One of the really awesome things about living out east, is picking trash. People here leave unwanted items on their curb for semi-annual large trash pick-up from the city, but also with the idea that someone will take it home before the garbage does. Some of the stuff that gets left by the curb is truly junk, but sometimes you can find some really awesome stuff. I have friends that have scored nice couches, bookshelves, desks, dressers, etc. this way. You all know how much I love thrift shopping, but picking up free stuff is much, much more exciting.
A few weeks ago I found something awesome by the curb while driving on a street I don't normally go down.
It must have been fate, because I have actually been on the hunt for a nice little wooden cradle for years. I have never found something I love at the right price, and I think this little cradle is so cute. And free is definitely the right price.
Since it was someone's garbage, I knew it was going to take a little work to turn it into something that I will actually put my baby into. The first thing I did when I brought it home was to throw the mattress into my garbage can, and clean it down with some disinfectant. Even though I was planning on stripping and repainting it, I wanted it to be clean until I had time to really work on it.
Today was the day that I started to strip off all the old paint. I did a little research to find a stripper that had good reviews and was as non-toxic as possible (since I'm 7 months pregnant and I have two little kids running around), and I went with Citristrip from Home Depot.
Things went along well for the first bit, and I managed to get the whole thing covered with the paint stripper. Based on the way the paint was blistering, I innocently thought I might just get the whole thing finished in just a few hours.
And initally, it started coming off just fine too. Then I started working on the spindles, and I realized this was going to take longer than I thought.
After working on it all morning, I spent a few more hours out there this afternoon. And it didn't look much better than when I started. At one point my neighbour walked by and said "Are you getting close now" (refering to my baby's due date), and I told her I still have two more months to go.
Translation: I have two more months to finish scrapping off all these layers of paint, sand the whole thing down, repaint it, cut a new foam mattress and cover it, and make some cute little sheets. Suddenly two months doesn't seem that long anymore...
What have I got myself into? Any tips on removing old paint? I think I'm in the market for something magical to help me out of this mess...