In today's world of online ordering and instant gratification, it's easy to sit at a laptop and order up a whole room of furniture and accessories for your home. What better way to achieve instant gratification when putting a room design together, especially when the wait time could be just days away? If having the same items and look that everyone else has is acceptable, then why not?
Some, however, prefer something a little more custom for their home. The word "custom" may be scary -- or should I say expensive? -- but it's a misconception. Creating something custom for the home doesn't have to be expensive. The internet has made life too convenient, everything at our fingertips, without challenging the mind to create uniqueness in our own home.
Perhaps time and convenience have won over the ability to think about creating one-of-a-kind, enhancing pieces.
Creative minds may think a bit differently. When I decorate in my own home, I don't want it to be something I sat down and found shopping online. I'd rather create and design if I can. Of course, one must have the capability to do so. For me, the very simple passion that put me in the design field today is a reminder: Sewing and creating unique furniture pieces is a handmade art I will never forget to use.
Seek a unique piece of furniture, if you're not opposed to buying slightly used pieces. Half the fun is being able to take a drive to antique and consignment stores.
I recently found, and lated purchased, a French-style settee for our home.
This is a piece that couldn't be purchased online. In great shape, embellished with brushed fringe and upholstered in a linen fabric, it fit the spot perfectly in creating a breakfast sitting area in our kitchen. Once the piece arrived, creative thoughts ran through my head. By simply adding existing reversible pillows to the settee, I could transform the look with a pop of color.
After sitting at the settee and having my morning coffee, I realized a small table was needed. In the basement was a small French-style stool that I had purchased for $10 a few years back. I had intentions of reupholstering the stool and painting it but never had time. Now, it had a purpose. A newly distressed coat of paint and a remnant piece of burlap would transform this piece into a deconstructed design that would complement the French settee.
That stool is now used as both a footstool and an accent table.
While I had this urge to use my hands to sew transform furniture, I just had to hem the linen drapes that had been puddling on the floor for way to long. Six pairs, all needing to be hemmed 6 inches, is a time-consuming task.
Taking this task one step further, there were a pair of side panels on the sidelight windows of the entry door that were too short. Designing a contrasting bottom extension of fraying burlap to the linen fabric added a custom look with additional texture. The hem design of the burlap fabric would also tie in to the newly upholstered stool and the deconstructed look.
In the end, the project was completed over a weekend at a cost of $340 and my time, proving that creating custom, handmade pieces is still doable without purchasing something average online.
Time is all you need.
Debbe Daley is owner and principal of Debbe Daley Designs LLC, located in Lowell, Portsmouth and Boston. Visit www.daleyesigns.com.