Hey Crazy Curious Complex Crafters …

… do you dear fellow creatives find yourselves turning your hand to just about any thing loosely related to the ‘arts and crafts’?

PHEW! I’m not alone as I sit here typing one fingered, left one as well! As I’m doing my own gel overlays. … Yep, I went and bought all the kit when I tired of paying daft money every 2 weeks to do something I jolly well knew I could do for myself. I’ve saved oodles🤗

Whilst down at our community vegetable garden earlier picking some strawberries and broad beans, I noticed old glass and metal artefacts that have been dug up during the planting of this little piece of heaven. My mind immediately went to how one of the worn but fancy pieces of iron work could be transformed into a mobile. Dual purpose of course, pretty and will help to keep the birds off of the seedlings.

It happens almost all of the time. See something discarded and I’m straight into up cycle, create something new and pretty mode. Can be a hinderence when it happens mid sentence or the like. Hey ho, I’ve got used to folk looking at me with that she’s away with the fairies look. 😍

My garden is a great source of peace and creativity. That said with the limited spare time HH and I have accompanied with the truly crap  awful weather we’ve had….. Lots of rain and very little sun has made the garden a near no go area. We’ve even had to fence it of from The Rt Horrible Pup (he’s huge) as he made it look as though we play rugby on it in the mornings followed by a game of 4 wheel drive agility in the afternoon . Pictures are for you to see how my now wild garden looks …. Not too shabby though huh?

Hope to have some more solid crafty things to show here after the weekend rather than the ramblings (like my garden) of my craft manic brain. Also hope to still have nails, don’t think you’re supposed to soak the old gel for quite as long as I have…. got a bit keen and distracted here. YIKES!

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I’ve Had An Idea!

You may recall a blog I wrote sometime ago, Poppies.image

Well for reasons way too complicated to go in to, the cushions never did get out to Aruba.

This year is the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, that dreadful war that cost our nation so dearly. It did inspire the wonderful poem Fields of Flanders and of course Armistice Day. The 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour.

I am proud to say that in my lifetime, in fact in recent years the armistice silence is so faithfully observed in the UK. Only a few years ago I stood in Kings Cross, a phenomenally busy train station as the 11th hour was announced. The whole station came to a totally moving silence and stand still. It moved me deeply.

Well now …. My idea.

These here poppy cushions. I would like to somehow promote a raffle to win the set, proceeds of the raffle to go to The British Legion.

So far my idea has got as far as asking a local shop to display initially pictures of the cushions (to avoid fading of the actual cushions) also offering the raffle tickets for sale. Could be good business for them as I think the local press would quite like to do an article.

Spread this out over the year to allow for as much money as possible to be raised for this wonderful charity who do so very much for all military families, to culminate in the winner being selected immediately after the armistice silence.

What do you think?

Additional ideas to promote and raise more greatly welcomed.

50 Creative Ways to Repurpose, Reuse and Upcycle Old Things

For those of you who may not have yet grasped the whole UPCYCLE thing that I love, what with my using genuine vintage fabrics to create something new and usable, check this blog out. AWESOME upcycling skills. In fact Gold medal effort I would say 😉

TwistedSifter

 

If you’re like me, you probably have a lot of old stuff just lying around your house. It’s not doing anything but taking up space, but you’re either too busy (or lazy), sentimental or just have more important things to deal with. Well if you’re looking for a little inspiration or a new DIY project, here are 50 creative ways to repurpose, reues and upcycle old things.

There’s a pretty broad range in this list but hopefully a handful jump out and spark an idea for you and your home!

 

 

1. Reuse Toilet Paper Rolls to Organize Cables and Chords

 

toilet paper rolls used to store cables and wires

 

 

 

2. Turn Old Credit Cards Into Guitar Picks

 

stamping old credit cards into guitar picks

 

 

 

3. Create a Window Cover Using Old Picture Slides

 

picture slides used as window drapes

 

 

 

4. Upcycle Old Light Bulbs Into Candles

 

old lightbulb turned into candle

 

 

 

5. Repurpose Old CD Holders Into Bagel…

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Brits Knit Their Way Through A War…..

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.. personally I am not so good at knitting being a needle woman and crochet fan, that said I can knit, just at a glacial pace!

Having one of those creative, insomniac nights in the week that I am sure you are all familiar with, I got bored pf pacing about with a head full of ideas so flicked the tv on at stupid o’clock just as company really.

As soon as I switched on, the tv was set to BBC Four and a programme was just starting called Fabric of Britain, Knittings Golden Age.

From the outset I found it so very interesting I knew immediately this would be my Sunday blog. Yes! Rather a wander away from my usual sewing and vintage fabric ravings but just really wanted to share it with you. I have set a link for you and I soooooo hope that international readers can access the programme as I am sure you too will find it fascinating.

A host of interesting and highly knowledgable crafts people interjected with some totally cool older folk talking about the importance of knitting. How for 60 years it dominated the UK and then fizzled away in the 1980’s only to now be reborn HOORAH!

The thoughts of the commentators were that in our highly wasteful and consumable age there are the beginnings of a fight back… why waste? why be a consumer sheep, following the crowd? why not try to make it myself?

I can attest to the fact there has been a rise in knitting, almost every High Street has a knitting shop or department again. We even get news of Urban (it’s not urban darnit, just can’t think of the word right now)  Knitters who rather like a flash mob but for knitting. The population go to bed at night, wake up in the morning to find wonderful little knitted critters tieds to lamp posts, bridges, door handles and the likes.  How wonderful and generous of these people to use their wool and TIME to then leave their creations for the population…. bringing a smile and colour into otherwise very mundane lives (probably).

Anyway, I digress (what’s new I hear you mutter), I was fascinated to see big burly guys knitting away through WW2 years, how families sat and unpicked old jumpers and rolled them up for use again. We think we are getting a handle on recycling! We have a long way to go.

Of course for the Brits it was an absolute necessity as we were rationed within an inch of our lives so the Make Do And Mend campaign was essential.

The documentary tells of how the ladies of the 1920’s were quite frankly sick of being trussed up in corsets and rigid clothing so when Coco Chanel favoured jersey knits she started an absolute revolution that from that day to this changes fashion forever. GO Coco!

I have put together a little slideshow that I hope translates as I sat in front of my little kitchen tv, ipad clutched taking screen shots….. it only occurred to me part way through hence the slideshow is not the best representation of the programme SORRY!

Very poigniently there is a section in the documentary where a lady from the V&A museum show pullovers made by POW’s and how they had make shift knitting needles made from Red Cross boxes. Not only did these men have the inginuity but the skill to do this. I felt rather humbled if I’m honest.

I hope you enjoy the pictures, even more I hope you are able to view the programme as I simply cannot do it justice here. If however, you are not able to access it I will make an effort to document as fully as possible the show should you want me to.

Knitting needles at the ready …… bet some of you are clever enough to knit and watch tv at the same time, not a skill I have but have seen it in action with my Nan who clicked her way through many a conversation, radio airing or tv show without dropping a stitch  WOW!  Happy Sunday everyone 😉

Ultimate Vintage Upcycle

Recover(y)… get it …. cushions, covers???

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Don’t worry if you don’t…. think I am still a bit silly in the head following the ‘flu’ from hell!

SPITALFIELDS did go ahead last week despite the dreaded lurgie and it was a fantastic day. The hours flew by, so many interesting people to chat to. As a launch pad for our Ultimate Vintage Upcycle business, now on facebook…. it really was a great place.

The market was teeming with tourists who simply loved what we are doing with the sourcing genuine vintage fabrics and then upcycling them into cushions, tote bags, bunting, ornaments and the likes. Many business cards were taken and we even gathered some VERY useful emails. All very exciting. We even made some sales to boot!

We now know that the Sunday market would have better suited our stall as it has a very large foot fall of Londoners who are out to shop rather than peruse. Not that I am grumbling, the whole day was fun and we learned so much and we feel even more able to move our little venture forward. This would have started on 4th November had I not been totally struck down but as we so often say, everything happens for a reason. My reason was a definate need to draw breath and re-focus, which I have done and now with renewed vigour am prepping for next week and a big push.

I do hope you will swing by my facebook page to see what I have for sale. I would be especially grateful if you could point your friends and colleagues to the site as well…. the more the merrier!

Shipping will be international, I don’t intend to limit myself to these shores.

The pictures of the day, well we hope you like them. In for a penny, in for a pound we decided to go the whole hog and dress in a vintage inspired way. Think you will agree that DD1 victory roll is AWESOME!

Please do share the new facebook page with your friends….. the more the merrier 😉

Ultimate Vintage Upcycle

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Super Duper Quickie…..

…. have just set up my ‘business’ facebook page Ultimate Vintage Upcycle.

Until I have a real, honest to God website I’m starting here. Not convinced I have set it up right BUT it’s a start nevertheless!

From small acorns grow great oaks (we hope)

Welcome ANY tips on setting up a fledgling business to sell via the world wide web 😉

Thanks x

£1 = 1 tie = 4 Doobries!

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In a self set challenge I purchased an Italian silk tie in a local charity shop for the princely sum of one English Pound! It was the ducks that attracted me ….. Theres a whole story about ducks and my youngest daughter but that’s for another day but it is a QUACKERS little tale! 

Following a skype session I brazenly stole the idea for making a coin/card purse from the fat end of a tie but what to do with the remaining tie? As you know I hate waste, hence the upcycling of vintage fabrics.

so here are the doobries …..

1. Coin/card purse

2. Flower to attach to either a bag, hair or just a pretty decoration

3. Wallet for my Blackberry

4. Pin cushion …… Well it had to be didn’t it, after all I am a needle woman!

Any other ideas for tie makes? I’m sure with some more thought I will come up with more but I happily welcome your ideas too. These were an utter joy to make. All hand sewn, sitting quietly in the evening winding down chatting away to my man.

Ahhhhh! The simple pleasures 

Army Stands Guard …

.. For me, my growing army brings feelings of great satisfaction. 

Not only do they guard my precious textiles but everytime I walk into what was our daughters bedroom ( was, as in she went off on a hoolie to the caribbean to stay with my darling friend at Coral Reef Beach, Aruba) I smile at those stylish old stylie guys.  Once a pair of barkcloth curtains they are bit by bit growing into my very own army!

As much as I love them they will have to be sold, for some reason the bank manager is very insistent on the mortgage being paid which is a dreadful bore!

You can see the bedroom rather resembles a girl cave, full of my favourite things and I am happy to report my much needed stock for Judy’s Vintage Fair in Spitalfields on 2nd November is beginning to shape up. Eldest daughter has also been hard at it so her little cottage is brimming too. Come the day we will have plenty of fare for the fair!

Keep your fingers crossed for us please, our tiny fledgling business may, with a kind wind behind us and an appreciative audience with money in their wallets could launch us in the direction we have dreamed of for so very long now.

As my faithful and kind readers I feel it only right that I whisper to you, and only you the new name we have decided upon, so sssssshush for now, just between me and thee:

ULTIMATE VINTAGE CYCLING by sewinloveuk

Next a proper, grown up website to sell our beauties. Feeling both excited and pretty darn scared, a healthy mix I am told.

Have a super weekend lovely people and hope your weather forecast is better than ours….. Rain, rain and more rain.  (Yep, the Brits really do always talk about the weather) x

 

What Bright Spark ….

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Decided to do such a delicate belt for the up and coming kimono! DANG I need to kick myself up the you know what!!!

This delicious vintage fabric is coming together beautifully between other projects albeit very delicate. Am employing the many skills my wonderfully talented Mum taught me over the years to ensure a lovely hand finish as well as an item that can actually be worn and not just admired! 

I have used a pattern made by Moi! Again Mum is in the picture here, she bought me a little kimono many years ago while on a trip to Canada and although it would only fit my thigh now it was the perfect template. It will be quite simple to grade up and down as these lovely garments are cleverly crafted, just a bit of simple math! Believe me I’m loving simple at the moment, got a few too many balls in the air and all my own fault. Oops!

As for the belt …. I am trying to turn it through with my silly arthritic thumbs and wishing I had made it a yard wide!!!! 

Although not yet complete I have posted some pictures of the journey this far. Am hoping to have a finished article before you by the weekend. 

Happy sewing and crafting dear creative souls if nothing on the go then just have a HAPPY THURSDAY x

Well Willen, Wondering What I Do?

Began life as a discarded bedspread

Began life as a discarded bedspread

Waste nothing ...

Waste nothing …

image

Ends up remodelled for many more years use..... No landfill insight for this sweetie!

Ends up remodelled for many more years use….. No landfill insight for this sweetie!

Especially for the manager at Willen Hospice charity shop, think her name is Carrie Anne? Sorry if I got that wrong. 

As an example of what happens to the bits I buy from you I thought I should whip something up and post it here for you to have a looksie. 

You can see where ever possible I will upcycle as much of the original article as possible. Hence, the unpicking of the lovely trim on this huge bedspread that after washing went gloriously fluffy!

Item 1 for your perusal was quickly made up in my head as I wanted to use some of that trim as well as the fabric, then after kicking my Hubby out of the kitchen so I could get cutting the made up idea becomes something real. Hope you like it!?

Over the coming week you will see lots more items that you will recognise as having come from your donated stock so keep an eye out here. 

Look forward to seeing you in a couple of weeks, but not 28th…… Daughter has her graduation. Yeeha! Proud Mum, had to have a little boast. 

 

 

 

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