Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Repurpose a Vintage Yarn Basket with Martha Stewart’s New Paint Line


I was so very very blessed to receive a big box containing the Martha Stewart Crafts Decorative Paint Line by Plaid. Head over to your local Michael’s Craft Store, where this line is being sold exclusively…you may find the shelves stocked by now!


I knew the paints, stencils and tools would come in handy for what I love to do lately, which is repurpose thrift store finds. A few weeks ago, I found this 70s fabulous yarn basket for $6.


I don’t knit very much, but I loved the detail of the handles. The fabric…not so much, so I planned to change that out. I bought it anyways, not sure what I would do with it.


Then my mom came over one day, and while I was giving the girls a bath, she noticed their dirty clothes on the floor. I was already proud of them for putting them in the same spot on the floor every time (then I scoop them up and put them in the laundry room downstairs), but my mom has higher standards!


She said “You’re training them to throw clothes on the floor! Find them a basket or something to put them in!” Oh all right, I said reluctantly. Then I remembered my yarn basket, which I have now repurposed into a hamper for my girls, made pretty by Martha Stewart!




  • Martha Stewart Satin Paint (colors below)
  • Martha Stewart Spray Paint Kit
  • Martha Stewart Stencil Brushes, Pouncers, Paint Roller and Stripe Brushes
  • Martha Stewart Medium Stencil (Eyelet Lace Design)
  • Masking Tape or Painters Tape
  • White primer
  • Plain cotton fabric
  • Fusible webbing (I used Heat ‘n’ Bond Light)

{Note: I will include a tutorial for the bag itself in another post, to keep this one focused on Martha Stewart’s products}

First I removed the original fabric and started painting the frame. I could not wait to try the Martha Stewart Spray Paint Kit!!!


Buying a whole can of spray paint in one color can get quite expensive as well as take up a lot of space! For small jobs like this, the Martha Stewart Spray Paint Kit is perfect. You just need equal parts of satin paint in your color choice (I used Jonquil) and the Satin Spray Medium. You pour both into the bottle that comes in the kit, shake it to mix, and then attach the sprayer (don’t shake after you attach the spray).


It goes on so smoothly and easily. I applied two coats over some white primer, and I barely filled half the plastic bottle (that’s combined paint and medium) so I didn’t use that much paint. At $2.99 a bottle of paint, that’s really economical. In addition, it was convenient to not have to go to the store to buy spray paint…I already had my color on hand!

yarnbasket4 yarnbasket5

As that dried, I started to stencil. So. Much. Fun. I last stenciled in middle school! I’d forgotten how much I love it.


I used some vintage-inspired fabric I found at the thrift store for $1.50 for 2 yards! The print inspired my color palette: Mint, Pink Carnation, Jonquil, Carrot, and I also added Raspberry Ice (a fuschia color). There are 160 total colors to choose from in the line, not only in satin finish but also pearl, metallic, glitter (woo!) and high-gloss.


Because I plan to wash the bag periodically (since it will be holding dirty clothes), I want to make sure the paint will stay on. It’s amazing that I can use the same paint I just spray painted on wood onto fabric as well! All I have to do is mix the paint with fabric medium (2 parts paint, 1 part medium) and after heat setting after 24 hours, it’s safe to go in the wash!

By the way, Martha Stewart Paints not only can be applied to wood and fabric, but also glass (dishwasher safe), terra cotta, metal and ceramic. In addition, they are suitable for indoor/outdoor use and are non-toxic so children can use them as well.


First I tried the stencil brushes on this butterfly.



Then I tried a roller on this doily-shaped design. The roller also comes with its own plastic bottle for mixing the paint with medium. If you don’t need medium, the roller attaches right onto the paint bottle.




The stencil brushes and roller were so easy to use, but my favorite stenciling tools were definitely these pouncer brushes. I found them to apply the paint very evenly.



And I also couldn’t wait to try these stripe brushes.



I made my own plaid fabric!


Instead of stenciling right onto the bag fabric, I thought it would be cool to add some dimension by making appliques out of the stencils. So when the plaid paint dried, I cut it into shapes


And I also cut around the stenciled shapes


I then traced the cut-outs onto some Heat ‘n’ Bond fusible webbing. The rectangle at the bottom of the pic would normally be used as a trim or border, but I stenciled a short length and made it into a pocket where my girls can put their hair accessories before bath time (which we keep downstairs…we are always losing them!).


I arranged them on the bag fabric


And I fused the appliques then stitched them.


For the pocket, I lined it with the print fabric and sewed that to the bag as well.


Again, will have a full tutorial on how to make the bag in another post. But here’s the finished product upstairs by the bathroom.





Most importantly, the girls love it. Glad to help them develop good habits (and Grandma will be happy too…also important).



I was so delighted to try out Martha Stewart’s new line of paints, tools and stencils by Plaid. They were so easy to use, easy to clean, convenient and of really really high quality. I have barely made a dent in my supplies, so there will definitely be more projects to come!


PS You’ve got to see what other bloggers are making with these awesome products. Visit Crafterminds every few days for a round-up:

Round-Up 1

Round-Up 2

Full post disclosure here.

Linking: Apron Thrift Girl :: The Thrifty Groove :: The Frugal Girls :: Petite Hermine :: Tip Junkie :: Sassy Sites :: Rook No. 17 :: The Trendy Treehouse :: Tatertots and Jello :: Lolly Jane Boutique :: Homemaker on a Dime ::Southern Hospitality



  1. what a transformation !
    really like the doily like stencil ~ so cute :)
    how fortunate you were to receive all those Martha Stewart products in the mail ~ how did you get that gig ?

  2. That is just about the cutest laundry basket ever!

  3. I'm so excited for these Martha Stewart paints by Plaid. I bought some of the tools the other day to use for monoprinting. Thanks for your post. It's very inspiring!

  4. This is so cute and well done! I've featured your stenciled project today at

  5. okay, I'm dying for the tute on the basket cause I have one these jewels (Ug-lee!) in my sewing room right now! This would be perfect for my son's room!

  6. Steph,
    What a great transformation! So ugly before and so adorable after!
    That kit looks amazing, will have to check it out.
    Thanks for visiting!
    P.S. your girls are adorable!

  7. First off, thanks for visiting my blog. I haven't seen a "slinky dog" in years so how cool you have seen two on blogs recently.

    And speaking of, how CUTE is this project! I keep looking at a little sewing basket thingy like this at our thrift store. It is so cute yet so dated and not exactly in a good way. Now you make me wish I sewed! I just may go snag it anyway. Thanks for the idea!

    Yay blogs and creative sharing people.

  8. What a great idea and what a great job in recycling!

  9. We want one of those kits! LOVE the after, Steph- great transformation :) Gotta love Martha!
    Happy Labor Day weekend!

    ps- Thanks for linkin up w/ us :)

  10. This turned out so cute! You did a wonderful redo on this old yarn basket! Thank you for joining TTF and have a fun week!

  11. What a fantastic makeover! Love how colorful it is. :) Your girls are adorable! Thanks for the visit to my blog the other day! (I'm behind on responding to comments) :)

  12. Oh goodness, how pretty! I love this so much - the appliques are gorgeous.

  13. Such a cute project!! What a great transformation!


  14. I love the makeover! The yellow paint is so fun and the stenciled appliques are so cute.

  15. Steph, what a beautiful job of transforming that vintage yarn basket into something new, fabulous and heirloom worthy! I love the way you used the new Martha Stewart projects, and gotta admit, I'm a little jealous of your stash. What an incredibly generous box of samples! I especially love that spray paint kit. What a great idea!

    Thank you so much for linking up to "A Little Birdie Told Me..."!


    P.S. I'm spotlighting your post on my Facebook page.

  16. Pretty! I hope you do provide a tute for making a new fabric sling for one of these baskets. I just got one on Etsy.


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