CUYAHOGA FALLS: The first piece of furniture Jessica Paris repurposed was an old dresser she found on the side of a road.
It was someone else's trash, but Paris got an adrenaline rush imagining what it could become.
Now, through her store, J. Paris Designs, she shares her passion for taking outdated and discarded furniture and turning it into chic, modern home decor.
The store, located at 1835 4th Street, is an eclectic mix of old-turned-new furnishings.
There is a wine bar made from a credenza and headboard. The top is tiled with corks from wine bottles and topped with glass.
The wrought iron legs of an old Singer sewing machine cabinet are now attached to a freshly painted tabletop.
A green desk and a nightstand that appears to be made of purple wood attest to Paris' love of bright colors.
"I like when I can take a piece of furniture and turn it into something else," Paris said.
Her passion for recreating furniture evolved from her hobbies during childhood. One of her earliest memories is learning to sew on an old sewing machine.
"I've been crafty since I was a kid," Paris said. "I caught the craft bug from my mother, Linda Paris."
Paris doesn't always know what a piece will be until she finishes, as evidenced by two pieces in her own home. One, a 1960's era stereo phonograph turned into a blue and white entertainment center, and the other a Craftsman tool chest replica she made for her husband, Dan Schreiner, from an old dresser.
She said Schreiner is an important part of her business.
"He's the heavy lifter," she said. "And he's analytical. He keeps me on track. He's the left side to my right side brain."
Paris also makes pottery, which is on display for sale in the store.
She offers custom recreations from a customer's furniture or a piece she finds for them.
Paris has a degree in interior design, and offers that service to her customers as well.
"I'm not one of those interior designers that follows all of the rules," she said.
Paris' prices are reasonable on purpose.
"I don't want people to come in and think, everything is beautiful but I can't afford it," she said. "I want people to visualize making it a part of their decor.
View Paris’ website, www.jparisdesigns.com, to see her blog along with before and after photos of her creations.