Tag Archives: Repurposing

Busy busy busy

Today is turning into one of those I-thought-I-had-loads-of-time-but-suddenly-the-day-is-full-and-I’m-running-out-of-time kind of days.

So, as briefly as I can make this post, this is something I picked up at a charity shop yesterday:

  • Lace on the edges to be ‘repurposed’ –  on gifts instead of ribbon, and possibly another attempt at fabric flowers.
  • Floral fabric – as well as a bit of  ‘bleach & dye’ experimentation (a little bit like this), I intend making a teething/nursing necklace (like this)
And I stopped in at the greengrocer to see what looked good, and ended up walking away with some strawberries and this fruit box:
I know the photos don’t really show the box very well, but I just got so caught up in photographing the lettering and the cool red heart…

I was very chuffed with myself for asking him (Simon, the very friendly greengrocer) about what he does with the fruit boxes… usually I would just gaze longingly but chicken out of actually asking such a question in case he 1) thought it was a ridiculous question and that I was a loony, or 2) laughed at me because of course he re-uses them and would never think of giving them away, or 3) offered to sell it to me, which I would decline and therefore look like a cheapskate trying beg stuff off others for free [which I was].
Great news! He loved that I loved the box and happily emptied the oranges that were being displayed into a different box. He then proceeded to offer me others, even though he does re-use the boxes for home deliveries. I was walking with the pram so I could barely take the first box, let alone any others, but he’s keeping some for me. What a nice man 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Oh Sweet Food, Oh Sweet Handmade, Oh Sweet Life

A Leaf From My Book

Last week Friday I posted about a use for those old books I bought at a car boot sale.

And here’s what else I’ve been doing with those old vintage pages… plus cereal boxes, doilies and vellum paper.

I used gift tags [that I bought a while back from here] as a rough guide to cut out rectangles from old cereal boxes (look at me repurposing all proper-like). I then glued the printed, colourful side of the cereal box onto suitable pages and cut out the tags. The brownish inside of the cereal box makes a nice neutral surface to write on.

On top of the page side of the tag, I glued a bit of paper doily (el cheapo) and hole-punched a message – birthday, in this case. I bought a pack of vellum and printed out a billion different messages – congrats, thank you’s, etc. to add to the ‘generic’ tag whenever I need them.

Lastly, I used rubber stamps to stamp out the recipient’s name in the doily bit. Then I strung the tag and birthday message on some twine and tied onto the gift.

While I was making this tag, I also used some scraps of Cath Kidston writing paper (leftover from this little project) to make another tag in the same way:

And here’s what I hope to still do one day with those old vintage book pages…

Via Kara Paslay Designs

A little ambitious perhaps? Especially considering my crafting skills don’t seem to go beyond gift tags!

Leave a comment

Filed under Oh Sweet Handmade

Embrace That Ol’ Camera :)

Ok, so I know today is ETC day, but I just had to show you these pretty (DIY/repurposed if you want!) cake stands. Yes, how sad – since yesterday’s post when I suddenly realised that it was my destiny to have a new cake stand, I’ve been looking around.  A quick coupla pics to soothe my obsessed brain, and then I can move onto all things ETC as I should…

Via Little Glass Box

Vintage Treat Pedestal, Nicole


And also do do do do check out {my all time favourite ever in the world blog} Under The Sycamore for Ashley’s cake stands. 

I like the idea of having a stand with cover, like this (totally NOT repurposed or DIY):

Porcelain Pedestal with Dome, Roullier White

Ok, Embracing The Camera now…

LOML’ s turn to be ’embraced’ and be on-screen with the boy 🙂

Yes, I know LOML’s head is cut off. And some of LM’s too.

But I just love the composition of this whole shot because of that. Totally unintentional – I’m no photographer. Clearly!

All I did in the way of editing was add the pretty framed edge.

There’s just something about the space to the right, under LOML’s outstretched arm. And the way LM is totally absorbed in looking at his Pappa, ignoring the toy in his hand that  he had been chewing on.



A little something extra…  here’s a link to a video clip of their favourite new game. It’s on YouTube (in case you have filters if you’re reading this at work).

Leave a comment

Filed under Oh Sweet Baby, Oh Sweet Handmade, Oh Sweet Life

A Personalised Gift

I love these…

By Sweet Dimple on Not On The High Street

By sarah & bendrix on Not On The High Street

By sarah & bendrix on Not On The High Street

I’ve wanted to try to make something like this for ages in my homemade and repurposed quest… so a recent wedding was the perfect excuse to make one as a gift 🙂


Frame from charity shop (a pair for £1.50)

White spraypaint

Sandpaper (we had this already)

Red paper

Old books (car boot sale purchase – remember this?)

Step 1: Remove hanging fixtures and keep. Lightly sand the frame, then coat with white spraypaint. I used many many many coats. And I sanded lightly again before my last two coats. Then I screwed the hanging fixture back into the same holes at the back.

Between coats of spraypaint, I got on with…

Step 2:

Make paper hearts out of old book pages

Personalise two red paper hearts with names and dates. I tried a few different things (rubber stamps, handwriting, printing on computer) but using fonts in Word and just printing it onto red paper was the nicest looking. Boring to do, but nicest to look at!

I made extra hearts and fiddled around with the layout and number of hearts a bit until I was happy with it.

And then all I had to do was put the frame back together again, and voila!

I liked it 🙂

Hopefully, they did too.

I’m looking forward to doing something similar with the second frame of the pair too.


Filed under Oh Sweet Handmade


Haha! Oh joy! What ho!

I have found somewhere to organise my I Really Want This List Wish List without having to bookmark or copy and paste a gazillion websites 🙂

I guess it’s kind of like the social network of collected images. You ‘pin’ internet images onto your boards, and other people can follow you, see your boards, and ‘repin’ the pictures (ideas, inspiration, etc.) onto their own boards.  When you pin the picture to your board, the owner of that image automatically is credited – the link appears below the picture, and anyone can quickly and easily see (and go to) the website that the picture comes from.

Hmm, I hope that makes sense….

Sorry, I couldn’t get the picture of my boards any bigger in the post – if you want to see it more clearly, click on the picture itself and you’ll be taken directly to my Pinterest page.

Anyway, this is Pinterest.

This is where you can get an invitation to join (yes, you need to be invited!)


People use it to catalogue all sorts – fashion, science and technology, wedding ideas, books… anything really! For me, it’s my Wish List, my crafty/DIY/repurposing To Do list, and my These Things Are Just Generally Gorgeous list.



Filed under Oh Sweet Handmade

Add to my To Do list:

Oh dear, my ‘I Really Want To Make This’ list is getting longer and longer…

Ever since I was a little girl and discovered chalk board paint, I have wanted to use it. And now (or has it always been like this?) you can also get magnetic chalk board paint. Double the fun! Perhaps I use ‘fun’ rather loosely. But double the practical uses, definitely!

I have long admired organisational accessories (what a geek) like this:

Love Of My Life was over in France a few weeks back and saw this in a shop: something similar to these photos in a shop….  He almost bought it on the spot, but then figured that since I’m on a DIY/repurposing journey, I would probably very much like to have a go at making something like this myself. He knows me well 🙂  He was also thoughtful enough to take a photo, which he has since accidentally and unfortunately deleted. Grrrr.

[Also, he had very quickly realised that getting it home was going to be a logistical nightmare. It’s a pretty big board.]

Hurray – so now I not only have ideas and inspiration for another project, I have LOML’s approval too!

But I have one big problem with chalk board organisers: I cannot cope with chalk dust. I sneeze and itch and just about go crazy when chalk is around. [What was I thinking becoming a teacher, huh? Thankfully, these days very few classrooms actually still have chalk boards. It’s all white boards and interactive boards (which are way cool, I must add).]

Enter the chalk marker. Drum roll, please.

Ta da! Problemo solved!


So now, a chalk board organiser is definitely on the cards.

I wish I could do something like this, but it would require some hanging and make unnecessary holes in our walls. Not good in a rented home!

Repurposed window chalkboard

Hmm, now… what do I have lying around that I can paint with chalk board paint  and pretend that I actually paid for it?

Leave a comment

Filed under Oh Sweet Handmade

Embroidery Hoop Art

I wanted to be all clever and do something April Fools-y for April First… but I just don’t have the brain space. It is the end of the week, after all. I do enjoy a good ol’ practical joke, but I think I’ll leave that kind of thing to the comedians and comediennes amongst us.

Here’s what’s in my head today.

A little while ago, I mentioned a hoop design that had inspired me to make my own little something for the baby’s room. Instead of a hoop I just used a canvas I already had, in the spirit of finding a new purpose for old things rather than throwing them away and buying new stuff.

I was unable to credit the idea at the time, but the creator of the lovely hoop I showed you has reappeared on Etsy, so here goes… Take a look at a few of Abigail’s pretty pieces


I am also drooling over this as a wedding or anniversary gift:


Which reminded me of these (which I love possibly even more):

From Sweet Dimple



From sarah & bendrix


I am positively itching to get going on my own frame like this… I think I’ll use our wedding anniversary as an excuse to make something as a ‘practise’ before actually trying to make one as a gift.

Oooh, I’m excited! I’ll let you know how it goes.

First on on the Plan Of Action list – find a box frame/shadow frame that’s not too expensive. Google, here I come!

Leave a comment

Filed under Oh Sweet Baby, Oh Sweet Handmade