Posts Tagged With: crafts

Tisket, Tasket, Updated Basket

So, I was making my way across Wal Mart from the paint department (can’t beat the price on spray paint!) to the crafts department (hey, sometimes they have supplies cheaper than the craft stores), when I spied these chicken wire baskets.

the front side of the original basket

the front side of the original basket

side view of the original basket

side view of the original basket

Now, farmhouse is not my style — mostly because I don’t live in a farmhouse — and black and white are not my color scheme in any room, but the size was perfect and they had been marked down to the fabulouso price of $6.  I could make them fit into my house with a little paint — especially since I knew I already had paint on hand.  Since the liners were ivory and not pure white, I started with a base of ivory paint.

Then I covered roughly the upper half of the baskets and used my TintIt spray for a slight ombre effect on the bottom half of the baskets.



and done - for now

and done – for now

I considered adding some painted or driftwood stained wood shims for a lobster trap look, but for now I’m liking the coastal color vibe look just fine.  A little paint creates designer chic.



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Every Day is a Dog’s Day

Well, the dog days of summer have already arrived for us humans. For dogs, every day is a dog day and even dogs deserve to dine in style.

As my little guy got older, I felt bad that he had to lean his head so far down to eat and thought he deserved to have his bowls somewhat higher to make his life easier. I once had a tray table like this that I pitched in one of my moves. (Didn’t think I’d still use it, silly me.)

basic tray table

basic tray table

So during garage sale season I searched for another ($2) to use for his bowls. The flat surface of this one was shiny, but hey, they say chalk paint can be used on any surface…I scuffed the surface slightly with very fine sandpaper just to ensure some grit.

While they say dogs don’t see colors the same way that people do, they can make out shapes and I wanted this table to be undeniably for the four-legged one.

First I made a stencil of a dog bone shape using the paper tape method and using his bone shaped bowls as a template. Then I had a store-bought stencil of a paw print, which along with creating letters on my computer, I used to stencil the word ‘woof’ on the top of the bone. Clever me.

close up of the table top

close up of the table top

The table top is in a light blue, which is also the base color of the trim and stand.  The stand also got touches of the green, along with a little ivory and pink (for that ‘shabby’ feeling).

the finished table

the finished table

While the word ‘woof’ isn’t visible once the food and water bowls are on the table, it’s apparent to everyone that this table clearly belongs to the dog.




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An Endless Summer Globe

While stores may be having Christmas in July sales, no one is putting up wintery decorations.  It’s summer (in the northern hemisphere) and hot and one of the ways to keep cool is going to the beach and jumping in the water.  So instead of displaying a snow globe, make yourself a beach globe.

I made this one some years ago, so I don’t have any step by step pictures.  I used sand from a favorite beach, shells I’ve collected over the years, and even added some small glass beads from the jewelry department at the craft store to imitate sea glass which I’ve never found before others.

My personal piece of the beach

My personal piece of the beach

What you need:
A clear glass globe fixture
Sand (or table salt)
Styrofoam or thick cork tiles


Creating the base:
First you want to make the base for the sand globe using the Styrofoam or cork.  I used styrofoam – the kind that used for packing electronics, small appliances, not the more porous kind found in craft stores.  Place the open side of the globe on the foam and trace the opening.  You will actually cut inside this line to fit just inside the rim so that you will create a tight seal.  Then cut another circle about 1-1 ½” wider than the original circle.  You want this piece to be at least as wide as the globe itself for stability and proportion.

Center the small circle on the wider one and glue.  Let this dry thoroughly.  I added a circle of sandpaper to put on top of the smaller circle to that when I move the globe around to rearrange the globe contents, the white Styrofoam was camouflaged.

Filling the globe:


These globe fixtures are pretty generic across suppliers.

These clear glass globe fixtures can be found cheaply (I originally paid $4.) at the big box hardware stores, thrift stores, Habitat, even at garage sales.  First add shells you have collected from beaches visited.  Even broken shells (for beachy authenticity).  Have friends and neighbors collect them for you when they go on vacation.  If you haven’t collected any, the craft stores and online sites have shells you can buy.  Add any beach glass or pebbles, even small pieces of driftwood found on the beach.

Next, add your sand.  If you haven’t collected any yourself, ask someone else going to the beach to collect some for you, or raid a child’s sandbox for play sand.  If these aren’t options, then buy some sandbox play sand or go to the craft store and buy some craft sand.  You can even use salt to imitate ‘sugar sand beaches’.  Do not use sugar.  You only need 2-3 cups of sand.  There is no need to completely fill the globe.

Putting it together:
Once your happy with the amount of shells and sand, add glue to the sides of the small base circle and fit inside the globe opening.  Let dry thoroughly before turning it over.

Finishing details:
Wrap twine around the base to complete the nautical look, then add the ribbon of your choice around the bottom of the globe to hide the inner part of the base.  Cut a circle of felt to put on the bottom of the base for the finishing touch.


Here’s a closeup of the finished base wrapped in twine and tied with a ribbon bow.

Now you have your own personal beach to tuck inside your home.  Shake it up to arrange and rearrange the shell mixture inside whenever you feel the need for summer and sand.


Here's another view of the finished Beach Globe.

Here’s another view of the finished Beach Globe. As you can see, some of the sand is still sticking to the glass from the last time it was shaken.


Best of all, this ‘snowglobe’ can be displayed year-round to remind you of summer memories.


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Walking the Beach

Some people are fortunate to live where they can walk the beach barefoot all year long.  Where I live, you’ll freeze your tootsies in winter if you’re barefoot.  And this spring, there haven’t been many days warm enough to wear flip-flops (until this weekend), so we need shoes.  Shoes fit for traipsing across the dunes to get to the water’s edge, but lightweight enough to be the next best thing to barefoot.  L.A. Gear made a pair that were my fave.  They went out of business for a while.  Then Hanes was making a pair they actually called Beachcomber.  They’ve been discontinued also.  Still I’ve managed to find a pair of lightweight casual canvas sneakers.

As they got worn and dingy, I decided to try an experiment.  I’d been using textile paints on denim, so I thought I’d try painting my sneaks.

My first painted pair I called sunset palms.  Yeah, the sunset is a bit reversed (the purple should be at the top), but that ‘s just my style.  I wore the heck out of them.

Paint your own sneakers: sunset palms

Anyone can paint a sunset.  It’s broad horizontal strokes and blending.  I used my Jacquard Opaque Textile paints for them.  They need to be heat set, but since using an iron would have been tricky, I just used my blow dryer on high setting.  It worked.  Got those sneaks wet and the paint held.

Rather than doing another sunset, on the next pair I decided to do a beach scene.  I even used the colorless sparkling paint to mimic the wet sand as the waves rolled in.

DIY Walking the Beach sneakers

Once again, beach scenes are very easy to do — for a big impact.  These are great for getting to and from the beach and easy to fit in pockets or tote while on the sand.  They’ll even look great walking around town in the summer — or on the tennis court.  I’ve been wearing out this pair too.  Haven’t decided how to paint the next pair, but I’ll probably need more paint since I used up the last of these colors.

No need to spend big bucks on store-bought colorful sneakers.  Paint your own!



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