the best dumpster dive of the YEAR!!!!!
I have been a dumpster diver/recycler for as long as I can remember. I search junk stores and yard sales and antique stores for things to make into 'something more'. My gorgeous studio desk is a dumpster find that I totally rebuilt and painted and decoupaged and now it is a treasure to hand down to a dear one.
Today, after a long day I decided to empty my studio trash as it fills up pretty regularly from all my work in here. Out at the dumpster I spied not one but two old-fashioned crystal chandeliers absolutely loaded with crystals. Who would throw these out???? The wiring and fixtures were obviously shot, and the metal was corroded, but the crystals!
I debated for about a second and a half and began to gather as many of the crystals as I could without tools. Some were very firmly attached and some could be harvested quite easily. I filled one jeans pocket so full that my pants threatened to fall down, and I held a huge clutch of crystals and crystal beads in my left hand. Back to the apartment to dump my cache and then back out with pliers and a bag to rescue all the rest of the crystal.
By the time I was done I had a bag filled with more than five pounds of crystals and crystal beads that can be used in Artsy Mirrors and mixed media pieces. Hundreds of dollars worth of crystals. The last time I bought chandelier crystals, about 7 years ago in a junk shop in Central Florida, the small ones were two dollars apiece and the larger ones were four. I was stunned at this find and so delighted. Definitely the find of the year.
Now I need to remove all the metal hardware and clean them thoroughly, but already they sparkle and catch the light and I am glad I was able to rescue them from an uncertain fate.
What is the best thing you ever got for free?