All The Other Crafts · Crafts

Making the Most of Craftroom Mishaps

     Don’t you just hate that moment when you’re half way through a craft project and you make a mistake? Can’t count how many times that’s happened to me!

     It’s frustrating, yes, but you know, sometimes good things come from mistakes – it’s true!

     Like this sloth envelope I decorated:

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     It came about because I wanted to test how a drawing I had done in photoshop would look on paper. I hit the print button on my laptop but completely forgot that I had left sticker paper in my printer! Well, that’s a waste of sticker paper, I thought at first, but I decided to cut it out anyway. So I had a giant sloth sticker, what do you do with that? On a whim I thought, put it on an envelope! It turned out to look pretty darn good on an envelope and it’s now something I plan on making more of!

      Or, take this card I made recently:

photo-new-family-member-cards-3

     My original plan was for a different card that was a bit more complicated and had the bunny and the fox on the inside. I started colouring them in with my copic markers and was quite happy with how they looked…then I flipped the card over and remembered that copics really do bleed through card! I forgot that I had meant to stamp the images on a separate piece of card, colour them in and then stick that on the inside! I didn’t want to cover the back of the card up with another piece of paper as I thought it would look messy but I also didn’t want to waste these coloured images, so I cut the piece out, stamped the word ‘hello’ and instead made a simple card front, salvaging it.

     These are only small things but I think there’s still something really satisfying about salving a mistake, don’t you think?

     With the cases above, I was able to put one craft towards another craft. That isn’t always the case but there’s still satisfaction to be had from doing something with a project that didn’t work out. Before Christmas, I had seen a lot of people making paper wreaths – getting strips of paper, getting the paper to curl and then pinning them to a styrofoam wreath. The ones I saw being made looked so good so I wanted to give it a go. I got a bunch of paper, cut it into strips and began the long process of curling it with my bone folder…

photo-crafting-mishaps-curled-paper-8

     I filled an entire basket!

     Well, with that done, it was time to start pinning them. Unfortunately, I still hadn’t actually found anywhere to buy those pins to use with wreaths (seriously, nowhere had them!). I tried using staples – that didn’t work – and didn’t relish the thought of hot gluing everything in place. So, that was a lot of time wasted, then! A waste of all that paper sitting in that hamper basket too…

     Looking at it all in the basket, I realised something – these paper curls really fill that basket up, if you were making a hamper, they’d be great for filling in the those gaps instead of using straw! My mom makes a hamper every year for her sister so I knew my paper curling wouldn’t be a complete waste as soon as I had that thought.

photo-crafting-mishaps-curled-paper-4

     It might not be as pretty as a paper wreath but there’s a lot to be said for practicality!

     Okay, this next project wasn’t a mistake at all – it actually worked out quite well and I was (and still am) happy with the result of it – it’s more so an unintended use of a project!

Photo - Coffee Table

     The IKEA Lack table I decorated for my sitting room. Like I said, really happy with the result of it. The unintended use? Well, what I thought of as a novel use of yarn to decorate table legs is actually…four cat scratching posts that you just happen to be able to put things on.

     Yup. Scratching posts.

     I should have known really.

      They’re really good scratching posts though. I have bought actual scratching posts for the cats and they just wouldn’t even look at them – kept using the table instead! One of my cats loves rubbing against them so the table legs do need to get hoovered every now and again but they’re holding up surprisingly well for something I made!

      So really, the point of this somewhat long blog post is don’t be afraid of making mistakes, you never know what good might come of them. There’s often a way to salvage something and really, even if a craft does go to plan, you never know what uses it might take on outside of your vision!

     How do you feel about crafting mishaps? How do you deal with them when they come up? Is there a project you’ve made from another that went wrong that you’re particularly proud of?

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30 thoughts on “Making the Most of Craftroom Mishaps

    1. Ah surely there’s usually something to save, even if it’s just a scrap of something! You never know when those kinds of things will come of use!

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  1. For future reference should you wish to make a wreath – if you are unable to find somewhere that sells the floral pins – try using thin jewellery wire bent in half.

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    1. Thanks! A very happy accident and a use of table legs – because really, what are table legs – they only do one thing! Admittedly that one thing is hold the table up but…xD

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  2. I’m really not surprised about the table. 😄 And honestly, it’ll probably last longer than the actual cat trees you can buy, and cost a whole lot less! (And take up much less space, be multifunctional, etc etc.)

    I can’t think of any craft projects I’ve managed to save, but I can think of plenty that I’ve screwed up for one reason or another. Things like boxes for cards where I forgot the bottom needs to be a 1/4 inch smaller than the top so they fit, miscalculating measurements (numbers really are not my strong suit), and so on. I try to save scraps for later projects, but then wind up with tons of bits that I’m just never going to use (because I forget they’re there and wind up cutting new bits) and eventually have to have a massive destash just to free up space. ¬_¬

    Kudos to you for re/upcycling project materials though! We all need to be a bit more thrifty, I think. Hobby supplies are so expensive these days, we can’t afford not to, so it’s great to see some ideas on how. 🙂

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    1. Ah, I’m the same – measurements are so not my thing! Whenever possible, I try to salvage as much of the paper or card as possible and put them in a box. I’m trying really hard to remember that they’re there! I need to come up with some really simple card designs to use up all the small scraps. Some pieces are quite small but when the paper is so pretty I just don’t want to waste any of it! xD

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    2. One thing you could do is make pennants for your planner, like for special events and appointments and such. Small squares are great for that, but longer narrower strips work too. I just need to keep playing with my craft storage to maximise not just space but visibility too 🤔

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    3. Visibility is so important for getting things used! When planning out my craft room, I made sure I had plenty of space but I was also really keen to have things visible because the saying ‘out of sight, out of mind’ is so true!

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  3. Oh, the sloth really does make a great envelope!

    When I was making my Christmas cards I put one cross stitched image behind the window upside down, which I found out when I went to write in the card! So I cut off the front part, cut it slightly smaller and taped it into a new card in a different colour. It looked like I had intentionally made a card with 2 different borders around the stitching. Success 😉

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  4. Actually sat here laughing….. As soon as I saw the table legs, I instantly thought “Does Emma have cats? If she does, that yarn is going to come in for a bit of a battering!” …. and then I read on and saw that you’d already found this out courtesy of your cats! LOL

    Great ‘make-overs’ for things which have taken you down another alley, Emma.
    Oh … and …. They’re are no mistakes when crafting … just opportunities waiting to happen. 😀

    My favourite is the Sloth. But that’s because I have a great big soft spot for them. Such fabulous creatures with amazing eyes. There’s so much more going on behind those eyes. I would LOVE to hold one.

    GREAT post Emma. Loved every word. ~ Cobs. x

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    1. Thanks! See, I thought the table legs would be okay because I had down the same on a previous table which the cats never bothered with but for some reason, this particular table really struck the fancy of one of my cats and she now just won’t use anything else! xD
      I agree, sloths are such amazing creatures – they really make you want to just slow down a bit, sit down and relax!

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    2. Cats … cheekiest little divils. Ours have an enormous climbing frame all with cat scratching posts dotted throughout the whole thing …. which they use. However … they do rather like to climb their paws up the front of the armchair which I sit on, in order to get me to give them a tickle. BUT they then walk down the front of the arm, pulling with each step. Mr.Cobs goes crazy and tells me off for letting them do it. (It’s a Laura Ashley chair, so not the cheapest chair for them to have chosen.) They’ve made a bit of a mess of it. There are pulled threads on the front. [sigh] Cats! Gotta love ’em. lol

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  5. I admire how you pull victory from the jaws of defeat! All the projects worked out really well, and it is good not to waste things. I am very amused by the fact that you have to hoover your table legs….

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    1. Thanks! Sometimes there’s nothing to be done to save something which is annoying having to waste supplies but when you can salvage something, it’s so satisfying!
      Ah yes, hoovering the table legs – such a strange sentence to say but it’s true! My cat doesn’t just shed hairs – she sheds clumps of hair! And it doesn’t help that it’s long and black!

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    1. That they are! They seem to favour the leg closest to the door so every now and again we just have to turn the table 90 degrees so that they wear down the legs equally xD

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