Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Something Old Becomes Something New

We are now in Operation Baby proofing -Phase 3. Just when we think the house is safe, our child gains a new motor skill, figures out how to pick a baby lock, or otherwise outsmarts us. We should probably grow accustomed to this right now.
Many years ago, long before the concept of a baby was real to us, we found this antique wrought iron baby crib at Brimfield Antiques Show for about $50. It was in rough surface shape, but I had to have it. Maybe it was all the years of trying to have a baby to no avail that pushed me into a little baby- accessory -hoarding phase in my collecting. My husband saw this, I was blissfully ignorant.
I reasoned with him-"if we get pregnant, we can use this, it will be awesome-I can re-paint it, I can see it now, we can put a chandelier in the baby's room..." We stood back from the crib with the dealer next to us, listening to my whole rationale...and listening to my husband's wake up call: "this thing was made in the early 1900s likely, clearly would not pass today's safety standards, and is heavy, large and how does a chandelier have anything to do with an un -usable antique crib anyway?" He had a point, okay a few points-but can't you just see the twinkling chandelier over a restored vintage crib!?!?
I eventually won the case, I think I may have even cried and the dealer put a "sold" sign on the crib, I told him I would be back that afternoon to pick it up with the car, that was now miles away from us. "Please don't sell it to anyone else!" I begged him. "Listen lady, after what I just heard, I wouldn't dare." Sheesh, was I that dramatic?!? And "Lady"? I was a bit young to be called that at the time...
And so the crib has been moved around in our lives, stored mostly in the garage, once for a few months in a storage unit-and moved around and around as we have re-organized and purged. But it never goes away. I just knew it would be useful. Somehow. Someday. Then we actually did have a baby.
When Ava started crawling, it came to me-we could use a side rail of the old crib as a baby gate across the arch way between the living room (Baby Command Central) and the kitchen (Baby Disaster Injury Zone).
It only took my darling husband 7 months to actually make it happen. When he finally got to this project, it only took a few hours to complete, mostly in my time scraping, sanding and sealing the darn thing. We used a gate latch and simple L brackets from the hardware store to rig it up to the wall. I am pleased, it looks so much better than the plastic abominations we have at the stairs, the cats can still Limbo under it to freedom, and my little human remains safely contained in her proper zoning area. For now.


Ashley said...

I would have also loved to have such a treasure! And what a wonderful idea. We have several sorry looking gates in our old home. There is no open floor plan around here, so to keep our little guy safe, we put him in whatever room we're in and block off the exits. I'd like a baby gate like the one you made though! Ours are so uglyyyyy.

Ebeth said...

I would LOVE something like this in our house! Astrid is starting to crawl and getting around so fast! Just around the corner she'll be walkin!

Ava is adorable in these pics!

Philigry said...

great idea. it is the sexiest baby gate i have ever seen!

Gretchen said...

what a great idea!!!Huge fan of reinventing ways to use something. great job!