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Tag: Do-It-Yourself

DIY: Glass Jar Pen Holder using a Pipe Clamp

Are you ready for a super easy project (from start to finish it took 5 minutes) that can be used all throughout the house and cost pennies to create?

I knew you would be!

My revamped central command center has put our family on the right path to an organized year (I’m crossing my fingers it’ll stay that way).  You’ve all loved it which I’m completely psyched about and today I’m back sharing the easy step-by-steo on how I created the new glass jar holders hanging on the wall.  It’s super simple, so let’s get started!

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

The one big annoyance with the old CCC was the lack of pen and pencil storage.  When in need of something to write with, we would always be hunting around the house and then the task or thought that needed to be remembered and written down was totally forgotten.


To start out, I grabbed a few glass jars from the refrig that were either empty or almost near empty.  I chose a jelly jar and a salsa jar, but really any glass jar will do!  (Unfortunately the diameter of the salsa jar was too big, so I substituted it with another glass jar).

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

The trick to these babies hanging from the wall is a $1 (I actually think it cost even less $$$) hose pipe clamp (usually found in the plumbing section). I chose a 3″ diameter, but there are larger and smaller styles.  The salsa jar could have worked if I chose a 4″+ size.

Once I had the jars cleaned out, they were ready to hang.  After some thought (and a few fails), I thought the easiest way to hang the hose pipe clamps from the wall was with a picture hanger.  This would allow for there to be only one hole in the wall (easy patch up job at a later date) and I could easily choose the right spot for install.

I wrapped the picture hook around the hose clamp and tightened it a bit so it was secure – super easy.  No tools needed other than a hammer.

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

The result once hung…

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

And the result with actual pens…

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

Super easy and unbelievably functional!  YES – huge score.

Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

To keep the glass jars even more secure, I added a tacky dot at the spot where the jar meets the wall.  Now it stays perfectly in place.


Simple DIY Glass Jar Pen Holder using a one dollar pipe clamp! Super easy to create & can be used anywhere around the house!

If you want to see more of my Family Central Command Center, click {here}

Chalkboard Family Central Command Center for the heart of the home including a monthly calendar, kids charts, inspirational quotes, and more.  Created by @Jenna_Burger via

It’s amazing what can be created with very little money and at the same time be super useful!  Now I’m on the hunt for other places around the house where I can stick a glass jar (or two) on the wall.

Do you collect or display mason jars?  Ever use this technique of using a hose pipe clamp?

Christmas Card Holder – A Lowes Creative Idea #LowesCreator

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend and stuffed your tummies full of turkey and mashed potatoes (with butter of course) – my personal favorite.  We traveled and enjoyed the Holiday very much, but the only bummer about not hosting was the lack of leftovers.  Anyway, let’s get on to something fun…

I’m super excited for today because I have so much to share with you!  I’ve been busy preparing for the Christmas season (yes, alreadyI know for some it’s early), but wanted to let Thanksgiving pass before bombarding you with all my Christmas inspiration.  Now that the Holiday season countdown has begun, brace yourself for a fun few weeks ahead with DIY creations and decorating ideas and tips!

Now that Thanksgiving is over, the first Christmas cards started trickling in over the weekend and since my December Lowe’s Challenge was to create something for the upcoming Holiday season, a new Christmas Card Holder seemed so apropos.

This card holder is one of my favorite projects I’ve ever made.  I got the idea when creating the family pallet photo holder a few weeks ago.  At the time, I mentioned how I felt the photo holder was so versatile and didn’t have to just hold family photos, but also christmas cards during the holidays, as well as invitations, announcements, etc anytime of year.  Thus my Christmas Card Holder was created…

I started off my hitting the lumber and paint aisles of my local Lowe’s and picked up a few must-have items:

  • 6′ long X 12″ wide wood board
  • clothes pins (30 – 35)
  • spray paint (I chose Valspar Glossy Cut Ruby)
  • stencil (purchased at AC Moore / a silhouette would work too)
  • white paint & stain (for the distressing)
  • paint for the letter (I chose metallic gold)

I began by…

1. Distressing the Wood

I was going for a worn look and wanted the wood to look old and distressed, so I banged-it-up a bit and layered it with a combo of paint and stain.

I began by using  nails, chain, and a hammer to bang up the surface to make it “used and abused”.  This is a great way to get out some of that pent-up aggressionhehe.

Once I achieved the desired “wear”, I added one coat of white paint.  I used a semi-gloss finish paint that I had laying around, but any kind will do.  Once dry, I sanded the wood thoroughly so some areas of the raw wood showed through and the surface was smooth.  I added a light coat of stain focusing more on the edges and ends. I applied it in small sections and quickly wiped it away so only a thin layered remained. Then I added another coat of white paint and sanded the surface once more.  This layering process resulted in just the right amount of wear.

Old to New in 30 minutes!

2. Stencil

I found a pretty stencil at AC Moore which I got for about $3+ (using a 50% off coupon). The letters are 3″ high and the words CHRISTMAS BLESSINGS fit just right on the 6′ board.

3. Paint

Once I outlined the stenciled letters with a pencil, I filled them in with a nice metallic gold craft paint. At first, I was going to use red or green for the letters, but I am so glad I chose gold – I’m loving the hue, especially with the other goldtones in my other holiday decor.

4. Adding the Clothespins

While the letters were drying, I spray painted the clothes pins with Valspar Glossy Cut Ruby.  Once they were ready, I attached them to the wood board with hot glue.  The spacing between each clothespin is about 5-6″ and there are 16 on each side.

 And it’s done…

I’ll admit, the Christmas cards are from last year – I haven’t received that many yet.  I always keep my cards and then use them the next year as tags for presents, so that’s what these will be used for in a few short weeks.

My new card holder is such a unique and fun addition to our Christmas decor. I have it situated right next to the Christmas tree so we can enjoy the treasures that are sent from family and friends – true Christmas Blessings!

If you’re looking for more ideas on how to display Christmas Cards, check out the roundup I did last year, by clicking on the link: 15 Creative Ways to Display Christmas Cards.

And I created another card holder last year if you want to see that as well.  I love this one too, but with all the cards we receive, it ended up not being large enough.  This new one though, has lots of room! Click to see: Holiday Card Holder.

I’m still working on putting the finishing touches on the rest of the house, and hope to share a Christmas Tour next week.  In the meantime, I’ll be showing you a few more DIY projects, as well as some easy and fun decorating ideas.

Have you decorated for the Holidays yet?  How to you display your Christmas cards?

Disclosure: I am part of the Lowe’s Creative Team and was provided with a Lowe’s gift card to purchase items for my project.  I was also compensated for my time to use the products.  No one told me what to create, what to buy, how to use the product, or what to write.  All opinions are 100% mine!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Serenity Now, Tatertots and Jello, Thrifty Decor Chick, Tip Junkie

Stick Star Door Decor

Last week I was vying to create something for my front door to transition the time between now and Christmas.

I’ve had my Fall wreath up for a while and I was ready for a lil’ change.  Then while driving over the weekend, I spotted a large wood star on an old, distressed barn.  It got me thinking and inspired my latest creation… a Stick Star which I’m now donning on my apple green front door.

In the front of my home is a 20’+ weeping willow tree and it’s beautiful in the summer, but this time of year with all the wind, the soft, thin branches often easily break off leaving lots of piles.  When cleaning up the yard on Sunday, we collected a bunch of branches and I knew they’d be perfect for the foundation of the stick star.

With my son helping out, we collected a good pile of branches and I started out making my new door decor. With my ruler in hand, I trimmed the soft branch to 30″ long.  And cut 49 more to have a total of 50.

The branches didn’t have to be exactly 30″, but close to it. After 50 were cut, then I broke them into 5 groups of 10. The 5 groups were used for each “leg” of the star.

This was a dry run and I was pretty happy with the direction it was looking.  Surprisingly it actually looked like a star, ha!

It was time to put it together!

I disassembled the star mock-up and separated each star “leg”.  Using floral wire (or any thin wire would do), I tied each end of the stick grouping so it was secure and “one”.

Once each “leg” was secure on each end, I put them together to create the star.  Once the star was layed out, I secured them together with more floral wire.

Since the floral wire is close to the color of the sticks, it really isn’t visible unless you are close to the arrangement.

And honestly within about 10 minutes, it was done.  It was really simple to create and something different than I’ve ever created before.  And I have to say, once the sticks are together in a bunch, they are really secure as “one”.

It still needed something though, so I trimmed a few branches and berries from my yard and tucked them within the branches.

This pretty and easy to create stick star can be used all year round and dressed up for any occasion.  It can be used on a door (like I used it for), indoors, or outdoors.

For my stick star door decor, I cut a 3″ strip of burlap, attached it with floral wire to the back of the branches and secured the top onto the head of the door with push pins.  There’s no damage to the door and it can easily be switched out.

And here is the result…

My stick star was super simple to create and didn’t cost a penny!  The perfect door decor for the coming Holidays or any time of year. I just love simple, just stylish creations!

DIY: Pallet Picture Holder

Just last week I finished up a really cute project for a client (which I was super close to keeping, but she was glad I didn’t) and I’m excited to share it with you today!

I’ve been making my way through the huge stash of pallets that I’ve had stored in the garage for quite some time.  Pallets are great for projects like this when you’re looking for a distressed, worn result and want to spend little (or no) money. Most pallets, a.k.a. shipping crates, have already been used-and-abused, so they are easy to dismantle and start upcycling.

When finishing up the final details on this clients family room, I showed her this picture of a similar pallet project and her response was YES! And off I was creating this Pallet Picture Holder

I started off by looking through my pallets (some were new and some had been picked through) to choose the 8 that looked best with each other.

Every pallet that I’ve taken apart (except one), has been constructed using twisted nails, and they are a BIG PAIN!  A typical crowbar or hammer won’t be helpful here and so I always use a reciprocating saw.  It’s a lifesaver!  Actually during this project, my original reciprocating saw broke – what a bummer.  Understandable though since I use it ALOT + it wasn’t top of the line (lesson learned: buy quality, buy once).

Anyway, once I took apart the pallet, I gathered the planks I needed (8 total which were about 40″ long) and then cut two pieces for the back that would hold the planks in position.

The overall size of this pallet picture holder is (about) 40″ x 28″.

Using finishing nails, I nailed two in each plank on each side into the back plank.

This was the result when done (from the back)…

I tell ya, this bad boy is heavy! I forgot to take a picture of the picture hanging wire I added to the back, but if you try something similar, make sure the hardware is for at least 100 lbs+.  The last thing you’d want is this falling down.  It doesn’t weigh 100 lbs, but it’s better to be safe than sorry!

This wall decor picture holder is going on a soon-to-be dark chocolate colored wall, so we (the client and I) decided that it’d look best to have the planks be lighter in color.  To do this, I added a quick sweep of paint to the surface.  The wood of the planks still show through underneath, giving it a rustic worn aesthetic.

This was the point where the pallet went from a blank canvas to a picture holder.  And the simple way that happened was by adding clothes pins.  Before that though, I gave them a little color.  I used a slightly darker color taupe – Annie Sloan French Linen to be exact.

Once the clothes pins were dry, they were ready to be placed onto the pallet.

I wanted to give the option to use 4×6 or 5×7 sized pictures, and with the size of the pallet, I’d determined that 3 rows or 5 across would be the magical number.

Using a tape measure and starting off in the center, I marked where each clothes pin would be placed.

Once the positioning was just right, I added hot glue to the backs of the clothes pins and stuck them in place.  They were good as gold!

The last step was personalizing it a bit and adding {our family}.  My client is a photographer and huge picture-person, so this totally fit the bill!

And then to finish it all, I gave it a quick sanding with my orbital sander to distress the words and edges.

And the Pallet Picture Holder was complete!

It’s nice “naked”, but pictures make it pretty!

I also had a thought that this would make a great Holiday Card Holder too!

What projects have you created using pallets?

Want to see more of my pallet creations, check them out:
How To Make a Pallet Bookshelf
Wall Decor in my Eclectic Family Gallery Wall
Travel Subway Art Sign
Monogrammed Chevron Pallet Tray
Succulent Arrangement in a Pallet Container

Garage Entry: Kids Art Display

Many of us have a door in our home that leads to the garage.  It’s a metal door and so it’s magnetized, leaving the perfect opportunity to jazz it up, bring color into the room, and display kids artwork, coupons, or much more.

I’m always looking for new nooks and crannies to organize and make life easier!  The entrance door to the garage is a perfect spot because it’s the way many of us enter and exit our homes.

As I mentioned (and gave you a sneak peak on) the other day when sharing my new foyer floor, our foyer space is not only the entrance area, but also the spot where the powder room, laundry, coat closet, and pantry are located.  Lots of functions in just one area and a place I spend alot of time in (mostly doing laundry!)

The door before was a blah white and with the old darker floor, it was a cavernous hallway.  Once deciding to paint the door, I chose the same color as my front door – Valspar Olive Tree WV34010.  I really love the cheerful apple green color and with all the other vibrant colors going on, adding another hue would be overload.

So here’s the before & after…

It’s amazing what a little paint can do! I started off by grabbing a small trial size container of Valspar paint at Lowe’s.  Since the door has no texture, I used a foam roller to apply the paint. It took quite a few coats – about 5 in all.

Once it was finally done, the space already looked so different, but it still needed more.

I had seen this cute idea a while back and thought it would be fun to try it out on this door.


I wanted to make “sections” for the kids artwork, plus a spot for pictures, coupons, and/or school announcements and invitations. Using a ruler and pencil, I outlined the “sections”.

And then painted over the lines with chalkpaint in old white.

Okay, so after it was done, I wasn’t loving the result.  I liked the look in the inspiration picture, but it wasn’t working with my white-against-green door. Onto idea #2.

Washi Tape!  You know how much I fell in love after my Washi Tape Initial creation.

Going over the lines of the paint, I added the washi tape and all was fixed and pretty!

Super cute, right?! And actually, you can still see some of the handpainted parts.

O, how we love thee Ben & Jerry’s – one of our Vermont favorites!

I also made these really cute decorative clothes pins with pretty scrap paper and mod podge – tutorial to come soon!

And one more time, the before & after…

O, do I love this new foyer space. If you haven’t checked out my new foyer floor using groutable luxury vinyl tile, here’s a picture + you can enter to win a $100 Lowe’s Gift Card!

Isn’t it truly incredible what a little paint can do?! Plus this is such a nice area to display some of the kids artwork, especially since the new refrigerator is stainless and non-magnetized.

Do you have a splash of color on your garage entry door?  Do you hang anything on it?

DIY: Installing Groutable Luxury Vinyl Tile

I hope you had a nice weekend and if you’re in Sandy’s path, stay safe! We’ll see what she brings our way later today and tomorrow.

In the meantime, I spent much of last week working on my next Lowe’s Creative Team challenge.  This month’s project was a “create anything” project and it was the perfect opportunity to redo the foyer floor.  This project has been one that I’ve wanted to tackle since moving into our home.  The difficulty always has been, how.

The entrance into our home is not only the foyer, but also the space that leads to the garage, our laundry room, pantry, coat closet, and powder room. As being the major entrance and exit path into the home + all these important spaces, I couldn’t grasp the idea of a long period of downtime for this area.  With 2 kids and a busy schedule, it was mere impossible to not make this an easy 1 day project.  So that’s where the how came in.  How could it happen?

Well about a year ago, I learned about Groutable Luxury Vinyl Tile.  This treasure has changed my life and saved a whole lotta headaches!  I shared my first LVT project earlier this year when I redid my parents floor, and since have used it in many other spots like my bathroom and the kids.

When the time came to tackle this project, it was really the only product that would provide the desired look of ceramic tile (you would never know it’s vinyl) , plus the quick turnaround of starting and finishing in ONE DAY.

What’s incredible about this tile is that once it’s finished, it looks and feels EXACTLY like ceramic tile.  You would never know it’s vinyl.  Believe me, I would not use something that has a fake look!

My existing floor was in really good condition. None of the tiles were cracked or chipped, and the real reason for the new floor was to aesthetically update the space.

If you plan on tackling this project, it’s important to evaluate the condition of your existing floor.  You may need to remove the existing floor or put down a leveler before installing the new floor.  Chat with your local Lowe’s customer service peeps.  My local guy was really helpful in directing me in the right direction.

To start off, I gathered my supplies for the tile installation part:

  • Triangle Ruler
  • X-acto Blade
  • Spacers ( I used 1/8 spacers)
  • A pencil
  • Snips
  • Cutting surface

There are various ways to start laying the tile.  Most commonly, experts say to start the first tile in the center of the room, but for me I wanted a whole tile when you walk into the front door, so I started at that point.  Since the room isn’t a perfect square, there really is no “center”.

Installing the tiles is really easy.  Similar to regular peel-and-stick tiles (even though these luxury vinyl tiles are much thicker and more durable), you do just that…

Peel the backing off the corner edge (not the entire tile).

Using spacers, lay down the tile starting at the corner edge.

Once the tile is positioned in place, peel off the remainder of the paper backing.

For my foyer floor, I layed as many whole tiles first, then went back and tackled all the tiles that needed to be cut afterwards.

For the tiles that need to be cut, here’s how I tackled them…

  1. Mark the cut with a pencil.
  2. Use a triangle to draw a line and mark the cut.
  3. Score the tile surface 2-3 times with an X-acto blade.
  4. Gently snap the tile where it was scored.

For difficult, none straight cuts, here’s how I tackled them…

  1. Sketch the design to be cut on the tile surface.
  2. Cut out the design using an X-acto blade.
  3. See if it fits and make needed adjustments.
  4. Stick it down. It doesn’t need to be perfect because once it’s grouted, many imperfections aren’t obvious.

I put together a quick video (it’s pretty amateur, so don’t poke fun please) of how I cut the pieces if you need more know-how!


Ok, so once the tiles are set, you can move RIGHT ON TO GROUTING.  That’s one of the beauties about groutable vinyl tile – there’s no downtime or waiting like with ceramic tile or natural stone.

To prep for grouting, it’s important to cover the areas where you don’t want grout.  Basically that’s the base mouldings around the room. For this, I find it easiest and best to apply painters tape around the perimeter of the room.

Onto my favorite part because at this point, you’re more than halfway done 🙂

For the grouting steps, I gathered my supplies of:

  • Bowl of water
  • Tile sponge (one side has a sponge, the other side is abrasive)
  • Tile float
  • Luxury Vinyl Tile Grout

The tiling process for vinyl tile is exactly the same as if it were ceramic, but the grout itself is different.  There is specially made pre-mixed grout specific for luxury vinyl tile. I used pre-mixed grout made by Precision Components which I found at Lowe’s in the same section as the groutable vinyl tiles.  This premixed sanded acrylic grout has “good flexural strength and adhesion” and is recommended to use over traditional cement grouts.

*Don’t use sanded grout that you mix yourself!

I started applying the grout by the stairs, so I knew I could back out of the space without stepping on what I just grouted. Even though it’s okay to walk on the tiles, the grout does need time to set and dry.  Once ready to apply the grout, I found it best to use a low angle and then a higher angle to wipe the excess away.  Once the joint is filled with grout, you want to wipe as much away as possible so not to have huge clumps of grout left on the tile – it just makes more work to clean up.

Once you’ve got a section of about 3′ x 3′ covered in grout, use a damp sponge to wipe away the grout.

You can easily notice the areas that have been grouted and the areas that haven’t (yet).

Once the grout is completed, I took the tape off.  It’s very important – and I’m only sharing this from a bad experience – to remove the tape when the grout is still somewhat wet otherwise once it’s hardened it’s near impossible (been there, done that).

Once the tape is off, the floor was done!  YES.  Major Project COMPLETE.  This is a huge checkmark off my DIY list. Here’s the result…

This is the hallway that leads to the garage with the doors to the washer/dryer on the left and the doors to the coat closet/pantry on the right.  I recently added a splash of color to this door and since it’s metal, it’s been a great place to display the kids artwork, coupons, etc.  I’ll share more on that in a future post.

Do you see a little something sitting at the front door?  That’s our new little 4 month old kitty.  She’s so cute and she loves the new floor – hehe!

Groutable Vinyl Tile PROS and CONS

Affordable – Luxury Vinyl Tile runs about $1.00 – $2.00 sq. ft. and compared to ceramic or natural stone, it is very inexpensive. The tiles which I purchased from Lowe’s were $1.18 and the premixed grout (for my 200 sq. ft. space, I used 2 tubs) cost $8/each.  Ceramic tile is available in a range of prices, but usually starts at $2 per sq. ft. , so the savings right there is 50%.

No Experience Required – And I’m completely being honest with you.  It’s easy and if you’ve never tiled before, you can do it!   I think a person with little experience can complete this project with ease.  Measuring and cutting is really the most difficult part of the project, so take your time and measure correctly!  Installing ceramic tile is not difficult, but it is tricky and experience is helpful.  Cutting ceramic tile can often be difficult and time consuming.  For prior ceramic tile projects, I’ve used tile snips, a tile cutter, and a wet saw.  A wet saw is the best for cutting ceramic tile, but it’s not easy – I’ve made alot of mistakes.  In my estimation, ceramic tile would take about double the time for installation compared to installing groutable vinyl tile.

Grout Right Away – Immediately after you install the groutable vinyl tiles, you can start the grouting process.  This makes the entire process possible to complete in one day.  With ceramic tile, after you finish laying it, you have to let the adhesive dry for 24 hours before grouting, which results in a 2+ day project, so essential ceramic tile takes double the time.

Availability and Selection – I purchased this groutable vinyl tile at Lowe’s, but other home improvement stores also offer similar products.  The selection is not as vast as ceramic tile (which is a con), but I was surprised by the wide range of colors and textures.

One important part to mention is that the surface must be level underneath.  If there is any flexibility in the subfloor, ie: gaps between the tiles and the subfloor, then the grout could crack and pull away from the tiles – this could happen with ceramic tile and LVT.  Overall though, it’s a great product with an amazing result.  As being a huge part of our home, this new floor sure brings a smile to my face!

Onto the giveaway, which is HUGE!

Now’s your chance to try this project in your home or something completely new and different.  Lowe’s is generously giving one winner a $100 Gift Card to their store – how cool?!

This is the first giveaway that I’m using rafflecopter, so please email me if you’re having trouble – (fingers crossed it works!).

Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I am part of the Lowe’s Creative Team and was provided with a Lowe’s gift card to purchase items for my project.  I was also compensated for my time to use the products.  No one told me what to create, what to buy, how to use the product, or what to write.  All opinions are 100% mine!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Serenity Now, Tatertots and Jello, Thrifty Decor Chick, Tip Junkie

DIY: 3 in 1 Kids Play Tent – A Lowe’s Creative Idea

I hope you’re having a great week and I want to thank all of you who left such kind comments about my daughter’s room makeover. I already shared one DIY creation in the room (the washi tape initial) and I’m back today to share another part of the space for my first challenge as a Lowe’s Creative Team Member (learn more about that here).

One of my favorite parts of the room was creating a play tent. My kids, as most kids do, love creating forts and tents with blankets and pillows. They love the idea of a hidden place to play, read books, and tell stories. When embarking on this makeover, I thought a play tent would be the perfect addition for a small space in the corner of her room.  I didn’t want to make the tent dominate the space, but I also didn’t want it to be too small because what fun is that?!

My solution for the dilemma… A 3-in-1 tent with long panels to allow room for 1 child or 5.

Kids love options – am I right?!  You never know if they want to play by themselves in a little cocoon or if they want all their friends around to have a tea party, play barbies, or battle like droids (parents of Star War fans know what I’m talking about).

When starting this project, I of course, headed to Lowe’s to gather my supplies.

  • 1 x 6 board
  • flexible wood board (I ended up using a 4″ wide x 8′ long) wood toe kick thanks to the suggestion by a Lowe’s sales person)
  • nails, screws, and anchors
  • fabric of your choice
  • ribbon of your choice
  • drapery panels

To start off, I headed to my favorite home improvement store, Lowe’s, to gather my supplies.

1. Once home, I cut the 1″ x 6″ board into a 38″ piece and a 26″ piece (Lowe’s will also cut your wood pieces to size).  The nailed the two ends together.

2. Using anchors and screws ( I always use the self-screwing kind), I attached to the two pieces of wood to the corner space.  Then for the curve, I cut the 4″ wide x 8′ long toe kick in half.  Using finishing nails, I attached the flexible curved wood to the end of each 1″ x 6″ to finish the canopy base.

The curved wood was a little flimsy (obviously so it can bend), so I secured it in the back by hot gluing on paint sticks.

Once the base was done, the fun part started… adding the fabric.

In knowing that I was going to use white long panels, I wanted to add a bit of whimsy and fun to the valance, so I used a fun Duralee Ikea fabric along with drop cloth and a white pom-pom trim.

3. I cut a piece of drop cloth that was slightly larger that the valance, then wrapped it around the front of the valance and secured it in the back with hot glue.  The curved front sits about 1/2″ from the ceiling so I was able to wrap the fabric at the top as well.

Time to jazz it up!

4. After the drop cloth was in place, I added the colorful Ikat fabric.  I determined that I wanted to have a 3″ band of the fabric and marked it along the valance.  Then once again, I hot glued on the fabric.  Easy-Peasy!

secured the fabric in the front…

secured the fabric on the back…

5. Then I added the cute white pom-pom trim. Of course with hot glue… again.

For the last part of this 3-in-1 Kids Play Tent, are the panels.

Ok, so let’s take a step back and let me explain how and why I created these panels. Because of the dynamic fuschia in the room, I thought white panels would be a quieter, fresh contrast.  I also wanted them to feel light and airy, so decided on a sheer panel with a small pattern (sheers from Target).  The overall length was only 84″ and needed to be much longer, so I added a solid white cotton fabric (used from Ikea window panels) to the bottom.  They look pretty for the tent, but could also be used as drapery panels at a later date – I love creating things that can be used now AND later.

6. With right sides together, I sewed the two short ends of the panels.  I wasn’t worried about the length because the longer the better – this is how the large canopy is created.

7. Once the two panels were created, I attached them with staples to the ceiling on the inside of the valance.  I also overlapped the two panels creating a natural opening / closure.

8. Lastly, I added metal tie backs that I purchased at Lowe’s.  These tiebacks are perfect to pull back the panels and have the space wide open – like a stage for the kids to put on a play.


And it’s done. An exciting 3-in-1 Kids Play Tent.

1 – Panels completely pulled back

2 – A cozy hidden nook with panels drawn

3 – Panels pulled out creating a larger “tent”

What a fun spot! Within minutes of having this space done, my kids had all their stuffed animals, blankets, and pillows tucked away inside.

Well my little girl is calling me to go back into her tent – I gotta go!

To see more on this space, click over to see the Big Girl Bedroom {Reveal}

You can find more DIY creations in the Lowe’s Creative Magazine or the Lowe’s Ipad App for FREE!

Disclosure: I am part of the Lowe’s Creative Team and was provided with a Lowe’s gift card to purchase items for my project.  I was also compensated for my time to use the products.  No one told me what to create, what to buy, how to use the product, or what to write.  All opinions are 100% mine!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Serenity Now, Tatertots and Jello, Thrifty Decor Chick, Tip Junkie

Colorful Washi Tape Initial

This is the first DIY project that I’m sharing having to do with my daughter’s room makeover.

The makeover has been takin’ a wee-bit longer than anticipated, not because of design challenges (thankfully) but because of her actually using the room (to sleep, to play, etc.), lol.  I tackle many of my projects while the kids are fast asleep and dreaming, so to actually work in her room has been challenging.

Thankfully I had some time this past weekend to get my hands dirty and this is a project that I just finished up and couldn’t wait to share… Washi Tape Initial Wall Decor.

Have you heard of washi tape (don’t be embarrassed to say no)? Until recently, I didn’t. I had seen this crafty goodness all over the web but didn’t actually know what it was or how to use it.  So what did I have to do? Buy it, of course!

Here’s the DL on washi tape  It’s basically pretty patterned tape.  Imagine typical tape with a pattern.  So it’s easy to add to anything to dress it up a bit -paper, a present, anything…

I recently was asked to check out the new online craft  store, Consumer Crafts.  While searching the site I found a huge selection of washi tape, plus this awesome large initial letter that I had been searching for, for a while.  Since not using washi tape before, I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into it, but in the end, I….  well you’ll just have to keep reading to see what I thought.

Once my package arrived (within a day or two – it was amazing how fast my supplies came), I laid everything out – Large initial letter, washi tape, and mod podge (I was initially thinking of using duct tape, but opted not to) – and got to work.

The most difficult part of using the Consumer Crafts website was stopping myself from filling my basket with $100s of dollars of stuff – they really have everything pertaining to crafting!  Once I narrowed down my list, and got started on my project, I was good as gold.  The colors in my daughters room are vibrant and strong, so the colors of the washi tapes were perfect.

I began at the edge of the “A” with a fun pink and white striped tape,  wrapping it around at the top and bottom.

I continued with different washi tape styles and added them edge to edge on the diagonal parts of the “A”, and then continued taping the inner and outer edges.

Lastly, I tackled the connector of the “A”.  Washi tape is fairly thin, so it’s easy to cut.  I lightly laid out the tape, then using an X-acto blade, trimmed the edge.

Within about 10-15 minutes, the washi tape was done. YAY!  To seal it all, I added 2 coats of Mod Podge in Matte – another goodie I ordered from Consumer Crafts.

A few hours later it was dry and DONE!

So my thoughts on washi tape is that it’s GREAT!  It’s just like tape with added color and cuteness. I might never use ordinary tape again.

Such a fun and easy project.

Here’s the result…

My daughter’s New Big Girl Bedroom

Big Girl Bedroom

Have you ever used washi tape before?  If so, what have you created with this crafty goodness?

Disclaimer: I was given a gift card to order product and test-out the online craft store, Consumer Crafts.  I was also compensated for my time to use the products.  No one told me what to create, what to buy, how to use the product, or what to write.  All opinions are 100% mine!

Ombre Halloween Pillow with RIT Dye

Halloween is just a few short weeks away and even though I’ve already decorated for Fall, I wanted to spice it up with some Halloween accents.  My favorite, inexpensive way to do that is with pillows.

I recently was lucky enough to get my hands on RIT Dye and thought an ombre design with a few spooky elements would fit the bill just perfectly.

Let me start by saying I have NEVER used liquid dye before and was a little apprehensive, but honestly it was really easy and fun to add a bit of color to a plain ole’ piece of fabric.

Here are all the colors I received for the project and since it was a Halloween pillow that I set out to create, I chose orange and black to work with.

I started off by making a simple white envelope pillow using a heavy cotton, which were scraps from another project.  If you want to save time when making something similar, you can also buy a plain white pillow, but make sure the insert can be removed so the cover can be dyed. (Need a tutorial for an envelope pillow?  Click here)

Once the pillow was complete, it was DYE TIME!

How you use the dye really depends on your fabric, plus how intense you want the color. For my project, I used a half bottle of dye + 2 gallons of warm tap water.  I first put the dye into an old bucket, then added the water + …

… 1 cup of salt.

The magical formula was now ready!

Because there are so many uses for this liquid dye, there are many different techniques and ways to dye materials, so my advice is to do a test for whatever you plan on creating before venturing into the actual project.  Never using dye before and wanting to create an ombre look (multiple, graduating depths of color) I had no idea if I was supposed to leave it in the dye for 5 seconds, 5 minutes, or 5 hours. So here’s my tester, and hopefully it’ll give you a guide when using the RIT products.

This swatch test really helped me to know how much I needed to dip the fabric for my real project.  Again, this was my fabric, and I’m sure if you try this out, your fabric type and weight will be different, so do a test before starting your actual project.

Here’s how the dipping process went.

It was fairly easy and while the darkest area of the pillow was soaking up the dye, I worked on a few other projects (like my Travel Subway Sign).  Once I was happy with the color, it was time to add the black. I didn’t really want an ombre look for the black and instead wanted it as intense and dark as possible, so I left this section of the pillow in the black dye for about 30 minutes.

When it was done, I hung it on my beautiful drying rack.  NOT!  The lawnmower handle was just the right size and only feet away from the dying area.  Be sure to put a rag underneath because it will stain (the mister was wondering what all the drips were on the garage floor when he came home that evening, hehe).

Once the pillow was good and dry (I waited till the next day about 24 hours later), I ironed it before starting the next step… Stenciling!

Using some fun, festive stencils that I got last year, I started adding them randomly on the orange ombre section of the pillow.  Using the bat and spider design, I dabbed black fabric paint onto the stencil.  Then on some of them I even added a little sparkly glitter.

These stencils have a sticky back so they stay nicely in place while painting. Then you can easily peel them off…

…and voila, it’s complete!

Have you ever used RIT liquid dye?  If so, what projects have you created?  I’ll admit, I was alittle weary to try it out, but I am thrilled that I did because it was really easy to use and I’m gushing over the result.  I’ve got alot more dying projects on my to-do list now!

Disclaimer: I was sent complimentary product from RIT dye and was compensated for my time to use the product, but no one told me what to create, how to use it, or what to write.  All opinions are 100% mine!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Serenity Now, Tatertots and Jello, Thrifty Decor Chick, Tip Junkie

DIY: Travel Subway Art Sign

I hope you had a great weekend and are enjoying the first officially days of Fall – the leaves are starting to change here, how about in your neck of the woods?

Like usual, I’ve been knee deep in creating new DIY projects and one in particular that I just finished up has been on my to-do list for a long time.  It took me a while to figure out how to make it, but thankfully I’m thrilled with the result, and the main reason is because it cost less than $10 to make – {complete score}!

I’ve gotta give credit for the technique on how to create this Subway Art to Cheri of I Am Momma – Hear Me Roar and Monica & Jess of East Coast Creative.  Both gals created completely different projects, yet both used the same idea of creating an image and having it printed as a blueprint (a thin black & white 24″ x 36″ paper) at Staples for less than $4 – Crazy awesome right?!

Here’s how I did it so you can create a similar travel sign or something completely different using the same cheap blueprint technique…

Using Picasa (my favorite free photo editing program), I started off with a clean white collage using the highest resolution possible and then cropped it to a 24″ x 36″ size so the text would print as clear as possible (at a large scale).   A while ago, I had wrote a list of vacation spots that the mister and I have traveled to together over the years and started adding them to the collage in a variety of different fonts.  (want to see a few of the fonts I used?  Check out my favorites!).

Once I created this collage using my computer, I pulled together the rest of my supplies:

  • (1) 24″ x 36″ Blueprint from Staples for – $3.60
  • (1) 24″ x 36″ 1/4″ piece of plywood – $4.00
  • Spray Glue – $2.50 +/-  (50% off with AC Moore coupon)
  • Mod Podge & Brush
  • Black craft paint & brush
  • 2 pieces of scrap wood or pallet boards

After my stop at Staples to get my inexpensive print, I then headed to Lowe’s to get a piece of plywood.  I found a 3′ x 3′ piece and then had them cut it down to my exact size of 2′ x 3′. Important note: The blueprint might not be exactly to size, so you may want to measure that first before cutting the plywood.  I didn’t, but the plywood was only about 1/16″ larger and I sanded the edge with my orbital hand sander, so it fit to size.

To adhere the blueprint to the plywood, I decided on the Aleene’s Tacky Spray which I purchased at AC Moore.  I was thrilled with their products that I tried out last year, and thankfully this spray glue worked like a charm!

To stick the blueprint to the plywood, I started at the top edge and sprayed a thin, even coat of glue, just like spray paint, from one side to the other side. Then lined up the corner of the blueprint to the corner of the plywood.

Once the top edge of the print was on, I continued to add the glue in small sections – again spraying from one side to the other.

Once the blueprint was fully on the plywood, I added a coat of Mod Podge to protect the paper surface.  I applied the MP from side to side just like the spray glue.

I didn’t forget the sides – it’s a must so the paper doesn’t rip or curl.

Almost done, but I have to admit there were some wrinkly spots once the Mod Podge dried…

Oops, I thought I adhered the blueprint so well.  No worries, I then got out my handy-dandy orbital sander and sanded the edges and top surface of the print.  I also added in a few “wear marks” to give the sign a distressed look.

Almost finished… to complete the look and to hide the plywood side, I used a black craft paint and painted the 4 edges of the sign.

The sign is complete…

…but wait, we’ve gotta mount & hang it!  To give the sign some depth and importance (plus it was slightly bowed because the plywood is thin), I added two vertical pallet pieces to the back.  Using short nails with a small head, I hammered them through the sign into the pallets. Then added picture hooks and wire.

Then it was really done!

So fun, So easy, and less than $10 – you can’t beat awesome, personalized wall decor like that!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, The Shabby Nest, Serenity Now, Tatertots and Jello, Thrifty Decor Chick, Tip Junkie