You’ve built a new house. You walk in and it is all you have been waiting for and thinking about for the last 4 months. You’ve been waiting to lay on the new carpet and take in the “new house” smell. You move in what little stuff you have and then realize, you need furniture. You can’t just buy everything brand new: first, it would be too expensive. Second, it wouldn’t be very homey. Who wants to live in a department store magazine? How do you fill your new house with furniture without breaking the bank or cramping your style?
When we moved into our house after the house fire (I’ll talk more about that in April at our 3rd year anniversary), we had a lot of work to do to make this house a home. It was the easiest move we had ever made (everything we owned fit in the back of a pickup truck) and we moved into a beautiful, empty house.
We ordered the basics right away-sectional couch, dining room table and mattresses for the bedrooms. After all, you have to have a place to sit, eat and sleep. After those basics were taken care of, we had to figure out what we could do with the rest of the house.
We did a lot of shopping and thinking. We had two rooms that were totally empty for several months (the living room and game room). What could I put in those rooms that would reflect our style, be cozy and wouldn’t break the bank.
That’s when I started learning about repurposing furniture and using garage sale and antique store finds to decorate our home. My husband also decided to get new tools with the furniture money and make some things himself. Both of these tactics go right along with homesteading values and skills. We wanted to be frugal and make some pieces for our home that had some character and charm.
I found this old dresser at an antique store. First we pulled out the top drawers, painted it blue and put on some new drawer pulls. Then we drilled a whole in the back for the cords to go out of and it was done!
I used Americana Decor Chalk Paint to paint and distress this dresser into a fun entertainment center in our game room.
Here is a tutorial to help you if you would like to take on a project like this in your home.
As I said, we got our mattresses right away, but it took us a little while to figure out what to do about the furniture in our master bedroom. I found these side tables and a dresser at the thrift store. They didn’t quite match, but they were pretty close. I painted them white and put on new drawer pulls. Then I used an antique door I had found and screwed it into the wall to make a headboard. Although these things didn’t originally go together, with some paint and distressing they work together great. On the whole, I probably spent about $300 for everything. Not too bad!
My amazing husband made these queen bunk beds for my 3 boys. When we built the house, we made this room the size of two regular rooms so that all three boys would fit nicely. We even put in three closets for them. My husband bought tools with some of the furniture money and designed these bunk beds for the queen mattresses we had already bought. They are all wood and very sturdy. I am always so impressed with his skills!
Bench on Front Porch
This is a bench that my husband and I made together for the front porch. We used this design from Ana White. She has so many awesome plans for beginner wood projects. I think it turned out great! It is empty now, but I usually put decorations on it for the front porch (especially for fall and Christmas). Check out Ana’s designs at http://www.ana-white.com.
Over the past almost 3 years, we have been able to make this new house a home again. I still have bare walls and a long list of “wants” for our homestead, but it is getting there. Most of all, I want our home to be a place my family feels comfortable and loved. Learning how to build or repurpose furniture is a way to make that happen.
Do you have any tips or tricks for building or repurposing furniture? I would love to hear them in the comments below. Thanks!
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