The beloved Moppe drawer unit is not available in Canada any longer. I was lucky enough to find one in a thrift shop. Unfortunately it was coated in thick and hideous purple paint.
I started by carefully sanding off all of the paint. I knew what I wanted to do with the drawers but was trying to think of a theme that would be interesting. I looked online at antique map illustrations and fell in love with the variety of sea monsters depicted. I found a selection of images that I liked and modified them where necessary so that their proportions fit within the drawer fronts (actually the backs, as I reversed the drawers).
I used graphite paper to transfer the monsters, then fired up my trusty wood burner and set to work. I covered the sides and top of the unit with a pattern of waves. Once the wood-burning was finished, I lightly coloured around the monsters with a blue watercolour pencil and applied a moistened cotton swab to give the water a blue tint. I scrounged through old books at the thrift shop until I found one with suitable nautical illustrations, and ‘podged’ the pages inside the drawers to line them. Then all that was needed was a set of little bronze pulls and it was done!
~ by Lorraine Andrusiak