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inspiration: Tools

DIY ROUND HANGING SHELF

I’ve been wanting to make a round hanging shelf for the last few months, I love the way they’re almost like art when you fill it with pretty possessions. However, I’ve struggled to find a way to create a perfect circular frame for it. Walking down the street in Hong Kong recently I stumbled upon the answer, a large dim sum steamer. Who would have thought that they could produce something more than a delicious lunch? Read on to see how. Spoiler: it’s shockingly easy.

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You need:

  • A dim sum steamer basket (mine was 38 cm / 15 inches across)
  • A piece of plywood a fraction longer than the widest part of the inside of the steamer, with a depth that matches.
  • Scissors/stanley knife
  • Rope
  • Wire

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

How to:

1. Start by removing the base of the basket by cutting away all the woven parts connecting to the frame.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

2. Once you remove the weaving it should be a simple task of pulling out the bamboo base. If yours is glued in You may have to pry it out.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

3. Your frame should look like this.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

4. Wedge your plywood into the steamer. Mine had some wrapped bamboo which provided a natural ledge for the shelf, but if your doesn’t I would also add some glue to keep the shelf in place.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

5. Cut the rope to the size you want in terms of how much you want the basket to hang down.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

6. The steamer basked will have holes in the side through which the weaving you cut out went, so I simply wrapped the wire through that to secure the rope.

Make a round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

Voila. This has taken pride of place above my desk!

Make a simple round hanging shelf www.apairandasparediy.com

DIY CHAIN STRAP WATCH

Combining two of my favourite things, a way to know how long it is until lunch and gold fishtail chain, to me this is the ultimate in functional and aesthetical DIYs. Read on to see how to make your own!

a pair and a spare DIY watch

For this project you can actually use any chain you like, a mix of different chains even (although like to stick to the same palette but that’s just me). I chose fishtail because I love the look of it but feel free to be imaginative!

You need:

  • enough fishtail chain to go around your wrist roughly four times, for me that was about 1 metre (40 inches).
  • an old watch
  • beading plyers
  • jump rings
  • lobster clasps

or if you’re loving chain as much as I am at the moment, grab yourself a chain crafting kit to experiment with this and lots of other chain projects.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

How to:

1. Use your plyers to take the watch straps off.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

2. Take the pins out of the straps.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

3. Put them back on the watch the add 4 jump rings to the pins.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

4. Cut the fishtail chain into 4 equal pieces and two ends to the jump rings on one side.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

5. Do the same on the other side.

a pair and a spare DIY watch

6. Add lobster clasps to the other end and wrap around your wrist to put on. Done!

a pair and a spare DIY watch

a pair and a spare DIY watch

First and last images by Sabrina Sikora

HOW TO: HANDMADE SWINGTAGS

Over the last couple of months I’ve become obsessed with packaging, something I rarely noticed in the past has become an almost addiction – I find myself loitering in the boutique supermarkets here in hong kong ooohing and ahhing over french soup cans… weird I know. When it comes to the perfect package, it’s all about how it represents the product itself, and so what better way to package up beautiful handmade pieces than with equally love-intensive packaging? My friend Megan (she of the amazing macrame necklace) recently shared with me her process for creating the gorgeous handmade swingtags she puts on her rope bags, and I couldn’t help but share. Read on to see how she does it!

HOME MADE SWING TAGS HOME MADE SWING TAGS HOME MADE SWING TAGS HOME MADE SWING TAGS HOME MADE SWING TAGS HOME MADE SWING TAGS

I have to say that the imperfect design and feel of these swing tags is what, to me, makes them so perfect!

Images thanks to Knots & Knits