Lined basket, cross stitch pillows and a denim rag rug.

I love re-purposing. And I love baskets. I especially love lined baskets. So when I have the opportunity to be able to re-purpose a basket simply by spray painting it and adding a lining, I am all over it.

This was a basket that was destined for the trash at work. Christmas time is full of deliveries and this one was a tray of cookies and breads. It was a ghastly purple color, but a nice size and well constructed of a hemp-like material. After attempting to spray paint it a couple of times and finding the color absorbed into the material and turned a garish pink, I determined that it had to be sealed first. So using a high gloss clear sealant, I covered it twice. This did the trick. Then a primer coat of white following by three coats of high glass candy apple red. I only did the outside as it was my intention to line it from the start.

To create the lining, I simply collected an assortment of red strips of fabric from my scrap stash and sewed them together. Then a quick hem and cut and sewed the corners for a nice snug fit. I added a couple of layers of scrap padding to the bottom of the basket and then slipped the lining on. Viola!

Next, since I was already in my sewing room, I decided to finish up a couple of the projects on my “To Get Done” list. The two large cross stitch projects were finally made into pillows. I had bought the upholstery fabric and pillow forms a few weeks ago and so it was just a matter of putting them together. A half hour and they were done. If only the actual cross stitching was that fast!

There was a Stephen King movie marathon on television while I was in my sewing room and was smack dab in the middle of the movie “Christine”, so I thought I would work on another project until the end of the movie. So I grabbed my denim rag rug that I had almost completed. Once I thought I had it done, I ran it through the washer and dryer which gave it a nice soft feel but it also revealed some bare spots.

So, I laid the rug out, marked the areas where I needed to add more fabric and simply sewed while I finished watching the movie. I still wasn’t really happy with the results and determined that the biggest mistake I made was using a white base for the rug, too easily seen through the denim strips. If I were to do this again, I  would start with a base that was either denim or dark blue.

To rectify the problem, I dyed the whole thing using a dark blue color. Once completed, I ran it through two more wash cycles to ensure that any excess dye is removed. Then threw it in the dryer until dry.

I wasn’t entirely happy with how it turned out. Before dyeing, the rug had some really nice color variances, some of the denim used was worn almost white and there is black denim as well. The first wash and dry cycle also made for some nice fraying and you could pick out pocket corners and seams occasionally. These details are now lost since it was dyed.

If I were to do this project again, I would start with much smaller size. Between the denim and the size, it became very cumbersome and difficult to work with and manipulate under the sewing machine needle. In the end, I do like the final result and will take it downstairs to the home theatre room (the ‘denim room’ as it is becoming to be known).

Well, on to working on a few more projects from the list and hopefully will have more to share very soon. Happy crafting, y’all!

About MacCupcake

Obviously, a big Mac fan (my first Mac was the first Mac) and mother to the most awesome kid in the world. A techno-junkie and self-proclaimed geek... I love anything and everything relating to computers. Addicted to collecting Pyrex! Also love making things and figuring out how to make or adapt existing stuff into something new! Always ready to try something new!

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