The Heart of Reclaiming Vintage Beauty

More Than Upcycling

Upcycling is a recent buzz-word that is showing up all over the media, but what does it is really mean?  Google defines upcycling as “reusing discarded objects or material in such a way as to create a product of a higher quality or value than the original”.  While that definition may be technically correct, it doesn’t quite get to the heart of the matter of what we do at Rusted Arrow Mercantile.

You Need To Have Vision 

People walk by worn and forlorn furniture every day.  It takes someone with vision to see past the surface.  When we go out hunting for quality furniture pieces at antique shops, flea markets, and private sales, we have to see beyond what is and recognize what can be.  Having that vision is the first step in transforming other people’s past into unique, breathtaking treasures for our customers.

How many times have you browsed a quaint shop or walked through a street fair and found a gorgeous piece of furniture that looks like an improved version of that old dresser in your home?  Or stared amazed at what someone has done with a light fixture that matches one you threw away after it had hung in your dining room for 20 years?  It all starts with a little imagination!

The Talent to Transform 

Have you ever seen pictures of Pinterest fails?  (If not, Google that after you are done reading this article, it’s pretty funny!).  As creative souls who love to share our techniques in workshops, we applaud anyone who makes an effort to create something beautiful.  Yet, the reality is that without some instruction and/or a little talent a fun DIY project can get messy and even disappointing (ok, it can be a disaster, but we don’t want to be negative about this).

We have years of experience in revitalizing and painting furniture.  We know how to pick quality pieces and what paints work with metal, wood, glass, plastic, and other materials.  We understand the work it takes to prep vintage furniture and how to avoid damaging the pieces we work on. For example: will the piece need to be designed to be indoors or outdoors?  Each piece requires thought and planning.   It’s a lot of work and we love it.

The Heart of Reclaiming Vintage Beauty

And that really is the heart of it.  We believe that our pieces inspire and delight others because there is so much love in what we do.  When we go out sourcing vintage furniture for our store, we aren’t just looking with our eyes, we are feeling what these amazing pieces can become.  It’s exciting to know that by the time we are done, whatever we work on will be one-of-kind.  Everything we create is hand-crafted and when you take one of our pieces home, you know there isn’t anything exactly like it anywhere in the world.

We love the idea that with a bit of vision and special techniques, something that was easy to overlook can be given a second life.  An old dresser, a chair, a table, etc. can be salvaged and transformed into unique pieces of art that inspire joy and beautify the room they are in.  All the planning, sourcing, cleaning, and painting is all worth it when we see our customer’s faces light up as they find something “just perfect” for their home or office.  Maybe it’s been upcycled, maybe it’s just been loved.  You decide.