Monday, July 12, 2010

Trash to Treasure

Now, you know I love flea markets, estate sales, thrift stores, Habitat ReStores, yard sales, etc. However, sometimes it takes imagination to see the potential for the pieces you love. Unfortunately, my imagination ideas aren't always original, so whenever I see how others have taken their trash to treasure, I try to make notes.

Inspiration (courtesy of Real Simple)

1. Assigned Space: Vintage letters are a clever way to designate hooks on a coat rack. Try to match the style of the letter to the personality of the owner. These flea-market finds are easy to install -- secure an initial above each hook with adhesive mounting squares, which can hold up to two pounds, or use a heavy-duty two-part epoxy intended for most surfaces.

2. Stacked Cabinets: These two flea-market cupboards looked nothing alike, yet it wasn't hard to turn them into a single piece that functions like an armoire. All we did was paint them the same shade of white and blue-green and then add polished-nickel latches and crown molding. We stacked them and placed display items in the glass-front and linens underneath.

3. Indoor Shutters: Modern windows no longer accommodate outdoor shutters, but that's no reason to pass shutters by at flea markets or secondhand shops -- when cleaned up and painted, they make charming indoor accessories.

4. Handkerchief Pillowcase: Leftovers are the bane of the sewing room as well as the kitchen. But the same creativity that inspired cassoulet can save odd lengths of fabric from ragbag ignominy. One idea: Use strips of cloth or lace to trim the opening of a cotton pillowcase. A monogrammed handkerchief from a flea market can be folded diagonally and machine-stitched to a pillowcase, creating a wonderful gift for someone with the right initial.

Enjoy! :)

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