Friday, December 16, 2011

All things pallets!

Pin It I've kind of turned into a crazy person when it comes to pallets. While I'm driving I'm constantly on the lookout for pallets discarded behind stores in the alley. One time I almost lost it when I was at my families storage unit and I saw about six pallets just hanging out in a corner. Alas, I couldnt take any because right now I'm living in an apartment and I just dont have any where to store anything. Sigh. But come June I'll be out and living in a house, and then hellllooo garage. Yeaaah.

So I reaaaalllly wanted to make some shelves out of a pallet and I was having a hard time finding one. So what does my sweet wonderful and amazing hubster do for me? He goes to Home Depot and talks to the manager, and scores me a free pallet. Score!! So he lugs it home, I show him and my father in law a picture of how I want the shelves to look, and bam. I got me some pallet shelves. Im not actually going to be able to do too much of a tutorial on the making of the shelves since my father in law cut the pallet and put the shelves together (dang I need a garage!), but if anyone wants to know how to do these, I will find out how he did it and post about it later.

So here are my gorgeous shelves:

What I can tell you, is that I stained the shelves to give them a darker and more roughed up look. I used a dark walnut nonglossy stain. To stain them I used an old towel and dipped it in the stain. I then dry rubbed the stain onto the shelves. I started out brushing it really lightly so I didnt get them too dark, and then continued until I was happy with the color. You wont need to sand them because pallets are already a rough unfinished wood since they're used for work purposes.

Done! It took me less than an hour to get it all stained. Just a note, when you hang them, they will most likely need to be nailed into studs since they are pretty heavy. These are above my couch and I wouldnt want these coming down on my head!

Hope this inspires you to get creative!
Until next time.... Pin It

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Rainy Days

Pin It So its been overcast and rainy for a few days now. My favorite kind of weather for two reasons: One, I love rain. And two, its the perfect excuse to stay indoors, in my comfy sweat pants, and create stuff! Yesss. So when my son was born, I wanted something cute and creative that I could use to mark the milestones throughout his first year. Enter a custom made chalk board. I had seen this idea around and was really wanting to make one, so I decided to go for a big one and use it for Graysons first year.

You can make a chalkboard out of just about anything since the paint can go on most surfaces. I wanted my chalkboard to have a cool frame, so I decided I would repurpose an old picture. I went to a GoodWill store and found an old large frame for 13 bucks, picked up some sand paper and chalk board paint at Hobby Lobby, and I was ready.

Materials Needed:
Large or small picture frame with glass
Chalkboard Spray Paint
220 grit sand paper
Acrylic paint (optional)
Paint brush (optional)
Antiquing paint (optional)

Remove the glass from the frame and lay it on a flat and even surface. Take your sand paper, and rough up the surface of the glass. You dont have to get too intense with it, but just enough so that you can see the scratches on the surface.
Once thats done, clean off the surface removing all dirt and dust. Take your glass outside and lay it onto a papered area. Shake the can of chalk board paint really well for a few minutes. Then, starting off the edge of the glass, start the spray and go evenly across the glass, continuing off the other edge. Repeat this all the way down the frame.
Then repeat going in the opposite direction you already sprayed (go vertical if you already sprayed horizontal). Once you have gone both directions, repeat again for a second coat. You dont need to let the paint dry between coats. Be sure to hold the can a decent distance away to avoid drips.

Once you have both coats on, let dry. Once its dry, take your chalk and rub it all over the board using it long ways. Place the glass back into the frame, and your done! A home made chalk board!

The frame I chose was gold, and I didnt want that color but I liked the design of the frame. The good thing about gold is that its really easy to rough up and "antique". I took some brown acrylic paint and a dry paint brush, and "rubbed" the brown paint on the frame. Super easy. You could also add some antiquing paint if you like. Get creative to achieve the effect that you want!

Here is something else that I was working on the other day that I decided to make for my sister:

Materials for Burlap Frame:
Burlap (black and brown)
Wood Letter
Hot Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
Black and White Acrylic Paint
Foam Brushes

I was obsessed with burlap this fall and was doing anything and everything I could with it! I took a frame I had sitting in my closet, and cut a piece of burlap to fit. I painted my letter with black acrylic paint, and then used a small round foam brush to make the polka dots with white acrylic paint. While that was drying, I hot glued the burlap to the cardboard backing of the frame. I took the glass off and set it aside (who knows, maybe I'll use it for another chalkboard frame!).

I then cut my ribbon to match the length of the frame, and hot glued it to the burlap. Next I made my rosettes. I cut a long strip of burlap and made it about three inches wide. Fold the end of  that strip in half long ways, and then fold it in half again. Then you can roll it up from the end and make it as big or as small as you want. Cut the strip and then glue the end in, or onto the bottom. Yay! Rosettes! I made three, one out of black burlap.

Once your letter is dry, put hot glue on the back of the letter and place it on the burlap where you want it. Hold it down firmly for  a minute or so. Now place your rosettes on the ribbon and glue them in place where you want. I did mine all in a row, but put them wherever you want!

Now you have a super cute frame and it would be great as a gift!

Well thats about all for today. Now its off to the kitchen to get some dinner ready. Im thinking its a crockpot kind of night. Pin It

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Finally! I found one!

Pin It Soooo, happy Tuesday! I have been on a long search to find a really cute Christmas card holder. Ive seen a few that were ok, but nothing that I was really in love with. Unitl I was on Pinterest the other day, and saw this idea. And BAM! I was off to Hobby Lobby.

Materials For Christmas Card Holder:
1 piece of styrofoam, any size you want
1 yard of fabric (or size to fit the styrofoam)
Hot glue gun and glue sticks
Rafia Ribbon

Cut the fabric to fit the styrofoam, with about an inch to an inch and a half overlay on each side. Lay a strip of hot glue along the top edge of the styrofoam, then fold the fabric and hold until the hot glue cools. Repeat on all sides. Once all the sides are glued down, put a dot of glue under the folded corners so they'll stay down. Next get your rafia ribbon, and gather as much or as little as you like, depending on how thick you want the bow. Once its all gathered, take one small piece of rafia, and tie it around the bunch to keep it all together. Once its bound, glue it to the back of the styrofoam. Once the glue is dry, tie your bow.

And this is the result:

I will probably make more because Im not completely in love with this fabric, but I wanted desperately to make one of these, so I just chose the cutest fabric available. This close to the holidays, the picking is slim.

She used foam boards, and used hers as wall decoration, but I desperatley wanted a cute card holder, so thats the purpose mine are serving!

Hope you enjoyed it! Pin It

Monday, December 12, 2011

Ahhh Christmas Time....

Pin It Im sitting here on the couch watching my son bat around his hanging toys on his play mat and then nearly having a kaniption fit with laughter. Well, sort of laughing. More like grunting while he smiles. The Christmas tree is lit, the lighted garland is on in the kitchen, and its overcast outside. A perfect December day. Christmas break is in four days and that means no work for two weeks! Oh yeah. Almost time to start power shopping and wrapping. Its funny to me that people seem to get crankier at this time of year, but I guess its because they're hungry and the lines at the food court in the mall are a mile long.... Tis the season.

One of my newest obsessions this year is wreaths. Big ones, small ones, ones with decorations, and ones without. I made a couple of different wreaths this season. One I made for fall, and the other two were Christmas wreaths I made with deco mesh. Super easy and fast, and the result is a beautiful wreath that looks like it took you a long time to make.

See?! Gorgeous.
Materials for Deco Mesh Wreaths:
One roll of each color of deco mesh
red paint
foam brush
floral pins
foam wreath
hot glue gun and glue stick
decorations and embellishments if you want

Put some paint on a paper plate. Using your foam brush, paint the green floral wreath. It should only take a minute or two to dry. Once its dry you can start pinning the deco mesh. Starting with the outter layer, take the end of the mesh and pin it to the outside of the wreath. Gather about ten inches down, and then pin it about 3-5 inches from the first pin. Repeat this all the way around the outside of the wreath. Now get your second color of mesh. Pin the end on the inside of the wreath. Use the same gathering and pinning as you did on the outside. Now, youre done with mesh! Once thats finished you can glue on any embellishments you want for the finishing touches.

And I know this is a month late, but I was so in love with my Thanksgiving centerpiece so I have to post a picture! I can always do a tutorial for the glitter pumpkins in a different post if anyone is interested.


Well, the day is winding down now and its time for a little tv and snuggle time with the hubs!
Hope you enjoyed the wreath tutorial, and post pictures if you try it!

And of course Im on pinterest, so follow my boards to see where I get some of my ideas!
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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Babies, crafts, and the holidays

Pin It Well, now is as good of a time as any to start this blog. There is always lots going on, and lots to be done between taking care of my 11 week old, Grayson, and finishing crafts and getting dinner on the table. You would almost think that I've become a regular susie homemaker. But there is lots of inspiration to be had thanks to websites such as pinterest. Ideas and inspiration a plenty!! I will post all crafts and recipes that I try, as well as tutorials on them.

In light of the holiday season here is what Ive been up to:

wrapping and....

pictures and...



and crafts!!

Ok, so I made the trees last year. But still. I love them!
Of course one of my favorite things to do is wrap presents for Christmas. Im just getting to the point that I can be creative with ribbon since I have recently learned different techniques on how to tie them. And also because I use wire ribbon. Which is, in short, amazing. I can make it do whatever I want!

The paper mache trees are a little more difficult but definitely doable and easy once you get the hang of it.

Here is the tutorial for them:
Five paper mache trees from Hobby Lobby. Three large and two small.
Craft or scrap book paper
Mod Podge
Brown bells
Brown wire ribbon
craft paint in burgundy
craft paint in brown
hot glue gun and glue sticks
Foam brushes

For the painted trees, I first painted the tree holding it by the base, and let it dry. I then painted the base the same color and let it dry. Add as many coats as you want to get the desired color. While the tree is drying, thread the brown ribbon through the bells, and plug in your hot glue gun. You can use as many or as few bells as you want. Once the trees are dry, take one end of the ribbon threaded with bells, and glue it to the top of the tree. From there, wrap the ribbon around the tree, putting dots of hot glue where you want the bells on the tree. Voila!

For the scrap book paper trees:

Put some mod podge/decoupage glue on a paper plate. Cut your paper into strips. Using your foam brush, generously apply mod podge to part of the tree. Then on the back of your paper, apply a coat of mod podge. Apply the strip of paper to the mod podge area on the tree. Smooth out with your fingers. Repeat until the entire tree is covered with paper. For the top part, I cut a square piece of paper, and rolled it around the tip until it formed a point. Apply another coat of mod podge over the entire papered tree to seal. You can use matte or glossy mod podge. The paper will be soggy and can still be moved around on the tree, but once its dry it will harden. Once the tree was dry, I painted the base brown. You can paint the base whatever color you want to match your paper. Done! Now you've got cute trees as a center piece on your table, or just decoration around your house.
If you try this, send me pics on my email or here so I can see them!

I have lots of projects and recipes to catch up on, so I will be posting lots to get up to speed. See y'all around!

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