Posts tagged "umbrella"

Upcycling ideas: bows & flowers & tins & umbrellas & everything

It’s been a while since I’ve done a “links round-up” post about some of the things that I’ve been emailed or spotted around the greater internet recently so … here goes!


  • With the major gift giving time of the year looming in the near-distance, I love this idea of reusing colourful children’s pictures to make gift bows instead of using generic plastic ones. Of course the same idea can be applied to any old paper – as the tutorial shows black-on-white newspaper text looks pretty cool too.
  • I’m always a sucker for stuff made with drinks cans but these flowers are rather cute – I especially like the painted ones.
  • Tinplategirl emailed recently her new tutorials site about working with tinplate – the smooth heavier-weight metal from various large tins & cans. The site includes a number of free videos introducing the craft – where to find the materials and how to work with them – and how-to PDFs for making all sorts of things (some free, some costing up to $9.95). A great resource for people wanting to move on from working with the more malleable drinks can metal.
  • And speaking of large tins, this tiered unit made from old biscuit/chocolate tins has been around for a while now but I thought it was worth mentioning because it’s a lot of fun and useful.
  • Another thing that’s a bit old but feels newly relevant given the sudden switch to autumn this week: how-to recover an umbrella frame. Great for revamping a brolly or fixing it if it gets torn – double up your green points by using old fabric (an old tent? old synthetic clothes?) for the umbrella and reclaiming the best bits of the original fabric for other craft projects (a water resistant swimming bag? or to make foam bath cushion?)
  • Oh, and if you haven’t seen it, do check out, which started as a 30 day/30 upcycled things project but is now a wider collection of upcycling ideas. No how-tos but lots of inspiring, pretty pictures.

Have you seen any fun or interesting reusing or recycling projects recently? Or have you got anything you’d like to show off of your own creation? Do leave a comment below!

How can I reuse or recycle the metal frame from an old umbrella?

Over on the “suggest an item” page, the bookstorebabe said:

Broken umbrellas were done a few years back, but most of the suggestions were reuses for the umbrella fabric.

How about specifically the metal frame, as is or taken apart? Any clever ideas, anyone?

Over on the old umbrella page, Pamela mentioned a lovely idea:

I saw broken umbrella frames used by a theatre troupe, they knotted streamers to the frame, and they blew in the wind, they held it like a rain umbrella, but it was fanciful and lovely and attracted attention. This was a walking troupe, on the street, attracting people to their performance.

While most of us probably wouldn’t want to become street performers with our old umbrellas, I wonder if a frame with streamers placed in the garden would act like a portable scarecrow…?

Nude umbrella frames remind me of swifts, for balling yarn from skeins – but I suspect they might have too many sharp bits/catches for nice yarn. Anyone used/modified one for that?

Any other reusing or recycling ideas? What about ideas that use it in parts rather than whole?

(Photo by LilGoldWmn)

Awesome reducing, reusing & recycling links

Here’s this week’s awesome reducing, reusing & recycling links round-up:

How can I reuse or recycle broken umbrellas?

UmbrellaAfter the post the other week about umbrella covers, it made me think about the umbrellas themselves.

I have repaired my current umbrella on a number of occasions whenever the cover become detached from the spikes but the fabric at the tips is getting weak now from its frequent visits from the sewing kit. I’ve also had to throw them away in the past because they’ve done that inverting in the wind thing, snapped a prong and refused to close properly from then on.

So any suggestions on how the mechanism or the (cute, strong, water-resistant) fabric could be reused? Any tips for fixing them would also be appreciated!

(Photo by neza)

How can I reuse or recycle … an umbrella cover?

UmbrellaAnnie sent in a suggestion at the weekend:

I have an umbrella cover – it’s a pretty black and pink tough fabric, originally from Accessorise. Unfortunately i left the umbrella that went with it on a train… any ideas what i could do with the case?

I usually have the opposite problem – losing the cover – so I’d probably just stash the spare cover in a drawer until I lost the one from my new umbrella but aside from that, any other ideas? Ones that would take advantage of the cover’s prettiness and water resistant would be best but obviously any suggestions are welcome.

(I couldn’t find a photo of one hence the generic umbrella shot but for those that don’t know, the covers are sheaths of fabric that fit over the closed up umbrella to protect the fabric of the umbrella and if the brolly is wet, to stop water getting all over the contents of your bag etc. They’re usually made from the same fabric as the umbrella and sometimes have a tie/toggle at the open end to tighten it around the base.)

(Photo by vale)