Thursday, April 26, 2018

What to do with old Windows

We recently replaced our old single pane windows with new energy efficient double hung wonders and I couldn't be happier. Full screens and no more storm windows , YES! But now what to do with those old but beautiful chippy windows? I'd like to share with you some ideas for those windows, I've been hoarding  out in the barn.

We'll start inside, depending on the shape your windows are in this might be the best bet.

 Pam at Our Adventures in Home Improvement shows howto turn an old window into a Display piece

If all your left with is a frame, then that works too. How about a blackboard organizer.
window chalkboard to add some farmhouse charm with architectural salvage pieces.

Using them to create a special frame, insert mirrors in one that has a different shape, create a cabinet door or a back drop for another framed item or display is another couple of great ideas.

If they are in good shape here are a couple of plans for your garden.
Very simple DIY cold frames are a good use for old windows.
Cold Frame with Raised Lid
Easy to Follow Tutorial at Grow Garden Tomatoes. This is a very simple and easy to construct cold frame but you could also use bails of hay and just top with a window for a less permanent option.

Create a "Window Box" on your garage or shed by adding a box to an old window and hanging it on the wall. Then it can be moved easily or changed out to maximize the seasonality of the plants.

Or ago all out and build yourself a greenhouse! 
From a small version by Picket Fence Cottage

To the extravagant 

Wow.. This is The Pineapple Rooms' Glass House

Depending on your needs there is something in the middle that will work for you.

This is just a very small list of ideas for upcycling windows. There are so many ideas out there, like additions to fences or railings. faux stained glass projects, table tops and the list goes on and on. 
At one point you would see these old windows sitting out in front of old barns and along road sides but now people have realized their value. Check with your neighbors, they could have some in their barn or your local habitat restore, I see they have them often at a cheaper price than what they are going for at the local antique stores. But before to get some before they are all gone, I think you'll be happy you did.

Thanks for stopping by and playing along with the A to Z Challenge. Just a couple of days left!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Extra Vases and What to do with them

Vases, old, new, clear, colored, we all have a few hanging around. Mine are under my kitchen sink and laundry room sink and it's quite possible that there are a few in the barn. It's not that I have gotten so many flowers in my life time but but I've inherited some and some were left over from other projects and some have been filled with flowers. But what to do with them other than let them take up much needed space? I've done the research and I'm ready to share it with you, so pull them out and get ready to repurpose.

Most vases have a lot in common, they are glass and they are clear, they don't a have lot of personality going for them so they end up hidden away. One easy fix is to give them a little notoriety with some paint and some embellishments. Then you can group them and different sizes and styles work together because they have something in common, color!

I love everything about this idea from Vera Morae

Can you believe these were once just clear glass from the thrift store?
Madigan Made tells you exactly how she got this cobalt color 

Are your vases a little on the plain side? No worry you can add some interested with Twine.

  Teach Craft Love used A bit of twine and some hot glue for a interesting display 
Here's an interesting tutorial on decoupaging with Lace by Urban Comfort, that would be great for adding a bit of Shabby Chic to a plain vase
Lace 2

Not looking to add more items to your counter top, how about using those vases in your garden? 
Glass Garden Ideas 4130
Add a bowl and you've got instant whimsy for your garden. 

If these mushrooms aren't enough for you how about slipping a vase over those not so pretty solar lights to turn them real decor like they did at My Frugal Home. How pretty would this be at night?! And if you have different types or shapes all the better/
How to Dress Up Cheap Solar Lights

No matter what you do with them, there are lots of ideas out there that will fit your style and budget. I hope this helps to get those gears turning to help clear out some of that cabinet space that those old vases are taking up.

I can't believe we are in the home stretch of the A to Z Challenge and I'm going to finish this year. I hope you all have had as much fun as I have and if you've learned something along the way so much the better. W is for Windows and I've been collecting these ideas for a while, so be sure to come back tomorrow and see what all the fuss is about!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

umbrellas as door decor

You've heard about April showers bring May flowers but what do you do with the umbrella you had for those showers when it seen better days? Why you hang it on your door of course!

Is this a great idea or what?!  Via RandomThoughtsHome

Door Decor isn't the only way to use an outdated or damaged umbrella. Here are a couple of more ideas to check out before you sent it on it's way. If the frame is broken and past repair recycle that metal but keep the fabric and turn it into a pouch, it is water proof after all. Here is a great step by step video from Wonder How To that shows how to make the bag pictured below.
This is just your normal everyday umbrella but think how cute it would be using a kids or character umbrella and then think about all the ways you would use it! Win Win

If the fabric is has torn or come unattached, that's what normally happens to me, then you can reuse that frame. Patio umbrellas fall into this category too. They are generally very sturdy and one way to repurpose them is in your garden, as a trellis!
umbrella trellis
Jessica Walliser posted this to Hobby Farms. Simple and Fun

Or if your crafty or know someone who is you can turn your regular umbrella into a parasol for a little shade with an attitude. Isn't this beautiful! Swaktra turned this knitted Shawl into a parasol and we're all a bit jealous. For all of you yarn artist you can also find her and her patterns on Ravelry.
Knit lace parasol

So say the whole thing went down hill and all you have is a really cute handle? Never fear that is worthy of reuse too. In it's new life it is now a Hook! 

It's it wonderful how we can reuse things in ways we have never thought of before? What do you have laying around that could be something else? Tomorrow I'll be talking about something that I know we all have that is taking up space under my kitchen sink! 
Thanks for stopping by on my reuse, recycle, repurpose journey with the A to Z Challenge!

Monday, April 23, 2018

T is not just for Tea Time

I don't know how many of us still have a dedicated tea time but many China sets still come with them. Sometimes dainty but always decorative, tea cups and their saucers can have a new life outside of just the dinner table.

As a rule Tea Cups don't survive as well as other dishes to be passed down in families, or they end up in shops or auctions as singles. While bad for a proper Tea Time it's good for crafters. 

Let's start with a simple but elegant idea, which is only proper for a tea cup. Other candle companies can't compare to ones that you make at home in a pretty cup. 
Here's a step by step process from My Kitchen Antics that will help you create these at home. What a great idea for wedding, holidays or shower gifts!

Now for those who prefer their tea Alfresco how about ideas for the garden? Bird feeders, planters or just garden decor are just some of the things you can use tea cups for.
                                                       Stand feeders Via StoneGable           \

   or a Hanging version via My So Called Crafty Life      

Tea Cups in the garden aren't just for the birds how about bringing a little garden inside with planters.
via Life with little ones                                       

hens and chicks in a tea cup

Or how about a Fairy garden for your little ones (or yourself). I think fairies love tea cups personally!

Lauren at Camp Makery has lots of great ideas on miniature gardens.

Add a bit of Whimsy to your garden.. You never know when you might be visited by a white rabbit who is always running a bit late..

Details and picture by Kylnnnn on Gardenweb

You never know when you might be visited by a white rabbit who is always running a bit it's best to be prepared with tea cup towers and tiers for your garden party!

Lund̢۪s 3rd Annual Mad Hatter̢۪s Tea & Bubbly | Party and Event GuideParty Ideas Blog | Event Services Directory | Party and Event Guide

or as tiered desert stands

Parties always need decorations so check out these wreaths made with Tea Cups. I'm in awe..

As for crafting with Tea Cups I think the ideas are only limited by your imagination! Their delicate shape, wide range of patterns and availability turn them into a crafter's dream. 

We're on the last week of the challenge! If you've had it this far give yourself a big hand! The end is in sight but we still have so many more fun ideas to go yet, so stay in touch! I'll see "U" tomorrow!

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Week 43 in the Year of Projects

This week has really flown by, this is always the crazy week of the month for me at work and being the end of the quarter makes it worse. Having said that I don't have much umpf left for crafting by the time I get home. But I did squeeze in a few things this weekend.

I had blocked my squares for my Peach Blossom blanket last week and I did about 40 variations on the layout and after many changes I think I've decided on a random layout. I tried squares, lines, and ended up with this..

I think I'm happy with
Then I knew I wanted to do a lacy border and I then I ran across Cypress Textiles Celtic Lace Join. It looked so perfect so and would add a few inches so now my blocks will look like this..
So I'm going to be needing some more yarn and it will take a bit longer than I had originally planned. It really gives it the extra elements I was looking for. Hopefully it won't take me as long to work out a boarder. I'm still going for lacy but with the other colors too.

I did manage to finally get my veggie's completed and a picture taken so that I could get it posted to my Etsy  Shop. I.m hoping to do a bit better about getting things posted on there this year, For some reason the listing is really hard for me
I also managed to get a few rows in on the rainbow baby ripple. Just stating the next color block.

I said I wasn't going to start another project until one gets done, BUT my brain was fuzzy with all of the posting and pictures so I went with a simple I don't have to think about it project, of which consists of granny squares and stripes. I'll have an update next week on that.

The A to Z Challenge is almost over and I've actually managed to stay ahead and I'm hoping to have all of the posts completed be early in the week. Now if I could just finish craft projects as quickly I'd be great!

Have a very crafty week! Be sure to check out the other Year of Project posts too!

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Suitcase decor

Recently at a local flea market I picked up an older suitcase, I loved the color but wasn't sure what I would do with it. Before I could decide, I also found a old travel makeup case at good will, so I scooped that one up too! I hadn't thought about upcycling suitcases until I ran across the one I had and now I seem to see them on lots of blogs, unfortunately not so much in person...

So I've decided that I'll be using the smaller case as a craft container. It is a good size for keeping smaller projects together and it looks super cute in my living room.

It's not that I don't want to do something with the larger case, it's that I want to do too many thing with it and i just can't seem to decide on one project!

At first I thought that I would make it into a stand or a vanity or a table... see what I mean way too many ideas. Here is some of the inspiration that is keeping me from making a decision.

Or I could hunt around and find a few more and do this..

Photo by Cupcakes and Cashmere 

These are all such great ideas I'm not sure which way to go.. I guess time will tell. I'm looking for a great base or some cute spindle legs but if a couple of more happen to wander home with me...

While I'm not in the market for any of these ideas, you might be, not everyone needs storage and hey it's good to think outside of the suitcase, er box I mean..
vintage suitcase shelves shelf
via Red Hen Home- for all of the details
Shelving out of suitcases, This would be a great idea for ones that are damaged!

A rolling bar for those smaller spaces.. Dane Holweger has a how to on Hometalk

Or a medicine Cabinet? I wouldn't have thought of this..

Easy DIY tutorial to turn an old vintage suitcase into a unique and charming medicine cabinet to add character and storage to your bathroom!
via Remodelaholic Great information on how to redo the interior also

umm, if I ever get another vacation I might need this..
Tutorial by Inspireco

The princess is a bit big for this but may be a great Christmas idea for the grandcats..

suitcase pet bed
Tutorial by Megan on Cafemom can be found here

Needless to say I now how more ideas than suit cases so I'll end this week heading out to the thrift stores in search of the next great project and I hope you do the same. Stop back by on Monday for "T' and maybe a crumpet or two. Have a crafty weekend!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Rags for Rugs

Rag- noun A piece of old cloth, especially something torn  from a larger piece.

Sheets, clothing and towels all wear out over time, like everything else, but should they be doomed to the dump. To hang around forever at a landfill, taking up space, just for a worn spot or a hole? Of course not! They can find a new life in your home with just a bit of time and ingenuity .

Rag rugs can be sewn, braided, woven, crocheted or worked like a latch hook for a fluffier style. The patterns, shapes and styles are limited only by your imagination. I'll give you some ideas on each kind and then the rest is up to you as to what will find it's way into your home.

Sewn Rag Rugs- The majority of this sort of rug is done with strips of cloth, sewn together to make large strips that are then rolled or coiled in a circle and then the coils are stitched to the coil next to it. This produces a round or oval shaped rug and by design is very sturdy and colorful. When deciding on this style rug you can either coil the strips of fabric, which would give you a thinner rug or you could coil the fabric over either cotton piping or a rope, which would make the rug a bit studier.
how to sew a fabric rug
The Ric Rac Blog has a great tutorial on sewn rugs, this one is done over a rope and doesn't require the strips to be sewn together before hand. 

Braided Rugs- This is the same concept as a sewn or coiled rug except in the fact that the rug strips are braided into a long strip and then coiled. This enables the rug to have a bit more texture and is can be used in a higher traffic area, since they are a heavier option.
Marissa from Little House Living shows how to create your own Braided Rag Rug with a great how to on a very sturdy non sewn join.
How to Make Rag Rugs

Woven Rugs also use the sewn strip method but instead of a continuous roll the strips are a certain length.  Longer strips will be placed in the loom for the length and then shorter stips will be woven in an under /over pattern to join the lengthwise strips together.  Due to the weaving process these will generally be rectangular in shape but can have various thicknesses and textures depending on the processes used. You don't always have to have a loom to make a woven rug, check out Laura's option on A Beautiful Mess. She has taken weaving to a new but simple level and ends up with a truly neat project you can recreate in your home.
Make Your Own Woven Rag Rug

Crochet or knitted rugs, just like it sounds, strips of fabric are crocheted or knitted just like you would yarn. This enables the rug to take on many shapes or patterns. Often used for more artful pieces.
Not what you typically think of when you think rag rug! Instructions for this version can be found on 
She used sheets and gives all the details on how to create one yourself!

Latch hook fabric rugs are a lot like the latch hook kits so popular in years gone by. They use a backing and small strips of fabric which are left open on the top to give the rug a fluffy appearance. I would imagine this would be appropriate for a bedroom or a less traveled area but what a cute idea! As with all rag rugs the colors are very customizable.
 Jamie At Everyday Art created this rag rug for her daughters and has a very detailed and easy to follow instructions on her blog. These remind me of the shag carpet I had as a child! Ugg that might be giving away my age!

Rag rugs can be made out of most kinds of fabrics, sheets, or even denim. Don't have any extra scraps, shirts or jeans laying around? Check out goodwill, they normally have big bins of linens in all colors and at very good prices. You'll often put more time than money into a rag rug, but when you're keeping the materials out of the landfill that's a bonus.Then add the fact that you'll end up with a creation of your very own style, that makes it all worthwhile!

Thanks for playing along with me in the A to Z Challenge, there is a large group of very talented people who are also blogging the alphabet this month and you should check them out too. There are daily letter lists and the original list that can be stored by content or by theme. But whatever you do please be sure to check back tomorrow for my next installment, which includes a travel item being upcycled for your home.