Embroidered Collar


Back in the summer I embroidered a pair of Harper’s espadrilles to add a bit of colour to them and to be able to do a project on the sofa and watch TV at the same time. Recently I decided it was time for another one of those ‘sofa projects’ so decided to add a decorative embroidered collar to a plain jumper of hers.

For this project you will need:

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Make a Little Girl’s Dress From A Man’s Shirt

dress from shirt tutorial

Whilst going through a bag of clothes ready for the charity shop, we found a couple of mens shirts that were too nice to get rid of.  We decided that we would snip them up and turn them into dresses for our little girls, using the buttons down the front as the buttons on the dress. We’re big fans of upcycling and this seemed like a pretty straightforward project.  It took us a while – toddlers are not the most willing of models – but we were so happy with the outcome.

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Nap Time Crafts: Cardigan to Cushion in 10 Minutes!

cardigan to cushion

Last week, I very cleverly managed to shrink both my and George’s woolen jumpers in the washing machine. Whoopsie. I tried to stretch them out but to be honest, they’re goners. I was about to throw them in the bin when I thought I’d try something first. I took my cardigan, chopped it up, stitched it into a square and BOOM! A cushion cover! This was the easiest thing I’ve ever made… Try it, it literally takes ten minutes.

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DIY copper Magazine Rack

magazine rack 7

A friend of mine recently showed me how easy it is to make things out of copper piping (she made an awesome table with some piping and scaffold boards….clever girl). You don’t need to be a fancy welder, all you need is some strong glue and a little device that cuts the copper pipe with a simple twist. I found this post by the awesome fallfordiycom which uses wooden poles alongside copper joins. I wanted the full copper look on my magazine rack so I went and bought myself some piping – the whole thing cost me under £20 (but I did have the fabric already).

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Scribble Top Table

chalkboard table upcycle

I love any project that involves upcycling furniture. When I was recently given an old table and chair I decided to give them a make-over and turn them into a scribble top table with a chalkboard top for Little Button to get creative on, with a matching chair. She’s now at the age where not everything goes straight into her mouth, so this table is a nice way to introduce drawing.

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Upcycling a Lampshade. We ❤ Chintz!

lampshade 12

In January I made a little resolution that 2014 is the year to finish what I started. I have so many projects that I start, then get bored of and stuff in a cupboard. So I starting forcing myself to finish things… and it was really satisfying! I put buttons on coats that have been in a pile for a year. I fixed a bag that had a broken catch. I sewed trim on an apron I made about 6 months ago. Being productive is addictive! On the top of a pile was a lampshade I bought from a car boot sale 3 years ago. Yep. For 3 years it has been sat there taking up room. I decided to upcycle it with some lovely fabric I had leftover from a dress:

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Tetris Cross Stitch Chair

DIY Tetris chair

I’ve been on the lookout for a cross stitch project for a while. While I was browsing in a second-hand furniture shop recently, I came across a mountain of chairs. Poking out the top was one that immediately caught my eye – a battered old wicker-backed chair badly in need of some TLC and wool! I knew I had found my blank canvas – now I just needed a design. I wanted my chair to have a modern twist, and a friend pointed out that Tetris is back!

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Hit the Brighton Sales with Viv’s Shopping Guide

Vivienne Egan is writer of the fabulous upcycling blog, ‘binoracle‘ where she finds a use for everyday stuff she finds on the street – our very own little womble. One (wo)man’s trash is another (wo)man’s treasure after all! She has kindly agreed to do us a guest post just in time for the January Sales, offering a guide to all the best recycled, re-purposed and second hand shops in Brighton. Here is what she says:

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Nap Time Crafts: DIY Magnets 3 Ways

button magnet tutorial

Today’s Nap Time Craft is so quick, it can be done while the kettle is on.

For this craft you will need:

  • An assortment of buttons/flat-backed tins/photo paper (depending on which type of magnet you choose)
  • Self-adhesive magnet sheet
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife

Cut the magnetic sheet to fit the back of the button. You need to use buttons that have a flat back and not the shanked variety.

Peel off the back of the magnetic sheet, and stick it onto the back of the button.

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Nap Time Crafts: Chevron Chair


Today’s Nap Time Craft involves adding a chevron twist to a tired piece of furniture. I used a dining chair I had painted a few years ago, which I wanted to jazz up into a striking new seat.

To do this project I used:

  • Wooden chair
  • Masking tape
  • Spray paint
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil

Creating a chevron design can be hard. My chosen method involved endless pencil markings, a lot of geometric guesswork, and so much misplaced masking tape that I started to resemble an Egyptian Mummy! I got there in the end, but I wish I’d known about this tutorial first.

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Sunglasses, bows and Polaroids

Lately I’ve been looking for a use for a large frame I’ve had idly propped up in my bedroom for years. It was originally used to display the seating plan at our wedding and has since been without purpose… until now.

I decided to turn it into some nifty storage for sunglasses, bows and Polaroids. I hammered nails into the back and strung three lines of fishing wire across the frame – and voila!

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Take One Granny Dress…

Thinking it was retro cool, I scooped up this delightful orange dress in a jumble sale last August. But, as is often the case with clothes I buy on a whim, when I tried it on at home it was definitely on the frump side. A year later and it’s still sitting in my “alter me” pile (which, to be honest, is more of a mountain…). But, with our spanking new blog to motivate me I decided the time had come to whip out my sewing machine and do a bit of hacking. I snipped off the puffy sleeves, nipped in the waist and took about a foot off the bottom and, hey presto, a lovely new dress!

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