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ABOTO Holiday Gift Guide: “Upcycled” Edition

December 4, 2011

Your general manager is headed for the winter meetings right now, armed with a checkbook and a mandate to buy your team some shiny new players for the holidays. (Unless you’re a Padre fan, that is, in which case a lump of Kotsay in your stocking will have to suffice for now.) In the spirit of giving, I’m pleased to offer you the first in a series of ABOTO gift guides, inspired by the evil geniuses at Regretsy and guaranteed to cost you less than Yu Darvish.

Today we’ll look at some of the finest “upcycled” crafts to be found on Etsy. If you’re not familiar with the term “upcycled,” it’s a neologism designed to make recycling sound fancier, and to allow thousands of online crafters to justify charging good money for items they made from stuff they found in their attics and their neighbors’ trash. Like this:

“Honey, I’m taking your old softball trophies, making them much uglier, and selling them for ten bucks a pop.” “Okay, Mom, but I get half.”

Upcycled gifts can make great stocking stuffers! Take a look at this little gem:

I don’t know. If I’m going to pay for $1.75 for a notepad commemorating a guy with a 5-7 record and a 5.43 ERA over seven seasons, I think I need the pink shag rug thrown in, too.

Perhaps you’re in the mood to do a good deed and cause the ghostly rictus of Johnny Bench to appear in your favorite relative’s nightmares. Have I got the gift for you!

There’s something so sad and weary about this one: “Reduced—this journal just needs to find its own home now.” I’m tired of fighting. Just go.

Admittedly, this upcycling thing can get a little self-indulgent now and then:

Yes, folks, this mixed-media piece includes the artist’s daughter’s report card, math homework, and late slip—but it also incorporates a Los Angeles Dodgers sticker and a 1987 Jerry Royster card! Caveat emptor, though: If it’s Kylian’s multiplication tables that really speak to you, you’ll have to shell out the $1,200 for the collage, but if you’re just in it for the Royster card, you can get one online for 25 cents, and it won’t have those creepy eyes above it.

Are you inspired yet?  Are you thinking of creating some upcycled mixed-media artwork of your own? If photography’s your thing, you’re going to want to personalize your equipment with this awesome upcycled seatbelt-cum-camera-strap honoring everybody’s favorite Mets infielder now that the Marlins are totally serious about signing Jose Reyes!

Well….at the very least, it’ll make a great gift for your cat, so that he too can take kitty’s-eye-view photos of his own litterbox.

Stay tuned for even more fabulous holiday gifts later this week!

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