Art of Americana


I used to avoid decorating for seasons and even holidays. In fact, I had a hard time sticking to themes in general; I loved too many styles and too many colors and too many neutrals and how could I ever choose?! I was the worst when it came to picking paint colors – especially if I planned to repaint furniture.  Blue was always a go-to for me, always will be (it’s my favorite color.) 

I’ve recently started volunteering at a local thrift store run by charity that helps those in the community who are in need of various types of assistance.  I’m not new to shopping thrift stores and after each shift, I do a quick sweep to look for hidden treasures because “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Of course, sometimes one man’s trash is also another man’s trash lol! One particular day, to my utter shock and delight, I stumbled upon an American Flag, officially and perfectly folded into the military-style triangle and encased in the classic triangular shaped, glass-front display box most people place them in. I am very familiar with this type of item, so much in fact, that I knew exactly what the shell casings that came out of the box were. When a veteran passes away, they are honored with a three gun salute, next to a full-size, authentic American Flag hanging proudly beside the gravesite. After the shots are fired (it’s a very reverent and highly honored tradition), a pristinely uniformed and white gloved officer releases the flag from the post and in a series of highly trained movements, folds the flag into a wrinkleless triangulated bundle and reverently presents it to the next of kin (that was my father at my grandmother’s funeral.) The shell casings are tucked inside as a reminder of the salute to the fallen service member of our United States of America.  This was a treasure for me to find, but also tugged at my heart. Who was this veteran? What was the story that led his honored memory to be laying on a shelf in a thrift store? I will never know, but I fully intended to honor this serviceperson by proudly hanging the flag in my home (I’ll sew the casings to the lining.) Was it so much that I wanted a little bit of Americana décor in my home? I don’t know. Was it that I wanted an oversized, wow-factor, one-of-a-kind piece hanging in my home? One hundred percent yes.

Now, I have to start researching all the information on the proper treatment of an official flag – it’s a legit business – the whole burning a flag ceremony that has touched the ground, the cutting up of a flag in a correct manner to officially retire a flag (a very politically correct way to say throw it away.) Maybe it shouldn’t be hanging vertically like this. Maybe I shouldn’t desecrate it by sewing the casings into the lining. Maybe it’s no patriotic to hang it from your wall, only from a flagstaff. I don’t know, so if you do know, leave me a comment because I have major respect for our country’s flag (my father and brothers are Eagle Scouts) and no matter what politics are happening, I refuse to disrespect the greatest symbol of our freedom.  What would this hanging flag be without a thrifted vintage dictionary, the classic writings of the American author Truman Capote and  classic literature by Charles Dickens (not American) but a major part of the public school system English class references? Oh, and an airplane, am I right? A popcorn machine, a little greenery, and a vintage classic American-made typewriter?


Want to try the art of Americana in your home? Try some of these great pieces from

Model plane, U.S. books, vintage typewriter artwork, U.S. flag

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