DIY or Do I Buy?

For as long as I can remember, I have had this uncanny ability to preempt purchasing trends. This has been both good and bad.  I find myself frustrated when what I want doesn’t seem to exist in any stores, but because I can’t, I end up creating it for a lot cheaper than when it gets popular.

Two examples:

  1. Mid-Century Modern furniture – Okay, so I can’t truly claim this trend, because I am pretty sure it never really went out of style. BUT it’s become so hot, they are selling it at West Elm for $900 at a time.

West Elm today:


And the dresser I bought three years ago for $80:

DSC_0643 DSC_0642 DSC_0745

(And here is further evidence of my obsession with MCM furniture, as early as 2012.)

2. This 2013 doomed-from-the-start lamp project. There is often a very large disparity in my vision for a project and the realization of it. And sometimes I assume quite wrongly that if I just have the necessary raw materials, surely I’m halfway there. Wrong.

For a grand total of $7 at Goodwill I bought this lamp that eventually ended up in the trash after being spray painted. The embroidery thread I’m still holding on to, in the vain hope my skills improve. (Pet Wookie not included):


And these beautiful, $187 lamps currently on Etsy:

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This is probably why I have never spent more than $200 on a single piece of furniture and still managed to decorate a three bedroom house rather nicely. It’s also part of why my husband thinks I’m nuts spending hours on the internet looking for milk glass and hoarding old wine corks.

The good news is YOU can do this same thing, only in reverse, and save yourself some money. Found something you love online? I guarantee you can find something similar on a Facebook Trading Post, Craigslist, or Goodwill for a fraction of the price.

I have to admit, just looking at these pictures inspires me to try again with the lamp…

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