DIY To Try: Refined Rope Bag

If we spotted this bag at a pretty seaside boutique, we would no doubt dream of whisking it off to the beach, pool, or farmer’s market. But even better—the tote is a DIY, made from scratch, via Style Me Pretty Living. You’ll want to dust off the sewing machine for this one, or borrow one, if need be.

The materials couldn’t be more straightforward. Just pick up some clothesline rope from the hardware store, (yup, it’s actually made of out of clothesline!), ready the aforementioned sewing machine, and break out the thread and a pair of scissors. Then follow along with the fully-illustrated instructions on Style Me Pretty Living. Don’t worry about the rope getting caught in your machine, either. Apparently it squishes down, making it as easy to sew as fabric. Can’t wait to tote this beauty around town.


4 Creative And Chic Easter Egg DIYs To Try This Year

Can you believe it? It’s already that time of year to start thinking about dyeing Easter eggs. Of course, you could always go with traditional egg dyeing kits … or you could be adventurous and opt to try something a little different.

This year, I wanted to try something different, so I figured out how to turn my Easter eggs into chic little works of art. Whenever I hear the word “chic,” I conjure up images of metallics and hues of pink. While it’s not the first word I would use to describe Easter eggs, I thought it would be pretty fun to decorate mine with that simple word in mind.

And to my surprise, it is possible! Who knew eggs could be so fashionable?! Here are the four different DIY ways that I turned this year’s Easter eggs from drab to fab!

How To Dye Easter Eggs

First, you’ll need to dye your Easter eggs so you’ll have a canvas on which to decorate.

I like to combine one cup of warm water with one tablespoon of white vinegar before adding food coloring to the mix. I’ve found this chart to be super helpful if you’re looking to dye your eggs in an array of unique and vibrant colors.

Once your dye is ready, place a hardboiled egg inside of a metal whisk and submerge it into the dye, making sure to rotate the egg until it’s entirely covered with the mixture. Once you’re happy with the color, remove the egg from the inside of the whisk and set it on a paper towel to dry.

And now for stylish Easter egg ideas!

1. Create a Marbled Pattern Using Margarine.

Margarine can help make beautifully unique eggs, as it will create the marbled pattern by preventing some of the dye from drying on the egg. This is a decoration idea to decide upon before you dye your eggs, Remember that old saying “oil and water don’t mix”? That’s exactly what will happen here.

In a small bowl, combine one cup of cool water with one tablespoon of white vinegar and food coloring. Then add one tablespoon of melted margarine. Using tongs, quickly dunk one egg three times before completely submerging it in the mixture for three minutes.

Remove the egg, and wipe off any melted margarine residue with a paper towel. You’ll be left with a gorgeous marbled pattern.

2. Decorate With Metallic Paint Markers.

Paint markers, which you can purchase at any art supply shop, are the easiest way to add some glam to your Easter eggs! The options for designs and patterns are endless and if you’re decorating eggs with kids, this is a fun way for them to express their creativity in an easy way. Paint markers come in many different colors but the chicest ones (of course) are the metallics.

3. Embellish Eggs With Metallic Temporary Tattoos.

Yes, you sure can use temporary tattoos on Easter eggs! It’s as easy as applying them to your skin. Consider purchasing temporary tattoos from Tattly and Flash Tattoos, both of which have plenty of options in silver and gold hues.

4. Use Metallic Tissue Paper.

Another fun way to decorate your Easter eggs is by cutting simple shapes, like trapezoids and triangles, out of tissue paper. Adhere the tissue paper shapes onto the eggs by using Mod Podge, which is a glue, gloss and sealer all in one. It’s easy to use and dries clear.

DIY: Upcycled Picture Frame Birdfeeder

Invite birds to your garden with this birdfeeder made from upcycled materials.

You will need:
• Ornate frame – mine, which I found on Trade Me measures 37cm x 24cm
• Wood glue
• 1m – 40mm x 10mm pine strip
• Plastic containers (mine were 90mm x 60mm x 60mm deep)
• Sandpaper
• Nails/hole punch
• 20mm screws
• Chain for hanging
• Skil saw/hand saw
• Resene Quick Dry Primer, test pots & brushes

Seed holder:
2 x 200mm
2 x 75mm
1 x 55mm

Cost: $35 excluding paint

1. Renovate the frame as required. Remove any glass, images and backing board. Here, I needed to re-glue the joins and repair some of the ornate edges with filler. Clamp and allow to dry.

2. Create a seed holder by measuring the plastic containers and building a frame. Glue and nail together, hole punch the nail heads, fill and allow to dry. Sand well.

3. Undercoat both pieces with Resene Quick Dry Primer. Top coat in your chosen colour once dry.

4. Cut the chain to length and attach. Angle screw the seed holder to the back of the frame.

5. Hang frame where birds can visit it. Fill the containers with seed or seed and water.

Eight Simple DIY Photo Filters You Can Make on a Budget

Photography gear can get quite expensive and put a huge dent in our wallets. While there are many things we wouldn’t want to cheap out on, there are several DIY hacks that can solve some of our wants and still fit within our budget. Some of those hacks are great for adding effects and different looks to shots. Here are eight DIY photo filters.
Coming from COOPH, this video shares eight different do-it-yourself photo filters that you can make at home with stuff you probably already have at your disposal. It not, the items used for these hacks are fairly cheap if you want to pick them up (I’m not sure how many photographers actually have bubble bottles laying around unless they have kids). While you might not use every hack in this video, there are some clever DIY filters to try out.

One of the hacks I wouldn’t do is spraying water directly on my lens. Instead of spraying water directly on it, use a good UV filter instead to spray water on. If you do spray liquid on your filter, make sure you use a cleaning cloth or something that’s not going to scratch it.

Out of the eight DIY photo filter hacks, which was your favorite? Do you have any filter hacks you use that were not in this video?

10 Easy DIY Hacks To Get (And Stay) Organized

Old receipts littered at the bottom of your handbag. Unmatched socks piling up on the top of your dresser, still hopeful of reuniting with their ‘solemates’. And how can we forget the notoriously chaotic linen closets? Clutter has a sneaky way of creeping into our lives. If left unchecked, it can easily take a toll on our health, productivity, and peace of mind.

Try these ten clever (and totally doable) DIY hacks to kick clutter to the curb this instant:

  • To Corral Paper Clutter: Cut up three or four empty cereal boxes and connect them to create a handy mail organizer. Use each section for outgoing mail, bills, important stuff and coupons/fliers, respectively. You can also use it as a desktop organizer. Use an empty tin can or a glass jar to keep all the receipts in one place. You can store them by month or by category (food, entertainment, miscellaneous, etc.). To make it aesthetically pleasing, decorate the jar with some Washi tape or spray paint.
  • To Organize Your Car: Make this DIY no-sew pouch to store all your travel essentials like first-aid items, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, etc. Use an empty gum container for storing loose change. If your car doesn’t have a trash can already, make one yourself with an empty cereal box and a grocery bag. Seriously, that’s all you need! Check it out here.
  • To Organize Your Kitchen: Blogger Toni Hammersley suggests organizing your pantry staples in see-through, pull-out baskets or storage bins to make it easier to see what you have and what you need. Store spices and seasonings in small stackable tins or mason jars for easier access and better storage. Label them to avoid confusion. (If you’re storing them in a drawer, paste the labels on the lids. Or, put the label on the sides of the jars in case you’re storing them in a rack). Instead of stashing plastic bags in a kitchen drawer or the under the sink cabinet, use an empty tissue box to make a quick DIY garbage bag/grocery bag dispenser.
  • To Organize Your Linen Closet: Use dollar store baskets or clear plastic containers to organize your linen closet so that you don’t have to pillage the rest of the closet every time you need a clean towel. Also, before storing bedsheets, stash each set inside a matching pillowcase so that the whole bedding set remains in one place.
  • To Tame Tangled Cords: Keep those power cables and cords from becoming a ball of wire spaghetti using old bread tags. Also, store USB cables in these easy-to-make TP tube holders to keep them organized and untangled.
  • To Organize Office Supplies: Make your desk easier to work by repurposing an ice tray or a muffin tin as a desk drawer organizer. It’s a great storage solution for small office supplies (like paper clips, thumb tacks, rubber bands etc.) that can add to work desk clutter.
  • To Organize Your Handbag: Put bobby pins in a used Tic Tac container and wrap hair ties around it so that you don’t have to rummage around your bag every time you need something to hold your hair in place. Keep all your gift cards, coupons, business cards etc. in a mint tin. And if you carry your headphones and smartphone charger with you, wrap them with binder clips to keep them from getting tangled.
  • To Organize Remote Controls: Tired of digging through sofa cushions every time you need the remote? Make this DIY caddy so that you never lose it again. You can also keep things like eyeglass cases, magazines, newspaper, etc in it.
  • To Organize Outdoor Tools: And while we are talking about putting all your stuff in order, how can we forget about garage and garden tools? Repurpose old pallets to organize all your outdoor tools in minimum space. You can check out the DIY tutorial here.
  • Multi-Purpose Shopping Bag Organizer: If you are like me, you probably keep all the pretty shopping bags stacked somewhere in your cupboard. Turns out, those cutesy bags can also be used as inexpensive organizers. They can be used to store everything from files and scarves to grocery bags and gift wrapping supplies. Just hang them on your wall and you’re good to go!

Now, put on your creative hat and get started with these DIY ideas that’ll make your life so much easier!

Trying The Knot With A DIY Wintage-style Wedding Day

The quirky affair was a truly memorable occasion for Katie Hall and Samuel Crosby.

The bride and groom had their ceremony at Alnwick’s St Michael’s Church, followed by the reception at Rennington Village Hall, on July 29. Katie, who is from Alnwick but lives in Seaton Burn with Samuel, said: “The wedding was certainly a little unusual. We did absolutely everything ourselves and we used local suppliers where possible. “Rennington Hall was completely empty and over three days we transformed it. “Myself, family and friends hand-crafted all the decorations, such as bunting, and we hired all the tables, chairs, china and glassware, etc.

“In the bar room of the hall, we filled it with all our own furniture and artwork from our home, as we are into antiques and retro furniture. We even took our Chesterfield sofas and coffee table, along with wall mirrors and photographs. “The cake had flamingos and pineapples on, along with images of our two cats and dog. Our sausage dog was there, along with my auntie’s dog – and I had 12 bridesmaids!”

Katie, 28, wore a re-worked original vintage dress from Vintage at Number 18, in Newcastle. Her hair was done by Jenz Hair Salon, at Village Farm, Shilbottle; Plush Beauty, also Shilbottle, did her eye-lashes; and her make-up was done by kellyblickmua and Nikki Louise. Samuel, 27, looked dapper in his suit from Only & Sons.

A friend and one of the bridesmaids helped with the flowers, from Team Valley Flower Market, while Cake Stories, Jesmond, did the cake. Guests were treated to an afternoon tea, by Margaret Smith, from Belford, followed by an evening hogroast, from The Spitting Pig, at Morpeth

The Yellow Taxi, from Alnwick, and coaches from Travelsure were used for transport, while the wedding car was supplied by Brooklands Wedding Cars, in Durham. Entertainment was provided by Martha Hill, who busks in Newcastle, and Manchester-based band, Jive Swings.

How To Cut Plastic

When undertaking a home DIY project, there’s usually no question about the proper techniques for cutting wood. But cutting plastic—particularly acrylic or polycarbonate—is a whole different story. Plastic is trickier to handle for multiple reasons: some types can melt during the cutting process without proper precautions, the surface is prone to scratches, and the edges sometimes need buffing when the project is complete. Here are three different techniques for how to cut plastic, depending on the thickness of the materials and the desired style of cut.

Cutting Thin Sheets of Plastic

If you want a straight cut in a thin acrylic or polycarbonate plastic sheet (up to ⅛ inch thick), rely on a simple utility knife. First, secure the sheet to a large work surface, such as a table, with a clamp. Mark your desired cut line using a straight edge, then score the sheet of plastic with a utility knife, making several passes across the site until you achieve a deep groove. You’ll want the score line to go almost halfway through the plastic. Flip over the sheet and repeat the scoring process on the opposite side, along the same cut line. Reposition the plastic on your work surface so the scored groove is lined up with the edge of your work surface. Secure the plastic in place with a clamp, then snap off the portion that is hanging off of the surface.

Cutting Thick Sheets of Plastic

To make straight cuts on thicker sheets of acrylic and polycarbonate plastic (greater than ⅛ inch thick), you’ll need to use a table saw or circular saw. Look for blades designed specifically to cut plastic, which are often packaged as “No-Melt” blades and available at local home centers and hardware stores. Ideally, the teeth of the blade should be evenly spaced, of uniform height and shape, and spaced close together; teeth spaced wider apart may chip or crack the plastic. Note that if you choose to use a regular blade instead of a “No-Melt” blade,” creating too much heat may melt the plastic. As a precaution, you should pause between cuts to allow the blade to cool.

Mark the line you are cutting along with a permanent or grease marker and secure the plastic safely to the work surface with a clamp before making the cut. Following the manufacturer’s instructions, use the circular saw (or table saw) to cut through the plastic in the same way you’d cut through wood.

Cutting Curves

When you wish to make curved or rounded cuts in plastic, a jigsaw is your best bet, whether you’re working with thin or thick sheets. Ideally, you will use a sharp blade specified for use with plastics, but you can also use a blade marked for wood. However, it’s possible that friction from the blade will create too much heat, meaning the cut plastic can quickly melt back together if it gets warm enough. To prevent this from occurring, you may need to experiment with different jigsaw settings and speeds with a scrap piece of plastic. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for how to use a jigsaw, and you’ll end up with a perfectly cut piece of plastic for your next home repair or DIY project.