I love to recycle and re-purpose – if I can figure out a way to make something that would normally be trashed into something useful or beautiful – or both – I’m up for the challenge.
I’ve been thinking about this project for a while now and finally committed myself to actually having a go. It came about this way…..
Do you remember I made a bunch of small gift bags a while back. I wanted to make some really big ones, you know, the size of a good shopping bag and I had figured I would need six 12 x 12 sheets per bag. Using quality specialist paper would have made the cost prohibitive – I mean $24 just for the paper and I haven’t even put the time in yet …. you can buy big gift bags at the moment for $2.50…..
With my creative mojo firing on all cylinders I had the genius idea I could make them from newspaper – the big giant ones.
I used the Otago Daily Times that I stole from YD’s place when I was cat-sitting the lovely Stanley. [I stole it for this purpose, I don’t read papers – they rarely have anything good or uplifting in them and I don’t want to live with images of all the horrible stuff that the media calls ‘news’]
An open double page measures 80 x 57 cm – I’m sorry I can’t convert that off the top of my head for you non-metric folk…… perhaps someone else might in the comments 🙂 Anyhow, it’s big!
So a couple of evenings back, I covered the floor with more bits of newspaper and hunkered down with a container full of blood red poster paint, a brush and a water jar:
I painted two double page spreads with a thick layer of paint and left them to dry overnight.
The next day I turned the paper over and
ran wrestled a length of contact paper over the page. [Contact paper is used to cover books and shelves – sticky on one side and a plasticky / wipeable finish on the other.] I used this to give the newspaper some strength and durability.
I worked out my score lines for width and depth and top and bottom ……. ooooh headaches!!
And made a pair of bags:
I like that you can still see the newsprint showing through – but the photo is not true to the red I used – think blood red and you’ll be closer to the truth of it.
With the basic bag hanging together quite well it is embellishment time – Hurrah!!
I rummaged through my paper stash and found a 12 x 12 vintage collection that I purchased in a sale a year or two back and have never known what to do with – I chose two different pictures and roughly cut out around the images and stuck one on each bag.
Using white, black and gold pens I highlighted the edges of the cut outs, faux stitched outside the edges and outlined different aspects of the woman.
Lace was hot glued all around the top edges and red organza ribbon employed for the handles
Next I punched out some hearts using off-cuts from the vintage girl paper and shiny metallic gold and layered some:
And stuck ’em on both the front
and the back of the bags
The hearts were given faux stitching in black pen.
So, looking good you say – finished?
Nope. Remember, if a little embellishment is good, a lot is better…
The fabric flowers are made from organza and curtain netting – great fun to make as it involves a lighted candle and
charring melting ….. 🙂
The beaded flowers I learnt to make from someone on the internet two or three years ago and I’ve completely forgotten who it was – but they too are fun to make. It’s just beads and twisted wire and they hang freely and move about which adds another layer to the whole thing.
I think they are finished – but there is still three weeks til Christmas, you never know what might happen to them between now and then…..
I think they came out quite well for a first try – I learned lots and know how to do it now….
Thanks for coming by today – I love that you did 🙂