A Life Worth Binge Watching

S3 E2 Marketplace Makeover

Every now and then I get the itch to do some redecorating in my house. The only problem is when you need to replace a lot of things, it can cost a lot of money! Luckily I have found my new best friend…Facebook Marketplace. Let me tell you about all of the amazing deals I have found. I’ve been in my house a few years now and I’ve never really done anything with my back porch. It was just kind of a hodgepodge of a few chairs, an old grill and some odds and ends. I decided to get it screened in to start my renovation. Once the porch actually looked like a room, I had more inspiration to make it feel like an actual living space. I have always wanted one of those cozy daybed swings but man, can they be expensive. I was pricing them online and was seeing prices of no less than $1500 and that was for just the frame. I decided to check on Marketplace to see if I could happen to find something a few hundred dollars less. To my utter delight, I found a brand new, hand-crafted one for $150. At first I thought, there’s no way…it’s got to be a typo or a scam. I drove to St Augustine to pick it up and sure enough it was perfect and even included some sturdy rope for hanging. I ordered some special hardware off of Amazon for about $8 that attached to the ceiling to anchor the swing. Then, I bought a few pillows from TJ Maxx and voilà, I have a perfect relaxation area on my porch.  I felt like I was on an episode of Fixer Upper. Watch out Joanna Gaines, here I come!  

Now that one side of the porch was nice and homey, I had to do something with the other side. I really wanted an L-shaped couch to add more seating for when I entertain.  Those things are also silly expensive. Once again, I pulled up my handy-dandy Marketplace page and found a barely used, L-shaped outdoor couch for $300. The ones I had been looking at online that were smaller were $2000 full price. I looked a little further and found a cute orange, metal plant stand to use as a side table. I added a few accessories and my back porch was complete!

At this point, I was having so much fun with my treasure hunt that I decided to spruce up a few other parts of my house.

My next project was my bar area. I have really been trying to find ways to incorporate my newly found love of bourbon into a little bourbon bar within my dining room. I have a nice collection of bourbon started, but I needed more storage and a little sitting area. Lucky for me, I found a Buffalo Trace bourbon barrel and some adorable stools with cow-print cushions to use as a little bistro table set. I was able to find a great barrel lid shelf to store some of my collection above it.

I was having way too much fun at this point!  I could not believe the cool things that I acquired.  They always say someone’s trash is someone’s treasure right?  Well, the things I found were by no means trash, and they most definitely became my treasures. The last spot I decided to spice up was in my office. I recently gave my daughter a few things when she moved to her first apartment at college, so my office was a little sparse. This is still a work in progress, but I did at least find a few things to get the ball rolling.

I am going with a cowboy theme (imagine that), and my goal is to create a wall of cowboy hats behind my desk. So far, I have been able to find about four antique, high-end brand hats for under $20 a piece. I will have to share a picture when that is complete on my FB page.  I also really wanted a rustic leather chair for the corner of my office and a cowhide rug under my desk. I have searched high and low for just the right cowhide but again they were $200 and above. I found just the perfect color and pattern for $80 on Marketplace, of course!  My latest and favorite find was the coolest rustic, leather recliner originally from Haverty’s Furniture that sold for $3000 new.  How much did I pay for it you might ask? Zero. Zilch. Nothing. It was free!

There are lots of items listed for free, which is why exploring deals on Marketplace has become one of my favorite hobbies! Not only have I found great items there, I have sold a ton of things too.  I will share a couple of suggestions, however. You have to check every day if you’re looking for something specific. Always browse the local posts if you want something close by to pick up because many times items are shipping only. Also, always meet at a public place whether you are buying or selling, and bring someone else along for safety reasons. Never send money before you receive your item. So far, I have been fortunate and haven’t had a single problem with my purchases.  I’ve actually met some really nice people in the process. So what are you waiting for?

If you’re looking to redo a section of your house, have some fun and go on your own Marketplace search. It’s so much more entertaining and practical than buying things full price. For me, I find it extremely rewarding!  Be sure to let me know if you find something unique by posting on my Facebook page! Happy hunting!

Melodye Lewis is a Friday columnist for Flagler News Weekly, inspiring women everywhere to follow their dreams of adventure.

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