At some point in each of our lives, each of us will inherit a few pieces of furniture or home décor from a relative or friend. Most of the time, someone has passed or maybe they are just downsizing or simply redecorating. It is wonderful to get that beautiful piece from a well-loved grandparent or other family member, but what happens when the piece is not so wonderful or downright ugly?
The things that people give us can be a blessing when we love the person, who gave it to us, or we love the piece that we received. This situation can quickly become a tedious situation when we really don’t like what we ended up with or maybe there is some bad memory associated with the person or item. I feel that the pieces we have in our homes, whether it be furniture or an accessory, become part of ourselves as our environments can have such a lasting impact on who we are as people. I still fondly remember some of the décor items my mother had in her house while I was growing up in the ‘80’s. I get nostalgic when I see a green glass chicken in an antique store! Although, sometimes memories can haunt us and it can really affect how we feel about a piece from that time period in our lives. If you are faced with an inherited piece that may not be your cup of tea here are some solutions that may work for you:
1. Find another relative or friend to pass it on to. You’ll be amazed at how many close friends and relatives get overlooked when someone passes away. This could be a great opportunity to build connections with a loved one’s friends or distant family by passing on a piece to them.
2. Donate the piece in memory of your loved one to a church or needy pre-school or other organization in your area.
3. Sell the piece and give the proceeds to a charity in honor of the person who gave or bequeathed it to you.
4. Refinish, repaint, re-use. Give the piece new life by making it look entirely different or using it in a completely different way. Turn a gaudy jewelry piece into decorative napkin rings or Christmas ornaments. Repaint a piece of furniture into a more modern color scheme. You get the idea.
5. Simply put it in storage to save for your children, grandchildren or special loved ones.
This list is by no means an exhaustive list, but are hopefully helpful ideas to a sticky situation. Our homes should reflect who we are and what we love. At no time, should we have things inside our home that we don’t love just to make someone else happy. With a little creativity, you can turn your inherited pieces into something you enjoy or as a tool to enrich someone else’s life. Happy Designing!