4 Ways to Upcycle Reclaimed Wood for your Home Décor

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Who doesn’t love the rich patina and character of a 200-year old piece of wood? Some people appreciate the history, others love the dynamic character and colors that only time can create. Whichever category you fall into, there are a variety of ways to upcycle reclaimed wood into your home décor.

Wood Floors

Reclaimed wood flooring, also known as antique wood flooring, is still one of the most requested wood flooring styles today.

Reclaimed wood flooring appeals to the historian at heart, people who appreciate the rich character and beauty that can only be created from years of use (and abuse); heart pine flooring walked on for over 100 years in an industrial factory; grey original surface barn siding weathered from a decade of heat, snow and rain; reclaimed oak floor joists and beams holding up an old dairy barn in Ohio.

Reclaimed Hardwood Flooring

The appeal of reclaimed wood flooring can also be attributed to programs like Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (“LEED”) which educates and promotes the development of more environmentally friendly and sustainable building practices. This Solano Beach, California home used reclaimed Antique Heart Pine flooring and green building practices.

When you look at a reclaimed wood floor, history resonates beneath your feet as you explore knots, holes, cracks, and checks, oxidation from nails and door hinges, bullet holes, wormholes, saw marks and other remnants of its past life — all meant to be there. Make sure you comfortable with the variety, and unpredictability, of the color and character that will be present in this style flooring.

Reclaimed Wood dining room table.Dining Room Table

A dining room table crafted from reclaimed wood can become a major conversation piece, for your room. Imagine family and friends gathered around a table made from wood that is decades, if not centuries, old.

There are a variety of companies who can build custom dining room tables from reclaimed wood, including Urban Wood Goods, based in Illinois. Many times you can even have custom dining room table chairs made from the same material.

Reclaimed wood bar stool.Even though you are using reclaimed wood to build your table, the overall look will work with a variety of interior design styles from a modern New York City flat, a San Francisco industrial loft or a rustic Maine farmhouse.


Reclaimed wood can be a great material to build custom kitchen or bathroom cabinets from.  The process of creating cabinetry from reclaimed wood is a labor of love.  The wood itself is sometimes hundreds of years old, which means it is dry and brittle and filled a variety of character likes nail holes, checks, cracks, knots – just to name a  few – a custom cabinetry maker or woodworker will be able to help you estimate the amount of material you need, based on the architectural design of your space.  With reclaimed wood, you may have a higher waste factor than traditional hardwood.  An experienced woodworker will also appreciate the uniqueness of the wood and carefully and slowly work with each piece to make sure it is aesthetically cohesive and stable.

Just like with reclaimed wood flooring, make sure you are comfortable with the variety of character and color variation this wood will bring into a space as this style cabinet will be more rustic.

To see some great examples of reclaimed wood on cabinet doors visit Houzz.com

Reclaimed Wood HeadboardHeadboard

Headboards today can be crafted in a variety of materials. Some Decorators will choose traditional wood headboards, others will custom design something to match a paint color, fabric or window covering to help create a cohesive interior design. These custom designs set the bar for luxury and create a beautiful focal point within the room. If you love reclaimed wood, then create a custom headboard for your space.

Unlike cabinetry or wood floors, a custom headboard is a little less permanent. They can be designed so they don’t need to be attached to the bed or bed frame. This makes it so easy to switch out and update your headboard for a new season or a new look in your room.

Wall Paneling

Wall paneling is one of the most popular applications for reclaimed wood. You can use it to build wall paneling, window trim, beam wrap and other interior millwork. You can also keep it simple and incorporate an accent wall for a living room, office, bathroom or kitchen. For some customers choosing just one option doesn’t work, like this New Hampshire customer who chose reclaimed Grandpa’s Flooring wood for the floors, wainscotting, and trim, then used Reclaimed Chestnut for the wall paneling.

Reclaimed flooring & Wall Paneling from Carlisle Wide Plank Floors

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Designing interior accents from antique wood can be a fun process, by working closely with your Architect, Designer, Builder and wood flooring partner you can see your design ideas come to life.
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