My First Cross Stitch Pattern

Cross Stitch A Small Design And You May Not Lose Your Mind

I have been bitten by the cross stitching bug! The truth is that I have always loved hand embroidery in general. In fact, I have some very simple embroidery in the past. Cross stitching, however, I had never tried. Several years ago someone gave me a few cross stitch kits, but I was always a little intimidated by them. I’m not good at following patterns. Thank God that I decided to start with a small design because the pattern was driving me nuts! I had to figure out a way to make it work for me. Ultimately I made several copies of the pattern and kept track of my stitches by crossing them off as I went along. This kit in particular came with a plastic note holder and a refrigerator magnet. That is awesome because it’s a way great to display my first piece.

Cross Stitch Honey Do

Cross Stitch Honey Do

Cross stitching is a very satisfying craft. It makes me feel a connection to ladies of the past. According to my mother, my grandma was terrific at cross stitch. I don’t remember seeing any of her pieces, however, I do remember the cloth dolls that she made for me. She always cross stitched their faces. I sure wish now that I had kept at least one of them. But I didn’t, and that’s OK too. She made them for me to play, not for safekeeping. It also connects me to women from Victorian and Edwardian times.

Now I’m working on a much larger design that I purchased on E-bay. It is easily 10 times the size of this one! I probably won’t be showing you that one for a while. However, I have other small designs waiting on the wings. They’re not exactly cross stitch, but similar. They are Christmas tree ornament where you cross stitch tiny glass seed beats. I sure hope to have them finished before Christmas!

Shabby Chic Altered Canning Jar

Turning An Altered Jar Into a Makeup Brush Holder

There are a million and one ideas on the Internet for altering mason jars. In fact, I posted a couple of them in my post: Altered Mason Jars. But let’s be honest, we all love altered mason jars. So here’s one more idea for you. This jar is not really a Mason jar. It is a $1.00 canning jar from a discount store, but it works the same way. I have been storing my makeup brushes with the rest of my makeup, and they were getting squashed in there.

Shabby Chic Altered Canning Jar

Shabby Chic Altered Canning Jar

 

My Process For This Altered Jar

 

This process is much easier than it looks. The only negative part is that it’s a bit time-consuming. I used Chalk It Up Chalk Paint, Crackle medium and Lime Wax. All the products are by Earth Safe Finishes.

  1. I made sure that the jar was clean and dry.
  2. I brushed 2 coats of brown chalk paint.
  3. When the paint dried I brushed a nice, thick coat of Crackle Medium and waited a couple of minutes.
  4. I brushed a coat of blue chalk paint and added a few brush strokes of yellow chalk paint.
  5. I allowed the paint and crackle medium to dry for about an hour.
  6. When the paint was dry, I covered the jar with 2 coats of Lime Wax.
  7. The last steps were to adhere the jute and the flowers using hot glue.

This time I didn’t do a tutorial, instead I took a short video showing to show you the products and the end result. I’m going to use the same techniques and products on a larger glass vase. When I do, I’ll be sure to do a video tutorial so you can see for yourselves how easy it is to create this effect.

In the meantime, enjoy this video.

Chalk Paint Vanity Table Makeover

Chalk Paint Furniture MakeoverTired of Looking At Your Old Furniture? Give It a Makeover!

My vanity table was cute, but the color was an awful, dark charcoal. I was itching to give it a makeover, but I was always afraid of painting it and somehow ruining it. My experience is painting furniture was using some spray cans to cover 2 small patio tables, nothing special. I saw all those videos on YouTube where flippers get some flea market find and turn it into beautiful furniture. Well, that was not me. LOL. Then I told me myself, what the heck? It’s just paint! If it doesn’t come out right I can just pile on more paint ha ha ha!

So one night, while watching TV, I pulled out my Chalk It Up chalk paint and went to work. With chalk paint you don’t need any special preparations. You just need to make sure that your object is clean. That is what I LOVE about chalk paint!

The funny thing is that the entire makeover process was so easy with chalk paint that now I can’t wait to paint every piece of furniture in my house! It took me approximately one hour to paint and add the wax seal. I was so afraid for so long to ruin my table, only to find out that it’s a breeze! I can’t begin to tell you easy Chalk It Up chalk paint by Earth Safe Finishes goes on iron surfaces. My table is made of wrought iron.

How I Made Over My Vanity Table With Chalk Paint

  1. I used a wet paper towel to wipe clean the table.
  2. I mixed the colors that I wanted using mostly white, a little brown and a little yellow.
  3. With a large artist brush I painted my table, giving it two coats. Chalk It Up chalk paint dries very quickly.
  4. I brushed on one thin coat of wax sealer. I did not wipe it off because I wanted an old, shabby look. But if you don’t want that, just wipe off the paint as you apply it.

My table was dry to the touch within half an hour of applying the wax. However, just because the paint feels dry it doesn’t mean that it is completely dry. It should take several days to completely cure. As long as I am careful though, I will be able to use it without any problems.

For another one of my chalk paint painting adventures click on DIY Shabby Chic Wall Mirror.

 

The Romantic Notion of A Stationery Keepsake Box

Why Buy One When You Can Make Your Own?

Let me ask you a question. Do you like to open your mailbox and find a handwritten letter or a greeting card from a loved one? I know that I do. They are less and less common these days. Most of what I get by mail is junk mail. Even my bills arrive by email now. That is why I have kept the tradition of making and sending out birthday cards, Christmas cards and once in a while a Just Because card. But I never had a special place to keep them after I made them. It really became extremely absurd to have to try to remember where they were when I needed them.

In the meantime, I had bought several wooden boxes at Micheal’s to store my crafts supplies. I needed the boxes are look like shoe boxes. But they are hard to find because Micheal’s sells them for a very good price. That is why I purchased one box that was flatter and wider than the rest. It was the last one on the shelf. But it doesn’t fit properly in my craft shelf. That’s when I decided to turn it into my Stationery Keepsake Box.

Stationery Keepsake Box

Stationery Keepsake Box

I painted, added texture, hot glued decorations and, voila, I had aStationery Keepsake Box that matches the decoration in my bedroom. Now I have a place to keep my handmade greeting cards and I won’t have to waste a couple of hours trying to remember where I had placed them the last time that I used one.

The Process

Supplies:

  • Chalk It Up Paint by Earth Safe Finishes.
  • Texture Medium by Earth Safe Finishes.
  • Flat back pearls from Miriam’s Crafting Supplies.
  • Metal Embellishment from Miriam’s Crafting Supplies.
  • Alphabet Stickers.
  • Crafts flowers and leaves.
  • Rub-On Flocking Embellishments.
  • Words Stickers.
  • Hot Glue.

Instructions:

  • First I covered the box with my chalk paint and let it dry. There is not need to prep before painting. That’s what I love about chalk paint.
  • I brushed Texture Medium. This medium is quite thick so I added water to it. This made it easier to use with a brush. I added it sparingly because I wanted the blue to show a lot. OK, it is a little more than sparingly, but you get my drift.
  • I used hot glue to adhere all the embellishments.
  • The finishing touch for me was adding the quote. I can look at it every morning and remind myself that I have a new beginning.

I hope that I have now inspired you to make your own Stationery Keepsake Box and send some happy snail mail to your loved one once in a while.  Oh, and if you like this article I’d love it if you shared with your friends online. Thanks!

My Upcycled Thrift Shop Espresso Cup

 Don’t Overlook The Darling Little Cup At The Thrift Shop

One of my favorite things to do is to go through the nick knack sections of a thrift shop. I don’t look for that one of a kind thing that I can take to the Antiques Roadshow and make a killing of a fortune. I’m just looking for adorable items that call out my name. That is how I found this little espresso cup. It was just a little orphaned cup, but the simple lines and the cheery color made it irresistible to me. I knew that one day it would serve a purpose. I bought it and put it away for some future use.

upcycled thrift shop find espresso cup

Upcycled thrift shop find espresso cup

Now I have been redecorating my bedroom. The color scheme is blue, white, and yellow. It is finally time for the thrift shop espresso cup to rise and shine.

First I stuffed the cup with a paper towel. This helped me add the decorations without the chance of having everything collapse into the cup. Then I added the first layer of flowers and the beautiful yellow bird. After the bird was secured on the first layer of flowers I went ahead and added a second layer of flowers and tulle. At this point I hot glued a yellow ribbon and a blue cord near the rim of the cup. If truth be told, I should have done that first.  It would have made the process a little easier. The finishing touch was the little bow on the handle using leftover ribbon.

This cheerful cutie now sits on top of a cabinet, next to a blue vase filled with fresh sunflowers that I purchased from a street vendor. I love sunflowers. They are second only to daisies in my book. Now I can enjoy my bright, upcycled thrift shop espresso cup all the time. What adorable thrift shop find do you have in your house right now that you can upcycle too?

Turning A Simple Table Into A Treasure With Inspirational Words

Create Motivation In Your Life With Inspirational Words

Do you have a furniture piece that is very utilitarian but ugly and uninspiring? I can sympathize with you. I have one of those humdrum, personal folding tables in my bedroom. It is very useful, but quite the eyesore. You see, I’m one of those people who love to work on my art journal late at night when it is quiet. This little folding table is where I put my art supplies as I work. I decided to show my little table the love that it deserves.

Finally, my lettering classes have paid off! I decided that what I wanted to see when I looked at my art table were words to inspire my life. I decided to use the Fruit of Spirit, found in the Bible in Galatians 5:22-23.

Inspirational Words

Inspirational Words

Supplies:

  • You need a folding table or anything else on which to write your inspirational words.
  • A pencil and eraser.
  • Gesso or white paint, some chalk paint. I used Chalk It Up and Earth Safe Finishes.
  • Clear varnish or sealer. So far so good, right?

Instructions:

  • Paint the background first.  I mixed gesso and blue Chalk It Up paint until I got the color that I wanted.
  • Write your words in pencil first.  Never start with ink or paint.  Use a ruler to create guidelines.  Try to use different fonts.  It is a good idea to look up fonts in Pinterest and use them as a guide.
  • Make some words darker by going over them with paint several times.
  • Make some decorations like wiggly lines, hearts etc.
  • Wait until everything is fully dry and protect the paint with clear varnish.

This is probably one of the easiest projects that you can make. However, the impact on your life can be tremendous. Take a look at anything that you already have at home and think of a way to use inspirational words to enhance it.

 

 

Easy Makeover For Any Lamp

Do You Want An Easy Makeover For Your Lamps?

I have two lamps in my bedroom that I like very much. However, the shades are a little boring. I certainly did not want to get rid of them. I love the base and I don’t want the extra expense of new lamps. My redecoration is being done on a shoestring budget. That’s when I saw a photo online of an adorable little lamp with a little skirt type thing covering the shade. Eureka! I still had some gingham left from the DIY decorative pillows project. That is how I came up with the covers for my two bedside lamps.

Easy Makeover For Any Lamp

Easy Makeover For Any Lamp

What you’ll need:

  • Enough fabric to cover your lamp shade. You need to have enough to for the two hems and a couple of inches more. You don’t want the shade peeking behind your top ruffles or from the bottom. I recommend that you have enough fabric to go around the shade at least twice.
  • Ribbon to decorate the top.
  • Iron on hemming tape. It will be much easier to make your hem that way.
  • An Iron.
  • Thread to hold your ruffles. I used white because my ribbon is white.
  • Dressmaker pins.
  • A safety pin.

The instructions are very easy:

  • First cut your fabric and ribbon to size before starting your project.
  • Make your hems using the hemming tape and a hot iron.
  • Fold your ruffles and pin down your ribbon at the same time.
  • With a needle and matching thread secure your ribbon and your ruffles using the basic running stitch.
  • Wrap your ruffled skirt around your lampshade and layer the ends making sure that the prettier end is on the outside.

Secure the cover with a safety pin. Don’t put the safety pin through the shade, only through the cover. You don’t wan to ruin your shade.

Voila! You’re done with your easy makeover for any lamp.

Easy Makeover For Any Lamp

Easy Makeover For Any Lamp

If you like this idea, if you’re inspired to make your own, I would love to know.  Leave me a comment and let me know.