Easter Banner

Easter Banner 3It’s Friday! And we are less than a month away from Easter.  With that being said – today’s DIY project is an easy way to dress up the mantle for the holiday.  For those of you who may not celebrate Easter, you can still use the same project to dress it up for “spring”.  In order to incorporate those great spring pastels, I created a super easy “happy easter” banner to hang across the mantle! I created this Easter banner using things that I already had around the house, however the materials still should not be very expensive so I will give you a cost estimate.

Materials:

  • Scrapbook paper in pastel colors (usually around $.50 – $1 per sheet – each sheet should be able to fit 2 banner triangles)
  • Yarn or any type of string/rope to attach the triangles to (I got my yarn for $1 from Big Lots)
  • Magic Marker in the color of your choice!
  • Tape

Instructions:

  • Step One: Cut out the banner pieces.  My triangles were approximately 4″ across the top and approximately 5″ in length.  You can make these smaller or larger depending on where you are hanging them and the look you are going for.
  • Step Two: Write each letter in magic marker! Ideas for phrases include Happy Easter, Spring, Spring has Sprung, etc… be creative! You can also use larger scrapbook sticker letters if you don’t trust your own handwriting. This will add to the cost – and I was looking for a super cheap way to dress up my mantle.
  • Step Three: Tape each banner triangle along the piece of string.  Make sure you make your string long enough to allow a slight sag in the middle.

What do you think? What are some other messages that you could use? I would love to see your mantle dressed up for the spring season!

Enjoy your weekend! I hope it is fun and full of DIY projects.

Easter Banner 1

Easter Banner 2

 

 

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Wooden Tray

Wooden Tray 1

Happy Tuesday everyone! Today’s project is another easy one – a great one for beginners! The project comes straight from the girls at Shanty-2-Chic. This wooden tray can be used in a variety of ways.  In my apartment, I used it as a tray to hold magazines on my coffee table. Now I use it as a serving tray on the top shelf of my bar cart as shown below (sans corner hardware).

bar cart1

Now that you can see the versatility, let’s get started! I apologize for not having step-by-step pictures for these projects.  I am working on a coffee table that will be posted soon and it will have clear pictures!

Materials:

  • 1 – 1 x 3″ furring strip = $1.42
  • 1 – 1 x 4″ furring strip = $2.06
  • Wood Glue (like the Gorilla glue found here) = $5.97
  • Finishing Nails
  • Handles of your choice = approx. $2/each
  • Corner brackets = approx. $1/each
  • Clamp (not required)
  • Wood Stain (I used Rust-Oleum Dark Walnut found here) = $5.48     Note that this can be used for multiple projects!
  • Foam Brush (like this one) = $.77

Cuts:

  • 1 x 3″ furring strip = 5 – 18″ pieces (for the bottom of the tray)
  • 1 x 4″ furring strip = 2 – 12.25″ pieces & 2 – 19.5″ pieces (for the sides of the tray)

Instructions: (for pictures to follow along, visit Shanty-2-Chic’s tutorial in the link above)

Step One: After making all of your cuts (Note: Home Depot and Lowe’s will make the cuts for you for free if you know the cuts you need ahead of time!) you are now ready for assembly.  I started by using a small amount of glue to glue each of the long sides of the 18″ pieces together.  You now have the bottom of your tray!

Step Two: Glue the 12.25″ pieces to either end of the bottom of the tray you just created.  You now have the short sides of your tray in place. I then used a clamp to hold these steadily in place while gluing on the longer sides of the tray (however, if you have a handy-dandy helper they can hold them in place for you!)

Step Three: Glue the long sides of the tray to what has already been built and use finishing nails at the joints where the long sides meet the short sides of the tray. I used three nails at each joint.  It should now look like a tray!

Wooden Tray 2

Step Four: You are ready to stain! I used Rust-Oleum stain in Dark Walnut (see link within materials list). The Shanty-2-Chic girls used another painting method which you can check out on their blog. Before you begin staining, make sure you shake that can very well! Once shaken, take your foam brush, dip it in the stain, and start painting it on the tray in the same direction as the wood grain.  Make sure you do not over-saturate it and make sure to give it an even coat.  After about 15-20 minutes, lightly wipe off any excess with an old rag.  What does not get absorbed into the wood in that time frame will not end up soaking in and will leave a slightly sticky residue.

Step Five: The stain that I used dries in 1 hour! After that 1 hour was over, I sanded the edges to give it a slightly worn/distressed look.

Step Six: Add your hardware! I could not find a link to the handles that I used, but I found them in the hardware section at Lowe’s for about $2 a piece.  I also added corner L brackets found in the hardware section for about $1 a piece.

Now go find a perfect place to use this! I have used mine as a magazine tray and a serving tray on my bar cart. How will you use yours?

 

 

 

 

What Exactly is this Project?

Outside

My fiancée and I recently purchased a house in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio.  As you know, being a first-time homebuyer can really break the bank, so my goal was to achieve the expensive looks I love for a fraction of the price.  In order to do this, I had to put down my Kate Spade purse and pick up a hammer (ugh!) and get down and dirty.  Thankfully, my fiancée is handy (and has every tool a girl could need) so I had all that I needed to let the learning process begin.  I have found some amazing bloggers whom I now follow religiously, and throughout my journey to remodel our new house, I will be recreating many of their projects.  Making your own furniture and home accessories is easier than it sounds (and way cheaper than buying new) as I have come to find out!

So please follow along and post any ideas that you have! It will take some time, but eventually this will be the house of our dreams!