Here’s an easy way to make something spectacular for your walls — paint-chip punch-out art! You need: paint chips, a hole punch, a glue stick, a large piece of heavy weight paper and lots of patience!
I made a picture of a mommy and baby giraffe for my daughter’s nursery.
Start by punching out a whole bunch of paint chips in the shades you want. My suggestion is to pick two complementary colors (in my case coral + grey) and punch from the spectrum of lighter/darker colors around each one — this way you get some great gradation in your artwork. To keep it simple, use one color for the main graphic, and then the other color for your background.
Once you have enough punched out, start moving the pieces around to form the graphic you want. If you don’t have a design in mind, find a picture online and trace the outlines onto your paper to give you some guidance. Here are my giraffes taking shape, just using shades of coral:
Once you have the main graphic looking like you want it, glue each little dot down (this is the tedious part. Do it while you’re watching reruns or something).
Now you can move on to the background. I ended up making silhouettes of trees behind the giraffe using shades of grey. Glue away!
And to tie everything together, scatter a couple little dots in the shade of your main graphic into the background. Here’s the final picture:
And here it is in our nursery. I think it turned out really great, and my daughter really loves staring at the dots so I think she likes it too!
Another spray-painted lace project for the weekend..
Tutorial from In Honor of Design here.
Another fun weekend project.. DIY Gold Lace Cuff Tutorial by Runway DIY
lazy sunday afternoon, i think i’ll go make one of these DIY felt gift bows…
I wanted Noelle to have a really sweet mobile to watch from her crib. This was a fairly time consuming project (hand stitching takes forever!) but uber fun - I made an animal mobile for the nursery using patterns I found for a giraffe, elephant and owl. I made a whale (no pattern, just eyeballed it) and some hearts, and tied them to grey painted dowels. It’s so light a little breeze sends all the animals bobbing and fascinates little Noelle.
Need a gift box? Print out these adorable ones for free!
I wasn’t actually planning to get a new glider for Noelle’s nursery but I was lucky enough to have someone in the office offer me hers. When it was new it probably looked something like this honey/oak glider with beige cushions, but it was a little more worn out and covered with cat hair when I dragged it home in my trunk (7 months pregnant!). Nothing a little paint and new fabric can’t fix!
I didn’t take detailed pictures of the refinishing process, but it involved sanding down the original oak stain, grey-washing the frame (i used watered down grey paint and applied it almost like a stain, wiping off the excess), reupholstering the ottoman and sewing new cushions for the glider. Fabric was an indoor/outdoor fabric from Dwell Studio.
Frame, post sanding:
close up of the frame with its grey wash:
the end product works so much better color-wise with our grey and coral theme nursery.
this is genius: edible spray paint. why didn’t I think of this! christmas desserts will never be the same again.
a jarful of sweetness.. love this idea!
For moms-to-be, make your own unique nursing cover with this nifty tutorial from Prudent Baby.
So one of the first projects for the nursery was figuring out wall decor — we painted the walls two shades of grey and I wanted a cool mural or motif on one feature wall. I really liked the idea of bare birch trees since she’s a winter baby and there are some really pretty ones out there but I didn’t want to fork out the $70 for them in case I put them on the wall and decided I hated them. Turns out that making them yourself was a) not terribly hard to do and b) very very inexpensive (like, six bucks)!
I have to admit I’m not the first person to have thought of this — there are some great tutorials out there (like here, and here). Here’s my stab at how to DIY birch tree decals.
1 roll of adhesive contact paper/shelf liner (I went with basic white from Target, an 18” by 24’ roll was just $6)
Masking tape / painters tape
How to do this yourself:
1. Measure the height of your room (mine was about 8 feet) and cut out two lengths of contact paper that are the height plus 3-4 inches — since your trees will be slightly slanted from the vertical.
2. On the back of your contact paper, sketch out your tree trunks roughly according to the pattern below, where for the first sheet, you have Trunk #1 that has a 6” wide base, and grows to have a fork in it that is 12” wide, and Trunk #2 which starts off 6” wide at the base and tapers to 4” wide at the top. And leave the section in the middle for later to cut out some extra branches. The second sheet just has 4 trunks, each has a 5” base tapering to 4” (but two are upside down, so they fit nicely on one sheet).
3. Cut out your 6 tree trunks, taking the liberty not to cut exact straight lines but curving them slightly to give your trees a more realistic and organic look.
4. Use masking tape to start laying them out on your wall and get a sense for how you’d like them to look. Trim the ends to be level with the ceiling and base. As you lay them out, cut out a couple extra branches from the leftover piece from the first sheet to add to the tree trunks. The extra branches don’t need to fit exactly at this point, you can experiment with how it looks and trim them to fit later.
5. Now we turn these regular tree trunks into birch trees by adding the little cut outs to the trunks. It’s probably easier to make these cuts before you have them up on the wall, but I liked seeing it up so I could decide the cuts looked best based on the overall layout. Make little V-shape cuts into the trunks (two side by side ones look more birch-like), alternating the left and right sides of the trunk, and use masking tape to prevent the contact paper from pulling the cuts wider.
6. Now the fun part — actually getting the trunks stuck onto the wall! Starting at the top, peel down the backing paper and slowly press the contact paper to the wall, being sure to smooth out any bubbles. Be extra careful around the v-cuts.
7. With the tree trunks stuck on the wall, adjust and trim the extra branches and then similarly peel off the backing paper to get them stuck onto the wall. I made the branches look as if they were completely connected to the tree trunks by trimming them in a straight line along the edge adjoining the trunks so you could barely see a gap.
8. All done! This project took me a couple of hours to pull off but it was extremely rewarding. I kept it spartan but you could also think about adding leaves, birds, owls.. have fun!
What a simple and elegant solution — no more tripping on those charger cables!
Time to create and hang the front door wreath! Each year I try to make something with materials around the house (here is last year’s and the year before). I’ve been loving a muted neutral palette lately, so I decided to use some scrap fabric in gold, beige and grey for this year’s wreath.
Materials you’ll need:
- cardboard pieces (cut up the boxes from all the gifts you’ve been ordering online!)
- brown packing paper or newspaper
- scrap fabric in the color of your choice
- start with six cardboard pieces of the same size and tape them together to make a hexagon. This will be the frame of the wreath and it’ll all be covered so don’t worry if it looks messy.
- next scrunch up some of the packing paper that came in your boxes or use newspaper and tape it on top of the hexagon to give your wreath some depth.
- Then cut your fabrics into pieces wide enough to cover the front of your wreath. I used three panels, and attached them by taping the ends to the back-side of the wreath.
- Next add embellishments. I decided to make little ruffle flowers to decorate the wreath. I sewed them on but you could easily hot-glue them instead. Then add a ribbon which you can use to hang it with. It looks better if you make a perfect bow separately and glue/sew it on to the longer piece of ribbon that is holding up the wreath.
- and that’s it! It should take no more than an hour to put together and costs next to nothing. Here is the finished product on our front door. Welcome guests!
my hands are freezing as i type this. Time to make some wrist warmers - this is such a helpful tutorial!
If you live in the SF Bay Area and are looking for some neat crafty gifts for Christmas, check out Christmas With A Mission, a craft fair held by Central Peninsula Church. It’s this Saturday Dec 3, 10am-3pm at 1005 Shell Blvd, Foster City, CA. For the third year running I’ll be donating a bunch handmade goods (see the photo for examples) for sale there — all proceeds go to support missionaries and organizations that serve the poor — or you can also get them at my etsy shop.