4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture

When a group of fellow bloggers asked me to write about some decorating items in my home that continue to stay year in and year out, it got me thinking about my furniture. Why do I keep certain pieces and how could that knowledge affect my future decorating decisions?

I quickly noticed that most of the furniture pieces I have been committed to were huge and hence, difficult to move. Things like benches, dining room chairs, small tables and shelves were all non- issues for me. Even twin size beds and dressers can be easily replaced or moved on a whim.

None of these make me bat an eyelash, but ask me about changing out these furniture pieces and I suddenly have a big moral dilemma in front of me.

You see, not only are they difficult to move, they have some kind of back story to them.

They have sentimental value or were customized and are now extremely functional. Or, gulp, I paid too much for it in the first place and I’m still trying to justify it.

Here are some examples:

The giant Ballard Designs mirror I bought off Craigslist. That story would be a complete post of its own.

It covers almost the entire wall, so it is very unique and stunning right where it is.

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

The leather and hobnail sleigh bed that was the first nice piece of furniture we ever owned.

It is extremely high quality and after a decade it still looks brand new.

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture

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My grandparents’ piano from 1903.

I can still hear my sprightly grandpa playing Ragtime on it with his little chuckle.

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

My customized sewing cabinet that sits in the corner of the kitchen.

I can quickly convert this area into a fabulous sewing room with my sewing station strategically placed where it is. The breakfast bar becomes my cutting table and my ironing board fits near by.

My husband bought my nice sewing machine at the state fair when we were newly weds, just like his grandpa did for his grandma when they were a young couple.

Then, for my birthday my mother-in-law picked up a sewing machine cabinet at Goodwill for $15.00 and my husband rebuilt the inside, painted it and replace the hideous hardware with glass.

Talk about sentimental and extremely functional.

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

O.K., so lets think about this.

If you find yourself bringing home furniture that is abnormally

expensive,

sentimental,

necessary,

or gigantic,

here are some things to help insure that you haven’t just created a future decorating crisis.

Ask yourself these questions. . .

  1. Does it have classic, timeless lines? Meaning, not too trendy.
  2. Can it be modified either with simple construction, paint or fabric?
  3. Can you resell it on Craigslist or the like and recoup some of your investment?
  4. Are there at least two locations in your house where this piece would work? Or, if it is a family piece, is there a family member that wouldn’t mind taking turns keeping it in the family for the next 523 years.

Let’s see how I did. . .

Craigslist Mirror

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

Not too trendy, I could paint the frame, definitely has held its resale value.

The only downside to this piece is that I cannot fit it anywhere else in the house,

but I would definitely do this again!

Sleigh Bed

  4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture

The flourish of detail on the headboard may date itself.

I technically could paint or reupholster this bed, but I don’t think I could stomach it.

As far as the price. . .this was before my days of thrifting and Craigslist deals, so I just tried to get really good sales. It was 75% off, but I still paid $1600! That price feels borderline ridiculous to me now.

It can go a few places in the master bedroom, the room is huge.

So, my conclusion is that I would have looked into getting this second hand to get a better deal. But, it is phenomenal quality and even when I do shop Craigslist my goal is to save at least 60% off retail, which I did in this case.

Grandparents’ Piano

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

Simple lines, can be dressed up with decor.

Definitely would be Ok with painting.

Price- well, free. But, the sentimental value is very high.

It could go two or three places in the house. And technically that piano was given to my twin brother, its possible I could give it back to him. But, I’m borrowing it indefinitely. You know how that goes!

Yes, I would do this again.

Sewing Cabinet

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

Basic, classic design.

Can be painted and the hardware replaced.

No cost to myself, but is extremely functional and sentimental.

Right now it can only go one place and still work for its intended purpose. Eventually, when we build on to the house, it can go in the guest room, too.

Yes, I would do this again.

Now go have fun, and remember, no decorating decision is the end of the world!

For more thoughts on long term decorating, visit these beautiful blogs!

My Sunset Avenue

Gratefully Vintage

The White Farmhouse

Home and Hydrangeas

Honey and Hydrangea

Little Vintage Nest

Indigo and Honey

4 Questions to Ask Before Decorating with Furniture by She Holds Dearly

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16 Comments

  1. January 30, 2016 / 6:46 PM

    Sarah, you’ve done it again! You may be new to blogging but you’re clearly not new to making beautifuul spaces. Your home feels so special and thought about. I loved your tips and am saving this for the future! Thanks so much for playing along with us, it was a joy to get to know you and your blog.

    -Brittany

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 31, 2016 / 9:37 AM

      Brittany, thank you for your kind words, they mean so much to me. Thank you, as well, for organizing the blog hop and for reaching out to me, I’m so happy to have met you!
      Blessings!

  2. January 31, 2016 / 4:08 AM

    I LOVE all the pieces you shared! Your home is so beautiful!!! I loved your tips too and won’t forget them! It has been fun to be on this blog hop with you & to have discovered your beautiful blog!
    ~ love, Kellie

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 31, 2016 / 9:35 AM

      Kellie, thank you so much, you are a treasure and I adore you blog, as well!!

  3. Morgan Ford
    January 31, 2016 / 6:09 AM

    Wow so beautiful as always Sarah. I love this post and the photos are stunning. So happy to have “met” you and look forward to whatever else you dream up 🙂 Annnddd that mirror…….. !

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 31, 2016 / 9:34 AM

      Oh, Morgan, you are such an encouragement to me! Thank you for always being so supportive and wonderful.
      xo

  4. January 31, 2016 / 11:34 AM

    What a great article! I believe everyone can relate! Your sewing corner is reminiscent of many of my sewing set-ups over the years.

    I have a post, yet to be published, about the different ways I have put one of our armoires to use…

    💖

    Melissa from HeyGirlfriend.Net

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 31, 2016 / 1:20 PM

      We do what we have to with our sewing set ups, don’t we?! I’m working on slipcovers today and my kitchen is a full blown sewing room. I can’t wait to read your post, I know it will be fabulous!

  5. January 31, 2016 / 2:42 PM

    Wow!!! This was soooo good, Sarah! That piano gives me life! You’ve incredible taste and memorable pieces!

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 31, 2016 / 3:39 PM

      Keila, what a sweet heart you are! Thank you for taking the time to read this post and leave me little note. Everything you have said means so much to me.
      xo

  6. January 31, 2016 / 2:58 PM

    So good! And your photos are amazing! I pinned a few of them. 🙂

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      February 1, 2016 / 9:51 AM

      Thank you so much, my Dear! You are such a good friend to me.

  7. January 31, 2016 / 4:04 PM

    Had to smile when I opened this post and saw your sleigh bed. We purchased one as well and now that we’re renovating our master bedroom it has been the topic of discussion this weekend as to where we will be placing it in the room. I purchased a chandelier as well and since we don’t want to relocate the electrical box and repair the ceiling, we somehow have to get everything to line up. Hope I’ll still be happy with our purchases too! (P.S. Wish I had a landing so I could get a large mirror like yours – stunning!)

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      February 1, 2016 / 9:58 AM

      Julie, your bedroom sounds divine, I would love to see pics on Instagram! As for the chandelier, I’m a big believer in chandeliers being off center with the decor, if that made you feel any better.

      Thanks for stopping by, it was so fun to see your comment!

  8. February 1, 2016 / 2:01 PM

    Sarah! This post was really great! Helpful and beautiful! I love that bed❤️❤️❤️ So happy to have met you!

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      February 4, 2016 / 7:19 AM

      Thank you so much, Jessica! It was wonderful to me you, too. I’m so glad you found the post to be helpful.

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