Crowdsourcing, the ultimate disruptor

Our story so far: While the drywallers worked upstairs and the concrete finishers labored outside, I holed up in the basement with creative projects that would find life as soon as Phase Four: Cabinets began.

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As I finished my last coats of polyurethane on the vanity, I pondered knobs. Initially, I had intended to reuse the original wooden knobs because they matched the veneer I had preserved for the top drawers, but with 90 percent of the wood painted, I considered painting the knobs, too.

So I took to Facebook to poll my friends.

wood knobs
“What do you think of these original knobs,” I asked friends on Facebook. “Should I paint them?”

One might say a lot of negative things about Facebook, but my friends are creative thinkers with good taste. One of them suggested vintage glass or crystal knobs, and a number of people seconded it. It was a great idea I hadn’t even considered.

On my next visit to Home Depot, I found a suitable glass knob to try. Cost: $6. I needed 18 knobs, so this meant I would be spending more on knobs than I did for the whole second-hand dresser set! I liked the look of the single knob which inspired a visit to eBay, where I found a mismatched lot of vintage crystal knobs—enough for the dressers—for only $25. Sold.

crystal knobs
The lot of crystal knobs came in all sizes, but they would work in an eclectic way.

Unfortunately, I discovered after applying the last coat of polyurethane that I had used too heavy a hand on the edges of drawers. Some of them no longer closed. So another round of aggressive sanding was required.

Still, I didn’t mind expending the effort. Including the quartz countertop, my eight-foot custom vanity cost only $1,020.86. And it looked like a million bucks.

The Facebook advice was just another example of the community rooting us on and helping us bring to fruition our vision.

Some people the ability to see for the beauty trapped in ugly things, and some people simply do not.

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Tomorrow: Chapter 28 opens. One step at a time. Check it out here.

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