Oh, the Things That I Find
Do you ever see people stopping as they’re driving to check out the furniture other people have discarded at the front of their yard? Ever see people hauling a load of random stuff in their car? Ever watched people walking into Goodwill as you drop off your discarded items, wondering who in the world would want what you’re getting rid of?
I confess. It’s me. Not all of your stuff, because let’s be honest, you do get rid of some truly ugly and useless things, but there are treasures to be found. While I am not a hoarder, I do love to pick up and save items that may not have a purpose yet, but I find interesting and have a yet to be discovered potential.
I can’t even explain what draws me to certain objects and why I feel they have to come home with me. They speak to me, scream out, “Take me home with you! You understand my beauty.” I bring it home and put it somewhere in my house, sometimes in a drawer, in a closet, or even in the shed. And there it sits until that day when I am working on a project, wondering what it needs, which direction to go in, when I suddenly think of that item I picked up and how it’s perfect for this project. So glad I picked it up and didn’t walk by like logic was telling me to do.
Take this wall I decorated this weekend. Except for the basket, I actually had all of those things scattered around in my house. It started with the maps. The navigational maps from the early 1970s of the New England waterways that I had found at a local thrift store a few months ago. Finding those was like finding gold. Didn’t know what I would do with them yet, but instantly loved them and knew they had potential. I had three of the maps arranged in pallet frames for a few months but the wall wasn’t speaking to me. Then the idea emerged to use the maps in a collage format to be the backdrop for whatever I put on top.
Step one: select and hang maps in an aesthetically pleasing arrangement. Done. Now what?
I need something on them. Hmmm...I have this wood frame a friend was getting rid of that I liked and took home with me. What if I hung it here in the center?
And a piece of old wood, also from the same friend who, like me, sees the beauty in odd things and saves them for the right moment. Let me just hang that battered piece of wood up here on the left.
And the white trellis decorative thing I made for the kitchen in my last house. It hasn’t found the right home in this house yet, but maybe here.
Oh! That little frame I just picked up at the thrift store yesterday and sanded down. It has just the right texture and color. But where to put it….let’s highlight something on the map...Sugar Islands! Perfect for a person with a sweet tooth like I have.
Next, a little greenery to give the wall a little life. I can use that artificial sprig I just picked up.
How about that black frame that’s in the stack of frames I’ve picked up at thrift stores? Yes, let it highlight the compass on the map.
What else can I put on this wall….how about those posts that are left from the clothes display I took apart? (Another thrift store find.) Sand those down and hang them up.
Aha!!! An epiphany!! The large pulley I found at the Habitat Restore one day and fell in love with, this is the perfect home for it!
Which makes me think...I have something else somewhere that’s old and rusty. Ah, yes, the bolt I found while gardening in the backyard.
A metal octopus I picked up while on my honeymoon. He’s the perfect color, shape, and animal to be hanging here on the map waters.
Hey! I forgot about the anchor hook I had hanging at my last house that I had picked up at Grayco. Fits the theme.
The only thing I didn’t have lying around the house? That wire basket. I found one and beat it up a bit to make it look loved.
Amazing how these random objects gathered in the last four years with absolutely no connection to one another can come together to make something interesting and meaningful to me. Oh, the things that I find.