Before + After: Flat File Cabinet

There is nothing quite as motivating as moving half-way around the world when it comes to finishing projects. As our move date approached I realized that I'd be unable to take any of the wet supplies I'd purchased (paint, thinner, etc.) with me and that I risked losing any hardware not already attached to the furniture. Enter the flat file project.

I got the bug for a flat file cabinet after seeing these two images on Pinterest and the Illusorio Cabinet from Anthropologie.

 Without any luck on the local Craigslist or Bookoo I went to eBay UK and found this gem for only £12! All I had to do was borrow a truck and a friend and pick it up myself. The photos may be deceiving but this thing is a monster! It's probably four feet tall, nearly four feet wide and about three feet deep. It barely fit through the door way and was too awkward and heavy to move up the stairs so it lived in the dining room. It was homemade for an elementary school classroom out of pine and came with a thin layer of varnish and various glittery splotches of paste and paint. 

I started by sanding all of the exterior surfaces. I decided to stain it a warm dark brown that I found at B&Q (English equivalent of the Home Depot). I *think* I used the Colron Wood Dye in Indian Rosewood. For the knobs I searched all of the local hardware stores as well as antique shops but didn't find anything that caught my attention and came in a quantity of 16. Again, turning to eBay was the answer. There I found a listing for "16 vintage architectural salvage porcelain and brass knobs." They were only $9.99 plus shipping so I was sold. They didn't come with backer screws but another trip to the B&Q and I was set. The final detail I needed to complete my cabinets were the antiqued brass label holders to go down the middle of the drawers. After searching all over the web I (yes, again) found exactly what I wanted on eBay! I ordered "10 antique label holders" from the seller Craft-Inc. for $3.50 plus shipping. They arrived very quickly and were just what I wanted! One final trip to B&Q and I had the brass tacks to attach them. I love how it looks aged with the dings and dents and uneven stain. It's exactly the look I was going for!

All finished!

This project only cost me $56 from start to finish. Not bad considering the cost of purchasing something similar! I am absolutely smitten with the final result and cannot wait to see it in my future office/studio styled with all kinds of arty goodies.

(PS: those awesome black and white prints in the open drawer are from the Etsy shop of UK artist baggelboy. I'm a big fan of his "the end of time" series.)

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