Thursday, March 1, 2012

Plastic with your latte?

A snowy Thursday is keeping me away from the Barn.  Grumble. Time to blog.

Back in December I had it in my head to make stuff out of discarded gift cards.  How many of you received one of these at holiday time? I did!  With no shame, I asked the people at the local Starbucks if they might hold on to the otherwise discarded cards when customers use up their card's balance.  They said "sure", inspired perhaps, by the mini notebook I showed them, made from two cards? This photo shows just a portion of the cards they collected for me in a few short weeks.  That's a lot of plastic.

Say what you want about Starbucks. They save their grounds for me in the springtime for my compost.  And you will agree that they have some great artists who design their cards.

This is my favorite.
Holiday themes abound.

So over Christmas vacation I hauled my newly acquired plastic pretties along with jewelry-making supplies on a visit to our pals in New Hampshire. You remember my young pal Talia from an April post? She is always up for a craft with me.  She jumped right into it, and within an hour she was sportin' some cool Starbucks earrings.



A Google images search, and a Pinterest search showed me oodles of creative folks making stuff from these pieces of plastic. Here are a few of my favorites.

Pick up something called a Pick Punch and make a ton of these beauties for your next jam session.
Bryan Berg, known as the Cardstacker, built a city skyline in celebration of Earth Day, from 22,000 recycled gift cards (although he usually stacks playing cards). 
 
  If you go to his site you'll see an entire hotel room that he created from hotel key cards.  


 Back to the realm of realistically-try-this-yourself, you might want to try making your own fancy paperclips or bookmarks by following the tutorial at Instructables.  I found them not easy to cut with an x-acto knife and I'm too lazy to get out my Dremel drill right now.
An etsy artist named Kim Baldwin at Lifeaccessories made this nice bracelet out of my favorite Starbucks card.  Swoon.
So, you've read THIS far down in a very long post, and you shall be rewarded.

 In  honor of my 1st Blogiversary, I will make a tiny notebook out of 2 recycled gift cards for each of you who leave me a message here on my blog. No, not on Facebook. No, not via email, but right here on the Barn of Opportunity comment log. Please celebrate the Barn of Opportunity by joining me in my first giveaway. While supplies last... which should be around my 2nd Blogiversary!

56 comments:

  1. Hopping off FB to say that I love this post: inspiration galore!! And happy Blogiversary: it's been such a great read all year: I always look forward to the next post.

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    1. And now I'm hopping off to make YOU a mini notebook, sweetie! Coming soon to a mailbox near you.

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  2. I happily recharge my same old, registered green gift card in hopes of getting a free cup o' joe on my birthday. Until that day, I rejoice in treating myself to something warm and spicy and certifiably NOT TO BE SHARED WITH MY CHILDREN, even when the rest of my money has run out. :)

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    1. Good for you, Mamma Tessa. I'll hold your mini notebook at the library. :)

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  3. Tell Olena I want her to make me some "card" earrings. I also love the book mark idea!

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    1. I'll put in your order with Olena. Thanks for your support, Cath.

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  4. wow !... must be a snow day, I'm reading blog posts about gift card jewelry !!... cool stuff... where does one get a pick press ??... hope you all are well, we miss B-ham !

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    1. And Bowdoinham misses the Olsen Family. Sam and I would be craftin' together, I'm sure.

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    2. I followed your link to the pick press. The question is - are you (Kate) going to buy it or am I? :)

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    3. You are, silly. I'll just rent it! And pay you in plastic currency?

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  5. Hi! Kate, I love the great ideas! I am going to look up that Pick Punch as soon as I finish this...and I am looking forward to making some jewelery with old gift cards, as soon as I start a collection of them...Time to make a request to family memeber through FB, I guess.LOVE the book marks,too. Thanks for always sharing your great ideas and finds! Stephanie

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    1. Steph- if you buy a pick punch I'll rent it by the hour! Sound good? And thanks for always sharing YOUR good ideas with me.

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    2. I see we're all going to share a Pick Press. :-)
      -Brigid

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    3. I meant Pick Punch.

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  6. Where is there a Starbucks in B'ham, Kate? And are you available to lead some craft workshops at my library this summer? Keep up the creativity. You inspire me.

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    1. Is that you, Melissa? You know by "local" I mean TheGreaterTopshamBrunswickGeneralMidcoastArea! We'll have to talk about library craft gigs. I'm pretty all out with my own SRP.

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    2. Yup, tis I, Melissa. Maybe you'd be willing to do a craft in April when you aren't right out straight? And ooooooh, did I win a blue notepad?

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  7. Yippee!!! I have one something.. Will it clash with my new smelt wear?

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    1. I'll make one custom for you, Smelt King.

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  8. I love free stuff. Do you still have any???? I am happy it's snowing cause you posted!!!!

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    1. Joanne! I'm making them as we "speak". They are so cute. I look forward to meeting up with you for a delivery. I have the bag pattern you asked for ages ago too.

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  9. You and your creativity tickle my funny bone! Especially love the pick and bookmark ideas. I used to be "crafty" in my younger days- hopefully, reading your blog will fuel the flickering flame! (Try saying that three times, fast) Jeanine B

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    1. Finally I figured how to find my family and friends by finagling a freebie! So glad I fuel your flickering flame, Jeanine!

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  10. Wow. Such great energy and comments! Benjamin just yesterday asked me for a little notebook. I gave me a small spiral which he lost on his field trip yesterday. Maybe he would be more inclined to keep ahold of a custom plastic card notebook? You're the best!

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    1. I'll pick out the 2 coolest cards for Benjamin.

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  11. I would like a giftcard notebook, please. I am a good girl who follows directions to get what I want. My name is Felicity.

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    1. And you shall be rewarded for your manners, if not your craftiness.

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  12. Happy Blogiversary Kate!! Nice post....craft on! Laurel

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    1. Thanks, Laurel. I think "Craft on" needs a hand motion to go with it... ask the boys to come up with something. Maybe something with a scissors motion?

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  13. Hey Kate...here's the neighbor replying to get one...maybe I can collect some used L.L. Bean cards to use! Jane CMcK

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    1. Oooooo! Are they pretty?

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    2. Yes they Are!!! I'll see what I can come up with...

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  14. Well, I visited today with the thought that I might see a book character costume created for tomorrow's Read Across America Day celebration, but this was just as cool. If it is too late in the day to claim a notebook, that is okay, I just figured it was time to finally comment in a blog. I never have before! Erin C.

    PS. I thought of your Mary Poppin's outfit as I was creating my own costume for tomorrow out of an old pillowcase and a valance, some cardboard, a headband, and plastic flowers.

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  15. The Berrys (aka Austin) would love a giftcard notebook. I love reading your blog and seeing all the great craft ideas that you come up with. - Jen

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  16. Man... you are inspiring. I can't wait to craft more;) I am glad I have found your blog and found it in time for your first give away:)! Corie Scribner

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  17. Yippee for snow days!!! Love your blog Kate! :-)

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  18. I love your blog, Kate, and the recycling barn and Bowdoinham and snow days! Happiness! Thanks for doing this blog!

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  19. I have to put in (this isn't about the give away, of course) this piece of "Joe for thought:" After years of blindly following my big-business phobic side and vilifying Starbucks for about a decade, I read that the Colombian Federation of Coffee Growers had acquired 11% of its stock, becoming Starbuck's largest "single" stock holder. The Federation is made up of a true preponderance of small plot land owners, who despite being heavily subsidized by the Colombian government (kind of like the way corn is in the US,) and receiving a minimal portion of the company's profits, still benefit from your purchase.

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  20. First, I HAD to buy a Bind-it-all. Now a Pick Punch. What will be next? I do so enjoy your blog.

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    1. Who knew I had a future in sales. Now which Rebecca? Back Hill Rebecca? River Road Rebecca or some other Rebecca I've forgotten?

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    2. I'm afraid (or not) that you don't know me at all. I live in Edgecomb and I'm a friend of a friend's mother-in-law. Some time ago she had forwarded one of your posts and I've been watching your blog since then.

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    3. Send me your address, then and I'll mail you your prize!

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  21. Hahahahaha - call me if you need help making these!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  22. I love reading your blog! You really inspire me! I too collect stuff to "upcycle" ! you get farther along on the stream than I do ! lol! thanks for the good work you do!
    kathy in Rochester NY

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    1. Thanks, Kathy. Send me your address and I'll send you a prize for commenting. cutkos@wildblue.net

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  23. PS: I agree; "Craft on" is my new greeting - and, like Aloha, it works coming and going! (me - snipping in the air with my fingers and winking at the same time - at you) Craft on, Sister!
    kathy

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    1. Identify yourself, sister Kathy. Peace out and Craft on. cutkos@wildblue.net

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  24. You have such great ideas!! I've been picking things up and reusing them for years from our Barn of Opportunity, but I've never been very crafty. Well, it's never too late to start! I love the jewelry and bookmark/paperclip ideas. I'll be trying those first and I'll be sharing your blog too. Thanks Kate!!

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    1. I wish the paperclips were as easy as they sounded. I really could not cut the card with an x-acto as i had hoped. Have fun experimenting. Send me your address (to cutkos@wildblue.net) and I'll send you a prize for commenting!

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  25. I just found your blog Kate after a link was sent through Facebook. We all love our barn! I'm sure that the train has left the station for the mini gift card notebook but thats perfectly fine as you know I bought my very own from the Long Branch School. Happy crafting! Laurie

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  26. Now that it is 60 and sunny in Rochester, just catching up on Bowdainham snow days. And you worried that you were posting into a big black hole? Just look how many crafters are lurking! Offer free stuff and we all begin to clamor. Miss you! Love, Sharon

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  27. Kate! What a wonderful little giftie in the mail! Thank you so much! It is beautiful. Craft On, sister kathy.

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  28. Bright shades with stunning designs your design for Plastic cards inspires me a lot....

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  29. Brilliant work..its marvelous card designs...thanks for sharing this inspiring post..!! Plastic card

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  30. Thanks for posting my Etsy Shop! I love your blog and am inspired by all the beautiful things you are creating!! Keep on Crafting on!

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