Wednesday, March 14, 2012

I love you honey (oak)

This post isn’t about my Honey, although I love him bunches too…even more than my honey oak. And that’s saying a LOT.

A few years ago I would have turned up my nose at any piece of furniture with “oak” as the finish. I’ve always been a cherry kind of girl. But over time my tastes are definitely changing.

But I’m a honey oak lady now and I’ll sing it from the rooftops! Or this blog. Whatever.

It all started with Craigslist. I’ve shown you a few of my finds over the years, but a friend recently told me about the alerts you can set up using the Craigslist app. So I set up a few alerts and I’m warning you now…don’t do it.

Curses you brilliant Craigslist people! Shakes fists to the sky!!

It’s dangerous.

I found another beauty the other day and practically sprinted to their house to get it, I loved it so.

But first, let’s recap some of my honey purchases over the past couple of years, shall we? It all started with a Drexel dresser I found – first it went in the family room, but then I realized it would be the perfect finishing touch to the Bub’ room:

airplane room

It’s a perfect addition – the warm honey tones work great with the dark walls and the white wainscoting.

Then the Henredon joined our lives:

I’m pretty much obsessed with using dressers as TV stands now. It’s perfect. I put all the electronics below the dresser, and the toys that the Bub keeps in the family room are (mostly) hidden away in the drawers:

We also keep our DVD case in one of the drawers as well. Out of sight! Wahoo!

Again…I LOVE the color of the wood. I just think it’s warm and lovely and smushy and I don’t think I could ever ever paint this beauty.

Well due to the blasted awesome Craigslist app and it’s horrible wonderful alerts, a new honey came home to live with us:

He’s going in the hub’s office in the basement and I’m IN LOVE. I love it’s slightly 60’s vibe. Kinda Mad Men-ish. I don’t watch Mad Men but I’m feeling it in this piece.

It has storage galore:

I love it’s old hinges too – I’ve never seen anything like them on a dresser.

The two drawers on the sides have plenty of space too:

Painting this one would be a beast with those doors, so it’s a good thing I’m leaving it as is. ;) I still need to clean it up and then give it some love with this stuff:

image

A reader told me about this product about a year ago and I LOVE it – I use it every six months or so (the oak version) on my dressers. It makes the little scratches and nicks go away and gives it back it’s warm finish.

The label on the inside the dresser is Morganton, which I had never heard of. It turns out it operated under Drexel as well – is it sad that the nicest pieces of furniture we own are all from Craigslist? These are super high quality (and expensive!) furniture brands that I’m sure will last as long as we do.

Just so you know, I am not paid to talk about Craigslist or the app – I just love em. Usually this is where I say Craigslist has no idea who I am – but Craig himself came by TDC to say hello once, so HOLLAAAA Craig! What. is. up?

Do you find treasures on Craigslist? Have you discovered the app? Have you had to delete all your alerts like me because you are obsessed and think you need every single item? Do you love honey oak as well? Or are you a darker girl? Or no finish at all – only color?

DO tell!

P.S. See all that brilliant light in the basement? Yeah, it rocks. I’ll tell you more about that soon. The basement finishing is moving right along!

P.P.S. I’m so excited you’re all so excited about the dining room transformation! I picked up the butcher block counter yesterday and the cuts were perfect – can’t wait to get it all installed!

**I think these are oak. That’s what I’ve been told. I have no idea. I just like them and the oak Resor-a-finish works perfectly on them. :)

70 comments:

  1. It looks absolutely awesome! Good job!

    Smiles,
    Lesli @ BeautifullyCoastal.com

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  2. Ah-mazing! I'm so jealous. I can never find good stuff on Craigslist here in Indy-- it's either overpriced or... overpriced. Congrats on your new treasure!

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  3. Now, don't cringe but I paint every piece of furniture that enters our house. I always buy my pieces from garage sales or kijiji.com. I have oak flooring but I'm trying to downplay it. I am very jealous of your finds.

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  4. Where I live, Kijiji is the popular one, but they are owned by the same "people". And, that is one of my "go to" places. I have purchased very few new pieces. I love quality, and my husband says I'm cheap - I prefer thrifty, lol! So, between what I like and what I'm willng to pay, that leaves me with purchasing "new to me" pieces. I'm all for "buy used and save the difference"!

    By the way, I love all the pieces you've acquired through Craig's List! Give me wood any day!

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  5. LOVE them all...that last one is great!! So glad you shared them with us!
    :-)
    shaunna

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  6. I love Craigslist and kijiji and have found some awesome pieces. Loving your honey oak pieces and the way you use the dresser for a media cabient.

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  7. I love them all. Do you mind sharing what search terms you use to find such great pieces?

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  8. i think that is fruitwood, not oak.

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  9. I've found a Henredon sofa and a Drexel dining table and chairs on Craiglist! LOVE IT!

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  10. If I found such fabulous pieces, I probably wouldn't paint them either! The one in the bub's room is just fabulous!!!

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  11. That last dresser you found is AMAZING!! Wiping the drool from my chin.

    And DARN you for telling me about the Craigslist app!! Downloading as we speak......

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  12. These are all great pieces! I have a ton of oak pieces that I couldn't bring myself to paint and I'm happy I never did.

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  13. Ok I am new to all the furniture finding stuff but..... We recently had a very distant Family member pass away and we were given (yes, free) a TON of what I thought was "just furniture". The bedroom set we got says Drexel on the back and the dining room set says Thomasville. I had no clue it was such good furniture until I just read this post. Yay for great free furniture. The Drexel set is ivory w/ gold accents so I am trying to decide if I should repaint it. It will be my daughter's big girl room furniture. Anyways thanks for cluing me In on what a great deal we got.

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  14. Great pieces Sarah, I never find anything good on Craigslist and if I do it's gone when I find it. Remind me where did you get that long mirror over the 2nd dresser, and was it recently?

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  15. Lovely! Nice job. I found something similar on Craig's List last fall but I decided to paint it (gasp). http://catherinehewlett.tumblr.com/post/16903989913/vintage-dresser-makeover

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  16. Ya know, I'm not afraid to paint wood at all, but I do love a piece that is an orginal-- ya know? I love stained wood. There, I said it. We might regret painting all our furniture people! Stop the insanity!! ;) ;)

    Lovely, lovely pieces, Sarah.

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  17. From looking at your new (SWEET!!) piece I wonder if it isnt maybe an office cureo, or a side board from a dining room, those hinges I have seen on an old dining room set, not on bedroom stuff usually. And old side boards had draws for lines (napkins and such) then silver service pieces would go in other draws...AWESOME Piece whatever it was!! ENJOY!!

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  18. My daughter and I just found a very good quality pine armoire in near perfect condition for $50 this past weekend on Craigslist. She's planning to repurpose it to hold her china, glassware and linens in her tiny apartment. She thinks she'll live with it for a little while before deciding whether to paint it.

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  19. Yeah, I've got the Craigslist app on my phone and it is wonderful and terrible at the same time.

    I'm trying to find that sweet spot with wood and painted furnishings. I think the oak fell out of favor because it was on EVERYTHING in the 80s/90s. But your pieces are lovely!

    On an unrelated note, I'm so excited to get to finally meet you at SNAP! Unfortunately our panels are scheduled for the same time so I won't get to hear you speak. :-( But I'm so glad you are coming!!

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  20. I don't know what this craigslist ap is, but after I find out I hope I am not cursing you for turning me on to it!

    Bliss

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  21. This post title actually makes me cringe.
    I have spent months and months and months trying to get rid of the awful dated honey oak that is taking over my house.

    I can't even imagine buying more! At least yours doesn't scream "1984!!!!!!!!!!"

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  22. I love that finish and that style dresser! (have you noticed that all your dressers have similar shape/legs?) The best and nicest furniture I own I bought on Craigslist too. Dressers make such good storage. I'm a sucker for them! I'm going to have to try that restor a finish stuff on my Craigslist finds!

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  23. Just so you know these pieces do not appear to be oak... Oak has a heavy grain like your wood floors do (in the picture with the television).. You have a few high quality beautiful pieces. They are likely fruitwood or maple... I think I will get the Craigslist app too ;).

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  24. I believe that with good care, these cabinets would last long.

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  25. congrats on all of your finds. to leave or change can be hard. sometimes the item will tell you the answer.

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  26. Wow, really nice. I like the newest one a lot. I wonder what they cost in your area, bc I feel like while they are very nice, it might be hard for (thrifty) me to spend that. But I think I need to get over that, bc they are lovely!

    I thought maybe the wood was maple, but the finish/color could certainly be deemed honey oak color.

    Do you think it might be a sideboard or buffet? I like how you use them.

    Thanks for sharing! You have a lot going on at once right now! Fun to read about!
    Chrissy

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  27. Sarah, these are all gorgeous! I never have such good luck on Craigslist. :( Being that I live in the furniture capital of the world (western North Carolina), I know that the Drexel Heritage headquarters are in a town about half an hour from where I live called Morganton. I didn't realize they had a brand named Morganton, though. Interesting!

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  28. Awesome finds! I'm sure I can fumble my way through installing the Craigslist app (much to my hubby's disappointment!) But is there more I need to know to narrow it down like you mentioned? Did you mention the details in a previous post and I missed it? There are very specific things that I'd love to search for and be alerted to before everyone else snatches them up :)

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  29. I am so jealous! We have Kijiji here in Canada...but I live in a tiny, tiny township in Northern Ontario and (get this) everything I find on Kijiji is either in the Soo (5.5 hours away) or Thunder Bay (4.5 hours away). Mind you I suppose I shouldn't be too upset...if I was closer to the goodies I'd be broke and have a house full of dressers! I too have a fettish for lovely dressers!

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  30. Love the pieces very much. Great job.

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  31. I love Craigslist! I did not know about the app, so I've been doing it the hard way this whole time :-) most of the furniture in my house is from Craigslist, dressers for my boys, dinning room table and chairs and now our living room couches ( just got them last week) here there isn't much in the way of quality furniture for good prices, but if you watch things for a month or two and then be ready to pounce when you see something you want, then you can get really nice stuff.

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  32. I don't think those are oak. They don't have that signature heavy, dark grain. They are beautiful though!! Love them :) and I, too, have found my CL app to be a bad thing. ;)

    I am currently painting all of the "honey"(aka orange) oak trim in my house. What an undertaking! They aren't the lovely burnt caramel color of your pieces. They're an orange amber.

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  33. Oooohhhhh I love the latest honey oak addition. I also LOVE Craigslist but I didn't know about the alerts - THANKS A LOT! (sarcasm) I need a new TV stand thanks for the dresser idea. I'll be off to Craigslist now.

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  34. I am a lighter-wood gal myself (oak, knotty pine, maple, etc.) and I absolutely LOVE your wonderful finds! I've never tried Craigslist (no, I don't live under a rock, just at the beach where there are always tons and tons of estate sales/yard sales to peruse, so I've never gone the Craigslist route!) but I've gotten all my best furniture 'second-hand' as well, so don't feel like you're alone in that! In fact, my entire dining room is furnished with estate sale finds, including an early American oak pedestal table and 6 oak straight-back chairs from that same period.
    You made some good finds, there!

    I have to chime in to agree with MANDI@TIDBITSFROMTHETREMAYNES, I'm kind of a traditionalist when it comes to wood furniture -- while I like a painted piece here or there, I'm much more apt to refinish it, than paint it. Luckily, the mister used to do this for a living, and he feels the same!

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  35. Wow- what great finds! I never find good things on Craigslist, or they are always too far away I can't talk myself into making the trip. I did make some small cosmetic changes to my house recently and got pretty good deals on both! Feel free to check 'em out! http://futuredukes.blogspot.com/2012/03/little-house-updates_15.html

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  36. Yay! Thanks for passing along info about Restor-A-Finish!!!

    My husband and I inherited a Buffet/Hutch 8 years ago that looks so similar to the style you purchased on CList and its needs some lovin! I don't have an exact date for the piece but we estimate 80+ years old. I didn't want to do a complete refinish and I would never ever dream of painting it, its just so old I would never! It took me some time to decide that I love the lighter wood color...and isn't it amazing how our tastes change over the years. :) Now its one of the favorite pieces in my home. I'm so excited to try out Restor-A-Finish!!!!! Yay! ps, I'm a huge Mad Men fan...check it out its excellent to watch with your man!

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  37. Love reading your blog! I live in Morganton where your new piece of furniture came from! We used to be a furniture manufacturing type of town but sadly almost all have closed down. I love finding older well made pieces like that!

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  38. Thank you, THANK YOU for understanding and appreciating the beauty of real wood pieces. And thank you for not painting them!!! Everyone all over blogland paints everything! It used to be people painted stuff that was old beat up rustic wood, thats why it has a county feel to it. But now people paint everything even when its all ready beautiful, it kills me. And I hope you never paint your kitchen cupboards either, they are beautiful!!!

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  39. My husband has the app on his phone for all of his car stuff. Seeing how he can be with it, I def think that it would be dangerous territory for me ;) So I do the traditional web browsing. Also, have you ever heard of the website "Search Tempest"? It's a way to browse within a certain mile radius of your location, regardless of what CL city the post is actually listed in. It works great!

    I loooove craigslist...I'd say about 90% of the furniture in my house come from there. I just picked up a Jenny Lind bed for $25 last weekend, and although I'm pretty sure it needs to be refinished, I might have to try that Restor-a-finish to see how it works and if it will hold me over until I can get to it. And I am a sucker for darker, cool-toned wood finishes. So pretty!

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  40. Good find! I'm from Morganton - it a town in the foothills of western North Carolina. Drexel is a funiture manufacturer here. They make great stuff :-)

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  41. Generally, I'm not an oak person as in I can't wait to paint my builder grade oak kitchen cabinets! However, antique oak is a different story like my great uncle's rocker which is a beauty! I have had no luck on Craigslist here in CT. The real finds are few and far between, but I keep trying! Those bureaus are beauties!

    Ciao!
    Guerrina

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  42. How do you find/use/apply the Craigslist app?

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  43. Hey I am also a dresser type fan though I go for the bachlor type chests 3-4 drawers not as wide as regular dressers and if your loving honey oak try fruitwood finishes (I like the grain structure of cherry better than oak-You will LOVE fruitwood finishes!!!)

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  44. I'm addicted to painting everything aged black at the monent. Love your blog and check it almost daily!

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  45. It's refreshing to see a beautiful unpainted piece of furniture appreciated for its natural finish. I love painted furniture (and paint a bunch myself), but sometimes I cringe at the beautiful grain and patina I see being covered up by paint.

    It's nice to know you're saving some beautiful furniture via your love of oak and the Craigslist ap!

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  46. The Henredon you have, I have the Exact style only the tall one. I love love love it and got it for a 20.00 steal at the thrift shop!!

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  47. I love your finds! I haven't bought anything off of Craigslist as of yet, but I have heard that it is fantastic from multiple bloggers and friends who swear by it!

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  48. I grew up in Morganton and my grandfather was the plant manager at Henedron (Drexel Heritage) for many many years. That furniture will outlast you. I have some of the same pieces gifted from my grandparents.

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  49. I have found the lovely Jacobean color and want to use it where ever I can. I tend to be different than the current trend LOL That is how I roll!

    I love love love Craigs list. Wait till I show the world a trunk I found to redo. It is gorgeous!
    Hugs,
    bj

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  50. I love Craigslist!! Over half of the furniture in our home is from there... Rowe Sofa, PB chair, Basset leather chair...I could seriously go on and on. :) I'm not really into wood furniture, I like it painted, but your pieces are really pretty. Installing app now!!

    Kim @ www.mylifeincolorblog.com

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  51. Sarah, help! Which App is it? There are so many.....some free, some cost. I just want to make sure I upload the one that has the notification option.

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  52. Yes! Can someone let us know which app it is? Pretty please?

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  53. Wow! Amazing find(s)! I too have the CL app, but did NOT know about the alert!! Here is a Craigslist find I almost left as is, but decided to paint green for spring:
    http://chase-thestar.blogspot.com/2012/03/spring-green-chair.html

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful Craigslist finds!
    -Barbara

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  54. You found some wonderful furniture on craigslist. Most of the furniture in our home is used. We have found such wonderful buys in newspaper advertising, craigslist, and thrift shops. The furniture is always far superior to anything we could buy new. We have a beautiful Drexel Heritage cherrywood bedroom set that is gorgeous and an oak buffet(an antique) from craigslist. I really love oak and detest painted furniture. I love the original wood finish.

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  55. My best furniture find was actually at Goodwill. A phenomenally gorgeous Thomasville buffet in a beautiful, rich cherry finish with the most delicate hardware you've ever seen. I literally laid across it to prevent anyone else from snatching it up.

    I got a steal of a solid wood dining table on Craigslist a couple years ago, and I'm planning to build a new top for it. It's currently a very lame-o blonde wood, and I'm thinking I'll paint the legs/apron and do a darker finish on the new, chunkier top.

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  56. I love this! I am also obsessed with using dressers as TV stands, and honey oak dressers or anything honey okay for that matter are absolutely fab. I also like cedar. Does anyone have any ideas of the stuff to use to cover scratches in cedar? Will the same stuff work?

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  57. Ok I must find this craigslist app you speak of! I've been searching for a new desk for weeks and am having no luck! Beautiful find!

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  58. That '60s-ish one is really awesome. I actually got a lot of my furniture through CL. My chest of drawers (that guy also threw in a little cabinet I'd originally planned on using as a bedside table but which is currently in my living room) came from there. So did my computer cabinet. I had been looking for a china cabinet for ages, and finally (about the time I decided I'd have to raise my cost limit) found one for less than I'd originally planned on spending!

    I had not heard about the Craigslist app, and I am going to pretend that I still haven't. I don't need any more furniture right now. I really don't. None at all. Although I could stand a new bedside table...

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  59. I went to check out Craigslist apps and there are about eleventy. So pretty pretty please tell me exactly which one?

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  60. Hey all! I wish I could help more with the app! I didn't realize there were more than one -- it's just called Craigslist app. (I downloaded it a couple years ago.) It's got a peace sign on it. I upgraded the free one I have to one called Craigslist Pro for a buck. Maybe try that one!

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  61. I love the finds you found !!! Great job to you and to Craigslist :)

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  62. I love your finds. . .you're so lucky to live near a "big city" and have this stuff available. . .and I'm so "over" oak but my husband won't let me change it because we spent such a pretty penny on it 15 years ago -- y'know, to get the "best" we could afford then :) It's still nice stuff. . .I just think I could "update" it shabby-chic, y'know? But that last piece you scored -- I would NEVER touch it! I'll have to try your conditioning. . .maybe that will help bring the "love" back to my pieces :)

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  63. I also use the Howard Restore and Finish on my wooden furniture. It works pretty well and definitely preserves the wood's smooth finish.

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  64. Im searching craigslist for a sideboard/buffet/dresser to put under my tv but i'm wondering how you change the channels when all of your tv equipment stuff is in the drawers? do you have to have everything open while you channel surf? do you not have a cable box dealy?

    also, can I ask what you pay for these great pieces? I just want to know what a reasonable craigslist price is for this stuff!

    thanks!

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  65. Hi Sarah...

    Can you speak to your green lamps in this post? If you did not find them on craigslist, where did you find them? If you did find them on craigslist, what search words would you use to describe them?

    Thanks!!

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  66. Maricris BoquirenApril 21, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    It never crossed my mind to go bargain hunting at Craigslist BUT thanks to your enabling, you have help me to looked at vintage/antique furnitures differently. I just scored 2 Drexel furniture dressers: Repertoire & Triune collection at Craigslist! (in 1 day,wowza!!!) They are a wonderful thing of workmanship & beauty. I snagged them $75 each, i googled right away, selling price online is $795 for the Repertoire!
    Restor-A-Finish is absolutely going to do the job, I won't re-stain or paint ...the wood is just perfect!
    Your blog is very inspirational for a 1st time homeowner like myself:)

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  67. Do you have any information about the Henredon dresser that you show in this post?? I have the tall dresser, and I would SO LOVE to have the one here to complete the set! I have searched the web only to try to find its mate, only to see your photo here! Any info that you have would be VERY MUCH appreciated!

    Thanks!

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  68. Andrea, I wish I did! I just found it by chance. :) Keep checking out Craigslist, that's where I find many of my pieces.

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  69. i am OBSESSED with that white mirror above your tv. i have SCOURED your entire blog and cant find where its from or if its a diy but i did see a lot of people asking about it in the comments. i love it. i neeeeed it! where's it from?! pleaseeeee :)

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  70. Britt, that was from Target! It was black, I spray painted it white. :)

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I LOVE your comments, thank you! (I read every single one.)

If you have a specific question I will do my best to answer you back here! Be sure to check out the FAQs tab at the top of the site and my Projects page for paint colors and DIY projects as well.

THANKS so much for reading!