Reclaimed vs. Salvaged Wood

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Reclaimed and salvaged are terms that are often used interchangeably when referring to reusing wood.  The truth is they are not the same thing but they do serve a similar purpose.  Reclaimed wood is wood that has been used previously in the construction of buildings. Old barns are a common source of reclaimed wood as are old warehouses, docks, homes and municipal buildings. These structures must be carefully dismantled when intended for reuse.  The wood is then cut up or re-shaped to be used in a new way.  Old flooring becomes a coffee table.  An old support beam becomes a fireplace mantel.  The simple act of re-using the wood is what defines it as ‘reclaimed. There are several reasons for choosing reclaimed wood as a building material.  Often hundreds of years old and exposed to the elements, reclaimed wood has a beautiful unique weathered patina.  It is an extremely stable wood having been air-dried for many years.  People also often like the stories behind reclaimed wood.  Knowing it came from a family barn or a historic building only makes it more interesting.

shutterstock_72186736Unlike reclaimed wood, salvaged wood has not been previously cut into lumber or used for construction. The wood is typically found in its natural state. It could be from trees that are dead, have fallen or need to be removed for some reason.  Trees are often removed to build a highway or new housing. Like reclaimed wood, salvaged wood has a lot of character. The color is often much deeper.  It may have intricate grain patterns, knots and worm tracks.  Centuries of aging causes a wide range of beautiful qualities that just cannot be found in younger tree growth.

In both cases, reclaimed and salvaged wood is ‘old growth’. Since the wood came from old growth forests it is harder, denser and has more character than new growth wood.  They also share the same benefits. Both are extremely durable and will can last for generations.  The wood can be re-finished, converted and re-used in many different ways. Best of all, both prevent new trees from being cut down.

Today there is much interest in using reclaimed and salvaged wood in home renovations and decor.  It is being used as hardwood floors, to make furniture, create feature walls and art. pallet-coffee-tableThe costs for each varies considerably. Reclaimed wood is often less expensive traditional lumber.  Salvaged wood, however can be more expensive.  It must be collected, transported, milled, and is often re-finished before it’s re-sold.  There is also a lot of waste that doesn’t happen with younger woods. Up to 75% of a tree that was fallen or salvaged is often unusable.

Although different, it really doesn’t matter whether you use reclaimed or salvaged wood. Each offers a one-of-a-kind building material.  Both benefit the environment and reduce what goes in a landfill.  The next time you shop for furniture or plan a woodworking project, consider using reclaimed or salvaged wood. Reusing and recycling are trends that are here to stay.

 

 

 

 

 

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Through the eyes of a window

There was an old window, this window lived in Granby, Colorado.Through the eyes of a windowFor 30 years Window enjoyed sunshine and mountain views by day and billions of twinkling lights among the dark sky at night.  One sunny morning Window was suddenly stripped of the life he knew. He was thrown in the back of a truck and headed to Denver, Colorado. In Denver, Window was on the brink of death, ready to be tossed in a giant brown metal container when suddenly a soft voice struck Window.

“Excuse me, what are doing with that window?” the soft voice asks.

“Why I’m throwing this old thing away” a deep and raspy voice responds.

“Is it broken?”

“No, I just installed new windows for a fella in Granby. These here were custom built in the 80’s.”

“Well let me take those off your hands, I can give him a new life.”

Found an old window

…And Window’s new life journey began. 

Liquid Gold cleans an old window  Repurposing a window

Window was pampered with a cloth smelling of sweet almond and decorated with mini clothes pins and string.

Materials

Uniquely salvaged window, mini clothes pins, yarn/hemp/string, photos of anything you love printed in BW or Sepia (with a white border or glued to scrapbook paper), spray paint.

Miniclips_window  Liquid Gold photos used for repurposed window

Window now enjoys the friendly voices and soft aroma of freshly brewed coffee at the Scott’s Liquid Gold office. And the Liquid Gold team enjoys the company of Window’s vintage accent.

Repurposed Window

 Adopt a window today! There’s one waiting to display your favorite family memories!  Similar re-purposed multi-photo frame ideas found here.

Repurposing a window

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Recreating French Vintage

Hello fellow country vintage lovers! I’m here today to share some wonderful resources and ideas for recreating a French, country, and vintage piece for your home. Read

First, find something old, ugly or boring to work with! I came across this hideous magazine rack with a leopard print-like design at Goodwill, immediately knowing it was the perfect piece.

See hideous!Magazine Holder

After much sanding, it was still very “spotted” I chose a dark stain to re-stain two areas on the rack that I had intentions for a reverse stencil (find great instructions here). I didn’t want the spotting coming through but rather a nice, clean dark wood. This worked out well, the wood took to the stain great!

R-purposed

Placing vinyl letters “READ” over the newly stained spots (I gave the stain 2-3hrs before placing vinyl letters and it needed more time but still worked for me), I then sprayed the rest with an off white spray paint.Read

Notice here – there’s nothing vintage about it, I wasn’t pleased. It looks nice and could have stayed as is. But I wanted vintage! This is when I found It’s Just Me Blog and followed her amazing guidelines for re-creating a French vintage appeal rather easily.

I created the rustic look (localized sanding and sporadic hammer marks) before creating the vintage “print” idea found on the blog. I would suggest doing this the other way around. If you make a mistake while doing the “print” it will be much easier to cover during the “create rustic” process.

Read

I also chose to create the French appeal in two locations, both being fairly small. I wouldn’t recommend this technique of “French vintage print” on anything smaller than this project here, the technique is amazing but indeed somewhat tedious with the smaller writings and lines. 

French Vintage

I chose to make the finished product a place for books rather than magazines. I love how the vintage and rustic turned out as well as the French lettering! The description on It’s Just Me Blog is fabulous and easy to follow. When you’re first reading through – it may sound lengthy but it’s quite simple once you get started.

Don’t forget the Liquid Gold once your project is complete and fully dry! Liquid Gold will ensure the preservative of your beautiful masterpiece!

Read

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Thanks for reading!

Do-It-Yourself Nesting Box

Summer is near, time to enjoy and embrace the natural world! Having a bird house or nesting box is a significant way to create a mutual relationship with nature. bird houseAs we are aware, humans have been increasingly building concrete jungle environments which in turn, is pushing out other species habitats.  By building an alternative and (nearly) natural environment for birds to nest, we are at least making an attempt to co-habitat.

pallet

pallet & pieces

Construction

Construction

Using an old pallet, a little man power, and a few power tools we built this amazing bird house! Once again, pallets are a booger to work with. We were able to get this one apart with a pry-bar and hammer, always use gloves when working with pallets! There is generally an excess of nails, most of which are rusty. After pulling off the best pieces, they were sanded (80 grit) to make the wood slightly safer to work with.

The pieces were cut according to the bird house plan used then glued and nailed appropriately.

I chose not to paint the roof, allowing Scott’s Liquid Gold Cleaner & Preservative to work its magic.

Before & After

Before & After

Nesting boxes have many positive purposes:

1. Attract natural pollinators to your garden.

2. Think wake up call – sweet chirping or obnoxious alarm clock?

3. Create a mutual relationship & co-habitat with the birds of your community. 

4. And well, birds are just fun to watch! Why do you want a bird house in your yard?

bird house

Nesting boxes generally attract birds like wrens, blue birds, chickadees, titmice, wood ducks and wood peckers. Check out choosing the right bird house for your backyard! Thanks Anthony for great instructions!

This post and project were created by our Intern, Amber Lesser. Amber is an Environmental Studies student at the University of Colorado. Thanks Amber!

From Nothing to Something!

A Do-It-Yourself log cabin style coat rack – made from a pallet!

Pallet

The Beginning!

Reusing old items is not always appealing, but re-purposing them can be very enjoyable and rewarding! I gathered some random materials around the office and home; a pallet, planters, random metals objects (hooks), and a few tools to create my very own cozy coat rack.

There is no doubt about it, pallets are not the easiest to work with but after some demolition work, I began sanding away. To create an even greater rustic look I used an old bike chain and hammer to dent the wood more. Then, I used a damp cloth to clean off the excess dirt and wiped it down with Scott’s Liquid Gold Wood Wash.

Rack in Progress

Making it Happen

Soon, I had a great product to begin staining. While letting the stain set in, I painted the little random objects to use as hooks and baskets. I gathered some nuts and bolts to tighten the pallet and attached the other materials (wood glue and clamps would have worked as well).

Once the rack was dry, it was quite dull so I used Scott’s Liquid Gold Wood Cleaner and Preservative to moisturize and shine my new coat rack and old pallet.

Job 1

The Finished Beauty!

If you want to start a project like this, make sure to look around your house you may be quite surprised at what you find! This fun project is a great way to spruce up your house while keeping those extra ‘things’ out of landfills.

This post and project were created by our Intern, Amber Lesser.  Amber is an Environmental Studies student at the University of Colorado.  Thanks Amber!