Secondhand Furniture Revival
Call it furniture makeover, upcycling furniture, revamping furniture or furniture revival, the trend continues where DIY enthusiasts are buying secondhand furniture to give it a new lease on life.
Secondhand stores can be found around the country, and around the world, these stores are a treasure trove of quality furniture that was no longer needed. It's sad that such beautiful pieces should go to waste, especially those that have a history or charm.
Today everything is synthetic and wooden furniture is no longer a viable option as we cut down more and more trees. The world is making a concerted effort to responsibly harvest tree species to reduce the environmental impact of losing our trees, and you will now only find pieces manufactured using exotic hardwoods in antique stores. But that doesn't mean that there aren't any more beautiful wood pieces of furniture out there. You only have to search online to find hundreds of sources for quality wooden furniture and it's this furniture that is perfect for revival.
If you fancy the idea of buying secondhand furniture to use for projects, or to upcycle wood furniture, either for yourself or for profit, here are some of the best types of secondhand furniture you should consider.
- Furniture With Character
They might not be antiques, but there is plenty of genuine wood furniture out there waiting to be found. Always be on the lookout for pieces that are in excellent condition and just need a little tender loving care to revive them. While painting wood furniture has become extremely popular in the past few years, not everyone wants to hide the beauty of natural wood. If this is you, you can look at restoring the piece to original condition and only using paint to highlight detail.
Repurposing is driven by our need to reduce our carbon footprint and be more sustainable in our choices for anything and everything to do with our daily lives, including the furniture we add to our homes. Buying a brand new item is always the best option, especially if you are looking for pieces with character or charm or pieces that resonate with you.
Buying a secondhand piece of furniture is not just about the fun you can have with the project, it's also about the need to feel that you are 'doing your part' while taking a piece of wooden furniture and transforming with milk paint, chalk paint or limewash. And don't think that pieces might not fit in perfectly with your design scheme because throwing something old into the mix makes your living spaces far more interesting.
Not everything needs to be matchy-matchy - sometimes a piece that is different or unusual adds personality to your home
- Components You Can Use
For those that enjoy making their own furniture, shopping for secondhand furniture is a great way to find components for your next project. For example, you might be making a coffee table and need Queen Anne legs but can't buy these anywhere. Chances are you will be able to find these on a secondhand piece of furniture, no matter what the condition, and be able to salvage the legs to use for your project.
Even with the legs removed, there will still be plenty of material you can use for other projects. If the furniture is wood and in reasonable condition, you might be able to repurpose the top or sides, or perhaps put the drawers to good use. You might be destroying the integrity of the original piece, but if it is in fairly bad condition your effort to repurpose is better than it going to the trash heap.
- Authentic Accessories
There's nothing quite like the real thing, and anyone who restores or upcycles furniture - especially if you live in South Africa - knows how difficult it is to get your hands on vintage hardware. You don't want to spend a lot on a piece of furniture just for the handles or knobs, but you may be willing to spend a bit more for detailed panels that can be repurposed, or original glass doors that simply cannot be replicated at low cost.
For me, it's about browsing through secondhand shops for pieces that catch my eye, for those that I can use again for a different project, and ultimately for furniture I can upcycle in any way that I want.