Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Turn old country ladder back chairs and wired rabbit cage sides into useful wall kitchen displays

       I just love a country kitchen with old folk style decor. When I go to the Cracker Barrel, I love seeing all the country ways they house there walls & open beamed ceilings with the old country pieces from long ago. You see any number of antique items from yesterday like old garden tools, kitchen utensil's etc.
       And though my kitchen is small, I try to find a corner or space for anything old or that has country charm to put on my walls. And as a crafter who loves to free hand paint, build things, sew etc. I am always looking at those old items in a different way thinking to myself, now how can I use that for another purpose.
     I admit it...When I see that someone has tossed old country items to the curb because they are broke, I pick them, bring them back to my craft building and make them into something country cute to use for myself or sometimes to gift or sell. Those old items from our past are hard to find and will die with time, never to be remade the way they were back then.
     At the age of 52, I remember so many of those items and using them or seeing my mom & grand maw use them. One of which was the wooden ladder back chairs. I mean real wooden hand made ladder back chairs. The kind they jointed together with wooden pegs, made from wood that was old strong & thick like oak or walnut, sometimes hickory wood. The post of the chairs were big and round and withstood the brunt of everything or anyone who sat in them. The seat bottoms were hand weaved with either twine string or rolled up brown paper or other items that made them last. And the prettiest thing about those very old chairs now is the grey weather turned color you see after years & years of age and being exposed to the weather elements.
       I just love the grey color on them.  I was tickled when I saw that the owner of an old house next to me had tossed out some very old wooden items. He is refurbishing that old house with the things from yesteryear and once even picked up a some things that I had tossed to the curb. So now when I see he has tossed out things, I ask him can I get them. We know each other now and are glad to share our tossed items :) 
         So I loaded up lots of broken wooden items to revamp & create into a whole new way to use them.
   Two of which I wanted to share with you today here in my post & pictures.
            The first one is the old antique wooden ladder back chair that has a pretty grey weather beaten color to it. The bottom of it was all broken and would of been to much work to even try to attach it back together or weave the seat back. So I made it into country wall decor for my red country kitchen that's as useful as it pretty. Using just the back frame of the chair, I then screwed on a red oval pail that I had gotten in a yard sale. And now it can house my aprons, plastic trash bag fabric holder, on the sides just by looping them over the top post corners and the center dowel rods can serve as dish towel holders and my red tin oval pail, now holds inside my potholders, oven mitts, so they are at easy reach. One of the pegs of the chair was still attached but short and jagged, so instead of cutting it off, I just used it as a slide on holder to house my old metal biscuit cutter, apple core slicer etc. Then to personalize it, I painted on my name with the country kitchen phrase and hot glued little plastic apples to it and a apple basket to the tops center rail since my kitchen theme is apples & roosters.
           I love how it turned out. Hope you enjoyed me sharing this idea with you. I still have the bottom wooden structure that I plan on making into something else for my kitchen, which I will share with you soon :)
       The other country kitchen decor idea I wanted to share with you today is how to use an old rabbit wired cage side.  I'm not so sure that this wired cage side was used for a rabbit, I found a couple of tiny feathers stuck in the wires so it may of been used for pigeons or maybe to raise chickens. But in the old days, they too used the real thick solid wood to build cages so the wood would stand up to time. And the wood on this cage was also grey weather beaten color. It was made using very tiny holed wire that looks to me to be like steal wire because its heavy gauged wire. And the side of the cage had handles at the top & bottom. And when I saw it I knew I wanted to make myself a wall rack to hold my kitchen serving utensils. But I didn't want just the bare wire to show and so I added country charm to it by adding  a wooden square piece to both the top and bottom the cages frame. That I had spray painted with black chalkboard paint first , then I nailed them to the frame. Then I added a copper tile to both of those in there centers. The copper tiles have roosters on them (the same tiles are behind my cook stove top back splash so it matches the room perfectly) then I stapled on fabric panel squares that I had that had hens laying eggs etc on them to the back of the wired frame. I then took one of the broken wooden pieces from the old ladder back chair and screwed it to the top of the cage piece. And I hand painted on a phrase and then added raffia and little eggs to it. At the bottom inside I put a nest and some straw and when I get time I am going to add more eggs inside there. Right now I am out of those :) Then I added black carpet tacks to the sides of the cage so they could hold all my kitchen utensils. Now I can just go to my wired rack and get the utensil I need to use instead of scuffling through a kitchen drawer to find ones I want to use. I just layed my wooden rolling pin on top of the cages top. And I may even come back and add a tiny off /on light to the top of it so the light can cast down upon it.  I can also choose to use the wire in the center to hang more small utensils. I bought some tiny s hooks to use for that. I loved how it turned out as well, To add country charm to my red country kitchen. I can use the black space around the copper tiles to write a phrase etc to with chalk. I will be back to share more country craft ideas with you. Feel free to subscribe to my free email newsletter so you will see when I post those ideas. Or pin these crafts to your pinterest boards so others can enjoy making there own.
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                                   Have a great day & feel free to comment below on your crafts that you
         are working on. I love hearing those ideas too :)


  1. Forgot to add that if you do pick up these old broken items from our past. To wash them really good before you use them in any way. I sprayed both items with a two part mix of clorox and water, let it sit for a bit, then scrubbed both items really good with a scrub brush and dish detergent and then affter they dryed I then proceeded on to crafting them as desired :)

  2. I love a creative mind Julie and you certainly do have one!! I unsed to have a little miniature ladderback chair that I had hanging on the wall. It was just big enough to hang a dishtowel from the rung under the seat. It was one of my favorite things. Did you know that we are the same age? I have tons of good memories of those simple times from our childhood and my grandma too. It seems like things have changed drastically between what it was like for our childhood. But when I think of the differences between me and my grandkids it doesn't seem like there's that big difference or as big of changes. Know what I mean?

    I love the way you reused the rabbit cage. Your house looks so fun and cute.

    Hugs…Tracy @ Cotton Pickin Cute

  3. that is such a neat idea!! My dad loves the country look, his whole living room is done in stuff he made/wood and anique things. I may have to make him one of the ladder chair hangers Thanks so much for your inspiration and sharing!!


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