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For music lovers, decorating is instrumental

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published June 1, 2016

 Stec’s ukulele hangs with music posters in her room.

Stec’s ukulele hangs with music posters in her room.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

METRO DETROIT — If the walls inside Dana Forrester’s home could talk, well, they probably wouldn’t.

Instead, they would break out into a guitar solo, entertain a melody or display some rockin’ riffs.

Forrester, who resides in Whitmore Lake with husband James Trunko, has set aside a number of her guitars — including a red Fender Telecaster — to use as decorative pieces throughout the house. 

“I have some guitars on the walls,” said Forrester, a bassist who currently plays in two bands: Crud and Dead in 5. “If you’re a musician or music fan, it’s a creative and cool way to decorate.”

The musician, who grew up in Birmingham, primarily uses the guitars she has won in raffles as decorations. And she doesn’t mind if friends and family take them off the walls to play when visiting.

“You can have a spontaneous jam. They are playable,” Forrester said. “Of course, you might be out of tune.”

Trunko, a drummer who can be heard playing skins for Dead in 5, Crud and Mound Road Engine, has found a way to creatively reuse worn drum cymbals to match the guitars. The Warren native engraves them and makes them into art pieces. He’s also working to make a coffee table from a bass drum for the couple’s living room. It has already been stained.

“We’re going to do a circular glass top over it,” Forrester said. “The bass drum is the biggest part and the centerpiece of most traditional drum sets.”

Forrester also has come across lamps made from old snare drums that work as furniture pieces. 

“I’ve seen people make drum lamps and light fixtures,” she said. “They look really cool.”

Over in Washington Township, Jillian Stec’s love of music — which ranges from gritty punk rock to Disney’s “Frozen” soundtrack — can be found inside her rock ’n’ roll-inspired bedroom. The 14-year-old has decked out her room with all things musical. Various instruments adorn the space, along with CDs and posters of her favorite bands, including Fall Out Boy, Twenty One Pilots and Panic! At The Disco. Stec’s parents recently added an addition to the home — her bedroom — which has become the teenager’s rock ’n’ roll haven.

“I thought it would be really cool to decorate my room like how I like to live my life.” Stec said. “When you walk into my room, you know who I am.”

The talented Stec plays guitar, keyboards, ukulele, drums and violin. All the instruments, minus the drums, have made their way inside the room. An acoustic and an electric guitar hang on a wall right next to the keyboards. Stec found a spot by her bed for the ukulele, and a violin and amplifier also are in view.

Since Stec has so many CDs, she decided to make those part of the decor as well by hanging them on the walls. She said she placed the lighter colors together and the darker colors by each other “so it looks more pleasing to the eye.” 

“It looks kind of cool,” she said. “It takes a lot of work and a lot of time to do it.” 

While punk rock influenced her room’s style, Stec added posters and CDs from many pop and classic rock artists, including Selena Gomez, Bon Jovi and Boston. She likes all kinds of music and has found her new digs inspirational.

“When I’m sitting there playing my guitar, just seeing all the bands up there makes me feel a little more like a musician,” she said. “My biggest dream is to be in a band. Having that motivation kind of helps.”