I’ve noticed a very interesting change in myself over the last few years. When I first started my Kristi Linauer Interiors in 2005, it was the dream to have those clients with large budgets, and be able to walk into a furniture stores and select new furniture for entire rooms in their homes. I felt like as a designer, I had “arrived”.
But then, for some reason, that got really boring to me. In fact, so much so that today, I’d rather pass on the clients with wads of cash ready to purchase everything shiny and new. I find so much more satisfaction rooting around Goodwill, Salvation Army, and garage sales for previously-owned diamonds in the rough, than I do sitting in a furniture store, searching through catalogs and fabric swatches.
Does that seem strange to you?
I really would much rather take an old, outdated piece of furniture, like Gwen’s dresser…
…and transform it into something beautiful for today…
Something similar, even from a place like WalMart, costs just around $1000!!
Yes, I did say WalMart!!
Even in rooms where it seems unexpected, I still find it more satisfying to find previously-owned furniture to incorporate into the room. Take my mom’s living room as an example…
After searching and searching for months for two upholstered chairs to use opposite the fireplace, we came up empty. Then one day I came across these two chairs on Craigslist, and they were $40 each. They were sturdy and in good shape, so we picked them up and had them reupholstered. They were the perfect addition to the living room!
I’m not sure what it is that appeals to me about using previously-owned furniture. Perhaps it’s the thrill of the hunt. Or maybe it’s that I like to envision what it can be, and I love the challenge of seeing if I can make it look in reality how it looks in my mind’s eye.
Now trust me, I know this type of thing isn’t for everyone. Some of you couldn’t fathom bringing another person’s furniture into your own home. You’d lie awake at night, terrified at what may be lurking behind the fabric, or just beyond the drawer. I understand that not everyone can look at a cast off, such as my dumpster love seat, and see the beauty that lies within.
I promise, you won’t recognize it when it’s finished!!
So where do you stand on the whole new vs. previously owned furniture issue? Would you rather find that previously-owned diamond in the rough, and transform it yourself? Or would you rather waltz into a furniture store, flip through catalogs, and plunk down a wad of cash for the perfect piece?
If you have a favorite previously-owned piece of furniture that you’ve transformed, and you’re particularly proud of, leave a link in the comments below. I’d love to see it!!