wild autumn spirit

A moth-eaten, unflattering, old wool sweater lay in the back of my closet for far too long, all the while tempting me anew with warm woolly comfort when the days grow chilly and damp.   When the temptation returned these past frosty days I knew it was time to re-imagine the undervalued  jumper into something forever altered that would pay homage to it’s autumnal allurement.

Wool roving was wisped and  needle felted into the moth holes, and a pair of trusty scissors transformed the neglected pullover into a comely cardigan.  Some coordinating wool yarn was found and new borders were crocheted along both the old and new.  A lovely branch provided a pair of buttons and secured this upcycled sweater’s place in the autumn forest.



This particular re-imagining owes its inspiration to this beautiful project discovered at this site (click for link).  Linking up with Funky Junk Interiors Upcycle Party. 


sassy satchel

Empty bags of our favourite locally roasted, fair trade, organic coffee have been adding up (and getting unwieldy!).  Upcycling bags with all those planet-friendly qualities just seems natural.  Fortunately, we also enjoy Full Steam Coffee’s logo and decidedly Maritime theme.  The scissors got to work, and the sewing machine (denim needle recommended) stitched away, and sure enough, a funky satchel just begging to go to the farmer’s market was born.

Our trusty roll of duct tape was concerned that the inside bottom of the satchel, the strap, as well as where the strap meets the body of the bag, might need a little reinforcing before carrying heavy loads of organic carrots or books, so it stuck itself there to help hold things together.



Linking up with the Funky Junk Upcycling party


nature lovin’ dresser

We recently came across a very damaged and orphaned dresser that we adopted despite our better judgement.  The back supports were replaced and the pressboard primed.  The exterior of the dresser received several coats of primer but the scars remained.  It was clear that this particular dresser was never going to be an elegant accoutrement to a lady’s boudoir.  It could, however, make a decidedly fun addition to an upcycling hippie’s closet.

The drawers were papered with pages from a proof copy of a nature book I wrote for middle-graders, and some vintage drawer pulls were added.  After that, I opened the paints and let them do as they will.

IMG_7434      IMG_7436


The result is a decidedly girly hippie dresser that brings a smile to my face.  I look forward to waking up in my little house in the woods and seeing this message cheerfully welcoming the day:


crochet conspiracy

A blockade of vintage crochet doilies refused to sit on surfaces, hidden below flower-filled vases anymore.  So it was that these protesting doilies dyed themselves away from a monotone beige and stitched, tied, and weaved themselves together to create this conspiracy of a swim suit cover-up.  Also at home over a lonely tank top, they certainly promise some interesting tan lines if you’re so inclined.



Sharing with Sew Darn Crafty

rainbow sun hat

Using the same method as granny’s braided rugs (click here for directions), a colourful group of discarded t-shirts merrily re-imagined themselves into a fun and practical sun hat.   Jersey knits are soft and fun, and the high visibility of bright colours help the little ones stand out in a crowd or in the woods.  On a hot summer day, this absorbent hat can also be dunked in water to help keep the wearer cool.  Plus, it makes a grumpy toddler seem a little more cheery than her serious expression would otherwise allow…


Sharing with Sew Darn Crafty party

the colourful curio

An old, ugly curio shadow box has mastered a colourful re-imagining.  Once an outdated shade of brown with kitschy heart-shaped doors, it was reduced to a simple shadow box reminiscent of old fashioned herb drawers.  Colour was added with simple acrylic craft paints and then challenged with sandpaper for some serious distressing.   Through the mysterious alchemy of re-imagination, it began to capture some of the magic of ancient herbalists and tug on the power of the elements present in the colours.  Now it burns with the fire of a thousand rainbows in a place of honour upon the wall.


Linking up with the Funky Junk Upcycling Party