March is a good month to think "green"

March is a great month to focus on "re-purposing", "sustained re-use", and "multi-purposed objects" (objects that multi-task).


My favorite "multi-tasking object"...

My embroidery hoop (rescued from a garage sale a few years ago), seen here in its Christmas/Valentine mobile incarnation. If you have an extra hoop lying around that is not currently in use, turn it into a mobile until you need it again. It is so simple to attach a few favorite seasonal objects.

I attach the hoop to my chandelier with pearl embroidery floss, and hang several of my favorite wheat snowflakes and "Christmas hearts" from the hoop. (You can also hang the hoop from a ceiling hook.)

As you can see from the photo this is a very simple assembly process!

Using ornament hooks allows you to change treasures easily, or you can tie them on with a simple knot.

Ornament hooks or simple knotted loops also work for attaching the "hanging strings" to the hoop.

Did you notice the lovely "cut-out" heart hanging right in front in the top photo? It is one of Margit's designs. Here is a striped heart design of hers that I have downloaded to make before next Christmas! Since Easter is only a few weeks away, you may want to make a small mobile using her lovely little eggs.

Speaking of woven hearts! I just love these recycled woven hearts I found on Maya Made. Along with inspirational material options, Maya provides a tutorial. Or you can refer to my own tutorial for weaving Danish hearts. Just think of all the "stuff" you can re-purpose into beautiful heart baskets.

Now that the winter holidays are over, I am putting my embroidery hoop back to work doing what it was originally designed to do - hold an embroidery project. And this very special embroidery project is the first to occupy my new craft tote made from a Pendleton remnant.

A small quilt for Diane. A beautiful Laurel Burch design embellished with beads and embroidery.

Being a huge Laurel Burch fan, I could not resist this fabric when I found it during a "fabric store/yarn shop" play date with Diane last spring. In the spirit of the subject at hand this month, the backing and filling are both pieced together from scraps of material and filler I had laying around, and I am using only what I have in my bead stash for embellishment.

My current heroine in the "re-use" catagory is Amandajean at Crazy Mom Quilts. Be sure to check out her fabulous secrets for scrap managemet and the links she provides for how to use them. I have to admit - I used to throw out all these supposedly useless bits and pieces. Never again. Amadajean, you ROCK! And thank you for allowing me to use your photo of your very organized scrap stash.

Check out these other clever ways to "re-purpose" those little pieces of leftover fabric or yarn:

Penny at Sewtakeahike is working on an improv quilt using little bits of leftover fabrics. It occured to me that a quilt would be a great project for "re-purposing" favorite clothing items that have been outgrown. I made all of Diane's dresses when she was little and I am just thinking what a lovely, nostalgic quilt could have been made from the dresses themselves (or at least the scraps that were left). I guess I had that idea a little too late!

Roseanna at After I finish this row never, ever throws out a single scrap of anything resembling yarn or fabric! And being the clever girl she is, she has discovered that birds just love her scrap stash!

If you don't have birds around that might be interested, Diane's tutorial for making woven cards may be a more appealing way to put those scraps to good use.

Have you had a chance to visit Geta's quilting studio? If not, don't waste another minute! Go visit her gallery. Geta's quilts are breathtaking. Although Geta's quilted bowl tutorial is shown using Trapunto quilting (at which she is a master), I am thinking it could be the inspiration for a beautiful and functional way to use up fabric scraps.

Moving beyond fabric and yarn scraps, did you see the "no spills paint cups" posted on Her Cup Overfloweth? Thank you to Cassie at the Crafty Crow for the lead to this one! What I love about this idea is that the cups can be used over and over - "sustained re-use".

Tin cans become craft tool containers embellished with beads when Susan Beal (West Coast Crafty) turns her creative mind to "re-use" in a recent post for Craftstylish.

Julie Finn has shared great ideas for re-purposing all kinds of interesting and unused items as storage, in her craft room makeover posted on Crafting a Green World.

Egg cartons! Green Living shares 10 ways to re-use them! Some pretty clever ideas there. Since we are rock hounds, we learned early on that egg cartons are perfectly suited for storing small rock and mineral specimens. They also work well for children's collections of small stones, coins, and other treasures pocketed on trips to the park or beach.

"Resource preservation" began in early cultures out of necessity and scarcity. Then it moved into the "green movement" as the need to preserve the health of our planet's ecosystem became obvious. Faced with the current global financial downturn, we are beginning to view "resource preservation" as a necessary part of maintaining our financial well being.

Bravo to all of us! We are becoming creative and diligent "resource preservationists"!

I finally got back to read

I finally got back to read this again and follow some of the links. This stuff is yummy yummy yum. I love your Burch quilt with beads. One day I will make that hoop mobile when I'm feeling better. My cold seems to be getting better...? hope. But a have a few projects yet to complete and then I'm doing the mobile and the Danish heart. I can't quilt, but I can do card weaving, so there.

Almost time to buy more Peeps. Better tell Kirby to get out there!

Also, have you dyed paper with Easter egg colors before? Oh, but who do I think I'm dealing with? You probably made a duvet cover out of them!

I'm just loving the mobile

I'm just loving the mobile :)

Thanks for all the wonderful

Thanks for all the wonderful ideas and the awesome links.

Wow, you are really full of

Wow, you are really full of ideas and information and places to find more. Very inspiring as always! I absolutely love that small quilt for Diane!! It is just gorgeous!!!