Metal features ~ You just can’t buy this stuff anywhere

Metal. Anyone else love this stuff?

I’ll admit, my taste in decorating has a unique twist to it. Which forces me to create rather than buy. Because what’s circling in my head simply doesn’t exsist on a shelf anywhere in many cases.

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And the stairway spindles are the perfect example. I made my own metal spindles for the new staircase because you simply can’t buy what was living inside my head and the look I desired to have. The rustic metal is really bringing out the other metal features in the room and that is why this works so well.

What other unique metal features you ask?

The kitchen hardware on the cabinets. I freaked when I found these and had no idea how perfect they would tie in with everything later. Complete fluke, but it was all about trusting your gut and choosing something that spoke back to you. They had an old world rustic and slighly funky feel to them. Little did I know they’d set the theme for the entire upstairs.

The metal topped island. Designed by myself, fabricated by my buddy Dan, it’s not only a workhorse, it’s beautiful!  The sides are softly curved, edges with large radius corners, which really minimizes the size visually. It’s a very large island that you can sit at from both sides, but fits perfectly smack dab in the middle of the open floor plan upstairs. No one stocks stuff like this.

The fireplace encosure I had custom fabricated also by Dan. (this guy’s kinda good but I’m not far behind… muaha..) I didn’t desire the exsisting square opening so this plate was fabricated to fit, complete with slide out pins so I can change to a gas stove at a later date if I wish. But if that means losing my beautiful riveted metal plate, I’ll stay with wood, thank-you!

And let’s so not forget the metal corbels holding up the fireplace mantel. Ohhhh yeah. And, the only reason I didn’t fabricate these items myself is because there were deadlines galore at the time. The renos were in high gear and I was busy gutting my kitchen, nevermind creating.

So, with those kinds of deadlines gone, I’m back to dreaming and creating with guidance again. And it’s a very good place to be!

Some days I think the only one that really gets me is my dog Jenna. I mean, who else hangs around me like a shadow, listens to my mumblings and watches me create and never rebuttles a thing I do? You rock, Jenna. Total support system here.  And just for that, I’m gonna make something metal just for you too one day!


If  ready made decorating just isn’t ringing your bell any longer and you’re striving to create something that isn’t sold anywhere else, create it and make it uniquely yours. This stuff has danced in my head for way too long. It needs to be fabricated and by golly, the more I learn, the more I can and will do! Bring on the power tools!

Be unique, be yourself, and continue to dream and create. Start small with those old doors and windows and work yourself up as you get familiar with tools. And by all means, buy yourself some great tools so you CAN create! (I’ll do a post on my favorite tools soon!)

I’m totally ruined. I can’t walk in a store with retail stuff any longer. I tsk at the prices, then go to the nearest thrift, pick up my newest treasure and go home and play and make that trinket look like a million bucks. I’m now stocking for those other than myself so I can build up some unique pieces when the need arrives.

(Storage?!? What storage? But that’s another story.)

Anyone else out there like me? Do you have this crazy stuff circling around in your head that you have to get out? Or is it really only Jenna and I in this together after all?!?

P.S. Just WAIT until you see what I do with my shower surround… ho ho hooooo….

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  1. Oh yea, I have this crazy stuff circling around my brain too- and I have a companion who is always two steps away. I’m not sure he gets my crazy, but he doesn’t mind it. As long as I take time to scratch his belly every now and then.

  2. Donna these are all beautiful and SO COOL… They look like they belong in a magazine. You are so talented and my favorite part… You do almost all of it yourself! Way to go!!
    ~Whitney

  3. Hi Donna! We just love your philosophy! We too are uninterested in the commercial, cookie cutter pieces! We will sometimes buy them (if the price is right) but we bring them home and customize them before we display them! I have said it before and I’ll say it again….I LOVE that YOU use your own tools! We are learning as we go how to use different tools and it is such a rewarding journey!!! I can’t wait to read about all of your favorite tools! ~ Ashley

  4. Your not alone! I to have crazy ideas circling in my head:) Luckily my Hubby just does what I ask with no questions asked. I would like to redo my kitchen with metal counter tops:) Haven’t run that idea past Hubby yet, but I will! I can’t wait to see what you do with a tub surround, because quite frankly they are all ugly. I want something different too!:)

  5. I am amazed at the stuff that you create. And I can’t even tell you home much I adore your style.

    I am doing my best not to just COPY you! But I have to admit that the VERY first item I am looking for when I move to Texas is a vintage sign to use as a headboard.

    Some things are too good NOT to be copied!

  6. Autumn, our fur babies keep us sane, I swear. Aren’t they special?!? Through thick and thin, my animals love me back. 🙂 I remember renoing through a few dark nights to meet deadlines and my purring kittens or snoring dog warmed up my heart on the spot.

    Whitney, you so hit the nail on the head. My alltime fav part is DOING this stuff myself. Walking through Homesense just doesn’t do it for me any longer. I go to get inspired, but if I see giant scissors to hang on a wall, I’ll leave and try and find the real deal rather than a fake. Or better yet, just make it.

    Ashley, you so encouraged me to do that tool post. I’ll drag stuff out and start clicking pics. Tools is one of my alltime fav subjects. Ever!

    KarenSue, you are so right. Dan taught me tools when I started working for him parttime a couple years ago. And it was like fate set me free. One day he didn’t need my help and I was standing in the middle of my home with a TON to do with brand new tool skills. DANGEROUS. I started buying and using and I’ve never looked back. Most of you have husbands that can show you this stuff. I do not. (sole parent here) Drag them outside and make’m show you!!!

    Coleen, welcome to my little crazy corner of the world. That is exactly what I hope to do for many/all of you. Think outside that boring box and apply your own special twist to your stuff. Or better yet, just hire me and I’ll do it for you. LOL!! The only kind of marketing I feel I can do btw is local. You can’t computerize finds you do not have, ya know?

    Patti, your comment hit home. I DETEST typical tub surrounds. I have two options circling in my head for that project, depending on what I find. I want it to resemble rustic painted woodslats OR metal clad siding it. So far the metal is winning because it’s, well, waterproof. Reinventing the wheel can sure be tricky!

    Metal countertops, eh? VERY interesting! The metal will show cut marks but my island totally looks pretty cool with that going on. Metal tends to be cold too (but then so is granite). You can install heating wires underside to warm things up abit as an option.

    Lori, it’s an enormous compliment if you copy, did you know that? Thank-you! And copy away! Folks will either copy a good thing or hire someone to just do it for them. There’s no in between. If you have the eye for this kinda thing and can make it work, it is right for you! Beware.. I get some raised eyebrows in my bedroom from that sign. LOL!! But it is so fun. I giggle every evening I crawl into bed. That is what your place should be doing for you!

    Thanks gals, this was a fun topic!

    FJ Donna

  7. I love the hardware and metal island top, mainly because it looks custom & adds a different texture to the space. You’re so good! I can’t wait to see what you do when you get your brushes out. You let me know if ever you’re in PA and we’ll paint together…not sure when I’ll be in BC, but I’ll do the same. 🙂