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Flea Markets and D.I.Y, turn your house into a Home

Updated on August 12, 2013

Your home is your sanctuary, every detailed nook and cranny is a special place. When it comes to decorating your home you have to consider the following: cost, design and durability of style. I’m sure when you read the cost factor you immediately flopped on the couch and fell into a foetal position of defeat. But do not worry fellow home owner, gone are the days when having the most expensive couch or gaudy piece of art was necessary into turning your home into a trendy heaven. This is the year of the hipster, the Instagrammer and where vintage and homemade pieces are appreciated. So grab your glue gun and wood polisher because we are going on a journey through DIY land.

DIY is well practised and loved throughout the world; anything you can imagine can be created with whatever you can get your hands on. Before we start on the basic essentials of DIY furnishing let’s talk about your personal style. Figuring out what you are like as a person is important to how you will furnish your home, for example, you can’t go with symmetrical shapes and chrome finish if you are an earthy person who loves comfort and colours;it’s all about what inspires you.

Finding inspiration (market places):

When establishing your style you have to know who you are and what you want to achieve. Look for inspiration and find your niche. The best places to be inspired are flea markets where beautiful and unique items can be discovered and restored to your liking. The top market places are scattered around the world; countries like Belgium, Turkey, Spain and a world favourite, Paris which possesses one of the most famous flea markets; Marche Aux Puces De Clignancourt. If given the chance to travel, go to France, visit this treasure trove to discover a world of weird and amazing items that will add character to your space. Don’t be shy to pick up the most unusual items; sometimes the most unlikely will be the piece that will complement and stand out the most. Blend in the modern environmental style of your D.I.Y creations with the rustic beauty of vintage. Vintage is not only for its nostalgic value but for the quality.Take time in finding unique pieces and bring them home with you, surely on the way you would have had a couple great ideas on how to turn your house into a unique masterpiece. If France is out of your reach then visit these amazing local markets across America. There are great markets like the San Jose Market that hosts over 2000 vendors; it’s open from dusk till dawn all year round. But the world is a huge place and limiting ourselves to the wonders of America and Europe is selfish. Let’s us take a deep look into the richness of South Africa, the tango streets of Plaza Dorrego Flea Market in Sal Telmo, Argentina and the spicy and colourful markets of Goa, India.

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Africa is best known for their culture and African wild, but what about their markets? Exploding with beautiful bead-works and handmade crafts Africa offers us more than a wild adventure across the reserves. The I Heart Market is a great place to start if you want to be filled up with inspiration for ideas and fill your basket with second hand beauties and hand crafted items. Your imagination will soar in Great Spirit as you unearth a new sense of South African treasure.


Known for their legendary soccer players like Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi, the majestic place of Argentina has an impressive range of markets with great culture, food and music. Plaza Dorrego flea market treats the shoppers to mesmerizing tango music and an eyeful of beautiful and rustic pieces in forms of copper pots or enchanting glass bottles. These timeless vintage finds will mold well with a splash of modern shapes and lights.

To tantalize your taste buds and noses, let’s head of to Goa, in the heart of India where the colorful Anjuna flea market can be found. This market offers an array of colorful materials and out of this world jewellery. India is very popular for their spices so why not fill your beautiful Argentinean bottles with the aromatic smells of Indian spices. This unique idea will sure to be a favorite in your home.

So now that you have discovered your unique style, don’t be afraid to explore the creative side. Get creative with your resources. Anything can become a masterpiece even if it was made from an array of plastic spoons or discarded crates from your local fruit and veg market.

D.I.Y Spoon lamp

This spoon lamp is not only eco-friendly but it makes for a good conversation piece when you have guests around. The plastic spoon lamp was created by a designer named Yaroslav Olenev, a nuclear engineer by day and a D.I.Y hobbyist by night. Now that we credited the right man for such genius work, let’s get down to business.

What you will need for this project is:

  • Glue gun ($6.94)
  • Sharp, cutting knife($1.88)
  • Pliers($8.99)

*prices according to Walmart

Supplies/Ingredients:

  • Plastic spoons
  • Lamp with a cable
  • Big, plastic bottle

If you don’t have any of the tools at home, go to your local hardware store or ask your friendly next door neighbour if they own a tool box. The plastic spoons, lamps and bottle can be found at supermarkets or just lying around in your house waiting to be recycled

Step By Step Guide

  1. Take your big, empty plastic bottle and your cutting knife. Cut out the bottom of the bottle. Before you begin step 2, make sure that your glue gun is ready for action.
  2. cut out the handles of your spoons and when the glue is hot, start gluing the spoon heads on to the bottle. Continue gluing the spoon heads until the whole bottle is covered.
  3. Every fancy lamp needs a fancy collar so grab a couple spoon heads and glue them into a circle. This will be placed later onto neck of the bottle.
  4. Thread the lamp cable through the left over bottle cap and install the bulb, place it in the bottle and seal tightly.
  5. Now step back and enjoy your finished project. Pat yourself on your back and switch on the light.

D.I.Y Pallet Sofa

What is a home without a sofa? Every house needs a place where your family or friends can kick back and relax. But buying a brand new sofa will burn a deep hole in your pockets and getting it second hand is a good idea but the more creative and thriftier option is the pallet sofa. Although this next project is not a simple as the Spoon Lamp it sure is more rewarding when you have completed it and realize what a D.I.Y genius you really are. What you will need for the pallet sofa is:

  • 6 wooden pallets
  • Sandpaper($6.81)
  • Paint($23.97)
  • Various paint brushes($12.97)
  • Flexible foam (1.8-3.0 pounds p/cubic foot is best, at least 4″ thick)
  • furniture fabric & notions
  • sewing machine (your granny or great aunt should own one)
  • flat brackets and screws (find in any hardware store)

Optional: if you don’t want to sew you can use pre-fabricated cushions or pillows although it might be pricier

Finding the pallets are not as hard as you think, it could be found at any restaurants, supermarkets and ships. Do not worry they are free, so ask nicely and I’m sure the owners will gladly part with them. Once you get the tools and materials sorted out let’s begin the project:

Step By Step Guide

1. Set your pallets in any shape you desire, remember, this is your creative freedom. Here are few examples:

Once you have a design in mind, sand out the pallets, making sure the corners and edges are smooth.

2. Measure the top of the pallets; this is to determine the size of your foams if you are making your own cushions.

3. Paint your pallets with your chosen colour and allow it to dry

4. While you’re waiting for the pallets to dry, start to cover the foams with fabric to make back cushions and cushions. Watch this video to find out how:

5. By now your pallets should be dry. Arrange the pallets into your desired shape and secure them. Do so by screwing flat brackets on the back top and bottom on all ends of the pallets.

“Happiness lies in the joy of achievement and the thrill of creative effort.”- Franklin D. Roosevelt

- The Jetstream Team

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    • profile image

      Ana 3 years ago

      Love the pallet sofa, this is a huge trend that I might have to followup and make! interesting and useful article.

    • toptenluxury profile image

      Adrian Cloute 3 years ago from Cedartown, GA

      I also think that the pallet sofa is sweet. Our master bed room is all balck and white so I think that I will do that spoon lamp because I have not been able to find anything that I have liked in stores.

    • NickyVee profile image

      NickyVee 3 years ago

      The DIY spoon lamp! I love it! It looks amazing! I want! (I can't even construct a proper sentence around this)

      Very cool article ;)

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