Thursday, January 27, 2011

New Life For an Old Tool

I found this old concrete trowel made out of wood about 1 1/2 years ago at a church rummage sale in Oklahoma.  It reminded me of a piece of driftwood and it had the most wonderful patina.  I call it patina, the woman I bought it from called it crust.  She said that her father made his own tools and used this for many years.  Imagine all the patios and sidewalks this beauty helped create......

I thought about a towel holder, but the crust patina wasn't going to come off.  I stashed it away and completely forgot about it until I saw this post from Jane at Mamie Jane's.  She made a magnetic picture holder out of a grout trowel.  I immediately had to find my long lost trowel; not an easy job in my messy garage.  Maybe I'm not as disorganized as I thought I was because it was in the first place I looked.

After years of use, this worn out old handle must have been a perfect fit for the hand of its maker.  After I bought it, I noticed the stamped words on the side of the handle:  HARRINGTON, L.A. CALIF. I guess he might have worked for that company, or he added the wood bottom to the metal plate.

The handle holds it up when turned on its side.  All the rhinestones are shiny, but some look a little dull in the picture.  Since it reminded me of driftwood, I thought COTTAGE would be a good word to spell out with the bits and pieces of old jewelry. 


  1. *gasp* That is stunning and wonderful. Arrrrggh. You make me crazy! Also, I am still laughing at 'crust.'

  2. The glamour of rhinestones against the crusty wood...Fabulous! I am running so low on rhinestones, I have got to be looking for some soon


  3. Oh My I love your new use of an old cast-off piece ...!!!

    I love the use of the old jewelry for the lettering too ..

    What a Great marriage of vintage finds ..

    Blessings ..Sara

  4. Betsy...this is wonderful! Such a nice contrast and rustic and bling...perfect!

  5. Love the sign and such a great story to go with it. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Beautiful!! What a great idea...hmmm where did I put my Dads cement tools??
    Yes we are fogged in too...makes everything so depressing. Hoping for a day of sun but I hear we may get rain this weekend, which we need.
    Have a great weekend!

  7. Great idea, love how you created that great cottage sign, it's so unique!! love it!
    Thanks for linking up with VIF!

  8. What a clever cute idea. I will have to keep my idea some old tool to put some of my rhinestones on.

  9. Hi Betsy, I found you on Cindy's "My Romantic
    Home". I love your trowel, that is really neat.
    "Crust" that is so funny. I love patina, it just sounds better. I have a trowel I bought back in the 90's at a craft show that has
    chickens painted on it and I love it. I still
    have it in my kitchen. I do love yours with it's
    bling. Maybe my chickens need a little bling too.LOL. I will be back to visit. This Louisiana girl loves your blog.

  10. Now this is CUTE! so glad you were able to find it:)

  11. That is such a cute sign. Glad you could find the trowel when you needed it. Mamie Jane's blog is just a wealth of inspiration.

  12. Another masterpiece, Betsy! That really was a cute idea to use vintage jewelry to spell cottage. ;)

    Thanks for linking to the party each week.

    Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage


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