I had twelve people, two dogs, and two cats for Thanksgiving dinner. To accommodate the humans, I had to use both dining tables. The critters, of course, were happy to eat off the floor.
Here are the pictures I promised in a recent blog. The table on the left incorporated warm gold elements to go with my gold rimmed Lennox Tuxedo china. The table on the left had a cool, frosty vibe to set off my late MIL's silver accented china; I don't know what the name of her china is.
The stemware on the left, a wedding gift to my parents 65 years ago, has a floral/leafy motif that was perfect for the harvest theme. The cutlery is gold electroplate. The crystal on the right was my selection as a young bride-to-be, Gorham Crown Point. The silverware is heirloom silver, solid sterling, that originally belonged to a great aunt. The set --- and it's an AMAZING set, right down to the fish forks --- found its way to my grandmother, then my mother, and now it is mine. Each piece is monogrammed with a "C", for the Crockett surname (yep, THAT Crockett).
Not to toot my own horn, but I so enjoy doing this kind of thing, I wonder if there is a paying niche for table designers? Gonna have a dinner party? Need a pretty tablescape? Call Prunella! She'll work with the crap you have and gladly spend your money for more crap! I could never design a whole room, that's just too overwhelming, but a table is just the right size for my limited imagination.
In a blog dated 11/20/11, I wrote about Christmas tree ornaments. One of the ornaments mentioned was a little reindeer given to me by a long-ago co-worker. I never much cared for that particular co-worker (she was a horrible gossip), but her reindeer is so cute, it inspired me to try making my own.
Honestly, anyone with half a brain could look at the picture and know how to create the little feller --- it's not rocket science --- but I'm gonna tell you anyhow because I took pictures. I may as well put them to use. Besides, my reindeer is a tad different.
You'll need: dark brown permanent ink marker, black permanent ink marker, three small wooden clothespins, small wooden spool, stretchy cord, wiggly eyes, red pompom for nose, brown pompom for tail, felt for the horse blanket, some small decorative baubles, hot glue, sharp scissors, a needle with a large eye, and a little patience. With the exception of patience, you can purchase all your necessities at your local crafts store.
Start by coloring the antlers and the hooves with your permanent markers. Brown for the antlers and black for the hooves.
Hot glue your little guy together. You'll note my version of Rudolph is more anatomically correct than the one shown above.
Hot gluing the wiggly eyes was frustrating. I have a pair of reverse action tweezers crafty types use to handle teensy things like this, but I couldn't maintain a grip on them. After some trial and error, I found it easiest to smear a dab of hot glue where I wanted the eyes to be and then, working quickly before the glue hardened, pick them up one at a time with the tip of a wet forefinger. Sometimes low tech is the way to go.
Far left: use a paper pattern to cut out your blanket. This will save you some time if you are assembling several of the critters, like I did. Cut off about 12" of the cord (unstretched).
Left: make a loop in your cord and double knot the ends.
Right: fold your blanket in half and poke your needle through the middle of the fold, making a small hole. I used a weaving needle.
Far right: thread your looped cord half-way through the eye and push the needle all the way through the hole in your felt. The knot will stop the loop from going completely through the felt.
Carefully glue on Rudolph's blanket. I tacked the blanket down on his legs and along his back. Applying a glue strip to the back will keep the cord anchored in place. Glue on the tail and a small decoration for the blanket (the snowflake was a glittery sticker) and you are done!
Here, I zig-zagged the blanket ends. You could also notch some fringe, or leave it straight. Another idea: make Rudolph as shown in the very top photo, hot glue a pin back or clutch back on the back, and wear as a pin!
I've spent the last three days trying to come up with two tablescapes for Thanksgiving, one for my formal dining room, and one for the informal one that is situated in the kitchen.
I love pretty table decorations. I firmly believe when company is coming for dinner, it is important to give your guests a feast for the eyes, as well as the stomach. Unfortunately, I always encounter two problems when deep in the throes of planning a tablescape. One is a severe lack of creativity. The other is a lack of funds. I can splurge on food and drink, OR I can splurge on table decor, but I can't do both.
To combat the first problem, I turned to Pinterest (slogan: See the same picture pinned 687 times!). Then I Googled several versions of 'Thanksgiving table decorations'.
Anyway, after two hours of Internet scrolling, an afternoon spent at Garden Ridge, 30 minutes at the grocery store, then back home to drag out every blessed thing I own that could possibly be used for decorative purposes (and arranging and rearranging and arranging again), I finally came up with my two tablescapes. The formal dining room will have a Thanksgiving theme; the informal one will herald the start of the Christmas season. I will post photos of the finished tables in Construction Zone in a couple of weeks.
Now, about the napkin rings.
I already had napkin rings that were a perfect a match for my Thanksgiving table. What I lacked was something for the Christmassy one. I went to Target thinking I could find something there, but amazingly, Target, always my 'go to' store, didn't have napkin rings. I was about to head to Bed Bath and Beyond when my eyes lighted on a package of clear plastic shower curtain rings and inspiration struck. Why not use these and then simply hot glue a pretty little bauble from a crafts store on them? Conveniently, there was a Michaels next door to Target.
Originally, I thought about gluing large rhinestones to the rings. Then I got distracted with the pretty beads in the jewelry section. Ultimately, however, I opted for a simple glittery snowflake in keeping with the Christmas theme. The rings cost $1.24 for an even dozen. The snowflakes were $1.99 for 10. Total cost per ring? A measly 54 cents. For this price, you could make napkin rings for every holiday and celebration out there. You could even make personalized place cards out of them using heavy card stock and a pretty font.
When assembling the rings, lock the ends together before gluing on your chosen bauble.
Fancy table: http://materialgirlsblog.com/dallas/2012/11/21/the-art-of-the-thanksgiving-table/
Minimalist table: http://marryingthenavy.blogspot.com/search/label/Thanksgiving
In keeping with the DIY motif for my daughter's new room, I made her headboard. Unfortunately, I was so tired from the three weeks spent sweating in a hot garage stripping and refinishing her 'new' furniture, that I took the path of least resistance in making the headboard.
I bought three cheap patio chair cushions at a home decor store called Garden Ridge. I was pretty sure it wasn't going to work; in fact, I was POSITIVE it wasn't going to work, but I hoped for a miracle, anyway: I simply Velcroed the three cushions to the wall. Before we even made it home to Dallas, Paige texted to say the cushions were peeling away from their Velcro supports. Dang.
I gave some thought to DIY'ing a headboard similar to what my friend Mendy did for her daughter, one of Paige's roommates:
But I had already invested money into the cushions, cheap as they were, and couldn't bring myself to ditch them just yet. So I came up with an alternate method that I think will hold until graduation, which will be in 2 - 4 years depending on whose timeline you are looking at: my husband's or my daughter's.
First, I had Paige text me some measurements for the headboard's base. Then I went to Home Depot and bought a sheet of really cheap (cheap is a recurring theme around here) 1/4" thick plywood and had it cut to size.
I had thought my sweating in the garage days were over, but no. I set up shop (again) and painted and sanded and varnished (again) the plywood. Fortunately, I had quite a bit of left-over paint from the earlier painting jobs.
Then we trundled back to Lubbock after a stop in Boulder, CO and environs for a family reunion.
Here's what you'll need: the plywood base, cushions, a weaving needle, a drill, fabric ribbon, pliers and brass screws. Optional: some rhinestone bling to cover the screws.
L: This weaving needle is 5" long and has a 1/2" long eye. You need a big eye to handle the ribbon that will be threaded through the cushions.
R: Place your cushions on the base. Once you get them aligned where you want them, jam your needle through each of the button-like indentations to the base below, and use the sharp tip of the needle to make a small scratch on the wood. These scratches will mark your drill spots.
R: Use pliers to give you the leverage you'll need to pull the loaded needle through the cushion. Those are not real buttons you see, just circular stitches made to look like buttons.
Hindsight being 20/20: a) I would not use contrasting ribbon; b) hell, ditch the ribbon entirely and screw the cushions to the base using molly bolts, then cover the bolt heads by gluing on buttons or bling; c) consider using one large rectangular cushion, like those used on chaise lounges.
Here are some shots of the furniture from the blog below, situated in their new, but really old, surroundings:
For the back story, please see my blog dated 06/18/13.
Be forewarned: this job is smelly, dirty and back-breaking. It is also hot and sweaty, depending on the season. You may get frustrated and will want to quit, but stick with it. The results are so gratifying.
In this project, I will be stripping and refinishing three pieces: a small sideboard, an end table, and a tall chest. The sideboard was my grandmother's from the 1940's; the end table belonged to my mother, bought in 1969; and the chest is mine, purchased in 1987. Three generations of furniture going to the fourth generation: my daughter. I think that's all kinds of awesome.
Part I - Stripping
YOU WILL NEED:
1) A well ventilated work space - the garage is perfect.
2) A drop cloth - we used cheap plastic from the local building supply store.
3) Stripping compound - there are many different brands out there. Some work in as little as 30 minutes, others require overnight. They come in liquid and paste formulas. Paste will cling to vertical surfaces better. They are all pretty much the same, but read the labels and the fine print to determine which one will work the best for you.
4) Lacquer thinner - this cleans the area of accumulated gunk and dust from your stripping efforts. It will also clean your brushes.
5) Small metal cans with lids - one for the stripper and one for the lacquer thinner. You can find these in the paint department.
6) An old brush - it doesn't matter what kind, and the larger the brush, the faster you can cover large areas. And it doesn't matter if the fibers are mangled and bent; the point is coverage, not perfectly aligned brush strokes.
7) Sand paper - 60 grit works well. Use this after you've scraped up as much of the old finish as you can. It's good on stubborn spots, and really brings out the bare wood.
8) Steel wool - for heavily carved surfaces. The mesh works into the crevices.
9) Rags - for use with the lacquer thinner. You can buy these in bundles in the paint department of your building supply store.
10) Scrapers - plastic is preferred for wood, but we also used metal. The corners on the metal one were great for long crevices.
11) Safety goggles - duh.
12) Chemical resistant gloves - duh-oh.
13) Patience - it comes in handy.
14) Elbow grease - think of it as a good workout for your upper arms, with a little cardio thrown in.
1) Place the piece on the drop cloth. Remove all drawers, doors, shelves and hardware. Decide which surface you want to strip first and place that upper most. When you finish that surface, turn the piece to access the next. As you work, you will be turning the piece over and over, like a chicken on a spit. Always work one small area at a time and completely strip it before working the next.
2) Pour the stripper into one of the metal containers. Pour the lacquer thinner in the other. Keep the lids on when not in use.
DOWN TO BUSINESS:
L) My horrifically mangled brush.
M) Applying the stripper. Be sure to cover every bit of the surface. You can see the stuff is already working, even as I brush it on.
R) After brushing. Now for a 30 minute break to give the stripper time to apply its chemical muscle.
L) 30 minutes later, it's time to apply MY muscle with my trusty red plastic scraper. Always scrape in the direction of the grain.
M) Voila! Maybe it's just me, but there is something immensely gratifying in seeing that ugly old finish come peeling off.
R) After scraping the entire surface.
L) Cleaning the surface with a rag dipped in lacquer thinner.
M) After a little more scraping to get the gunk out of the crevices, a good scrubbing with the steel wool and the sand paper (WITH the grain), and another cleaning with lacquer thinner, the table top is done! Compare the difference between the color of the bare wood with the finish in the photos above. My little end table is now back to her natural blonde self.
R) Here, you can see the unstripped finish lurking underneath the bare wood. The table will be turned on its side so I can tackle this surface next.
A NOTE: Stripping the first two pieces nearly did me in. Not because they are bigger, but because the old finish was EXTREMELY stubborn and did not want to let go. It took a great deal more elbow grease, and sometimes a second application of stripper, to get the job done. This little end table was a cake walk, by comparison. I'm no professional, but logic tells me that the amount of effort required to strip a piece is related to the type of wood, the kind of finish, the number of layers (if a piece has been painted over multiple times), and even the ambient temperature and humidity. If you are unlucky enough to get a stubborn piece of furniture, don't give up. Keep at it. You will eventually figure out how to beat that sucker into submission, and the remaining surfaces on the piece will surrender with nary a whimper.
Below, see the bare bones results:
Part II - Painting
YOU WILL NEED:
1) Paint - there's oceans and oceans of it out there and it comes in different sheens, from a flat (dull) finish to glossy and shiny. I used an eggshell finish. This has a little bit of gloss to it. Whatever floats your boat.
2) Brushes - get new ones.
3) Fine grit sandpaper - I used 220. (The higher the number, the finer the grit.)
4) A clean container - mine was plastic with a side handle. Use this to pour a little of your paint into as you work.
5) A tack cloth or really good dusting rag - to remove the dust from your sanding efforts. Never, ever forget to wipe down your surfaces after sanding, or you will have floofy bits mixed in with your paint.
6) Drop cloths - unless you like a Jackson Pollock styled garage floor.
7) Bricks - place these under the feet or bottom to get your piece off the floor a little bit. Otherwise, your painted feet will stick to the drop cloth, especially if it's cheap plastic. A couple of long 2 X 4's would also work. Just be sure your piece is balanced and not in danger of tipping over.
8) Primer - I add this mainly as an after-thought. Since I completely stripped the old finish away, a primer was not necessary, but you can certainly use one if you prefer.
1) Place the furniture on your drop cloth. If you have a small, short piece, put that on a sturdy covered workbench to help save your back. I did this with the end table. The other two pieces were too tall and heavy.
2) Wipe down all surfaces well with the tack cloth.
3) Pour some paint into your handy-dandy container, take a deep breath and......GO!
DOWN TO BUSINESS (no work-in-progress photos here, sorry!):
1) Brush with the grain. For best results, brush in the same direction. If you use a back-and-forth sweeping motion, the back stroke will "lift" the paint already laid down by the forward stroke, and the result won't be as smooth and flat.
2) Don't use a heavy hand with the paint. The idea is to build up coverage with two or three coats, so keep it light and even each time. If your first coat dries to a patchy, streaky looking finish, DON'T PANIC!
3) Be on the watch for drips and brush them down as soon as you spot one. Once a drip dries, you are stuck with it. Sometimes a little bit of lint or a hair will stick to the paint. While still wet, deftly dab it out with a finger, and then lightly brush over the spot.
4) Let the piece dry the recommended time before applying the second coat. The brand I used said to wait two hours between coats.
5) Using your 220 grit sandpaper, lightly sand all the painted surfaces. The idea here is to rough up the paint so that the second coat will stick better. If you sand down to the wood in some places, that's okay. In fact, you WILL sand down to the wood, especially on edges, corners and the upper parts of carved surfaces.
6) Remove all the dust with your tack cloth.
7) Apply your second coat, just like you did the first one, lightly and evenly. Rejoice as you watch the streaky looking spots disappear under the second layer.
8) If you decide to go for a third coat, follow the above steps again. I only required two coats to get beautiful coverage.
A NOTE: My original intention was to paint the pieces white and then "distress" them with a glaze tinted dark grey. It looked gorgeous in my mind, but the reality was anything but. Fortunately, I had the smarts to test this out on a drawer. When I decided that the results weren't going to meet expectations, the drawer was easily re-stripped and re-painted.
If you are interested in this technique, you will need: a glazing compound, paint in the color you want your glaze to be, a small brush, quick reflexes, and lots and lots of rags. You can buy bundles of rags in the paint department.
Tint your glazing compound. The ratio is typically 1 part paint to 3 or 4 parts glazing. Read the instructions on the can, it will tell you. Stir well.
Now for the scary part: WORK IN SMALL SECTIONS, really small sections. Brush on the tinted glaze and very quickly wipe the excess off using a clean rag. This stuff dries in seconds, I swear, so be fast, or work in tandem with a partner: one brushes while the other is right behind doing the wiping. The glaze will settle into cracks, crevices, on and around carved areas, highlighting details, while giving the piece a distressed look at the same time. My problem was that I had never done this before and didn't realize how quickly the glaze would set up. The result was a drawer that looked dirty. There is nothing wrong with the technique --- if you know what you are doing --- but I didn't and I was too scared to keep trying. Sometimes it pays to know when to stop, before what's perfect suddenly becomes a mess, you hate it, and days or weeks of work go down the toilet. If my experience doesn't scare you off and you are determined to try, buy some cheap wood, paint it like you did your furniture, and then practice until you get the technique down.
Part III - Sealant
YOU WILL NEED:
1) A water-based protective finish - as with paint, these come in different sheens. I used a satin finish that has just a little bit of gloss when it dries. If your paint is light colored, make sure what you get isn't going to yellow on you. The last thing you want is your beautiful bright white paint job looking dingy and old.
2) Brush - a new one.
3) Tack cloth - to remove dust
4) Fine grit sandpaper - I used 220 again, but follow manufacturer's instructions.
PREPPING: It's the same as the painting section, but I didn't pour the sealant into a separate container, preferring to apply it straight out of the can.
DOWN TO BUSINESS: Again, follow the painting instructions above. I used two coats of sealant. When everything has dried, apply your hardware, replace shelving, drawers and doors.
Part IV - Enjoy!
It's so true when they say hard work is its own reward. This project took me just shy of three weeks, working off and on throughout each day. Richard contributed a little bit of the labor, but he was mostly excused because he has a job and somebody has to pay the bills. He did, however, get the knobs screwed on, a chore that took some brute strength, and the doors to hang straight on the old sideboard. He's handy like that.
I originally wanted the clear acrylic knobs you see in the photo above. However, after pricing them at several places, including on-line, the cheapest I could find was going to run me $3.99 a pop. That doesn't seem so bad at first, but multiply $3.99 by 31, and the hardware alone was going to come close to what the other supplies had cost me.
My semi-homemade version was one-third the cost and took me about 1-1/2 hours to assemble. The plastic knobs were less than $1.00 each, and the clear rhinestones came packaged in bags of 10 for $2.99. I grumbled at having to purchase a fourth bag in order to get 31 rhinestones, but it turned out to be a good thing to have some extras; Richard popped off a few while screwing the knobs into place.
Stick a fork in me, I'm DONE!
I'm a big fan of any fabric craft that doesn't require sewing. A tack here and there is okay, just to hold things in place. Beyond that, I lose interest. When one does not own a sewing machine, it is easy to lose interest.
These pillows are strictly decorative. They are not meant to be used, just admired. If you want a functional pillow you can rest your head or tired feetsies on, stop reading. If you want something pretty and impractical, then keep going.
What you need: old throw pillows, fabric, SHARP scissors. Optional: needle and matching thread.
The pillows pictured above are destined for my daughter's bed. She's upgrading from a dorm room twin to a full-sized apartment bed. After spending more money than I really cared to on new bedding, I wanted to find a way to add punch and save pesos. I found a tutorial for no-sew pillow covers on Pinterest. It looked so easy, but as is often the case with the DIY projects on this site, there's an awful lot they don't tell you. In this instance, it would have been nice to know ahead of time that thin, flimsy fabric is the ideal for this kind of project. But I didn't know that (or was too stupid to read between the lines), and by the time I figured out this fact of life on my own, it was too late.
The pillow on the right (above) was recovered in a pink broadcloth. The other two pillows got a make-over in a purple felted fabric with sequins. Both of the fabrics were remnants. I spent a grand total of $17.13 (including tax) on fabric and got three brand new pillows. Not a bad deal!
Now for MY tutorial. This is the pink broadcloth and it was completely no-sew:
This pillow was approximately 18" square. Typical fabric runs 45" wide on the bolt, and for a pillow this size, the bolt width was plenty. For the length, the Pinterest tutorial said it should be 3X the length of the pillow. That seemed awfully short to me, so I got 2 1/2 yards to compensate for any rookie mistakes. This turned out to be a good thing.
(L) The grey blob (it's actually a light green) is the old throw pillow peeping out of its pink bed.
(R) The trick here is to position the pillow on the fabric in such a way that the outside flap (in this case, coming DOWN over the pillow) is sitting square in the middle. If the flap is positioned too high or too low, your decorative square knot won't hide it.
The first time I tried to recover this pillow using the Pinterest tutorial, I discovered the broadcloth, when the side "wings" were all gathered up to tie, was too thick to allow a proper square knot. This is why thin, flimsy materials work best.
(L) If your fabric is on the thick side, you will need to thin the herd. Using very sharp scissors (mine was like a butter knife, another lesson learned), cut away the top layer of the "wings" starting about 2" away from the pillow and cutting all the way to the ends.
(R) Here's what your recovering job should look like at this point, with the side wings thinned out. Honestly, it appears like I'm working on two different pillows: a pink one and a lavender one. Stupid camera.
(L) Fold the top and bottom of one of the side wings toward the middle, kind of like folding paper airplane wings. It's not going to be perfect, and that's okay.
(R) Bring the wing up and over the pillow. Folds and creases are normal and make the pillow prettier. Repeat these two steps for the other side.
(L and M) Tie the wings together, aiming for a square knot. This is where the extra length comes in handy. If your wings are too short, you won't be able to tie a square knot.
(R) If you have fabric that doesn't fray, you can trim and fluff out the ends for a pretty bow on your pillow. I liked this effect, but broadcloth will fray; so I tucked the ends under the flaps, leaving my finished pillow with a plain square knot, as shown below left.
(ML) For reasons I can't remember, but they must have made sense at the time, I whacked off too much fabric when making this pillow. The ends ("wings") were too short, and it was impossible to tie a decent square knot. I tacked the middle down with several stitches to hold things in place, and left it with an unfinished knot.
(MR) I had enough of the purple fabric left over to re-cover a small throw pillow. Here, I actually tacked the fabric to the pillow with a bunch of running stitches, stitching the flap closed.
(R) The left side wing was brought up and over and tucked in. The right side wing was brought up and over, the end folded under and then tacked to the underlying fabric with hidden stitches. Even with the stitching job, this pillow took only about 30 minutes to make. It is more functional than the other two; the tacking will keep the fabric from shifting and coming undone, so it can stand a bit more abuse than the other two. Still, it's purely decorative.
Always wingin' it,
A year after buying all the dorm essentials and non-essentials (see blog dated 07/07/11), we are buying new stuff because the dorm stuff, some of it, is obsolete. The reason for this is because my daughter has ditched dorm life for a deluxe apartment in the sky. Okay, so maybe deluxe is stretching it a bit, but it IS brand new. And the sky part is really only the third floor, but she's excited to be out of Chitwood Hall and living with three of her Zeta sistahs.
In an effort to save some money on wall art, and indulge my artistic side, I found a DIY wall decor project on Pinterest and decided to give it a whirl. It's just squares of Styrofoam covered with scrapbook paper.
Here's what you need: Styrofoam squares, scrapbook paper, pushpin, cutting board, X-acto knife, emery board or nail file, Mod Podge (I used the clear finish, but you can also get a matte finish), sponge brush, and a straight edge (like a ruler). Optional: coordinating ribbon trim.
(L) Instead of purchasing individual 12 X 12 squares of Styrofoam, I bought two 12 X 36 sheets. The Styrofoam sheets were $4.49 each at Hobby Lobby. As I recall, the individual squares were priced at $3.99 each (they were thicker). By cutting the longer sheets into six 12 X 12 sections, I saved $15.00. The scrapbook paper was 59 cents each. I bought six in coordinating colors/patterns for $3.54. Throw in the Mod Podge and I spent a grand total of $17.51 before tax.
(M) Position three of your papers on a Styrofoam sheet. I discovered that the measurements were off; the end papers hung over the Styrofoam just a smidge, but no biggie. Anyway, place your papers on the Styrofoam so you'll know exactly where to cut your sheet.
(R) Using the pushpin, score the Styrofoam along one edge. You'll want to leave a deep enough indentation so you won't have trouble seeing it when cutting your sheet. Thankfully, I had just had a manicure, so my nails looked better than usual for these pictures. Kudos to my daughter for taking the photos.
(L) Make sure you have a brand new blade in your X-acto knife; this will lessen the drag as you cut. Place your Styrofoam on a cutting board, and carefully cut the sheet along the score.
(M) Sand down the cut edges with the fine side of an emery board or nail file. Because my Styrofoam was thin, I found it easier to sand two sheets together.
(R) Before using the Mod Podge, brush away all the loose bits from the surface of your 12 X 12 square. Brush a thin layer of the Mod Podge on one side of the square. Brush it on as smoothly as possible. Don't leave ripples and ribbons, like you see in the picture above.
(L) Position the paper on the square.
(M) Using your straight edge like a squeegee, smooth the paper down working from the middle to the sides.
(R) Turn the square over and press down for a few seconds to get the paper to stick. Turn upright and glue down any sides or corners that don't seem to want to play by the rules. After this step, I placed the glued square face down with a heavy book on top to hold everything in place for a while.
(L) After the glue has thoroughly dried, trim any excess paper using your X-acto knife.
(M) Brush on a thin, even layer of Mod Podge and set your squares aside to dry. This will act as a sealant and leave a glossy finish. You can also brush the cut edges with the Mod Podge to keep the Styrofoam from "shedding".
(R) Here are all six after the first coat. Allow this coat to dry thoroughly, and then brush on a second, and final, layer. For a little extra oomph, you can glue ribbon trim around the edges. Hold the ribbon in place with some straight pins until the glue dries.
Here's the inspiration from styrofoamcrafts.com. After my daughter gets moved in and settled, I will take a picture of the completed project and post it here.
The original square peg,
Here's a fun project for a rainy day, or for when you are bored, or need to keep the kidlets entertained.
All you need are: Sharpie pens, rubbing alcohol, eye dropper, a small bowl, a tee shirt, cardboard, and a heat source like an iron or a clothes dryer.
First, place cardboard inside your tee shirt to keep the design from bleeding through to the other side.
Ribbed tanks are impossible to draw on because the material will catch on the felt tip, so I just made dotted circles in orange and light green. Here's the first "batch" of circles.
I cannot believe that is my hand! Ugh! Anyways, pour some rubbing alcohol into a small bowl, and using an eye dropper drip the alcohol on your designs.
Here's the first batch of circles after their alcohol soak.
Dot on more randomness, and apply more alcohol with your trusty eye dropper. I thought it interesting that the orange circles bled a lot more than the green circles, and that the green faded to yellow. I liked the effect. Keep working in batches until the entire front (or back) of the tee is done.
Remove the cardboard insert and take your shirt outside to dry in the sun. Alcohol evaporates quickly, so it won't take long to dry.
Once it is dry, do the other side. Don't forget the sides where the seams meet and the tippy-tops of the straps.
When your tee is completely done and dry, you'll need to apply some heat to help "set" the color, so that it won't fade too much when you wash it. You can iron it (no steam), or you can toss it into your dryer at the highest heat setting. Being lazy, I used the dryer, but if you are afraid of shrinkage, then the iron would be your best bet.
Voila! When washing, use cold water.
UPDATE: Because other DIYers had trouble with massive fading in the wash, I did a little research. Sharpie has a line of markers for fabric decorating called Stained by Sharpie. I don't know how these inks will stand up to the alcohol treatment; you can always test. I also read somewhere that adding salt to the wash water will help keep colors from fading noticeably. There's a world of information out there. As I always say, When in doubt, Google! PRUNELLA
grew a beard after our kids left the house. He decided a mid-life hirsute pursuit was cheaper than a new car, and certainly less hazardous to his health than an affair. If he can have a mid-life crisis, then so can I.