“Twenty-five years ago, shop­ping at the Good­will wasn’t a cool thing,”

Country Sampler - BOHO Style - - GIVE ME SHELTER -

says Kate Keesee of Ana­heim, Cal­i­for­nia. At the time, she was a sin­gle mother who wanted to make a beau­ti­ful home for her three chil­dren, and buy­ing sec­ond­hand made sense. Af­ter be­ing di­ag­nosed with lu­pus, a chronic in­flam­ma­tory dis­ease, Kate could no longer con­tinue work­ing as a wed­ding plan­ner, and that bud­get got even smaller. Ever re­source­ful, she started a blog to share her thrift­ing and dec­o­rat­ing ad­ven­tures, and the rest is his­tory.

Sal­vage­dior.com went live in 2009, and Kate, like so many oth­ers, found re­port­ing her en­deav­ors to a wide and sup­port­ive au­di­ence to be an af­fir­ma­tion of her artis­tic eye and self-taught skills. Be­fore long, Kate went from post­ing snap­shots of shabby style to pulling out the power tools and carv­ing out a boho niche for her­self. The rise of other so­cial me­dia plat­forms led con­tent-cre­ators like Kate to re­di­rect their time and energy, and she brought Sal­vage Dior to Face­book and then In­sta­gram where she has amassed more than 93,000 ad­mir­ers who fol­low along to be in­spired by her trade­mark low-cost, high-end de­sign schemes.

To Kate, “thrift” is an es­sen­tial word in her style vo­cab­u­lary, as she goes to the thrift store to thrift and is thrifty. She makes weekly vis­its to her lo­cal Good­will of Or­ange County, where she has found all kinds of name­brand treasures for a song, in­clud­ing her cov­eted Room and Board sofa. “It’s all very hit or miss,” coun­sels Kate of shop­ping at thrift stores. “It’s good to have a game plan, and it’s help­ful to know which days they re­stock so you’re not wast­ing energy.” An al­most daily vis­i­tor, over time Kate has out­fit­ted her en­tire home with thrift-shop scores. “I feel good sup­port­ing the OC Good­will, plus with the money I save on fur­ni­ture and other things for around the house, the eas­ier I feel about the oc­ca­sional splurge, like cus­tom wall­pa­per!”

Spaces through­out Kate’s home have a very dis­tinc­tive look. She is drawn to rich wood, and most rooms in­clude a hand-wrought piece or two—whether it’s a barn door or cof­fee ta­ble—with stain ap­plied us­ing Kate’s go-to: old bath towel squares. The same rus­set hue ap­pears in leather ob­jects as well as wo­ven bas­kets filled with leafy plants. Faux­fur throws, pale che­nille, gilded finishes, and chan­de­liers all add el­e­gance to the eclec­tic sur­round­ings. Some­how in this cock­tail of eco, glam­our, rus­tic and con­tem­po­rary styles, Kate has wo­ven a soul­ful mix.

A com­mon thread in Kate’s keen style is tex­tiles, es­pe­cially macramé, which is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing a chic resur­gence. Long gone are the bulky and dark an­i­mal forms of the ’70s; to­day’s ver­sions are gen­er­ally loose knots of ivory cot­ton draped and tied along wooden dow­els or sticks. Sim­ple, in­tri­cate and oh-so-groovy, Kate has cre­ated pieces to dis­play as wall art or drape over fur­ni­ture.

Kate calls her­self a “DIY Stylist Builder” and re­cently flipped her kitchen with a strict $300 bud­get. “I painted the cab­i­nets dark, took off the doors, and re­moved the scal­loped edges with a jig­saw to cre­ate the open shelv­ing I’d al­ways wanted,” she says. “Beau­ti­ful pot­tery, wood bowls, bas­kets and even a fab­u­lous rug all came from the OC Good­will! It has helped me beau­tify our en­tire home.”

Ap­pre­ci­a­tion for Western cul­ture is on dis­play and in­cludes a fa­vorite print from @ccan­d­mike­cre­ative, which Kate framed us­ing re­claimed wood from her stash. Bas­kets, lamp, and bench tex­tiles are all from—you guessed it—thrift shops! A trio of graphic pil­lows is from @withlaven­derand­grace. An acous­tic gui­tar is quin­tes­sen­tial boho, whether any­one in the house­hold plays or not.

TOP LEFT: So of­ten, peo­ple re­place kitchen cab­i­nets when re­mod­el­ing, but Kate wanted to work with what she had. Af­ter re­mov­ing the cabi­net doors and scal­loped wood edges, she now has the open shelv­ing she al­ways wanted for a frac­tion of the cost of buy­ing new. TOP RIGHT: A macramé hang­ing is un­ex­pected and flirty as a back­drop to worka­day kitchen tools. BOT­TOM LEFT: Kate used wood wall planks sup­plied from a lo­cal lum­ber­yard to fab­ri­cate a back­splash. BOT­TOM RIGHT: Wood shelves built from fourby-four fence posts found in an al­ley add stor­age and dis­play space in the tiny 10- by 11-foot kitchen. OP­PO­SITE: The cabi­net to the left of the sink was a school bi­ol­ogy unit that Kate's neigh­bor had in his garage. Up­cy­cled with paint and spray­painted hard­ware, it now holds pots and pans with style.

Flank­ing both sides of the kitchen are rich barn doors fea­tur­ing a di­ag­o­nal pat­tern cus­tom-built by Cody Springer of @mom­sx­garage. “They are the new­est up­grade to our home, and we don't know how we lived with­out them be­fore,” Kate says. A sim­ple thrifted desk was fresh­ened with white paint; the Mex­i­can Equipale bar­rel-style chair draped in macramé was dis­cov­ered in a Dump­ster.

“I love in­ject­ing strong col­ors, such as black, and us­ing a mix of wood and metal in my decor.”

“My An­thro­polo­gie-in­spired room was born once I laid eyes on the stun­ning rose wall mural from D. Marie In­te­ri­ors. Then I was in a se­ri­ous hunt for every­thing else,” says Kate, who spot­ted the brand­new ta­pes­try area rug at the Or­ange County Good­will.

ABOVE LEFT: A small lad­der is at once use­ful and charm­ing as a place to hang a quilt and hat while also serv­ing as hum­ble wall decor. Macramé fringe draped over a mir­ror echoes the var­i­ous ecru el­e­ments around the room. FAR LEFT: The dream catcher was hand­made by Kate's friend Mary (@thrift­store­ad­dict) and adds a sanc­tu­ary vibe. LEFT: Kate felt jus­ti­fied splurg­ing on this wall­pa­per know­ing that she'd saved money on all of the other things she had bought on the cheap at thrift shops. Blush, rasp­berry and gray are cap­ti­vat­ing in the small bed­room.

TOP LEFT: Macramé is a com­mon thread through­out Kate's decor; in­ex­pen­sive and rel­a­tively sim­ple to make by knot­ting string in pat­terns, it fills walls with an or­ganic, home­spun qual­ity. Find tu­to­ri­als on­line, or buy fin­ished ac­cents at stores like Ur­ban Out­fit­ters. TOP RIGHT: Kate cre­ates all of her wall art­work by as­sem­bling pieces of res­cued wood and var­i­ous hard­ware parts—re­sult­ing in ar­ti­sanal as­sem­blages. BOT­TOM LEFT: A bit of green­ery springs from a hand­made mount on the neu­tral-painted walls. BOT­TOM RIGHT: A set of shelf brack­ets on the head­board hold wrapped light kits. OP­PO­SITE: Kate built the head­board us­ing left­over scrap fence wood and made it tall enough to ac­com­mo­date stand­ing pil­lows and a framed pic­ture. Crisp white bed­ding topped with pale che­nille blan­kets soft­ens the look with­out be­ing frilly. A small pat­terned ta­ble keeps in­spir­ing books handy for bed­time read­ing.

“A lit­tle rus­tic touch never loses its magic. I love giv­ing new life to old fence wood!”

Kate ad­vises to splurge on t he unique items that you can­not thrift.

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