Archive for the ‘Craft Ideas’ Category

McHubby enjoys keeping busy. I enjoy him being happy. Sometimes his projects allow me to charge up my creative juices and experience some joy of my own. Hopefully, we are working on one of those projects now.

This fall, McHubby has been working to develop an events business for his old employer. Rust Manor House is a beautiful old house that has hosted weddings in the past, but has been primarily an office and education location for the Audubon Naturalist Society. McHubby’s old employer is negotiating with Audubon to reinvigorate the events business.

Lucky me, McHubby asked me to guide him in sprucing up the interiors. I’ll get to try on interior decorating for a client as a potential career direction. I’m looking forward to the work and have lots of plans. Until the legal work is finalized, we are on hold. Although I did decorate for the November Board Meeting with buffet dinner.

Here are a few pictures from the foyer/buffet space:

A nature inspired winter decoration.

A nature inspired winter decoration.

Lighted branches with greenery and white floral accessories.

Lighted branches with greenery and white floral accessories.

A few greenery picks from Michael's up the stair railing.

A few greenery picks from Michael’s up the stair railing.

The bird house centerpiece was created with pine branches and a cherry tree limb that were toppled during Superstorm Sandy. I bought an unfinished birdhouse at Michael’s painting it and adorning it with faux snow, glitter and pine cone pieces. The berry vine and the bird with the nest were from Michael’s. I made the sign hanging from the branch using scrap wood, white paint and black vinyl cut with my Silhouette Cameo.

I hope you like the few touches I added for the festivities. I’ll show more decor when we are able to get up and running.

How are your holidays going so far?





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Can a girl ever have too many shoes? Probably, however, I don’t see anything wrong with having  a lot of shoes. Plus, I’m not talking about Manolo Blahniks. I usually buy my shoes at Ross, Kohls, Target and Marshall’s preferably clearance priced. Well, not all my shoes fit into the guidelines for a Type 4- Bold, Striking Woman in the Dressing Your Truth system. Those guidelines include pointed or squares toes, zebra prints and saturated hues including black, white and navy.

My choices…buy all new shoes or refashion the old ones. I chose to refashion the ones that I could. I used spray paint for some and acrylic paint for others.





The following don’t have before pictures.

Shiny Black shoes started as dull yellowy silver.

Shiny black booties started out grayish brown.

Brown ballet flats became red with spray paint.

The new collection:

Refashioned shoes

I’m pretty happy with the way these turned out. Granted, I can’t change the toe shape, but you do the best you can. Have you ever refashioned your shoes? I’m wondering if duct/duck tape might work.


Linked to:

Finding Home: Spray Paint Link Party

It All Started With Paint: Spray Paint Link Party

Thistlewood Farm: Spray Paint Link Party

Top This Top That: Spray Paint Link Party

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Have you ever bought something thinking it would work perfectly, but the reality just didn’t live up to the promise. Okay…I’m not talking politics. I want to talk  in particular bathroom organization. When we built our house, I thought our bathroom was huge. It is a nice size, don’t get me wrong, but the builder grade cabinetry is challenging to create usable storage for makeup, jewelry and hair necessities. I’d seen some bathroom organizers on blogs, but couldn’t find anything in the stores that would work in my bathroom.

Then, I had a brainstorm. I could make something out of plates and candlesticks from the Dollar Store. Even better, I spied a glass lazy Susan in my pantry that I hadn’t used in a while. After a trip to the Dollar Store and my china cabinet, I had all my pieces.

Glass plate which I previously bought for $1 at Walmart

Lazy Susan found in pantry 

Votive holder from Dollar Store

Bud vase from china cabinet

Candlesticks from the Dollar Store

5 Minute Epoxy from Home Depot

  1. After gathering all supplies, clean with glass cleaner.
  2. Stack pieces with the largest on the bottom and the smallest at the top. Arrange candlesticks in pleasing manner.
  3. Once you like the composition, mix the 5 Minute Epoxy.
  4. Apply epoxy to the bottom of the candlestick.
  5. Place on Lazy Susan in the center.
  6. Apply epoxy to the top of candlestick.
  7. Place  plate centered on top of candlestick.
  8. Repeat with next candlestick on plate and votive holder.
  9. Apply epoxy to bottom of bud vase and place on middle of votive holder.
  10. Allow to epoxy to set.

Finished glass organizer pedestal

I’m still in the process of finding some small glass bowls to corral makeup brushes and other small assorted items. I’ll post a picture of the pedestal in action once I’ve got it organized.

What solutions have you developed for your bathrooms?


Linking Up with:

Tuesday’s Treasures at My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style

Tweak It Tuesday at The Cozy Little House

SNS 153 at Funky Junk Interiors

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Welcome back to our exploration of fairy gardens. Today we will be looking at the accessories that you can include in your creation.

Houses- The dwelling that you choose to offer in your fairy garden can run the gambit from a traditional bird house to a traditional brick human home. You can also select gourds, mushroom/toadstools, stone covered, moss covered and wooden country homes. Fairy houses can be bought pre-made or you had design one even recycling household materials to craft them.

Mushroom Fairy House

A toad stool fairy house.

A fairy house covered with moss.

A traditional brick house designed for fairies

A fairy house made from a gourd.

A fairy house made from recycled materials.

A white country fairy house.


Use a bird house as a fairy house

Doors – If not included in your fairy house, one can be attached to the base of a tree.

Door examples for a fairy garden.


Paths/Stairs – You can use pebbles, stones or glass bits to make your own. I’ve seen preformed concrete/plaster paths also.


Make a path with colored sand.

A pre-made fairy garden path from etsy.com

A fairy path made from pebbles.

Wooden fairy steps.

Water Features include ponds and water fountains.

A glass pebble creek with a bridge.

A fountain for your fairy garden.


Play equipment- Slide or swings (maybe even a tire swing)

A swing made from clay.

A tire swing for your fairy garden.

“Patio furniture”- Craft miniature chairs, settees or benches.


A stone chair for your fairy garden.

A fairy dining set from wood twigs.

Wicker fairy furniture

Whimsy – Include toadstools


Include a welcome sign.

A pink toad stool

Gnome statue

Beach themed fairy garden

A miniature bicycle for your fairy garden

Fencing – Premade or use twigs or popsicle sticks.

Fencing around fairy garden.

You are only limited by your imagination.

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I finished a project. Hip, hip, hooray! I’ve been working on redesigning my blog and moving it to the WordPress.org site. Since I’m a still a neophyte blogger, I seem to be wasting hours in front of the computer with very few tangible results. Oh…my now finished project took a few U turns and nearly found its way into the unfinished project pile in the basement. Once again, however, perseverance paid off with an item checked off my to-do list plus a blog post. (I still have a lot of work to do on the website.)

I will admit that guilt was bit of a trigger. I had a comment to my Patio Color post from a fellow student in the décor8blog class that I am taking. She asked where a picture of my patio was. Unfortunately, the honest truth is that I’m not finished with my patio nor had I been making any progress on making it colorful. Okay…I will give myself credit for the boatload of annual flowers that I have planted, but only a little credit.

Here is a picture of my patio last week:

Boring patio awaiting color

My patio has potential for a cozy summer hangout spot, but it really needs some color.

I wanted to minimize the view under the deck. First, I tried a metal potted plant holder, but it was too small to be effective. Then, it occurred to me that I had another metal art piece just like the one I used to make the basket hanger above the kitchen island. See here. I didn’t want to keep the original color and decided to go with a blue-green patina.

Here is the piece before changing the look of the finish.

Metal grill awaiting a makeover.

Project waiting for makeover to begin.

I used basic acrylic paint. See a sample of the colors below.

Aluminum, Aqua and Dark Green

I used aluminum, aqua and dark green acrylic paints along with stencil brush to change the finish color.

Using a stencil brush, I dipped the bristles into a little bit of each color and pounced the paint randomly until I got the look that I was trying to get. Then, I allowed the paint to dry for several hours.

***Warning, warning, warning. Potential failure alert ***

Next, I sprayed the entire piece with clear enamel sealer. OMG! The aluminum and aqua disappeared. I don’t know why, but the original finish was once again totally visible on about one-third of it. I tried acrylic clear coat since I was concerned the enamel sealer was reacting with the acrylic. But nooooo. Even more disappeared without any drips or any other trace. Vanished. That unfinished project pile started looking pretty good at this point. Well, I needed to let the sealer dry so the whole thing only made it half way to the pile.

Today, I pulled out the acrylics again and repeated my pouncing technique. This time, however, I used Modge Podge to seal the finish. Success!!!!

New finish on grill

The finished (rescued) project hanging under the deck.

To finish the grill, I took three medium sized clear jars with lids. After wrapping wire around the jar neck, I twisted the wire around the grill hanging the jar from the grill. I added colorful glass drops and tea lights. Once I hung the grill from under the deck with cup hooks and chain, I stood back and took a deep breath. Ahhhhh! One piece of color added to the deck. Yes, the guilt has diminished a tiny bit.

The patio with new metal piece.

The underside of the deck is now minimized with a refinished metal piece.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that I will finish some more projects tomorrow. Wish me luck. ; )

Linking to Domestically Speaking’s Power of Paint Party.


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Slow and steady progress…Unlike my garden, my home projects are developing much more slowly. At long last, however, I completed (McHubby, really) renewing our market umbrella. Three cans of blue spray paint were all we needed.

See, I had seen blog entries on painting furniture which looked pretty decent.

Here for example:

Before and After

Painted chair before and after at Attempts at Domestication

A few months back I saw how Ellen at Ellenscreativepassage.blogspot.com had used a canvas drop cloth to replace the fabric on an old patio umbrella that she had bought at an auction.

Replace fabric on umbrella

Ellen’s umbrella with fabric replacement

Between moving houses, changing styles and deterioration due to the elements, I had three less than desirable market umbrellas in my basement. Not wanting to add another umbrella to the collection, I hoped to find a creative way to reuse at least one of them.
While I can sew, my projects don’t always go smoothly. I wasn’t enthusiastic about such a big project. Then, I realized that maybe spray paint would work. While it isn’t totally perfect, I am thrilled with the results. Every time I catch sight of my refreshed umbrella it just makes me happy. All we needed was three cans of spray paint.

Take a look.

Before umbrella renewed

Old faded umbrella before painting

After umbrella painted

The old umbrella has been refreshed with spray paint.

Unopened umbrella

Closed umbrella after painting

Do you have a few items in your home that have seen better days? What are you planning on doing with them?

Linking to: Domestically Speaking, French Country Cottage

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Whew! I’ve had a busy couple of weeks including a vacation and Relay for Life preparations. I wouldn’t change a moment, even having car problems on vacation. Oh, wait…at the Relay McHubby and I unfortunately didn’t notice that the camera was on the manual setting. I wish we had realized this problem before we took pictures. Two-thirds of our pictures didn’t turn out. Luckily, my friends and their friends came through for me on Facebook.

Our team chose the theme, Disney princesses, in order to follow the overall event theme of Lights, Camera, Hope (Hollywood). I volunteered to make the sign, tent decorations and the baton in addition to my costume. The way the timeline came about I only had one week to prepare, but I loved working on this project.

The tent was decorated like a castle using donated cardboard boxes. In order to make the castle fit for a princess, the opening was draped with white tulle, pink tissue paper flowers and a sparkle crown sign. Our relay baton was a pearl decorated scepter. My costume was Snow White.

Castle for Princesses

Our Princess Castle

Baton for Relay

Our Scepter Baton

Princess Team Sign

The tent sign for identifying our team


My Snow White costume

Relay team and Castle

The princesses in front of our castle

Mom and I

My mother, 27 year survivor, and I at the Survivor Dinner.


John, five year survivor, and Sandy

Our event raised over $230,000 toward eliminating cancer and was truly inspiring.


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