Thursday, January 3, 2013

A Potpourri of Repurposing and Organizing Ideas !

He who was seated on the throne said, 
“ Behold, I am *making all things new!”
Revelation 21:5
**Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy loving kindness; 
for they have been ever of old.
Psalm 25:6

I’m delighted to be traveling to see family and friends this past 2 weeks and although I feel I've had to go 'cold turkey' from my Paper Crafting, I do have several projects on my laptop that I thought I'd share with you for the New Year!  My offering for today will be a potpourri of ‘do-over’ ideas for you -  ;-}

I have learned through the years to ‘make Beauty from Ashes,’ so to speak, and I thought I’d share just some of my many Repurposed Items and ‘creative storage’ ideas.  Perhaps some of these may be helpful to those of you who are on tight budgets or in tight spaces – as I know all too well… I have been ‘re-purposing’ items all my life – long before it became ‘fashionable’ to do so and I enjoy reusing ‘usable’ items, often making them more beautiful.

So – there are times when I just have to acknowledge my Dutch Heritage…  Being very frugal, resourceful and drinking coffee all day are a few things I do that come from my ‘Dutch genes.’  *smile*  Therefore, I have many empty coffee cans for which I continue to find ‘good use’ –

My first project today is a ‘repurposed’ coffee can – decorated with scraps – and turned into a Gift Container for some yummy Christmas Cookies or candies.

To cover the can, I stamped ‘sheet music’ in brown on parchment paper, inking the edges and then stamping snowy flourishes in silver in various places. (These don’t show up in the photos – sorry.)  I used the ( Bell .svg file – a scrap of red, one of ‘marbleized’ silver, two of plain silver and a snippet of silver ribbon to make the ‘Silver Bells,’ which I adhered to the red grosgrain ribbon wrapped around the can. 

I made a Recipe Card/Gift Tag for the top with a Circle Card file (I don’t know from whence I got it…) – topped it with a Scalloped Circle ‘wreath’ I made from the same file.  I punched ‘notes’ from silver scraps, placing them on the wreath.  I used the flourishes that were cut from the Bells under a red flower plucked from a red hydrangea stem, enhanced with a red, flower-gem center and silver ‘Scribbles’ paint.

Another enjoyable passion of mine is ‘burning candles’ – for their relaxing scent - as I ‘burn mine at both ends!’  Therefore, I have several of these empty glass jars at any given time…

These harvest-themed .svg files are from 
The pumpkins were cut with my Cricut/SCAL2 and then embossed on my Cuttlebug. The pumpkin atop is for the recipe and a note -

      These Christmas .svg files are from 
      After cutting the pieces with my Cricut/SCAL2, I embossed them in my
      Cuttlebug and then adhered them to the jar. Both jars are ready for 
      holiday Goodies!

I’ve found many ways to reuse baking sheets – These are old ones that I spray- painted, used discontinued wallpaper for the backgrounds and then .svg files as decorative elements, further decorated with gems, flowers (from the Dollar Store) and magnets for memos.

I also use some cookie sheets and pizza trays that I picked up at the Dollar Store while working on scrapbooking pages or other projects.  Arrange elements on them with magnets until you have the whole page designed and decided upon.  Then you can secure them to the pages with adhesives.

I have turned simple lunch sacks into Mini-Albums to keep memories – turning this -

- into these -  They include many pages for photos and pockets for memorabilia -  I'll show the inside pages of these in my next post, so you can see all that's inside!  Watch for it -  ;-}

 As far as organizing my crafty supplies, I’ve re-purposed things for this, also.  Here are just a few of my ‘bright ideas.'

I got the box at Michaels, cut my ‘business/blog name’ on my Cricut and adhered it to the front of the lid.  For the dividers, I cut pizza and cereal boxes to fit, covered them with cream parchment paper and punched tabs.  Some days it’s filled with cards I’ve made, some days it’s not – I have actually made many more since I took this photo several months ago!

I covered empty soup cans with the corresponding color to my Timeless Twine spools.  I put my baker’s twine in a Sugar Jar, of the ‘restaurant style,’ that I picked up at the Dollar Store.
I made a cutting board lap desk from a postal box covered with Kraft paper.  It’s lightweight, portable and I’ve found it to be quite handy for years.


I saw a post recently about using knobs attached to wooden dowel pieces with Velcro added to hold pieces of felt to use for ink blending…  I looked around and decided to attach the felted ‘furniture leg pads’ that I had in a drawer to wine corks and lids that I’d been saving - FREE!  I also use makeup sponges for blending inks –

Another idea for corks and milk container lids:  glue them together and glue on the little foam shapes to make simple stamping fun – for you or for children!

Jars and food containers can also be reused as ‘serviceable,’ too – I use many of them to hold laces, ribbons, chipboard shapes, buttons, pins, any decorative elements – 

I use all manner of food containers for various crafting implements -  Here are vegetable containers in which my felt marking pens fit perfectly and stack nicely on the ‘box shelf’ which is their home -

I keep track of all of the Punches I have in a $1 Kraft-page Journal book I got at Michaels – I punch on cream paper and adhere in this book for a quick reference as to what I have while ‘projecting.’

I will leave you with another ‘make-over-magic’ project I made this fall – turning a lowly, plain Dollar Store mini clipboard into a sunny gift for one of my Dear Friends…!  The .svg file is from    I used Mod Podge to adhere all of the papers and gems and protect and preserve it while in use – The mini-pads come in several colors and I look forward to making a rainbow of these to have for quick gifts -

I hope that some of this has been helpful to you!  I love having you come by MY blog and see what I ‘cook up’ each week – adding ‘An Elegant Touch…’ to all that I do!  If you have some great re-purposing or organizational ideas, I’d love to hear them, too -  Have a Lovely Day wherever you are and whatever you are doing in the beginning of this New Year - 2013!  Blessings!

(P.S -  I do NOT understand why BLOGGER decides to change Color, Type, Line spacing - on it's own - when I have things done very uniformly as I transfer it to here!  Sorry for it looking like I don't know what I'm doing...  I've worked several hours to try to figure it out and I must leave this as it is...sadly...  Thanks for understanding, now that you know...  ;-/  )  


  1. How talented. I still would be interested in you doing the wall cling ons if you are interested for my business. Just let me know if you are interested. I also would be interested in the file boxes with my company name on them. Interested?

    Irish at

  2. I have to make a gift journal for a group I belong to. Thanks to you and a journal idea you posted recently I feel confident about turning out a lovely product.

  3. Love your work, especially that repurposed coffee can. I have a couple of empty tins set aside to use for gift giving and this is so inspiring.


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