Transform everyday items into new decor
ILOVE using things for purposes other than the intended or obvious. Today I thought I’d share some ideas on how to use everyday items to enhance your décor. These are items many of us have kicking around the house that can be modified for decorative purposes. Let’s get started. Shelving for display All kinds of neat items can be used as a shelf for display purposes. An old skateboard can be mounted to the wall of a den or child’s room with L brackets to display trophies or books. Not too long ago, I shared a bookshelf project wherein the shelf was made from an actual hardcover book. I still love this idea and will use my shelf at the cottage to display a decoy. Attach a hockey stick to the wall (blade down) to use to display hockey cards or small collectibles. Free standing shelf cubes, for books, shoes and so on, can be made out of everything from old solid core doors to pallets. An old multiplepane window with the glass removed can be displayed drawbridge-style using a decorative chain in the kitchen for use as a pot rack or to hold cookbooks. Consider fun items like vintage hatboxes to display lightweight items or a small trunk to use as wall display. Hatboxes could house sewing notions or craft supplies in a craft room. We covered the idea of using an old trunk as a medicine chest in a past article. This is a novel idea for the cottage or second bathroom. From the junk drawer I literally went through my junk drawer to garner some of these ideas. A collection of wine corks can be used to make a unique bulletin board for the home office or the kitchen. Use a wooden serving tray or an empty photo frame as the base for added interest. A bit of hot glue and voila! I turned a leftover piece of scrap wood and some cording from my junk drawer to create this lovely Paris sign for my home office. A stencil and some paint is all you need. A small collection of used pencils from the junk drawer could be glued to a picture frame for school photos. Ceramic egg cups (Why do I have so many egg cups?) can be used at the dinner table to hold tea lights. Old furniture An old wooden kitchen chair can be turned into an adorable cat hammock simply by removing the seat and back and attaching a piece of fabric on the remaining base. This is a fun way of including your pet’s needs into your décor. I actually tried out this project after seeing it in a book and it turned out quite nicely. I found an old wooden kitchen stool at a thrift store that was not sturdy enough to sit on as it was missing a few rungs but used it for display in the corner of our kitchen. I love the vintage look of the worn white paint. From the workshop A leftover kitchen door with a clear glass insert can be used to create an interesting photo collage. Create a backboard from foam core or cardboard, adhere the photos so they will fit into the window of the door and hang in the kitchen or den. Leave the doorknob or handle on for a unique look. A rickety old wooden stepladder is not safe to use as intended but can make a fantastic vertical display rack for pots, books, CDs, decoys, plants, bathroom linens or whatever suits your space. Put it onto the patio or balcony in summer to house potted plants. I used such a display in our rec room for decoys and strung white mini lights throughout it for a warm glow in the evening. This was a really fitting look for that particular room. Small decorative ceramic tiles that may be leftover from a renovation project can be turned into lovely coasters. Simply adhere felt tabs to the underside of each tile to keep it from scratching the furniture. From the sports closet Hang old vintage skates as they are in a den or family room as a unique accessory. Vintage snowshoes can be displayed in the same way. Hockey sticks can be used as curtain rods in a games room or child’s room. They work well with tab curtains, which allows the stick to show through. Make a headboard out of a collection of hockey sticks. Cut an old basketball in half to use as a planter. Free stuff from the earth Driftwood can be used to create all sorts of unique décor items, from intricate chandeliers to simple painted and mounted displays. Dried reeds are great when visual height is needed in a room. Use a floor vase and long reeds to create instant drama. At the cottage, old bird nests add interest to the cottage décor. If possible, take them with a bit of the branch — after the birds have vacated, of course. Smooth stones can be stencilled with inspirational words and set around the house as accessories. I love to collect beach glass and display it in a clear container in a sunny window.
At top, a bookshelf is created from hardcover books. Above, a leftover piece of scrap wood and some cording from a junk drawer are turned into a Paris sign. At left, an old globe is transformed into a lamp shade.