Posts Tagged ‘DIY’
These days our family has turned into a little zoo! That’s why for Halloween, instead of tying the kids down, we thought we’d let em run loose and enjoy being monkeys for a day! Or at least an evening. We may have bribed them with a few pieces of candy to keep them close by, but it did work (at least for the first hour or so)!
This is the third year that Cale and I have been involved in the Trunk or Treat at our church. Every year we try and come up with an original theme that includes a large group of people; typically all 5 of Cale’s siblings, spouses, a few friends, and nieces and nephews! Since we have all been busy having more babies it’s been harder to get everyone involved and on the same page. We know we could always just go with a trunk based on the latest popular kid’s movie, but coming up with an original theme is always way more exciting!
A few brown thrift store hoodies, sheets of felt, and some fabric glue and we were good to go! Using this DIY for a monkey hoodie costume we were able to simply repeat it for all the kids involved. Plus, we got to sit on a comfy bed and pass out candy to adorable children the whole night!
This is our littlest monkey Hardy Boy. He’s nearly four months old now and if you don’t watch out he will steal your heart (and your Snickers)!
We had a few surprise monkeys show up too! The sock monkey’s from another trunk didn’t want to miss out on the party so we invited them over.
The tails were my favorite part! We actually just bought them as-is at a local craft store and attached them to the back of the hoodies. ADORABLE!
Of course we wouldn’t give the book justice without representing The Doctor and The Momma! I love that my little nephew (monkey #2) and I have the exact same facial expression. Let’s do this candy thing!
Girl monkeys gotta represent!
Hard to believe our oldest Monkey, James David, turned 2 this past September (tear)!
Of course my costume was really annoying to have to wear all. night. long. But, I suffered through.
Our No More Monkey’s Jumping on The Bed Trunk was a huge hit! It was so much fun seeing families walk through our candy line and immediately get the theme. Hearing everyone comment on how cute our little monkeys were made it all worth it. And honestly, it was super easy! We spent one evening going through thrift shops looking for hoodies and buying supplies and another hour or so creating the actual costumes. The rest of the time needed was just gathering up a few pillows and blankets, a head board, and a few toddler mattresses and we were good to go!
Did you have any monkey’s running around this Halloween? Or maybe a princess, a dinosaur, or a mini Captain America (those fake fabric muscles are so awesome!)?
Happy (belated) Halloween friends!
From The Farm
Get inspired for next year by checking out our roundup of 8 Easy and Adorable Halloween Hoodie Costumes.
When I was a kid my grandma would make us the best Halloween Costumes. She’d take us to the fancy fabric store and we’d spend hours looking at all the books with samples of the different patterns. It was always really hard, but eventually we’d narrow it down and she’d make our costumes completely from scratch. Now these were not your flimsy Big Box Retail Costumes, these were handcrafted, tailored, pieces of art that were made with lots of love (and blood, sweat, and tears I’m sure!). Back then we actually got to wear our costumes to school, which was always my favorite part. For a whole day we’d get to prance around in our homemade garb as a pretty witch, a silly clown, or for my brother; Captain Planet (which included a fabric six pack of course)!
Unfortunately my kids won’t have the same quality handmade Halloween Costumes I had as a kid, but I’m gonna do my best to make something a little crafty and original. The last few years we’ve participated in our church Trunk or Treat. As a family (including Cale’s five brothers and sisters and children!) we’ve done everything from the Super Mario Brothers to a Bakery complete with the most adorable cupcakes and cookies! This year everyone’s schedule is a bit more crazy than usual so we are trying to keep things fairly simple (although we say that every year!). I love a good hoodie costume cause you can buy the base at a thrift shop, purchase some felt for simple handmade add-ons, and finish with some fabric glue baby and you are good to go! Even if you’d don’t have a sewing a machine you can still create something unique and fun for your little minions that’s simple and one-of-a-kind.
Below is a roundup of links to some of my favorite easy handmade costumes. I’ve been searching for a particular hoodie tutorial myself, but you’ll have to wait until after Halloween to see our final costumes and theme this year!
- Care Bears by See Vanessa Craft
- A Minion from Despicable Me by Not So Idle Hands
- Octopus by dollarcraft on Instructables
- Unicorn by Fiskars
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles by Vanilla Joy
- Knight by fjnorm on Instructables
- Shark by Fiskars
- Little Red Ridding Hood and The Big Bad Wolf by Martha Stewart
A little bit of forethought goes a long ways! Halloween might be a week away, but I promise you’ve still got time to create you own costume that is way cooler than something from the store (and probably a lot less expensive too!). Get together with some of your friends for a craft night, and cut and glue your own hoodie costume together. Who knows, the materials you need may already be in an old box just waiting to be used.
What’s your favorite handmade costume? Leave us a link in the comment section.
From The Farm
Nothing celebrates a holiday better than dressing up your kids and cousins in matchy matchy outfits and taking blackmale photos for future birthdays, graduations, and weddings.
Or maybe that’s just our family!?
It’s true, we’ve started a tradition monster and it cannot be stopped! My sister-in-law is typically the brains behind these types of operations, but she always finds the cutest ideas online that spark all kinds of crafty creations. I’m sure you’ve seen some of the straw and pipe cleaner firework stamps via Pinterest, but we just decide to take that idea a step further and make them into t-shirts… with glow in the dark paint of course!
I’m not gonna lie, it was messy, and a bit crazy trying to “organize” three menions to stamp things that actually looked somewhat like fireworks, but they had a blast! And we had a blast creating memories with them as a family.
That we have saved and backed up on several digital files until the day we die!
- Plain T-shirts
- Straws (cut 6 slits in one straw at equal lengths to make your firework paint brushes)
- Fabric or Acrylic Paint
- Paper Plates (for paint pallets)
- Small Sheets of Cardboard or Card Stock (place inside t-shirt before painting to prevent the paint from bleeding on the back side of the shirt)
- Roll of Construction Paper (to protect whatever counter top you are doing the craft on)
- Make it Outside: As much fun as this craft is, it can be messy! We just stripped the kids in their diapers and panties and let them go to town outside on the patio. This way we were not worried about them getting paint on inside furniture or their clothes. Although, getting the paint off during bath time was a bit harder than we thought! Might want to make sure they don’t get too crazy and smear it all over themselves.
- Create Different Sizes of Firework Stamps: Your fireworks will be bigger depending on how far down you cut the slits in the straws. Mix it up by cutting some of the straws only an inch deep, and others two or three inches deep. This will add more variety and scale in the prints.
- Mix-Up The Colors: Instead of buying just one large bottle of red, blue, and black paint I purchased several smaller bottles of red, glittery red, black, gray, dark blue, light glittery blue, and even glow in the dark paint! This was just an extra fun touch that made each shirt a bit unique!
- Let the Kids Do It! I know this is hard because the designer/perfectionist will come out, but show them a few samples on their shirt, and then let them do a few on their own. They may not be exactly where you would have placed the stamps, but that is the point! For them to learn and experience being crafty. You can always come in behind them and clean up their firecrackers by adding outlines in glow in the dark paint like we did. This really added an extra depth to their shirt designs, especially for the areas that started to look like blobs of paint. Oh, and don’t freak out if they mix-up the paint cause it’s going to happen! You’re welcome.
I realize this post is a bit late since the Fourth of July was a few days ago, but give me a break I’m 39 weeks pregnant ok!? I still managed to buy all the supplies and actually make the shirts. This close to my due date, I’ll take it!
Here’s to fireworks, matchy matchy outfits, family, food, and a celebration that reminds us how precious it is to have all those things in our lives.
Best of luck on all your holiday crafts and don’t forget to pin this project away for next year!
From The Farm
Table cloths smacking you in the face and interrupting a good meal is a constant recurring problem here in Oklahoma. You can try setting all the food up on top to hold the cloth down, but inevitably the wind catches any and all corners that are not sealed and thus begins the never ending hold down war. I don’t know about you, but it’s time we showed that wind who’s boss! It’s time we did it in a way that wasn’t cheesy with table cloth weights or random plastic clips. Instead of forcing the tie downs to be a part of the table decor (their usually ugly anyway!), let’s hide em away so that they don’t distract from your beautiful spread.
And that’s where these babies come in: Velcro Dot Sticky-Back Fasteners.
Sometimes being married to an intern-architect helps out in the most random ways! We’ve had these velcro dots saved away in our craft drawer just waiting for a re-purpose. I think I bought them for a project in college!? Cale had the idea when we were setting up for our Spring Music Yard Party and I think he’s pretty much a genius!
STEP 1: Pick one corner of your table cloth to start with. Place one dot sticky side down and velcro side up on the table where you want the cloth to lay.
STEP 2: Place a second dot on top of the first dot you put on the table velcro side down and sticky side up. It’s like making a velcro sandwich.
STEP 3: Smooth out the table cloth over the velcro dot sandwich and it should automatically stick to the second dot you applied in Step 2.
STEP 4: Repeat steps 1-3 on all corners of the table cloth including any middle areas that might need some extra tie down help (especially if your table cloth is really long and rectangular).
* Obviously we are showing you a sample of using the dots to velcro two table cloths together, but we did use the dots directly on the table on the first table cloth layer and it worked out perfectly! Just make sure you don’t mind rubbing off any leftover sticky glue from the dots stuck directly onto your table.
The best part about this DIY is that there is no sewing, no glueing, no pre-crafting, pre-prep involved! Simply purchase the Velcro Dots for your next outdoor get-together and you are done! Depending on the size and strength you can generally find packages of 12 sets for around $4.00 in most office supply or craft stores. You could even buy a big batch in bulk if you really want too?! The Velcro Dots are simple, easy, AND aesthetically pleasing! I promise once you’ve gotten em in place, the picnic table cloth flying away will be the least of your hosting worries!
Doesn’t Cale make a sexy hand model?!
May your outdoor gatherings be filled with delicious food and hassle free table cloths!
From The Farm
Recently we were able to work with Cut Loose Hair Design on not only their branding, but their interior design as well. One of the biggest draws to their salon is that they are very family-friendly and wanted to encourage that in every part of their space.
Our inspiration for a waiting room with a large family style dining table was originally found here. Although they loved the idea, Cut Loose didn’t have the extra square footage to host such a large table. Instead, they shrunk the table size down to accommodate their space. The finished piece is a slender sized dining room table that functions great within their space, but also creates an inviting and relaxed client waiting area.
We found several Table DIY’s as examples to help Cut Loose Hair Design visualize and create their own custom design.
Our list included:
- IKEA Vika Lerberg Iron Legs DIY from Stylizimo
- 3-Prong Hairpin Legs DIY from A Beautiful Mess
- Pottery Barn Inspired Wooden Legs DIY from Shanty 2 Chic
- 9 4x4s
- 1 2×4
- 2 8ft 1/2″ threaded rod
- 8 1/2″ washers, split washers, and nuts
- X4 Joint plates
- Box of Truss Screws for low profile on joint plates
- Drills bits
- 4 Casters (consider to hold enough weight)
- 8 3″ x 3/8″ lag bolts for x beams (2x4s)
- 16 2″ x 1/4″ lag bolts to hold casters
Ultimately the final design was one Cut Loose customized to their personal tastes. We asked the maker Matt Yacko, the owners son-in-law, to share his final thoughts, creative process, and any tips that might help others looking to make a similar table.
- Start with making the table top first: I identified where the structural supports needed to be which were close to the ends and then split equally across the middle.
- Experiment with the arrangement of the boards before inserting the metal rods: Since all of the boards were slightly different in thickness or had a unique warping, each 4×4 had to be measured and marked so that the surface of the table would be as close to flat as possible.
- Cut ½” threaded rod to the approximate desired width of the table: Make sure there is plenty of left over just in case! After drilling the first board, inserted the rods through the holes in order to line up the next 4×4.
- Use decorative hardware on the sides of the table to cover up the rod holes and add additional support: I cut the ½” threaded rod so that it would sit just recessed inside the counter bored holes and then installed the hardware to secure the tabletop into one piece.
- Assemble the entire table, stain the bottom, and add the casters while upside down: Flipping the table right-side-up is a task in itself, wait until you are completely finished and then use a friend!
- Install the legs using a framing joint commonly found at your local hardware store: Afterwards, measure out the desired angle of the cross beams securing the legs lag bolts in countersunk holes.
- Sand the bottom of the table with a heavy 40 grit belt sander: Legs are likely to touch this area but the finish is not as important because it will not be seen.
- Lightly sand the top, side, and legs of the table to preserve it’s natural finish: I used 2 coats of medium-sheen gloss polyurethane to seal the wood and smooth the surfaces with a light 200 grit sanding in between coats.
It’s always fun seeing clients take your initial ideas and truly make them their own. Walking into the Cut Loose Salon, the table is such a fun focal point and is always filled up with people, coats, and crayons.
Regardless of if you are looking to create a similar table for a waiting room or for your actual dining room we hope you’ve found a good example to get your creative juices flowing!
Now start drawing up sketches on that napkin! Go a head. You can do it, and send us photos when you’ve finished your own Rustic Table DIY!
Thanks again Matt for providing the supplies list and how to instructions!
From The Farm
Our friends, Andrew & Crystal, live in a tiny 2-bedroom house near downtown Oklahoma City. Fitting two kids into one bedroom will challenge any family, but when they found out they were pregnant with #3 they knew they had a BIG design problem on their hands. As an intern-architect Andrew has a definite design style he prefers, and wasn’t afraid of getting his hands dirty with a good design challenge.
Using galvanized pipe for the bunk bed rails and birch plywood Andrew designed a space to sleep both girls while providing clothing storage for all three kids. Since they are renting it was important to design the bed to structurally hold two kids safely without being attached to the wall. Both beds have their own bunk cubby providing a private space for the two oldest siblings. To make the most of their floor space the bottom bunk currently holds a toddler bed, but was designed to accommodate a twin mattress for the future.
Finding modern children’s furniture that is designed and functions well can be difficult and very expensive! Often times the ladder feels like it was a last minute thought and is awkwardly incorporated into the overall layout. Andrew did a great job establishing an overall clean and functional aesthetic by incorporating the ladder as a cutout from the overall bunk bed structure.
We love seeing our creative friends come up with fun solutions for their homes that are custom and affordable! Thanks Andrew and Crystal for inspiring us as we plan out James’ new toddler room!
What’s your favorite design element of Andrew’s bunk bed?
Wanna build one yourself? Visit Andrew’s blog to see the detailed bunk bed specs and materials.
From The Farm
As James Daivd is getting older I’m really enjoying coming up with creative crafts he can be a part of. Since Cale and I’s design work is mostly on the computer it’s always fun making stuff from scratch using tape, crayons, and old school construction paper!
About half of our close family and friends live in other states so it’s important to us to keep in contact–even in small ways. Coming up with little notes showing them how much we love and miss them is one of our favorite things to do! Last year we designed a Valentine using James’ handprint and it was a huge hit. This year we wanted to continue that tradition, but with a new card design.
- Construction Paper
- Scissors/Paper Cutter (Preferably NOT your fabric scissors!) :/
- White Washable Kid-Friendly Paint
- Paper Plate (An easy throw-away prop to load the kids’ hands with paint)
- Kid Size Smock (Something to cover the wee ones up just in case things get crazy!)
- #10 Envelopes
- Take It One Hand At A Time: Before I assembled the actual cards I cut and organized the strips of paper into 10 left hand & 10 right hand stacks for a total of 20 4×6 strips. Like an assembly line we went through one stack of papers at a time so that only one hand had paint on it at all times.
- Don’t Be A Clean Freak: Even with the smock on things are gonna get messy! Take a breath and let your kids enjoy the craft! As long as it’s washable paint it will be easy to wipe off surfaces and get out of clothes.
- Leave Room For Errors: Cut extra strips of each color for both the left and right handprints. We needed 6 total cards so I cut enough for 10 (20 4×6 colored strips) and was able to pick the best prints out of the batch to make the final cards.
- Make It Yours: Decorative Washi Tape and even mini confetti hearts are just a few additional ideas that can add even more Valentines Day Flare!
My favorite part about this craft is that it’s messy! At first I was a little hesitant, but watching James get at it with the paint and teaching him to work with us to “squish” each print was a blast. This craft was super easy and something we did as a family on a weeknight between supper and bath time. It’s just a little reminder that you don’t need hours to create and send a little snail mail hug for Valentines Day or “just because”!
What’s Your Favorite Handmade Valentine Design?
From The Farm
I can’t tell you how excited I have been to share my latest homemade gift with you all! To be honest I was a bit overambitious last Christmas, and didn’t complete any of the FOUR projects I started (surly I’m not the only one… !?). This year I was determined to complete ALL my projects from last year, and I’m happy to announce that I reached my goal just in time for Christmas!
Tis true, me and Martha Stewart became besties this holiday season, and I couldn’t be any more happier with the results!
Once you plan out your portrait the cross-stitching isn’t that hard, but it does take time. Personally, I enjoyed spending my evenings with the tv off, bundled under a blanket, working away while Cale studied for his latest Architecture Exam. You might think of cross-stitching as an old lady sport, but it was really fun giving an old craft an updated design.
- Embroidery Hoop
- Embroidery Thread (Just ask around and borrow some from your crafty friends if you don’t want to buy a bunch–thanks Courtney!)
- Embroidery Needle
- Embroidery Aida Cloth (I started with 22 count and the stitches were way to small and close together. Definitely aim for 11-14 count squares, or even 8 if you would like a bigger design.)
- Graph Paper (I just stole a few pages from Cale’s Moleskine Journal, shhh… don’t tell!)
- Colored Pencils
- Scotch Tape
- Select a Wider (smaller) Embroidery Aida Cloth Count: I started my first portrait with a 22 count and hated the whole process. The wider squares (11-14 count) show off fun details better, and you won’t be cussing as much as you try and poke your thread through tiny, TINY, little holes!
- General Size/Scale Chart: 8 stitches across for adult heads, 7 stitches across for teen/kids heads, and 3 stitches across for babies.
- Plan it Out: Use graph paper and colored pencils to plan out every detail. Having a solid plan creates a smooth transition once you start cross-stitching.
- Customize each family member: I found the inspiration for this project sifting through an old subscription of Martha Stewart Living. Visit her page for ideas and suggestions on how to each person in your portrait their own unique style. Think about the person’s hair, the type of clothes they wear, and even fun accessories.
- Use Back Stitching for Small Details: This simple technique allows you to create fine details like glasses, baby eye’s and mouth’s, letters, and numbers.
This was my first cross-stitch project so don’t feel intimidated if you have never done this before. I stitched two full portraits of the same family until I got the style, layout, and the scale just right.
You can do it! Old ladies unite!
What new Christmas projects did you take on this year? How did they turn out?
From the Farm
You know it’s wedding season when your mail box is full of wedding and shower invites. Some of our dear friends are getting married in May and recently bought their first home. We wanted to do something special to help them celebrate so we threw them a DIY Around the House Couple’s Shower. We really tried to think through the decor and made sure that everything we created for the decorations was something the couple could turn around and use in their new home.
Of course what new home isn’t full of paint swatches, brushes, paint cans, stir sticks, and messy floors? We loved the paint chip garland tutorial found here but instead of getting out the sewing machine we just used a glue stick.
For an afternoon Sunday shower we wanted to keep the food simple and sweet. We decided to do a cookie bar (complete with cold whole milk of course!) and asked a few close guests to share a batch of homemade cookies.
The large paint swatches (found for FREE at your local paint store) worked great as simple ways to label each platter and table activities.
Each table was furnished with a house plant and brown kraft paper painted with teal and purple smudges. We wanted to come up with a fun way to encourage guest interaction. Each table was assigned a different activity and guests were encouraged to move from table to table throughout the shower.
HIM Table: Guests were asked to write “tips and tricks on how to love a man” on blue paint swatches for the wife to be.
- HER Table: Guests were asked to write “tips and tricks on how to love a woman” on purple paint swatches for the husband to be.
DATEGAME NIGHT Table: Guests were asked to choose a month out of the couples first year of marriage to host the newlyweds. Mickey and Reagan love spending time with their friends and playing games. This was a fun way to keep in touch with friends and a creative solution for inexpensive date nights throughout their first year of marriage. We printed this lovely 8.5 x11 2013 calendar here and had guests write down what month they would host the newlyweds.
- BLESSINGS Table: Guests were asked to write marriage advice and/or prayers for the couple.
Notice the handmade burlap pillows? One of them says “lets make…” while the other pillow says “pie” on one side and “whoopie” on the other. I’ve seen this done with “coffee” and “love” before as well. Either way, it’s a really cute way to customize a gift that relates to the couple’s since of humor. Find a basic tutorial here.
Overall it was a wonderful afternoon and we enjoyed blessing our friends with love and good things for their life together as a married couple. The shower was perfectly simple and definitely made for easy cleanup.
From The Farm
* Review more work like this and others by visiting our graphic design portfolio at Green Couch Design.
If you are on Pinterest at all I’m sure you’ve seen the DIY Mug Art craze. I’ve been pinning a few ideas and decided to give it a try for a special wedding gift. I found the white mugs at a thirft shop for $0.48 cents! Spring is always full of weddings so if you are looking for an inexpensive, quick (takes about an hour to create and about three hours to bake and completely cool), handmade gift look no further! This is definitely my new “go to” gift if I’m wanting to do something a little special.
- Cup(s): Can be different shapes, sizes, and colors
- Paper: To practice illustrating your design(s)
- Sharpie: Can be black or try a colored sharpie on a white cup
- Dish soap and Paper Towel: To erase mistakes before you bake
- X-Acto Knife: For possible mistakes after you bake
- Practice illustrating the front and back designs on a piece of paper. Feel free to do a scripture or fun quote that relates to the couple. Look for ideas on Pinterest, the couple’s Facebook Page(s), their Wedding Invite, or visit their Wedding Website. Make sure you double check the correct spelling of the couple’s name(s) and wedding date. For mistakes (before you bake) wet a paper towel with dish soap and the sharpie should wipe off.
- Pre-heat oven to 425
- Place cups upside down on the rack and bake for 30 minutes.
- DO NOT REMOVE. Turn off oven and let the cups stand and cool completely in the oven. If you find a mistake (after you bake) take an X-Acto and scrape the sharpie off. Re-do the sharpie and bake again for the full 30 minutes. There might be a slight smudge where you scrape the marker off but you should be able to wipe this off after it is baked. This method works best if you catch any mistakes while the cup is still hot!
Let us know how your mug designs come out! I’m already taking notes on ideas for other upcoming holidays like Father’s Day and Mother’s Day. It’s definitely a fun way to personalize a gift for someone you love.
From The Farm