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Monday 20 January 2014

Mending vs. Upcycling

I often think of myself as "upcycling" something when, in actuality, I'm just "fixing" it. But there is still a real sense of satisfaction in giving something a new life and saving it from being thrown away.

To mend: to repair something that is broken or damaged.

To upcycle: to reuse discarded objects or material in such a way as to create a product of a higher quality or value than the original.

I recently found a great backpack that had a broken zipper. The material is heavy canvas and it has a bead work patch near the bottom.

I removed the zipper and was so lucky to find another one in my stash that was just the right size. It even matched the beads in the little patch!

Good as new.

I also recently recovered my favorite office chair with some great tweedy fabric that I got for free.
I took the chair apart, did some quick sewing with the machine, and attached the new cushion covers with... HOT GLUE.

The hot glue worked because the chair is screwed back together through the fabric seams which will hold everything in place even if the glue fails. In my sewing and gluing frenzy, I did not think to take "before" photos of the faded orange and sharpie-marker-stained fabric. Oh well.

Both of these projects are more like "mending" than "upcycling", right? 
...Still crafty!

In other homesteading news, the weather has been mild enough to get into the garden. I have been weeding and appreciating my stalwart winter veggies, especially the beautiful leeks.

I have a strong suspicion that these leeks are "Blue Solaise". This is a French heirloom variety of leek and it grows bigger and better than any other variety I have tried. This patch was grown from seeds that I saved from a harvest in my garden two years ago.
Leeks make beautiful flowers that bees and butterflies love.

Leeks also produce a small bulb at their roots, which looks like a little clove of garlic. This bulb will grow into a big, beautiful leek! Leeks are amazing food producers and are hardy and delicious. They are certainly one of the more under-appreciated vegetables.

I am looking forward to the overwintering Brassicas sprouting red and purple broccoli this spring, too.

Also, my four goats are all pregnant and I think they are starting to show!

It is hard to tell if their belly bulges are babies or just a wad of hay and gas. (Lovely)
But the real sign is on the udder. These goats all have firm and perky teats.

Firefly wishes you all a wonderful week.

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