Wednesday, December 18, 2013

DIY Christmas Gifts Part Two

Ok so I admit, I have been slacking a lot on this blog posting thing haha. It is Christmas time and I had the flu this week so give me a break. Alright, so the next DIY gift is for those who you know love fresh flowers. Obviously you can't really do it yourself flowers in the wintertime BUT you can DIY the vase that you put them in.

The first way you can refurbish a vase is by going to Goodwill and they usually have old vases (like the ones below) for only $0.50 a vase, sometimes even cheaper.
Grab a few, go crazy! Find ones that are unique, there are so many to choose from. First thing to do is wash them out because they probably have dust or markings on them from stickers, so run them through the dishwasher. Next take a can of white spray paint and lightly spray them. Reason we want to lightly spray them first is because with glass, the spray paint tends to run down it leaving a streak of thick paint and that is just not pretty. After you have painted them all you are now ready to find some fresh flowers (or fake if you like) and put them in there for your Christmas gift. Below are the ones that I did over the summertime. 

This last way to gift a vase, I can't take complete credit for because my friend Brandi found it online and i just added the chalkboard part to it. Find a mason jar and take off the lid and the little metal piece that covers the jar. Take the metal piece and a hole through the top. 

After poking the hole, spray chalk paint on the lid so that way you can write a greeting on it. 
String some festive string, ribbon, cord, or twine around the mason jar and through the hole in the lid to hang it on the front and you are done. 
These are two easy ways to use some Christmas colors and make a personalized gift for someone special or even that boss at work that you aren't sure what to get. Don't forget, only one more week until Christmas!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

DIY Christmas Gifts Part One

So it's that time again. Time to get everyone you know a gift, whether that is a family member, another mom on the PTA board, a co-worker, boss or the neighbor across the street. It can be very expensive when you add up all the costs of all the people you want to buy a gift for so sometimes you end up cutting people out of Christmas gift giving. I have some cheap easy solutions so that you can get everyone a gift. Best part is that they are all thoughtful gift ideas! This will be part of a series that I will continue throughout the month of December so keep checking back for more ideas.

Something that has been very popular lately are canvas photos. These can be very costly if bought online or made at a store. Last year I searched my favorite website, Pinterest,  and found a way to make them cheap and easy. Here is the link to the blog I used for this tutorial. This gift can be made personal by using a photo of grandkids, a family portrait or it can be made for a co-worker, neighbor, boss by using a picture of your local park or their favorite city skyline.  Ok so all you need for this gift are:

  • A photo print (from Target, Walgreens, Walmart wherever)  
  • A bottle of ModPodge (can be found at any craft store: Hobby Lobby, JoAnn Fabrics, Michaels)
  • A sponge brush
  • A canvas that is the size of the photo (again found at any craft store)
The steps for this gift are so simple. All you need to do is take the sponge brush, dip it in ModPodge and paint it all over the front of the canvas. 

 After the Modpodge is lathered on you can carefully lay the photo on top of the canvas. Smooth out the picture and make sure that there are no bubbles underneath the picture. There is a smoothing tool you can buy at the craft store but I found it unnecessary since I just had a 8x10 photo, maybe if the photo was bigger I would use one.  Now that your photo is arranged how you want it, you can layer more Modpodge over it, let it dry and it is now finished and ready to be given as a gift. To add more to the gift you can always paint the sides of the canvas so that it is not so plain.

Pretty simple huh? Last year I also made a few Christmas wall decorations by taking the same steps using wrapping paper. It was quite simple and with all the different types of wrapping paper there are these days it makes it easy to find some according to your decorating taste. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to comment in the comment section. Happy Thanksgiving weekend.

Monday, November 18, 2013

My First Real Blog...

When I was in high school I had a “blog” on Xanga. Remember Xanga? I won’t give you my username because it is far too embarrassing. So this is my first real blog. I am starting this blog because I picked up a new hobby this year: refurbishing old items.

First off, this year was NOT my best year. It’s hard being in your 20’s these days, I have just turned 27 last month. I heard of something this year called a quarter life crisis and I can personally vouch for its existence. Growing up we were told that after high school, you go to college, find a boy, graduate, move out, get a great paying job (one related to the degree you spent all four years on), get married and have kids. We imagined this would all happen by the age of what, 23 or 24? Well let me go through my checklist of all of that.

  • ·   Graduate from college – CHECK
  • ·      Get a job with a salary- Nope, I struggled to make money with two part time jobs. I do now have one full time job with health insurance, although it is not near what a college graduate could make.  
  • ·      Move out- I still living at home with the parents, sharing a bunk bed with my 22-year-old sister.
  • ·      Married- Nope, but I do have a great boyfriend  of over 2 years.
  • ·      Children- No, but my body is telling me “hey girl, I am READY!!”

Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty that could be worse in my life and I am very fortunate to have a roof over my head and loving people around me. Sometimes it is just hard in the world of social media to not compare your life to others around you, we all do it.  I feel like every time I log onto Facebook there is a new announcement of someone having a baby, getting engaged or buying a home with their significant other. So what started this all? Well, while struggling earlier this year with 2 part time jobs, working 60-hour weeks and dealing with MAJOR anxiety, I realized that I needed a healthy outlet.  I spent a lot of my spare time on Pinterest (as I can imagine a lot of you do as well) and found this picture of a pink desk that someone had refurbished. She did a great job and I really loved it. So, I started going to Goodwill’s around town and found a desk that could be made into the one I saw on Pinterest; I haggled the price down and bought it. Even though I didn’t come up with the idea myself, I loved feeling artistic. I am not normally the artistic type, one of those who can create something out of  nothing. But I make up for that with my “handy man” side thanks to my dad, who has been a roofer his whole life.

Here is the picture of the desk I liked from Pinterest from Goodwill Glam:

And here is the desk that I refurbished (I will show the steps I took in my next blog post) 

 I have noticed that refurbishing has become a very popular hobby. I noticed on Instragram, Facebook, Pinterest. I also happened to come by a local refurbishing business, Loveleigh Again (check out her facebook), from Napoleon, Ohio while I was at the Grand Rapids Apple Butter Festival and realized that I could start turning my hobby into something profitable. So at this point I am just doing some pieces on my own for fun but as soon as I get some more items I am planning on selling them in a local shop in Toledo. In my blog, I am going to be putting a few things about my everyday life, DIY projects that interest me on Pinterest, and my main hobby of refurbishing and upcycling. I am excited to share this news with ya’ll and look forward to hearing feedback.

Shoutout to CreateTheCut Etsy shop for my super cute blog banner!!