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Salvage love

Another source for materials is the people who patronize Silver Fox. "Our customers have become our pickers and our friends," Gibeau said.

Once the raw materials are in hand, Silver Fox delights in building items to order. Gibeau said her favorite aspect of the job is walking through the warehouse with someone, taking notes on what they like, and then turning that into a unique piece. One recent customer, for example, had an extra wide garage and wanted some kind of divider for it.

She liked mirrors, she liked bead boards. The finished divider featured both of those, along with a trunk, a space for shoes and some other stuff.

"We made it all come together for her," Gibeau said. "It's very gratifying."

Also gratifying is knowing that Silver Fox is helping to keep things out of landfills, Gibeau said, especially given recent reports of just how much garbage has accumulated at the Albany landfill.

That aspect is one of the key reasons people come to Silver Fox, as is the fact they're getting one-of-a-kind pieces, Gibeau said. Dinosaur Barbecue in Troy was a recent customer, buying two chandeliers from the business, which also helped decorate the eatery's Manhattan location.

Gibeau said there's an additional draw to Silver Fox: It's fun. She and Shaprio share the warehouse not only with about a dozen co-workers, but with a cat and a dog who are customer favorites. People are free to touch items as well as admire them, and Gibeau said all ages are welcome.

"It's a place a 16-year-old boy could bring his 60-year-old aunt," she said.

At the home show booth, people can get an idea of what Silver Fox does and dream up designs for their own custom pieces. Other attractions include nearly 500 exhibits and more than three dozen seminars, encompassing everything from solar energy to kitchen and bath renovations. Frank Fontana, host of HGTV's "Design on a Dime," will host three seminars.

Show hours are Friday, 4 to 9 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults; children under 14 are free when accompanied by a paid adult. For more information, visit www.greatnortheasthomeshow.com.

For more information on Silver Fox Salvage, visit silverfoxsalvage.com.""

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