Thursday, April 25, 2013

Branch chandelier... How-to!

Hi everyone! I am so excited to write this post as I'm FINALLY going to post about a project I've had in the back of my mind for MONTHS. This was probably the easiest/cheapest project I've done so far, but turned out to be one of my favorite. Many of you have probably seen a deer antler chandelier or one made of coral (I've seen AND drooled over both). Well I love the look of those chandeliers but wanted to create something that 1) I could ACTUALLY make and 2) wouldn't take years of collecting deer antlers to make. SO, in this post I'll tell you how I made my VERY own branch chandelier. And yes, I'm in love with it!

Completed branch chandelier

1. Sticks (thankfully my neighbors cut down some trees so I just snipped about 50 branches from their tree)
2. White stray paint (silver or gold)
3. Molding wire
4. Hot glue gun

I'm a thrifter...whether in Target or a Goodwill, I'm always looking at how I can take something and turn it into something else (yes I recognize it's a personal problem). While at a local thrift store I found this little chandelier for $10 and couldnt pass it up. I snatched it up before I even had the idea of creating a chadelier, then let me little brain do all the work.

Local thrift shop find= $10

Like I said earlier, my neighbors had recently cut down a few trees so I just cut a bunch of branches from their trees. The first step is to start placing all of the branches starting from the center out and attaching to the chandelier using molding wire.

Once you have wired a good number of branches into the chandelier (like pictured above), start hot gluing the end of the branches into the chandelier. Also, as a helpful hint, I think its easier to see the progress once you have spray painted the chandelier. So I spray painted the newly added branches every so often.

Continue wedging/gluing/shaping up the chandelier until you have the outcome that you want.

This could also be either dusted with gold/silver spray paint to give it a sheen or painted solid silver/gold...both would also look awesome.

AND here is my final project. I LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! It's perfect for a breakfast nook, an office, bedroom or dining room.


The bottom
This chandelier required 40W bulbs found at Home Depot

Happy DIYing everyone!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Wood crate bookshelf...How to!

I have been searching for a corner bookcase for a few months now. With no luck, I decided to make something myself. I've always loved the look of old wooden crates, but after seeing the price of just one (around $50-$80), I thought I would try making new wooden crates look old by staining. While it's no perfect match, I still think the bookcase turned out perfectly. Here's what you need:

Materials (from Michaels and Home Depot):
  1. Qty. 20 screws and nuts (1/4"-20 x3/4")
  2. Qty. 20 flat washers (1/4")
  3. 4 wheels --Industrial wheels would look awesome, but mine were from Home Depot. Make sure two are lockable.
  4. 5 Wood crates (from Michaels...use your 50% off coupon)
  5. Wood stain
  6. Hand sander
I started by sanding each of the wood crates (inside and out).

Next, I stained each of them. In an earlier post I mentioned that the longer the stain stays on the wood, the darker it is. These crates SOAKED up the stain so I literally was brushing the stain on and within seconds rubbing the remainder of the stain off with a rag. Let each crate dry for about 4 hours.

The next step is the add the wheels to the bottom crate. Position the two lockable wheels to the back. drill a hole where the screws will be placed and then screw in all of the wheels.

Here is what the bottom crate looks like with all of the wheels in place.

Now the work is over. I literally just stacked the other crates on top of each other, but for more protection, you could screw each of the crates together! The hardest part of the entire project was finding cute decorative items to fill up the bookcase, besides books (because who has enough books to fill up 5 levels!!) I found some of my decorative items at Target (which has AWESOME items right now)...and others at local antique shops.

Here's my final project...for now atleast! I'm sure I'll continue to rearrange the items and add and remove some things. The best part...the total cost was right at $40 (using the 50% coupon at Michael's REALLY helps).

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Rope covered Monogram...How-to!

Yes, I'm ACTUALLY going to post about this..sounds simple enough...and it is! But here is what you will need to create your own shabby/chic monogram.

List of materials from Michael's craft store:
  • Wood monogram (mine is 12 inches tall)
  • String/rope
  • Hot glue gun
  • Burlap or other fabric for the flowers
  • Picture frame brackets (in case you want to hang)

Start by wrapping the rope around the top of the letter in a vertical matter. On any of the corners, leave spaces so that the majority of what you wrap is either vertical or horizontal, you will fill in the gaps with spare robe after wrapping it. As a general rule, only glue where you feel like it might slip if you don't.

Now you will begin to fill in the gaps. Leave a line of hot glue and fill with lines of rope, one at a time.

Glue piece by piece until the entire thing is covered. No worries if there are a few places that you don't LOVE, that's what the flowers are for.

Now, you will begin creating the bow that the monogram will hang from. Start by cutting out a strip of burlap ribbon about 10 inches long. Fold both of the sides in so that they are overlapping over eachother.  See picture for one side folded in. Fold the right side on top of the left.

Next, you want to fold the ribbon in half and staple the folded side to the back of the monogram. See picture for visual. 

To make the bow part, overlap three continuous layers of ribbon on top of eachother.  (You will be have three layers of about 10 inches of ribbon within each layer. Pinch the layers in the middle and pull the ends of the bow out, like pictured.

Then you will lay the bow down on the folded ribbon stapled to the monogram like so. Wrap the folded piece of burlap on top of the bow and tie a small piece of brown ribbon to cinch the bow See picture!

Cut the extra of the folded ribbon off of the back after cinching the bow with the piece of hemp string.

Here is where we are so far:

If you want to add a decorative fabric flower to the's how! Cut a strip of fabric about 2 inched wide and 8 inches long. Sew my hand weaving in and out of the right side of the fabric strip (see picture). Cinch the fabric so it puckers. Once you have created a full circle, cut the remainder of the fabric.

Another way to create a flower is to cut a complete circle out of the fabric. Mine was 4 inched in diameter. Hand sew weaving in and out all along the border of the fabric and cinch until you have created a full puckered flower. 

Here is the final product. If you add a small loop to the back you can hang this on your front door or on your wall. This could also be done to a moss letter!

Pillow with cording... How-to!

Have you ever had a problem finding the perfect pillows for your couch, room, etc?! Story of my life! In this post, I'll show you how to make your own pillows with cording.

  • Fabric
  • Pins and pin cushion
  • Sewing machine (You can find good ones at Walmart for $100. Saving money in the long run!)
  • Zipper foot attachment for sewing machine
  • Piping from craft store (Hobby Lobby). For a 24 inch pillow I got 3 yards.
  • Measuring stick

Start by cutting out a perfect square for your pillows. If you are making 24x24 pillows, cut one inch less on each side (23x23).

Next cut 1.5 inch wide stripes of fabric that equals the circumference of your pillow (this is for the cording). Mine was roughly 100 inches long.

Begin by pinning the piping inside the stripes like pictured. Do this for all 3 yards of the fabric.

You then will use the zipper foot attachment on the sewing machine to sew right up against the piping for a tight stitch. Do not worry about being exactly because once sewn to the pillow you can't see mistakes (lifeeeeeee savvveeeerrrrr!)

Now you will pin the piping to the cut out squares. If there is a certain way the pillow sits up, start at what will be the bottom left with the piping. Place the fabric square's printed side facing each other inwardly, and the piping on the inside, with the seam running along the edge of the squares. See picture.

On the corners, cut the piping halfway through (up until the seam) so it can turn easier. Pin the piping in on every side.

When you get to the bottom of the pillow on the side you started, pin in the last corner then just pin the piping to one side of the fabric to leave a hole where you will stuff the pillow inside and hand sow the rest. See picture for visual.

Now begin sewing! Use that zipper foot attachment again to sew right on the edge of where the piping is.


Once all the way around the pillow, don't forget to JUST sew down the cording to one side of the bottom where you will be stuffing the pillow. Your time with the sewing machine is done! Turn the pillow inside out! Stuff your insert into the pillow and begin hand sewing the open side. I used a light color and made small stitches so it was not noticeable!

Here are my finished products so far!

Wood headboard... How to!

My next big project has been our guest bedroom. For months I've been searching for a barn wood headboard that wasn't too expensive but still unique. NO LUCK! So I made one. With the help from my hubs, we made a headboard for only $80!

Here's what you need:
  • Qty. 4 of 1x4x10ft white pine wood (have Home Depot cut it in half for 8 pieces)
  • Qty. 1 of 2x4x10ft (cut in half too!) -wood stain (I used a dark stain)
  • Package of screws 2 inches long
  • Hand sander (or sand paper if you don't have a hand sander... But a hand sander saves so much time!)
  • Outdoor lamp for headboard (optional)
  • 2 small L-brackets for mounting the headboard
Start by standing the top surface of each piece of wood.

Once sanded and the dust is brushed off, build the headboard structure. We laid down a tarp and faced the sanded pieces face down. Next we added the legs...make sure that the bottom of the legs are the same length from the bottom of the headboard for both legs.

After drilling each hole through the legs and into the headboard, we screwed in the 2 inch screws.

Next, you stain the boards. Apply the stain with a paint brush and let sit for 10 seconds then wipe of with a rag. The longer you let it sit on the wood, the darker the stain.

Let the entire headboard dry for a few hours outside to lose the stain smell.

There is an optional part to this. I wanted a light connected to my headboard. My original plan was to add two small lights, one to each side. Once I found the light though, I thought one in the center would look best. Without getting too technical, we bought the light, bulb and dimmer from Home Depot. A few other accessories to make the light compatible to plug into the wall was necessary (ask anyone at Home Depot... They can help!)

One last thing, use very small L-brackets to attach the headboard to the wall.

Here is the finished product! Ekkkkkk!!!