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I don’t own a lot of jewelry, but the few pieces that I do have I tend to wear a lot.  When this pair of wooden earrings broke recently, I was upset.

I was about to throw them away, but thought that I should at least try to fix them first.  I chose to use EcoGlue because it is water-based and adheres to wood.

First, I applied the EcoGlue along one of the broken edges.  Then, I matched up the two pieces and held for about 30 seconds.  I let the earring sit overnight and it was as good as new!

Next time you think about throwing out a pair of broken earrings, try repairing them first!

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A couple of years ago on a business trip on the other side of the country, I picked up a pair of pants on clearance at Banana Republic for less than $10. It wasn’t until several days later and when I had returned home that I realized the zipper placket was completely unstitched. The pants were inexpensive enough that I wasn’t motivated to return them and I also knew it was an easy fix. And I always had it in my mind that I would do so (despite my lack of sewing machine).

pants_busted

After a recent move, I was resolute to keep what was useful and donate what was not. So, armed with a tube of E6000, I determined to fix my pants. The pants were clean & dry. This part of my pants is not visible once this particular repair is done, but if you were to use this same technique to fix a hem, for example, you’d want to be more careful about potential permanent wrinkles.

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I followed the directions on the tube and then left them on the counter so the glue could cure overnight.

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The repair was invisible, pants washed just fine, placket intact. E6000 creates a permanent bond that will hold through washes, ironing and every day wear.

Pants_fixed

Get your own tube for repairs of all kinds, including zipper plackets, at ExcelBuyOnline or your local retailer.

Before throwing out that scrap wood, worn out piece of furniture or leftover DIY project materials, consider reusing them. We found some clever projects that do just that.

Give Old Furniture an Inexpensive Facelift

Bring an old table or chair back to life by refinishing it. Home improvement guru Danny Lipford gives directions on how to refinish.*

  • Apply liquid stripper according to the directions, allowing it to stay on the surface for the recommended amount of time.
  • Use a putty knife with rounded edges to remove the bulk of the old finish.
  • Take off the remaining finish and stripper using steel wool or a plastic scouring pad dipped in the recommended solvent.
  • Fill cracks, holes or damage with a wood filler like Famowood.
  • Sand the surface thoroughly; start with coarse sandpaper (80-100 grit) and work up to fine (180-220 grit). Sand with the grain when possible.
  • Stain the piece, applying with a rag, and allow to dry.
  • Finish with several coats of a clear finish such as Glaze Coat.

Picture 1

Piece it Together with a Mosaic

In the same vein as refinishing, you can also save furniture by creating a mosaic table top. Using recycled glass, beads or tiles, you can create a work of art. E-How has great directions for making mosaics.

Deep Fried Kudzu has directions for creating this cool swirly marble mosaic table top (left). Simple, yet stunning. A great way to make a generic or tired table your own.

We’ve found EcoGlue works well for mosaic projects.

Get Crazy Creative with Vintage

You can do lots of amazing things with old suitcases from creating anything from filing cabinets to end tables. You might have some old hard-side suitcases in your garage; if not, it’s likely your local thrift store does.

I thought these suitcase cat beds were pretty clever. Maybe if I had one, my cat wouldn’t sleep on my laundry.

The legs can even be glued on (no fancy power tools necessary) with something like EcoGlue Extreme or Amazing GOOP.

Scrap Convention with Cool Wood Projects

If you’re a woodworker of any manner, you have piles of scrap wood. You can create a country chic wall decoration that doubles as a place to hang bags, coats and keys. You can glue the “tree branches” together with EcoGlue Premium Wood and then nail it to the wall in just a few places (rather than peppering your wall with nails for each piece).

Be Inspired by the Pros

You can also see how professional designers are doing amazing things with furniture and style with reused and repurposed items at Design Blog.

What have you done to turn trash to treasure? Leave your tips in the comments.

*Note that product recommendations are our own, and not from the original directions. But we’re still sure they’ll work.

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If your little princess’ shoes are losing their luster, a little GOOP will help keep her on her toes.

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Step 1: Clean each part of the shoe that need to be stuck together. Apply a thin layer of GOOP between the shoe and the sole.

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Step 2: Clamp the toe of the shoe together using a basic plastic clamp.

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Voila! Your little princess is all set for another twirl around the ballroom dancefloor.

427626636_3268de8bac_b In well-appointed homes, tile is a popular choice from earthenware tiles in the foyer to porcelain in the bathroom and ceramics in the kitchen. A cracked or broken tile, even when it appears to be nothing more than a hairline, can cause thousands of dollars in water damage. Don’t delay making this repair.

  1. Use a hammer and chisel to completely remove the broken tile, taking care not to damage surrounding tile or to break the adhesive seal.
  2. Clean out the broken tile completely, including all the old grout and adhesive.
  3. Apply new adhesive. You can use tile adhesive, or for simpler application, try Amazing GOOP. GOOP is also a waterproof sealant and at about $5 a tube, can save even more money than specialty adhesives. Be sure to read the directions for the best results with the adhesive you choose.
  4. Replace the tile, regrout and leave to dry overnight.
  5. A quick clean up in the morning and your tile is as good as new.

Bottom line: A standard four-inch tile, plus the supplies will cost you less than $10.

Photo via Flickr by Abmatic

2811616330_d3fee03f28_bCustom picture or art framing can be awfully expensive. Wooden frames are elegant, but the joints expand and contract a good deal just from the temperature fluxuation in your house. And that can create loose joints.

If you have a frame that’s coming apart at the seams, a quick repair using Amazing GOOP Wood & Furniture will have it back together in no time.

After a recent move, I found that one of the corners of the wooden frame for a large Cheri Blum print was a bit loose. The print is probably 30” x 40” and with the frame it measures closer to 40” x 50”. The repair is easy enough to make. Here are the instructions:

Supplies:
•    Screwdriver
•    Amazing GOOP Wood & Furniture (about $4)
•    Two clamps ($20 if you need to buy)
•    Famowood wood filler in matching color (about $4)
•    Finishing nails
•    Small hammer

Step 1:
Carefully remove the paper backing and determine how the frame is held together: glue, brads connecting the corners or a spline joint. Most frames are held together with glue and one brad.

Step 2:
Gently separate the corners. Old glue can be chipped away or warmed slightly so it can be pulled apart.  A joint with two brads may require you to cut through them using a small saw and a spline joint may require a screwdriver to loosen.

Be gentle! It’s crucial that you don’t cut any wood away from the frame. Even a seemingly minute adjustment can result in an ill-fit when put back together. Don’t bend the spline – you only want to remove one side of it for repair. Final don’t – don’t leave tool marks on the frame.

Step 3:
Clean the corner you’re repairing. Pry away and remove the nails and any remaining dried glue. Fill the old nail holes on the outside of the frame with Famowood, and allow it to harden.

Step 4:
Put the frame corner back together. Lay the frame flat on the corner of a table to line up the sides.  You can also use a T-Square to ensure you have a sharp right angle. A suggestion: put a “cushion” of thin cardboard or something between clamp and wood so you don’t leave marks on the frame.

Clamp one side of the frame to the table. Apply Amazing GOOP Wood and Furniture to the loose side of the frame. Replace the spline if necessary. Allow the glue to partially cure – between 2 and 10 minutes – before joining the two pieces. Remove any extra adhesive immediately.

Position the two corners until the edges are smooth and consistent. Use your second clamp for the remaining side of the frame to hold the corner tightly. Wait about 30 minutes.

Step 5:
Hammer two finishing nails into the corner – one from each side. Countersink the nails into the wood and fill with Famowood in a matching color. Allow the adhesive to fully cure for at least 24 hours before replacing the picture and hanging up.

The Bottom Line:

Cost for supplies is about $30 if you have to buy everything

Cost of custom framing a 30” x 40” print: estimates range between $300 and $500 for basic framing.

By doing this repair yourself, you’d save at least $250!

Photo via Flickr by trimmer741

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