Condo Blues: DIY




Showing posts with label DIY. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DIY. Show all posts

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Edible Landscaping Groundcover Ideas and Friday Favorites Week 584

Last weekend was a long holiday weekend here in the US and my husband and I spent a chunk of it digging in the dirt. We want to add more color to our front flowerbeds which is largely an oasis of black mulch. Wood mulch isn't a bad thing. Mulching protects the soil from eroding and helps keep moisture in the soil after watering. Wood mulch also breaks down over time and add nutrients to the soil - which a good thing for our clay soil but also a bag thing because we have keep buying heavy bags of mulch. Anything we can do to less the chance of the yearly hefting mulch into the landscaping beds is a good thing in our book.

We didn't have to look any further than our own backyard for a practical zone 6 living groundcover solution: transplant the golden oregano overflowing its pots in the container garden to the front yard.  Thyme is another fast growing perianal garden groundcover we could use or mix in with the golden oregano but we don't cook with thyme as often as we do with oregano. We're hopping the yellow in the ground cover will make the lavender blooms pop a bit more.

Please don't die.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

My First DIY Cold Process Soap Project and Friday Favorites Week 583

I fell in love with using handmade soaps after trying some I bought at a renaissance festival. Every year I'd buy a bar or five. I dabbled with making soap with a melt and pour kit like this one   because I could play with herb add ins, natural scents, and colorants without messing around with lye because lye sounded scary! (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.) A soap maker friend encouraged me to keep experimenting because that's how you learn how different herbs and oils interact and influence the final product.

When I stumbled upon a liquid hot process soap tutorial online, I realized I had most of the equipment needed and I could buy the soap ingredients at the grocery store. I gave it a whirl and realized working with lye isn't as scary as I thought!  But liquid soap is tricky (at least for me.) The book I have doesn't give a lot of why to the how and there is even less information on line unless you're making cold process bar soap. Cold process soap tutorials didn't seem as scary as they did before I started making soap in an old crock pot. I bought this exact The Natural Soap Making Book for Beginners book and made my first batch of cold process soap!

DIY cold process soap
The color is a little *intense*  and there were some slight bubbling after sequestering but overall I'm pleased with how my first batch of real deal bar soap came out. 

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Easy Garden Watering Hack and Friday Favorites Week 581

I used to have a hard time not killing plants in my flower, herb, and vegetable gardens. I'd either overwater them or under water them. 

Often I thought a recent summer rain had already watered plants for me because the soil was wet on top but not deep down at the root of the plant. The result? Plant murder. (Unintentional, but it's still death.)

A few years ago, I learned a great little gardening hack on how to know when you need to water a garden that works 100% of the time - use a simple rain gage like this one! (Disclosure: I'm including an affiliate link for your convenience.)


best gardening tip and watering idea
I put my rain gage in a pot in my outdoor container garden.


Thursday, May 6, 2021

DIY Door Sign and Friday Favorites Week 580

It's funny how you think you come up with a totally new and original idea for a craft or decor project to find out someone (or many someones) have done it too. It's fun to see  how another person put their creative spin on a great mind think alike situation. Case in point:

I added a hanger to a sign I made with this exact Home paw print stencil and added my little creative spin using a woodburning tool like this one to add texture so it looks like the bottom of a dog paw. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.)

how to stencil and wood burn a Home door sign
I hang the sign on the front door sometimes instead of decorating with a wreath

Sunday, May 2, 2021

The Best Ever Quick and Easy Sewing Pattern Storage and Organization Idea

I store my sewing patterns in a recycled shoebox because it is the width of a sewing pattern envelope.

Also, with a husband who is a long distance runner, I can get a replacement shoe box when I need it on the regular.

It worked for awhile - until it didn’t.

As I’ve done more costuming work, my pattern envelopes are  in all shapes and sizes. On more than one occasion I plopped the whole pattern into a gallon size zipper baggie because the pattern pieces won’t fold to fit back into its envelope. I try to store my sewing patterns by category but they quickly return to their natural disorganized state – a pile busting out of its shoe box(es.)

how to store and organize craft and sewing patterns
Please excuse the carpet that needs vacuuming. That’s what prompted me to move the pile and find a better solution.

This is not working. I need to find a better way to store and organize my sewing patterns that fits in a small, limited craft room space.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

DIY Farmhouse Floating Shelf

During our bathroom renovations the bed in the guest room/craft room has become a de facto storage area that also holds crafty bits.

Who am I kidding?

The bed is a  dumping ground. It is a mess and it is driving me nuts.

Fortunately I have a great spot for a wall shelf to store the crafty bits above the closet door if I use a floating shelf. Let’s do it!

how to make a farmhouse style floating shelf
Save this tutorial to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!


How to Make a Quick and Easy Floating Shelf

Thursday, April 15, 2021

How to Spring Clean Your Dryer Vent and Friday Favorites Week 577

I'm Spring Cleaning inside of the house, like ya do, and I noticed one thing I need to Spring Clean on the outside of my house - my dryer vent!

DIY dryer vent cleaning
I'll spare you the current gory state of dryer lint build up and give you this one when I first installed my energy efficient dryer vent.

Even if you clean the link trap/screen in your dryer after every load lint can still build up in the dryer duct, vent, and end cap. Dryer lint is highly flammable (which is one the reasons why people use it to make homemade fire starters) and according to experts it doesn’t take much for accumulated dryer lint to cause a dryer fire. Fortunately cleaning a dryer vent is a quick and easy thing to do. Learn how in my post How to Clean a Dryer Vent the Easy Way! you'll be glad you did.

I showed you my project, now you show me yours! Time to link up your favorite projects, recipes, and posts! 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Decorative Rain Barrel and Friday Favorites Week 576

As I type this it is raining. It is pouring. I'm dancing instead of snoring because it is warm enough to  hook up our rain barrel! Right now it is filling with sweet, sweet, organic and free rain water! We use rain water  I use to our container garden and make compost tea. It also keeps a poor drainage spot in our side yard from turning into a mud pit. 

Oh and it is pretty too. I looks like a giant boulder!


how to install a rain barrel
You can find pretty rain barrels similar to my Water Stone here (affiliate link for your convenience.)


I showed you my project, now you show my yours! Time to link up your favorite projects, recipes, and posts! 

Thursday, April 1, 2021

DIY Harlequin Jester Costume and Friday Favorites Week 575

Happy April Fool's Day!!!

As a professional jester in the Before Times, I consider April 1st to be My Day.  I don't play tricks or jokes on people, I just walk around extra happy and foolish. See?

how to make a harlequin jester costume
This costume is my first and probably last quilting project because it took four months to build!

Time to link up your favorite projects, recipes, and posts! 

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

DIY Non Toxic Resin Look Coasters

Six years ago I made a set of aluminum can coasters that looked like this:

 

 

After years of abuse with a constant stream of hot coffee cups and cold beverages all day every day the coasters on our desks now look like this:

 

DIY coaster makeover before

Choosing a difference adhesive may have helped as well as adding a  protective coating to the top. Cutting down on coffee and ice water is not going to happen  - ever.

 

Sunday, February 21, 2021

How to Build an Outdoor Dog Ramp

Our dog Lacey lives life at 90 miles an hour. She runs. She jumps. She barks. She barks some more.

So. Much. Barking.

When Lacey practically flipped a switch from her normal bouncing off of satellites self to barely and cautiously walking it meant a quick trip to the vet for x rays.

Lacey has two slipped discs in her back which is common for dachshunds. We left the vet with meds for the pain and inflammation, bed rest for two weeks (good luck with that!) and to eliminate jumping situations as much as possible so her back doesn’t get any worse.

I bought these light weight dog stairs with a washable cover for the living room furniture Lacey is allowed to sit on. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.) They aren’t the prettiest but they were cheap enough to buy a few more to add to what we have so that every chair/sofa in the living room has stairs leading up to it. We think jumping up on a chair that didn't have dog steps is how she hurt herself. 

Sitting next to my people is my favorite place to be!

I also scored this exact folding dog ramp on Marketplace for a song because OMG folding dog ramps for cars are spendy! Hopefully we can get Lacey to use the ramp to get in and out of  the car. No matter how many times we tell her to wait until we pick her up Lacey will catapult herself into the back seat of the car because waiting is for sissies – apparently.

 

How to Make a Down and Dirty Small Dog Ramp

Thursday, February 11, 2021

How to Put a Removable Pompom on a Knit or Crochet Hat and Friday Favorites Linky Party Week 568

I'm attempting to crochet a winter hat. It isn't going very well. I've had to rip out stitches/start over at least six times! At this rate I'll probably finish it by the middle of summer.

In the meantime, it has been snowing all week and my head is cold.

I found a cute chunky knit with a warm fleece liner similar to this Heat Holders thermal hat on winter clearance. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.) The price was more than right but it didn't have a cute pompom like the style of  hat I will hopefully make.

quick and easy DIY pompom hat
BRRRRRRRR!

Monday, February 8, 2021

Master Bathroom Remodel One Step Forward One Step Back

I've said it before and I'll say it again: home improvement isn't always as easy as they show it on TV. Anyone who tells you that you can do a quality renovation in a couple of days just like on TV is a big, fat lair who hasn't spent a week in an editing bay cutting weeks of construction footage into something that looks like it only took hours without taking basic things into consideration things like drying or delivery times.

In other words, after demolishing and installing a new subfloor I hit a snag. Drat!
Bathroom remodel snags they don't tell you on TV
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Thursday, February 4, 2021

Mason Jar and Wine Cork Centerpieces and Friday Favorites Linky Party Week 567

I like to mix up my home decor from time to time. I want a new center piece for our dining room table and thought it was a good time to revisit making my mason jar and wine cork candle holders.

The construction is simple. simple. simple.


Wine Cork and Mason jar candles


Put a handful of wine corks in a mason jar, add a glass tea light candle holder, pop in an electric or real tea light, and decorate with a bit of raffia. Cute. Quick. Cheap. Love that!


I showed you my project, now it is time for you to show me yours!

Thursday, January 21, 2021

The Best Ever Sea Shanty and Friday Favorites Linky Party Week 565

Sea Shanties are having a moment on TikTok and as a historical performer, I sing a lot of sea shanties.  Mingulay Boat Song is one of my favorites because its slow and steady rhythm makes it easy to visualize the whole crew pulling together to hoist anchor to sail home to their families.  


Most renaissance festivals end the day with a pub sing. Another reason I like Mingulay Boat Song is after my fellow performers sing it, the fun is just beginning. If you notice a bagpiper makes his way onto the stage towards the end of the song ready to rip with Scotland the Brave. Everyone claps. Some sing. Cast members jump up on benches and tables to encourage the crowd or dance. Sometimes there is a crack the whip silly dance snaking around the pub. It is a rowdy, good fun way to end the day!

It's that time again - show me what ya got!

Monday, January 11, 2021

How to Remove a Damaged or Moldy Subfloor

On Master Bathroom Demo Day I found black mold on a chunk of the wall and on several areas of the subfloor.

 

how to remove and replace subflooring
Save this tutorial to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!

After removing the damaged drywall, the next step in the process is to remove the bathroom subflooring, check for  mold or water damage, have it treated if necessary (and crossing my fingers I don’t,) and replace the subflooring. 

Thursday, December 31, 2020

End of the Year Silver Linings and Friday Favorites Linky Party Week 562

What a long, strange, trip this year has been. My husband and I kicked off 2020 at a Roaring 20's party and shortly afterwards everything roared to a full stop. While it is all too easy to focus on the boatload  of the bad things that happened this year, for my sanity and mental health, I'm trying to focus on the few positives I experienced:

- I did a lot of projects on my Do It Yourself Honey! list. DIY, craft, and otherwise. As a result, I got  new and repaired clothes, household items, home improvements, and cleaned out a bunch of my fabric stash and scraps. Yay!

- A Christmas gift from my mother in law inspired me to relearn how to crochet. Something I haven't done since my grandmother taught me as a kid.

- Zooming all over the country to see friends, family, and performances regularly instead of the once or twice a year we normally do in real life.

- Having the free time to shop at farmer's markets and can a boatload of end of season sale tomatoes.

- Lacey is absolutely thriving with both of her people being at home 24/7 (although her people have gone a little stir crazy at times being home 24/7.) 

Hey Lisa, if you are looking for a project how about filling my treat jar with some homemade dog treats? It's looking pretty empty in there!

What good things happened to you this year?

Time to show off your creative recipes, projects, and ideas for the last time this year!

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Friday Favorites Linky Party Week 561



Time to show off your creative recipes, projects, and ideas!

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Sunday, December 20, 2020

DIY Glass Candy Cane Swirl Christmas Ornaments

Every Christmas I give my niece and nephew a Christmas ornament. Usually they mark special events (such as the year my niece danced Clara in the Nutcracker,) hobbies, from places my husband and I traveled, or something really cool and unusual. Sometimes I make their Christmas ornament gifts but most years I buy them.

Except last year when I made their glass Christmas ornaments with fire

DIY handmade glass Christmas ornament

Save this Christmas ornament idea to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!

After making my first glass blowing project without burning off a body part, I’ve been on the lookout for more glass blowing workshops. Unfortunately I don’t have the space for glass sculptures (especially when Lacey spits a ball at my feet and demands a rousing game of Catch at the end of the workday. I swear that dog can tell time!) so I tend to lean toward the practical yet pretty glass art projects. Luckily blowing glass Christmas ornaments ticks all of those boxes.

With the added bonus of impressing my teenage nephew with photos of me in front of a furnace working with 3000 degree (F ) molten glass! (That is not a typo.)

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Hearts and Gnomes Christmas Decoration House Tour

This year I mixed old and new to decorate the house for Christmas. As our gnome population grew so did my collection of Danish Christmas heart decorations. Actually many of them are Valentine's Day decorations I bought in February and use as Christmas hearts. As crazy as this year has been I think we all need to share a little more love, kindness, and compassion now more than ever.

Christmas out door decoration house tour
Save these Christmas decorating ideas to your Pinterest boards for later! Share them with your friends!