Building a Bookshelf with Crates, a Cabinet, and a Drawer

It is a work in progress.

Caution: Work in Progress. *smile*

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living–a place to sit a spell with a good cup of coffee and explore the randomness of my home renovation and decorating. This time around, I am not focusing on a project list or a must-do-this-now list. Nope. I want styling this house to be fun–to be inspired. No plan. This time around, it is not just a house that the hubby and I are flipping–it is our home. Our home. And we want to decorate it with soul. I am on a mission to conquer the odd corners and awkward spaces at Hathorn Hall–starting with the bedrooms. Both of the guest rooms upstairs are similar in size and shape. Both have a wall of windows, tall ceilings,and the character of a house built in 1920. I really don’t want to do “period” furnishings…and I do not like everything to be all matchy-matchy. I adore junk…old junk. But…I do not want my home to look like a flea market…or one of those flea market finds magazines. Nope. I want my home to have a soul. And in order to accomplish that, I must incorporate personality, family treasures, and functional art pieces.

Lately, I have been on a mission to find old crates. I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but I knew that I wanted them. I used one in the "bookshelf" that I "built" for the guest room--which the hubby and I named Winston, after our home county in Mississippi.

Recently, I was on a mission to find old crates. I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but I knew that I wanted them. I did use one in the “bookshelf” that I “built” for the guest room–which the hubby and I named Winston, after our home county in Mississippi. The others will find a special place soon. *Old crate from Sampson Mountain General Store, owners Jeanie Braden and Greg Cash

I also had a collection of new crates that I got from Home Depot last year. I was using them in the master bedroom closet because I have no idea how I want it to look or be organized. The crates were basically working as laundry baskets. Believe me, the master closet is a hot mess...and it is really a hot mess since I took some of the crates for Winston's bookshelf!

I have a “collection” of new crates, which I was using in the master bedroom closet because I had and have no idea how I want it to look or be organized…the crates were basically working as laundry baskets. No real purpose. Believe me, the master closet was and is a hot mess…and it is really a hot mess since I took some of the crates for Winston’s bookshelf! I digress. As stated earlier, I do not like matchy-matchy, so finding different pieces to make the bookshelf was important. *New crates from Home Depot

At first, the hubby and I were going to build traditional bookshelves for the room. We had priced lumber and paint–the total for what we needed for the space was just over $250. Not bad…but for ordinary bookshelves…it seemed a bit much + I wanted more for less. So, I went shopping in my basement, other rooms in my house, and Sampson Mountain General Store in downtown Johnson City for pieces to create a bookshelf + display for my childhood treasures.

At first, I had all crates--different sizes and ages. It was pretty awesome looking, but lacked a wow factor. I took the crates down. No photos were taken. I should have taken some to show y'all--but when I am creating, I am in the zone *smile*

At first, I had all crates–different sizes and ages. It was pretty awesome looking, but lacked a wow factor. I took the crates down. No photos were taken. I should have taken some to show y’all–but when I am creating, I am in the zone *smile*

I am not sure how many times I stacked and re-stacked these crates. I just could not get the look I wanted…so, I went to my go-to place for junky treasures–Sampson Mountain General Store, which is literally two or three minutes from my house. Too close for the hubby’s comfort *wink* At the General Store, I found salvaged kitchen cabinets. Perfect. The one I used in my display still has the old cup hooks! I could not bear to take them out, so I just slid books in between them.

I wish I could give y'all great tips about stacking crates and cabinets, but I don't have any. The truth is it was trial and error. There was also a lot of standing back and thinking...shaking of the head...rubbing of the forehead...walking away. In the end, you just stack and re-stack until you are in love with the result *smile*

I wish I could give y’all great tips about stacking crates and cabinets, but I don’t have any. The truth is it was trial and error. There is also a lot of standing back and thinking…shaking of the head…rubbing of the forehead…walking away. In the end, you just stack and re-stack until you are in love with the result *smile* P.S. Do you see that cute, little clay house? It is by Beth Macre from HeartHomes on Etsy. I love all of her darling clay houses and owls…well, I love everything in her shop *smile*

This is a drawer from a dresser that the hubby converted into the vanity for the master bath. He had to remove a couple of interior drawers in order to get the plumbing to work. I will tell y'all about it on another day...anyway, as I was hunting in the basement, I stubbed my toe on this drawer. I took it as a sign to include it *wink*

This is a drawer from a dresser that the hubby converted into the vanity for the master bath. He had to remove a couple of interior drawers in order to get the plumbing to work. I will tell y’all about it on another day…anyway, as I was hunting in the basement, I stubbed my toe on this drawer. I took it as a sign to include it *wink*

All of the crates, the drawer, and the cabinet are in their original states. I did not paint, stain, or even sand. If I did, I would be removing their souls, their marks and their histories.

All of the crates, the drawer, and the cabinet are in their original states. I did not paint, stain, or even sand. If I did, I would be removing their souls, their marks and their histories.

I have enjoyed filling the crates and the cabinet with my favorite things. Good news is I still have space for more treasures and books!

I have enjoyed filling the crates and the cabinet with my favorite things. Good news is I still have space for more treasures and books; however, I am not sure if that is good news for the hubby *wink*

I am still debating on wall color for the Winston room. It needs to be a sweet and rich color. Something to bring out the whimsy in the room. I also want to add art above the crates...not necessarily paintings or framed pictures...but something that reminds me of Winston County and my childhood....

I am still debating on wall color for the Winston room. It needs to be a sweet and rich color. Something to bring out the whimsy in the room. I also want to add art above the crates…not necessarily paintings or framed pictures…but something that reminds me of Winston County and my childhood….

Each and every item on display has a meaning and a story. These little things keep me connected to my roots. They make me smile. And that is what decor in one's home should do *smile*

Each and every item on display has a meaning and a story. These little things keep me connected to my roots. They make me smile. And that is what decor in one’s home should do *smile*

I did not nail, screw or even glue these crates together; however, the "bookshelf" is sturdy. I like to change things up too much.

I did not nail, screw or even glue these pieces together because I like to change things up. During Christmas, there will be a tree in this corner…shhh, don’t tell the hubby *wink* Even though there is nothing holding the shelves together (except laws of Physics…I think it is the laws of Physics…Newton, perhaps, mentioned something about things sticking together…or was that Einstein…)–where was I? Oh, yes! The “bookshelf” is sturdy.

My collection of paper dolls.

My collection of paper dolls.

IMG_6824 Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about building a display/bookshelf from crates + cabinet + drawer. I encourage all of you to get creative with your furnishings and create something with soul. Now, I am off to work on my writing area. It is definitely a work in progress!

So far, I have decided to use a vintage ironing board as a magnet board. I also found an old window frame and a louvre door...but I am not sure if they will make the final cut.

So far, I have decided to use a vintage ironing board as a magnet board. I also found an old window frame and a louvre door…but I am not sure if they will make the final cut. P.S. I cannot wait to tell y’all about that lamp–it was a fabulous find!

Transforming a Boring Corner in the Guest Room

This is a LollyMollyArt project chair that I could not bear to sell. I have a bad habit of keeping a lot of my upcyled, repurposed pieces for myself. The hubby has caught on and realizes when I say "This would be perfect to redo and sell" that it really means "I love this, and I am gong to keep it" *smile*

This is a LollyMollyArt project chair that I could not bear to sell. I have a bad habit of keeping a lot of my upcyled, repurposed pieces for myself. The hubby has caught on and realizes when I say “This would be perfect to redo and sell” that it really means “I love this, and I am gong to keep it” *smile* P.S. Ziva was determined to photo bomb. I am pretty sure she wanted me to play instead of working.

Hey, y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living. Today on the blog, we are chatting about boring, awkward corners. We all have at least one in our homes. My new place, Hathorn Hall, has more than I care to count. It will take time and creativity to conquer the walls in this 1920 gem, but I am up to the challenge *smile* Now let us grab a good cup of coffee and sit a spell!

Normally, I would stick to one room until it was 100% complete and perfect. Staying up late…shopping for decor until I dropped…building…painting…exhausting the hubby and myself until all items could be checked off the project list. But not this go-round. I want to have fun. Jump around from room to room. Find something that sparks an idea. Not have a detailed list of things that must be done by a set time or the world will cease to exist. Nope, I am winging it. Wandering from room to room. I am kinda liking this new freedom that I have given myself…and the hubby.

This is a three-panel screen with one panel tucked behind the others + it is upside down. I needed the rust color on the bottom to anchor the corner because the ceiling is tall...perhaps 10 feet...or taller.

This is a three-panel screen with one panel tucked behind the others + it is upside down. I needed the rust color on the bottom to anchor the corner because the ceiling is tall…perhaps 10 feet…or taller. And I love the design that was on the bottom, but it is now on the top. Why hide it!

Guest Room Number One is inspired by Ernest Hemingway. At first, I was going to paint the walls…but I am thinking that I like the soft khaki with the rich cream trim. I will know more after I get everything else for the space. If I do paint, it will be a cigar inspired color…bourbon…leather….Oh, my!

This room has a wall of windows, and y’all know I love windows + bright spaces. But my favorite thing about the space left me with an awkward corner. No need to fret because I had the perfect pieces…I bet the hubby is glad that I keep so many of my projects now *wink*

Panel + Chair = Still Boring Corner...it needed more, but there was barely any room...I had to walk away and ponder.

Screen + Chair = Still Boring Corner…it needed more, but there was barely any room…I had to walk away and ponder.

There was not enough room for a side table, and I really did not want to build one...or hunt for one...so I played around with some old Reader's Digest books until I created the look I wanted...just big enough to rest a martini and a good book.

There was not enough room for a side table, and I really did not want to build one…or hunt for one…so I played around with some old Reader’s Digest books until I created the look I wanted…just big enough to rest a martini and a good book.

I love all the rich colors + the hint of gold.

I love all the rich colors + the hint of gold.

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The chair seemed lonely, so I went on a shopping adventure in my basement, where I discovered an espresso and gold one that I had painted several years back. I totally forgot that I had it...and for the life of me, I am not sure why I even made it...or painted it those colors. But I am glad that I did because it looks dashing in my Hemingway room!

The chair seemed lonely, so I went on a shopping adventure in my basement, where I discovered an espresso and gold footstool that I had made several years back. I totally forgot that I had it…and for the life of me, I am not sure why I even built it…or painted it those colors. But I am glad that I did because it looks dashing in my Hemingway room!

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The awkward corner is located between the wall of windows and the closet.

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I am really excited about how this corner went from boring to dapper. Good news is this little design project cost me ZERO dollars because I already had everything! Better news is y’all can create this look without having to spend a lot. Check out your local antique malls, thrift stores, and flea markets for similar or exact items. The footstool was made from a wooden top + legs that I got at Home Depot. Now, I just need to locate some old maps…

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about transforming a boring corner with items that I already owned. I encourage y’all to go shopping in your basements and garages to see what you can find to transform boring spaces in your homes *smile* Now I am off to play with Ziva and Mattie because they have been worrying me to death! Be sure to follow me on Instagram to keep up with their adventures and my randomness *smile*

Ziva doing what she does best...photo bombing *wink*

Ziva doing what she does best…photo bombing *wink*

The Dining Room of Hathorn Hall–Pretty Much a Blank Slate

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Hey, y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living. Today on the blog, we are chatting about Hathorn Hall’s dining room–which is pretty much a blank slate. Now, grab a good cup of coffee or nice glass of wine and sit a spell with me as we take a look at what I’ve found so far that’s inspiring my dining room and what is still left to figure out.

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Recently, the hubby and I visited Corner Nest Antiques Mall in Elizabethton, Tennessee. It’s fabulous. It’s amazing. It’s a wonderland of treasures. Y’all must go see for yourselves! Anyway, we went in search of period furnishings for our 1920 home…but I’m so easily distracted by beautiful junk that our original reason was quickly lost by my begging for every single piece of rusty goodness.

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Now, please understand that I know my own junk addiction…and the hubby has learned the difference between my “I’ve got to have this.” and my “I’ve GOT to HAVE this!”. So, when I stumbled upon a big, green handmade tool box…he knew I had to have it because I had a vision for it…an exact place to put it where I could admire it and show it off.

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The colors of the tool box drew me in…the John Deere green and yellow with the slightest hint of lilac showing through…its bulkiness…its size…all its special compartments…as soon as I picked it up to examine it closer, I knew someone like my dad had built it because my dad builds everything sturdy and with detail.

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Before I found my giant tool box, I had wanted a big dough bowl for my dining room table. I had found lots of dough bowls that I liked, but none of them had spoken to me….

I love all the table displays at Z Gallerie, and I’ve thought many times about buying one…the tall vases, the sparkle, the glam…oh, my! But in my heart,  I knew the hubby’s table did not want anything new, sparkly, nor glam…this rugged table was handmade from a walnut tree from his family’s property many moons ago…it rested in the hallway in his family’s barn for many years before finding its way to us…for years, friends and family sat on it while drinking and enjoying the annual cow sales…it has had a rough, but good life. If you see the hubby, get him to share the story of his table because he tells it much better than I. *smile*

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No, this table did not want Z Gallerie. I did. It wanted something that represented its character–good,  hardworking folks. The tool box was perfect.

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To add a bit of pizzazz to the table, I’m going to fill the tool box with old bottles and vases…and then fill those with fresh flowers. For Christmas,  I can fill it with greenery and vintage ornaments. Oh, the possibilities are limitless!

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I’m not going to talk much about my art piece that’s in the dining room because her story is very interesting, so I will write a separate post dedicated to her…but I had to give y’all a little peek. *smile*

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Ugh! This wall has me all in a tizzy. Thermostat and the return air grille. What to do…what to do!

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Blank wall…and still debating on wall color…I’m leaning toward a rose color…not too pink…not mauve…I will know it when I see it *smile*

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I love the windows…I really don’t want to cover them with bulky curtains or ugly blinds…hmmmmm….

Well, that’s all the dining room news that I have. There is still much to be done, but one of these days…inspiration will hit and BAM! Dining room complete *smile*

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about my dining room. Now, go out and find your own junky treasures! *smile*