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7 Apr

We all love instagram, but what to do with those square photos if you want to print them? It’s hard to find a square frame, and you can’t scale them much larger because of the quality. But I have a solution for you! Instacubes!


Wooden Block
Spray Paint (optional)
Photo Paper

First find a wood block. They have these wooden cubes at most craft stores. Measure a side of your cube.

Next, set up your favorite 6 instagram photos to print. I made mine a little smaller than each side of my cube so they all had a border, but you can go all the way to the edge as well.

Screen Shot 2013-04-02 at 6.12.06 PM

Paint your cube if you like, or keep its wood appearance. Once you’ve printed and cut your instagram photos, spray some spray adhesive to the back of each, and stick it on your cube.

This is a simple, cost-effective, unique way to display your instagram photos. How cute would a bunch of these blocks be stacked up on a shelf? Or even as a fun centerpiece at a wedding filled with photos of the bride and groom! So many possibilities.

I made this Instacube for Katie, one of our winners of our “Photo-a-Day Challenge” on facebook. Be sure to follow us for fun DIY updates and more contests!


Wedding Weekend Wrap-Up

26 Jun
 As some of you may know, my brother got married this past weekend. I had been working behind the scenes on a few of the design details as well as the rehearsal dinner, which was held at our house. I didn’t want to ruin the surprise for the guests attending, so I’ve been recording my projects and am so excited to finally share them all! So here is my wedding weekend wrap-up!
I had mentioned the wedding centerpieces back in March, so Mary decided that she loved the look of the frosted glass, but felt the colored glass was a bit too much for what she had in mind.
So with the help of my cousin, Jessie, we got to work frosting upwards of a hundred mason jars. We were lucky to know someone with a very large collection of jars and willing to part with some.
We tried a few different ways to get that wrapped up look. The electrical tape ended up leaving a black residue on the glass that was(or so I heard, my aunt Kathy was kind enough to do the cleaning portion) a pain to get off. The twine made the lines on the jars not as sharp as we would’ve liked. So ribbon was the best choice. I have seen this done with wide rubber bands too, which is probably the way to go.
Jessie and I giving the jars a first coat of paint. They ended up needing two, so keep that in mind when purchasing paint.
Onto the next project! Mary wanted to display the place cards on a board with ribbons holding them up. So I used some scrap plywood, shelf liner, spray adhesive, a staple gun and vintage ribbon that my nana had saved.
First I glued the shelf liner onto the plywood boards as a background to the ribbon. Then I just stapled the ribbon ends to the back of the boards as tightly as possible.
Here are the three boards, ready for some place cards!
Next, I got to work on a program. Mary had a coupon to VistaPrint so she asked if I wouldn’t mind designing a program for her.
Using the basic layout and colors, I designed the place cards to correspond.
And the table themes as well!
For the rehearsal dinner I used some leftover jars and wrapped a bit of twine around them and placed tea lights inside. To keep the tea lights from moving around, I put a 1/4 cup of epsom salts in the bottom of the jars. I also collected roses from around the yard and put them in vases with twine wrapped around them as well.
The programs in their basket and ready to be passed out!
I had a few frames left over so I printed out a little sign to put near the guestbook.
Here are the place card displays all set up!
You can see a frosted jar in the background and how nicely they add to the centerpiece arrangement. Also notice the place card in the foreground.
And while everything really came together perfectly, the best part of the whole day was seeing how happy Mary and Phil were. Congrats!

Wedding Centerpieces

4 Mar
Warning: this post will be long. My brother, Phil, and his fiance, Mary, are tying the knot this June and asked me to try out a few centerpiece ideas to see what they like and what’s feasible. I was thrilled to be able to help and had a ton of ideas I wanted to test out, which means this post is a bit all-over the place, but bear with me!
Glass containters
Exacto or utility knife
Food coloring
Sobo glue or Mod Podge – Elmer’s will NOT work in this case
Spray paint
Spray adhesive
Glass etching paint
So Mary had mentioned that she really liked the look of glass jars with candles in them, possibly with a spray paint or frosted design and maybe some of them could be dyed a light blue. I gathered all the glass jars in my house – cleaned them up and got to work.

I wanted to try out a criss-cross type random pattern on the jars so I cut my 1 inch thick tape down the center to make thinner strips. 

Then I just started wrapping.

Here they are!

Ready for etching – I won’t go into the details of this process again, but if you are interested we posted a tutorial for new years on glass etching. 

Now that the glasses have the frosted look, time to dye the inside.

To create the dye – mix 3 parts water to 2 parts glue and however much food coloring you want for the your desired color. A little goes a long way with this mixture, so don’t waste your glue on making a large amount. 
Then you pour in the mixture and swirl it around to cover the entire interior.

If you are thinking ahead – keep the lids so you can screw them back on and just shake the mixture up. If you’re like me, you threw them out and used a baggie with a rubber band around the top so you can shake it. 

Then pour the excess dye back into you mixing container and allow the rest to drip. You can leave them to dry like this, or turn them upright but make sure to spread out the extra dye that will collect at the bottom. 

Now I also wanted to see what some spray painted lace would look like so I went back to our tile coaster tutorial and followed those same steps for these candle holders. 

Ready for paint!

I wanted to spray these with white paint but the closest we had was silver, so this will do for now.

And here is the bunch of them all aglow! The dyed glass with the brown glass gives it a bit of a beachy feel – though I would add in some plain frosted glass for good measure. There is also spray paint that gives glass a frosted effect if you didn’t want to go the etching route. 

These little candle holders look attainably elegant with their lace pattern.

The brown glass warms up the color scheme.

And the dyed glasses allow for customization to any style of wedding. 
There are a few more ideas I didn’t get to try out yet, so get excited for a second round of centerpiece ideas!

Wrong Holiday Project

12 Dec

I know it is December, but I decided to do this project as a Christmas gift to my sister, who happens to love Halloween as much as I do.  But it is actually pretty easy to convert this whole project to a Christmas tree if you want to be festive. (I actually may do this as Christmas trees too, time permitting. I’ll be sure to post an update with photos if I do.)

Styrofoam craft cones (I found mine at JoAnn Fabrics. $2-$5 depending on size)
Start by wrapping yarn around the base of the cone and work your way up. Try not to show any styrofoam through the yarn
The great thing about this project is that there is no mess or glue involved. Just tuck the end of the yarn strand into a nook between your yarn and styrofoam.
Another great thing about this project is that you can easily do it while watching a movie, drinking coffee, and entertaining your cat (with the yarn…), which is my typical Sunday morning. 
Just keep wrapping…
and wrapping…
until you get to the top. Tuck in your last piece of yarn and paint the open top whatever color your yarn is.  Or if you do a Christmas tree, you could easily cover this with a fun star ornament. 
It’s not October.
Why hello there, candy corn.
If you would like to change this project to a Christmas one, try alternating red and white yarn. Or turn the cones into a tree forest by using green  and placing pins with colored fun ends on them into the cone, like ornaments. 
But for this project, today was Halloween for me.
–Emily Jo
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