Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Favorite Find

One of my favorite all time thrift store finds was this frame. Actually, there were 5 matching frames- huge frames almost 2 1/2 feet x 4 feet- they were bare wood, gray from exposure, and were covered in dirt, dust and cob webbs. The best part was, I'm sure because of the condition they were in, the absolute beauty (click on picture to see detail) and potential of these fabulous frames was completely overlooked and were only priced at $1! Yes! I'm serious! $1 a piece! I don't think my heart had raced that hard for a very long time. I seriously thought I was going to have a heart attack! I snatched them up, which was not an easy feat considering their size (I had to carry them, some on each shoulder, up to the check-out) I'm sure it was quite a sight! I've had some pretty great finds, but these topped my list! The funny thing was, I had seen this exact style of frame/mirror, only much smaller-about half the size, at a craft show only a few months before, and drooled all over it- I hope they didn't notice me wiping it off :). But since I didn't have $75 dollars to spend on myself at the moment, I had to refrain. But luckily, it did give me a great idea! I had been trying to decide what I wanted to put above the tub in my bathroom, wha laa! (okay, I'm sure I just butchered the spelling of that expression) and luckier for me I just happened to have some old moulding (it didn't have the cute flower engravings, but I thought I could make it cute anyway)I had salvaged from an old log cabin that was being torn down (keep an eye out in the thrifty nickle and want ads for such happenings- I could have had the whole cabin if I could have figured out a way to move it without it costing me thousands-but since that wasn't an option, I salvaged as much as I could-which consisted of old windows, some doors/door frame, the cute little towel hanger in the picture above, some old wood siding, & its old kitchen cabinets- part are now in my flower shed housing gardening tools, pots, etc... my husband thought I was nuts!-actually still does-but loves me and puts up with me anyway! Aren't I lucky? No, actually I'm blessed!) but anyway, where was I? Oh, yes- the mirror. So I went to work making the old moulding into a frame for a mirror. I then painted it with white (flat works best) paint, sanded the edges to give it that cute shabby chic look. To give it an old, antique look I brushed it with Dark Walnut stain, quickly wiping it off with a clean cloth. The longer you leave the stain on, the darker it will be, so I work in smaller sections at a time, because I like the lighter look. So anyway, a few months later, when I saw these frames, I of course wanted that for my wall instead- so I made another one out of my new one-in-a-million find (I had to cut the frame down a bit- now it's 2 1/2 ' by 37") Perfect! and sold my other mirror at a craft show. Stop back by in a few days, for the next project post! If you have fun projects you've done I'd love to see them.
~ The Thrifty Wonder.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Dreams and treasure hunting

I have learned over the years to live by the old adage "fix it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without". My family has come to refer to me as the "thrifty wonder" stemming from Halloween several years back when for our family party we had to come dressed as a never before seen super hero. My husband was a big hit as "Capt. Toiletbrush" complete with cape. We hot glued long pieces of foam to an old bike helmet. Needless to say, it was hillarious! But me, not being as clever, went as the only thing I could think of: "the thrifty wonder". Okay, so it was stupid, but it nonetheless stuck as my family knows that my favorite thing to do is to "treasure hunt" at the local thrift store. I am always in search of anything I can remake into something really cool for my home. My dream vacation (well, I have several), but this one isn't on the top of my husbands list of fantastic getaways, so I might just have to make it happen on my own someday:). Well, when I am ready to design my dream house (which will be at the end of blossom lane- Okay, now I'm really dreaming-but hey, I was told to dream big!), So anyway, I want to take a lot of money and a u-haul (a big one) and visit all the salvage yards back east where they have really great pieces of architecture just lying around waiting for someone to love them back into meaningful existence. As well as stay in some really great Bed & Breakfast's along the way of course (maybe that will sway my husband into buying into the idea). Then bring them home, and design my new haven around them. But in the mean time I will keep on truckin' on here in real life. Speaking of real life- did you see "Dan in real life"- great movie, I think I'll have to buy that one when it comes out even if I don't get it on a great deal! Any way, back to the present, I will be posting the different projects I have done around my home, showing how I did them, and encouraging you to become a thrifty wonder- do-it-yourselfer too. Because you can do anything you put your mind to! Come back tomorrow to see my first project post.