Recycled by Hyena: My work is infused with my ethic and each of my creations is the result of passion and dedication. My clothes are made from scratch but not from new materials. They are made with fabric from clothes I purchased in Goodwill stores and non-profit thrift stores.
I “believe” in the craft revolution and I think it is our future. The handmade and eco-friendly life is the only alternative to the consumerism destroying our planet and the living beings surrounding us.
It would be nearly impossible for me to choose a favourite shade of green, but if pressed, I would probably put “grass” in my top 10. Of course, that answer is an utter cop-out because grass itself comes in hundreds, if not thousands, of shades. Just last night, while watching my fella cut his lawn, I found myself mesmerized by the way the grass appeared to change colour with each pass of the mower; much like velvet changes when you run your hand across the nap. Before I knew it, my guy was finished with the lawn…and I was inspired. This week’s collection of handmade goods is just a small sampling of the many shades of fresh green grass, chosen not just for their colour, but for their eco-coolness as well.
Wren Willow’s “Ozymandius” (the grumpy owl, above) is an original design hand-screened onto a 100% cotton American Apparel t-shirt, which has been dyed in a gorgeous grass-green. The special water-based dyes that Marla uses are environmentally friendly and will not bleed or fade in the wash. Your shirt from the Wren Willow shop promises to be perfectly unique because, as with all hand-made items, it is the slight differences from one piece to the next that make them so special. So, what does that owl have to be so grumpy about anyway?
This beautiful grass-green votive (above) is made in Spain from 99% recycled glass and filled with clean-burning, eco-friendly soy wax, scented with your choice of Mireio’s irresistible fragrances. Each candle is custom-poured to order and should last up to 20 hours with careful burning, according to shop owner Wende. Once the candle has burned, the holder can be refilled with any of the standard 2oz (15 hour) votives from the Mireio shop.
Bring nature inside and add a touch of colour to your home without going to the mess or expense of painting with these striking vinyl decals by Connie of Circle Line Studios. The removable decals adhere to any clean, smooth, flat surface and are a quick and eco-friendly way to freshen up your décor. Cut from high-quality vinyl, the decals are available in your choice of colour, including my favourite – the grass-green pictured above. Check out the Circle Line Studios shop for dozens of designs or to inquire about a custom creation.
Semra of Istanbul, Turkey is the talent behind these amazing grass-green necklaces pictured above. These stunning pieces were crocheted by hand and are just two examples of the unique and beautiful lace and crochet jewelry items available in the Kirevi shop. Whether you are looking to make a big statement or just a little one, Semra’s bohemian-chic necklaces will add an attention-getting shot of earthy colour to your summer wardrobe.
Please join me in welcoming our newest columnist to Try Handmade, Cara Quinn! She’s going to be writing about frugal living and minimalism as it relates to buying handmade and making it yourself. Check out her first post, and let her know if you have suggestions or requests for future posts. Welcome Cara!
I’m not a fan of cranking up the thermostat in our home (well, truth be told we don’t even have a thermostat) and all throughout winter I was determined to whip up a draught excluder that would plug the huge gap under our front door – where a majority of the heat escapes from.
I’ve been determined to do this for two winters running. When I saw these sausage dog draught excluder’s on Ellie’s Crafts they looked like the perfect addition to our otherwise dog-free home.
On top of draught excluder’s, there are other ways to keep the heating bills down (and Planet Earth happy) and keep warm – after all, before we know it, we’ll be springing into spring. Until then, I plan on cuddling up close to my baby son (that boy has a freakish, almost superhuman, ability to keep me warm.)
This adorable onesie from Ink & Ivy is made from water-based ink and organic cotton so appeals to my eco-friendly nature. It’s also available in a light red – which I find is gender neutral and could work for two (or more) babies. I’m a huge fan of hand-me-down clothes for little people!
Other tips for staying warm:
Wrap up in a blanket. I have a little fleece blanket on my sofa that I love to be wrapped in. I have two thin blankets and one really thick one. The two thin blankets I can circulate when the weather is sorting itself out for a spring season and the thick blanket is for the hell that was last winter. Or as we called it in these parts: Snowmageddon. By the time summer rolls around, I don’t need blankets or my central heating to keep me warm.
Put on some socks. It’s true about losing body heat through your extremities and covering those tootsies up will keep you cosied up.
Put on a sweater. I know I sound like someone’s Granma when I say that, but the fact is that it remains true. More layers means more body heat is given out – don’t over do the layering when you go out, though, or you’ll be sweating like a turkey the night before Thanksgiving.
Got some sweaters that don’t quite fit any more or have reached their life span? That’s okay, up-cycle them into a nifty (and thrifty!) purse/handbag. Make and Love It tells you how.
If you love this idea, check out some of the other up-cycled ideas on that same blog; pillows and dresses made from sweaters and a cute little beanie hat and skirt, who were in a former life, scarves.
No need to donate (or throw away – but I seriously hope no one is throwing away clothes in this day and age!) winter clothes that have outrun their lifespan; they can come right into spring with you!
Please welcome new columnist Sarah Safranski to Try Handmade! She’s going to be treating us to a weekly column on how you can create popular styles using handmade wares. Looking to recreate a particular style? Let her know in the comments, and she’ll see what she can do :)
Having grown up in the Midwest, the summer months meant three-day weekends and road trip adventures. Our destinations were always peaceful and relaxing, but packing up the car and getting there was half of the fun.
The first essential for any road trip is the weekend bag. This option by StudioOneDesigns is roomy, made from sturdy material, and has lots of pockets to hold all of the little things you need to keep track of while you’re on the road.
When you’ve got a long ride ahead of you, comfort is key. This sweet yellow dress by Gina Michele is the perfect combination of ease and style. Made of bamboo jersey, it is both wrinkle resistant and eco-friendly. You’ll arrive at your destination looking as good as when you first stepped into the car.
Getting lost along the way can make for fun road trip moments, but eventually you’ll need to head in the right direction. This compass necklace by Rubyann Designs will point you in the right direction.
When you finally reach your location, you’ll want to do some exploring. These cute handmade and eco-friendly flats from extraseed will allow you to walk around all day without aching feet. The neutral color will match every outfit, and leave room in your bag for souvenirs.
You’ll want to take lots of pictures to document your trip. This braided camera strap from Loray:n is both stylish and timeless. Made from leather, it’s sure to last through summer road trips for years come.
So, what are you waiting for? Call some friends and hit the road! Just don’t forget the music and snacks.
At our house, December 2009 was a blur of working, crafting and traveling. Somehow, in all of the excitement and frenzy of the holidays, the 31 days of 2009’s final month felt more like 13 days. There just never seemed enough time! That must be why, almost a full week into the new year, we are just now getting around to replacing all of the calendars in the house. In past years, I have always grabbed a big, glossy shrink-wrapped calendar from the big-box bookstore, but this year I am looking for something different. Because we are going to have to live with it for the next 12 months, I want something unique, clever and, of course, eco-friendly.