Making new from old….and homemade Mod Podge

A month or so ago I showed a little cupboard I had started repainting, one that my son almost threw out. I wanted to turn it in to something my granddaughter might like but or I would rather have inside (depending on how it turned out!) then I didn’t like my paint job πŸ™‚ I decided to decoupage it. Anyway this is it before:Image

My husband pinched a short length of cane from the back of a cane bookcase to replace the missing one, I painted it, covered it, attacked it with sandpaper to shabby it up a bit and applied a couple of coats of Mod Podge.Image

Mod Podge is a horrific price here in New Zealand – $20 for a wee pot of it. As I have never tried the real stuff I have nothing to compare the results with but from my very unexperienced eye I am happy with the surface.

Mod Podge:

1 cup Elmer’s or PVA Glue

1/2 cup cold water

2 tablespoons clear varnish

Mix all together and store in glass jar.

The price for much more than a jar or Mod Podge was around $3.


I love the look of rusty barbed wire and old timber. Rustic and shabby are my favourite styles in decorating…which is good because it’s cheap, or sometimes free. Overall though I guess you could say we are eclectic collectors of junk πŸ™‚ Roger works on a farm that has heaps of discarded “materials” everywhere so he brings home bits and pieces sometimes.

6 months ago he made me this kitchen shelf to hold bigger things I had no storage for. It was made from old farm gates and posts.Image

And a few weeks back he made me this πŸ™‚


And maybe everyone will wonder why on earth I love this but I have no idea….I just DO love it. We went to help someone clean up their section around 5 years ago. They own an old country pub/cafe and this was in a skip. It was much bigger and is solid wood and quite weathered. Much to my husband’s consternation I asked if I could have it for the kitchen wall. He cut it down for me to fit but it’s still very large. It came down in the quakes and we are about to put it back up.

About as eclectic as it gets adding this to the bunch lol


28 thoughts on “Making new from old….and homemade Mod Podge

  1. I don’t know why either but I like your lobster art for the kitchen too. πŸ™‚ Your cabinet is so cute, will it go in the kitchen with the lobster art, the blues seem to match.

    Tell Roger he can visit and make art and shelves for my home any time he wants. πŸ™‚


  2. Love your cabinet re-do! It’s so sweet! Are you going to put anything in it? Enquiring minds want to know . . . πŸ™‚
    Thanks for the Mod Podge recipe; it’s pricey here, too, or was last time I looked. I can’t begin to tell you how much I love that barbed wire heart, your shelving and that blue lobster piece. Is it just a picture for the wall or is it part of a box you use for storage or a cupboard? For me, it’s the colours and the shapes. You are so lucky I’m needed here; your shabby/found items are enough to have me sneaking down there and you would wake one morning to find me happily ensconced on your couch . . . πŸ™‚ drooling over your dΓ©cor . . .

    I can hardly wait to unearth all my own treasures and show them off, between you and Pauline . . . I love shabby/found/rescued items! I’d rather have all my old beaten up stuff than a room full of new whatevers. Even if I won the big lotto!
    . . . and is that an enamelled teakettle I spy on the top right shelf, all seagreen and loveliness? The only thing I would love more is a huge battered old aluminium one like the one we had when I was young . . . I have a few pieces of white enamelware with black detailing that I treasure.

    You know, I don’t think I’m going to ever give up the ghost; I’m just going to stay here and enjoy . . . πŸ™‚


    • I rarely talk about what I have posted on the blog or what people say with Roger, but read your comments out and he chuckled. We would rather have old than new too even if we won lotto. I can appreciate other’s nice homes with modern things but I just feel more at home with old.

      I think I will give the cabinet to my granddaughter, she loves butterflies.

      We have a few enamel things we bought when we first moved here but most of them are in the spare room now with nowhere to put them.

      The lobster thing just goes on the wall in the dining room/kitchen. It looks good up there….well I think so anyway πŸ™‚


  3. Your camera is doing a great job for this post! Love the heart! Not quite so fond of the lobster, but like the size and colours and such πŸ™‚ You made a lovely job of the little house. I make my own decoupage glue too, pretty much the same as yours but minus the varnish. I guess that gives it a bit more shine? Next time I whip a batch up I’ll try and remember to pop a bit in and see what difference it makes. It’s lovely seeing more of your handiwork and your eclectic collections! xoxo


    • Lol, the lobster is a weird one – I can’t imagine liking it at all a few years ago but for some reason do now, dunno!! There is a little blue and orange in our curtains and it just seems to fit, I am sure most people would do a double take at it on the wall though πŸ™‚

      The varnish can either be glossy or matt but I got matt. I just decided on a recipe that sounded more durable for furniture etc.


  4. I’ve never heard of mod podge but I want to try it now! I’m looking for a second hand table at the moment. Just a small one which I’m planning to paint. However, that sounds a bit boring now after seeing you gorgeous little cabinet!


  5. LOVE your creations. I love the way you make it all work together + it looks like it all was meant to be:-) You are a creative soul. I sure enjoy watching how you create from “toss outs”-lol. Mod podge is not very expensive here in the USA, why is it in other places?

    They have made mod podge into a variety of types, for example, the non gloss, gloss, outdoor use, sprinkle kinds etc. It is quite the art supply “go to” here for many people:-) I have a huge bottle ,but have not been doing much with it lately. I did like using it with dried flower pictures and homemade paper. It is such a useful tool!Pretty neat you made your own-you are so resourceful!!!:-)


    • Thank you πŸ™‚ A limited budget teaches resourcefulness that’s for sure lol but I guess we are fortunate both our tastes are for old, different, cheap or free!

      Mod Podge is a great product but wow, so pricey here and I don’t understand why either. I absolutely refuse to pay that sort of money for something like that. I had seen the homemade stuff all over Pinterest – so much cheaper.


  6. Cheers for that mod podge recipe Wendy, I am always on the look out for cheaper copies of very VERY expensive things and this is a definite goer for me πŸ™‚ I LOVE that little decoupaged cupboard now, you have taken it from “shabby” and rendered it “shabby chic” to the max. I really love that rustic shelf that Roger made you. Steve is always hoarding old hardwood boards outside and occasionally makes something out of them other than wooden spoons. We both know the value of a gorgeous old gnarled up bit of hardwood :). I truly adore that barbed wire heart on that little wooden shelf. Love is hard work…staying in love is even harder work…sometimes it feels like you have to climb over barbed wire just to reach/see the other persons point of view in order to grow, learn and become the couple that you are meant to be and a barbed wire heart is a perfect example of just how beautiful a bit of healthy pain can be and the amazing results that it can yield πŸ™‚

    LOVE that lobster advertisement! An excellent SCORE there you guys…I bow to your foraging abilities…no lobster signs here but we will keep on hoarding that hardwood whenever and wherever we find it πŸ™‚ I guess Pauline and I won’t be fighting over that lobster poster? πŸ˜‰


    • Yeah…no, I don’t think that is Pauline’s cup of tea at all by the sounds lol.

      That’s a big part of why I like barbed wire, it says so much! I adore that and look at it every day. We both love recycled old wood and have alot of it around the place. Roger made me a sandwich board years ago, a two sided blackboard with old wood with lichen all over it. He is in the right job for picking up materials for this sort of thing and we are hoping to be able to sell craft work made with it one day. Love the way you wrote that Fran πŸ™‚

      I have just sanded down the map drawers I showed on here once to decoupage, such a lovely pastime – turning ugly into something pretty πŸ™‚


      • I KNOW! Isn’t it rewarding to take something ugly and turn it into something that other people say “WOW!” about. You get the creative save, the reuse, the satisfaction AND the praise…no wonder some of these crafting bloggers are prima dona’s πŸ˜‰ “Craft Rockstars!” πŸ˜‰ Can’t wait to see those map drawers sorted. I LOVE lichen and adore seeing it on old wood. You will have no problems selling gorgeous things like that Wendy, looks like the markets… “here you come!” πŸ™‚


      • Yeah, we both have a ways to go to become “Craft Rockstars” but gosh there are some clever people out there!
        To be able to earn a living from home would be the ideal and we are hoping to both be able to do that one day in the future. We are going to try private boarding for precious pups too “special” to go to kennels. We can have 2 without a license so that is next on the agenda. My work will be running out soon so I need to find something I can do.


      • I can only begin to imagine how spoiled those precious pups would be ;). A great idea though and so long as you prop them in front of the telly with a nice soft fluffy cushion you should be right…and snacks…don’t forget the snacks! (Or am I thinking “children” there? Never quite sure which is which these days…) Start an Etsy store, an Ebay account and get Roger…just being “Roger” and you are set πŸ™‚


      • If the dog thing doesn’t work out, you can always do the kid thing…I hear you don’t even need a license for 2 or more and people are screaming out for after school care these days…same deal, cushions, fireplace, telly and snacks only you get to send them home at 6 πŸ˜‰


      • Yes, I could do that πŸ™‚ Not so into kids these days – though I love kids and adore my granddaughter of course, I am knackered when she goes home!! Kids are so full on nowadays.


  7. I so love your new creation… I am sure your Granddaughter will cherish it… Brilliant ideas… and I love your heart too… πŸ™‚ and not only the barb-wired one.. πŸ˜‰ Keep it beating with Love Wendy.. As you share it with us here.. xxxx Hugs Sue


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