My sister, Molly, and I went to a great place this weekend in East Palo Alto called Whole House Building Supply and Salvage. It's this place that takes apart houses that are going to be demolished, piece by piece, and sells the recycled materials to the public. They also get a bunch of donations. The place was amazing. It was kind of like an organized junk yard that went on and on forever. They had absolutely everything...wood, picket fences, antique and modern windows, doors, toilets, sinks, tubs, bricks, ducks (yes, really), hardware, lights...everything! I'm definitely going back there with all my door measurements and buying a bunch of old doors that belong in a house like ours. There were also a bunch of cool bricks that caught my eye and some glass french doors that I want to make into mini greenhouses in the vegetable garden some day. Getting lost in isle after isle of doors was fun, but the best part of the day was when the guy who worked there told us that they were actually doing a house demolition that day and gave us a map to a nice neighborhood in Palo Alto. We decided to drive by and check it out and I'm so glad we did. When we got there the ladies in the garage gave us a price list with over 200 items on it all corresponding to something in the house. It was so weird! All these people were hurrying around (kind of like vultures) tearing out every last piece of the house. There were big holes in the walls where window used to be and bathroom cabinets with no more sinks in them. Some guy was taking out the front door when we were there and there were sold stickers on nearly everything. I even got caught up in the excitement and bought an old wooden potting bench for the back yard!
The sale lasted Saturday and Sunday, and then on Monday the house would be demolished and anything that wasn't sold gets taken back to the shop. It's actually a pretty great concept. Recycle, Reduce, Reuse, right?