10 items to look for the next time you go to the charity shop, for the home, and it may not be what you think. These items apply to ebay too!

  1. Zips
    I’ve found brand new unused zips for reasonable prices in charity shops, useful for cushions or pencil cases. You can always cut them down if they are too long.

Zips tin. Make a brooch with these charity shop finds. www.makingforliving.com


2. Buttons
Buy an item just for the buttons! Make a heart canvas, like I did here.

button heart picture

The buttons don’t have to match. Use just one colour or mother of pearl ones.

Make button heart cards


3. Jugs
Small jugs are useful not only for cream or custard but as vases. They’d also make a sweet gift with handmade felt flowers in.

Source pretty jugs from thrift stores/ charity shops for home decor.

This white pitcher was a charity shop find.

4. Plates 
Plates as art, not in an seventies travel collection way but as a wall texture statement for the dining room or kitchen. The cheapest way to get a selection of different sizes and styles, keep to one colour for a stylish look.

Image from The nester.

I sourced some large random oval platters from a charity shop that decorate my dresser. I went for mainly white ones, with different patterns, all english pottery. I have a couple in autumn colours that I display in Autumn and ones that are actually used for food!


Dresser at Easter

5. Crockery

Old style as new. This beautiful Hornsea pottery dish came from a charity shop. It works in a mid century modern style so well at a bargain price. It looks at home alongside a Orla Kiely candle holder that is more recent. You can shop for style as well as function in the charity shop too.

mid century modern pottery sourced in charity shops. www.makingforliving.com

6. Lamps
Keep your upcycle and creative eyes on. I saw an amazing large ceramic lamp in an 80’s peach mottled colour, it was a large size and had great shape, with a few coats of spray paint it looks stunning.

lamp before
lamp before
Upcycled lamp. www.makingforliving.com
Lamp after

Details here.

7. Ceramics or ornaments
Don’t forget quirky shapes can always be changed with a spray coat of paint in one colour. It’s a big interiors trend, especially for birds.

image: craftsonsea

8. Frames
Frames are often good buys. Look past the faded, dated print in a frame and buy it for the frame that can be used or upcycled into an earring frame.

chalk paint frame

9. Fabric

I spotted this vintage Liberty silk scarf in a local store, it is beautiful and could be used as a cushion cover. Scarves, duvets, sheets, curtains can be a good way to get large amounts of fabric for projects. Scarves could be used as curtain tiebacks. Clothing can also often be reinvented as cushion covers, lavender filled bags, bags.  


I made a play tent tepee with an old duvet cover from a charity shop.

play tent tutorial makingforliving.com
Play tent tepee

This side table was found in a charity shop for £5! It was the perfect size for a small alcove where our phone and router has to live. Side tables are so versatile and can be used in any room. 

Table sourced from charity store. www.makingforliving.com

10. Cushions

Check out the cushions! Often you can buy cushions with feather filled pads, very reasonably. (Have you seen the price of quality pads?) Ignore the case but grab it if it’s feather filled, you can then splurge on pretty covers. I wash the inserts on a hot wash, just to be safe and tumble dry them.

Make a cover for them from tea towels or from a pillowcase that you’ve painted a watercolour flower on.

Tea towel cushion

watercolour floral cushion

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10 items from the charity shop for home.
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