Projects so far

Sunday, 27 November 2011

48th Project announcement

I hope you all liked yesterday's project. This week I will be continuing with the Christmas theme using......


I already have an idea, but to find out what it is you will have to join me on Saturday! See you then.

Saturday, 26 November 2011

47th Project completed - An 'Icy' Christmas Bauble

Well another busy day over. I spent the day with my Other half and Daughter at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport for their 'Trash to Treasure' Gift fair. It was really nice to do  a craft fair again as it must have been around 6 yrs since I did the last one.

Unfortunately it was very quiet but it was a good day with friendly (and very talented) stall holders. I spent most of the day demonstrating whilst doing this weeks project which caused a lot of interest and comment!

Anyway, on with this weeks offering. As promised last week, this is the first of a few 'Christmassy' ideas to tie in with the time of year.......

An 'Icy' Christmas Bauble


  • Plastic bottles
  • A Polystyrene ball (mine came from my stash, it had got warm at sometime and was a bit melted on one side)
  • Silver Acrylic paint
  • A scrap of left over ribbon
  • An old box of pins (a bit worse for wear)
  • Left over beads
  • Heat Gun
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Bowl of water
  • Optional - small amount of silver spray paint
  • Beading thread / fishing line
  • Pair of tweezers


1. The first step is to paint your ball with some silver acrylic paint, this will take time to dry so pop it to one side whilst you do the other steps.

2. Next, let the hot glue gun warm up so the glue flows freely and hold it over a bowl of water and 'squiggle' some glue into the water so it forms a 'mat' TAKE CARE NOT TO GET THE GUN WET!!!! The glue will cool immediately so you can remove it straight away. You will need a few of these 'mats' to cover the ball.

3. Cut the bottles up into small squares around 1cm square. Push a pin through a bead and then through a square of plastic. Holding the pin with a pair of tweezers, heat the plastic quickly with a heat gun so it begins to curl up around the pin head. Should it decide to curl the other way remove the pin and put it though the other side. You will need a lot of these so keep going!

4. Use the plastic on pins to attach the 'squiggled' glue mats to the ball. Keep going until the ball is completely covered.

5. Using the jewellery thread / fishing line, make three beaded strands and tie together to form a 'tassel' to go on the bottom of your bauble. Pin and glue it into place.

6. Now finish with a loop for hanging and a bow made from a small length of left over ribbon. All ready for the tree.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

47th Project announcement

Welcome to this week's project announcement! 

Christmas is fast approaching, so I thought I would dedicate the next few weeks to some great (hopefully) Christmas makes. 

I seem to have an abundance of empty squash and other plastic bottles this week so I have decided to use them up and see what I can create with them. I feel Christmas decoration ideas coming on! Don't forget if you are in the Gosport area on Saturday, come and see me at the Submarine Museum's 'Trash to Treasure' event. It would be great to meet you!

Saturday, 19 November 2011

46th Project completed - A textural vessel

I wasn't at all sure what to do with the chocolate box, I really liked the shape but didn't have a clue what to turn it into..... then I had a flash of inspiration! So I made this, it is made from lots of different scraps, sweetie wrappers, left over fleece and silk fibres, scrap threads and other bits and pieces! It was great to get the sewing machine back out as well!

Materials & Equipment

  • Celebrations chocolate box
  • Left over scrap of iron on interfacing large enough to cover the box
  • Bondaweb
  • Sweetie wrappers (Roses, Quality street etc.)
  • Waste fibers, threads etc.
  • A few left over beads
  • Sewing machine
  • A selection of co-ordinating threads
  • Needle and thread
  • Scissors
  • Embellisher machine
  • Glue
  • A small piece of card
  • A largish piece of felt
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Teflon sheet or parchment paper

1. Start by drawing around the box onto your piece of iron on interfacing. Add a 1" border all around.

2. Lay your sweetie wrappers on top of the iron on interfacing then iron to fuse them together. Don't forget to cover with a Teflon sheet or parchment paper to protect your iron!

3. Add a layer of Bondaweb on top of the sweetie wrappers, fuse then remove the paper. Start adding a layer of threads, fibers and scraps of fabric in a striped design on to the Bondaweb layer. Once you are happy fuse into place, once again making sure you cover with the Teflon sheet or parchment paper.

4. Using an Embellisher machine felt the layers together to hold them in place for stitching. If you don't have one of these machines, place a piece of water soluble film over it and pin into place.

 5. Using a sewing machine with the feed dogs down and an embroidery foot, stitch a tight grid over all the stitching. I changed the colour of top thread for each stripe to add interest.

6. Now wrap your box in your made fabric and slip stitch the ends together, Neatly fold in the ends and glue into place. To finish the bottom cut an oval of felt and card to fit and glue into place. Line the inside with some felt.

7. To finish add some beads (I used some of the left over sweetie wrapper beads from project 1)

And there we have it a wonderfully textured vessel. To use as a vase for fresh flowers just pop a slim jam jar or drinking glass inside to hold the water!

I hope you enjoyed this project, join me tomorrow for the announcement of number 47!

Sunday, 13 November 2011

46th project announcement

Wow number 46 already! So what have I got to use this week?

A celebrations chocolate box, wish me luck!

Saturday, 12 November 2011

recycle4real out and about again!

Come and see me at the Trash to Treasure event at the Royal Navy submarine museum Gosport, Hampshire

Haslar Rd, Gosport, PO12 2AS
Registered charity 1142123

45th project completed - a 'stained glass' keyring

I am finding it hard to believe it is Saturday again already. So what did I make with the plastic packaging? 

A 'stained glass' keyring. Does any one remember shrinkies / shrinkie dinks??? Well the type of plastic found in some plastic packaging has very similar properties. You will find it labelled number 6 on the recycling stamp marked on the packaging (it has to be the non-foam type number 6).

Materials needed

  • Number 6 type plastic
  • Permanent marker pens
  • Key chain ring and chain
  • 4 x Jewellery pins
  • Some small beads and 4 x handmade sweetie wrapper beads (as made in project 1 of the challenge)
  • A small piece of tin foil
  • Multi purpose glue (like UHU)

1. The first job is to thoroughly clean your packaging making sure any labels are completely removed and no sticky glue remains.

2. Cut a section from the bottom of your packaging and using the permanent pens, decorate it as desired. I drew random intersecting lines on mine but you could draw a motif or favourite design instead. Outline in a black pen to simulate the leaded lines separating the panes.

3. Place in an oven at about 180 degrees Celsius. It will curl up then settle down flat again but shrunken when it is ready. Once cooled, glue your piece onto a small piece of tin foil to accentuate the colours.

4. Trim to a desired shape and punch a hole at the top to accommodate the key ring.

5. Thread some beads onto the jewellery pins and make a hook at one end. 


6. Now pierce 4 holes in the bottom of your piece to take the jewellery pins. Thread them through and turn in the end to form a loop to attach.

7. To finish add the key chain and there you are, a highly unusual key ring made from recycled plastic packaging.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

45th Project Announcement

Well, another busy day is over, just time left to cook the dinner for the ever hungry family and tidy up before settling down in front of the telly. 

Oh and let you all know what I will be using this week for the project.....

Plastic packaging

Saturday, 5 November 2011

44th project completed - A buttercup ring

I have noticed lately that there is a fashion for large plastic rings around at the moment so I thought I would have a go at my own. Here's mine .........

A buttercup ring made from the 'butter' tub!


  • Yellow plastic butter tub
  • Ring blank or Gold wire and a scrap of yellow craft foam
  • 3 light green seed beads
  • Super glue
  • Needle & thread
  • Small sharp decoupage scissors

1. The first step is to remove all the borders from the tub so you have flat sheets of plastic to work with. Then cut a small simple 5 petal flower shape from a piece of the plastic.

2. Now cut a small circle from another piece of the tub which looks the right size to make the centre of the flower and cut slits around the edge towards the centre as shown above. Now using a heat gun gently heat the edges of your circle so they start to curl up slightly and separate. You will need to hold down the centre of the circle with a pair of tweezers and do the heating in short bursts to avoid a melted mess!

3. Using the super glue, stick the two parts together and leave to dry. Once completely dry, glue 3 light green seed beads onto the centre of the flower using super glue and set aside to dry completely. 

4. If you do not have a ring blank (like me), you will now need to make a ring. Wind a length of wire around your finger 3 times make sure it feels comfortable and is not too tight. Now neatly bind the 3 strands together tightly with some more wire making sure the edges of the wire are covered.


5. Cut a small circle from a scrap of yellow craft foam and stitch it firmly to the wire ring.
You now have a ring blank - of sorts!

6. Now glue your flower onto your ring back and there you are a cute little flower ring! 

I could have painted out the printing on the back of the flower but I thought it was actually quite nice to leave it there!