Friday, June 25, 2010

Re-purposing the old and unwanted.

In the current economic climate, most of us are looking to save a dime here and there and fortunately for the entire planet, it has fueled the “green” revolution and encouraged us to think outside the box and reuse, repurpose and recycle.

What better way to reduce your “carbon footprint” than to purpose used or vintage items, as they were originally meant to be used or to recycle them for a completely new purpose.

reuse • repurpose • recycle

Of course, “going green” is not a new idea to any of us, but as these terms are being bandied about, I wondered what their actual definitions were and how they varied, if at all.

Yes, here I am again, trying to “define” something else. What can I say, I like organization. It is the graphic artist in me.

According to Wikipedia, that constant online source that everyone says is not reliable:

to repurpose
1.     To reuse for a different purpose, on a long-term basis, without alteration.
2.     To alter to make more suited for a different purpose.

to recycle
1. To break down and reuse component materials.
2.  To reuse as a whole.
3.  To collect or place in a bin for recycling.

to upcycle
            1. to convert waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value.

to reuse
1. The act of salvaging or in some manner returning a discarded item into something usable.

So, the jist of it is, they all pretty much can and are used interchangeably.

If you would like to delve more into the whole green movement, check out this link on going green:

I apply the repurpose theory to my home decorating as well as to my art. Thrift store treasures find a new life in my home after a coat of paint and a dash of embellishment. For some examples of my thrifty home décor projects, visit my other blog:

As to my current artisan projects, I have been recycling vintage handbags by embellishing them with my own hand painted artwork and will shortly be adding shoes and jeans to my product list.
I enjoy creating designs that have a retro feel. That might incorporate the design elements of a particular era, such as the 1930’s or as recent as the 60’s.  My designs are often a blending of eras with an Old World, Boho Chic, eclectic feel to them, but always with a repurposed sensibility.
‘til next time,


  1. The bottom pic looks like a Coach purse. Love the painting on it. I like it when people add snippets of personality to everyday objects. Great post!

  2. Hi Diane, (from another Diane) I just found your very inspiring blog and beautiful art. I too love to repurpose items with my art. I love the fact that all of these pieces have a story behind them--beautiful work!!

  3. Gorgeous purses! I too am a repurposing junkie.
    Your blog is so interesting and your art is beautiful!
    I will be sure to continue visiting!

  4. gorgeous purse, I am too obsessed with retro feel everything:)


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