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The Green Life: Recycled Crafts: Paint Chip Mobile

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July 09, 2012

Recycled Crafts: Paint Chip Mobile

Pain Chip MobileWant to liven up your living space? Grab some paper scraps and get creative. For inspiration, we asked expert crafter Kayte Terry to share a few ideas from her book Paper Made! 101 Exceptional Projects to Make Out of Everyday Paper (Workman, 2012).

Project #1: Paint Chip Mobile

Why let these strips of color go to waste? Use paint chips for this easy-to-make mobile that catches the breeze in a colorful way.

What you need:

  • pencil
  • 1" circle template (like a spool of thread)
  • 30-40 paint chips
  • scissors
  • access to a sewing machine
  • thread 
  • string or yarn
  • 2 wooden embroidery hoops (one 5", one 8")
  • hot glue gun, glue

With the pencil, trace 310 circles on the wrong side of the paint chips using the 1" template. Cut them out with scissors. Take the sewing machine, set to straight stitch, and pick 10-14 paint-chip circles to make your first chain. Line up a half inch apart and feed them through, adding a new paint chip circle until you've finished the first chain. Repeat until you have 20 chains, and lay them flat so they don't tangle.

Now take the large embroidery hoop and cut four 4" lengths of string or yarn, double knotting them equidistantly around the hoop. Then do the same with the smaller hoop with 6" lengths of string. Gather and knot together the untied ends of string. Hang the smaller hoop from a c-clamp attached to a shelf or window ledge. Make sure it hangs level. Put the large hoop below the smaller one, matching up the strings, and tie the larger hoop's strings on the smaller hoop's with a double knot.

Take out the hot glue gun and, starting with the smaller hoop, glue one end of eight paint-chip chains around the outside of the hoop about 1" apart. Repeat on the larger hoop with the remaining thirteen chains.

You should have some leftover circles not used in the chains; use those to glue on the parts of the hoops that are not already covered with circles.

Hang and enjoy!

--image courtesy of Kayte Terry from the book Paper Made!

READ MORE: Make a Key Rack from other repurposed materials!

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