Designs · For the Home

The One With The Dumpster Sofa

I did not technically do any dumpster diving to get this settee, none the less, I still retrieved it from the side of a dumpster.

I can only imagine that the Dumpers were too tired after a day of cleaning out to actually heave the settee into said dumpster. To them, I offer my eternal thanks for their tiredness. There ain’t no shame in my game when it comes to snatching deals. This story would definitely have been a recall of my spastic attempts of pulling this piece out of a dumpster.

Thankfully, the story goes a little like this: I was in the process of moving into a new apartment. While prepping for the move I had stored some things in a friend’s (Lauren, you’ve seen her before) storage unit. One afternoon, Lauren and I were going to get my stuff out of the unit when I spotted this bad boy!

before pictures of settee refashionI did a silent jump of excitement to myself before speaking
Would you judge me if I went to check out that settee?
Lauren “I was about to tell you we need to look at it!!!
sounds of spastic skip running

We semi-thoroughly checked out the condition of the sofa. There were no broken legs or springs. No signs of bug infestation. It was a comfortable sit. It would definitely need a new upholstering job- no problem, I already had the fabric picked out that it would be recovered in. Sold! Fo’ free!

how to refashion a dumpster find

There are multiple morals to this story.

1. Surround yourself with people that get you and encourage dumpster thrifts.

I feel like that is pretty self explanatory.

2. Do not disregard items because they are  not perfect upon first viewing.

Can I tell you my #1 pet peeve watching HGTV? When people are looking at buying homes and this comes out of their mouth “But, I don’t like the color…” Hmmm. I hear you. But. There is this product called paint. People use it to change the color of things they do not like.

This brain baby can be used for anything! You see a piece of furniture you like. It has great bones. It’s sturdy and would be perfect for something you have wanted in your home. You hate the fabric. Or the finish. Change whatever it is you do not like!

Seize opportunities to personalize items in your home.

3. Furniture is not something that should be bought in bulk from cheap discount stores.

Furniture is something that should be collected and personalized. It should have a story to tell.

I learned this from my mom. She has collected furniture over the years. And it shows. All the furniture in my parents home has character and there is an experience that goes along with it. That is a home.

Recovering furniture to repurpose it

My settee is almost 5 years old now. And I still love it.

I covered it in a beautiful and inspiring fabric. It is piped with a coordinating fabric of which I also made pillows, but that topic is for another post 😉 It is a statement piece that makes me happy every single time that I look at it.

I am proud of this settee because it has a great story with a dear friend of mine. I am proud of this settee because it is covered in one of my all time favorite fabrics. I am proud of this settee because I know I reduced waste by investing a small amount of money into a beautiful item rather than discarding it.

I am telling you this story because I want people to fill their homes with stories.

When I talk to people about decorating their homes I don’t want them to have cookie cutter replicas of their neighbors. I want homes to be filled with owner’s personalities.

David and I have not bought a home yet, but our little apartment feels much warmer with this settee in our living room. And I can  guarantee you, this settee will be moving with us whenever we do make that big leap to buy a home.

how changing fabric can change your furniture


4 thoughts on “The One With The Dumpster Sofa

    1. Thanks! The original upholstery really was a pretty fabric. A great color and very classic choice, it was just quite worn and had seen better days. Perfect opportunity for a whimsical update!

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