ARTful: using or characterized by art and skill

Salvage: to rescue or save especially from wreckage or ruin

[ARTful] Salvage was born from a love of creating, repurposing and salvaging. I simply abhor seeing perfectly "useful" items headed for the landfill or tucked away in a cardboard box, never seeing the light of day. I believe there is always beauty to be found, even under a layer of rust or a coating of dust. I see scratches, dents or imperfections as badges of honor to be worn proudly. I have a great love for the history, story and life of a piece. We lovingly dream up ways of restoring new life to these discarded and neglected fragments of life. I am glad you are here and hope you will come again often. Please make yourself at home; friends are always welcome. I'd be thrilled to hear from you and get to know you better.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Repurposed mirror into Garden ART

I saw this mirror at a friend's pre-garage sale and thought it was lovely. I was thinking it would be great for display in our booth. She graciously offered it up to me. I was shocked to discover it was plastic!! Doesn't it look like a vintage plaster mirror? So, I was really excited to have it and use it. It, btw, measures 22" x 26".

And THEN.....I started thinking about it. Can you see the sly little grin than was accompanying these thoughts?? Yep, the one that comes when a repurposing idea is forming in my brain. So, what could I do with this for the sell at the next show???? Hmmm.....then my brain says, "You could etch a design on it." Well, that has potential.....but how to make it special?? Well, anyone who knows me (English and Writing Major) will know that WORDS are everything to me. I LOVE them. So, words it is. But "what" words? I turned to best friend, Google Chrome and began sifting through some ideas. I knew I wanted a quote or phrase. I knew I wanted it garden related and inspiring. I knew it needed more than JUST words. So, here is what I came up with:

"The Garden is a Mirror of the Heart" that. Enter my SCAL software and my Cricut Expression. I designed the quote, along with some gorgeous roses and cut it from white contact paper. It looked amazing. Now, how to transfer this......this step is NOT for the faint of heart!! LOL Somehow, Hubs and I managed to place this onto the mirror fairly well. This is one of those times where you find out just how well your marriage is working. 2 people, armed with exacto knives, working in close quarters, doing the almost impossible. We (and the mirror) came through relatively unscathed!! :::Smiling::::

So, I covered the rest of the mirror with my trusty blue tape to protect the surface. Hubs put on the glass etching cream.....we waited impatiently for 5 minutes and rinsed it away. My fave part of etching is how it NEVER looks good at first. It has to dry. Then we clean it with glass cleaner and let it dry, again. Then, I stand there, like a 4-year-old gasping in wonder and just how cool it looks!! [Yes, I do this EVERYTIME we etch something.....kind of like shrinky dinks 'ya know].

So, without further she is? Is she not now gorgeous and so far from her humble beginnings of life at a garage sale??


  1. WOW!!!!!!!!! That is amazing, Shelly. Can't you just picture that hanging in someone's garden? Yall did a fabulous job, and I guarantee it will sell quickly. (that is, if yall can stand to part with it. LOL)

  2. Your mirror turned out absolutely wonderful. You are a woman of many talents.

  3. It's beautiful! Can you stand to part with it or is it staying at your house?

  4. VERY cool, Shelly!! That's a beautiful piece, and you have an inventive mind!!

  5. How very beautiful, Shelly! Awesome job! Diann

  6. Oh my gosh Shelly! It is just amazing! I am always is awe of your artful repurposing! :)

  7. The mirror turned into a Beautiful piece of ART...I am loving all of your re-cycled stuff and looking forward to see what you come up with next...

    an idea I did once and saw others do, a ceiling fan that doesn not work anymore, take blades apart and paint them and seal them to hang outside.....


  9. Shelly Rae, you are the Queen of Garden objects! This totally rocks! I am off to hit the tag sales and make one of my own. Thanks for the inspiration. Hope to see you a AG 2010.

  10. Saw your the photos of your wonderful repurposed items at our library. Great Work!!! Can't believe you live right here in the same town and I've never seen your work before. Hope to get to meet you soon.

  11. I just saw your mirror on Pinterest...Love it! You did a wonderful job and what a terrific idea! Oh well, better late than never.
    thank you for sharing!