I have been working hard to rid my life of unnecessary stuff for a time now, and there are a few things I can’t bring myself to rid of, but also have a hard time justify keeping. One of those things has been my Great Aunt Betty’s trunk. Aunt Betty was a Navy nurse that traveled and lived abroad, and had many fine and interesting treasures from her travels.
Many years ago I lived with Aunt Betty while I had an internship in Wichita, KS. She was a lovely hostess and I learned so many things about her life. She was always a treasured aunt by my father and his siblings, and she never had children of her own, so when she died her things were distributed among the family. Somehow, I ended up with her trunk.
This sad trunk had seen much better days. Someone must have lost the key to it, because they broke the lock to get it open. It was dirty and scuffed all over the outside. And at some point it must have been left in a puddle of water, as the bottom has been damaged all the way through to the lining.
However, despite its problems, I couldn’t ever bring myself to toss it. I mean, it has such cool aspects to it like the Wichita Trunk plate, and Aunt Betty’s initials painted on the side.
As I was hauling things out of the garage this summer I got the idea to use it in the attic to store linens. Although I failed to take a pic, the original trays are still in tact in the trunk, allowing for trinkets to be stored also. However, the inside was super musty, so I googled how to rid of that smell in old furniture, and came up with the AirSponge as the remedy. Next I had to deal with the issue of mobility. I didn’t know how I was going to be able to move it around once it was full. After contemplating for a little while, I finally came up with the idea to add caster wheels to the bottom. The casters were purchased at home depot for about $4 each, along with some fat, short wood screws (I think a size 10). The AirSponge was purchased for about $7 on Amazon.com.
After attaching the casters, I shut the AirSponge inside the trunk for about a week to absorb the odor. I cleaned the outside of the trunk with mild cleaner, and attempted to clean up the hardware with Brasso, but it wouldn’t come clean. The final product really pleases me, as I can actually use the trunk and not just store it for no reason. Chet helped me move this baby to the Attic, where I store extra blankets and guest sheets. The AirSponge did wonders for the musty odor, and I can’t believe how much better it smells. I think it looks much better and Aunt Betty would be proud of my hard work and creative use.