A Passion for Recycling

We built our porch addition using all recycled materials, except for the screws.
By Margaret Davis
February/March 2011
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The porch on this shop is the result of judicious recycling efforts. 

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When we moved to Tennessee five years ago, my husband, Max, noticed all of the old barns in the area. Where I saw old buildings falling down, he saw 100-year-old timber going to waste. Over time, we were granted permission to dismantle a number of barns, and we sorted and stored the siding, timbers and tin roofing material.

Shortly after building a large shop at our new place, I asked Max whether he was going to put a porch on it. He said a porch would be nice and began making plans to build it. The only materials he purchased for the porch project were the screws to hold it together. The roofing tin and timbers came from the old barns. The windows were salvaged from the local landfill. The light shades were hubcaps from a vintage GMC truck restoration project. The chains and light fixtures were also from the landfill. The three rocking chairs (not pictured) on the porch came from a neighbor who was going to throw them away, but decided to donate them to our “recycled” porch project.

Max carried the same theme inside part of the shop when he created our “party room.” Everything in the room has been recycled: Barn-wood siding covers the walls, and the towel racks in the bathroom are authentic 1950s side-view mirrors. He is currently working on a new “recycled” sink for the bathroom.

Being an ultimate recycler is a habit worth developing.

Margaret Davis
Possum Holler Garage
Sawdust, Tennessee

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