Easy Up-cycling

Summer is always a restless time for me, especially if we aren’t doing a lot of traveling.  So this year I combined my restlessness with the fact that we moved to a new place.  I needed to spruce a couple things up, and start filling up the space in my bigger than the last place house.  My kids have their own room now, which means decorating and DIY-ing to my heart’s content!  And, only increasing my giddiness is the fact that I have a playroom/family room now too, which when you move from an apartment is like heaven.

For me, I knew I didn’t want to spend too much money on the kids.  For one, they are kids.  Two, I imagine their rooms will be changing as they get older, and I can’t imagine myself spending a ton of money re-doing their rooms with every stage of life and fleeting fancy.  So how can you make the most of what you have without breaking the bank?  Try Up-Cycling.  Up-cycling, for those non-crafters out there, is when you take something you have and spice it up, or alter it to make it better. 

My two older children had Classic Pooh as their nursery theme because I just adore Pooh, and reusing themes was a sure way to save money.  My son has now transitioned into a military themed room, and my daughter has a lady bug theme to match her nick name since she was a baby, “bug”.  Since kid’s tastes change rapidly and the hubby’s and mine doesn’t, I wanted to spend the money on new stuff for the master bedroom.  In the master bedroom we originally had a plain white lamp, which is the perfect thing to use for up-cycling because it’s like a blank canvas.

I’m such a fan of the dainty, girly, vintage look, like here and here,  but seriously, that much for a four-year-old’s lamp?   I thought, “there must be a better way!”  Actually, I think what I really thought was “With three kids under the age of 6 I don’t have time to take a shower, much less make adorable ruffle lamps with fabric and a sewing machine!”  But, you know what they do have?  You can buy pre-made edging at the fabric store, of all colors and styles.  Eureka!

So off I went to the fabulous Joann’s fabric store, where I always have a coupon and I know there is a aisle full of ribbon, accents and notions.   For this simple project all you need is measuring tape, ruffle fabric of your choosing, and some fabric glue.  So, I grabbed myself three yards of pre-made ruffle edging, with coupon for $10.  The fabric glue I already had in my stock pile of craft supplies. 


After sizing up the project the best way to do it is one row at a time, ending in the same spot.  Another trick I discovered was pull tight at the end of each row.  You get more out of your fabric.  After completing the ruffles you can choose to accent it any way you want…a ribbon border at the top, a fake flower, jewels.  I made a ribbon flower from this tutorial with ribbon and a lady bug button I already had from the bows I make.  It is a super easy way to up-cycle something you already have and it saved me about sixty bucks!  Super cute, super easy!


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