We brought back dressers from my Grandma's house. I have always love them. They are very much how my Grandma was - or at least how I thought of her when I was little -elegant, charming, detailed, whimsical, solid, hardworking, and lovely- all at once.
My Gram was small- I was taller than her at 10, but she was strong and tough as nails. She didn't put up with nonsense, but was generous and unremittingly kind. She taught me how to knit at five and the smell of the yarn, Grandpa's pipe tobacco and Grandma waft past me everytime I look at her dressers. It is the scent of being loved; the fragrance of family, and simple, important things.
Gram hand long, lovely nails, functional, not fussy as she had been a professional seamstress and the owner of a laundromat in the years when women who worked to support themselves and their diabled mother took no small amount of grit and determination. She was an old school craftswoman and her work was beautiful, functional and well made, much like this lovely dresser.
We washed the dressers with warm soapy water and then applied Linseed Oil. The directions say to wipe off the excess, but we put 4-6 coats on and it soaked right in.
Years of living in smoggy Chicago, in a house where pipe smoke was de riguer for decades had dried the wood. But it's looking a bit better today and is going, perhaps oddly enough, in the dining room where it will be seen regularly and stand as a reminder of my lovely Gram, and as a testimony to an age gone by.
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