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Entries in Upcycling Blog (220)


Repurposed Water Ski Beer & Soda Bottle Opening Station - "Beer 30" #2

Howdy folks!  I've got another one of my repurposed vintage water ski bottle opening stations fresh from the garage.  I've made a lot of different ones in the past year, but they are just so much fun with their own identities and parts/pieces.

I've made a "Beer 30" one before but it flew off the shelf and I dearly missed it (HERE).  This one has a different bottle cap/trash basket and a few other different modifications and pieces.  The most fun is picking the vintage water ski and deciding what I'll use for the bottle cap/waste receptacle.  

This one was perfect with the Mustang artwork on it.  And the addition of the water ski fin at the bottom.  Great for a man cave, game room, garage, patio, deck, kitchen and more!




Austin, TX -- Here we come!

GadgetSponge worldwide takeover starts this weekend!  Just kidding.  How about one city at a time!?!

For the folks around and in Austin, TX, you'll be able to see GadgetSponge creations in person at Outlaw Boots & Eclectic Emporium on Burnet Rd.  They are a super, growing business that needed a larger location and will have their grand opening on Saturday, February 1st.  They have Texas' largest supply of vintage cowboy boots and unique and unusual one-of-a-kind items.

Outlaw Boots has a ton of vintage western boots, clothing, accessories, original artwork and pieces -- AND NOW -- GadgetSponge!

You'll be seeing more pictures and information about this awesome addition to the GadgetSponge locations.  Stay tuned and head over to Austin soon, if not this weekend!


Upcycled / Repurposed Pay Phone + Phone Charger + Bank + Accent Light Creation

Hey folks!  I'm opening the door to the GadgetSponge Garage and revealing something I'm very proud of...

The biggest question is, "What is it not!?"  I was lucky enough to run across a pay phone at a garage sale and then a few weeks later, I found the used metal casing/shell.  The shell was pretty beat up but still had a lot of character.

 The encasing that the shell provides drove me right to where I wanted to go with this piece.  I wanted to bring old technology together with new technology.  Although the enclosed strip outlet will charge most anything, I figured most would charge their phones, Kindles, or other small devices in the bottom basket area.

I custom cut and fitted the wooden structure to securely hold the strip outlet in place.  The top panel opens up and allows you to plug into up to 5 devices.  Vintage typewriter keys allow each person to see which charge cord is there's when the plugs are full.  You can see how the panel raises up below....

The hardwired lighting in the top "Phone" compartment was shot.  So I took it all apart and installed a new fixture with a nice LED bulb (to last a long, long time and to not get too hot) and drilled a hole in the acrylic panel so that a switch chain could drop down.  This will now allow the new owner to turn on and off the light as they choose.  

Next up is I had to find something to occupy the empty hole where the coin holder went.  I still wanted to use the coin slot as a means to collect money so I looked around and found this old maple syrup tin that fit just right.  I put a vintage handle on it and now it's fun to put the money into the coin slot and save it for a rainy day!

The whole inside and outside of the phone casing was a bright red/orange.  I wanted to liven it up some on the outside.  I laid down two different colors of chalk paint and distressed them to show through each other.  Then, I taped off section to paint on some metallic silver.  Then after some more distressing, I added in some dark wax.  I was chasing the distressed style of a phone that had been in place many years and with many paint layers that had chipped away and worn away with the seasons.  I think I didn pretty good!

The custom cut piece of wood on the back is what hold everything together.  I painted and distressed the edges and front with some chalk paint and dark wax.  On the back, I torched the wood to bring out the grain.  I cut out a large hole so that any future modifications could be made to the telephone wiring. NOW IT'S READY FOR A NEW OWNER!!!

Measurements: 30" tall; 15" wide; 10.5" deep.  Three-prong outlet cord.  Phone cord included.




Large Vintage Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Blueprint & Custom Color Board Wall Art

My oldest son actually did most of the leg work on this one since he did the first one that sold.  The new owner bought the smaller one and asked for a much larger one to compliment it.   Here's the first one...

And here's the larger one that was just finished and shipped....

We ran across some vintage blueprints from a friend of a 1930s Coca-Cola Bottling Plant.  I had them all digitally scanned so I could save them before we used some of the pieces.  The piece is about 46" wide by 24" tall.

Outside of the blueprint panels are custom painted, distressed and waxed pieces of wood.  

You can see the "Bottling Room" referenced in the piece above.

And below you can see the bottom blueprint information with reference to the Coca-Cola Bottling Plant...

This piece now resides on a campus in Talahassee, FL.


1940s Wooden Gameboard Repurposed Table

Hey folks!  I just finished a table that I really enjoyed putting together.  It started with a fantastic Carrom brand #95 wooden board game.  I removed the other side design to give myself a flat surface to build my table leg foundation.

All the netting in the corner pockets is intact and the table legs have a naturally-chipped patina that you just can't replicate without a lot of patience and torture!  Haha.


I did some custom wood work underneath to give the table legs strong support and I cut into the 2x4 framing pieces to offer more leg room height underneath.  I also reinforced the legs with some metal angle brass hardware.

This newly-created table is ready for a second life of more games or simple enjoyment as a side table or party table.  GAME ON!!!

Measurements:  28.5" wide;  28" tall.

FOR SALE!... This custom creation along with all of my others is available in the GADGETSPONGE ETSY SHOP or at Timeline Antiques & Collectibles Mall in Shreveport, LA.