Y’all know what they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure! Since I started Belle of the Barns, I’ve always loved using pieces that are repurposed, old, or even common household things that you probably have lying around. It’s just a normal day around here to find me using pages from an old hymnal or pieces of a vintage license plate. I have found that the most simple things can take your crafts to the next level with a little creativity. Today, I’ve got 5 things I want to share that you probably have at home, that you do NOT need to throw away!
How many times have you chipped a salad plate and tossed the whole plate? Well, no more, friends! Broken glass and ceramic pieces are such a great way to add texture and dimension to your projects. Of course, it’s so fun to find vintage dinnerware to make a statement on a craft…but you can do so much with just a plain plate, too.
You can see that I keep a stash of broken plates here at the shop, I like to incorporate it however I can. Soon, I am teaching a class using broken plates to make some mosaic art. I can’t wait to see how those turn out!
Oh my goodness, how many times have you bought cute napkins for a holiday and stuffed the 5 leftover ones back in your pantry? Surely it’s not just me! If you’ve got some of those, it’s time to get them back out! Napkins are so simple to add color or pattern to a craft. I recently used them to add color to some of my Spring Church windows and I absolutely loved it. No one would ever know these windows got their color from a simple dinner napkin.
This is a favorite. Buttons are one of my favorite things to embellish with! I recently snagged a whole collection of vintage buttons, but you don’t have an entire stash to use them in your crafts. You can often find buttons or small broaches at thrift store or a yard sale. Many times if you buy a new shirt or jacket, there will be a spare button or two attached to the tag…don’t throw those away! Buttons are a simple and easy way to take a craft from boring…to extra. And if y’all have been here long, you know I’m a little bit extra!
I know you’re thinking that cardboard wouldn’t make for a pretty project, but hang with me! Cardboard makes a great starting point for projects. While it is an easy material to cut, it’s also sturdy enough to use as a base, to cut out shapes, and paint over. I used cardboard as the base of these Paper Mache Bunnies, and it worked perfectly! Next time those Amazon boxes show up to your door (or better yet, a Belle of the Barns package 😉), hold off before throwing them away. I think you’ll love getting on more use out of them.
Magazine and Newspapers
Last, but definitely not least, keep those old magazines and newspapers! I love to use newspaper as a background, and you can find me using it that way often. It’s even more special when you can get your hands on vintage newspaper! I just love something about them being frozen in time. You can also use newspaper or magazines to form shape to 3D projects, and for paper mache. I even love to cut out letters from magazine for a funky spin on a craft. If you have any old newspaper or magazine laying around, maybe you’ll give them one more look now!
So what have you been throwing away that you might start keeping? What would you add to my list? There are so many things you’ve probably had right under your nose that could be taking your crafts to the next level! Look around and see what you find, maybe even in the trash can. 😏