Practical Solutions for Paper Crafters is finally here! I can’t begin to tell you the amount of hours we spent planning, creating, and writing this issue. But I will share with you just one of the projects near and dear to my heart.
In planning for the organization and storage section, I knew I wanted to recycle an old suitcase. I went looking in my parents’ basement for my Mom’s old suitcase, but what I found was even better—my great grandmother’s old suitcase. The suitcase was a little beat up and had been storing old Christmas ball ornaments in it. Such a waste!
I went back and forth on whether to recover the suitcase. See the piece of tape by the handle? That’s my great grandmother’s name in her own handwriting. How cool is that!
I realized there was a lot of damage needing to be repaired, but what finally tipped the scale was the Parisian road map fabric I found to recover the suitcase. It was so fitting I couldn’t stand it!
I stripped the sealed fabric from the existing suitcase using a cutting knife. You’ll notice that I couldn’t take off the locks and handles so I had to cut around them. (I hesitate to mention the love affair Jennifer’s dog had with the peeled off fabric. I think her dog actually ate an entire strip. Yuck!)
I wanted to keep the navy blue woodgrain interior so I carefully stripped it to be used again.
And finally I was left with a naked suitcase. There was not much to it really. I was amazed to find that the top and bottom of the suitcase were just thick pieces of cardboard and the sides made of wood.
I used wood glue to mend some damage, glued on the new fabric using fabric glue, and replaced the existing interior fabric. Lots of glue and hours later, here is the final piece!
I think it turned out rather lovely. My mother said my great grandmother would have liked it as well. In the end, having my great grandmother’s suitcase made it just that much more special to me. And more importantly, it’s a fabulous practical—and I dare say pretty—storage solution!
This is one of just many storage solution ideas from Practical Solutions. Leave a comment about your favorite recycling idea by 5 pm MST on March 21st and I’ll choose a winner for a free issue of the magazine!
Organizing in vintage style!