I have a confession to make. If you were to take me on one of those grand flea market trips I probably wouldn’t buy much.
Oh, I’d see tons of things I would love. You’d hear me say things like “LOVE that!” or “Wouldn’t that make the cutest lamp?” or “I could sooo see that as a pillow.“ but I probably wouldn’t make a lot of purchases. Well, I take that back. I’m a sucker for fabric so I’d probably buy that pillow thing but I’d pass by many great finds. I tend to over think these things. And then I suffer from “I can’t believe I didn’t buy that” remorse the next day.
Do you know what makes me say No, Thanks?
No story. I need a story! But you catch my emotions with a story and I’m hooked. Sold!
Today’s little vintage table has actually been in my family for years but I never knew it’s story until this summer.
I was raised in the very small town of Bassett, Virginia. Bassett used to be home to the factories of Bassett Furniture Industries years ago when furniture manufacturing was a booming business here in the States.
This little table had been a hard working draftsman’s table for years in one of the Bassett Furniture factories. Around 1933 my grandfather, whom everyone called Mack but I called Papa, bought this little table and took it home to be used by his growing family.
The table was a typical drafting table with tall legs and a hinged drafting top. Papa cut off the legs and removed the hinges to make it a functioning kitchen table. The table isn’t very big, about 54″ long by 30″ wide. My Dad remembers it being the kitchen table for their family of 6 until about 1950.
Sometime mid century my Granny bought herself a nice shiny 50′s style dinette with a silver top and black and white chairs. This is the table I remember. My Mom still has it. The tiny wooden table got relegated to the back porch where it became a jack-of-all-trades table.
One of it’s duties became the butchering table. (Honestly, it may have been the butchering table prior to it’s back porch days.) Dad said they would cover it with an oil cloth, mount a sausage grinder to the edge and have at it. They raised hogs as a main source of meat for their family.
I’m not the least bit squeamish about raw meat but this just sounds like a gross process. Sorry, Dad.
A few years go by with our little table doing all sorts of duties like being a potting table, laundry folding table…who knows what all.
Sometime during the 70′s my Dad goes by Papa and Granny’s house and see’s his old kitchen table in the trash pile. Now, my Dad is not a hoarder. Not really. No. I’m sure he’s not. Not really. I mean, not like a real hoarder. Moving on….
Dad decided to save our little table from the trash. He brings it home and promptly stores it somewhere (no clue where).
Fast forward to early 21st century. My Mom finds the table and, being the keeper of all things sentimental, decides to use it. She thinks she’d like to paint it and enlists the help of my sister, Sheri.
Sheri, bless her heart, scraped and scraped and scraped to cleaned up the table top. She said it was covered in a thick, yucky gunk. I’m not sure I want to think about what that gunk consisted of. Once it was cleaned up, Sheri said the wood was way too pretty to be painted that they should stain it. I think she made the right call.
When my niece, Libby, got married our little vintage drafting table/kitchen table was the centerpiece of the reception as the bride and groom table.
The chairs you see here are the original chairs my Dad’s family used all those years ago. They are so low to the ground that we have to sit on pillows to use this table! My Papa was over 6′ tall. It’s hard to imagine how he sat in these short, little chairs.
If you were to visit my Mom and Dad you’d find our little table on the “sun porch” of their home. It’s current duties include everything from dinners to crafting, computers to games but it’s most prestigious honor is the keeper of desserts. All family dinner and holiday desserts. We always know where to find the pound cake.
And that’s my story. What this little table lacks in monetary value it sure makes up in sentimental value. Even more so because of it’s story.