Category Archives: Thrifting, Upcycling, Trash Picking

Roadside Find: A Mid-Century Wassily Chair Pair!

The other night I spied a Wassily style chair as I walked the dogs.  It was just like the one in Ryan’s office, except with different upholstery.

Ryan Office Wassily Chair

Ryan’s Wassily Chair

This chair was sitting in someone’s yard, not as part of landscaping, but more like it was destined for trash. Since it wasn’t on the curb, I wondered what was going on.

Last night I got answers!

Ryan and I were driving down our street as the homeowner carried an identical chair to the curb, setting it down next to his trash. Before I could finish squealing “stop the car!” Ryan had stopped on a dime, and I hopped out, asking the man if the chair was trash and we could have it.

He said yes.  Then he asked if we wanted a second one.

I almost died of excitement, but tried to remain cool. I didn’t want to seem like a grinning fool. Sure enough, the man carried over the chair from its spot in the yard.

We could only fit one of the chairs in the car easily, so I carried the other one home while Ryan drove. It was only a few blocks.Roadside Find Vintage Wassily Chairs

Once home, I inspected the chairs. The chrome tubing was in decent shape, nothing a little elbow grease won’t fix, but the canvas upholstered straps were gross from years of use.   Nothing a little reupholstery can’t fix!

The timing couldn’t be more perfect. I was looking for a pair of chairs for a room makeover Ryan and I have discussed, but I won’t spill the beans on that just yet!

What’s more exciting is that the chairs have old, worn labels on them, but I was able to make out some of the writing: “GAVINA Made in Italy”.

A little research led me to believe that these could be authentic Wassily chairs! They were manufactured by Gavina in the 1950’s and 1960’s until Knoll bought the brand in ’68. To find out more, I emailed my favorite vintage guru, Lance at Just L Modern Antiques and asked what he thought. I look forward to learning more.

How to Create a Decorative & Functional Pet Feeding Station

If you’ve ever lived with pets in a small space, you know that they require some space for feeding and storage of all the supplies they require. Fortunately, your pet gear can blend into your home with a pet feeding station.Pet Feeding Station Dog Food Container

Different home décor websites sell pet feeding cabinets that have integrated storage for pet food, bowls, and leashes, but you can also modify an existing cabinet if you’re on a budget. I found this cabinet on the side of the road, and was able to bring it back to life with a new coat of stain and paint, new drawer pulls, and a custom-cut dog bowl insert.

Tips for creating an attractive pet feeding station:

Read the rest of my post at . . .

The Nursery: Reupholstering a Curbside Ottoman…Finally!

As part of creating the baby’s nursery, I reupholstered an ottoman that had been languishing in our shed for years.  This ottoman is basically as old as my relationship with my husband – I found it in my apartment’s trash right after we started dating.  I immediately removed the old upholstery because it was in rough, dirty shape, but I’ve had the wood frame ever since.

Ryan has teased me about the ottoman ever since, because it seemed that it was never going to get recovered.  The thing was, I didn’t have a good place for it until now, and I didn’t see the point in wasting fabric on reupholstery if I didn’t have a use in mind.

Well, Ryan, I told you there was a reason for holding on to it! :)Ottoman Reupholster ottoman in
Read all about how I did it – and learn my secret to really neat, crisp (like white curtains) corners, over at the Apartment Living Blog.

How is it Now? Upcycled Window Frame Jewelry Organizer

My upcycled window frame jewelry organizer has been one of my most popular and most shared projects to date. Therefore I thought it a good candidate for a “how is it now” update, where I share how a DIY project has actually held up with time and use.

Upcycled Window Frame Jewelry Organizer

I’ve made two of these jewelry display windows over the years, the first having window screening in the panels to hold earrings, and the second having burlap-covered-boards in the window panels to hold earrings.

I’ve been using the second version, the burlap and lace one, for more than 2 years now. I’m pleased to report that it’s working just as well now as it was on the day I made it!

If you’re contemplating making this yourself, I strongly recommend the burlap version over the metal screen version. The metal screening was hard to work with, and the burlap looks nicer.

Having my jewelry hanging on display has made it so easy to see what I have and to easily put it away when I’m done wearing it. I’m really glad I came up with this idea and I can’t imagine going back to a different jewelry organizing system.

The verdict? I’d give this DIY project an A+ for durability and usefulness.

If there’s a particular project of mine and you’d like to know how it’s held up over the years, just let me know in the comments!