New Use For An Old Favorite

The hubby and I have been at a decorating stalemate for quite some time now. He has a trophy case from his childhood that he just can't let go of. Now, to be fair, his grandfather made it for him - and it was one of the last things he made before he cut off his finger with a wood router - so I very much understand the sentimental value. However, just because I appreciate its history does not mean I instantly fell in love with it. It is well crafted and a very nice piece, but it is made of heavy grained, warm-toned oak - not my favorite wood finish. Also, it has ornate brass hardware that I would love to replace, but hubby's attached to that too.

In our old apartment the trophy case was in the office (a room few visitors saw) because I refused to put it anywhere else. Then when we moved it sat in the closet for a long time because we couldn't agree what to do with it. He wanted to put it in the nursery. I said sure, as long as I could paint it white. He looked at me as if I suggested we take it out back and burn it. So in the closet it sat.

Last week I took advantage of a napping baby and decided to re-organize the kitchen to make room for baby stuff. Part of this organization included finding a new home for my spices. Up until now, all my spices had been in a plastic rolling cart parked next to the base cabinets. It was tacky, cheap and didn't really fit. I also had been begging the hubby to install a simple shelf over the stove for my spices and he still hadn't gotten around to it.

He saw this as a golden opportunity and he seized it. He suggested we hang the trophy case in the kitchen to display our spices and whatever else I wanted to put in it. He even said he was willing to let me change out the hardware if I was willing to hang the case in a public room of the house. Once we brought it into the kitchen, I realized the wood pretty much matched the cabinets and wood floors and actually looks pretty darn good in the kitchen. As soon as it was on the wall I loaded it up with spices, oils, sauces and a few decorative items.

You may remember the canisters I found for a steal at a yard sale. As cute as they looked next to my Kitchenaid mixer, I put them on top of the spice rack to free up some counter space.

Here's something else you might remember from an old post: my measuring spoon shadow box. I already had it on display in the kitchen, but I moved it to the spice rack to add some color and interest.

One pleasant surprise was finding a new home for my shot glass collection. As tacky as collecting shot glasses may be, I buy one every time the hubby and I go on vacation together. The tiny shelf at the bottom of the spice rack is the perfect height for displaying my collection.

While we're on the subject, I wanted to highlight one of my favorite shot glasses from Gettysburg, PA. When the hubby and I were road tripping with some friends we stopped and spent the afternoon at the famous Civil War battlefield and I couldn't pass up this souvenir.

To add to my collection, sometimes my mom brings me a shot glass from her travels. I sprinkled them throughout the rack to spice things up (pun fully intended). The 'LOVE' glass is from Philadelphia and the smaller glass bears the logo for my mom's office. The one with the toothpicks (below) is my Paula Dean "Hey Y'all!" shot glass and it's sitting next to my NC State shot glass, which is quite possibly the most awesome thing ever. On the back are markings for a single, double, triple and quadruple shot labeled Tar Heels, Blue Devils, Deacons and Wolfpack, respectively. (For those of you not well versed in the ACC, the first three are NC State's major rivals.)

After I got the spice rack loaded and decorated I headed out to my hardware store to replace the god-awful handles. We kept the original hinges, so the new handles still had to be brass, but I found these sleek and simple babies for the perfect middle ground.

So there you have it. This is quite possibly the biggest compromise to date in my marriage. What do you think?

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