How to Reuse Old Interior Columns
If you would like to rehab stripped interior columns from aged decor, or you are fortunate enough to have scored some previous columns in a real estate sale, then recycle them into iconoclastic and useful accent pieces or frames. Columns are almost infinitely adaptable — they hold up enormous Boston ferns; mark the border between rooms; border a wall of bookshelves; shrink or cram to become hallway coat racks, wall-hugging stone pillars or folk art. Imagination and that Ionic column could redefine your dining room.
Faux Fireplace Surround
Dress up a fireplace that is dull by cutting a decorative interior column in half lengthwise and attaching the halves to the sides of the firebox to support the mantel. Utilize a painted and constructed slim wood box to your mantel and border it with ornamental molding to match the fashion of the columns. Faux paint the pillars along with the wood mantel to look like malachite or lapis lazuli for pure shiny drama. Or go lighter for a romantic bedroom or casual sitting room, with a light, creamy eggshell finish paint to match the trim in the room.
The Short of It
Cut down ornate columns to create a base to get a glass-topped coffee table. The capitals from two columns support the glass, the ornamental shapes clearly observable. If the pillars are solid and secure, all you have to do is put the glass on them. For greater stability, attach the columns For example, screw half of a cabinet butt hinge to every column and join them together with the hinge’s metal pin. A single wide column having a Doric, Ionic or Corinthian funds and distressed and crackled finish can be cut to create an end table or a base for a plant or sculpture.
A beautifully maintained wood column can form a part of the support to get a spiral staircase to a mezzanine office or sleeping area in a attic or a cathedral-height room. Nice hardwood interior columns, salvaged from old estates or townhouses, have usually been treated such as furniture — shiny and oiled to maintain the wood. The better the status of the column, the more you must expect to pay for it in a salvage depot. But well-cared-for wood columns are generally good wood, so they are strong enough to support stair platforms and units or frame the sides of a bookcase. Use two columns to define an archway between bookshelves that leads to one part of the open plan room into another, splitting the living room in the dining area, or the library in the family room.
A slim column, mounted on a secure plinth, can easily be embellished to make a holiday tree. Insert decorative coat hooks for hanging garlands and ornaments around the “tree .” A wider base and eye hooks at the top let you stretch light strings in a cone shape from the surface to the base of the column to make an illuminated Christmas tree, with glittery ornaments and fragrant evergreen boughs observable between the lights. A smaller column may be shortened, mounted on a plinth, and decorated and painted to look like an angel. Flat milk paint to the body — light or white — triangular iron brackets for wings, a garden gazing ball to your mind, and a twist of brass or copper wire to get a halo conjure up a folk art angel to greet guests in the entryway.