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1970’s Easy Listening Room (“Easy Like Sunday Morning”)

1970’s Easy Listening Room (“Easy Like Sunday Morning”)

At one point Mel and I had a house in Sacramento and an apartment in San Jose. This was required because of Mel’s work. It was just easier for Mel to stay in San Jose during the week for work, and then come home to Sacramento during the weekends. As somebody who loves to decorate, I saw her apartment as an opportunity to decorate in space-age decor.  When we decided to go “all in” in the bay area and buy a house, we didn’t want to get rid of all the space-age furniture. We ended up deciding to devote one of our rooms in our house to 70’s space-age.

While I really do enjoy decorating with atomic Mid Century decor, it’s nice to explore a different genre. Decorating in a different style can really get your creative juices flowing. 

The real issue was going from decorating a full apartment to decorating just one room. It came down to a battle for space. We had so many cool pieces in her apartment, but they coudn’t all fit in one room. We tried to keep the coolest items from that collection.

I am big into music. I wanted to create a room to hang out in and listen to records and cassettes. I think I’m one of the few out there who are still listening to their cassette tapes. LOL! I remember the first cassette I ever bought was the “Black Celebration” album by Depeche Mode. I was raised on 80s music, but listen to everything! This is our wall of cassettes! I also use this wall to display some choice records.

We were able to keep Mel’s Seeburg Olympian 160 jukebox. Because I was a kid raised in the 80s, we loaded this sucker up with all 80s music! Since space is an issue, I took the closet doors off and created a cove for the jukebox. I also had an electrician come out and wire an outlet into the closet so I didn’t have extension cords hanging out. 

We have a few space-age radios and TVs, and the shelves in the closet above the jukebox are great for displaying those.

You might remember this Chromcraft couch, chair and ottoman set. We blogged about them a while back after we had them reupholstered.

I’m not sure who the maker of this red chair is, but we also had this one reupholstered. It is so comfortable to sit on.

This corner table is really unique. We came across it at an antique mall, and I knew it would be a great addition to the space-age decor. The bottom is a terrarium and I was able to put some of my favorite artificial cacti in there.

I suppose this table could also have been used as an aquarium. I’m not sure if that would work, but it might be a cool idea.

These vintage concert posters are all original prints. We purchased them from a dealer at Midway Antique Mall. The story behind them is that an elderly lady living in the bay area back in the 60s would see these posters on telephone poles and light poles. She would take them down and save them not really knowing that they’d be worth so much later. Anyway, the house she lived in was being demolished and I’m assuming she had passed away or moved on. A couple of observant ladies were walking by the dumpster that was being used and noticed a bunch of papers rolled up. Since they were being thrown away, they grab them. When they got home it was a massive collection of original concert posters from that era. They went to Midway Antique Mall and sold quite a few of them to that dealer. One man’s junk is another man’s treasure!

Mid Century TECHFAB Fiberglass Seating

As I always do, I was surfing Craigslist in surrounding areas and came across this set down in Fresno. Once I was able to coordinate a showing I hopped in the truck and shot down!These were being sold by a gentleman down in Fresno who had a warehouse full of stuff. He said that he buys a lot of items from estate sales.

My plans are to light sand these and then repaint them. These will be great as additional seating in our backyard.

Each section has five chairs. They’re mounted on really sturdy and heavy metal frames. It would take quite an effort to tip one of these over.

The cool thing is that both pieces still have the original manufactures tag on it. I’m assuming that these were made sometime in the 1960s. The gentleman I purchased them from didn’t really know much about them.

Once these are refinished, I think they will look really good in our side yard where we plan to put a horse shoe pit or bocce ball game area. It seems like anymore you have to go the distance to find the cool things.

Modern Craft Furniture Mfg. Co.

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This set came with a hutch, table,  six chairs, one leaf and table top pads to protect the top.

Mel and I acquired this set recently and are soo excited about its condition and how it will look in our new place.

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We were thinking this set is probably manufactured sometime in the 50’s. This is the second dinning set we own now. We purchased a Heywood Wakefield dog bone table and chairs that I still have to refinish.

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I searched online and was only able to find one other set (link). Modern Craft Furniture Mfg. Co. also made a matching sideboard. I guess Mel and I will have to keep our eyes peeled for that piece.

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I am now on the hunt for new upholstery for the chairs. I want something really atomic.

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Here are a couple of cool Jaru pieces chillin on the new table.

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I love all the wood grain on these pieces. If I didn’t know who the maker was I would swear they were made by Brown Saltman. I can just imagine what a large Carlo will look like next to these pieces.

 The best thing about this set is the only thing I have to do is the upholstery, no sanding or staining!

Hoop Chair Revamp

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These chairs were designed by John Hauser Sr. for Ironworks, Kitchener, Ontario, in 1955.  These chairs need some sprucing up, and I am the man for the job!

You might remember we picked up a couple of these chairs a few posts back.  I thought it would be a good time to refinish them.

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My first stop was to swing into Jo-Ann Fabrics to pick up some tasteful pink pleather fabric to recover the seats and back rests.

Once I got home with the fabric I started on the deconstruction of the chairs.

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These chairs only had 8 screws total holding the seat and backrest to the frame.  That took just a couple of minuets to remove.

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Here are the cushions removed.  Some might say, “what is wrong with the current fabric”??  All I can say is that it isn’t pink.

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I laid the cushion on the fabric and outlined it with about a 3 inch space from the edge of the cushion and cut it out.

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Here is the type of stapler and staples I used on these chairs.  I picked them up at my local home improvement store.

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The trick is to start on one edge and staple the fabric down.  Then start on the opposing edge pulling fabric tight and staple it into place.  This is how it should look.  Make sure to cut off any excess fabric.

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The backrests were upholstered on the front and back.  I first had to remove the staples and material from the back of the backrest.  The next step was to recover the front of the backrest.  Recovering the front of the backrest uses the same process as the seat portion of the chair above.

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After the front of the backrest was recovered, I started on the back.  I decided to make it look nicer than just staples as it had originally.  I cut a piece of fabric roughly the same size with about 1-2 inch excess to fold under.  I used black upholstery nails to finish the back.  The trick is to keep constant pulling on the fabric as it is nailed.  This pleather is stretchy so that helps pull out wrinkles.

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Now that the upholstery is done it is time to focus on the frames of the chairs and getting them painted.  As you can see there is a lot of surface rust on these.

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A great way to sand pieces like these is to use a foam sanding block.  They come in various grit and conform to the area you are sanding.

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I used Rust-Oleum black appliance paint.  This stuff has a nice finish and is durable.

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After a good coat of paint I let them cook in the sun.

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I was able to pick up some new black rubber feet for the chairs so I replaced the old ones.

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Here is how they turned out.  We are very happy with them, and it will just add to the mid-century feel of our backyard alongside our mid-century BBQ!

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I think the upholstery nails look soo much nicer than just staples.

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On to the next project!

Mid Century Daystrom Table & Chairs Flip

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This set was in great shape, but the upholstery was shot.

I was cruising Craigslist as usual and came across this set.  I knew I could redo the upholstery and make it more desirable for resale.

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The frames of the chairs were worn down to bare metal in some areas, so I had to repaint the chair frames.

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The table legs needed a quick repaint as well.

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After the chair frames and table legs were painted, I turned my attention to the seat cushions and recovered them with some atomic barkcloth fabric.

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I used these vintage electric scissors to cut the fabric.  It’s pink and called “Lady Enduro”!

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Once I cut the fabric out I centered the cushion on it.  I made sure to leave enough fabric around the edges to attach to the bottom of the cushion.

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I like to start on the front edge of the cushion by placing 2-3 staples along its edge.  Then, I pull the fabric up on the back of the cushion and staple the fabric in place.  I work around the cushion until it is done.  Watch out for edge wrinkles when stapling and try to keep fabric tight.  Make sure to cut off excess fabric.

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While I staple I like to mark where the old holes are so when I reattach the cushion I can line it up correctly.

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Here they are re-upholstered and ready for years of enjoyment.

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This will be a great set in someone’s pad.

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Thank goodness the Formica is in good shape on the table.  This is a really clean atomic table and chair set.

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Next time you see a table set you love but hate the upholstery, just remember recovering the seats can make a huge difference.

Grundig Speakers, Clamshell aka Hoop Chairs, Tension Pole Lamp etc.

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Mel and I had a few good finds, let me tell you about a few of them.

It’s the end of another weekend and Mel and I were able to squeeze in a little picking.  Here is what we came across!

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A couple John Hauser, circa early 1950’s iconic “clamshell” chairs aka “hoop” chairs.

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These are in good shape for their age.  We plan to recover them in either aqua or pink Naugahyde.  The frames need to be sanded and repainted.  These will look soo cool on the patio with the vintage Royal Chef BBQ!

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We were able to score a set of these really cool Grundig speakers for $40!  Although, my stereo repair guy Luis at “Stereoadvisor” told me if you’re going to buy any vintage electronics, he recommends Telefunken.  He said the sound of these German units are unbelievable.  I have one Telefunken table top and 3 floor counsels and I have to agree with him.
But, I’m a sucker for pointy legs and couldn’t resist these Grundig speakers.  These will be pretty easy to restore…just some stripper, light sanding, a little bit of stain, and semi-gloss polyurethane for the wood.  As far as  the speaker fabric, I’ll remove it and clean the stains with “Awesome”.

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The final item we got was this fantastic tension pole lamp.  I have never seen this style before and really dig it.  This is a keeper.

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All this light really needs is to be cleaned up and put into the perfect spot!

Mid Century Hall Tree/ Coat Rack

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This is a great example of the one we picked up. This one looks complete and appears to even have the water catcher tray for umbrellas.

Mel and I hit one of our old haunts, the Antique Company on “X” street and came across this really cool piece.  The owner of this shop routinely gets shipping containers full of mid-century and art deco furniture from England and this is one of those pieces!

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This is the one we picked up. It is in really fantastic shape, but I think I am going to change some things up on it.  First, I want to replace the green fabric with either a black or dusty rose/ pink fabric.  Then, I will replace the cording that goes button to button with a gold or black cord depending on what fabric I choose.

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As you can see, this unit is missing the water catcher tray, but I am sure I can come up with something.

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This will be a perfect place to put your keys when you get home.  Mel always loses her keys, so this might just do the trick.

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The brass buttons and hooks need cleaning.

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Unfortunately, the mirror is worn and the foil appears to have separated in a few spots.  I will have to get a mirror cut for this piece to replace the old one.  The shelf up top is really cool, a great place to put hats and gloves.  When I was researching this piece I came across some other racks I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on…

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Love the styling on this one.  The shape of the mirror is eye-catching just like the fabric!

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MUST HAVE!  This also appears to be a room divider.

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This one has a Danish feel to it.

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This one is a trip!  I love the colors and the imagery on the bottom of the center panel.

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This just SCREAMS atomic!

Sources:

http://www.1stdibs.com/

http://pinterest.com/

1950’s Phone Table Quick Restoration

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I really dig this table and think it will be a nice addition to our pad.

Mel and I acquired this table from our friend Vic. I wanted one of these tables so we could set our aqua colored phone on when we get into our new place. I liked the styling of this phone table but the fabric was soo blah that it needed something that would breath new life into it.

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Here it is! I think it turned out great!

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This phone is made by Bell System Western Electric.

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I can just see us chilling on the chair talking to family. It will be a cool experience.

Things That Are In The Works

Right now is a pretty active time for me.  I have lots of projects that are being worked on and will be coming together soon……..hopefully.  Anyway, I thought I would give you a sample of what is coming!

Vintage Desk & Chair

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This is what I am starting with.

I have eyeballing this piece for a while because I am a huge sucker for unique Formica from the 50’s.  This was at an antique store we frequent often and it had been there for some time.  The only hitch to getting this piece is there was no chair for it.  After cruising Craigslist for a week or so, I found a chair that when re-upholstered will look like it went to this desk.  The desk is marked but the mark is unreadable :(.  Here are some pics of it before it gets its refresh!

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I can’t put my finger on what era this desk is from.  It is either the 40’s of 50’s.  I really wish the makers mark was more legible, but it is an ink stamp that bled out.

I fell in love with this desk because of the tapered leg, and of course the Formica that I just go ape for!

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Here is a close up of the Formica.

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With my chair upholstery choice, I will have to paint the drawer pulls gold to pick up the gold in the fabric.

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The upholstery has to go, but what I love about this chair is the styling.  I will have to paint the wood black so it ties better to the desk.

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I searched for a while for fabric I though would look great with this desk and I found this ultra atomic fabric!  I will be dropping the chair off at B&T Upholstery as soon as my fabric arrives.

RCA Victor Stereo Orthophonic Mark XIII

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These units were produced in the 50’s.

I found this piece on Craigslist in San Francisco.  I used to own one of these in a cherry finish and always regretted getting rid of it.  I am a huge audiophile and would fill a warehouse with audio equipment if I had the chance.  As you can tell, this unit needs some work.  I am going to refinish the wood on this piece, but will have to re-veneer the top of the lid.  I plan to use the champagne Heywood Wakefield stain to finish the cabinet.  I will need to get it over to my audio guy to get it running perfect again.

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As you can see, this unit needs a refinish. I do have the gold metal legs too!

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It also needs some detailing and a good cleaning.  My stereo guy said that these have such great sound when working properly, so I can’t wait to get it back!

RCA Victor Stereo Orthophonic Mark III

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The next unit I have I got off of Craigslist as well.  I had to drive to Walnut Creek to pick this unit up.  This unit is very clean and just needs a tune up!  I can’t wait to play some Como on this sucker.

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The cabinet just needed some oil to bring back the luster of the finish.

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The radio has a green “Cats Eye” that brightens as you tune into a radio station.  The dials light up when on as well.

Here is a cool advertisement educating us about the “New Living Stereo” technology of Orthophonic!

Heywood Wakefield M590 China Cabinet

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As you can see, this cabinet was well used.  I plan to refinish it to go with the Heywood Wakefield dog bone table and chairs we picked up that I will post later.

This is such a cool hutch when restored.  I have the shelves and glass doors in storage.  The cabinet doors look rough but after sanding, they will look like new.

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I have a lot of work ahead of me and I will keep you all up to date on my progress.  We are going to be moving soon to hopefully a mid-century ranch style home, so there will be a whole lot to cover in our new place.

Atomic Bar Quick Restoration

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This bar didn’t need a lot of work.  All I needed to do was repaint all the metal, redo the Formica, recover the seats and replace the bumper strip on the top.

Mel and I drove out to Clovis to grab this really cool bar.  As you can see, the bar stool cushions needed to be recovered.  The bar top was warped and curled upwards on the ends.   The metal feet on the bar and the stools had to be repainted as well.

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To fix the top of the bar, I flipped it and screwed it down which helped flatten out the top.  Once that was done, I sanded the surface to prep it for new white Formica.

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The Fabric matches the bar really well!

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I added simple little details like gold tips to the bar and the bar stool feet.

I had to recover the stools because the fabric was so old that it was brittle and cracked.  I used some of the cool aqua colored frieze fabric that Bill from B&T Upholstery gave me from a couch he stripped (THANKS BILL!!!!).  The frames of the stools just needed a quick repaint.

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I think the fabric really goes well with the bar!

 After a long search at Lowes, Home Depot and local cabinetry shops, I was unable to find a replacement bumper strip (t-molding) that goes around the bar top.  I had to jump on eBay and order a strip of it to replace the worn old strip.  After a few days it arrived and I popped it on and BANG! The bar is done.

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This quick little freshen up brings this bar back to its former glory.  This will end up in our booth at Midway Antique Mall in Sacramento.

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As you can see, the top is as good as new.

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On a side note, we finally found a total of four super atomic “Old Forester” decanters.  These will stay in our collection.

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Mel and I hope whomever ends up with this bar will enjoy it!  On to the next resto.

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