Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Getting a Notion to Upcycle With Crafting

Crafting and do-it-yourself projects were a big part of my life, way back when I was a kid. I enjoyed sewing, macrame, paper mache, basket weaving, and any other craft that kept my hands busy.

When I grew into an adult, crafting time disappeared to make time for The Job. And, there was all that time spent traveling around the country with no place to set up a crafting table.

I thought my crafting life was over. I was wrong.

Crafting never did leave my life, even though I set it aside for other activities. While I traveled about, my parents carefully stored my boxes of fabric, buttons, ribbons, twine, and other notions. They must have known that one day I would come to my senses. Parents are so smart.

I did come to my senses. I settled down, bought a new home, and collected a few of my forgotten belongings from my parents storage shed. As I unpacked boxes that I had not seen in decades, a million surprises spilled out onto the floor. One box in particular caught my eye and kicked my brain back into crafting gear.

It was a box full of notions. Ribbons, buttons, thread, zippers, and a whole lot more. Where did I begin? At Squidoo, of course! Why, because I loved Squidoo and it was a fantastic place to be a writer.

My journey began by writing about the collection of ribbons that filled that box. There were so many ribbons that there had to be at least 101 Things To Do With Ribbon. And, what a great title for a story.

So, I'm writing a list of all the cool ribbon crafting projects I come across. On this list you'll find ways to turn ordinary ribbon into bows for a little girl's hair, flowers for a spring bouquet, decorations for a holiday party, and bookmarks for your favorite bookworm. This list of 101 Things To Do With Ribbon is a work in progress and I keep adding to it as I find new and interesting ribbon projects.

Learn how to make this
Fabric Paper Handbag.
With my ribbon project well underway, next came the fabric. I'm not ready to set up my 1958 Singer sewing machine and start sewing again, but I wanted some cool and unusual project that would put all my scraps of fabric to good use.

I came across a cool tutorial by ImagineCreateInspire on How to Make Fabric Paper. This looks like such a fun and easy project. All it takes is fabric, paper, and glue to make handbags, shopping bags, memory books, scrapbooks, gift wrap, and wall art.

A Tatted Alphabet
And, finally, I had a bushel basket full of thread in a rainbow of colors. Oh my, what shall I do? Once again, a search for ideas brought back memories. Crochet projects gone wrong and thread crafts that I had long ago forgotten.

Anyone remember tatting? Tatting is similar to crochet, but with thin threads, and is used to make doilies, lacy edgings for dresses, and cutout monograms for towels. It can be done on a train, in a plane, or while watching TV.

I remember giving tatting a try when I was in high school. It was fun, but life was going a million miles an hour and tatting just didn't hold my attention. That is, until I came across a story by Studentz filled with information on How to Tat, Tatting Craft Tutorials and Projects. I even rummaged through my sewing kit to find those itty bitty crochet hooks that mom gave me long ago.

Until next time, rummage through your closets and see if you get the notion to upcycle into crafting!

Coletta

16 comments:

  1. Needlecrafts were a part of my life for many years, set aside when along came my first computer. I see the fine threads slipping their way back into my life, a stitch at a time. I, too, am inspired by many of the crafting articles I read on Squidoo. And I too, love Squidoo!

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    1. Yes, I love Squidoo and all of the wonderful friends that I've made there. Fine thread work has always fascinated me and I'm so happy that I can settle down and start crafting again.

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  2. I wish I had kept all of my crafting supplies and tools. When I got busy with my career, and started moving around the country, I got to a point where it wasn't fun to haul and haul and haul that stuff around. Now, I would be happy to have those boxes full of creative inspiration. Can't wait to see what you design with all those lovely notions.

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    1. Thank you, Diana! The only reason I still have all that stuff is because my dad built a shed in his backyard so he could store my stuff. He had a feeling that one day I'd forget to pay the rent at the Storage Place and my stuff would be featured on Storage Wars! Smart man!

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    2. I've had an interest in crafting since my youth (which was a long time ago...LOL) which came from my grandmother and her sewing and quilting abilities. As time went on I somehow acquired her boxes of notions (threads & fabric, buttons & tools) and still have a few of her things in my crafting box as inspiration for my own projects. Recycling & upcycling is more than earth-friendly; it's a form of remembering the past.

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    3. Hi Elf! I've never thought of recycling as a way of remembering the past. But, yes, you are right. I've been doing a lot of reminiscing over my newly-found old box of ribbons and buttons!

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  3. I am very inspired by all the crafting ideas I see on Squidoo. I used to have a closet full of craft materials and unfinished (even un-started) projects and really need to get busy with some creative projects. I love your recycle/upcycle approach to the topic!

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    1. Hi Susan! After buying a house, I don't have a lot of money leftover. Recycling and upcycling help me save money. I love that I can take things that I already have, search around Squidoo for inspiration, and find step-by-step tutorials for all kinds of creative projects.

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  4. Oh, some cool new ideas for my closet full of notions, most left over from past projects. I think I feel a new Squidoo page coming on.

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    1. Susan, make sure you share your new Squidoo page when you're done. I'd love to see what you create with your notions!

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  5. I have a whole room dedicated to my scrapbooking and paper crafts. Now I get to share my love of crafting on Squidoo. I am blessed

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    1. Hello Linda! Isn't it fun to have a whole room just for crafting. I have a whole room set up as a combination craft room and office. I love being able to mix business with pleasure. And, writing on Squidoo is the best! Have fun and make sure to let me know when you create a new Squidoo page!

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  6. I always keep scraps and pieces. When I finally decided to convert our guest bedroom into a craft room, I was amazed at the treasures I had stuffed in a closet for years. I suspect we all go though periods of time in our lives when life calls us away and we much focus on current concerns, but it is always such a welcome home to step into my craft room, surrounded by the bits & pieces that spark my imagination.

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    1. It is fun when we come across those forgotten treasures. Now that I have a crafting space, I'll be raiding my mom's sewing room every time I go visit! I love my craft/work room!

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  7. If you have read some of my articles on Review This!, you might have learned that I have a huge stash of craft supplies. I love to recycle ribbon, buttons and paper to make crafts. I just wish I had more energy! Thanks for this wonderful posting full of your glorious personality.

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    1. Mickie! I love your posts here on Review This! and I think it's wonderful that so many of our Contributors on Squidoo support recycling and are avid upcyclers. I have so much fun upcycling my crafting supplies that there just aren't enough hours in the day. I'm glad you enjoyed today's show. Please come back again in two weeks and I'll bring you another entertaining installment of "Recyclers on Squidoo."

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