fritch, TX, US

Im a mom to three teenagers and have been a registered nurse since 1990. I first started junking and repurposing dumpster and raodside finds when I was a college student with no money trying to furnish my first apartment. Way back then it really wasnt cool, but I didnt care. I had 3 kids in 3 years, and no money took on a whole new meaning! By that time, antiquing and junking were starting to catch on and friends always complimented the unique things I did with junk. My home is small, so whatever junk I did rescue needed to serve some purpose and be functional...thus my name FunktionalJunk. Now that repurposing things and green decorating are so hot, Ive been able to sell some of my creations at craft shows and local shops, as well as creating custom pieces for my special customers. Ive made it my mission to build almost everything I can from completely salvaged materials...right down to the hardware. Im happy to be doing my part to keep the landfills empty!

Member Since: 12/29/2008

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My bull skull...transformed

This is an old bull skull I've had hanging in my house for many years...ya'll don't laugh!  It's a Texas thing.  Anyway a few months ago I hit on an estate sale and bought a whole box full...

Old window and shutter cabinet

I made this cabinet using old shutters for the sides, old pickets for the back, salvaged wood for the shelves, and an old multi-paned window as the door.

Old door vanities and benches

I used old panel doors to make these.  The vanity/bench parts are made from salvaged wood and attached from the back of the door.  I used old mirrors in the panels and wired on discarded...

What can I do with all these?

Somehow I "inherited" all these cable spools...largely because I can't say no to something I might be able to use.  I had no idea it was this many (there are actually more that aren't in the...

Rescued game table

I found this table in an alley and it was in bad shape.  Original pukey green paint was horrible, legs were loose.  A few screws to tighten the legs and lots of stripping, sanding, and...

Old baby crib bench

I used one of the end panels of an old baby crib as the back of the bench and salvaged wood to make the sides and seat.  It was a horrible beigy color to start with.  I painted it black and...

Old carousel horse lamp

I saw the legs of this old paper mache carousel horse sticking out of a dumpster in Amarillo, Tx and I had to rescue it!  I used spray-painted PVC pipe for the "pole", a $4 lamp wiring kit, an...

Old window projects

These are just a few uses I've found for my MASSIVE stash of old windows.  I'm always looking for more ideas!

Recent comments

Re: Guest Bedroom

Thanks so much for posting more pictures of your beautiful home! I love all of many great ideas! I especially like the baskets instead of drawers in the little desk. I have always passed on desks and dressers when the drawers didn't work so well or were missing altogether. Now I'll have to start scooping them up! Thanks for another great couple of postings!


Re: Vintage Piano Music - Decoupage, of course!?

This is so sweet! I do like the antique wash you put on it. And don't you love decoupage?! It's the ultimate in instant gratification! Great job.


Re: Vintage Potato Mashers find new life as ~ TaDa ~ Bud Vases!

I love this idea! Lots of possiblities with this! Thanks for the great post!


Re: Our Scrap wood floor

This is gorgeous! I have been saving scrap wood to use for this very thing but couldn't really envision how it would look with the variations in the stains. Now that I can see one finished I know it works! The nautical stars are a wonderful future son-in-law is in the Marines in Afghanistan right now. Thanks for the great post!


Re: retro space ship propeller table i made last night

My teenage son fell in love with this table! Now we're on the lookout for similar items to try one of our own. This is just amazing! Thanks for the great idea!


Re: self-hanging collages

I can envision several of these hanging together in a grouping! These are fabulous. Thanks for a great idea!


Re: "Every Wall Is A Door"

I can only say "wow!" I absolutely love the quote and also the comments posted by Kari. This IS the perfect today to share these sentiments. Your piece is beautiful! Thank you for another great idea!


Re: My Love for Junk is on the Rise!

I'm having a big shindig on superbowl Sunday and I can't wait to use these ideas! These will be perfect for holding dips and appetizers! Thanks so much for the great idea!


Re: Ski Tip Table

I love this! I wonder if you could take the same idea and use skateboards? Living in Texas snow skis are harder to come by, but skateboards I see in thrift stores all the time! I may have to give it a try! Thanks for the idea!


Re: Entry table/old sewing machine base

I'm always amazed to see all the different ideas people have for using the sewing machine bases. Seems like I used to see them everywhere and now that I see all these great ideas I haven't seen any up for grabs! Yours looks great and I love your big red star!


Re: Kids Kitchen sets

What a smart idea! Just when I thought I'd seen everything you can do with an old square side table! This is absolutely amazing and waaaay better than those plastic kitchens! Great inspiration!



Glad to see you're a contributor now! I've enjoyed looking through all your other postings and this one's no exception. I had no idea the silver leaf would stick to glass. What a great idea. And I think it looks AMAZING with the candlelight inside! Thanks for the ideas.


Re: A Junk Bonanza Find! Can you guess what it is?

Based on the other great things you've posted from your house I can't wait to see what you come up with for this! I know you'll come up with something really wonderful!



What a fun idea! I bet half the fun was looking for and collecting all the cool junk...isn't that every junker's favorite thing?! Great job!



This is so much fun! With so many royalty-free sites you could download lots of different vintage pictures for these...lots of possibilities. And I love the maribou trim!
Thanks for the idea!


Re: Very Inexpensive Bathroom Makeover

I love the dark brown walls with the white accessories. I've thought of doing that in my small bathroom but wasn't sure until now. It really looks great! Thanks for the inspiration!


Re: 3 Chair Bench

This is great! I also love the old wedding-ring quilt you used for the seat. That really makes it special! Thanks for the ideas!


Re: Enamelware Ladles - Treasure Holders!

Oh wow this is cute! I'm like several of the others...I was on a crazy-sick enamel ware binge for a long time and I have tons of it in my house. Thanks for another great idea on how I can use it!


Re: Screen Door Dresser Mirror

This is just so smart! I love seeing another idea for screen doors...they're just so welcoming. Thanks for a great idea!


Re: Garden Gate Pot & Pan Hanger

Now I would love to do this in my kitchen but I don't have tall enough ceilings to do it! We'd all be bumping our heads on the pans. But I love what you've done. It looks amazing! Great work!


Re: Garden Gate

I love this gate! I have used old gates lots of times around my yard. At present I have one stashed in a little spot in my backyard where I have ivy growing everywhere. It's taken over the gate and covered it pretty well. It's a good thing I like it there because I don't think I'd ever be able to get it free from all the ivy now! Great job!


Re: Shutter Closet Door Panel Divider

I love this idea and love what I can see of the rest of your space. The suspended windows are awesome! I'm like the others...I'd love to see more pictures of your dining area and other spaces in your home! From what I can see it looks like something in a magazine! You should be proud!


Re: Sunday Project - Freshening up a 150 year old cupboard!

What a great save! I love how all the colors blend with each other. I can see a glimpse of your farmhouse sink with the skirt. It looks like it matches with the paper you put in the back of the cupboard. I LOVE your sink! I've been trying for years to locate one for a reasonable price for my luck yet. That just means I'll have to keep on haunting my favorite junk places...oh, darn! Great job!


Re: All work and no play

This is adorable! I love Sue's story about her nickname...I think "Re-Pete" would be the perfect name for your little guy! Great job!


Re: "THE UNCOLA Crate" Shadow Box Table

Another great table idea, JunkArchitect! I also have a lot of these crates I've collected over the years and this is just one more really cool way to use them! Thanks, as always, for the great ideas!


Re: How to Make A Paris Lamp

Oh my gosh! This is just too cool. My teenage daughter probably would've loved the fringe version but I am in love with the Paris one! This technique offers so mnay possibilities. Now I can't wait to find a lamp to try this with! Thanks, as always, for your inspiration!


Re: Repurposed Typewriter

Personally, I love decor that makes people laugh! I bet your friends love coming to your home to see what new wacky things you've come up with. I think this is great fun!


Re: Punched Tin Message Board

I love this! This is SOOO my style. I agree the patina on it is wonderful and I love the vintage button magnets. Very cool!


Re: Art for under $3

This is an amazing idea...and so cheap! You're right. The possibilities are endless. How fun! Thanks for sharing!


Re: Create a Faux tile backsplash behind your stove

Wow! This looks just like real tile! You are very talented. And thank you for including the instructions for those of us who plan to try this great idea ourselves! Great job!


Re: A Precious Gift

This is just so cool! And I love the quote...who couldn't get over a hump in their day reading that?! Thanks for the ideas!


Re: Believe Santa Door Panel

I've tried painting Santa on several projects in the past and he's not easy! Yours is just wonderful...blows away any Santa I ever did! Love it!


Re: Antique Door Knob Coat Hooks

It's getting so I get excited when I see you've posted something new! Your stuff is just awesome and this project is no exception. I have the same question as you have an easy trick for attaching them? Thanks, as always, for the inspiration!


Re: Rediscovered Treasures

This set is so cute! You did such a nice job painting it and I bet the lucky little girls who have it are enjoying it every day! Great work!


Re: S T R A N G E CARGO...... the saga continues.

Love the sewing machine and bistro tables! Those are great. And your yard art is really fun. What are the "stems" made from? Great work!


Re: make do window/curtain

Very clever disguise of an awkward space! The arch on the frame gives an interesting shape to your cubby and using the elastic is a neat way to attach your curtain. So cute!


Re: Cigar Box Items

I love the different papers and ephemera you've used in your design. It makes the whole project so much fun to look at. I've looked at it several times and see something different every time! Great job!


Re: How to of Gretchen's Button Jewelry

As a Texas girl you know I'm particularly drawn to the star! I would be proud to wear that! I agree with Lani...bracelets and earrings would be great too. I think several of them together on a chain would be fun! Great job!


Re: Repurpose old jeans into a fun, funky purse!

What a great idea! I agree with Kathy...who doesn't have worn out jeans around?! This is such a neat way to get just a little more use out of them! Thanks for the idea!


Re: headboard shlef

This is just adorable. Your cottage-y accessories look great on it. Good save!


Re: Shelf, What Is That Made From?

This is so nice. I really like the groupings of the old spools and metal star. That rustic stuff mixed with the white shelf looks so cool! You have some great stuff posted and really inspirational ideas. Keep 'em coming!


Re: My Bench projects

These are amazing! The painting you've done on them is so sweet. What lucky grandkids! Great work.


Re: A Window with a re-Purpose!

This looks so inviting for your customers! Very cute. I wish I was closer to MN (I'm in Texas) and I'd come shop for sure! Good luck!


Re: The Garden Room - (Part 2)...details, details, details...

I would give anything to have a porch area like this! This would be the ultimate relaxation space for me. You guys did an awesome job!


Re: My Family Pic Gallery

What a neat idea! How fun that you can change the pictures around. Great work!


Re: What can I do with all these?

You guys are just wonderful! I had no idea when I posted this I would get so many great ideas! The latest idea of using the ends for decorative yard art is awesome. I love to decorate for Halloween and had never even thought of the big jack-o-lantern idea. Now I just need spring to get here a little faster so I can stand to work outside again and get some of these things done! Thanks again to all of you!


Re: Scary salvage

I agree with the's not scary. What's scary is thinking that beautiful architecture like this was almost trash! Now THAT'S scary! Great save!


Re: Making cards with..........junk of course!

Who wouldn't be thrilled to get one of these pretty cards? Great idea using the scanner so you can still have the original stuff. Very sweet!


Re: Upcycle your cabinet doors: Part 1

These are so smart! Thanks for the instructions, too. I really like the idea of hooking it all together with velcro so you can change it out. That's a great plus for those of us with a fetish for vintage fabric scraps! I love your have so many clever ideas. Keep 'em coming!


Re: wall art

How smart using the wallpaper behind the window to give a "view"! Wouldn't that be a great idea for a room that doesn't have any real windows? And you have decked the whole thing out so nicely. Wonderful work!


Re: Spool Table

This is so great! I agree with the others...the spools add so much interest inside the basket. You always have the coolest ideas! Thanks!


Re: headboard bench

This is beautiful! I love the white wood against the pretty rose fabric. VERY nice!


Re: SNOWMAN HILL.......junking forty two many years?

What a great garden bathroom! I escpecially like the old hoe holding your towel. I love to use things like that in unexpected ways. I also have a thing for old doors and really like the way you have yours set up with the wreath. The old desks are fabulous! They give you more room for cute displays. And the old sleigh is great. The wire basket you have holding your magazines is very clever. I love seeing how other people incorporate their junk finds in their homes. Please keep posting pics!!!! You've got great ideas!


Re: Merry Christmas to Me

This is such a great piece and you got it for such a bargain! I actually like it just the way it is, but I'm sure I'll change my mind when you do your thing to it and post those pics!


Re: Old Dresser Re-mix (appliance garage)

Oh, this is just too neat! The door really is a great way to hide all of your appliances and I love the old things you have showcased in the visible parts! Great job!


Re: "BEWARE" of Tarnished Silver!!!

Wow!!! This is gorgeous and your ribbon and rhinestone accents are just perfect for it! Thanks!


Re: Pssst. Don't tell anyone, but....

I can see why this is one of your favorite projects! This is so ingenious! I love it! And love the paint color, too!


Re: Viking Cowboy and Sailor Joe Lock People

Isn't is nice just to create something really fun every now and then? These are adorable!


Re: Toilet Topper

This is a great idea! I especially like the way you have everything so artfully arranged. I agree with Debbie, it does look like a magazine photo! Great job!


Re: SNOWMAN HILL......Hi, I'm the Mom

I love, love, love the wire milk carrier on your table! All of your arrangements look so put together and thought out but still so whimsical and fun. Very inspirational! Thanks for the ideas!


Re: Chamber pot

What an appropriate place to re-use your antique chamber pot! Your arrangement of goodies in it looks so upscale and very spa-like! Very cool!


Re: Small scale architectural salvage

What a great way to take memories with you! I love all the detail work in the pieces you have...they will look stunning with your transferware! Thanks for the idea!


Re: A couple fun winter shelving projects

How clever is that! Very cool recycling and how fun would that be in a sports lover's room! Thanks for the instructions and the inspiration! Leah

Re: GOOD EATS Clock Using Vintage Wood Type

I love the look of this! What I really like is how you used the yardstick to hold everything together! I've had that dilemma with some of the things I've made and wondered what I could use that wouldn't be too bulky on the back or cost as much as metal brackets. This is pure genious...thanks so much! Leah

Re: Fifteen Minute Laundry Room Fix

This is way cool! I'm drawn to the old sign most of all...I have a big thing for old signs and scarf them up whenever I can. The frame really sets it off! Love it all!


Re: Painted trash to treasures

These are all just great! I really like the pearl strands you used for the pulls on the jewelry box...that is just too cute! Great work!


Re: Ski Lodge Headboard

This is such a great idea! I live near a lake and come across old discarded water skis all the time and I've always passed them over. Now I may have to start picking some up! It was also neat to see your work-in-progress really makes the finished project even cooler when you can see the humble beginnings! Thanks for the inspiration!



I love all of these, especially the old door turned table. The distressed wood against the cast iron bases is such a cool look. I bet your guests love coming to your house to see all the neat things you've created!


Re: Horseshoe Cake Pan Message Center

I love anything that is functional AND brings good luck! This is so much fun! Thanks for the idea!


Re: blueprint wallpaper

This is so cool! I like the blueprint idea, but I'm really drawn to your old metal baskets. That combination of something rustic with something that has such clean lines soooo speaks to me! Great job!


Re: Studio Junk

I could only wish for a studio like this! You must be so inspired every time you go to work! Congratulations on a great space!


Re: My bull skull...transformed

Ya'll are just too great! My whole entire family (of guys, no less) thought this was a horrible disgrace to the fine, masculine animal that this skull once belonged to. I thought it made it a little more bearable for me to keep looking at for the next however many years! I'm so glad there really are people out there who can see the funkiness in stuff like this! Thank ya'll!


Re: A Visit to "Purple Cow", St. Louis, MO

Is this not just heaven-on-earth to anyone who loves junk!!!! I spent about 15 minutes studying your photos just to see how they put all that funkiness together and made it look so great! Thanks so much for sharing!


Re: A New Year's Resolution

It seems like my kids always wind up with all these pencils that they want to discard when they get about half-way used. This would be a wonderful way to use them. And the old type-writer font is perfect to convey such a wonderful message!


Re: Dressed up Kitchen Light

This is so pretty! I bet it really sparkles when it's all lit up!


Re: Earring hanger

This is such a neat and space-savvy idea. I like that you can keep all your earrings in sight instead of having to dig through a jewelry box to find them. And it takes up like no space at all!


Re: Tin Ceiling Fixture Lamp & Sign

I really like these lamps! I also really like the metal piece in the center that's holding the candle. All the weathered finishes really compliment each other!


Re: Mobile Boutique

This is such a wonderful idea! I've been a nurse for 20 years and I've seen first-hand how often our elderly are kind of "forgotten". What a neat way to show them that they are important, too. Hopefully other people will see this idea and do something like this where they live. How inspiring!


Re: Message Boards

These are wonderful! I've done similar stuff with old windows but never old screens. They provide such a great frame I don't know why I haven't thought of that before. Thanks for the inspiration!

Re: Found objects with a new found purpose

We have a Habitat for Humanities restore in our area, too, and I have found so many wonderful things there. And it feels good to know the money I spend is being used for such a great cause! Happy junking!


Re: Vintage Register Grate Clock

This is so cool! I love all the scroll work and patina on the grate. It gives it so much character. Great or should I say "grate" idea...ha-ha!


Re: A Wish For The New Year...

Thank you, and happy New Year to everyone on here. I'm relatively new to the site but am finding it so refreshing to see that other people share my passion for junk and love seeing what you all do with your finds. So much talent in this group of people! Thank you all for making us new folks feel welcome and for all the nice comments, ideas, and words of encouragement!


Re: Heard It Through The Grapevine Table

I agree with the others...not too over-the-top at all! I love the design on the top. Did you use stencils or anything or were you able to just see the design in your mind and go with it? Either way it works!


Re: Dominos

I love the graphic black and white of the dominoes! This set would look great with anyone's style! Thanks for the idea.


Re: Out of this World Chandelier

This is soooo great! I bet the photos don't do justice to just how much sparkle that gives off. Awesome!


Re: New Year...New Challenge Project

I think this is an awesome idea. I put myself up to a similar challenge when the gas prices were so high. I live in a small town with no hardware store, no craft store, etc. The closest town with any of those things is 50 miles away from me and I drive a suburban...not too gas friendly. I had several orders for projects I was finishing that needed to be done by a deadline and I really had no choice but to use what I had on hand. That was some of the most fun I had creating and they turned out to be some of things I'm most proud of. Necessity truly is the mother of invention! Good luck and I'll look forward to seeing what you create!


Re: Thinking Big!

This is wonderful! I also love old doors and have lots of them in my junk stash. This is another way to use them. What did you use for the mattress part? Thanks for the ideas!

Re: Marilyn Monroe Mahogany Cabinet/Bar

I love your ideas. Your daughter is so lucky...all of her dorm-mates are going to be jealous! These look very expensive, like something you'd see in a high-end boutique kind of place. Awesome!

Re: Sewing Machine Drawer Charging Station

This is so great! I've loved the idea of charging stations but all of the ones I've seen in stores are way too modern looking for the style in my house. This is a great vintage look and I can't wait to try it myself! Thanks!

Re: What can I do with all these?

Thank you all for some great ideas! I was just about ready to take a chainsaw to them and call them firewood.'s funny you mentioned the goat idea because a friend of mine who raises goats actually did take a few off my hands for her goats to climb on. I just don't know that many people with goats! I love the idea of putting an umbrella through the hole...that could be so cute, kind of a bistro look. The lazy susan idea is great too...I hadn't even thought of that. Some of them are pretty big so you could put a whole meal on it and guests could turn it to serve themselves. Great for outdoor BBQ's. I'm feeling more inspired guys are great! Thanks so much!

Re: Old window projects

Thanks to everyone for the nice comments! Several of you asked about the looking glass can get it in the spray paint section at craft stores. Here it costs about $11 for a small can. It also comes with a can of clear sealer. It'll turn any clear glass into a just spray it on the backside. It's really great for turning old picture frames with their glass into mirrors. I've also used it to spray the inside of clear vases and it gives kind of a mercury glass look for much cheaper than the real thing. It's also cool for clear votive holders because you can still see the candle light through it. It's a little tricky getting it to come out perfectly smooth, which actually works for me because I kinda prefer that older, worn look in mirrors. It's pretty cool stuff and I'm sure all of you clever folks could find even more neat things to do with it! Good luck!

Re: I've Pulled Another Wheelie

I think this is great! I have teenage boys at home who are constantly hauling home bicycle parts in attempt to build the ultimate bike. When their enthusiasm wanes I'm left with the parts everywhere. This would be an adorable way to use some of those wheels! Thanks for the idea!

Re: Industrial BirdFeeder

I love all the ideas you have in this! What a great way to use up all those little metal findings we all hold on to...cause we'll use them for something! This is awesome and definitely one-of-a-kind!

Re: trophies, trophies, trophies!

Hey, retro gal! I'm actually quite close to you...I live in Fritch, just north of Amarillo and am going to Lovington this week to visit a friend! I have used trophy bases for lots of things. Lots of times the wooden bases are good quality wood that are great for making small little signs. I've also taken off the athletic tops and epoxied old lamp globes onto the base that's left to make votive holders. I don't know if I could use the entire lot of what you have but I could definitely lighten your load a little! Let me know!


I'd say you've definitely gotten your $1 investment back on this project! It looks great!

Re: Fun Little Organization Project

I love that idea! You could use that idea to organize lots of stuff...magazines, mail, scrapbook stuff, toiletries, garden stuff...the possibilities are endless! It would be a great way to use those little baskets that bubble bath and lotion sets come in. Who doesn't have a bunch of those laying around after the holidays?! Now I'm inspired!

Re: Mirror

That is too cute! What a great way to add personality to a mirror...would also look great on picture frames, too! Love it!

Re: Old carousel horse lamp

Thank you! At first I didn't know what it was...I just saw the little legs sticking out. It wasn't in bad shape and it already had the hole cut through it. I actually made it with a friend's daughter in mind...her room is very pink and rosy and shabby chic and I knew it would be perfect. Only problem is that she was only 3 at the time and she wanted to "ride" the horse!

Re: Old window projects

Thanks for your nice comments! I've seen a few of the windows that have been mosaic'd and would love to try it. Do you have any idea what type of adhesive would work to stick the pieces down on the glass? Maybe silicone? If you have any idea let me know...maybe that'll be next project and posting. Thanks again!

Re: Old window projects

Thank you! I've done lots of those for gifts in all kinds of styles and colors...people like getting something personal like that!


This is a great idea! I did some painting a while back for a friend and she "paid" me with 24 old single pane windows of various sizes, so I'm always looking for new ideas to use them. I'll be posting some pix of some of the things I've done with them in case other people have a window stash as big as mine!