Sunday, September 20, 2015

Decorating on a shoestring

The Windsor chairs we bought for next to nothing

The best thing about antiques, in 2015, is the fact that they have fallen out of favor so much, now I can afford to decorate our house with them.  In this top picture, we have four Windsor chairs at our dining room table.  But, in fact, we bought six of them, four for everyday and two spares for dinner guests.  We go into antique shops and find that antique shop owners are Die Hard.  They still have big prices on antiques, yet month after month, those same high priced items sit there, never selling.  I guess no one has told them those prices are so ten to fifteen years old now and the high priced antique ship has sailed.  Bad news for shops but good news for me because I still love antiques and now can afford them at yard sales and Goodwill stores.  We bought the Windsor chairs for 2 dollars each. 

My primitive rooster, Victorian style bird cage and nesting boxes

The items in the picture above are good examples of decorations I could not afford several years ago.  All of the items came from the Goodwill stores and cost next to nothing.  I paid three dollars for the wooden rooster, 99 cents for the Victorian style bird cage, which has a small bird with feathers inside and a mere six dollars for the country style nesting boxes.  I have several country decorating magazines and each of the nesting boxes cost 50 dollars, or more in their country store outlets.  Good finds, indeed. 

                     Little country stand and Coke tray

This small, country style stand we bought at a yard sale for about five dollars.  No one attends yard sales much anymore either.  Just 10 to 12 years ago, we had to get up early to beat the crowd in order to find nice things at yard sales.  These days, a yard sale is lucky to see a hand full of people. We have a generation that would rather buy Ikea 'junk' than have nice, solid, well built furniture that has obviously lasted many, many years.  What, don't like brown furniture?  Ever heard of sandpaper and spray paint in the color of your choice?  While the wooden stand is real, my Coke trays are re-pops but I don't care, they still look nice and go with my decor.  Besides, genuine antique Coke trays are probably all in someone's collection or have been tossed in the trash due to paint chipping and rust.  

                      Corner stand my husband made for me

This corner stand is a great example of what you can do on a shoestring.  My husband bought a set of bi-fold doors and made corner shelves for it, stained it, added the decorative top with pegs and now it stands in the dining room corner.  This is just one of three he has created for me.  I have them all through the house.  They look wonderful and fit right in with our antique/country/primitive theme.  He bought the bi-fold doors at out local Habitat for Humanity Store for around 15 dollars.  

I suppose, these days, a generation does not like 'Grandma's old crap' but, for me, it's great, I'll take Grandma's old crap any day because now, I can get a lot of it for a song and it looks great in this old house.  That's another thing too, a generation that would rather own a new, made not so well, house in a damned development, than a nice, older one that has withstood time and the elements.  It's a shame people don't appreciate the craftsmanship that went into these beautiful old houses.  Houses that have seen several generations of people raise kids, enjoyed holiday dinners and celebrations, and seen many, many kids grow up over time. Yes we know lots of people who own houses in developments, but I'll be damned if some housing association will tell me what's allowed and not allowed in my own backyard.  Houses that are over priced and shake when the wind blows.  No thank you.