Convertible Cabinet

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This inexpensive cabinet was purchased for intended use in my bathroom. The unit didn’t quite fit as I envisioned, so I reinvented it for my living room! I love how the decorative paper looks like stained glass. Use any paper to match your scheme!

Things to consider…

  • The cabinet is narrow, great for all of those odds & ends you want to hide away. It has five shelves inside which hold everything from candles and spare sunglasses to DVDs and books.
  • This cabinet started white. All outside surfaces were sanded and primed, then painted a semigloss black and finished with two coats of polyurethane.
  • The decorative papers are applied to the inside of the cabinet doors with decoupage glue. I recommend thin paper for ideal results.

Punch. Drunk. Love!

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A real crowd pleaser! This slush recipe is a hit at every party. Use your favorite bourbon, rum or other spirit.

Bourbon Slush Recipe:

  • 7 cups of water, boiled
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 12 ounces of frozen lemonade
  • 12 ounces of frozen orange juice
  • 4 tea bags, brewed in 2 cups of water
  • 2 cups of bourbon or rum
  • Sprite or 7-Up

Pour the boiled water into a large, plastic bowl. Add the sugar, frozen lemonade and orange juice.  Brew 4 tea bags in 2 cups of water. Add to the bowl as well as 2 cups of alcohol. Stir completely. Place in the freezer for at least 48 hours. Put frozen concoction in your desired punch bowl and add some Sprite or 7-Up on top.  Enjoy!

Don’t Pop My Bubble

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Looking for a cheerful welcome?  This quirky wreath is made using gumballs, a Styrofoam form, hot glue gun and some ribbon. Super cute and incredibly easy to make yourself! 

Things to consider…

  • Paint the styrofoam wreath a complimentary base color first – two coats for good coverage. And make sure it dries completely before adhering the gumballs.
  • The wreath gets pretty heavy once all of the gumballs are in place. If you want to hang from a wreath hook, use a heavy gauge wire to wrap around the styrofoam form and create a loop.
  • The gumballs aren’t a perfect circle, there will be some irregular spacing and the gumballs won’t cover completely. Just make that the back side of the wreath – no one will know otherwise!
  • Once complete, spray your creation with a clear gloss spray enamel. Go outside or somewhere with good ventilation. Spray one side, including the inside & outside of the wreath. Let it dry before flipping over. I usually give it two or three coats of enamel. It really make the colors pop!

Footnotes:  Get creative! The huge selection of bubble gum colors & flavors can carry over for seasons and holidays.

Tres Tray Chic

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The perfect gift for the hostess, the newlyweds or your own home! Personalize this tray with a monogram or keep it simple with a lovely paper background.

Things to consider…

  • This 12″ x 12″ tray comes from West Elm – it’s inexpensive at just $22.00 and comes in a variety of colors.
  • The decorative paper is applied with decoupage glue, on the underside and on top. Try different color combinations and textures! Consider a vibrant fabric as a background too. Just be sure to tuck the unfinished edges underneath.
  • Acrylic sheets of varying size and thickness can be found at your local hardware store. Cutting acrylic can be tricky, but don’t let it intimidate you. See directions in File Under: Paper Makeover.
  • Remove the protective plastic covering from the acrylic. Adhere the acrylic directly to the tray with super glue – a dot in each corner isn’t too obvious.
  • Keep in mind the tray isn’t waterproof & it should not be immersed in water. Wipe clean with some glass spray and a paper towel.

Footnotes: I use a cutting machine on my computer to create the letters and shapes. You can easily create a template to trace and cut the paper.

File Under: Paper Makeover

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I’ve been obsessed with finding a flat file for all of my paper supplies, but most traditional flat files are quite bulky and can be expensive. This one-of-a-kind version is made with the ALEX drawer unit from IKEA, decorative paper, sheets of acrylic and fearlessness with a drill.

Things to consider…

  • The ALEX file from IKEA comes in white or black and measures 26”W x 26”H x 19”D. Be sure to take the drawer fronts off before starting these steps.
  • A template is created to mark the holes on the drawer front with an index card and hole punch. Drill holes directly through each drawer front – two for the handle, two for the outside supporting screws.
  • Large sheets of acrylic can be found at your local hardware store. For crafty projects like this, thinner sheets are easiest to use – the acrylic on this project is .085 thickness.
  • Cutting acrylic can be tricky, but don’t let it intimidate you. Measure the drawer front and use a straight edge and a good blade to score the sheet.  Bend back and forth with even pressure to snap. Be sure to keep the acrylic’s protective plastic intact.
  • Use the index card template to mark holes on your acrylic for the drawers and screws. Go slow and don’t apply too much pressure with your drill. Helpful hint: before drilling holes in the acrylic, place a small piece of masking or painters tape on the area to prevent cracking.
  • Cut your desired paper to size and watch the transformation!
  • Take the protective covering off the acrylic; be careful not to leave fingerprints. Use a screwdriver to install the screws and secure with a wing nut on the back side of the drawer. An added touch, I spray painted the 1” screws white before assembling.
  • Use any handles or pulls you like. I fancy the look and feel of cup pulls. Also found at the hardware store, these reinforce the acrylic as well as fit the design

As Dave Coulier would say…”Cut. It. Out.”

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Accentuate a birthday party with these festive cupcake cookies! Present cookies on a lovely tray to give as a gift or package individually with cellophane and ribbon to create the perfect party favor.

Baking and decorating cutout cookies extend beyond the holiday season. These sugar concoctions are the perfect treat for parties of any sort – birthdays, showers, holidays, anything! Here’s my favorite cutout sugar cookie and royal icing recipes.

Things to consider…

  • I highly recommend using a Silpat silicone baking mat. The mats are fairly inexpensive, they’re nonstick, they can be used over & over for batches of cookies and are easy to clean afterwards. You can even roll the dough directly out on the mat and use your cookie cutters to create perfect shapes.
  • Keys to successful baking
    • Cookie Cutter Size – I like to stick with a medium-sized cutter, approximately 3 to 3.5” in diameter. Too small, they easily burn. Too big, they tend to fall apart.
    • Rolling the Dough – Maintain a thin layer of flour on your rolling surface and dough. I recommend rolling the dough to 1/4” thickness
    • Baking – Keep an eye on the oven! As soon as the edges of the cookies start turn a golden brown, take them out. Keep the cookies on the pan for a minute or two, and then transfer to a cooling rack.
  • Royal Icing
    • Make a large batch of royal icing and divide into smaller mixing bowls to add color. I like my royal icing to be a little runny – the consistency of white glue.
    • For even frosting, apply the with a squeeze bottle. Trace around the border of the cookies first, then fill in with the icing. 
    • Use your imagination and have fun! 

Dandy Lines

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A DIY art project! I’m smitten with the whimsy and carefree nature of dandelions. This pop-art silhouette was found as a large wall decal and adapted to fit on a canvas.

Things to consider…

  • The canvas is a 20″ x 24″ gallery frame. The 1.5″ thick wrap canvas is painted black with the background painted a complimentary dark grey.
  • The lines are hand-drawn and filled-in with a black paint marker – so easy!
  • Four contrasting shades of purple card stock are selected for the dots, cut with various circle paper punches.
  • I affixed full sheets of scrapbook adhesive to the paper before punching out the dots. The subsequent thickness can make cutting difficult, but applying the dots is so much easier. The first time I used white glue and a pair of tweezers…

Footnotes:  Get creative! Experiment with the various sized circles to see how they best flow on the canvas. Try different color combinations and shapes.