For those of you not from hunting families, two weekends ago marked the beginning of deer season for gun users in Indiana. Since Chase and I are both from southern Indiana and both of our fathers love hunting, we are quite comfortable with the whole shooting Bambi thing. With fathers who hunt comes wall mounts of your great trophy kills. We both grew up with the heads of deer mounted on the wall. While this may seem very hillbilly or country, which admittedly it can be, this sort of thing is making a crazy interior design comeback in a pretty fresh way.
For example, Z Gallerie, one of my favorite stores, sells lots of wall mounts (note: the current home page has a mount on the first picture you see):
So these must be in style right? Well maybe I don’t want an animal’s entire head mounted on my wall, but antlers are also really popular. Restoration Hardware sells this antler for $129!
Pottery Barn is currently sold out of these antlers that cost about $30.00 for a small one.
You get the idea. I should note that these antlers, etc are all made of resin, so no deer were actually harmed. However, because I am always looking for a way to get something I love for a low, low price (like practically free), I was at my dad’s and had a thought that he might have deer antlers somewhere. Sure enough, he had several! If you don’t already know, which I would guess most don’t, if the deer doesn’t have a lot of points or a nice uh..rack…you don’t mount the deer. However, you usually just cut the antlers off and put them in a pile somewhere (for my father-in-law, we found out later that “somewhere” is in a five gallon bucket in the barn).
Since my dad had no use for them, he gifted them to me. Chase was completely skeptical and I kept pulling up websites like Pottery Barn to show him that antlers are in fact very popular. Anyway, I was completely thrilled! I took the antlers home and tried washing them to get the dirt off and even used a sonic scrubber thing we had under the sink. After cleaning, they still didn’t look nice and white like the things I had seen at Z Gallerie.
Clearly, these weren’t looking so cool. So I followed my dad’s advice and put the antlers in a five gallon bucket with several cups of bleach and filled it with water. After letting them soak for about 24 hours, I was left with these beauties!
While these looked much better, I really wanted glossy white antlers that would pop against the walls/furniture in our house which are mostly rich or dark kinds of colors. Thus, I sent the husband to the craft store for some glossy white spray paint. The ladies at those stores must think interesting thoughts when they see Chase perusing the aisles looking for things I have only half explained to him. Thank you, Chase! So I sprayed these babies with several coats of paint which was not easy considering they have rounded edges and require acrobatic-like painting. Nonetheless, they turned out great! We haven’t quite decided where or how to put them, but for now they look like this.
Since I don’t personally hunt deer (it’s too darn cold and early to get in a tree stand to do that), I feel like I had a pretty successful deer season. I love my antlers! And what a savings. Seriously, Restoration Hardware? One hundred and twenty-nine bucks for an antler! No thanks! But thank you, Dad! And for those who still don’t like the idea of using antlers from a deer, you should know that deer shed their antlers every year and you can walk around the woods to find them as well!
Note: No new deer were harmed in this project. And we do eat the meat if that makes deer-lovers feel any better? Not even a little?
Do you love this mount/antler craze as much as I do? Do you have any weird items you have made household decorations? Do you have a wonderful husband that runs to the craft store to pick up spray paint, glue sticks, and wreath forms like I do?