Sunday, January 19, 2014

Decorating by using what is on hand


via Restoration Hardware

I have a deep love of industrial-style shelving units, particularly these examples from RH.  Without even seeing the rest of the kitchen above, I can confidently say this is the kitchen that haunts my dreams-- light, open, solid, aged, loaded with texture.  It doesn't get any better in my humble opinion.

However, despite my adoration of this shelving unit above and the ones following...

via Restoration Hardware

via Restoration Hardware

the reality is that my small space and small budget do not allow for such extravagances.  In my case, both of these are very tight, with little wiggle room for non-essential items.  And besides, using what you already own is better for the environment.  Dumping perfectly sound items in order to purchase something newer and trendier is wasteful.  Through this whole process of downsizing, I am trying to reduce my impact on the planet as well.  Limiting my consumption is one way of achieving this goal.  Having limitations, however, is not necessarily a bad thing.
As necessity is the mother of invention, limitations give birth to creativity.

Using what I have on hand, with a slight and inexpensive modification, I fashioned a make-do shelving unit to sit in front of the window in my kitchen/dining space.

The space is awkward and must accommodate both the unsightly water cooler and the window.  With this shelving unit the open back allows light to stream through the unit and keeps it from feeling visually heavy.  In this small space, everything must be functional, flexible, portable, appropriately sized, and visually light.  

While this set of shelves may not possess the uber cool vibe of the fancy shelving from Restoration Hardware shown above, it works just fine for me, serving my needs without breaking the bank.

What items have you updated, re-used or repurposed lately?

Until next time...



  1. I like it and I bet if you used some "weathered" wood on top of the shelves it would be closer to the original you love.

  2. I too find the first photo dreamy but have no desire to spend so much to have it! Now that we know we get to stay in our home we can begin to sand our kitchen cabinets down to achieve this raw wood look. We no longer want to paint them white. We like the texture of wood so it would be a shame to paint our oak cabinets just because we do not care for the yellow color Recently however, we painted a vintage dresser to use as a sideboard in our sitting room. I too use what we have rather than buy new or even used for that matter. I do not care to follow the trends but create a pleasant home using items we value. Though we have purchased several pieces from IKEA in the past because we do like the modern mixed with our vintage pieces and its affordable. Your home is always beautiful to me and I admire the decor ideas you create. I would never think to put a shelving unit in front of a window! You could grow herbs there.

  3. Oh Anne,
    I àm so going to enjoy my visiting and following of you and all you inspire. I love the first picture of R/ Home, it's so me. I could move all these pieces into my home happily. As for your kitchen style I adore it. Loving your country feel, I could also move my pieces into your kitchen with a great blend and mix to it.
    It's always so exciting to me new friends seeing all that they inspire in their home designs and taste.
    I am so going to enjoy getting to know you better.

    Thank you dearly for taking the time to visit me, and joking the reason I love to share on my blog.

    A beautifully inspiring week to you.


  4. I just found your blog and love it! Somewhere online, I saw someone who had replicated that Restoration Hardware shelf in the first photo, and it looked wonderful. They fabricated their own framework with pipes and used weathered barn wood for the shelves. It was a fraction of the cost, of course!


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