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Finding off-cuts and rummaging!

So I am feeling pretty pleased with myself after finding this little lot today and bagging it all for just £8!

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It may not seem like much so here’s a breakdown:

24 coasters and large piece of mirrored glass, all found in charity shops and altogether costing the princley sum of £6! I will obviously be using the mirror for some kind of mosaic project and am thinking of doing some ‘how-to’ mosaic step-by-steps with the coasters. I’m thinking cute bumble bee’s possibly with flower detail! I will of course be posting plenty of pictures when I’m done. Thought a mosaic ‘how-to’ was long overdue as that is my primary craft.

FREE – 6 pieces of wood from Homebase as they were cut-off’s left over from other customers! They even cut them up for me, in return for a small donation into their charity box 🙂  I think these are a great size for small mosaic projects or even practising designs.

£2 for 4 small flower pots which will look great spruced up with some sparkly mosaics!

It just goes to show that, even in today’s economic climate, you can still find yourself a bargain if you’re not too shy to ask! I am a regular at my local glaziers where I often get their off-cut bits of mirror at a very reduced price. I am not afraid to ask for these because I know that if I don’t take them, then they have to pay to dispose of them. So not only are they getting a small amount of money from me but they’re also saving money too!

I have also been known to pop into any kind of tiling shop and ask if they have any unwanted stock. I always offer to pay….but sometimes they are happy to just give them to you. I’ve had a few disgruntled shop owners who don’t like the idea, but really not very many. Most people are happy to give you what they are not using, especially if they’re getting a small amount in return,

As this post is on the theme of charity shop finds and reduced price items, I thought I’d share some picture of things that I have up-cycled so far.

The first picture I have to share is a favourite of mine. I found this elephant on sale in Wilkinsons. He was badly scuffed and chipped on the top and was originally plain black pottery. I bought him for 50p. After A LOT of love and attention (much cutting, sticking, glueing and polishing!) he was re-born to be loved once more and has been re-homed!

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Found with him was this slightly smaller elephant who had also been damaged. He had a chunk broken off of his ear, which I repaired with some grout and plaster of Paris! He was bought this Christmas as a special present for an elephant lover.

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A common item in charity shops is the picture frame. I have found lots of good ones and re-made them, although you do have to really check them carefully for damage. I have had a couple break after I have re-made them, meaning I have not only lost time but my tiles too! I only buy them now if they are of a very high quality.

You can see some here in a picture of my stall at a craft fair.

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If you’ve been into many charity shops then you’ll know just how many glasses there are on the shelves! I find a lot that are just the right size for tea-light holders, a few of which can be seen here:

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One of my best finds were two large wooden bowls, which were a pound each in my local Oxfam. I have sold one of these so far and the other is a work in progress. I love the geometric feel of this one, so too did the lovely lady who bought it!

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This is the second bowl, which is still ‘in the making’. It’s a more relaxed design with some lovely purple tones. Incidentally, most of the purple tiles that I have been using recently were found at the back of a large tiling shop near me. The fashion for bathrooms has moved from small mosaics to large neutral stone and therefore the shop owner had no use for them! I got over ten sheets for a pound each, as there are 250 tiles on each sheet that’s pretty good! You can see just how pretty they are in this picture, they have a lovely shimmery effect.

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Below is a small mirror bought in a charity shop, it was originally plain wood.

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Last but certainly not least is a mosaic heart, made using a chipped vase found (yet again) in Oxfam! Lovely bird detail on the pottery.

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Even old Christmas serviettes can be up-cycled! I made these for our Christmas tree last year……initially was going to sell them at a fair but loved them so much I kept them all!

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Well I hope you’ve enjoyed this entry and I hope it’s maybe given you some ideas for an up-cycling project of your own!

Remember at my Facebook page Crafty Love I love to see any pictures of things that you’ve up-cycled, just pop onto the page and message me the pic or post it on my wall!  I have a great album called ‘Up-cycled Wonders’ which I add the best pictures to!

Crafty Love can be found here: http://www.facebook.com/CraftyLoveUK

If you’d like to see more of my mosaic work you can find it here: http://www.facebook.com/AliceThrewTheLookingGlass

If you’ve enjoyed this post please comment and let me know your thoughts. It really is the only feedback us bloggers get! Make sure you ‘follow’ my blog to be notified when I post a new entry. I will be adding some great mosiac ‘how-to’s soon……using the coasters above maybe! 🙂 x

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6 responses »

  1. What beautiful work! I especially like the wooden bowls……just gorgeous!
    I, too, ask for stuff that would otherwise be thrown away, and have never been refused.
    My favourite place is Primark…….have you ever been in the ladies and children’s pyjama department, and seen ribbons on the floor?…….they throw them away! I asked, and was given a big bag of ’em….for free!!!!

    Reply
  2. Gobsmacked so beautiful x love it x

    Reply
  3. Those elephants are so stunning. Love them!

    Reply

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