(n.) Cabindo: A condo on a lake, among tall old trees. Half cabin, half condo. My first home. This is a running journal of the renovations, projects, and general shoestring budget craziness.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Artful Antique Tool Storage and Display

So, I don't really keep this blog up to date anymore. All of the things have been happening around here but some of them have made it to instagram....

But overall; I have become a social media slacker. #firstworldproblems
This is a post I wrote a long time ago and was just waiting to take a final picture for. Today is the day!

I have a thing for antique tools and industrial trinkets.

They are such a beautiful combination of form, function, elegant design, and craftsmanship. You can look at them and truly say 'they don't make em like that anymore!'. Because this, while it does a great job, is darn ugly:

Bumblebee jr.

My engineer grandfather was a man of many tools. A good example is his file 'collection': off the top of my head I'd say he had at least 20, with more than a couple duplicates. Since he passed away I have been fortunate enough to inherit some of his treasured tools and hardware items.

Sprout gazes into the distance, lost in her dreams of becoming a lumberjack.
Alas, she knows it's a dream that cannot be.....curse you, lack of opposable thumbs!!

I want to use the tools where I can; to keep them, and his memory alive.  I would also like to have them on a wall somewhere to be able to appreciate how beautiful and special they are.

Not so much going for crazy:

Ettore Guatelli
As I am sleek and modern:


I like the idea of using a framed out space to delineate that these are pieces for display, rather than 'Hi! I'm sadistic!'. I tried hanging Sprout's saws artfully on a wall, but it came across more 'Preppers' on a good day, and horror flick on a bad one. Those babies came down soon afterwards.

I picked up two matching heavy duty wood framed cork boards from Public Surplus for $10.

Sorry Sara plain & tall, it's Cork board plain & wide's turn now. 

I knew I wanted to cover them with fabric and mount them on the wall, but I had no fabric laying around that sung out to me. As I'd just dispatched with a good chunk of change buying fabric to make slipcovers for the living and dining room seating, I was not about to go out and bleed more money. It tends to stain the fabric anyway.......
There was some gingham laying around that was heavy weight and would tie in with the lumberjack/tool/etc. thing, but the high contrast colors would not work in an already high contrast yellow & magenta room. I dug through a craft box and found bottle of dye, so I did a test run.

um......what the what??
Not what I expected.

Actually, I think it's way better than expected! The blue dye clearly did not come out blue at all, but the shade of purple it ended up ties in well with the rich magenta wall on which it will live.


As you can see above, I covered the cork boards with the dyed fabric. I started at the top, and using a staple gun attached the fabric going down both sides and then across the bottom. It was important to keep the fabric tight and be mindful of the pattern to avoid wavy lines everywhere. I had one box of oil-rubbed-bronze colored upholstery tacks laying around, which I used to anchor the front in several places.

The dye is not totally even, nor is the pattern completely wave-less.
Oh freekin well! I'll be putting tools all over the thing anyway, and there are too many other things to worry about; like when will I get around to laundry/sleeping/riding my scooter/etc.? Yeah I'm 30 and said scooter. Whatevs.
I put the better of the two panels right above the desk, and hung the other one wonky-side-to-the-window. (Wonky side pictured above)

I used silver push pins to hold down each item because they don't distract you visually from the tools.

board for all the small tools

Because these are HEAVY, I used 50lb wire in a triangle method to distribute the weight and ensure the structural integrity of the frame.

will be hung from the horizontal section on a anchored screw

I did not have enough D-rings, so rigged up a different kind of bracketed attachment at the bottom of each frame.

thats dust from drilling, not crumbs

It worked great and validates my hardware-hoarder tendencies.
I think Grandad would be proud.

hey there craiglisted (free!) mcm day bed, let's snuggle
and pray no tools attack us