I spent a weekend with One Raffles Place Mall to partake in their efforts to promote going green with the theme “Find your Eco-Style”. One Raffles Place hoped to inspire shoppers to make a stand for the environment through various creative and Eco-friendly workshops and exhibitions.
Building a terrarium helps to create a mini green environment indoors so that we can have a patch of green in the office or anywhere. Taking care of the terrarium proves to be pretty easy and it’s a constant reminder that the environment actually asks very little of us but gives a lot in return.
Up-cycling a t-shirt to a rope necklace
I do some up-cycling of my own with many other items as well so craft things ain’t foreign to me. In this workshop, they teach us how we can cut up old t-shirts into strips and pulling the fibres out so that they lengthen into a scarf like necklace.
In the t-shirt scarf workshop, there are still some leftover material. The instructors told us we could re-cycle the t-shirt material as wash cloths or table cloth wipes so we can achieve zero waste.
However, I wasn’t too keen to do that, I decide that the t-shirt material could do more than just a simple wash cloth.
T-shirt Fabric Flower Brooch Tutorial
Leftover t-shirt from workshop
Materials & Tools needed
Besides the leftover t-shirt, you will still need:
- Thread and Needle
- Black stiff felt
- Plastic gems
- Back pins for brooch
Type of Glues:
In the picture below, I had showcase 3 types of glue.
- White Glue: Non-toxic, easy for children, but it takes time to dry. If you are using this, you may need some clips or clamps to hold the pieces in place while the glue dries.
- Bostik Glu & Fix: This is a new type of fabric glue I had recently discovered. It is very good to replace needle and thread, however, as you will see later, I preferred the thread over this fabric glue at one particular step in this tutorial.
- UHU glue: Use this to adhere the pins to the back of the felt.
Additional Materials and equipment
Step 1(Optional): Cut the sleeves
You can jump this step if you like. I had the sleeves cut out because I do not have much table space and it was much easier to manage the fabric material when cutting later on.
Step 2: Draw circles
Depending how big you want your flower to be, draw the circles of the size of the flower you want. I drew a 3 inch circumference circle using the inner side of a duct tape.
You need 6 circles, so draw 3 of them on one sleeve, then cut all 6 from the front and back of one sleeve.
Step 3 (optional): Colour the sides
You can decorate the circles with colours and patterns with fabric markers. After you colour them, seal the colours in with an iron, or follow the fabric markers instructions in sealing colours.
Here I used ZIG and Sharpie brand of fabric markers which both are as good.
Staining both sides: So that the colours will show on both sides of the fabric and also at the edge when the fabric is folded later on.
Staining with two colours: I want each layer to have a different colour thus I purposely stained each circle with two colours.
Step 4: Forming the petals
- First, prepare the circles and fold them in half.
- Then fold it in a zigzag wave like the picture below.
- When you have a zig-zag cone shape, put a stitch or two at the pointy end.
* You can use glue to hold the pointy ends together but I find that glue do not enclose the ends into a tight bunch.
Step 5: Glue the petals
- Cut a small circle of stiff felt, and using it as the pin brooch backing.
- Apply glue on the felt.
(I have chose the Bostik Glu & Fix for this task because of it’s ease of use and quick dry properties. However, if you are using this glue, please do it in an open-air area or areas with good air-flow circulation because this particular glue stinks when wet, during application.)
- Then arrange all the petals (like slices of a cake) and stick them onto the felt circle.
*The back of the brooch should looks like this (picture below).
- While waiting for the glue to set and dry, quickly fluff up the fabric so that when the glue gets dry the fluffed up petal stays in its place and not get glued down.
Step 6: Embellishing the brooch
- Pick a suitable plastic jewel to cover the stitches in the centre of the brooch.
- For this, I used UHU, which dries clear and it helps to adheres the plastic to fabric.
Step 7: Glue the brooch back pin
- I also used UHU glue to paste the back pin onto the felt back. Spread the glue generously so that some of the glue will spill over the holes in the centre of the pins, so that the glue can hold properly.
- Alternatively, you can sew it onto the back felt using thread and needle.
And it’s done!
I had two versions of the pin. One with the stain sides and one without any colour-stained edges.
What other ways can you go green with fashion???
Here are some I have ideas I have thought about:
- Refuse Packaging:
Refuse additional packaging. Many big stores will include luxurious packaging like tissue papers, additional paper bags, flyers and what nots. If you piled up all the nice packaging and paper bags and what-nots, you will realised the huge amount of trash you accumulate during shopping.
- Refuse “recycled bags”:
Some retailers now uses fibre plastic bags, that often termed as “recycled bags” or non-woven bags. While these bags were tauted as “recycled”, only some are truly made from recycled plastic and the end-product — this recycled bag, is not at all recyclable any more.
- Refuse paper bags where possible:
We can help reducing the need to produce paper bags if we do not need to use them. You can start by refusing paper bags for small items that can be carried in your own bags. Reducing the demand for small paper bags like these would help to save the planet!
- Just do these small steps whenever you are shopping, and you will be helping the planet whenever you go shopping!
Check out my other up-cycling projects
If you decided to do any of my upcycling projects, do drop me a comment below or upload your project on instagram and hashtag #PingerrainDIY so that I get to see your masterpiece!
Thanks One Raffles Place Mall for the invitation to the eco-style workshops!
All opinions were my own.