Antique Hutch Restored

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Project by gsimon posted 01-12-2013 01:58 AM 4862 views 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I purchased this old hutch from a family that had this in a barn to hold greasy tools and machine parts – it cost me $250.00
This one was good except it was too perfect. The reason i wanted one was for the family room. I tormented myself for a week on whether to remove the glass doors and stiles. It killed me to be suburban and utilize this for a family room but finally i have to come to terms with (A) there was no real inherit value in the piece – i think it’s Douglas Fir and it appears to be a common piece from the 40’s or 50’s and (2) the intended purpose of the piece. I had to get out of my mind all the other things this could be. I needed a piece for the family room so i relented. Either way if i fixed it up and sold it I would still need a piece for that wall.

I stripped it down completely, (still have the doors), added a small crown molding on top, and did repairs
Chalk painted it a black cherry, distressed it and minwaxed it. Distressing it was easy because i could see where it naturally was distressed from real age and use. This is all one piece by the way – it does not have a top and bottom. It was very heavy and too convoluted to cut in half and design to be slip fit or match up again

I’m very eager to start building furniture so I’m really taking the opportunity to analyze how these older pieces are made up close and deconstructing the techniques

-- Greg Simon

6 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30058 posts in 2539 days

#1 posted 01-12-2013 02:07 AM

It’s a classic looking piece. You can always create something else with the old doors from it.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3778 days

#2 posted 01-12-2013 03:35 AM

A wonderful looking hutch ,really nice work.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View FeralVermonter's profile


100 posts in 2172 days

#3 posted 01-12-2013 12:50 PM

Very nice… sorta steep opening price, though, to my ear (ex-antique dealer here)... If you like this sort of restoration, may I suggest that you start attending auctions? In this part of the woods (which is, admittedly, rich in old stuff) a hutch like that wouldn’t have gone over $50 at auction, unless there were something antiquey and special about it. But if you do, let me give you a tip: when you see something you like, write down you absolute top price, and when you start to bid, you keep that price in your hand and keep looking at it. Letting yourself get caught up in a bidding war is a recipe for regret. If someone beats your bid… there’s always next time.

View gsimon's profile


1293 posts in 2314 days

#4 posted 01-12-2013 06:22 PM

excellent advice Feral – my father ran auctions for awhile and bidding emotionally is not good!

We checked all the imported hutches like this and they were all $550 plus tax and up in stores and
other antiques were either too big or too small and also around the same price, so this fit the bill
We decided after building this new house that our criteria in furniture selection had to include the right size and scale. In the past we purchased because we loved the piece but it lost it’s charm in the wrong setting.

New England has such a dense population base and rich history in furniture that it must be great pickin’s. At $50 per unit i could refurb and turn those over all day. If i put this hutch online in Nova Scotia it would be $500+
Start shipping! ha ha

-- Greg Simon

View EmeraldDragon's profile


146 posts in 2370 days

#5 posted 01-13-2013 12:49 AM

You’ve got more willpower than I have, I totally would have left it original!

-- There are countless woodworking plans but have you checked out God's plan? Jeremiah 29:11

View hoss12992's profile


4091 posts in 2094 days

#6 posted 03-27-2013 02:50 AM

Great job. Have have never seen shelf leveler like you have in the one pic. Will def incorporate it into some of my future pieces. Thanks for sharing

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

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