April 29, 2011

Love 2 DIY on the Weekend: SEARCH!

Usually I only use scraps from around the house for these DIY posts - but I made a small exception this time. It's  90% upcycled but I had a crazy idea for a Christmas ornament and didn't quite have the materials needed.

In toys stores, bookstores, everywhere - there is a new game called Find It! where you find items hidden in a tube of beads. You can play alone, or time yourself with several players. It's addictive and perfect for car rides or waiting rooms. With several empty glass ornament left over from a project I did about 5 years ago, I thought this game was perfect as a gift for my kid's friends during the holiday!

(I know it's a wee bit early - but us crafters have to be WAY ahead of the game for big holidays or we get left behind!)

You actually don't need much:
A glass or clear plastic object with a lid or other opening
(I used canning jars and a glass bulb ornament - but even a water bottle would work just fine)
Lots of beads.
Small surprises to "find"
Camera and Printer
Glue (optional)

First I gathered all of my materials - which is the most difficult part of the project.

The silver shiny circle thingies are what I bought!

Next you choose the 'goodies' you want to put in your project.
I made three games - a simple one for younger kids with large animal beads,
a more difficult one for kids at heart with smaller, more difficult to find items,
and a Christmas one, with a bird theme.

Then I laid out the goodies and took a picture, named my game Search!, and printed out game cards.

The cards are so the players know what they are searching for. You should print out several cards per game so the players can circle what they find. If you have the energy, each card for the same game could list only a few of the items in the jar. This way the same player could play over and over and not get bored!

Next, layer beads and goodies in your container. Leave about one inch empty at the top so there is room to shake and move the beads around to find the goodies.

That orange thing in the center is a bird. 

Once you fill up the containers, you have the option of gluing the lid on to keep kids (and adults) from spilling beads all over your car.

Also, if you would like to give as a gift, tie a ribbon around the game and then through a few hole-punched cards for instant fun!

Merry Christmas!

About the Author:
Sammi is a creative starter who loves to help others do the same. She always has several projects going at once and loves to boss people around. So she had three children. You can find her on freckleLips or a soccer a field in middle America.

April 28, 2011

Giveaway from InMetalJewelry!

I know you are so excited for another great giveaway! Congratulations to last week's winner - Tirabaralla who has a great blog you should all go visit! Please contact with your address in Dublin so Cat can send your great goodies!

Thank you to Corrie at InMetalJewelry for donating this beautiful piece today. 

None of her pieces are tumbled to retain the natural grain of the break

Let's get to know her....

Upcycling is not a trend for Corrie, she is very passionate about the environment due to her parents influence.

“My parents are very environmentally conscious and love the outdoors. Since I was little we would go camping and spent a great deal of time enjoying nature. Fortunately, they instilled in me a kindness for all creatures and an awareness of how we impact the planet.”
“So, I've always had it in me and have always looked for ways to enlighten others not only about conservation and the things they can do to help, but to the joys of it as well. Beauty can come from upcycling! I try to make my pieces a testament to that.”

Corrie’s shop has only been up and running for a few months, and she has had a little difficulty figuring out all the ins and outs of Etsy!
“There are so many pieces to the Etsy puzzle- promoting and figuring out SEOs and perfecting photography and tags and descriptions and on and on.”

Corrie has found setting small goals and focusing on specific area at a time has helped her maintain a positive attitude and more forward improving her shop.  
Even though there has been a transition from person to person sales and online sales Corrie’s husband has been her main source of encouragement to not give up and to maintain perspective.

“I love him for that!”
Corrie loves creating jewelry because she loves wearing jewelry!

“I love big statement pieces and sometimes it's hard to find what I like. I have also been branching out with other items like sun-catchers and keep a look out for items like keychains, mobiles, who knows what else!”

This is the gorgeous piece Corrie is giving away today!

Giveaway Rules!

1.  This giveaway is only open to followers of Love2Upcycle! (Not a follower? It’s easy! Click the follow button in the left sidebar!)

2.  Each comment only counts as one entry, so if you are entering multiple times you must comment separately.

3.  FIRST entry: Check out InMetalJewelry and post your favorite item in the comments below.

+1 Follow Corrie’s blog
+1 Like InMetalJewelry's facebook page
+1 Post on YOUR facebook about this giveaway - please post link in comments.
+1 Tweet about this giveaway - please post link in comments. 

Winner will be announced May 5th - Good luck!

April 27, 2011

Meet & Greet Tubbytabby

Jodi creates a collection of jewelry from upcycled items like resin, game pieces, and vintage items.  She is all about creating bling for the limited budget, so it's easy to buy two or three pieces at a time.

Domino Pendant Live Laugh Love
I asked Jodi a few questions about herself and her Etsy shop and here is what she had to say:

Tell us a little about yourself and what you sell.
My name is Jodi, I am 52 (wow, did I just say my age outloud) I am a freelance graphic designer and operate a graphic design business from my home office. I've always crafted in some way, even as a kid. A few years ago I discovered Etsy and thought I'd try my hand at a shop. Tubby Tabby's Jewelbox was born mostly as an experiment. So now I make jewelry from upcycled items, resin, game pieces, vintage and whatever else I can get my little paws on.

Dangle Earrings Olive and Ice
Why did you decide to work with upcycled/recycled/repurposed/vintage materials?
My step daughter was making necklaces out of scrabble tiles and I got the idea that it would be cute to make them from wooden dominos or backgammon tiles. To be honest, at the time, I wasn't really thinking about how it could help the environment, I didn't even know the word "upcycle" But since discovering that I was in fact, upcycling, I now make a strong effort to create from vintage/old/recycled materials whenever possible.

Resin Pendant Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
What is your favorite thing about running your etsy shop?
I think my favorite thing about running my shop is selling something! Duh! Actually, it's not so much about the money, it's just thrilling to me to think that someone actually fell in love with something I created, and that they are walking around somewhere wearing one of my designs. It's a great eco-booster.

Etched Dark Red and Creme Beaded Necklace
What inspires you to create/sell what you do?
I'm not really sure. At first it was just an outlet, a way of making a few extra dollars. Now, however, it seems to have turned into an obsession. I've recently purchased a huge lot of vintage jewelry from a friend and I spend hours going through it, deciding what I'm going to make, and coming up with ideas. Some days, I spend so much time looking at everything, that I get overwhelmed with ideas and end up not getting anything done! Sometimes it's just best to walk away, My newest obsession is revamped vintage. I love creating something updated while still retaining some of the vintage feel.

Triple Strand Beaded Bracelet Salmon and Turquoise
Share links to where we can find you on the web
You can find me several places:
My jewelry can be found at: Tubby Tabby's Jewelbox www.tubbytabby.etsy.com
I also offer graphic design services at TopCat Design: www.topcatdesign.etsy.com
Twitter: www.twitter.com/design45
My Blog: www.tabbysquawks.blogspot.com

Thanks Jodi for sharing with us today!

See you next week,
Everyday Inspired

April 25, 2011

Monday's Makeover: From Broken to Bling!

Ann Marie's blog and shop is aptly named: Very Creative Creations! She entered this creative creation in the recent Green is Universal contest, The Art of ReUse. And even though it's a bit early (or late?) for Christmas, this is an idea you might want to file away for later this year. You could also change it up to a flower bouquet design or maybe a another kind of tree... hmmm~ now I'm feeling very creative!

Material List: old picture frame (garage sale find), broken costume jewelry, scrap of velvet, pieces of cardboard and glue.

This upcycling project is relatively easy but time consuming to make.

1. Cut a piece of cardboard to fit the opening of your frame.
2. Cut a piece of velvet about an inch larger than your piece of cardboard.
3. Glue velvet to cardboard with fuzzy side facing out.
4. Place velvet covered cardboard into the frame.
5. Lay out broken costume jewelry into a Christmas tree form.
6. Start gluing jewelry pieces into place.
7. When finished gluing all the pieces in place let piece dry over night.
8. Cut a second piece of cardboard to fit the back of frame.
9. Glue cardboard into place and let dry over night.

Now display your Recycled Christmas Bling.  Set up your upcycled Christmas tree and enjoy all year round.

Here are some other 'makeovers' by Ann from her Etsy shop~

Have a DIY or Makeover idea to share? We'd love to feature it, just drop us an email:
teamupcyclers@gmail.com and we'll be in touch!

April 22, 2011

Love 2 DIY on the Weekend: Last Minute Gift Idea!

Easter's on it's way! 

And with everything you have to remember on your to-do list for any holiday or occasion, there's always a chance you'll need a last minute gift. Whether it's for someone special you want to show some love to or maybe a hostess gift, this little jiffy quick idea is perfect. And it even has a some WOW factor because they will think you are sooooo clever! This project is also easy enough for a child to do, so it can even be a gift they can make for Mother's Day~ which is also on it's way!

Now, I can promise this is a quick idea because I made these after working all day, (which is why this post is late) shopping for my Easter dinner and making supper! WHEW! So trust me when I say it's easy.

Start with these wonderful bags of candy in a favorite flavor, or choose based on the color of the bags, like I did. (actually, for me the flavor doesn't matter, I love them all!)

Carefully open the bags and remove the candy. I decided to use the Lindor Truffles for this DIY, because I liked the little window and thought it would be perfect to personalize the gift with a picture. Cut the bag just below the glued area where it was sealed. You can trim it lower if you want, I did it a couple of ways. It might depend upon what the label looks like!

Find or print a photo that will fit the window, size it to be sure, trim if necessary, but leave enough at the top and bottom to add double stick tape to adhere it to the inside of the bag. Next find some coordinating ribbon to make handles. Cut them about an two inches longer than you want the handles to be, 8 inches works well. I like to have a finished edge, so I added a little double stick tape to the "wrong side" of the ribbon and folded it over. Next, put some of the tape on the ends on the right side and stick to the inside edge of the top of the bag to make handles. On one, I put the ribbon on the outside and added little rhinestone flowers over the ribbon. Then, I added a silk flower with a brad, by poking a hole in the bag and fastening it. Of course, any embellishments will work!

Now you have a beautiful upcycled gift bag! Just add some tissue, put the candy back in and Voila! A last minute gift that's sure to please~ and it's affordable, lol~ especially, if they are on sale and you have a coupon like I did! Here's this one finished:

You can change it up all sorts of ways, using whatever you have on hand~ be creative! And if you can't resist eating the candy, just use it as a gift bag for any little treasure. It can be altered to any holiday, just by dressing it up for the occasion!

Hope you enjoyed our DIY for the weekend! Don't forget to enter this week's giveaway~

Happy Easter!

April 21, 2011

Weekly Giveaway: Tags and Favors!

This week's giveaway is also a DIY tip~ You can easily make these yourself, so even if you don't win the giveaway, you will come away with some simple ideas! These tags and favors are perfect for family and friends or if you are a shop owner, a little something extra for your customers.

You can find a tag punch in your favorite craft shop or online, use some colorful cardstock weight paper~ it can be anything! I've upcycled paint sample chips, postcards, greeting cards and even clothing tags. Glue on some embellishments, whatever matches your tag.

Punch a hole and add some colorful ribbon, yarn, rickrack, parcel string, raffia~ okay, you get the idea! You don't even need the tag punch, you can cut circles, rectangles, or cut out an  object printed on your cardstock!  Want to make it a bookmark, just don't add any 3D embellishments and Voila! You have a bookmark...

For a simple shower favor, or another idea for a little something extra for customers, you can try your hand at these customized memo pads.

You can buy a pack of Post-It's or generic memo pads in a block that can be divided into smaller pads. Find cardstock that matches the color of the paper and cut it to the width of the pad and 2 1/2 times the length.

First center the pad on the paper lengthwise and fold it up and over the pad, be sure the pattern on the paper is facing down! Crease the cardstock and remove the pad, crease again.

For a ribbon closure like these, cut a slit the width of some matching ribbon in one of the bottom folds, thread a piece through and lay 2" flat on the inside where the pad will sit. Be sure the ribbon is long enough to wrap around the closure button. For mine, I used Scotch Tie-Downs to wrap the ribbon around, but you can use your imagination to create all sorts of closures. You could do a ribbon tie by adding a ribbon under the pad coming out the top, for example. Just use a piece long enough to tie after you pass it under the memo pad, out the top and bottom.

Put some double stick tape or glue dots on the back of the memo pad and on the paper under where the ribbon will be, reset the pad on the cardstock with the ribbon underneath and press down to stick. After you've assembled the memo pad, add embellishments like stickers, stamps, little objects, etc.

If you'd like a chance to win these sets of tags and favors, it's easy!
Just browse, follow, tweet and share~ Here are the details:

First you must be a follower of Love 2 Upcycle to enter~ not a follower? Just look to the right and click on the 'Follow' button!

You can submit up to four entries, each must be entered HERE in a separate comment.

1. Browse my shop, Collagical, and tell me which item was your favorite.

2. Follow my blog~ Already a follower? Follow my other blog, I'm Sew Pretty!

3. Tweet about our giveaway or become a follower of Collagical's tweets!

4. Share a link to the giveaway on Facebook or become a fan of my page, Collagical!

Deadline to enter is Tuesday, April 26th at midnight. Random drawing on Wed. April 27th.
The WINNER will be announced with our next giveaway~ Thursday, April 28th.
Good Luck!

Would you like to Sponsor a Giveaway on Love 2 Upcycle? You don't have to be a member of Upcyclers to be a sponsor, all Etsy sellers of upcycled or eco-friendly products are welcome! But of course, we'd love for you to join the team!

Email us at: teamupcyclers@gmail.com Tell us about the item for the giveaway and provide us with a link to your shop.

April 20, 2011

Sarahsquiltsncrafts WINNER!

What a great giveaway! Thank you to everyone who entered!
Be sure to keep checking in because giveaways are going to
become a regular feature here at love2upcycle. 
But for now we would love to hear from KAYLIE!!!! That's right! 
You've won an adorable upcycled tote from Sarah!

Meet & Greet Revamped

Geri loves to craft, she loves sparkly items, and vintage textiles. Revamped goods is all about giving vintage and other cool stuff a second life.

Upcycled Vintage Pastel Bobby Pins
I asked Geri a few questions about herself and her Etsy shops here is what she had to say:

Tell us a little about yourself and what you sell
I'm a lady who loves vintage, quirky, funky things (and Disney World, not that that's related to crafting) . I work a full time job and am working on my masters, but I still find time to do a little crafting, because it's good for my psyche. I run 2 shops on etsy--one for vintage and then one for things I make out of vintage things. Currently, I'm doing barrettes and have started revamping western shirts. Occasionally, I'll make a handbag, but that's usually in the summer when I get a little free time to sit down at the sewing machine. Sewing is my love, but usually if I take the time to make something, I keep it for myself!
Vintage Dress 8 M 1960 Preppy Pink and Green Golf
Why did you decide to work with upcycled/recycled/repurposed/vintage materials?
 I really do love vintage fabrics and prints. I would find lots of great vintage things that were either damaged or had outlived their purpose, but they were still beautiful. I started doing the barrettes, because I LOVE vintage earrings, but most of them are huge, and totally impractical today. A lot of times, I would find one sad and lonely gorgeous earring at a flea market or garage sale. What in the heck are you going to do with one vintage earring? And then I started thinking, "wow, this could look great in my hair." I've always loved hair accessories, but I had a hard time finding some that were age appropriate. Most were for little girls or teenagers, and at the time, I was 30. It went from there.

Men's Vintage Upcycled Pearl Snap Shirt Medium
What is your favorite thing about running your etsy shop?
My favorite thing is when people buy my hair accessories for a special occasion like prom or their wedding. I love knowing someone chose one of my items for something that they will remember for the rest of their life.

Upcycled Vintage Red Handbag Purse Leopard Woven Straw
What inspires you to create/sell what you do?
I love going to the thrift store, antique stores, or swap meets. I see so many things there (and unfortunately buy them) that I think, "I could totally do something with that." Unfortunately, most of that stuff is in a gigantic pile that has been labeled "to do." One of these days, I'll get to all of it!

Mod Bobby Pin Hair Clip Set 1960's Revamped Vintage Red
My facebook page is www.facebook.com/revampeddesigns
My shop for recycled items is www.revamped.etsy.com and for vintage finds, it's www.evelynrosevintage.etsy.com

Thanks for sharing Geri!

See you next week,
Everyday Inspired

April 18, 2011

Monday's Makeover: ReUse Has Its Rewards!

Two weeks ago, we announced the Green is Universal contest, The Art of ReUse. Now, we've learned who the Top Ten Finalists are~ and as thrilled as we are for all the Etsy sellers who have made the finals, we can't help but root for one of our very own members of Upcyclers, Re-Zip It! Of course, we'd love it if they all became members, since our goal is to forward awareness of the upcycling movement, and each day we welcome new like-minded sellers to our ranks (We now have almost 750 members~). But today, we want to brag about just one member:
Heather from Re-Zip It!

Heather "hearts" zippers~ and as a full time, working and married mom, she has turned to creativity as a stress-buster. As she puts it, "My creative mind allows me to express myself, while making others smile and keeping the Earth GREEN all at the same time!"

And apparently her formula is working! Not only has she made it successfully to the finals, Heather has also found success on Etsy, having sold hundreds of her zipped-up flower brooches and other creations.

Heather takes these:

And "Re-Zips" them into these:

What's happens next? Heather and the other nine finalists will have their entries featured on the Today Show next week, in anticipation of the seven celebrity guest judges' decision on the winners. So stay tuned, and we'll let you know how this exciting adventure turns out!

April 17, 2011

Wouldn't You Like To Curl Up Under This!?!


she said. After a 'long, arduous process', Lisa from BunnyBear Designs had finally finished her first set of Felted Sweater Bedding!

The process of washing each sweater several times in hot water, cutting pieces to her pattern size and then the pinning and sewing took much longer than she expected~ but the most time was spent whip stitching the back, since she wanted the piece to be reversible!

But despite all the work, Lisa is proud of this set and already planning the next piece! She says the next one will be a map of the United States~


To see more of the process of making this bedding set, follow Lisa's progress on her blog, BunnyBear Designs from when she started her 'New Project' and while she was 'Moving Along' on the quilt. Lisa also has some great advice for 'Marketing Yourself and Your Etsy Teams' (We love that idea, lol).

Did you fall in love with this upcycled bedding set? If you hurry you won't have to make it yourself~ Just head over to BunnyBear Designs and buy this one!

April 15, 2011

Love 2 DIY on the Weekend: Upcycled Jewelry

Yea it's Friday once again! And time for another great DIY for you to try. I found this fun blogger on our Upcycle team on Etsypreneur and she was very enthusiastic about posting her tutorial for us! Her name is Cynthia and is a brand new blogger, she even added a little surprise at the end, so please show her some Upcycled love by following her blog so she isn't quite so lonely!

Junk Art Frame DIY From Costume Jewelry
I made a recycled, junk art frame to share with you today.  With a bag of junk jewelry, a glue gun, and a pair of pliers I made this little frame in about an hour.  Maybe more (time) because I fuss with my projects...but if you are aggressive you can complete your own in no time at all.

This was my original bag of costume jewelry and blank picture frame.  I selected a thrift store frame that I acquired for .25 that is metal covered with paper.  A wooden frame would work, too.

To see the finished product please head over to My Junk Inspired Life! And have a fantastic weekend!

April 14, 2011

Giveaway from SarahsQuiltsNCrafts!

Welcome to another great giveaway hosted by Love 2 Upcycle! This is so exciting, I think everyone will love this fun upcycled tote Sarah has donated today.

Sarah’s mother had all three of her children sewing at a young age. Sarah said she was only 5, “so you could say it is what I know”.

Cathedral Windows Quilt

A few years ago Sarah discovered Etsy and thought it would be fun to try it out. Friends who sew, local stores and websites that sell fabrics continually inspire her as well as wanting to be a member of society that contributes something that is useful and hopefully attractive.

Retro Print Clutch

Sarah has struggled with pricing items fairly. Although she loves a bargain as much as the next person, having a handmade store on Etsy has really begun to open her eyes to how we've been seduced by "cheap" and "sale", to the total neglect of the individuals behind handmade items, who are trying to make a living wage.

Vintage Zipper Wall Art

Despite the difficulties of the oversaturated handmade market and the challenge of getting visibility Sarah said her motivation is the same thing that keeps her breathing every day.  “Life itself! The sheer wanting of expression of the Life Force that is in each one of us.”

Canvas Tote/Book Bag with Vintage Lace

When I asked Sarah about her favorite item in Sarahsquiltsandcrafts, she expressed how most of us feel. “My favorite item to make is the one I'm really "into" at the time. Right now I need to work on 5 tote bags for a request, which I will enjoy, and I have an idea for a new mandala zafu burning away in my mind! Can't wait to get to it, but need to focus on first things first!”

This is a little like a double giveaway! You can enter for our tote giveaway here, then head over to Sarah’s blog and enter for a Cathedral Pillow!

Enter now to win this fun tote!

Giveaway Rules!

1.  This giveaway is only open to followers of Love2Upcycle! (Not a follower? It’s easy! Click the follow button in the right sidebar!)

2.  Each comment only counts as one entry, so if you are entering multiple times you must comment separately.

3.  FIRST entry: Check out Sarahsquiltsncrafts and post your favorite item in the comments below.

+1 Follow Sarah’s blog
+1 Post on YOUR facebook about this giveaway - please post link in comments.
+1 Tweet about this giveaway - please post link in comments. 

Winner will be announced April 20th - Good luck!

April 13, 2011

Meet & Greet: NotYoMammasHandbag

Ellen's handbags are made with love, and memories of those women in her life. Not Yo Mommas Handbag are a series of handbag creations that are named for the friends, family and mentors in Ellen's life.

Ellen also has a wonderful collection of original photography and very cool vintage finds in her Etsy shop.

Handmade denim purse named Windy
I asked Ellen a few questions about herself and her creations, here is what she had to say:

Tell us a little about yourself and what you sell.
I am a photographer by profession. I shoot weddings, social events, fund raisers and portraits. Occasionally, I help artists create their portfolios. While I owned a studio several years ago (nearly 10) I like to work out of my home, now.

A couple of years ago, I made myself a jeans purse from two pairs of children's jeans I found at Goodwill. I like to recycle, and they were very cute. I kept receiving compliments from women in the grocery, mall, ball game, school, church, etc.... My husband kept saying "You know, you should really think about selling those.", but I didn't think anyone would buy them. Then, on a vacation trip to Cincinnati, we were having lunch in a fancy hotel, and as I walked to the buffet a very handsome tall man leaned over and in this deep voice said, "I like that purse"....well, that did it for me. I opened Not Yo Mommas Handbags the next week.

Sunshine Flower photograph in 5x7 
Why did you decide to work with upcycled/recycled/repurposed/vintage materials?
I believe that each and every one of us can make a small difference. I love the feel of old worn broken in denim, doesn't everyone?

As for the vintage items in my shop, I find them everywhere, and they all remind me of a time when things seemed a bit simpler. I love good clean lines, and modern style.....I am also a nut for kitsch.

Spicy in Myrtle Beach
What is your favorite thing about running your Etsy shop?
More than anything I love Etsy and the whole concept of homemade crafts, clothing, jewelry, etc...I am constantly amazed at the talent I find within the treasuries.

I love finding materials to work with, a lovely piece of material, an old bamboo handle, you name it....I can find a use. I love the hunt for vintage items. I really LOVE a bargain.

Handmade cute purse named Allison

What inspires you to create/sell what you do?
As I make my handbags, I find that I tend to daydream, and usually I start thinking about an old friend, or a current one, but mostly the girls I know in school that are either out of my life now, or have passed away, or simply moved away. I tend to name my handbags for those who touched my heart in some way. It is my way of sending out that message to them, that I valued them and am grateful for the moments we had together, even as children.


Become a fan of NYMH on Facebook

See the photos

Read more about the "girls" behind each purse go here:

Thanks for sharing Ellen!

See you next week,
Everyday Inspired