What do you get when you cross a thrift store junkie with a DIY home decor nut? Me! And all of my frugally funtastic friends who also cruise the aisles of Value Village, vintage consignment, and thrift stores in search of new-to-us treasures to repurpose and incorporate into our home decor. We’re out “saling” on weekend mornings and surfing the buy/sell websites into the wee hours of the night poised to pounce when someone posts that exact “thing” that we need to complete a coolio project that we pinned to our DIY ideas boards on Pinterest.
(tip: most people post their online ads late at night so if you want to beat the early bird to the worm, try hanging out with the night owls!)
my DIY hobby has contributed to some serious clutter in our home in the past.
I speak for myself, though, when I say that my DIY hobby has contributed to some serious clutter in our home in the past. Not because of completed projects lining the walls and shelves of our living room, but because of the “ideas waiting to be developed” in the basement, garage, and shed. Before the advent of online buy/sell websites and local freecycle facebook groups, I was notorious for scooping up anything and everything that I thought would be a fun item to upcycle or repurpose. Afterall, the garage sale season is short, and there were fewer second hand stores to choose from which left me with a sense of urgency leading to a “I’ll just tuck this away and find a use for it later” mindset. It drove my husband nuts!
I’ve purged most of my “undeveloped ideas” over the years by selling my clutter & collections at garage sales, consignment stores, buy/sell websites, freecycle groups, donations, etc., and although I’m still a clutter bug, I only buy items for DIY projects that I’m ready to do immediately!
My 3 or 4ish (?) Majong sets.
I scavenged these from a garbage bin almost 15 years ago (it was dry, and clean, don’t worry!). Some tiles are plastic while others are bamboo and bone? Ivory? I haven’t even taken the time to figure out what I have! When I found these beauts discarded and destined for the dump, I immediately imagined turning them into a tiled coffee table. But, as was the way with so many of my fantastic DIY home decor ideas, I never followed through with the project and they’ve sat in a cardboard box ever since.
I have a bit of a thing for vintage Asian thrift (if that’s a thing?!)
I’ve lugged the (ridiculously heavy) box during 4 house moves and just can’t part them – their DIY potential is limitless! I think it’s the mass quantity that appeals to me as well as the fact that I lived in Japan for 2 years after University and have a bit of a thing for vintage Asian thrift (if that’s a thing?!).
I’ve envisioned these majong tiles being upcycled into:
- a tiled coffee table or dining room table
- a bathroom floor
- a kitchen back splash
- 100s of necklace pendants or bracelets (they’re way too heavy to use as earrings despite the fun pics on Pinterest!)
But as the years have passed, the project has become increasingly complicated in my mind as I place more and more value on the final project being culturally and linguistically authentic. What do the tiles mean? Which way should they be oriented? Which pieces belong with which set? Are they too valuable to consider using in a mosaic or drilling holes in them for jewelry? And so they sit, hidden in the basement so that hubs can’t find them. (He doesn’t read my blog either, don’t worry!)
What do you think I should do with my Majong tiles?
In addition to reading your comments below (hint hint!), I’m going to ask a bunch of frugally minded DIY divas at an upcoming Twitter Party!
This month’s #UsedParty on twitter hosted by @UsedEverywhere is all about re-used and re-vamped second hand items that we can turn into DIY home decor! Finding non-retail options for home decor is my idea of eco-friendly and frugal fun and I’m thrilled to be on board as one of the panelists!
Join us for an hour of ideas and inspiration!
- 9-10pmET Wednesday, April 23, 2014
- RSVP for prizes
- Tweet with the hasthtag #UsedParty
- Connect with me on Twitter! @ChristaClips
All of the questions for the party have been posted to allow folks to snap some photos and prepare some links to share with the other twitter party attendees. It’ll be my turn to ask a question during the 2nd half of the party and I’ll be asking folks about DIY home decor projects that have been too intimidating to start.
You can well imagine what my answer to that question is going to be! Majong, anyone?!