What can I do with all these?

December 30th, 2008 in member junk     
FunktionalJunk FunktionalJunk, member
5 users recommend

Part of my spool farm.

Part of my "spool farm".

Somehow I "inherited" all these cable spools...largely because I can't say no to something I might be able to use.  I had no idea it was this many (there are actually more that aren't in the photo!)  They range in size from knee-high or so to 5 feet tall and 8 feet across!  What in the world am I going to do with them!?  Aside from the obvious college apartment end-table any creative ideas would be appreciated.  I'm at a loss. 

posted in: member junk, wood, outdoor spaces

Comments (19)

sshack writes: Saw great furniture in store in New Mexico. Painted great colors. Posted: 12:21 pm on September 2nd
harvestyourblessings writes: I love all of the ideas posted!! I have a small collection of spindles and I made them into planters. I laid the spindle on it's side, took small slices off the bottoms of the circle ends- so they wouldn't roll away...LOL! Remove some of the slats along the topside of the spindle. It's this area where you can fill it with potting soil and lots of flowers. On each end... I painted flowers, wreaths, mountain scenes, address numbers, and welcome greetings. If you remove an additional board from the center cylinder towards the front of the planter... it makes it a bit easier to see your flowers. You could also add some large wooden sunflower petals around the edge for some fun. On one spindle planter I painted watermelon slices on the ends with lady bugs and a trail of ants around the sides. Just some ideas to make people smile when they go past your yard. Have a blessed day !!! Posted: 8:53 pm on February 26th
cre8vjunk writes: We used one of these as a table in our first apartment (1972 eek!). Once we moved into our home I tore the spool apart and made a clock from one of the rounds. House numbers for 12, 3, 6 & 9 and clock works with LONG hands. At the moment I am in the middle of painting the round (dry brush white) and the numbers and hands (payne's grey, love that color in place of black). I'll hang it on a different wall for a whole new look. Posted: 2:25 pm on January 26th
KingChase writes: OK here is MY Idea! I would take one of the larger spools, make a tree sized hole in the center, cut it in half height wise, then cut the bottom off enough for sitting height, then re attach the two pieces around an old tree for a rustic outdoor tree bench. Or maybe even a table around a tree or light post. Anyway, that is my idea. Posted: 1:46 pm on January 20th
sanfordandsons writes: I work for an electric company so, I know how wire reels build up. Here's my idea, my daughter-in-law's grandmother uses them for a dog house. Keep them upright. Cut a door in the slats if you will big enough for the dog to go in and out. There is plenty of room inside for bedding and the overlap of the reel is good for rain and sun protection like a front porch and even has a wood floor. I just joined this website and I'm going to love it. This junk literally is in my blood. Thanks! Posted: 9:54 pm on January 19th
Valleyartisan writes: How about cutting one in half and making a 1/2 table to attach to the wall in an entry hall area. If the weathered wood looks good, just add glass to the top and put a coat of clear acrylic on the rest of it to preserve the weathered look. If it is too bad on the top, add a mosaic top. Sounds like a great idea to me. Posted: 6:19 pm on January 11th
secondwhistle writes: I have used these spools as potting benches/tables. Attach hooks underneath the top round to hang gardening tools. The bottom round holds pots, potting soil, etc.

I have also seen them used as bistro tables. Cut the the bottom round to a smaller circumference so it will still balance but leave room for a your legs when sitting on a chair or stool.

The broken slats could be salvaged for signs. Posted: 6:18 pm on January 6th
FunktionalJunk writes: You guys are just wonderful! I had no idea when I posted this I would get so many great ideas! The latest idea of using the ends for decorative yard art is awesome. I love to decorate for Halloween and had never even thought of the big jack-o-lantern idea. Now I just need spring to get here a little faster so I can stand to work outside again and get some of these things done! Thanks again to all of you!

Leah Posted: 9:00 am on January 6th
SnowmanHill writes: I love all the ideas, I would take a few apart for scrapbuilding. The ends would be so fun to use for holiday decor. You could paint one big round end to look like a snowman head and stick in on your porch or in a snowbank, we have lots of those today. I would paint one to look like a primitive jaok-o-lantern face and use it in my Halloween display outside, they would be so fun. I love your site.
Happy winter! Posted: 11:30 am on January 5th
csudderth writes: There's no end to what you can learn on this site. I had no idea goats would climb like that! Looks like you've got some good suggestions--post pics of your finished projects.
Christy Posted: 9:52 pm on January 3rd
noodleheadml writes: I have seen people take them apart and stand the round pieces on end side-by-side to make a fence. It was colorful too because they painted them all different primary colors;). Posted: 9:03 pm on January 1st
FunktionalJunk writes: Thank you all for some great ideas! I was just about ready to take a chainsaw to them and call them firewood. ThriftyFarmGirl...it's funny you mentioned the goat idea because a friend of mine who raises goats actually did take a few off my hands for her goats to climb on. I just don't know that many people with goats! I love the idea of putting an umbrella through the hole...that could be so cute, kind of a bistro look. The lazy susan idea is great too...I hadn't even thought of that. Some of them are pretty big so you could put a whole meal on it and guests could turn it to serve themselves. Great for outdoor BBQ's. I'm feeling more inspired now...you guys are great! Thanks so much! Posted: 11:49 pm on December 30th
CottageElements writes: I like the idea of making a Lazy Susan out of it, or how about attaching it to a vintage chair base and making a Lazy Susan table that's top turns. Otherwise you can use just the tops, painted them and stencil some word on them or maybe even decoupage a cool print on them for wall decor. I also like the idea of using the wood for other purposes. Old wood is great for making signs, or coat hangers with hooks. I think there's a ton of things you can do you them.

Lani Posted: 9:09 pm on December 30th
JunkArchitect writes: I would take them apart for the wood…free up a little space in the yard.
Keep the top and bottom intact for table tops. There are so many things you could use as bases.
Posted: 2:12 pm on December 30th
suewhitney writes: Wow, now that's a lot of spools. In my new book that comes out at the end of March I actually made one into a very feminine table with a lazy Susan attached to the top. I guess I am a little sentimental about spool tables as one was my first table in my very first apartment. Can't wait to see what you do with yours. From the looks of it you should be busy for quite some time. Ha!

Take care,
Sue Posted: 1:41 pm on December 30th
junktiqueboutique writes: We had one that one end was in pretty bad shape. It wouldn't make a good table because you could't get a chair up close to it because of the base. Anyway, we removed the 3 nut/bolts
on the bad end so we could make a usable table. As soon as we started to unloosen them the whole thing fell apart. No way to put it back together. But I had a whole pile of nice size boards to make signs with. Posted: 1:14 pm on December 30th
italianpeasant writes: i agree with TFG; when i was younger (last week) :) we had one as a table & when i got bored i'd turn it on its side & roll on it LOL Posted: 1:10 pm on December 30th
ThriftyFarmGirl writes: Well, not everyone can so what I am about to suggest! We have an outdoor fire pit area. I use them as tables. Variety of heights. The center hole works great for holding hot dog sticks! Have also put umbrellas in the ceter for shade...just like the fancy store bought sets! I have taken vinyl fabric and covered a few with that too. Adds some color to the area and can easily be wiped off.
The other thing I use the more beat up ones for is for my goats. Not exactly a 'crafty use' but they LOVE to jump, play and sleep on them! Posted: 12:09 pm on December 30th
You must be logged in to post comments. Click here to login.