Upcycled Projects Benefit Habitat Auction

Upcycled projects and handmade wooden décor were hot sellers at this year’s Destination Design – an annual fundraiser for the Habitat for Humanity of the Mid-Ohio Valley. Local businesses in the Parkersburg, WV, area donated home furnishings and décor items that were auctioned in the organization’s largest fundraiser of the year, held April 8 at the Grand Pointe Conference Center in Vienna, WV.

Woodcraft Magazine donated a wall organizerthat will be featured in their June/July issue. The magazine article features complete instructions for customizing and building your own organizer with corkboard, chalkboard or a mirror.

Steven Roberts, manager of The Rustic House in Vienna, WV, used scrap wood and a light stain to create this neat primitive clock, which sold for more than $200.

Joshua Woodard of Parkersburg donated two repurposed items for the auction – a secretary with a drawer and a trunk made into a desk.

“The secretary desk was actually headed for the garbage dump. It was handmade many years ago, but I’m not sure how old it was,” shared Josh. “My grandfather had it and gave it to my uncle. It was in bad shape. It was missing the back piece and front door and had a broken leg. My dad and I replaced the missing pieces and repaired the leg, then we stripped and stained it.” Josh painted the front door with chalkboard paint to turn it into a clever message center.

The repurposed trunk was an item that Josh found at the Habitat ReStore. “I had seen people repurpose trunks before, but usually into mini bars. I saw an IKEA desk that was made to look like an old trunk so I thought why not use a real trunk?” pondered Josh.

The ReStore trunk had shelves and drawers for clothes at one time, so it kind of lent itself to the same configuration, said Josh. “We just replaced the shelves and added a larger desktop. It actually still could be closed up and stored to save space too.”

Watch Josh and his father in this time-lapse video that captures the whole process of creating this fun project.

Donna Linsell and her daughter-in-law, Sarah Metz, of Mineral Wells, WV, like to “create conversation pieces” with their business called Repurposed and Refinished. Said Donna, “We find old damaged furniture, then create something functional or beautiful.”

The ladies submitted three items for the auction, which raised nearly $600 in total – two Lego tables and a doggie bed (complete with a basket of snacks from Pet Supplies Plus). All three items were repurposed from old end tables. “They are out-of-date and most people would burn or trash them. We saved them from the landfill and gave them purpose again!” Donna said.

Our friends from Open Hands Gallery in Williamstown, WV, provided several items for the fundraiser. The crew used some old windows, frets, baseboard and part of a bannister out of an 1870s house to create the white display case.

The ladder shelf was fashioned using a vintage door, removing the panels and securing them as repurposed display shelves. New 2x4s give the unit support. “This is actually a nice and easy project to make, and not very costly,” Open Hands director Mark McCullough said.  Mark stated that they have created similar shelves with the top panel left out and adding vintage leaded glass with a light behind it.

The funky Dr. Seuss stand, created in honor of Seuss Day, incorporated tongue-and-groove flooring from a 1900s house as the shelf planks, and espresso stained moldings. Mark said a larger version of this was just created in the Open Hands workshop.

The repurposed/handmade crow is quite a conversation piece. It is made from old files, blades, pliers and “just about anything you’d find in a garage” welded together. The Open Hands team’s hard work brought in $465 for the charity.

The 2016 Destination Design event netted nearly $32,000 from both silent and live auctions, up from $25,000 in 2015. Proceeds from the auction will assist the Habitat for Humanity of the Mid-Ohio Valley in completing five or six new homes in the next year. Since the entire 2016 event was sponsored, every dime raised will help build Habitat homes!

Upcycling or repurposing old objects bound for the dump into something useful again is a great way reduce landfill waste and breathe new life into nostalgic items. In this case, it’s also an excellent way to raise funds for a favorite charity! Thanks to all the artists who lent their time and talents to this great cause.

We hope you’ll be inspired!

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