One man’s trash is another man’s treasure

At the weekend I was talking with a friend about Christmas gifts that we had received. My darling husband bought me the below Dala Horse and tall Brass candlestick whilst we were in Stockholm – thoughtful accessories that he knew I’d love (and coveted).

This poor unsuspecting friend had been given a set of eggcups from an Aunt that are terribly ugly. I did asked what she’s done to deserve it and whether said Aunt had ever visited her home – she’s very stylish.  Thankfully my family and friends know better than to buy me knick-knacks or ornaments as they will rarely go on display in my home.

How many of you are guilty of displaying the occasional horrid gift out of fear of hurting someone’s feelings?

It can be difficult to brooch the subject directly as it will surely hurt the givers feelings. It might be better to make an announcement before Birthday’s and Christmas etc.  “I don’t need anymore x or y’. Or maybe it’s the heavy-handed hints option, “did you see the wonderful green ring in the shop window, oh it was so lovely”.

Sometimes it’s worth a second look though. That little trinket that at first glance appears tacky could actually inject some humour and irreverence when placed in the right vignette. It’s often how you display the item that makes all the difference. By taking a different view you can celebrate individuality.   

Sometimes it really is as simple as staging the item well – with other eclectic items, in a simple box frame, under a cloche or in amongst books in a bookcase. 

 Image source 1, 2, 3, 4



  1. January 11, 2012 / 10:56 am

    I love the Dala horse, I will get one myself when I travel to Sweden:-)

  2. January 11, 2012 / 5:52 pm

    Yes, I've been guilty to display a gift only when the friend who gave it to me came over. For my 16th birthday I got this creepy painting of an eye which kept staring at me so I couldn't keep it up…

    And you're right a little kitsch can bring some fun into decorating if you use it well…

  3. January 12, 2012 / 9:22 pm

    My brother and his fiancé always buy my boyfriend some novelty socks from M&S for Christmas. This year he got superhero ones. it actually really annoys me as it shows a real lack of care in choosing a present and I wish they didn't bother. if you met him you'd know in one second he's not the sort of guy to wear novelty socks (his are all Paul Smith).

    And I got bought three hot water bottles for Christmas! Not sure what that was about.

    So no, I don't feel any guilt at all and just like you no one dares to buy me ornaments! 😉

    I quite like the items you've shown here though!

  4. January 13, 2012 / 10:54 am

    I love the zebra print stool! I think that kitsch and quirky items work well if they are used sparingly and only as accents not as focal points, but I guess everyone is different.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.