6 Outside of the Box Furnishings

furnishing
Image via Melanie Denney

I feel at home in secondhand stores, and in the forest. I think that is why I love to decorate and furnish my home with the things that I find there – it’s the wabi sabi in me. Today I'm sharing six of my own finds that I've used to make my home more beautiful while on a budget. I'd love to hear some of your great ideas, too.

1. Wall Fabric. My wall got a little boring, so I decided to paint it; it was still boring so then I textured it, and painted it again – it was still just a mediocre wall. I was playing around with some fabric, one day — it was when my husband and I were contemplating a move.  We looked at a few rentals with some pretty offensive 1970's paneling, and I thought that if we ever had to rent a place for an extended period of time, then I would just cover the walls in fabric — an attractive and temporary fix for an ugly wall. I did it to one of my walls a few times with different fabrics; I just folded in the edges, and fastened the fabric to the wall with tiny nails. It's a fun thing to do, and if you get the dollar-per-yard fabric, then it's a cost-friendly alternative to wallpaper. 

2. Shed Antlers. If it is possible to fall in love with a jewelry holder, then I have done it. It’s a pink and white, porcelain Jackalope, with a price tag that is over fifty dollars. I found a free alternative — a shed moose antler, and I love it just as much as the strangely beautiful Jackalope.

3. Coat Rack. Perhaps I should be a little embarrassed over my love of branches, but I’m not. If I see a nice one on the side of the road, it usually ends up coming home with me – I have no shame. But I get a lot of use out of them, like this coat rack, for example — I just cut a few limbs off a branch and attached a string so they could hang on the wall.

furnishings
Image via Melanie Denney

4. Pallet Table. My grandpa knows that making stuff out of random junk makes me happy, so when a contractor offered to give him all of his disassembled pallets, he called me to come get a few pieces to make something. My kids and I made a dinner table.

I have learned that everything can always be used for something else – that is my mantra.

5. Huge Chalkboard. I love ugly, secondhand store paintings – the kind in fancy frames. I always get the ugly ones because I paint over them, or rip the picture out, and I don’t feel so bad doing that if the picture is damaged and faded. I painted over a very faded, water spotted painting, with plain black craft paint, and my friend chalked out the little winter bird. I wanted something that could change up my living room, whenever I felt the notion, so making a huge chalkboard was the answer.

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6. Night stand. My parents gave me four old barstools they got at a thrift shop, because they knew I’d love them. I only had four stools, but was looking for two more, so it worked out perfectly. The other two move around the house to serve different purposes, as needed – my favorite use was as my son’s night stand and bookshelf.

{ MORE: The Big Kid Room }

I always try to think outside of the box, when I'm searching for something that I want for my home; it saves money, and gives me a sense of pride that I have, in a way, defeated consumerism. It's a small rebellion. 

What are your clever ideas for using unconventional furnishings or decor for your home?

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6 Outside of the Box Furnishings

Melanie Denney lives in the smallest of towns, with her two little darlings. She has a Bachelor's degree and happily works as a full-time mother and a freelance writer, specializing in sociology and recreation leadership. ... More

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1 comment

  1. Patricia says:

    Great ideas! I love the fact that you are repurposing items that can be found anywhere. I would like to see what it would look like if the branches were de-barked and lacquered.

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