Ty Hafan

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upcycled treasures set to raise funds for life-limited children

Children's hospice charity Tŷ Hafan is upcycling items donated to its shops to create a stylish range of homeware, gifts and accessories - just in time for Christmas.

Penny Collins

Instead of simply selling on pre-owned items through their charity shops, the charity's retail team has created a new label, Handcrafted by Tŷ Hafan, which includes Christmas decorations, furniture and accessories, all lovingly crafted, hand-painted and sewn by a team of volunteer 'elves'.

The inspiration for the new label came from project manager Penny Collins, who has worked for the charity for five years.

"I was working in the charity's retail department and noticed we had some donated stock and materials which could not be sold in our shops because of damage or marks," she said.

"As I've always been a keen crafter, I couldn't bear to see all these fabrics and items going to waste. I could also spot all these opportunities to make more money for the charity. So I decided to do something about it."

Penny scoured the charity's warehouse and hundreds of bags of donated items to find the perfect materials and sourced discounted chalk paints and tools from her contacts in the industry.

"By giving them a new lease of life and transforming these discarded treasures into decorative items or pieces of shabby chic furniture, we could open up a new revenue stream for the charity," she said.

"For example, I found some original Liberty fabric at our warehouse which was slightly marked and could not be re-sold. Using a bit of creativity and a needle and thread, we have now turned this into luxury vintage bunting, which could retail on the high street for around £20 each."

The new upcycled range, which has been branded Handcrafted by Tŷ Hafan, will be available at the charity's Abergavenny Emporium, Cardiff Emporium and Penarth shop from December.

Volunteers, members of staff, corporate supporters and even families supported by the hospice have been happy to get involved to help this exciting new project, with so-called Crafternoons turning out an impressive collection of creative Christmas decorations, bespoke furniture and stylish accessories.

You can even pick up a present for your pet, such as a quirky 'woofachief' or a comfy dog bed made from woolly jumpers.

"It's a creative way to support the charity, raising money and awareness," said Penny.

"You can pick up unique, high quality items for a fraction of what they'd be sold for on the high street, while raising money so the hospice can continue supporting children with life-limiting conditions and their families across Wales."