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Upcycle Challenge - Nailed It!

Becky Engen

What did our second-place winner have to say when he found out that his "Nail Chair" took second place in our Earth Day chair UpCycle Challenge?

"My friend Joey took 1st place in the chair challenge and I can't allow that to happen again!"

Meet the good-natured and competitive man behind the "Nail Chair" creation - Beau Layman. He's no stranger to ReStore, and has been a loyal supporter since he first found one in Mankato. "I went to college in Mankato and ran a non-profit bicycle shop the recycled and refurbished bicycles. I frequented many second-hand stores while living there and at one point needed to build a table for a loft apartment I was in. I went to the ReStore there and purchased three used doors and turned them into a high top table."

And Beau's creativity didn't stop there. He purchased a 132-year-old home three years ago with his wife, and together they have been working to restore the home to its original style. Beau says that he often finds supplies he needs for his home project at the ReStore, and he describes it as a "combo of a thrift shop, architectural salvage, antique/vintage shop and home goods store."

Beau loves that he never knows what he will find when he visits the store, and says that is just one part that he loves about being a regular shopper.  He also loves the variety, hunting for great deals, interacting with the knowledgeable staff, and that the store acts as a green alternative to other home improvement stores.

"Items are priced right, and the employees and volunteers are always very cheerful," Beau said. "But the best part is I find what I need without having to consume "new" products, so I'm helping to keep things out of the landfill."

Read about ReStore's Earth-Saving Purpose >>

During one of his regular visits, he saw the posters for the Upcycle Chair Challenge.

"I noticed one lonely metal chair among a sea of wood. At that point I decided I better do it."

nail char


"This chair was one of the most commented on of the Challenge," said Jan Hagerman, Assistant Store Manager. "The amount of work and time was amazing!"

For additional supplies, Beau attempted to access the Restore scrap pile but was denied (the metal scrap team does amazing work!). "I ended up choosing non -coated nails. There was a huge selection and I needed a bunch of them to make a design. They seemed like the right solution. I think I had about eight hours into it total. The rust patina and stripping the old paint took the longest. I think the rusty patina was the best part of the chair but difficult to see in the photos."

When we asked if Beau was planning on participating in our next challenge, he didn't hesitate. 

"Of course! I tried to get a bunch of other people involved for the last challenge. I hope to see MANY more people involved in the next challenge!"

Topics: DIY, 2019, Upcycle