DIY

113

Floral Bun Wraps

Time for another DIY project involving fake flowers and wire. It’s just so fun! Bun wraps are a less in-your-face version of the flower crown I shared a while back. You can make them with any kind of fake flower that floats your boat. And they’re so simple- really you only need wire and flowers! Plus, once I got a wire-twisting system down, it took me all of ten minutes to put together a bun wrap from start to finish. Start now and give them as gifts (or keep a million for yourself). They instantly make¬†a casual outfit more put together or add a little fun to a dressy outfit. Have fun with flowers- it’s spring!

Supplies:

– Fake flowers (about 5-8, depending on how large they are)

– Floral wire

– Wire cutters

– Floral tape (optional, for smoothing out unruly bits of wire)

– Pliers (optional, for grasping wire while attaching flowers)

Assembly:

Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 4.20.42 PMMeasure 10-12 inches of wire. Double the wire and wrap the two strands around each other until you get two loops at both ends (as you can see from the picture, the first time I made one I tripled the wire- I then discovered that’s mostly unnecessary)Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 4.21.20 PMWhen you’ve twisted all the wire around, leave a little loop on both ends and secure with floral tape if you’re feeling wary about pointy pieces of wire.Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 4.22.09 PMYour wrap should now look like the picture on the left. Cut your flowers as close as you can to the edge without breaking them (I discovered this varies according to different kinds of fake flowers- some need a bit of stem or they fall apart, others can be cut almost up to the very edge, don’t be afraid to play around!)Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 4.22.57 PMAttach the flowers to the wire base by wrapping pieces of wire (2-3 inches) first around the flower stem a few times, then around the base. Use the pliers to get a tight grip on the wire without destroying your nails! Repeat until you’ve made it all the way around the base. Ta da!

Meet the lovely Kelsey- my model for my first bun wrap. I love how she styled it with a casual bun, it looks like the flowers are just naturally in her hair. Scroll down for my styling of a different wrap with a more structured bun!

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eighty two

DIY Corkboard Jewelry (+more) Display

As I’m sure many of you know, a huge struggle with dorm living is storage, so this year I’ve tackled that problem by really embracing vertical space while also working on disguising my dorm’s boring layout. I started with one of the room’s biggest eyesores: the giant rolling wooden¬†closet doors. They’re attached pretty simply, so I removed one from its track and sneakily hid it behind one of my colorful wall tapestries, but I knew I needed to keep the other one on (because really, what’s more stressful than staring at an exposed messy cluttered closet?!) I figured I’d take a whack at two challenges with one project: cover ugly closet door with corkboard accessories display! So easy and so pretty! I was actually really surprised with how much character it adds to my room. It also encourages me to stay organized- If something’s missing from its place on the board (and therefore likely tossed on my desk/bed/floor) there’s a weird void on the board that bothers me so much I have to fix it immediately. It’s the same pressure of someone telling you to clean your room without all the yelling!

Board

– Piece of corkboard (I got this one at Target at the end of the summer and it’s great, but boy do I wish I knew this one existed at the time!)

– Things in dire need of organization (necklaces, headbands, flower crowns, barrettes, sunglasses, collars, hats, etc.)

– Thumbtacks

– Heavy-duty hanging strips (these work great!)

Creation/installation is so simple: hang the board wherever floats your boat, add thumbtacks, then hang items! Boom! If you want to get really crazy, it might be fun to add vintage postcards, dried flowers, or other fancy details to the board as well! The best thing about this is how easy it is to change if you start adding new pieces to your accessories routine.

Spotted: DIY¬†Flower crowns¬†and¬†Glittery Sunglasses¬†(y’know, if you’re into this project but don’t already have enough stuff to display..)

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seventy nine

DIY Decorative Resin Antlers

As I’ve mentioned before, a lot of the DIY projects I’ll be posting here are going to be dedicated to making semi-permanent spaces more special. I spent a lot of this past summer looking at interior decorating magazines/blog posts, focusing on “renter-friendly” projects and pieces. I prepared some things beforehand, others I’ve been making when I find some spare time in between classes and homework and my job and designing costumes for a show (opening tomorrow night! #help) and sleeping and cooking. Wow, who else is ready for this semester to be over? Sheesh.

I got the idea for these antlers from White Faux Taxidermy -a truly cool (not to mention totally animal friendly and affordable) way to make your room look like a hunting lodge on psychedelics- and this image from A Beautiful Mess.

Antlers

– Resin antlers (or skull)

– Fun spray paint (I had some bronze left over from a previous project, but I think a pastel or electric blue/pink/green could be super cool. Resin bone project part 2 coming soon?)

Simply place the antlers on newspaper and spray away! When hanging, I recommend using nails if you can. These came with handy hooks on the back, but since the spot where I hung them in my dorm is probably an air duct covered by thin plaster I went for the renter-friendly heavy duty Command Hooks (be sure to stick the hooks to the wall and let them set for a few hours before hanging the antlers!)

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I wish you could see how lovely the color turned out in my room, but alas, low-watt institutional lightning strikes again!

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seventy four

Tooling Foil Plaque

At this point in my life, most of my friends are either living in dorms or renting apartments. One of the biggest problems with these living spaces is decoration. For some reason, it seems like everything made specifically for a dorm is not only miniature, but also super colorful, and in a weird way. It’s almost as though people think if something is made with gaudy colors that it will look good in a bland dorm. I don’t know about you, but I never ever find this to be the case. With apartments, decoration would seem to be an easier task what with the normal amount of space to call your own, but if you’re not allowed to paint (or even nail things onto) the walls, again it becomes pretty tricky. So I hope in the future to share a bunch of DIY projects here that make semi-permanent living spaces seem a little happier, in terms of easy art (click here and here to see ones I’ve shared already!), decor tips, and even spacial usage (What? You’ll see.)

Now for the plaque:¬†This project is super simple. Really all you need is the tooling foil and a writing utensil, both of which are very easily obtained. The foil itself can be purchased in lots of different colors, but I went with the “brass” option, because it’s basically gold and I’m really into gold right now. Read on and enjoy!

Plaques

– Tooling foil (I used this. So cheap!!)

– Wooden dowels, dull pencil, or pen (for marking)

– Sheet of foam large enough to place your foil on

– Sharpie

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Cut a piece of foil into any size that pleases you.

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Pressing lightly with a Sharpie , draw anything you’d like on the foil (I know the picture is deceiving, but after some experimenting I realized you should not lean on the foam for this step). I went with a cute cat illustration (it is National Cat Day, if anyone noticed/cared, so this is very appropriate). Remember that the gold side of the foil is really shiny, making it hard to read detail on the image from far away. Keep your drawing relatively simple!

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With the wooden dowel, pen, or pencil (or all of them to get varied line thickness), trace over your Sharpie sketch (this time you should use the foam, it helps make a deeper imprint on the foil!)

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Flip it over and admire your handiwork! How cool is that?! I was so pleased with the end result here I made another (much simpler, but just as fancy looking) one:

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(Remember to write letters in backwards on the sketching side if you’re including text!)

Happy decorating!

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sixty four

Collared Shirt Restyle

Over a year ago I got this¬†shirt as a gift in a pretty coral color. I loved it immediately, I’m such a sucker for peter pan collared shirts and anything pastel, so of course I went ahead and took the tags off and started wearing it. But it was never quite right..I’m 5’2″ on good days, so while this shirt might hit below the belly button of a normal person, I could almost wear it as a tunic. And when I tried to tuck it in, like all those tall models are doing if you clicked on the link, it just got super bunchy and awkward because I am not a tall model. Not so great. And so it began to just live folded up in my drawer, which is always sad for such a pretty shirt. I decided I want to bring it back to life with this simple restyle! While I do fancy myself pretty handy with a sewing machine I assure you, this is a very very simple sewing project. If you really wanted to, you could even sew it by hand, but that would take waaaay too long and you would probably end up teaching yourself how to use the machine just to get it over with.

First, I cut off the sleeves and pinned the edges (1/4 inch seam allowance). Next I cut about 6 inches of the bottom hem, going a little further up on the sides with a curved ruler to make a little scallop, then I pinned that edge (1/2-1/4 inch seam allowance). Then I went over the areas I pinned with an iron so they would lay flat on their own, then sewed up the hems. Bam! So quick! This honestly took me 15 minutes, and now I really do wear the shirt!

(sorry for the poor quality of the images….I wasn’t in an area with great light)

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Here’s what the hemmed sleeves and trimmed bottom hem look like.

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Here’s the finished bottom hem and scallop detail.

I think my favorite part of this shirt is how versatile it is. It can be dresses up/down incredibly easily and it works just as great under things as it does on it’s own. Below are a few ways I wore it recently.

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Necklace/Vintage, Headband/Modcloth, Shorts/Homemade cut-offs, Sunglasses/25 Central, Shoes/Salt Water Sandals

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Necklace/Forever 21, Scarf (I wear it as a headband)/Vintage, Dress/Vintage (Urban Exchange), Shoes/Vintage Prada (!!! first pair, I get excited..)

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Pinafore/Forever 21, Flower Crown/Homemade, Shoes/JuJu Jellies

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fifty nine

DIY Glittery Sunglasses Restyle

I love sunglasses. I’m usually guilty of taking advantage of those “2 for $20” or “buy one get one 1/3 price” or “get 3 here for the price of 1 really expensive pair elsewhere”, and so on and so forth deals. So naturally, I wind up with a lot of cheap pieces of plastic eyewear that, once I’ve worn obsessively for three straight weeks, usually end up abandoned in the bottom of my purse. Very sad. And no sunglasses should have to live that way! So I’ve come up with a little project that gives new life to old “sunnies”, which is what they’re apparently known as in the blogosphere. This also makes for a great gift or party favor, whether you’re on a budget or not!

Sunglasses

– 1 pair of sunglasses in need of some love (I’m pretty sure I got these cat-eye ones free from a giveaway on the streets of New York because I thought they were kinda cute, and then of course promptly forgot about them for two years)

– glitter (any color you want, but I think gold/silver/white/black tend to be classiest)

– Elmer’s glue

Triple Thick Glaze¬†(You can use another coat of Elmer’s in place of this, but I really recommend the glaze for a professional look)

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Using a small paintbrush, cover the portion of the sunglasses you’ll be glittering with glue.vsco_1-1

Spoon or pour glitter over the glasses, making sure all areas with glue have been covered. Shake off excess glitter as best as you can. Look for any spots that need more glitter or glue and repeat the process if necessary.

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Here comes my favorite part: once you’ve shaken off as much extra glitter as you can, let the glasses dry for about 5 minutes. Then, using a standard vacuum with no attachments suck up any stubborn pieces of extra glitter. This was SO FUN. (I almost didn’t think this would work and that I was going to ruin the glasses but it WORKS. Watch the video if you think I’m lying!) Also it’s really cute how I don’t smile and generally look very serious and scary in this video..

Apply the glaze with a paintbrush in a well ventilated room or outside! This stuff smells BAD. And it will make your room smell BAD. For DAYS. It’s like nail polish on steroids. I learned the hard way. Apply two or three coats; the more you apply, the more smooth any shiny your glasses will look!vsco_3

Let your new shades dry overnight, then wear them somewhere only super cool people go (or in my case, the grocery store!!)

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Desserts, DIY

forty seven

Almost-Cookie Jar

This post is a DIY and a recipe! One of my favorite things to give for gifts are homemade baked goods. It’s an almost foolproof gift idea: they will definitely be delicious, they will not break your bank account, and there is no way the receiver will want to return them for a trendier sweater or store credit and risk ruining a great relationship because you don’t know what the appropriate monetary equivalent of your friendship is!! This is also a great gift for a friend who is far away, which was my reason for making this particular Almost-Cookie Jar.

The Almost-Cookie Jar contains all the dry ingredients one would need to make cookies; it’s the jar receiver’s job to add all the wet ingredients, spoon the cookies out, bake, and eat! Just make sure, jar makers, to include full ingredient list and baking instructions.

 

Jar

– 1 quart mason jar (I found one at a craft store for $1.50! How great is that??)

–¬†1 1/3 cup all purpose flour

– 1 tsp baking powder

– 1 tsp baking soda

– 1/4 tsp salt

– 1 cup cooking oats

– 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Р1/2 cup packed brown sugar

– 1/2 cup granulated sugar

– 1/3 ‚Äď 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds

To assemble: Carefully measure out all ingredients and layer them in this order in the jar, making sure to pack everything in.

First: flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt
Second: oats
Third: chocolate chips
Fifth: brown sugar
Sixth: granulated sugar
Seventh: chopped nuts

Put the top on the jar and cover it with a square of cute fabric and tie with ribbon or string.

Attach the following info along with the ingredient list: Stir the contents of this jar together in a large mixing bowl. Add 1 slightly beaten egg, 1/2 cup melted butter, and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Roll the cookies into balls and bake on a parchment covered cookie sheet for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Yum!

 

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forty six

Poetry (or Song Lyric or Random Words) Wall Art

 

This project is inspired by this one from A Beautiful Mess. Art is so much fun to put on walls, and it really is too freaking awesome to have someone compliment it and ask if you bought it in the apartment section of some hip store. (Your answer should always be something along the lines of “oh this? Lol it only took me a few hours, I was just bored!” for¬†maximum impressiveness). Being a relatively crafty person, I had everything needed for this project just lying around, so it was FREE. FREE. Had to say it twice because in my book, thriftiness is next to Godliness. Wanna make one? I thought so!

 

Wall Art

– small canvas

– old map

– white acrylic paint

– mod podge

– alphabet template/stencils (I didn’t have any, so I used this)

Рmatte paper Mod Podge (which is basically really rad craft glue/sealant that dries clear quickly)

 

First, paint your canvas (and sides if you’re using a thick one like I did) white. It may seem unnecessary, but if you don’t you’ll realize the canvas may look a little unfinished without it. Feel free to use another color if that’s your thang.

Next, decide what words you’ll be using. I went for the e.e. cummings poem “r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r” because I just love how silly it is. Cut out the letters you’ll be using from the stencil sheet and tape them to the map.

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Cut every letter out and then set them up on the canvas

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Using the Mod Podge, one at a time carefully cover the back of each letter and then paste it onto the canvas, making sure to paint a thin layer over the top of the letter to smooth it down.

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Next, cut long strips of the map to cover every side of the map to make it look more put together and neat. Paint a thin layer over the top of the strips to smooth it down. Don’t be afraid to really use your fingers here!photo 4

Finally, touch up the white paint in any areas that have begun to look messy due to excessive touching/Mod Podge squishing. And you’re done! Woo!

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forty four

Flower Crown

So, who’s noticed the floral crown craze among the flower-power dressed 20-somethings at music festivals, trendy brunch spots and hipster bars lately? I have! Some people think they’re over the top, buuuuut I think they’re pretty cute. And instead of spending $35 on one at a store I decided I’d make one! This is inspired by the author of the blog K is for Kani, she makes beautiful crowns herself, mine is created similarly to hers. Enjoy!

Crown

– cheap headband

– floral wire or hot glue

– floral tape

– pliers

– wire cutter

– silk flowers

Using the floral tape, mark off how far down you want the flowers to go. Next, cut off a flower, leaving a bit of the stem still connected. If you’re using wire, cut a piece of wire (a few inches long) and using the pliers wrap the wire around the stem and then wrap it around the headband. Repeat this process with every flower. If you’re using hot glue, cut off a flower leaving no step, place a dot of glue on the headband and then stick the flower on and repeat.¬†If there are any pointy bits of wire sticking out, bend them as best you can with the pliers and then wrap some floral tape around it.¬†(No pictures of this step, sorry! I used wire). Whichever method you use, your fingers are gonna get a little wear and tear. I recommend not having freshly manicured fingers (if you’re like me and get a little OCD when your nails chip). And ta da! So pretty!

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forty two

Restyle/Repair: Clogs

I recently (several months ago) found a pair of adorable and yet rather¬†disheveled pair of clogs. Now, I don’t know if anyone’s noticed how freaking awesome clogs are, not to mention hip and trendy, but they ARE. Having enough money to buy these¬†is all I’ve been dreaming about lately. They seem to go with everything, seriously. They’re functional. They’re not stilettos, but still rad heels. Ifjosidhfaudaoushdoaisdjpisd. Yes. So although the clogs I came across are not the ones I’ve been lusting after, they do look just like¬†these, made by the same company. So while I’m pinching pennies (1795¬†SEK to be exact…quick, how many pennies is that??) a repaired shoe will have to do.

The leather on the ones I found was a beautiful color, but really worn out and covered with scratches. Usually I’m a fan of the “lived in” look, but it was just a little too much here, which was a shame. But it also meant I got to buy spray paint, which is my favorite. It makes me feel like a rebel. The wooden soles were also covered in scratches, not so cute.¬†Here’s what I did:

vsco_0Using some super cheap sandpaper, I buffed all around the edges and inside of the wooden parts of the shoe until it was smooth. I ended up with a beautiful light color. If I end up not liking it, I may paint them with a darker wood stain.

photo 1vsco_1Screen Shot 2013-07-01 at 4.50.47 PMvsco_1-1¬†I then covered every inch of the shoe that wasn’t leather with painter’s tape and used¬†weatherproof craft paint¬†in a rad copper color to refresh the tired leather.¬†

vsco_2-1Once the paint dried I lined the inside of the shoes with insoles. Not only does this take care of the drab looking insides, it also fixes the whole walking-on-wooden-shoes-with-no-support-thing. (Seriously, have you ever spent a few hours with wooden blocks strapped to your feet? This is a similar sensation).

And bam, they were done!

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