Monday 11 February 2013

Trash to Treasure - No 3

I really wanted to start this post by thanking everyone that has left me such lovely comments over the past week.  You have really confirmed to me how much I love to craft and how wonderful this blogging malarky is.  Who knew a year ago when I started blogging how addictive it was and that is really down to you, all my fellow crafters out there in what I think of as a virtual community.  Everyone has been so willing to help when I didn't know how to do so many things but best of all is the sharing.  I know it might sound a bit soppy but I think you will agree with me there is such a generous sharing of ideas and knowledge, sharing of art and inspiration and a willingness to encourage and support out there and that spurs me on to try harder to make beautiful things.  I might not always manage it but I really enjoy the trying!  Thank you to everyone that has liked what I have been doing here on my blog enough to follow me.  I still check out my statistic page and colour in my map each time a visitor from a new country pops up.  How cool it is to have coloured in 68 countries to date.  I have been brushing up on my Geography and thank goodness for the internet or I would still be searching the atlas for the whereabouts of Kazakhstan.......ok ....... and lots of other countries I only vaguely knew where to look for!!!  I have just spotted Moldova on my list of visitors and I will have to look that one up too!!!  I still need a visitor or two from Alaska though as that is a major colouring job!!! ;-)

Now as I suspected when I decided to do a regular Trash to Treasure post it is going to be two weekly!!!  So without further ado my trash this week was old jeans and this is what I did with them.

The jeans have been torn into strips, frayed and fashioned into flowers and ribbons!  As I wondered how to use the flowers I had a huge pile of very large flowers that were in need of a storage solution sitting on my desk and I had this box (actually it was a set of 3 nested boxes I bought some time ago) and decided to make a pretty home for my pretty flowers kindly gifted to me by my friend Barbara.

I white washed my wooden box with acrylic paint liberally thinned with water.  Just to make sure that the wood colour was toned down a bit as I wanted to try out an image transfer technique on a 3D object rather than the flat ones I have done this on before.  That is when the Trash to Treasure ethos popped in to my head and I decided to print my images on to unused instruction sheets that I have left over from previous classes I have taught.

So I found a lovely blue and white Toile image on the internet and I  printed out several sheets (ink jet printer) on my recycled instructions!!

Then working on a side at a time I trimmed pieces of my toile print roughly to size and then you need to work fairly quickly for step one of this technique.  Liberally coat the piece with acrylic paint - I am using white as my print has a white background.  Work quickly and evenly coat the side with a thick coat of paint.

 Next press the printed image onto the side into the wet paint.  Have a piece of kitchen roll handy for mop up of excess paint and an old plastic card (gift card or similar) to gently at first press the paper over the piece and then being careful not to tear the paper smooth it out and against the side making sure you have good adhesion.  Then it is time to have a coffee and let it all dry.  You can use a heat gun if you want to speed up this process.

 When it is totally dry it is time to wet it again!!!!!  I use a paint brush to coat the back of the paper with water and leave it a minute or two to soak into the paper.  Then use your finger to rub the paper and gradually remove the top layer of paper to reveal the image below.  If you have not done this before then be careful.  If you rub too hard you will remove the image entirely.  Gently does it.  There will be bits that don't work but don't worry as this adds to the shabby chic look and the over all charm of the image transfer.  There was a slight problem using the recycled paper in that the black ink did start to bleed.  I manage to avert disaster by rubbing away from the revealed print so as not to transfer the ink back on to the transferred image.

Let your image dry out again and then take a piece of kitchen towel and gently buff off any large stray bits of paper peelings.  Then carry on working to cover the entire box.  This technique is messy but I think it is worth it.

Here is the outside finished.

And then I used more of the printed paper cut to size and glued into position to cover the inside of the box as you can see here.  

I inked all my edges with Chipped Sapphire Distress ink.

Including the inside edges  and then gently sanded the whole piece to shabby it up some more.

And here is my finished Trash to Treasure piece with its recycled denim embellishments.

and here it is filled with pretty flowers - perfect!  Gotta love a bit of gorgeous storage!!! (I am soooooo modest!!!! ;-))  I love this image transfer technique.

I am in the middle of making a video of this technique and using it on the card I am going to give away this on my next Trash to Treasure post.  I wanted to get this post up first as it is a bit long and I will post the card with video later today or early tomorrow dependent on You Tube upload times.  So if you want to win the as yet unseen card then please comment on this post.  Have you tried this technique?  It is a bit messy to do but I think it gives a lovely result and I hope you like it too.

I have done the draw for the Trash to Treasure No 2 card and the winner is.........


Thank you Eliza and to everyone that took the time to comment I really do appreciate it.

That's it for this post.  Pop back later to see the card you could win if you leave a comment on this post.
Hope you enjoyed this Trash to Treasure project and try it out for yourself.

Thanks for popping by x


  1. Beautiful box and wonderful instuctions. I never thought of just using paint to transfere an image.

  2. Hi Helen
    I have just nominated you for the Liebster Award, see my blog today for more information

  3. What a beautiful box and the details of how to do this technique are fab.

  4. Oh, I do love your box - it's beautiful and the denim flowers are genius. The effect from the transfer technique is lovely - another one to try one day :) Elizabeth xx

    PS: the flowers from Barbara are stunning too!

  5. Oh thats me Im the winner yippee, regardless I really enjoy reading your blog and your instructions are perfect, your art so versatile.


  6. Gorgeous box Helen and such a simple technique too! Something I am going to try on a wooden frame I have. I also often re-use paper for printing, like the back of my Asda home-delivery order receipts. There's usually two or three sheets that need to be re/upcycled. Thanks for sharing this and keep up the fabulous works :0) Mo x


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave me a comment. I always love to read them and if you have a question for me I will reply. Thanks again, Helen x
PS have had stop Anonymous comments as I am getting a lot of spam. I am so sorry to any real commenters that this affects. Feel free to email me if you want to and I will get back to you that way instead x

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