Sunday, November 28, 2010

Bambi Coasters

This is not a recycled sewing project, but more of a recycled craft project....

Anyone following my other blog will notice a Bambi childrens book I was given for free by a lady in an op shop, because it had pen scribble marks inside.

A few months back I remembered a craft project in Frankie magazine, recovering old cork coasters with vintage childrens books. So that is what I did with this Bambi book, and some coasters I had in my kitchen drawer that really needed a spruce up.

Scissors, PVA glue, mod podge, and sandpaper were used to create my new coasters

Gotta love Bambi! I am going to make some more of these for gifts for Christmas if I can find some second-hand coasters in op-shops before then.

A farewell card

Today is a sad day. Our closest and dearest friends are moving to the other side of the world; permanently. We of course wish them all the very best, but we are also sad we won't get to see that much of them anymore.

I wanted to make a farewell card for them, so found appropriate things that I have in my recycled remnants kit to make up a card.

Firstly, a blank recycled card, and a piece of fabric left over from a clothing refashion. Quite suitable I thought, it reminds me of the Qantas flight attendant uniform; a distinctly Australian print. Something to remind them of Australia!

Next, a little book I purchased on my last Op Shop Tour, a 'friendship' book for 50c. Filled with lovely little phrases and pictures all relating to the meaning of friendship.

With my pinking shears, I cut a squarish shape of the picture and phrase in the book I liked best, along with a background piece of Australiana fabric, and machine stitched into place:

All the very best to our special friends.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Pattern purchase

I saw these fabulous fabric ring stackers and thought they would be a great gift idea for a friend with a new baby. I have just purchased the pattern from etsy seller pattern play. This will be my next sewing project, using a mix of my thrifted material stash to make it. Not sure when I'll make a start yet though.. busy weekend ahead!!

Has anyone else seen any interesting tutorials or patterns worth trying out on thrifted or recycled materials?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Rice sack to laundry bag

When I buy rice for the household, I buy in rice sacks like this one:

We've used these bags for various things. My husband uses one to keep loose change in throughout the year, and in December, takes it down to the bank to exchange for notes for Christmas!

I've started using one rice sack as a laundry bag, keeping undies/laundry in when we go away for the weekend, or putting smalls in the wash. So I thought about making it look a bit prettier, and thats what I've done today.

Using fabric from my thrifted material stash, I used a pretty floral one:

And an elephant motif from a faded childrens t-shirt I purchased in an op shop for 50c.

A funny story behind the t-shirt, my son and I were out walking yesterday, and he completely soaked himself with his water bottle. I had no change of clothes, so I bought the only kids t-shirt that would fit him in my local op shop! And this is it, a girls elephant t-shirt! I changed him when we got home but for half an hour he looked pretty funny in pink and frilly sleeves! I'm glad I found a second use for it.

I simply stitched together two rectangle shapes to cover the rice bag writing, unpicked the sack open to sew into place, and stitched it back together again. Here is the end result, from rice sack, to pretty laundry bag:

The back of the bag I've left plain:

Monday, November 15, 2010

More chalk mats

So I bought the fairy fabric from an op shop in Parkdale, and here is the first chalk mat I have made out of it:

A friend of mine ordered two chalk mats from me, as Christmas gifts for her friends children (girls), one of which is going overseas - a great idea for kids on planes!. I've made the other chalk mat out of some pretty quilting fabric my Mum gave to me last year. She originally bought it for quilting many years ago.

Just big enough to fit into your handbag!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

More t's and fabric

I finished off the last two tie t's today, this time I managed to score the long sleeve t-shirt and grey short sleeve t-shirt from Salvos last Friday. Washed, and dried before sewing mini ties in place. The cool thing about these two t's; they are a Christmas gift for two brothers, a 5yr old and an 18 month old. I think they will look cool together =)

I also bought some brilliant fairy fabric from an op shop in Parkdale. So girly, so cute. I am making a chalk mat out of it today, and still got loads left for another project in the future.

Mini tie T's for kids

Out of some of the thrifted mens necktie fabric I've had leftover from my necktie owl project, I made a mini tie to sew onto one of my son's plain white hand-me-down t-shirts. I liked the way it turned out, so I decided to make more as Christmas gifts for friends kids this year.

I feel terribly guilty about this, but I did in fact buy two new blank t-shirts. I would prefer to source everything second hand, and these t-shirts were the first 'new' clothing items I've bought in well over a year. I'm just not sure I could give second hand clothing as gifts for friends kids? The mens necktie fabric is of course second hand.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Electrical wire hiding tubes!

I'm a bit fed up of messy electrical wires hanging around at the back of the TV, with the DVD, Playstation and digital TV top box... wires are everywhere.

I wrapped some christmas presents yesterday from last years wrapping paper, and had the tube leftover - what to do with it? I cut the long tube into smaller tubes, and machine stitched fabric scraps to the tubes to make them look a bit more attractive. And there we go, some pretty covers for electrical wires.

My pretty tubes are not perfect, because they don't fit all of the wires in one place, but it does look remarkably better than it did before.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Fabric 'pairs' game with pocket pouch

I am constantly thinking of my 'next' sewing project, what can I make next? Is craft an addiction? Sometimes I wonder.

On twitter, I found a link to a blog ( with a fantastic idea for a children's game, a matching game card reader, using felt and fabric. Do you remember playing 'pairs' with cards as a kid?

This inspired me to make my own from my stash of thrifted fabric. Now I don't have a lot of felt left, and I don't want to buy new, so I used what I had, and instead of cutting shapes, I had another idea using this childrens sheet I picked up from savers:

I bought this fabric as I thought the little animal squares would be great for pockets on my chalk mats. However, a lightbulb moment - why not use some of the squares in a fabric memory card game.

I used the same principle, cutting my fabric with pinking shears, but the remaining white felt I had left over in my stash I cut straight with scissors, and machine stitched together.

I got the check fabric free c/o freecycle. Has anyone used freecycle before? My friend put me onto it, people can post things up on online of things they no longer require, to see if someone else wants it. I got a box full of fabric from a lady that, sadly, no longer sews because her eyesight isn't so good.

I had a slight hiccup, the edges of the check fabric still frayed even though they were cut with pinking shears, so what to do? I remember reading about using hairspray or nail polish to prevent fray, so thats what I used. Having said that, I do not like using chemicals, so I used my organic nail polish, which is water-based, and doesn't have that god-awful smell that regular nail polish has. Anyway, it worked well - a little time consuming, but it worked.

Here it is:

I made a 'pocket' envelope with velcro fastening from my sewing stash, with one of the dog squares on the outside.

I tried it out on my 2 year old. He is still a little young to understand the pairs idea, but he enjoyed looking at the pictures. I suspect 3yrs might be a good age for the game?

Saturday, November 6, 2010

First Award!

I started writing Recycled Sewing to supplement my first blog Recycled Fashion. I started sewing as a result of my interest in adjusting vintage / second-hand fashion, which soon progressed to other items I make from recycled materials. I wanted Recycled Fashion to remain its focus on fashion, and thus Recycled Sewing was born.

I'm feeling very flattered today, as I've just received my first blog award for Recycled Sewing; the Beautiful Blogger Award.


The lovely Dee over at BabyGalah , awarded me with this honour. Thank you so much Dee! Have you seen some of her creations? She is very talented:

Isnt this vintage girl onesie just gorgeous?

The rules of this award require me to nominate another 10 bloggers the 'Beautiful Blogger Award' so here goes:

1. Kitty n' Kitsch I know George has already received this award, but I just adore her little handmade childrens boats, so I award her again =)

2. The Posh Op Shopper by Je T'aime Vintage for her collection of beautiful vintage clothes

3. Giggles Down Under A beautiful photographic blogging journey of a family leaving Maui to move to Australia

4. I am Pink A blog about a dog! called Pinky Deluxe, who showed up needing help at the Merced Animal Shelter in Central CA, United States, and found a new family home.

5. Little Food Junction A blogger from India who creates absolutely magnificent food for picky eaters..children!

OK so I know I am supposed to nominate 10 bloggers, I do read other blogs all of the time, but these are my top 5 beautiful blogs I can think of right now. Enjoy!