Eco-deco making in mint & silver; -with flu in the house.

Yes my little ones are not well, so have been busy with runny noses, feverish nights and killing toss, therefore time has been divided between that and making eco-deco for the wedding. In fact I love making things so am a bit sad that the actual date is approaching as I wish to go on making things for another 6 months…hihi I suppose I just need an excuse for making..

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First out is a detail of an arrow made of recycled materials like chopsticks, string and scraps of paper, were thinking to incorporate  them with the elk horns, instead of the white moss idea…lets see what you think?

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Secondly I made a feather garland with silver tips and mint ribbon, which will be used in the reception area, as there they have two double doors which opens up in the middle of the room so I thought it could be nice to mark that with a dreamy garland before you enter into the ceremony area…(once positioned on location I will post some images.)

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Then for the kids play area I have made several multi-coloured mint garlands that will act as a curtain and invite the kids into a ‘secret’ corner with toys and other activities, at the same time as it blends with the other decor.

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However our most tedious task are painting twigs and branches, phww it takes forever!!!…and yes I know you could spray them, but my heart goes out to the environment and I have resorted to using an environmental friendly paint and a old fashion brush. The idea is to make them look wintery and bring some of that crispy, white feeling indoors. I mean they do look great once painted but it takes ages to do!!!

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The twigs will then be part of the table decor together with the horns, arrows and some candles, well lets look a bit closer at the arrows:   I started by clearing our kitchen drawers from all old chopsticks (we love sushi so I feel a certain satisfaction about being able to re-use these chopsticks) Then I cut arrow shapes from different scraps of paper and glued them to the sticks. After that silver thread was wrapped around the top part and decorated with glitter.

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It’s nice seeing it all come together and I still have other objects on the way, but this is a little preview of work-in-progress and I promise to post some photos once its set up on location on the 20th of March, so more will come!

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burning wooden plates and illustrations

Apologies for the lengthy silence, been busy with an interior design project, working with wood and old details has given me some ideas. So after purchasing some ecological plates in bamboo (which is a very popular eco-material at the moment) for an event I thought it would be nice to personalize the item with customers name, -by burning it! well not literally burning the plate, no of course not (then it would be nothing left hihihi) but burning in to it, like engraving it through heat!! well it is not easy I have to say and in order to perfect it you need lots of practice, but here are my first sample and I promise it will get better…

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so lets hope Jane will like it… she was also given some simple eco-wall decoration made with pen and ink, nothing fancy but sometimes we forget the power of pen and paper! the colour I used was  left-over paint from the walls and thereby was able to recycle a material which otherwise would have been thrown away. I sourced local flee-markets for frames and its amazing how many there are and to a very good price! The illustration were then given a final touch with a little eco-message…’can we be green’

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so lets keep working, as I said before, and I will say it again: you can’t change the world but you can change what you do…

Back to the grim reality…

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So it finally came to an end, our free life with plenty of nature and fresh air, here we are waving good bye to the countryside and returning to the city… bye bye green grass and hello gravel.

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however, on the return to the city we faced some distress when we passed the supermarket to buy food…

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Because going from free growing, berry picking existence to commercial plastic environment we could not help to feel distraught when one bag of supermarket products gave us this much plastic junk! -despite buying everything organic!!! so unless you have access to farmers markets or large city bulk buying options (which we don’t)  you are forced to bring home a lot of plastic rubbish; -crazy!  -tick tock waiting for times to change… 

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ok sometimes we just got to look in a different direction; so to distract our minds from all this madness I wish to show you my latest up-cycle projects which I have worked hard at for the last few days.

Some time ago we purchased some second-hand furniture, which looked a bit dated,  but they have now been given a fresher look:

Project no.1

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it looked something like this before the makeover (this is a borrowed photo because I got so carried away that I forgot to make photos before I started)

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-now it looks like this.  First we cleaned it up and then gave it a new life with an ecological white wash, new metal hairpin legs and doorknobs.

 

Project no.2

-to give new life to an old chair, very simple, just change the fabric but don’t buy a new piece just recycle something old by adding paint to it. I actually had some old print samples lying around so I decided to use this ‘failed’ print which looks a bit abstract but makes a nice contrast to this vintage chair.  Gone old fashion embroidery!

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collecting water

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Now we are back from the island and the fact of being completely surrounded by water, and the occasional rain, has made me think about water a great deal. And this morning when I was taking a shower in my parents house the water suddenly stopped, -so annoying! with soap on the body and shampoo in the hair I had to step out and dry myself, -what else could I do, there was no water!?! We quickly packed up and went to the Eco House project, which neither has any water  (it has never been installed), anyhow we tackled the garden with different tools and made some plans of what to grow there, and it just hit me that we need to collect rain water! why did I not think of that earlier??? -of course that’s what we need to do, so obvious! But as we have decided not to bring any plastic or newly produced objects in to the house we need to source something second-hand or make it our selves from recycled material… for now here are some pictures to start off the thinking process, and maybe more people will be inspired to collect rainwater?!?

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maybe this last one is too rustic? but which one do you vote for or suggest? well will look around and see what I can find but will definitely start collecting rainwater one way or another!

 

presents & paint

As summer holidays are coming up, I quickly needed to create some ecological presents for the staff at the nursery our girls attend (they are lovely and definitely deserve to be remembered), and as I have the fortune to have a chef as partner, he quickly threw together some ‘garanpinadas’ which basically are roasted nuts covered in crystallized sugar. Yes I know, sugar isn’t good for you but believe me, -they are yummy! so my job was obviously to come up with some form of  packaging for these delicious treats, so after raiding the cupboards I found 6 equal glass jars to re-use which we then covered with paper lace lids and hemp string. In order to make the cards I re-used colour sample strips from the DIY store (as we recently bought some paint for our coffee tables) and cut out some hearts in different colours. -japp, done and dusted!! so here you have an eclectic mix of presents, painted furniture and ideas.

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These are the 2 colours we choose for the coffee tables, which you can see in the above pictures (the brown version is the ‘before look’) and remaining sample cards became gift tags for the nursery staff, -now lets hope they will like them!

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and I thought I show you a little peek of my home studio (it is actually quite convenient to have a studio at home as then I can work when the girls are asleep)

so this is where most of the creations are currently born:)arrow

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here you have a thing I am currently working on, which basically is a collage reflecting my geographic position at this time of life, of course with recycled materials such as paint strips, news papers, old drawings and dyed paper lace.

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Late night sewing and eco labels

Its been a busy week and the onset of summer here in the north has definitely given me more energy! Apart from crafty creations I have replanted all the plants in the house, -so now they are very happy, and the girls room got a little make over and am just about to complete an eco-outfit for my youngest.

Some time ago I sourced these beautiful vintage woven tea towels which I am now transforming to summer dresses. However as I have two curious creatures in the house it is much safer (and easier) to get the sewing machine out at night…(hence the industrial spotlight).  I used old invoices to make some quick pattern pieces in order to re-use existing materials, and the best invention was the eco labels! For that I made a mixture of very strong coffee and salt which I then applied to cotton bands by using rubber stamps and hey! -I got some garment labels! you know; coffee stains the fibres and salt acts as a fixative and together they make an ecological ink!  So these are the first samples:

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well, I still did not get the iron out and got to complete the neck and hemline however today I tried it on to check the fit and yes it looks like it will work! (will get some photos with my little model once its 100% completed)

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so now I have to make one for big sis too, -equal rights are an important factor in a democratic home! that’s why I made two eco labels straight away, I know what I have in front of me and I better get on with it A.S.A.P.  Anyhow; – here you can see the printing process: to make an ink pad I just cut off a small piece of cleaning cloth and gently soaked it with the coffee & salt mixture, and I would recommend that you test print on a scrap piece of paper before you apply it to the real item.

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So there we are; front and back view with an eco label, and yes; will get on with the second one now, -see you soon!

 

 

Plastic toy reincarnation

Thanks to the wonderful world of Pinterest, I got this idea of up-cycling some of my daughters plastic toys (yes, are going through a phase of domestic plastic-dieting by trying to eliminate the use of plastic at home). So with the approval of my 5 year old we got the kitchen knife and cut one of her little dolls in half! Then we cleaned up some used glass pots and got to work and glued 1/2 doll to the lid, applying glitter to the glass pot (of course, -working with a 5 year old) and then painted lid+object in a uniform colour, voilà!

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Here you got some photos of the process, and it was all fairly straight forward, however creating the zigzag pattern on the jar was probably the most tricky and if you want to have a go I would recommend using a masking tape to seal off the area where you want to apply the glitter. -So what will we now use them for? well I was thinking they could be good for storing smaller objects in the kids room, maybe some hair-bands or crayons, I mean the good thing is that you can see what’s inside.

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