Flea Market Finds: Key Wall Hanging Refashion

I purchased this large dusty gold key shaped wall hanging for just a $1.00 during my last flea market trip. I could see the potential and brought it home for a quick refashion.

Key Refashion Before

This refashion was so easy and rewarding. First I gave it a good cleaning with mild car washing soap. After letting it dry I laid out an old tarp and grabbed a can of all-purpose glossy black spray paint I bought  for $1.99.  (At this point my husband stepped in because apparently I wasn’t using the proper spray paint technique.) He gave the key two good coats of paint and we let it dry over night. For less than $3.00 I transformed this bad 70’s gold decorative piece into a glossy black modern beauty that now graces the wall of my guest room!

Spray Painting the Key

Flea Market Finds: Antique Sewing Machine

Antique Sewing Machine Before

I hit up my local flea market this past weekend in search of some dusty treasures and inspiration. I was so excited to come across this little gem of modern industrialism and I had to share it with you. Check out the before and after pictures and the story below.
Antique Sewing Machine After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I found this beauty peeking out among lots of machinery and tools that I wouldn’t begin to know the origin of or uses for. The machine is obviously missing several parts that would be needed if you planned to actually sew with it, but that didn’t matter to me. I prize it simply for its beautiful sturdy, intricate lines and its romantic symbolish of a time past. I looked beyond the layer of dust and muck and could picture it sitting proudly on the nearly empty desk in my living room.

A cool $10.00 and a good scrubbing later and my vision comes to life!

I have tried to do some research online to find out more about the machine with little luck.  I believe it is from the 40’s and was made in Japan. The label says it’s a “Best Built” De Luxe model. I simply cleaned it up using a mild car wash soap and some warm water and now it’s on display in my living room, sure to be a conversation piece for years to come! I hope it can inspire you to find your own flea market treasure for your home.

Flea Market Tips and Tricks

Price Tags Are Just a Starting Point vendors expect you to haggle, don’t be afraid to offer less

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See Beyond the Dust:  don’t focus on the piece in front of you, rather envision what could be

Don’t Be Afraid to Get Dirty:  some of the best deals may be buried deep and a little elbow grease goes a long way

Don’t Follow the Crowd:  The best deals may be had during the off-season, just before closing time, or during bad weather. The vendors are there to sell and may be more willing to bargain with you on a slow day.

Carry Cash: Money talks and it’s much easier to haggle with paper than plastic

Sometimes the Thrill is in the Hunt:  You may not find something wonderful on every shopping trip. Sometimes having disappointing days at the flea market makes finding that great treasure later even sweeter.

Easy to Knit Washcloth for Beginners

I love knitting washclothes. They are an easy, beautiful, and quick knitting project which is great for beginners. All you need to know to knit this washcloth is the basic knit and purl stitches.

If you need help with these stitches check out these great tutorials:

How to Knit

How to Purl

 You will use two patterns for this washcloth:

The Loop and  Cartridge Stitch

Materials: 

1 :  One Skein of Peaches and Cream Yarn in your favorite color

(or any  cotton worsted weight yarn)

2:   No. 7  4.5mm knitting needles

Washcloth Pattern/Instructions : 

Cast on 34 stitches

Not sure how to cast on? View this tutorial: Casting On

Loop Pattern Bottom Boarder

Row 1:  Knit all the way across

Row 2:  Knit one, Slip one (this means you slip the loop off of the left hand needle onto the right hand needle without knitting): repeat this pattern all the way across

Row 3: Knit all the way across

Row 4:  Knit two, Slip one : Then  continue knitting  one and  slipping one all the way across

Repeat

Repeat these four rows in order two more times  for a total of 12 rows all together. Congratulations you’ve created your washcloth’s bottom border and you should have something that looks like this:

The center of your washcloth will be knitted using a cartridge stitch pattern.

Cartridge Stitch Pattern:

Row 13:   Knit all the way across

Row 14: Purl all the way across

Row 15:  Knit all the way across

Row 16:  Knit all the way across

Row 17:  Purl all the way across

Row 18:  Knit all the way across

Repeat

Repeat these six rows in order 8 more times for a total of 36 Cartridge Stitch rows and a grand total of 48 rows counting your Loop Pattern border.

To finish up your washcloth you just repeat the loop pattern boarder again.

Loop Pattern Top Boarder

Row 49:  Knit all the way across

Row 50:  Knit one, Slip one (this means you slip the loop off of the left hand needle onto the right hand needle without knitting): repeat this pattern all the way across

Row 51: Knit all the way across

Row 52:  Knit two, Slip one : Then  continue knitting  one and  slipping one all the way across

Repeat

Repeat these four rows in order two more times  for a total of 12 more loop rows and a grand total of 60 rows all together.

To finish up just cast off and weave in the stray end.

Need help casting off and weaving stray end visit these tutorials:  Casting Off       Weaving in Ends

Congratulations on knitting your washcloth! Soon you’ll be making them for everyone.