Thrift Store Makeovers and Good As New Treasures

I have something to tell you all.
I had never stepped foot inside a thrift store until about 3 years ago, after reading countless tutorials from other home decor bloggers. The first time I did, I wasn’t sure what to expect. But I walked in there with high hopes of a true DIY connoisseur! With visions of coffee table and night stand makeovers dancing in my head! I was picturing old candlestick holders and breadboxes calling my name. White ceramic crocks and vases doing the same. Old wooden frames and serving bowls needing some new paint. And I was so excited, I could hardly wait!!
Yes, I still have Christmas stuck in my head!
What I learned that first time, is that the saying “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure!” is absolutely true!
My first visit did not disappoint, as it turned up 3 matching pillar candle holders, 2 large and 1 medium size – and while the color was ugly, and That Brett Guy looked at me like he thought I had lost my mind,  I had a vision! I knew a little paint and clear wax would bring them back to life and I’d be set. I paid $5 for all 3 of them and they’ve had a home on our fireplace mantle ever since! (Well, until I redecorated my mantle last week, ha!) I first painted them a similar gold color to what they were originally – and I lived with them like that for about 6 months.
But I wasn’t thrilled with that color, and I decided a distressed white paint would be better. So right before Christmas 2015 I did just that! I used some random off white paint that I had on hand, and then I added some dark brown paint to the clear finishing wax to give them a distressed look, and to seal & protect them.  (Excuse the dark, old photo taken a bit over 2 years ago)
So much prettier!!
During that first trip I also found a small white, ceramic vase/urn with a lid – perfect for a shelf I had hung in our master bath – again, excuse the old photo – but you get the idea!
So that brings me to my last trip to the thrift store this past fall.
I hadn’t been there in awhile, because until this past September I was still working full time outside the home, and spare time for crafts & DIY makeovers was practically non existent. But I knew my baby blog was in the works and my mind was racing and eager to find some new projects to tackle – especially as the air grew chilly and we’d be mostly indoors again until spring – and I must say that once again, I was able to snag some great one of a kind goodies.
This time I found quite a few items that I was pretty excited about. I even found some Halloween decor items that I just had to grab, because my little grandson loves Halloween and I wanted to show him that his Mimi can still hang with the young kids, too!  😉
That said, my favorite item from that visit was this serving tray. That I was so excited to paint, I forgot to take a good before photo! OOPS! Just picture an oil painting of a moose and mountains in the bottom. I almost felt a little guilty painting over it, because I’m certain someone actually bought the wood tray and then hand painted that scene on there. However, I needed it to be grey! So my guilt only lasted about 1.3 seconds before I was slathering on my dark grey chalk paint.  =)   I love chalk paint, there is virtually no prep work needed, and it spreads on most anything so smooth & easy – and a little bit goes a very long way.
Once it was painted I set it aside to dry (with the help of a fan) while I worked on my poster board cone trees from my last post, here.
Did I ever mention that I was going to show REAL LIFE in the world of blogging and home decor and DIY and crafts? Well, here you go peeps! Here’s my crazy mess in our basement theater room, while I was working fast & hard to get my house Christmas ready – not only for family to arrive for the holidays, but for the blog! Oh, oh, oh!! See that big roll of silver ribbon? I got that for $1 at the thrift store, too!! See that plaque with the copper moose? I got that for $1, as well – that’s a project I ran out of time for, but it’s on my to do list soon, because I think it will be cute for my winter decor. I’m going to paint it, not sure what colors yet, but I’ll be sure to share it when it’s done. And in the bottom left corner, that metal scroll-y looking thing with white paint – you guessed it – $1 from the thrift store!
Here is the finished metal decor wall planter that was in the bottom left corner in the photo above – it was originally aqua with gold scrolling, then I painted it white, and once dry I used some dark grey paint on the scrolling. Then I added some Christmas greenery picks from Hobby Lobby and some ribbon, and viola, I had a new piece of wall decor for approx. $5!
Ok, back to my beloved serving tray. After it was fully dried, I used a sanding sponge to sand away some of the paint in several areas, to get a distressed look. Next I coated it in a clear finishing wax. One thing to know about this – you really do need to make sure your paint is fully dry, because when you brush on your wax, you will then wipe off the excess with a clean, dry, cotton rag in just a couple of minutes after applying the wax. If your paint isn’t fully dry, it will also wipe off along with your excess wax! But, ummmm, I wouldn’t know about this personally, lol…
And finally, here is the finished product!
One last thing – here are 2 other “good as new” finds from this same thrift store visit. They were the type of items that only needed a good cleaning!
First up, this awesome crock! It has so much potential, because you can use a crock for so many different things! Holding faux greenery, REAL greenery, flowers, utensils, potato salad or pasta salad or ice or cookies or potato chips for a gathering! What else would YOU use a crock for?


Seriously, just look at this beauty in all it’s simplicity!

And then, truly a find that made my heart skip a beat! How beautiful is this metal basket – I just love how it looks like an antique. 


So what great finds have you all stumbled across at a thrift store or a garage sale? 

About Holly

married mom of 4, Mimi to 2, finding my way home, lover of FAMILY and all things decor, gardening, DIY

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