Huntsville’s Old Harrison Brothers Hardware Store — Dusty Wood into Vintage Treasures

The other day, I posted Huntsville’s Old Harrison Brothers Hardware Store — Part I.

Here’s the second part of the story, where I turn dusty wood into vintage treasures!

Before….

The Project

I first brought all those wooden treasures home in the back of my car. It drove me nuts, because they bumped and jangled all the way home. (Because bumping and jangling stuff in my car drives me nuts.)

I didn’t stop to shift the wood because I was too excited to slow down, visions of my Flea Market Flip-esque project dancing in my head.

Once at home, I dragged Lefty (my left-handed, left-brained husband) and Princess Buttercup (my adorable daughter) out of the house to see what I’d bought.

They were over-the-top excited for me.

I made that last sentence up.

Before…

 

Cleaning up the Wood

My first step was to sand the dusty wood. Sanding went a long way in cleaning up that wood.

I pulled out rusty nails with Lefty’s hammer, nicking my left palm in the process.

(Stay tuned for my Lock-jaw post to be posted in a week or two!!!)

Next, I went to the store and buy wood cleaner. Except, I couldn’t remember what the stuff was called.

“May I help you, Ma’me?” asked a man at a computer.

“Yes, I would like wood cleaner. I know what it looks like, but I don’t know what it is called.”

Interesting wooden drawer, now cleaned up.

The man typed in “wood cleaner.” His two colleagues were punching each other behind his back. I wanted to say, “Hey, boys! Knock it off! I’ve got an amazing DIY project on the line, here!” But I maintained my southern manners and bit my tongue.

“Do you mean,like, hardwood floor cleaner?”

“No. Nevermind. Thanks anyway.”

I’d seen that stuff before. I’d used that stuff before. As much as I hate hunting for stuff, especially in one of those big warehouse stores, I decided to search on my own.

I finally found it! Murphy’s Oil Soap!

Back to the house I went, purchase in hand.

Anyhow, after the wood dried, I tried to paint it with acrylic paint.

No good. It looked like a Kindergartener’s work.

Wood Painting Class at University Pickers.

But here’s the good news…Today I signed up for a sign painting class at University Pickers! I’m well on my way to creating beautiful home decor with sweet quotes and Bible verses for Sweetgum House!
More to come on how I turn dusty wood into vintage treasures from Huntsville’s Old Harrison Brothers Hardware Store…

This is what I want my sweet home decor signs to look like.  I got it at Mill Clothing Company.

More Home Decor Ideas.

I got a lot of terrific suggestions about how to turn my dusty wood into vintage treasures.  What do you think so far?

Dusty wood crate into wall art.  I haven’t hung it yet.  I’ll have to get Lefty to put it up for me if I can figure out the best place to hang it.  Or I may turn it into a coffee table.

Dusty wood crate into fire wood box. I got all the firewood from the forest at Sweetgum House.

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Pearls for Christmas

How about Pearls for Christmas this year?

Last Thursday, my In-Loves took me to Loretto, Tennessee to look for Pearls.  Pearls for the Home is a little home décor shop established back in November by Vickie Bosheers.  Vickie’s husband is a friend and colleague of my husband’s dad.

exterior of pearls shop

A Mighty Fine Welcome

Vickie gave us a big southern welcome and invited us to enjoy complimentary coffee and goodies.  While munching on  homemade cookies and  fudge, we browsed Vickie’s store’s shelves, stocked with dishes, candles, dish towels, Christmas ornaments, home accents, and gifts.  Many of Vickie’s products come from local artists.

Because both of Vickie’s grandmothers were named Pearl, Vickie named her shop after those great ladies.  In addition, Vickie says that pearls are the epitome of simple elegance. Simple elegance radiates throughout the shop and and outside with the simple mint green exterior paint teamed with the raw wood.  Vickie is and expert on simple elegance.  She was one of the first two graduates at the University of North Alabama to receive a degree in interior design. .
After years of teaching Vocational Home Economics in secondary education, Vickie left the school system and later opened Pearls in the old Putman’s Barber Shop.

ceramic santa at Pearls

Hey, Santa…Need a shave and a haircut??

Demo Day

The Bosheers put in a tremendous amount of sweat equity to transform the old building into the cute little shop it is today.  Vickie says the place was filthy and “there was a lot of rot and deterioration in the building.”  She adds, “The carpenter did a really good job.”  Mr. Bosheers also did a lot of carpentry work.  “We had a lot of wood in the barn,” says Vickie.  “People will say ‘we’ve got a tree down.’  He’ll go saw it up for them and keep the wood in our barn.”

The barn wood used on one of the big shelving units in Pearls is from a barn in Maury County, Tennessee.

Vickie found and salvaged the barber shop’s mirror that hangs over the fireplace mantle and reflects the shimmering mercury glass Christmas décor.

Putman’s Barber Shop

As the sign outdoors says, Putman’s continuously operated as a barber shop from 1928 until 2001.

While my in-loves and I shopped, a lady and her husband came into the store. The lady said that she had once lived in the house next door while her father ran the barber shop.  She showed us where the barber’s chairs were located and where customers would sit and wait their turn.

Puttman's sign at Pearls

What I Couldn’t Resist

As you may know, we bought Sweetgum House 18 months ago.  I’m slowly, slowly trying to turn it from an track house to a home for our family.

So, the minute I saw a pair of rustic hanging lights, I knew I had to have them in Sweetgum House.  Little additions like this will help bring a little character to our place.  As soon as I figure out how I want Lefty to hang them, I’ll post pictures.  I’ve got an idea, but I may have to ask my Dad-in-love for some of his old wood that he’s got laying around in his collection.

vintage red truck at Pearls

The Rest of the Story

After making my purchase at Pearl’s, Vickie suggested we go eat at Nana’s Pizzeria on Broad Street.  My in-loves and I enjoyed delicious from-scratch pizza that was cooked in a traditional stone oven.  The next day, I was inspired to use Loretto in my short story, Kaitlyn’s Christmas.

After church on Sunday, Lefty, Princess Buttercup, and I had Sunday lunch with Mom and Dad.  Mom asked, “Did you know your Grandmother M was born in Loretto, Tennessee?”

I had no idea!

home decor at Pearls

Visit Pearls on Facebook or at 206 2nd Avenue South in Loretto, Tennessee.

So what is your favorite thing from Pearls?  I’d love to hear from you! 🙂


more home decor at Pearls

Pearls window decor

***
Legal stuff:
I did not receive compensation for posting about this business.

Huntsville’s Little Five Points Chapel

Check out Huntsville’s Little Five Points Chapel!

The other day I went and photographed this pretty little chapel in Huntsville’s Five Points area. If you read Tuesday’s post, I said that Five Points is the area in Huntsville where several roads come together. The community came about in the years following World War II, when the suburbs became popular. I read that Five Points was the first suburb in Huntsville. Or one of the first. Now there are suburbs everywhere.

Perspective 1 of chapel

Huntsville is very unique to the state of Alabama. When many other cities in the state are rated low, some of the schools around Huntsville are rated high in the nation. I always say that you’re either an engineer or married to one around here. Education is a very strong value to us.

Five Points sign

Anyway, because of our city’s wealth, the little houses in Five Points are consistently sought out by people who want a smaller and historical home.

Perspective 2 of chapel

The little chapel looks well-kept and is as neat as a perfectly frosted white cupcake. I like its simple lines and how the steeple contrasts against the blue fall sky.

I’m still learning how to use my little Nikon DSLR, so I took several perspectives of the church.

And, by the way, I hope you’ll be at church tomorrow! 🙂

Perspective 3 of chapel

 

Perspective 4 of chapel

Down the Architectural Rabbit Hole.

singersewingmachine

Old Singer Sewing Machine.

Every first and third Saturday of the month, architectural treasure hunters can make their way down the creaky steps to the Harrison Brothers basement. There you’ll find all types of goodies to upcycle into art projects and home decor.

oldtypewriter2

I went last Saturday and found some old wood that I’m going to glue together to make a wall-hanging. (More of that on Friday’s post!)

Harrison Brothers is located on the courthouse square in downtown Huntsville, Alabama.

I’ve posted before about how you can find gifts made from local and regional artists.

harrisonbrothersstorewindow

Harrison Brothers window display: You can also buy old-looking new stuff.

But bar-none, my favorite thing about the place is walking to the back of the store and down the steps to find what they’ve scavenged from old houses in the area. The place is run by the Historic Huntsville Foundation and opened from 10 a.m.- Noon. According to an article by Al.com, procedes from the sales go to education and preservation.

architectural_basement_harrison

“Secret” doorway to the basement. Feels like you’re about to enter a speak-easy!

harrisonbrothersstairway

Down the rabbit hole!

I’d love to hear about similar, quirky places where you live? Got any to share?

watering_can

Old watering can, covered in plaster and paint.