Handmade: Mixing it up

I love mixing up old and new materials, be it found objects or items i’ve purchased new or used. For instance, I look for used and interesting charm bracelets or necklace chains, that I can add my ideas too. I’ve been collecting sea glass and beach stones for about a decade now, but actually started collecting rocks when I was a child.

Sea glass and stones can be made into jewellery, into many home decor items such as lampshades and candle holders, and also displayed in gardens where it can be admired in a nature space. I’ve also picked up and cleaned driftwood, but I’m saving the bigger pieces for a future project when we move dwellings. Driftwood is a beautiful accent to a home adding a rustic and natural aura, but it can also be made into many items such as signs, mobiles, walking sticks and hangers for fabrics. Do you have any other ideas for uses of driftwood?

Aside from the enjoyment and reward of making something by hand, I find the act itself to be important for strengthening eye and hand coordination. I’ve spent many years working on the computer (like most of us) and have noticed that even my handwriting skills have declined. In fact, I am thinking about taking up a handwriting class to help improve this. Making things with my hands is also calming and meditative; great for stress relief.

My other past handmade activities consisted of wood carving (I still have that carving knife around somewhere), pottery (I was a child potter and loved it) and knitting (again something I took up in my youth). If anyone is out there reading this, what kinds of things do you make by hand and why?

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