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I find beauty in the broken

I have an aversion to fine, “mint condition” antiques.  If something looks that good after 100 years, it couldn’t have been used that much.  I don’t need something in my house that needs to be roped off. 
I find beauty in a brush with missing bristles and book pages that are frayed and worn.
I find beauty in a crooked-faced clock that no longer works. 

I find beauty in a piece of ironstone that is stained, cracked and crazed. 

I find beauty in a smoked mirror with a chipped plaster frame. 

 I find beauty in the broken.

How about you?

For those waiting for the next installment of the slipcover series, it is uploading right now and will be available to view tomorrow.  Sit tight!

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  1. I love the history of something that is broken. My dining table has knife marks that my mother in law made when she was 3, in 1924. If you don;t know the story…make up a good one.

  2. Kalen says:

    My mom collected Ironstone… LOVED IT! It came out once a year on Thanksgiving & it was the most beautiful spread I'd ever seen. I wish I would have grabbed that collection when she passed, but I'll never have a Thanksgiving dinner close to the ones my mom used to pull off! And I'll never have the space to display the amount of ironstone she had!

  3. Cheers to that! I love the rustic worn look myself on most pieces. I find even knew things, I am roughing them up. Great post.

  4. Oh yes, it is these marks that are part of a life well lived. While on a certain level i unerstand wanting to have "nice" things, but how " nice" are the if you never use them an leave them wrappe in tissue at the bottom of a chest of drawers?

    The guys working on a bit of our house went to sand out some of the names carved on the stair treads while I was out getting more paint. My kids threw their bodies over the stairs as my teen called me to tell what the workers were going to do.. all in a panic since they knew how much those carved names mean to me.. the work guys were very confused to say the least! ( In the end it all worked out.. names are safe and sound.. and it' obvious that kids really know what is important!) History known or not will always have a place in my heart


  5. I love broken and worn things. My mom went shopping with me one day and said, "You gravitate to the broken stuff…"
    It's a good thing I do so my heart doesn't break when my things get frayed or chipped or worn; my house is 130 years old and full of hand-me-downs so that describes pretty much everything I have.

  6. i agree 100%!

  7. Worn and broken you know it has been used, loved and made it into my hands to be preserved forever. I have a broken and mended cup. Very frail thin cup that belonged to my Great Grandmother (Mamaw to us all), she had saved that cup from when she was a little girl because her brother had given it to her. The glue is brown from age and I would not change that for the world. At some point it had gotten broken and she glued it back together and I will treasure it forever. Many items in my home are like that and I have told my grown children of their history so I hope they will take care of them also some day. ~~Sherry~~

  8. i so agree. it is the history of the item that speaks to me. how was that item used, loved, cared for? i am a flawed human being, but i still have value in God's eyes. so it is with "things" that are flawed, they have value in our eyes.

  9. So well said!! Lori L

  10. Here On Crow Creek says:

    Amen sista! Me too!!

  11. i am likely to pay more for wrecked and worn…and much loved…

  12. I live in a 1938 Colonial and there's patina abound in the hardware that creaks to the smoked mirror…

  13. I too love the old and broken! Adore the primitive and mouse chewed stuff the most I think. Love your blog!

  14. Yes, me too. I like to imagine, most of all, the people before me who owned my prized possessions, something that was probably mundane and ordinary to them. If only these pieces could tell me the stories of the people who used them… Can you imagine?

  15. Sure do. In fact, you sellin' that mirror or am I after your stash? (It matches the white one on the right side of my bed. Need one for the left.) Hope you have a great rest of the weekend. :)


  16. Love it. All over the broken. Beautifully written post!

  17. Anything that's been loved…I love.
    such a pretty post…you always have the most beautiful posts ~

    sarah xo

  18. You took the words right out of my mouth. That pretty much describes a lot of things in my house. And why set them up on a shelf for display? Use those beatiful items! I always say they have been well loved.

  19. Yep me too! Give me the old and chippy over the new every time…..ummm except for undies and stuff ….something not so good about chippy undies *winks* Vanna

  20. So much character in all those things! :)

  21. This is my favorite post. For who among us is perfect. And I like people, even flawed as they are (with the exception of my perfect daughter of course!) Love, Dad

  22. Oh, we are on the same tattered page. I like to say I am more of a rust than a chrome kind of gal.

  23. I Love love LOVE those!

    – Jaana from "Kainuunkatu"

  24. I love to have an eclectic mix! I also just realized I missed your 1st slipcover tutorial

    Do come and enter my Artful Offering!

    Art by Karena

  25. I agree because the worn items were loved and useful to someone else in some other time.

  26. YES!
    I find beauty in the broken…because of the familiarity of it. I can relate.
    I praise God for brokenness.

    Your pictures are pretty.


  27. Hi Marian,
    I think all of your broken items are beautiful!
    I am exactly the same way… I actually think I like things better if they aren't in perfect condition….
    I hope you are having a great weekend Marian!
    Your photographs are stunning, and your blog looks beautiful! I love the new design.
    Take Care,

  28. I hear ya!! I love it all! When items are broken, chipped, and worn, it's a sign they were well-loved and used often. If they could talk, I'd love to hear the story.

    I'm so excited for the continuation of the slipcover tutorial!!!


  29. I so agree with you! The chippier the better!! Rusted??…perfect!! Stained??…fabulous!!

  30. Good morning Marion,
    I agree!

    I remember as a young child, enjoying Sunday dinners at my grandmother's house. She always served the food in these glorious glazed and crackled bowls. I remember staring at them and wondering how they were being held together. I was sure they were going to crack apart any moment and spill food everywhere.

    Now I adore collecting cracked and glazed bowls for my dinner table. They have such character.

    Janet xox

  31. I love your post and love your statement "I find beauty in the broken." Have been going through something and your post is like a reminder to me from God as he finds "beauty" in the brokenness of us.

  32. Some just don't get it. Worn,old and no matchy matchy.
    Enjoy your Sunday!

  33. Beautifully said. And a great reminder that God finds beauty in all our brokenness.

  34. Then you will LOVE this blog:

  35. …..and don't you love those delightful plate repairs done with rivets …..I consider it n added bonus…..someone loved their plate so much they had it repaired …..makes me want to bite my knuckles.

  36. Beauty in the Broken. Ah man – that's your book title! And yes, yes, yes – I actually go through button jars to find the rather dingy and weathered ones – they are my personal favorites and the first ones I use on my jewelry! I love what people kept instead of casting off.

  37. Uhm, hello? When did you come to my house and take those pictures? Everything from the broken clock to the crazed ironstone to the aged mirror! My house hold many things that are aged to imperfect perfection!


  38. I'm with you! I stay away from fancy antiques and look for the rusty, cracked, and used antiques!

  39. Yep! I totally agree. Things that aren't "bumped" up a bit make me uncomfortable, like you shouldn't use them.

  40. you said it so well.
    history and a story of a well-lived life:
    so much better than perfect and untouched!

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