17 Replies to “My Home Is Filled With Discarded Stuff No One Wanted”

  1. Lesley Randles says: Reply

    Hi- I’m so impressed with the quality of the stuff that you find at the dumpster or on the side of the road! I also believe that the Universe will send you what you need but I have to say that it seems you have a direct line to the Universe through Chandra!
    I really enjoy your inspiring blog, thank you. Lesley, Durban, South Africa.

  2. I love your questions at the start and you’ve managed to collect some amazing finds! I must try harder, clothes are the only thing I consistently buy second-hand. I usually look but don’t have the patience to wait!

  3. Rebekah Jaunty says: Reply

    These are all beautiful things, and you have such lovely taste— I’m sure there are plenty of free things out there that don’t suit your aesthetic/ethics at all, and you have the restraint to leave them for someone else.

    That said, “asking the universe” seems to work best for middle-class or upper-middle-class people. You clearly live in a place where people can afford (or at least THINK they can afford) to be careless (or best case, generous) with their things/money.

  4. Just amazing finds, all what you wanted/needed and in excellent condition. Now they are being used and loved as they should be.

  5. Good post as always. Those Le Creuset pots are the best! I do my sourdough breads in one just like that orange one. It is amazing what a throwaway society we are in the west. I totally agree with you about visualizing. A lot of truth in the saying “Be careful what you wish for.”

  6. I was recently looking to buy and bike and thinking about finding one second hand and a co-worker of mine happened to give me one a couple of days later! I love it when the universe bring things to you that you need. 🙂

  7. I love this. It’s so true things come your way a lot of times. I had been looking in thrift stores for ages for a pasta machine. Before I decided I wanted one it was one if those things I saw there occasionally next to 1000s of fondue sets. But for several months I found nothing. Then a friend of mine cleared out her basement so I told her what I was looking for (in case she had it hiding about) including the pasta maker in a WhatsApp group. She didn’t have it but another friend had one she bought at a garage sale and never used. She gifted it to me 🙂

    I have many other stories. My most amazing one was being gifted a free knitting machine. They can easily go for a few hundred dollars on eBay.

  8. Good thing Chandra didn’t arrive shrink-wrapped in extra packaging from Amazon -I’d say it sounds like he’s the real find!

  9. Madeleine Lawrence says: Reply

    Wonderful post 🙂 I also have a dear little black cat. Believe it or not, mine was found in a recycling bin as a near-starved kitten. A treadle Singer sewing machine is long on my wish list, so lucky you on that score. I sighed with envy when I saw yours…And the Le Creuset pots, oh my! This is when I again conclude that on the whole we are just so affluent when we can afford to give away cookware like that.

    My 15 year old son asked me the other day, why is everything in our house antique? I thought this was funny because it was like he’d only just noticed after 15 years living with the stuff! I explained the whys and wherefores – quality, sustainability, beauty etc… and it was as if a light bulb suddenly went on and all of my years of ‘lectures’ suddenly made sense!


  10. This is so awesome! The apartment building that I live in actually has a sort of raised surface in the lobby where we all put things we aren’t using anymore and others can take them if they need! It’s unofficial but everyone takes part and it’s been amazing!

  11. I think there is a common thread there: Chandra! All you need to do is mention it to Chandra. Do you have a spare Chandra please? Or could you let him know I need a duvet cover in green forest hues? Seriously now, on the topic of Le Creuset pots, how does one restores a 22 year old Le Creuset pot to its former splendour? The inside of mine has turned brown over the years. Is there a way to make it look less battered?

  12. Stephanie Unger says: Reply

    I love looking around at things I’ve gotten for free. The upholstered chair in my living room, my dining table and two of the chairs, my daughter’s bed, a set of Pyrex mixing bowls, a set of three cake stands that I use to hold produce on the counter, baskets, my clothes drying rack, chalk board and cork board, pavers for my backyard, my trusty Jansport backpack, clothes…the list goes on and on! Just last week, my three year old and I were taking a walk and came back with Tom’s of Maine shower gel, two necklaces, a pair of brand new socks, and a book!

  13. Dyane Sonier says: Reply

    I really enjoyed this post because it resonated with me on a very personal level. When I moved into my house ten years ago I obtained about half of my furniture and decor from people taking it to the landfill, dumpsters, a quarter from yard sales and the remainder was given to me. I have always received speculative looks from guests who don’t know me well (they got over the origins of my furniture soon enough). You are right, every time I thought (earnestly) that I needed something, it presented itself to me – not always exactly as I wanted it, but as I needed it. I often found I also had to be humble enough to accept what came my way – it’s become easier over time. I’ve just found your blog – it’s very interesting, thank you for it! I hope the ceramic bowls come your way!

  14. It boggles my mind the things people in the US throw out. Good stuff! I’m always looking at the side of the road here but things are in dump condition before put there for the rubbish truck. I have gotten a perfectly good kitchen cabinet from an uncle though.

    1. The Zero-Waste Chef says: Reply

      Hi Alisa, I can’t believe it either. Every time I look at my new-to-me chairs, I still can’t believe they were just sitting there on the curb unwanted. It’s good for me but also crazy! Glad to hear people are less wasteful where you are. ~ Anne Marie

  15. Holly @ kitchencadaver says: Reply

    While I did score a pretty sweet cat from the streets, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything worth taking in my area, both IRL and online. Poor people don’t really get rid of a lot of good stuff, and sadly I don’t have the space for fun recycled art.

    Once I did find a gorgeous low slung 60s/70s mod armchair, but it was missing its cushions and turns out replacing seat cushions is HELLA expensive when theyre custom fit for the furniture. So, so expensive that I had to leave it behind. Still sad about it.

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