Recycled | Fashion statement or necessity? | Spotlight on Etsy

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There was once a time when mums in the UK made a beeline for knitted garments in jumble sales.  For a fraction of the cost of shop bought wool, the garments could be washed, unpicked and then recycled to make knitted/crochet garments for members of the family.  Recycling was a necessity to save money.

Today we see recycling as a need to take care of our planet and its ecosystem.  Products made from things considered waste are often sought after aren’t they!


Today I’m spotlighting two very different Etsy shops that sell recycled products.  All different but giving something back to the environment.

Made by Swimmer

You will find an eclectic range of toys, accessories and cushions all made by hand with love and care using vintage and recycled fabrics and materials in the Made by Swimmer shop.

Evolved from a women’s art group Jo and Sue’s work is driven by the fabrics that they find in second hand outlets and flea markets – they find something and think ‘that would make a great….’ or sometimes just buy something because it’s beautiful and months later, a use for it will come into their heads.  Embroidery is by hand.


 the names of the toy animals.

Prices range from £7 – £50.

Follow Made by Swimmer on Instagram and Pinterest.

Tangle Crafts

You knew that stationery had to be something that caught my eye didn’t you 🙂

You’ll find upcycled postage stamp art, notebooks & travel gifts in the Tangle Crafts shop.

This is what owner Su Mwamba says:

“I think of postage stamps as tiny, disposable fragments of history. The rescued stamps I use in my collages are all vintage (pre-1980), but of little value to collectors – torn, creased, or just too common. But their faded colours provide the perfect palette for my ‘imaginary landscapes’ & I love the sense of preserving something so ephemeral within the creation of something new. I don’t know much about philately, and I will never know the roads a particular stamp has travelled, from one hand to another, but at least some of these forgotten stories will now continue to evolve through my artwork.

In addition to the inherent old world charm of vintage stamps, I simply enjoy playing with colour: the stamps are my paintbox, blending together to build each artwork.”


the nostalgia.  A touch of romance.

Prices range from £8.50 for an A6 travel journal to £150 recycled rainbow postage stamp wall art.

Follow Tangle Crafts on Twitter @TangleCrafts

Do you buy recycled or upcycle yourself? 

What are your thoughts?  Fashion statement or necessity?

I've been blogging about my interests at Jera's Jamboree for 8+ years. My love of reading, crocheting and being out in nature are all things that help me unwind from my role as an Inclusion Lead in a primary school. I'm passionate about early help and sharing strategies with families to empower and help build resilience. I'm a member of of my Local Authority's Early Help Operational Board, working alongside other professionals to instigate change and growth.

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