04/10/12 11:00am

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Build It Green opened its first Brooklyn location last year (the original is in Astoria) but for whatever reason we had not had a chance to visit the salvage store yet. So, Saturday morning, with a rare weekend to ourselves, we headed down to 9th Street in Gowanus, between 2nd Avenue and the canal to check it out. There was lots of old stuff (doors, windows, sinks, tubs) as well as a bunch of complete kitchen cabinet sets. Very cool. Unfortunately, the salvage yard in the Lowe’s park lot that we reported on three years ago wasn’t open for some reason, but we took a couple of photos through the fence. Lastly, we popped into another nice store called Find, which is located right next door to Build It Green. Based upon the prices alone, it’s fair to say that this is definitely more of an antiques shop than salvage place, but lots of nice couches, lights, tables, etc. nevertheless.

03/23/12 11:45am


The Dumpster Project, a collage/art installation by Mac Premo that was featured at The Dumbo Arts Festival in the fall, now has an installation parked in a lot on Bergen between Court and Smith through early May. This was the description for the Dumpster Project at the arts fest was as follows: “The Dumpster Project is a work of transportable public art. …Fundamentally, though, The Dumpster Project is a physical taxonomy of one man’s existence. A visitor to the installation will walk into a modern-day “cabinet of curiosities”, where objects of nostalgia (i.e. a Yankees cap Mac wore through most of the 1990s) have a place beside items culled from international travels (i.e. the curiously named ‘Long Life’ brand of cigarettes from Hong Kong). Each object will be numbered, and a mobile application will enable the viewer to use his or her smart phone to access a eulogy Mac has written for each item, as well as a studio photograph of the object set cleanly against a white background.” All photos are by Cara Greenberg, who writes writes Brownstoner’s weekly Insider column, and more are on the jump, including some close-ups on featured items! (more…)

12/21/10 11:01am

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We alerted you a couple of weeks ago when the Strong Place Church Condos (officially The Landmark at Strong Place) hit the market and we hear that some of the larger units are moving quickly. (The three-bedrooms are price from $1,400,000 to $2,000,000.) But that’s not why we’re writing this post. We received these two photos from one of the architects on the job showing how some of the salvaged woodwork was being incorporated into the new design. Pretty neat. Another salvaged item is the old church bell, shown in its temporary location in a photo on the jump. The plan is to put the bell permanently at the corner right behind the iron fence. GMAP

09/14/09 11:15am

lion-mantle-0909.jpgWhen we were renovating our house back in 2005, we used as much architectural salvage as possible. The marble for our kitchen counters came from a great building products recycling spot in Long Island City called Build It Green NYC–there were two large slabs of carrera marble that had been rescued from an old theater in the West 40s and were ours for a total of $400. Sweet! Anyway, we opened the non-profit’s monthly email newsletter on Friday and our eye was caught by this beautiful 19th century cherry mantlepiece that had come from a house in Park Slope. Anyone interested? It’s yours for $1,500. Lots more salvaged items here.

07/20/09 10:31am

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If you’re like us, you’ve got piles of old hinges and doorknobs in your cellar that are layered in old (probably lead) paint. Last week, Reclaimed Home gave a great primer (no pun intended) on how to clean up these antique pieces yourself. Check it out on the link.

05/20/09 10:15am

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The NY Times’ Local blog had a guest post yesterday about one of our favorite stores and people in the neighborhood: Eddie Hibbert and his eponymous salvage store at 224 Greene Avenue. We began frequenting Eddie’s as soon as we bought our house a couple of blocks away (here’s the first mention of him on Brownstoner back in 2005). It was the perfect spot for us for a couple of reasons: 1) we were endeavoring to use as much architectural salvage as possible; and 2) we were trying to spend as little money as possible. Not lost on the writer of the post: Eddie’s warm personality and insider’s knowledge of what’s going on in the neighborhood. As the real estate market has exploded in the area in the last decade, Eddie’s had a number of offers for the large storefront space he occupies but has no plans to move—which is good news for salvage junkies and those who care about the community.
One Man’s Trash [NYT/Local]
Photos by C. Zawadi Morris

02/24/09 11:00am

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We received a tip about the opening of a new outdoor architectural salvage business a few days ago but haven’t had time to make it over to Gowanus, so we were pleased to see that blog Casa Cara wrote it up this morning. According to her post, Roy Baccaro, whose family has been in the business for a century, recently rented space in the Lowe’s parking underneath the F train and is displaying a tempting array of antique iron fences, newel posts and fireplace covers, among other things. Anyone checked it out in person yet?
The Ironmonger Under the El [Casa Cara]

11/20/08 10:59am

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The coolest item at The Flea this weekend was without a doubt this old iron fireplace that Clinton Hill resident and regular vendor David Sokosh had for sale over near the backstop. (He ended up selling it for $50.) While the exterior frame is instantly recognizable as the semi-circular edge of a fireplace, the guts of this piece are less familiar. Turns out it’s an apparatus for burning coal. Pretty neat. Anyone have one of these still installed in a fireplace at home?

09/29/08 9:33am

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Teardowns are as much a problem in non-landmarked Brooklyn areas as they are in other parts of the country (even a couple of “green” condo projects stand in lots once occupied by humble, wood-framed homes). So perhaps we can learn a lesson from Brad Guy, a deconstructionist — and we don’t mean that in an academic way — who is trained in the fine art of advanced salvage, and profiled in the NY Times Magazine this weekend. Deconstruction, dismantling and reusing building materials rather than just junking them, is becoming more popular. “The demolition industry has identified 14 recyclable building materials, but it only recycles three in any real volume: concrete, metal and wood,” they write. But it has some drawbacks: Deconstruction can be cheaper than demolition, but it can never be faster. “It takes two weeks and a dozen wage earners to do what a piece of hydraulic machinery accomplishes before lunch,” they write, but it does provide jobs, not to mention lightening the carbon footprint of the building industry, which produces more pollution and consumes more energy than any other business sector, according to Architecture 2030. We know a couple of demo projects that might be a good fit (see above).
This Old Recyclable House [NY Times]
Decon2. Photo by horseycraze.

08/01/08 11:01am

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There’s nothing quite like a yard sale to satisfy a bargain hunter’s desires. We found these four sconces in the nicest yard we’ve ever seen hosting a yard sale last weekend in Bridgehampton. The price? $5 a pop. Of course, now we’ve gotta spring for the rewiring but the hallway lighting in our place is one of those cases where we put something quick and easy in to get our C of O three years ago and have been too lazy to upgrade to something more attractive. Have any other readers scored any yard sale finds this summer?

02/18/08 8:01am

We’re off for the holiday today but…We just discovered this very cool new slideshow application called PictoBrowser and wanted to give it a whirl. So, in anticipation of Brooklyn Flea’s imminent launch, we threw together a look at last September’s Salvage Fest, our first toe-dip into this whole outdoor market thing. Most of the folks who were there—Demolition Depot, Olde Good Things, Silver Fox and Eddie’s—are going to be a part of the Flea along with a whole host of others selling antiques and other old-school items. For a reasonable up-to-date but not comprehensive list, check out the side bar on the Brooklyn Flea Blog.