Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Upcycling galore

I had put a call out for any unwanted t-shirts or linens during spring cleaning (whatever that is!)and my friend Lori kindly dropped off a bag for me.  I started cutting the shirts into yarn, but some were too cool to just cut up, and one I have even been wearing (*gasp*).   I have been doing 2 different upcycling crafts with these supplies: rugs and chair pads.
     I decided to crochet the rugs, but I don't really know how to crochet!  I am making a rectangular one to fit in my boot tray and absorb the salt, then get thrown in the washer to clean it.  It is ugly as I have been trying to get used to the t-shirt yarn.
Ugly, but functional

My second attempt is an oval rug, again probably just for use in our equivalent of a mudroom, to be a good foot scrubber during barefoot, sandbox summer months.

Could be cuter if I tried to save my yarn and work in a color scheme.

I had a vintage dish towel that was sort of tea stained and ragged in some spots, but it had that power over me that all vintage linens have, so I just couldn't let it go.  I decided to use it to make a chair pad for my antique cosco stool.  I did a really craptastic job, because I was in such a hurry to jump into it, I didn't make a pattern, so its fit isn't "ideal".  But it serves its purpose and I love looking at the colors on it.  I used an old receiving blanket for the batting and machine quilted around the design.  I had some rick-rack scraps that I used rather weirdly.

One of the t-shirts from Lori that I couldn't bear to cut into yarn was a souvenir from Hell's 1/2 acre, Wyoming.  It became a chair pad for Vladdie's stool.  I used the edge from a gingham sheet I had to make a ruffle.  I also used another blanket for the batting.

Vladdie's cool new chair pad!

Unfortunately, my machine gave me nothing but hard times when I was making it.  I wanted to do some more machine quilting on it.

I have posted this to show people that although my results are more Sanford and Son than they are Martha Stewart, anyone can have fun with upcycling.  You can end up with something functional that provided you with some free entertainment and may have helped you develop at least one new swear word!  Plus you not only kept something out of a landfill, you didn't consume something else to fill that task. On that note, I would encourage anyone that has not seen this to please take a few minutes to watch it! http://www.storyofstuff.com/

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