Sunday, May 19, 2013

Kid's Clothes Organizer for the Week

So while I love crafting to make cute things, I am also all about anything that will make my life easier. With kids, there are all of those little battles that take time and wear out your patience. When this idea came around, I thought it might help me both in saving time and sanity. I saw an idea where someone took a 4-peg  hanger that they put their kids outfits for the next few days. I loved the idea, but I wasn't a fan of the numbers and wanted to do the days of the week instead. I couldn't find a 5 peg hanger so I went with this 6 peg one and added wooden letters and the cute owl (the colors and owl go with my daughter's room theme). 
Here's the final result and the best part is my daughter is really excited about the idea. We mounted it at her height inside her closet so that she can not only pick out all 5 outfits for the week, but she can reach them herself to start getting dressed on her own (and maybe save more time!) Plus the added bonus of getting a better concept of time with the days of the week. I am loving this idea and if it works like I'm hoping, there will be another one of these for my son's room!

Friday, May 17, 2013

LOVE canvas with Hand and Foot prints

I literally cannot tell you how much I love this canvas project! All I did was order a canvas through Hobby Lobby and covered it in acrylic paint (I used Artist's Loft in Crimson). The hardest part was actually painting the canvas because achieving a real, true red takes A LOT of coats. I seriously used almost an entire 4 oz. tube of paint! After I was finally satisfied with the color, I used my 21 month old's feet to make the V and my 4 1/2 year old's hand for the O. Then I printed out the L and E using a typewriter font (which I enlarged to 500 pt font to get a 5 inch tall letter) and traced them, then filled in with paint. It should be noted that I used semi-gloss white house paint instead of acrylic because of the base color. When I first tested the acrylic, the first coat of white looked light pink after it dried and I obviously couldn't do multiple "coats" of hand or feet prints, so this was my solution. I love the result and it's such a personal, but clean and simple touch to add to the home. Plus this would make a great gift and you could do it on a smaller scale, but that would probably work best with infants. 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Old Wooden Sewing Box Revamp

Last summer I found this old wooden sewing box at a garage sale for $5 but one of the handles was broken so she gave it to me for $4. It never hurts to ask for a deal! I recently started needing some extra storage for my new craft room and remembered this piece. I'm using the colors yellow, orange and pink in my craft room and I figure this is the best room where I can most enjoy the bright pops of color. I chose Painters Choice spray paint in sun yellow and as you can see I got a little happy with painting it before I remembered the before picture!

The remaining handle I just pulled right off with a set of pliers and then bought a set of silver drawer handles that I picked up at IKEA for less than $2.

The drawers were pretty dingy inside and even though I'm probably just going to fill these up with craft odds and ends, it's always nice to have a surprising detail inside. 

It may have taken a little while for me to put it to use, but if that's one thing I've found, you've got to strike while the deal is available!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Another Free Printable

My husband is out of town so I'm drowning in kids and chaos but wanted to share another free printable I've found on paper coterie. This one is great for gifts or parties and comes in several color combinations! Check it out:

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Pirate Piggybank

I tweaked the original idea I found here and instead of the skull and cross bones I painted the ship. I love making personalized piggy banks as gifts and they are much easier than you may think. If you look for stamps or print out a small version of the preschool coloring pages that I have mentioned before, you really just have to color them in. No shading or complicated brush strokes required! I often use stickers or stencils for the lettering and you could even use rub-on letters and then seal them. This was a plain ceramic piggy bank from Michael's.
 If you look closely you can also see I personalized the ship by adding his initials to the flags and in the bottom left of the boat, I put his birth date. I love any extra details you can add, beyond just their name, to make the gift (for someone else or for you!) especially their own.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Family Tickets Shadowbox

I have always been a collector of odds and ends, especially when it come to memorabilia. This may be an inherent characteristic of all crafters, but I know I drive people (mostly my husband) when it comes to saving tickets. Ironically as part of my real job I work with people who struggle with hoarding tendencies and one of the things I am constantly encouraging is "Things are here to serve us, not the other way around". So if you want to keep these memories then don't shove them in a box and never look at them again, but figure out a way to incorporate them into your life. I loved the idea I saw here, but I wasn't a fan of the size or the color scheme. The great thing about this project is you can design the inner part of the frame any way you want. I wasn't able to find a tutorial online for how anyone made the slot in the top of the frame, so there may be an easier way, but this is what I chose.
First I started with a 10 x 10 shadowbox frame from IKEA for around $5 (LOVE me some IKEA!)
Then I took the glass and inner frame out and marked the length and width of the slot I wanted to cut in the top. 
Then we took a router with a round bit and cut into the wood. We didn't have any problems with splitting of the wood and it was fairly easy.
Then you have to repeat that process by doing it with the frame insert. Make sure the two line up well so the ticket stubs will go through without getting bent. I would suggest making the inner frame slot bigger than the outer frame slot so they don't have to line up perfectly. 
There was a touch of the finish curling up on the outer frame slot, but it isn't noticeable when hung on the wall.
Then I chose a paper scheme I liked with an accent paper to put behind my letters. I used metal brads with the decorative alphabet stamped on to spell out "Admit One". Many people are using these for movie tickets only, but I designed mine in mind for all family events like museums, sporting events and recitals. 
Then I put all of the pieces back together and here's the final result
I love the idea of having a reminder of all the fun outings we have gone on as a family out in the open, rather than shoved in the back of a closet. I also thought it would be fun to sit down with the kids as a family at the end of the year, open up the frame and talk about all of the fun events the ticket stubs represent. It's always fun to see how much kids remember from your family events and it would be an opportunity to review being appreciative of all of the experiences we were lucky enough to have throughout the year. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Old Microwave Cabinet turned Laundry Room Storage

After moving into our new house that is well over twice the size of our old house, we quickly realized we had lots of empty space to fill and very little budget to fill those rooms. I've been going particularly crazy with our laundry room that has no cabinets, so I decided to try to revamp a very old microwave cabinet, that had been previously relegated to our garage because it was so old and tacky. We pulled off the shelf that was on top of the cabinet and filled in the holes with wood putty. (We did this awhile back so I don't have a before picture but it looked like this one. I can't imagine paying that much!) 
So I pulled off the handles, lightly sanded the rough parts and gave it a good scrub
I chose Rustoleum's Painter's Choice spray paint in spa blue because my husband isn't nearly as big of a fan as I am of bright colors. The laundry room seems like a great place of a pop of happy blue since I'm usually not super happy to be there.
I wanted to spend as little as possible, especially considering very few people are going to actually see this piece, so I used a hammered metal finish spray paint that I already had. The effect is very nice if you haven't used this paint before and you can only tell it isn't metal by touch. 
Since there were lots of imperfections in this cabinet due to lots of wear, I decided to do a distressed finish. Simply take a medium grain sandpaper and rub lightly around the edges and on the surface. If you want a more subtle distressed look you may want to use a fine grain. More pressure = more paint removed.
I love the look of distressed furniture pieces but I've never done one myself. It's a fabulous technique for a piece that's in a little rough shape like this was because it makes the flaws look purposeful. 
The knobs look more black in the pictures but have a mix of antiqued black metal with bronze undertones which makes the metal effect so realistic
I love the fact that I have some storage and organization to my laundry room and all it cost was a can of spray paint! I will definitely be looking more closely at garage sales this summer for other ways to upgrade outdated furniture to fill the rest of our rooms :)