23 May 2007

Redux - Shoes

My feet are hard to fit. I've worn a wide width since my son was born (and a few even before then), so finding my size in a wide width that I can afford can be a challenge. I've noticed, however, a problem with a couple of pair of shoes I have. They have a back strap that attaches to the side of the shoe. Not to the front part, like a slingback, but to the sole. And this back strap keeps sliding off my heel. It seems that since I've lost weight, my heel isn't as wide as the standard for a wide width.

I like these shoes and want to wear them - heck, I've paid for them so I want to get to use them. Then I realized - why not remove the back strap and wear them as slides?!? Since the strap was falling off anyway, they tended to be "slides" by defaults.

A couple of days ago I got out a pair of utility scissors, and a minute later, I had re-made the shoes to make them more wearable!

So - how do they look???

15 May 2007

I'm not the only one....

.....who uses buttons and reclaimed items for redesigns!! Check out Enthral's blog and Etsy store for some cool redesigns! I especially love this necklace and these earrings.

Not only does it do me good to know I'm not the only one recreating, but I love to see what someone else comes up with that I hadn't thought of.

And speaking of Etsy----don't forget to check out my shop! I've been relisting things as they have expired, and I've got a few new things to list in between. I'm assisting on the wardrobe for another short movie this weekend, then I hope to have some time to create new things. In amongst the gifts I sent my mom for her birthday/mother's day were several things I had made myself - and one of my business cards! Hopefully she'll pass the information along to her friends and generate some interest.

When making your next purchases, please consider buying from the artists at Etsy. Everything is handmade, and I can report that everything I have purchased there has been of high quality. I may not have a lot of extra money to spend, so when I do, I love being able to help someone else develop their business.

One last item - I'm hoping over the next few weeks to post more how-to posts. I've got a lot of ideas - I just have to remember to take pictures as I go!!

13 May 2007

Duvet Cover to Pillow Cases

OK, so not everything I remake is to be worn - by a person anyway. This remake is for my bed!

The backstory - in 1998, I bought a duvet cover for about $25 (on sale, of course!). It has served me well through the years, but a few years ago, I noticed it was faded and beginning to get some tears. The tears I patched as best I could, but it really needed to be replaced. However, I had trouble finding anything less than $50, and most of them I didn't like. So---I kept looking.

In March, while hitting the thrift stores to look for wardrobe for a movie I was helping with, I found one! In excellent condition, it was the right size, and - best of all - the place sold by the pound. So, my new-to-me duvet cover was under $5! YES!!!

The old cover, however, wasn't completely trashed. There was a lot of good fabric still in it, and I couldn't bring myself to throw it away. But what to do with it? It so happened that I also had a set of pillowcases that were getting threadbare and torn. So - make new pillowcases from the old cover!

It was a rather simple remake. I laid the old pillowcases on the duvet cover, and used them as a pattern, cutting extra to make them a bit larger and to allow for seams. I stitched up the sides, zig-zagged the opening, then turned it up and sewed a hem. Actually, I sewed a double seam to added "decoration". I've been using them for several weeks now, and I am very pleased with the results.

Here a photo of the completed pillowcases in use. The color isn't quite right, but I think you get the idea.

And here is a detail of the hem. Sorry about the blurry photo, but I think you can get the idea!

Two more things - 1) there is still a lot of the fabric left, and I'm not sure what to do with it yet, but I'm hanging on to it for now. Surely inspiration will strike! and 2) the old pillowcases were not thrown away. Oh no, I found a use for that fabric as well. Taking my pinking shears, I cut them into squares to use to remove my eye makeup and nail polish. The fabric was really getting worn, so it won't matter if it tears up or not, but so far they seem to be holding up well.

So - before throwing something away, take the time to think of any alternate uses for the item - or the materials that make the item. I spent under $5 to buy the new-to-me duvet cover, and in the process got new pillowcases and new make-up remover pads.

Not bad!