A few weeks ago, I took a trip out to one of my favorite antique stores (Beaver Creek Antiques in Hagerstown, MD) to pick up a pie safe I had been mulling over for a while.  It was perfect.  Chipping, creamy-white old paint, still wearing all of the original tins and she is an old girl who has lived a good life and has gotten even better with age.

This post is not about that pie safe, though.  This post is about the one that had, shall we say, issues.

But, it also had potential.

And things with potential are my favorite.

mms-5929

So, some obvious issues…the neon green curtains.

Well, as Kriste put it, “Someone tried.”

The other issue was that this poor pie safe was basically in pieces.

mms-5930

The bottom was missing and one side had come apart.  Fortunately, the missing tins from that side were in one of the drawers.

I would write a tutorial on how I fixed this, but I basically figured it out as I went along!

I started out by glueing the wood rails, the cross pieces, back in place.  They had tongues on each end that fit into a groove.  I clamped them, so the glue had a chance to dry overnight.

mms-5932

I took some measurements for the bottom shelf and to cut a piece of wood for the missing rail along the bottom of the side.

mms-5934

I found a scrap piece of wood in our workshop and asked Jeff to cut it to size for me (I don’t do table saws) and cut a groove in the top of it, so the tin has a place to rest.

Since this piece doesn’t have tongues, on the inside of the board, I drilled two Kreg pocket holes on each side, so I could screw it in place.

mms-5950

I had an old piece of wood on hand that was almost exactly the right size to make a new cupboard bottom.  Jeff cut that piece down for me, too, so it fit perfectly.

mms-5953

I like that it’s an old piece that looks like it has always been there.  I tacked all of the shelves and the new/old bottom in place with finishing nails.

And now it’s ready to paint…

mms-6041

Now, I know some people aren’t going to like this piece painted.  That’s okay.  I wanted to paint it to camouflage the repair on the side and because this wood didn’t particularly speak to me.  I can’t explain it, but this wood didn’t look as old as it actually was and that bugged me.  I could tell from the interior wood, hardware, tins, construction, etc. that it’s an old piece, but the wood on the outside read too “1980’s country reproduction” to me, even though it wasn’t.

All of that to say, it’s getting painted.  If you like it wood, take one last look at it…

mms-6039

I applied a couple of coats of a custom-mixed MMSMP white.  It was a little bit of Mora and Grain Sack mixed with Farmhouse White.

mms-6045

The wood on the interior of the cabinet was very dry, so I applied a generous coat of Hemp Oil to hydrate it and bring out that pretty patina.  I lightly distressed the edges and areas where the paint chipped a bit and sealed the paint with the new matte Tough Coat.

Lastly, I needed to deal with the big, gaping holes in the doors.  The best option I could think of was screen.  The gray color would match the tins and is fitting for a pie safe.  More than glass would be.

I cut it with a utility knife and tacked it into place with wood strips that were used to hold the fabric in place.   I used some fiberglass screening out of an old window screen, so it was lightweight and easy to work with.

mms-1034

Given the shape it was in when I bough it, I am so pleased with how it turned out.

mms-6152

mms-1035

mms-6146

mms-6143

And it really is a perfect piece for my “Farmhouse White” themed booth.

mms-1039

Did you happen to notice the pretty ironstone compote in the pie safe?

mms-6199

I spotted it and practically leapt towards it.  There was absolutely no doubt, unless the price was obscene, that this piece would be coming home with me.  It has a flat bottom, so it’s more like a mini cake pedestal with decorative edge.  I’ve never seen one like it.

The price wasn’t obscene and it, of course,  came home with me…

mms-6196

54 Comments

  1. Lori

    So much better painted, and you really had to due to the addition of new wood. Gotta feel good saving a piece that would probably never sell. Nice job!

    Reply
  2. Karen

    Just thankful you took the time to save it! I like it painted!!

    Reply
  3. Karen

    Once again you worked your magic! It’s so pretty and that compote is amazing. I don’t blame you for snapping it up.

    Reply
  4. JoanMarie

    Wonderful restoration and LOVE the tin sides. You have made this piece a “show piece” once again.
    JoanMarie

    Reply
  5. Donna

    I am not one that has a lot of painted furniture in my house, but I agree, the pie safe needed to be painted, great job!!! Through these posts, I see so many things I want to buy at Lucketts…can’t wait!

    Reply
  6. Gina

    It is gorgeous. I used to have a cabinet that had these same exact doors but it was much taller. I loved that cabinet. My husband saved it and put it back together and that made it more special. I love the screen on the doors letting the beauty from inside show thru to the outside. I am sure this sweet little cabinet will find a new home and make someone very happy! I love this blog!

    Reply
  7. Samantha Hall

    I have been so excited for you to do the pie safe reveal. I have a pie safe my grandpa gave to me. He took it apart to strip it, and now I have to figure out how to put it back together! I think it might be your pie safe’s twin… Unfortunately, I don’t have the original tin – I’ve thought about having some made. Any other ideas?

    Reply
    • marian

      If they are the standard 10 x 14″, you can order replacements that are reasonable and look nice. I looked into that for the doors on mine, but those were 12 x 15, so I couldn’t find ones that worked.

      Reply
  8. Sharon Grundy

    So cute! You did a wonderful job!
    What’s the green plant you have inside the pie safe? One looks like rosemary but what’s the other one?
    I’m very new to gardening so I enjoyed it when you shared your experiences with plants. Well…I love everything that you share Thanks!

    Reply
  9. Kim

    Hey, just a suggestion here, but wouldn’t some nice old metal screening be better than fiberglass? Like the stuff on older window screens.

    Also, it isn’t ultra difficult to make new tin inserts, other than the patina matching. Some more ideas for this piece!

    Reply
  10. Hannah Rose

    This is my FAVORITE thing in a long time, and I LOVE everything you do! What a sweet piece.

    Reply
  11. Krista

    It looks great! I love how you fix these pieces up.

    Reply
  12. Virginia

    This looks as if it has always been that way. It looks like it was just plucked out of a sweet grandma’s kitchen. I love it!

    Reply
  13. Charlotte

    You did an amazing job on the pie safe…love it

    Reply
  14. SHERYL

    I’m a new subscriber…what took me so long!
    How nice…love it! Beautiful job. Was the piece walnut!?!
    What is your favorite wood glue and filler?
    Would a chicken wire screen look as good if one likes a country French appeal?

    Appreciate your sharing and expertise.

    Reply
  15. Graham

    Painted is good- I like the screen. I have one problem with the piece though- the holes in the doors are not as primitive looking as the rest of the piece- they jar me somehow. Could they have come from another piece of furniture do you think? Regardless, the piece looks great.

    Reply
    • marian

      I totally agree with you and have even considered removing the doors! The design seems a little off to me, too, but based on the patina of the wood, hardware, etc. I can tell that they are the original doors.

      Reply
  16. Nancy

    “Issues” hilarious!

    Reply
  17. Tracy

    Nice! I agree it did have that 80’s repro look, but not anymore! The compote is awesome, looks great with the limes/apples. You rock, girl!

    Reply
  18. Gilda

    I would’ve tinted the side piece to match the rest of the wood and kept the patina as-is…just my vote…

    Reply
  19. Jean

    Like the pie safe,LOVE the compote.

    Reply
  20. DeAnna

    I have a pie safe I purchased from Ethan Allen about 12 years ago that’s similar in style to this one. My cabinet also has tin but in the front doors instead of the sides. I’ve been thinking about using your milk paint to change over it’s current red. Been debating whether to remove the tin and replace with chicken wire, but the tin provides privacy and is country. After seeing yours painted out, I’m sold on changing the color. Looks great Marian!

    Reply
  21. Paula Scheib

    Love this , I have a taller version of this . I have had it for about 17 years. The design of the tins on the side of yours are very similar to mine. I struggle with wanting to paint mine but have only painted the drawers. Always love your creative vision.

    Reply
  22. PJ

    Marian, I love how you see the potential in pieces that most would give up on. In addition to creating beautiful things, you demonstrate a reuse and recycle mentality that is inspirational!

    Reply
  23. Marcia

    Love, love, love it! kisses ML

    Reply
  24. Jelena

    Wow! What a transformation! The pie safe looks so pretty now, and I love the ironstone compote, too.

    Reply
  25. Robin Leach

    You are AMAZING, it turned out PERFECTLY!

    Reply
  26. Carole

    Loving your Lucket posts. I can’t wait everyday to see your latest finds.

    Reply
  27. Cheryl

    You did an awesome job! As I was reading this post I thought for sure you were going to say that you had found some old doors for replacements, or got Jeff to route/cut out the design in the doors. The color looks very nice! I have seen old pie safes that had layers of old white paint and had even painted over the punched tin sides. The tins look great painted as well. Love the ironstone compote, it’s wonderful!!

    Reply
  28. kddomingue

    Yep. I would have painted it too. The original wood stain did have that funny , hint of orange in it that I associate with the 80s. Didn’t like it then, don’t like it now. White is fantastic on that piece.

    Reply
  29. Wendy Johnson

    I do like wood but not that wood. It is much better painted. I love seeing you transform these pieces, I learn something every time.

    Reply
  30. Linda

    Your work is always so beautiful.

    Reply
  31. Sherry Parks

    I have the matching step back cupboard in the original finish. Mine has glass but the same turn of wood. Pine gets redder as it ages and mine is a very rich color. I love the paint as well. I have been thinking of painting a pie safe as well. Nicely done!

    Reply
  32. Donna Doble-Brown

    Love this piece PAINTED! It’s adorable!!!!!! Well done, Marian!

    Reply
  33. Cheryl

    WOW?❤️?!!!

    Reply
  34. Rebecca

    Superb Save! Warms my “rescuer” heart.

    Reply
  35. Cindy

    I love it painted! But I love painted furniture!!

    Reply
  36. Kate

    I wonder if the doors are not original and that’s why it looked a bit ’80s? Given the rest of the piece, I would have expected the doors to be plainer and less chunky.

    Reply
    • Miss Mustard Seed

      That was my initial thought, but the wood is identical and the hardware is all in keeping with the age of the piece. Plus, the patina is the same, so they are the original doors as best as I can tell.

      Reply
  37. Deborah D

    Love love love the cabinet. It turned out perfect. Wishing I could come to Luckett’s.

    Reply
  38. Cheryl

    Love both pieces!! You always do a great job deciding what to do with your pieces.

    Reply
  39. Cecelia Krajcar

    It looks fabulous and I love the tin use….

    Reply
  40. Karen

    Oh, that compote! I have a punch bowl that I love but it is quite stained. Any suggestions on cleaning iron stone? Although, I am quite happy to leave as is!

    Reply
  41. Kathy Pagnozzi

    She looks stunning! Once again you worked your magic.

    Reply
  42. anneb

    :). once again.

    Reply
  43. Jenn

    Miss Mustard Seed, you are simply amazing!

    Reply
  44. Jennifer Banker

    I am so jealous of all the ironstone you find! My neck of the woods doesn’t seem to have any!

    Reply
  45. Marlene Stephenson

    I don’t care about the issues it is a lovely piece. I love your ironstone piece it is a great find.

    Reply
  46. Jill Hilbrich

    Marian, I am always impressed with what you do, but I have to say, this takes the cake! I’m so impressed by how you saved this pie safe!! If I lived out east, I would snatch it up from you. Fantastic job!!

    Reply
  47. Kimberly Bruhn

    I love the way the pie safe looks now…gosh, I think removing the green ‘curtains” was even a great improvement!
    I have the same cow head and am wondering what size that boxwood wreath is around Lula’s head? I ordered one but it wasn’t quite big enough. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hello!

Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…

facebookPinterestYouTubeinstagramfeedfacebookemail

Subscribe today

and receive a FREE e-version of my planning sheets!

Categories

Articles by Date

 

our sponsors


Bliss and Tell Branding Company