Tag Archives: DIY

Square lampshade redo

In my quest to finish my little man’s big boy room, I decided to add a few more projects to the list.  One was a new lamp that was more fitting with the rest of the room.  This idea started when I saw this lamp shade at a thrift store for $3 and a recollection of the 20,000  tutorials to recover a lampshade. Interestingly I never found a tutorial for a square lampshade, so here’s my stab at it!

While I pulled some ideas from a few of them, I followed the tutorial from shanty 2 chic the most.

I started by cutting down a seam and then carefully removing the outside layer of fabric (Keep the liner on). Try to keep the fabric all in one piece as that will be your template for your new fabric.  Good thing I read the tutorial before attempting this, because I’m totally that girl who just rips everything apart and then tries to figure it out later.  You’ll end up with just the lampshade skeleton

Because my lampshade was square, and my fabric didn’t have much give to it.  I ended up cutting 4 pieces and sewing the edges together.  This was different from all the other tutorials I had seen. I added 1/2″ of extra fabric all around my previous fabric template before cutting it out. Then just ran a stitch connecting all 4 sides. I trimmed the excess fabric off about a 1/4″ from the seam to make it less bulky and allow it to look more smooth.

Place the new fabric over your lampshade skeleton. (sorry for the bad lighting.  Some project are done best at midnight!)

I used my cameo to add an acrylic barn red-painted stencil of the number “10” to coordinate with my little man’s decor and vintage car theme. I was afraid that it would have been too hard to paint this once the fabric was on the lampshade, so I chose to do it before.  I don’t know if I would bother doing it that way again.

I placed the new lampshade over the skeleton.  Using E-6000 and clothespins I stretched the fabric, glued with e-6000 and held in place with clothespins.  Oh I should mention that I cut all the corners at a diagonal (essentially cutting the bottom corner off) to make the fold over and gluing much easier and again to make sure it laid smoothly on the lamp shade.  I clipped the top of one side with clothespins to hold it in place, then glued and clipped the bottom.  I did each side then waited a few minutes before moving to the next side.  I did all 4 sides on the bottom of the lamp shade before tackling the top.

To finish it off I added my own DIY bias tape to the top and bottom of the shade using excess fabric cut into strips long enough to wrap around the bottom and top of your shade.  Fold over a side and iron, then fold over the other side iron.  Wrap around the bottom of the shade and use e-6000 to glue on.

This little project inspired me to make my own lamp, and night stand too.  Stay tuned, you might even see little man’s vintage care themed bedroom reveal yet this summer?!


1 Comment

Filed under Before/After, DIY Projects, Gift of Thrift, Tutorials

Secure and recharge

Our beloved first child (our dog) happens to LOVE bread.  When we leave, he finds a way to get all the bread an eat it.

(How can you get mad at this face)?!?! He’s a pure bred Weimaraner if you’re curious, whose can rest his head on a “normal” sized dining room table.

My husband came up with a solution, that not only secures the bread from the dog…it also helps to store the toaster and also serves as a recharge station for all of our cell phones, iPods, iPads, etc. every night.  This is one of my husband’s favorite projects. You may have already seen this here.

To appreciate this here’s what our little kitchen corner looked like before.  A useless spice rack (since I store all of my spices in the cupboard), weird empty space, and a smorgasboard of cords.  One of my BIGGEST pet peaves is having cords showing! Have I also mentioned that I like the spaces in my home to be not only pretty but functional whenever possible.

Here’s the inside- deep enough for house the toaster freeing up some space on one of my two pantry shelves.  It’s also wide enough for several different bread products.

You can kind of see how he made it above.  The door is made by “a bunch” (real technical, I know?!?) of thin wood slats glued to a piece of canvas.  There is a curved groove on the sides that the door travels up and down in.  There is a small open space in the back to allow the board from the toaster to pass through.

The top shelf has little slits in the back to fit our cell phone and iPod charging cords, with felt glued to the back to hold them in place.  I love that our phone and iPod have a place to rest peacefully each night to recharge without 17 cords spread out throughout the house!

This is just one more example of how I can tell the handy husband an idea of something I want, and he brings that idea to life!

Leave a comment

Filed under DIY Projects, Handyman, Real Life

Preserve your wedding gown on the cheap {DIY}

Your wedding gown is often revered as a prized possession that many women dream of and then cherish forever.  Thus the bridal industry has found ways to scam thousands of dollars from hopeless romantics to make every details of your wedding a huge budget breaker. I found ways to rebel against the industry and make my wedding a gorgeous day without breaking the bank (For a series of DIY thrifty wedding ideas go here).  Four years later, I’m still finding ways to save money on my wedding.

I did the unthinkable after our wedding, as do many brides.  The day is over and you hang your dress up in your closet with every intention of cleaning it or selling it, or deciding what to do with it, and end up totally forgetting about it.  Four years later you pull it out to create something wonderful (stay tuned) and realize that there are a few stains and spots on your dress.  Eeek, will they come out? Well thanks to google I found a few ways to keep my cleaning expenses down by doing it myself.

My dress was made mostly from satin with a sheer overlay with embroidery.  Here’s a few pictures of the dress for your reference

As you can see the train was sheer with embroidery around the bottom and up the back.  Here’s a close up of the bottom of the sheer layer

The bodice had some beadwork

I did my research and talked with a few friends.  One friend used to work at a dry-cleaners where she said 90% of all wedding dresses can be turned inside out and put in the washer on delicate.  I also had read about some techniques to get stains out of different fabrics.  Here is an article I read and followed most of their suggestions.  Based on my inspection of the dress, most of the “dirtiness” was on the bottom hem of the train.  As they say wedding dress trains act like dry mops, and mine was no exception.

I started by hanging my dress from a hanger into the bathtub.  I filled the bathtub with warm sudsy water.  I took a mild brush and went around the hem doing some spot scrubbing to get the dirt out.  I then drained and rinsed with clean cool water and let hang to dry for at least 24 hours.  When it was completely dry I inspected again.  I actually used some watered down stain removers on several spots.  I used both Shout and OxyClean.  (Make sure to test on an area the won’t be very noticeable incase they aren’t meant for your fabric).   Again apply the watered down spot remover to stains with a gentle scrub brush, or tooth-brush.

Then I did exactly as my friend suggested (Most of my dress was made from polyester based fabric), I turned my dress inside out to prevent any beads or delicate lace from catching, and placed into our front load washer.  I used a gentle detergent and placed on delicate.  To dry I hung in the bathtub for another 24-48 hours to make sure it was fully dry.

I repurposed my dress into something wonderful (stay tuned), but I have also read that if you want to preserve it, it’s best to use white tissue paper or anything that will not leave an acidic residue on the fabric.

As you can see from the pictures above, it cleaned everything pretty well.  Was it 100% perfect, no but it was about 90% better and saved me almost $200 in cleaning.

Linking to:
Bowl full of Lemons ( I never thought I’d link up to a cleaning category, but I guess there is a first for everything!)


Filed under DIY Projects, Gift of Thrift, Tutorials

t-shirt headband {repurpose}

Since the arrival of my little girl, I am all about creating accessories for her.  While she was blessed with a full head of hair, I’d love to add “pretties” to dress her up, however her hair is so fine and slippery that nothing (including headbands) stay on her head or in her hair.  But that doesn’t mean I won’t try…

In celebration of her 1 moth birthday I thought I’d try something fun.  I used my husband’s white t-shirt to make this little headband.

Using a sleeve from a white t-shirt, I cut 5 strips then pulled on them to make the edges roll.

Initially I planned to just braid it, but it seemed to thin and boring.

Then I found a tutorial for a 5 stranded braid, which was more of what I was looking for.  Since Ashley from Make-it & Love-it has a fabulous tutorial on a 5-stranded t-shirt braid, you can go there for the complete tutorial.

Source: makeit-loveit.com via Heidi on Pinterest

After completing the braid, I simply sewed the ends together and glued (e-6000) on a fabric flower (recycled from gift wrap).  I think she looks pretty darn cute with the little accessory.

Sharing at:

Not just a Housewife, Home Stories A to Z, Cherished Bliss


Filed under DIY Projects, Inspiration

DIY Baby Wipes on the Cheap

Being that I’m a new mom, baby wipes are used frequently in this house.  A friend gave me a gift basket with my first child with the ingredients and recipe to make my own baby wipes.  I decided to pull out that baby and make a few batches today.

Roll of Paper towel
2 Cups of Water
2 Tablespoons of Baby Wash
2 Tablespoons of Baby oil (or olive oil works well too)

Begin by finding a container to fit the diameter of the paper towel roll (this might be the hardest part of this project).  Cut the paper towel roll in half using a non-serrated knife.  A serrated knife kind of mangled the paper towel, but it was all I could find when I was ready to make these.  You can see the mess it makes.

Place one of the cut paper towel rolls into the container and add the remaining ingredients.  Let set until the roll has absorbed the liquids.  Remove the cardboard tube from the center.  Pull the wipes from the center of the roll for use.

Turns out one roll of paper towel (which is about a $1/roll or less if you buy in bulk) makes about 400 wipes.  The oil and baby wash are about $2-$3 each, but with only 2 Tablespoons per batch you can make quite a few baby wipes with each container.  Best yet the wipes are super soft without any chemicals on your baby’s bum!

Leave a comment

Filed under DIY Projects, Gift of Thrift, Tutorials

Clip on Curtains- Big Boy Room phase 3

Still working on some finishing touches for Little Man’s Big Boy Room. You may remember the Barn Board Accent Wall and painting the walls.

Then there was the Big Boy Dresser makeover.

And finally the DIY Spice Rack bookshelves.  Which could be considered the start to phase 3…Big Boy Room Accessories.  But this will be a long phase so I’ll break it up with a few posts before the final room reveal.

I’m finally getting to the point of some finishing touches, and am hoping for the entire room reveal soon.  Today I’ll feature the curtains.  If you notice in the first picture the bright green valance really wasn’t working with the new color scheme.  Keeping with the blues, greys, and reds I opted I picked up some off-white and navy striped fabric on sale at JoAnn’s.  I bought 3 yards but only used about 1 1/2 yards total.  (I also made 3 valances and really only needed 2).  To start I laid out the fabric width-wise.  I wanted the stripes to be vertical so I needed to cut my fabric into equal lengths.  Luckily I have a very large dining room table.  I cute the fabric into 3 strips of 18 inches each.  I was planning on a 15″ curtain which gave me a little flexibility for a 1″ hem on top and bottom.

I added a 5/8″ hem on both sides after cutting. using a standard straight stitch.

The I ironed the entire fabric, pinned and steamed the fold to create the 1″ top and bottom hem.  Since I was planning to use clips, as I had in the past, I didn’t need to create the slot for the curtain rod to slide through.

And now in real-time, in the room and hanging…

The clips were placed 10″ apart with a 1″ overlap for the pleated fold.  The clips are places over the fold and stretched out on the rod so none of the curtain buckles.  The trick, that I kept forgetting about, with the clips is to make sure they are all facing the same direction so you get the curtain to hang properly.

Now, I need to get some wall art done and we should be set for a room reveal 🙂

1 Comment

Filed under DIY Projects, Tutorials

Week of Ideas {Spring}

Since this week was my last week of work before little miss Bea arrives, I didn’t much accomplished in the crafting arena to share. So instead I thought I’d share some inspiration with you from a few of those I’ve pinned lately.

For The Home

Shanty 2 Chic has an entire how to series of these babies – bookcase, bed, end tables, you name it.  I’m in love with the style she’s pulled together!

Source: shanty-2-chic.com via Heidi on Pinterest

As the weather gets warmer I find the amount of sand and grit coming into the house increase too.  I thought this Martha Stewart door mat to was a cute way to add a pop of color just outside the door!

Source: sayyestohoboken.com via Heidi on Pinterest

Who can resist birdhouses?  I’ll admit I really hate birds, but this time of year birdhouses, nests and eggs fill my home decor.  This little tutorial from the speckled dog using candlesticks, might be right up my alley!

Source: thespeckleddog.blogspot.com via Heidi on Pinterest

What is Spring without a little mantel love? Shabby Creek Cottage won me over with the simplicity of her mantel.  And those barn board crosses…have been added to my inspired list of things to do!


Child’s Play

We are on Spring break for an extended weekend, and I will have nearly 12-weeks with my little man and an infant.  So I’m starting to think of fun little projects we can do.  Here are some Spring inspired ideas and snacks that looked amusing, we’ll see what we actually do 😉

The warm weather has flocked us toward outdoor activities.  Currently our driveway serves as a sandbox for our little man, I’m dreaming of something more like this in a few months… (hint, hint to the husband!)

Source: gltc.co.uk via Heidi on Pinterest

I can’t say I’m the world’s biggest fan of sand, so this rainbow rice alternative is somewhat appealing to me

Source: shareandremember.blogspot.com via Heidi on Pinterest

I’m always looking for creative ways to offer healthy food that looks more appealing to my little man (he’s SUCH a picky eater).  So I thought this was a fun little Spring snack idea.  I actually made these as one of his birthday treats using cake decorating bags and goldfish.

Source: susanweinroth.typepad.com via Heidi on Pinterest

On a similar note, hard-boiled eggs are a fan favorite in our house (at least the whites are).  I found this Easter egg dying technique particularly appealing, and I can only imagine my little man would too. Lord knows cracking the egg is the best part, why not do it before you dye the egg 🙂





With that I wish you the very happiest Easter.  Enjoy splendid time with you and your family, and rejoice in the celebration of new life.  Hopefully I’ll return next week with an announcement of our newest family member!



Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration