Saturday, December 8, 2012

DIY Leg Warmers

Love your new winter boots but wishing they were a little warmer (and cuter)? These leg warmers are disguised as socks to keep your feet warm but not too squashed in your boots!


What you need:
-a sweater to cut up
-sharp scissors
-fabric glue or a surging machine
-a sewing machine or a needle and thread

Go to Goodwill and find yourself a cute sweater! I look for sweaters with interesting arm designs that would also look good as 'socks'. Make sure that you get a sweater that fits over your calf, or at least fits to mid calf, where ever you're planning on wearing it!

Lay the sweater flat and measure the length you want your socks to be! Cut straight across, making sure that your cut is always parallel with the edge of sleeve. (Or you can do what I did and cut with the pattern, but I eventually trimmed it to be straight.)

Try your leg warmers on. Chances are, they're not snug around your leg because one side is slanted out thanks to them originally being a sweater sleeve! Turn the leg warmer inside out and sew up the side with the seam, making another seam, farther in, so that the leg warmer is a perfect rectangle. (You can do this with a sewing machine or needle and thread. It will be much sturdier with a machine, but work with that you have!)


 Now onto the bottom edge! You can either surge the edge with a machine, blanket stitch the edge, use fabric glue to hold the sweater together, or you can tuck under and sew a seam in there. It really depends on the type of material the sweater is made out of. For something not very sturdy like a cotton sweater, I would surge it or tuck it under and sew. For a sweater of wool or other thick fibers, I would surge it, blanket stitch it, or glue it!

And now you have your easy, cheap, and hopefully cute leg warmer/socks!


Sunday, September 16, 2012

DIY Fabric Coasters

Here's a quick and easy tutorial on making coasters out of fabric that you really like! And you don't need a lot of fabric for this to work!

-at least a square foot of fabric
-sharp cutting shears
-Large crochet hook (I used size N)
-a little patch of felt
-needle and thread

Step 1:
Lay out the fabric and start cutting from one end to the other in small strips, but DON'T cut all the way down. Don't separate the strip from the body of the fabric. Just go down and leave about an inch of uncut fabric and turn back around and start cutting back. Do this so that the entire piece of fabric turns into long strip! If you're confused, refer to the picture, or comment and I can post a diagram.

Step 2:
Ball up the fabric strip! If you don't know how to ball yarn, now is the time to learn! Wrap a strip around your index finger and middle finger and make a little wad, then take it off of your fingers and wrap it perpendicularly, so that it looks like a little bow. Then just keep wrapping and making it look more and more circular! If my instructions have caused havoc, check out youtube for some tutorials!

Step 3:
Start crocheting! If you can't do this then you need to hit up your grandma or youtube again and watch some tutorials. It's so easy to crochet in a circle with some practice you'll be a pro! I personally crochet circles using the "magic circle" method. It works beautifully!

Step 4:
Make your coaster as big as you want then sew in the ends and grab that felt! Cut out a felt circle for the back that's a little smaller than the actual coaster.

Step 5:
Get your needle and thread out and sew the felt circle on! And you have your cute and easy coaster!


Sunday, August 19, 2012

DIY Egg Carton Lights

What cha need:
-strand of Christmas lights
-enough cardboard cartons for every light or every other light on your strand
-sharp scissors
-paint or anything else you want to decorate with
-small pocket knife
Step one:
cut apart carton and individual cups. The cups naturally separate into four petals.. Don't do what I did and try to make them 5 or 6 petal flowers because it looks bad and it's unnecessarily hard. Get the four petal flower down and you'll be happy :)

EXTRA SHINE: I did another egg carton yesterday and I sprayed the inside and outside of the carton with silver spray paint just for more shine and sparkle. It looks more like metal than cardboard now and gives it a more girly vibe! Just an idea if you want some more color!

Step two:
Make a slice on the bottom of the cup for the light to come through; make sure the slit is no more than a cm across or it won't stay fastened to the light strand. 
Step three:
Paint glue inside flowers and add glitter. You can spray paint them as well, I just don't have access to spray paint right now so I was trying the glitter out! Decorating the outside of the cup is also a pretty idea! I want them to be low key looking bc red isn't a color in my room so I left the outside the cardboard color.

Step four:
Be patient and let everything dry! Then just pop the cups over the lights and ta daa! You have your snazzy little room decor for less than $10!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

DIY Crackle Paint

How to make your own crackle paint at home! 
You need:
-a base color paint 
-a color to crackle with
-WOOD glue
-two sponges or brushes
 (it needs to be wood glue because it bonds to paint better than school glue but won't ruin your brush or hands like gorilla glue)
 I used Annie Sloan's Chalk Paint because I don't quite understand it yet so I was just playing around, but any regular paint you would use for walls or wood will work fine! 

First step: Prepare the surface for the first layer of paint: sand, clean, wipe off..whatever you need to do! Then paint the base color onto the surface and let dry. I do not have a picture of the all blue drawer..sorry!

Second step: Once base coat is dry (be patient if it's not, it will dry eventually, promise) paint a thick layer of WOOD glue onto the surface and spread around where you want the crackle to appear. Make sure you apply the glue quickly because the layer of paint needs to be added onto the glue while it's wet. After you've applied the glue, dab on plenty of paint with your second brush and smooth around; it will mix with the glue and turn into a thick sticky layer. If this happens, you did it correctly! 

Notice how shiny and thick it appears, it will do that because the paint and the glue have mixed somewhat. Also notice the small lines forming in the top layer instantly even though the white paint was sponged on evenly. This is the crackle starting!

After many painful hours of checking on my drawer, it finally dried! All pretty and crackled too! I kept it outside in the shed with a fan on it and it took about 6 hrs to completely dry. 

Step Three: I sanded it down quickly and not with too much pressure so the crackle look was preserved, just to smooth it out a bit. The Chalk Paint comes off in a thick powder as seen above because of the minerals that are in it...I'm still confused about this stuff.. 

Step four: Wipe it off with a damp cloth and you're ready to go!
Ta daa! (it looks a bit odd with my already distressed nightstand, so a new painted look for that is in the near future :) 

Thanks for reading!! Feel free to post and comments, questions, or advice below!