Upcycling & Creativity

Remember at the start of lockdown when we all thought we’d make so many things? Well, most of us didn’t get as creative as we’d have liked to – and that’s ok – but I did manage to create a few pieces, and I’d like to share some of these with you.

Before I share my new creations, I’m going to share one of my earlier pieces, where I turned a free branded jute bag – covered in advertising – and made it my own using scrap fabrics, buttons and badges. No need for neat stitching – unless you want to – I love a messy blanket stitch, hand sewn.

I often find canvas bags and other large jute bags too big, and they can trail on the floor or get awkward carrying. This had short handles and made it so easy to carry my lunch to work, my cardigan, my bits and pieces of shopping, post office packages. Not too big, not too small. So, I wanted to use it every day, but have something more fun to carry around. Think of your canvas/fabric/jute bags as another handbag. You can really make it your own. Think of all those old badges you collected when you were a child – they can really come use here!

 Remember, you can apply this to any type of bag – it works great with softer, fabric bags too.

The Deathly Hallows

Moving on to my favourite lockdown creation – and one for my fellow Harry Potter* fans. The Deathly Hallows. This was made using an upcycled wreath – previously used at Christmas last year, bamboo canes cut from our garden, and artificial flowers liberated from a charity shop. I always love to create using products which may have otherwise been thrown away, or gone to waste. The bamboo in our garden is hugely sustainable – it grows so quickly and we have a constant supply of canes for gardening, creating structures, and using for art too. I’m really proud of this piece, and it was so quick to make.

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

During lockdown, Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust ran a postcard competition, and the idea was to show our relationship to nature. I chose to use dried flowers, to show the beauty of nature and importance to wildlife, combined with acrylic paints. Plus, “Plastic Volcano” uses recycled plastic to show the effects we, as humans are having on the planet. All entries will be showcased in their exhibition – when restrictions allow.

I’ve also been experimenting with air dry clay, and making beads, but these are a work in progress and I’ll be sure to share them with you when they are ready.

What have you been creating during lockdown? And have you upcycled old materials? It’s absolutely fine if you’ve made nothing – creation is optional. Time for you to do whatever works for you is vital. I find creativity and art very good for my mental health, and even a little now and then works wonders.

* Whilst I still love the Harry Potter films and stories, I do not support the views or actions of J.K Rowling and stand, as do many members of the cast and crew, in support of trans people.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Such a nice example of remaking things. Since I have been more conscious with consumtion, I have been more creative myself. Ok, not that much!

    Let me ask, do you have any advice for reaching out with a blog?
    http://sadnesstheory.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/a-little-help-from-my-fellow-bloggers/

    1. Thanks for the lovely comments. It takes a bit of effort, but it is worth it! With regards to reaching out with a blog, I am doing the same myself at the moment. Set up a Facebook page for your blog, get active on Twitter and perhaps run a competition, like I am now. 🙂

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