project guest room: scavenging
It is a blessing, I say, that we do not all share the same taste in decor, or that our tastes never change with time. The waste created by various, varying preference is formidable, it’s true. But there is something wonderful about the opportunity for reclamation, reuse, and the chance a bedside table or bathroom sink has to find itself the object of a second love affair.
When Bill and I scavenge, we spend the afternoon in Berkeley and we go, always in this order, to Omega (true architectural salvage, much shipped from the east coast and beyond) Omega 2 (ditto, but cheaper), and Urban Ore (actual landfill salvage. It’s great, cheap, full of treasures and it smells terrible.)
Visiting these places is a little surreal sometimes, because it’s basically our culture’s architectural waste that’s been sorted, catalogued and put back on display. So you wander into a whole shipping car lit from above with milk glass globe lights, across a bathtub full of doorknobs, or into five long double rows of doors, each of which someone disliked enough to remove and throw away. Full light, half light, two panel, three panel, pocket, Dutch, French, sliding, screened, pre-framed.
Our crap room now has a beautiful, ten light antique door. Old, old, old, and it has green crayon all over the bottom three feet. Elsewhere in the room, I’m cooking up some plan or other to hang curtains with pipe, iron rings which spent a previous life doing who knows what, and porcelain towel brackets. All said and done, you will not find our crap room in the pages of Better Homes and Gardens, but that’s perfect, as it’s the reason all of this perfect windfall became waste for us to find in the first place.