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do it yourself {photo frame}

11 Nov

I have been wanting to hang more pictures up around our apartment for a while. Dan isn’t really willing to hang a bunch of pictures up though, because of all the holes he’ll have to fill when we move. So I wanted to come up with a way to hang pictures without actually hanging a bunch of frames.

So thank you Pinterest for, once again, having brilliant ideas for me use.

I found this amazing frame project on Pinterest. It is from the goodwillionaire blog and I loved it as soon as I saw it. I knew it would be perfect for what I wanted.

Now I just needed to find an awesome frame to use and I would be all set.

Finding a frame proved to be a little more difficult. I never saw frames like this at thrift stores. Dan I looked at Home Goods because we have a gift card and we found some that would have worked and we would have only had to pay about $15ish after the gift card. We decided to still keep looking. Our next stop was ReStore, which benefits Habitat for Humanity. We were thinking maybe we could find a cool old window or something. We didn’t find an old window but we came across 2 huge frames for only $5 each! The picture was super ugly and the frame was just a plain wooden frame, already painted my favorite color of teal, but the frame was really big and I knew it would work. So we bought both.

We threw out the pictures and the mats because they were old and dirty. We decided to save the glass just in case we might need it for something in the future. And we pulled out all the staples from the back so we were just left with the frame.

The paint was a little worn out and I didn’t like that you could see a line of unpainted wood on the inside, so I decided to do a quick coat of teal just to clean it up. {I somehow missed taking a picture of the new paint job but the colors were pretty close}

I bought twine to use to hang the pictures on and used a glue gun to attach it to the frame. I spaced each line of twine out by 6 inches so there would be a little space around the pictures. I wanted to use twine because I like the way it looks kind of rustic.

I let the hot glue dry for a couple hours to make sure it was really secure.

I used mini clothespins that I bought at WalMart to attach the pictures to the twine. I had a few wedding pictures that I knew I wanted to include on this so I put those on first. I had just ordered 101 free prints from Shutterfly the day before, so I just had to wait for those to come before I had more pictures to hang.

Last night, when we got home from a long day, there was the orange package from Shutterfly sitting by our mailbox. I knew I wanted to hang more pictures up right away. So, even though I was exhausted, I looked through those pictures and hung more up right away.

I absolutely love the way this turned out. I would love to have a fancier frame at some point but I think this works amazingly until then. I love how easy it will be to change pictures out as we do more activities and want to include those new pictures. And I love love love being able to hang more pictures up without putting tons of holes in the walls.

What do you guys think?

do it yourself: crayon drip art pumpkin

29 Oct

I realize I haven’t blogged much in the past week or so. I tried to and then things came up. And then our internet wasn’t working well. And so on…

So here I am, ready to blog about my pumpkin. Dan and I both talked about getting pumpkins to carve. Then the day when we were actually going to go get pumpkins, neither of us felt like carving a pumpkin. So I decided to buy a white pumpkin so I could try something that I had seen. This awesome crayon drip art pumpkin by Alexa on The Swell Life that I found through Pinterest.

I thought it would be really fun and something different to try.

Dan and I went to Apple Crest Farms last weekend and I found a perfect little white pumpkin. We also picked up some apple cider and some delicious apple cider donuts…that were pretty much gone by the time we got home….Anyway, on to my pumpkin.

I brought the pumpkin home and decorated it that same afternoon.

I found a box of unused cheap crayons in one of my craft drawers. I began by peeling all of the labels off.

I decided to do this on the kitchen floor where I had plenty of space. I put a trash bag down on the floor because I knew there might be some splattering as the crayons melted.

I started trying to lay the crayons on top of the pumpkin and discovered that they were too long so I broke the ends off the crayons. Then they were rolling off so I used a little dab of super glue to hold them all on the top of the pumpkin.

I used my hair dryer on hot and high. I tried medium but it didn’t really seem to be working well. There was some splattering but most of it stayed right on the trash bag. {ps. don’t mind my comfy clothes. Dan came over and decided to snap some pictures while I was in the middle of doing this}

Some of the crayons melted really well and others didn’t really do so well. It was kind of weird. But I just went with it and tried to heat them evenly.

I think it turned out really cool. Some of the colors show up better than other colors and some are more chunky. But I really love it.

This was something completely different from carving an orange pumpkin and I’m glad I did something different this year. Now if only we had a porch that I could put this out on…..Maybe next year.

Did anyone else do anything different this year?

pinned it. tried it. {do it yourself: painted canvas quote}

30 Sep
I found this DIY project on A Beautiful Mess a while ago and pinned it. It has been something I wanted to try but just haven’t gotten around to it.

Last week I finally got around to looking for  vinyl letters to use and Michaels. I wasn’t sure if I could use the permanent adhesive ones or the repositional ones. All they had in the size I wanted was the permanent ones so I decided to wait. I wasn’t sure they would come off the canvas. At Target the other day, I saw these letters and thought they would be perfect, especially because one package came with 2 sizes and it was only $2.99. (When I looked back at the blog post after I noticed that she used permanent ones so I guess either would work. Oh well) I already had a canvas and paint, so I was ready to go.

Dan and I decided on paint colors together that we thought would look good in our space. The first thing I did was cut out the letters that I needed so I could place them out on the canvas and see how they fit. I decided on green and pink stripes for underneath the letters. Then I peeled the letters and stuck them on the canvas where I wanted them.

I let the stripes completely dry before starting with the purple. I had to do 6 coats of purple in order to cover the color of the stripes. I like that you can still kind of see the texture of the stripes but I didn’t want to see the color at all. Once the purple was dry, I peeled the letters off so you could see the stripes underneath.

The purple bled under the edges of the letters a little but I actually like it better than if all the edges were perfect. I love the way this turned out. I love the colors and stripes. I think it looks really cool.

I think this was a fairly easy project to do. I have tons of canvases and lots and lots of quotes that I love. I can’t wait to make more of these. I think they would also make great presents.
What do you guys think?

do it yourself {fabric covered shoe box lids}

22 Aug
I found this idea on Pinterest a while ago…like way back when I started Pinterest. When we got a big canvas wedding picture, I knew this would be a great idea to go around the canvas because they would stick out from the wall similarly. I made 3 right away because we happened to have some shoe box lids laying around. The wall stayed like that for a while. I knew I wanted more but we didn’t buy any shoes for a while. Eventually, we had 4 more shoe box lids so I decided to make some more.
I went to Joann’s and bought a few fabric quarters that all went together with what was already on the wall. All the fabric was yellow/black/gray/white. I think they go together great without them matching exactly.

I got my trusty hot glue gun out to heat up. I cut the fabric so match each lid. Then I wrapped each one like a present and  glued each side tightly so the front on the lid is nice and tight.

When I first hung the first lids up, Dan just put a nail in the wall and we hung the lid right on the nail. When we had a strong fan blowing in that direction, they would sometimes fall off the wall and on to our heads in the middle of the night. So I decided to needed to make something to hang them with. I had some cardboard laying around and just made these little squares. I cut a square, folded it in half, poked a hole in it, and hot glued it to the side where I wanted to top to be. They work really well for such a simple thing.

Here are the 4 new ones I made. I love all of the fabrics together. And they match really well with the ones that were already on the wall.

Here is our finished wall with canvas picture and fabric covered shoe box lids. I really love the way the whole wall looks together.

I think it would look really cool with a ton of lids on the wall at all different heights. Maybe some day when we have a house and don’t mind putting so many holes in the wall, we can do more. I love this for now though, and it looks great over our bed.
What do you guys think?

pinned it. tried it. {ranch dressing}

18 Aug
I have decided that I pin so many things and I need to start actually doing more things that I have pinned. So I think the pinned it. tried it. might start to be a new thing that I do.
I’m starting with this ranch dressing I found on pinterest. It comes from here.


I absolutely love ranch dressing and I’m not a big fan of most other dressings. With me trying to eat healthier and everything, I decided to give this a try. I think it turned out pretty good.
1 cup plain nonfat greek yogurt
1 packet hidden valley ranch (dressing, not dip)
1/2 cup 1% milk
Whisk together in bowl and chill for 1 hour before serving.

my ingredients all ready to go

all mixed up

on my salad for lunch

I used Hannaford brand everything for this (as you can see from the picture). I did the recipe exactly as it said. I think it turned out kind of runny compared to real ranch dressing. I think next time I make it I might try a little less milk and see if that helps. I love the taste of this dressing though. It is something I will use again and again.
Has anyone else tried this? Or does anyone else have any homemade dressing recipes?

do it yourself {dry erase calendar}

16 Jul
Dan and I have been talking about having a big calendar that we can write things on because so much has been going on. We have a wall hanging one but we don’t write anything on it and there isn’t really a lot of space. I saw this dry erase calendar on Pinterest, which is from The Aesthetic Writer, and decided to give it a try.

I got a 16×20  poster frame that was 50% off at Joann’s. I also went to Home Depot and got a bunch of free paint chips. I decided to use yellow because I figured it would be light so we could see what we write clearly. I didn’t love the selection of yellow but I found enough. I got 6 colors and 4 of each color. I knew I could get 2 blocks out of each paint chip. I used a paper cutter to cut the blocks so they would be even. I cut them 2 inches by 2.5 inches.

I cut 6 of each color so I ended up with 36 blocks. I only needed 35 so I didn’t use one. I opened the frame and used the back of the paper that came in the frame. I laid out the edge so I could see how far apart to space the blocks. I glued the edge down then laid out the rest of the blocks and glued those down. I had a space at the bottom that I left white. I figured we could write notes or anything important from the next month. I wrote the days of the week above the blocks on the white. Then I put the paper back in the frame.

I bought an eraser and bright colored dry erase markers because I think they’re more fun. I wanted to put them next to the calendar so I made a little pocket to hang on the wall out of scrapbook paper. I just used a half sheet of paper, folded a bottom up and folded the sides around and taped it closed. Then I tacked it to the wall with flat thumb tacks. The stuff fit in perfectly without me checking before finishing it, so it worked out perfect.

At the apartment right now, we didn’t have many choices on where to hang the calendar. I wanted it somewhere it was easy to get to so we could write on it easily. We decided on the kitchen. There is an ugly phone jack right in the middle of the wall and this frame didn’t fit over it, so we had to put it next to it. It works for now and when we have a house, I’m sure we will have a nicer place to hang it.
I wrote the dates with a dry erase marker and the things we have going on this month. So now all we will have to change is the dates each month and add all of our activities. I love the way it turned out. And if we use it a lot and love the way it is, I would love to find a nice frame for it. This will work for us for now.
What do you guys think?


do it yourself {1st anniversary present – paper}

20 Jun
I definitely love the idea of doing traditional anniversary presents. I told Dan to make sure he did something having to do with paper for me. He was like, “so…I could get you a card…” haha. Anyway, he came up with something great.
I looked around for some fun ideas that I could make for Dan. I found some great ones and decided on one that I knew I could make and that Dan would love.
Here is my inspiration picture that comes from A Step in the Journey.

I printed a map of the United States out and cut out all of the states so I would be able to trace them on scrapbook paper. I chose a few different pieces of scrapbook paper to use. They were all plaid in teals, yellows, and greens. I placed the states together as I cut them out so I could see how the different papers were fitting together.

When I had about half of the states cut out, I decided to start taping them together. I didn’t have time to do them all that day, so I decided having them taped together would be the best way to keep myself organized. It also made it easier to see how they were fitting together.

I had a canvas that I wanted to use. I decided to just keep it white because I thought the colors would pop off the white. I also decided to paint on the canvas “Let’s go on an adventure”. Dan and I like exploring and going on adventures so I thought that would fit. I put modge podge over the whole canvas and let it dry.

I then hot glued the buttons to the places we have gone together. I already had buttons so I used teal and yellow buttons to go with the scrapbook paper. I decided to do places we’ve spent the night in. There aren’t many places we’ve gone but I know we will add lots more buttons.

I think this turned out really well and Dan loves it. He loves maps so he thought this was a really creative idea. He found a place and hung it right up on the wall.


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