So I have a problem.
When it comes to my children, I can be pretty sentimental. Too sentimental at times. I’ve kept stained sleepers, chewed-up board books, bits of paper they’ve scribbled on. I’ve been known to weep over itty bitty socks and stand there in a near catatonic state, hemming and hawing over whether I can stuff just one. more. thing. into the chest I’ve allotted for keepsakes.
Yes, I could use some therapy. I wish I were joking, but I’m not. As much as I crave minimalistic spaces, as much as I recognize the wisdom of William Morris (have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful), as much as clutter drives me around the bend and makes me cranky and on-edge, any item remotely connected with my children has proven to be my stumbling block.
So when our youngest moved from the crib to a twin bed (over six years ago), I was stumped. What to do with a piece of furniture that had cradled our three sleeping babies?
I’m pretty sure I know what a sane person would have done: (maybe) have a good cry over the passage of time, and then send it off to a resale store, or list it in the newspaper, or cart it off to Goodwill.
So what did I do? I stowed it — disassembled, of course — in the back of our closet, with the full intention of keeping it for possible future grandchildren.
Yes. I’m fully aware this borders on crazy-lady behaviour.
So the crib had sat in the back of our closet — taking up precious space — for about two years when I caught a whiff of a problem: crib safety regulations had changed. Drop-side cribs were no longer being made, and it was illegal to re-sell them. It seems the plastic parts that make the side rail moveable were occasionally failing, with devastating results. Suddenly, the notion of keeping our crib for possible future grandchildren went from nostalgic frugality to cavalier riskiness. But while I knew I would never want to risk the life of a child on the dubious security of a brittle bit of plastic, I also knew I didn’t want to just chuck the crib into the landfill. (Have I already mentioned our three babies slept in this crib?!)
Thank goodness for Google. That’s all I can say.
We had just moved back to Canada (our now-illegal crib coming with us) and while I was looking for renovation ideas for our new-to-us house-from-hell, I had a sudden brainwave: perhaps I could use the pieces of the crib to make something else. I did a Google search, and fell down a rabbit hole into the awe-inspiring DIY internet-land of Let Me Show You How to Re-Purpose ANYTHING, emerging several weeks later with ideas galore. I truly am amazed by all the creative people out there: people like Gail from myrepurposedlife.com who can look at the side rail of a crib and envision a bench. And not only can they envision said bench, they have the wherewithal to take photos of its metamorphosis and to make this handy bench tutorial.
So this is the first piece my husband and I made:
a plant bench to fit in the narrow space between the wall and the free-standing bathtub in our ensuite bathroom. We loosely followed Gail’s tutorial, but unfortunately, a blog wasn’t even a dream at the time, so I didn’t think to take photos.
(I think William Morris would approve).