Scrap Woollen Quilt

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RUDE Girl was not well for a couple of days this week.  And when you do on-line volunteering you are snowed under when you get back to the computer.  That’s my excuse for this Friday’s late blog post.

A follower of Rude Record’s blog posted a lovely article this week from Linda Holliday in Missouri.  Linda writes poignantly about her mother’s quilting with scrap fabric and old clothes.  I related very much when Linda highlighted that she had made a quilt from new polyester fabric but somehow it did not quite have the homely feel and character as her mother’s quilts.  It’s a reason that I too left behind sewing with new fabric in the late 1980s.

You can read Linda’s article here.

Reading her beautiful story took me back to the middle of last year 2014, when I started planning a quilt for my daughter Rebecca and her partner Danny.  Of course, it goes without saying that recycled fabric was going to be used.  My choice of fabric was wool for warmth because this throw rug was going to be taken to winter football games.

However, the recycled wool fabric had to be sourced as it was discovered.  This took a couple of months but it was well worth the search.  It makes for an interesting story as presented in the video below.  This video is a shortened version that was made to accompany the gift.  I have made it especially for this blog post.

https://youtu.be/Mui1lXyGFWw

You can also read more about the making of this quilt in a previous blog post at this link below.
https://ruderecord.wordpress.com/2014/09/26/scavenger-saint/

Beat The Man and use up your scraps, be it food or fabric!

RUDE Repairs

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RUDE has been travelling around this last week and we are still on the road.  This week’s blog post will be short and sweet.

Before we left home, we tried some Selley’s Shoe Glue which came highly recommended from a Byron Bay Shoemaker.  We have glued the bits needing to be repaired.  As yet RUDE Girl has not had a chance to test the repair on these boots which were scored from a neighbour’s GARAGE SALE for $4 total.  Check out the video below.

https://youtu.be/-BElu16Odkw

RUDE girl will mend anything, even old undies, with a bit of life left in them.  The $22 for these Bonds trunks is a bit over the top, so we try to buy up big when they are on special for half price.  These are worth framing at $22 but for $10 they are definitely worth mending.  Check out the video below.

https://youtu.be/SwboZcw0VYg

On our travels this week, RUDE girl scored a little round vintage sewing basket.

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Vintage Sewing Basket circa 1970s

I have seen these in Vinnies and The Salvos charity stores for $6 to $8, and not in as good as condition.  This little cutie cost $1 but it required a quick fix repair job, as explained in the video below:

https://youtu.be/cNIVPT4z96w
RUDE boy has worn a large hole through another pair of his vintage red tab Levi’s.  You may have read that US Levi stores and outlets are giving 20 per cent off vouchers for old jeans.  You can read more here.  If this incentive was in Australia, there is no way the Levi company would be getting RUDE Boy’s vintage jeans.  They are priceless and cannot be bought back.

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RUDE Boy’s priceless vintage red tab Levi denim jeans ready for sashiko mending.

I have unpicked the seams, so that when I return home next week, I can start to sashiko mend a third pair of RUDE boy’s jeans.  Check out the video below.

https://youtu.be/wk8OzEhG3aU

Beat The Man and repair!  It’s fun and very rewarding.

A Few Favourite Things

The best things in life are unexpected – because there were no expectations.

Eli Khamarov

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A favourite children’s book rescued from landfill. Was originally a library book.

This Friday’s blog post is going to arrive late, and a bit wanting.  It is 7.30 pm in Melbourne, Australia and RUDE has been unexpectedly distracted.  And like the quote above when there are no expectations wonderful things do happen.

Firstly before we share what we have been doing, I want to let you know that in last week’s blog post I was not really crying at the funeral of our old oven.  It was staged for the first owners of the house.  They had built the house, and were very kind to us when we bought it off them.  We send them details of what is happening to their old home once or twice a year.

Anyway back to what unexpectedly distracted us this afternoon.  RUDE went down to our recycling facilities Tip Shop.  We go about once a week these days.  The place is overrun with market traders and on-line sellers who are ruthless.  We are only interested in things for our personal use.  We prefer to scavenge around when it is quiet, and today it was because it has been very cold in Melbourne.

We had a great score today with six contemporary style dining room chairs in very good condition.  I also managed to pick up a big bag of garments for refashion.  We scored a working toaster, a brand new kettle, a 1976 sewing book by Woman’s Day, a small bedside chest of drawers and some other bits and bobs.

Of course when we got all these things home there was work involved.  Clothes have to be soaked overnight.  The chairs had to be vacuumed and wiped down.  And the bedside table had to be cleaned and positioned for immediate service.

It was then dinner time and my blog post had not been given any thought, other than I must write it.  This week we will share just a few things that we have scored for next to nothing but have used over and over again.  It’s a good example of what people throw away.  And what other people, like us, make very good use of. 

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A compressor rescued from landfill. It was working but had a broken air gauge. RUDE boy repaired it and the gauge is working now.

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Water pressure unit for all sorts of cleaning jobs around the house. Rescued from landfill. It did not work. RUDE Boy replaced the power lead and it works now, yey!

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RUDE’S three favourite knives.

The knives come from various places.  The top knife is amazingly sharp and was made in Portugal.  it’s great for cutting and slicing meat.  It cost $1.00 at a little charity shop in rural Victoria.

The middle knife is serrated and is great for slicing tomatoes.  It cost $0.00 and was found in the rubbish bin at the Tip Shop.

The bottom knife is a gem, and we have never been able to find this brand of knife in the shops or online from memory.  It is made in Italy, and is an all-purpose knife that cuts a treat.  It probably cost 50 cents in a charity shop many years ago.  It has never needed to be sharpened.

There was absolutely every expectation these knives were blunt when they were taken home by us.  All three have exceeded expectation, and have bought such joy to the task of food preparation. 

I will be showing in a future blog post our new chairs but I will share the very dirty toaster we bought it for $1.00.  We only ever pay that much for this type of electrical item as again we expect it not to be working.

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Very dirty Ronson brand crumpets and bread toaster. RUDE Boy has it on the sink for testing and cleaning.

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Orange handbag bag with chocolate-brown handles. Brand unknown. Not leather but loved the colour and shape.

Beat The Man by not expecting too much.  Anything over and above can turn out to be the best thing!

Stuff with Soul

Ordinary men live among marvels and feel no wonder, grow familiar with objects and learn nothing new about them.  George Henry Lewes

Eventually everything connects – people, ideas, objects. The quality of the connections is the key to quality per se.  Charles Eames

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Two Japanese women with a Sony Aibo robotic dog

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This morning RUDE read this article about how Sony has closed down its Aibo robotic dog repair service.  We hope our followers read the article because it is what inspired our blog post this Friday.

The title of the article indicates it’s a sad story.  RUDE does not see it that way.  Yes, the story is heartfelt but for us it is also hopeful.  If these robotic dogs are repaired for as long as possible, they will not end up in landfills, and their spare parts will be reused.  By all accounts the repair of Aibos is keeping a technician in rewarding work.  But he does indicate getting the parts is difficult, and going to become more so.  What a challenge for someone to come along and solve this dilemma.

There is research written about humans and why to varying degrees we love inanimate objects.  RUDE Girl can relate because a few years ago I performed a funeral for our 37 years’ old oven.  It just could not be repaired anymore, and parts were getting harder to source.

Old Oven

Westinghouse wall oven with a fahrenheit scale that was given a fitting funeral after 37 years service.

Oven's Funeral 1

Before leaving for the appliance graveyard.

Oven burial 2

Our Westinghouse oven at its final resting place.


The link below is a good read and also makes mention to a funeral for a microwave.  And in the video about the Aibo robotic dogs, in the above article, there is also a funeral for a pack of them.

There can be no denying that RUDE likes certain stuff or objects.  We rescue and repair unloved and oftentimes broken and worn things.   How do we reason our love of other people’s junk.

RUDE believes there are all different types of love, and we think if people get their heads around love in this way, then it becomes more comfortable to express love for their stuff.

RUDE is big on repair and mending stuff, we love to do it.  Therefore we require objects to work on and must go seeking them out.  We do not always love the stuff we bring home but we do love the potential that this stuff may contribute to our lives.

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RUDE Boy’s second pair of sashiko mended red tab Levi jeans.

The love for the object grows as our hands and brains move into action to inject some of our soul into the thing.  For example, many of you know I have been sashiko mending RUDE Boy’s Levi jeans [above photo] that he loves to wear.

Whilst I appreciated the fact that these jeans were secondhand and cost very little, I have developed a stronger connection [or love] to them, now that I have spent many hours mending them.  When I look at my hand work, walking around on RUDE Boy’s legs, it stirs in me something special, that I never felt before, when I looked at his jeans.

Here is a link to an article about loving inanimate objects.
http://www.psmag.com/health-and-behavior/history-humans-loving-inanimate-objects-75192

Beat The Man and lovingly care for your stuff.  In RUDE’S opinion, it will be more meaningful if you develop a relationship to your things by spending time and effort saving and repairing them.

RUDE on Recycling and Rhetoric

“The values we live by are worth more when we pass them on.”  Author of Foundations of a Better Life

Today RUDE Girl finally realised that what RUDE does is definitely frugal.  We re-use and re-purpose.  We make do and mend.  We are NOT modern-day upcyclers.  We were the children of menders and repairers.  There was no excess of stuff to be frivolous with, in order to satisfy creative desire.

This article on upcycling is definitely NOT what we do, and we do not aspire to do our recycling in this manner.  We hope if you are conflicted about what it is you do, in relation to the type of re-cycling you undertake, then this article will clarify it for you.

For this week’s frugal Friday blog post, we just want to share a few scrapbook moments.  It’s a little glimpse into what we have been doing.  It’s very cold in Melbourne, Australia so RUDE being homebodies tend to hibernate at home and potter around.

Yesterday we did venture out to visit RUDE boy’s father in hospital.  He’s 86 years of age and undergoing surgery.  On the way home we stopped in a rest area behind some shops, to have our BYO refreshments, and RUDE boy just could not help but look through a pile of rubbish [photo below].

And yes, he found a few bits and pieces that he salvaged for possible future projects.  You can see the blue vacuum cleaner in the foreground.  He cut the cord off and took the clips and base.  He found some handles that he unscrewed from a security screen door.

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RUDE Boy loves a good scavenge through a pile of rubbish.

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Struggling ratepayers dealing with rate increases above CPI, foot hefty cost for three council officials to attend a conference in Mexico.

Many of you will know that RUDE is an avid activist on many issues related to recycling but also on global and local issues that we feel passionate about.  We advocate by making commentary and/or opinion on many issues, and we post widely.  This weather keeps us indoors, and what better way to be ageing activists than to have our say from the comfort of our armchairs.

This week just passed,  this article [above] in our local newspaper was featured, and we had to get our frugal heads around it. We initially thought it was a joke not a junket.

RUDE lives a frugal lifestyle to help ensure we can pay our ever-increasing costs of living, including municipality rates.  Cost of living in Melbourne, Australia is one of the highest in the world.  We get disgusted by some of the wasteful ways of our local council. This is evidenced by, in our view, an ignorant and self entitled organisation sending not one, but three officials to Mexico to spin and spruik at the 2nd Global Network of Learning Cities Conference. 

Anyways, moving on from unfairness and an overseas junket, to lack of transparency in relation to donations to charities.  This week we posted about how we have been getting all these donation bags stuffed into our letter box.  Four in a week is telling us something is not quite right in charitable land. 

We suspect private recyclers are paying charities money to use their names on these bags, but that the donations are going anywhere but our local charity shops.  We believe from what we have read, and have been told, that private recyclers are making money on-selling the donations to merchants that ship textiles overseas.

We suspect, many people donating are thinking that their local charity shops are being stocked from their goodwill.  Our understanding is that a vast amount is being shipped to third world countries.  This can have devastating effects on local tailoring and textile manufacturing industries in these countries.

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Four plastic bags in a week shoved into RUDE’S letterbox. A bag for Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

To end on a lighter and more positive note, I thought I would share a photo of stuff we bought before our landfill scavenger days. The old wardrobe and trunk came from charity shops.  From memory we paid $25 for the robe and $20 for the trunk.  The mat covering the trunk was purchased for $5 from a garage sale. 

And like I said at the start of this blog we do not upcycle .  We immediately reuse what goes into our home.  The wardrobe is a storage cupboard for RUDE boys electrical bits and bobs, a step-ladder and vacuum cleaner.  The trunk stores winter curtains during summer and summer curtains during winter. Everything in the robe and trunk is from landfill.

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RUDE decor is secondhand, and all about immediate reuse and practical function.

Beat The Man and pass on your frugal tips and tricks for a better life.  Stick it to The Man when fairness is forgotten or ignored.  Refuse to vote for The Man who is self-indulgent.

RUDE Boy Rocks Disruptive DIY

Men, we don’t get much, as far as holidays go – Father’s Day.

DMX

RUDE Boy is on a break away from his part-time employment for 6 weeks and has been doing some odd jobs.  We cannot get enough of his fix-it acumen.  I have let him know he has a wife not a life, and there is no rest.  That there is time enough to rest when you are dead!  Oh dear, I do hope you all get our Aussie humour and that there is a ‘u’ in humor.

 
These light fittings were both rescued from landfill.  But the dish shaped retro 60s light fitting fits the decor better.  The three pendant light fitting has been replaced.  We just had a check on eBay and the retro 60s fitting was $40.  Ours cost a couple of dollars.  It still has the original brown Bakelite light globe holders.

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Three pendant light fitting from landfill has been replaced. Handmade place mat it sits upon is one of two and was also rescued from landfill.

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1960s retro light fitting rescued from landfill has replaced the three pendant light fitting.

The Vulcan hot water system that has been removed by RUDE Boy was 18 years old and rusted out.  He sourced a secondhand Rheem 400 litre electric hot water service on eBay for $150.  New, these systems are priced around $1,600.  And then of course there is the plumber and electrician costs to add-on top of that.  RUDE Boy doing this disruptive DIY has saved our household $1,800 or thereabouts.

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18-year-old Vulcan electric hot water system 315L has seen better days.

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7-year-old Rheem electric hot water system 400L purchased on eBay for $150.00. Works a treat!

Beat The Man and be disruptive, if safe to do so, and you can!  Oh, and the hot shower was lovely.

Cloche and Crochet

Hello to RUDE’S followers and thank you for following our blog.  Many of you know that RUDE Girl writes a weekly Friday blog post.  I really love sharing our frugal journey with you all.

It’s now 8pm in Melbourne, Australia as I write this blog post.  RUDE had another priority today, and that was to do some housework!!  Yes, boring but it could not be put off any longer.  Lots of dust on the floorboards and furniture.  And the cork flooring in the kitchen really did need to be mopped over. My feet were sticking to the floor, yikes!

Another thing RUDE has been doing a bit off in the last few days is de-cluttering.  We have given some stuff away but have also been selling some things on Ebay and Buy Swap Sell sites.  We do not really enjoy selling as a rule, however it has bought in a little bit of extra play money.

Anyway, because it’s getting late I am doing a quick post this Friday.  I just have to share that I have been making cloche caps or capats out of recycled fabric. I wanted to make a contemporary cloche capat out of denim.  The fashion article titled Denim Revolution below inspired me to create a new look cloche with a vintage twist.

Denim Rev Weekend Sat 13 Jun 2015

Photo source: Weekend Liftout Sunday Herald Sat 13 June 2015

I adore 1920s style fashion and it really does suit my tall and lean frame.  I am definitely not suited to 1950s style as there is no hourglass shape happening with me.  And I do not like any clothes that are waisted, preferring to accentuate my hips.

1920s Style Fashion

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Vintage denim skirt made in Australia. Rescued from landfill. Fabric used to make a cloche cap.


I have made three cloche capats so far, and then realised I required crocheted flowers to embellish the caps.  Therefore this week I taught myself to crochet with the help of some very helpful Youtube videos, such as Craft4Love and bobwilson123.

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Right side view of cloche with handmade crocheted flower

Denim Cloche Cap

Denim cloche capat handmade by RUDE Girl


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Lace cloche capat [photo from the internet]. RUDE Girl would like to make something like this for a wedding.

“The right hat may also enliven our imagination of the past….an old-fashioned cloche, a picture hat, or a toque trimmed with a pouf of polka-dotted veiling is just enough to make us feel as if we were living in another, romantic age”.  ~ anon

I am currently making a cloche from red fulled wool and plan to add a purple crocheted flower or heart.  The red jumper that was fulled was rescued from landfill.  I have my daughter’s wedding in December and if my hair is still very short, I would like to make and wear a lined lace cloche.  Not sure yet but plenty of time to practise cloche making.  I would really like to crochet a cloche capat but have to find a tutorial on Youtube, as I do not like following written patterns.

Beat The Man and be your very own milliner!