Browsing Tag

repurpose

HOME + GARDEN HOME decor

New Uses for Picture Rails

spools of thread stored on picture rail

Picture rails are way more versatile than its name would suggest. Let’s explore ways that you could use them. Beware that reading this post may trigger a desire to install picture rails in every room of your home.

In a Craft Room or Design Studio

One idea to steal from crafter, knitter and designer Brett Bara’s studio tour is her use of a picture frame ledge to hold spools of thread. I love the burst of colors and the practical application. Continue Reading

HOME + GARDEN HOME decor

New Uses for Old Things: Wooden Boxes …and Tips for a Rustic Meal

storage made of wooden boxes

storage made of wooden boxes
Photo: Wooden Box Service Stations at Clyde Common via Remodelista

Each fall, I crave for cosy space and comfort food. There is a design lesson to take home from the service stations at Clyde Common, a Portland restaurant located at the Ace Hotel. You could replicate their design to organize your pantry, your linen closet, or to create storage in your craft room or your kids’ playroom.

Laid-Back Food Presentation

serving steaks on a wood cutting boards
all food photos by David Reamer for Clyde Common

After reading their story on Remodelista, I was curious to see how Clyde Common interprets the European style tavern. I wanted to see how it differs from what is happening here in Montreal. This led me to food presentation that you can steal for your next fall or winter dinner party.

family style at the table

Even though I am a stylish girl, I appreciate the laid-back feeling of food being served on cocottes, cast-iron pans and wooden cutting boards. When I host an everyday dinner party at home, I leave the fancy food presentation to the professional chefs and concentrate my energy on cooking delicious food. Through simple tricks, I add flair to my meal.

charcuterie tray
A crowd-pleaser: the charcuterie tray

Finally, a cute way to serve crudités with their vinaigrette. Even if people don’t eat it, they pleasantly decorate your table.

veggies in a mason jar

What is your favorite way to serve food in fall or winter?

ORGANIZING

New Uses for Old Things: Vintage Suitcases

vintage suitcases etsy photo

Easy spot to at second-hand stores and garage sales, vintage suiteases come with built-in charm (and, usually, a not-so-pleasant smell). Battered corners and silky linings tell tales of the suitcase’s travelled past, and you can instantly imagine the trips taken and memories made by previous owners.

vintage suitcases etsy photo

It’s just as easy to imagine taking one of those suitcases on a new trip, albeit one which tranforms it as creative storage, a cozy bed for Fifi, or a modern tech-savvy charging station.

Here are just a few of the most creative suitcase re-purposing projects we’ve spotted. (Look for links to full DIY in the Sourcing section below!)

It doesn’t matter if you’re a cat person or a dog lover, your furry family member will feel right at home with a stylish space of its own.

vintage suitcase pet bed diy

Of course, suitcases make lovely seats for your less furry family members too – just add legs, upholstery foam and pillows.

vintage suitcase chair diy

Did you see this colourful train case-cum-charging station on Design*Sponge last week? Most charging stations tend toward masculine styling, so we loved that the suitcase’s original girly colour was preserved, and the colourful feminine lining that was added.

diy suitcase charger device design sponge

Thinking outside the closet is the key to giving these suitcases a new lease on life. Create an organized and portable crafting station for kids (or mom!), or a picnic-party-in-a-box that will be ready to go when spring weather arrives.

vintage suitcase craft organizer diy

vintage suitcase picnic basket diy

Anyone who’s visited the home of a musician knows how instruments can take over the home. This guitar stand from the master Macgyver-ers at Readymade keeps things corralled, and folded up is easy to tote on stage or to band practice.

vintage suitcase guitar stand diy readymade

Of course, don’t overlook the suitcase’s original intent: storing clothes. Britsh artist James Plumb created custom chests and fitted suitcase fronts to the drawers for a one-of-a-kind look.

vintage suitcase chest of drawers james plumb

SOURCING:
+ “Journey in Blue” Vintage Suitcase Print, Simply Hue Designs on Etsy, $25 USD
+ Cat Bed DIY by Camilla Styles
+ Doggy Day Bed DIY by Covet Garden
+ Vintage Suitcase Chair DIY by See Kate Sew
+ Charging Station DIY by Design*Sponge
+ Craft Suitcase by Inspire Co.
+ Picnic Basket Suitcase DIY by Funkytime
+ Guitar Stand DIY by Readymade
+ Suitcase Chest of Drawers by James Plumb via Bless This Stuff

ORGANIZING

New Uses for Old Things: Shutter Makeovers

old shutter diy pin board

Next time you pass by a stray shutter on the curb, at a garage sale or at an antique market, stop and consider giving it a new lease on life. Sure, they function perfectly well inside or outside of windows, but with a little creativity that shutter can also add functionality and organization in the corners of your home.

old shutter diy pin board

Shutter slats are perfectly suited for storage and organization. As shown on MarthaStewart.com, a coat of paint unifies a trio of shutters to create an entryway catchall for shopping lists, invitations and mail. This easy idea can be put to use almost anywhere in your home – add one to a kitchen wall to clear clutter from the fridge, or a kid’s room to display their artwork . We also love the idea of using a weather-worn shutter to organize seed packets and other gardening gear in a garage or potting shed with the help of clothespins, S-hooks and other hardware.

shutter diy book magazine rack

Speaking of kid’s rooms, turning a shutter on its side creates a clever rack to keep their favourite books easy to grab (check out the full DIY by Jamie of Something To Do). Right-side up, with a few rungs removed, create a rack for magazines and tuck it near your favourite chair for an adult-friendly reading nook.

shutter diy furniture shelf table

Obvious organizers, shutters can also play a part in larger projects around the home. We love the country-charm of this coat rack and shelf combination – perfect for a cottage. For a more contemporary look, choose clean-lined brackets and hardware.

HGTV created a console table using a shutter as the tabletop, and it’s barely recognizable! We love the light and airy look, but for a more solid surface, add a piece of glass on top.

SOURCING:
+ Entryway Pin Board DIY, Martha Stewar
+ Seed Packet Pin Board, Nest Full of Eggs
+ Entryway Coat Rack DIY, Better Homes and Gardens
+ Console Table DIY, HGTV.com
+ Magazine Rack, My Repurposed Life
+ Kid’s Bookshelf, Something To Do

ENTERTAINING HOLIDAY entertaining

New Uses for Old Things: Holidays Cookies Wrapped with Office Supplies

old cd envelopes cookie gift wrap

old cd envelopes cookie gift wrap

This post is about finding a use for your old office supplies. If you still have an box of CD envelopes lying around, I saw on Better Homes and Gardens a way to transform them into cute cookie packages. Instead of a printed ribbon and a Holidays adornment, you could decorate the envelopes with a beautiful string and affix a gift tag. I wish that I could insert a gold cake pad but at 6 inches, the smallest cake circles are two big for a CD envelope. This is why you need to use a scrapbook paper or gift wrap paper to add a festive backdrop. The only downside is that I would feel the need to cover the cookie with food-safe cellophane before inserting it into an old CD envelope.

christmas cookies wrapped in mailing tubes

If you plan to ship them, why not wrap your Christmas cookies in mailing tubes? I showed you three ways to add a Holiday touch to plain mailing tubes last year.

SOURCING:
Gingerbread People Cutouts
+ Three-Pepper Spice Cookies

COOKING tools FOOD + DRINK

New Uses for Old Things: Muffin Tins

muffin tin ice cube tray cookie bowl

muffin tin ice cube tray cookie bowl

There seems to be no end to the versatility of baking tins: from container gardens to home office organizing stations. Though as useful as they may be elsewhere in your home, turns out they can be put to creative use in the kitchen too.

With its inverted moulds, Wilton’s Non-Stick Ice Cream Cookie Bowl tray makes a simple scoop of ice cream practically gourmet. The fluted edges of each “bowl” mimic vintage ice cream sundae dishes, but you can create the look (and the taste) for less by flipping over a regular muffin tin, adding a generous coat of cooking spray and forming your cookie dough around the mounds.

Lest you work up a sweat baking these sweet treats in the summer heat, keep cool by adding oversized ice cubes to your drink. Place slices of lemon and lime in muffin tins, fill with water and freeze! Try freezing cucumbers and pairing them with this recipe for Spa Cucumber Water, or use berries and plop the ice cubes in a punchbowl. If you don’t have a large freezer, remember to make room to balance the muffin tin.

We want to know: have you re-purposed kitchen tools or utensils in creative ways? Share your tip in the comments!

SOURCING:
+ Wilton Non-Stick Ice Cream Cookie Bowl, $11.99 USD
+ Lemon-Lime Ice Cubes from Industrious Justice

KITCHEN design ORGANIZING

New Uses for Old Things: Baking Sheet Magnet Board

Baking Sheet Magnet Board

Baking Sheet Magnet Board

Yesterday’s easy end-of-the-year teacher gift project got me thinking about everything else that comes with the end of the school year: piles of projects, artwork and report cards making their way from the classroom to every room in the house.

A little spray paint gives everyday kitchen baking sheets a new life as wranglers of colourful artwork and rainy day creative projects. Photos and display-worthy drawings are held to the baking sheet with magnets glued to the bottom of fluted metal tart cups, which are filled to the brim with pretty, stacked sewing notions.

This idea would look at home on the wall of a kitschy kitchen, in a kid’s bedroom or a craft room – whether you choose a colour that adds punch, or leave the sheets unpainted for a more modern look.

For full project instructions, check out the Crave Paper Blog.

SOURCING:
+ DIY Baking Sheet Magnet Board from Crave Paper Blog

HOME + GARDEN ORGANIZING

New Uses for Old Things | Loaf Pan Organizers

bread pan loaf organizer kitchen

bread pan loaf organizer kitchen

A couple of weeks ago we shared a few creative container garden ideas – including one that made use of old muffin tins. Tin loaf pans would work well as makeshift garden planters too, but they look just as lovely hung in a row on a bright kitchen wall.

These rustic tins look fresh when filled with colourful kitchen linens, shiny silverware and cheap-and-chic citrus fruits, but they’re easy to imagine in other corners of your home too.

Try them in the office to organize paperwork and stationery supplies; in a garden shed to keep seed packs, twine and garden gloves within reach; or in a crafty corner filled with scissors, ribbon spools and a stack of fabric fat quarters. No matter where you find a place for this DIY, it adds a touch of upcycled, old-meets-new charm.

It’s easy to see why this simple, versatile project made ReadyMade Magazine’s list of 100 best projects of the year. (Check out the complete list for more clever, reader-submitted projects!)

SOURCING:
+ DIY Loaf Pan Storage from ReadyMade
+ Photos: ReadyMade

HOME + GARDEN HOME decor

New Uses for Old Things | Wooden Pallets

wood pallet coffee table reuse

wood pallet coffee table reuse

April may be the month when the urge to spring clean takes over, but it’s also the month when we seem to give the most thought to our environmental impact. While you’re in the midst of purging and re-organizing, don’t underestimate the power of re-purposing. Case in point: the lowly wooden shipping pallet.

They’re easy to overlook leaning against dumpsters and tossed in ditches, but wooden pallets also have built-in rustic charm with a nod to industrial functionality. With a bit of TLC, they can be transformed into fresh furniture pieces or smart storage. We rounded-up a few clever DIY examples. Don’t miss all the step-by-step instructions for these projects in the “Sourcing” section below!

Pallet-Turned-Coffee Table

A bit of sanding, four castors, a glass top and a coat of stain or paint turn these pallets into large coffee tables with built-in shelves for storing books, magazines and removes.

wood pallet reuse table lounge day bed

Pallet-Turned-Day Bed

Add a futon mattress or high-density foam topper to a painted pallet to create a day bed or lounge. Perfect in a finished basement or a teenager’s bedroom.

Pallet-Turned-Shelf

wood pallet wine rack plate shelf reuse

The basic construction of wooden pallets makes them prime storage solutions (especially for wine). On the left, they’re stacked and lined with deep rectangular baking sheets for bar storage. Mounted on the wall (right), the slats are perfect for displaying a collection of pretty plates.

Pallet-Turned-Garden

wood pallet balcony garden

For apartment dwellers who want a balcony garden without tons of hanging baskets or heavy pots, line a pallet with landscape fabric to keep soil inside – then plan to your heart’s content.

SOURCING:
+ DIY Coffee Table 1 from Noepa Hjertet /  DIY Coffee Table 2 from Fjasevashuseton, both on Stylizimo.com
+ DIY Day Bed from Siljesol on Stylizimo.com
+ DIY Wine Shelving from Remodelista.com
+ DIY Plate Rack by Katrin Arens on Remodelista
+ Balcony Garden from Life on the Balcony

HOME + GARDEN HOME office

New Uses for Old Things | Kitchen Gadgets in the Office

desk organization kitchen tools

desk organization kitchen tools

Nothing gives new life to seemingly out-of-date kitchen gadgets than a change of scenery. I spotted these creative office organizing solutions via Better Homes and Gardens and can’t wait to put them to use.

Though it may be past its prime in the kitchen, a roughed-up muffin tin is the perfect desk drawer catch-all for office essentials like paper clips and stamps. Try it in a chest of drawers to keep jewelry untangled, or in the drawer of night table to stash relic tubes of lip balm and lotion.

And though egg cups may only find their way to your dining table once (or less) a year, you can put them to work every day decluttering your desk top. If you don’t already have some in your cupboard, you can find inexpensive vintage options at thrift stores. Treasured teacups would also be a pretty solution for small stationery items.

SOURCING:
+ 19 Home Office Solutions from Better Homes & Gardens