Micha Fohl Revisited - How to Recycle Wood

Posted on September 10, 2015 at 8:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Micha Fohl is a German designer who has an artist's intuitive appreciation of what most of us consider to be rubbish. For example, he takes the tiniest pieces of wood - leftover, perhaps from a renovation project - and instead of tossing those itty-bitty bits out, Micha transforms these into enchanting Lilliputian 'houses'. The little buildings he creates are adorned only with a nail and a bit of paper (forming a window) which only just adds to their charm. A child's imagination will take care of the rest.

He manages to transform even the teensiest bits of wood into a tiny village complete with nail and wire 'telephone' poles linking each building. What more could a little kid want? Heck, this adult would love this village.

For the little houses click here.

For the little wood village, click here.

To explore all of Micha's work here. You'll love what he does with a old key!

Hanging around - Upcycling Coat Hangers

Posted on August 20, 2015 at 11:55 AM Comments comments (0)

I seem to be all over the map these days - I think the heat wave we are in the middle of is affecting my brain. Anyway, something told me I had to organize my closet and I started to but in rummaging through it I got sidetracked and began to think about the many uses of clothes hangers, both wire hangers and wooden ones. I've posted a few ideas here and there, and today looked for a few more. And here they are:

Wooden Clothes Hangers

If you've got a few surplus wooden clothes hanger just hanging around in the closet, consider putting them to work with these ideas:

Cafe Table


Dish Drainer


Kid's Mobile


This kid's room mobile by Micha Fohl is definitely my favourite.

Manoteca Pezzo Unico - Door to Table Upcycling

Posted on February 21, 2015 at 8:15 AM Comments comments (0)

I'm a great fan of all things Italian from architecture to design to food and even Italian detective programs such as Il commissario Montalbano (especially the Young Montalbano series - only on BBC unfortunately), Il commissario Franco Soneri, Provaci ancora prof (a teacher who detects TV series). So, when I was looking for a work table to replace my wobbly Ikea ones, I was pleasantly surprised to come across Elisa Cavani's furniture site - Manoteca. She's a creative and gifted Italian furniture maker specializing in one of a kind (pezzo unico) items including tables and wonky but endearing tricycle 'libraries' with headlamps (Il Fausto - she also gives each of her creations a name).

Much as I would love to own one of these tricycle libraries, it is her Elisa's work/study desks/tables that caught my eye - each desk is a work of beautifully functional art. When opened, a desk features a hand-sewn leather pocket and a wooden drawer. When closed, the desk can function as a dining table. The pine wood doors, hinges, and latches are all authentic early 20th century pieces. Each completed desk is a one-of-a-kind item.

Here's an example of her latest work, the Windoor, a small work/study desk made from vintage wooden window shutters.

To find out more about Elisa, go here.

To see the entire Manoteca collection, click here.

Ikea Inspired: Make a table from reclaimed wood

Posted on February 6, 2015 at 1:00 PM Comments comments (1)

Okay, okay, I know I seem to be obsessed with Ikea these days but there's a reason. I spotted this table that looks like it's made from reclaimed wood planks (look hard, it's under all the dining stuff) at Ikea's Livet Hemma site and just loved it. A perfect idea for upcycling old wood planks - if you've got any.

Despite the piles of snow (we got hit with a few storms), there's still a lot of condo construction going on around my neighbourhood (does anyone really think condos are a great real estate buy???) and, as a result, there's plenty of tossed building material to pick up if you are so inclined. I can't at the moment because I put my back out awhile ago and have to spend some time in bed although I do get up occasionally so that I don't permanently freeze into a seated position. Now, before you get your knickers in a twist, I know that's only an excuse, not a reason. The reason?  To pass the time while recuperating, I've been visiting my fav sites such as Ikea looking for some table ideas as I plan to replace the one I now have in my studio to something I like better (and yes, the current one is a cheapo Ikea one - I think I paid $25.00 for it)! 

If you want to make your own using reclaimed wood planks (if you've got 'em), British feature writer and commentator, Sophie Heawood takes on a Guardian Do Something: Creative challenge to make such a table in a video tutorial. I admit that I would leave the edges of the table more rustic, like the one shown in the Ikea photo, but Sophie's tutorial is a very good step-by-step tutorial. that even I will be able to follow. To view her video, click here.

If you'd rather have written instructions, Apartment Therapy provides the how-tos with pictures here

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