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Monday
Jul162012

DIY Project: Ombré Tablecloth & A Spray Bottle Dye Technique

Happy Monday blog friends! How was your weekend? I'm kicking this Monday off with a DIY project. Last week I shared my summer outdoor entertaining tips which featured this ombré tablecloth:

I created the ombré effect myself on canvas dropcloth purchased from Home Depot. Dropcloth comes in a variety of sizes (this one was 5'x5'), all readily available at local home improvement or paint stores. It is inexpensive and very durable, ideal for outdoor conditions.

You can achieve the ombré effect in various ways, usually it involves dipping fabric into a bucket of dye. I wanted to eliminate the bucket and come up with something easier. I created this blue tablecloth with nothing more than a spray bottle, water and some fabric dye. I saw results immediately and had a lot of control over how light or dark the pigment would turn out. The dyeing process is quick and then you just need to wait for the tablecloth to dry in the sun.

Want to see all the steps in perfecting this ombré technique? Check out the full article and all the pictures on Houzz:

Make a Fashion-Forward Ombré Tablecloth

The dropcloth I purchased was lined with waterproof plastic on the back. I thought this built-in feature would be handy if the dropcloth were used as an outdoor area rug. Keep it poolside, a place for everyone to relax and grab refreshments between dips in the swimming pool. 

What DIY creations have you been working on this summer? How have you implemented them into your summer lifestyle? My family eats outside a lot so these tablecloths are perfect for setting up a quick and casual dinner.

Have a great week!

Wednesday
Jul042012

DIY Project: Two-Tone Gilded Air Plant Terrarium

For those readers in the United States, happy Independence Day! Do you have big plans for the holiday? Are you having a party? Barbecuing? Watching fireworks? I have work today so the festivities will be limited but we have a great view of a couple different firework shows from our deck so that is how I will spend my evening. Whatever your plans, be safe and have fun!

Today I wanted to share a DIY project that I put together for Houzz. I acquired this little air plant awhile ago and have been meaning to create an official home for it. Air plants live off of the air (hence the name) so they have the ability to grow on any surface. I wanted to put together something unique that would become a display piece in our home. I actually came up with something quite simple and minimal in design but I gave it a little color boost with some gold spray paint. Here is the two-tone gilded terrarium I made:

Instead of rocks, I used a bag of white navy beans that you can get for cheap at the grocery store. All the materials are easy to find and inexpensive and some you might have lying around your home already.

Do you want to DIY this gold terrarium yourself? Check out the article on Houzz to see the full tutorial and materials list:

Bowl Over Guests With a DIY Air Plant Terrarium 

Originally we were displaying this guy on our coffee table, as shown in the pictures, but Scout started getting too interested in the beans. She kept sneaking them and I'd find navy beans scattered in the living room. We have it up higher now, near a window so the plant can get plenty of light.

I thought succulents were easy to care for but air plants are even better for those who are plant-challenged...aka people like me. I spritz mine with a little spray bottle occasionally and every once in awhile I submerge it in a cup of water. But it can survive without water for a long time. This might be my ideal plant. Have you tried caring for air plants? How do you care for yours?

Happy 4th of July! 

Thursday
Jun142012

Simple & Rustic Wood Block Candelabra DIY

Today I am excited to share my own take on the classic candelabra in this DIY project that I created specially for Houzz. I transformed a basic wood block from Home Depot into a rich and rustic base that is a display for thin taper candles. I wanted the materiality to be the prominent feature and have the simple, clean lines of the design take a back seat to the striking wood grain which I enhanced with a walnut stain. I love minimalist designs and wanted this candelabra to reflect that. But there is such a beauty in warm hues and I thought the rustic wood adds that aesthetic to this project quite perfectly.

It was such a journey trying to find these long, thin tapers. Online is an easy resource but I was trying to source them locally. I ran around to a handful of different shops but I kept coming up short. Finally I had success at a party supply store called Party City. The candles were actually longer even and I had to chop them down. They were worth the frenzied search though. They look great paired with this walnut-stained block.

See how to make this project on Houzz:

This Modern DIY Candelabra Is the Envy of the Block

I plan to share some family dinners gathered around this candelabra eating out on our deck. A meal by candlelight under a starry sky sounds like a great way to spend summer evenings, don't you think? What are some of the DIYs you have planned for the summer? 

Thursday
Jun072012

Houzz Feature: Vintage Tart Tin Hanging Lamp DIY

Happy Thursday readers! So today I have another DIY to share. I created this for Houzz and it got featured on the homepage yesterday. This is the first lighting project I have ever attempted so I am proud of my efforts into something new. No scary wiring is involved though (this DIY is intended for anyone to do) and you can pick up a cord and socket kit from Home Depot. This project also repurposes vintage tart tins, infusing new life into something old and discarded. I bought a bunch of tart tins at an antique store awhile ago (they were very inexpensive) and have been waiting for an idea to present itself.

These are mini lamps actually, tart tins are quite small, but you could replicate this project with pie or cake pans for something a bit larger. These are the perfect size to read by at night, they put out just enough light. The colorful cords are just plain cords wrapped in electrical tape. I never thought much about electrical tape before but a trip to the hardware store proved to me that it is actually quite handy. Not only does it come in a bunch of bright colors but I could imagine using it for packaging projects as well.

See how to make your own mini lamp on Houzz:

Whip Up a Lighting Fixture From a Tart Tin 

Have you attempted any lighting projects yourself? Have you DIY-ed any lamps out of old materials like in this project? How did it go?

Wednesday
May302012

Houzz Feature: Simple Screenprint Cloud Pillows

Hi readers! How has your week been going so far? Today I want to share a DIY that involves one of my favorite crafting techniques. I have heard it called 'Poor Man's Screenprinting' before and I love that title because it really is the cheapest, easiest way to pull off the screenprinting technique. Real printing is an elaborate and beautiful process (I wrote about one of my favorite print shops Sass & Peril last year...be sure to check out all of Shannon's beautiful work) and the real thing definitely puts this technique to shame. But this way does help get crisp, clean paint lines when you are painting on fabric.

I created this DIY for Houzz and demonstrated a step-by-step tutorial on making your own cloud pillow using this screenprinting process.

With just a few materials you can make this design or something similar in a few hours on a weekend or in the evening after work. To see what you need to make this DIY and to follow along with all the steps, visit the article I wrote on Houzz: Punch Up a Pillow With an Easy Stenciling Project.

Do you recognize that calligraphy? It's my new favorite Jacques and Gilles which I've mentioned a few times on here now. Part of the script was done using the screenprinting technique but I also had to freehand some of it (where the lines get really skinny). 

Have you ever tried this craft technique yourself? What did you make and how did it turn out? I have used it multiple times and have been very happy with the results. 

Happy Wednesday everyone!