It’s amazing the things people throw away: in our transient, must-have-the-biggest-brightest-newest society, the littlest imperfection consigns our goods to the rubbish tip.
And that’s where treasure be found!
I’m a great advocate of making something out of nothing. My little flat is stuffed to the gills with not-quite-matching but very “me” one-offs. My dining room chairs, for example, were found seat-less and on the side of the road and are now, thanks to some handy staple-gunning and market-bought material, covered, comfy and totally unique.
So where to start?
Guide to Dumpster Diving
- Search the website of your local council and I’d be surprised if you didn’t find the address of your nearest tip. Here, multitudes queue up to get rid of perfectly serviceable but not-quite perfect furniture and other bits and bobs. Make sure you check with your local site as to their rules on reclaiming. Some have special shops, some turn a blind eye to rummaging and some flatly forbid it.
- Scope out up-and-coming areas around you – chances are that if renovations are going on, there’ll be a skip you can have a little look in. If you’re going to do this, best ask permission – and wear clothes you don’t mind getting a bit dirty. Remember to take some gloves and don’t dig into bits you can’t see.
- Get on your local freecycle/freegle list. A lot of people would prefer to give away their things to willing recipients than throw them away.
- Check out your local listings magazine/website for car boot sales, flea markets and antiques fairs. Practise your haggling skills and bag yourself a bargain.
Do you have any tips for decorating on a budget? Put them in the comments below.
Imogen can be found blogging over at Parlez-vous Moo?