Reducing waste through upcycling, repurposing, refashioning and reloving.

Showing posts with label upcycled jewelry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label upcycled jewelry. Show all posts

Winner! eyelidcanvas pendant




Time to send this eyelidcanvas pendant to a new home! As always, I used a randomizer to pick the winner and it landed on entry #178 - that's Lanae C! 

Lanae, congrats! Expect an email from me later today to get your shipping details. Thanks to everyone who entered for your interest and thanks to eyelidcanvas (Kim!) for the great giveaway!

Keep up with eyelidcanvas on Facebook and Instagram
Kim's work is available directly through her website and at:
Tarnish, Chicago
Coming Soon: Strangelovely in Chicago





Giveaway: eyelidcanvas pendant ($60 retail)


The core concept that drives eyelidcanvas is the freedom of imagination to create functional and wearable art through the clever reuse of found objects. 

Meet Chicago-based artist and designer Kim Schafer, the talent behind eyelidcanvas. I first saw Kim's jewelry at Remix this year and spent a long time appreciating (and photographing) her unique work. What I always hope for at events like Remix is to see something I haven't seen before. Kim's work is that "something"! So I'm thrilled to not only feature her, but also give you guys a chance to win a pendant she created especially for you! 

Waste? Not! - Day 4 Beautiful waste




I see treasure in trash. I thinks there's joy in junk, wonder in waste. I've been showing you my upcycles, alley grabs, refabs, roadkill rescues and refashions for 6 years. As I contemplate the next step in trimming my waste (so to speak), here's a round up of some of my favorites tutorials.

1 and 2. Aluminum Cans 
Specifically, local (Chicago) craft beer cans. I love good beer and supporting local brewers. And I'm often distracted by the beautiful design featured on the cans. So much so, I thought they were worthy of jewelry. Save a few cans from your recycling and make your own geometric necklace or flower pin

3. Book Folding (if you're a book lover, please know that I am too. Here's my argument for why I think crafting with books is acceptable)
By far the most popular post on the blog, folded books make beautiful wall decor. It's a great way to repurpose a book that no one (and I mean no one) will ever read again. For example, old reference books, recipe books and city guides.

4. Negatives 
If you're keeping old negatives, ask yourself why? If you've lost the pictures, go get them printed! Then turn the negatives into something beautiful. Earrings, a necklace or create something decorative for your home

5. Pages of old books
There are so many ways to use book pages! Make your own paper beads then use them to make a bookmark. Or...
6. Big reference books 
Huge old encyclopedias are too big for bookfolds. So I made a book vase and won a Womens' Day Challenge for my trouble. I've also turned books into clocks and purses

7. Guitar strings
I played guitar regularly for 12+ years. I threw out so many broken strings in that time. What a waste! I could have made bunches of these beautiful flowers. And if you have an old, broken guitar lying around, here's a round of ways you could repurpose it.

8. Postage stamps (or any other pretty paper)
Betsy Siber makes beautiful jewelry out of stamps from around the world. This earring tutorial she created for me a few years ago is still a favorite. And here are other ideas for things you can do with old stamps.

Looking for more ideas? There's a long list of repurposing ideas in the sidebar. Lots of tutorials here and big roundups here




Fab: MakeShift Accessories


License plates, cymbals, street signs, musical instruments, machine plates and metal rulers ... just a few of the salvaged things Devin Johnson turns into jewelry. Amazing jewelry, made in Minneapolis! I was lucky enough to oggle MakeShift Accessories in person at a recent street festival and it's impeccable. Not a word easily applied to re-junked stuff. But there it is. If you're up in MN, visit the actual store or shop on Etsy  :)  

Guest post: Trashy Crafter (Recycled Book Beads)































Very excited to host The Trashy Crafter today! I'll let her introduce herself ... enjoy  :)  

Books are magical, they give you the ability to go on a jungle safari one minute and a deep see dive with mermaids the next. But what happens when books has gotten lots of love from years of use? The pages get creased, dog-eared and ripped, the bend or even start to fall off. That’s where my Mom Helen and I come in. And this is where the story of Trashy Crafter begins.

Fab sponsor: Sleepless Storyteller



Introducing... drumroll please .... the Sleepless StorytellerMy first blog sponsor for 2014 :) 

Christine Hart lives and creates in Vancouver, BC. When she's not conjuring jewelry, she's writing young adult novels, working as a copywriter, blogging and being a mom. To say that I jumped at the chance to feature her work would be an understatement!

All the pieces pictured above are from her her Etsy store. The work covers steampunk, cyberpunk, trashion, neo-victorian and upcycled vintage jewelry. When you visit the store, be sure to read the product descriptions. They go like this: If Mid-Century Modern style ever found its way to Mars, the landscape might be inspired to grow flowers like these. A vintage enamel flower accented with an atomic-shaped brass finding, small enamel flowers, hand-set rhinestones and a tiny brass gear (the white daisy pictured above).

This is jewelry created by "an eccentric fiction writer,  inspired by alternate realities". If you love science fiction, fantasy or gritty urban settings, you'll see it in her work. If you have a touch of whimsy, remember your dreams, feel sure you've fallen down a rabbit hole at some point and, maybe, have a crush on Neil Gaiman, you might want to one of these lovely pieces.

Here's a little more about Christine: 

1. What came first, the crafting or the writing? How do they influence each other

I've been crafting and writing as long as I can remember, but writing came first as a career. I studied professional writing at the University of Victoria. After graduating in 2001, I worked in roles that utilized my copywriting and journalism skills. 

I started making my own jewellery probably as far back as high school. I have very petite wrists and fingers, so the best way to find rings and bracelets that fit was to make my own. I'm also fond of chokers, which I need a small size for as well.

Today, the two pursuits really weave into each other at a higher level. My work as a communications and marketing writer gave me the training I needed to handle the promotional and graphics side of having a shop, backed by a website and social media.

2. You are strongly oriented to repurposing, upcycling etc... where did that come from for you

Being a writer, even working mostly in the corporate world, is rarely a lucrative pursuit. I start the answer there to explain that recycling, for me, began as simple thrift. Already making my own jewelry, I found myself remaking old designs I became tired of, and from there, experimenting with clockwork and computer parts I had access to at home.

3. Advice for folk who are trying to turn their passion/craft into an online business?

Turning a crafting hobby into a business isn't as big an undertaking as you might think, now that sites like Etsy, Big Cartel, ArtFire and others make it fairly painless to upload and offer goods for sale. In addition to your products of course, you need a decent camera, photo editing software, and time. Time for things like copywriting and social media, as well as the time spent crafting.

The main challenge is trying to grow that shop into a recognized brand with a sales volume that covers a real wage, after expenses are deducted. Most crafters work on their business while holding down a job, often while raising a family. Growing a business when you can't devote all your time to it is a process that takes several years at a bare minimum.

I want Sleepless Storyteller to grow and thrive. But I also enjoy my work as a copywriter and I'm working on having another novel published. I have a toddler at home and I'm thinking about having another baby.


To enjoy your business and your brand, I think it's critical to know where you want it to go and why. For a self-employed crafter to replace the income of a day job, I think it takes an all-consuming passion. A complete devotion of all waking hours. And luck on top of that. 

4. What are you excited to read this year?? 

Great question! This year, I'm doing quite a bit of research reading, so my list looks something like: Cryptids And Other Creepy Creatures by John D. Wright, African Mythology by Jan Knappert, Gods, Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece by W.H.D. Rouse and Dictionary of the Occult by André Nataf.
For fun though, I'm reading Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye. Before that it was A Clash of Kings. Is there anyone left who's not a Game of Thrones fan?

I hope that list isn't too long! When start talking (or writing) about literature and crafting, I can really get going.


Visit Christine's Etsy store and follow her Facebook


Upcycle: 3 plastic bottles... 1 Fab Necklace!



Well... what do I really need to say about this one? Great upcycle, fantastic colors, excellent tutorial! Oh, and the blog name: 2nd Funniest Thing. What's the funniest, I wonder? While you're there, take a look at the whole DIY Gallery - lovely! 

Upcycle: Plastic bottles turn over a new leaf...


Gearing up for a leafy Earth Day giveaway ... and very inspired by these pretty, feathery things posted a couple of years ago on the Free People blog. Click through for all the instructions. 





Upcycle: From Plast(ick!) to Classic ...


LOVE this!  It's a "Marni for H&M" inspired DIY that involves some simple (but ingenious) repurposing of horrible little plastic containers. Head over to Matter of Style for the full DIY ... 

Giveaway: Recycled FlipFlop Fauna!

Ours is a story of logic and magic; the logic of recycling our rubbish using the magic of imagination, creativity and finally, plenty of passion! The result is a bouquet of colourful, well designed sculptures, household items, fashion accessories and bespoke pieces.

Let's face it - old flip flops are, well ... gross. But even when they're old and disgusting, they're still rubber and they take upwards of 50 years to decompose ... so they don't just "go away" when you forget them on a beach at the end of the summer. They do, however, float away. Apparently, by the hundreds of thousands. Then what? Well, Cleaning Beaches, Creating Masterpieces is the FlipFlop Recycling Company’s solution. And their motto! This eco-business (based in Nairobi, Kenya) collects discarded flip flops that were previously blighting waterways and coastlines around the world. Then, through the magic of talented local artisans, the collected waste is turned into amazing flipflop creations. And people from local communities earn an income in the process! Are you impressed?  Me too! 
And I have a couple of FlipFlop creatures to give away ... read on!