I picked up these drawers on Freecycle. They were salvaged from the kitchen of a 1940s house that was demolished. My original plan was to put the drawers on wheels and use them as under-bed storage. Turns out, no two drawers are the same height, which would look janky. So I tried stacking them vertically instead (anchoring them to the wall, of course). You could also hang these drawers as individual shadowboxes. Read more »
Kelly and Sarah, two former Sunset coworkers, planned to use this shabby bookshelf in Sunset’s Menlo Park Idea House last summer. After removing the doors, which were in a dire state of disrepair, they painted it. Paint: Benjamin Moore Aura Steam (AF-15) and Caliente (AF-290). Then they decided to kick it to the curb. Knowing I rescue dilapidated furniture, Kelly offered it to me.
It sat in my living room while I hunted for keyhole covers (notice the keys were stuck in rough holes cut in the wood). Finally, I found the perfect keyhole covers (called escutcheons) with finger pulls on eBay. After three days of scraping, gluing, sanding, painting, and reassembling, the doors are hung at last.
This one was my friend Kristi’s idea. While window shopping one day last spring, we saw a glass cake stand in a jewelry store window. She said, “You could make one of those.” I spent the next couple weeks scouring thrift stores for plates, candlesticks, vases—anything I could find to make a cake stand. As you can see, I couldn’t stop with just one. But I did stop at just one cupcake—I swear. Read more »
Instead of chucking these old mismatched frames, I painted them all the same color, attached magnets, and gave them a whole new life. If only I could give this 1980s fridge a new life—in the junkyard. Read more »
A few years ago, I achieved my dream of owning a Yamaha DX7 keyboard, the synthesizer behind that bell-quality sound of 80s pop music. But, I couldn’t just plop it on top of any keyboard stand. A former roommate gave me an old piano bench, and I found an unfinished Shaker sofa table to match. I shortened the table legs three inches (for correct piano height), then painted both pieces black.
To finish off the scene, I bought black frames at Michael’s and grouped photos of my favorite pilots—including my grandfather—on the wall. Now all I have to do is learn to play something other than Jingle Bells.
With a wall-mounted sink and no storage to speak of, my small bathroom needed a little help. Paint isn’t an option, and the neutral tile colors limited my color choices, so I decided to go with natural wood and the colors of seashells. I found the spacesaver on Craigslist, the jars at Ikea, the waffle-weave shower curtain at Kmart (Martha Stewart’s line), and the basket at Michael’s. The seashells are strung with twine through holes drilled in each shell. I sewed a canvas cover for the wicker tissue box and attached it with wooden buttons. I also made the seashell shadow box. Read more »
Ever since I saw it hanging on Vanessa’s wall in a photo of her home, I adored Ikea’s plastic “Ung Drill” picture frame ($25), but the cost of replacing the glass with an oval mirror was prohibitively expensive. Then I found this carved wood mirror on Craigslist for a steal—$20. The existing finish was much too multicolored for me, though. You can’t tell in this picture, but the mirror was painted gold, then highlighted with magenta, splattered with black, smeared with a gray wash, and finally sprinkled with silver glitter. I kid you not. I think it turned out quite fabulous painted solid black—which was an easy fix. By the way, I scored that fabulous lattice bowl at a thrift store. Read more »