A Happy Accident


If you are a regular reader of this blog, you probably remember our post on “international online shopping” gone (slightly) wrong? Back then, I described a number of pitfalls that I experienced when I ordered a piece of wall art in one corner of the world, but to have it transported halfway around the world in an incredibly roundabout manner before it finally arrived at its final destination.

The logistics involved worked surprisingly well: the piece was delivered fairly quickly, and it seemed efficient on the surface. Unfortunately, upon further investigation, we found that it was slightly damaged. One of the disks had popped off. We assumed that this happened because it was not packaged properly, at least not well enough to travel around the world. What happened next was interesting in that, as a result of complaining about the sloppy packaging, the US vendor immediately (without consulting me first) sent a replacement piece. That one then went through the same logistics as the original: It was first delivered to a warehouse in the US and then picked up by our New Zealand shipper who dropped it off at our place a couple of weeks later. Of course, the shipping was not exactly cheap and I was not particularly enthused about how things had went, especially not when I learned that the second shipment arrived again with a disk popped off.

Wayfair, Moe's home collection, damaged artwork

The replacement piece with the small, popped-off disk shown to the left

Hm. I now had two damaged pieces of metal wall decor for which I had paid quite a lot of money simply to haul them from the US to New Zealand. What to do with them? Donate one and fix the other? Throw both of them away? Or just leave them sitting there in the storage room until I had a better idea?

For quite some time the latter was what I actually did, kind of by default. I was not motivated at all to touch the things and almost forgot about them.  Then one day I finally went down into the basement to deal with them.   I looked at the two pieces – still partially wrapped in the torn cardboard boxes they arrived in – and found that the popped off disks were actually only a minor issue – I’d only heard about them secondhand, and had overestimated the damage. If nobody told you, you would most likely not even notice the damage. Thus, I took one of them and placed it tentatively exactly where I wanted to put it in the first place: above the bed in Natasha’s room. Her room has a turquoise grey colour scheme and I had bought the wall decor with that room in mind. To my dismay, it looked quite awful there: it was too flimsy, too small, and even the colours were not quite right. Damn. Now I really had a problem!

Looking at the colours of the decor again and again and thinking about where else I could put it, I eventually had an idea. Our master bedroom’s accent colour is a bit of a mix of blue/green shades … and we still have many white walls there. Maybe that would work?! Given the recent (somewhat depressing!) insight that the decor was much less significant than anticipated, I finally had a Eureka moment: Why not use both pieces together and turn them into a really unique piece in their own right? Excited about this new option, I rescued the second piece from the storage as well and tried several layouts on the carpet. My objective was to make them appear cool, look like one piece, and, of course, nobody should be able to notice that the artwork actually consisted of two identical pieces. Thus, I placed them such that they seemed to belong together,  but turned one of them up-side-down and vertical to make it as hard as possible for anyone looking at them to realise that they were in fact two identical halves.

Wall Decor on Carpet

Artwork laid out on the carpet in the final configuration

Once happy with the configuration, I called my husband to have a look and see whether he was ok with it. He did, and even volunteered to hang it right away! You may wonder what happened to the popped off disks? We did not glue them back on – since we did not want to mess around with the glue – but rather nailed them separately onto the wall. As a result they now seem to float around the main piece.

The three pictures below show you what we finally ended up doing (with/without art light and how the two pieces are put together).

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A couple of days later, friends of ours visited and since they had not been to our place before they asked whether I could give them a quick tour through the house. Upon entering the master, they were immediately taken by our new piece of metal art. In fact it was the first thing they took in and they loved it!  I thought that was pretty funny; we seemed to have created a brand-new focal point in our master – made up of two pieces of damaged merchandise! A happy accident indeed!  🙂


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