Sept. 3, 2013 06:00
Julie Bush gives fresh life to old pieces. Julie Bush gives fresh life to old pieces. By Amanda Bedgood ~ Photos by Robin May

Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2013

Julie Bush made innovative use of a salvaged armoire she
found while antiquing, using a portion for a fireplace mantle
(top) and the drawers as the foundation for a new coffee table.

Julie Bush is innovative. She knows how to make much use of an item in the most unexpected ways. When it came time to find repurposed pieces, she proved that necessity is the mother of invention.

It all started with one small problem - "I couldn't find the right mantle."

When she and husband, Robbie, found themselves in need of a mantle for their new fireplace, Julie got creative.

"We were antiquing in Lake Charles and I found this walnut armoire in bad shape," she recalls.

The front doors were gone, but she saw potential.

"It was exactly the right size," she says of the crown that now sits in a living area of her home on their fireplace.

"I love walnut," she says. "It wasn't pretty. But, we stained it. It had some imperfections. But, that's what I like."

After the top was removed, Bush's mind went quickly with what to do with the drawers of the armoire.

"They were the perfect size for a coffee table," she says pointing to the, indeed, perfeclty proportioned piece in front of her couch.

She later took portions of a Victorian headboard and finished off the missing spots for the new coffee table. And in true fashion, the innovative Bush used another portion of that headboard for a bar outside by the pool. Proof that with enough determination much can be done with even the most unlikely pieces.

"My husband didn't think it would even fit in my small SUV. We brought it home in pieces. I had a vision."

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