Tag Archives: DIY

Merry and Bright! Christmas Cards

9 Dec Christmas Card

So I got my first tree this year AND it’s the first time I’m sending out Christmas cards.

If I didn’t know better I might just say I’m growing up.

I’ve always loved the idea of sending Christmas cards. After all, I’m the girl who can’t pass up pretty stationary and a good pen all year long.

But sending Christmas cards has always plummeted to the bottom of the list this time of year. This year, I made a plan.

In between handing out candy to trick-or-treaters on Halloween, I made Christmas cards!

Christmas Card

Christmas Lights Card

But you want to hear a secret?

If you want to make similar cards, no need to have started next to a bowl of fun-size Snickers in October. These are so easy, you can whip up a bunch during an episode of Glee. Promise.

You can probably figure it out by looking at the picture above, but here’s what I did:

Blank Christmas Card

I bought a pack of blank white cards from Michaels. They sell packs that come with matching envelopes for about $5

Christmas Card Line

I used a fine tip black Sharpie to draw a squiggly line diagonally across the card.

ChristmasCardPre

I picked five festive colors from my mason jars full of skinny Crayola markers.

Mason Jar Markers

Is there anything mason jars can’t be perfect for? I guess this is how dads must feel about duct tape.

Anyway, I picked five colors and bulbs at random spots along the line. Leave some room between the line and the ovals, and go back with your fine tip Sharpie and draw little squigglies (technical term) to finish off the bulbs.

Christmas Card

Tada! You’ve got a merry and bright Christmas card. I’m digging the simplicity of the bright colors against the white background and the retro feel of the big bulbs.

If you’re so inclined, you can add some glitter.

I did a few with “joy” stamped in the bottom right hand corner, but stuck those in the mail before I took a picture. Whoops.

Are you sending Christmas cards this year? Have you received any cool cards? Are you as enamored with mason jars as I am?

How To: Snowflake Garland

2 Dec Snowflakes

This year, I bought my first real Christmas tree.

Well, it’s fake, but real in the sense that it’s taller than me. And takes up significant space in my living room rather than a corner of a hallway table.

My Christmas Tree

I won’t be getting a knock on the door from the Rockefeller Center people anytime soon, but I like it. It’s charming. It’s sparkly. And is there anything better than a room aglow with a Christmas tree?

But see that wall behind the tree? During the rest of the year, there’s a bookcase there with some ever-revolving art propped up to fill the space. The wall feels complete.

But when I moved the bookcase and set up the tree, the wall felt empty. I needed something to pull it all together.

Let’s take a closer look.

Snowflakes

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Hmm…a wall to fill…at Christmas time…

Snowflake garland!

I’ve always loved the whimsical look of paper art, especially during the holidays. There’s just something about mixing a little homespun crafting into holiday decor that feels right.

So, I went back to kindergarten a bit. Except this time I used real scissors and I wasn’t wearing saddle shoes (although that would have been awesome.)

Snowflake supplies

Snowflake Garland Supplies

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I used coffee filters to make about 45 snowflakes. If you haven’t done this before, it’s really easy. Here’s a tutorial, but basically, fold your coffee filter in half. Then fold it again. And again. Then snip little shapes out of the sides of your triangle. Do whatever you like, as long as you keep the triangle intact.

Unfold the coffee filter and you’ll have a snowflake, straight up Buddy the Elf style.

You can stop there and use the snowflakes to decorate Christmas gifts.

Leftovers

You've heard of the Rachel Ray garbage bowl? This is the Every Day Pretty craft scraps bowl.

If you want to make the garland, grab some ribbon. I used gold curling ribbon that I had on hand. I liked it because it added a little sparkle to the garland.

Measure the length of your wall and cut the ribbon accordingly.

Tape

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Cut several thin strips of tape and carefully tape your snowflakes to the ribbon. You can play with the spacing – I kept stepping back to see how I wanted to position the “snowflakes.” Snowflakes Pin It

Once you’ve got your snowflakes attached to the ribbon, use a slightly larger piece of tape to affix the top of the ribbon to the top of your wall. (You could do this more permantly with a nail or even a Command strip, but the tape has held up for almost a week so it worked for me.)

Repeat until you have enough garland to cover your wall.

Snowflakes Wall

Snowflaskes Wall 2

Snowflakes Wall 3

Snowflakes Wall 4

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I like the way it turned out. Now I just need to add some wrapped gifts under that tree (working on it) and it will feel complete.

Don’t have a wall to cover? Try a mini-version with cupcake liner snowflakes in a doorway!

Have you reverted to kindergarten crafts lately? How’s your Christmas decor coming along? Share in the comments!

DIY Framed Inspiration Board

30 Nov Inspiration Board

Oh, how I love an inspiration board. Maybe this is why Pinterest and I are such besties.

But there’s something about having your favorite pictures, quotes and colors right there in front of you, on paper.

When I created my home office (still very much a work in progress), one of the things I knew I wanted was a an inspiration board that I could add to from time to time. And I wanted the board itself to be pretty, because is anyone really inspired by a standard-issue bulletin board? Um, no.

I was inspired to create one of my own after seeing this framed board on the Ballard Designs website:

ballard designs board

More than $100 for a bulletin board? I planned on pinning lavish dreams to the board, not having a board that was a lavish dream itself.

I purchased this 16 x 20 barn wood frame from Michael’s for 40 percent off. (Don’t ever buy anything full-price at Michael’s – it all goes on sale every couple of weeks. And if you sign up for email, you’ll get a coupon every couple of weeks.)

Then I bought a cork roll (does that sound like a dance to anyone else?) from Amazon.com. You can find cork at any craft store. If you buy it thin, be sure to buy enough to double it up so your push pins will stay put.

cork roll

The party hit of 2011

To make my inspiration board, I popped the glass out of the frame, cut the cork to size and hot glued it to the frame backing. I let it sit for a couple of hours with some heavy books on top to be sure it stuck before I put it in the frame. (This project was all kinds of analog.)

DIY Cork Board

There’s the almost finished project. Almost finished because it’s empty. And that would mean I have found no inspiration. And that would be sad.

Here’s the board as it sits on my desk today.

Inspiration Board

If you look closely, you’ll find a hint to my next DIY project.

The “Live What You Love” print is from the Etsy shop HeartFish Press. She does some great letterpress work.

The content of the board will be rotated as I find new pretty things to look at.

Do you have an inspiration board? Or is Pinterest your one and only? What have you re-made from a catalog?

Pretty Quick: Cozy Candles

29 Nov Cozy Candles

What makes a room cozier?

Candles.

What makes a candle cozier?

A sweater.

Who wants cozy candles?

You, after you see how crazy simple they are to make.

Cozy Candles

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I used a mason jar and two dollar store glass candle holders, all lit by tealights. I grabbed a sweater I no longer wear and cut off both sleeves. I slid the sleeves around the candles (I trimmed a bit for the shorter one) and tada!

Cozy Candles Lit

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Cozy candles.

If you don’t have an old sweater lying around, check Goodwill. You can find an abundance of cozy sweaters there for a dollar or so.

Feelin’ cozy?

Got a Pretty Quick holiday decor trick? Share it in the comments!

Pinterest Challenge

2 Nov Peacock

Hmmm….how to describe Pinterest to the uninitiated?

You see pretty things. You pin them. You get inspired. Repeat.

And repeat. And repeat. And repeat. Seriously, Pinterest can take up a ton of time, if you let it.

That’s why I’m loving the Pinterest Challenge idea from Sherry at Young House Love and Katie  from Bower Power.

They came up with the Pinterest Challenge this summer in order to motivate all of us pinners to actually create something from all of the inspiration we post. Take a look at the awesome entries from the first challenge.

Now, it’s time for the 2nd Pinterest Challenge, Fall Edition. And since I now qualify (Pinterest obsession? Check. Blog? Check.) I’m participating.

Here’s the inspiration:

PeacockPin

And here’s my version:

And a close-up (because pretty guys deserve a close-up):

Peacock Closeup

I made this little guy by first sketching out the details with pencil on card stock. That took awhile, because I wanted to keep the intricacies of the feathers and the texture.

Then, I took a good ‘ole 50-pack of super-tip Crayola markers and got to doodling. This was a project that took a good month or so – I just picked it up and colored for a bit when I had time.

Now he lives in my bathroom, adding a pretty pop of color to an otherwise plain wall.

And… I learned two things.

  1. A brand new pack of markers is just as fun as it was in first grade.
  2. Bars should have coloring materials out at Happy Hour. Seriously. It’s stress relief times 10. Add a glass of wine and you’re golden.

What have you pinned lately that inspired you? Have you created something (food, art, outfits) from inspiration you found on Pinterest? Are you wondering what all this Pinterest stuff is all about? Email me and I’ll send you an invite.

PS. I just love Pinterest. They’re not paying me to say nice things about them.

The Changing of the Wreaths: Part 2

31 Oct Fall Wreath 1
So, it’s officially fall weather around these parts (Yay! Boots!) and, as promised, I’ve got a brand new wreath to greet the season.
Fall Wreath 1
I had originally planned to add more flowers, but I was really digging the simplicity so I backed aways from the hot glue gun. What do you think?
Fall Wreath 2

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Here’s how to make a yarn wreath for your door:

Gather the supplies listed in this post.

Heat up your glue gun and use a small dot of glue to secure the end of your yarn to the form. Pull out a good amount of yarn and cut it from the rest – it’s just easier to work with it this way.

Then, start wrapping the yarn around the form, careful to not leave gaps. You can secure it at places along the way with the hot glue gun. If you’re feeling extra colorful, you can switch up the yarn colors throughout.

This step is going to be time-consuming, I won’t lie. But it’s also really simple so it’s a perfect project to do while catching up on the DVR.

Once your wreath form is covered and secured with a dot of glue, it’s time to add the pretty.

Use your hot glue gun to adhere the flowers (or whatever you’ve chosen to use). Keep stepping back to take a look and determine how full you want your wreath to be.

Then, use a wreath hanger or a pretty piece of ribbon to hang the wreath on your door.

Boom! Bring on the season.

So are you as into seasonal wreaths as I am? Have you dressed your front door for fall?