Hipless Martha Washington



Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

I keep finding these little orphans in the thrift stores that are just begging me to take them home and make them pretty. Monday it was a recipe card holder, last week it was a Thomasville Side Table and last month a writing desk covered in grafitti.  Some people bring home a stray puppy, I bring home a stray side table.

Who can resist such a sweet face and the $12 price tag.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

There were a few scratches on the top and sides, but what was most noticeable was the color differentiation on the side as well as the holes on the top, something was missing.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

It wasn’t too hard to  figure out that this was a Martha Washington Sewing Table, especially since the medallion in the drawer said it was a Martha Washington sewing table…that’s the detective in me hard at work.  🙂

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

And now I know what  was missing…Martha was hipless. It looks like Martha’s hips were meant to “keep the clothes they wish to mend or materials to be fashioned into clothing.” 

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

It was easy enough to fill in the holes where the hips were attached with wood putty.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

The finish had turned just about black over the years but was fairly easy to sand off to reveal the beautiful mahogany.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

If Martha was fully intact I may have tried to restore her to her former glory days. 

A coat of red chalk paint hides all her imperfections.  Well, almost all,  I had to reglue one of the drawers that fell apart while painting.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

A natural stain followed by a couple coats of tung oil sealed in the top and highlighted the grain of the mahogany but it didn’t cover the wood putty.  A little acrylic paint hides that imperfection pretty well.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

I painted the knobs with a dark walnut Varathane, the finish with stain and polyurethane in one step.

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

Martha Washington Sewing Table, Little Red Side Table

I know this table would be more valuable if Martha had kept her hips, but I think she’ll be more useful without.  A former sewing table that can now be used as a nightstand or end table.

Have a great weekend. Stay inspired.

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