Thursday, November 4, 2010

Upcycling and Recycling

So I've just recently learned a new hip and cool word - upcycling.  Here's the definition:

  • Upcycling is the process of converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value.
  • The repurposing of a material into a product of higher quality. An example would be a purse made out of woven candy wrappers.
I'm not quite sure how this differs from recycling, but blogs that are way cooler than mine use this word all the time.  So here's my newest "upcycling" projects:
 This mirror, in all its lovely golden splendor, hung in my parents entry way for a long, long time.  Underneath it was an equally lovely, and matching gold shelf on which two ivory and ebony little elephants stood.  I asked my mom the other day if I could have the mirror.  She said yes and pulled the dusty thing out from under her bed (my sister had already taken the little shelf). So in the mode of upcycling, and because I get asked at least 6 times a day, usually more like 12, what's for dinner, I decided to try my hand at making a chalkboard out of a mirror to post our weekly menu on.  It actually was pretty easy and if anyone wants to make a chalkboard out of something, I have TONS of the chalkboard paint left. (Found out later, there are much smaller bottles in the craft section, instead of the paint section.)
Next is my other new love, painting on t-shirts using freezer paper as a stencil.  I've cut the freezer paper using my Cricut (or I also did one by just laying the freezer paper over a picture I printed out and cutting) and then iron it on the shirt.  Then paint away.  Maddie's shirt had a stain on it which I carefully covered with the butterfly.  Jon was very sad when his favorite shirt (which is a hand-me-down from Billy, and before that cousin, Chase) got a big snag and hole in it.  So I cut out the felt guitar and painted it and the shirt.  Now he has his favorite shirt back and he thinks it's cooler than ever!  I also painted a shirt for Cheyenne, Natalie, and me (covering up a hole I patched).  I even painted all of the kids Halloween shirts.  My kids are now becoming a little leery of telling me they have a stain because they know I'll whip out the paint and fix it right up, instead of just buying a new one.
What do you have sitting around your house just waiting to be upcycled?

Linked to:
Love Notes by Lauryn


Marissa said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! We enjoy freezer paper stenciling shirts too. I just wish I had a cricut handy for the cutting. I think I would do more of them that way.

Candice said...

That is an awesome upcycle. Did you just spray the chalkboard paint directly onto the mirror?

I am craft disabled.

Kimberly T. said...

Thanks Marissa, and you were the inspiration for the freezer paper stenciling, your shirts are adorable! Candice, I couldn't find any spraypaint so I just used a little roller brush to roll it on.

Leslie said...

The mirror turned out so cute! I still have the shelf if you want it. I can bring it at Thanksgiving. What other fun things can we do then?

MaryBeth said...

Seriously? And you think I'm crafty...puh-lease.

Mamma Mia said...

I'm behind the times, again, in reading this. But I loved it. I love seeing my girls do such crafty things. I was impressed that you remembered the ivory and ebony elephants. You should submit this to a craft magazine or something like that.

Kim Rosema said...

That's an awesome mirror! Looks great as a menu board!

Lauryn Ashli said...

thanks you so much for linking this up to flashback fridays. i love vintage victorian ish frames/mirrors.
flashback fridays is going on again today and will be going all week.. go enter!
{love} lauryn @

Terrie Mathison said...

Great redo! I am collecting items to do just that kind of a chalkboard!! Great job!

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