Friday, October 15, 2010


I love a good deal.  I relish in finding the 'find'.  And, I hate paying full price for just about anything, so be warned flea market and garage sale vendors!

This past summer, back home again in Indiana,  I was checking out the goodies at my local Goodwill store with nothing particular in mind.  Sometimes I think items there are overpriced.  Like the time I was  looking for a crock pot and found that I could get a brand new one at Walmart for the same price as a used one.   This particular day at Goodwill however, I came across two denim tab curtains. They were in like new condition and marked $2.50 each!   Two dollars and fifty cents each!  Really??  I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but I couldn't pass up the bargain and I grabbed them, furtively glancing around me to make sure no one was going to challenge me for my find.  Visions of women, tugging at them, pulling my hair and screaming, "I found them first", ran through my head as I quickly made my way to the cashier.

When I smugly left the parking lot with my steal of a deal on the front seat, it hit me,  "Oh yeah, take them to use at the house in Arizona", and I knew right away what I was going to do with them!

A little background would be appropriate here.  When my dad bought the Arizona house five years ago, this kitchen was filled with chickens.  Chickens on the wall paper, chickens above the cabinets, chickens on the stove burner covers, chickens on the dish towels.  And to make matters worse, there were these wooden apples the previous owner had screwed into the upper cabinets.  Now, I'm not opposed to chickens or apples, both are pretty country, but let me tell you, the chicken stuff was overkill and the apples were over nothing!  They made no sense to me with all the chicken stuff. 

I must also preface this description of the old kitchen decor, (for which I have no pictures to show you how bad it was, as I was concerned it might break my camera) that my dad HATES chickens.  As a teenager he had worked at his aunt's farm where she raised chickens to sell eggs.  He cleaned many a chicken house and ate way too many chickens that I suspect he probably had to behead himself.  To this day he refuses to eat chicken.

Needless to say, I immediately started purging the kitchen of all things chicken.  It took about two winters to get it all down, including the wallpaper and then I didn't have it all.   As I was cleaning out a cabinet last winter I found 4 tiny chicken plates stashed on the top shelf way in the back. 

I digress.  I began a journey to redecorate the kitchen to something more pleasing to dad and me.  Not really a hard decision......I'm in Arizona, in the desert, home of the last frontier of the rough and tumble Wild West.  

My biggest problem was what to do with the holes in the cabinets where the apples had been screwed?  I couldn't reuse the screw holes.  I couldn't fill and patch the holes because.....the cabinets are inexpensive board, covered with a wood look alike paper.  After much searching and shopping, I found some little rusty looking metal ornaments to start me off with the look I wanted!

I glued the cactus, suns and horses over the old screw holes.  To finish off the look, flat rocks from the yard were placed underneath the cactus!  

For window decor I used wooden poles for curtain rods, bandanas for curtains and  some rusty metal cactus tea towel holders to hang the rods from.  A little secret here, the wooden rods are actually tree stakes purchased for a few dollars at the local hardware.  The ends and edges were whittled down with a pocket knife to give a more rounded, rustic look. 

It was all quite nifty but somehow, the windows just didn't seem finished.  
And that's where the denim tab curtains come in.

You might want to stay tuned for my next post to see exactly what I did with them! 
I mean....after all, I don't want to give away all my bargain decorating secrets at one time, right!  


  1. Karen, Very clever how you overcame your challenges in the kitchen. I think the demin is going to finish it all. How exciting that it was a deal on top of it. I too love the thrill of the hunt. I have been restricting myself from going for a week or so. I think it is starting to hurt alittle. lol. I just have so many things that I have found and I need to work with what I have and stop bringing more in. It wasn't cuz I watched " horders " this time. lol. Just kidding. My home isn't like that but I am sure it is a slow process. haha
    Anyway, I look forward to more pictures. Have a great day.

  2. Wow, So creative with the bandanas. The denim curtains are going to look fabulous.

  3. I had to laugh at the goodwill - Isn't it the truth - around here they are sometimes more than new! Glad you didn't have to fight off a gaggle of women for your curtains!

    The denim tab tops will look perfect!

    Growing up my Mom made denim placemats with a pocket and inside the pocket was a bandana to use as a napkin - just thought of them again!


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