A junker's inspiration

Being a creative junker, I'm always on the lookout for inspiration...and how I can tweak what I see...to fit both my style and my budget.

Last week I received the latest Ballard Designs catalog in the mail...when I was done flipping through it, I did a double-take on the back cover...

Those framed vintage hotel labels looked vaguely familiar...I think I have some of those labels...and then I looked at the price...$79!  And these weren't originals...they were reproductions...I was on the hunt...

Now, I like Ballard Designs...I've bought my share of goods from them over the years...but these framed labels just seemed ripe for a makeover...at a junker's price...

I found my labels...bought many years ago...but still found them online at Laughing Elephant...package of 20 for $8.95

I hunted through my stash of frames...all gleaned from either Goodwill or yard sales...never paid more than $2...the catalog description for the framed Hotel Palais D'Orsay label was an 11" square...I thought this 9" square came pretty close...and I liked the gold peeking out from the black...

I found two more black frames that I would use to make a trio...trimmed three pieces of mat board, mounted the labels, cleaned up the glass...and hung them on the wall...

Here's the comparison -
Ballard Designs framed hotel label, $79 each

Junker's makeover, $3 each 

I think this turned out well...

And while I would never advocate to copy original art, this is merely wall decor...and a more resourceful use of reproduction materials.  I'm sure the frames from Ballard Designs are higher quality...but on my junker's budget, my trio suits me just fine... 

Linking up to Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors...the  theme is vintage - perfect for inspiration!

Want some more budget decorating ideas?  I'm happy to report that my brass stencil lampshade is one of 10 DIY bedroom ideas highlighted on HGTV.com...click here for all the details...thanks HGTV.com!


  1. Great job and congrats on your lamp!!

  2. They look great! Such a simple, wonderful, shot of color on the wall...I love them! And you certainly can't beat the price!

  3. Amy! Congratulations on both the highlight on HGTV and your junker's makeover! You have proved again that one does not need to be rich to be surrounded by beautiful things.

  4. Oh....go ahead...show off!! (o:

    Cool "junk"....love it!!! So go ahead...list these on Etsy...they'd sell in a picker's moment!!

    Like the lead photo...another assignment?

  5. Turned out way better than well--love your junker's ethic! And televison? Wow! Wow! Wow!

  6. Smack! Did you just get the kiss I sent you? I just went to the Laughing Elephant site, LOVE IT! Thanks for that info...now onto your creative decorating solution, gonna copy it, though I have done something very similar myself with veggie crate labels. Don't you love knocking off a great look for less?
    Will be following you, found you from FJI, Saturday Night Special.

  7. thanks suzieQ...glad that I inspired you! I've used fruit crate label reproductions to the same effect too...glad you will be following...

    and to Jane and Jill - always appreciate your support and comments - for some odd reason, Blogger is not sending comments to my email box so I don't have a quick way to respond back to everyone! I hope that gets fixed soon...

  8. I love what you've done here, Amy. I did something similar with some fruit crate labels I bought at an antique mall for $3 a piece. :)

    1. thanks Nancy...there really could be so many variations on this theme...maybe I'll do some exploring of the possibilities...

  9. Gotta love those catalogs that give us inspiration...great job on yours!!

    1. thanks Deanna...I am a catalog junkie - mostly for the inspiration!


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