Category Archives: DIY

The Redhead tonight: “What are you doing, Momma?”

Me: “Just hanging forks on the wall!”

…wait a minute…I’m sure I remember being told NOT to do that as a kid!  And here I am, doing it on purpose!  At least this time it didn’t involve a food fight or getting out of washing dishes.  DIY art for my dining room was the adventure for today!

I have a small-ish two bedroom apartment, but somehow my walls are always blank – you’d think I’d be able to fill a few walls with stylish stuff, but either the “stuff” I want to put on my walls surpasses my budget or I am just unable find what I’m looking for.  So I decided to make some of my own, on the cheap – and I’m pretty excited at how it came out!

I nabbed a set of forks and knives – four of each – from the thrift store for around $1 per set the last time I was there and then picked up a couple of $3.00 picture frames at Wal-Mart.  I really have something against perfection and eat up (pardon the pun!) the interesting mismatch going on with the forks.

Then it was time to lay the newspaper down on the dining room table and let the white spray paint fly!

After they were dry, I used the absolute easiest method of hanging them on my wall and was thrilled that it worked!  I picked up some Scotch “Permanent Mounting” tape, which is not technically permanent, and comes in a long roll of thin adhesive foam.  I need to make the statement that I am in no way affiliated with 3M and I don’t receive any kind of compensation by mentioning their products – I just REALLY liked this stuff!  The best part about using this kind of adhesive – besides that it will come off of the wall without taking paint with it – is that you can easily cut the strip into whatever shape you need which was absolutely perfect when I was attaching it to my oddly-shaped utensils.

I measured and marked two inches between each knife and fork and just stuck them to the walls!  Afterward, I decided to give the Permanent Mounting a go with the frames and mounted them on the wall in the same way.  Time will tell if the mounting will work long-term, so I’ll update this post later on to let you know how it holds up through the hot days of summer.

I am really liking the result!  It’s a really simple look, but just a bit unexpected.  I saw some similar pieces at a well-known boutique about town with a price tag of $70 a piece, so I was excited that I could recreate it for a fraction of that …and it’s always more fun to make it yourself, especially when it is this easy to accomplish!  My new art, from a seat at my dining room table:

Advertisements

I took my inspiration for Etsy-awesomeness-finding from the current weather conditions outside of my window today…no hail-themed items, though…

 

1. Handmade Grey Cable Bag by effybags

2. Say My Name Initial Necklace by makepienotwar

3. Man in Raincoat Print by delaflamant

4. Big Rain Cloud Mobile by leptitpapillon

5. Sunshine Coral and Glass Earrings by BlueDoveStudio

6. Umbrella and Rain Drops Hand Carved Rubber Stamp Set by GreenGardenStamps

 

 


I really wish that I had a green thumb!  I don’t.  I don’t know what the opposite of having a green thumb is, but my thumb is that color.  I wish that I could keep a plant – any plant – alive, but it never seems to work out for me; however, when The Redhead gave me a hand-painted (by her!) flower-pot, I felt like with her help, we might be able to successfully grow our own little flowers.

This is her getting frustrated that I wanted to take pictures of her present instead of getting down to business and planting something in it – you can see her face getting more and more miserable with every shot (geez, Momma!).

I love that even simple things like planting seeds feels like a new and exciting adventure to a three year old…she loved the idea that she was going to get to plant something in “mud”.

Now, the best part – getting our hands dirty!

A little water (hopefully, we’ll remember to do this on a daily basis so the plant will actually grow).

Dirt, sun, water and a great paint job – if I were a plant, this would be the life for me!

 


I think I’ve mentioned how excited I am that Spring is finally here – it is definitely my favorite season and it’s taken FOREVER for it to come to Minnesota, so I’m really grateful!  Along with Spring comes all kinds of fun stuff, like tree buds and green grass and Easter….and with Easter comes not-so-fun stuff like rouge strands of Easter basket “grass” that gets stuck in my vacuum and hoards of left over plastic eggs. 

The Redhead has approximately fourteen million of these plastic eggs strewn around the house, emptied of their sugary contents.  I threw away most of them but then a miracle happened and I saw this post  at Creativity in Progress: Brilliant!

I immediately heated up the hot glue gun and with a button, some beads, a sharpie and some random bits from my crafty left-overs, The Redhead had an absolutely adorable – and even personalized(!) – new little tea set!

She helped pick out some of the decorations – she especially liked the gold stars on her orange tea cup and then she played with them for an hour – they’ve quickly become one of her favorite play things!  She especially likes filling them up with Momma’s beads and serving them to us as “special drinks”.

 What a great way to re-use and repurpose junk I would have just tossed in the garbage can three months from now when I was sick of seeing them all over the house!  I’m tempted to use the other three million plastic eggs to make sets for all the little girls I know….

 


 

I’ve got the fever, folks – the Spring Fever!  I was cleaning out my closet and putting away my winter clothes (hopefully for a good, long while!) and I came across a dress that I bought a year ago on Target clearance because…well, it was on clearance.  And I liked the emerald green color.  Unfortunately, it was hideous when I actually tried to wear it (not a great quality when you’re talking about clothing).  It had a great hem to it so I decided to make The Redhead a skirt out of it instead of throwing it out and it turned out great-fitting, but kind of boring.

 Lately, I haven’t had a lot of time to spare, so I fancied her skirt up in one of the quickest and most fool-proof ways possible (seriously simple!) and I thought I’d share.  I’m gonna loosely use the word “embroidery” in this post, but in all honesty, this technique can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it.  I kept it super-SUPER-simple for my projects.  If you’re awesome at embroidery, embroider away!

You’re Going to Need:

A Design, Solvy (water-soluble stabalizer that you can get at craft/fabric stores), Pen or Marker, Embroidery Floss/Craft Thread, Embroidery Hoop

Step #1:

First of all, you just need to find a design that you like!  For me, I like to use simple designs and line-drawings.  For the Ice Cream Sundae design on The Redhead’s skirt, I actually used an iron-on transfer that I bought at Joann Fabrics a long time ago

For another project, I printed some line-drawings that were available on the internet.  You’re going to trace your design, so you can use just about anything – for instance, tracing one of the free, downloadable stickers here could be really cute (and you can adjust the size)!  

Step #2:

Use a little bit of tape to anchor a square of Solvy to your design and use a pen or permanent marker to trace it right onto the Solvy

Once the ink is thoroughly dry, place the Solvy onto the material that you are embroidering on and secure it with your embroidery hoop.

Step #3:

Let your creative juices flow with the color and style of embroidery you want to use!  I used three strands of thread for the thickness that I wanted and did straight stitches all around the tracing.  Just remember to sew from the front of the garment/project that you are embellishing and to knot your embroidery thread well each time you change thread. 

Step #4:

I don’t have any pictures of this step, which is sad because it’s my favorite part! 

I specifically use Solvy as my stitch reinforcer on these projects because it’s magic when it comes to its removal – it completely desolves in water but still leaves your stitches more durable!  Once you’re done stitching, remove the embroidery hoop, trim off excess Solvy and then dunk your project in a bowl of water and watch the Solvy disappear (you may need to rub off any undesolved Solvy with your finger in the water).  You can throw your project in the drier or let air dry and viola!  You’ve got a cute, embellished, fabulous something!

The awesome thing about embellishing this way is that it can be easily portable – you can throw the project in your bag to work on while waiting, riding the bus or watching TV and you can easily start and stop the project whenever you need to, which is a huge plus for me when The Redhead asks for a glass of milk, I get her a glass of milk, she spills the glass of milk and then requires another glass of milk.  No harm done to the project due to my lack of attention!

My Mom got a set of embroidered tea towels for her birthday that I did in the same way:

Before I knew it, she had distributed them throughout her house along with her Easter decorations!

I hope that you are finding great ways to get ready for Springtime – if you try this project out on something of your own, drop me a line and tell me how it turned out!