Art Elements April Theme Challenge – Repurpose

The AE Theme Challenge this month is Repurpose chosen by Lesley. Great subject, and I wish I had more time to work on it. The day job kind of takes away my creative energy at times, and this month is no exception! However I did manage to do a few things!

The first thing I thought of for the theme was something I had been thinking about for a long time. I remembered I had this magazine that repurposed those desiccant containers you get in pill bottles into beaded beads. I set out to find that magazine in my stash.

I’m glad I found it, because it was actually driving me nuts as to where it was. Here are some photos of me in the process of making some of these beads.

So the first one I made, I liked ok. But noticed on the end that you could see the white container through the ends. So I got a sharpie out for the next one, and colored the ends so they didn’t look so white.

Then I made a few more of these beads, and quite honestly, I was done with it. If I get back to them, I’ll try some different shapes and sizes of beads. Here are the ones I made.

The next subject was wire. I get all kinds of wire scraps from my boyfriend when we work on electrical projects. I can’t throw it out so I keep it. I have given some away, and finally got to work annealing the wire that I already had stripped.

I learned how to anneal it in the kiln from Maria Richmond, and it’s a quick and easy way to anneal your thick copper wire. I decided to make some charm holders, but you could also use them as bead frames. Here’s the first one. The steps included shaping the wire, antiquing in liver of sulpher, buffing, and finally tumbling for strength. Which is ironic because I ran it in the kiln to make it softer and now I need it to be strong again!

I made two, and then I was pretty much done with that as well. I need way more practice on adding thinner wire to a frame.

Finally, I did what I enjoy doing with old glass bottles – making beads from them.

They go from whole bottles to shards to beads! I have so many bottles saved, waiting to be beads, I could never really get to the them all. But I hate tossing them, especially the gorgeous green and blue bottles. The Reyka bottle is a slight gray color, so I’m looking forward to doing that and seeing if the beads will stay gray or not. I also want to make a little glass bowl with the bottom of that bottle, but have to perfect my cutting skills!

My next post on Art Elements will be a little demo on how I go about making them. I know you can find tutorials out there and people do them differently, I’m just going to show you how I do it! I also make spoon rests with the bottles – beer bottles are great for that because they are a perfect size for standard serving spoons. Wine bottles make great cheese trays! I have tons if anyone is interested in purchasing any.

This is a blog hop so I hope you hop around to see what everyone else made! Thanks Lesley for the great inspriational subject.

16 thoughts on “Art Elements April Theme Challenge – Repurpose”

  1. I love those beaded beads Sue…such a great idea….and yor recycles glass beads are very special too…well done. Many thanks for joining us in this challenge.

  2. First of all, I've always wondered what those dessicant things could be useful for .. and those beads remind me of Little Miss Muffet's Tuffet 🙂 … I'll be waiting to see how the glass bottles become beads too. Alysen

  3. I saw your post at the beginning of the month and had no idea that the containers would end up as beads… they're fantastic! Love the wire work, and I'm looking forward to seeing how you make your bottle beads. I've always fancied a go at that.

  4. ooo yes please on the tutorial/demo on the bottles into beads, I have some I keep meaning to do but just never get round to it as I worry that I will smash the bottle into smithereens!

  5. Your beaded beads are beautiful and i love how you can repurpose those annoying little plastic things! I really love those blue beads from the glass bottle. Just gorgeous! The shape of the copper wire pieces are perfect for earrings or for dangling charms on a necklace.

  6. I look forward to the tutorial. We belong to a lot of wine clubs, so I always have a steady stream of glass coming through here…It's great you gave a never-ending supply of wire! The charm holder is great and something I should do sometime.
    I love the beaded beads, but I have never seen one of those pill bottle things….

  7. The beaded beads look so cool! What stitch was it? I can see they might be a little tedious. I love your glass recycled beads – that blue! And I like the texture you've them. You are a veteran at up cycling – what a great way to reuse the bottles.

  8. The way you took these items that would clearly be considered trash and transformed them into works of art is absolutely amazing! I cannot wait to see your tutorial for the recycled glass beads. I had no idea that this technique was do-able by lampwork artists. for some reason, I thought it had to be more of an industrial technique. How exciting to be wrong!

  9. Your beaded beads are just gorgeous, Sue, and well worth the suspenseful wait! 😉 I wonder what you'll use them in. Your glass projects are awesome – beautiful beads (looking forward to reading about how you make them), and I just love those spoon rests! The charm holder(s) have turned out well too.

  10. Your beaded beads are really cool but I LOVE your recycled beads they have a very old look to them almost like antique melon beads (which I adore) I am looking forward to seeing how you make them!

  11. Your beaded beads are really cool but I LOVE your recycled beads they have a very old look to them almost like antique melon beads (which I adore) I am looking forward to seeing how you make them!

  12. I wondered what you would do with those dessicant vials when you shared a peek on insta. I love the beaded covers but will have to find something else do with mine since I don't know how to bead like that. The copper components are awesome and I wonder if stripping wire is as therapeutic as popping bubble wrap. 🙂 The recycled bottle glass beads are the best, especially the blue ones.

  13. I wondered what you would do with those dessicant vials when you shared a peek on insta. I love the beaded covers but will have to find something else do with mine since I don't know how to bead like that. The copper components are awesome and I wonder if stripping wire is as therapeutic as popping bubble wrap. 🙂 The recycled bottle glass beads are the best, especially the blue ones.

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