Thursday, January 19, 2012

Repurposing Re-purposing

We have all these trendy terms these days...

sustainable
   compostable
      organic
         upcycled
            recycled
               reclaimed
                  recovered
                      reused
                         re-purposed.

I won't lie - those last few came from a thesaurus.

We're supposed to buy local, shop local, eat locally grown produce, use re-useable bags, upcycle our furniture, donate our old things, recycle our plastics, compost our scraps; and use all organic, all natural, BPA-toxin free, not tested on animals, made in the USA products.  Did I leave anything out?  

People who never before cared about the environment now feel compelled to recycle and use sustainable products because IT'S COOL.  I'm down with that.  I'm not complaining.  I love it.

And what gives me great joy is when this happens in my own life with little or no effort.  Because who doesn't like good things that come with no effort?

You might remember these windows, shown here at our wedding last March.






These are windows Mr. Spouse and I collected from alleyways in the District.  I wasn't sure what I was going to do with them, but I knew I wanted them.  They were diiiiirty, the glass was mostly broken, and several of them had layers of old newspaper GLUED to the panes.  sick.  I won't lie.  (It looks like I'm making a habit of being honest in this post.)  It was several days and many hours that Mr. Spouse and I worked these six windows over to clean them up.  We sanded them, knocked out the broken glass panes, and sanded, and sanded, and sanded s'more. They are still pretty rough looking, but I like rough-looking things... why else would I have married this guy?


So we used them as decoration at our wedding. They helped create that "chapel in the woods" sensation we wanted for our guests.  Then they got stuck in storage for a while.  Even though my parents tried to convince me to leave them swinging in the trees for a while, I knew I would use them for other things and didn't want them out in the elements.  A few months later, my friend Danielle of Sunday Hatch and I got invited to design a photo shoot in Houston.  Out came the trusty window frames to act as backdrop.


Then they went back into storage.  Shortly after the photo shoot, I was contracted to design and coordinate a wedding, where I got to use them as photo displays.  No pictures of that yet!  And then.... this Christmas, we decided not to get a Christmas tree.  So I decorated one of the windows like so, instead.  Funny thing... those little felt ornaments with our initals were also hanging from a tree at our wedding... but whatever.



 And I mixed it up.... also using it as a Christmas card display for some of the cards we received!


And finally, today I decided to hang the other two.

I love them.

And every time I look at these I remember marrying my love, getting creative with one of my best friends, making someone's wedding day super special and pretty, and most of all, I remember the day we went for a walk and found these little windows next to someone's trash can.



That's the real reason you should re-purpose things.

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