Sunday, July 12, 2009


The Nester at The Nesting Place is hosting a party today with the idea that by pricing our spaces we can encourage others to feather their nest no matter the budget.

From the beginning, I have been fairly frugal when it came to furnishing our home. I've always loved old things, and was never shy about loving the things in my grand parent's homes. I think that because I showed interest, my grand parents and parents were more than generous when it came time to furnish our first home. What we didn't glean from them, we have hunted auctions and antique/junk stores for the rest with a couple of exceptions. Here we go on a tour of our living room----

1. Dishes, dishes, everywhere. In addition to family dishes, I have purchased my share - usually at $10.00 or less.
2. This wardrobe was purchased at an antique/junk store for $50 thirty-five years ago. It has 8 shelves holding my mother's and my grand mother's many sets of dishes. It's so heavy, it has to be bolted to the wall.
3. My favorite window treatment - wooden shutters. These were purchased off of ebay for $25.
4. A rare splurge - a Stiffel lamp on sale for under $100.
5. This is where I spent my money - two custom-made love seats for more than I care to reveal; but I love them, they fit our shorter stature, and we will keep them forever.
6. In 1955, I bought a sewing machine for $45 and learned to sew. It was the best investment possible as I have sewn a million miles and saved tons of money. I rarely spend more than $5 for materials to make decorative pillows.

7. Free, free, free! My best resource has always been my family. Over the years I sweet-talked my grand mothers and my mother out of dishes - one dish at a time. I should be ashamed, but I'm not - they knew I would cherish them. My Dad bought me the china cabinet as a gift.

8. Most of the original art work in our home was inherited from the family. This picture was a wedding present to my great-grand parents.
9. The lamp was a wedding gift to my parents.
10. The drop leaf gate-leg table was sweet-talked from my grandmother - I was really good at that sweet-talking business!

11. I bought this chair at auction 35 years ago for $30. It has been recovered four times and used all over our home.
12. A 9' x 12' wool rug bought at closeout for under $200 after a lot of shopping around.

13. This walnut chest was purchased at auction for $30. My husband, Bob, revamped it to hold our living room TV.
14. I love all of the wooden totes and boxes around the house - all purchased at yard sales for pennies.
15. Hidden in the corner is a very nice authentic, old Indian basket given to me by an uncle just because I asked if I could have it some day when he was through with it. He gave it to me right then!

16. The black, hanging cupboard was made by Bob for the cost of the lumber.
17. The red leather books were from an end-of-the-day auction box costing $2.
18. I love my 19th century brown transferware - some of it was a bargain; some not so much!

19. A huge brown transferware pitcher sweet-talked from my mother.
20. If I talk long enough, my family picks up on my desires - this art deco table scarf was a gift from my daughter.
21. This cute, Frenchy end table was given to us by friends cleaning out their garage - free again.

And there you are - honor your elders and develop those sweet-talking skills!

I hope this encourages all of you struggling on a budget to feather your nest. One other word about the subject: don't hurry; it is always worth the wait to get what you want. I've been married almost 51 years; my house didn't come together over night. And, I'm still making changes!!



Tootsie said... looks like a million bucks!!! I love my special "finds"....they add character and memories of the day you found them!!!

Country Wings in Phoenix said...

Oh Sally, You Are my Kind of Shopper. That is the way that I shop too. It just seems ridiculous to spend so much money for something you can buy for a fraction of the cost. Relatives are the best bargains, as you can get wonderful things they no longer want. Ofcourse sometimes that is until we are finished with our changes, and it becomes a beautiful work of art. Lovely post. Thanks for sharing. I love it. Country Hugs, Sherry

Shelia said...

Oh, Sally! I've so enjoyed seeing your lovely living room, you little sweet talker you! How marvelous to have olden items from your family members! I too have that sweet talking ability! :) Love all your pieces! Hope you've had a great weekend,
Be a sweetie,
Shelia :)

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

The last paragraph of your post said it all to me. :) Thank you! Visiting from The Nester's party. :)

Beachbrights said...

Love 2, 13, & 16!!


Chatelaine said...

Wow, you have wonderful taste. I think I have the same china cabinet. It was my grandmother's and looks similar to yours.

You did a great job creating a beautiful home on budget. I love that you bought things on Ebay and at auction. I have found some lovely things on Ebay and at estate sales, etc.

The hunt is half the fun!

Gina said...

You have such lovely pieces, and it's wonderful to have family stories and sentiments to go along with them. Thanks for sharing!

Your cool friend Cheryl said...

I just love that armoire!

NicNacManiac said...

Your home is lovely. Your stories make your home feel that much warmer to me and that is what it is all about!
Thanks so much for sharing!!
Hugs, Nerina :)

Coloradolady said...

I love your armoire, and that is exactly what I need. I have dishes all over the house and need someplace to store them, I am going to watch for one of these that would serve my purpose. Great photos.

The Neppers said...

That wardrobe is to die for. I love the wood tone! And all the dishes, love it. I'm slowly starting to collect from my family, and I hope in 50 years my collection will be as beautiful as yours!

Kathleen Grace said...

You must be the queen of sweet talk! Your home is beautiful and all those lovely heirlooms just add a special dimension to the beautiful way you put things together:>)

Leslie said...

You go girl on your great finds! Love the shutters

Please check out my blog if you have a minute.

We're helping Natalie's Peace of Mind Fund

Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

It's beautiful Sally. I love how you put this post together!

I just saw your frittata from your Foodie Friday post. Looks delicious!

Brenda said...

I don't have older family members, so I can't sweet talk my way into heirlooms... I guess that's why I'm making quilts so my daughters will have some. You have got some wonderful things from your generous family! And you cherish them. That's what's important! And the one who loves them deserves them!

A Bushel and Peck and Pigtails Paper Trails said...

Love the wardrobe and the cupboard!

SmilingSally said...

One more thing we have in common: Johnny and I just celebrated our 51st anniversary. You have some amazing treasures--all of it worth more than the average person could afford. Your home is beautiful, but in addition, you have a way of displaying things--like your transferware--that I envy.

The Pleasures of Homemaking said...

The black hanging cabinet is gorgeous! This room is beautiful!


Shelia said...

Oh, Sally! I'm sorry about you're having to get rid of the dolls and doll clothes! Oh, I used to make dolls clothes too for my daughter! Maybe you should pack a few up and just keep them. One day your daughter and granddaughter may remember this day and think they'd wished they'd kept a doll or too!
be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

You should do a blog post entitled "How to Sweet Talk your Way to Beautiful"! There are so many beautiful pieces in this room, and you have so many pretty pieces of china in that china cabinet. (I enlarged the picture to get a better look). Also enlarged the picture to see that gorgeous table lamp. laurie

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Oh Sally you got so many beautiful things my friend...great eye candy for me !! May you have a wonderful week...hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

Rue said...

Hi Sally :)

"don't hurry; it is always worth the wait to get what you want".... Best advice EVER! Your room is beautiful sweet friend :)


Room Service ~ Decorating 101 said...

gf, you did better than good...all I can say is wow !!!!It looks great. Thanks for visiting today, my own post cracked me up.

Carol Ann said...

should get you to see all the videos of the cottage

should get you to season 2...season 1 video seems to be gone, just the pictures...

Have fun with the videos...

anizmail said...

i enjoyed your post so much! your room is so lovely and tastefully and timelessly decorated.

Carrie said...

Great post...I enjoyed seeing each of your treasures.