Curbly Original
Make These: Rorschach Ink Blot Pillows

by M.E. Gray

Make these: DIY Rorschach test pillows

Are you familiar with the Rorschach Test? It's the psychological exam where you look at ink blots and say what you see. Depending on how you interpret the ink, you receive a different diagnosis of your psyche. Now, I'm not a psychiatrist by any means, but I do know a DIY opportunity when I see one. Whether or not you interpret the shapes as a bear, or as the face of your mother, throw a little color in there and we've got ourselves a project. These ink blot pillows are easy enough for anyone to make, and each result is different!      

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Curbly Original
Make This! Abstract Wall Art Using a Hair Dryer

by M.E. Gray

DIY abstract art using a hair dryer

Lately I've been getting sucked into watching painting videos on Instagram. The abstract paintings are the best. I love the ones where the artist is seemingly just messing around, throwing paint here and there, when suddenly BAM! - some well-placed paint or drip technique brings it all together. While I'm not as clever an abstract painter as these Instagram stars are, you don't have to be an expert to make some fun abstract wall art. I made this piece the other day using a hair dryer - keep reading and I'll show you how.              

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Curbly Original
Craft Idea for Kids!: Miniature Fish Tank

by M.E. Gray

Kids Craft: Make a mini fish tank!

School is out for the summer, and that means loads of down time. Need a kids craft idea to keep little hands busy? Making a mini fish tank is inexpensive and fun (even if you're a grown up!). I actually pulled the idea for this project from my own childhood. When I was a kid, I made one of these mini fish tanks for my dollhouse. I remember being so pleased with myself, because it looked so real with the tinted water, and the fish could actually float! This kid-friendly craft project is easy to execute, and with drying time included can be completed in about an hour.         

 

Watch this kids craft DIY come together in the video above (which, side note, was a blast to put together!), and keep reading for the full details.

Materials

 

  • Baby food jar
  • Acrylic paint and paintbrush
  • Foam pieces
  • Rocks or pebbles (I just gathered these from my yard, but you could also buy rocks meant for actual aquariums. If you're gathering rocks from nature, make sure to rinse them off first!)
  • Invisible thread or fishing line
  • Blue food coloring
  • Craft glue (I'm using a non-toxic, water-resilient kind; if you're looking for longevity, use hot glue and lots of hands-on adult supervision)
  • Scissors
  • Filtered water

What you'll need to make mini fish tanks

Step

Step 1: Cut foam into fish and grass shapes

Cut shapes from the foam to resemble fish, grass, coral, sea horses -  whatever you desire! Make sure the shapes are small enough to fit inside the baby food jar.

Step

Step 2: Paint lid

Paint the lid of the baby food jar to make it pop. You'll need to apply two coats for total coverage. 

Step

Step 3: Tie invisible thread to tail of fish

Take invisible thread or fishing line, and glue strands to each fish, or tie strands to the tail of the fish. 

Step

Step 4: Glue everything inside lid

Apply glue to the inside of the jar lid. Glue the ends of the thread attached to the fish to the bottom of the lid. Make sure the thread does not stand taller than the height of the baby food jar. Fill the remainder with rocks, pebbles, and foam shapes. Let dry completely. 

Step

Step 5: Tint water, then add to jar

You can add clear water to the fish tank, but tinted water is more fun, right? Add a drop of blue food coloring to a glass of filtered water (filtered water appears clearer). I ended up diluting my blue water further after seeing how dark it was in the jar, but the color choice is up to you. Fill the jars completely, screw the lids on tightly, and you're done!

If you want to permanently seal the jars and prevent them from being able to be reopened, apply hot glue to the inside rim of the lid before screwing shut.


Kid-friendly craft: Make these mini fish tanks!
Kids craft: Learn how to make these mini tanks for foam fishies!

Kid-friendly crafts: Make some mini fish tanks!
Share this kid-friendly project on Pinterest! 

If you want to add extra flair to this kids craft project, throw some glitter in the water for more of a snow globe effect. Want a bigger fish tank? Try a mason jar and some plastic fish figurines! Happy crafting!

 

Looking for more ways to keep kids busy this summer? Why not start with this DIY flower press?

How to make a flower press

 

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Curbly Original
How To: Make Graphic Cork and Leather Hanging Memo Boards

by Capree K

How To: Make Graphic Cork and Leather Hanging Memo Boards

After recently completing our office makeover, I realized I needed somewhere to put all those random little notes and lists and other office-y bits. You know, something people like to call a "memo board". After looking around, the only options appeared to be giant rectangular boards, emphasis on giant. And rectangular. Since I like to keep things a little quirky (and colorful and covered in pattern), I decided to make my own!       

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Curbly Original
Capree's Office Makeover, Part 3: The DIY Neon Desk Makeover

by Capree K

Capree's Office Makeover, Part 3: The DIY Neon Desk Makeover

Last week, I shared some of the inspiring spaces, colors, and artwork behind our office makeover, as well as the paint colors we decided on. You may even remember talk of some neon pink desk legs being thrown into the mix. Well, I wasn't lying!       

If you follow Curbly on Instagram, you no doubt have already seen some sneak peeks of my office makeover, as well as this neon DIY project. (What can I say? I'm a sucker for crazy pops of color!) If you're thinking about painting your own metal desk or table legs a fun color, here's how I did it!

created at: 01/22/2013

Materials:

  • VIKA ADILS desk/table legs (however many you need)
  • painter's tape
  • drop cloth
  • fine grit sandpaper
  • tack cloth
  • white spray primer (not shown)
  • spray paint (for 14 legs, I went through about 5 cans)
  • spray sealer (not shown)

created at: 01/22/2013

Step 1: Lightly sand the entire surface of each desk leg, then wipe the dust off with a tack cloth.

Step 2: Tape off the black plastic feet that are attached to your desk legs.

created at: 01/22/2013

Step 3: Spray each leg with an even coat of primer and let dry thoroughly.

Step 4: Spray on your first coat of spray paint and let dry completely. [The spray paint I used was really, really hard (and frustrating) to work with because it came out in horribly uneven spurts (see photo below). Recommendation: buy better spray paint, preferably one with a decent nozzle.]

created at: 01/22/2013

Step 5: Repeat step 4 for as many coats as you need in order to get an even finish. [I ended up having to apply 4 coats (see previous note about spray paint quality).]

Step 6: Apply a sealer in whatever finish your heart desires (matte, satin, or glossy). I went with matte.

created at: 01/22/2013

And there you have it! Once those bad boys are dry, you can attach them to your desk or table top.

Speaking of desktops, we also decided to cover our white VIKA AMON desk with some wood grain contact paper. I would include a tutorial for that except, you know, I needed both of my hands at the time. It's super easy, though! The trick is to measure (twice!), cut (once!), and very slowly peel the backing off as you work/rub your way up the (clean and dust-free) desk surface, watching for air bubbles along the way. Bam! Easy peasy.

And now for some sneak peek-age!

created at: 01/22/2013

A little in-process action before we hung our staggered, floating cabinets.

created at: 01/22/2013

Another quick makeover: painting our filing cabinet to match the walls!

created at: 01/22/2013

Oh, and this happened: Wrigley, caught in the act. Little sneak.

Be sure to check back next week for the FULL REVEAL!

 

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Make It: DIY Potato Print Textiles

by Capree K

Make It: DIY Potato Print Textiles

Making your own printed textiles couldn't be easier (or more fun)! So, grab a potato or two and let's start stampin'.    

Just like with that awesome potato print wall art, this project involves carving the desired shape into a potato and then stamping to your heart's content. But this time, you'll use acrylic craft paint on a clean tea towel. Easy, right?

I love the simple geometric pattern Lexy from The Proper Pinwheel used here. What shape...

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