Super Saturday Craft Day

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One of my favorite things to do this time of year is to help organize a “Super Saturday” at my church.  Super Saturday is a day where the women from church and their friends, family, neighbors…can come together and craft.  This event is always in November so we can make holiday decorations as well as inexpensive gifts for Christmas giving.  I just thought that I would share what we are doing this year:

This Snowman/Scarecrow craft was requested by someone who had seen a similar craft online using planks.   As you can see, this craft is reversible, making it possible to have it out from October through January.  Love that!  I will do a tutorial on this soon.  Promise!  ***UPDATE: Here is the tutorial***

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This 2 minute craft  is great for display as well as for holding a plate of holiday goodies.  It is as simple as removing the backing from the vinyl sticker that I cut with my Roland Dr. Stika machine, placing the sticker and rubbing it to smooth it out, then removing the masking layer.  Easy peasy!  I love how simplistic it looks.

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I found some little wood boxes that I thought would make perfect little chalkboards.  Before Super Saturday, I will paint the boxes white.  That day we will add a vinyl frame to use as a stencil.  After painting with chalkboard paint and letting it dry (we always use hair dryers at Super Saturday to speed up the drying process!), we will remove the frame vinyl to expose the white below.  I’m also going to do a quick demo about how to easily “write” on chalkboards.  I love that this little guy can stay up year round.  I love, love, love chalkboards and the fact that “art” can change in a matter of seconds.

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We are also going to do a demo of how to make a 5 minute pillow cover.  Soooo easy!  Here is a great video tutorial to show you how it’s done and here is one of the many pillows that I have made this way:

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Lastly, here is a craft that I patterned off of one that my friend found online and loved.  I made sure to use an image that is copyright free of the LDS Salt Lake Temple spires.  We will decoupage that as well as the saying, “Families are Forever”.  This idea can be used in a thousand different ways, using different pics (pics of children and grandchildren, family home…) and sayings.  I drilled tiny holes in each corner of the word wood so I could easily insert little brads for added detail.  I also drilled a couple of larger holes on the top for the ribbon to go in and, BAM! it’s a fabulous item to hang in your own home or to give as a gift.

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I’m so excited for this Super Saturday event…I can hardly wait!  It is so much fun to turn on the Christmas tunes and work and laugh and craft with friends.

Do you participate in a similar crafting event?   If you are not aware of a similar event around you, why don’t YOU get one started?  Grab your friends and family and get crafting!  You just might end up with some pretty cool stuff and warm memories as a result.

 

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Welcome to 31 Days

Autumn Colors: Peacock and Pumpkin

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As of last month, I have a new favorite fall color combination:

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I came across it by fluke, really.  First I purchased this shower curtain

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I bought it for $10 at Ross with the intention of turning it into decorative pillow covers, but I threw it over my dining room table to get out the wrinkles and it morphed into my new table cloth instead.  I must say that L*O*V*E it. The above pic reflects its true color.  I call it Peacock Blue. I wish that all of my pics reflected this color correctly, because, sadly they don’t.  I’m not sure why.  Hmm.  Anyway…when I brought my Fall décor in and threw my regular Autumn flower pot in the center of the table…magic happened.

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I admit that I had to manipulate the hue in order to get the true Peacock Blue for the above image.  It looks a bit oranger than it should.  But I still love the color combo.  More pics

Peacock Blue and Pumpkin Pie Orange…my new favorite Autumn color duo.

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What colors are you crushing on this Fall?

 

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Textured Wooden Pumpkin

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Fall is in the air…isn’t that exciting?  Around here, that means that we are no longer having triple digit temperatures.  Woo hoo!  With daytime highs of less than 85 degrees and night time lows in the 50’s, I’m in the mood for everything Autumn.  The other day I got the hankering to just make something new to add to my Fall decorating.  I gave myself a challenge.  Do you ever do that?  My challenge was that I would use materials that I already own and create something I’ve never seen before.  Here is what I decided to work with:

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Some stained old textured wallpaper and 3 scrap pieces of 2×4 left over from a garage shelving project.  Are you inspired?  I was.  Wanna see what I made?

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Turned out okay, don’t you think?  I happen to love it!  Would you like to see how I made it?  Alright.  Here we go:

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First step, I cut out the textured wallpaper.  I wanted a continuous pattern so I traced around the 2×4’s, stacked vertically, on the back side of the wallpaper.  After cutting out the wallpaper, I glued a strip down on each of the 2×4’s using regular white glue.  Easy.  To make sure that it didn’t bubble, I stacked them up and weighed them down with books.  As the glue dried I made up a pattern.  Kind of.  I’m not an artist so I went to the computer and found a basic pumpkin template.  I printed it out then cut the image in 4 pieces so I could stretch it out to make a larger size.  After taping it down to a large sheet of (pieced together) paper, I drew in my own lines.  Next step, I cut out the paper template and then transferred the pumpkin shape to my textured wallpaper 2×4’s, again making sure that the pattern was continuous.

After cutting the individual pieces out, I sanded random dents in the edges to make them more rounded and textured. See?

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I wanted the pumpkins to look nice and finished and not thrown together so I made sure to “caulk” the edges with spackling.

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See how much better the spackled part looks?

I chose to paint my pumpkin a nice white, but orange, black, aqua or teal would be equally nice.  I had originally painted mine black with the intention of sanding the edges to allow the black to show through, but ended up liking the white, un-distressed look.

My stalk is a cut piece of a branch from a tree in my yard.  If wishes were fishes, I would have made it longer, but by the time that I decided that, the darn thing was too attached to remove.

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Once the paint dried, I assembled the pieces:

A few twist of baling wire forms the tendrils.  I also added some silk leaves and some natural raffia…

And, there you have it… a finished pumpkin.

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I’m kind of liking my new pumpkin.  What do you think?

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———This post was FEATURED!!!———–

Live Randomly SimplePieced Pastimes

http://www.cozylittlehouse.com/2015/11/tweak-it-tuesday-166.html

Welcome to 31 Days

Funky Junk Interiors: DIY Salvage Junk Projects

Intelligent Domestications  101 + Pumpkin Decorating Ideas:

Easy DIY: Distressed Metal Art

Chippy Metal Art

Check out this awesome piece of metal art that I bought 4 years ago at Ross.

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I thought that the design was okay-ish and the size, awesome (3 feet by 3 feet),  but above all, I loved the price:

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7 bucks?  That, I can do! I’m thinking that it was discounted because it was kind of scraped up in a few places…

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…which is ok since I didn’t like the finish on it anyway.  So after moving it from place to place in my garage for the past 4 years, it got some attention today, and I LOVE it!

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Wanna see how I did this uber-easy project?  Of course you do!  First I grabbed a can of black spray paint and mainly focused on painting the edges and raised portions:

Sorry, the dappled sunlight makes it kind of hard to see, but if you look at the upper left corner of the above pic, you can kind of see the black edges which will be visible once the piece is distressed.   Next, came two coats of a semi-gloss white paint:

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Of course I could have called it “Done” at this point if I was going for a clean modern look, but I wanted to take it a step further and distress it up a little to highlight some of the details.  Of course that is why I painted it black in the first place.

***Very Important*** If you plan to do a similar project, spray the top coats with only a short time between coats and distress while the paint is still a bit tacky.  They make spray paint so well these days that it dries to form a really tough surface, which is really what we want, right?  SO, if you are distressing spray paint, you have just a short window of time to accomplish that task.  Even though the distressing process took me about 10 minutes, I could tell a big difference between how easy it was when I started, compared to when I was finished.  Work fast, ok?  If, heaven forbid, you miss that window of time, you can try using some fingernail polish remover and a Q-tip like I did with my metal star project.   Just make sure that you change Q-tips often to avoid a smudgey look.  Got it?  Good!

Now, do you want to see my high-tech distressing tool?  Of course you do:

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Let me be honest:  I started out by using my thumbnail and realized that I would likely wear it away to nothing so I figured that a plastic spoon would do the trick and it did.  Sometimes I scraped away with the spoon part…

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…and sometimes I used the handle to cover more area at a time…

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Here is the finished project…

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…which I LOVE!!!  With the new finish, it is no longer “okay-ish”, it is fabulous.  I thought that I knew exactly where I was going to place this baby, up high in my dining room, but now I want it more front and center.   Hmmm.  The easy part was re-creating this piece.  The hard part is deciding where to put it:

What do you think?  Where should it go?

 

Yep, I can honestly say that I love this piece.  Love!   So, do you have something hidden away in YOUR garage that could use a couple of coats of paint and a spoon?

 

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Orchids: Silk versus Real

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How do you feel about silk plants?  Are you a purist who will only allow fresh flowers in your home?  Do you frequent the silk flower section at Michaels, Hobby Lobby or Dollar Tree?  Or, are you perhaps somewhere in between?  I place myself in the latter category and in just a minute,  I will show you why.  Before I do, I wanted to show you an article that I found from Architectural Magazine.  Let me quote just a little,

“Mention fake plants to most people and the response will be outrage—artificial flora is a soulless simulacrum, they moan, a horticultural travesty, and just plain tacky. John Updike, the novelist, called them an “obscene mockery”.  Yet no less a design authority than Mario Buatta swears by potted silk orchids, saying they look like the real thing and are godsend for clients who travel so frequently they can’t keep real ones alive.”

I couldn’t agree more.  Case in point?  This little natural beauty:

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Stunning, isn’t it?  Ahem.  Actually it looked great for about 2 months I would say.  I made sure that I didn’t water it too much.  I made sure that no water ever touched the leaves.  I made sure that it wasn’t in direct sunlight, yadda, yadda, yadda.  I was quite proud of my little orchid and of my apparent green thumb.  But, like all good things, the blooms came to an end.  I was left with just that one little bloom.  After some research I learned that if I continued to care for the “plant” with just the right amount of watering, right placement, etc. it could bloom again!  In about a year.  Hmmmph.   The phrase, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!” comes to mind.   Into the trash it went.

And check out the orchid that I have had for almost 10 years:

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It is still as beautiful as the day that I bought it.  The only upkeep is a light leaf-dusting every couple of months.  The only thing that I have changed is the pot color.  Teal spray paint with a bit of Minwax Ebony stain to age it.

Here is my mom’s fake orchid:

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It’s a beauty, isn’t it?  It has been looking this fabulous for 3 or 4 years now.  When my sister gave her the orchid, she started messing with the branches to reshape them, and Mom finally said, “I’m afraid that you are going to break it.”  My sister then answered, “Mom, you do know that this is fake, right?”  She didn’t.

Which makes my point perfectly.  Is it really such a travesty to have fake plants, in this case orchids, if they can forever be in bloom, looking vivid and fabulous?  My answer?  An emphatic “No!”  Of course I do still love real flowers, as well.   I’m pretty well-rounded that way.

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So, what do you think?  Are silk plants/flowers allowed in YOUR home?

 

********* Linking up to these awesome parties!*********

 

Dreams of White and Gray

Do you love Pinterest as much as I do?  It is mind-boggling how much incredible information there is out there.  Like I said in my first blog post ever:  “I used to love decorating magazines.  I subscribed to them.  My mother-in-law gave me hers after she finished reading them.  I would look for them at thrift stores and garage sales.  To be honest, I didn’t necessarily read those magazines.  I would (very quickly) scan through them, tear out pages that I liked and then file them away in my very organized files.  Come to think of it, it was kind of a precursor to my Pinterest addiction.  Pinterest is so much easier.  And less messy.  And cheaper.  And less time consuming.  OK, maybe not less time consuming, but so much more fun.”  Yep.  I love Pinterest.

About a month or so before I found Pinterest, in the Spring of 2011, we purchased and moved into our current home.   My husband loved this house because everything inside and out, landscaping, etc. was done.  Translation for him, “Everything is just perfect.  We don’t need to do anything except upkeep!”.   Honestly, I was a tiny bit bummed because there really was nothing that needed to be fixed, updated, redone.   Well, that was my thought UNTIL Pinterest.  Once I started using Pinterest  I realized something… I absolutely LOVE gray and white interiors.  Love. Them.

Soon thereafter I created what has become my most popular board: Shades of White and Gray.   As a side note; not long after I started this board I heard about the naughty book “Fifty Shades…” (which I would never read or promote) and was a little sickened that someone might think that I was trying to copy the naughty book title.  That was not the case AT ALL.  An-y-way, I really love everything white and gray.  What about my house?   I don’t have a single white or gray room.  See?

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The previous owners did a fantastic job of adding beautiful wood trim everywhere, but painted everything beige.  Beigggge.  I once read a decorator’s opinion on beige…basically you should never paint a room the color of bad foundation.  Amen.  I am at the point where I realize that there is much to be done to this house.  I see a lot of gray and white in my crystal ball.   Until then I will dream.

Here are some homes that have made the beige to gray/white switcheroo:

http://www.whitehouseblackshutters.com/beige-to-greige-before-and-after/

http://www.allthingsthrifty.com/2013/04/room-evolution-from-beige-to-grey.html

http://thefrugalhomemaker.com/2014/07/29/entryway-before-and-after-beige-to-greige-with-behr-paint/

 

Seriously, take the time to check these out!  Here is one more for you to click on.  This blog article from “Our Small-Town Idaho Life” shows the amazing gray colors that this couple chose for their new home.  I want to copy(!):

http://andrewrachelashmore.blogspot.com/2012/01/paint-color-decisions.html

Well, now that I have a whole house of rooms that need to be painted, I have much, much, much to do.  Maybe not until summer, but I have plans.  You can be sure that there will plenty of Before (beige) and After (gray/white) blog posts and photos to come!  Thanks, Pinterest!

 

 

 

Giant DIY Satin Flowers

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Remember this post where I showed you how to make adorable satin flowers?   Well, I love those little flowers so much because they can add cute touches to anything from hair, to clothing, to home accessories, to purses, to gift packages.  To be honest, though, they are a bit small to add a lot of WOW to a room.  You know the theory that “bigger is better”?  Well, it is if we are talking about bigger budgets, bigger backyards, bigger pieces of chocolate cake.  Bigger thighs?  Maybe not so much.  An-y-way.  I thought that I could take this idea of making satin flower up a notch and make one, well, bigger.  The process was pretty much the same except I added more layers.  Eleven, to be exact:

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For a base, I covered a circle shaped pieced of cardboard with fabric (to keep it pretty) to add stability:

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Of course I glued the flower layers to the ugly side so the bottom looks nice and finished.

This finished flower turned out to be about 8 1/2 inches wide.  Big enough to make a statement in a frame that I backed with unpainted textured wallpaper:

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I thought that it turned out pretty good, and I’ll admit that I excitedly thought,  “I MADE that!” every time that I walked past it.    The above picture just doesn’t do it justice.  The satin is so beautiful and I love the color that the fabric turns when the flame melts the edges.   Come to my house sometime and you will see.

After I had walked past it a hundred times or more I got thinking again.  Dangerous!  I adopted a new theory, ” If bigger is better, gigantic is the best!”.  Are you with me?

I looked in my fabric stash and found this lovely blouse that had been purchased and cut up for my daughter’s school project last year.  This little number set me back probably $.50.  Way cheaper than fabric store fabric.  I didn’t want to ruin good fabric if my big idea didn’t work.

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I totally know what you are thinking.  “How could you cut up such an stylish blouse?”  I know, right?

As I started cutting I realized something awesome, this 100% polyester fabric tears really easily.  In no time at all I had a large stack of fabric squares.  The largest squares were cut out of the back of the blouse, but I was amazed at how much fabric was in each sleeve.  I didn’t even try to count how many layers this flower has.   I just know it was a lot because I wanted my gigantic flower to be nice and fluffy.

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Using the same process that I showed you in my Super Simple Satin Flower tutorial I started melting my edges.  Unfortunately, my hubby was working at home when I made this and I knew that he would not welcome the thought of me putting fabric over a flame in the house so I did it on my front porch.  Trust me, it is much faster to do indoors.  Every little breeze makes the candle flicker.

I made a cool little video to show you a way that I found to speed up the process, but ding-dang-dong, I can’t for the life of me figure out how to add it in WordPress.  I will keep trying to figure out how to add the video, but basically, just take one side and simply fanfold the edges (maybe a 4-6 inch section) and hold the fanned area vertically about the candle’s hot spot to melt a larger section at a time.  Quickly spread out the fanned out area just in case parts fused together and then melt any sections that might have been missed.  Again, don’t put the fabric IN the flame, just OVER the flame.  We are melting, not burning the edges.  It probably took me an hour to melt all of my edges.

Once all of your pieces are melted, start stacking, largest on the bottom and work your way to the top.  Many of my pieces were similar in size and that is okay.   Just do this:

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See how I put the glue down and scrunched the fabric to make sure the layers beneath can be seen.  This also adds wrinkles which help add volume.

When I got to the center area, I took 4 of my smaller melted shapes, pulled the center down to form a cone shape and glued them down to hide all of the hot glue spots.  At this point, I still had some extra melted fabric sections so I folded them in half and glued in the bare areas.

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Ta-dah!  This baby is about 14 inches across!  It’s gigantic!

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Here, you can see how I added it to a throw pillow:

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And here I attached it to a framed mirror:

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In all honesty, this bright blue doesn’t go with anything in my house, BUT, my daughter is going away to BYU this fall and this BYU Blue gigantic flower will go with her.  Now that I know that it IS possible to make a Gigantic Satin Flower, I’m making one for me!

So, whadda-ya think?  Was my $.50 investment + 1 1/2 hours of my time worth it?

(Here is a different blouse makeover project that I made)