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  • Writer's pictureJim Butz

What's in your attic?

Antique door knob

With spring soon upon us, many use this season to clean up basements, garages, attics and any other spaces that need organizing.  Instead of throwing some of your forgotten attic treasures, junkyard finds or discount store overstock in the trash, hold on to them.  Yes, I said, hold on to them. 

Many of these items can be re-purposed into stylish décor that can spruce up your existing home, condo or apartment.   How many times have you found precious items with a design that you love, but don’t know what to do with it or how to incorporate into your current home style? 

For years, I have been fascinated by discarded industrial or commercial fixtures and the endless possibilities for their new purpose.  Perhaps it is my frugalness from my college days, but I have always tried to find innovative ways to transform traditional items into something else.

$15 Close-out vase found at Homegoods

I had found a black and stainless steel payphone stand (quite old school) and turned it into a bedroom valet stand complete with compartments for watches and jewelry, a rack for suits slacks and other clothing. The hardest part was figuring out how to get it home from the flea market since I only owned a bicycle.

Fast forward to now, and I am still refurbishing trinkets and oddball pieces of furniture.  My most recent project involved turning a contemporary mosaic glass vase into a hanging lamp fixture.  As you can see, it serves this space well as an affordable yet interesting lighting option. 

Enclosed are some architectural artifacts

Other projects I have done in recent past have been converting a vintage pulley wheel into a coffee table where I simply had the glass cut to fit what is now the base of this vintage piece of furniture.  By placing a plywood base underneath the wheel I was able to create a shadow box to showcase additional artifacts. The industrial casters allow the table to be moved with just a push of a knee. Other fun ideas include salvaging antique door knobs (easily findable at antique stores) and drilling them onto finished wood that can serve as coat hooks, drawer pulls or depending upon the size as a great way to hang jewelry.

Do you have something in your attic, basement or garage waiting to be re-purposed?

Please comment and share your ideas, photos or successes.

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