Upcycling is by far my favorite type of crafting! It is a true expression of creativity and the possibilities are only limited by your imagination. It's simply amazing to me, the things I've seen people create out of other people's discards. I still don't participate in this type of crafting as much as I'd love to but boy do I love to dabble.
While exploring Carnation, WA last summer my mom and I wandered into a thrift store and came across these....I'm not even sure what they were (maybe plant pots??) but I was in LOVE. The distressed metal and shape called to me and for $2 each I couldn't resist bringing them home, even though I had no idea what they we're destined to be at the time.
So they sat and sat and sat some more until one day I realized they'd make beautiful dresses! The metal at the top was perfect for a corset style and begged for use with my Steampunk Debutant G45 papers. That's all it took and I was off turning my vision into a work of art.
The first thing I did was wash down the metal. Then I picked out my papers; blue being my all time favorite and butterflies being one of my favorite craft embellishments. I held my paper up against the inside of each section, traced the metal then cut out each piece before gluing it to the inside of the metal.
With the hard part out of the way I moved on to finding the perfect accents. I glued an old broach to the front and some lacy ribbon to the inside. Then I cut out some matching butterflies from my leftover paper and glued them to the shirt joints.
It was beautiful but still felt like it needed something so I went digging in my room again and came up with a mask I'd worn with a costume I'd made a couple years back. Who knew it'd have a second use one day! I glued it to the back of the corset giving the dress a lovely old fashioned steampunk feel.
But I didn't stop there! The Halloween costume I had made was a gorgeous turquoise gown and I still had extra fabric leftover so I cut and sewed a piece to create a train on the back of the dress. After gluing it to the waistline (over the nose piece of the mask) I tied a matching blue ribbon around it. This was great because it held the fabric and mask in place while they dried. Yay, hands-free drying!
Finally, my vision was complete and it was just as beautiful as I'd imagined it would be. All it took was some creativity and willingness to dig for treasures.
If you haven't given upcycling a try yet I would strongly suggest you do. It's so amazing to see the results of your creative passions come to life before your eyes...and I love seeing the look on people's faces when they find out what things used to be. It's priceless when they go back and look at all the fine details more closely.