Trash To Treasure - DIYInspired.com
20th Nov2012

Refurbished Garage Sale Night Stands

by Dinah Wulf

On the same garage sale trip I found my bench I posted recently, I found these two night stands for… you’ll never believe this… $5.00 each!!! What?? I know!  All I knew was that it has great bones and would be a good trash to treasure project, it didn’t smell, there were no major scratches or dents, and the lady was coo coo.  Just kidding about that last part but I seriously couldn’t believe that I walked away with three great pieces for $15.00.  Anywho, here is how I made my refurbished garage sale night stands.

Here is what you’ll need:

  • Thrift store or garage sale night stands in need of some love
  • Sander (I used both block and electric, but just block is fine)
  • Paint
  • Paint brush
  • Hardware (optional)
  • Screwdriver
  • Clean cloth
  • Time
  • Read this to find out if you need primer

The first thing I did was removed the hardware and sanded it.  I used a hand block sander for hard to reach areas, and used an electrical sander for the larger areas like the top and the shelf.  Next, I cleaned the sucker.  It obviously had not been cleaned in a long time, perhaps left lonely and unattended in a garage. There were caked on gooey stains, but nothing that couldn’t be easily removed.

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Once they were clean and dry, I painted them with the left over paint I had from re-painting my guest room.  I used two coats.  I had to order the new handles online because the average size these days is either 3” or 4”.  These were 3.5”.  If you’d rather not order new handles online, you can always putty the holes and drill new ones.  I screwed in my new hardware when they arrived in the mail and I was done!  Here are some more after pictures.

 

14th Nov2012

Recycled T Shirt Bunting

by Dinah Wulf

I wanted to spruce up my mantle for the holidays so I decided to make a Thanksgiving banner.  Naturally, I wanted to use recycled materials so I found an old wrinkled cotton T shirt in my husband’s side of the closet (my side is neat and tidy of course!).  There was a huge stain on the front right on the chest so this was perfect for my recycled T shirt bunting.

Here are the materials you will need:

  • Old clothing item
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Paper (to make your flag pattern)
  • Iron
  • Spray starch
  • Fabric paint
  • Spouncer
  • Stencils
  • Ribbon or rope
  • Hot glue

Instructions:

Step One: Grab and old T shirt or any other piece of clothing.  Feel free to play with colors and textures.

Step Two: Make your flag pattern.  I used a piece of cardstock (8”X6”).  It’s easiest to start with a rectangle, measure the center of one end, and draw a diagonal line from one corner to the center mark for both sides and cut.

Step Three: Cut out your flags.  I chose to spell out “Give Thanks”.

Step Four: Lay out your flags to iron and spray it with starch.

Step Five: Iron your flags.

Step Six: Stencil your letters using a spouncer.  I chose green my favorite color!  Check out my stenciling tips I from my stenciled place mat project. You can purchase these stencils online.

Step Seven: Allow your letters to dry and then hot glue each flag to your rope.  I bought 3 yards of rope they had on sale for the holidays and cut it in half.  It was perfect for my recycled T shirt banner!

Here are some AFTER photos.

I took these during the day…

 

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13th Nov2012

Shoe Box Lid Clock

by Dinah Wulf

I recently painted my guest room and I wanted to add some DIY wall art so I decided to recycle some shoe boxes and make shoe box lid wall art instead of buying paint canvases from the craft store.  For one of them, I thought I’d turn into a clock using a clock kit from a craft store.   You can turn practically anything into a clock!  Consider using other recycled items like books or paintings.  Here is how I made a shoe box lid clock.

Here is what you’ll need:

  • Shoe box lid
  • Craft Paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Stencils
  • Spouncers (sponge stencil brush)
  • Clock Kit
  • Drill

I started off by choosing my color pallet and laying out my shoe box lid and painted it with two coats.  Allow it to dry in between coats.  It dries fairly quickly (approximately 15 minutes).  Using stencils and spouncers, I added my design by carefully saturating the tip of the brush, removing some excess, and stamping the paint down onto the stencil in an up and down motion.  This helps prevent bleeding.  Allow the box to dry in between stencils if you are using more than one.

Next, drill a hole into that area you want your center of your clock to be.  Follow the directions on your clock kit.  Typically you put the hour hand first, the minute hand second, and the second hand last. Add a battery.   Viola!  There you have it!

I ended up hanging my shoe box lid clock with a thumbtack among other lids that I painted.  You can add rubber putty at the tip of your thumbtack to prevent slipping.

Here are some more after photos.

 

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07th Nov2012

Garage Sale Bench Makeover

by Dinah Wulf

Here is my story about the best trash to treasure garage sale bench makeover ever.  Two weekends ago I got a call from my best friend.  It went something like this:

  • Jen: I just dropped Tiff off at school and am stopping at this garage sale.
  • Me: Ooooh is it any good?
  • Jen: Let me call you back.

<vibrate vibrate> (I never have my ringer on anymore these days)

  • Me: Well?
  • Jen: She’s moving and needs to sell everything this weekend.  She said she’d give you a good deal!
  • Me: I’m putting on my shoes! Text me the address!

In 5 minutes, we were out the door and my daughter was in her car seat.  It was the best garage sale I’d been to in a while.  A lot of stuff for cheap!  I walked away with two side tables and a bench for $15 total!!  I didn’t even have to haggle.  Yeah, I thought she was nuts too but I didn’t argue.

I had no idea what color to do so I posted it on my Facebook page.  I got a ton of great feedback but for some reason I still couldn’t choose. All I knew was that I wanted to add a cushion and upholster it on top.   I decided to go to the fabric store and stare at all the upholstery fabrics until one jumped out at me and I found this fabulous print that happen to match.

Side note: Please let me tell you that if you have a toddler, going to the fabric store to pick out something that is not yet decided is no easy feat.   The entire time I was there my daughter was running up and down the aisles, throwing yarn in the air and yelling out the wrong colors. Put her in the cart you say? Yeah right…

Also, because I am SO CHEAP I went back to the store 3 times on three different days, so that I could use a coupon for each item I bought.  What? It saved me $15! It was totally worth it.  I already had all the other supplies I needed from past projects so technically, this entire makeover cost me $20.00 including the bench! Woot woot!

Before I go on, here are the materials you need:

  • Bench
  • Spray paint
  • High density craft foam
  • Scissors
  • Yardstick
  • Fabric
  • Staple gun and staples

I first attempted to clean the bench and started wiping it down.  But the second a giant spider ran out and attacked me I decided to take this sucker outside and hose it off.  With the highest stream setting on my nozzle, I hosed it down and let it air dry outside.

After the bench dried, I spray painted it red.  I loved the original color and it matched my fabric, so I touched it up with some red spray paint with primer.

Meanwhile, using a ruler, pencil, and the best scissors ever, I cut some high density craft foam to fit over the top of my bench.

I also cut and measured my fabric.

I laid the foam on top of the center of my fabric and laid the bench on top upside down once it was dry.

Using a stable gun and heavy duty staples, I began pulling the fabric taught and stapling it to the bench.  The corners were a bit tricky, but with a little maneuvering and folding, I was able to make the sides look neat.

Here are a couple after photos.

That’s it!  I’m pretty proud of my $20 garage sale bench makeover that will go perfectly in my guest room at the foot of the bed! The best part is that I saw a smaller plain wood bench in a catalog for $149.00!

For more repurposing ideas and trash to treasure ideas, check out this fun round-up of garage sale and thrift store transformations! There are over two dozen original projects I have done including housewares and furniture transformations.

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05th Nov2012

Shoe Box Lid Wall Art

by Dinah Wulf

I’ve said it a hundred times and I’ll say it again!  I’m cheap!  Let me add to that; I may have an acute hoarding problem as well.  Wait. Is “acute hoarding” and oxymoron?   Anyway, I recently painted my guest room and I wanted to add some DIY wall art so I decided to recycled some shoe boxes and make shoe box lid wall art instead of buying paint canvases from the craft store.  They turned out great, I must say!

Here is what you’ll need:

  • Shoe box lids (Papa sized, Mama sized, and Baby sized)
  • Craft Paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Stencils
  • Spouncers (sponge stencil brush)

I started off by choosing my color pallet and laying out my shoe box lids in the arrangement I wanted to hang them.  Next I painted each box lid a different color.  I used two coats for each.  Using stencils and spouncers, I added my design by carefully saturating the tip of the brush, removing some excess, and stamping the paint down onto the stencil in an up and down motion.  This helps prevent bleeding.  Allow each box to dry in between stencils.

I ended up hanging each lid with a thumbtack.  You can add rubber putty at the tip of your thumbtack to prevent slipping.  For one of my paintings I added a clock (I’ll show you that tutorial later).

Here are some more after photos.

Tip:  I have used many different brands of craft paint in my day and I have to say that the easiest and best to work with is Martha Stewart’s craft paint.  It goes on like butter!  For these I used the satin finish… oh and I used her stencils too!

Here are some more fun trash to treasure ideas and tutorials!

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29th Oct2012

Repurposed Inspiration from Antique Shopping

by Dinah Wulf

I can’t believe this is my 400th post!  Thought I’d celebrate by sharing a lovely event I went to.  Recently, I attended the Socal Social here in Orange County, a local get together for Bloggers.  I didn’t know what to expect, as this was the first blog conference I had ever attended.  All I have to say is, WOW! Well, OK that’s not exactly ALL I have to say.  It was fantastic and far exceeded my expectations.  From meeting the most inspiring women to finding repurposed inspiration from antique shopping all day, I had a blast.  There were lots of swag, giveaways, and even celebrity writer and television personality, Mark Montano. By the way, you have to check out his new book, The Big Ass Book of Bling!  Some of my favorite projects are jewelry made from bobby pins or safety pins.  It’s fabulous!

I spent most of the day with Loren from Pandora’s Craft Box and Jen from Something Turquois.  I was also able to chat with Barbara from Chase the Star, Tara from A Spectacled Owl, Erica from Gee Whiz Designs, among so many other amazing fellow bloggers.  Of course, our hosts were Vivienne from The V Spot and Bev from Flamingo Toes.

The event was held in the historic Orange circle if Orange, California also known as the Orange Circle Antique Mall.  Needless to say, I found some fabulous repurposed and upcycled antique finds that I wanted to share with you.

Baskets turned Wall Storage

Utensil Chandelier (Check out the spooky picture at the bottom…ew!)

Umbrella Pendant Lamp

Vintage Suitcase Vanity

Chair Swing Flower Pot

Mason Jar Glasses (love these!!)

OK, these bottles aren’t necessarily repurposed, but I thought they were pretty!

Last but definitely not least… MY FAVORITE… Bird Cage Chandelier

I can tell you how great it was to meet like-minded ambitious women that knew EXACTLY what I do day in and day out.  Thank you ladies!  I had the time of my life… until next year!

 

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15th Oct2012

Add New Life to Everyday Objects with ‘Upcycling’

by Dinah Wulf

If you are looking to upgrade but don’t want to discard, it’s possible to add new life to everyday items by “upcycling” them. Whether they are boring, broken or just taking up unnecessary space, here are three easy Do-It-Yourself crafts using materials you already have in your home.

Problem: Drab Light Control

If your living area needs a face lift but you don’t know where to begin, think lighting. That paint in the store may look perfect under the fluorescent lights of a warehouse, but it will undergo a dramatic transformation in your home’s natural light. You can control how much sunlight streaming into your home will affect your decor by using Blinds.com window blinds and other window treatments. Shutters help regulate light and offer privacy, but all that fancy light control can sometimes be pricey. Why not revamp what you already have?

Solution: Paint Your Curtains

Yes, it’s possible. All you need is fabric paint, tape and a small roller with a thin sponge. If you don’t have fabric paint don’t fret; using that regular wall paint you have stored in the garage will work too. All you need to do is add textile medium to the paint. Its a $2- $5 acrylic paint additive that allows for proper adhesion and permanence on a fabric. AKA it helps them not flake or fade. Now just tape off whatever design you want – stripes and chevron are bold choices – and get sponging.

Problem: Glass Overload

When you’re creative or crafty, a common problem is having a shelf, closet or pantry full of items you can’t bear to toss out. These items aren’t keepsakes, but materials that could someday come in handy when creating. So if you have a closet such as this, here’s a solution for something that’s bound to be in your collection: glass jars.

Solution: Upcycle Old Jars

You’ll need your jars of all sizes, yarn, masking tape, white spray paint, ribbon and tea lights. Tightly wrap yarn in a crisscross pattern around a jar, then tape the ends on the underside or inside of the jar. Don’t place tape anywhere you’ll be painting. Lightly spray the jars with three coats of white paint and let dry. Remove the yarn, wrap the tops with ribbon and add your tea lights for a chic twist on DIY candles and light.

Problem: Outdated or Broken Frames

You probably have some outdated or broken frames somewhere in your home waiting to be used or thrown away. But instead of wasting or willing them away, upcycle them into something new. Whether they are cracked, an awful color or outdated design, this crafty tip will transform them in no time. And bonus, they don’t necessarily need to be used as frames, but maybe trendy wall décor instead.

Solution: DIY Yarn Frames

Mkae sure you have enough yarn knowing that one skein would probably cover five 8-by-8-inch frames. Besides yarn and your frames, the only other thing you’ll need is a light-duty staple gun. Start by stapling the loose ends of the yarn to the top left corner on the back of the frame. To prevent unraveling, loop the yarn around the frame twice, pulling it tight. Then start wrapping, working in a clockwise motion and every so often scrunching it toward the wrapped end to make the effect more substantial. Once you’ve covered the frame, staple the end to the backside of the frame, making sure it doesn’t unravel.

Getting crafty to reuse common items around your home doesn’t have to be hard and it doesn’t have to be pricey. By recycling something the average person would throw away you are revamping your space in a spunky, eco-friendly way.

Authored By: Justin Greig A self-proclaimed “21st century hippie,” Justin studied Journalism at Berkeley and freelances for many environmental publications. He has a special interest in conservation, and he and his wife recently added solar panels to their home.

 

 

03rd Oct2012

Repurposed Doors

by Dinah Wulf

There is so much inspiration out there for recycled DIY repurposed furniture ideas.  I’ve noticed during my recent flea market trips and visits to Habitat for Humanity Restore that you can easily pick up an inexpensive wooden door.  Here are some amazing ideas I found for repurposed doors.

How about making a kitchen island?  This is gorgeous.

This door frames a coat hanger from Buckets Of Burlap.

This salvaged door headboard is from Goodhousekeeping.com.

I love this bright yellow upcycled barn sliding door!  What a fantastic statement piece! You can never go wrong with a yellow, white, and gray color combination.

Door to door versus wall-to-wall!!

So very clever!  This is a salvaged door painted with chalkboard paint.  You can very chicly stay organized every day of the week!

This is a repurposed screen door from ApartmentTherapy.com. I love the double storage for both up top and hanging underneath.

Not my style, but love and appreciate the creativity of this coat hanger and organization station!  There are several hooks, knobs, shelves, and even a basket to hold all of your things.

Green is definitely my color!  I love this idea for a door coffee table.  It looks fairly simple to make as well.

Lastly, this is a recycled door turned shelving unit.

 

 

01st Oct2012

Recycled Plastic Container Crown

by Dinah Wulf

Recycled-Plastic-Container-Crown

This year for Halloween my family is going to be the Mad Hatter, the Queen of Hearts, and Alice from Alice in Wonderland.  As you know I preach recycled crafting and I made a DIY Mad Hatter Top Hat out of a cardboard box and hanger (among other things), but this time I decided to make my Queen of Hearts crown out of a recycled plastic container, specifically an old (but clean) sour cream container.

This was quite easy and fun and I have to admit I got a little carried away with the plastic gems.  I happen to have everything in my craft closet already, so I didn’t spend a dime making this.  The materials you can use are endless but here’s a list of what I used:

  • Clean plastic sour cream container
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Glitter
  • Felt
  • Foam craft hearts
  • Even More Glitter
  • Plastic craft gems
  • Hot glue
  • Clear glaze spray paint (optional)

I started off by cutting off the top trim and the bottom of the container.  Next I cut a jagged edge at the top, using the first triangle I cut out as a pattern to cut out the rest so that they would be even.  Next I glammed it up!  I glittered the entire crown gold and added red felt trim.  I also sprayed the entire crown with a clear glaze to seal in the glitter.  It helps to minimize months of glitter hair!  I decided to glitter foam craft hearts in red and add plastic gems.  I kept adding and adding… I couldn’t help it!  Oh well, it IS a Halloween costume…it can be a little gaudy.

I think these would be fun to make for a princess themed party or even an Alice in Wonderland tea party.  There you have it! A low cost (or no cost) DIY crown.

 

20th Sep2012

Mudroom Makeover

by Dinah Wulf

I don’t know why but when I think about a mudroom, I think about the Fall season, perhaps because that’s when school starts.  I think about a place where the kids leave for school in the morning and all their necessities for the school day are all in one place.  I think about a place for when the kids come home from school or Dad or Mom comes home from work and there is a place to put your keys or change from lunch and a place to hang your coat and scarf.  It’s a place where you can stomp your muddy shoes on a durable floor, take them off, and leave them there to go spend time with your family after an exhausting day.  With that said, I thought I’d put together a few of my favorite BHG inspirations for a mudroom makeover.

Use an old tall and slender shelving unit in small area for perfect mudroom storage.  Add hooks inside and on the side.  Hang a chalkboard, whiteboard, and/or magnetic board on the side for appointments and reminders.  You can add decorative wall paper to add personality and character and match your decor.

This is a fun and simple repurposing idea.  Use a vintage metal label as a place to put your change.

An inexpensive storage idea is to use a shadow box with hooks to hang your keys.  Decorate it with a pattered and colorful sheet of scrapbook paper to fit your décor style.

Set a flea market tray atop a table for items you need before you leave to go somewhere like keys, jewelry, or accessories.

Find inexpensive flea market or thrift store baskets, wood crates, or metal tubs for fun and decorative storage.

Use colorful metal pales for storing gloves, hats, scarves, and such.  Label them so that everyone stays organize and can find them easily.  Consider getting a pail and putting each person’s name on it.

Photo Source: BHG

 

18th Sep2012

Recycled Plastic Container Pencil Box

by Dinah Wulf

School’s here!  I know my little one isn’t quite ready just yet, but she does love drawing and coloring.  I don’t think a day passes that she doesn’t (she must take after her Mama).  I have a trip coming up to visit my parents back home in Maryland and I have a long(ish) plane flight with a toddler to prepare for.  I need to keep her busy on the plane.  I was about to throw away my Crystal Light container when I realized it’s the perfect size for pencils, markers, crayons, and such.    I decided to alter it a bit and make this recycled plastic container pencil box for our trip.

This project is very easy, as the pictures are self-explanatory.  Here are the materials you need:

  • Crystal Light Box
  • Mod Podge
  • Paint Brush
  • Decorative Paper

Simply remove the existing plastic and cut your scrapbook paper to size.  Using a paint brush apply the Mod Podge in even strokes to the back of the paper and carefully wrap it around the container.  This is the trickiest part in order to align it correctly.  If you work quickly, it is fairly easy to lift and adjust if you make a mistake.  Next apply an outer layer of Mod Podge
and allow it to dry (approximately 15 minutes).  I thought one coat sufficed however you can apply another if you wish.  Consider embellishing it with stickers or plastic gems.

This container can hold anything!  I actually may use it for my daughter’s toothbrush and toothpaste for when we travel.  You can use it to hold hair accessories or even use it for craft supplies.  This is the perfect project to do with your kids.  Now they will have a one of a kind pencil box to bring to school and show their friends.

 

12th Sep2012

Recycled Book Page Art

by Dinah Wulf

As you know, I am a BIG fan of recycled book page crafts.  I have done more than one wreath tutorial, magnets, and flowers, just to name a few.  I think my most favorite craft done to date is my recent book page butterfly wreath.  One of my favorite online retailers, Shabby Apple, not only has the cutest selection of dresses, maternity wear, and kids clothes EVER, they have an arts and crafts section with the most colorful and creative recycled book page art pieces that I’m absolutely in love with.  What I love about them is that they are printed on vintage dictionary pages and no two pieces are alike.  As an added bonus, they are also signed by the artist, Zlatka Paneva.   I may be crafty, but I’m not really an “artist”, so I decided to put together my favorite pieces perhaps you will be inspired by.

A is for Alphabet. 

This one is customizable by letter!

An Elephant Never Forgets

My mother and my aunts always told me when I was little that elephants with their trunks up are good luck!  This one reminds me of them.

Freedom!

This one may be my favorite.  I love that the bird is carrying the key to set the butterflies free.

Seashell Fantasy

My daughter loves butterflies and the beach.  This one is dedicated to her.

{Back to 12 Recycled Book Page Crafts}

 

 

 

11th Sep2012

DIY Recycled Jar Tea Light

by Dinah Wulf

I’m pretty sure I save every single jar after it’s empty.  Pickle, spaghetti sauce, salsa… I don’t discriminate.  The Mason jar is beautiful but I think it gets too much credit (don’t get me wrong, I’ve done several Mason jar crafts in the past and I still LOVE them).  For this DIY Recycled Jar Tea Light, I decided to use a pickled beet jar.  Yes, I eat pickled beets…yum!!!

Materials:

  • Jar
  • Burlap scraps
  • Scissors
  • Wire or a wire coat hanger (I used 20 gauge because it’s easy to work with)
  • Spouncer
  • Craft paint in the color of your choice
  • Stencil of your choice
  • Wire cutter
  • Pliers
  • Hot glue
  • Tea Light

First, cut your burlap so that it fits nicely around your jar.  Next, stencil your burlap and set aside.  Wrap your wire around the mouth of the jar several (4-5) times depending on the desired thickness.  Cut another piece of wire for the handle wrapping each end securely around your wire circle as shown.  Place the wire circle with handle around the mouth of the jar.  Locate the ends of the wire circle and pull taught.  Pliers may help.  You may have to massage the circle accordingly.  Tuck in the ends of the wire.  Finally, hot glue the burlap around your jar and insert and light your tea light.

I thought six of these spelling out “boo” and “eek” would be really cute on the mantel for Halloween.  Hope you try it out!

 

06th Sep2012

Repurposed Shutters

by Dinah Wulf

Shutters are probably the one item that you can find in every flea market, garage sale, salvage yard, or recycling stores like Habitat for Humanity Restore.  Not only are they abundant, but they are usually inexpensive. With a little paint and creativity, you can literally turn trash into treasure.  Here are some great ideas for repurposed shutters.

In my search to find DIY inspiration for repurposed shutters, I found that most were used for organization.  Shutters could be used for organizing everything from mail to potted plants or from family photos and post cards to kitchen utensils.

 

Here is a great idea using shutters for decorative display from 221 Vision.

Make a big impact in the dining room with these beautiful ideas.

 

This repurposed furniture idea is an outdoor table is from Goodhouskeeping.com.

I LOVE this free standing headboard from a display at Anthropologie.  Once again, GREEN is my color!

This crafty shutter shelf is from BHG.com

Shutters work well for bathroom organization as well.

Additional Photo Sources: Etsy.com, Goodhousekeeping.com, Pintrest.com, Dwellinggawker.com

More Ways to Repurpose! 

Thirty creative ways to recycle, reuse, and repurpose: