Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Using my stash: recycled glass bottles

If you've never seen my craft room after I've worked in it for awhile, let me tell you why: I will never post a picture of my messy craft room for the entire world to see. :)

I love organization. I read (and collect) books about organization. I even organize for other people. But do you think I can keep my craft room under control? No way!

Part of my problem is that I hoard things. I have an excuse: it's in my genes. My great-grandmother did it, my grandmother does it ... Well, I better stop there since my relatives read my blog, too! :) Let's just say that I have a direct line to those genes!!

At least my older relatives have an excuse: they lived through the Great Depression when it was foolish to throw almost anything away. Me? Well, I just think I'm too cheap, er, frugal to throw away perfectly good items.

And what does this have to do with my craft room and this post (and these pictures)? Well, I have a stash of things I've been collecting because they have great potential as gift containers and what-not. But I haven't used any of them in over two years. So I decided that I need to start making things with them, and if I can't find a good use for them, they have to go in the trash can.

I started with the glass bottles leftover from my good deals on Fuze and Gold Peak tea. I have at least a dozen of them sitting on a shelf taking up space. I saved them because I thought I could fill them with candy or something as a small gift when we had an overnight guest. The only problem is that it takes a lot of M&Ms or Skittles or pretty much any candy to fill one of these things. Do I need to reiterate the fact that I'm cheap? The whole idea was to create an inexpensive gift, so I knew I would never get around to filling them with small candies.

Then I had a brainstorm. We live near the ocean, and I like to capitalize on that when I give gifts to overnight guests. I happened to remember those $1/box Stauffer's whale crackers that my kids love, and I knew it would be the perfect little (inexpensive) gift in one of these bottles. So here you have my first recycled glass bottle gift ... I used a Studio G kids' stamp from Michaels for the large fish. They originally came on plastic knob-type handles, but I unmounted them and just use them on my acrylic block. The blue paper is from Creative Memories. I have several sheets of it since I never could find a good use for it in my scrapbooks.
See the lid? I needed to cover up the Gold Peak Tea logo, so I freehanded my own mini fish "cracker". I thought he was pretty cute. Then I added a tag around the neck that says, "Relax," which is what I hope each of my guests does when they visit. I tied it with some green and blue swirly fiber.

I was pretty pleased with it!


Liz said...

Have you seen bottles like that filled with some kind of bird feed, then there are also several little tiny things that you have to try to find: a penny, miniature animals, nail, thumbtack, etc. and you put a list of the things in it on the side . . . just a quiet toy option. Another bottle-using idea . . .

Sophia said...

Oooh! I had forgotten about that idea! Thanks!! :)

T. Kaiser said...

As well you should be pleased - a clever gift; and, in keeping with your blog title, it's frugal :)

I have enjoyed reading your blog and seeing your artwork. Thank you for sharing!

T. Kaiser said...

By the way, did I see Pfaltzgraff Tea Rose in the background of one of your photos? That's my set too!

Sophia said...

Yes, I have been collecting Tea Rose since I was 16. My sister and I both picked our patterns, and I was fortunate enough to pick an enduring one. She picked "Poetry" (which I still think is beautiful), and they discontinued it a year later. Most of my collection has come from thrift stores and yard sales, as you might have suspected. :)