Another Unusual Wooden Table

Antique cash registers often sat on top of a wooden base that held the cash register drawer. The wooden bases make fabulous tables!

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example of cash register with wooden base

I recently made a cash register base table but I was able to acquire another one and wanted to try something different with this one! 

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before

The top of my first one had a hole in the top for which I cut out a wood shape to fit. This second one has an interesting “well” in the top, and a hole, both which needed to be filled. (the hole is where the mechanical arm went from the cash register down through the hole to operate opening the drawer inside the wooden base)

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Building a Live Edge Wood Table with Resin Pools

[browse my current vintage furniture available now in my shop!]

I have always wanted to try and build a live edge wood table. I wanted the kind with little cracks and wells in them so I could fill it with colored resin. Through a lot of trial and error, I did it! And I learned a lot in the process for the next live edge resin table. (Yes, next!)

The one I chose was a teak “starfish” imported from Indonesia. It was 3″ thick and 36″ wide at its widest point and weighed 50lbs.

Here’s a video talking about what I planned to do for this project:

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A Rescued Card Catalog

I recently found this beautiful card catalog chest, most likely from the 1940s and came from a dentist office. It may look perfect on the outside, but it looks like besides its time  in the dentist office, it spent a little time getting wet as the drawers were pretty rusty. A little rusty metal can be fixed, but the wood was in fabulous condition!

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I cleaned the drawers with soap and water first and then used a Rust Dissolver to get rid of the excess rust. You should spray it on and let it sit for 15-30 minutes before washing off. Continue reading

A Factory Cart Coffee Table

[Browse and shop my current re-purposed, vintage furniture!]

I’ve always wanted to transform an old industrial cart into a coffee table. I finally found one recently. This one actually has 2 levels and gorgeous original hardware. It did have 2 vertical “push handles” that I sawed off. (see nubs on left picture. I later sawed those down to be level with the top)

I found out this factory cart came out of a cigar factory in Dallastown, PA. Research seems to point to the William H. Raab Cigar Factory, which first opened for business in 1871. The last news I see of it is that Raab continued his business with his sons in 1927. That’s the best I could date it! Continue reading

An Unusual Wooden Table

[Buy similar vintage furniture pieces now, available in my shop!]

Early 1900s cash registers are beautiful and ornate. Sometimes they are fully restored and look beautiful in your home.

Sometimes they fall into disrepair over the years, but so much can be salvaged from them and given new life. Often the cash register would sit on top of a wooden base with the cash drawer inside. That was just how I found this orphan cash register base and I decided it would make an amazing table!

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