Tag Archives: Bags

second-hand living is officially ‘cool’

Friday night was fun.  Despite not wanting to actually go out due to having a stinking cold, I still took the time to adjust my dress and make and extra petticoat to go underneath it.  Hopefully I’ll get a good photo of how I looked on Friday night, but as I entered the doors of the club I was asked to pose for a photo as I was officially ‘cool’ 🙂 I’ve never been ‘cool’ and at 36 I never expected to ever be cool. But apparently my outfit was and I’m pleased to say the intrinsic parts that made it up were ALL second-hand.  My dress was from the Salvation Army shop in Catford and cost me £3.49.  My jacket was handed down to me via a friend of a friend – as it didn’t fit them, my bag was a box purse from a charity shop (quite a while ago so I can’t remember where it was from) for £3 and my shoes were my darling Pradas – £9.95!  The only new aspects to my outfit were my pink tights and some more netting to go under my dress.

Whoo hoo – I AM cool! lol – although judging by this photo I definitely don’t look cool:

I'm the one in the middle

I'm the one in the middle

Apparently they want to put the photo of me on the website for This Feeling – I’ll let you know if they do so you can see the outfit in full.  I was kind of shocked but pleasantly surprised 🙂

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What to do with books – #1

A home without books is a body without soul.” ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero

BOOK SHELVES

BOOK SHELVES

However – I sometimes wonder if the time comes when you have TOO many books.  There are days when I virtually salivate over the sight of peoples’ libraries, their shelves stocked floor to ceiling with books, and there are other days I want to take all my books and throw them out, because I don’t know when I’ll ever get round to reading every single book I’ve ever wanted to read and re-read every book I’ve loved reading.

Next to my bed right now

Next to my bed right now

Not that you can really see them – however for some reason the Stephanie Meyer ones are standing out!  Yes, I’ve read all of the Twilights – I bought The Host – however my better half says it’s rubbish.  So whether I get round to watching it is debatable. Suffice to say that’s a pile of books next to my bed.  We have 4 shelves in the bedroom full of books, 6 in the study and 9 in the living room.  That doesn’t include all of the books in the loft that still haven’t been unpacked in the 7 years we’ve been here.

Ok – so I decided to look around to see what to do with all of these books, apart from the obvious.  As I’ve blogged before – I’ve started Bookcrossing – I’m yet to see what happens there.  And of course I give books to charity shops etc.  However I do have a lot of books that are in a SHIT condition.  So decided to search around this wonderful thing we call the world wide web to see what other people do with books – upcycling wonderfulness abounds:

Turning books into purses/bags

Book Bag

Book Bag

If you click on the photo you will be taken to a video tutorial that looks pretty easy to follow – so I recommend trying this out.  I’m yet to find a book that I think will work well for this – but as soon as I do I will post it here so you can see my efforts.

SO cute

SO cute

Cute star bags

Cute star bags

These are some cute examples of books turned into purses.  There are SO many on the internet now – just search and see what you can find.

Turn books into art

Click on the photo to take you to a whole set by a school.

Click on the photo to take you to a whole set by a school.

Books of course, are art. However – to turn this form of art into more art looks so much fun.  I saw a wonderful exhibition at Fulham Palace last month entitled ‘Butterfly’ about the obsessiveness of a butterfly collector – using copies of The Collector by John Fowles (one of my favourite books).  The exhibition was very interesting and really made me want to try something similar in my purse designs.  I’ll post them when I’ve created my final design 😉

Here are some other links showcasing books into art:

Rag and Bone Blog – some collected examples of beautiful paper art – I LOVE the octopus

Books into vases

Reversing vandalism – San Francisco public library’s exhibition on old books turned into art

Fun Forever – another blog that collects some wonderful examples of books into art

{part #2 – coming up}

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Filed under Art, books, Uncategorized

tut tut

I had to buy something new today – but they were crafting materials so I don’t feel SO bad.  However, I will donate some books and clothes to a charity shop tomorrow to make up for my purchase of a glue gun and some vinyl.  Naughty naughty.  However I don’t feel so bad as I’m going to use them both in some upcycling projects.

As soon as I got home today I started on my vinyl record bag after seeing this on ThreadBanger:

Vinyl record bag

Vinyl record bag

(click on the image for the link)

I fell in love.  After all  – what could be more original than a bag made out of your favourite (or indeed tackiest) records?  So today, at lunchtime, I took myself off to the local charity shops and came back with a few second hand records – Engelbert Humperdink, Prince and Val Doonican 🙂  What more could a girl love on her bag?  As soon as I got in, I put my husband to work on burning the holes through the vinyl, which resulted in a lot of swearing and burned fingers 🙂  Since then I’ve decided to ‘go it alone’ on the design of the bag.  Rather than try to follow any tutorials I’ve found (most are for smaller bags with the record cut in half) I’ve decided to see how I get on.  So far it’s not going great, but this is a first try.  I did hope to finish the bag tonight however my back is really hurting, and I don’t fancy leaning over a sewing machine tonight.

Tomorrow my first ever record bag should be made and I will post it for you here 🙂

In the meantime here are some other vinyl bags that others have created.  As always, where there are photos, click on the photo to take you to their page.

These rock – Broken Record Designs are apparently the ‘original’ record purses – and I just LOVE that Pat Benatar one 🙂  However I’m not a huge fan of rivets etc.  I just think they look a bit ‘high street’ and less hand made.  There’s something ‘manufactured’ about them that I’m not keen on. They also have a ‘patent pending’ on their design – so beware of copying them (too much!).

The 45 by Luce Belanger

The 45 by Luce Belanger

This is a real old-school bag – apparently they’ve been around since the sixties – this idea of creating bags using records.  I really like this one – small and compact yet ultimately groovy! There’s nothing like an old 45 to make you feel a tad nostalgic!

I love the yellow on this and I’m really thinking carefully about the colours I choose for my vinyl record bags – I’m considering some gorgeous upcycled fake fur and velvet.

Album cover bag

Album cover bag

You have NO idea how much I LOVE this bag.  This album was one of my favourites as a child – I just loved how it opened up and you got the portraits of Karen and her brother.  Kind of creepy yet reminds me of my childhood.

I might try something similar when I finish the bag with the actual record.  I’m sure someone will LOVE an Engelbert Humperdink bag for Christmas!

Mighty Mighty Bosstones purse

Mighty Mighty Bosstones purse

Honestly – how freakin’ awesome is THIS bag? I absolutely love it.  SO groovy! 🙂

I’m getting so excited about creating my bag.  I know it’s not going to look so great as I’m not really using great material to make the bag itself (as this is a first go) – however I’m already thinking about what I want to hunt out in order to create my bag.  And yes … I will make sure that the material I use is either material I already own or upcycled.  That’s REALLY important to me at the moment – to not buy more material.

Wish me luck!

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Filed under Bags, Upcycling