Saturday, June 30, 2012

Passion for Trashion

Tons of Handcrafted Ideas to Help Fulfill Your Passion for Trashion

Ew. Garbage? Who in their right mind would want to dumpster dive in the name of cutting-edge style? These days, it seems like everyone is in on the fun. Major designers the world over have stepped up to the reclamation plate in an effort to demonstrate that there is beauty and creative potential in that which is typically made to be utilized just one time before being chucked.

You have heard of Nancy Judd, right? For years, she has made a splash thanks to her crafty trashy couture confections that showcase everything from crime scene tape and rusty nails, to junk mail and shower curtains. So, too, has Gary Harvey, with his witty array of flouncy frocks expertly crafted with empty skincare packaging and magazine pages, or Susan Stockwell, with her unique collection of map-crafted and coffee filter-tufted dresses.
Candy wrappers, old newspapers, plastic bottles — they’re all fair game, as are broken objects, obsolete cultural artifacts and factory floor bits and pieces that would otherwise be swept into the bin. The coolest part, though, is that you don’t have to be formally schooled in the fine art of fashion design to exercise your innate trash-repurposing abilities. Tread with caution, though. This is one creative experience that you’ll quickly discover can be incredibly addictive.
trashion Tons of Handcrafted Ideas to Help Fulfill Your Passion for Trashion

Post-consumer packaging…
can be refashioned into collaged, waterproofed umbrellas; rainbow-sweetened drink-pouch beltsfloral-shaped cereal and cracker box pins; and 6-inch peep-toe, slingback, Christian Louboutin heels. Word on the street is that babies even go gaga for these booties made out of recycled ramen noodle packages!

Bubble wrap…
can be refashioned into a form-fitting cocktail dress, a strapless version with a full skirt, a honeycomb-like necklace pendant or bold-looking men’s ties. It is also a great material to incorporate into your artistic creations.

Aluminum cans…
can be refashioned into barely there bikinis and swimming trunks, supportive undergarments, stylishly arresting high heels, farmer’s market-worthy bags, wrist cuffs or charm necklaces, or used to make a petal-covered skirt. (Here’s an easy recycling project to get your juices flowing.)

Magnetic PET video or cassette tapes…
can be refashioned into a futuristic, sci-fi combo; an elegant evening look; a dramatic full-length coat; conveniently waterproof beach attire; and even hand-woven purses or neck adornments.

Old men’s suits…
can be refashioned into a multilayered dress, a criss-cross vest top or a vast array of reinvented garments and accessories like totes and “power suit” bags.
Garbage bags…
can be refashioned into a perfectly plastic ’80s-style jacket and matching skirt ensemble, a transparent fairy tale gown or a Marie Antoinette-era costume, or fused onto old bedding to create an edgy, one-of-a-kind jacket that will stand up to all sorts of wild and wacky weather.

Old leather jackets…
can be refashioned into new handbags — a simple yet fantastic way to breathe new life into a neglected or otherwise ill-fitting coat — or assorted types of jewelry and boots; not to mention cozy, custom-made winter-worthy gear for your pup.

Leather gloves…
can be refashioned into a earrings, pendants, hair clips, a grand (neck) fashion statement, brooches, dainty handheld purses or a halter top, or used to add a decorative upgrade to shoes, bags and coat lapels.
Shoulder pads….
can be refashioned into a sultry hat or a plush, hooded coat, or used to reinforce the elbows of your favorite sweaters or shirts. If, however, you are a huge fan of the glitzy, Cristal Carrington throwback look, then here is a tutorial that will help you to create your very own over-the-top, shoulder-strutting version.

Men’s silk neckties…
can be refashioned into costume jewelry; the grand, sweeping, floral detail on an old dress; a tidy striped clutch; a glamorous halter top; custom gowns for formal affairs; belts; and hair bands.

Oversized men’s button-up shirts…
can be refashioned into newborn infant pants, an apron, a fitted bustier top, a ruffle-covered dress or a summer-weight skirt. There are myriad skirt designs and equally countless DIY tutorials floating around online, however, with just a bit more time and effort, this far more stylish halter-neck dress can be yours.

Computer parts…
can be refashioned into a vast array of fashion-forward possibilities, including a keyboard bustierequally finger-clicking-good handbags; a colorfully wired, off-the-shoulder dress; and PC motherboard sandals.

Pet food and kitty litter packaging…
can be refashioned into surprisingly durable creations! While any paper-based material will suffice, heavy-gauge dog food bags can be deftly transformed into a fringe-covered frock, much in the same way that empty kitty litter and cat chow packaging can become rather sturdy shopping totes.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Earth and Surf Fest

The Earth and Surf Fest on North Topsail Beach is coming up on July 7. The RE3 tent will be there again, check it out:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Artist Flips Fire Extinguishers into Lamps

Artist Flips Fire Extinguishers into Lamps

Valentino Llegada fire extinguisher lamps
Artist Valentino Llegada designs lamps and other decorations made from discarded fire extinguishers. Photo: Valentino Llegada
Wispy layers of golds, greens and hot pinks embellish some of South Florida artist Valenino Llegada’s pendant lights. Others are shiny and bare. A few feature patterns of tiny holes.
The variations are interesting. But perhaps the most intriguing aspect of Valentino Llegada’s pendant lights is of what they’re made; fire extinguishers.
Llegada uses empty fire extinguishers discarded as scrap metal. Cut in half, the canisters yield two types of hanging fixtures – flat-topped and domed.
Llegada originally picked up some old fire extinguishers on a whim while shopping for art supplies at a metal recycling facility. Perhaps, he thought, he’d use them some day to make gardening tools.

Recycling facilities are a favorite source of material for Llegada, who was a student of art and sculpture in his native Uruguay. For him, relying on discards to produce something fresh and desirable is not only environmentally appropriate, but adds an extra dimension to an artist’s work.
Photo: Valentino Llegada
“It’s wonderful when you create something with unwanted things,” he said.
A fresh idea for the fire extinguisher sparked when Llegada was glancing around his shop for materials to make a vase as a birthday gift. He was pleased with the result. From there, he ventured into different styles, playing with paints and primers until he perfected an approach for applying vibrant designs.
When his daughter pointed out pretty pendant lights in a design magazine, Llegada was motivated to spin out something new with his fire extinguishers.
Before he applies any design embellishments or electrical components, Llegada spends a good amount of time transforming the former safety equipment into suitable surfaces. He soaks the extinguisher shells. Then he uses three types of sandpaper to hand-strip the original paint – usually red – and smooth the metal.
Llegada showcases that smooth gleaming metal in some of the pieces, which are bare and unpainted. Others feature vibrant blends of color, which Llegada applies with his two-brush technique. On some, Llegada paints marble-like designs.
Pieces are priced starting at $70 on his Llegada’s website.
A selection of pieces from Llegada’s fire extinguisher collection is also available from online retailer Uncommon Goods.
“They’re gorgeous,” said Katie Giannone, an assistant buyer for Uncommon Goods. “What we really love about this, he took a commonplace [item] and made it a beautiful sculptural piece for your home.”
When fire extinguishers are removed from service and swapped out, often because of damage, corrosion or age, the metal shells are generally discarded or recycled after the contents are safely emptied, according to representatives of the industry.
Artist Valentino Llegada has three of his fire extinguisher pendant lamps hanging in his own home. Photo: Patti Roth
John Gioseffi , president of Broward Fire Equipment and former president of National Association of Fire Equipment Distributors,, said his firm removes reusable and recyclable parts and then sells the canisters in bulk to a metal recycler. He estimated millions are taken out of service yearly.
Llegada is delighted to be repurposing at least some of them.
In addition to serving as the designer, he’s also a satisfied customer. Three non-matching pendant lights hang at different levels in his living room. “They look wonderful,” he said

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Alarm Clocks Powered by Water

Alarm Clocks Powered by Water

A look at the Bedol Water Powered Alarm Clock. Photo: Bedol

A new alarm clock design shuns traditional power sources like batteries and wall plugs in favor of an old, time-tested standard from the world of advertising – just add water.

It’s a fitting slogan for a design from Mark Bedol, the Los Angeles-based designer behind SkyMall-worthy, “I didn’t know I needed that” products like the checkbook calculator and 18 time zone clock. The Bedol Water Alarm Clock is a 100 percent water-powered alarm clock. It’s not a clock “hybrid” that uses batteries or plugs for back up support, but a completely self-powered product that contains metallic plates that convert ions in the water into enough energy to power the device.

Check it Out: Save 27,412 Gallons of Water This Year
This it isn’t the first water-powered clock that looks to wake you from your slumber. Austrian Designer Vera Wiedermann has already released the hydro-powered alternative to buzzing wake up sounds.

That extremely low-tech model, the Dreamtime alarm clock, is made from nothing but copper and glass. Users can fill their Dreamtime to the water mark of their choosing, indicating how many hours they would like to sleep, then let the modern clock do the rest. When time comes to wake up a hammer falls, causing soothing chimes to be played rather than a droning buzz.
It looks like there’s a hydropowered alarm for both heavy and light sleepers. The Bedol Water Alarm Clock retails for $26-$39. All Dreamtime units are currently sold out.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Green Art

VW Wire Project

VW Wire Project feeldesain

The VW WIRE project held a challenge due to the complex forms that had to be taken care of, the linear shape that later blends in to a much more organic figure tries to reach out for the green open space it was put on.

Monday, June 25, 2012

A Matter of Taste


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Plastic Bottle Fish Art


A fish sculpture constructed from discarded plastic bottles rises out of the sand at Botafogo beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on June 19, 2012

Saturday, June 23, 2012

And Behind Curtain Number One

25 Recycled Curtains Made Out of Someone Else’s Trash

Can old junk accessorize a window? A little upcycling is all it takes.
Most would agree that eyes serve as windows into the human soul, offering insight into one’s personality and raison d’être. It might seem like a stretch to apply this same concept to the typical home, but windows — whether of the stained-glass, wooden-trimmed or low-E variety — all evoke a decidedly unique vibe when they are adorned with curtains.

While this simple addition has long been employed to ensure privacy while buffering the effects of direct sunlight, somewhere along the way, homeowners and apartment dwellers became positively smitten with the visually transformative power of window coverings to not merely just address our practical needs, but also our desire to have a little fun in the process.
As it turns out, shrewdly selected and arranged fabric swaths can take the basic rooms into the realm of design elite. Dress your windows in just the right way and you’ll be able to speak volumes about what really makes you tick without uttering a single word.

No need to contemplate the damage that this seemingly whimsical décor distraction will inflict upon your bank account. That’s because you’re going to pull off an eyeball-popping window makeover using nothing more than other people’s unwanted trash.

You know that our culture is locked in a perpetual acquisition and disposal mindset. Make the most of that sad reality by turning someone else’s lemons into your recycled curtain lemonade.
curtain recycling 25 Recycled Curtains Made Out of Someone Else’s Trash
Create one-of-a-kind, no-sew curtains out of a vintage duvet cover or a bed sheet decorated with contrasting ribbon.

Piece together small squares of random fabric for a country quilt feel, but be forewarned: This sewing project is best suited to those who are truly gung-ho about wielding a needle and thread due to the significant time commitment.

Turn old aprons into curtains. Yup, you can do the same thing with dishtowels, too, not to mention thrift store “granny” smocks and button-down uniform work shirts!

Jazz up old, humdrum curtains with reclaimed fabric strips gleaned from no-longer-worn clothing, trim the edges with repurposed designer fabric remnants or just enhance them with carefully applied paint.

For those who shy away from complicated hand-sewn projects, take advantage of the built-in DIY power of repurposed shower curtains.

Quickly cinched burlap coffee sacks with intentionally frayed edges are ideal for earthy-looking window valances — no sewing skills necessary.

Broadcast your audiophile inclinations with a recycled vinyl record curtain, which is quick to assemble and offers an added light-blocking bonus.

The plastic-based foam used to make flip-flops wears out rather fast, so rather than tossing your old beach footwear into the trashcan, transform it into colorful and irresistibly squishable curtains.
Create a beaded curtain effect by adorning yarn strands of varying thicknesses with different shades of paint.

Trace a repetitive pattern — such as circles, rectangles or stars — onto the flattened aluminum gleaned from multiple beverage cans. Using sharp scissors, cut each shape out and then create a curtain by connecting several circular, rectangular or star-shaped strands together. Then again, you could just hang loads of soda cans up in your window au naturel.
Magazine paper beads offer a festive, rainbow-tinted option.

Slices of reclaimed glass beverage bottles can make the metamorphosis into elegant, glistening curtains when strung together with clear, heavy-gauge fishing line, or for a far more post-modern pop-art feel, execute this idea with recycled plastic bottle caps.

Kodachrome slides can form the foundation of a privacy-maintaining curtain that, during peak sunlight hours, will also create a kaleidoscope effect.

Transform a canvas drop cloth into a customized curtain with the aid of stencils and fabric paint.

Add graphic flair to your digs by turning a PVC-polyester fabric billboard into a full-length curtain
Reclaimed bubble wrap makes for an interesting window-shading choice, especially if you like the lace-like effect that it creates.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Congratulations New Bern Grand Marina

Release: Immediate
Date: June 19, 2012
Contact: Michele Walker
Phone: 919-707-8604

Three sites certified, six others recertified as North Carolina Clean Marinas

RALEIGH– Three coastal marinas have been certified as North Carolina Clean Marinas, a designation given to marinas that exceed the state’s environmental regulations. 
The Mona Black Marina, Federal Point Yacht Club and Carolina Beach State Park, which are all in Carolina Beach, earned the status as North Carolina Clean Marinas.
The Clean Marina program illustrates how marina operators can help safeguard the environment by using management and operation techniques that exceed environmental requirements. To earn the certification, the marina’s owners prepare spill prevention plans and conduct safety and emergency planning. Marina operators also control boat maintenance activities to protect water quality. Marinas must complete the recertification process every two years in order to retain their certification as a North Carolina Clean Marina.
In addition to the three newcomers, six coastal marinas have been recertified as North Carolina Clean Marinas: Cypress Landing Marina, Harbour Village Marina, Wilmington Marine Center, Joyner Marina, Southport Marina and New Bern Grand Marina.
N.C. Clean Marina is a voluntary program that began in the summer of 2000. Marina operators who choose to participate must complete an evaluation form about their use of specific best management practices. If a marina meets criteria developed by the N.C. Division of Coastal Management, it will be designated as a Clean Marina. Such marinas are eligible to fly the Clean Marina flag and use the logo in their advertising. The flags signal to boaters that a marina cares about the cleanliness of area waterways.
Clean Marina is a nationwide program developed by the National Marine Environmental Education Foundation, a nonprofit organization that works to clean up waterways for better recreational boating. The foundation encourages states to adapt Clean Marina principles to fit their own needs.
The North Carolina program is a partnership between the N.C. Division of Coastal Management, N.C. Boating Industry Services, the N.C. Marine Trade Association, the Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Program, N.C. Sea Grant, the U.S. Power Squadron, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and N.C. Big Sweep.
For more information, contact Pat Durrett, with the N.C. Division of Coastal Management, at 252-808-2808.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Water and Salad

Plastic Bottles Recycled into Salad Boxes

Water is healthy for you, and so is lettuce. But when they come packaged in plastic and that packaging is disposed of improperly, it’s less-than-healthy for the environment.
But Global PET, makers of the Bottle Box, believe you don’t have to scrap your ideals for convenience. The Perris, California-based bottle recycler turns plastic soda, water and juice bottles into plastic salad containers using 100 percent recycled plastics.
Don’t Miss: Reuse It Safely – Food Packaging

Though the company has been around for 16 years, the newly released video below shows the process from start to finish.

Thousands of bottles are brought to the Perris facility every day and are then sorted by color. Then, they’re ground into flakes, which are thoroughly washed and cleaned. Heat is applied to the flakes to create long spools of post-consumer PET, which are then formed into simple plastic containers marketed as salad containers. The containers could easily be used for other food products as well, as long as the food isn’t so hot as to burn through the plastic.
Check Out: 10 Reuse Ideas for Takeout Waste

As one of the few U.S. companies that perform the recycling process, from gathering bottles to churning out a finished product, Global Plastics signed on Rubio’s Mexican Restaurants to use their salad containers in 2010. Small businesses were the first to catch on to the idea, though, eager to increase their environmental responsibility, the company says on its website.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Thinking Outside the Pizza Box

Create a pizza box easel

pizza, box, easel, chalkboard, chalk, board, white, takeout, delivery, marker, markers, chalk, craft, crafts, kid, kids, children, school, art, arts, DIY, reuse, recycle
Reuse Idea #1: Reuse those old pizza boxes as clever mini-easels for the young and young-at-heart. Photo: LiER/ikat bag

Pizza boxes are notoriously difficult to recycle in some communities. So, if you can’t toss these common takeout leftovers in your curbside bin, why not find a clever way to reuse them instead?

Ikat bag blogger LiEr dreamed up this creative easel craft while planning a birthday party for her 7-year-old daughter last fall. Rather than spend loads of money on supplies, the resourceful mama reached for a stack of recycled 10-inch pizza boxes – which turned out to be the perfect size for artsy little hands!

This unique project features a white board on one side, a chalkboard on the other and a homemade eraser to complete the set. Check out LiEr’s guest-post tutorial on to give it a try with your little ones. Added bonus: When the kids are done playing, just put chalk and markers inside the easel and close the lid for easy storage.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Turning a New Page

Make a work table out of book pages.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Take Records For a New Spin


Vinyl Records Ripe for Recycled Style

There once was a time long ago when people attempted to listen to their favorite musical ditties by first putting a giant black disc the size of a dinner plate directly on top of a boxy turntable “platter.” In order to transfer the sound embedded within each groove of the vinyl directly into their ear canals, they would then gently place a tone arm-mounted needle on the outermost edge of the record and wait for the magic to begin. Despite what you might think, these musical aficionados of yesteryear also drove cars, spoke fluent English and even consumed pre-sliced bread.

And yet, for all intents and purposes, the vinyl record is now regarded as a dinosaur, or at best a novel, adorably vintage throwback. While select retailers are jumping on the retro bandwagon by selling a new, improved generation of record players and LPs, it doesn’t seem to be a trend with pervasive staying power based on the widespread appeal of digital music consumption.

That leaves a vast inventory of dusty old vinyl cluttering attics, garages, dark closets and storage pods from sea to shining sea. It may be especially tempting to subject them to slow death by landfill-induced methane asphyxiation or fling them boomerang style into the sky, but these musical artifacts deserve far better treatment. Countless hours of crafty website surfing has revealed the mother lode of all vinyl record repurposing ideas, so go forth and multiply your personal and household DIY style!

vinyl record recycling Vinyl Records Ripe for Recycled Style
Did you know that old vinyl records can be transformed into…

… a hand-stitched purse? Variations on the basic design are seemingly endless, from the inclusion of contrasting fabric panels and bold graphics, to recycled silk fringe trim.
… a light-blocking window curtain for audio enthusiasts? Better yet, try making a bold, mandala-style room divider!
saddle shoes adorned with black, faux-patent leather detailing? This idea can be easily applied to a much-loved pair of kicks that are in desperate need of a facelift, or even a simple pair of scuffed but comfy flats.
… a flat, two-tiered treat stand or wavy, triple-tiered storage tray?
… a simple, wall-mounted jewelry display?
… a durable, hard-covered notebook? (Seek out colored vinyl for an extra bit of pizzazz!)
… a laser-etched clock?
… a silverware holder for each table setting?
bookends for an audiophile?
… a wine rack?
guitar picks?
… colorful hair combs? Yes, even a hair band can be made with very little effort!
… a picture frame?
… a Rolodex-style business card storage unit or a conventional, compact holder?
hand-decorated wrist cuffs?
… a decorative wreath?
… human-like, three-dimensional portraits and sculptures?
decorative bowls for fruit or other random household objects?
… waterproof beverage coasters? (Just make sure they’re laminated!)
garden planters?
… a Christmas tree?
roof shingles?

A word of caution to crafting enthusiasts

If you intend to take on a recycling idea that requires heating an LP prior to cutting or shaping it, please proceed with caution. Records are made out of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which contains carcinogenic ethylene and dioxin-laden chlorine, as well as phthalates and bisphenol A, the majority of which have proven to compromise hormone activity in the human endocrine system.

Upon heating vinyl, chemical fumes can be inhaled into the lungs and even be absorbed through the skin if the material is handled by bare hands. So, prior to launching your vinyl record repurposing project, be sure to ventilate the area you plan on working in and make a point of wearing protective gear (such as goggles and gloves)!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Repurposing Underfoot


Repurposing Underfoot: Totally DIY Recycled Rugs

Recycling projects both simple and time-consuming can yield amazing recycled rug options you never thought possible.
Living amid the very same surroundings can be a familiar and perfectly welcome experience for some. Surely that is why we’re inclined to refer to our personal dwelling not merely as a house, but a comfy, cozy, home sweet home

On the other hand, waking up to 4-inch-high avocado-tinged shag carpeting that has repeatedly been trampled upon by three consecutive generations is bound to trigger a wicked case of DIY madness. Just trust your instincts and give that matted, time-battered rug the heave-ho!

Applying a new coat of paint to four walls can cast a surprisingly cheerful disposition upon any room, but there is another easy way to shake up your personal environment — one that requires a lot less of a time commitment from you, as well. Transform the appearance of several rooms in your house just by replacing your old rugs with modernized yet 100% handcrafted versions made with recycled materials that can be obtained at minimal or zero cost. Whether you’re a fan of weaving, stenciling, hammering, knitting or sewing, there is a unique recycled area rug that can quickly come to life courtesy of your creative TLC.

DIY recycled rugs Repurposing Underfoot: Totally DIY Recycled Rugs
A colorful starburst of men’s silk ties looks mighty dapper paving the entrance to a room.
While not exactly comfy to stand on, a recycled metal bottle cap rug would certainly speak volumes about your commitment to refreshing beverages and eco-décor.

Create a patchwork-style recycled potholder mat or cozy circular rug using woolen winter scarves unearthed at a thrift store.

Felt scraps or blanket strips can be used to add plush panache to an otherwise cold room.
Stencil a sheet of plywood with a vividly cheerful pattern for an alternative take on a traditional textile-based rug.

Fused plastic bag strips can be bound together into a basket weave-style doormat.
Turn recycled fabric scraps and tufts of yarn into lush-looking, faux-moss floor accents.
The waistbands from multiple pairs of old jeans can be sewn together to create a sturdy, easily washable mat.

Java lovers will develop an instant craving for this fringed burlap coffee sack mat.
Be prepared to carve a fair amount of time from your schedule to duplicate this coiled rope rug accented with colorful yarn twists and pom poms, but some things are clearly well worth the effort.

Woolen sweaters can be recycled into a woven mat that house pets will happily claim.
For a relatively affordable yet dividend-paying décor investment, cover a sheet of reclaimed wood with sealed copper pennies. Your welcome mat will quickly become the talk of the neighborhood.

Puzzle pieces anchored together with glue and a topcoat of durable sealant can become a playful welcome mat for visitors as well as family members.
Here’s an oldie but a goodie: recycled clothing rag rugs made with worn-out cotton T-shirts or flannel button-ups.

Do you appreciate the look of oriental rugs but dread the costly price point? Piece together a visually intriguing patchwork rug made with a mixture of garage sale and thrift store finds.
Those who find weaving extremely cathartic will welcome the opportunity to transform bicycle tire inner tubes, old leather belts and a plethora of measuring tape into distinctively unique, recycled DIY creations.

Any which way you slice ‘em, stack ‘em or glue ‘em, wine cork mats are a brilliantly sustainable underfoot solution.

Stuffed animals — when relieved of their squishy innards — can be sewn into a kaleidoscope of purely inspired, rug-ready fun for the young at heart, no matter their chronological age!

Home Electronics Disposal