This isn’t the step-by-step account of a Do-It-Yourself project; rather, it is a story of love, thoughtfulness, forgetfulness, and how a poor, pitiful, Pie Safe found its purpose in life.
Mr. Saucy and I met in Nashville, where I worked (for a very short time) for his business. Years later, both of us divorced, we were reintroduced by a mutual friend. Neither of us were overly enamoured with the thought of being wed again; we both figured it would be nice to have someone of a like mind to hang out with and do things together.
We went on a hike on our third date; we rode our bicycles together (I was an avid cyclist at the time); I even got him away from car camping and “forced” him to backpack camp in the woods. When I felt myself growing attached to him, I encouraged him to move away from Nashville (Yes, that’s right…move away!); he’d owned the property we now live on since the 80’s and kept saying he wanted to move eventually. So, my girlfriend Peg (one of The Nashville Girls) was looking for a house and I pushed them together to get Mr. Saucy to move away. She bought his house and within weeks he was gone.
The way I saw it, I didn’t want to become involved with anyone and I didn’t think a long-distance relationship would ever last.
Oh, the best laid plans…Mr. Saucy and I continued long-distance dating for several years while he was finishing up construction on the house in which we currently reside. Still clinging to the belief that he was a confirmed bachelor, he refused to “build a house by committee.” I had a titch of input on the house (mostly because I can’t keep my mouth shut), but they were important things like:
- DO NOT put a red brick foundation on a house in the WOODS! It really needs be stacked stone to blend in, so it will appear to have grown up there.
- Gray…the house needs to be gray. Not Federalist Blue (see above).
- The wall ovens should not be on the far side of the kitchen with no counter space nearby.
- The refrigerator door needs to open INTO the kitchen.
- The garbage drawer should not be next to the dishwasher, so both could not be open at the same time (honestly, I don’t think his kitchen designer actually ever used a kitchen, bless her heart).
As time got close for the completion of the building and his moving-in date, he did give me a project to help him with the house. I was tasked with the acquisition of furniture for one of the guest bedrooms. It would be a complete room decorating project, floor-to-ceiling furniture, fixtures, bedding. It was a pretty tight budget, but I had some ideas in mind.
First, I got a friend to build a Shaker-style pencil post bed, raised high so that it needed steps to get into; I went to an unfinished furniture store and bought bedside tables in the same style and finished them myself in the same stain as the bed; I ordered lamps and a mirror, a rug, and mattress and bedding. The last thing the room needed was a big piece for one wall, and I envisioned an armoire, but something more in keeping with the Shaker-goes-elegant style of the room I had in mind.
Since my budget was so limited, and I was running low on the allotted amount, I started scouring thrift and antique stores for an old double pie safe to fit the bill. I thought something like that would really work. I looked. And I looked. And I looked some more, but I just could not find anything that was suitable. So, I got Mr. Saucy to increase the budget just a hair and purchased a golden oak armoire. Project complete. The room looked gorgeous.
Fast forward a few years…we had married, co-mingled our belongings into the house he built, and started a fly fishing business. At that time our shop wasn’t just fly fishing, we also carried camping, backpacking, hiking equipment and clothing. Mr. Saucy wanted to use another successful area store as a business model, so he and our friend, Tom, traveled to North Carolina to visit the store to get ideas.
While they were there, Mr. Saucy spotted a Pie Safe for sale. He didn’t remember at all why I had been looking for a Pie Safe, he just knew I’d been hunting one. He promptly told Tom that he was going to buy said Pie Safe for me and tote it home. I still laugh, to this day, over Tom’s response, “I can absolutely guarantee you…that is not something P~ would want.” Mr. Saucy brushed aside Tom’s comment, purchased the Pie Safe, and proudly brought it home to me.
I loved the sentiment behind the purchase, but I really didn’t have anywhere I could use it (keeping my thoughts about its aesthetics to myself). I thought about putting cookbooks in it, but I already had an antique half-canoe that was converted into a bookshelf for that purpose. So, the poor, pitiful Pie Safe was relegated to the basement where I used it to store gardening supplies.
In April of this year, when I started construction on Saucy’s Wee Kitchen Garden, I was digging around in that Pie Safe to find the various paraphernalia I had purchased over the years for use in my dream garden when the thought struck! I needed a garden shed!
The site for the garden is on a small field (the only open area on our 10 acres) and it is a bit of a hike from the house. Since I didn’t relish toting all my gardening tools there and back every time I worked in the garden, I decided to convert that drab, ugly, brown Pie Safe into a happy, fun, whimsical Wee Kitchen Garden Shed.
I bought this new handle for it at Hobby Lobby, as the inspiration piece for its renewal:
I cleaned it up, painted it, coated it with varnish to protect the finish, and have installed it in Saucy’s Wee Kitchen Garden. It has life…it is loved…it has found its purpose. And every time I walk into the garden and see that Pie Safe turned Garden Shed, I will smile. And I will be thankful for the convenience of having it there, but more for the love and thoughtfulness that originally brought it home to me.