Sunday, February 15, 2009

Repurposing Trash to Treasure and a Time to Help

It's been awhile since I've shown you one of my new Trash to Treasure projects and decided that now is just as good a time as any.
Almost everyone we know around here - Hubby's coworkers, our neighbors, family members - know that we deal in antiques and also enjoy repurposing old items.  As a result, people will often call us after they clean their garages, basements, etc. to ask if we can use their discards before they take it to the dump.  And, of course, we scream:  "The dump??? What about our environment??"
Okay, so maybe we don't say that out loud.  But, believe me, we have an abundance of "stuff" that people have decided to let us sift through.  We routinely haul box loads of old clothing, useable kitchen utensils and the like to the Salvation Army, Goodwill, homeless shelters.  But, we still have LOTS of things that most people wouldn't want.  It's just that, well, we're not like most people.  (I kind of like the word "eccentric".)
Of course, I'm getting off track.  Take another look at the picture at the top of this post.   Look closely and you'll see an old frame that was broken, a cup that has strayed from its family, a strip of lace and some old millinery flowers from arrangements that had been tossed out.  Put them together, add a cute little mushroom bird and leftover craft beads and you have a sweet wall or door decoration.
I stapled the lace that holds the cup to each upper corner of the frame.  You don't want to trust glue to hold something that is not only heavy, but breakable.  You can hide the staples with flowers, buttons, or even bows.
You've seen some of my altered bottles before and have probably surfed into many others as you travel from blog to blog, Etsy site to Etsy site - here's a couple more of mine.  I used corks from old wine bottles and attached ribbon, yarn, lace, bits of pretty fabric - whatever I had available - around the corks.  This one has a glass pebble thing glued to the top (I painted the top of the cork to disguise the ugly cork color) and decorated the bottle itself with ephemera and a sprig of pipberries.  The little green bottle below it was given a similar treatment.  I'll be adding these bottles to my FFM (Friday Flea Market) page soon if you're interested in buying one.
The can pictured below is/was a CoffeeMate container.  It was fun to play with.  I coated it with gesso, added pieces of pages from old books and magazines that (trust me) had neither monetary nor literary value, painted over those layers, then sanded through spots of that, added wax and tied an old flower, affixed some "bling" and am now using it to hold pieces of pipberries.
The other day I drove a person that I know who is on a fixed income to a church that was helping needy people with high utility bills.  Here's a shot of part of the parking lot and the street in front of the church.  
The church was on a corner.  All parking lots were full and street parking was difficult to find.
If you know someone who is struggling to pay utility bills, please have them call their utility companies to inquire about assistance.  There is help available.
We've all been affected by this recession.  Let's try to remember that this isn't just in our hometown, and it isn't just the state that we happen to be living in.  It's not even just our country.  This is worldwide.  Each of us can do something and nothing is too small to matter.


Debbe said...

I just found your blog from The Queen of Fifty Cents...what an inspiration...I've been trying to mend my ways this year, I went alittle consumer crazed for a few years...I swear my granma was rolling over in her grave and my granpa was in my ear going tsk tsk tsk. But I'm back on the reduce, reuse recycle wagon. Thanks for your blog and showing me new ways to be creative with what I already I have to go refasion a thrift store sweater!

KatCollects said...

Great post, and you are right nothing is to small to matter. I love what you did with the teacup and frame, very creative!

That Girl Ang said...

WOW... You have been busy babe! Nicely done... WOWZA!

Michele said...

Hi Sher ~ I love all your projects...they just turn out so cute! I try to repurpose too...I know I should sell these things, but sometimes, they just love living with me!



Evening Sher,
More great ideas from you!!!I know the economy is tough on MANY folks. I can see it. I am thankful that it was busy and people were buying on Sunday at the sale.
Have fun creating.

Janet C. Fish said...

As always, you are very clever. I love it when people turn something into something else. Specifically trash into art.

Larry got a broom out of the neighbor's trash the other day. Now that he's retired, he's probably got town tongues wagging over his trash adventures. LOL Not really, he only does that if he sees something he wants.

Listen, on the economy. Where IS all that money? I mean, it has to be someplace. If it isn't in your pocket, or mine, and my pocket is emptier than usual, where IS the money?

Sher said...

Hi, Girls! Thank you all for taking the extra time to comment! Janet, I have no idea where the money is; rest assured, it's not to be found in any of MY assets! (Word used sparingly...)

bec4 said...

I love the little teacup bird nest/house. Very clever and cute!