One of the best ways to and uniqueness to your home is by using architectural salvage pieces. Old cornices, old windows, peices of crown molding, all can be repurposed to give your home a unique timeless look. And the best part is, reusing something that would otherwise go to the dump is an easy way of being eco-friendly.
Architectural pieces can be found anywhere for any price. Your best bet is to check local auctions, estate sales, Craigslist, ebay (like that mantel above, bidding starts at $40; or the old farm window, $19.99), or the newspaper. I know a woman who got a free claw-foot bathtub because she asked a neighbor who was renovating their house if she could peruse their dump site. My mom scored 20 old farm windows, like the one above, for FREE because she read the newspaper.
~ Get creative with your finds. Turn an old piece of crown molding into a picture frame, like the ones at Recycling the Past for $38 each.
~ Attach old doorknobs or hooks to an old cornice or piece of molding for a unique coat hanger.
~ Use an old grate for a piece of wall art. Go to Old House Parts for some budget-friendly pieces if you can find them in your home town.