The Dos & Don’ts of Building a Fireplace Mantle

A few weeks ago my dear sweet friend asked me to help her build a mantle for her fireplace, so naturally I said yes. (I should mention that neither of us had ever built a mantle before.)  Today I’m going to share with you a few of the Dos & Don’ts of Building a Fireplace Mantle.

Do your homework (Hello, Pinterest)

Don’t follow the exact lay out another person posted. (Your fireplace will be different, so there will need to be some adjustments made. If you don’t you’ll be making to two mantles and one of them will end up being a wine rack.)

Do find the most experienced carpenter in Home Depot and talk to them about what you’re doing. She or he can give you some helpful hints to make your project go more smoothly. (Shout out to Mark at the Home Depot in Hattiesburg, MS!!)

Don’t forget to charge your tools the night before.

Do make a list of ALL of the supplies you’ll need.

Don’t do your shopping the day you plan to complete the project. (The shopping took a lot of time.)

Do this project with a friend it makes it so much fun and a lot easier. Enjoy!!

 

 

DIY Glitter Shoes

I’ve never been the type of woman that’s into pink, knows designers, and wears make up every day. I’m more of a jeans, t-shirt, and hair up kind of woman. However, I’ve always loved a “wow” element when I do dress up. When I got married two years ago, I knew I didn’t want to go with a white/colored  regular pair of heels. I wanted something that went wow. (As a little girl and as adult too, I’ve always love Cinderella and I wanted something like her.)  So I decided to make my very own “Cinderella Shoes”. I even made flats for dancing at the reception.

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 My wedding shoes. Photo Credit: JoCo Foto Two of the best photographers in MS.

As much as I love my Cinderella heels and flats they don’t exactly go with my more casual dresser outfits. So I decided to make a pair of black glitter Oxfords so I can still have my element of “wow” just a little less loud. Today I’m going to show you how you to can glitter your very own shoes.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

Shoes

ModPodge Glue

Paint Brush

Masking Tape

Glitter

Hairspray/Clear Spray Paint

Sand Paper/Emery Board Nail File

Garbage Bags/Newspaper

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First you’ll want to lay a garbage bag(s) or newspaper over the surface you’ll be working on. Next apply masking tape to the sole of the shoes.

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If you are using a shoe that has a slick surface like the ones I’m using then you are going to take the piece of sandpaper/nail file and scuff up the shoes. (If you’re using a canvas or velvet shoe then you can skip this step.) Scuffing up the shoe’s surface allows the glitter to stick better. Be careful not to over do it.

There are two ways to apply the glitter to the shoes. The first way is to mix the glue and glitter  and using the paint brush paint it on the shoe. Doing it this way will make sure that the glitter isn’t going any where. The only downside to tackling it this way is that it will take several coats to finish the shoe. (Tip: Use a hair dryer to speed up the drying time.)

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The second way of applying the glitter to the shoe is, to place the glue directly on the shoes using the paint brush. Then sprinkle the glitter over the shoe. The biggest annoyance with this method is that regardless of how cautious you are, you will get glitter everywhere including the inside of the shoe. (Tip: Stuff the inside of your shoes with newspaper. This won’t stop all of the glitter from getting on the inside but it will prevent the majority.)

Once the shoes have dried, spray the outside with hairspray/clear spray paint.(This helps keep loose glitter in place so you won’t leave a glittery trail every time they are worn)Allow 24 hours of drying time before wearing. Then enjoy your element of wow!!

 

 

 

DIY Kid’s Magnets

My son is always playing with the magnets on the refrigerator. I decided to make him some of his very own, using some of his toys. Today I’m going to show you how to make your own magnets in this easy tutorial.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

Magnets

Small toys or figurines

Hot Glue Gun

First you’ll need to decide which toys to use. Next using the hot glue gun apply the glue to the back of the magnet and stick it to the toy/figurine.  (The bigger the toy the more magnets you’ll have to use.)

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Give the magnets to an hour to dry and then let your little one have a blast. ENJOY!!

 

DIY Magnetic Chalkboard

I recently started looking into buying one of those magnetic chalkboard easels for my son and I was shocked by how much they cost. After some research I decided that I could make him one. Today I’m going to show you how to make your very own Magnetic Chalkboard.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

1 Picture Frame (I bought mine from Goodwill for $8)

A piece of sheet metal (The size and price will depend on the size of your picture frame)

Metal Cutters

Safety Glasses

Gloves

Paint for the frame

Sharpie

Chalkboard Paint ( I used Rust-Oleum Chalk Board Spray $4)

 

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You’ll start by disassembling the picture frame. Grab the backing of the frame and lay it on  the piece of sheet metal. Then you are going to trace it. ( Don’t trace the back piece in the center of the sheet metal like I did. You’ll be creating more work for yourself than needed. Instead pull the cardboard backing to the corner of the sheet metal and trace it. This way you only have two sides to cut instead of 4.)

Next you’ll follow the sharpie lines and cut off any excess sheet metal you don’t need.Your cuts probably aren’t going to be perfectly straight. That’s okay. The frame will hide any imperfections. Then you are going to place the cut sheet metal in your picture frame to make sure it fits. If it doesn’t fit take a sharpie and color the places that need to be trimmed. Cut away.

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Once that’s finished you’re going to paint the sheet metal with the Chalk Board Paint. ( I did 3 coats to make sure it was well covered.)

When it’s completely dry you’ll need to season  your board with white chalk. Take a piece of chalk, place it on it’s side and color the chalkboard vertically and then horizontally. Making sure the entire thing is covered. Next take a soft rag or cloth to wipe it off. You now have a seasoned board.  The reason you need to season the chalkboard is because if you don’t, you’ll never be able to completely erase the first thing you wrote. (You’re suppose to wait at least 24 hours before you season the chalk board. Ya’ll know me by now, I waited for 4 hours. Waiting probably would have been better but I’m too impatient for that.)

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Next you’ll paint the picture frame any color you want.

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When the frame dries, resemble it and enjoy! Your toddler and you’ll love the great price tag too!!

*TIPS: You don’t have to use a piece of sheet metal to make the chalkboard magnetic. You can use a magnetic primer. The only reason I didn’t use this instead is because I’ve been told it’s not as strong and doesn’t hold very heavy magnets.

If you do a large frame, like I did, you’ll need to buy a stronger hook or fasteners to make sure the chalkboard is securely in place.

To make sure you cleaned up all the metal shavings run a magnet over the surface you’re working on.

 

 

DIY Sugar Scrub

Last month I was over at a friends house and we got to talking about essential oils. She had just attended a “make and take” Young Living party that I couldn’t go to. After talking for a bit about what I’d missed, she goes to the other room and comes back with a small jar of sugar scrub for me to have.

Later on I got home, placed the sugar scrub beside my kitchen sink and went to bed. By the next morning I had forgotten all about it. I got up and started my normal routine making breakfast, begging my toddler to eat, forgetting that I made myself a cup of coffee, etc. (You know, the Mom stuff) As I’m finishing loading the dish washer I notice it. I decide then was the time to give it a try. My hands were so soft after using the sugar scrub, I’ve been using it every day since then. Needles to say I’m almost out now. So today I’m going to show you how to make you’re very own sugar scrub.

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Here’s What You’ll Need:

1 Glass Container w/ a Lid

1 1/2 Cup of Sugar

1/2 of Coconut Oil

15-30 Drops of Essential Oils ( I used Young Living Fresh Citrus)

IMG_0720In a medium sized bowl combine the sugar, coconut oil, and essential oils. Stir until it’s completely mixed.

Then scoop into your glass container. There you have it ladies and gentlemen, an easy and quick sugar scrub that you can keep for yourself or give away. Enjoy!!

 

 

DIY Jewelry Candle

I recently purchased a jewelry candle for a friend as a Christmas present and it got me to thinking. “I could make one of those.” So today I’m going to show you to make your very own jewelry candle that’ll be a great gift for any occasion.

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Here’s What You’ll Need:

Soy Wax Flakes

Glass Jar with Lid

Essential Oils  (I used Young Living Citrus Fresh & Thieves)

1 Sheet of Aluminum Foil

Tiny Baggy

Jewelry

Broken Crayon

Glass Measuring Cup

Hot Glue Gun

Wick

IMG_0634First you’ll want to add  hot glue to the bottom of your wick and stick it to the bottom center of the glass jar. (You may need to grab a spoon or butter knife to press the metal plate to the bottom of the jar) Set it aside to dry for 30 minutes.

While waiting on the hot glue to dry grab your piece of jewelry and place it in the tiny baggy. Then wrap it in the sheet of aluminum foil.

IMG_0657Next take your glass measuring cup and add the soy wax flakes. Place in the microwave on high for 30 second intervals. After the 30 seconds stir and add more soy wax flakes as need.  (I strongly recommend soy wax flakes/beeswax over paraffin wax. Paraffin wax can cause carbon dioxide poisoning and all sorts of other medical issues. If you need more proof click here. Also I originally tried to make this candle out of cooking oil. I don’t know if it’s the humidity here in MS or not but it was an epic fail. So I don’t recommend using that either.)

Once the flakes are melted add the broken crayon to it and stir with a spoon. Next add your essential oils, stir. (I added 20 drops of Fresh Citrus and 10 drops of Thieves.)

Then you’ll fill the glass jar about 3/4 of the way full. Grab a pencil, a stick, whatever you can find and wrap the wick around it. Set the rest of your melted wax for later. Let your candle sit for 45 minutes.

IMG_0705After 45 minutes take your piece of jewelry that’s wrapped in aluminum foil and stick it in the mushy wax, on the side of the glass jar as far away from the wick as possible. Take your left over wax and reheat it in the microwave in 30 second intervals. When it’s melted pour it  slowly into the jar until it’s full. Place the lid on and give your candle a full 24 hours to harden.

IMG_0716There you have ladies and gentlemen you’re very own jewelry candle. It may not have a piece of jewelry in it that could be worth up to $10, 000 but it sure makes for an adorable gift. Enjoy!!