Friday Favorites–Crafting in the Hardware Store

I’m amazed at the creative uses people come up with for things found in the hardware store.  The best part is, if you buy your supplies there, rather than a craft store, they usually cost less.  Here’s a few projects from people who’ve clearly spent as much time there as I have, staring at aisles of endless home improvement projects.  I mean craft supplies.

DIY Napkin Rings from Be What We Love

From the hardware store:  PVC pipe, Dremel tool, sandpaper

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DIY Neon Rope Belt from My Bloggable Day

From the hardware store:  rope, carabiner

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Boys’ Hardware Accessories from House of Joyful Noise

From the hardware store:  nuts, washers

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Cupcake Ring from Shades of Tangerine

From the hardware store:  wooden plug, super glue

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Boxes from Paint Swatches from How About Orange

From the hardware store:  paint swatches

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Sewing Organizers from Sew Many Ways

From the hardware store:  wall corner protector

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Hardware Stamps from Daisy Yellow

From the hardware store:  tiny washers, plastic piping, sprinkler connectors, wood

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Restyle a Goodwill Clock from ModHomeEc

From the hardware store:  wood shims, wood stain, paint, epoxy, clamps

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DIY Tray from Auto Glass from The Flourishing Abode

From the hardware store:  auto glass, copper plumbing feet

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Love Connection Wood Sign from SAS Interiors

From the hardware store:  L-bracket, pipe clamp, screws, picture wire, nails, wood

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Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center

I mentioned the kitchenware Reuse Design Challenge at Earth911 a a while back.  Well, I won!  My thanks to everyone who voted.  This was the challenge:

Upcycle used/old/worn out cookware (pots, pans, utensils…etc) into something completely different, but useful. We are looking for creative AND practical reuse designs, not simply decorative.

Sounds pretty easy, right? Except all I could think of were projects that were decorative. My sketch sheet is almost hilarious. Draw something, realize it’s only purpose is to look pretty, cross it out.

Luckily, my need for a good project and an actual need collided. My husband and I have started exercising regularly and trying to eat healthier. I find we eat better food if I plan it out in advance, so I wanted a menu board for my kitchen. I saw lots of kitchen command centers out there, but I have lots of windows and very little wall and they were all too big.  This little cookie sheet fits the spot perfectly.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 0

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 0

To make one of these handy boards, you’ll need a cookie sheet, an empty mint container, a flat-sided pen cup (or a small box), clothespins, a shopping list pad, chalkboard paint, acrylic paint, a silver Sharpie, flat magnets or a magnetic sheet, ribbon or cord to hang it, and, of course, chalk to write on it with. 

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 1

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 1

This is probably the cheapest cookie sheet known to man, but in this case that’s an advantage.  I felt like I could safely hang it on the wall without having to worry about it.  Rough your pan up with some sandpaper to help the paint stick.  I did this on the back, because that’s the side I chose to use.  Do the same with your mint tin and pencil cup, if it’s metal.  Clean everything well.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 2

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 2

My cookie sheet didn’t have any holes in the ends, so I used a screwdriver, a hammer and a piece of wood to add a couple.  It wasn’t difficult on this thin metal.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 3

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 3

Spray all three pieces with two or three coats of chalkboard paint.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 4

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 4

After the paint has dried completely, use a pencil to draw a menu block.  Trace the pencil lines with a silver Sharpie.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 5

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 5

Add the days of the week, if you’d like them to be permanent. 

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 6

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 6

I printed my own shopping list (which you can download here) and secured them together with a piece of cardboard on the back using padding compound.  I cut a magnetic calendar down to fit the back (don’t tell my insurance agent!) but any flat, sheet-style magnetic will work.  Glue that to the cardboard.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 7

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 7

Paint the clothespins with the acrylic paint and glue magnets to the back.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 9

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 9

I also added a few details to the mint tin and pencil cup using the Sharpie and paint.  Glue magnets to the side of the pencil cup and the bottom of the mint tin.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 10

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 10

String the ribbon through the holes in the cookie sheet and tie for hanging.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 11

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 11

The day I finished this, I just made up a menu for the photos.  My son walked in while it was hanging and excitedly asked “Are we having Pad Thai for dinner?" which is his favorite.  Since I didn’t even have the ingredients into the house, that wasn’t happening, and he sadly left the kitchen.  I probably owe someone some Pad Thai.

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 12

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci 12

Now that I have this little thing, I don’t know what I did without it.  I always know where my shopping list and pens are, and my son could stop coming home and asking me what’s for dinner every night.  That’s if I can ever get him to trust it again.

Friday Favorites–Creative Planters

I love the way the outdoors looks this time of year.  Flowers are starting to bloom, the leaves on the trees are unfurling and it’s still raining so it all stays green and healthy.  It’s always right about now when I get an urge to plant something in a container, but that little voice in my head says “Really?  You want to add to the plant body count around here?  You know as soon as it stops raining, that thing is a goner.”  When they make a plant that will water itself and not rely on me, it might stand a chance.

Around here, we’re wearing rain boots about now, but if you have some that have been outgrown or are no longer a pair, try these cute planters from Rosy~Posy.

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I love the mini tiered garden effect created by this Tackle Box Garden from More Design Please.

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We’re planning to replace the gutters on our house in the next year or so.  I might have my husband save the old ones so I can make this DIY Vertical Garden with Reclaimed Gutters from Green Upgrader.

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All that clear, beveled glass makes these old ceiling fixtures perfect for planters.  Design Sponge shows you how.

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We’ve all seen old tires used as planters, but there’s something special about the way they’re used in this park in Peru.  They almost look like you could sit on them.  Shared by Wallace Gardens.

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Just…wow.  Click through to see this Mobile Garden Dress from Foodtree on an actual human model.

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We’ve pulled a few sinks out of our house, and although ours were lovely 70’s shades of avocado and light blue, they might still make great planters.  Cherry Hill Cottage set hers on top of a sewing machine stand.

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These Baby’s Tears in Muffin Tins from Country Living would make great centerpieces for an outdoor event.

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If it’s still a little too cold to think about planting outside where you are, try this Indoor Terrarium, made using a fishbowl, from SheKnows.

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Using tea cups as planters is an idea that’s been around for a long time, but the addition of the Tea Bag Plant Markers from At Home on the Bay is genius.

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Just so you know, I think my lack of gardening skills has skipped a generation.  My daughter was given a bamboo plant for her birthday over a year and a half ago and it’s still alive.  She forgot to take it back to school with her when she left after spring break, and is worried I’ll kill it in the 5 days until she’s here again.  Nothing green is safe with me.

Reuse Design Challenge - Kitchenware

I’m a little competitive.  Maybe more than a little.  The problem is, I’ll accept a challenge, then drive myself batty trying to knock it out of the park.  That’s what happened to me recently, when I was contacted by Earth911 to compete in another Reuse Design Challenge.

This is the challenge:

Upcycle used/old/worn out cookware (pots, pans, utensils…etc) into something completely different, but useful. We are looking for creative AND practical reuse designs, not simply decorative.

What I finally came up with was a kitchen command center, made from an old cookie sheet, an Altoid container, an old pen cup, wood clothespins and a custom made shopping list:

Cookie Sheet Kitchen Command Center - Crafty Staci

I’ll tell you more about how I landed on this project and how it was made next month.  If you’d like to vote in the challenge, visit Earth911 before this Friday!

Protect Your Tech Design Challenge

I was asked by Earth911, a great website focused on creating less waste and finding ways to use things in new ways, to participate in their Protect Your Tech Design Challenge this month.  The goal was to make a carrier or case for an electronic device using recycled or repurposed materials.  You know how you’re full of great ideas until you’re asked to think about something specific, then totally draw a blank?  That was me for a while. Eventually it came to me.  My red coat!  I still had some leather and a couple of small buttons left and I’d been wanting to make something to hold my smart phone anyway.  I managed to scavenge all of the other pieces from my “I’m saving this because I might use it later” box, so the only part of it that’s new is the thread.

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It turned out exactly the way I pictured, and holds my phone perfectly.

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I think my favorite part of it is the flower I cut out from the leather.

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In case you didn’t catch the "Challenge” part of this, it’s a competition between me and 8 amazing craft bloggers, determined by your vote.  If you’d like to participate, visit the Earth911 website here and click the circle next to your favorite project on the 11th page of the slide show.  Voting closes on January 30th.

Of course, I’ll be sharing the tutorial for this little bag with you, but I have to wait until the challenge is over.  Thanks for taking the time to share your opinion!

Friday Favorites–New Life for Old Clothes

This is the time of year when I always find myself standing in front of my closet with a critical eye, ready to start tossing.  Sometimes it’s things that have just seen their last outing, thanks to a hole here or a stain there.  But often, it’s just that I’m tired of looking at a garment in it’s current form.  In fact, I’m working on a major clothing refashion of my own I’ll be showing you soon.  In the meantime, I’ve found lots of inspiration.

I actually tried this Pinched Hem from Feathers Flights a couple of months ago.  My jeans are always too long, but I don’t like the look of my “homemade” hems.  This trick worked beautifully.

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This Draped T-Shirt from One Avian Daemon is made from a piece of knit fabric, but I think it could also be done with a t-shirt or two.

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I love these Faux Chenille Capri Pants from RoCa and Company.  I think if I made these with the chenille closer to the hem I could get away with it.

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I used to have a sweatshirt with three-quarter length sleeves and I wore it a lot this time of the year.  I’ve been thinking about altering a long-sleeved one I already have to replace it, and I’d like to also use the neckline from this Sweatshirt Makeover from Irish Attic.

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My short-short days are over, but luckily I have a daughter with lovely legs.  I think she’s going to need these DIY Vintage Lace Trimmed Shorts from Hippie Lace.  Living vicariously through my daughter’s closet.

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The ruffle and buttons are a great details on this Men’s Polo Shirt to Woman’s Cute Shirt with Yolk from LauPre.  This would be equally fun with short sleeves for summer.

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I’m not sure this Snowflake Cutout Tank from Honeybear Lane on Ucreate would be the same if she hadn’t used the black and white polka dot fabric.  It really adds to the design.

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These little Ruffle Cuff Pants from The Mother Huddle are adorable.  How cute would this be for shorts?

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I love how the braiding turns this big, boring shirt into something so stylish.  Scroll all the way to the bottom of the tutorial on Crafting Dreams to see what she did with the bottom of the sleeves.

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Single-shoulder tops are everywhere right now, so why not make your own?  Find out how with this tutorial from Craft.

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Also, in case you haven’t already heard, next Monday is the first day of Giveaway Day (which is really Giveaway Week) at Sew, Mama, Sew!  If you haven’t heard of it, you’re really missing something.  Hundreds of bloggers and crafters from all over participate by giving something away.  Some offer a premade item, others craft supplies.  Some give both.  Everyone has their own method of entry, but it’s often as simple as leaving a comment. 

I’ll be giving something away as well, so be sure to check back here on Monday to see what it is and enter to win!