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Cyber Monday Gifts

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Our artisan elves have been keeping busy creating one of a kind upcycled gifts. Here are some rad new pieces for Cyber Monday (really for Bust Craftacular next weekend, but feel free to purchase online now!)

Emilia (the elf) did a series of old postcards mounted to found objects. She finishes the scene by painting it in. Can you see where the postcard ends and painting begins? $65 and shippable!

IMG_0001 Here’s another postcard painting done on a piece of antique bed frame. $50 for that bed frame postcard lover in your life.

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Our Christmas ornaments are not even online yet. Glass balls with various decoupaged designs. Price range is $25-$35 per ball.

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Oops, this guy isn’t online yet either. Guess you’ll have to stop by the shop! So much for Cyber Monday. A vintage wooden box with patinaed top and glass head that we found at a sale. The “collar” is a light fixture part.

 

The Holidays Are Here!

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Happy Thanksgiving, y’all! As this is our first time ever in the retail world, we’ve been freaking out about this time of year since we opened back in April. And wouldn’t ya know it? We’re not prepared.

We did manage to come up with some fun things. Here are the Reclaimed Home holiday season happenings so far…

Today! Wednesday, Nov. 26th: Nothing special, really. Just wanted you to know that we’ll be open during the usual business hours and have lots of last minute table settings and host gifts for your Thanksgiving needs. Also, some tables and chairs if you’re that unprepared. **Plus, Emilia will be giving out free hugs.

Black Friday, Nov. 28th: Furniture and vintage artwork goes on sale. By how much? As much as we can afford without losing money. The name of the game is to make way for new furniture in the New Year and focus on handmade small gifts for Christmukkah.

Small Business Saturday, Nov. 29th: 10% discount all around. Spend $50 or more and get a free “Small Business” tote from American Express. Support your local small businesses, yo!!

Bust Craftacular, Dec. 6 & 7: Whilst the Crown Heights shop will be open for business, we’ll have lots of small handmade items at the Bust craft show in Greenpoint. Come check it out!

South Franklin Holiday Stroll, Dec. 13: We’ve teamed up with Owl and Thistle and I Love Mountain (and maybe more to join) to create an afternoon event for the shops south of Eastern Parkway. Tastings, drinks, raffles and crafting. Keep track of this on the brand new FB page.

Ready for the Holidays!

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Fork Hooks. $55

Now we understand why retailers start gearing up for the holidays as soon as the leaves start turning color. As early as August, we’ve been worrying about not having enough gifty items or having too much small stock. Being it’s our first year in business, we don’t know what to expect.

Since we’re not sure that the Crown Heights shop will bring in loads of people, we’ve signed up for some craft shows and holiday markets. Ok, that’s a lie. We only have ONE confirmed show and that’s BUST Craftacular. We’re still figuring out what else we want to do. Yeah, we’re cutting it close since it’s almost November already, but then the event promoters are taking their time getting info together too.

Here’s a preview of some of our handmade gift items. We’ll have to make a ton more if we’re to stock multiple venues plus do online sales, but we can eat and sleep after the holiday season.

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Vintage Candlestick Menorah. $90

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Double Light Switch Plate. $10. (not online yet)

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Clockface with Double Glass Hooks. $40

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Found Object Double Hook. $50

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Door Knob Coat Hook. $50IMG_9871 Found Object Face Art. $50IMG_9870 Upcycled Typeset Block Triple Hooks. $75IMG_9867 Industrial Metal Candle Holder. $40IMG_9863

Antique Auto Triple Nail Hook. $55 

UK Doc Filmed in Crown Heights

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A few weeks ago we received a phone call from a UK production company wanting to know if it was ok to film a scene with 2 women coming in to Reclaimed Home to shop. Sure, why not? The documentary crew showed up yesterday and we found out a bit more about the show.

Well, not really much more, just the fact that the host is Jodie Marsh and she does kind of “Day in the Life Of” snippets for her TLC UK series. The woman she was with was a Texan….we know this because she signed our mailing list by adding “TEXAS!”.

The Texan bought some vintage nudie magazines and girlie art for her “naughty” boyfriend while Ms. Marsh purchased the 1980’s band coasters that hadn’t even made it onto our online shop yet. The set of 4 coasters consisted of Madness, The Jam, Morrissey and The Cure. She had to explain to Ms. Texas who these people were, but then I had to chime in off camera when she confused Rob Smith (or perhaps Moz?) for Nick Heyward. Now, I like me some Haircut 100, but come on….not in the same coaster set as those legendary bands!

Also, I found out that the gal realllly likes her Paul Weller.

I sent them down to the hipster end of Franklin (“Make sure you cross Eastern Parkway”) for more cafes and shopping. So, if you were were on Franklin yesterday and wondered what this crew was doing, that’s your answer.

We may not get the series here in the U.S. but I’m sure I’ll be alerted from friends and in-laws on the other side of the pond once my punim shows up on their tellies. Good thing about the internet is that they won’t have to videotape it and transfer it to a U.S. system. Remember those days? Oh gosh. I do. And it was all pretty much tapes of those bands mentioned above.

Good Riddance, Summer!

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Boy, it’s no joke about summer being the slow retail season here in NYC! Everyone who can go away, does. Those who are left behind are either working or at the beach. We struggled through. I think there was an entire week that we did not sell one thing. Then, a couple of weeks ago, it just picked up again. Just like that. But dayum, we were nervous!

We are pleased to announce that the store is fairly empty right now. Once we do a big shopping trip tomorrow, we’ll have new fall merchandise! Well, that was a blessing that most of the big pieces that sat around all summer just sold within a week. Now we don’t have to hold any clearance sales.

We bid farewell to those items we’ve been looking at all summer. Hope their new owners are happy with them!

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By far, the most emotional sale was the pair of cherub sconces that I priced NOT to sell. They were purchased for a house I was dressing up to the nines, but when I decided to put it on the market, I took the sconces with me. They didn’t work in my current home, so I hung them at the shop where they remained looking beautiful until a guy walked in one day and just bought them. Yes, I cried, but of course I was also happy to be able to pay my expenses after a dreadful summer. The buyer sent photos of the living room where they’ll hang and they will look great! He’s going to give us an update once they’re hung.
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When we purchased this mid century hutch we priced it at $295 and thought it would sell immediately. We learned that not too many people have room for hutches in NYC where space is a luxury. It even sat there when we lowered the price to $195. Finally, someone in Astoria, Queens had the space for it!IMG_8882

Same spatial issues with this sideboard. You can’t quite use it as a dresser, so it’s more of a dining room piece and since dining rooms aren’t the norm in these parts, especially with apartment dwellers, it had to wait for the right person. IMG_8920

Ah, the red desk. So much interest yet nobody took the plunge until another Queens person committed to the purchase online. IMG_8932Yeah, we don’t know why this credenza stayed with us as long as it did. All we can say is “summer”. Glad it’s over and this piece has finally found a new home.

Can’t wait to hit the “pickers” tomorrow!

Our Renovations

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We’ve added another page to this website! Long time blog readers will recognize most of these renovations as Phyllis has been writing about them and sharing DIY tips along the way.

The renovations page is our way of displaying our style and capabilities to prospective clients, however it does come with a disclaimer that we are not licensed contractors. DIY’ing our own properties does not mean we can gut a client’s home and put it back together. We are happy to sub-contract for your architect, GC or designer, though….especially if they need assistance with reclaimed materials.

Check it out!

Ebay Listings

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Little known tidbit: Reclaimed Home has had eBay listings up since the beginning of time but we never actually linked to them on the shop page until now. It was kind of a separate entity for items we didn’t know how to price. Ebay is our appraiser.

Ebay is a funny thing that we can’t seem to figure out. We’ve had some really fabulous items sit there without any bids. 1960’s Waterford crystal with a low starting bid, great light fixtures that do tend to sell better there than on the shop page.

It’s surprising to us what does fetch the highest prices. A 1980’s sculpture from the Metropolitan Museum gift shop (above) that we would have marked at $60 in the physical store sold to someone in Australia for $375.  A prop knife from the 1997 film “Titanic” (below) that we found in a box of vintage jewelry is currently up to $81.

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Be sure to check out our eBay page because you may be able to pick up some bargains if nobody else is bidding.

The Bradbury:Our Finest Piece Yet

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We’ve painted a lot of pieces at Reclaimed Home and we’ve done some great techniques such as patina, wood grain and stenciling.  But we’re loving our latest signature piece that we like to call “The Bradbury”.

This came to us as a throw away vanity with mirror and side compartments.  It sat outdoors in someone’s Long Island backyard for too long and the wood became warped and rotted. Although we saved the top bits as we removed them, the lower part was the only thing that was really salvageable. We don’t know exactly what use it has….a storage bench to go against the wall or at the end of a bed, a single sided coffee table. It definitely has some function and will be the highlight of any room.

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Sometimes the best things come out of necessity. In this case, the top was in such bad shape that we needed to figure out a way to restore it or hide it. That’s when it came to us that the leftover Bradbury wallpaper from a previous home restoration was sitting on the shelf. We’ve done resin wallpaper techniques before and knew that’s what this piece was screaming for. We matched the paint to the wallpaper and gave ourselves a nice pat on the back, but at the end of the day, it’s hats off to the original designer of this piece. The lines and detail are incredible!

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The amount of work time involved and the price of Bradbury wallpaper makes this, not only our finest piece yet but also our most expensive at $1200. Yes, we take credit cards. Come on, you know you want it.

Works in Progress

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Goodbye Summer!  Hello the unofficial end of that summer retail slump! We endured the season by moving along inexpensive as-is furniture while working on design service samples and holiday smalls (Yes, THOSE holidays), but we’re back to creating some awesome one of a kind larger pieces now that everyone is returning from vacation.

The Mickey coffee table was a mid century piece with a bland white top.  No, it’s not meant to be a kid’s table, but perhaps only a handful of adults would appreciate it.  It’s nearly done.  Just needs a coat of resin and another coat plus sealer on the base.

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We were planning on making a side table out of a few skateboards when Mr. Phyllis came in and said “A chair would be so much better.”  Fine, so YOU do it, hubby!  He tried to renege, but was forced into the closed shop this weekend. The boards need to be cleaned up and maybe we’ll change the color of the metal frame.

No prices yet but keep an eye out on the shop.  They should be up by the end of the week with some other fabulous new items!

Handmade Gifty Things

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Yay!  We’re working on some smaller merchandise that we can wholesale and easily ship for online sales.  Some are completely put together by hand and the price unfortunately has to reflect hours of our time.  We do want to have affordable smalls, but that means mass produced made in China stuff that we simply embellish.  You know the old saying… You get what you pay for.

We are proud of our 100% recycled re-made in America (heck, right here in Brooklyn, USA) wares.

Wanna take a peek?  Ok, sure!

The table runner above was made from 100% recycled plaster lath.  We love lath!  It’s totally free and you can find it in most renovation dumpsters.  That’s the good news.  The bad news is that each individual piece has to be sanded on both sides, cut and sealed, especially if it’s going to be around food.  At 72″ long, this runner took about a full day to make.  We’re not complaining.  We’d love to make tons more of these!  Actually, we’re adding a set of lath placemats to the inventory this week. This runner is $280.  Lengths and designs will vary in price.

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Speaking of placemats, we’ve been working on sets of mats and coasters.  These are made from the bottoms of discarded antique dresser drawers.  We found the wood to be the perfect thickness.  Designs are protected by resin.  They are f*ckin’ amazing, if we may say so.  Set of 4 placemats and 4 coasters is $180.

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This is the less funky, “classier” set of the two we did.  Crazy how well it matches that table.  Too bad the table just sold yesterday. Also, $180. More info here.

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These recycled door and lath serving trays have been selling pretty well at $75.  We think they’re going mostly as gifts but a few folks are keeping them for their own homes.  Even the handles are vintage. Only the paint and resin are new.

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This particular mirror was an Ikea hack job. We hope to find or build multiple recycled frames, but in an effort to go with a few uniform pieces that were inexpensive, we caved and embellished a new object.  The legos are second hand. $35

il_fullxfull.637777529_onnnFinally, more “new” items. The salt and pepper shakers were a close-out at Ikea.  If we buy new, we like to purchase liquidations so we’re not completely supporting production of inexpensive labor. Anyway, at least you know they are clean!  We have several of these, all with different designs.  $25 apiece.

Silent Auction This Wednesday!

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Ah, auction week is upon us.  In preparation, we have enough new merchandise so you can’t turn around in the shop if there are more than three people.  Eggggcelllent.  The plan is to empty the store completely of the older pieces.  So, are you in?

Refreshments will be served and 10% discounts will be offered on ALL items in the shop!  If you can’t make it, try contacting us on Thursday to see if your desired item is still available.  We probably won’t be able to monitor online and phone-in bids during the auction.

Here’s a taste of what’s up for sale.  If nobody else bids, you get it for the starting price.

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Mid Century Hutch.   One of the items that is just too big and adult-like for many NYC apartments.  It’s too big for our shop also!

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Antique Stove Base Coffee Table.  Speaking of too big, everybody loves this table and nobody has room for it! Got a back yard? Use it as a bench or planter.  It’s very versatile!

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Mid Century Metal Patio Set.  And speaking of back yard….got one?  This lightweight outdoor furniture folds up for easy storage in a corner, which is why it hasn’t sold.  Nobody sees it in the shop.

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Cherub Grotto.  Tacky is the new chic!  Come on, you can’t go wrong for 25 bucks.

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Hand Made Veneer Shelves.  The one brand new piece we have in the store and not a soul has seen it in person because we’re using it behind the desk.  Someone put a lot of work into this sweet little thing.

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Mid Century TV Cabinet. We can’t go too low on pieces that we worked on but this came to us inexpensively and didn’t take too long to finish.

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Antique Child’s Desk.  We love it but we bought it for a good price, so we can pass the savings along.

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Mid Century Atomic Enamel Cookware. They are the coolest things ever but four pots actually take up quite a bit of real estate in a shop of our size.

Ok, that’s all you’re getting for now.  We said a “taste”.  You have to get over to the shop on Wednesday evening to partake in the full menu.  Hope to see you there! And don’t get lost!

Painting Techniques

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Copper green patina and stencil

Emilia has been as busy as a little elf creating some awesome sample boards for custom jobs.  I haven’t quite had a chance to put them up on the service page yet (where there are even more techniques) because I’m more like Hermey the Elf who would rather be doing something else than uploading images to a website.

But anyhoo, we’re still waiting for someone to hire us to do a job with some of these fabulous designs!  All we’re getting is straight forward painting gigs.  Not that we’re complaining.  It pays the bills!  Can’t all be fun and fabulous.

Think kitchen cabinets, backsplash, walls, countertops or furniture when looking at these images.  Also keep an eye out for DIY classes so you can learn to create your own funtastic surfaces!

IMG_9307Doily and spray paint.  We want to get some image doilies and try to make it look like a black and white photograph.

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Plaid!

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Fun new stencil in da hizzous

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Wood graining can be done in any colors. This light colored sample shows the “grain” best.  It was just a plain piece of board beforehand.

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Silver leaf.  She just did a new gold leaf sample too.

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Crackle.

IMG_9324Venetian plaster.

Reclaimed Weddings

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About a month ago when the retail summer blues hit us at the shop, we came up with an idea to create some wedding merchandise.  We went as far as making a Pinterest board on the subject and then thankfully got busy and never got around to executing the plan.

This week got us excited about weddings again when we received a frantic phone call from a maid of honor who had seen an Eastlake mirror of ours online. She wanted it painted white to present the seating chart.  No problem, apart from the heartbreak of painting over the original wood.

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She needed a way to display it as well, which became more of a task.  Now… that one can of ivory spray paint we had in the shop wouldn’t be enough, nor did we have a display.  I searched online for a vintage easel then went out to pick up more paint. Four paint stores later and nearly killing a cyclist (HE ran into ME!), I had to go with a new color and repaint the entire mirror.

Ran over to pick up a Craigslist easel in Bushwick at 7am yesterday before the seller left for work.  Have you ever painted an easel?  It’s a pain in the ass with all of those moving parts.  Plus, she was coming to pick it up and we didn’t have enough time to let the paint dry.  All’s well that ends well.  Let’s just say she ended up with a tub of touch up paint that she’ll be placing with the emergency wedding kit.

All this reminded me of my wedding photography days and how stressful and all-consuming weddings can be.  But I loved it!

This was our official introduction to our reclaimed wedding offerings.  Maybe next time we’ll be more prepared.  Or at least have enough warning!

Some items from the Pinterest board that we like:

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Some Sweet New Pieces

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The name of the game this summer is to work on pieces that are quick and easy, thereby being able to price them to sell.  Instead of painting an entire piece of furniture with several coats, a complicated design and more coats of sealer, we’re repairing only the damaged bits with funky designs and letting the original beauty shine through. To be honest, we haven’t come across a fabulous piece of furniture in terrible condition that we can work on as a signature piece. It seems like nearly everyone who came into the shop this weekend asked about that bold deco dresser or the orange mid century dresser that we opened the store with and had there for months before they sold. They caught people’s eyes and we want to do more, but they do need to be the right pieces. We’re totally into customizing if you gots it!

The half table above goes up against a wall for mail in the hallway or it could be used as a plant stand.  We found it broken and instead of putting a new top on it, decided to center what was there and recycle that very piece.  How cool is that design done with a doily and spray paint? $75.

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A decent sized side table with just a few colorful designs on the top to brighten it up.  We did a smaller one about a month ago that sold within hours of putting it out, so we figured it will be a popular look. $125.

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Remember this desk?  We wanted someone to come along and customize it.  Nobody did, so we went ahead and worked on the damaged bits, leaving the beautiful undamaged wood untouched. Please forgive the terrible Photoshop job trying to cut out the background. The stenciled desk is a substantial piece of furniture for a decent sized office. $325.

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We had to give distressed chalk paint a try since all the chicks are doing it these days.  They rave about how easy it is and how great it looks.  We agree that this piece looks great, but we pride ourselves on the variety we offer, so don’t look for a store full of shabby chic any time soon.  But this child’s bench with storage IS cute!  $150.

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