When craftsman Jay Chaikin has a design idea, he relies on the environment for inspiration. In “Restoration Wild,” Chaikin scours the countryside to reclaim abandoned items and transform them into livable, spectacular spaces, helping clients to reconnect with nature. His toolbox of materials includes rusted-out buses, old barns and abandoned railway cars — weathered remnants of yesteryear that Jay and his team upcycle for the one-of-a-kind builds. The catch: the structures must flow seamlessly with the surroundings and appear to be a century old. With limited resources, Chaikin looks to the land to help deliver jaw-dropping results. In 2012, Chaikin was featured in the National Geographic Channel series “Abandoned,” in which he and two buddies salvage valuables from dilapidated buildings.
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