The normal person throws away clothing every year. A popular homemade art is to make crafts to sell from objects that otherwise would be trash? There are many crafts to make and sell from used materials.
My grandmother uses to take old jeans cut them up into strips and weave small throw rugs. Do they work, yes? Do they last, yes, I have a couple that are almost 40 years old. I washed them a hundred times and that is what makes them show the wear they show from the years of use.
We as consumers (especially in America) have become wasteful with products that could be recycled into homemade crafts that sell from our homes. It’s a shame and it would not take much work to make our trash into possible heirlooms.
Selling homemade craft’s today has gained in popularity. Buyers are seeing the virtue of buying a craft item’s compared with a subpar item made overseas in masses. A positive fact about homemade products is the craftsmanship or craftswomenship, built into the product.
When someone takes the time to craft an object by hand, it becomes more then a common product. They place their feelings and heart into the hand crafted item and gain some pride for doing so.
It’s not, one of 100,000. It’s one of may be only a few, and each one is slightly different. If you consider the old “or out of style” items we discard, the possibilities for working materials is endless. Consider your old, shirts, pants, dresses, blankets, bath and kitchen towels, coats and even socks. This is a huge stockpile of crafting making supplies for great homemade gifts.
So you might think, what are the added costs? Well, you will need a few items to get started. A spool of thread, a needle, a pair of scissors, for a total cost of somewhere less than the cost of the shirt on your back!
Does it take a lot of your time? It takes a little time, but all good things do take time and effort to produce something you are proud of. There are no schedules or time lines you need to meet. Work on homemade crafts with your family or as you watch TV.
What can you do with the handmade items you make? They make wonderful gifts for family or friends. You can sell them from anywhere like your local paper to eBay. If you ask, how to sell crafts, there are consignments, crafts stores, flea markets, the list is endless and the profits can be rewarding.
Back to grandma’s plan of craft attack for rug making. She would cut the pants or whatever into strips about one and a half inches wide. Longer pants meant longer rugs, if you get the idea. Then she would roll up the strips as she placed a stitch in the material and form a round rope, about one half inch in diameter.
If longer lengths of workable rope material were needed, she would stitch the pieces together and build up a longer rope. This technique also helped with shorter cuts of clothing. One a good amount of cloth rope was ready; she would layout the rough shape of the rug she was working on.
Sometimes the rugs shapes where rectangles, sometimes round. For the rectangles ones, she just looped the rope back and forth until it was the size she wanted, or the material ended. Then she would stitch the pieces together about every two inches. Once the piece was held together, she interweaved the rug with a coarser thread with a open stitch. This formed a figure 8 weaving design around the cloth ropes and pulled the rug together as a whole.
One of the rugs I have used for years finally had to be taken from the backdoor of our house. It has been abused for many years and was washed, then out away in my family trunk. You could not buy it today, it was made from the jeans I wore as a child, and now is an heirloom. Used, worn out, made from what otherwise would have been trash. It’s priceless!
Another craft for used materials is quilting. I plan to write a separate article on the art of quilt making later. If you are interested in quilting or looking for patchwork patterns, here is a good place to look. They offer patterns for only 5 cents each. Patchwork quilt patterns