Posts Tagged ‘ reuse

ReUse – Powdered Drink Container Storage

Earlier today I posted about using old Crystal Light plastic containers to make cheap and safe “big girl” candles for my friend’s little girl.  Afterwards I remembered I had never shown you how I use these containers in my craft room/office for storage.  Before I had all my pens/pencils in a large flower pot on my desk, but I was NEVER able to find the specific type of writing utensil I was looking for.  Now, I know right where they are…and they look stylish sitting on the shelf as well.  🙂

Supplies & Materials:

  • Plastic Powdered Drink tubes (ex. Crystal Light)
  • Clear Address Labels
  • Computer & Printer
  • Scrapbook Paper
  • Double-Sided tape or Xyron Machine
  • Scissors or Paper Cutter

Directions:

  1. Start out by cleaning the plastic container and removing all labels.  Dry throughly afterwards.
  2. Measure the height of your plastic container.
  3. Using your scissors or paper-cutter cut a piece of scrapbook paper to the correct height.
  4. Wrap paper around your container and make a small mark where the edges meet (adding .25 inch to allow for a better seal/overlap).
  5. Using your scissors or paper-cutter cut the piece of scrapbook paper to the correct width.  Use this piece as a template to cut other pieces for more containers.
  6. If using an Xyron machine run your pieces of cut scrapbook paper through the machine.
  7. Carefully remove the backing from the paper and carefully wrap it around the plastic container, taking care to smooth out to prevent any air bubbles. (If using double-sided tape run a piece down the height of the container and attach one end of the paper.  Then attach another piece of double-sided tape to the inside of the finishing edge and carefully smooth around so that the paper is smooth and the edges are sealed).
  8. Using your word processor of choice, print out your clear labels for each container
  9. Apply your labels and fill up your containers with their new contents. 

Cost Breakdown:

  • Plastic Powdered Beverage Containers – Free from recycle bin
  • Scrapbook Paper – Free, leftover from wedding
  • Clear Mailing Labels- Free, leftover from wedding

Total:  FREE

Bonus:  These are so easy to make they would make a fun crafty project for the kiddos as well!  You could also cut a small hole in the lid to make a stylish coin jar!

ReUse – Powdered Drink Container Candle

I have a friend with a growing 5-year-old…one who decided she wanted some big girl candles for her room.  Obviously candles aren’t the best solution for a 5 year old, and battery operated candles are quite pricey for something that might lose its appeal quite quickly.  So I had an idea:  use some leftover battery operated tea lights to whip her up some cheaper “big girl” candles 🙂

Materials:

  • Plastic Powdered Drink tubes (ex. Crystal Light)
  • Battery Operated Tea Light (1 per plastic tube)
  • Scrapbook Paper
  • Double-Sided tape or Xyron Machine
  • Scissors or Paper Cutter

Directions:

  1. Start out by cleaning the plastic container and removing all labels.  Dry throughly afterwards.
  2. Measure the height of your plastic container.
  3. Using your scissors or paper-cutter cut a piece of scrapbook paper to the correct height.
  4. Wrap paper around your container and make a small mark where the edges meet (adding .25 inch to allow for a better seal/overlap).
  5. Using your scissors or paper-cutter cut the piece of scrapbook paper to the correct width.  Use this piece as a template to cut other pieces for more containers.
  6. If using an Xyron machine run your pieces of cut scrapbook paper through the machine.
  7. Carefully remove the backing from the paper and carefully wrap it around the plastic container, taking care to smooth out to prevent any air bubbles. (If using double-sided tape run a piece down the height of the container and attach one end of the paper.  Then attach another piece of double-sided tape to the inside of the finishing edge and carefully smooth around so that the paper is smooth and the edges are sealed).
  8. Drop in 1 or 2 battery operated votives and display your “big girl candles”. 🙂

Cost Breakdown:

  • Plastic Powdered Beverage Containers – Free from recycle bin
  • Scrapbook Paper – Free (or $1 from Target Dollar section)
  • Battery Operated Tea Lights – Free, leftover from wedding (or $1 for 2 at Dollar Tree)

Total:  FREE (or $1.50)

Bonus:  These are so easy to make they would make a fun crafty project for the kiddos as well!

Reuse, Recycle: Leaf Seating & Food Labels

Yesterday I left you with a bit of a teaser for today’s project which also uses leftover food box cardboard.   Each year my office has a Thanksgiving lunch, and each year there is always a bit of question as to what each dish on the line is.  So, today we’ll use the scraps leftover from the banner project to make buffet labels or you could use them for seating cards as well.

Today we’ll turn those leftover cardboard box scraps into this:

Materials:
– card board scraps leftover from banner project
– marker (for lettering)
– scotch tape, school glue, or hot glue

Tools:
– Cuttlebug (or edge punch, or scrapbooking scissors)
– Cuttlebug Leaves Dies (or edge punch, or scrapbooking scissors)
– Scissors
– Shape punches (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Carefully stack the leaves dies and the card board and run through the die cutting machine (careful to use acrylic plates as indicated by each machine’s instructions).  Repeat as many times as necessary to cut enough leaves for each of your dishes or place settings.
    Note:  Don’t worry if you don’t have a Cuttlebug, or the leaves dies. You can get an equally fun look by marking off rectangular pieces and cutting out with scrapbook scissors OR also from cutting out with regular scissors and then using an edge punch.
  2. Using your black marker write on the dish names or person’s name for place cards.
  3. For leaf dies cut a small 1.5 x .25 inch piece of leftover cardboard for each leaf. 
  4. Fold each of these pieces in half vertically. 
  5. Use your scotch tape (school glue & hot glue would work well also) to attach the folded piece to the back of each of the leaves.
  6. Place & Enjoy!!

 

Reuse, Recycle – Thanksgiving Banner

If you are anything like us, you throw away several “chip board” style boxes every week, between cereal, granola bars, and yogurt packs it adds up.  Now, if you are anything like ME, then you love using chip board & kraft paper for your crafting projects…do you see where I’m going with this? 

For projects that are one-sided, why not reuse something that you would just be throwing away (hopefully in the recycle bin)?  So stick around and I’ll show you how to turn these:

Into this:

Materials:
– card board boxes destined for the trash
– scrapbook paper to make letters
– 3 yards of raffia (twine, ribbon, or yarn… use what you have)
– tape

Tools:
– Cuttlebug (or edge punch, or scrapbooking scissors)
Top Note Die from Stampin Up
– Standard Hole Punch
– Glue Stick, School Glue, or Xyron (again use what you have)
– Scissors
– Bone Folder

Instructions:

  1. Carefully pull apart glued seams on each of the cardboard boxes.  I use a bone folder to help open up the more difficult areas.
  2. Using scissors cut off all side flaps from both sides of each box.  For larger (cereal sized) boxes you will also need to cut the larger areas into small pieces that will fit through your Cuttlebug or Bigz machine.
  3. Carefully stack the Top Note die and the card board and run through the die cutting machine (careful to use acrylic plates as indicated by each machine’s instructions).  Repeat as many times as necessary to cut 6, 12 or 18 (depending on your selected message). 
    Note:  Don’t worry if you don’t have a Cuttlebug, or the Top Note Die. You can get an equally fun look by marking off rectangular pieces and cutting out with scrapbook scissors OR also from cutting out with regular scissors and then using an edge punch.
  4. Put leftover cardboard aside for tomorrow’s project 🙂
  5. Use hole punch to carefully punch the top area of each piece and set aside
  6. Using your scrapbook paper carefully cut out the letters for your desired message.  I like using 2 inch sized letters.  If you have letter dies you could use them to easily punch out your letters, you could also use stickers or pre-cut chip board letters.  OR you can always use old school stencils to trace letters in reverse on the back of your scrapbook paper and cut them out with scissors (that’s what I did) 🙂
  7. Use your glue product to attach letters to card board pieces.
  8. String your card board pieces with the raffia.  To be consistent I always start from the front of each piece of card board, so that the raffia piece is behind the shape. 
  9. To help keep my pieces in place I use a bit of tape on the back of each piece to keep them from sliding.
  10. Hang & Enjoy!!


Another really fun feature to this quick & cheap project is that it folds up to store really easily, so we can use it again next year! 

Price Breakdown:
Since I used boxes that were going to be thrown away, and other materials I already had literally lying around my craft table…it was FREE!!!! 

And did you notice a hint for tomorrow’s crafty post in the photos above?  Yep, check back tomorrow for another reuse project.

DIY – Framed Fabric Table Numbers

To start with I wasn’t sure we would even need table numbers.  We hadn’t’ planned on a seated dinner, but then realized it would be easier on both our event staff and our guests if we tackled assigned seating.  Of course that meant more DIY projects since that single decision yielded the need for escort cards, table numbers, and perhaps seating cards.  I didn’t like the idea of a piece of paper on a metal stick.   While I think they are perfectly fine, I just didn’t think they’d fit our “not-so-shabby chic meets French Garden” wedding.  So I went to my standard go-to for wedding inspiration and found some framed table numbers on Weddingbee to use for inspiration and then gave it a little different approach for a look that really fit with our table decor.  I think they turned out quite well 🙂

table01(photo credit:  Climie + CO)

Tools Needed:

  • Hot Glue Gun & Glue
  • Scissors
  • Paint Brush
  • Tape
  • Paint in desired color

Supplies Needed:

  • 4×6 ” Frames (make sure they have glass panes)
  • Fabric (1/2 yard or so per 5 frames)
  • Wooden Number(s) for each table.

Getting Everything Ready to Assemble:

  1. Disassemble your frames.  Doing this all at once will mean you can put them back together in a more assembly line type process which will go MUCH faster.
  2. Paint your frames if they need to be a different color.  I realize that it might be easier & cheaper to buy unfinished frames and paint them.  Had I not found white frames I liked I would have done the same thing.  This is the step where you should paint the front and sides of your frames.  Let them dry and then flip them over to paint the back.  I also think spray paint might work well for this, especially if you could hang the frames on a makeshift clothes line so they could hang and dry more quickly.
  3. Paint the wooden numbers.  Since they are unfinished it may mean you need multiple coats of paint to produce a solid coated surface.  Since I wanted a more textured look to my numbers I used a foam stencil brush and “dabbed” them up and down with paint.  It gave it a more textured finish than painting them with a regular brush in a back and forth motion.
  4. Let everything dry.  I painted my numbers one night and then left them to dry until the following evening before I started assembly.

Assembling the Table Numbers:

  1. Take one of the pieces of glass and lay it on top of your fabric to use as a template.  Use your scissors and cut around the piece of glass, leaving about an inch of fabric on all sides.  Repeat this step for the number of tables you will have.  We used two different prints and had 10 tables, so we cut 5 blue pieces and 5 green ones.
  2. This is where the assembly line process kicks in (so if you have buddies over to help you can assign each one a task).  Go ahead and plug in your glue gun and get that bad boy preheated.  And no laughing at how old my glue gun looks…because it is!  My mom gave me her OLD one when I left for college 10 years ago, and it still works so I still have it!  Thanks Mom! 🙂
  3. Take a piece of your fabric and place it face down on a flat surface.
  4. Place a piece of glass centered on top of the fabric.
  5. Pull up one of the long sides of the fabric wrapping it around the edge of the glass and using scotch tape secure it to the glass.  Shocked that I used tape for attaching the fabric instead of glue?  By using tape we were able to easily remove the fabric and reuse the frames after the wedding!
  6. Repeat this process on the other long side, making sure to pull the fabric tightly against the glass to make a smooth surface.
  7. Now, take the fabric on the end of the glass and push it in from the sides to make two triangular flaps.  Pull the back flaps back firmly against the glass and tape down.
  8. Then pull the top flap down over the bottom one and also tape it securely to the glass.  Repeat this process on the other side of the glass plate and then turn it over to make sure you have it all tight and smooth. This is where you could pass it off to someone else if you’d like.
  9. Now it’s time to reassemble your frames.  Place the covered glass pane back into the frame with the covered side exposed.  Then place the frame backing into the frame and reattach with side slides or press down the staples (depending on how your frames are structured).  Then pass the reassembled frame off to be glued.
  10. First play around and decide where you want your numbers to lie on the frame.  I wanted everything centered which made it really easy to stick them and move on.
  11. Break out your trusty glue gun and apply a thin line of glue to the back of your painted numbers and then quickly position them in the center of the fabric area.
  12. Hold it down until solid, and you are DONE.  Pack them up and mark table numbers off your list.

For ReUse After the Wedding:
Using this method made it possible for use to reuse the frames after our event, AND even sell the fabric/number portion to another bride and save her some work! I call that a win-win!  To reuse simply take the back off the frames and remove the glass plate with the fabric/number still attached.  Simply peel off the scotch tape and separate the fabric from the glass.  As long as you used a light weight Cotton fabric the glue won’t have gone through the fabric and it will slide right off.  You might need to clean the glass panes, but otherwise your frames are ready to showcase your beautiful wedding photos!  This is how my mom reused them for our hometown reception.

3773399031_c879735e1c

This is what we were left with once we took the fabric off the glass….see they are all intact and ready for someone else to use with the frames of their choice or even save for a future event!

Cost Breakdown & Ideas for more savings:
Frames: We used white wooden frames that my mom already had to use for our hometown reception to display wedding photos (and later gift to several family members).  However, for this mock-up I used white plastic ones  I picked up for $1 each at Dollar Tree and I actually think with the beaded edge they look nicer , plus they are lighter weight for those needing to pack & transport.

Fabric: $1.00 from the Dollar-a -Yard section at Hancock Fabrics we had leftover from covering our jam jar escort cards/favors.  We purchased a yard of each fabric and used approx. 1/2 a yard of each color for (5) 4×6 inch frames of each color.  You could also use leftover scrapbook paper like this or wrapping paper like this.

Wooden Numbers: $6.24 (including tax) for 11.  From Michaels (purchased during a 40% sale).  Using coupons at craft stores like Michaels, JoAnn’s, or Hobby Lobby can really save you alot of money!  Sign up for each of their email programs to get advance notice of big sales and extra coupons sent directly to your inbox.

Paint & Brush: Free since I already had them from some other project years ago.  These are also items you could pick up for a buck at Dollar Tree.

Total for 10 Tables: $18.96 (w/Dollar Tree Frames)
Price per Table: $1.89 (w/Dollar Tree Frames)

Semi-DIY – Fabric Petal Flowers

This weekend during all the rain I *gasp* pulled my sewing machine of the basement to finish up a project I started as a gift to my florist/day of coordinator.  I’m super pleased with how it turned out and I hope she feels the same way.  However, I’m being a bit of a tease since I won’t post photos of the finished product until she receives it in the mail.  BUT…I will show you a small piece of the finished product because it could have SO many uses.    The 3-D Fabric Flower!

I played around and made several of these (or at least something similar) using leftover scraps from covering our jam jar favors.  Then I found this tutorial at …and All Things Nice that explained things much better and my flowers came out much cleaner this way. 

I made very few changes:

  • I added in an extra petal
  • My circles were 3 inches in diameter since I already had them cut out from a previous project and wanted larger flowers anyway.
  • I added leaves to the back of my flowers.
    • For some flowers I used left over felt to cut out a leaf shape which I stitched around with embroidery threat and attached it to the back of the flower
    • For others I simply cut out a larger circle and made two leaves using the petal technique from and All Things Nice‘s turorial
  • I attached a small circle of felt to the back of the flower and attached the button before it was attached to the final product
  • Instead of sewing my flower to the end product I attached a snap to the flowers and the backside to the final product.  This way they can be changed out for several different looks.

There are so many ways you could use these flowers!  A few running through my head right now are for:

  • attach a stem and use a bunch of them for a floral arrangement
  • attach stems and use a bunch for a rehersal bouquet for a wedding
  • a toss away bouquet for a wedding
  • a fun pin to add to a wool jacket
  • a fun pin to add to a hat or boggin
  • attach to a hair elastic or barrett for a cute little girl’s hair decoration

Here is a teaser of what I used my fabric flowers for 😉

What will you use your fabric flowers for?

 

Decor Inspiration – Reduce – Reuse?

Has anyone else seen the new Pottery Barn catalog for Fall 2009?  I’m loving all the vintage looking inspiration (even through it doesn’t fit the “look” of our house).  Something that really caught my eye was this recycled wine bottle light fixture.  It reminds me of the cute wine bottle vases and candle holders some of those craftybees whipped up.  Wouldn’t this but fun hanging at a vineyard wedding?  or on my back deck…ok it’s a bit pricey so maybe not but it’s seriously fun.

pbarn001

(Photo Source

 

 




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