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Wednesday, February 27, 2008


I was enjoying a piece of this Strawberry cake and looking around, I realized that I have several "look-alike" pieces of furniture in my house....

I have never been able to buy a lot of NEW, really nice furniture so I have always picked out what I like in a catalog or magazine and then....hit the thrift stores and garage sales to see if I can find something SIMILAR to the item I really like.

Sometimes I can get really close or at least close enough that I am happy with it. That's all that matters, after all.

I have always admired this type of, with shelves. When I replaced our old dining table with a newer one (but, it's used, also!!), I used the table beneath shelving my Sweet Hubby made and came up with something fairly close to this........

I was thrilled with the way it turned out. Especially after I painted it all with my favorite red paint!!

I really wanted something like this for my living room so, again, I hit the thrift stores.... (this one from Pottery Barn was waaaay out of my budget! :(

A vintage white and gold dresser bottom, $50.00 at the thrift shop, painted black, gave me the same look for several hundred dollars less. When I hit the lottery, I may visit Pottery Barn and replace this with one of their beautiful pieces....and, then again.....I may find something else I'd rather spend my money on and just keep this little $50.00 buffet ! :)

Pottery Barn's version of the neatest storage unit....soooo expensive.

I painted my old bookshelf black and filled it with baskets. I bought the baskets at 50% off at Michaels. I use them for everything from little games, yarn, dvd's.....all sorts of things.

I think this metal table is so cool....and I love the stools beneath. Several hundred dollars.....I "no can do" so I took off again for thrift store row!!!

Neat metal table with really THICK glass, $16.00 ....the two little foot stools are from Big Lots.....

Oh, I know my versions of Pottery Barn's fabulous furniture doesn't even come close but...I am fairly happy with my pieces and REALLY happy with the savings. I love getting ideas from their catalog and others and, as I've said before, then the 'thrill of the hunt' kicks in and I am a happy camper!

If you find pieces that you love, can't really afford them right now, there's always "gently used" pieces out there that you can revamp and make into your dream pieces!!'s so fun! Plus using some of these pieces can give your room a sense of evolving over a period of time. This is a GOOD thing.
Oh......and the cake? Just a simple Strawberry box cake mix, Strawberry Icing in the can, fresh Strawberries mixed in with the icing and some strawberries served on the side. Not a thing magical here nor any thing "home made" but, with vanilla ice cream, it sure tasted good!!! :o)

Happiness, bj


ginger at enchanting cottage said...

WOW! Bj, thank-you for the inspriration your pieces are great and just what you wanted. What a lucky lady to find such bargin. I wish I had room for more furniture. I love furniture.

Karen H. said...

Good Morning BJ,
I am here with my bowl of cereal. Do you care to join me? Oh wait, you are probably having a piece of that Strawberry Cake huh? LOL. It sure looks good and I bet it tastes good as well. I love all the pieces of furniture that you have bought at the Thrift Stores. They do look better than the ones at the Pottery Barn. Sometimes an old piece just needs some TLC and it looks just as good if not better than something from a magazine or expensive store. Just as soon as Yard Sale Season starts up, I'm going to be on the hunt for several things to start collecting. Everyone has really inspired me here in blogland. I just wish we had a Thrift Store around here, but we don't. When you have time my friend, stop by for a cup of coffee. I have some things for you on my post today. Take care my friend and have a great day. May God Bless You and Yours.

Love & Hugs,
Karen H.

Teresa said...

I like what you have come up with better than the store's stuff!! You put your own creative twist on it and that makes it special. They should be copying you! LOL

Take care

Amelia said...

You have an eye for seeing an object and with paint -it then becomes almost what you saw in the expensive places.

Plus think of all the fun you had in the "hunt".

Looks great in your home!

Rosie's Whimsy said...

You are a clever gal and you serve wonderful desserts! :-) Rosie

Mary said...

My goodness, bj, that cake looks scrumptious! Will you bring a piece of it to my Spring Fling?

I think all your thrift store furniture is fabulous! Isn't it fun to hunt for a bargain, and then transform it, and make it yours? Love your red hutch! :)

Have a wonderful day!

Anita said...

Your stuff comes VERY close - and it's all gorgeous!

The cake looks yummy, too... I think I have a cake stand just like yours! :)

Dena ~ swaddlecottage said...

Hi BJ,

I am just in love with your red cabinet! What a beautiful job you have done recreating your own versions and what an inspiring lesson for all of us!


Adrienne said...

Great look-alikes! I like what you've done on a budget. And with what you had. That's the best way to go. Thanks for the inspiration. ~Adrienne~

Counting Your Blessings said...

Oooo I was just enjoying that song. One of my favorites! I love it when we can rehab or paint something and make it like what we want. Especially the expensive stuff! You have gorgeous things. Blessings... Polly

Holly (Nickname) said...

oh Bj~~~
I love all of your side by side comparisions and how you truly managed to replicate each piece of furniture, and have it meet your needs...just amazing!! I have never expected anything less for you, though!!!
Thanks for playing the meme ...can't wait to see your responses!!1 HOLLY :)

Lucy Bloom said...

Hi BJ, thanks for your lovely well wishes, now that I'm starting to feel better I could just gobble up that strawberry cake! Unfortunately it looks like Mr. Bloom has caught the bug now - he won't want to eat much, more cake for me then! (hee-hee)
Lucy x

Cyndy said...

My that cake looks good! And here I sit at my desk needing an afternoon snack.
Love all your fantastic remakes! You have such an eye for decorating! I love your red cabinets and the black buffet!

Jackie said...

BJ, I always find something to inspire me on your blog. Your look a likes are just perfect, you did a marvelous job.

...... Kristina ...... said...

Hi Sweet BJ,
I just love your home and the way everything is put together,you really made a great job of all these pieces.
I find if i have restored a piece myself i appreciate and love it more don't you ?.
Kisses Kristina XxX

Tara said...


It does come close! EEverything looks just as nice to me--and you have money left over to go out to dinner to celebrate!

Michelle said...

BJ, I think your home is lovely..that's the best part of decorating..the hunt for that perfect piece of furniture! Please send me a piece of that cake ~ yummy!


Lenka said...

Oh, wow - you husband ir really awesome! It looks better then any furniture from store! And red is my favorite color also! No matter if i is strawberry or paint.

Hope said...

Ok, BJ, I'm more than ready for a piece of that cake! Leave it to you to even spruce up a store bought cake and mix and make a masterpiece out of it!!

I'm voting with the majority here..I love your pieces better than the store bought. I love to see old pieces take on new life as you've done with yours. This reminds me of a show on HGTV. I'm not sure it's still on and I don't remember the name. But they did room make overs for people. The person would show a picture of the room they wanted. It was always very expensive furniture and accessories. Then these designers would find cheaper imitations of these pieces...just like you have!! I love it all and wouldn't mind one little bit if you have more to show!! :o)


Janet said...

Not only do your "look alikes" come out great they save you money to spend on your M-C addiction :)


Penny @ Lavender Hill Studio said...

Hi BJ!
I love all of your sensibly chic versions of the originals! I think yours look much better!

That strawberry cake looks YUMMY!

Meggie said...

Your post is rather timely...since the Oscars I've seen lots on TV about duplicating some of the lovely celebrity dresses at a much more reasonable price. Just like your furniture shopping...

Jan Parrish said...

Great job. You should have your own TV show. That's what they do. Pottery Barn stuff is supposed to be cheaply made so I think you're ahead in the long run. And the red hutch is soooo much cuter!

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Marcela said...

Hello sweet BJ
You are really good at decorating your house!!!..
Thanks for the inspiration!

Kathleen Grace said...

I think your home is gorgeous! You have gotten the feel of those items without the expense and you have excellent taste so it all works! I love the challenge of making my budget fit my tastes in more expensive items. Looking at the expensive stuff trains you to know good lines and quality when you see it!

Cottage Contessa said...

BJ sweetie, after looking at the photo's, I would much rather have things as you've set them up rather than PB's version anyway. Your displays are so lovely! Hope you're having a terrific week!
Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

Nan said...

That strawberry cake looks fabulous. I could use a piece right now. Well, I guess I don't really need one. I just want one.
Love your look-a-likes!

beddow said...

BJ, I am impressed. I am inspired too! I may not have the eye for this that you do and may have to work at it a bit but I am feeling better that I can do this!
You are so awesome!