Last weekend I had some garden waste and a few other items to take to the local dump, or the Household Waste Recovery Centre as it is now termed!
I have to admit, if you say dump it conjours up images of piles of rotting waste with sea gulls scavenging on it. In reality, our local dump is clean, tidy and very well managed. There are marked recycling skips for metal, wood, cardboard, garden waste (which is composted), household batteries, aluminium foil, mobile phones, car batteries, gas bottles, glass, textiles and even a charity bra bank! There is also a general skip for everything else but even that gets sifted through by the staff for anything worth saving.
To one side is the "shop" which is very popular. You can buy all sorts of salvaged items from books, DVDs and CDs to china, furniture, garden tools and bicycles. I have to admit, I do quite like a poke about when I am there to see what I can find. I've found jewellery which I have broken up for the beads, a brand new lampshade still in its wrapping and various other odds and ends which have found their way onto ebay.
Whenever I go anywhere, I have my fabric radar on full alert and last weekend was no exception. I spotted a corner of some very interesting fabric sticking out of a large bin full of old curtains in the dump shop, so started to pull it out for a quick look. I found that it was a curtain pelmet which, judging by the length, was for patio doors. There was no sign of the curtains to match, so someone had obviously beaten me to them. The pelmet was in really good condition with no fading, so I decided to buy it for the princely sum of £2.50. A bargain!
Once at home, I very quickly ripped off the header tape and lining and broke up the pelmet in fabric widths. Once it was flat, I found I had 5 sections measuring 120cm (46") wide and 40cm (16") long. Best of all, one piece had a name and date stamped on the selvedge. It was a 1989 Laura Ashley print. So even better than I thought. After a quick wash to freshen it up and iron, the fabric has already been put to good use on the latest edition to my door stops. It just goes to show that you can find useful treasure pretty much anywhere if you keep an your mind and eyes open.