Gallery Wall Get Up

Gallery walls are all the rave right now (at least in my world). Anyone with me? I’ve been playing around with one in our den and I’m really loving the way it’s looking. I feel like I’ve got a pretty decent base going on and my plan is to just add things as they catch my eye when I’m out running errands (aka grocery shopping at Target and getting distracted by all the pretties then dreaming of redoing the entire house while adding said pretties to my cart then trying to talk myself out of everything I just put in the cart, but not really trying that hard).

 

Our gallery wall started out with 2 pieces of wall art from Target (seriously you guys, the addiction is unreal), and some watercolors my Grandmother painted. I had been on the hunt for some fun and colorful farm animal prints to add to the wall when I stumbled upon Annette Bennett Art. Stop what you’re doing right now and check her out. She’s amazing. I settled on (3) 5×7 prints despite my strong desire to buy out her entire Etsy shop. My original plan was to frame the prints in simple white frames, but then while attempting to organize my craft closet which never seems to be organized, I came across some wooden plaques I had bought ages ago from Hobby Lobby and a bright idea popped into my mind. Don’t you just love when that happens? See below for step-by-step instructions to my bright idea 🙂

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materials

  • wooden plaques
  • spray paint
  • scrapbook paper
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • mod podge
  • paint brush
  • artwork
  • double-sided tape

step 1

paint the wooden plaques. easy enough, right? just lay some newspaper outside on a day that’s not too cold, place the wooden plaques on top and spray away (usually a couple coats will do it). be sure the side you spray first is completely dry before flipping over to spray the back.

i went with Rustoleum Paint & Primer in one in gloss coral because i had been wanting to add pops of pink to our den redesign without it being noticed by the husband. he doesn’t care much for pink home decor. i guess i can’t blame him.

step 2

once the paint is completely dry, trace the outline of the plaque onto the scrapbook paper of your choice and use scissors to carefully cut out the shape. this step probably took me the longest because i could only pick 3 of these amazing prints. is it normal to be so in love with paper?

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i chose to cut out a shape that was the exact size of the plaque, but another option would be to cut out a smaller outline so that some of the painted surface shows after everything is said and done – a little trickier, but not too tricky.

step 3

use mod podge (or any other crafting glue) to affix the scrapbook paper cut-out to the wooden plaque. be sure to apply just a thin layer of glue and firmly press the paper down. you can trim any uneven edges at this point.

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step 4

add your artwork! double-sided tape works great and will allow easy removal of the artwork in the future … you know, just in case you like to change your mind as much as I do 🙂

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Talk about adding pops of color to your wall! Since adding these guys, I’ve also added a mirror and a puppy dog print that I’m madly in love with (both from Hobby Lobby and both Christmas gifts from my wonderful in-laws). I’m throwing that whole ‘less is more’ saying out the window when it comes to our gallery wall – I mean isn’t the beauty of a gallery wall that you’re allowed to just keep adding this and adding that and you never have to be done? I think so. Ours still feels a bit bare in my opinion. Target may be seeing my face real soon.

DIY Succulent Love

Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday season and feels renewed and refreshed and ready to take on 2016 by the horns. I’m not 100% there yet to be completely honest (I mean it is a Monday morning), but I’ll get there soon hopefully 🙂 I’ve been a little MIA lately because I’ve been soaking in my time off from my “real” job by spending every bit of it with family and friends and not really focusing much on social media. It’s been kind of amazing, I have to say. I’ve realized how much time I can waste on all the social media outlets, wondering what other people are up to and sharing what I’m up to … it’s pretty incredible the amount of time you gain by not paying any attention to that stuff, but I’ll save my thoughts on that for another day.

Instead of getting all deep and sentimental with you this morning, I thought I’d share a fun and simple DIY instead – the succulent terrarium in a jar. And before you stop reading – no, you do not have to have a green thumb to make this work. Succulents are for everyone – green thumb, pink thumb, no thumb, doesn’t matter. Just give ’em some sun and don’t over-water, and they’ll most likely be content.

My husband and I host an annual Christmas party (6 years strong now) with our friends and I just love giving out little party favors to everyone. I always plan on getting creative and making something, but most years I run out of time and end up buying something instead. But alas! This year I found some time to let my creative juices flow. I’ve had this idea on my “She’s Crafty” Pinterest board since forever and I’m happy to say it’s a keeper. Now I haven’t followed up with anyone on how the plants are doing, but the one I made for myself looks pretty darn good if I must say. Fingers crossed everyone else’s do too …

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My first step in this DIY was to decide what materials I wanted to use. And yes, I’m counting this as a “step” because we all know how indecisive I can be. The great thing about this project is that you can pretty much use whatever you want. The only definites you need are some sort of a clear glass container, potting soil, and a succulent. The rest is really up to you!

I decided to use clear glass jars because I had a boat load of them.

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I wanted to do a few different layers in the terrariums to give them a “fun” feel, so I went with sand mixed with crushed coral as the bottom layer. The sand/coral mix will also work to absorb any excess water. Succulents will rot if you refresh them too much so I thought this would be a helpful addition. The sand came from Home Depot and the crushed coral came from Petsmart (aquarium section).

The second layer is what makes the terrariums, in my opinion at least. I picked up a few bags of colored aquarium gravel while at Petsmart and used these to brighten up each jar. I went with a pinkish-purple, a black/white mix, and a blue/green mix.

The third layer is the necessary layer – the potting soil.  Just make sure to add enough soil so that the succulent can root well and so that it’s not flimsy once you set it in the jar.

 

And now the fun part! Add your succulents! I ordered a 20-pack of assorted succulents off of Etsy (way cheaper than buying them individually). The one thing to keep in mind here is that if you’re using a small glass container (like I did), make sure to buy the right size succulents. Most of the time you can buy 2-inch or 4-inch plants. I had to stay with the 2-inch plants so that they’d fit inside the jars.

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I added some small river rocks (also found in the aquarium section of Petsmart) around each succulent once I planted them, just to add a little somethin’ somethin’.

Next up, give them a little bit of water (just a little bit I tell you), set them by a window, and watch them grow! Or at least not die.

And that does it! Pretty simple, right? And pretty cool-looking too. So cool-looking in fact that I used the leftover gravel to make 2 more terrariums out of larger glass containers I had lying around. I’m living in a succulent wonderland I tell ya. Enjoy your week!

Gather ‘Round

I like to think that I don’t fall for trends very easily. I like what I like, and if it happens to be in style at the time, so be it. But I really try to steer clear of the latest and trendiest thing, because you know that sooner or later (usually sooner) something bigger, better, and well, trendier, is going to make an appearance and you’re going to be stuck with a room full of non-trendy things. And even if you still secretly like those non-trendy things, your mind (thanks to advertising and social media) is going to tell you that your tastes have evolved and you need to hop on the trend boat and do some shopping. Am I right?

With that being said, I love the marquee look. SOOOO trendy, I know (although I think I hopped on this boat at the tail end of its trend journey). I’ve honestly always liked it. It’s vintage, which is right up my alley, and I’ve always had a special place in my heart for things that light up. What is not right up my alley, though, is the price of a true marquee sign. Even the non-vintage ones at your local home or craft stores are outrageous, or maybe I’m just cheap. Either way, I wasn’t about to spend a hundred plus dollars on one, no matter how badly I may have wanted it for above our bar as part of our den redesign.

So I did what I sometimes do best – I created my own. I wish I could take full credit for this project, but those Heidi Swapp Marquee Love Letters sure did make my latest DIY pretty easy. I first noticed these letters at Target – big surprise since I’m there at least once a week – I walked by them though (several times) because they weren’t the real thing, and it looked like a lot of work and I didn’t want to take another project on at the moment. A few months later though, these same Marquee Love Letters ended up in my online Michaels shopping cart and  then on my doorstep a few days after that. This came after I shopped ’til I dropped, almost literally, looking for one that didn’t break the bank. Did I mention that these letters were originally $12 at Target, but I scored them on clearance for $6.49 plus 20% off at Michaels? That’s $5.19 a letter, people. I could swing that.

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I decided on the word “gather”. I had to get the OK from my husband because for some reason he doesn’t like most decor with words on it, which I find so funny. I bought a sign that said “thankful” a few months back and ended up returning it because I could tell it bothered him a little (plus I really didn’t need it). He’s so laid-back when it comes to how I decorate the house, so I do try to respect the couple of things he doesn’t really like … so far it’s word decor and the color pink 🙂

My first step in this DIY was to make these letters look as old and metal-like as I possibly could … a little tricky since they’re made of a thick cardboard-like material, but I think the Rustoleum Aged Metallic Paint and Primer In One did a pretty good job. No special trick to this at all – just spray. I did a couple of coats on each letter.

The next step was to insert the little bulbs and the string of lights. One wouldn’t think instructions would be necessary for this, but they actually proved helpful since they showed you in what order to string the lights.

I thought I was done at this point, so on the wall they went. As much as I loved the look, I wanted a little more color. In case you can’t tell from the teal walls, I kinda like color 🙂

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Each of these Marquee Love Letters comes with an insert in the shape of the letter so that you can either decorate the insert itself, or use it as a stencil to trace the letter shape onto something else. I chose the latter. I had this amazing book of scrapbook paper that I snagged from the clearance shelf at Target a while back, and I had the bright idea of using a different pattern inside each letter. Surprise! I like pattern too.

I picked my 6 favorite patterns and used the letter inserts to draw the letter shapes onto each piece of scrapbook paper. I simply cut the letter shapes out and then used a hole-puncher to punch new holes for the light bulbs (the letter inserts have holes so you just line up the inserts with your newly cut-out letters and punch in the appropriate places).

I then placed the letter shapes inside each letter, after removing the lights and bulbs of course.

Putting the light bulbs back in was a little tricky, only because the holes I punched weren’t quite large enough. Just use a little force to push the bulbs into each hole and you should be just fine. Then insert the string of lights from behind.

And once again, above the bar they went. I was a bit more satisfied this time.

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The great thing about this project is that if I ever tire of the colors or patterns I chose for the inserts, I can always make new ones. I can even take the inserts out all together and go back to the simpler metallic look. I may or may not have already changed out 2 of the letters. You’re seeing the final product, but the “T” and the “H” didn’t always look like this. Indecisiveness sucks, y’all.

Happy Crafting!

Scrap Fabric & Hoop Art – Take Two

I know, I know; I’ve already done a post about hoop art … but I’m doing another one. I actually used a needle and thread on my latest hoop so I have to share, right? I mentioned in my first hoop art post how much I love scrap fabric. Well I still do, and since that post I’ve accumulated much more and I was really crushing on the patterns I used in this last creation. I still don’t know all (any) of the stitches, or really how to even stitch correctly, but I was able to produce stitches in the shape of letters and you could tell what the letters were, so I was content.

Two of my dear friends recently started up an event planning business – www.piliandtalli.com – check them out if you’re ever in need of an event planner. They are two of the nicest, funniest, most down-to-earth girls you will ever meet, and better yet they rock at what they do. And no, I’m not just saying that because I like them. I actually pinky swear you. Is that still a thing or am I telling my age? Anyway, they asked me to create some hoop art for their latest bride & groom who got married in September, so needless to say I was beyond flattered and I was determined to make something I could be proud of because let’s face it – it’s one thing to craft something for yourself, but it’s a whole other thing to craft something for someone else. Yikes. The pressure was on.

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materials

  • 4″ embroidery hoop
  • scrap fabric for background
  • scrap fabric for heart applique
  • thread for letters
  • thread for exterior stitches
  • stencils (heart and letters)
  • embroidery transfer pencil
  • fabric scissors
  • mod podge
  • paint brush
  • needle
  • felt

step 1

take embroidery hoop apart and lay scrap fabric (for background) on top of the interior hoop. fit the exterior hoop around the outside and tighten. you may have to adjust fabric so there are no wrinkles

step 2

use transfer pencil to trace around heart stencil onto scrap fabric (for applique) & cut out heart shape. top secret – it’s really handy to have one of those tiny pairs of scissors to work with small shapes like this.

step 3

apply a very thin layer of mod podge to the heart applique with paintbrush and glue heart onto background fabric. this might be cheating, but I wanted to be darn sure that heart stayed in place when I stitched around it.

step 4

using a needle and thread, stitch around edge of heart. I wish I could be a little more specific here, but I just did a very basic stitch – obviously I’m not perfect though, so neither are the stitches. I honestly didn’t try too hard to make these stitches perfectly even – I feel like it looks kind of cool with the imperfect & uneven stitches (or maybe I just told myself that enough times that I finally started believing it). I started on the backside of the hoop and stitched upwards into the heart shape, and then I placed a stitch right outside the edge of the heart going down to the backside of the hoop. does that even make sense? a “running stitch” maybe? I apparently need some Stitching 101 classes.

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step 5

use transfer pencil to trace outlines of letters onto background fabric. I didn’t have a ‘plus sign’ stencil so I just drew out the shape myself.

step 6

using a needle and thread, fill in the letters with more basic stitches. It’s way more important to get these stitches close together (I even did some stitches partially on top of other stitches to give it a more filled-in appearance).

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step 7

cut excess scrap fabric and glue remainder onto back of hoop so edges don’t show. I used clothes pins to hold the glued edges in place until dried.

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step 8

cut piece of felt to fit inside back of hoop – this helps hide the ugly stitches and helps the fabric not be see-through, if that’s an issue.

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Flip it over and there you have it!

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You’ll notice from the very first picture that I originally planned on using three different fabrics. The khaki colored fabric was meant to be for letter appliques, but I later decided to stitch the letters instead – I thought the contrast between the stitching and the applique would be a bit more fun 🙂

I also mentioned in my last hoop art post that I get scrap fabric from all sorts of places. The background fabric used on this hoop came from the packaging that my bed sheets from Target came in. Have you bought any from there? I believe it’s the Threshold brand that packages the sheets up in cute little fabric pouches, complete with a velcro closure. You’re crazy not to keep it. The fabric used for the heart applique came from a bundle of fabric marked way down (and I mean WAY down) at Hobby Lobby. That’s a great place to check from time to time to get a random assortment of cheap fabric.

Happy scrap-fabric-hunting, hoop-art-making Monday to you!

Chair Love

I am in love with my dining room chairs. You’ll hear me say this about pretty much everything that is found in our dining room, but as I said in an earlier post – the dining room is my favorite room in our house, so I really do mean it when I say it. When I bought the dining room table way back when, I decided to buy only four chairs from the same set because I wanted a mix of chairs at the table. It only took me about 4 years to finally have a set of 10 that I was proud of, and who knew that the additional 6 chairs would come from a garage sale? Thanks to my mom’s keen eye, she picked up the chairs knowing that they had potential. Thanks Mom. I don’t have a before picture (go figure), but the chairs were a very light-colored wood and the cushions were covered in black vinyl – oh yeah. The chairs themselves were such a cool design though and I was excited to get my hands on them.

Deciding on a stain color for the chairs was fun, or not. I found myself standing in the stain aisle at Home Depot just staring, for God knows how long, as if waiting on a can of stain to come flying out at me. I should mention that I am so appreciative of my husband’s patience with me; however, we’ve both learned over the years that if I don’t know the exact item or items that I want at a store when we run errands, it’s just better for both of us if I go to the store alone. It’s pretty sad when he’s gathered the other 12 items on our list and I’m still looking at stain colors. Why are there so many? Somehow I finally settled on Minwax Wood Finish in Golden Oak 210B, and I think it was a pretty good choice.

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Picking a fabric for the cushions was a little more fun … more time-consuming, if you can believe it, but definitely more enjoyable. My mom and I scoured fabric stores and I brought home probably 18 fabric swatches before deciding on a yellow zig zag stripe fabric from Hancock’s. Being that the dining room was giving off a vintage farm-house feel after finally redoing it, I thought a pop of modern would be perfect. The original price of the fabric was $24.99/yard but knowing that Hancock’s puts their fabrics on sale quite often, I waited until it was marked down to $14.99/yard. My mom suggested I bring one of the cushions into the store when purchasing the fabric, so I did as I was told and the lovely lady at Hancock’s was able to estimate how much fabric I would need to recover 6 cushions. Now I’m pretty good at math but I’m also pretty confident that I would not have purchased enough fabric, so thanks for the tip Mom.

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Now that the shopping was done, it was time to work –

First up was removing the rest of the cushions so the chairs could be sanded and stained. Luckily each cushion was held in place only by 4 screws underneath, so a Phillips Head screwdriver was the one tool I needed to accomplish this.

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Fortunately there was no paint to remove so a light sanding was sufficient. I used a pretty fine sandpaper as well because I didn’t want to nick the wood. My wonderful husband offered to stain the chairs for me and I decided to take him up on the offer so I could get started on the cushions. I was loving the final color …

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The first step for the cushions was to remove the lovely black vinyl. This was not an easy task as there were like a million heavy-duty staples and nails to remove, but I got it done. I then used the vinyl I had removed to trace the shape of the cushion cover onto my new and improved fabric. Then came the cutting – I should mention here that I purchased some fabric-grade scissors while at Hancock’s, and let me tell you that they were well worth the $20.

The next step was to lay out each fabric piece upside down on a table and place the remainder of each cushion on top of the fabric. By ‘remainder’ of cushion I’m referring to the wood board that acted as the bottom of each cushion and the foam insert. While at Hancock’s I also purchased some polyester fiber fill because I wanted the cushions to be a little more cushion-y, if you will. I just added a very small layer of this between the foam insert and the wood board.

Once everything was laid out, I tightly pulled the fabric around each foam insert/filling/wood board combo (one side at a time) and used a staple gun to staple the fabric edges onto the wood board. I placed each staple about an inch or two apart. The corners were a bit tricky – I had to fold one side down and then fold the other side on top as best I could, while ensuring it looked decent on the front-side. You’ll see in the picture below that I didn’t make this part very pretty, but it’s the bottom of the cushions so who cares, right? At least the tops were pretty …

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I was, and still am, in love with the final product. I also adore the combination of the chairs around the table, although part of me wants to replace the original four with some recreations now … 🙂

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Seeing Clearly Through An Old Window

I was feeling a little brain-dead this morning, courtesy of spending the weekend in Nashville for a friend’s wedding. Thanks to my in-laws, my husband and I were able to enjoy a child-free get-away and it was much appreciated. However I don’t quite recover from staying up too late and enjoying one too many adult beverages like I used to. Who knew? I imagine my in-laws might be spending their day recovering as well, considering our 18-month old is a handful (but a perfectly sweet handful at that). I had to make a quick trip to the grocery store to clear my head after staring at the computer screen for God knows how long this morning trying to come up with a title for this blog post. Sad. I think I’m okay now though.

For whatever reason, having old windows in your house as decor is super “in” right now. Actually it’s been in for a while and it doesn’t seem to be going out anytime soon. Being that my brother is a handy-man, he always seems to have a supply of old windows sitting around. Lucky for me. I have a stock in my basement, as well as 25 ancient windows on our house, so I should be good to go. During the dining room remodel I decided I wanted an old window hanging on one of the walls, but it took me a while to figure out exactly what I wanted to do with the window. So the wall remained blank for some time.

After my dad passed away a couple of years ago, I came across some really old postcards when going through his things. The photographs on the postcards were from National Parks and other attractions around the Southeast. I thought they were so cool. Then I flipped them over and realized that half of them had actual writing on them (mainly from my grandmother, Papa Ernie, and their friends). Even cooler. When’s the last time you sent somebody a postcard and actually wrote a note on the back? It reminded me of the postcard chain letters that were so popular when I was growing up … nostalgia at its finest. I knew I just had to do something with them, so I did.

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I decided to hang the postcards in the window I was redoing – super simple but oh-so-special. The first step was sanding the window. It was in pretty bad shape with multiple coats of paint, so it took a good bit of sanding and I used a pretty coarse piece of sandpaper. Then came the painting – thanks to Pinterest I originally decided to paint the window a lime green (Craft Smart Citron to be exact). Now I love color, but the lime green window hanging against the teal wall was just a little too much, even for my liking. So I painted over the lime green with a couple different colors (Folk Art Dark Brown and Folk Art Dove Gray). I used acrylic paints and a sponge brush with short quick sweeps because I wanted a layering effect with the multiple colors. There are even some spots where the lime green peeks through.

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Next I just arranged the postcards the way they looked best. I had to pick my favorite ones at this point because there wasn’t room for all of them and I wanted to have some sort of pattern. I used the tiniest pieces of clear tape to attach the postcards to the window. You’ll see from the picture below that I didn’t bother repainting the back of the window. Who has time for that?

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I was thrilled with the with the way it turned out and I don’t see myself ever getting tired of it (even if old windows do someday go out of style). It has great meaning to me, it has a vintage feel because it is vintage, and I think it’s the perfect addition to our dining room. And believe it or not, I’ve actually seen similar old postcards in antique stores – so you could actually do this same craft yourself 🙂

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Pink Goggles & Homemade Air Fresheners

My husband and I hosted a backyard BBQ yesterday and all that was left at the end of the party after everyone had gone home and after all the clean up was done was a pair of pink goggles. Have we really reached that age when none of our friends leave their wallets or sunglasses behind, or better yet their left-over wine and beer? Are we really that responsible now that only our kids are the ones leaving various items behind? I guess so. I took a picture of said goggles because I found it amusing that our get-togethers have changed so much. I think there were more kids than adults at this one and everyone had made their way home by 7pm. That used to be considered an early start time. Granted it was a Sunday …

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I made absolutely nothing from scratch for this shin-dig, which is not normal for me. Usually I try to home-make everything and end up wishing I hadn’t. I decided to grant that wish this time. My husband smoked 2 pork butts overnight on the Big Green Egg, which turned out fabulous as always. He credits the Big Green Egg. I credit him. The pulled chicken and mac & cheese came from Sam’s BBQ-1 in Marietta, GA – who I highly recommend. All of the other items came from gracious guests and the grocery store.

I spent the first part of my Sunday attempting to clean the house before our guests arrived. I say ‘attempting’ because my 18-month old finds it amusing to follow right behind me as I’m cleaning and ‘unclean’ whatever I’ve just finished. He also likes to try and stand on the vacuum cleaner – while I’m vacuuming. For the record, I have officially given in and accepted the small greasy hand prints on the stainless steel appliances as new additions to our home decor.

One thing I did manage to accomplish was refilling my homemade air fresheners, which I soon realized had been long overdue. With a dog who always seems to smell (even an hour after he gets groomed), two cats, a toddler who happens to be a boy, and a husband, our house needs some help in the scent department. Sometimes the Febreeze just doesn’t cut it. I used to buy the plug-ins back in the day, but then I read some article about the health effects (I’m not claiming them to be true but I didn’t like what I read) … not to mention the expense of replacing them monthly got to be a little much. I had a Pinterest fail trying to fill the plug-ins with my own mixture of water and oils – after breaking a total of 7 I decided to remove that DIY project from my Pinterest board, because I could not, indeed, do it myself.

I finally came across an article that gave instructions for making air fresheners out of … you guessed it … mason jars! I won’t claim them to be the best air fresheners ever, because they’re not. I find myself needing to add more oil on a pretty regular basis, but they’re cute and all-natural so I’ll put up with it.

materials

  • baking soda
  • essential oil (any fragrance)
  • scrapbook paper
  • mason jar (I chose the short & squat 1/2 pint jars)
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • something worthy of poking small holes in scrapbook paper (I used a mini phillips head screwdriver)

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step 1

trace lid of mason jar (without the ring) onto scrapbook paper (look at the awesome patterns!)

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step 2

cut out paper circle and fit into ring of mason jar lid

step 3

add baking soda to mason jar (I added enough to fill the jars about 1/3)

step 4 

add several drops of essential oil. the amount you add will depend on your preference – I typically add about 8 drops. lavender is my favorite every-day scent and peppermint is my go-to for Christmas time.

when I first started making these, I had to order the oils online or go to a specialty natural food store, but now my local Kroger carries a few scents.

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step 5

put lid onto jar and shake well. poke holes in the scrapbook paper top to release the scent …

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Couple things – the article I came across (which I can not currently find) used fabric instead of scrapbook paper, and a needle to make the holes instead of the mini screwdriver. I was not able to get the fabric to stay tight enough – over time it would sag, so I opted for scrapbook paper. I also didn’t think the needle holes let out enough of the scent so I opted for larger holes via the mini screwdriver.

Cheers to a fresh-smelling home 🙂

Scrap Fabric & Hoop Art

I am in love with hoop art. It’s been around forever, mainly in cross-stitch fashion, but today there are so many new (and easy!) takes on it that I just can’t get enough. In my haste to finish Austin’s nursery, I helped myself to a few from Etsy and they are the cutest darn things ever – props go out to bohointheround and lulusloft for your lovely creations. I wanted to add my own touch by making some myself, but because I go a little nutty when things aren’t 100% complete (insert nursery here), I “cheated” if you will and took the easy way out by creating some “stitch-free” ones. I personally think they’re still pretty darn cute. Forgive me, son, if I wasn’t really up to learning how to cross-stitch while on maternity leave with a beautiful, yet somewhat needy, newborn. I hope he’s not totally put off by my shortcuts.

I should go ahead and mention my adoration of scrap fabric here. I never throw it away, not even the tiniest piece. Some people might think of it as hoarding (you know, similar to those people who hold onto used wrapping paper no matter what shape it’s in. I am not guilty of that, although I never throw out a gift bag and I mean if the tissue paper isn’t too crinkled …). Anyway, scrap fabric has so many uses it’s unreal. I’ve used it to make pin boards and pillows, canvas art and gift tags, as well as my very own hoop art creations ~

materials

  • embroidery hoops (various sizes)
  • scrap fabric
  • scissors
  • craft glue
  • sew-on patches (or in my case glue-on – I’m not kidding when I say I cheated, a lot)

step 1

take embroidery hoop apart and lay scrap fabric on top of the interior hoop. fit the exterior hoop around the outside and tighten. you may have to adjust fabric so there are no wrinkles

step 2

cut excess scrap fabric and glue remainder onto back of hoop so edges don’t show. if you’re dealing with really thin fabric (see elephants below), you can choose to glue a piece a felt or thicker fabric onto the back so it’s not so see-through, although when hung on a wall you really can’t tell.

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step 3

cut out various shapes, objects, letters, etc from other scrap fabric and glue onto hoop (be careful with this step so the glue doesn’t show through the fabric. I used a paint brush to brush the glue on in a thin layer)

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step 4

glue on cute patches/stickers/etc for a final touch

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Above creations + my Etsy finds below …

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= the final product (aka wall o’ hoop art) …

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On a side note, if any of you are wondering where on Earth I get so much scrap fabric, let me just tell you that it is everywhere. Think fabric samples you pick up in stores or order online, quilting squares, leftovers from other craft projects or sewing creations, the cute little fabric pouches that things come in these days (I’m talking about sheets from Target specifically), old clothes that you don’t want to be seen in but just can’t part with, old curtains, old tapestries, old pillow cases, etc., etc., etc. I even keep my eye out for marked down fabric when I’m in craft stores and I’ll grab it if it’s cute enough and a really good deal. It’s truly everywhere. I have a basket labeled “scraps” in my craft closet for this very purpose. You may want to think of doing the same 🙂

Etsy credits:

Dapper Tweedy Fox and Little Jumpy Squirrel – bohointheround at https://www.etsy.com/shop/bohointheround

Mr. & Mrs. Owl – lulusloft at https://www.etsy.com/shop/lulusloft