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The Expand-O-Matic Facelift

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This past spring I bought this beauty at a community garage sale for $20.00.  I had no ideas what it was, but I thought it was cool the way that the front slid out and turned in to a table.

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A little research, and checking out the drawers for a label, taught me all about the mid century Expand-O-Matic.

It was designed at a time when we Ameicans were moving off the farms and into the city.  Space was tight in apartments so furniture had to do double or triple duty.  Here is a a 1960’s advertisement after they tried to update the name by calling in EXPANDWAY.  I like the 1940’s/ 1950’s version- Expand-O-Matic.

expand advertisement

I find it ironic that I bought it because I am moving to the country not the city.    My plan is for the desk/table to move into the back guest room.  I plan on us making a Murphy bed for the room along with the desk.  It will be able to convert between office space and bedroom as needed.

The room looks like this right now: 
As you see above, the room needs love. 

The room is going to be kiwi ( a little richer than lime but bright green), cream and teal.  The top and legs were stained with a Minwax gel stain  called special walnut.  I am so excited to have my own space inside he house to paint, sew or just piddle as my mom calls it.  It will be a fun, bright, creative space with my awesome painted chair which will have cream legs when we move in, this super cool desk/ worktable, and a kiwi colored cabinet with a Murphy bed in it.  I am thinking I will be painting a rug to go in the space in case of disasters that occur when I craft.

lime green legs

Here is the inspiration room:  

 
Of course my room will have a little more of a rustic vibe.

The hardwood runners that allow the table to expand to 6 feet are all cleaned, waxed, and now move easily between open and closed.  We still need to fabricate the leaves, but  the body is painted (Behr Real Teal) the drawers are a mis-tint sample I picked up for fifty cents.  The mis-tint is darker than my go to “sea salt” cream, but still an off white color.  I tried to stain the drawers but they were too far gone to save.  I was able to save the top and legs even though ther is an ink stain on the top.  (I wonder what happened there?)

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Ink stain

stained drawers

The drawers above were sanded until I almost sanded through the veneer but they still were not going to look right.

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I tried to polish up the hardware but in the end, I had to spray paint them with metallic spray paint.  (Rustoelium Soft Iron).

Wouldn’t this piece be great in a mini house?

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I found these awesome curtain panels for $5.99 each too!  The color is a perfect match to the teal color on the Expand-O-Matic.  There are three windows in the office so getting the curtains for under $40.00 is amazing.

 
I hope you have a wonderful day.

I love to hear from you.

Blessings,

Karen

Media Center Becomes Home Office

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Remember those giant televisions from the late 80’s and early 90’s? The tube type televisions were thick, wide and heavy. Oh… and UGLY! Smart women figured out a way to keep them from being the center of all things in the family room.
The solution was usually some sort of media center. Ours was a big open shelving oak unit. Long gone.

Before we even moved into our new house I knew we needed a place to put the computer modem, charge the laptops and phones, put the bills and keep up with paperwork. We had a place in our city house to keep up with everything but there was no space in our new house. Before we even closed on the house I found an armoire style media center that would do the job and would be able to be closed up when we don’t want to see everything. It was designed to have a pull out shelf for a big television that swivels. It was an $80.00 cabinet that was solid wood (knotty pine), and was made in 1987 according to the information on the back of the piece. It is 7 feet tall and 40 inches wide.

knotty pine

missing trim- fixed by Hubby

\pine media center

 

knotty pine cabinet door

 

knotty pine media TV

The media center was bought and put into the storage unit the week we moved out of the city house. Once we moved into our new house it moved into the garage. The mail started piling up on the kitchen counter, the electronics started to be scattered around the house and my aggregation grew. Time to get after the home office.

I wanted the piece to be the color scheme of the Roadside Credenza. I knew that I wanted to paint the crown moulding and base moulding Behr Revival Mahogany and the body Behr Powdered Snow. Because it was knotty pine it actually took two coats of Kiltz primer to keep the knots from coming through. It was a workout to paint and took three weekends. Weekend one- primer coats, weekend two- two coats of paint on everything and weekend three- three coats of Kona floor poly.

behr powdered snow and revival mahogany

 

painting and glazing

glazing supplies

Essentials for glazing. Cheap brush, damp rag, glazing mix.

glazing up close

The glaze is Behr Faux Effects mixed with a little revival mahogany

using glaze to look like wood grain

I left the inside raw wood as a nod to my husband’s love of wood. It is going to have a bulletin board inside the back, a magnetic blackboard inside the door and some pockets to hold the bills and cell phones, but that is not ready yet. It is so tall that Hubby is going to have to use a bar stool when he is writing lesson plans or paying bills. Right now one from the lake house will work, but I have my eye on a great bar stool that is upholstered in teal. It may have to come home with me soon.

home office from media center

This picture is the best at showing the color. Color is tricky in our new house. I need to go back to class to figure it out.

painted and glazed home office

I still have not finished the curtains and it shows up here. Darn.

Home Office painted

 

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inside of home office

 

Home office pull out

 

printer spot in home office

 

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What do you think about this beauty?