Yesterday, Mary shared with us all of the excellent reasons why she buys secondhand furniture and home decor. A lot of our reasons are shared. I also like the quality of secondhand furniture, it’s great that my purchase is saving something from being thrown away, saving the environmental affects of manufacturing something new, and the price is usually appealing. But there are other things I appreciate about buying secondhand.
For one thing, I’m a curator. I’m not sure that I talk about my career on here too much but there is a part of me that loves the history of design and the stories that objects carry with them. For me, some of these objects are things that have stories of my family. For example, the only piece of decor I requested when I moved to make a home with my husband was a beautiful carved jewelry box that had been a gift from my paternal grandmother to my mother when she married my father. I like that it’s something I grew up seeing and now it’s mine. It went from my grandparents’ home to be in my parents’ first home and then to be in Kyle and my first home.
We also have a secondhand furniture set that was in my mom’s parents’ first home. Sure, these items aren’t our secondhand purchases but we didn’t buy anything else, either.
I also like secondhand because I think it’s easier to get something close to exactly what you want without paying the price for custom. When we remodeled our house, I had a vision for our living room and it involved new couches. Our old couches had these detachable back cushions that I hated and basically always looked terrible, so I definitely wanted attached cushions. I also had an idea in my head that I wanted a white and blue stripe. We looked for a new living room set for a while and couldn’t find anything that came close to what I wanted. In fact, we couldn’t even find anything that came within the general area of what I wanted and everything was so much more than I wanted to pay. This is where Craigslist saves the day. Kyle found a listing early on a Saturday morning for the couch, loveseat, and coffee table you see below for just $200. Obviously, we bought it. Also, a little obviously, it was the couple’s first Craigslist experience so we got a killer deal.
Perhaps my favorite part of getting something secondhand, which echoes Mary’s point, is that there is so much hope and thrill for a piece. Case in point: We bought a slipper chair from Craigslist recently. I’ve really been wanting one and the one we found has a little bit of recline in it that makes it perfect for lounging, but it needs some TLC. Good thing I’ve been meaning to learn to DIY reupholster (… and that I just started a home decor blog with a friend and desperately need projects, right?)
Next Tuesday, we’ll really dive into buying secondhand, sharing tips and tricks for making a good decision and being satisfied with your purchase. Our secondhand series will continue every Tuesday through June and part of July!
Do you have any great secondhand finds? Share them with us in the comments!