11.22.2016

DIY upcycled burlap wreath

And so Xmas Crafternoon prep is on! I now have 6 upcycling workshops lined up throughout December. Find out when and where at www.thriftybydesign.ca.

One of my Xmas Crafternoons is with New Westminster Public Library on Saturday, December 17th from 2pm to 4pm. We're making DIY wreaths out of upcycled wire hangers and burlap. Who knew you could make something super pretty with so little and in no time.

First you need a wire hanger. I cut off the top hook off with a pair of pliers then unraveled the hanger. Next I shaped it into a circle.



I then cut strips of burlap. I used 4 strips that were 12 inches wide and maybe 4 feet long. You can try using one long strip but I wanted to use up some of my scrap burlap from past projects.



I then folded the strip... I folded the ends in and then folded again to hide the ends and loose threads. You can buy lovely burlap ribbon from Michaels to avoid loose strands of burlap but why not go for free materials and repurpose burlap sacs!



You then weave the wire hanger through the burlap. I would do one fold at a time since it's easier to push the wire through the threads of the burlap that way. You can also fluff the burlap folds and twist the burlap to help make the burlap wreath more robust.



I used burlap from 2 different sacs... You can't tell I have 4 different strips and different burlap.



Here's the wreath with the 4 strips of burlap. I used my pliers to close the wire circle then I adjusted the burlap to hide the lose threads, to fluff up the folds, etc.



I then added a jute hanger to the top. This is such a simple DIY that it only took under an hour to complete the basic wreath. I love how it's looking so far!



I had some green burlap that was donated to me. I made 3 rosettes that I then glued on using my trusty hot glue gun.



I was feeling very nostaglic making these since I made them for my crafty book, Raw Crafts.



And I was done! I might get some festive accents in the next while but here it is... From wire hanger to a fabulous DIY burlap wreath.



One sample project done! Phew! I might make some other small projects using the other scrap burlap. And now to gather wire hangers and burlap sacs!



Next up I'm making reusable packaging for my Xmas Crafts Using Recycled Materials workshop with Guildford Library on Saturday, December 3rd from 11am to 1pm. Definitely feeling crafty these days! And getting into the festive spirit.

11.20.2016

Get free stuff, give free stuff

I've been a teeny bit remiss in my blog posts... The countdown is on for Roly's arrival. He'll be here December 2nd. Life is going to change drastically very soon crafty peeps! So I'm focusing on finishing up projects like crazy plus getting my homework done. Eh gad - things are nuts right now.

I did manage to refinish a few donations I received. These items were from my neighbour whose husband passed away a few years ago. He was a well known and loved furniture maker in North Vancouver.



The pieces were made out of pine and half completed. They just needed a bit of TLC. First up was this wall piece. A bit of sanding and staining would do the trick!



After sanding for a bit, I added a coat of stain. It was already looking FAB!



A couple of hours of sanding and staining made a big difference!



There was no way I was going to paint any of these pieces...



It didn't take much time to get them looking good.



I love this old toolbox... The stains and dents made it even more beautiful!



After day 1, I was ready to see how these items would look once I was done! The toolbox didn't take much more work. I ended up using a self adhesive roll for the inside bottom. The stain was too much work to try and remove so I covered it up.



I thought the design worked with the look of the toolbox.



Next was adding a coat of sealer and it was good to go!



Then I stained and sealed these. I thought I could use them to hang up art. Screw them into the wall, add a piece of dowel and then hang 'stuff' from them. Maybe use them as a one-of-a-kind bed board. We'll see!



And this wall piece was ready to go...



Along with this one.



Oh and then there was the planter...



Such a gorgeous piece... My Mom ended up keeping this one.



And all the rest were given to happy new homes. Fun to just spread the love! I got these for free, they only took a bit of time to refinish so why not give them away. Luckily I have a 'real' job to pay the bills because I'm too much of a sharer to make the big bucks crafting!

11.05.2016

Bring on the Xmas Crafternoons!

December and Xmas are fast approaching! I have 3 Xmas Crafternoons lined up... This month I'll prep samples, collect supplies and get ready for upcycling awesomeness with my peeps.


Here are the 3 upcycling workshops. I'll post details on what we're making in the next couple of weeks. Hope to see you at one of the below Xmas crafting happenings!

Xmas Crafts Using Recycled Materials
I'm partnering with Guildford Library for a Xmas upcycling workshop on Saturday, December 3rd from 11am to 1pm. Stay tuned for details!

Christmas Crafternoon
I'm partnering with the North Vancouver City Library on Saturday, December 10th from 1:30pm to 3:30pm for a Christmas Crafternoon. Details to come!

Christmas Crafternoon
I'm partnering with the New Westminster Public Library on Saturday, December 17th from 2pm to 4pm for a Christmas Crafternoon. Details to come!

11.03.2016

DIY paper making with the City of Richmond

Sunday was my first ever Paper That Grows Flowers and Veggies workshop with the City of Richmond. I haven't made paper in years so was a teeny bit nervous about this Crafternoon. I made pulp the night before, collected my materials, made some samples and I was ready!



First was getting set up... Pulp was made, we had upcycled wire hangers wrapped with old nylons for the strainers plus we had a ton of seeds and dried flowers to embed in the paper.



Here's my pulp! The brown goop was Kraft paper and old newspapers. The pink and blue are regular paper. Making pulp was super easy!



We had 12 participants who got really REALLY into the paper making... People made plantable cards, art and bookmarks.



Here are some art pieces in progress...



Everyone created multiple projects and had a blast!



Turns out the paper making workshop was a hit! Two thumbs up from my regular Ruby.



And this cutie patootie loved the workshop - she made tons of paper making awesomeness happen!



Who knew paper making was so easy yet messy! Upcycled wire hangers and old nylons plus pulped up recycled paper makes kick butt DIY art!



Big thanks to the City of Richmond, my participants and my amazing helper Vivian for another fun afternoon of making!

10.31.2016

One super awesome Halloween Crafternoon

Last weekend I had one of my biggest Crafternoons yet! It was a Halloween Crafternoon with my FAV peeps from the North Vancouver City Library. The upcycling workshop was supported by a Neighbourhood Small Grant and is my way of helping build community. And we sure had a ton of community building happening!

My sparkly BFF Sanam helped me get set up. Love my crafty peeps!



We started at 1:30pm and by 2pm we hit room capacity! We had 60+ participants plus 20+ hoping to get in. Wow! Thankfully I had 50 t-shirts and tons of egg cartons, cereal boxes and craft supplies for everyone!



My main DIY was an upcycled t-shirt trick or treat bag. Super simple, no sewing necessary and the kids got to add their own touches!



I had felt, glittery duct tape and glow in the dark fabric paint.



And so many awesome crafters! Here's the superhero of the Crafternoon! He got to wear my upcycled t-shirt cape. He saved us from craft disasters, accidents and used his superpowers for good.



I loved all of the t-shirt trick or treat bags! 50 secondhand t-shirts were upcycled in a jiffy.



And we made very spooky egg carton spiders. I'm not sure who had more fun - this girl or her Dad!



Best photo EVER! She hid her spider in the bag then brought it out to show me. Crafting and crafty peeps are da bomb!



An upcycled cereal box trick or treat bag in the works.



A pretty darn fabulous trick or treat bag... Grey base, felt accents and glow in the dark text. Perfect!



And cutie patootie headbands with ears plus a makeshift hook.



We then gave away my project sample... So many kids were keen on winning this. All the kids who helped clean were entered and then this girl won it. She was so darn happy to win it... Love finding happy homes for my kookie projects!



Finally the craft renegade joined us and made a spectacular origami scene for Halloween. Even origami can be spooky!



Thanks to everyone who joined me for the Halloween Crafternoon - it was an awesome time! Amazing attendance, a super fun project, a team of cleaners and we just rolled with it. So grateful to the North Vancouver City Library and the Vancouver Foundation for their Neighbourhood Small Grants program. Building community + crafting with 'crap' = one kick butt afternoon!

And for those of you who were turned away, we're going to figure out a plan for the Xmas Crafternoon. Stay tuned!