I was attracted to its nice clean lines - it oozes early 20th century Australian "no nonsense" design. Except for these gorgeous little scroll embellishments on the raised thingummie on the back (Can you tell I'm not up with vintage furniture terminology?):
The original drawer pulls have been replaced with hideous square plastic knobs, but that's easily fixed. The finish - most likely shellac - is in poor condition, but that's fine since I plan to sand it back and refinish it anyway. The timber looks to be in pretty good condition overall and the drawers don't stick, although a bit of soap on the runners to smooth out the action won't go astray.
I have plans to use this as a living room side table/storage piece, so I won't be needing the mirror. No worries, thinks I, I'll just remove it along with its supports and sell it on eBay. Realising that it wasn't going to fit in my little hatchback as is, I asked the seller how the mirror was attached, so I could make sure I arrived with the right tools to detach it. Here's the bit where things went a bit wrong...
The seller wasn't going to be home this weekend but (obviously being a trusting soul) she left the dresser under the back verandah and told me to just go through the side gate, leave the money under the back door and help myself to my purchase. I bribed and cajoled The Baby into coming along for the drive, grabbed a few screwdrivers and an emergency hammer and pair of pliers - just in case - and off we headed on our epic journey.
All went OK until I tried to unscrew the support pieces from the back of the dresser. Those screws had been in place for many decades and were not budging, no way, no how. Aargh! I managed to unscrew the mirror itself, but was left with these bloody great posts sticking up - and no amount of manoeuvering was going to get that thing in the back of my car.
It had taken almost an hour and a half to get there, and I was NOT leaving empty-handed and defeated. I sent The Baby into the unlocked, and no doubt spider-filled shed, while I scoured the verandah cupboards in search of some tools that might help. Desperation and
Oh, yes I did: I sawed off the support posts and we crammed that sucker into the car and headed home.