Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Book Report: Home From the Hardware Store

(via Amazon)

Since Monday, many bloggers who attended the ALT Summit have started sharing some of their sage advice, much of which is directed to newbie bloggers like myself. Their guidance has been very thought-provoking, and got me thinking about ways in which I can improve this lil' ol' blog and, in turn, create more enjoyable content for my readers.

That said, I am starting a new feature here on Meet Me in Philadelphia called "Book Report," where I share a bit about a new design-related book I've discovered. I hope you enjoy this new element of this blog!

First up? Home from the Hardware Store (2010) by Kathleen Hackett and Stephen Antonson.

This book's premise, that unique additions to the home can be found in your local Home Depot/Lowe's/Ace Hardware, defies convention in a lot of ways. Instead of poring over Ballard Design's latest selections, the authors suggest that a little ingenuity and sweat equity can produce unique (and often cheaper) home decor.

One of my favorite projects inside?
This folding screen is comprised of luan bifold doors and brass tacks--can you believe it?
And you know it's a good project when it's featured in Elle Decor!
(via Elle Decor)
Really thoughtful and out-of-the-box idea are included in the book, such as industrial bolt candlesticks:
(via DIY Life)
These bolt candlesticks were spray painted a glossy white, while the metallic striped wallpaper is really just HVAC foil:
(via The Chicago Tribune)
How about a whimsical wall organizer made of plastic piping?:
(via Country Living)
A coffee table made of pipe fittings and a lamp made of electrical pipe:
(via Home Improvement Ninja--what a funny name!)

Instructions to create these hardware-sourced products are easy to follow and the photographs are beautiful, light, and modern.

All in all, I highly recommend this book to those with a willingness to add the unconventional to their homes. No, I can't imagine everyone running out to their local hardware store to buy steel pipe fittings for a coffee table base; but I do think the original ideas presented in the book push even the most traditional among us to think "outside the box."

The book itself, available for little more than $15 on Amazon, is a great addition to the home decor library.

Hope you all enjoyed my first entry in the "Book Report" feature!

If there's something you'd like to know about the book or something you'd like to see on Meet Me in Philadelphia, be sure to post a comment or email me!


  1. Ashley, let me say that you have a lovely blog! Keep writing! I just became your 10th follower... my lucky number! I'm looking forward to many future "book reports!"

  2. What a fun new feature! Love those bi-folds in the screen - genius!

  3. Hi! Thanks for the comment!

    I too am soaking in all the Alt posts. This looks like a great new series.

  4. Great post idea! So much too learn with this blogging business. I feel like I am in the freshman class, looking up to all the seniors like they are all cooler than me:)

    Amy R.

  5. Neeto book! I love getting stuff at Lowes, my dad and I walk around and explains what all the things are for, and I just think about stuff I can make with it. We are installing a rose trellis made of copper tubing this spring!

  6. Great feature idea!

    Thanks so much for stopping by La Lamp Shade!


    If the Lamp Shade Fits

  7. Your blog is new but fantastic! Looking forward to following along - thanks for stopping by!

  8. Thank you, everyone! Mary Ellen--you are too sweet, thank you!

  9. Ashley, great report - people's creativity wows me sometimes! A table made out of pipe fitting!! the series....keep it coming!

  10. How I love that silver striped wall paper!!!Incredible post!

  11. ahh, people can be so brilliant.

  12. Thanks for sharing this book and these ideas. Too clever!

  13. Keep up the fantastic piece of work, I read few articles on this web site and I believe that your blog is really interesting and has got lots of good information. pvc pipe connectors


I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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