Category Archives: Decor

DIY Hanging Bud Vase

Oh hi, blog land! It’s been, uhhh, six-ish months since I’ve posted anything here… Which, well, sucks. I’m still here, you guys, and I still want to do this diy blog life thing. It’s hard lately. By way of explanation, a second job kind of fell into my lap last December, and I jumped at the chance to take it. It’s a lot of work, dudes. Like, a LOT. I’m not complaining, though, because it’s fun work. And, well, I like money. I’ve got lotsa diy dreams, and money will certainly help me accomplish them. It’s just been a busy whirlwind that hasn’t left me a cache of energy to work on projects (or finish the five or so that I’ve got in progress/half done). In any case, I want to pledge to balance business and pleasure better, so hopefully I’ll be around on here more often. I’ve got something to share today, though, so let’s get started!

I’ve got a history of making garden related things for my flower child mom and posting them here (painted flower potsplant markers). This post continues that tradition.

My mom has these rose bushes… She loves them dearly. She planted them at the house where we lived while I was in junior high and high school. When she and my father downsized after my sister and I moved out, my dad carefully dug them up so she could transplant them to their new yard. Five or so years later, they’re still doing pretty well, despite one getting a rose disease. Yes, rose diseases are a real thing.

She’s always snipping off a rose or two and giving them to me and my sister, or displaying them in jars around the house. So for Mother’s Day, I made my Mom a wall mounted bud vase!

I can’t take full cred for the idea. Buzzfeed’s Nifty Facebook page posted a video of three mason jars being mounted to a board to display succulents, organize your bathroom, etc. I just took the idea and modified it. It was easy peasy, lemon squeezy!

Supplies

  • Block of wood (mine was a scrap)
  • Jar
  • Twine
  • Acrylic paint
  • Hose clamp
  • Screw
  • Sawtooth hanger

Tools

  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Flat head screwdriver
  • Foam paintbrush
  • Hot glue gun + 1 hot glue stick
  • Hammer

Steps:

1. Paint your wood block. The first coat is pictured here, but I ended up painting three coats on the front and two on the edges.

2. Prep your jar. I used a salsa jar, which still had salsa in it, and since I don’t waste salsa EVER, I poured it into a plastic food saver and proceeded to wash the jar.

Pro tips:

  • Wash the jar thoroughly with hot water and dish soap.
  • Use goo-gone to help you get the label off. The kind in the spray nozzle bottle is amazing.
  • To remove printed-on “best if used by” dates, soak a cotton ball in a little bit of rubbing alcohol or nail polish remover and gently wipe off the ink.

3. Add twine or ribbon to the rim. The threading on the top rim of the jar makes it very obvious that it’s a salsa jar. Using hot glue to affix twine around the rim gives it a much more finished look.

I don’t have pics of the below parts of the process, but Buzzfeed’s video is a good resource for visuals for the parts I’m about to explain.

4. Attach your sawtooth hanger to the back of your board. Because I did a vertical bud vase I attached it to the very top in the middle, using the tiny nails that come with the hanger, and a hammer. If you’re making a horizontal hanger, you’ll probably want to use two sawtooth hangers towards each top corner of the board. Because I sometimes get asked what a sawtooth hanger is, look here:

5. Attach the hose clamp to your board. You’ll want to measure to find the middle of your board and then mark where you’re going to screw the hose clamp in. Make a very small pilot hole for your screw. Open the hose clamp and use a Phillips head screw to attach the clamp to the board.

6. Insert the jar in the hose clamp, and use a flathead screwdriver to tighten the hose clamp down taut so that the jar has no wiggle room. Not too tight, though, you don’t want to break your vase!

7. Hang, add water and pretty flowers, enjoy!

And because I love the waterlogue app and how pretty it makes flowers look, here’s a waterlogue pic of the vase:

This was so easy and inexpensive to make! I want to make a ton more so I can display all of the flowers! 🌻💐🌺🌸🌼🌷🌹

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A Very Cube-y Christmas

Hello internets! It feels like it’s been ages since I’ve posted – because it kinda has been.  Let me first assure anyone who’s following along (thanks!) that I’m not going anywhere!  In my real life, I work in the online retail industry, and fourth quarter is absolute madness for me.  I just don’t have the time for a good ol’ hands on DIY project this time of year.  ‘Tis the season for online shopping, #amirite?!

Moving on… I have some projects on the to-do list that I’m very excited about tackling and later posting here.  In the interim, I thought I’d do a quickie post about how my cubicle at work is decorated for Christmas!

Some people don’t care to decorate their cubicle at all, but my stance is that if I am going to spend most of my waking hours in here, I want to enjoy what I’m looking at!  It normally looks like this… 

photo-21
Here’s how I added a little holiday happiness to it!

4″ pre lit tree  

cubicle decirated for christmas  

Bow tree topper made of streamers ($1 at Target)

 cubicle decorated for christmas 

Pastel orb ornaments hung in a gradient pattern ($3 for 25 at Target)

   

Battery operated lights (I think these were $3 at the Target dollar spot, I’ve had them a few years now) + a Noble Fir branch (free! my mom cut it from her tree for me) for my console

 cubicle decorated for christmas

Merry message on my mini chalkboard

 cubicle decorated for christmas 

This only took me about 30 min total to put together, and added up to a whole $4 when you consider that I already had much of this stuff lying around!

 cubicle decorated for christmas 

Now my cubicle has me feeling the holiday spirit every time I walk into it!

Anyone else out there decorating their workspaces?  Link to yours in the comments if you please! 

Happy Holidays homies! 

xo

My Key Lime Green Mirror

It’s the New Adventures of Old Mirror up in here, dudes.

A friend gifted me this mirror a couple of years ago. It didn’t match my stuff, but I knew it was a great piece that I could somehow work with, so I happily accepted her generousity.

green spray painted ornate antique mirror

First off – this thing is big. Like, 38″ x 48″ x 2″ and heavy big.

It was very classic and traditional in style, with several embellishments on its red and gold frame.  In all of its intricate crevices, there was a decent layer of clay-like, caked-on dirt.

green spray painted ornate antique mirror IMG_2147

I knew that spray painting it a fun, bright color would accomplish two very important things: a) it would match my stuff and 2) I would like the looks of it more!

But first I had to clean it. I tried jut blowing the dirt off with my hair dryer first. Ha! That dirt didn’t budge. Then I tried soapy water with a toothbrush. That just turned the dry clay-like dirt into wet clay-like dirt, and moved it around but didn’t clean it off. Also, after it took me a whole five minutes to cover about one square inch with the toothbrush, I ditched that method.

This is when I temporarily “gave up”. Do you ever do that? Lots of times I get frustrated with a project and I bail. Ninety percent of the time I go back and finish but sometimes, the juice just ain’t worth the squeeze.

Anyway, my final attempt to clean the frame (two weeks later) came in the form of a thick-bristled cleaning brush that I used to dry-brush the dirt off of this thing. You guys, my arm got SOOO TIRED. I brushed it as hard as I could for a good 45 min. Then I thought, “okay, if the dirt isn’t coming off with this much force, I’m just gonna spray paint right over it and hope for the best”. And that, friends, is exactly what I did.

green spray painted ornate antique mirror green spray painted ornate antique mirror green spray painted ornate antique mirror

Check out how great it turned out!

I had zero issues with the spray paint adhering, and I’m confident it will hold up well over time.  My best tips and tricks for spray painting household objects can be found here.

I used Rustoleum Painter’s Touch 2X Ultra Cover Paint and Primer in One (say that ten times fast), which I’ve used before with great success. The color is called Key Lime and I used the gloss finish.  I feel like changing the finish of this very ornate mirror to a high-shine, vibrant color creates such a fun juxtaposition!

I hung it over my 2×4 expedit unit in my dining room, and I love it there, but I’m already staring to redocorate the room around it in my head!

Before:

IMG_2164 IMG_2165

After:

green spray painted ornate antique mirror

That builder’s special boob light has GOT to go.  And I’ve already got a plan to IKEA-hack that expedit.  And I need to do something with that wall on the right.

I really need to find that elusive affordable tulip style dining table I’ve been searching for to give this room a little more cohesiveness. Plus, once I refinish my sexy cantilever dining chairs, they’d look preeeety handsome pulled up under a tulip table, yes?

Anyone else working on giving new life to an old item? Hit me up in the comments!

DIY Shibori Curtains

I love it when I have an idea that makes folks tell me I’m crazy, and then makes them eat a hearty plate of their words once said idea has been executed.

Try telling people that you want tie-dye curtains.  Their reactions will be a fun experience, I promise.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Shibori is a Japanese form of tie-dye that produces beautiful, intricate designs.  This isn’t your average Grateful Dead, rainbow tie-dye, dudes.

This wasn’t nearly the easiest project I’ve done, but the end result is amazing.  Lucky for you, I’ve written this tutorial, so if you’d like to make your own Shibori curtains, you’ll know what you’re in for.

Materials:
*Natural fiber fabric (I used jersey)
*Two large plastic buckets (one for dye bath, one for rinsing)
*Fabric dye (I used my favorite, tried-and-true Rit Dye)
*Appx one cup of salt
*Water
*Twine
*Long dowel or stick to stir your dye bath
*Fabric scissors
*Gloves

diy shibori tie dye curtains

You’ll want to start by ordering a pizza and picking up some beer, because you’re going to need to entice your friends to help with this.  I had the assistance of both of my parents and my little sister and it STILL wasn’t easy.

The first thing I had to do was cut my fabric to size. I purchased one massive length of fabric for three panels because that way I could use my Hobby Lobby 40% off of one item coupon. I ended up paying $33 instead of $55! IF YOU’RE USING JERSEY FABRIC LIKE ME — get enough fabric to allow for about a foot and a half of shrinkage per curtain panel. More on that later in this post…

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Cutting it into three even panels did not prove as easy as I thought. We had to move a bunch of furniture and stretch the fabric between two rooms to accurately measure it and cut it into three equal pieces.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

My parents’ dachshund delayed things by using the fabric as a runway.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Once the fabric was cut, it was time to tie! I went with the accordian fold method. My sister and I each took a side and horizontally folded every six-ish inches.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

I tied twine about two inches in from the edge and wrapped it tightly all the way down the width of the fabric. You might assume, as I did, that the tying is a one-person job. NOPE… My mom held the end we were tying towards down tightly, while I tied, and sis helped me maneuver the tied end of the panel so it would be nice and tight. It was tough, peeps.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Now that my 3 panels and my excess piece (which I used for tabs) were tied up nice and tight, it was dye time! Make sure to follow the instructions on your dye explicitly to achieve the best results. I love using Rit Dye bottled liquid dye because the process is quite simple and it produces beautiful color results. BTW this post, like my others, is NOT sponsored. I am merely providing my opinion of the products that I use.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

With Rit, you want to use hot water so the dye will set. I accomplished this by using two stock pots to boil water which I mixed in with a few gallons of water straight from the hose. The water was a good temp to help the dye set, but not so hot that it was dangerous to put my gloved hands in it.

I wanted an indigo look for my curtains so I used an entire bottle of Royal Blue and around four tbsp of Black Rit Dye. This was the easiest part; just pour and stir! Indigo’s not your jam? Never worry, Rit has a ton of color options and even handy tips on mixing to achieve that perfect hue!

diy shibori tie dye curtains

After the dye was all mixed up with the water and one cup of salt, I took a deep breath and dropped my bound fabric in the mixture, and then stirred it around like a witch at a cauldron. Instead of a dowel, I used a metal broom handle to stir, which worked like a charm. During this process, my mom was close by, filling the other bucket with water from the hose, so I had a place to rinse my fabric.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

I let my curtains soak for around eight minutes, then I promptly pulled them out, squeezed out the excess water and rinsed them in my other bucket.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Once most of the excess water was out, I cut the twine and un-bunched them. I was straight up giddy about the way they looked!

diy shibori tie dye curtains

diy shibori tie dye curtains

diy shibori tie dye curtains

After they were all un-bound, I thoroughly rinsed them in the water bucket my mom filled for me until the water from the panels ran clear.

I used some of my leftover twine to create a makeshift clothesline and hung the fabric to dry in the hot afternoon sun. I hit the homestretch!

Except, when I held the curtains up to the wall to see how they looked, it occurred to me that they shrunk about a foot and a half. I was soooo sad, friends. This is where buying more than you need comes in. Educate yourself on the shrinkage tendencies of the fabric you plan to use BEFORE you purchase / cut it. In my case, I KNOW jersey shrinks. I was so gung-ho about finally tackling this project that I just didn’t thoroughly think through that part.

Luckily, I was able to stretch my panels back out to their pre-hot-water-and-dye-bath size. More on that in a near-future post. Let us quickly work our way to the reveal, yes?

diy shibori tie dye curtains

I used that extra bit of fabric that I dyed with the panels to sew on some simple foldover tabs. I didn’t hem any edges. I actually rather like the rolled-edge look of jersey fabric.

diy shibori tie dye curtains

diy shibori tie dye curtains

I used a few strips from my excess to create ties to hold the curtains open during the day.  I am big on natural light so these ties were a must!

How great do they look?! They give off a sort of whimsical, relaxed, boheme vibe that I hope I’m cool enough to pull off…

diy shibori tie dye curtains

Who else has tried their hand at shibori? Link to your project in the comments si vous plait!

Adventures in Spraypaint: Sunburst Mirror

In my last living room post, I mentioned that I needed to spray paint the mirror over my fireplace.  I finally got on it  and I’m super happy with the result!

I bought this mirror three years ago, not for it’s weathered oak finish, but for it’s sunburst-y shape.  Sunburst mirrors were mega popular in the decor world that year, and they are in heavy circulation still, as any diligent pinterest user will tell you.

spray painted wood mirror

spray painted wood mirror

I loved the weathered oak, but it didn’t match any of my stuff.  As the old saying goes, life is too short to be irritated by mismatched furniture… That’s how it goes, right?

Taping this bad boy was a bit tedious, but diligently protecting the areas you don’t want to paint is key to a good spray paint job.  I used a plastic putty knife to smooth the tape down into the little crevice between the mirror and wooden frame.  Once I got tape all around the edge of the frame, I also taped newspaper on top of the mirror – no pics of that part, sorry!

spray painted wood sunburst mirror

I used Rustoleum Paint + Primer in gold, and because I didn’t use a white primer underneath, the grey tones of the weathered oak created a kind of champagne color. It turned out so pretty!

spray painted wood sunburst mirror

spray painted wood sunburst mirror

Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when spray painting.  Here are my tips for a successful spraypaint adventure:

*Wear protection:
I wear gloves, a dust mask and clothes that I would be okay with accidentally staining EVERY TIME I spray paint.
*Protect your work surface:
Always use a drop cloth, and on days with a light breeze, stand up some cardboard or use more drop cloths to protect nearby items from overspray.
*Take it easy:
Use a light trigger finger on that spraypaint can to avoid a gloppy, drippy mess, friend. It should take at least three light coats to get full coverage with spraypaint.
*Move swiftly:
Quick, even strokes (paired with the light trigger finger) make for beautiful coverage and a smooth finish!

Lets compare the before and after again, shall we?

spray painted wood mirror

spray painted wood sunburst mirror

Yay for pretty things!

Next up for this spot is to install a floating shelf mantle – stay tuned!