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need help with old suitcase

Posted by tralynn (My Page) on
Tue, May 24, 11 at 6:25

would like to make a birthday gift for a friend of mine. She loves old things and loves to garden. I would like to take an old hard covered suitcase and paint the outside a sage green. The inside is musty smelling and is covered in an ugly brown. I thought maybe of getting a pretty plastic tablecloth and recovering the inside, but would like some ideas of things that I can put inside garden related. She also loves to write notes to send to people so anything that pertains to that also. It probably doesn't make much sense what I am telling you, but everything I come up with is the usual garden things. Garden tools, pots, seeds, plants, which I will put some of those things in, but I would like to add a more personal touch. Any ideas? Thanks.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: need help with old suitcase

does she like to sit outdoors in the garden as well, or picnic? Daytrips, etc? If so, maybe make her a little portable stationary desk for writing letters. Add a nice picnic type cloth to sit on, stationary, and other letter writing stuff, along with the gardening things - packs of seeds, bulbs, gloves, new gardening tools


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RE: need help with old suitcase

I like the idea of the little portable desk. Yes she is very much an outdoor person, thanks for your ideas.


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RE: need help with old suitcase

The suitcase lid can be the desk. I also meant to add that I have seen some cute re-doing of old vintage suitcases on Etsy, though not sure if any are available now. I trashpicked a really cool round american tourister case last year, with a red satin lining. The outside is gray blue, very hard plastic vinyl type material, would be easy to paint, and I saw one online (etsy again) painted white, with black trim along the edging seams, and then big red poppy type flowers painted on it. Very simple design, even a non-artist could manage it. That would look great on the one I found, especially with the red satin lining. I have also seen many where vinyl decals or stenciling is used for decorating them.

The problem with the suitcase I want to do is that it is in perfect condition except for a musty basement smell that I just can't seem to get rid of. No point in doing anything to it if I can't first get rid of that smell!


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RE: need help with old suitcase

I've read that stuffing suitcases with newspaper and leaving for awhile will get rid of odors. Haven't tried it myself.


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RE: need help with old suitcase

I have found Febrez works on some things. I used it on an old sewing machine case. Once in a while I get a whiff but it really helped. I wiped down the in side and outside both. Never found that newspapers helped. I also thought that a complete coat of varnich or sealer of some kind would work, depends of the material.


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RE: need help with old suitcase

Try setting a bowl of white vinegar inside it. Or, laying it out open in the sunshine.


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RE: need help with old suitcase

Place a bowl of charcoal inside it and close the lid. Check it after a day or two. It should get rid of the odor. It kills odors in old freezers and ones that have had food spoilage so it should work for you.


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RE: need help with old suitcase

Just noticed this post. Old suitcases are very difficult to remove the odors. Try this: if you can find Yellow Sweet Clover, it grows in roadside ditches in our area. It must be in bloom, cut a good bunch and stuff into the suitcase and it will take the odor out. It will do the same for your musty basement. For the basement I cut multiple small armloads and scatter here and there in the basement. Let it remain there for a few weeks.


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