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How to Use Your Inherited or Hand-me-down Furniture

Free furniture? Great! Unless…it totally clashes with the rest of your stuff. Here's how to make it work.

Photo: Benjamin Moore & Co.

You've just inherited a piece you've had a soft spot for since forever, but you're crushed to find that the traditional piece doesn't fit into your home's contemporary decor...Or does it? With a few touch-ups, you can keep both the piece and your style intact.

  • Redo: Refinish, repaint, reupholster, re-anything to make your inherited piece fit in with your current interior decor style. This way, you can hold onto Grandma's favorite loveseat…without Grandma's favorite (loud) upholstery.
  • Repurpose: Maybe that old china hutch with glass doors doesn't look right for dishes in your dining room, but what about storing towels in the bathroom? Sometimes, the exact same piece that looks so wrong in the room it “belongs” in can add a whole new dimension to a room you'd never expect.
  • Rethink: Okay, maybe it's time to switch from a modern style of decor to something a little more eclectic. Embrace that dark wood dining room table, and surround it with the chairs you already own, a clean flat rug, and white dishes.

Nestpert: Minnesota designer Jay Nuhring, author of the blog "Loving What You Have."

Get more inspiration by visiting our gallery.

-- The Nest Editors

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