HOME TOUR: Second-Hand Treasures

living room design

Family Sponge is excited to kick off HOME TOUR with the Hansard Family in Wesley Chapel, FL. Ryan and Jen have been on a crazy adventure since last June when they sold their home in California and left for Florida. They drove across the country with their two young kids in an F-150 truck towing a trailer of their cherished belongings behind them. The Hansards share a three-bedroom townhouse with their two hilarious kids (Jackson, 4, and Clare, 2). An incredible thing about their home is that 99% of their furniture, toys, and home decor is second hand. Craigslist, the Salvation Army and garage sales played major roles in this Tampa Bay home.

picture frame wall

HOME TOUR by Jen Hansard
Hi there and welcome to our home. We moved in a month ago and have worked extremely hard to make it feel like a home. We are strong believers in “reduce, reuse and recycle” and try to apply it to our home as much as possible. We tend to shop at thrift stores and garage sales— and love a good Craigslist deal (read Craigslist 101). Take a look around and I hope you find inspiration in what you see.

Living room: I bought the blue Pottery Barn couch on Craigslist in Los Angeles and knew it would be hard to ever find another one like it (that I could afford). So we managed to fit it in our trailer and dragged it across country with us. Two months ago, we were at the local Salvation Army and I spotted the beige couch— exact same style and brand as our blue one. So we bought it on the spot for $200. The pillows and coffee table are also Craigslist deals. The large wool floral rug I scored at a garage sale in California for $45. Deals like this make me do the happy dance.

My favorite thing about our living room, or I guess my house in particular, is that we don’t own a TV. We are a TV-free family and when it comes to decorating it’s much easier to not have to work around a big black box. The wood coasters on the coffee table are handmade by Ryan and I. We had a large tree branch fall down in our yard and we decided to make coasters out of them. The picture frame wall is something I have been dreaming about for a while. I have been collecting unique frames at thrift stores and garage sales over the years. Once we moved into this townhouse I was ready to bring them out and let the fun begin. We are still figuring out what photos to put in some of them, which explains the blank frames and a sideways rooster.

wood coasters diy

toy organization living room

I love this coffee table because each drawer has a label slot on it and I can store the kids puzzles, board games and some preschool learning tools in them. This keeps my living room from being overrun with toys— which is very important for my sanity.

dining room

Dining Room: We picked up our dining room table at the Salvation Army and the cedar chest at a storage unit sale. This is technically supposed to be a sitting room, but we swapped it with our “official dining room” because it was more open and flowed better with our layout. And the Melissa and Doug art easel in the background is awesome! The reviews don’t lie—it’s amazing…especially with two kids.

play room

Playroom: Ryan and I love watching our kids play together, so we created a space for them downstairs where we spend most of our time. We turned our dining room into the kids area. The craft table was a Craigslist find. We use it for drawing, play dough, board games, crafts and even for meals when we have lots of friends over. The black Pottery Barn entertainment center is another Craigslist find— we store all of our crafts, books and games in it. Where a TV is supposed to go, we display kids books and keep our tabletop paper holder, which I got at Ikea and highly recommend it.

book display for kids

shoe cubby, shoe holder,

Shoe bin: We try to be a shoe-free home and this usually creates a pileup of shoes right by the front door. I have struggled every place we move to create the perfect spot for shoes. This is definitely not perfect, but it works for now. We each get our own cubby and the bottom two are for socks and hats. Boots stay to the side and our running shoes stay in the garage because they are typically caked in the nasty Florida mud. If you have any shoe storage ideas to share, I would love to see them!

pottery barn desk loft area

Loft: The loft is Ryan’s office space. He uses it for researching, reading and all the other jobs of a pastor. The desk was another Craigslist deal— I love how wide and deep it is. Since Ryan has mountains of books, we created a bookshelf on the back of his desk for his most-used books. Check out the clown bookends we scored at the thrift store as well— we love them!

music reading room

We refinished this Craigslist bookshelf in a dark blue to add some color to the room. The chair was calling my name at a small backwoods thrift store. It even rocks back— which makes it the perfect reading chair.

paintings and books

And for the overflow of books, we crammed them in this additional bookshelf that we got at a thrift store for $5. The glass jars and painting frames are also second-hand treasures. The wood duck is actually a gift from my good friend, Kerry, that I met two years ago through Craigslist.

cool kid room idea

Kid’s bedroom: We just got the kids this bunk bed set (another Craigslist deal). It opened up the floor area so they can play with their train tracks (another Craigslist buy), building blocks and Duplos (we bought most of our duplos on Ebay). The side table is actually meant for a bathroom, but we decided it’s new home was in the kid’s room (and yes, it was a thrift store find).

costume corner

Costume corner: Dress up is one of my fondest memories as a child. I asked Ryan to make a costume stand for me, since he is my handyman. He used sprinkler pipes and an old wood door we had in our yard. We spray painted it blue to conceal the plumber’s vibe going on. The mirror was actually a freebie (the people we bought the bunk beds from on Craigslist gave it to us). We hung it very low so the kids can see themselves when they play dress up. FYI: The day after Halloween is the day to stockpile your costume corner. Target has them discounted 50% off.

homemade raft diy

We made this raft as a family last summer with some sticks we collected around our yard. We actually launched it into a pond and watched it float across it. The kids loved it and I decided to mount it to the wall— like a trophy commemorating our adventure.

master bedroom layout design

Our bedroom: We keep books above our bed because all of our bookshelves are crammed full of books and we had to get creative. The bed, nightstand and lamp were all Craigslist purchases in Los Angeles. I love our bed because it is low to the ground and our 2-year old can easily climb up on it and snuggle with us.


home office, master bedroom office, office in home design

home office desk ideas

Home office: Welcome to Hansard Studio! This is my home office— where I talk with clients, edit photos, design websites, sketch out logos and write articles for Family Sponge. It’s also located in my bedroom (just to the right of our bed). So I guess it’s actually a “bedside office”. Ryan refinished this desk (bought from the Salvation Army) and we found this funky chair at a thrift store as well. The seat cushion of the chair lifts up and my kids like to hide treasures in here for me to find. So sweet!

The bulletin board began as a frame we found in the trash. Seriously. I spray painted it and then bought cork squares at Lowe’s to attach to a wood panel. Then we mounted the board into the frame and called it good. I use the board for creative inspiration and to hang our children’s lovely artwork. I have been considering using it as a vision board too.

desk organization

We use this computer to watch Netflix movies some nights (remember our bed is just to the left of the desk). I turned a candle holder into my office supply jar for easy accessibility. The strange tablet on my desk is what I use instead of a mouse. It’s an art thing and I love it! Much more ergonomical since I spend a decent amount of time on the computer. Oh, and we even buy our computers second-hand (refurbished) through Apple. I told you, we truly have this second-hand thing down.

Have a home you want to share with us?

Family Sponge is excited to start our monthly home tour. We are accepting submissions now and would love to show others a glimpse inside your family’s life. Email us at hello (at) for more information.

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42 Responses to HOME TOUR: Second-Hand Treasures

  1. Popo Joy January 16, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    Love your style Jen! You have been a busy girl!

  2. Marieke January 16, 2012 at 10:21 am #

    Jen, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your creative ideas. Awesome job on decorating your house. Great clean style, contemporary and cozy at the same time. Two thumbs up hon!


    • familysponge January 16, 2012 at 10:25 am #

      Aw thanks! We have found a lot of great items at the second hand stores in Florida and it has been fun to show them off. We should do a home tour of yours— your place is amazing. Mixing the Dutch with the Valley :)

  3. Ryan hansard January 16, 2012 at 10:39 am #

    When you buy things second-hand, everything has a story. Sometimes the story is lame, other times it makes the piece extra special.

  4. Jenni McKay January 16, 2012 at 11:20 am #

    As someone who has been here, I will add that it’s just as cool in person! :)

    • familysponge January 16, 2012 at 11:58 am #

      Thanks Jenni! And since you have been here, you also know it is never this clean. :)

      • Jenni McKay January 18, 2012 at 1:25 pm #

        Ah, but that is part of the charm….and if it were always this clean, I don’t think we would be friends, because I am SO not a neat and tidy person! :)

    • Yan February 13, 2012 at 9:35 pm #

      420greyfox on August 24, 2011 is a REAL place to earn cash in your pp account and points to spend on amazon products. Get clothing, electronics, ANYTHING! ? wont you join me?

  5. PB Rippey January 16, 2012 at 1:26 pm #

    So pretty and organized! I love it. Looks like a happy home.

  6. Vangie January 16, 2012 at 2:58 pm #

    You guys did an amazing job! I am impressed! Love the style!

    • familysponge January 16, 2012 at 3:57 pm #

      Thanks Vangie! I was actually surprised how well it came out with all of our hodge-podge pieces. Miss you guys! Come down and visit!

  7. Rachelley January 16, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

    Great job! I can’t believe how organized you are for just moving in! i love the mix of wood colors. The photo wall is so fun. I love ours too. I catch myself gazing and revisiting all the memories in the photos often. :)

    • familysponge January 16, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

      Thanks! I have a craze— once I move I have to get settled in .2 seconds or I go craaaazy. Poor Ryan had to deal with my late nights rummaging through boxes and moving furniture around many times. We are still putting up pics on the wall, but we are pretty dang close to being done! Wanna visit? We have a spare room….with a crib. We just moved Clare into the bunk bed, which is a new adventure in itself.

  8. Linda January 17, 2012 at 5:55 am #

    I love your decorating ideas especially the bin for shoes. You are very creative Jen and I love the warm, personalized feeling of your home. What great memories you are giving your children with the arts and crafts area and dress up area.

    • familysponge January 17, 2012 at 6:00 am #

      Thank you! The shoe bin was actually a wedding present— when we were first married we used it in our kitchen to store canned goods and apples. Over the years it has served various functions… and I hope I can drag it across the country every time we move (since I think as a pastor family, it will be a lot!).

  9. carolynn ferraro- king January 18, 2012 at 10:16 am #

    i love the dining room picked up at salvation army and the chest is beautiful too.

    • familysponge January 18, 2012 at 10:24 am #

      Thank you! When I open the chest I can just smell the cedar— it’s wonderful. We thought about refinishing it, but I am kinda fond of the rugged look. It has history and I don’t want to hide it.

  10. Jessi January 25, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

    Great ideas! We actually have that same green shelf (I spray painted it high gloss black) and have used it for shoes, hand bags and now it holds cookbooks and our cats sleep in the bottom empty cubbies. :) We also have a similar wall collage of frames. So fun!!

    • familysponge January 26, 2012 at 10:48 am #

      Jessi, I would love to see your collage of frames. Send me a pic if you want! Your cats have a super comfy home. :-)

  11. Megan April 2, 2012 at 11:59 am #

    Wow, I am so impressed by your neatness and style. You can tell there’s a lot of thought put into your choices and how you use pieces. I’m really impressed. I found your blog through, the link to your roadtrip was posted on here and when I saw you were moving to FL my ears perked up so I started looking around this blog. I live just south of you in New Tampa. What a small world!
    Do you do home visits! ;P I could use some repurposing, decluttering, and recycling around here!

    • Family Sponge April 2, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

      Well hello neighbor! That is too funny. I saw the train pics from Wiregrass on your blog. We live right by there. We should get together! I’ll email you and see if we can make this world even smaller. :) —Jen

  12. Becka @ Just a Bunch of Momsense April 5, 2012 at 4:28 pm #

    Just want to say that I LOVE your home! It looks so charming and warm and not like your typical “keeping up with the Jones’” theme. Most of the items in my home are Craigslist finds with the exception of our mattresses, couches and kids’ beds. We do get some strange looks when we tell people that, but you’d never know it by looking at the inside of our home.

    You’ve done a wonderful job of picking out great pieces.Your photos are perfect examples that you really CAN have a beautiful home without breaking the bank. It’s actually BETTER than ‘new,’ ;)

    • Family Sponge April 5, 2012 at 6:38 pm #

      Thanks Becka! I checked out your site and have been wanting to repaint a lamp like you did— you did a great job! Maybe this next week will be the week I find the perfect lamp at the Salvation Army. Thanks for the inspiration and kind words.

  13. Catherine April 29, 2012 at 8:44 am #

    I love this! I, too, try and get most of our requirements second hand (except most of our clothing – childhood hang up I can’t quite get over yet!). I LOVE finding pieces of furniture here and there to incorporate into our home plus I love how eco friendly it is. Your home is beautiful!

    • Family Sponge April 29, 2012 at 4:25 pm #

      So cool that you shop for used items to design your home too. That’s interesting to hear about the clothing. :-) I’m a big fan of hand me downs. But I remember as a kid not enjoying hand me downs so much either.

  14. Trina {Beginner Beans} May 30, 2012 at 8:31 pm #

    Great job on your home! I love your take on the dress-up/costume corner. Your’s is a little more my style, but our daughter is so “fancy” so her’s is definitely on the girly side :)

  15. Gina July 26, 2012 at 9:43 am #

    Wow! Your home is amazing! That’s just the kind of thing I love–super fun and eclectic, but so put together. Great job.

  16. Shana September 21, 2012 at 9:05 pm #

    Hey! I live down the road from your mom and she mentioned I should check out your blog…after I invited her and our neighbor to watch our space shuttle launch display on the driveway this afternoon.

    My blog isn’t as posh as yours, but after seeing your house tour, I feel a bit of an affinity to you cause I totally dig crashing the Salvation Army as often as possible, making stuff from PVC pipe (your kiddos’ dress-up clothes rack), and my husband is also a pastor. I refer to my double-Bob stroller as our second car. I’m feeling inspired by your picture wall in your living room. I’m no stranger to spray-painting frames and can often be found out in the front yard spray-painting a new thrift-store find. So, cool to ‘meet’ ya!

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