Jewelry Converts #3,4,5 (ongoing diy)

While flipping my closet out for summer attire I realized that my wardrobe has lost its flavor.  I used to be prone to outrageous combos, and was a real fan of double-knit.  Maybe now that I am “older” I am shying away from my more whimsical ensembles, and the last thing feel like doing is shopping for new clothes. They are expensive and made to fade these days,  so I’ll tone it down a bit but that means it is time to accessorize!   This was the first bunch I encountered when I closed my eyes and dunked my hand into the FREE miscellaneous bin in the church basement.

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After thoroughly cleaning off the layer of caked on 80’s foundation, they didn’t look half bad.  Using wire cutters I snipped the metal holding the posts to the drop, It is that rigid, close to the ear thing that makes them really look bad.

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then I simply slipped on regular earring wires.  (When apple comes up with a phone that makes me look gorgeous in selfies, I’ll take a pic.)

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the final pair was pretty chunky and ugly but I wouldn’t give up. So I clipped them onto my high heels for a dash of 80’s glam.

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The most important thing is to have fun and try to find little morsels of coolness. Unless you want to look like everybody else 🙂

 

jewelry converts #1 and #2 (ongoing DIY)

There are many cool earrings out there in the wild masquerading as clip-ons.  I have tried to wear them but, no thanks, it is less painful to change them quickly and cheaply.  I own an abundance of tools, but if you can’t make it over to my house to use them you should probably stock up on a few.

First of all don’t go anywhere near a craft store until you have a coupon from the paper, mail or online, if you forget yours you can google and it can be scanned right from your smart phone.  You can also get your pliers from a hardware store, but the prices are pretty similar when you use a coupon.

We won’t use all in each project, but I will add the most useful as I think of them

1. Round Pliers (I am sure there is a more technical name but it is escaping me at the moment) are good for making rings and curving metal wire.

2. Standard pliers (these come in all shapes, colors and sizes, just make sure they feel good in your hand)

3. Wire cutters (mine double as standard pliers so they are multipurpose, you can get snub nose cutters and two pairs of pliers,  whatever your preference you will most likely need two pairs of pliers at your disposal for proper jump ring action)

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4. Assortment of headpins

5. Assortment of jump rings (I like to have lots of colors and shapes around)

6. Ear wires  (These are the basic ugly ones that I adapt, or you can purchase prettier ones at the store or make your own if you are really ambitious)

 

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7. You must have interesting tidbits that you have found.  There are a ton of cool components at thrift stores, garage sales, or your mom’s dresser.  Try not to think about it as a whole but as pieces that can be broken up, and be sure to inspect them carefully and make sure the cool parts aren’t broken or chipped.

#1 These earrings would be discarded because they are clip-ons. NO!  Simply remove the clip-ons with your pliers and replace with regular ear wires. I takes mere minutes to bring these beauties back in style.

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#2 requires little skill but a few more supplies.

When I am out and about, well not anymore because I have enough for a lifetime. I buy necklaces that have a lot of bang for the buck.  They have a lot of dangly things or a lot of chain that can be reused. Like this one.

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Ugly to the untrained eye, but very useful to me.  Just one section released from what looks like Skeletor’s head makes a lovely pair of earrings, with a few additional goodies.

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After freeing these cute diamonds, I simply wrapped the chain around once and toggled it on the jump ring.

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These are my new favorites.  Light and long with an unexpected black accent.

Don’t forget to find a toolbox and some containers to keep your new crap organized.

Hey! Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

Darling Nicky

I am a wee bit of a fabric hoarder.  There is an unknown quantity available at any time, to people I like. Thank goodness my friend Nicky needed curtains.  It gave me an opportunity to hone those rusty sewing skills and bring some beautiful fabric out of the dungeon and into the light.  I had 50 yards of this glorious fabric that brought all the colors of her dining room and living room together.  We decided to use the same in both spaces, not only because I already had it, but we thought it would look more cohesive and cozy when you entered the front door and your eyes scanned the rooms.

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She just happened to buy a house built in the 50’s, which is my favorite type of home.  I had a difficult time not decorating it for her in my every waking moment, so I jumped at the chance to custom make some window coverings.  The bedroom and the dining room were simple.  Subtle decorative rods were easily installed, and a quick eyeball fold, press and sew method was used to create panel curtains that add warmth and depth.  We employed my very technical technique of using the stripes on the ironing board to measure the hems. This by the way is the most awesome iron ever.

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The living room was a bit more of a challenge because of the size and angles of the windows.

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These curtains were to be decorative, non operable and pretty to fit Nicky’s evolving style which I would describe as feminine elegance.  A long curtain rod was not going to work because it would be ugly even if we did consider Lucite.  I did the research on curtain rods for this type of angle, and not only were they expensive they required precise measurements which I don’t do.  I wish I did, but alas I do not.  So instead I wandered around the home improvement store (the blue one) and spent a whopping 11 dollars on the smallest, most basic rod you can buy.

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I bent the rod until the metal broke and fit the ends back together to create a 10 inch rod for either end window.  The center angles presented a challenge and I bent the rods right in the middle to fit the angle of the window.  I had to shorten the other half of the rod so they could fit back together, and added a center support that were leftover from the bedroom.  We used four panels for the center window to add a bit more luxury, and weighed them down with curtain weights so they hung straight, and felt more tailored.

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Nicky, my basement thanks you. Enjoy!!!

measure ten times cut once or twice depending.

You have two choices, either you can make sure your project has your full undivided attention or not.  Because life is hectic and precious I usually fall into the later category. I think to myself “No problem, The Associate is doing her homework, I’ll make some precision miter cuts for the cabinet trim.”  This sounds like a splendid idea, theoretically.  Ten minutes later I am chanting the measurements out loud as I climb down my ladder.  The chanting helps a little, it sort of signals to The Associate that I am in fact doing something that cannot be interrupted, but you are probably asking yourself “why doesn’t she just write it down?”  You are a genius, however I may have left my pencil inside.. with my tape measure… or I may have left that little piece of paper I ripped off of The Associates homework  to scribble on inside as well after discovering my pencil tangled up in my rat nest hairdo.  As you can see many things can happen, and the moral of the story is  “Your project will actually go faster if you do it when your family isn’t bothering you.”

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method/madness.

I am finally done painting the kitchen cupboards. I made many mistakes and hopefully I have learned from them all. 😉   Instead of the slow and steady process of four doors at a time, and painstakingly removing gunk and letting each layer of paint dry properly in the shade, I hurry. If you want paint to self level it needs to dry slowly. I know this, I have already done 34 doors and 10 drawers, but in haste I decided to not follow this simple rule on the last two largest doors. Dumb. Now I am discouraged and my progress stalls. Nobody else notices the flaw, but I do.

My awesome family doesn’t mention this stall. Who cares that there are giant heavy doors all over the kitchen. A week or two or three goes by.  I am clearly opposed to using sandpaper because I managed to remove decades of gunk without it, ill be damned if I am gonna use it now. Chalkboard paint! duh, I just happen to have some in the dungeon. The Associate attempts to defile it between every coat. Three coats later chalk poised, I tease The Teenager that only inspirational quotes can adorn this wall  (I won’t tell you what she wrote, my mom reads this blog.) After quickly cleaning the surface with paper towels (dumb) The Associate has a go.

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I guess we will be tightening up our spelling this summer.

Next up ugly tile back splash, cause I roll backwards.

 

good job my young padawan.

I never made pancakes yesterday, so she never got out of bed.  She is definitely stubborn, I mean tenacious. 

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However, when my husband arrived home with fresh bagels she graced us with her presence.  My husband’s family has this delicious tradition of “The bagel boy”  It is a fresh toasted everything bagel (or mish mosh), cream cheese, sliced hard-boiled egg and sliced tomato sandwich.  You must try it someday.  After the eggs were boiled I rinsed out the carton because it was styrofoam and couldn’t recycled, so of course I had to make something out of it. I didn’t notice that it disappeared from the drying rack until I found it in My Associates room.  Good job my young padawan. 

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I guess my spell check has never seen Star Wars.

please share, because sharing is caring.

coupling cups

On this day so chilly and rainy I try to find something to occupy my mind.  It is noon and my Associate has declared she will remain in bed all day. Occasionally she yelps for pancakes. Oh wait. She just declared she will get out of bed if I make pancakes. I hate pancakes, sorry kid. Every surface of my petite studio is covered with a project. (These projects are top secret for the moment)  I have about a square foot of free space to make something, so I go small and easy.  The other day a friend generously tossed random crafty items into a bag for me.  The last item she cast has had me stumped.

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Two bags of PVC couplings.  Inexplicably they were dirty despite being sealed in a bag, so first I cleaned them and started to stack.  Using a quick acting glue, that wouldn’t ooze I made two stacks of two and one stack of three leaving the others as singles. I thought for awhile about spray painting them a different color, but decided to leave them white.  I then arranged them in a neat formation and using a very sticky glue clamped them together.

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Now I guess, I’ll go make pancakes.

 

please share.

dance with me?

On the 1000th day of porch renovation I found a new dance partner. She is very forceful, and definitely takes the lead.

I have a tendency to not stop when I get started and getting the proper gear on was no exception.  A combination of sweats, goggles and my daughters purple lace Air Jordan’s sufficed, but it wasn’t pretty.  She didn’t notice my get-up, she is an animal, a mechanical sanding, resurfacing machine, but an animal I wanted to tame.

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At this point I have done my research, called up the manual online and studied the technique. Now is the hard part. With my daughters high tops covering my ankles and my glasses and gloves on I set about making this machine do my bidding. After wasting a few overpriced pieces of sandpaper we fell into an easy rhythm that was very much like a dance. One-two- three-four. One-two-three-four.  One-two-three-four.

I must give credit to the men working and renting from my local handy rents.  They call me Ms. Morris and never doubt that I can handle any machine I rent. thanks…

cuporama

Sometimes I get started on a project and then it gets in the way of another.  A little pile of stuff, that my brain hasn’t quite processed to fruition.  So I organized.  Instead of sweeping the pile into a basket to be lost again for years possibly, I cuporamasized (insert teenage daughter sigh here)
Who uses yard sticks anymore?  I haven’t actually printed anything out and bound with a clip in quite sometime. Oh and those cups so darn cute!!

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Now a completely unusable space on the back of door is ummm awesome, and my seeds, beads and barbie heads can co-habitat waiting for their next reincarnation.