A couple years ago, Dean and I were in Fort Myers, Florida for Dean’s baseball tournament and while we were there for a few days we made the best of our time visiting our friends and looking for architectural salvage. One of the places that we visited was a lady’s home that she opened up to the public and you could walk through each room where she had several pieces of vintage furniture and re-purposed items for sale. I wish I could remember her name to give her full credit because what we saw on her dining room farm table that day inspired us for two whole years. She had a galvanized vintage chicken feeder re-purposed into a dish rack holder. I thought the idea was ingenious and ever since then we have been searching for a galvanized vintage chicken feeder to re-purpose.
I never think to go to Craigslist, Amazon or Ebay for vintage finds even though I am sure I would be able to purchase whatever I am searching for there immediately. It is much more fun and meaningful to go on the hunt ourselves no matter how long it takes. Three weeks ago, I visited Trader Mae’s in Apopka, Florida and could not believe that after two years, I spotted a vintage chicken feeder exactly like the one the lady had in Fort Myers. Believe it or not, I didn’t buy it right away. I had Dean come back a week later just to confirm that, yes, we both still thought it was an amazing find and that our taste hadn’t changed since two years ago. He was pretty darn adamant that we buy it right then and there so in the SUV it went.
These are the DIY projects I really like. Bring it home in it’s natural state and re purpose. No painting, no sanding, no drilling, no sawing, you get the idea.
I was a bit concerned that it was going to be too long for our 7 foot and 2 inch farm table but we got it home and it was a perfect fit. The chicken feeder measured 6 feet exactly. This was one time we didn’t measure anything and just crossed our fingers that it would be a good fit. Dean was pretty confident that it would be okay but once we got it home I felt totally relieved when I saw that it looked great on the table. It was a perfect mix of our rustic wood + galvanized metal design style.
I couldn’t believe it was in such great shape. I expected it to lay a little uneven but the metal was very aligned and no bent metal here. So the fun part was deciding what plates to put on the feeder. We have white plates which I thought would look great however, we have square plates and square-rounded plates and only 8 total. It was looking a little bare. I tried stacking our matching white bowls which are a combination of square and rounded but that soon ended up in a domino effect. At that point, I thought about our family china. We have plenty of pieces but I was a little nervous about putting them all on display. Once I stacked all the plates, dinner plates, side plates and saucers it was a perfect fit and oh my goodness, the space it opened up in my IKEA hutch where we stored everything.
I like the blend of all fancy and vintage blended together and on display. We may mix it up eventually if we get more matching dishes but for now it works.
I am so happy with how it all came together. If we ever tire of the chicken feeder being a plate holder we can always re-purpose it to a planter or something else but I really doubt that this piece will ever leave our home. It definitely sparks joy.