Hidden Gem in the Kitchen

by Emily on September 28, 2011

Our home was built in the 40’s, and a lovely older couple occupied the house until the mid 2000’s.  One of the charming things that we discovered when we bought it was how many quirky built-in’s or items left there were. (remember Coon?)  In our basement, we had a room dedicated to canning!  In our kitchen, we have/had another hidden gem.  This one appears to be a very narrow pantry door…

But actually it’s a table…

I can almost imagine the older gentleman building this for his wife to make her canning counter space more expansive.  Such a great idea…but they must have been little people, because there’s not much room to walk around this table.  My heart was set on keeping this charming aspect of our kitchen for about a month, then I wondered what I could do with this space.  Since the thought of tearing out this wall and building a bar-space to open into the dining room is about Phase 8 in our home project cycle, I just decided to do this…

We took out the table but cut the base piece to cover the gaping hole in the bottom.  Sid generously screwed in the pieces and filled some of the holes with wood filler and left it to dry.  I then took over, sanded the dried wood filler, and started to prime.

It almost looks as if it’s always been a shelving unit now!  I wanted to add some pizzazz to the shelves and considered chalkboard paint and wallpaper.  I decided to potentially use the chalkboard paint on the lowest piece at another time but wanted to enjoy the pristine white for now.  I then called several Seattle decorating companies and inquired about wallpaper.  Since I only needed a piece about 17″ X 51″, I certainly didn’t need to buy an entire roll of 9 yards in length.  This really surprised me that you couldn’t buy smaller pieces.  Anyone know anything about wallpaper?  Seriously you can just buy a strip of it??

So back to the drawing board; I was digging around our garage and came up with this idea.  I had leftover contact paper that I lined Pip’s dresser with and plenty to go on the backs of the shelving!  I was super excited about this thought because I liked the pattern, but I’ve mentioned I’m a green snob and worried  that the greens wouldn’t match.

Well, I think they look great together!  So I proceeded!

I cut out each piece to fit perfectly in just the backs, and once I determined that putting contact paper down in tight spaces might just be the death of me, I found a system to get it smooth.  My tool of the trade you ask?  A credit card!  Helps to smooth out the bubbles as you stick it on.  Good thinking Sid…I was using a spatula and throwing down some choice words for the contact paper at risk of waking the little one in her nap.

I got to pull a few items off of our kitchen counter and put them in the shelves!  Cookbooks fit!  Once I got the cookbooks off the counter and onto the shelf, I still had four more shelves to play with and didn’t have a clue what to put on them.  But in the end, this decoration works, and it makes me smile every time I look at it!

It’s hard to believe there was ever a canning table there!  This was complete and dedicated to just 3 partial, daytime naps!

 

 

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