Curbly Original
How to: Make a DIY Tabletop S'Mores Grill Centerpiece

by Kayla Domeyer
DIY S'mores Centerpiece
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Today is the last day of my Curbly guest posting spree. I'm so happy I got to share my Curiosity Bone Vase, Printable Watercolor Art and DIY Coasters with you all. For my last post, I'm really excited to share this DIY S'mores atio "grill." S'mores are one of my favorite parts of summer - but city ordinances in my hometown don't allow patio fireplaces. 

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Curbly Original
How to: DIY Sharpie "Painted" Coasters

by Kayla Domeyer
Easy DIY Home Decor Coasters made from Permanent Markers!
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

It's day three of my whirlwind adventures in guest blogging here on Curbly. Today, it's all in the details...of home decor, that is. Sometimes in DIY home accents, it isn't about the big, striking pieces. Often, it's the lovely, custom details that add up to make a space. Like these DIY coasters. They can be any color, and the watercolor effect is both elegant and whimsical.

 

Making a set of these takes less than an afternoon, and they would definitely make great gifts. Think of how sweet a matching set would be for a housewarming party, or a patio get together!

Materials

 

  • 4 - 6 ceramic tiles
  • Permanent alcohol based markers (I collect Sharpies in all colors)
  • Rubbing alcohol (90% or higher)
  • Paint brushes
  • White felt
  • Craft Glue
  • Accent paint for the edges
  • Dishwasher safe Mod Podge (I got mine on Amazon.)
You'll need Markers, ceramic tiles, rubbing alcohol, felt, and dishwasher safe Mod Podge.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Step

Scribble some shapes on the ceramic tile.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

Begin by cleaning your ceramic tiles thoroughly to make sure that there isn't any dust or oils on the surface. Then, begin by scribbling some of the permanent marker on the shiny surface of the tile. Not all of the colors react the same to the rubbing alcohol in step two, so feel free to experiment with a couple of shades in the pallet you are hoping to achieve.

 

Step

Use a soft brush dipped in the rubbing alcohol to create a painterly effect in the marker.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

After you've got your colors on the tile, use a soft bristled brush dipped in the rubbing alcohol to make a painterly effect on the tile. The rubbing alcohol dissolves the ink a bit, and can make a lot of really interesting effects. I just did a straight brush across, but you could try dripping the rubbing alcohol, or using different types of brushes. If you don't like what you've made, just wash off the ink with more rubbing alcohol and start over.

Step

Once your design is dry, use a coordinating color to paint the unfinished edges. I chose silver because it really makes the color pop.

Use a coordinating color to paint the unfinished edges of the ceramic tile.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Step

The ink is going to be pretty water safe, but with the moisture of condensation threatening our pretty coasters, we'll want to add some extra protection. Mod Podge has a dishwasher safe coating that should work perfectly for this. Use a wide soft brush to coat both the top and sides of your tile. Don't over brush it though, as you might smudge your design.

 

Step 

Finally, we will need something to protect table surfaces from the scratchy backside of the coasters. Trace out and cut pieces of white felt and glue them to the bottom of the ceramic tiles.

Trace a piece of white felt for the bottom of the coasters.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Glue the piece of white felt to the bottom of the tiles.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

That's it! The Mod Podge takes 28 days so try not to get them too wet for a couple of weeks. After that, these should be perfectly water safe and ready for every day use!

 

Beautiful DIY Permanent Marker Coasters
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

A little about Kayla: I'm a Creative Director for an international crafting company full time in addition to having my own crafting blog at SayNotSweetAnne.com. I'm a wife and a mother, and I work really hard so that I can spend my down time in the warm company of my 15 month old son and amazingly supportive husband. I love to make printables, jewelry, decor items, and I especially adore making DIY gifts. Don't forget to stop by and say hello on Instagram!

 

Interested in learning more about concrete DIY projects? Check out some more project ideas here

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Curbly Original
Curiousity Planter: How to Make a Simple DIY "Bone" Vase

by Kayla Domeyer

Hello everyone in Curbly world! My name is Kayla and I can't really say just how excited I am to be guest posting for Curbly. I've been a fan for a long time, and just recently reached out in hopes of being able to share something beautiful with you. The response was more than I asked for, and I'm going to be sharing FOUR posts with you all this week.

DIY Bone Vase using Air Dry Clay
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

One of my favorite things to work on when in art class in high school was clay projects, and this DIY Bone Vase takes me back to those days. It's got the vibe of one of those old "curiousity shoppes," but you don't have to source any unusual animal parts.

 There is something really satisfying about the weight and cold feeling of wet clay as you manipulate it into shapes and textures. It is just like a squishy stress ball that you can eventually turn into something beautiful. I've toyed a lot with making salt dough projects (like DIY baby hand dish), but it just isn't the same as wet clay.

 

For this project, you'll need a plastic planter that you'll build your piece around, some white air dry clay, and some glue. You may or may not want to paint it when you are done. I personally like the look and feel of the rough clay.

Materials

  • Plastic Planter
  • Air Dry Clay (I got this on  Amazon)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Knife (optional)
Materials needed for this project
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Step

Roll a chunk of the clay to be 1/4 inch thick
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Use a chunk of your clay and roll it out to about 1/4 inch thick. It doesn't need to be perfectly smooth, and a cracking surface is actually a really nice effect.

 

Step

Loop the coil around the pot
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

Take your clay rope and loop it around your pot. Repeat until the whole rope is coiled up the surface of the pot and the whole pot is covered in clay ropes. 

Loop the coil all the way up to the top
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

Step

It looks great right!? Well, the bad news is it is going to break in a bit. You see, clay shrinks a bit as it dries, and since we've wrapped it around an object that won't budge, our clay ropes are going to break as they dry. Prepare yourself for heart ache and let the clay dry thoroughly (in the sun maybe 12 hours, or in the house 24-48 hours).

Retrieve the broken bits of your clay rope, which are now dry and oddly reminiscent of an elephant graveyard, and wipe off the surface of your planter. Repeat steps 1 - 3, saving the second set of broken "bones" with the first.

The pot of going to break, but that's okay.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

Step

Now you are ready to assemble. Remember what I mentioned about shrinkage? Because of that, the total dried "bones" from our first go around won't be enough to cover the planter. Since you made the ropes twice, however, you now have plenty of ropes to cover your planter. Clean and dry the planter's surface, and get your hot glue gun heating up.

Begin placing the broken pieces onto the planter.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

Starting at the bottom of your planter, glue your "bones" onto the surface with the hot glue. If your planter is like mine, some of your "bones" will have a tighter curl than others. The best way I found to assemble the vase is to simply test fit each piece before gluing it down. If a piece doesn't fit, save it and try it again in another place. For variation, you might want to break apart some of the "bones" so that you have smaller bits as well as large ones. Be sure to clean up any hot glue strands at the end.

Continue layering the broken pieces.
Photo: Kayla Domeyer
Carefully shave any pieces you need to make a smooth top lip
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

Step

Spiral the clay pieces up the planter. You might have to use a knife to shave down a few pieces as you near the top. Remember - untreated, this air dry clay is likely not water resistant, so we don't want it in contact with the plant's soil.


That's it!  A succulent makes a great match for this look, since it doesn't require a lot of water, and it plays well off the porous texture from the clay. This curious and unique vase is already one of my favorites. For some reason the rawness of the materials really looks great against my other bright shiny porcelain pieces. I hope you check back tomorrow for more goodies from me!

Beautiful DIY Bone Vase - a unique and elegant home decor piece
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

 

Beautiful DIY Bone Vase - a perfect and unique addition to any home's decor!
Photo: Kayla Domeyer

 

A little about Kayla: I'm a Creative Director for an international crafting company full time in addition to having my own crafting blog at SayNotSweetAnne.com. I'm a wife and a mother, and I work really hard so that I can spend my down time in the warm company of my 15 month old son and amazingly supportive husband. I love to make printables, jewelry, decor items, and I especially adore making DIY gifts. Don't forget to stop by and say hello on Instagram!
 

 

Interested in learning more about DIY planters? Check out some more project ideas here.

 

 

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Get The Look For Less: Rustic Natural

by Faith Provencher
Get The Look For Less: Rustic Natural
Photo: Magnolia Market

Rustic home décor has become popular lately, and not just in cabins or mountain homes. Natural elements like wood, glass, iron and wool fill these spaces, and with a bit of strategic decorating they can be totally chic and stylish. And while they can have the tendency to be pricey, we've culled through the internet to find some affordable options. Keep reading to check them out.   

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Rental Kitchen Gets MUCH Needed Makeover

by DIY Maven
Rental Kitchen Disaster
Photo: Creative Living

Usually around the Curbly neighborhood, we talk about renters who are itching to make improvements to their space. Well, in this case, we're talking about a landlord who was itching to make improvements to her rental property. Katie, the property's owner, was faced with a--let's face it--disaster in the kitchen

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How To: Make a Cactus Pincushion & Geometric Planter

by DIY Maven
Cactus pincushion in geometric planter
Photo: Delia Creates

To recap--it's unauthorized succulent week here at Curbly. Monday: Cactus Watercolor. Tuesday: Gumball Machine Turned Succulent Planter. Today: A Cactus Pincushion in its own DIY Geometric Planter. Yes...it's a twofer! First, Delia made the cactus's pot using air-dry clay, which you can see by clicking here. Then, using a high-quality olive green wool felt, she started in on the cactus. The results are sweet, to be...

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Curbly Original
How To: Make a Concrete Mason Jar Lid

by DIY Maven
Concrete Mason Jar Lid Feature Image
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Once again, I'm super psyched to be able to share the second of two projects from my recently released book, MASON JAR NATION (Cool Springs Press, 2016)! (For the first project, click here.) Like the hanging air plant planter, this project can also be found in the "Crafts" section of the book. UN-like the last how-to, this one ranks easy on the easy to hard scale. As I mentioned last time, because my publisher, Cool Springs, is so very accommodating, they've agreed to let me share the project in its entirety straight from the book. 

But first...why a concrete Mason jar lid? Because concrete is cool and they're the perfect top to Mason jars used as canisters.

It’s the 19th century. Mechanical engineer William Ward wants to build his family a new home, but he is deathly afraid of fire. Such a fear isn’t unreasonable in a time when open flames are used for survival. Lighting, cooking, and heating coupled with combustibles that are commonplace in every household can make even the bravest among us skittish. But William Ward isn’t just any mechanical engineer. Oh, no. He is a forward-thinking mechanical engineer who knows a thing or two about concrete. With the help of friend and architect, Robert Mook, Ward builds a reinforced concrete home in Port Chester, NY. Completed in 1875, it is the first of its kind in the United States. 

The fire-proof home was first mockingly referred to as “Ward’s Folly” because of prognostications that it was just a matter of time before the house collapsed under its own weight. Still standing sound and looking much as it did when first constructed, today the building is known as “Ward’s Castle.” So much for the naysayers. 

Mr. Ward’s creation marked the turning point in the country for modern uses of concrete. From impenetrable facades to highly prized interior decor elements, such as flooring and countertops, concrete is everywhere. And now, it's even topping a Mason jar. --From MASON JAR NATION, by JoAnn Moser, Cool Springs Press 2016

SUPPLIES:

  • An empty, plastic cylindrical container slightly larger than the jar band (an empty cake frosting container works perfectly)
  • Utility scissors or tin snips
  • Craft glue, such as E6000
  • 1 lid and band to fit the jar
  • Empty container in which to mix the concrete
  • Water
  • 1 cup of Portland cement
  • Cooking spray
  • A few pebbles for weight
  • 1 Mason jar with a regular-size opening

MAKING YOUR CONCRETE LID:

Cut down the edges of the frosting container so it's approximately 2" tall. This will become the mold for the concrete mix.

Glue the jar lid and band together with craft glue. Let dry.

In the other empty container, mix clean water to 1 cup of Portland cement until reaching the consistency stipulated on the product's packaging. 

Concrete Mason Jar Lid Pouring Concrete
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Spray cooking spray inside the mold. Fill the mold with approximately 1 of mixed concrete.

Concrete Mason Jar Lid in Concrete
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Nestle the lid assembly into the mold, displacing the concrete. Stack pebbles inside the lid just until the band's edge is equal to the top of the concrete.

After the concrete has cured, coax the entire part out of the mold, and twist the new lid onto the Mason jar. 

Concrete Mason Jar Lid for Pinterest
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Feel free to share this tutorial from MASON JAR NATION on Pinterest!

If you love Mason jars, you just might want to see the other 49 more projects featured in MASON JAR NATION. You can order it today from Amazon or Barnes & Noble ($15). And to read more about my road to publication, check out this post right here on Curbly. 

MASON JAR NATION cover
Image: Courtesy of Cool Springs Press

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Roundup: 10 Outdoor Party Essentials

by Lidy Dipert

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: West Elm

Hosting those summer dinner parties are always a must - it's where you share and make lasting memories with close friends and family. Here are 10 must-have outdoor party essentials to help you plan the perfect evening with your loved ones. Think minimal and modern with lots of great textures! 

 

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: Scandinavian Designs

1. It's important to start thinking from the ground up when planning a perfect dinner party. Pick a table that is sturdy (so not to spill your drinks) and big enough to comfortably fit your guests without any elbow bumping. [Photo: Scandinavian Designs

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: CB2

2. Seating should be both comfy and stylish! You want your guests to stick around after dinner is served for good conversation and perhaps a fun game or two. [Photo: CB2

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: H&M Home

3. Scattered lighting along the table creates warm and welcoming ambience, especially as the sun starts to set a bit more throughout the evening. [Photo: H&M Home]

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: Etsy

4. Forget the disposable plates - this is a classy affair! Be sure to serve your guests dinner on one-of-a-kind pieces. Stoneware is earthy, edgy and packed full of personality! [Photo: Etsy

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: West Elm

5. Having a bit of bling can really make a difference from your day to day dinnerware and gold cutlery will make your party look all the more glorious! [Photo: West Elm

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: West Elm

6. Serve fancy drinks in unique cups by adding funky geometric drinking glasses to the mix. [Photo: West Elm

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: CB2

7. Have those napkins handy for any minor or major messes that may occur. There's something about cloth that makes the table look all the more sophisticated. [Photo: CB2]  

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: H&M Home

8. Add a playful or conversational piece to the table to keep things interesting. Snakes should do the trick! [Photo: H&M Home

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: Marimekko

9. Serve your water, punch or even Sangria in a pretty pitcher full of pattern and personality. [Photo: Marimekko

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

Photo: H&M Home

10. Lastly, every table needs some fresh flowers to give your party that final touch. A textured and masculine vase will compliment any delicate flower! [Photo: H&M Home]

10 Outdoor Party Essentials

 

 

 

 

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How To: Make a Mason Jar Hanging Air Plant Planter

by DIY Maven
Mason Jar Hanging Air Plant Planter Feature Image
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

So psyched to be able to share the first of two projects from my recently released book, MASON JAR NATION (Cool Springs Press, 2016)! This DIY hanging air plant (tillandsia) planter is found in the "Crafts" section of the book and it's one of my favorites. (Although, to be honest, there are a lot of favorites in the book--as it should be, otherwise they wouldn't have made it into the book!) This project ranks medium on the  easy to hard scale, but that's only because it requires a bottle cutter (Click here to read my reviews of some popular bottle cutters. Long story short: Ephrem's is the best out there). Because my publisher, Cool Springs, is so very accommodating, they've agreed to let me share the project in its entirety straight from the book. 


Educated types will tell you Tillandsia, also known as “air plants,” are an epiphyte. No need to remember that as there isn’t going to be a quiz at the end of this project. What you do need to know is that epiphytes don’t require dirt to grow. They siphon the nutrients they need from the air, and as for watering, a one-hour dunk every couple of weeks, or a spritz every couple of days is just what the horticulturist orders. The best water to use is of the rain variety, of course, but distilled works well as does tap water that’s been sitting for 12 hours “off-gassing.” For sunlight, these virtually indestructible darlings prefer that which is bright filtered. Tillandsia’s unique growing requirements make them the perfect plants to grow in Mason jars, as each humble form highlights the other.  -----From MASON JAR NATION, by JoAnn Moser, Cool Springs Press 2016                                       

SUPPLIES:

  • 1 clear, quart-size Mason jar
  • Bottle cutter and finishing equipment (We recommend Ephrem's Deluxe Bottle Cutter, $37)
  • Painter's tape
  • Small paintbrush
  • Etching cream
  • Metal hole punch or drill and small bit
  • 1 lid and band or 1 reproduction lid to fit the Mason jar used
  • 1 small cotter pin
  • 2’  of #16 single jack electro-galvanized chain requirements
  • Small washer with small a hole 
  • 18-gauge wire (about 8" or so)
  • 1 tillandsia

MAKING YOUR PLANTER:

Cut approximately 1” off the bottom of the jar and finish the cut edge according to the technical instructions in MASON JAR NATION or according to the bottle cutter’s instructions. 

Hanging air plant planter etching cream
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press
 

Apply painter’s tape about 1/2” up from bottom edge of the jar.

With a small paint brush, apply etching cream to the exposed area. Keep in mind that a thick, even coat works best. Leave the etching cream in place for as long as the product’s recommendations stipulate. After that, rinse off the etching cream and remove the tape.

Hanging air plant planter hole and chain
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Next, punch or drill a small hole in jar’s lid. Thread the cotter pin through the last link in the chain, then feed the cotter pin through the hole in the lid. 

Hanging air plant planter cotter pin
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Slip the washer onto the cotter pin’s legs and bend them open. 

Hanging air plant planter wire
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Using a length of 18-gauge wire, gently wire up the Tillandsia. Then, feed one end of the wire through the top of the jar and screw on the jar’s lid. Note that 18 gauge wire is small enough that the band will screw on. 

When it’s time to water the Tillandsia, simply remove the lid and ease the plant out from the bottom of the jar. Just remember, after the plant’s soak, allow it to dry before re-inserting it into the jar. 

Hanging air plant planter for Pinterest
Photo: by JoAnn Moser via MASON JAR NATION, courtesy of Cool Springs Press

Feel free to share this tutorial from MASON JAR NATION on Pinterest!

If you love Mason jars, you just might want to see the other 49 more projects featured in MASON JAR NATION. You can order it today from Amazon or Barnes & Noble ($15). And to read more about my road to publication, check out this post right here on Curbly. 

MASON JAR NATION cover
Image: Courtesy of Cool Springs Press

 

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Curbly Original
How To: These DIY Tropical Leaf Coasters Are Simple and Stunning

by Jessica Gregg

tropical leaf coasters and a cup of coffee with a yellow background

My family and I just returned from a sunny, beach trip to Florida. My kids packed an abundance of shells to bring a piece of the beach home with us, but the tropical plants and trees I longed to bring home were too big and deeply rooted to pack in my suitcase. Plus, the dry, cooler climate of Colorado (combined with my lack of growing skills) would have doomed the plants upon their arrival.

So naturally I went to the next best thing for tropical vibes in my home - DIY tropical leaf coasters. Now, I can enjoy my cup of coffee in the morning, or a cocktail in the evening with a touch of the tropics on my table.

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