As part of my '40 for 40' this year I visited the Dorset Scrapstore which is a not-for-profit organisation to see what they do to recycle and reuse everyday items that may otherwise have just been sent to landfill. The Scrapstore is based at Alder Hills in Poole and if you love crafting then I guarantee you’ll be in heaven!
Stock is frequently changing so although you might find something identical to a previous visit you’ll definitely come across lots of recently donated goodies which you can use for a new project. They even regularly swop stock with other Scrapstores so there is always a lot of variety.
Before visiting I asked my son what he would like to make after school and his answer was a ‘car wash garage’ so other than knowing I needed a box I wasn’t entirely sure what I would do and spent ages wandering around for inspiration. I found some great plastic tubes which I knew his cars would fit in nicely and some clear plastic sheets which could be used for the entrance to the car wash. I also wanted to make some sort of sensory board or bag for our baby and found some lovely sheets of patterned paper and sparkly things which I could put inside plus I also got some blank cards and boards to use on another project.
Whilst wandering around I found plenty of material, wool, leather, polysterene, all sorts of paper and cardstock, boxes, foam, buttons, plastic tubs plus some huge cables reels which crafters have made amazing things with from stools to fairy gardens.
The vast majority of materials are things you can fill your bag with but they also have a few reduced priced things you can buy separately which include big tubs of paint, pens, pretty tins and ribbons.
I met with a lovely member of staff called Sarah while I was there who explained a little about the charity, the membership fees and bag prices. She also told me that items are donated from local businesses so that nothing is wasted and their unwanted products can be given new homes and reused.
Once we were back at home I found a big box suitable for our car wash and we worked out what should go where before we started painting and glueing. We used a sponge to slap on some paint and we wrote ‘Sams Car Wash’ on it which I then went over with PVA and glitter to make it stand out. Then he cut up a sheet of the stiff plastic for the car wash door and I used a hot glue gun for the plastic tubes which made great runs for his cars.
On another project we had great fun with the cardboard mounts. Using shaving foam we squirted a big dollop on a plate which we then dabbed with food colouring and with a cocktail stick we made a nice swirly pattern and gently pressed the board onto it. Once we knew it was covered I firmly scraped the shaving foam off with a ruler and we were left with a wonderful marbling pattern. We also used some of the card stock to make pretty patterns which we then turned into thank you cards for the family.
We still have some bits and bobs to use up from our bag and our next project will be to have a go at making sensory bags and bottles plus some homemade cards for sick children as part of another 40 for 40.
To make a purchase from the Scrapstore you’ll need to be a member which costs £5* a year for individuals and slightly higher for groups and schools.
It costs £6* to fill a small bag and £9* to fill a large bag.
The Scrapstore LOVES it when members share their creations so please do take some pictures to show them. They also have lots of competitions and workshops for adults and children to get involved in.
For full details on location, opening times, prices, workshops and events please visit the website and Facebook page below.
Website: Dorset Scrapstore
Facebook: Dorset Scrapstore
I can thoroughly recommend a trip to the Dorset Scrapstore. One thing I’ll warn you though, you’ll be in there longer than you think and you’ll be eager to go back soon.
*Please note prices are correct at the time of updating in April 2023.