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Craft and tool station

This project is what Elizabeth would call “finding crap on the curb and making something fabulous.” I found this mint green railing (from a crib? shelves?) in a pile of debris. Add galvanized wall pocket planters (on clearance at Jo-Ann for $1.50 each), daisy hooks (thanks, Kristi), spice rack ($3.50 at a thrift store), paper/pen bin (thanks, Jim), dowels and wire for hooks (Freecycle), and I’ve got a cheap craft organizing solution. A power strip and a salvaged bench vice (thanks, dad) attached to the rolling toolbox make it complete. Can’t wait to use it! Read more »

Salvaged mirror with framed wallpaper samples

Broken window frame - before

“First rule in government spending: Why build one when you can have two at twice the price?” Any guesses what movie that line is from? I loved these salvaged window frames so much, I bought both. This one was a little worse for wear, but it was nothing wood glue and a fresh paint job couldn’t cure. I got the (free!) wallpaper samples from FabMo, a volunteer effort collecting discontinued fabric samples from the San Francisco design community. Thanks, Hannah and Jonathan! Read more »

DIY salvaged shadow box

DIY salvaged shadow box - before

Two drawers were left over from my modular bookcase project. I didn’t think they’d be useful for anything but firewood. But upon closer inspection, I began to appreciate the aged beauty of the wood—even the smattering of white paint. Combining the drawers into one shadowbox—and not painting it—was a great way to showcase the wood’s character and history. Thanks again to my favorite neighborhood woodworker for cutting the pieces. Read more »

Fabric covered dining chairs - after

Fabric covered dining chairs - before

I found these chairs curbside with a “free” sign taped to them. They have a nice shape but suffer from two problems: a shoddy paint job and cracked seats. I knew I could fix both issues. I wasn’t settled on the how part until I saw what Melissa did to her tables at ikea hacker. Perfect solution for these two chairs. The fabric serves as decoration and camouflage. Read more »

Floral bamboo veneer side tables

Floral bamboo veneer side tables

Sakura table

Inspired by Jason Horvath's Sakura table from Uhuru.

Last year I fell in love with Jason Horvath’s Sakura table from Uhuru. It was out of my price range, so I decided to make my own version using some bamboo veneer a friend gave me and two Ikea Lack tables I got on Craigslist. Aiming for an organic floral design, I used photos of gerber daisies and cosmos to create my patterns. Btw: This treatment would also look great on many other types of painted furniture. How about a 70s geometric pattern on a boring cabinet? P.S. Thanks for your patience and words of encouragement this week. It took me a while to scrape off the old glue and summon the will to try again. Read more »

Salvaged window mirror - after

Salvaged window mirror - before

I saw this window frame at a salvage yard and coveted it for a few months before finally buying it. Instead of the opaque Plexiglass it came with, I inserted mirrors. I love mirrors because they can make a small space feel airy and bright. This one offers an added bonus: the illusion of an additional window. I planned to paint the frame, but decided that I like the natural, rustic look of it. Plus, it matches the wooden doors in my apartment. Read more »

Cupboard door serving tray

Salvage cupboard doors

I noticed this stash of cupboard doors at my local salvage yard. The white one was the perfect size to make a serving tray. The old drawer pulls—also found at the salvage yard—made ideal handles. Their swirly shape gave me the inspiration for the pattern I painted. All it took was a little black paint. As with many of my projects, the possibilities are limitless: change the handles, add découpage or fabric, paint it a different color, or just leave it classic white. Read more »

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