"Braided" Wreath DIY

Monday, November 30, 2020

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I've been thinking a lot recently about how this Christmas is different, and how I can use that to create something special. One of the methods I would like to try is really embracing the theme of HOME, in all of it's cozy, cuddly glory. 

There was one specific piece of decor that embedded this idea for me, and that was this gorgeous wreath from Etsy shop King and Eye Crochet. I wanted my own simpler and smaller version for inside my home. So I made this cozy little wreath out of a surprising supply that I bet you already have in your home: cotton balls!




Supplies:
Cotton Balls
Cardboard
Ribbon
White Paint
Exacto knife
Scissors
Clear Tape

 
Step one: Cut out your wreath.
On a piece of corrugated cardboard, draw a bigger outer circle and a smaller inner circle. I traced a dinner plate for my outer circle and a small bowl for my inner circle. Cut it out with an Exacto knife. In the end, the edges will be hidden, so don't stress too much about keeping your cuts smooth.




Step two: Paint your cardboard.
I knew that the cotton balls wouldn't cover the cardboard perfectly, so I gave the front of my cardboard a quick coat of white paint. I almost wish I had gone a shade darker, though, because it was hard to see the details when there was nothing to contrast with in the background. I would like to see how it looks with a beige!




Step three: Pull apart your cotton balls.
I had a little helper for this step! I thought that cotton balls were squished bits of stuffing, but it turns out they're more like a roll of fluffy cotton (at least the ones that I had were.) When I unrolled them, they were about 6 inches long, so I cut them in half so they were about 3 inches. To completely cover my wreath I used about a third of the bag.




Step four: Create your "braid."
This "braid" was created by layering the strips on top of each other at an angle, then taping down both ends. I  would lay one strip down at an angle, tape the end, then wrap it around and tape it to the back. Then I would lay another stip perpendicular to the first, covering up the tape from the first strip, and tape it down. Repeat the process until you've covered the whole wreath.

Step five: Perfect and add your ribbon.
Before I put away all of my supplies I went through and covered any tape you could see or added cotton where I thought it was looking a bit flat. Then I just wrapped the ribbon through the hole and hung it. So simple.





In the mood for something more complicated? Check out my "Hogwarts Letter" wreath!

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Thanksgiving Printable Conversation Starters

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

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We all have felt the effects of this year, and as we get closer to the holidays I don't see it getting any easier. But that doesn't mean we can't enjoy the holidays... we just have to think a little outside of the box. This year I'm adding conversation starters to my printable Thanksgiving kit. In the spirit of thinking outside of the box, I tried to make sure the questions I supplied in this printable were unique. Maybe even a little weird. But hopefully, they will help you learn things about your family that you never really needed to know... like what kind of food they think should be put in Jello.



This .pdf contains three different types of cards. One page is weird questions, one page has multiple cards that ask "What are you thankful for today?" and the third page has blank cards. You can use these blank cards to fill in your own questions, or they could also be used as place cards!



These conversation starters might complete the set that I've been working on for a few years. I have linked to the downloads for all three .pdfs in the kit below!


Download the Conversation Starters printable here.



You can download the Thankful Tags here.



You can download invites, place setting wreaths, and a gratitude journal here.

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Recycled Fall Puzzle

Thursday, November 19, 2020

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I enjoyed the challenge of making my last geometric puzzle so much that I just had to design another. Maybe this blog will just be all DIY puzzles all the time. Hello, Wild Puzzles.

This beautiful puzzle is fall inspired, and it's kinda tricky to put together. But it's not impossible, which is the level of difficulty I like for my puzzles. Not impossible. 




Supplies:

Cardboard

Ruler

Exacto Knife

Paint

Template (not required)



The first thing I did was measure out my puzzle. My original template was 5"x7", but I wanted it to be a bit bigger so I cut my cardboard to be 7.5"x10.5". After that, I drew a line down the center (at 3.75"), and then drew a 1.5" grid. The grid isn't necessary but it helps me line up the ruler to make drawing easier. All of this can be skipped if you decide to use the template.


After I drew all of my lines and had the look I was going for I label my pieces by the colors I wanted to paint them (DT for dark teal, etc.) and used my Exacto to cut it out.



Next step was paint! I made my browns by mixing orange, a bit of green, and a bit of red. The teals were made with blue, green, and a bit of red to tone it down. It can take a lot of mixing to get the color just right, and if that sounds daunting you can always go to a craft store and buy the exact colors you need!


Let your pieces dry and you have a puzzle!



I am kind of in love with the texture using corrugated cardboard gives these puzzles. If you prefer a sleeker look try using foam core board. 



Here is a template if you want to attempt making this puzzle on your own. Or, you can skip all of the complicated steps and just cut up the template to be your puzzle! 

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Mood Boards: Houses I Will Never Own vol. 2

Monday, November 9, 2020

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You know I'm never going to stop looking and dreaming about how I would decorate houses I'll never own. Like last time, these mood boards are full of inspiration for dream spaces that I would love to live in. But if I can't,  maybe you will be able to use the ideas for your own spaces!

Our first building is a generic lodge out in the woods. With floor to ceiling windows and wood EVERYWHERE it's easy for a space like this to look too busy. So I was thinking maybe I would dial it back a bit and go for a more minimalistic look. Masculine touches solidify the "lodge" feel while adding hints of industrial elements bring it to a more accessible level for the average family. I also just wanted an excuse to share these beautiful chandeliers. They are made out of bike chains and are stunningly equal parts masculine and elegant.

Image sources: 123, 4, 5, 67



The house that inspired this relaxed mood board is an angular house that was built in 1975. Sitting on about 5 acres with sloped ceilings and a loft at the heart of it all, this house has been on my "want" list for a very long time.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6



This last mood board is a bit more "vibey" than the rest of them, but it's also the look I feel like you could replicate in any house, even a generic dorm room. The soon to be released video game Cyberpunk 2077 has me all excited for neon lights and futuristic fashion, but when I come home I want my space to be chill. I want to be able to fall asleep on any piece of furniture, and I think this aesthetic hits the mark.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
 

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Creepy Crawlies Witches Brew Counting Game printable

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

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Help your little witches and wizards with their math skills with this creepy crawly witches brew counting game!



This printable includes a simple papercraft cauldron, 6 pre-made recipe cards, 6 blank recipe cards, and a page full of bugs to cut out and use in your witches brew!


You can use the blank recipe cards to create recipes that use things around your house! Puff balls, beads, and dry noodles make great ingredients, or you can use things like "a handful of grass," "an orange leaf," or "something blue." 



Click here to download the Creepy Crawly Witches Brew Counting Game printable!

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(Slightly) Scary Campfire Storytime

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

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It's the creepiest (and my favorite) time of the year! What better way to celebrate than by cuddling up in front of a fire and telling ghost stories? Well.... I guess if I'm being honest I don't actually like scary stories that much. But, luckily for me, I was able to find some children's books that are just scary enough to give you the heebie-jeebies, without being full-on terrifying! So if you have a child that isn't too fond of getting the pants scared off of them, this is a perfect list for you.

And to take this storytime to the next level (because that's what Halloween is all about!) I made a fake fire out of tissue paper and battery powered fairy lights. Add some comfy cushions and you have the perfect spot to read, and you don't even have to leave your living room!


So shine your flashlight under your face and let's read some (slightly) scary stories!







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Persephone Costume DIY

Monday, October 12, 2020

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I made this gorgeous Persephone costume two years ago and didn't get a chance to share it.  But this year I've been into the wonderful comic that is Lore Olympus, and man, if this costume doesn't fit those vibes. In case you aren't into Greek lore (look into it! It's super cool, and I am no expert.), Persephone is the Goddess of Spring Growth... and the Queen of the Underworld. So if you're into those kinda creepy but also historical costumes with a little bit of fashion flair, this might be the costume for you!



I'm going to start out this tutorial (I use that term loosely) with the inspiration for the costume! To come up with this idea I did what I normally do when I'm brainstorming for a character: I researched some shapes, pulled some inspiration images together, and drew out a sketch. The basic idea was a black greek inspired silhouette with flowers that peeked out when you move, almost as if you were planting flowers with your steps. I wanted to keep with a more gothic look, so that's where the crown of flowers came into play. 


The next step was shopping. I was on a time crunch so I was limited to what I could get quickly. I bought a black shirt and two skirts that I layered, giving me the draped shape I wanted. Then I bought this lace skirt for the underskirt and this crown for the base of the crown. I went to my local dollar store and bought a colorful array of fake flowers, trying to get flowers that were burgundies, blues, muted greens, and oranges. For the final decoration, I found the straightest sticks I could in my back yard.

  

The crown I bought was great for what I was creating because I could move the leaves and mold them into the shapes I needed. I positioned the sticks, and hot glued them on. I kept the skull pictured above on hand to help get the shape correct, also trying it on periodically to make sure it looked okay. When I liked the position of the sticks, I started gluing on flowers, keeping the bulk of the flowers on the bottom and "fading" up to the top.

For the floral underskirt, I used hot glue to attach flowers onto the bottom two feet of the skirt. I tried everything on as I worked to make sure that the flowers would peek out as I walked. If you have more time I would suggest sewing, but I wore it a couple of times and I didn't lose any flowers.


For how beautiful and unique this costume was, it was pretty simple to make. The most difficult part was the crown, but I really loved how it turned out. So much so that I actually just keep it displayed on the skull in my bedroom all year round. Someday, if I get time to create this costume with all of the attention to detail that it deserves,  I would love to have a train with flowers so it looked like I was leaving a trail of spring behind me. Also, embroidered flowers on tulle? I think so. And to really take the costume to the next level I think it would be such a great touch to carry around a goblet full of pomegranate seeds. This could be a really unique couple's costume as well. Hmm... what kind of Hades costume could I create for my husband?
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