Recently, I did a mental inventory of our house. I counted 6 pieces of furniture that we bought new. All of the rest are hand-me-downs, handmade or thrifted.
The basement reading nook shows our mix: Strandmon wing chair (new, though it was a birthday gift), ottoman (made by me), stump table (made by Matt’s Dad and me), monkey art (hand-me-down from Matt’s Grandpa).
I’m pretty proud that we’ve only bought 6 things new. I like walking through a room and seeing all of the things that I’ve made or found or rehabbed. I think it makes our home personal. It also makes me feel capable when I reflect on all of the projects we’ve done.
The environmental aspect is really important to me as well. By reusing and recycling we’re reducing our impact.
Here are my 6 newbies, along with the year we purchased them. I’m curious to know what’s your number?
- Ellie’s dresser (2018)
Another good example of a mix from Ellie’s nursery: dresser (new–Matt’s parents covered half the cost as I was stricken with sticker shock from buying new furniture), bookshelf (thrifted and repainted), Strandmon wing chair (thrifted this time), ottoman (made by me), triangle table (hand-me-down from my grandparent’s cottage). I should note that the crib was new as well (a gift from my Mom). It has since been passed on, so it is having a second life.
- Basement wingchair (2013)
- Basement ottoman (2013)
- Basement couch (2012)
- Living room couch (purchased in 2006 for our first house. Does this count as vintage now?)
- Living room chair (also from 2006)
This total does not include appliances, mattresses, lighting (though all of our lamps are second hand), or accessories (art, pillows, etc.).
If you look at the dates above our “new” furniture is not all that new. Holding onto things for a long time is another way to reduce our impact.
Furnishing our house in this way is financially beneficial as well. The Strandmon wingchair that I bought secondhand for Ellie’s nursery was less than half the price of a new one. Keeping the same couch for 16 years is obviously cheaper than buying a new couch.
Here’s a final mix from the basement TV area: sectional and ottoman (new), wood side table (hand-me-down from Matt’s Grandpa), lamp (thrifted and repainted), TV cabinet (made by my Dad and me), TV (new, but bought mostly with points), chair (won), Monopoly art (made by me).
Mostly, I thrift and DIY for fun. This is what I like to do and I love furnishing our house in this way.