Decorating Shabby Chic Ideas: Thrift Stores and Secondhand Stores
I’ve started to completely ignore the financial news every day since it is just more doom and gloom. With the new year, we all realized there was no other choice than to change some habits, but there is still nothing wrong with wanting nice things, right? Being conservative tends to keep some people at home so their surroundings need to reflect comfort as well as personality. If new furnishings are not in the cards, then I suggest a trip to the local consignment shops or used furniture stores.
Remember, one man’s junk can be another man’s dream. With a little creativity and some elbow grease, you’ll be surprised what you can do. I found a drop front desk on the curb one summer, and was able to rehab it without too much hassle. After a light sanding, I primed and painted it a dark chocolate brown. The drop down cover needed to have some gouges hidden, so I found an oval world map with similar brown tones and applied it to the center, using glazes to “age” the paper. Then using mixes from a local hobby store, I applied a crackle finish to the drawer fronts and drop down cover to add texture. Lastly, I gave it some subtle gold striping to set off the lines of the piece. All told, I had less than $100 in materials, and a superb piece of furniture when I was done.
Upholstery pieces such as sofas or chairs may need a simple recover to bring them back to life. If you are picking up the piece for around $100, then it is worth the extra cost to reupholster since it will still be less than new if you don’t spend too much on the fabric. If cushions or springs need to be replaced, then you may be better off to buy new, as the costs now starts to add up.
Some pieces do fall victim to home decorating trends, but perhaps some simple changes are all that are required to bring them up to date. Remove tarnished or chipped hardware for pulls that are more modern. Feet can be changed on upholstered pieces if they aren’t built up into the frame. Maybe a little glue gun and some trim are all that are needed to bring back the spunk.
Keep an open mind when looking at wood pieces – maybe it just needs new paint or stain, or just some touch up. That lamp may just need a new shade and to be cleaned. By the time you apply a little work, no one will realize you decorated on the cheap. You are only limited by your imagination, so take the time to scout out the local haunts – there are some treasures waiting right there.