In terms of sourcing items for use in art and upcycling projects, thrift shops are where it is at. For chic, creative, and eco-friendly projects the thrift shop is the way to go. Sometimes I find actual craft products there; paint, beads, fabric, yarn. Sometimes I find thing I can get creative with. For instance, I usually am on the look out for old lampshades, mostly the vintage ones, from the thrift shop to strip down to the frame and then redo with ribbons of muslin tied around the frame. I especially like items that are “deconstructed” and these lampshades certainly look that way.
The picture I have posted has two projects I did in it. The lampshade is a redone one with a bit of millinery flower as an added bonus. I bought the plaster base for $1 at a thrift shop. The chair in the photo was dark blue with stripes when I bought it for $20 at a thrift shop. I painted the upholstery and the wood frame with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White and then applied a coat of Clear Wax. Yes! You can paint upholstery with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint! The stuff is amazing! The finish on the fabric part of the chair is almost leather-like. It is comfortable to sit on and attractive close up.
At times I find items at the thrift shop that can be repurposed like wood items including furniture to be painted or books that can be folded into sculptures, cut into garlands, or decoupaged. Being the frugal, thrifty person I am, I buy most of my wardrobe at thrift shops as well as art items. Sometimes the clothes get re-donated when I am finished with them and sometimes I make them into a project. Once I had a bunch of Oxford shirts. They were pink, white, and pink and white striped. I tore them into strips about an inch wide and six inches long and tied them to a green florist wire that was about six or seven feet long. I tied the strips very closely together, creating an adorable garland or boa. It is currently living in storage or I could take a picture to demonstrate what I did. My brother’s girlfriend is currently collecting old t-shirts, sweaters, and other knit items because her brother-in-law built her a loom to make rugs! I have to admit I am jealous! But I will go through our things to donate for her next project.
Meanwhile, back to the in-process project, I applied Annie Sloan Clear Wax to the footlocker yesterday. Wax on, wax off. My friend acquired mineral spirits for me this morning so that I could apply a coat of Annie Sloan Dark Wax on the exterior today. I just finished (my first time using Dark Wax) and my observation is a little goes a long way. Because of fumes from the mineral spirits, this is work I really should have done outside. Could-ah, should-ah, would-ah. Ah well, now it smells like fumes in here. It came out a bit darkish. Not sure I like it as is. I understand that I can reapply Clear Wax and that will pick up some of the Dark Wax so I will give that a try. I really don’t know what I am doing here folks! Learning as I go I suppose. Cheerio for now!