Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Festive Holiday Events!

‘Tis the season for reuse crafting! As the holiday season approaches, it's important to be mindful of the amount of waste created over the holidays. With all the merry festivities comes a mountain of used wrapping paper and purchases of new items, which ends up creating a great amount of waste!

This year, let's try having a Waste-Less Holiday! Celebrate an eco-friendly holiday season by making an effort to decrease our waste before and after the holidays. Instead of buying new, why not head to the Reuse Centre to pick up an artificial tree and deck it out with some creative ornaments? Or, try upcycling Reuse Centre items and create some one of a kind gifts.

To get your creative holiday juices flowing, the Reuse Centre is hosting a number of festive crafting sessions and reuse workshops at the Reuse Centre to provide hands-on holiday reuse crafting. We hope that you will join in the holiday fun!

Free Drop-in Winter Crafting Session

Bring the family for this free crafting session where we will be creating snowmen by using reusable items. This is a great opportunity to get the children engaged with holiday crafting and to check out our holiday reuse ideas that you can make at home. The workshop room will be decorated in reuse Christmas cheer to get you in the holiday mood!

Date: Thursday, December 1st
Time: 4-7pm
Where: Reuse Centre Workshop Room
Ages: Children 5 years and up recommended, parent/guardian must stay to supervise

Image Credit: Craftaholics Anonymous

Deck the Halls DIY (#586371) 

This special reuse workshop is just for adults! Cozy up to the DIY fireplace as we show you how to transform ordinary household items into festive home decor. Repurpose old lightbulbs to make hanging ornaments, craft a wine cork Christmas tree and try out some paper-free gift wrapping alternatives. All craft materials and some light refreshments (tea and cookies) provided.

Date: Thursday, December 8th
Time: 6:30-8:30pm
Where: Reuse Centre Workshop Room
Ages: Adult
Cost: $18

Register: through eReg or by calling 311 (course # 586371)

Image Credit:Pink When

All I Want is a Waste-Less Crafty Christmas (#586370)

This reuse workshop is for the whole family. Make a frosty snowman light-up jar, a decorative holiday wreath and Christmas tree ornaments with puzzle pieces. While waiting for your project to dry, try playing one of our winter-themed games, and nibble on some tasty treats. All materials provided. Adult must register and attend with the child(ren) registered in the course.

Date: Saturday, December 10th
Time: 10am -noon
Where: Reuse Centre Workshop Room
Ages: 6 years - Adult
Cost: Child $8 / Adult $15

Register: through eReg or by calling 311 (course #586370)

Image Credit:Club Chica Circle

Happy Holiday Crafting!

Friday, 4 November 2016

Reused Halloween at the Reuse Centre

Halloween has come and gone for another year. That means it's time to put away the costumes and decorations until next year. This year for Halloween, our blog team decided to focus on reuse for our costume ideas. We left the theme of reuse open to interpretation. Our ideas included borrowing an old Halloween costume from a friend or family member, purchasing a second-hand costume, wearing a Halloween costume from a previous year, and creating a new costume from reused or repurposed material. Here's our showcase of reused, repurposed, and upcycled Halloween costumes.


I made this 1880s bustle skirt last year, entirely out of reused materials, though I confess I did buy the pattern new. The dark blue underskirt and white panel are both made from curtains, and the light blue over-skirt is made out of a tablecloth. I already had the lace edging in my sewing stash, from a long ago trip to the Reuse Centre!

The bustle pad (basically a pillow that you strap around your waist under your skirt) is made of an old pillowcase I already had. The blouse came straight from my closet. I reused the costume again this year, and given the time it took to make, you can bet I'll be looking for every excuse to wear it again!


Every year when I think about what I want to be for Halloween, I set a few rules: one is to incorporate my normal wardrobe and supplies at home, as much as possible; the second is to have a work-appropriate outfit.  Restrictions help breed creative solutions and I believe it has made my Halloween costumes thrifty with minimal waste. Here are a few costumes I've created:

Cap'n Crunch

Cruella de Vil

and this year, Olive Oyl

To create Olive Oyl, I safety-pinned a piece of yellow scrap ribbon on a black skirt and pinned cotton ribbon trims around the collar and sleeves of my red blouse. For my mate, Popeye, we taped yellow foam to a black polo shirt, cut up a red place mat for the collar, and borrowed a captain's hat and pipe.


I crafted this Rubik's Cube costume last year and wore it again this year. My goal for the costume was to only use materials that are available at the Reuse Centre. It was very simple to create. I cut off the bottom flaps and three of the top flaps of  an empty moving box and covered the box with black poster paper. I used scrap booking glue runners to hold the paper in place but any glue or tape will work. The colourful squares were made out of file folders! I measured and cut out 6-7 squares in each colour and glued them to the existing black paper. Then I just tied some yarn to the front flap and back of the box. Voilá, I had an affordable and unique Halloween costume made entirely out of reused materials!

We had fun thinking outside of the box creating our Halloween costumes and look forward to reusing them in future years. Do you have any reuse themed costume ideas? Share them in the comments section. 

All photos provided by volunteers and Reuse Centre staff

Vanessa (Staff)