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Treasure hunter says curbside finds go fast; grab it before it's gone

DALLAS (MCT) — In hunting for roadside treasures on bulk-trash day, you have to act fast.

If you see something that looks interesting, treasure hunters say, grab it right then. "It's never there if you pass it up and try to come back for it," Brina Tignor says.

And for the East Dallas woman, that means she's often grabbing pieces without knowing what she's going to do with them once she gets them home.

She says she just can't stand to let a good piece of free furniture go by — even if she doesn't have room for it herself.

"I'm a saver of things — saver of people, saver of animals and saver of furniture," Tignor says.

She recently saved a white side table her neighbor was tossing, and though she didn't have room for it in her East Dallas home, she grabbed it to pass it on to someone else.

She also remade a found chair with vintage fabric and playing cards before putting it in a charity auction.

Tignor says she doesn't have much room left for other found pieces, because she's been collecting midcentury elements for a while and her home is already full.

Before her house reached capacity, Tignor saved a small nightstand from going to the landfill and customized it with metallic paint and drawer pulls she made using bakeable clay and vintage jewelry.

She's also found several pieces for her daughter to enjoy. Though the bones of a wooden kitchen play set were good, Tignor wasn't content with the way it looked. So she made it match her room's decor with bright paint and oilcloth.

"I usually don't have to look too far to find something good," Tignor says. "Most of the pieces I've saved have come right from my own street or just a few blocks away."

(c) 2009, The Dallas Morning News.