June 12, 2014

Ombré Art DIY

Inspired by this DIY on a lovely blog called Two Delighted (which of course I found on Pinterest), I decided to take a canvas I had on hand and turn it into a personal piece of art.

As the blog said originally, there are no real step-by-step instructions for this DIY. Basically, if you start with a darker paint color and keep adding white paint to it, the ombré effect will happen naturally. 

It was fun, actually painting and getting results because let's face it, I am no artist. My dad was a for real artist (paints, easels and everything), and I always dreamt of having that talent... but no dice. I just don't have the kind of creativity that can turn nothing into something with a flick of my wrist and a palette of paint. I wish!!

But anyway - my ombré art: it's simple, it's not flashy.... and I love it. I'm happy! :)

Gallery Wall

I'm not gonna lie, I've been feeling pretty glum about the state of my living room recently. Well more like I think it's glum. It's boring. It's decorated in a broad color spectrum of beige, brown, white and more beige. *yawn*. 

Here's a picture of my living room about a month after we moved in. 

Not much has changed since this picture was taken. The couch has been pushed back and now my husband's desk is in the back corner. And we have a new tv? Other than that, samesville. 

I decided quickly that I don't necessarily want to repaint....the beige walls aren't my biggest irritation with the room. A beige wall isn't the enemy. It's the insane lack of color. Brown blinds, white trim, brown table, brown couch, brown clock... I could go on. 

What I decided to do was inject color slowly. I bought bright blue and green pillows on clearance at target, to go with the existing burnt orange pillows I've had since we got married. That wasn't enough though. I began looking around my house for things I could swap out and place in my living room. I remembered that my sister in law had bought me durable paper coasters in Katie Daisy prints. I saw a project on Pinterest that involved an old picture frame, string, mini clothespins and Instagram prints. I immediately decided that this was the perfect idea for the coasters, since I knew right off the bat that I wasn't going to put drinks on them. 

I just love how it turned out. Everyone told me how cute and creative it was when I shared it on Facebook and I was so happy that it brought in pops of color to my beige walls. 

I had a big empty space on the other side of the window that was still calling my name. It was so empty and boring. 


I would eventually like to get a taller bookshelf to house all of our books, but in the meantime we have condensed it to just as many books that fit in the 3 shelves. 

My friend Carrie and I had started talking about gallery walls, and I knew I wanted to do one eventually. I just wasn't sold on how much I would probably end up spending on frames and Etsy prints. 

One night, I just caved. I have a large box of random picture frames that I've collected over the years and never used. I started picking out frames that looked good together and matching them with prints I made myself and scrapbook papers that I love.


I think it turned out awesome.

I took some close up pictures of the pieces I love the most:

June 3, 2014

Coaster Art

Oh. Hey. Is anyone there?

Probably not. It's been like 18 years since I've logged into this blog.


Excuses such as "life got busy" or "I had to focus on me" don't apply here. I wasn't busy. I focus on me quite a lot. I just stopped caring. For a while, I was living in a basement and all of my crafts were boxed away in storage. Then we bought a house and sure, things did get crazy. But we didn't do any major updates to the house that I thought would have been blog-worthy. We mostly painted and moved in.

I've done crafty things since... but nothing I felt warranted a blog post. I don't even really think this does, based on how little time and resources it took me to complete it. Buuuuut, I think it turned out perfectly and exactly how I imagined it. And cost me literally $2.99 to make. The best!!!

I took apart an old print so that I could use the frame. It actually took a screwdriver to pop out staples and some serious patience, but it worked out. Part of me wanted to take out the glass, but I think it helps preserve the coasters a little better since they aren't exposed to the elements.

(This is a bad picture of the frame before I destroyed it.)

I then measured out string that I already had on hand and stapled it into the back of the frame, making sure they were taut. 

The only money came from the mini clothespins - I think I spent $2.99 on a bag of 50 from Hobby Lobby.

The coasters were a gift from my sister in law for my birthday last year. The artist is Katie Daisy, and if you aren't familiar with her work, I strongly suggest checking out her Etsy shop and buying everything. These coasters are actually manufactured by Drinkblots and are called 'Life is Beautiful'.

After about 5 minutes of work, I now have a completely one-of-a-kind statement piece that features my favorite artist AND breaks up the monotony of my beige walls.

I'm officially in love!

August 26, 2013

Let your coasters do all the talking! (warning: curse words)

Don't you just get SO CHEESED OFF when you're hosting a slammin' party and then BAM! you find yourself in a tough situation where you didn't want to come across as rude, but damn it if you haven't told your soon-to-be-ex-friend A MILLION TIMES not to put her drink on your coffee table?!?! I mean, come on!

She isn't the one that is going to have to get those pesky rings from hell off (though I'm sure there's some crafty solution on Pinterest) or be told by her husband that me and my friends are the reason we can't have nice things. No way. That's all me.

Well, I've come up with a solution. A super awesome and passive aggressive solution. 

Let your coasters do all the talking!!

Actually, I can't take all the credit for these. My friend Cayse has coasters with these sayings that she originally bought from Urban Outfitters about a million years ago. The only link I could find is this one. They are paper doily coasters and to make them more durable, she reinforced them onto pieces of cork and sprayed them with sealer.

I thought they were perfect, and my husband thought they were funny, albeit tacky. Even better.

I vowed that night (as she handed me "no one likes a hot mess" and I pondered the significance) that these would soon grace my coffee table.

Fast-forward like 3 months, because that's just how I do things. Ridiculously slow.

I opened up Publisher, found some fonts I love and got to work. I left out "be considerate, bitches" only because I only had 4 tiles to work with. I'll probably add that one eventually. (read: most likely in 3 more months)

I then decided they needed some pretty scrapbook paper, because what made the original coasters so amazing was that they were doilies. Like, how more prim and proper can you get than doilies?? So I chose this bright floral paper that just screamed girly. I attached some washi tape to two of the coasters, but didn't like how it looked with the other two, so I nixed it. That's the best part of these, they are rough. The ink on one smeared when I put on the first coat of mod podge. I didn't want them to be perfect. I'm literally calling you an asshole and a douchebag and implying you have worse manners than a skank. LITERALLY.

So yeah, then I just mod podged the hell out of them. I think I used 3 coats, but they definitely should be sealed as well. Maybe when I make the other coaster. In like, 3 months. ;)


In keeping with my inappropriate, child-unfriendly craft day, I also made this canvas that has found a home in my craft room. It's just wrapping paper hot glued to canvas with black glitter stickers. I was going to paint the whole canvas and take the stickers off, but decided I loved it too much to mess it up. 

And it's a great message. Don't be mediocre. 


June 15, 2013

No Sew Fleece Sleeping Bags

I first saw this tutorial on Pinterest for an American Girl doll sleeping bag. Within seconds my mind went to: "why not make this into a big kid size?!"

I knew there would be some adjustments, besides size obviously. I thought about it for about 5 minutes, then went and dropped some money at Hobby Lobby. Ladies and gents, fleece is not cheap. Even on sale. But when you think about how long these blankets last and how excited kids will be to have totally customizable sleeping bags... it's totally worth it!!

Like I said, these are totally customizable, and totally easy to make. There are so many options when it comes to fleece! For my projects, I chose rainbow peace signs and pink fleece for my 8 year old niece, and a baseball motif and gray fleece for my 4 year old nephew.

What I Used (per blanket):
3.75 yards of patterned fleece
2 yards of solid color fleece
Fabric scissors
A ruler/yardstick (I didn't use one, but some people like to measure things. I am not one of those people.)

This isn't going to be a full tutorial, because there are a MILLION no-sew fleece blanket tutorials out there, and it really is the easiest thing in the world to do. If you don't know how to make one, google it (okay, Pinterest it) and come back here if you want to turn it into a sleeping bag. ;)

So, as I was saying. If you've ever made a no sew fleece blanket, you can totally make this sleeping bag. The only difference is adding another layer of fleece to the top side, though not the same length. You don't want to knot all 3 layers together, that would just be a heavier blanket. And what fun is that?

I made my sleeping bags 2 yards long and then got another piece of the patterned fleece that was 1 3/4 yards to layer on top. Remember, you are going to be cutting strips around all 4 sides, so the bag won't be quite 2 yards long when you're done.

For me, I also wanted them a little narrower. I laid out all 3 layers on top of each other (pattern, solid, pattern), and then folded over approximately 1 foot on one side. I cut that strip off, and was left with a narrower blanket. I wanted it to be more of a sleeping bag and less of a blanket, and thought that would help. I think it turned out perfect! (And now I have a 12 inch wide piece of scrap to do.....something with!)

Knot all around the sides, and fold down a flap on one side so that you can make it easier for your kids to get inside. That was the only change I made from the doll tutorial I found.  Don't knot all 4 sides up tight, you want to make it so that a child can get out in case of an emergency bathroom trip in the middle of the night! Just the thought of tying down the top blanket entirely makes me claustrophobic!! You can see in the picture below, to make it look more finished I also cut the strips down the flap and tied them together. But feel free to leave it uncut and as it is!


When I finished, I cut a strip of excess patterned fleece and double knotted it around the bag for a handle. These bags are going to stay at our house for when my niece and nephew come sleep over, but that way storage is easier and the kids can pick them up without them unrolling everywhere.

I am beyond excited for the kids to see these next weekend and see how they will react. I spent nearly 4 hours total working on these blankets, and I know I won't get 4 hours of praise (though their parents could really suggest that, it'd be cool). Even if I just get, "WOAH, LOOK AT THAT!! OH MAN, THAT'S SO COOL. Can I have a snack? Are we going to watch a movie? But I don't want to watch that!" it will be enough for my little heart. 

In my head, I know that I could have just thrown down a pillow and blanket and they would have been thrilled just to be in my house, but instead I poured my love for these 2 crazy kids into 10 yards of fleece. I hope one day, they will realize how important they are to me. 

I don't know what I would do if these kids weren't in my life, but mostly, I'm just happy I can spoil them and send them home later. With a total sugar buzz. Isn't that what aunts are for?