My favorite pieces to decorate with around my house are definitely family pieces. Now, I have one more to add to my collection of handed-down décor. And, like the others, it has a story to tell.
My Grandfather worked at our local DuPont plant for 33 years and one of the requirements for completing his maintenance course back in the 60’s, was to build his own toolbox. He had to draw up the plans before building it and this is how it all turned out…
Well, I’m sure it looked much better when he first built it. This is what it looked like when it arrived to my house a couple of months ago. It was handed down to my uncle many years ago and he was still using it for it’s intended purpose. I had other plans in mind though. It was just too nice to be hidden away in our utility room and remain as a toolbox.
I really wanted to keep it just the way it was, but what it really needed was a good cleaning. You can see the inside was lined with carpet pieces. I removed all of them and scrubbed the inside good with a bleach/water mixture. It required a lot of elbow grease to remove the carpet backing that stuck to the wood.
Ewww…those drawer liners. They had to go.
I left a few things attached, including the lock box on the side and the baseball stats and quote he had taped on the inside…so cool!
After cleaning it inside and out, I lightly sanded the drawers on the outside. I really just wanted to remove the dirt and grime. There were a lot of scratches and dents, but that’s okay…just makes me think of all the hard work my Grandfather must have done with his toolbox at his side!
The stainless steel top needed to be cleaned as well. Have you ever used the stainless steel cleaner called Cameo? It is the best stainless steel cleaner I have ever used and it was around $1.25 the last time I purchased it. You can see how the top of the toolbox shines now. And check out the pulls now after using a little Cameo with steel wool pads to remove the grime that was there before. What a difference!
After lightly sanding the drawer fronts, I coated them with Minwax’s Wipe-On Poly. This is such an easy product to use and gives the wood such a nice finish.
Stay tuned for the second part of this project, as I do a little more work to the inside. I plan on lining the drawers and placing the original dividers back inside for organizing the things I’m going to store in my new serving cart!
To be continued…