Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Finished School Desks

1932 Ad for our school desk
I am finally finished refinishing my desks!  My friend found some school desks that were being thrown away, and she grabbed them for me.  After some research on the desks, I learned that they were made by the American Seating Co. in Grand Rapids, Michigan around 1932.  They were well loved, and in need of some TLC.
Before pictures

When I got the desks, the first thing I realized is that they are HEAVY!  I couldn't carry them; Matt had to move them around for me.  It was fun to take a look at the desks, and see the used ink wells with ink stains on the desk, chairs, and inside as well.  On one of the desks there were burn marks from a fire or embers. 

I went to work stripping, washing, cleaning, power washing, sanding, and priming all of it.  I also tried to lube up the moving parts, so that the desks and chairs could be adjusted as the kids got older. I then asked Sebastian what he wanted on his desk.  He wanted dinosaurs. (I should have known!)  He also came up with a great idea to use chalkboard paint on the top of the desk so that he could color on them.  Genius boy.

I painted their names on the back of the chairs, added some rhinestones, and sprayed a protective layer over the whole thing.  I also got tiny terracotta pots to put in the ink well to use as a pencil holder.  It took me a couple weeks to get everything finished, but I love how they turned out.  We tried out his desk yesterday during school time and it worked wonderfully.  My favorite feature about these desks is that there is a foot on the underside of the desk top you can pull out that makes the desktop level.  It works great for our "decimal street" (we are learning place value right now).

After pictures (Sebastian is a little excited)
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