Monday, April 6, 2015

DIY Coat Rack for less than $30

We have a problem. It's called not enough hooks to hang things on. This problem manifested itself recently when I received several new purses as gifts, and my hanging spot became a chair. And then I stopped hanging up my coat in the coat closet because it was too far away. And then our entry way turned into a pile of purses and coats and gym bags and our primary bag and I just can't handle that kind of clutter. We decided that something must be done, so we got on the internet and looked for a free standing coat tree rack (we're in a rental, so anything wall-mounted just wouldn't work). We did a lot of searching, because we wanted something sturdy but inexpensive because let's face it, we just need to hang our stuff up so it doesn't look like we're hoarders.

The more we looked for one to buy, the more we realized that we can make our own dang coat rack and it would look cooler and be cheaper to make! So we decided to make our own. I was inspired by the design of this one from Anthropologie (but not the price.. yikes!). So we went to Home Depot.

We bought: A 2x2x8 pine pole for $8, 4 L-shaped supports for just over $1 each, and two sets of hooks that were I think around $2 for a pair.

Other supplies needed: A hand saw and some sandpaper (although we could have had the pole cut at Home Depot if we had thought of it)


I forgot to take pictures of the actual process, but I think it took us about 30 minutes to finish, including hand-sawing the pole.


It's the perfect spot for our jackets and my purses!


I really like how the industrial supports came together with the plain pine wood of the pole. 


This was such an easy DIY and it was fun for my husband and I to make together too :)
(I'm playing with the idea of making more of them to sell.. maybe! Stay tuned)

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Gift Wrapping on the Cheap

Christmas Double Post: (I promise this is it!)

One of my most favorite parts about the Christmas season is wrapping all the Christmas gifts I've gotten for my family. It usually takes me several weeks to pick them all out and/or make them all, but the best day of December is the day I finish my shopping and DIYing, pile all the gifts up and start wrapping.

This year, we underestimated the amount of gifts we'd be wrapping and only bought one roll of wrapping paper and some ribbon. Luckily we had a pretty good stockpile of Trader Joe's Christmas bags and brown packing paper from the Dollar Store. 

I used a bottle ring to trace circles on the Trader Joe's bags to make all the gift tags which was fun and I think they turned out cute! 

I also had a bunch of random ribbon, netting and twine, so I used every square inch of my wrapping paper by making accent wrapping paper bows using a tutorial from Ziploc (I couldn't find the original pin, but it is exactly like this one).







My Christmas Glitter Etravaganza- a little late :)

Yes, I know it's March, but sometimes life happens and you take forever to write about Christmas. (It's still winter-ish right? No. It's spring. Oh well.)

So this Christmas I wanted to give gifts from the heart. I also didn't want to spend $101,283,047,484.99 on Christmas gifts, because we're newlyweds. And we have huge families. And sometimes Christmas is hard. So I did what any crafter would do and started looking around my craft room and on Pinterest.

I recently acquired a TON of different colors of glitter, and I've been accumulating blank canvases like a hoarder, thinking I'd remember how to paint some day. That still hasn't happened, so I've had quite the display of white 'art.'

Lately deer silhouettes have been really popular in home decor, and so awhile back I wanted to do something cute for my office (I've been there 6 months and I have nothing on the walls in my office still. People keep asking me if I'm planning on leaving. I'll get on that ASAP- posts to follow. At least I have a window..).

So I found one of my tiny canvased, printed out and traced a little reindeer silhouette and then I found some Elmer's glue and my gold glitter. 3 minutes later I had made this cute little bad boy that sits on the bookshelf in my office: (I recently added some twine to it so I can hang it on the wall, but I'll post on that later too).


Then I forgot about it.

UNTIL Christmas was around the corner. I thought this would be a great Christmas to DIY my gifts, but I completely Pinterest-failed making an ornament wreath for my Mother in Law (it wasn't terrible, but not Mother-in-Law-gift-worthy. More like hang outside where its mostly dark and nobody-will-look-at-it-closely-worthy). I really like to give Christmas-themed gifts, and then I remembered the glitter deer and a light bulb went off: RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER!!

I found an 8x10 canvas, so all I needed was a printed out version of the silhouette (I used a different reindeer silhouette with a more prominent nose so the red nose would pop), Elmer's glue and Gold and Red glitter. I think I spent less than $4 and I think it turned out pretty cute! It was a big hit with my Mother-in-law, (and I made one for my parents and sister and a friend too!)



Previous to my reindeer epiphany, I had found the cutest little tiny canvases at Walmart and I really wanted to do something with them. I made ornaments for my husband's siblings (and I forgot to take photos :(, but they are cute!) and I still had some left over. I thought they might be cute if I attached them to some twine in a banner, so I decided to make this one for Rochelle's family:


And then I made this one for our youngest sister Anna:



At this point I was having a glitter-frenzy and I was on a roll. Our friend Lindsay got married right before Christmas as well, and we had no time to go buy a gift. I've seen cute monogram wedding gifts before, so to finish off my Christmas glitter extravaganza,  I took another canvas I had laying around and made this little number with their wedding date:


Suffice it to say, this Christmas definitely glittered. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Celebrating the Ultimate Pi Day


Pi...aka the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter... aka 3.14159265359 and so on... Celebrating Pi Day (March 14th) is a beloved tradition for math enthusiasts and pie enthusiasts alike. We have enjoyed celebrating this "holiday" for several years (not that we need an excuse to eat pie, but can you think of a better reason to do so?!)

A few years ago we enjoyed this apple pie on Pi Day.

This year Pi Day is kind of a big deal, because March 14, 2015 is 3.1415. Some people are even taking it to the next level, marking 9:26 on the clock. We decided that we for sure needed to celebrate this once-in-a-century event, so we planned a Pi Day brunch celebration with a few friends.  On the menu: Quiche, Pineapple, and of course assorted pies.

I had fun designing an invitation (I used Inkscape and Silhouette Studio) with a math pun or two in it.


We'll be keeping the kiddos happy doing Pi art and activities, like this Pi in the skyline by What Do We Do All Day?, this Easy as Pi artwork by Pink Stripey Socks, this Circle Art by Momgineer, or this Pi bracelet.

My husband wants me to make Pi Day Tshirts; we'll see how it goes and I'll post pictures if I get that far.

Update 3/18/15:
Here are pictures of some of the things I made:

I used my silhouette machine to cut this design out of heat transfer material, then just ironed it on the shirts.
I did this onesie the same way as the shirts above.

Our welcome sign, right next to the Pi wreath on the front door. :)
I designed the shirts using Inkscape and Silhouette Studio. I'll share how I use those programs together in another post. Peace!

Do you have any fun plans/ traditions for Pi Day? Do share!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Remember me? Meet Cara

Hi! I'm another sister of the Homebodies. You may remember me from this post about fixing jeans with a broken zipper (they were my favorites!), or this post about my DIY wedding, that my sisters and mom DIY'd (I was in la la land, so I can't say I was super involved there). In any case, I'm excited to be here!

Here's a little bit about me:

I got married a year and a half ago (crazy!) and I graduated from BYU in April 2014 with a degree in Public Relations (also crazy!). I now work as a graphic designer/marketing coordinator/creative communications coordinator/social media manager at a small health professions university.

I love shopping and fashion, especially finding good deals and great classic pieces! I'm a firm believer in buying things that make you feel strong and powerful immediately. None of that "it's on sale, so maybe I'll wear it someday" business. If you don't love it now, you won't love it in a year. (I'm a reformed shopaholic).

I love to create things. Especially now that I've been married for a little bit and its socially acceptable to craft again. ;) As a little girl, I always had tape, scissors, string, paper etc. stashed under my bed, just in case I needed to whip up a little something. It drove our mom nuts (because I always stole the tape and scissors), but she loved that I was creative and she always encouraged me to create, no matter how many new tape dispensers and pairs of scissors I stashed. You'll see some of my latest crafts in future posts.

I love to be active and to exercise. I've slacked a bit lately (huge life changes can do that to you), but I love to run, hike and play volleyball. I'm even learning to like Softball! This Christmas, I also got my very first bicycle, so I'll be learning to do that this Spring as well. Rochelle and I started taking swimming lessons (who knew it was so hard when you're a grown up and never learned..) I'm a little nervous about all of it but I'm excited to try new things too!

I love to cook and bake- the healthy way. My husband Jeff is a personal trainer, so we don't keep junk food in our house. I have a lot of fun finding healthy, delicious recipes to try out on him. I also have found some great recipes for guilt-free treats that satisfy my (huge) sweet tooth, and are sugar and grain free! I'll share some of my cooking wisdom in the future too!

<3 Cara

Friday, February 27, 2015

Sunday Chicken


This is a recipe that we like to make Sunday mornings and have it ready by the time we come home from church in the afternoon. It is pretty low maintenance, but very delicious- my kind of meal for a day of rest!

I like to use these pretty, multicolored mini potatoes from Costco...


...so that all I have to cut up are a few carrots and an onion. It all goes in the pot (I love to use these crock pot liners because it makes the cleanup so effortless- I know it probably isn't the healthiest as it is plastic, but right now, it takes away a barrier to me actually cooking, which is a win. Priorities!)


The spices are added to the melted butter- ok, you can reduce the butter, but I don't recommend it, because chicken is pretty lean, and you want this to be tender and flavorful. To that end, I also recommend using the longer cook time on the lower heat setting.


Sunday Chicken
{aka Crockpot Deliciousness}

Layer in the crock pot, in order:
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • a bunch of fresh green beans
  • washed potatoes- mini, or regular sized, sliced 1" thick
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 1 white onion, sliced

Mix the following and pour over chicken and vegetables:
  • 1 stick of butter, melted
  • 1 Tbsp. ground rosemary
  • 1-2 tsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • fresh ground pepper to taste

Stir gently to coat, and cook covered in crock pot 5-6 hours on high or 6-7 hours on low. Serve and enjoy!


By the way, this meal goes rather nicely with this Rosemary Olive Oil bread (recipe from A Hint of Honey).


Enjoy!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

DIY Can Stilts


Warm, sunny days are becoming limited around here, so we decided to make the most of the good weather and make these stilts. This is a fun activity that I remember doing as a child, and my kids didn't really even know what stilts were, so I though this would be fun to do with them.

I used #10 food storage cans that were going to be recycled anyway, but you could use any sturdy metal can (like a large soup can).  Just use your judgement on if it is strong enough/ big enough for your child.


My 4 year old loved being my helper and the look on his face when he tried the stilts for the first time was priceless.

Here's how to make your own tin can stilts:

1. Gather your materials. You'll need two metal cans that are the same size, some twine or strong cord, scissors to cut the cord, a thicker- sized nail, and a hammer.


2. Using the nail and hammer, make two holes- one each on opposite sides of the can, just under the rim of the sealed end of the can.


3. Cut a length of cord or twine and poke each of the ends through the holes you just made.  The length you should cut the twine depends on the height of your child.  When they are standing on the stilts, the twine should come high enough that they can grip it easily but have no slack in the string (slack makes it easier to fall off or trip).


4. Tie the ends of the twine together inside the can for a hidden knot- or, if you want easier adjusting, string it though the opposite way, with the knot at the top where the handhold is.


5. Repeat steps for the other can.

Photo credit goes to my 4 year old!

Test it- you know, quality control!  Remember that the strings need to be pulled very tight as you walk in order to keep the cans next to your feet to avoid tripping or falling. It may take a little practice!


My first grader wanted to get in on the fun when he got home from school and both boys spent about an hour tromping in and out of the garage and down the sidewalk.


Yay for homemade (recycled) toys!  Do you remember making stilts like this as you were growing up?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

DIY Ring Pillow

Here is a quick photo tutorial of the ring pillow I made for my sister Cara's DIY wedding.  Cara's colors were light pink, eggplant, and champagne/gold. I had one afternoon to make a pair of these pillows, since we were driving to the wedding the next day. Luckily, I am a fabric hoarder and I didn't have to waste any time running to buy fabric since I had a variety of fabrics in exactly the colors I needed. :)


This pillow ended up being about 8 inches square.


I used two 9" squares of cream colored sateen fabric, one 9" square of cream colored lace, a 9x4" strip of eggplant colored linen, and a 5x20" strip of light pink chiffon. Obviously, use any variety of fabrics and colors that you like- this would look great in all white or cream too.


1) I basted along each long edge of the chiffon and 2) gathered it on both sides.


3) The lace is layered over one of the plain cream pieces. 4) The gathered chiffon goes across the bottom and is pinned in place. 5) The chiffon is basted in place. 6) The long raw edges of the eggplant accent strip are folded towards the middle and ironed.


7) The accent strip is pinned on top of the gathered chiffon, covering up the raw edge on the top. 8) It is then sewn in place with a straight stitch.


9) Right sides of the cream pillow fabric are pinned together and 10) sewn, leaving a small opening to turn the pillow right side out. Clipping the corners will give a nice pointy finished corner.


11) The pillow is turned right side out, stuffed, and the opening sewed shut.


12) It is a good idea to add a ribbon (which can be sewed on by hand) to secure the rings during the ceremony


Then just get yourself some adorable ring bearers and you're good to go!

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