Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Why I Like Fixer-Uppers

Hey everyone! Have you ever fixed up something that is old or falling apart? 

I know I sure have! In fact, it seems to be the story of my life! Houses, apartments, myself ... ha ha! 

As I mentioned in my last post, my husband and I have been fixing up our eighties style cabin home in the woods after moving there last December. 

Well, if you have ever tried to fix up something that is run down, you know it is a TON of work! 

If you are like me, you start off with some great ideas, and feel inspired about how beautiful the end product is going to be. That was me! 

You feel like a miracle worker, knowing you will transform the house, or household item, or even person, into a stunning masterpiece. You can't wait! Yep, over here, I relate! 

But then ... not too soon after reality sets in. Unlike those H.G.T.V. shows I love to watch, it doesn't happen in an afternoon. 

You realize that it will cost a lot more than you thought. And that you don't really have the skills or tools that you need to finish the job. 

And you start to get discouraged. Maybe this house wasn't really worth buying, after all. Yep, that sounds like me! 

We get so discouraged, with all the work. With all of the ways we have failed to finish our project, and get unto other things. We want to quit. But when we don't, therein is the beauty .... 

When we persevere, and keep going, making something old new, something useless useful, we do see the other side and start to see the beauty again that we imagined when we started. 

This is what happened to me yesterday. I have been working like crazy on our master bedroom. It had no working closet space when we got there. It had a old bed left over from the previous owner. 

And because we moved, and were so busy working, it had TONS of boxes everywhere for the last seven months. Plus clothes, clothes, clothes everywhere from not having a closet. Overwhelming? You bet! Gross? Yes. 

So, I have been working on the bedroom. Feeling discouraged. My husband fixed the closet so it's functional. And I have been tackling all the clutter, the boxes. And wow, the beauty is starting to emerge. I see the loft attic room as we first saw it. 

And that, I realized last night, is why I actually enjoy the fix-up process. Whether houses, or a marriage, or even myself. 

Because you work for the beauty, with sweat and tears. It's not done for you, by someone else. It is yours. I love the creative process, the struggle that goes into making something old new again. 

It's that struggle that I live for. The creative struggle. And so, I realized, I don't buy things old, just because I can't afford the brand-new shiny things. I buy them because something in my soul longs for that process, that challenge. 

And I realized that that any beauty, in art, or design, or even ourselves, begins with doing some work. And it's worth it! 

How about you? Can you relate? Do you actually enjoy the process of making old into new? Tell us your story in the comments below. 

*Copyright 2014, Sharilee Swaity. All photos in this post are the creation of Sharilee Swaity. 

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  1. I couldn't fix something like that myself, but I have fixed up and repurposed furniture. I love old things--houses, cars, furniture, decor, clothing. I don't buy new things. Old stuff has a character and history. What a neat place you have! I would love to see pictures of the inside sometime.

  2. Great article, Sharilee.

  3. @Vicki, when I say "fix up," I mean mostly clean up and decorate. My husband has done my renovating along the way, though. I don't even know how to turn on a drill by myself! I agree with you about the character thing. Older stuff is interesting. And thanks for your comment about the place. I will post pics as soon as I can get it presentable! Have a wonderful night!


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