Friday, May 6, 2011

Upcycling & Repurposing

I love old stuff.  I don't know why, but it has always been interesting to me to explore, find and wonder about things from the past.  When I was a kid, we used to hike in the woods by our cabin, and find old logging trails and old garbage piles.  There were rusty old cans, cool old bottles, etc.  Just junk, but interesting junk.  And I love the repurposing I've seen lately, and wish I had more time to be creative.  Or at least copy some great ideas :)

My friend recently gave me this old printer's drawer.  I debated for a bit whether or not I should try to clean it up, or if I should leave it alone and just hang it on the wall.  Hanging it on the wall in my new woman-cave to display sewing and lacemaking items just fell into place.  It really feels like a "me" thing.  This is my contribution to today's repurposing. Not original on my part, but it's my own version.

I have old shuttles, old crochet handles with screw in hooks, old wooden thread spools, a piece of hairpin lace in progress, and I threw in some new collectible thimbles.  Some of the openings are too small for anything I have at the moment, but I'm sure I'll find something to fill them up eventually. 

I also did some of my own "upcycling".  I've seen plenty of cute needleminders out there, and only recently realized they are not just attractive, but how really very useful they are.  I was forever stabbing needles into a coaster or the arm of my chair.  I had some cameo jewelry that I had given to my grandmothers years ago for Christmas.  My Mom gave them back to me after my grandmas passed away, and I have had them in my jewelry box.  Coming to terms with the fact that I'd never wear them, I dug them out of the settings and glued a very strong magnet on the back of each one.  Voila!  Perfect little needle-minders.  Making these from old jewelry is a great way to upcycle, and I think they'd make a great gift for any needleworker.  I didn't do anything to cover up the magnet - I think they are just fine the way they are.  And a sweet reminder of my grandmas everytime I use them.

And with that, I'll show you the two bags I made this week.  I found this fabulous pattern I just had to try, and ended up making two.  This one I'm using for a purse that I can load my tatting bag and my lunch into for work:

And this is the same pattern, but I didn't use the thicker interlining and interfacing.  I'm very pleased with this pattern - a quick and easy bag!

And that was my week.  Oh, and I've started another tatted doily.  Mostly ecru, but it will have some color accent.  More on that next week!


  1. Oh the bags!!! beautiful!!

    And the cameos, they're so lovely.

    But what you've done with the printer's drawer is stunning!!

    Everything- you are SO talented!

  2. Lucky you to get such a wonderful old display piece! I love old stuff too but am trying to get rid of stuff that isn't something I just LOVE. Hard to do. The bags are so nice and the cameos are a superb idea!

  3. That printer's drawer is a great find, and I love the way you're using it! Your bags are great. There's nothing like a good bag!

    I love cameos, have since I was a little girl. I have some needle minders like that somewhere in my sewing room. Would you like to come visit and help me organize? ; )

  4. Brilliant idea for old cameos. Just brilliant!
    Fox : )

  5. What pattern is the bag? Everything looks wonderful!!!


Thanks for your thoughts - I read and appreciate every one!