Salvage Chic Finds
Rescue what others might toss and cultivate an expressive style that's all your own.
Trash to Treasure
This homeowner's mom spotted a mantel worth saving discarded on the side of the road -- its previous owner had simply kicked the splintered and peeling piece to the curb.
First, sand down a piece like this and apply a fresh coat of paint, such as the brilliant white shown here. Next, you'll need to fill in the center with fabric. Then, place fabric on top of batting and secure with staples. Affix the fabric panel in the back; in the corners where the mantel and plywood meet, nail one end of a small piece of wood to the mantel and the other end to the plywood. "The whole project (shown here) cost less than $100," says the homeowner.