Tag Archives: DIY

Shark-Themed Party and Mini Shortcakes

Baby A turned 1. O. N. E…ONE! And just like every mom when her precious baby’s first birthday looms, I found myself wondering how it was even possible that he joined our little family almost a year ago?!?! After recovering from the shock, I turned my attention to planning a first birthday. How could we celebrate baby A and his first year of life?

I began thinking through what we could do to celebrate. Here is a summation of my thought process. I started by asking myself how we could host friends in our little apartment? We could have the party outdoors! How could we do something outdoors in the July desert? We could have it in the morning at the pool! What theme goes well with a pool party? An underwater theme! And it just so happened that A just got a new pair of shark swimming trunks. Sharks.  And just like that it was decided. An early-morning, shark-themed birthday party.

Next was the menu planning. Early morning party = breakfast food. Breakfast is easy, affordable, and has so much presentation potential. I focused on strawberry shortcake in different forms and added in fresh fruit and an egg casserole to complete the menu. Easy to prep the day before or morning of and so good!

One sheet cake of strawberry shortcake is all I needed to make the smash cake, mini cakes, and trifle. I simply baked a sheet cake of strawberry shortcake. I “cheated” and used the gluten free bisquick mix and recipe right on the box. So easy and delicious! 

I used round cookie cutters to cut out A’s smash cake and the mini shortcakes. 

The mini shortcakes were topped with a dollop of jam and then cream cheese frosting, a fresh strawberry slice, and shark fin cupcake topper made by the awesome Sonora Handmade

A’s smash cake was simply outline in piped cream cheese frosting and filled in with jam on top both layers and then lightly frosted on the outside to get a naked cake look (and also lock in the moisture). And topped with a laser cut number “1” also made by Sonora Handmade.

I crumbled up the leftover shortcake and topped with the leftover strawberry jam, strawberries, and whipped cream in a glass bowl to get a quick and easy trifle.

Three different presentations out of one recipe.

The decor was a mix of things I had and a few things I picked up. I used galvanized buckets, linens, and severware I already had. I purchased sharks (which doubled as party favors), plates, napkins, forks, and straws from the Dollar Tree. I also picked up some balloons for the backdrop from Party City. Cut out a few shark sillouhettes from blue bags. And, lastly, I added in fresh flowers. Fresh flowers are always such a nice touch for any party and I scored all the greenery and flowers for this party for $10 total from Trader Joe’s!

What do you think? I was pretty pleased with how everything turned out and how budget friendly it ended up being. It was such a precious time with friends celebrating our sweet boy.

Any ideas or traditions for celebrating first birthdays? Please share them in the comments below! If you haven’t already, feel free to subscribe to get all my latest DIY and money saving ideas. And, if you enjoyed this post, give it a like so I know to do more like this one. Up next week is an easy decor set-up for your next dinner party. 

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DIY TACO FIESTA…on a budget (including recipes!)


One of my husbands most favorite things on this earth are tacos…specifically my barbacoa tacos. So when his birthday came around it was an easy decision to make tacos for his birthday lunch. The kids and I planned to meet him for lunch at his work with the tacos in tow. He was excited! What he didn’t know was that I had also set up a surprise lunch with some of his friends and co-workers. Surprise!


I made a few decorations throughout the week…hiding them on the porch. It’s been over 100 degrees here so I knew he was not going to be going out on the porch lol. I made some avocado piñatas, a faux chalkboard sign, picked up a few fiesta looking linens from goodwill, and used some old Voss glass water bottles to hold some fresh sunflowers I picked up.

I needed to be able to set up the whole table in a matter of minutes to avoid being caught (which I almost was!). I laid down a white curtain as the table cloth, laid a fiesta looking blanket (goodwill for $4) and hand painted pillow cover in bright fiesta colors (goodwill for $2) over the curtain to give a pop of color, hanged a party sign (“hooray” sign from target for $5) on the front of the table, and then added the table top decor of the faux chalkboard, flowers, and avocado piñatas. Easy. Easy. Easy.

HERE’S A TIP: Cloth linens easily dress up your decor over the cheap, plastic ones but they can cost so much! So look around your house and secondhand and thrift stores. What can you repurpose as a linen from what you already have or for only a few dollars? I’ve used everything from a curtain to a sheet to a blanket to cheap fabric and it makes such a big difference!

The avocados were an easy DIY using two bowls, paper mâché, and streamers and tissue paper. There are plenty of DIY tutorials out there so I won’t waste your time. Rather,  here  is my favorite link. A couple notable differences: Instead of balloons I used two bowls covered by Saran Wrap (since I already had Thor on hand = free), and instead of a brown seed I used gold foil to make the seed similar to the avocado piñata sold by Urban Outfitters here.


The faux chalkboard was a last minute attempt to DIY something that resembled a chalkboard for cheap. My chalkboards are being borrowed right now so I wanted to make due with something I could make fast and cheap. I grabbed black foam board and pom poms from the dollar tree, glue, a gold pen I had on hand, and stencils and got to business. I have to say I was pleased. For $2 I had a pretty good centerpiece that matched so well and made the area so much more fun!


The sunflowers were a bulk purchase from Costco. $10 for 12. They add so much color and height to the table.

HERE’S A TIP: Instantly add a sophisticated touch by using fresh flowers and/or greenery. It doesn’t have to be expensive though. What bushes and trees can you use in your or a friend’s backyard? What plants are on clearance in your local nursery? What bulk flowers are available at a discount cost? I’ve used all of those for different events and loved the results of every one of them.


I wanted some tall, thin vases to keep the height of the flowers and also to be able to hold the heavy stems up. After looking around at what I had, I came across some old glass water bottles I had stored for such a time as this! Perfect and free! I turned them around so the writing faced the back and you’d never know they were old water bottles.


Lastly was the food. I wanted a catered feel to the table so I chose some foil food containers from the dollar tree. We had meat, corn tortillas, rice, beans, chips, taco toppings of lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, guacamole, salsa, and sour cream, and donuts for dessert. Delicious and about $50 to make it for a group of 20 people ($2.50 a person!).


So, I am not a cooking blog but I thought I would quickly share the easy recipes for the food to make this a one-stop shop blog for your future fiesta. It isn’t perfect (I usually eyeball it when I make it) but hopefully it helps! 

Barbacoa: a chuck roast or London broil, box of beef stock, can of chipotle peppers in Adobe sauce, 3 garlic cloves, 1 white onion sliced, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 3 Tbsp chili powder, 2 Tbsp cumin, salt, pepper. Combine all ingredients except the meat in a slow cooker, add meat, if meat isn’t covered by the sauce then add water until covered, and cook in a slow cooker for 10-12 hours on low or until cooked thoroughly and falling apart. If possible, cook on high for the first 3-4 hrs for the most tender results IMO.

Beans: 4 cans of black beans, drained, rinsed, and warmed in a pan with some of the cooked barbacoa juice and salt.

Rice: basmati rice, box of chicken stock, can of tomato paste, and can of stewed tomatoes. Bring stock to a boil, add in tomato products and a cup of the cooked barbacoa juice, salt, and lastly add the rice. Turn the heat down to low, cover, and let simmer 20 mins or whatever time your rice directions say. 

Chop up the toppings. I had pre-made salsa, chips, and corn tortillas for convenience but made my own quick version of guac. For the quick guac, mash 3 avocados and add a few spoonfuls of some pre-made salsa, dash of salt, and Tbsp of mayo (weird but trust me…soooooo creamy!). Mix thoroughly.

That’s it. You’re done! Easy right? What do you think? Any ideas you have for a great fiesta party? Let me know in the comments below. 


And, as always, feel free to subscribe if you haven’t already to get all my latest blog posts. Also, like this post if you want to see more budget friendly party ideas in the future. Until next time…

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Play Kitchen Renovation Of 2017: $4 DIY faux marble backsplash

Toys. Bless them. Colors of the rainbow litter every room. They are taking over our home! 

I don’t know about you but mismatched toys everywhere can make me feel a little chaotic. Add in normal toddler messes that are hard to clean up and my day is gone admits the chaos. I mean, this is just an example of what my toddler can do in about 14 seconds. Tiny. Paper. Everywhere. 


I’m on a mission to organize said toys and random stuff in an effort to calm the chaos a bit and make it easier to clean up at the end of the day. I mean, who wants to watch the bachelorette in the midst of that mess? Not me.

I’m dedicating a play area for the kids in one of the main areas of our home. I mean, I want the kids to be able to play and enjoy our home still. I’m not a total Scrooge. In doing that though I knew I would want to tweak some of the toys blend in more with the decor of the room and keep things feeling even calmer. 


I was so close to be doing done organizing (can you already feel the chaos coming down?) but that play kitchen really needed a facelift.


I scored it for $15 so I wasn’t out much if it didn’t work out. So much to gain and so little to lose. I was off to lowes for what I jokingly dubbed the “play kitchen renovation of 2017.”

Supplies:

1. Spray paint. You’ll want at least two colors. The color you want the kitchen to be and color you want the hardware to be (and any additional colors if you want to do the kitchen in multiple colors). I chose a brighter navy blue for the kitchen and stainless steel for the hardware.


2.  Stick on floor tile (large size) for the backsplash. I only needed one for this project but you may need more depending on size. I used Item A3263 to get a marble look. There’s so much variety and it was less than $3! It would have cost me quadruple that for the premade stick on backsplashes!

3. Painter’s tape and scrap paper/bags

4. Super glue

5. Sharp scissors

Steps:

1. Prep for painting. Scrub your kitchen down and remove and/or tape off the sections you don’t want painted.

Our knobs were removable so I took those off to paint separately with the stainless steel paint and then used scrap paper, plastic bags, and painters tape to cover the remaining areas of the kitchen I didn’t want painted.


2. Paint your kitchen. Self explanatory. Follow use, dry times, and safety precautions on your spray paint can.

3. Backsplash. Cut your floor tile into subway tiles (or your preferred tile style). My subway tiles were 3″ tall and 6″ wide. I traced them out on the paper back and then cut. Once I had my main tiles done, I practiced placing them where I wanted before removing the paper backing and sticking them more permanently. This let me see what space was left and cut some special sizes to fit in the leftover spaces (just like you would when tiling a real backsplash). You can see the special, shorter pieces I needed on the ends.


TIP: to figure out the easiest and best size tile for your kitchen measure the width and height of the black splash area. I didn’t want to cut a ton of special sizes so I just evenly divided the 9″ tall backsplash area by 3 (because I wanted three even rows so if yours is taller or shorter you may want to divide by less or more than 3) which got me 3 rows of 3″ tall tiles. I just doubled the 3″ to get my width and keep it simple. 

Practice placing the tiles before removing the backing. Once you have all your tile pieces cut out and you’re pleased with their practice placement, remove the backing, add super glue around the edges (for extra hold), and place your tiles permanently(ish).


I placed mine edge to edge and I think it gave it a cool, marble-looking backsplash. Much more sophisticated than what it was before for sure. 

$3 Tile + dollar tree super glue + a little math and elbow grease = $4 backsplash!

Here’s a little peek of the kitchen in its new home. Don’t mind the blurry pic. I was trying to to snap the pic as my destructive toddler headed straight for the play area. But, I mean, doesn’t the kitchen fit in MUCH better?


I love the new, modern look of the kitchen! What do you think? Any tips for tackling your own play kitchen project? Let me know in the comments below. 

If you like what you read then please feel free to subscribe and follow along. You’ll get notices of all my most recent projects and ideas. Don’t miss a thing! Until next time…

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Water colored succulent planters: easy kid craft for the special adult(s) in their life


So this year my three old has really become her own, independent person. She loves to be the one in charge. So, for Father’s Day I decided to let her develop what she wanted to do for daddy with just a “little” help. The results are this trio of hand-painted, succulent planters that cost me a whopping $2 and took only an hr or two to put together. 

They’re subdued enough to be the perfect touch to any dad’s office or space and are sure to remind him of some littles that really, really love him.

 So here we go. You’ll need:
1. Clay pots. We scored a three pack at the dollar tree.

2. Succulents. We found a four pack for $1 in the clearance section at lowes.

3. Paint (markers, stickers, decals, whatever you have on hand). We just used whatever paint we had on hand.

4. Potting soil for succulents. Again, we just used what we already had on hand.

To Make:

I’m sure you guessed it, just let your kiddos imaginations run wild! I just pulled out old paint, taped down some paper protection on our surface, and let little boss go at it. 


HERE’S A TIP: I created a water colored effect to give the project a little more of a sophisticated feel. I let our little boss create her own design on each pot. Let that dry. And then painted a watered down coat of paint in the same color over the whole pot to give that water color effect. I think it adds a subdued touch keeping the project from  being too much of a whacky, kid crazy, macaroni necklace status project. I pictured this in my husbands office, a professional environment, so it needed to be somewhat subdued but still a sweet reminder for him every day of a little three year old girl who loves him so dearly. 

Plant your succulents and you are done! 

HERE’S A TIP: our pots had small draining holes at the bottom. I did not have time to pack everyone up and go buy something to keep the water from leaking out all over my husbands desk. So, I added some painters tape over the hole on both sides and painted over the tape on the bottom of the pot. Since succulents are best kept damp, this quick fix worked like a charm to keep the dampness in. 

So, what do you think? What Father’s Day gift ideas are you trying out this year? Let me know if you give this one a try. And, if you aren’t already, make sure to subscribe so you’ll get notices of all my new posts right when they happen. I can’t wait to share everything I’ve been working on! Until then, happy Father’s Day! 

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Americana Themed Party Decor on a Budget

11722120_10153505240071672_3090114973966614293_oY’all…you like that southern slang right? But seriously, I am inspired by some dear, southern friends today on the blog. I recently had the opportunity to decorate for a one year anniversary celebration of the youth leader and his wife at our church. Not only was I excited to celebrate all they had done at the church, but I was also excited to celebrate them becoming our good friends over the past year. Now, these two are Georgia peaches so I definitely wanted the party to have a Georgia country vibe. I took that into an Americana feel (I mean I was still feeling very patriotic after the Fourth of July) and ran with it. I had a budget of $100 and a lot of ideas running through my head. I can’t wait to share what I came up with you!

Without further ado, here is what I hope you can use as inspiration for an Americana themed party complete with DIY “how to”s and money saving tips for your own party no matter the decor you decide on.

imageFirst, I started by creating a ton of rag garlands in our party colors. I used some affordable material in our red, white, and blue color scheme to create my own DIY, budget friendly, country rag garlands. It cost me about $18 to make them all.

To make the garland, I purchased one yard of four different patterns (about $16). I then cut my material into one inch strips. Taking each strip, I folded each one in half with the pattern facing me and placed the folded edge about 2 inches above a long piece of twine (from Dollar Tree) like so: image Be sure the twine is the length you want your garland to be. Then I simply wrapped the two loose ends of my folded, one inch strip around the back of the twine and through the folded edge above the twine like so:

imageimageimagePull from the bottom of the strip to tighten and start with your next strip. I bunched some strips really close together on some garland strands and left them about 6 inches apart on others to give the different garland strands some variety. I hung some on borrowed pallets (donated to our youth group for free by a local home improvement store) and others above the food tables to add a real country, summer feel.

11264855_10153505240066672_2074573162746211750_nNext, I made banners with words on them by cutting small triangles out of material, using paint and stencils (you can use whatever you please to match your party) to add the letters, and gluing those triangles onto twine (again from the dollar tree). So easy! I splurged on this material because I loved the striped pattern. All in all, it cost about $14 to make all my word banners but you could easily do it for about $5.

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imageI used plastic table clothes (from the Dollar Tree) covered by a thin, natural linen material (from Wal Mart for $2 a yard). I love cloth tablecloths but needed the ones for this party to feel more rustic. The natural linen was perfect and so affordable! I added two rolls of burlap about 4″ wide purchased from the Dollar Tree down the center as a runner, fresh flowers from a friend’s garden in mason jars (from Dollar Tree and old ones I already had), and some homemade wood cuts to finish off that rustic feel. Cost me about $24 for two food tables, a cake table, and a punch station.

imageFor the card area I hung twine from a pallet and added clothespins to hang all the cards from. I love displaying cards like this. It really makes the one or ones we are celebrating feel so loved when they see all their cards up front and center. Clothespins were $2 and the rest (twine and pallet) were from left over supplies.

imageTo add height to the food table, in addition to large wood cuts (homemade so they were free), I also made my own tiered server for $3! Simple glue the bottom of martini glass to the top of one plate and the top of the martini glass to the bottom of another plate. So simple and yet it adds some great height to any table! I got my plates and martini glass from the dollar tree.

11745404_10153505240061672_1268914120188250075_nFor the drink station I used an old spool to display the punch and cups. I found this spool in our church attic. It had been used for electrical cord. I added in a pallet, a circular plastic tablecloth (from dollar tree), a burlap tablecloth (just a yard of burlap from wal mart for $3) and fresh flowers from my friend’s garden to create a whole new station to add to the decor feel.

imageAdd in a few flags and checkered paper from the dollar store and you have a completed Americana themed party. I also purchased plates, forks, cups, serving trays, and napkins from the Dollar Tree which added to my expense list but with what I saved by making all of the party decor I was able to easily get those supplies and still come in under budget.

What do you think? Let me know what ideas you were able to use for your next party and don’t forget to check back soon for more DIY ideas…on a budget of course. Next up will be a DIY door hanger. And, as always, if you enjoy what you are reading then feel free to follow my blog to get all my latest decorating and money-saving ideas and tips.

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DIY Spring Wreath Ideas

I was so inspired by some grapevine wreaths I found yesterday that I decided to spend my Thursday evening crafting some new spring wreaths. I want to share them with you to inspire you to make your own as well as get your input. I’d love your input on what you love and what you could do without. Let me know in the comments below what you think. Now, without further ado…

imageimageAnd, as always, if you like what you see don’t forget to subscribe to get all my latest DIY ideas.

Also, I just opened my first etsy shop and these two are my first items. Check it out – https://www.etsy.com/shop/Trendythrifting.

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DIY Floral Arrangements: Spring Peonies


So I have to share this while the spring florals are still available at Dollar Tree. These florals are amazingly beautiful for how cheap they are. Please forgive this quickly written post. I really, really, really don’t want you to miss out! I mean, look at those peonies! So, without further ado, here you go.

I originally made these arrangements for a baby shower coming up and loved them (and the price) so I used them for a missionary luncheon and then my home. Anyone can add a pop of spring to their home or event with these arrangements and bring a little cheer inside for a very affordable price (approximately $4-$8 an arrangement depending on the amount of blooms and accents you use). Who doesn’t want that?

wpid-20150330_101013.jpgTo make each one you will need:

1 Queen Rose Bouquet in white

1 bunch Peonies in pink (I ended up buying one in a peachy pink and another in a more white and pink ombre coloring but both will work and look great)

1 rose bouquet in a peachy pink

Feel free to pick up any other florals that have a full bloom and go with the color scheme. I added in a few random florals like white and pink Magnolias and fern leaves to add more variety.

I also picked up floral foam and a glass globe shaped vase and a tall, cylinder shaped vase at the dollar tree so I had some variety to work with.

To make these you need to:

1. Cut the stem of each floral to the height needed for your arrangement. You will want a shorter stem (3-4 inches) for the globe shaped vase and a longer stem (7-8 inches) for the cylinder shaped vase.

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2. Cut your foam to fit in your vase and then place your brightest, biggest bloom in the center about an inch or two higher than the top of the vase. How high you place it depends on how full you want your arrangement to be..the taller the bigger and fuller the arrangement will be. I used my peonies to start. I just love them so much!

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3. Begin to fill in around that center bloom. I go in circles around the bloom until the arrangement is to the fullness I want and then use smaller blooms to fill in any gaps. Feel free to pull and push at the blooms to get a very organic look to your arrangement.  I also added a few bird embellishments to add interest to some of the arrangements.

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4. I added in burlap strips into the globe vases and glued burlap around the outside of the cylinder vase to cover the floral foam and add texture to the arrangement.

(you can see the fern leaves I used in this first arrangement)

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(this second picture is one of the centerpieces we made using the floral arrangements for a missions luncheon)

Just as a heads up, for the arrangements in the globes, I had florals left over from each one so I was able to get a few more from the leftover florals since I wanted a lower arrangement height in those.

HERE’S A TIP: Add even more interest to your vase by spray painting it. I added a few arrangement to various Dollar Tree vases I spray painted gold for a pop of metallic color.

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What do you think? Let me know how your arrangements turn out and don’t forget to check back soon for more DIY ideas…on a budget of course. And, as always, if you enjoy what you are reading then feel free to follow my blog to get all my latest decorating and money-saving ideas and tips

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Add a metallic accent to any room with this quick, easy, and budget friendly DIY idea

wpid-20150330_101013.jpgOur family room has been 50 shades of brown since we moved in. All of our lounge furniture and decor just somehow ended up being brown, beige, greige, or white. All of it.

In an effort to get the room redecorated in time for spring, I decided to work on adding in some color and texture…on a budget of course. Some of the textural ideas I had I already blogged about, like my $2 DIY jute bowl or my easy burlap frame. Once I got some texture into the room I turned my eye towards pops of color.

The idea I am blogging about today came to me out of a desperate need for metallic accents. One way to add texture and color is to use metallics. But how could I do it on a budget? Reusing what I already had was one way to save money. Our family room already had a lot of glass from old candles that had long since been used up and old dollar tree glass and knick knack items that could really use an upgrade. So I had a lot of stuff I could re-purpose but I also needed to do it quickly (I have a toddler so nap time is about my average project duration these days). Spray paint was the clear answer. That seems to be my go to whenever I need a color quick and am on a tight budget. You already saw how I was able to transform some old Dollar Tree frames into Lilly Pulitzer inspired frames in this post so my love for spray paint comes as no surprise. But that being said I wanted to share what all I was able to transform with a $4 can of spray paint

You will need:

Old trinkets and glass containers (try dollar tree if you don’t already have these).

Gold spray paint (or color of your choice)

You need to:

1. Spray anything you want gold. Obvious right?

Really, this blog is to give you ideas and inspiration based off of what I was able to transform. So, here are some of my ideas on what you can paint to give your decor a little face lift.

1. Old candle jars. Spray paint them and display them empty or place an arrangement inside. No need to take the candle out unless you want to. I just placed the floral arrangement right on top of the old candle.

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2. Glass vases. Again, some of these I displayed alone and others I added flowers to. For this first one I wanted an ombre type look. To achieve that I began by spraying about 6 inches from the glass and moved further out from the glass as I sprayed in upward motions.

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3. Wood letters. This W was $1.49 at a craft store. A little paint and it takes on a whole new look.

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4. Knick knacks. I got these from yard sales or thrift stores. I always keep my eye out for fun shapes that would look great with a new coat of paint. To get the two toned leaf pictured below I simply places it upside down and sprayed only the bottom portions of it. I like the surprise gold you get along the edges of the leaf.
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I even spray painted a trash can from the Dollar Tree!

wpid-wp-1428521314383.jpgWhat do you think? Let me know how your accent pieces turn out and don’t forget to check back soon for more DIY ideas…on a budget of course. I will be sharing how to make the floral arrangements pictured in this post from Dollar Tree florals soon. And, as always, if you enjoy what you are reading then feel free to follow my blog to get all my latest decorating and money-saving ideas and tips.

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DIY Burlap Frame for Under $4

wpid-20150326_102440.jpgY’all (you like that southern slang eh?), anyways, y’all, it is spring! I have been enjoying getting the house decor changed in celebration of spring and summer. Out with winter and in with spring! All the changing over in decor would be the reason for my 2 week absence, but I am back with some budget friendly ideas for getting your own home decor into the spring spirit.

Whenever changing decor up I always like to start with the mantle and let the rest of the room take its cues from there. For this spring I wanted to really brighten up the mantle by adding in some metallics along with soft pinks and peaches. I also wanted to add some rustic elements into the whimsy color pallette to ground it a bit with the rest of the neutrals in the room. To do that I added in some rough wood, burlap, and jute elements. From the need to add in these rustic elements came my super easy and cheap burlap frame and today I want to share that DIY burlap frame with you!

You will need:

1 yard of burlap (or less depending on the size of your frame)

1 foam board (dollar tree has them)

Glue gun

Bread knife

Scissors

To make it you need to:

1. First, take the picture you want to frame and lay it centered on the foam board as pictured below. My picture was a print out from staples that cost me $4. If you haven’t heard about these prints available at Staples then check out this blog post to get all the information.

2. After you have your picture centered on the foam board, you want to trace the border of the picture onto the foam board as pictured below.

wpid-20150326_110155.jpg3. This line you just traced will be the line you use to create your frame size. Measure on inch below the line all the way around and one inch above the line all the way around and viola, you have a 2 inch thick frame shape to cut out as pictured below. (Note: The picture below wasn’t measured exactly. I went back, measured, and adjusted lines needing it)

wpid-20150326_110326.jpg4. Cut out your frame shape. I like to use a bread knife to do this. Gently cut. You don’t want to bend your frame.

5. Lay out your burlap. Take your cut foam board and lay it on top of your burlap. Then cut approximately 2 inches above and below the frame shape all the way around so it looks similar to the picture below.

wpid-20150324_144504.jpg6. Cut a slit in every corner like the picture below.

wpid-20150324_144552.jpg7. Then begin gluing your burlap to the back of your frame like the pictures below.

wpid-20150324_145330.jpgwpid-20150324_145407.jpg8. Fold your corners like you are gift wrapping and add a dab of glue to hold the corners in place. You want sharp corners.

9. Finally, tape or glue your picture to the back of the frame and voila, you are done.

wpid-20150326_102456.jpgI added my picture and frame to my mantle to give it a bit of a rustic feel without being too rustic. What do you think? What pictures are you re-framing this season? Don’t forget to check back soon for more DIY ideas…on a budget of course. And, as always, if you enjoy what you are reading then feel free to follow my blog to get all my latest decorating and money-saving ideas and tips.

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DIY Faux Bird’s Nest…perfect for your home decor or next party theme.

wpid-wp-1424986403666.jpgI am in the process of helping create some “woodsy” decor for an upcoming baby shower. One of the projects on my “to do” list was create a bird’s nest out of some supplies supplied to me by my MIL. I managed to come up with a rather quick and easy way to create a bird’s nest on a budget and wanted to share that DIY with you today.

To get started you will need:

1. A foam wreath 7.8in wide x 1.9in.

2. Spanish Moss

3. Natural Moss or preserved moss and/or leaves

4. Hot glue gun with glue

5. Small paper plate (big enough to cover the hole in your foam wreath but not bigger than your foam wreath).

6. Decor for your nest. I used a bird, eggs, and burlap flower.

To make your wreath, you will need to:

1. Cut your foam wreath down the middle. You want it to be about 1 inch tall when laying flat. Cutting the foam was a slow process for me. The foam is very delicate and breaks easily. The key is go slow and apply as little pressure as possible.

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wpid-wp-1424986425700.jpg2. Next, you want to carefully stretch out your Spanish moss to make a moderately thick rope about the length it would take to go around your wreath. You can make one long rope or two or three shorter ropes. I made three shorter ropes like the one pictured. I found that easier to glue on that one big rope.

wpid-wp-1424986468222.jpg3. Glue your moss rope(s) directly onto the smooth side of your wreath (so the cut side  becomes the bottom of your nest). Generously drizzle glue on the top of the wreath and push and hold your moss rope onto the wreath over the glue. Don’t get stuck trying to make it perfect. As long as it sticks that’s all that matters. Once glue has dried, pull at your moss to get it to fold over the outer edges and attach around the outer edges with a dallop of glue as well. don’t worry about the inside just yet. We will get to that.

Here’s a picture of the moss glued to the top:

wpid-wp-1424986501777.jpgHere’s a picture of the moss being stretched and glued to the outer sides:

wpid-wp-1424986535495.jpg4. Now fill in those areas needing more coverage using your filler moss which can be anything from the left over spanish moss scraps to natural moss, preserved moss, and/or preserved leaves. I mixed a few of these together to get my filler moss. Just dallop some glue on the bare area on the wreath and push on a pinch of the filler moss. Using different moss in different colors adds texture and interest to your nest and really gives it a real life look. Here’s a picture of my spanish moss scraps mixed with my greener preserved moss.

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wpid-20150226_124122.jpg5. Now we finish off the inside of the nest. Glue the bottom of your paper plate to the bottom of the nest. This allows you to apply a bit more of the spanish moss, natural moss, preserved moss/leaves to the center of the wreath, fill it in, and complete that real nest look.

Here’s a picture of the plate attached to the bottom of the nest:

wpid-20150226_124103.jpgAnd here’s a picture of me filling in the center of the top of the nest after the plate had been attached to the bottom:

wpid-wp-1424987290217.jpg6. Now it is time to add your wreath decor. For mine, I attached a bird, eggs, and a little burlap flower, but your options are endless. You could put some simple robin blue eggs for a country chic look or even use foil covered eggs to hold your candy during the Easter season. Let your imagination run wild and personal preferences play into this.

wpid-20150226_123744.jpgWhat do you think? Don’t forget to share what ideas you come up with to decorate your own DIY nest. Check back soon for more DIY ideas…on a budget of course. And, as always, if you enjoy what you are reading then feel free to follow my blog to get all my latest decorating and money-saving ideas and tips.

And here are a few pics of how the nests were used at the recent baby shower. It’s a girl!

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