Monday, 2 April 2012

Bin raiding

Yesterday I began the long task of preparing for a car boot sale, to rid my bulging storage areas of things I can't bear to part with – often because I plan to turn them into something else. Or, in marketing speak, to "upcycle" them. 

Of course, for every five great ideas I only ever get around to one. Sometimes less than one. But my enthusiasm burns on. Here are two ideas I spotted over the weekend that I can confidently say I will never get around to copying. Unless I become very rich and retire to live my dream life of messing about with furniture all day...

Last week I walked past a skip full of some beautiful Victorian doors. "But what would you do with one of those?" the sensible half of me asked. Had I seen this simple but useful and good-looking conversion I'd have been in trouble... I seriously need to open a shop, that is one expensive door-shelf-mirror at £250. That said, Home Barn, is a new shop on my radar and is full of lovely stuff. Not much I can afford, though.

I've also recently started struggling to throw away tin cans. Labels off, they are just so pleasing to look at, but I'm useless at keeping kitchen herbs alive (I like the look of a small plant growing from one) and all visible utensils are already canned. So this wall storage idea really appealed. It reminds me of that design classic, the Uten.silo, designed by Dorothee Becker at the end of the 1960s. That version, however, is 200-odd quid. I love how the very creative Meg Spaeth, who runs craft-focused blog, Elsie Marley, has used the idea – and some other excellent ones – in her children's bedroom.

Now I just need to focus on my mind-bending jam jar collection; why are they so hard to throw away? I like the idea of using them as glasses, but many are so little. And there's only so many tea-light holders one household can handle. What, if anything, do you do with yours - or what do you think I should do with mine?

And if you have made something clever and/or beautiful from rubbish, cast-offs or other things that were once something else, I'd love to hear about/see your (re)creations. So do get in touch.

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