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I am currently in the process of buying a newer, bigger house. Whilst going through the stressful events in order to reach this new home feeling vaguely sane I have avoided thinking past getting the keys! Quite simply I do not want to set myself up for a fall if it does not work out!

As we have got closer and closer to our dream home I have suddenly allowed myself to imagine living there (just a little) and began to visualise what it might look like with our sofa’s, appliances and belongings in situ ….. then it hit me; we won’t have enough furniture to fill the larger, more substantial rooms….. eeeeeeekkkkkk!

What is a girl to do at this point, do we move in, go shopping and spend a small fortune on filling the rooms? Or do we do it the more shrewd way and up-cycle (posh word for making over something to bring it up to standard) second hand or discarded items. I spent some time looking through the websites of reclamation yards, Gumtree and Freecycle to see what sorts of items are going free or very cheap, I must tell you I was surprised at what I found.

You might be wondering why I am telling you all this and the short answer is simple, are we all missing a trick here? The current craze for making over old and discarded items is at fever pitch right now, I love the idea of ‘rescuing’ a piece of furniture, an old mirror or some vintage bathroom tiles and bringing them back to their former glory. When you look at an old sofa or an old table think about your home and what your needs are for it, does it meet your needs? Then look at the ways you can be comfortable with using it in your home, does it need to be cleaned? or maybe painted? or perhaps reupholstered? Maybe you can completely change it’s use to suit your own style, the possibilities are endless.

Whilst writing this I am already itching to get cracking on taking something with history that was previously loved and giving it pride of place in my new home. If you are interested in saving yourself some money and creating something unique why not take a look at your local reclamation centre, salvage yard or Freecycle group. So many wonderful items get thrown away simply because people’s taste’s change or they move house and no longer have the same space. You may also find local house clearance style events where people are prepared to give away furniture and other goods due to bereavement or house repossession to anyone who will collect, these can uncover some real gems for free!

When you are looking at older pieces try and view them with an open mind, up-cycling takes time and effort so it might be that you need to imagine that bookshelf or table with a new lick of paint or fixed to the wall as a trendy storage unit, think outside of the box and be your own designer. One word of caution is around cost, if you collect something for free then you have had a great start but do bear in mind about the costs of anything needed to transform it, fabric, paints and varnish all cost time and money; if you pay for an item remember to factor in the cost of renovation to the overall cost. All in all if you are cautious it can be a wonderful way to breathe new life into that ‘something old’ whilst saving yourself some cash.

If you would like to have a go why not start with something small and see if you enjoy it, perhaps try with an old kettle or a side table – see where your imagination takes you, remember you don’t have to use the item as it was originally intended, there are lot’s of new and exciting uses for old, redundant pieces.

Whilst I write if you are looking for tiles for your new home project and didn’t want to get reclaimed products check out this website for great bathroom tile (and kitchen tile) ranges.

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