Thrift Tip #1: Tennis Racquets

Hello!  This week  I am inspired to start a weekly post containing a thrift tip for you!  Sometimes we just need some ideas....nothing lengthy or too detailed.  These will be short and quick tips. And best of all.....easy to start, finish, and enjoy!   I'm kicking off the Weekly Thrift Tip with one of my all time favorite racquets!   YES!   What can you do with a tennis racquet besides slam a serve?  And what do tennis racquets have to do with decorating?  Tennis racquets could potentially "serve" many purposes.  One of my favorites is WALL DECOR.   But where and how do you find old racquets? 

FINDING YOUR RACQUETS are at your local thrift shop looking at the sea of random items.  Where do you start?  You start by going immediately to the sports equipment section.  At larger shops, sections are labeled and fairly easy to find.  At others, you just have to search!   Sports equipment sections are usually a pile of "things".  Sometimes the gems are hidden underneath so you have to dig a little!  Below is an example of a rather "organized" sports equipment section.  The racquets are center stage; easy to find....

But not all tennis racquets are created equal.  The type I am referring to here is the OLD type.  The wood framed babies, not the newer graphite ones.  At any particular thrift store, there is usually a grouping of racquets...all sizes, shapes, and types.  Among the mess you will also see plenty of badminton and racquetball racquets.  Those you want to skip.  The wood framed tennis racquets are your ticket.  The best kind have a little color and are perfectly distressed, but the colorless ones work great too.  It's fun to mix the colorful with the "brown" or non-colorful ones (I will get to that soon!).  And the best part.....your prep work for these racquets is zilch.  Simply  peel off the price tag and hang (clorox wipes might be in order). The photo below shows you the type of woord frame I am referring to:

This is a great example of a racquet you'd want to snatch up.  It has bold color and is naturally distressed.  No work involved on your part!  Here are more examples....

The more varied (and distressed) the colors, the better!  This is fun and creative art at your fingertips!  

Now that you have an idea of what type of racquet you are looking for and where to go, you can embark on your tennis racquet hunt.  The best results come from visits to multiple thrift shops.  You might not find any at one store, and three at another.  Persistence pays off!  So let's say you've found three great racquets.....what's next?   


A single tennis racquet hanging on a wall may seem out of place.  I have found that the best results come from hanging a "collection" of racquets together.  It creates more visual impact! In the world of decorating, you might have heard that items are best placed in groups of odd numbers.  For example, instead of placing just two candle sticks on your mantle, place three, five, or seven.   I follow this same rule with hanging decor.  In this  example, I've hung a grouping of three racquets......  

To my knowledge there is no rule that says you cannot hang tennis racquets in the bathroom! This is our kids' bathroom and it was in desperate need of color!  I've collected racquets for a while now, and it was time for me to put the idea to use!  I really like the look; a fun, unexpected detail.  My oldest son said,  "Mom, it's actually pretty cool".  

Hanging them is easy. I used a simple nail, about an inch and a quarter length, with a small head. Two racquets took one nail at the top, below the round frame.  One racquet required a second nail to keep the handle from sliding sideways....see below:

And that is it!  Quick, easy, and nice results!  

Stay tuned for a full post on this bathroom make-over!  From a drab and boring bathroom to a fun and colorful place my boys don't mind being.  (if you can make your bathroom somewhat enjoyable to be in, and if you have boys this is a GOOD thing!)

So what do you think?  Will you give tennis racquets a try?   If you go for it, I'd LOVE to see your results!   

As always, happy decorating and happy thrifting!