Sep 20, 2014

My Hutch Over The Years

 I hope you're all having fun this last summer weekend of 2014.

I was organizing some photos on my computer earlier today and came across some old ones of my hutch. I thought you might like to see what it looked like before I painted it, and some different ways it's been decorated over the years.

This before photo really cracks me up! Can you believe all those pictures and frames! What was I thinking?! I had all my favorite photos of my husband and me, all my favorites of our daughters, and at least one of every extended family member. 


My mother and father bought this Heywood-Wakefield maple hutch and the matching drop leaf table with four chairs for their first kitchen eating area after they were married. The blond midcentury Heywood-Wakefield furniture is very collectible and pricey, but this reproduction colonial style furniture that was manufactured in the 1940's, isn't. In fact, my google search found the same table and chairs to this set for sale for around $175, and I've seen it numerous times on Craigslist, too. 

It's not "collectible," but it's really good quality sturdy maple furniture. I never cared for the red maple finish and reproduction colonial style, and I had considered selling it many times. But I lived with it because it had been my mother's, and that tugged at my heartstrings every time I got really sick of it and almost gave up on it. 

It wasn't until I painted it and replaced the hardware that I began to love it. Painting black furniture is tricky. It's hard to get the paint smooth; almost like it has a nap, like fabric. Also, the second coat is like painting a shadow because you can't tell what's already been done, since it's so dark. This was the first furniture I ever painted (pre-chalk paint), and I cherish every little mistake. I've learned so much since this! (To see before and after photos of the painted matching maple table and chairs click here.) 

The photo above is my hutch a few years ago in summer. I'm still learning how to decorate my hutch. Some people just really have a knack for styling, and I've been pinning and studying other blogger's techniques. I think I'm still so afraid of overdoing it, like in my before photo, that I go a bit sparse sometimes. But I don't think you can go wrong by decorating with things that are meaningful to you and with things you personally find beautiful. After all, you're the one who has to see it everyday!

This was the first time I tried my hand at decorating my hutch for a holiday. It was so much fun, and I was hooked!

 This was Christmas two years ago. Most of these photos were taken before I learned to use a tripod. So, no, it's not your eyes, these previous photos are a bit blurry. :}

This is a photo I took last week of how my hutch has looked this summer. I love how the silver, white, black, and brown looks against the new softer wall color (BM Manchester Tan). The autumn sun is starting to shine through the west windows and make these silver trays glow in the evenings, so I think I'll leave them here when I start my fall decorating next week. I haven't a clue what to do yet, but I know I'll have fun.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my before and after hutch, and a little in-between. 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

It's a good day for a party!


  1. Wow! What a difference a little paint can make! I think you did a beautiful job painting your hutch--it looks very high-end. If it makes you feel any better, I used to do that same thing with all the picture frames. It was the 90's and I blame all the hairspray I used to achieve my big hair! I wasn't thinking really clearly...

    I love all your posts and your pretty blog!

  2. I think you went the right route in bringing this piece up-to-date and making it something that fit in with your home, Laurel. I love it in black! You can have so much fun with a piece like this. I really wish I had room here for something like that. It would be great with the high cathedral ceilings we've got, too. I'm sure you'll get some great ideas for decorating off of Pinterest. I love the layered looks with plates going across the back and then little pieces placed in front of those.

  3. I just love the power of paint! Your hutch looks beautiful painted black and I love your "summer" pretty!!

  4. Paint and new hardware totally transformed your hutch. It's beautiful and the perfect spot to have a little fun with holiday décor. I think this post is proof that you do indeed have a knack for styling!

  5. I sure enjoyed this post - it's nearly impossible to imagine that is the same piece - wow. You have saved a family heirloom and made it your own. Love that and love how you have styled it! The new hardware is AWESOME!

  6. I like it better before. But I am appalled at painting furniture with colored paint and putting boring hardware on period pieces. Before it represents the era. The beauty of the piece. I have all my Grandmother's pre Victorian antiques in gorgeous magahony. I would never paint them as the wood is so spectacular and the hardware is original. The piece reminds me of the look of realtor staged furniture or one I saw in Target. It lost its original beauty and personality.

  7. Hi Laurel, I love your hutch painted black and all the ways you have decorated and displayed on it. I too painted my 30 plus year hutch black a few years ago. Took out the country window grids, changed hardware and it became a totally different piece. It is amazing what a little paint and new trims can do. Yours transformation is a dream from your vision and talents.
    Have a great week.

  8. Hahaha! I did the same before with my console - picture frame galore!!!! I agree with you on that black color, it's a more 'easier ' background to work with. My fave is the one with the baskets and the silver platters!

  9. Oh Laurel the hutch is so pretty painted. What a big difference. Love your vignette on the new painted hutch so pretty.
    Happy Sunday.

  10. Perfect choice! It makes it look right out of a Pottery Barn catalog. And the hardware makes it so much more modern. You say this was pre - chalk paint days...what type of paint & finish did you use? 'Cause it looks great in the pictures!
    Barbara Ann
    P'S I so did the picture frame thing too. Every picture of my family I could get my hands on was framed somewhere in my house. /shop/barbaraannscreations

  11. I love the transformation of the hutch after you painted it - the changes over the years are so fun to look at. A beautiful piece and you have done so many great vignettes on it. Thank you for sharing at Share It One More Time. Cathy


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