9 Billionty Nails (and a quandry)

All the salvage accumulating in our cellar comes infested with nails. Lots and lots of freaking nails. It seems that no job was too small for a 3-inch nail; nor, it seems, were nails in short supply: better secure that little strip of trim with as many (gigantic) nails as humanly possible. So yes, 9 billionty nails pulled, or approximately a little less than half of the pile.

(9 billionty nails = 6 blisters)

(The nails win. For now.)

Anyway, while I was toiling way with the stupid nails in the cellar, the hubs was surprising me with a new (old) light fixture.

victorian light fixture

This purdy little thing was a salvage find from a couple of years ago, on a trip to Detroit. It was in need of a good cleaning and some new sockets and wires.

It is going in the bedroom, where it will be replacing the cheap and generic Ikea fixture that was there before. (one day we’ll be living in a house that doesn’t rely so heavily on blah-Ikea… Oh, I kid. That will never happen.)

victorian light fixture detail3

After a good cleaning, what looked like a gray rusty fixture, turned out like this:

victorian light fixture detail2

I like the subtle hints of green, gold and red, so I think we’ll keep it like this (rather than restore to full color).

victorian light fixture detail3

However, as you might have noticed in some of the photos, at some point someone was less than neat with their ceiling pant job and got a big slop of institutional beige on  the side (beige, the color of boring).

victorian light fixture detail

As someone who is fascinated with all manners of paint removal, I’m stumped by this one: how am I going to remove the ugly and keep the pretty?




Salvage lighting finds

Sometimes the things I stress most about our house may seem absurd when compared to the sheer volume of large project we have yet to tackle. But  it’s the little things that make all the difference. Sure, I can live with the shower of sadness – for the time being – because sometimes tackling a small project can make the larger picture not seem so daunting.

The lighting fixtures that came with the house are ugly. Not two ways about. UH-GLY! Here is a sampling of the ugly currently on display in our parlor floor. Yes, the brass ceiling fan does take the cake – we don’t use it so that we don’t get used to having a gentle breeze overhead. That monstrosity is going to Build It Green very very soon.

We have been shopping for more period appropriate fixtures for the house and needless to say, anything available in the New York area costs and arm and a leg. Since we have a limited supply of arms and legs we have been looking elsewhere for our salvage: hello midwest!

The fixtures are in raw condition – they need to be cleaned and re-wired, but we purchased all four for less than the cost of a nice non-Home Depot light. Now, onward to getting these guys up and working!