These industrial desk legs mark the start of my obsession with antiquing; specifically at the Brimfield Mass. Antiques show. It also is the start of Mitch cringing everytime he heres about the show “coming up soon”. Everytime I go with the intention of “just looking” and everytime I come back with new projects.
I’ve always had this tendency, but until I found this particular antique show, I've have never had so much inspiration. This show is one of the largest in the country (country, not county).
Finding the industrial legs
I found these amazing legs leaning up against the back of an architectural salvage tent, like they were the cast offs of the bunch. When I asked the gentleman about them he said they came off a 1860’s church bell in upstate New York .
I shelled out $135 which ended being every last cent I had on me, to get as close to the $150 he wanted for them. I was literally standing with my wallet open, no lunch money in my near future, hoping to god he would take the $135. Cue the puppy-dog eyes and we were off!
Refinishing the industrial legs
My original plan was to paint the legs white, for some reason they made sense to me painted. This was a very hard decision to make because most of the appeal of lies in the rustic character. By painting it white I would be taking some of that away and making it modern.
I decided to go with the white to highlight of company lettering Jones & (In those days they didnt bother writing & Co.), soften the industrial look, and to tone down the desk which was destined for such a small room.
So I used appliance enamel paint to cover the cast iron legs after sanding them up a bit. We then secured them together with a board and then created a cleat for the wall along the back of the industrial desk top.
The appliance enamel has pulled away in a few places, giving back some more of the character over time. Thats what always amazes me about a project... it's beauty is revealed in the initial refinishing process, but also over the lifetime of the piece.