For many years now I’ve prided myself on being able to see the potential in some things that people ordinarily wouldn’t. Building a behind-the-couch table out of a gnarled piece of wood. Cutting up old pillow cases and using them to create a shabby chic, rag-style lampshade. Scavenging frames from thrift shops and bargain bins and bringing them back to life with a new coat of paint and dual panes of glass. It’s what I love. I love creating and repurposing and finding new interesting ways to use what’s already right in front of me.
All this being said, you can imagine the hodgepodge my home has grown to be over the years with such an eclectic mix of hand-me-downs and random must-haves. I like to think of it as quirky and charming but there are times when I would like nothing better than to just sweep all of it to the side and start fresh. Don’t get me wrong—I love my home. I love my tin signs with fun quotes like “Don’t judge a book by its movie” (in which there was a typo of the word “its” so I got it on clearance, took it home, and fixed it, of course) and the entertainment center which was gifted to us by a family friend for our first place together. But sometimes I can’t help looking around at all of my unique pieces wishing they went better together as a cohesive idea instead of a bunch of separate ones.
So I’ve been making some changes. And this isn’t the first time. I’ve moved numerous times throughout my life and every so often I get this overwhelming urge to start over. And so I do. But not always in gigantic, cataclysmic ways. Sometimes it’s enough to just redo one room or refinish a piece of furniture. The hardest part during these bouts of creative desperation is being patient with myself and with the process. So rather than get rid of my one-of-a-kind treasures, I challenge myself to find a new way to look at them.
Our large, dark, secondhand entertainment center had crazy, colorful knobs when it first found its way to us. Now after more than five years it’s evolved into a blacktopped, gray-wash bodied piece with distressing and lovely, vintage, crystal knobs in varying hues. The beautifully etched crystal bowl gifted to us from a dear friend (as part of a bar set with several glasses) is currently brimming with luxurious, organic soaps in our bathroom. Beautiful and functional. Half priced coffee beans? Votive filler. Old ladder at a yard sale? Quilt rack in my living room. Outgrown favorite sheets? Now a lightweight summer throw. The possibilities are endless. You just have to be willing to see them.