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The 6 Reasons Why We Love Southampton Scrapstore

If Hobbycraft had a love child with a car boot sale, it would be Southampton Scrapstore.

Let us share the reasons why we find Southampton Scrapstore invaluable. If you are creative, we think you will love it too. Heck, we think it is even a blessing for non-creative parents, craft challenged students and art shy aunties too.

MayInspire visits Southampton Scrapstore

This is an old photo of us at Southampton Scrapstore - can you tell we get a little crazy at this place?!

1. In a world of one-use plastic

Recycle. Re-love. Re-use.

Thanks to the wonderful David Attenborough, we are more aware of the challenge plastic gives our beautiful planet. This is why Southampton Scrapstore warms our hippy-at-heart souls. The whole idea of this place is to 'waste not want not'. People and companies donate things which they no longer have a use for...then Scrapstore members come along and find a use for it.

Donations include paint, paper, plastic containers, folders, buttons, material, frames and boxes.

We are in love with their recycle and re-love culture. Although the stock is unpredictable, it saves us a fortune at craft shops and we feel like we are contributing to the upkeep of the planet (win, win!).

Having a clear out of containers, scrap paper, knitting needles or even old calendars; drop it off so it can find a new home. Tons of people use this place, including schools, so you will be shocked how creative people get with unloved 'trash'. I once cut out the Jan-Dec titles from a calendar to create a new 3D block calendar; just because it is out of date, doesn't mean it has to be landfill.

They even make money from old milk bottle tops, raising money for their charity.

2. Kids craft made easy

If you have a bunch of kids for the day and you're not sure how long you can play tag, get to Scrapstore for some random inspiration. Don't resort to sitting them in front of the TV. Build memories and have some fun with giant pieces of card and stamps. If you are struggling to think of activities, speak to the wonderful team for ideas. The best part - if their art work looks questionable because they decided to craft like a hasn't cost you a fortune from the craft shop!

When you kid comes home and explains that they need to make an Egyptian masterpiece for class, or you are in need of a fancy dress costume; you know where to head.

3. Cheeky home items

IKEA, John Lewis and Lush have all donated items to Southampton Scrapstore?!

And they're not alone. Other donations have come from Next, Ordnance Survey, Brides of Portswood, Southampton City Council, B&Q, Asda, Stewart Signs, DeeCee Upholstery, Morgan Ceramics, and Diguru printing.

We always feel smug when we get a 'branded' items for a fraction of the price. It's even led to gifts, ideal storage solutions, craft room bargains and cheeky home items.

If you are just expecting junk, then think again!

4. Hire equipment

We have been making full use of their badge machine hire lately and they hire out a few others things too including a parachute, Batik kit (wax melting kit) and sewing kits. Also, if you want to borrow a sewing machine, you can use their ones upstairs on a Monday morning.

This has been useful for us, for those one off projects and testing out equipment before buying it ourselves.

5. Business hacks

Has a teeny tiny business, we fully appreciate ways that we can save wonga on promotional and marketing items. It also disturbs our 'green planet' thoughts when we think about buying displays for one off events. We have used Southampton Scrapstore to help with stall displays, craft fair backdrops and product photoshoots. It is really helpful when businesses donate display boards, even when slightly damaged.

Recently we used plastic yogurt containers as water pots for an art groups for adults. After we had finished, we cleaned them out and returned them to the Scrapstore so someone else can find them just as helpful. Little things like this have made running local craft groups so much easier and less wasteful.

If your office is throwing anything away, consider passing it to Southampton Scrapstore. From empty files, and presentation stands to scrap paper and branded mugs. The users of Southampton Scrapstore are thrifty. It's worth dropping it by, free of charge so you can sleep knowing that you did you little thing for planet earth.

6. They do classes too

There is always the risk that Southampton Scrapstore could end up with a fabric mountain that builds quicker than anyone can re-home it. Well, luckily they have a cunning plan for this. To make use of their scrap, especially the fabric, they run classes which include sewing lessons. You will pay a modest fee to attend the group and all costs go to Southampton Scrapstore. A very talented volunteer could teach you skills like how to sew a beautiful cushion cover into a bag. They regularly change their classes to keep it relevant to their stock, so give them a call and get involved. They also advertise the classes above the sign in book. Keep an eye out for groups which interest you.

Fancy a visit?

Southampton Scrapstore, Unit 15 Belgrave Industrial Estate, Swaythling, Southampton, Hampshire, SO17 3EA

  • Monday: 10:00am – 3:00pm

  • Tuesday: 10:00am – 3:00pm

  • Wednesday: 4:00pm – 8:00pm (we love the late night opening on a Wednesday)

  • Thursday: 10:00am – 3:00pm

  • Friday: Closed

  • Saturday: Open the first and third Saturday of each month from 10:30am – 12:30pm.

  • Sunday: Closed

During School Holidays: They only open Wednesday evenings (4-8pm) and the 1st & 3rd Saturdays of each month (10.30am-12.30pm). Do phone to double check if you’re not sure, as school term dates do vary.

Children under 8 years old are not currently allowed in the store. Call them if this is a problem; they are very helpful.

Types of Membership

For full details on their membership, go to their website or pop in and speak to Wendy. There are 5 categories:

  1. Individual for students, artists, individuals, parents

  1. Small Group for non-funded junior/youth clubs, once-a-week activity clubs, annual play schemes, Sunday schools/churches, parent and toddler, childminder and home educator groups, PTA’s, uniformed groups, drama/theatre clubs, small preschools (<100).

  2. Educational or Commercial for play groups, play/book buses, large pre-schools, nurseries, creches, after-school clubs, toy libraries, theatres; hospital, council, college, and university departments, special schools, schools up to 200 pupils, funded youth clubs, day centres, City Arts Depts, adventure playgrounds, art workshops, childminder associations.

  1. Extended for schools with over 200 pupils and organisations supporting several groups.

  2. Event for anyone needing a temporary membership to support a specific event, for a 3 month period.

These details are correct at the time of publishing this blog. Please check their website for current details.

Not local?

If you aren't from, or nearby Southampton then please look into Scrapstore projects in your area. If there isn't a similar charity near you, perhaps you should change this.

Don't be trashy - recycle!

Gemma from MayInspire gifts and craft classes

Not a sponsored blog

Note; this blog has NOT been sponsored in anyway, shape or form. We believe in highlighting the amazing creative places in your area, so others can find out about them and also fall in love with them. Let us know where your favourite place to get creative is.


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