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For those who believe Saturday mornings are meant for yard sales, not sleeping in…who re-sort their recyling for “upcycling” possibilities…who have a special place in their heart for old houses…and see rust marks as a sign of beauty, not deterioration…you’ll love our editors’ “What We’re Reading” design book picks for August.



Found, Free & Flea – Creating Collections From Vintage Treasures: In 2004, Tereasa Surratt’s husband convinced her that they should buy an abandoned 1920s summer camp property in Wisconsin called Wandawega Lake Resort. After exploring the grounds and discovering hidden treasures dating back at least 90 years, Tereasa said yes, igniting the inspiration behind her picture-filled book Found, Free & Flea. Since its creation in 1926, Wandawega has served as a summer camp, brothel, speakeasy, Catholic Church retreat and a casual vacation spot until its final use in the 1970s. The property’s many uses over the years instantly become evident with each antique treasure Tereasa pulls out of the attic, basement, kitchens and decrepit cottages. After recovering more than 150 items, Tereasa is determined to turn each one of these once-prized possessions into stunning collections and displays that will later decorate this restored lakeside retreat. From bedroom linens and potato sacks to distressed oars and beer bottles, Tereasa gives each piece a brand new take on life and a similar flea-market companion. For those new to thrifting and navigating flea markets, Tereasa’s DIY projects, display suggestions and “treasure” hunting tips are sure to leave you with time-worn finds that will instantly add charm, interest and visual history to your home. And if the abundance of tips isn’t enough to reel you in, the stunning photography should seal the deal. Tereasa shares some serious antique eye candy. Let’s just say that immediately after reading Found, Free & Flea, I hopped on Wandawega.com to check the rates and reservations of the tents and cottages for my next vacay. —KAYLA KITTS, Assistant Editor


Salvage Secrets – Transforming Reclaimed Materials Into Design Concepts: Ever since I found out the exterior siding on my parents’ house was once boxcar bottoms, I’ve known that reclaimed materials have the power to transform a home from ordinary to extraordinary. But if you’re new to actually using salvaged items, like I am, that’s where reclaimed material evangelist, designer and blogger Joanne Palmisano comes in. Her new book, Salvage Secrets, is the ultimate guide to getting started. Palmisano breaks down materials by type, with chapters on wood, glass, metal, ceramic and lighting, detailing the different uses for each one as well as practical tips, like how to sand old wood to reveal the character underneath. She also features real homes outfitted with reclaimed materials, from light fixtures fashioned out of recycled wine bottles to a vintage washstand turned into a modern bathroom vanity. When you finish the book, you’ll be armed and ready to search for your own trash-into-treasure find. —LIZ GRAY, Senior Editor


The Vintage House – A Guide to Successful Renovations and Additions: My ultimate dream home is a turn-of-the-century cottage or Colonial Revival farmhouse in need of a little TLC. Owning and preserving my own piece of history appeals to my patriotic American individualism – but after renting a very old home that lacks modern accoutrements like three-prong electrical outlets, an oven hood and a garage, I wonder if I’m up for the challenge of renovating a historical fixer upper. Mark Alan Hewitt and Gordon Bock’s new book, The Vintage House, gives me hope that I can one day conserve history while enjoying the modern life. The book is full of tips on choosing authentic materials, blending in historically accurate additions and meshing sustainable building practices with an existing home – not to mention beautiful photos of America’s masterful restorations. Even if you aren’t looking for a historical renovation guide, this book is a must-read for anyone interested in the different architectural periods of America. From Greek Revival to mail order bungalows, The Vintage House has the 411 on them all. —KARLI SANDERS, Assistant Editor


Rediscovered Treasures – A New Life for Old Objects: Chock-full of creative ideas for turning discarded vintage items into cottage-chic accessories, Rediscovered Treasures will encourage you to take a second look at the forgotten items stored in your basement or attic. Authors Ellen Dyrop and Hanna Kristinsdottir share over 100 easy do-it-yourself decor ideas sure to turn trash into treasure. Among my favorites are the stenciled silver and stoneware platters, cutlery hooks and tea cup cupcakes. So cute! —CAMILLE SMITH, Editor


Antiques, Book Reviews

12 Responses

  1. [...] via: What We’re Reading: August – Everything Old Is New Again Category: Design Tags: AGAIN, August, Everything, Reading, [...]

  2. E. Gwen Dawson says:

    I watch Hgtv 24/7. I have battled aggressive cancer for 3 and a half years. 5 weeks before my diagnosis my husband had a life altering accident..I think you give the houses and prizes to people that do not need help. Maybe we don't live in a high neighbor location, but we sure could use help in just remodeling our 45 year old house which we happen to love. He was a great carpenter, but he worked for a company to pay our monthly bills. He loves DIY and the yard crashers. Thanks for great tv, it keeps my dreams just that dreams. I'm sure all the rich people need your homes and upgrades and remodels. Don't worry we will continue to watch even though we live in Central Ky. Keep up the great shows and I will keep dreaming…God Bless, Evelyn Gwen Dawson, Richmond, Kentucky.

    • Visha says:

      what is your point? because you are one of the millions including myself poor like a rock you deserve this ? come on get real not sarcastic.

  3. [...] to add a few new books to your DIY and design collection? Check out HGTV‘s “What We’re Reading” design book picks for August. Tagged: back to [...]

  4. Jillian says:

    Life is a journey to the end. There are no promises that we will be 100% healthy or that we will live in what we think is wealth on this earth. God did promise that if we "believed in Jesus Christ as our Savior" we will have eternal "life". What we have on earth is temporary. We live in the "Best" country there is with freedom and we have the "best" Doctors in the world. Be Thankful for what we have and Thankful for what you think that you don't have. God bless

  5. Maverick says:

    If you want to be considered whether you have money or not, if you need help, particularly in the physical process, why not write to them and ask to be considered for a 'makeover'?

    Whataya got to loose?

    ps.. (Jesus isn't going to be one of the carpenters though, he isn't waving his magic wand somewhere in the clouds sitting on his golden chair either picking the rich people over the poor peope.)

    that is sarcasm and a swift kick in the ass reality check!!

    better to keep your religion to yourself

  6. Laura says:

    People are really mean. Just keep the faith.

  7. Karen says:

    Wow! "Magic wand"—-really. You don't know my Jesus. He doesn't need magic wands. And I find it funny, if there is nothing to this 'Jesus Christ', why does it bother you so much for another individual to encourage someone with his name. And, G. Dawson, keep dreaming…its the best past-time in the world.

  8. I was wondering how the Backplash with the round circles was made. I can not locate information on it. I just love it could please let me know how it was made? Thanks Cindy Walraven

  9. snAPjO2toVLz says:

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