7 November 2013

Upcycled projects

I've finally been getting around to a few little projects. When I say finally, some of these have been years in the coming. And there are others that could be years more!

However, here are three. Once, about two years ago, I bought some coat hooks at a garage sale for $2 each. Then a few months ago I began to sand, undercoat and paint them. I took 'before' photos for you, but it was so long ago I don't know how to find them. Anyway, one of them is for our ukuleles, and now hangs in our dining room on an unused wall. I like the honest old hooks that remind me of the cloakrooms where we hung our schoolbags when I was little.

The instruments are hanging by short lengths of fingerknitted wool, made by Anna. I'd got sick of them lying around, and I like the way they look on the wall. To be honest, we've got out of the habit of playing them much. We have to get back to it. I'm hoping that the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra comes back to town this summer to inspire us.

Next, a little sewing project. I bought this cushion cover (merino and angora) on Trade Me. I traced the feather from a book and photocopied it up in size, then used an iron-on transfer to get the pattern onto the brown fabric. The brown fabric was once a daggy old brown woollen jersey at the Salvation Army, until it was bought by me, felted in hot water in the washing machine, and snipped by my sewing scissors.

Then I attached it to the cushion cover by stitching carefully around it in brown thread. The trusty old Singer, circa 1940s perhaps, did the job beautifully. Gosh - look! - there it is above in the bottom picture of the ukuleles, should you care to admire it.

The last story begins at the stinky old dump shop here in Hamilton, where people can dump anything reusable for free before they drive into the dump and have to pay for what they get rid of. This little table was picked up for $10. Ah, again no before pic, but it was covered in scratched yellow polyurethane varnish.

I sanded for a while, then got sick of it (I'm sure you know the feeling) and used 'Dad's paint stripper'. It worked a treat, but freaked me out a bit because it says on the packaging that it has cancer-causing ingredients. I was well suited up, I can tell you.

Bizarrely, I discovered that underneath the yellowed stuff the timber was rimu, apart from a solitary mahogany leg (the right hand front one in the photo). The mahogany is beautiful - I think I've only seen/noticed it in veneer before, and this non-grainy leg is quite different. Anyway, rather than get upset about mismatched leg colours, I decided to play with the idea of different timbers, and stained the drawer front with a pale colour, and the knob (which I bought new) a deep red-brown which we had left over from another project years ago. I finished the whole lot with a natural oil from the Natural House Company. (The white stain was from them too. I don't like the way the two areas of dense grain on the drawer front haven't taken up the stain properly, but don't feel inclined to do anything about it.)

So I have a few things to tick off the list, and a few additions to our dining/living area.

To finish, some wildflowers I picked on a walk and from our garden.

1 comment :

  1. Got any floor lamps on the go? Mine is still sadly in the basement gathering dust!


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