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From the trash can to the centerpiece…A spaghetti jar, an old candle container and discarded vase are given new life with a little paint, a bit of glitter and some cheap broken earrings. Pour a little paint into the jars and rolled it around to cover the inside. Once the paint dried I applied Mod Podge to the top edge of the jars. Immediately after I rolling each jar in glitter then left to dry. Ending with a final coat with Mod Podge to seal the glitter in. I picked up a couple succulents and flowers out from Sprout Home to plant. I think they turned out a little bad ass and a little beautiful.
admin / Crafty Beavers Chicago, DIY Crafts / Banner Flag, Chain, Diamonds, Doiley, Doilies, Earrings, Gems, Gold, Halloween, Jewelry, Nameplate, Necklaces, Pickle, Pins, Poly Clay, Polymer Clay, Recycle, Reuse, Teeth, Tooth, Upcycle / 0 comments
Last night was the first Crafty Beaver event we have hosted in months and it was perfect. The attendees were small in numbers but it really gave me a chance to spend some quality time with my ladies. All in all it was a fantastic event.
I found a few great blogs on how to make poly clay jewelry; Henry Happened, Dismount Creative and Minted Strawberry. I always like to add a recycling or an upcycling factor to our crafts and encouraged the ladies to bring old jewelry parts to reuse in their new pieces. We used FIMO clay I picked up at our local craft store, Joanns. The first batch of necklaces I followed the directions perfectly, 230 degrees for 30 minutes. The second batch I messed up and baked them for the proper 30 minutes but accidentally bumped the temperature to around 320. Honestly, the mistake in temp turned the clay a Silly Putty color and was more pliable. It seemed brittle then the earlier versions. I can see why Henry Happened’s blog altered their instructions from ones suggested by FIMO. You don’t need a lot a of clay to make a lot of fun stuff either. If you reuse old jewelry pieces this craft can cost as little as $2.40 to make several items. This craft was a definite win!
BATCH TWO: I did not get a chance to take photos with the earring backs on and chains on the necklaces. I can assure you that they all turned out beautiful though. I really love the Deathly Hallows pin!
It is the beginning of the school year for some and so this month we wanted to focus on education. We would like to encourage you to support Pencils of Promise . Pencils of Promise, also known as PoP for short, is a non-profit organization that builds schools and increases educational opportunities in the developing world.
Adventures in basement hunting. I love our creepy old basement because I always find something awesome down there. Our landlord is in poor health and so she has not been inside our building in over ten years, if things need fixing we just do it ourselves. When I moved in over three years ago I found a hoarders dream of probably 20+ years of renters crap in the basement. If you read my last post you know that my inner weirdo could not tend to my laundry and not try to clean up while I was down there. I finally called the landlord and asked her if I had her permission to clean it all out for her. Since she did not know about the mess she was grateful for my help. While I did find a couple gems to keep like a shelving unit and a projector screen the rest was craigslist worthy or headed to the alley for pickers. There were a couple items I left alone because they weren’t in the way and they were pretty self-contained. An old rusty filing cabinet was one of them. The drawers were so hard to open that I just didn’t bother…until yesterday that is. I couldn’t help myself, I just had to know what was in there after all of these years. I found a 1930′s bird lice treatment container, some old plumbing parts, fridge bins and racks and horseshoes. Horseshoes? What luck! No really, they are supposed to be lucky if you hang them above your door.
The tradition of putting a horseshoe over the door to bring good luck and keep the devil away has long been tradition. The story behind this tradition has many variations. This is one of them: Once upon a time, a wise old blacksmith was hard at work making horseshoes. The sound of the anvil attracted the attention of the devil. He saw that the smith was making horseshoes, and he thought it would be a good idea to get his own hoofs shod. So the devil made a deal with the smith and stood to be shod. The wise blacksmith saw with whom he was dealing, and so he nailed on a red-hot shoe, driving the nails square into the center of the devil’s hoof. The devil then paid him and left; but the honest blacksmith threw the money into the forge fire, knowing it would bring him bad luck. Meanwhile, the devil walked some distance and began to suffer the greatest torture from the new shoes. The more he danced and pranced and kicked and swore, the more they hurt him. finally, after he had gone through the most fearful agony, he tore them off and threw them away. From that time to this, whenever the devil sees a horseshoe he turns and runs–anxious to keep out of the way of those torturous devices. (Dr. Doug Butler’s book, The Principles of Horseshoeing)
Another lore is that if you hang the horseshoe above the door it was god luck. Legs up meant it is good luck for all who live within, if you face it downward it was believed your luck would run out. However others did/do believed that if you hang it legs down that good luck will pour down over all who enter. In most of Europe, the Middle-East, and Spanish-colonial Latin America protective horseshoes are placed in a downward facing position. Americans of English and Irish descent prefer to display horseshoes upward; those of German, Austrian, Italian, Spanish, and Balkan descent generally hang them downward.
So I guess you can hang it however you want. “What IS important is that the horseshoe was actually used — worn and discarded by a horse — that it was found in the road or in a field, not purchased, and that the person who enters the door can touch it.” What I want to know is if it decreases its lucky power if I glitter the crap out of it. Lucky for me I found two horseshoes(insert sly wink here).
With three people living in our apartment space is an issue. Scratch that. I am the issue. I am an organized clutter minimalist, if that even makes sense. Sure I may own a lot of things, but not really. Our apartment seems cluttered even though it looks rather empty. Don’t get me wrong I love the gifts my friends gave me, the art we have collected and a homey feel but it needs to be put away somewhere. I don’t like things left laying on the coffee table, not even remotes. Which baffles my boyfriend as to what I think it’s supposed to be used for then. Well now I just sound like a weirdo. I truly believe that a cluttered home leads to a cluttered mind. I like the bright and spacious look of a clean and empty-ish looking apartment. So while space is a problem for storing our stuff it is also equally important how it is stored.
We only have one closet for three people’s plethora of towels, bed linens and dining linens. Yes, we own dining linens. Also, I am so cheap, I want it free. Yes, I also said free. I decided to take this storage issue to the basement. Insert creaking stairs and eerie noises here. I found some seriously old, rusty cans of paint and a little bit of leftover shelf liner paper. I snagged some old shipping boxes, a Miller High Life, threw on some Law & Order Season 1 and went to town. After painting the boxes white to cover up the USPS red and blue motif I added dots. I traced mugs, cups and shot glasses onto the shelf liner paper. I felt so fancy sipping my champagne of beers while cutting tedious circles. Oh Jack McCoy, your court banter is so witty. I could listen to you object all day. An episode and a half later and I was done. I threw sheets, pillowcases and tablecloths into the boxes, in an organized fashion of course and tied them closed with black ribbon. TADA!
Of couse I had the perfect place to put them out of the way in our circus tent of a diningroom. So you can spend twenty bucks on a storage bin from the store or spend zero dollars and make them yourself. The Miller High Life was even free. I found it in the back of the fridge. SCORE!
I was doing some spring cleaning in my apartment and found myself losing hours going through old boxes of keepsakes. I came across my Whole Woods name badge from when I was 18. I thought I was funny using another name, Danny on my badge and no on ever questioned it. With it was a Suburbia inspired patch my co-worker Matty (Matthew) made us. He had silkscreened them himself and I started to wonder what he was up to these days. Well, it turns out that he is back at it again after recently ending his career as a hairstylist.
Now Matthew has an Etsy shop full of things I MUST HAVE! The name of his shop is called Gingersnap Press and be prepared to become instantly obsessed with his pot holders. I sent him a message asking him how Matty got his groove back. Sorry for the bad movie reference.
admin / Blog / A New History, Always Sparkle Art, Apple Blossom Print, Artylicious, Define Design 11, Early Bird Ink, Encore Prints, Frilly Chili Design, Fultterbye Notes, Good Old Days 1, Harvey Grey, Hello Sprout, Ink of Me, Karimachal, Mapity, Of Life and Lemons, Peachwik, Personal Posters 4 U, Print Me Prettiful, Spoiled Royal Studio, Studio Jones 1, Textured Ink, Up Up, Words Work Prints / 0 comments
WEDDING SEASON IS HERE! IT’S HERE! RIGHT NOW!!! AREN’T YOU SUPER EXCITED?!?!?! YES, your answer should always be yes. I am going to show you a few of my favorite engagement, wedding, bridal shower, personalized gifts, what have you. I lump those all together because I am 34, have been to over 20 weddings in the couple years and yet can’t figure out the damn gift etiquette. (Oh yes, I think have heard of Gogle. oh it’s pronounced Google? Yea, well hmmmm, I’ll have to check that out later.) Of course it would be easier for us to just grab a ________ gift card and throw it in an envelope. Unfortunately for all of you getting married, I am one of those annoying people who prefers not to shop off the registry. TA DA! Yup, I may be the reason you didn’t get the full towel set or that fourth hand mixer (thank goodness). Guys! If you thought Etsy was a “chick thing”, think again. There are some epic gifts for dudes getting hitched as well. Strap yourselves in, here we go! Oh and remember a lot of these come in variety of colors so can customize it for the happy couple.
- Early Bird Ink
- Of Life and Lemons
- Up Up
- A New History
- Harvey Grey
- Spoiled Royal Studio
- Define Design 11
- Personal Posters 4 U
- Words Work Prints
- Print Me Prettiful
- Studio Jones 1
- Good Old Days 1
- Always Sparkle Art
- Spoiled Royal Studio
- Frilly Chili Design
- Apple Blossom Print
- Encore Prints
- Ink of Me
- Hello Sprout
- Personal Posters 4 U
- Apple Blossom Print
- Textured Ink
- Flutterbye Notes
- Good Old Days 1
admin / Blog / All Cut Up by DG, Annie Poon, Art, Betty Octopus, Bright Barnaby, Carl Gruettert, Clocks, Crafty Cuts Laser, Cuckoo Clocks, Dailee Dose, Decoy Lab, Dolan Geiman, Fantastic Toys, Gallivanting Girls, Hello Petie, Jamie Zeff, Marisol Spoon Makery, Mini Blings, Pedro Meahla, Plain Fancy Emporium, Pronounced You, Purdey and Blue, Rosie Plus the Boys, Stephan Strumbel, Tiny Modernist / 0 comments
I think we all get the flutter of nostalgia when we see things from our childhood. For me there are three things that warm me with great emotion. One item is small Irmi lamp fitted with a retro orange lightbulb. It was on the nightstand at my grandparents house in the room that my brother and I shared while visiting. I had spent many a night falling asleep staring into the orange glow. The other is a Black Forest cuckoo clock from my grandparents basement, just at the bottom of the stairs. I had always loved it even though even as a kid I remembered thinking it was kind of old fashioned looking. The third isn’t a visual but a taste, a smell…Jack Daniels. This was not my grandpa’s favorite whisky nor can I even remember it ever being stocked in their bar. Still, whenever I drink that specific brand it takes me back. You see, for me it tastes like how the dusty records in my grandparent’s basement smell. I know it sounds weird but it’s true.
While Irmi lamps are a vintage collectable now, the cuckoo clock has been given new life with the help of a lot of color and sometimes a lack thereof. It’s not often I say I MUST have something but these bad boys have me squealing with excitement at their sight.
Sometimes fashion over function actually makes sense. Especially when it comes to this batch of cuckoo clock art work.
And sometimes fashion is just awesome.
admin / Blog / Apartment Garden, Barreau & Charbonnet, City Garden, City Living, Diet, Dietary, Free Food, Garden, Garden Swag, Gardening, Growing, Growing Companions, Healthy, Healthy Diet, Healthy Eating, Indoor Garden, Jamie Oliver, Obesity, Rain Gutter Garden, Ron FInley, Savvy-Gardener, Sprout Robot, Upside Down Garden, Urban Garden, Vegetable Gardeners, Vegetables, Vertical Garden, Water Bottle Garden, Window Boxes, Window Farms / 0 comments
Last week someone I know on Facebook was complaining about a shopper with an Smart Phone using a Link card to buy their groceries. While this does seem a little unusual to me too it made me wonder about something else entirely. I started to think about all the times I myself went to Aldi and peered into someone else’s shopping cart, judging. Truth was, I was also there to buy the cheap crap food that is pretty much the same as regular stores but priced higher. In my cart was chips, pastas, breads, essentially carb heaven. Looking into others baskets and carts I saw groceries one would call “typical” if stereotyping by our class systems. The truth is, most people buy what they can afford, what goes the farthest in your household. Of course healthier foods like fruits and vegetables cost more than a case of Ramen noodles. It may not be the healthiest but at least your family will be fed. Now, those foods ultimately harm your health in the long term. Obesity is on the rise on this Country with no signs of stopping. So again, why do we do it??? Money. This made me again think about my own financial situation and weighed it against my health. One effects the other and vice versa. How can everyone including myself save money while still getting the healthy food we all obviously deserve, our children deserve??? (Hey parents, need a little perspective? watch this TED Talks with Jamie Oliver.)
So What’s The Answer? GROW OUR OWN FOOD! Quit rolling your eyes and hear me out. Let’s talk about urban gardening and indoor gardens. One of these is for you!
Apples Tomatoes Potatoes/Sweet Potatoes Green Onions & Leeks Carrot Tops Pineapple Celery,Romaine Lettuce and Cabbage Avocado Lentils Pumpkin Ginger Garlic Bok Choy Mushroom Lemongrass Basil Onions Beets
I live in an apartment. WHERE THE HELL AM I GOING TO PLANT FOOD??? Good question, you angry city living reader. The answer is…anywhere! Here are a few window/indoor gardening ideas and tutorials for you. You. Are. Welcome.
Don’t forget to Google upside down planters or the more commercial As Seen On TV Topsy Turvy. For info on how to make a window box garden click here for the Vegetable Gardener’s instructions.
The visit the people at Window Farms for instructions on how to make your own. TODAY!
Let this Aussie show you how to make a garden using old plastic bottles. Reuse and recycle my friends. Woohoo!
So, it is not in English but you get the idea. Check out Barreau & Charbonnet. There site will get you inspired to make your own.
HAVE A PATIO/BALCONY/SQUARE PATCH OF CEMENT? That’s good news! You only need a little space or a wall even to make your own garden oasis.
Use one of those old pallets you find all over the city to make a vertical garden.
Rain gutters? What??? That is so easy!
Take a que from these guys and make planter boxes for your patch of land.
GROWING OUTDOORS? Let the professionals do some of the work for you. There is a website that will tell you when you seed, plant and harvest your food specifically for your city. Each area is different due to climate, soil etc and the people at Sprout Robot have your back. Just type in your zip code and let the professionals help that black thumb or yours become green.
HAVE A YARD? You lucky sonofabish! The world is your oyster and you have no reason to not be gardening already. Get to it!
Thanks for taking the time to read this. I hope you got some good ideas on how to make your own urban garden.
Damn the man! Your food is free!
“Print is dead.” A phrase commonly used by my boyfriend whose career is based in web design. I disagree. These days when I get postal mail it’s because there is a baby shower/wedding invitation or bill enclosed. A couple times a year I will get a notebook in the mail. This is the same notebook my friend Gena and I started in 2001 or was it 2002. She was moving back to California and we wanted our own special way of keeping in touch. So a couple times a year she sends me the notebook full of old letters, photos, trinkets, stickers and Korean keepsakes from her trips to give me the latest news. I try to update her on my latest goings on and trials and tribulations and celebratory news in return. Of course we could send messages on Facebook or by email but this is better. For some reason it just seems more thoughtful, more loving and more tangible. I miss getting letters from friends and not just the occasional card around the holidays. Facebook and Twitter are great for instant updates about your newest bad haircut, how much you hate politics and kidstagrams but I am greedy and want more. I love writing letters, poems and doodling pictures of my dog along the edge of the page. Thinking about it those actually look nothing like him. Why start and stop at writing friends though. I found this guy named Justin who travels the world and will send you a postcard from wherever he is at. He has me seriously intrigued with his site Postcards From A Stranger. Sounds a tad creepy but I love the idea. This guy must have thousands of Facebook and Twitter followers. If you want to keep that snail mail love alive across the globe sign up for Global Pen Pals to correspond with some total randoms. Woah! I just found this amazing project on The Elevated Envelope for artists to exchange envelope art. I am going to sign up now for the next round in September. I can’t wait for my first piece of mail. I am going to go sit by the front door now and wait for the postman. I can say postman because our mail carrier is Tyrese, one hunk of a man. He makes you want to put your face on before answering the door. You know what I am talking about ladies(insert sly wink here).
Now I will leave you with a great penning project for Valentine’s Day. A sweet idea with whole lotta heart.