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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Reinventing And Reusing

Hello everyone, hope this finds you all safe and warm; I see Mother Nature is coming down hard on you folks in the East again and winter has made a reappearance here in the West as well.  We've had about 8 inches of snow over the last couple of days:

and the deep freeze is forecast to descend again early next week.  The Big Dog is very happy to see the new snow as it was getting really icy around here and he and slippery surfaces do not get along!  But now he's happy as a clam making his puppy snow angels and bedding down in the snow drifts :O)

While it's been snowing outside, I've been working away on a new challenge for our Mixed Media Studio group inside.  We are doing a year long "I Dare You" challenge where we are dared to reuse and reinvent a normal everyday item that we find in our homes, with a new challenge being issued each month.  This month we were to alter a can; tin can, pop can, coffee can ... whatever you'd like.  Since we have mounds of dog food tins that we recycle each month, I decided to reuse and reinvent some dog food cans and this is what I did with them.

Votive candle holders!  I covered them with some wonderful vintage script paper that I got at Far Far Hill blog, added the lovely forgetmenot hearts (from the same paper pack) and then embellished them with some ric rac and lace trim I got at Michael's.  Added some rusty wire for a hanger and then stuffed them with tissue paper with some spanish moss on top to nestle the battery operated votive in.  I aged the votives by painting them with black paint, then a coat of asphaltum paint and sprinkled lots of cinnamon on while the paint was wet.  Here they are lit up (sorry for the reflection on the middle can, not sure what I did!):

And I am hanging them under the mantel in the living room from the hooks we use to  hang our stockings at Christmas.

The I Dare You challenge for February is to alter a fork or forks.  I've got some ideas rattling around in my noggin' and I'll share pictures when I get it completed.

I also got a couple of new items made up for my Prim Nest shop and my Etsy shop in between sewing hearts.  I had a bit of a crisis earlier this month when someone ordered some vintage image bowl fillers I had listed and when I went to make them for my customer, the technique I had used in the past to transfer the images went horribly wrong!  No matter what I did, I couldn't make it work so I finally resorted to printing the images directly onto the muslin with my printer.  It's not something I like to do since it is very hard on your printer heads but I was desperate and had exhausted all other options.  It took more than a couple of tries to print the images properly and by the time I finished the ordered bowl fillers and got them mailed off, I ended up with a couple of images that were still usable.  So I made up some more vintage image bowl fillers but changed them up a bit and also hand embroidered a 'Spring' bowl filler to go with them.

This will be the last time I make these guys unless I can find another image transfer technique that I can make work reliably.  If anyone has something that works, please let me know, I'm open to suggestions!

And then I made a 'Robin Love' door hanger since Spring was on my mind with all the warm weather we'd been having.  Our current snow fall and forecast have pretty much wiped out that thought for now but one can hope!

Love how this turned out, they were supposed to be love birds for Valentine's Day but when I got snowed under with heart orders that idea got put on the back burner.  So I reinvented them as robins and am very happy with them.  The bowl fillers are available in my Prim Nest shop if you are interested and the Robin Love door hanger is listed in my Etsy shop.

And finally, I finished stitching up a pin that Michelle May of The Raspberry Rabbits very generously included in my wool kit that I had ordered from her shop for her Fellowship Of The Flowers stitch along.

If you haven't checked out Michelle's SAL, click here to read all about it and come join in the fun!  I have to admit I am woefully behind in stitching up my flowers but at least I got my feet wet by stitching up her lovely pin.  Thanks Shell, that was the most complete kit I have ever received, right down to the needle and thread to stitch on the pearls!

So now it's time to complete a Valentine heart pin for an upcoming swap and I also have some LUCK bowl fillers to make up for a customer.  Time to get back to stitching and painting, stay warm and safe everyone and we'll talk again soon.  Happy creating!



  1. You are one very creative woman. Love the recycled cans, at first glance I was thinking, oh no, did she use real

    And then I found out that you used battery operated ones, good job.


  2. Deb, I love seeing your mixed media challenges. Love the pin too.

    Big Dog looks at home in the snow! what a sweetie.

    Stay warm


  3. I love all your ideas, you're so imaginative! I resort to those ready to use fabric sheets for the printer now, it's the only way I've found if you want a clear image, rather than muted.
    Big Dog looks so happy, bless him! Here it's rain, rain and more rain!

  4. You have been so busy and so creative! Boundless talents, girl!
    Can't wait to see what you do with forks !
    Stay warm and cozy!

  5. All your makes are fabulous...I really like the Robin Door Hanger:) Very sweet.

  6. You sure have been a busy bee! Great projects! Glad to see someone likes the snow (I've had enough).

  7. You always do such nice work! I really like the candles! :)

  8. Such always do such wonderful work...warming a bit here before big snow moves in the beginning of the week...HAPPY creating...Hugs lil raggedy Angie


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