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New Uses for Old Things: Serving Dishes in the Jewellery Box

While in Thunder Bay last week (I only just revealed that tidbit yesterday), I made a mess of my parents’ house while setting up shop with my Mom.  Their living room is now home to 70+ vintage finds and handmade goods (although that number is declining), all boxed and ready for new homes.  I had promised to help de-clutter, but mostly I just made a mess.  I forgot my Mom hates the smell of cardboard.  Ugh, I feel terrible.

To my credit, I did help my Mom organize a little.  Without invitation, I rummaged through the contents of her costume jewellery drawer and reorganized to make everything more accessible. 

Here’s what she was working with:  lots of things were in their original, non-descript boxes, which made accessorizing a real shell game of trying to figure out what was where.

A closer view:

My plan was to buy something that would fit in the drawer and help create at-hand storage.  But, I like a job done quickly (sometimes at the expense of doing it well, but that’s another story) and this time my ants-in-the-pants paid off.  I scooted to the kitchen and started rummaging through the cupboards, where I found two, rarely used divided glass dishes.  One was the perfect fit!

We kept a few rarely worn items in boxes in the back, then put a few larger pieces in the “new” dish.  Her existing silver lidded dishes house smaller pieces.

Now everything is easy to see, easy to access and easy to wear!

Full disclosure: not everything went back in.  The empty boxes found a new home, yes, as did some of her never worn jewellery.  Coincidentally, my jewellery box now has a few additions, like a sweet coral brooch and a couple other goodies.  I’m horrible.



  1. Kucorgó anyámkája
    July 4, 2012 / 3:07 pm

    Gyerekkoromban nekünk is volt ilyen üvegtálunk. Abban szervíroztuk a vendégeknek a sós rágcsálnivalót 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 6, 2012 / 3:58 am

      I am lazy with the Hungarian today ;)Do you still have these kinds of dishes? They can be used for so many other things . . .

    • Kucorgó anyámkája
      July 7, 2012 / 6:26 pm

      Több kibúvót nem kapsz a magyar alól :). Tudod, a szülinapi listád 23. pontja. Én vagyok a hajtód 🙂 Szerintem anyunak még van ilyen tálja. Egyébként ez tényleg egy remek ötlet az újrahasznosításra!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 8, 2012 / 4:20 pm

      Igen, tudom, hogy kell gyakorolni. Nem kéne ennyire lusta lenne. Köszönöm a motiváció :DSzeretek újrahasznosítani. Újrahasznosítás pénzt takarít meg!

  2. Jae
    July 4, 2012 / 8:00 pm

    Nicely done! I like the glass bowl to display her pretty items.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 6, 2012 / 3:59 am

      Thanks!! It really does let her pretty costume jewellery "shine".

  3. Tamsyn
    July 5, 2012 / 1:44 am

    I love what you did with her jewelry drawer. Having everything beautifully organised means things get worn so much more. I seriously need to give my drawer some attention too 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 6, 2012 / 3:59 am

      Yup, I am happy to report that Mom is wearing more of her lovely pieces now.

  4. How2home
    July 5, 2012 / 5:20 pm

    Very well done Tanya! I love it when i open my drawer i can find anything and everything in a second. Makes life so much easier. Do you organize your makeup and what not the same way? I bought some makeup organization storages from here ( and its quite helpful. But for jewelry items we have a PAX wardrobe, it makes things easier to find for sure.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 6, 2012 / 4:00 am

      Ooo, those are neat! I have many little drawers in my bathroom vanity, so I have little dishes in there too. And sometimes I use vintage planters (for lipsticks) or metal serving trays (for nailpolish). I get creative, lol, mostly to save money.

    • How2home
      July 9, 2012 / 5:47 pm

      I agree…that is the best way to save money! Way to go Tanya 🙂

  5. emilie
    July 6, 2012 / 12:51 am

    That must have been so fun! I love re-organizing, especially such pretty things!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 6, 2012 / 4:01 am

      Reorganizing jewellery is much better than reorganizing socks, that's for sure!

  6. Amelia @ House Pretty
    July 7, 2012 / 11:27 am

    Such a great idea. I definitely need to figure out a better storage solution for my jewelry – too many things in too few boxes means I forget what I have or it just ends up in a tangled mess! I'm thinking I probably need to let a few things go…

  7. Amy
    July 9, 2012 / 2:27 am

    i use little baskets in the same way — i never thought about dishes though. Genius!

  8. Anonymous
    July 14, 2012 / 3:13 pm

    Do you know the artist name for your turquoise studded chain piece?

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