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Pine Box Makeover, A Sweet Recipe Holder

Many of my projects are special.
At least to me anyway. 
Recipe Box 
For example, my dining room chair backs. After the chairs were all done I went back and hand stenciled the birth-dates of my kids next to each of the blank areas after "ROOM#".
Grain Sack Style Dining Room Chairs Bliss Ranch
If you look at the picture above of the chair back you can see where it says ROOM#. There are six chairs, and I happen to have six kids, so their birthdays are in place of actual room numbers.
Or the drawer pulls on the apothecary chest below. Each drawer pull is numbered and the numbers are the birthdays of my mom and dad and the parents of my better half, along with their first initial.
Apothecary Rast Ikea Hack Bliss Ranch
Today's project is special too, but it doesn't have birthdays on it.
This plain pine wood box has been in my laundry room for many years collecting pocket change, receipts, buttons and lint. The lid wasn't even on top of the box, I had to scout for it.
Recipe Box
  I mentioned in my last post how one thing led to another when my washing machine went kaput. The new washer arrived and the laundry room got a much needed cleaning and a little makeover, resulting in the dirty laundry hamper project {here}, as well as a makeover of the pine box above.
One of my six kids made the box. I'm not sure which one it was and neither are they. 
By process of elimination we all agreed it wasn’t the oldest or the three youngest, so that left two. Those two remembered making a box, but they couldn't be certain which of them were the owner. They both inquired if there was a name on it to solve the mystery. 

Why yes sweet children there is.... the initials scrawled on the back read..."ME", and those are not any of our initials.
I determined that of the two possible box cobblers, only one was the kind of smart azz that would label the box as theirs by using *ME* and forgo their actual initials, but to cover my bases I told both of the possible owners that the box was getting a makeover and moving out of the laundry room. 

Recipe Box
The new home was going to be the kitchen, but the box needed an alteration first. 
It wasn't tall enough for it's new purpose, and the lid just rested on top and could slide all around and off, so a thin piece of wood was nailed on all the way around to raise it up, and a hinge from the garage was added to hold it in place.
Recipe Box
An old fork was bent to the shape of a handle to open it, with a hole drilled in each end, then tried on for size on the new part of the box.

Recipe Box
I used Fusion Mineral Paint in Ash and painted the whole thing inside and out. 
Just one coat as I wanted some of the old wood to show through when I sanded it, like it had been in my kitchen for many years not my laundry room.

Recipe Box
I thought about making my own stencil with some clever saying on it, but why reinvent the wheel? I had a kitchen-ish stencil from Old Sign Stencils at the ready and it fit on top of the box like it was made for it. 
So the painted pine box got a little sugar.
Recipe Box
That little jar of Fusion Mineral Paint in metallic silver was NOT used for the lettering, because at the last minute I decided to use the color Putty instead.

Recipe Box
 I found some black handles in a junk bin and those were attached for easier moving from counter to counter when I'm cooking up a storm.
Recipe Box
My recipe collection was a disaster. Split between one of those recipe binders and a little recipe tin I've had for over 30 years, and I could never find anything. 
I started off by researching new binders thinking maybe mine was just not the best version for organizing, and I came to the conclusion while some of the binders are really nice looking, they weren't any different than the one I had, and it was the whole concept of turning pages then pulling the recipes out that I didn't like. 

So I emptied and tossed the binder then got to organizing all my recipes. I'll have a post coming up on that, as well as the inside of the box and the homemade dividers I made.

But for now I'm admiring the way the former laundry room box looks in my kitchen.

Recipe Box
If you're wondering about the opening picture of the locker tag that is on the front of the box, well it isn't from my locker. But I am a product of the Los Angeles Unified School district, and my dad was a long time employee, so that little tag is just the way I added a bit of nostalgia for myself. The place I went to school, on a pine box one of my kids made in school, holding the family recipes. Perfect.
Those school cooks DID make the best chili I ever had. Wednesday... that was chili day and I'd leave my lunch box and smelly tuna sandwich home and walk to school with my lunch money in my little red coin purse. 
But just on Wednesday, for chili day.  

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  1. This is absolutely adorable! I need one in my life! Or maybe a fleet of wooden canisters... all I know is I want it to look just like this! Way to lead me into possible cooking too... now that would be a miracle...

  2. Way to go Bliss!! This is a charming, warm makeover!! Love the fork handle.

  3. What a fun make over. We have reached the place in our family where peop,e aren’t sure anymore who made what. So I totally get that. I love that one of your kids was cheeky enough to write “me”.
    All the Best,
    The Other Marian

  4. So adorable! What a fun way to keep a memory alive in more ways than one! Very clever remake!

  5. This turned out so great, Bliss!! And I love hearing your memories...xo

  6. I need one of recipes are in several piles and "sort of" in a plastic box that's way too small and has been missing its lid since the 1980's....oh for a cool wood box and that sweet nod to school and your dad~ xo

  7. Yep! I love it too! Love the stencil and the fork. I just finished painting an actual recipe box complete with the measurement equivalents printed on the inside. Haven't decided to keep it for recipes, so I'm looking forward to seeing what you've done with the inside of yours.

  8. Oh I love this pine box makeover and the fork handle is so cute!

  9. What a cute transformation! I love the backstory too-how you personalize your projects too.


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