Monday, April 23, 2012

How To Turn Garbage Into Money

     I mentioned in an earlier post that I refurbish furniture to bring in extra money.  I really just started to do this only a few months ago when I was in a serious need of instant cash.  To tell the truth, my home went into foreclosure.  My bank is currently under investigation for my situation specifically, but regardless of the reasons why, and why it wasn't my fault, or within my control to prevent, the foreclosure status was real and happening fast.

     Fees above and beyond my mortgage were accruing weekly, and it became painfully obvious that I wasn't going to make ends meet unless I took immediate action.  First line of defense, PRAY!  I can't stress this enough, God promised me I wouldn't lose the house.  I believed Him and knew that He wanted me to get off my duff and put in some elbow grease to increase my monthly income, but I didn't know exactly what I was supposed to do.

     During this time, my eldest daughter, Kayla, was working for the local dump.  One night after work, she brought me a beat up, left for dead dresser, thinking I might clean it up a bit and use it somewhere.  When I first saw it there was the ew factor, but then I really looked at it.  I wondered if this beat up corpse of boards and nails could possibly be brought back to life.  The more I looked, the more I realized it had good bones.  The structure was intact for the most part, it was real wood, and I could tell that at some point in its life, it was quite a looker.

     Five days and to many to count hours later, the dresser was done.  Clean, sanded, and painted, b-e-a-utiful!  It was a hardwood dresser with great lines and made to last.  Little did the original manufacturer know their dresser would live so many lives.  If they only knew that their creation would be abused and left for dead, painted on, written on, scratched, dented, chipped, and that in its final days, when it should be laid to rest, literally in the ground, that it would be given a second chance at life, that it by golly would shine once more. 

     The dresser cost me nothing but paint and sandpaper and probably some of my lower vertebrates (small price to pay).  But the investment reaped a whopping $100 profit and a new set of skills.  That dresser was my first and I've gotten much better in time with methods and resources.  Now I'm on my fifth piece of furniture.  My skills are increasing with each experience and so is the selling price of my pieces.  I've been able to purchase a random orbital sander, more brushes and rollers, and a few other odds and ends with my dresser sale profits.  I'm learning new painting and staining techniques every day.   I got my latest fixer upper dresser off Craigs List for $25, and it's selling for $150.  All the work was done in one day.  This one's a flat black finish with distressed detail.  To achieve this look, I  sanded down to the wood, primed, painted with latex flat black, sanded 120 grit, painted, sanded, painted, sanded, then when I thought my arms were just about to fall off, I put the final finish on with SC Johnson Paste Wax and WOW is she purdy!

     I'm no longer in foreclosure, thanks to God, my family and friends (Mom, Sara, Heidi. and two others that choose to be anonymous) but I still refurbish furniture to bring in fun money, and extra bill money.

Casey Everly


  1. Hey! I had no idea how many things are going on in your life! Good for you. I tried to have a blog, but discovered that I don't have time, what with writing a piece for Writing Group every week and all the letters I send off to friends by snail mail. It's good to hear you are going on retreat. Sounds wonderful. Who is keeping the kids?

    I was going to do all kinds of things in the yard today, but it is sprinkling, so I guess it can all wait. I will clean on the house instead.

    I love you dearly. Grandma

  2. Beautiful Casey!! You go girl! I am so impressed. Love this and you and your crazy kids!!