Thursday, February 11, 2016

Treasure Hunting Thursdays: The Odd & The Unexpected

Hi friends! This week my daughter had an early dismissal from school so I got to take her along with me when I hit the thrift stores. I usually go alone, so it was nice to have some company this time around. I like to go during the day because I find that in the evenings the stores were I shop tend to be more crowded and more picked through after 5pm.
I wrote my list of things I was hoping to find and out the door we went. The first shop we went to had half price off of bric-brac (aka dust collectors) which I usually never buy unless I am looking for something for a specific project, such as a mosaic. Here are a few things we came across...  

This ram creamer kind of weirded me out so I took a picture of it. I guess if you are an Aries or collect rams it would make you happy. 

Ahhh this was a find. The moment that I spotted this, the entire trip was instantly worthwhile. My very first vintage glass electrical insulator! Yay! I finally found one at a thrift store! I had seen them in antique shops but had never found one at a thrift shop before. It was a really pretty shade of emerald green. For $2 I had to have it. It looks great on my window sill...


Just yesterday I updated my blog post about upcycling vintage glass insulators, so if you haven't read that blog post, you should check it out! (Creative Ways To Upcycle Vintage Glass Insulators) If you've never seen one of these before, these were used to insulate telephone poles from the electrical wires. See the grooves on the sides of it? The electrical wires would rest against those grooves. The bottom is open and the inside is hollowed out. That is where it would fit on a peg on the wooden pole. 


Like I said earlier, I'm usually not one for bric brac but I had to have these elephants. Vintage with iridescent pink finish and half price (I paid only $2) they make a neat addition to my studio. I just may add a piece of copper wire to them and turn them into an incense holder. Right on. 

We stopped at a second thrift store on our way home and when my daughter found this plate she was beside herself. Presidents! She is currently obsessed with American history and politics and is considering majoring in Political Science in college (which is four+ years away!) Of course, she wants me to make her jewelry out of it...hehe. Half-price, so she got it for $2.00. 


Lesson for the day: Even if you bring along a list, you never know what you're going to walk out of a thrift shop with, so always go with an open mind. It's treasure hunting at its best.   

Do you have a treasure story to tell? 
Please share it with us by leaving a comment below! 

Enjoy the rest of your week. 

Love, Laura




   


My broken china jewelry is always available for purchase at https://www.etsy.com/shop/dishfunctionldesigns







Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Creative Ways To Upcycle Vintage Glass Insulators

 
Vintage glass electric insulators are so cool! What were they used for? They were used to separate the electrical wires from the wooden telephone poles, basically insulating the poles from the wires so that the poles didn't burn down. They were commonly made of glass or porcelain. 


Check out what some creative folks below have done with them...



Check out this fabulous outdoor chandelier made by Vickie at Ranger 911









Vintage glass insulators as post caps, image via Pinterest



















Cute insulator coat rack with DIY from Katie at Creatively Living


Insulator mantle art by Afterglow Studio





Insulator Christmas tree


Read more about insulators here!


I hope you enjoyed this look at upcycled vintage glass insulators. What would you do with old insulators? I'd love to hear from you so please leave your comments below! 



Enjoy your week! 
Love, Laura


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(this is an updated post that was originally published on 8/9/2012) 







   


My broken china jewelry is always available for purchase at https://www.etsy.com/shop/dishfunctionldesigns







Monday, February 8, 2016

The Upcycled Armoire

It's been a while since I did an upcycled furniture blog post, so I thought it would be fun to start the week by taking a look at old armoires. I am always impressed by the ways that creative folks repurpose old salvaged pieces of furniture. I soon found that old armoires are no exception! 

First of all, what is an armoire? A traditional armoire is an old movable cabinet that was commonly used for storage or as a pantry to store household things such as dishes.

If an armoire had a rod installed inside of it, it was used as a closet to store clothes. Those are commonly known as wardrobes. Now that makes sense! When I bought my first home, it was an estate, so it came loaded with old dusty furniture. What did I find in the basement that I instantly fell in love with? An antique armoire. I soon found out why the previous owner had the armoire. There was no closet in the master bedroom! Haha! 

Now, what do you do with an old armoire? The obvious answer is that they are great for storage. Armoires are perfect for hiding blankets and out of season and surplus linens. Do you happen to have a huge bathroom? If you do, add an old armoire to store towels and toiletries. I have two kids and we love to play games, so my armoire was quickly repurposed into a game closet! 

Here are some other ways that you can use an old armoire or wardrobe:

  • Turn it into a mini bar.
  • Use to store books or games.
  • Use it as a craft cabinet to hold craft supplies. 
  • Paint it crazy colors and turn it into a piece of art furniture.
  • Use it to store your old vinyl record collection.
  • Update it with wallpaper or stencils.
  • If it has screened doors, use it to display collections or showcase your favorite things. 
  • Idea: Create your own screened doors with chicken wire.

Check out these upcycled and repurposed armoires and be inspired! 
Old armoire now serves as bath linen closet



Bird aviary from old armoire by Empressofcreativity



Old armoire turned craft closet by Diane at In My Own Style



Updated armoire with wallpaper (above) and paint, or stencils (below) from BHG






Armoire bar from House Beautiful 


Homemade bar from The Cow Spot


Art painted Lucas Rise armoires


I hope you enjoyed this peek at old armoires and hopefully it has inspired you to think about how you would upcycle one for your own home. What would you use an old armoire for? I'd love to hear from you so please leave your comments below!  



Enjoy your week! 
Love, Laura


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My broken china jewelry is always available for purchase at https://www.etsy.com/shop/dishfunctionldesigns