If you can't beat them, join them

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Project by lumberjoe posted 06-04-2012 04:22 PM 2009 views 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My wife has been very supportive and appreciative of the projects I have been making, mostly because they are for her, to her specifications. She has been getting a little jealous of the time I spend in the garage, so to my surprise, she adopted the “If you can’t beat them, join them” mantra instead of giving me grief. She didn’t construct the table. It was left in the house by the previous owners when we moved in. It was in terrible shape and I didn’t even deem it worthy for scrap. Rather than put it in the dumpster, she dragged it into the garage. She painstakingly sanded about a dozen coats of latex paint and and old finish down to bare wood, and then finish sanded it all down to 220. After that she stained the top two colors. First Minwax “weathered Oak”, then Minwax early american. This produced a really cool and rustic finish. She then sourced and purchased some general finishes milk paint for the rest. When the wife loads up the baby and says “let’s go to that woodcraft place, I think they have the paint I want”, I am not going to argue.

She also applied several coats of poly to the top, sanding between coats, and buffed it out/waxed it with the Johnsons paste wax I use for my tools and steel wool all on her own. The drawer pulls were also her selection and installation. The only thing I did was carry it inside. I must say she did a really nice job and the finish (minus a few runs in the early coats of poly) looks fantastic. She definitely caught the bug and wants to experiment a lot more. While finishing she was asking a lot of questions as to how I make certain cuts, what this tool and that tool actually does, and remarked “man, that is a lot harder than I thought, no wonder it takes you so long”. She may be building her own projects soon. I’m not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. Now instead of just fighting for shower time in the morning, we will probably be fighting for table saw time soon.

Then again, the garage is big enough for 2 table saws :)


12 comments so far

View michelletwo's profile


2756 posts in 3163 days

#1 posted 06-04-2012 04:34 PM

she did great..she’ll soon need her own LJ’s page!!!! Enjoy your time in the shop together!

View lumberjoe's profile


2899 posts in 2396 days

#2 posted 06-04-2012 04:47 PM

She has a couple more yard sale finds she is refinishing now. I may have her sign up and post them herself, but she is worried about criticism. I told her people here are very accepting and supportive. Take a look at my projects list….


View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3188 days

#3 posted 06-04-2012 05:29 PM

Don’t Worry – Be Happy !!!!

She Done Good !!!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 2517 days

#4 posted 06-04-2012 06:37 PM

Nice! Maybe she can give my wife a call…

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View MT_Stringer's profile


3175 posts in 3379 days

#5 posted 06-05-2012 12:26 AM

Nice work on her part. Sounds like good times ahead for the two of you. My wife and I fish a lot. Sometimes I just man the boat and get the net. She does just fine all by her self. I really enjoy watching her catch the fish and getting mad when she loses one. That’s the Cajun way!

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View patron's profile


13630 posts in 3489 days

#6 posted 06-05-2012 08:06 AM

a very nice save

some advice for you though

ask for a decent position and wages
if you don’t start out right
you will always be part of labor
not management

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View helluvawreck's profile


32083 posts in 3014 days

#7 posted 06-05-2012 11:34 AM

Who knows, maybe you can make a woodworker out of her yet. She might even take over your shop. She must like doing this. Get her another antique with 15 coats of paint. She can stay busy on that and keep her mind off the shop.


-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View lumberjoe's profile


2899 posts in 2396 days

#8 posted 06-05-2012 11:44 AM

She grabbed some really rough looking small, pine cabinets from an estate sale last weekend for practically nothing. We had to go to woodcraft again last night because I was out of sandpaper for the ROS and I really like the Klingspor stuff. We ended up spending about an hour in there…and … she bought herself a scroll saw. I guess it’s something she’s always wanted to do, so now she will have her chance.

As long as I don’t end up with a shop full of scented candles, doilies, and plants, it will be ok. She is very crafty anyway and a talented painter and seamstress, Honestly if she gets over her fear of power tools and gets into woodworking, I have no doubt she will surpass me in skill level in a very short time.


View Oldtool's profile


2723 posts in 2338 days

#9 posted 06-05-2012 12:13 PM

The reclaimed table looks fantastic. It appears you two have a new woodworking partnership in the making. One can create and the other can finish. Good luck in determining the senior partner.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

10906 posts in 3576 days

#10 posted 06-05-2012 12:49 PM

She did a swell job! Rescuing that piece and finishing it so well is quite admirable. You, my friend, are a lucky guy.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View JohnMeeley's profile


255 posts in 2481 days

#11 posted 06-05-2012 08:47 PM

And she was worried about criticism. Just have her read all of the above.

-- "The greatest pleasure in life is doing what others say you cannot do."-Walter Bagehot

View Russ's profile


357 posts in 3225 days

#12 posted 06-10-2012 02:39 AM

Looks great she did a good job. Weather she does much more or not at least she can truly appreciate the process especially sanding.

-- Russ

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