Friday, April 30, 2010

A New Spring Wreath

I can honestly say that Spring time is my favorite time of year!
I was sad to take down my Cadbury Egg Wreath,
I needed something to replace it with.
I wanted something grassy,
something purple,
and something that would be able
to stay on my door till summer was through.....
or until Candace and I come up with another idea for a wreath!
I'm also pretty cheap so I wanted to make it for cheap
but I didn't want it to look cheap.
Does that make sense?
Ya see we have a ton of storage space (the land fill) stuffed with our
previous "cheap" projects that do look "cheap".
We've both gotten to a point in our lives that we don't want to "look cheap"
even though we may be.....:)

~~~So here's the breakdown~~~
Grapevine wreath (40% off coupon) $2.43
Clearance spring grass $2.49
Clearance Easter grass .15 cents!!!
Excelsior (40% off coupon from Hobby Lobby honored at Michael's) $2.43
Clearance spring bouquet $2.49
**Last minute butterflies from the dollar store added on $1.00
Grand Total.........$10.99 + Tax
So I started by mixing together my paper Easter grass and Excelsior,
fluffing it till I got what I wanted.
Then I formed it around the wreath and started hot gluing it in place.
For some extra stability I wrapped it a few times with some green thread
(a brilliant idea I got from Design Dump)
Already it was looking pretty good to me!
Then I started to completely dismantle all my spring grasses and bouquet.
Randomly I started gluing them around the wreath.
Then for some extra whimsy I curled the grasses!
Yes, I said curl!
Another fun tip I learned when I was working for Provo Craft!
By using a knife or a pair of scissors
(and being pretty careful so they don't break)
You can actually curl those plastic grasses as little or as much as you want!
After gluing all the little flowers on with my glue gun
I realized it was missing a little something.
I had picked up these butterflies at the Dollar Store but they weren't the right colors!
So using Candace's brilliant idea, I spay painted them white first.
Then just using some craft paint I got them the right color!
I "freckled" them with some green paint,
gave them some little eyes too....
ya know my little girl would notice that right off the bat
if they didn't have eyes!
And then I ran.....
Outside as fast as I could
before the light faded.....
So I could show you what I'm so happy about!
I did the butterflies each a shade lighter than the last.
You could say I'm "tickled pink"....
Well, purple that is.:)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Mirror For My Mantle?

I have always wanted to join in Beth's Vignette linky party at The Stories of A to Z.
I thought I would try decorating my mantle.
I have been stumped with decorating my fireplace, it is heavy and rustic with the stone and I have trouble balancing the decor.

This is my favorite tree!  It is in full bloom right now.

 I look forward to this tree blooming each year, in the fall it turns a dark red.
 I decided to cut some of the branches and bring them indoor.
The blossoms are so fragrant.

This is the mirror I had some problems with a few weeks ago.  The plan was to enlarge it to fit the wide space above my mantle. I mounted the mirror onto a backboard with tons of liquid nails and started drilling  screws into the frame. I quickly realized that the frame is made from a cheap material and is HOLLOW!  There went that idea!


This is how it looked above the fireplace in it's original black. 
 I didn't really like it and I couldn't return it with a goopy glue all over it.
 So I took Nicole's advice to spray paint it.  She said to first mist with silver and then mist with gold...back and forth. 

The rain sprinkled on it while I was waiting for it to dry...oops!  I decided to give it an aged look! :)
I rubbed a few of the edges and lightly wiped on a black glaze.

What do you think?
Should I keep looking for a larger mirror or go for something entirely different?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Hinged Frames

This is a super easy project!
  We were again inspired by a decor store.
I feel bad copying store ideas, but I also feel bad paying high prices! :)
  Their frames had a built in arch, to make them would require power tools ( well this time anyway;) ).  We didn't feel like pulling the saws out today and so we turned to a really easy
 (and cheap)
 way to make these, plus the frames are already made. 

We used Michaels cheapo unfinished wood frames and inserted the glass from another cheap Michael's photo frame.  Hinges and decorative wood pieces came from Hobby Lobby.
This is probably the hardest part - putting on the hinges. 
 Make sure you have the hinge going the way you want to picture to tilt.  I had to unscrew a few! :)

We used a little wood glue to stick on the wood piece.
We gave it a couple coats of spray paint.
I read a post by Rene of Cottage and Vine sharing her favorite places to find free artwork.
  I found these free fern prints at one of the sites she recommended,  Vintage Printable.
Carefully pop the glass out of the second photo frame and place into hinged frames along with print cut to size.
 We used this same idea in a craft group I'm involved in to make a set of hanging frames.
This would also be easy to make with thrift store frames.
Pretty simple!

Nicole and I have been busy with tons of garden and yard work. 
There's always so much to do this time of year! 
We hope to bring you some more projects soon!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

A Bird House For The Perch

So finding a bird house for this perch was a lot harder to do than we anticipated.
Did you know all those pretty ones in the store are
"Decorative", "Not Meant For Outdoor Use".
So we finally found one at Michael's made from pine
and grabbed a simple plaque base to mount it on.

We primed it and decided to paint it to match my (Nicole's) house color.
People think I'm joking when I give directions to my home and
says it's the Pistachio Green one
on the corner.  Seriously when I told our Dad what color
I had picked out for it he thought I was nuts.
Especially with cream trim?
When he drove almost 6 hours to come help me paint it
(he's the world's greatest Dad ever!!!!)
he couldn't believe that it actually was pretty and worked, somehow!
We thought it would be fun to give the roof some bling
so we pulled out this embossed metal sheeting we picked up a few years ago
for pennies when a hardware store went out of business.
Back then we thought it would be cool for a magnetic board
but quickly found out
aluminum isn't magnetic.  :(
We made a pattern and cut it out with our metal snips!
If you don't have a pair of these snips get some!
We picked these up at Home Depot for about $15 and they cut like butter!
We nailed the roof in place and then screwed them onto the plaque base
and then onto the perch.
Not bad huh?
So now the grand total for the project is a whole whopping $11!!!
Not sure why the base is looking pink below
but hey at least you'll know which house this one belongs to!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Bird House Perch

Is it worthy of a pretty bird house?
A couple of weeks ago one of my friends brought me
a cute catalogue that had fun letters in it
she wanted me to recreate for her.
Well, I couldn't just look at the letters~
We saw this cute Bird House Stand and
knew we had to make it!
It's from Chasing Fireflies.

We knew we could make it for less than the almost $100 price tag.
It doesn't hurt that Hobby Lobby has bird houses on sale this week so we just had to!
All you'll need is a baluster $3, some nails, some screws, some glue and some 1 x 6 or 1 x 12's.
Make sure you check out Home Depot's junk wood pile, where I picked up
these boards for .51 cents a piece.
Yeah, they're a little warped but when you cut them into 6 inch sections you can't tell.
We kinda eyeballed the sizes we wanted and chopped away on the miter saw.
It soooo doesn't have to be perfect.
We had an extra chunk of block wood we ended up not using.
We glued and nailed each section to eachother.
Then using a double sided screw, attached the baluster to the bottom
and then screwed a 2 inch screw to the top to hold it in place.
We forgot to take a picture of the big hole we drilled through the bottom.
We wanted the ability to stick it in a garden bed but wanted some stability too
so the wind wouldn't blow it over.
The hole is big enough to slide right onto a wooden garden stake
so you can have the versatility of it in the garden
or to put it flat onto the patio.
Oh yeah, don't forget the spray paint!
Can we say it enough.....WE LOVE RUSTOLEUM!!!!
The pretty birdhouse we got originally looked too small in scale when we got done.
Sometimes it's easier (and cheaper in this case) to buy one already made....
It ended up being about 40 inched tall
and less than $5 to make....Not Bad HUH!
Isn't it pretty????
So tomorrow check out to see what we end up putting on top of it.
Transformation Thursdaygiveaways


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Best "CRAFT-manship"

I think a Pinewood Derby car is
 " craft blog-worthy"-
 don't  you think?
I'm even tempted to find a  linky part to share my   our latest craft!

My son didn't win the race but he won "best CRAFTmanship" :) and 5th place. in me and my son worked hard the last couple of days designing, cutting, and painting his car.
My husband was the director/wheel-checker/giver of approval.
I know it's suppose to be a father/son bonding moment...but I just couldn't help getting involved especially when it comes to cutting wood and making it pretty!

My son's first time spray painting. He did quite well!
I was so proud of his spray technique!

He wanted two stripes- like a Ford mustang GT.

We polished the wheels with wet sandpaper.
I learned a lesson this time.
  It's all about wheels. 
 If you set them wrong you are toast!  I put one in crooked and  permanently messed it up.
Ahhh the pressure!
It was a fun night. 
No bad competitive feelings that happen sometimes at these races.

I have...I mean "we" have another year to perfect the winning car!

I only hope from now on that I'm
 referred to as the "SHE-MAN" mom that likes saws and power tools:)
I got some strange looks from the other dads! ;)
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