Almost thirty years ago, my dad brought me this oak legal filing cabinet that had belonged to my great grandfather. He had been using it for the hammers, nails and rusty hinges in his shop.
He had told me that he would give it to me someday and, sure enough, he did. He restored it and drove it out to Skaneateles where I filled it right up with drawings, paper and letters. It honestly saved me, providing sorely needed storage and a path to organization.
Two years later, he brought me four doors from a screen belonging to that same great grandfather. After living a posh life, the homeless doors had been stashed in the dank rafters of a dusty garage.
Each of the door's panels had different inlaid flora and fauna on the front. The backs were again different from the fronts!
My dad trusted I would do something with the doors but instead, I am sorry to say, they spent nearly three decades propped up in my house looking pretty but at a loss for purpose.
I dreamed about a cabinet to store the boxes of teetering artwork stacked in my house. But the project was too pricey and I was doubtful it could meet my lofty expectations.
The doors waited.
Then, a friend, Heather Bruno Sears, reminded me that I knew a magician, the very one who converted my porch into a useable space without compromising its antiquity.
I was nervous to put the doors into new hands and new wood, but David Lee was confident he could house them in the way that would respect them. We drew up a plan.
There were rickety mirrors in some doors and horse hair behind glass in others, half of them were cracked. That was a stumper for a while.
I have a college friend who makes the most beautiful textiles on earth.
Believe it or not, he had the perfect fabric, hand-woven horse hair and sisal. Incredible! And the color was exactly right.
Add to that the fact that my dad was once in the rope business back when rope was made from sisal and he had horses from the moment he could build a tiny barn (at age 14) until the day he died.
Here is the beautiful result.
David Lee did the most thoughtful job. He matched the color and patina of the wood perfectly on the top and sides of the cabinet.
Thank you David, Thank you James Gould and Rogers and Goffigon.
Thank you Spencer H Brewster and Sherman L. Whipple.