Birthday Party Ideas, Party Craft Ideas - DIY Inspired
20th Jan2014

Recycled Carton and Straw Treat Box

by Dinah Wulf

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Being a craft hoarder at heart, I went to throw away this juice carton and in mid throw I stopped myself. I decided to myself up to the challenge and upcycle it. I stared at it for a bit and stared some more. After a few minutes knowing that Valentine’s Day is right around the corner I willed myself into a trash to treasure making a Recycled Carton and Straw Treat Box.

Materials:

  • Clean milk or juice carton
  • Sharp craft knife
  • Straight edge
  • Pencil
  • Straws (the pretty paper kind!)
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue and glue gun
  • Large plastic treat bag
  • Ribbon
  • Washi tape

Here’s the juice container that taunted me.

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I cut it in half by measuring and marking with a pencil and ruler and cutting with a craft knife.  I measured about three inches from the bottom. I washed and dried my new box… oh and the craft knife and ruler too because they got sticky (apparently I didn’t rinse out the carton well enough).

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The straws are a little over seven inches, so I ended up cutting them into three and a half inch pieces. To make it easy, I used the ruler each time and cut.

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One by one I hot glued each straw to the carton. You can kind-of-sort-of create a pattern by arranging the stripes as you go. Make sure you know which side you want to show before you add the hot glue since it dries so quickly.

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A large treat bag fits perfectly over the treat box. I filled it with Valentine’s day heart shaped cookies from my bakery (no I didn’t make them!). I closed the top with a little bit of fun patterned washi tape and tied a pink ribbon around the outside of the plastic bag.

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There you have it! Instant treat box! You can use these for any holiday or occasion and switch up the straw colors. I thought that this one would be cute for Christmas as well. 

13th Jan2014

15 Minute Craft: Paper Towel Roll Valentine Scroll

by Dinah Wulf

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Woo hoo! Another series of Craft Lightening is here and I am sharing a fun recycled Valentine that my daughter and I made for my husband (hopefully he doesn’t see this post before Valentine’s Day)! This craft only takes fifteen minutes (or less) to make.  Here is how we made our Paper Towel Roll Valentine Scroll.

Materials:

  • Two paper towel rolls
  • Three sheets of scrap book paper
  • Paper cutter
  • Double sided tape (or glue)
  • Computer (optional)
  • Ribbon

Instructions:

First cut two pieces of paper (in the same color) with a paper cutter in 8X11 pieces. These will cover the paper towel rolls at each end of the scroll. Cut a third piece of scrapbook paper in a size 11X12. This will be the center piece that the letter is on.

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On both of your 8X11 pieces, place double sided tape (or glue) down the center to secure each paper towel roll.

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Next tape one of the paper towel roll ends to the center piece as shown.

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Fold it over and secure it with tape or glue.

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Repeat on the other side.

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Write your message on the blank side of your scroll.  We typed it, printed it, and taped it inside with a boarder (optional).  Our message said:

Daddy,

On this special Valentine’s Day,

There are a few things I want to say.

Even though I’m only three years old,

I know you love me more than gold.

And when push comes to shove,

You’ll always be my first love.

Because when I’m older and give life a whirl,

I’ll remember that I’ll always be your little girl.

Will you be my Valentine, Daddy?

Love, Mia

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You can roll it right up with the message inside…

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…and the patterned part on the outside.

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Lastly, add a pretty bow!

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Thank you to Country Chic Cottage and 30 Minute Crafts for allowing me to participate in another fun Craft Lightening!  If you want to see some of my other 15 minute crafts you might like:

09th Jan2014

Easy Homemade Love You Valentine

by Dinah Wulf

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I love making my own cards. It only takes a few minutes and is such a great personalized touch…oh yeah, and it’s cheaper than buying one! I made this easy homemade Love You Valentine in a few easy steps. I love that you can pull the little felt flower out as an added bonus! Here is how I made it.

Materials:

  • Cardstock (I used a pretty lavender color)
  • Paper cutter
  • Cutting Mat
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife
  • Straight Edge
  • Felt
  • Toothpick
  • Glue
  • Pencil
  • Circle punch

I started off by cutting my card. If you have envelopes handy use those dimensions. For some reason I always have extra envelopes lying around. How does that happen???

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I used a cutting mat and craft knife to cut slits in the front of the card for my heart toothpick to go through. This slit was approximately one inch from the bottom of the card.

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Next, I cut out a heart out of some scrap pink felt I had left over…

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…and glued it to a toothpick. Hot glue works best because it’s quick and easy and you don’t have to wait for it to dry especially if you are making several of these cards at once.

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I also used a craft punch to cut out a circle and drew a “u” in the center of it.

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Finally I glued the circle to the front of my card.

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That’s it! A sweet, simple, and thoughtful “love you” card with a bonus gift! I thought this would be cute for Mia to send to her grandparents, cousins, and uncles and aunts.

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01st Jan2014

Best of DIY Inspired 2013

by Dinah Wulf

Best of diyinspired 2013 Collage

Happy New Year!!!!!! I can’t believe it’s 2014.  I remember New Year’s 1994 when I was 18 and thinking that 20 years was SO far away.  What happened? Where does the time go? I feel that way with blogging too.  It’s been over two and a half years now and just FLYING by. At the end of last year I wrote Top 15 Recycled Crafts and Projects of 2012 and I swear that wasn’t 12 months ago…Geesh! This year I decided to do the Best of DIY Inspired 2013. All nine of these posts have been shared over a thousand times, some several thousand…what?? Here we go!

Best Storage and Organization PostCraft Room Ideas  

This was when I turned an extra room into the official craft room AKA, my sanctuary.

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Best UpcycleRecycled Map Drawer Makeover

As you can see in that last post, my drawers in the craft room were naked. This post took care of that!

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Best Trash to Treasure PostStuffed Animal Toy Storage

Literally trash to treasure, I turned a plant hanger I found in the garbage into toy storage for my daughter’s room.

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Best Recycled Craft ProjectCoffee Filter Flowers

I made this bouquet of paper flowers out of coffee filters and book pages.

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Best Kid’s “Stuff” PostReading Nook for Kids

One of my best ideas to date because it encourages my daughter to read or be read to!

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Best Thrift Store Makeover- Painting Old Furniture

Best $5.00 I ever spent :) 

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Best 15 Minute Craft- DIY Rope Vase

This is an easy way to update a boring glass vase.

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Best Theme PartyAlice in Wonderland First Birthday

This is another fun theme party from my best friend who just started blogging too! Go visit her at Simply Creative Ways!

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Best Holiday PostElf on the Shelf Ideas

And finally, this post along with this Two Dozen Elf on the Shelf Ideas post were done in December but shared a lot! Oh and did I mention it started an obsession! Yikes!

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20th Dec2013

Paper Toolbox Gift Card Holder Tutorial

by Dinah Wulf

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Thank you to Ralph’s for sponsoring this Paper Toolbox Gift Card Holder Tutorial post as a part of the Gift Card Pairings Campaign. All opinions are 100% my own.

As a Crafter and DIY Blogger, I spend a lot of time at not only craft stores, but home improvement stores. Many of my fellow Bloggy friends could attest to that statement! My BEST friend, in fact is also a craft and DIY Blogger over at Simply Creative Ways. This year for Christmas, I knew right away I wanted to give her a gift card that I selected from Ralph’s awesome gift card selection. I ended up making a fun gift card holder that looks like a pink toolbox.  Here is my Paper Toolbox Gift Card Holder Tutorial.

Materials:

  • Paper Cutter
  • Pink, black, and glittery silver card stock
  • Glue or double-sided tape
  • Scissors
  • Computer and printer
  • Lowes gift card
  • A fabulous present to go with it!

Instructions:           

I ended up buying my friend DIY ideas: Projects and tips for every room and a $25 Lowes Gift card from Ralph’s.

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To make the toolbox gift card holder, cut your pink piece of card stock in 4 ¼”X 7”.

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Fold it in 3”, 3”, and 1”parts as shown.

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Cut out 3 4 ¼” X ¼” strips out of the glittery silver cardstock, two silver latches, and a black handle.

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On my computer, I made a little “Crafter” label, print it out and cut it.

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Using double sided tape, I put it all together.  You may find it easier to use glue or a glue stick, but I’m obsessed with double-sided tape and use it for everything… good stocking stuffer (hint hint)!

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Here are a few AFTER photos. I can’t wait to give it to my friend! 

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17th Dec2013

Mason Jar Teacher’s Survival Gift Kits

by Dinah Wulf

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My daughter is only three years old but she is in her first year of pre-school. So, this is the first time she’s really had teachers AND the first time I’ve gotten to make a teacher’s gift for the end of winter break. I decided to break out the good old recycled Mason jars and make Mason Jar Teacher’s Survival Gift Kits for her teachers, Mrs. Shelly and her assistant Mrs. G.

Materials:

  • Mason jar per gift
  • Scrapbook paper
  • Paper cutter
  • Double sided tape
  • Paint
  • Brush
  • Circle craft punch
  • Computer and printer (optional)
  • Felt ribbon
  • Gifts (see below)

I started off by using two spaghetti sauce jars.  I had to REALLY wash them because they smelled like sauce!

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I decided to buy some fun small things to fit inside like, candy, mints, gum, note pad, pen, lip balm, mini lint roller, hand sanitizer, lotion, and band aides. The possibilities are endless for this gift.  Gift cards and movie tickets are great too.

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Next I designed, printed, and cut out my scrapbook paper to cover the jars. Since they are pre-school teachers I picked little blue mittens and red stockings for my decorative paper.

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I stuffed the jars and everything fit nicely.

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I added them to the jar and painted the lid blue and used a circle craft punch to cover the top with corresponding paper. I love the combo of blue and red.

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Finally, I used felt ribbon to mimic a scarf for the ribbon around the lid. That’s it! I thought they turned out so cute.  I really hope Mrs. Shelly and Mrs. G love them!

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13th Dec2013

9 Eco-Friendly Gift Wrapping Ideas

by Dinah Wulf

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I was wrapping gifts the other day and realized that I have published some fun eco-friendly gift wrapping ideas here on DIY Inspired and on Inheriting Our Planet as well.  Since the holidays are just around the corner, I thought I’d share nine easy ideas from both sites. Make sure you check out the links for all the pictures and full step by step tutorials!  Here we go!

Recycled Food Containers & Dyed Coffee Filter Flowers

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I made these for my Twin God Daughter’s on their first birthday. Recycled food boxes worked out perfectly because their clothes were so small!

Brown Paper Bag with Neon Color Gift Wrapping

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These are a bright mix of fun neon colors mixed with the simplicity of the brown paper bag.  This wrapping is perfect for stocking stuffers and small gifts.

Dyed Book Page or Newspaper Flowers

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I used good old newspaper to wrap this present but gave it a colorful kick with some dyed water colored book page roses.  Check out the full tutorial.

Recycled Box Gift Bags

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I loved making these!!! And they were quite a hit with the recipient. All you need is boxes, scrapbook paper, ribbon, and decorative tape.                                                                                                                           

Recycled Food Box Gift Bags IOP

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On Inheriting Our Planet, I made similar ones for a Hello Kitty themed gift for my daughter’s best friend’s birthday.

Recycled Coin Wrapper Gift Embellishment

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These were the result of a challenge from one of my friends who works at a bank and handed me several rolls of coin wrappers.  These cute little flowers are perfect for embellishing gifts, especially at this time of the year.

Repurposed Coffee Can Gift Set

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This one was a quickie! I drink so much coffee that I always have these little buckets handy.  They are perfect as gift boxes.  You can paint and decorate them any which way you wish!

Recycled Baby Food Jar Gifts

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I made these on Inheriting Our Planet recently. These are perfect for an upcoming Christmas party for favors.  So ask your friends with little ones to save those jars for you!

Pringle’s Can “Pull Me” Gift Kits

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Last but not least! Another one from Inheriting Our Planet; these fun gift kits are great for anyone on your list and are fun to open too!

11th Dec2013

Gift Card Pairing Ideas for the Holidays

by Dinah Wulf

Gift Card Pairing Ideas is sponsored by Ralph’s.  All opinions are 100% my own.

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I’ve often heard people say “gift cards are so impersonal”.  On the contrary, gift cards allow the recipient to buy what their hearts desire without the hassles and hurts of playing the return and exchange game. I’ve put together a fun list of creative gift card pairing ideas to make the “impersonal” a thoughtful and stand out holiday gift. Oh! And of course I had to throw in my own upcycled DIY tutorial!

My husband and I went to Ralph’s and were inspired by so many ideas.  We searched the aisles to look for creative gift card pairing ideas… and I must say we were EASILY inspired! We came up with several ideas to fit many different types of people like, co-workers, picky family members, and fellow Moms. More on this later… I want to share with you what I ended up buying my in-laws along with a gift card from Ralph’s.

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My in-laws are coffee drinkers like me, so we bought two recycled eco-friendly Aladdin coffee travel mugs, a bag of their favorite Starbucks coffee, and some Private Selection Carmel Sea Salt hot cocoa.

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I decided to make my own gift box out of a recycled food box. I cut it to size leaving the top open.

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To cover it, I used:

  • Recycled burlap coffee bean sack
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue and glue gun
  • Paper (optional)

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The burlap I used was a little see-through, so I covered the box with paper to hide the writing.  I had this burlap coffee sack left over from when I made my recycled coffee bean sack pillows. I used a glue gun to secure the burlap in place.

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I stuffed the inside with some extra burlap scraps and placed my items gift card inside.  It turned out quite sturdy and cute!

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Here are some other gift card pairing ideas we came up with while inspired by walking up and down the aisles of Ralph’s:

  1. Dessert theme:  ice cream cones, sprinkles, chocolate and caramel sauce, and cherries
  2. Baby theme: any baby products along with your gift card
  3. Nail theme: nail clippers, nail file, nail polish, cotton balls
  4. Spa theme: face mask, wash glove, loofa, sponge, lotion
  5. Mixed drink theme: any of the Bonny shakers, corckscrew, jigger, or cocktail strainers, and a bottle of liquor
  6. Wine theme: bottle of wine, wine charms, wine bag, and corkscrew

The list goes on and on but those are our favorites.  We wanted to give a big THANK YOU to Ralph’s for sponsoring this post and inspiring us!

02nd Dec2013

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

by Dinah Wulf

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My older brother told me that when I was little I used to sing “My Favorite Things” from the Sound of Music and I would mess up the words. For example I would sing, “When the bee bites, and the dog stings.” I often think of that time and age in my life when I’m stressed out. Being creative is very therapeutic for me. Sometimes it’s just the little things like wrapping presents for friends that make me happy.  Many times (if not all) when I’m “crafting” there really isn’t an exact plan.  Things just happen and fall in place.  Anyway, I decided to wrap these brown paper packages tied up with string to relieve some stress of the holiday season this year.

This was my process… just picture me staring at the boxes and raiding my craft room in between each step wondering what to do next.

I started with these boxes.  You can’t see what’s inside because it’s for two of my best friend’s birthdays coming up and I don’t want them to see it!

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Because of “My Favorite Things” I wrapped them in brown paper.

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I looked in my cabinet filled with all different types, colors, textures of ribbon and pulled out this super thick lace.

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I also found some pretty pink satin ribbon.

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I finished them off with some twine, a felt flower, and I used a craft punch to make the tags.

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I know I know… not a crazy tutorial or upcycled DIY project today… but just taking a moment to enjoy simple things like wrapping presents for friends that make me happy!

28th Oct2013

How to Upcycle a Vase with Paint

by Dinah Wulf

How to Upcycle a Vase with Paint is sponsored by Elmer’s. All opinions are 100% my own.

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I had the honor of testing out a fun craft product, Elmer’s Paint Markers.  They are great because you can use them on wood, metal, glass, ceramic, and even fabric.  When I received these markers I knew immediately what I wanted to try with some recent thrift store finds. 

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Here is a short four minute video tutorial I did on How to Upcycle a Vase with Paint.

How to Upcycle a Vase with Paint

Before and After Painted Vase

Materials:

Instructions:

I purchased these glass vases at a thrift store for $2-$3 a piece.

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Step One:

Once you remove your Elmer’s Paint Markers from the package, shake them well.  Remove the cap and press the tip down onto a piece of scrap paper for approximately 60-90 seconds to allow the paint to bleed through.

Step Two:

Fill your glass with a generous amount of paint.

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Move and shake the glass until the paint coats the entire inside of the glass.  This takes time and patience!   Allow the paint to dry overnight.

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Step Three:

Apply an adhesive stencil to your vase.  Feel free to free-hand your design instead of using a stencil.

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Fill in the stencil with the desired Elmer’s paint Markers color.

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Remove the stencil.

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Here is another clear glass vase that I painted green and added polka dots with the metallic markers.

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Here is another vase I found at a thrift store that was already green in color. I painted a flower trim with the markers.

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There you have it!  The possibilities are endless.  Try these markers on canvas, metal, and wood too!

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Thank you to Elmer’s for sponsoring this video and post!

22nd Oct2013

Thrift Store Apothecary Jars How To

by Dinah Wulf

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Apothecary jars are so beautiful and can serve several display purposes.  You can use them for candy, holiday decorations, or even display your collections. They look pretty on a mantel or kitchen island or even a bathroom filled with sponges or shells.  I like to use them for candy on a candy bar dessert table for parties. Apothecary jars start at about twenty dollars apiece for the small ones, I decided to try a little do it yourself thrift store apothecary jars project.

I found a box of four glass canisters at a discount housewares store for twelve dollars.

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On one of my recent thrift store ventures, I found some candle holders for $1.50 apiece.

Additional materials needed are:

  • Spray paint of your choice
  • A strong adhesive

In my case, I chose a metallic silver spray paint and Gorilla glue.

Before you start, make sure your jars candle holders are clean and free of wax especially if you purchased them at a thrift store.  When you spray paint them, every little bump will show (I learned this the hard way).

Spray paint your candlesticks holding the can about 12 inches away in a well-ventilated area.

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When the paint is completely dry, approximately two hours, glue the candlestick to the canister. I let the glue set overnight before picking it up, just to be safe.

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Voila! Instant DIY apothecary jar! Fill it with whatever you like… pinecones, peppermint sticks, or ornaments for the holidays are perfect for this time of year.

25th Sep2013

Vintage Themed Baby Shower

by Dinah Wulf

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FINALLY! I get to share the vintage themed baby shower that I have had the honor of working on for my best friend’s brother and sister-in-law.  It was a beautiful day and my friend had the perfect back yard for it.

I know I already shared:

I had such a great time decorating for this party.  I bought some flowers and arranged them all before I left.  I loaded the car and brought all my decorations including the thrift store shelf I made over.  I wasn’t sure exactly how I was going to decorate because I had no idea how the venue would be set up.  There were five tables, so I needed five centerpieces.  I brought some toys, vintage books, small decorative suitcases, several handkerchiefs I bought while antique shopping, and of course the flowers.

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I also had the food table to decorate.  I layered the table with boxes to create some height.  I also brought some cupcake stands I made. The table was quite the hodge-podge, but I think I made too many decorations!

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I ended up using my thrift store shelf to place the favors on.  I brought my DIY pedestal trays, some antique books, and more handkerchiefs. I c small flower boxes from the craft store and put chocolates inside.

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I wish I took more pictures of the backyard in total but I forgot!  There was too much going on and I was trying to enjoy myself.  Oh well!

16th Sep2013

Fun and Easy Baby Shower Decorations

by Dinah Wulf

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There is so much that goes into decorating a baby shower…well, at least when I decorate for one!  Last week, I shared a couple decorations I made; a fabric scrap bunting and recycled jar flower vases I made for a vintage inspired party. I’ve been on a roll with making these fun and easy baby shower decorations, and sometimes some of the work and details are missed when you only show the final product, so I thought I’d share a few more.

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I bought these wooden frames from Michael’s and Mia and I painted them different colors.  I bought some onesies and baby socks and hung them from twine.  I embellished each end with lace and ribbon in different colors and textures. They turned out so cute.

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Here’s another tiny flag banner made out of scrapbook card stock, twine, and mini clothes hangers. I will string this inside a vintage suitcase as part of one of the center pieces (I think… We’ll see how it actually turns out the day I decorate. I always end up moving things around).

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I made this banner using doilies I found in the dollar bin. I simply folded them in half and secured it with double sided tape.

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I’m getting really excited for this shower! I’ve pulled a bunch of thing together that I already have, I’m just going to bring it all and wing it that day. I think I’ll bring my up cycled blue thrift store shelf to put the drinks on. We’ll see! The shower isn’t for a couple weeks. Can’t wait to show you!

05th Sep2013

Whimsical Navy and Yellow Wedding

by Dinah Wulf

My baby cousin got married!!! Woo hoo! I’m so happy for them…they are seriously PERFECT for one another.  With their permission, I just HAD to share some fun DIY wedding ideas for this very sweet, very whimsical navy and yellow wedding.

Ceremony

This was a very small and intimate wedding. It was the perfect size, if you ask me. There were about fifty or sixty guests.  The center aisle was lined with lanterns adorned with painted wooden yellow hearts with a navy background.  Simple white paper flower flowers graced the alter.

Table Setting

Covered in navy linens and yellow napkins, the table was beautifully done with wooden boxes.  Each box had three bottles of yellow and white flower bouquets.

The bride and groom had special Mr. and Mrs. Wooden letters on their chairs.

There were also special bottles of wine gifted by the groom’s father. Each bottle had a personalized number of years labeled on it and a silver pen attached.  Each guest wrote a special note on the bottle for the bride and groom to open on the corresponding year.

Decorations

Lanterns and lights were strung across the entire dining and dance floor.

The bride crafted recycled bottles spray painted in a textured gray spray paint as pretty vases scattered on the food, gift, and favor tables.

The bride also upcycled a hutch she found for five dollars and used it to display cupcakes.

She also make DIY cupcake stands with candlesticks and plates.

Games

There were several games for guests to play under a beautiful gazebo with cushioned seats.

Favors

Last but not least, there were personalized navy and yellow pinwheels for each guest to take home and place in their garden to remind them of this special day.

This was one of the best weddings I have attended… congrats again to Mr. and Mrs. Brian and Jenny Fusco! Love you guys!