Jed’s Blanket: Handmade With Love

Does anyone else find the boys/men in their family are the hardest to buy presents for? I think I’m a pretty awesome present picker-outer but when it came to deciding what to get for my little bro last Christmas I was stumped. I didn’t want to give him a gift card again or money. Was there anything I could make that he would actually use? My sister and I put our heads together and came up with a useful and warm idea!

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A Chair Renewed With Tie dye

I hate to throw anything away. I’d probably be a hoarder but watching all those hoarder shows on TLC has scared me into keeping my house at a light clutter. Which is probably for the best. I’d hate to have Stella go ‘missing’ one day, only to find her years later squashed flat under a pile of boxes. The point is, if something can be saved from the trash heap AND save us from spending money on a new one I’m all in.

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What I made… Paintbrush case

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My sister Halie is taking Fine Arts in University. Apparently her brushes did not have a case suitable for carrying to home, class and back again. She asked me to make her one, so here it is! I just made up my own pattern and using bias tape for the edges made it pretty quick and easy. The denim came from an old pair of paint stained jeans I was going to throw away and I used a piece of clear plastic on the inside to help protect the brushes.

Using the longest brush I had as a guide for height I thought there would be plenty of room, but my sister just had to have a super looong one! She says she likes so I’m satisfied. She took these pics in her studio and the last one is her hand so you can get a sense of the size.

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CONCLUSION

Now that my sis has her paintbrushes all organised maybe I should make a case for mine!

What I made today… Ikea Billy revamp

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With two new roommates moving in this month I needed to get some more storage for the kitchen so off to Ikea I went with boyfriend in tow. Going Sunday morning we were able to take advantage of their $1 breakfast. It’s such a good deal and for $1 more you can add a piece of yummy cinnamon french toast!

I was all set on getting the Billy bookcase in black/brown until I realized the white one cost $30 less! All of a sudden white was looking like the better choice. I love all the room set-ups in Ikea. In one bedroom there was a bookcase with a pink patterned back. Walking over to it I realised they had just put fabric against the back panel, which you could also purchase there. Thank you Ikea for the cheap bookcase and a great idea to personalize it!

While my very handy boyfriend was assembling the bookcase I looked through my fabric stash to see what would look good and what I had enough yardage of. The fabric I choose is a groovy vintage cotton made in Japan. First I measured the panel and added 2” on each side. This is probably a 2 person job. While one person is sliding the fabric and panel through the grooves the other is pulling the fabric tight on the sides to it doesn’t bunch up or sag. It was actually quite easy and the extra fabric on the sides was handy to grasp on to. After I checked to make sure the fabric was snug we nailed the panel to the bookcase as per the instructions. What a huge difference! I think I’m going to have to do this to all future bookcases!

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conclusion

Adding a personal touch can go a long way in making even cheap Ikea bookcases fit your home and style.

Decoupage Cell Phone Case DIY

 

Update: This post was originally published in May 2013. Even though I have moved on to a new iPhone this is a creative and fun way to personalize your phone case. This case lasted a long time and the jewels never fell off! Yay Mod Podge! 

Spring has finally arrived and it’s time for spring cleaning, swapping out the winter clothes for the summer ones, and giving things a general sprucing up. Some of these chores might not be fun but they need to get done. My iPhone case was something that need a spring revamp but instead of just picking one out at the store, which I admit can be fun, I decided to personalize one with this quick DIY. It’s also a great way to use an old case that might be scratched or your just tired of the current image. Just make sure you clean it well so the Mod Podge will adhere properly.

Decoupage is an easy and enjoyable way to decorate pretty much anything with a flat surface. It involves cutting out various shapes of paper, usually from magazines, and applying coats of varnish to seal it. I looked through old issues of Instyle and Cosmo to find pictures I liked then used my trusty Mod Podge to seal it.

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After finding some pictures of gems, flowers, and a cat I laid them out over a plain white iPhone case to get an idea for placement. Then I applied a thorough coat of Mod Podge to the back of the cut-outs and stuck them down. Your fingers will get sticky and you might have to carefully smooth out the paper if there are any air bubbles underneath. I wrapped the pieces around the edges of the case to get a full covering. The inside doesn’t look very pretty but no one will see it. Once you have all the cut-outs you want apply an even coat of the Mod Podge over the entire case. This will help the corners not to raise up.

 

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I wanted this case to be pretty girlie so I added stick on gems and glitter! After letting the glue dry for a few minutes (till it was tacky) I placed on the gems. Then I mixed some glitter with the Mod Podge and applied another thick even coat. I didn’t apply the glitter coat to the inside of the case. Let dry fully for a couple of hours and your case is ready for use!

 

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I wasn’t sure how well the gems would stay on. I’m not very careful with my phone, it usually hides out at the bottom of my tote bag/ huge purse, but I have been using it for over a week and they’re all still there! That Mod Podge really works!

conclusion:

We all use our cell phones so much now. It’s nice to have a case that makes me smile and that I like looking at everyday!

What I made today… Washi tape clock

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I bought a clock from Ikea to put in my sewing/craft room. It was super cheap at $2.99 but also super ugly. A clear smokeyish plastic. What a great opportunity to use washi tape to brighten it up! I stuck it on while watching Mad Men. Yay for multi-tasking! To fix the problem of some of the edges coming up off the rounded corners I gave it a coat of Mod Podge.

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conclusion

Now this once generic clock looks like it belongs in a craft/sewing room!

Getting a little cozy in here DIY

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My sister, Halie, and I have done a couple art collaborations in the past and all have had fantastic results! So when she came to visit me for her reading week, she’s going after her Bachelors of Fine Art, I though it was a perfect time to use the canvases I had and make something for a blank spot on the wall. Of course being the procrastinator I am we didn’t start till the last day she was here. A quick yet still dynamic project was needed. I’d like to say I came up with this fab idea but it was all my sister’s.

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I picked colors that I thought would compliment the living room and other art on the walls. We came up with lots of 4 letter words but finding one that I actually wanted to look at everyday took some time. I finally thought of COZY with a heart for the O. It’s what I aspire my house to be. I think the word you pick should reflect your surroundings in some way.

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Next we painted the majority of the canvas the color I wanted the letters to be. We didn’t go all the way to the edges, just as far as we thought the letter would reach. After allowing the paint to dry Halie sketched the letters onto the canvas with a pencil. You could use any font desired but I think the blockier the better just to make taping easier.

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I only had masking tape on hand to fill in the letters. It worked well but it left a little residue on the Z, so I would recommend using painters tape to insure that doesn’t happen. It actually didn’t take that long to fully cover the letters with tape. To make the curvy parts I just ripped small pieces of tape to follow the pencil line.

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Using different sized brushes we splotched, splashed, and spotted the paint in an abstract pattern, covering the whole surface and the sides. I did the C and Z and Halie did the heart and Y. I think this would also look good if a more constrained pattern was created. you could use the painters tape to make stripes on the letters. Vertical, horizontal, or diagonal would look great! The sky’s the limit!

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After the paint dried we carefully peeled off the tape. The letters looked a tad unfinished so Halie painted a white boarder around them and I love it! Another successful collaboration. I had originally planned to hang the letters in a 2×2 square but after trying out some different formations, including staggered, this side by side layout looked best for the space.

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A big thanks to my little sis for her idea and help. It was a lot of fun! She recently started her own blog so please do check it out! I love the name of her blog! It’s Shouldn’t you be studying? lol http://shouldntyoubestudying.wordpress.com/

conclusion

Two artsy heads are better then one! I hope this DIY has given you some inspiration and ideas to create your own splatter and letters wall art!