My Dumpy House (AKA I Heart Upcycled Decor)

I’ve alluded to the various things I’ve found at “the dump” a few times here before, so today I’m going to explain myself, and come out of the closet as the garbage-picker that I am.

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Where we live, in Hingham, we don’t have town trash collection, so we actually have to bring our garbage and recycling to the transfer station, AKA the town dump. Mark and I didn’t know this when we bought our house (it actually never even occurred to us that it was not possible to have town garbage collection).

We found out from our neighbors as we were unloading our first UHaul the weekend we moved in. They let us know that after we had finished unpacking all those boxes, we’d need to bring them to the dump. Not exactly what you want to hear when you’re moving into a new house, that you need to make room on your to-do list for one more chore.

So originally, we were pretty pissed about the dump. Mark still hates it (though he has made up a catching jingle about dump runs that he sings every time we go  there, to the tune of Dane Cook’s old skit, Beer Run, remember that one?). But I LOVE the dump. Because on our first trip there, I discovered something called “The Swap Shop.” Which is where all the people of our town drop off things they no longer want or need: kid gear, sporting equipment, books….and furniture. Since we’ve moved here, I’ve gotten vases, shelving, a few old books to fill out the book cases in our living room, a few trays, a lamp, and a chest I turned into a media cabinet.

DIY blog  - upcycling furniture
I scored the green vase in the center and the stack of encyclopedias at the dump.
spray painted lamp
All this lamp needed was a good cleaning, and some spray paint around the base.

Now, most of this stuff didn’t look all that appealing in the state we found it in…actually none of it, save for the books…but we were able to see some potential in everything we’ve taken home so far (and I do mean we, because although Mark still hates having to go to the dump, he does willingly participate in the swapping). Some cleaning, paint, and updating (like new lampshades and hardware) have turned everything into usable, even stylish, pieces in our home.

Upcycled decor - books
One of my favorite finds was the dictionary at the bottom of this book stack.
spray painted tray
I found this tray with a painting of a bouquet of flowers on it. After sanding, painting and spraying with lacquer, it’s now a cute catchall for the top of our media console.

If you come over, there’s a good chance I’ll point out to your every thing in my house that came from the dump. Mark tells me this might be better kept to myself, but I’m proud of my resourcefulness! I’ve even taken a couple of my friends on dump runs with me 🙂