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Friday, December 3, 2010

Recycle, Repurpose Items From Your Local Donation Store

Recycling and repurposing doesn't mean always mean finding things around your house to re-use. I have done curb-side shopping. This is literally finding something sitting on the curb that someone has discarded. I have found some great old wooden chairs that I brought home, and repainted and recovered.

But my favorite place to find items to recycle or repurpose is a local donation store. I visit it once a week or when I specifically need something. During one of my weekly visits, I found a beautiful Christmas table runner tucked away between blankets and towels. I felt I had won the lottery. It was in perfect shape; no tears, stains or snags. I immediately began searching for matching place mats and napkins. Although I didn't find place mats, I found four napkins in a deep emerald color perfectly matching the table runner. They too were flawless. I couldn't believe I had scored yet again and decided that such great finds should be gifted so I mailed them to my daughter who absolutely loved them.

This week, I went in search of a throw pillow at the donation store. I found several that would have been useful for my purpose and settled on one of them that was fully stuffed, not over used, torn or stained. It cost me one whole dollar. This will also be gifted once I am finished recovering it with scrap suede leather I have stored away.

After measuring the pillow I purchased and cutting the suede, I will trace an image of a wolf's face then -  using my wood burning tools - burn in pencil-like details on the smooth side of the suede. Once I'm done burning the image, it will look like a pencil drawing complete with shading and fur characteristics. Then I'll use either my old treadle sewing machine (I will have to buy a specific needle sharp enough to go through the leather) to sew the two pieces of suede into a pillow cover or quilt stitch them by hand.

The newly covered and recycled throw pillow will be a perfect Christmas gift for my parents whose home is decorated western style. And it will have cost under five dollars.

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