Book Ledge, Dining Room, Kitchen, Living Room, MacKenzie Childs, Music Room, Nursery, Painted Furniture, Pantry, Secretary Desk
I have been rescuing old secretary desks of late from their drab existence in thrift stores. With a few repairs and a splash of paint they have come alive, ready to debut in their own Act II. Each is ready to tell a story—little reminders of yesterday scattered on their shelves. Happy to display books, china, family photos, collections aplenty…anxious to hear the stories their memorabilia evoke. The storytellers are many, their stories vary, but the constant remains—the word ‘remember’…
In the Nursery…
I framed the kids’ newborn hospital hats in shadow boxes backed with wallpaper. The birth announcement was cross stitched by my sister. I cast my daughter’s foot with a plaster-of-paris kit. I love that foot.
When the kids were babies, there were mornings when I felt like this doll looks after one sleepless night too many!
We added the book ledge. Just a piece of narrow wood trim from Home Depot attached with some small wire brads and wood glue was all it took. Books give the face of a fall front writing desk some character.
In the Music Room…
A music room—we should be so fortunate. I actually practiced my high school band clarinet in the furthest room from the main living area because I had no musical aptitude whatsoever. Yep, a hamper was my music stand. You know you stink (yes, that word is appropriate here) when the band director asks you to just carry a pair of cymbals in the marching band. Good times.
Another book ledge was added—and it doubles as a music stand.
A great place for family photos and keepsakes. I love the secret compartments. Any space suddenly becomes charming when you add an old secretary with tons of personality.
In the Kitchen…
What a great place for a coffee or tea station.
This book ledge is a handy spot to hold a recipe book.
In the Dining Room…
My favorite secretary. The perfect french blue backdrop for my collection of Mackenzie Childs. I ragged the focal wall years ago with Valspar paint from Lowes to cover up some floral wallpaper. The color glows when the sun shines through the window.
Yes, you have spotted one secretary doing double-duty. Which just shows how versatile they are—something you can move from room to room, depending on where life takes you. People change, needs change, and your secretary is always willing to change with you.
Some before photos…
4 Secretary Desks – Thrift Shops and Craigslist
Enamelware- Mackenzie Childs
Small Chair – Auction
Doll and Pillow – HomeGoods
Curtain Fabric – IKEA
Most Everything Else – Estate sales, Thrift shops, Auctions
Hi Lynette your secretaries are beautiful. I love secretaries also. I have one that comes from my husbands family and we have it in the kitchen we had it in the kitchen at our last home also but we have had it in the bedroom and the guest bedroom also so versatile but I couldn’t dare paint it since it is a family heirloom one of his great grandfathers made by hand.
Here are a couple links to old posts at my blog that shows it… right now it has all white ironstone in it lol no pics of that.
Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. said:
I agree, secretaries are such wonderfully versatile pieces! So pretty too!
Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage said:
They are definitely ready for their starring roles! And I love your Mackenzie Childs pieces!
connie snipes said:
I am in love with these secretaries! I shall be looking for one for me. I have always been a fan of Mackenzie Childs and visited the store while in NYC. I understand they have folded–so your beautiful collection is probably even more valuable. I put your blog on my favorites list.
Silvina from Tazas y Cuentos said:
Hello Lynette! Oh! Those secretaries are gorgeous.
As you can imagine the first one is perfect for me! The dishes…the old books…that children’s tea set… Fantastic!
Besos from Argentina and thank you for your visit and your sweet comment.