December 7, 2012 by Jenn
As we get closer to Christmas, we are (hopefully) almost done with our shopping and it’s time to start wrapping up all our goodies! There are a lot of options when it comes to wrapping but, as usual, we think handmade is more fun. It’s also easier on your wallet. Here are some ideas we’ve come up with this season to help make your gifts stand out!
Potato Stamp Paper:
I had a left over sweet potato that wasn’t looking so hot. I used an exacto knife to carve three potato stamps, a tree, a heart, and a circle. I then took my brown postal paper (left over from my advent tutorial) and patterned my stamps in different colors. I used a paintbrush to apply the paint to my stamps and practiced once or twice before stamping my paper. If some of the stamps look a little crazy, just use your paintbrush to fill in the gaps!
As you can see, in these photos my bows are pom poms. This is a fun extra you can add to your gifts. Make a pom pom and turn it into an ornament by keeping the tether yarn longer and tying it together! Use a piece of tape to attach it to your gift and voila! The bow now doubles as an ornament. You can use a pom pom maker or make them yourself, there’s a helpful tutorial here.
Snowflake Atlas wrapping:
I love using old magazine photos or map pages as wrapping. It adds a fun texture to your packages. I had an old atlas lying around so I used a page as my background. A friend and I were making paper snowflakes the other night to hang in my apartment and I had a few left over. I added the snowflake on top and tied my package with festive yarn. So easy and so very FREE since I had all these things lying around. Can’t beat that!
Have a great weekend!!
December 5, 2012 by Emily
We’ve always been partial to making gifts for people, and while we have a few ideas rattling around in our noggins (you’ll see them soon!) We just like everyone else, turn to our fellow DIY bloggers for ideas, inspiration and sometimes just to oggle at how crafty and creative they are!
Take a peek at what DIYs are on our “must make for presents” list, and have been making us oooh and aaah lately!
Hmmmm..what to get for the conflicted vegan who wants to rock some Mad Men style fur wraps? What about a DIY “fox stole” scarf! Prudent Baby shares the pattern to make a furry friend to keep them stylish and cozy!
For the Kiddos:
How about a modern spin on matryoshka nesting dolls for the munchkins in your life?
This also works for all people in your life that are of russian heritage and were always fascinated by their grandparents nesting doll collection… oh, that’s just me? moving on…
For the Readers:
Book worms need love too! I’d be a smitten-kitten if someone made me one of these to gussy up my book collections! The same post has a tutorial on making a leather feather headband as well!
For the Art Lover:
Is there an art lover on your list but you can’t afford a Picasso? I’m a huge fan of anything wood grain and this DIY is a fantastic addition for any home. The Happier Homemaker lays out this tutorial that is a cute and easy project for any one on your list.
For the Foodie:
Wine is a welcome gift for that person on your list with great taste… get it? Taste. (I’m a dork) This wine bottle cover from Pocket Change Gourmet is inexpensive and looks adorable. It’s a great way to recycle those old winter sweaters you aren’t using!
For the Creative Type:
I AM IN LOVE. Ornaments make thoughtful gifts and gives your friends and family a keepsake for future tree years. Blow them away this year with these adorable animal ornaments from Voyage of the Creative Variety. I may or may not be making these for some artsy folks on my list, Wink.
Stay tuned for more Holiday ideas and DIYs!
November 30, 2012 by Jenn
Distilled white vinegar is probably one of the most useful solutions on the planet. It’s chemical make-up alone makes it much more powerful than most cleaners but A LOT less toxic for your home, plus it usually costs less than 3 bucks for the big bottle. I use white vinegar in my house at least 4 times a week, the big bottle lasts forever since it’s highly concentrated and you don’t need to use much. Here are 5 ways to use distilled white vinegar that will help your wallet and your home!
1. Make your polish last! Have you tried everything trying to keep your nail polish from chipping? Next time, dab a cotton ball with white vinegar and rub it on your nails. The vinegar helps the polish adhere to your nails. It may make your hands a little stinky but if you rub your hands with a little lemon juice it’ll take away the vinegar smell! Maybe try Emily’s decal DIY when you’re ready to paint?
2. Make your furniture a scratch-free zone. My cat has claws. Good ones. Sure, I’ve bought her scratch pads, cat condos, those things that hang on the door that are supposed to make them stop scratching but DON’T. I’ve tried it all. Then I found out that my cat hates the smell of vinegar, apparently most cats do. So next time your cat is going for the furniture, take a water bottle of water with 2 tbsp white vinegar and lightly spray the area. You’re cat will be bummed out but the stink and won’t scratch it up! Depending upon the type of fabric your furniture is made of, do a spot test first, just to be safe. If you have an issue with your pets jumping on windowsills or countertops you can spray the vinegar in those spots as well.
3. Baking in a hurry can be a catastrophe, the recipe called for a teaspoon of salt and you accidentally put in a tablespoon or more.. EEK… what to do?? If you added to much salt to a recipe, an easy fix is to add 1 tablespoon white vinegar and 1 tablespoon sugar and voila! All better.
4. Cleaning your produce is important but some of the veggie washes at the store can be expensive. A quick and cheap substitute is to add 2 tablespoons of vinegar to 1 1/2 quarts water. Put mix into a pray bottle and wash away the veggie germs and pesticides!
5. One of the most well known uses for vinegar (and one of my personal favs) is removing deodorant deposits and sweat stains from shirts. Its a dirty secret a lot of us have and vinegar clears it right up! dip the problem area of the shit in undiluted vinegar and let it sit for 20 to 30 minutes then put directly into the washing machine and wash normally. I have only used this trick on t-shirts so like I said with the furniture, if it’s a unique fabric you should always do a test spot treatment.
I hope these tricks are useful for your home. White vinegar is cheap and super useful! It even stops bee stings from stinging
November 25, 2012 by Emily
I hate bar soap. Really. Theres just something about it that squicks me out. Maybe because it turns the soap dish into a mess, and it just seems germy. I prefer to use liquid body wash, but it’s pretty expensive and I can find a scent that I like.
I LOVE the way that these Biggs & Featherbelle soaps smell and feel but they don’t make liquid soap to appease my bar aversion. So I decided to make my own, this way I’m able to use the soap scents I like (or custom mix my own!) with out all the added chemicals and colors that come with store bought washes.