Sunday, October 9, 2016

Upcycled Wine Cork Trivet

Until we started buying screw top wine, I had been painstakingly saving up all the wine corks: cleaning, drying and storing. Thanks to my inexplainable sentiment towards the little brown thing and the thought that one day I would be able to use them for something, I've filled up a whole large shoe box. And they had been in there for 7 long years!

Just when I was about to give up and decide to clean them out, I caught a glimpse of a trivet made of wine corks in the background of a TV show. Obviously this is not an original idea and surely there must be others who've already done so, but hey I managed to use up all the corks and turned them into something useful - that's good enough for me.

Most importantly: I get to keep them, not bin them ;)

Monday, May 30, 2016

What to do with damp stained shirt

We believe in afterlife.
Not in a religious way particularly, just factually :)

This cushion cover is made from one of my husband's old shirts, which unfortunately had been damp stained on the collar due to the highly humid weather.

We can't give it away to the charity and the material is not suitable for cleaning. I was meant to upcycle it into a wrap dress but was too lazy to do so. Whilst I was staring into the buttons the idea just came to me. It was so simple:
  1. Just lay the shirt flat, buttoned, turned inside out.
  2. Mark out the square (whatever size fits your cushion) where the button panel will fall in the middle.
  3. Secure with pins or quick stitches, cut the excess material out and sew it all around. (I did it by hand as I don't have a sewing machine)
  4. Unbutton and turn inside out. Now you have a cushion cover with ready button fastening.
We probably won't buy another cushion cover - unless, of course - if there are some really nice ones.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Handmade Hand Fan

4 good reasons that made me think of making my own hand fan:
  1. Extremely hot weather
  2. Some used disposable chopsticks lying around
  3. An odd old table mat
  4. I can't be bothered to spend money on an ugly one available in the shops

And the whole process can't get any simpler:
  1. Cut out 2 identical rectangles from the table mat
  2. Spread strong glue evenly on the underside of each cut out mat, leave to dry.
  3. Stick the 2 chopsticks together with strong glue. 
  4. When the chopsticks are dry and firmly in place, apply thick glue over about 2-3 inches of the smaller end (depends on the length).
  5. Now place the glued part onto the middle of one of the cut out mat's underside, then press on the other cut out mat, making sure that all sides are in line.
  6. Leave to dry. Hold the sides in place with some paperclips or even clothes pegs would do.
  7. Trim to round corners with sharp scissors.

It's now placed next to my TV seat, ready to serve me on a hot evening when a ceiling fan is not enough to kill the heat.

Monday, December 7, 2015

DIY Tinsel Christmas Tree

Angel lights are placed inside of the tree for a softer feel

The bad news is, our tripod was broken (the top bit - heaven knows when and how that happened). The good news is, I can now use it for something else with no guilt (especially to all the photography enthusiasts out there) - as a base for our 2015 DIY Christmas tree!

DIY Christmas tree from a broken tripod and some Christmas tinsel

This has got to be the easiest-to-assemble Christmas tree to date. All I did was set the tripod up to the height I want, then tie the strips of Christmas tinsel around it. Everything can be packed away easily and reused for next Christmas. The wired ribbon has been used a few times on the 2012 Christmas tree on the wall, the 2010 CD Christmas tree, and our very first DIY Christmas tree in 2008.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

DIY Flash Drive Organizer

Due to work, I have to keep quite a few flash drives - each for a different type of job or client - in my bag. Although there are small compartments in my bag, I still find myself having to ransack through other stuff in the same pocket to get to the right flash drive. I've looked everywhere for a flash drive organizer but I just can't find one that I like; and most importantly, I do try not to make unnecessary new purchases.

So I went to get some inspiration and help from my sewing box, and made this:

I found some fabric scrap big enough for my flash drive organizer pattern, an old zip I saved from some old clothes, and an old and partly used Ikea fleece blanket (which I've used some for the snake stuffed toy). Here are the few simple steps of the making of the flash drive organizer that's now happily residing in my bag:

1. Little pockets sewn onto the inner layer, then wrapped around with the fabric.

2. Secure the sides with a basting stitch, then a running stitch all round.

3. Fold it up and stitch each side with running stitch (see needle).

4. Sew the zip onto the top open edge.


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Recreate to Reduce Consumption

Let me guess: you like crafts, and you want to do your part in preserving the environment you live in. You'd probably have a room full of clutter like me and like creating things out of junk too.

You may also already know that real sustainability means reducing new purchases and reusing existing material before we even take anything to the recycling centre. And I'm also guessing that just like me, you may have visited EcoStreet Directory at least once before.

I only hope that some of my humble little home craft and domestic ideas would help some of you clear some clutter, save some money, or at least have some fun with your little ones. Better still, some of you may even share your valuable ideas with me!