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DIY Mother's Day

Posted on May 10, 2017 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Eh gads and zuts alor! - it's Thursday and I haven't posted anything for our Mother's Day. I hope you've been giving some thought to what you can make for your Mom. Your recycling bin, believe or not, is full of great possibilities for repurposing containers, etc. and to help you along, here are a few ideas for you.


CARDS FROM MAGAZINES, JUNK MAIL, ETC.



These cards are so easy to do and all you will need are some junk mail, magazine, gardening catalog, etc, some brown paper (I used a brown paper grocery bag - but use what you have), thin cardboard (cereal box, etc) and a bit of ribbon (leftover from other occasions). If you are artistic, you could draw flowers but, as I'm not, I roughly clipped out pictures from a gardening catalog and glued these to some cardboard before cutting these out so they looked like flowers.


Here's what I did: I cut two pieces of brown paper in the shape of a flower pot - one for the back and one for the front. Fold the top of each part over so it looks like a flower pot, then glue these two together at the bottom and sides, leaving the top wider part open. Then I cut a cardboard insert in the same shape but slightly smaller and glued the flowers to this. Then I inserted the flowers into the pot, glued on a ribbon tied into a bow in front and voila a nice Mom's day card was born!


MORE MAGAZINE RECYCLING FOR MOM - LET HER HAVE CAKE!



If your Mom loves cake but you don't have the time or inclination (or like me, no ability) to bake one yourself, head for your grocery store and buy a plain iced cake. When you bring the cake home, style it up with a couple of flowers (fake or real) and some butterflies cut out of magazine pages. Stick the whole thing on a pretty plate and wait for the compliments.


Click here for a butterfly template.


GIFT WRAP LEFTOVERS - FLOWER VASE



You don't have to break the bank to present a nice bouquet of flowers to Mom. Heck, you can raid your garden and clip a few from there. Grocery store flowers aren't too expensive and you can separate the flowers to make a couple of bouquets. To make the cone, use gift wrap or scrapbooking paper if you have it. Or you're a little artist, why not make a nice drawing on plain paper and use this as the cone wrap.


Here's a cone template for you.


Before sticking the flowers into your vase cone, insert the flowers into a plastic sandwich bag so water doesn't seep out. You want them to stay fresh for at least a couple of days, no?


REUSING EGG CARTONS - FOR MOM'S BATH BOMBS




Bath bombs are so easy to make that I wondered why I hadn't attempted these before. But I couldn't think of a way of packaging mine until I raided my recycling bin. I found and reused plastic eggshells from Easter as moulds to make the bath bombs and it was a no brainer to use the papier mache egg cartons (also from my recycling bin) as the bath bomb containers .


For a bath bomb how to, click here.


RECYCLING VINTAGE BAKEWARE - JUST HANG IT!



If Mom's a whiz in the kitchen why not raid her bakeware and see if you can find a few spare pie plates or tart pans to create some kitchen wall art for her. Write or print out some of her favourite baking recipes and cut out to fit inside the plates or pans, use double-sided tape to hold the recipes in place and hang the how thing up. Several would look spectacular.


I found the ones shown here.


FINAL WORD


Okay, we've got cards, cake, flowers and some wall art for Mom. I think she'll be pleased and you haven't emptied your wallet completely and even did some good for the environment, too. Hurrah!

Upcycling Clothespin Springs into Jewelry

Posted on September 27, 2016 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

I know, I know, I was supposed to put this up days ago so apologies for being tardy in posting this idea but, hey, it's a busy time of year.




Okay, so we've made use of our surplus clothespins, now what do we do with all those little springs? No, I'm not planning to toss mine. Instead here's a lovely idea for reusing these from Michele L. over at Michele Lina over at Mich L. in L.A



Michele's upcycled clothespin springs couldn't be lovelier. There are loads of other jewellry ideas for these springs. but I think Michele's are probably the best I've seen.


For her how-to photos and instructions, click here.


As I don't have the tools (nor the talent!), my idea is simpler. 




Yup - a simple necklace and I've had lots of compliments on it. Very few guessed what the necklace was made of. To make, all I did was slip the springs together in a circle. Easy-peasy and no tools required.


Upcycling Wooden Clothespins - Trivets

Posted on September 15, 2016 at 8:05 PM Comments comments (0)


This past Sunday afternoon was my afternoon for entertaining some kids where I live. Usually I keep the kids busy with some recycling/upcycling craft and this afternoon would be no different - but what to do? A few days ago, a neighbour had handed me a bag of clothespins (she didn't know why she had so many) and had challenged me to recycle these in some creative way. So, of course, I, in turn, decided to challenge my little friends to come up with new ideas for using these clothespins. After a bit of discussion, we decided that trivets would be fun (and easy) to make (after I explained what trivets were!).


So having tossed the gauntlet (do you toss a gauntlet??), the kids took up the challenge.



In preparation for this challenge, I removed all the springs from the clothespins to prevent any fingers from being squished. Then I handed each kid a small paintbrush, a container of wood glue, and, of course, clothespins. Here's what we made:



Petie and Tim made the ones on the left and I made the one on the right (hey, couldn't let the kids have all the fun and I do need a trivet!).



Akim and Libby created these two which they named Sun and Star.



Not to be undone, little four-year old Jonah (with a little help) made this cutie he's calling Box. We didn't have time to decorate or paint the trivets but each kid took one to finish off at home. Mine is staying unadorned.


Later, I'll show you what you can do with the springs removed from the clothespins.


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Himmeli Mobiles - Upcycling Drinking Straws

Posted on July 28, 2016 at 2:10 PM Comments comments (0)



What do paper drinking straws and a Finnish Christmas ornament have to do with each other? Since I first spotted himmeli mobiles at Ferm Living last winter, I've become somewhat fixated by these sophisticated mobiles. 


In case you didn't know, himmeli is a traditional craft from Finland that is normally created out of real straw and has various levels of intricacy. Himmeli are put up every Christmas to bring good luck to a household. I fell for this craft for its geometric and minimalist simplicity. Now it's making a comeback but in a more modern guise.


I think the idea clicked for me while I was checking out my kitchen cupboards for a snack and spotted my stash of drinking straws.


Yes, I save drinking straws. Whenever I or anyone I'm with buys a cool drink or milkshake when we're out and about, I grab the straws because I know that MILLIONS get tossed out EACH DAY and end up in our landfill. 


I can't understand why folks just don't bring them home to reuse. I wash out mine thoroughly and then keep them (fittingly enough) in a drinking glass to reuse or until an upcycling idea pops up.


Now that I've got several dozen, I thought, why not put them to work? Himmeli mobiles fit the bill perfectly.


To get started with your own himmeli, click here.