Our Crafts Category

May. 2011 26

Painted Shoes

I absolutely love painted shoes. You can find them all over the internet and they are just amazing. So on a recent business trip, I decided to fill some of my boring hotel time with a craft project. I went to Walmart and bought a pair of $10 heels on clearance, some sand paper, paint, and a $2 set of paint brushes. I spent a grand total of $20 on this project (minus the clear spray I used to seal it).

The $10 Shoes

Everything I used, except the gloss spray

So here’s what I did:

1. Sand the shoe down. The paint won’t adhere to the shinny surface, so you need to get all that off. I also hear using acetone helps, but I didn’t have any.

2. Tape off the bottom of the shoe

3. Paint your base coat, I used solid white and needed 2 coats.

4. Once your base coat is dry, draw on your design lightly with pencil.

5. Finish painting

6. Seal with 3 coats of shinny clear gloss spray paint.


May. 2011 21

Hanging Herb Garden

So, I had set this to autopost for Wednesday (the 18th), but didn’t do it right…so it’s a little late, but no worries.

My middle sister Angela lives in Raleigh. I like to call her the hippie-engineer of the family because she’s an engineer who plays in the dirt/woods/streams for a living.  :)   So it was no surprise to me when she told me about her new herb garden she made over the weekend. Being as how bunnies and squirrels just love fresh herbs, she took a very creative approach and was nice enough to share. Here’s her tutorial:

Okay so here are the basic steps:

Goal: make a bunny/squirrel proof herb garden for someone who has no sunny kitchen windows
1. Take coffee cans (odd number cause I’m anal about things looking good…eyes like odd numbers)
2. Drill holes in them. I took a hammer and a small screw driver to tap the holes into the bottom of the can. The sides of the can were trickier because you don’t want to dent in the cans. An exacto knife  ended up working best
3. Tie the string to the holes…… I used cotton string because it was cheapest, but a coir string, fishing line, or something else would work too. leave a lot of extra length on the string so you can make adjustments to the height of hanging it.
4. Fill the can with potting soil.
5. Add seeds or seedlings to the cans. Three of mine have seedlings and the other two I used seeds…it was just what was available at the nursery
6. Hang them up!  My porch already had a few nails in the over hang to hang them from, but you can tap in a few or use a plant hook hanger.
Total cost = string $2, seeds $2, seedlings $6, potting soil $3….with enough soil left over to fill 3 8″ pots for my flowers.
It’s great cause my porch smells absolutely amazing, and I hear that rosemary is a natural mosquito repellent. Living in the south, that is a big plus!
I’ve seen another thing similar done on apartment therapy with old tea cans where they made a garden of succulent for indoor spaces….it wasn’t hanging though :)
Apr. 2011 6

The Drip Painting

So, as I’ve mentioned before, my mom is a home stager. And a good one at that!

Recently, she staged a beautiful house in DC. The owners are art collectors and had a custom built-in-bookshelf made to surround a prized piece of art. But when the owners moved out they took the art with them, leaving a big hole in the middle of the wall. So mom, being the  smarty she is decided “why not make our own!” And so between my mom (the brains), my dad (the builder), and myself (the artist) we came up with this painting. I did it entirely by dripping paint off a stir stick. It’s pseudo-Jackson Pollock, pseudo-art school study, and totally works with the black, white and red accents in the room.

Not bad for a couple bucks and an hours worth of dripping paint.

***UPDATE! It’s listed, here’s the tour:  http://www.homevisit.com/tour/mrisTour.asp?id=49703&ver

Dec. 2010 15

Last Minute Holiday Decor

Are you as bad at being on top of decorating for the season as I am? Well if so, it’s your lucky day! Today, we have a double holiday post!! So exciting. So to start off we have a simple ruffled tree skirt. And to follow we have a guest post from the very talented Sandy of Common Wealth Staging on how to make Rustic Christmas tree (insert to the left is a close up).

Lets start with the tree skirt. I have a small tree; it’s only 4.5′. This will still work for a larger tree, but you may find you want a wider ruffle or something to make up for the size differential. Also, I made this pretty fast. It took me maybe an evening after work. I think it would have been even faster but the fabric I used for the backing was terrible and shifted a lot !

What you’ll need

-2.5 yards Red fabric (about 44″ wide)

-1/2 yard green fabric

Since my pictures turned out less than stellar, I’ve done some illustrations of the step.

1. Cut 2 squares out of your red fabric 44″x44″ (so you use the whole width of your fabric)

2. Fold into quarters

3. Using a ruler, measure a 22″ arch starting from the corner, so you’ll end up with a quarter circle

4. Cut off excess

5. Measure a 2″ arch the same way as step 3, cut off excess

6. Making the ruffle:

6A. Cut 4 strips 4″ wide. Use the whole width of the fabric

6B. Sew strips together, press open seams

6C. Fold in half, wrong sides together, press

6D. You can either ruffle the length or pleat it. I pleated it because it was much faster, and it lays flat that way

6E. Either option you choose (ruffle or pleating) should bring your length down by about half. You are going to have more than enough to go around.

7. Pin ruffle strip to right side of one of your red circles

8. Pin the other red circle to the right side of your circle/ruffle combo. You should have a sandwich: red, green, red.

9. Pin along the inner edge as well. Sew outer edge and inner edge at 1/2″ seam allowance. Leave the long straight edges open.

10. Turn right side out. Press.

11. Tuck the raw edges in on each of the straight sides.

12. Top stitch around everything (long edges, outer edge, inner edger)

All done, so pretty!

And now for the guest post! Today’s post comes from the lovely and talented Sandy of Common Wealth Staging. She has a keen eye for design and quick do-it-yourself projects that lends itself perfectly to her staging and redesign business. (She’s also my mom  :)    )

Rustic Christmas “Trees”

Here’s how they were created-
First– put your coat on!  One of the best parts of this project is a hike in the woods.  Fortunately, we have parkland behind our house and a ready supply of branches.  There were also piles of cuttings dragged through to the woods by neighbors who pruned their trees.  So, I selectively dragged some of them back out.
Select some willowy branches for filler and some stronger branches to hold ornaments. I found some that still had a few leaves on them. They were fresh cuttings, therefore stronger than brittle dried wood.
Next, fill a planter with sand, I used one 50 pound bag.  Here’s the trick- in the center insert a length of PVC pipe to corral your branches and help keep them upright.  I bought a piece with a 4″ diameter opening in the center for $2.00 at the hardware store.  Then insert the branches, cutting to a pleasing length, filling in with the more willowy branches as desired. I covered the sand with leftover burlap and a few lengths of grapevine.  You could also cover the sand with pinecones.
Finally decorate.  Glass ornaments are really nice and an uplight at the base of your “tree” will provide dramatic lighting at night.  During the day sunlight lights them up nicely.