Tuesday, September 15, 2020

DIY Fabric Pumpkins Using Recycled Items (Instead of Toilet Paper Rolls)

Last year, we made fabric pumpkins using toilet paper rolls for the "stuffing," but this is 2020 and well, you know, we don't want to waste any t.p.! lol So what's a girl to do to make cute and easy fabric pumpkins? 

Well, I went digging in the trash! You can watch my video on facebook or through on IGTV to see how I used several repurposed items to create the center of my pumpkins. 
Living a ways from town and craft supply stores, avoiding making extra trips to the store, and trying to keep our cost of goods down, we looked around and found ways to stuff our pumpkins, all while recycling and repurposing items. This also went a long with the theme for our repurposing workshop we held in August. There, I had a few pumpkins made and ask attendees to guess what was insides were made of. 
In this example, I used empty spools of ribbon, with just a little bit of polyester stuffing. Using the spool, we saved it from the trash and reduced our need for as much stuffing. I've also used a "naked" softball (I used the skins to make flowers and had the ugly ball left over) and an empty shipping tape spool.

 Look around and see what kind of goods you can repurpose and save from the landfill. In our workshop, one lady even used a wine bottle for the center of the pumpkin with the stem being the neck of the bottle and cork. It turned out really cute! I've even thought about using the empty container of mixed nuts as the center of one. 

For our fabric, we cut up a skirt we had purchased at a thrift store. I picked this one for its rich colors and textures. In addition, we used some jute twine, a wooden spool, fringe trim, and a silk sunflower for accents. We like using whatever we can find at hand, so we use random trims, ribbon, lace, twigs, and flowers that are in reach on our work table or tidbits left after other jobs. 


These are fun to make and you can create them with a variety of fabrics and trim you have on hand. So look around the house and see what you can use in a new way. You'll feel good making something pretty from something that was headed for the trash! As we say "rescue, recycle, and repurpose!" 

P.S. If you made pumpkins last year, using toilet paper rolls, you've got a hidden stash, just in case you need it ;)

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

It's Show Time!

It's Show Time! When life get's tough, get creative, & keep the show rolling on!
It's Show Time tee benefiting youth livestock show participants

This time last year, I released the "It's Yam Time" tee shirt, in advance of our October county fair. Along came 2020... In June, it was announced that this years county fair in October would be cancelled all together. My heart hurt for all the youth involved with FFA and 4H projects. You see, many of the animals are raised or purchased many months in advance. Some possibly back in 2019, before all the current events. I was one of those youth in the 90's raising animals and there was just a month or so out of the year that we didn't have a calf in the barn, getting it ready to show at the fair. With the proceeds from the livestock show and sale, I put that money towards my first vehicle and college expenses. Due to my involvement in both organizations and my animals, I was awarded several scholarships, learned responsibility, and leadership skills that have made me who I am today. 

The county fair was where we had our first booth for this business, that led to so many more opportunities. In 2019, the Yamboree was our best show to date and we were looking forward to it again this October.
When life gets tough, get creative, and keep the show rolling on.

The very night (in June) I learned of this year's fair closing and the possibility of a new show being organized, I drew up this design. My first thought was that I would create and sell t shirts, with a portion of the sales going to the youth showers. This week, it was announced the there will be a new Upshur Co Youth Expo to be held the third week of October 2020. A show will keep rolling on, with modifications and safety precautions in place. Therefore, I am now releasing this set of tees and will use a portion of the sales to purchase or add on money (depending on how many shirts we sell) to youth projects that make the sale. (when purchasing animals at the fair, it is more of a donation type event as the purchaser doesn't usually keep the animal they bid on.) I am so happy to see that an organization has been created to allow the show continue for the youth. 

The design features all the animals that will be a part of the livestock show - dairy heifers, steers, rabbits, pigs, goat, and chickens. There is also a basket of fall leaves and sweet potatoes and a pie - things that are symbolic of our fall fair season. It's powerful what can happen when we get creative and choose to keep the show rolling on! I truly hope that together we can all make a difference in the youth of our county. 

You can find the two shirts on our website (bleached or baseball), by messaging us, or we will have some available at the Gilmer Area Farmer's Market on September 12 from 5-8 (please note different times for the final farmers market of the season - food trucks and live music as we conclude the farmer's market season.) While you are on our website, be sure to check out all of our other tees and flannels that have a rural / county fair / animal theme going on - such as The Farm that Built Me, Hangin' with my Heifers, I Goat This, or the new Christmas on the Farm.