Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Hard Work and Opportunity

 

“Opportunities are usually disguised as hard work, so most people don’t recognize them.” — Ann Landers

As the last of the remaining warm days dwindle here in Montana, I’ve spent several days this week working on a clawfoot dining room set that I got for free earlier this summer. I got the set because I just happened to be in the right place at the right time. At a local flea market, I was caught by a vendor admiring one of the chairs out on the loading dock. He asked if I liked the chair and I replied that I thought it would be beautiful with a little TLC. He told me there was a table with it and I said that my husband would probably shoot me if I spent a bunch of money on a fixer-upper dining set. He said if I loaded it up, it was all mine, free of charge. I jumped at the opportunity and with a little help from a few old guys, I was on the road with a pickup loaded with six dining chairs and a gorgeous hardwood clawfoot table.

As I spent the first half of the summer travelling, I didn’t get much time to work on the furniture. I spent a Saturday tearing the chairs apart so I could assess how much work they actually needed. Fortunately, not a whole lot: upholstery, replacing a few missing screws, and re-waxing.

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On my trip to Arkansas back in May, I found some gorgeous, reasonably priced upholstery material to re-cover the chairs with. I didn’t get to touch the upholstery until some time in July, when both Terry and I decided to retreat back into hermit mode as we’d both spent May and June on the road. I was very pleased with the results.

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This week, I managed to get a few warm-enough-to-work-in-the-garage days to finish four of the chairs. (Which I wanted to have done tonight for my company coming over.)

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If I were afraid of hard work, I wouldn’t have this gorgeous set of furniture, soon to be completed, to proudly display in my home.

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There are 21 comments.

  1. MLH Inactive
    MLH

    very nice!

    • #1
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:19 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  2. harrisventures Inactive

    MLH (View Comment):
    very nice!

    Nice nice! very nice!

    • #2
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:37 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  3. Kevin Schulte Member

    Nice score. Well done. :)

    • #3
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:43 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  4. PHCheese Member

    Wow.

    • #4
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:46 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  5. kelsurprise, drama queen Member

    Gorgeous!

    Great find and great job!

    • #5
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:49 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  6. Arahant Member

    That is a lovely set, and you can’t beat the price.

    This is an entry in the Quote of the Day Series. This is a daily series done by member volunteers on Ricochet. If you would like to sign up to take a day or two, our October Sign-Up Sheet is here. We look forward to seeing the wisdom you share, and as J.D. did, showing us how to apply that wisdom.

    • #6
    • September 30, 2017, at 6:56 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  7. MarciN Member

    You’ve done a beautiful job restoring it. You will really enjoy it.

    Bon appétit.

    • #7
    • September 30, 2017, at 7:49 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  8. kelsurprise, drama queen Member

    Oh, right, dining table.

    All I could see was a long line of Rummikub tournaments taking place but sure, I guess you could eat there, too.

    • #8
    • September 30, 2017, at 8:05 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  9. J.D. Snapp Moderator
    J.D. Snapp Post author

    kelsurprise (View Comment):
    Oh, right, dining table.

    All I could see was a long line of Rummikub tournaments taking place but sure, I guess you could eat there, too.

    We actually just said goodbye to our company who brought over board games and were very happy we got rid of the crappy folding chairs.

    • #9
    • September 30, 2017, at 11:15 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  10. Kay of MT Member

    You lucky, lucky woman. Not sure if I’m jealous or just envious. What a beautiful, nice set. Did you get the panels to expand it so more folks could sit at table? May I suggest that you obtain the felt pads to cover the top of the table for protection? It doesn’t take much to mar the finish. Oh, you lucky lady you! Congratulations!

    • #10
    • October 1, 2017, at 6:33 AM PST
    • 1 like
  11. J.D. Snapp Moderator
    J.D. Snapp Post author

    Kay of MT (View Comment):
    You lucky, lucky woman. Not sure if I’m jealous or just envious. What a beautiful, nice set. Did you get the panels to expand it so more folks could sit at table? May I suggest that you obtain the felt pads to cover the top of the table for protection? It doesn’t take much to mar the finish. Oh, you lucky lady you! Congratulations!

    The new table isn’t finished quite yet (today is the day!) but it does have a leaf and I fully intend on getting felt pads to protect the top. The table in the picture is my antique mahogany table and I’m going to refinish it and it’s chairs probably next summer.

    • #11
    • October 1, 2017, at 9:42 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  12. Randy Weivoda Moderator

    Nice job, J.D.

    • #12
    • October 1, 2017, at 11:52 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  13. Ansonia Member

    The chairs, after the TLC, are beautiful in the room; way, way better than anything new anyone could buy.

    • #13
    • October 2, 2017, at 6:44 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor

    Beautiful!

    • #14
    • October 2, 2017, at 7:31 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  15. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor

    J.D. Snapp:Fortunately, not a whole lot: upholstery, replacing a few missing screws, and re-waxing.

    So no need for wood filler or epoxy?

    Sometimes epoxy performs for me just as advertised. Other times, despite a long cure undisturbed, it has let me down :-(

    • #15
    • October 2, 2017, at 7:33 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  16. J.D. Snapp Moderator
    J.D. Snapp Post author

    Midget Faded Rattlesnake (View Comment):

    J.D. Snapp:Fortunately, not a whole lot: upholstery, replacing a few missing screws, and re-waxing.

    So no need for wood filler or epoxy?

    Sometimes epoxy performs for me just as advertised. Other times, despite a long cure undisturbed, it has let me down :-(

    Nope! A few minor scratches that were easily covered with wax crayon and a few roughed up spots that actually lent it a slightly distressed look that I’m completely happy with. I may have to do something major on the table top as there’s a big spot where some chemical stripped off the finish, but I’ll see. I was going to strip it yesterday but we had a blustery, chilly, rainy sort of day and as Terry was home, we just stayed indoors.

    • #16
    • October 2, 2017, at 7:52 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  17. Susan Quinn Contributor

    Gorgeous, Julie Wow, are you talented. You illustrated the quote beautifully. I love the fabric colors, and the chairs with that little fan on the top of the back is really lovely. And the table top edging matches the edging on the chairs. I hope you enjoy the set for many years to come!

    • #17
    • October 2, 2017, at 11:00 AM PST
    • 1 like
  18. J.D. Snapp Moderator
    J.D. Snapp Post author

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    Gorgeous, Julie Wow, are you talented. You illustrated the quote beautifully. I love the fabric colors, and the chairs with that little fan on the top of the back is really lovely. And the table top edging matches the edging on the chairs. I hope you enjoy the set for many years to come!

    I plan on it! :) I had my mom go pick up the rest of that bolt of upholstery fabric for me so I can make some matching valances for the dining room and kitchen windows.

    • #18
    • October 2, 2017, at 11:49 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  19. kelsurprise, drama queen Member

    J.D. Snapp (View Comment):
    so I can make some matching valances for the dining room and kitchen windows.

    And a scarf for Terry?

    Pleaseohpleaseohplease . . . just for the photo-op alone.

    • #19
    • October 2, 2017, at 12:12 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  20. J.D. Snapp Moderator
    J.D. Snapp Post author

    kelsurprise (View Comment):

    J.D. Snapp (View Comment):
    so I can make some matching valances for the dining room and kitchen windows.

    And a scarf for Terry?

    Pleaseohpleaseohplease . . . just for the photo-op alone.

    He’d totally wear it! I’ve also been making polymer clay bead jewelry using some of the flowers out of a bouquet he got me. I’ve threatened to make him “bro” beads. He said he’d wear them, but not to the rig.

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    Please ignore my gross looking nails. The stuff I was using to clean the chairs stripped my polish quite a bit.

    • #20
    • October 2, 2017, at 12:24 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  21. SkipSul Moderator

    Well done!

    • #21
    • October 5, 2017, at 9:51 PM PST
    • 1 like