Monthly DIY: Vintage Slide Curtains

vintage slide blinds (1)This month is all about using vintage slides to make custom, unique and beautiful slide curtains. I found out about slide blinds originally through my brother who shared a photo of them with me of (these) curtains and I fell in love. I just adore how not only can you use them functionally as curtains but they are a work of art. Being able to look at each individual slide, not to mention the reflections of them on nearby surfaces really makes the space more beautiful. Right away I set out not only to find how these were made but to make my own for my kitchen window which has been lacking a window treatment since we moved (years ago). Although a long and tedious process, I think the project is very straight forward and the end results makes me so happy. Anytime I am in the kitchen I find a new slide to look at and appreciate. One thing I would love to do is someday make my own slides and make a memory curtain with them. Below I have all the steps you will need to do to make your own as well as videos on me making them, not to mention MANY MANY photos of the finished curtains.

What You’ll Need:

  • slides
    *to calculate how many you will need, refer to step one
  • pair of pliers
  • jump rings
    *to calculate you roughly need 4x the amount of slides
  • drill or hole punch
  • triangle ruler and pencil
  • curtain hooks

Cost and Material Information:

The cost will depend on how you are acquiring the slides and how many you need to make the curtains (I used around 200 slides). For my slides I purchased through Etsy for about $10 per 150 slides. I bought more than I need as I wanted my blinds to mostly be of flowers. For the other materials it will be around $25 to pick up jump rings, a hole punch, pliers,  a triangle ruler, hooks, and the curtain rod. All common things to find at Dollar stores, craft stores or online for cheap.

Video of Steps:

 

Steps:

  1.  Calculate the amount of slides you will need. To do this measure the height and width of the area you will be covering (include overhang if you want slides to go past the glass) and divide each by the measurements of 1 slide.This will give you an approximate base amount you will need. Have more on hand for mistakes and possible changes.
  2. Take the slides and lay them out so you know what will be the top slides connected to the curtain hook, the middle slides and the bottom slides. At this time you can also create a pattern with the slides or paint the paper edges.
    Example: All slides featuring the color yellow in one column, or all flower slides on the top row, ect. Having a large group of slides to choose from will make this step much easier.
  3. Take all the middle slides and measure 5mm in on each corner using the triangle ruler and mark. You can skip this step if you want however it helps make sure the slides hang as evenly as possible.
  4. Where you’ve marked on each corner, use a drill or hole punch to create a hole.
    *I did mine with a hole punch and it’s painstaking in the amount of time it takes and on your hand but I found it easier than a drill.
  5. For the top slides you will need  to repeat Step 3 & 4 however for the top two holes will need to accommodate the curtain hooks so you will need to check if you need to make a larger hole.
  6. Repeat step 3&4 to the bottom slides except only do 2 holes on the top of the slide.
  7. Lay out all the slides you want for 1 column with 1 top slide, middles slides and 1 bottom slide.
  8. Use the pliers to twist and separate the jump rings you will need ahead of time, you will need 4x each slide except the bottom and top.
  9. Attach the slides together using the jump rings and pliers, working down one by one until you are at the bottom. Then attach the hooks to the top slide.
  10. Repeat until you have all your columns done and place each hook on the rod.
  11. Hang on your curtain rod and enjoy!
    Optional
  12. You can attach the columns together to create one big sheet, or two curtains. Simply use jump rings and either hook into a new hole on the side of each slide or into the existing jump rings. I did the later but the original DIY added additional holes. You can also skip this step and each column will be on it’s own.
    TIP
    I found out at the end of the process a much easier way to create the holes is to have 1 template slide that has the punched holes already and then simply lay on top of each slide and punch the holes you need using it as a reference. No marking required.

 

Finished Curtains

vintage slide curtains (2)vintage slide blinds (19)vintage slide blinds (20)vintage slide blinds (22)(The bottom is a little wonky but I will figure that out. I also went down from 20 slides per column to 19 and accidently left two slides that aren’t meant to be at the bottom)vintage slide blinds (12)vintage slide blinds (3)vintage slide blinds (2)vintage slide blinds (11)vintage slide blinds (18)vintage slide curtains (1)
(the slides also leave patterns on the floor on sunny days which is a delight)

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Monthly DIY: Scented Bath Salts

This month’s DIY project is scented bath salts which I love to use in the Spring and Summer time since I am very active and enjoy adding them to my bath to sooth and relax sore muscles as well as their many other benefits. It’s one of those more practical bath additions but that doesn’t mean it can’t smell and look good and it’s great to customize and make your own instead of relying on store bought. It’s really easy to do and very affordable if you go through large amounts of them. Also they make great presents for just about anyone in your life.

What You Need:monthly diy (3)

  • Plain Epsom salts
  • Food coloring
  • Fragrance or essential oils
  • Container
  • Spatula or spoon
  • Mixing bowl

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Making My Own Homemade Vanilla Extract

I mentioned earlier about my brother shipping me a bunch of goodies from his most recent trip travelling around India for half a last year. Well one of said goodies was an insane amount of vanilla beans and as soon as they arrive I realized it would probably take me years to actually bake enough to get through my new supply. So I decided to do the most logical thing and make homemade vanilla extract. I had no idea what that required until I googled it and my first reaction – vanilla extract is vodka?? I am so ashamed to have not known the ingredients of extract considering I did pre-culinary school courses. My second reaction was how easy it was to make, just some 35% proof  alcohol, a few vanilla beans in a glass jar and a little time.homemade vanilla (3)

To start off you will need a cutting board, knife, any type of alcohol you prefer over 35% proof (vodka, bourbon, rum), vanilla beans (mine are Indian variety which have a hint of chocolate) and since my bottle of  vodka is in a glass jar – I’m all set. This by the way is only half of my vanilla beans.

homemade vanilla (4)homemade vanilla (5)

So to start the number of vanilla beans is really up to you, there is no agreed upon correct amount per liquid. Every recipe I found online uses a slightly different amount, as well excess doesn’t necessary mean a better or stronger flavor. I had a 750ml bottle of vodka so I went with 1 vanilla bean per 60ml (or 2 fluid ounces) in total of 13. To prep the beans I cut off the ends, flattened them down with the side of the knife and sliced in half to expose the beans.

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Simply add the sliced vanilla beans into the glass container. I removed a shot glass of vodka out of the glass container first to make sure there was enough room. Any glass container will do, just make sure the alcohol is above the beans. As I was using the whole bottle of vodka I decided to simply use it to save time and I knew I would be repackaging the extract after it was made. The container HAS to be glass as the alcohol will leech any plastic container over time.

homemade vanilla (8)homemade vanilla (11)

I left 4 vanilla bean halves out when I was adding them in and simply scraped them down the middle to get the vanilla seeds and placed both the stalk and the seeds into the container. Not required but I wanted to guarantee that my extract would have some seeds at the bottom. After that I topped the container up with some of the vodka I had taken out earlier and put on the cap.

homemade vanilla (9) homemade vanilla (10)

The last step is to shake the concoction up and place in a cold dark area. I am using one of my bottom kitchen cupboards. Now just to leave it alone and shake it up once a week while the magic happens. The extract should be useable in a few weeks however the ideal time is to wait 6 weeks and you can go longer. I will be sure to show you the results at the end of June and how I will be bottling up my vanilla extract to gift to friends and use.

homemade vanilla (12)homemade vanilla (13)

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A Year in DIYs

monthly diy (4)Have a look back at the last year of DIYs!  I started off the year with Polaroid Chalkboards and from there did various projects from vintage slide lamps to homemade chocolates and Easter egg ornaments. Click the link/photo if you want to see all the DIYs I’ve done and below there is a list of each individual project if you want to check out a specific one.

 Polaroid Chalkboards
Valentine’s Day Strawberry Cupcakes
Silk Dyed Easter Eggs
Tattoo Easter Egg Ornaments
Easy Mode Chocolates
Paper Crane Mobiles
Paper Switch Plates
Vintage Slide Lamp
Resin Sticker Table
Dried Flower Resin Bracelet
Vintage Slide Necklaces
Paper Crane Ornaments & Card Display

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Monthly DIY: Dried Flower Resin Bracelets

flower resin bracelets,jpg

For November’s DIY I wanted to share with you how to make your own dried flower resin bracelets.  I kept running into resin jewellery on Etsy that I wanted to buy but was far too expensive so I decided to figure out how to make my own using dried flowers and leaves.  It was easier than I imaged and there is so much creativity you can do to make one of kind bracelets.  This DIY I would say is a medium level but I will say right now beside 4 leaf clovers I’ve never dried anything before in my life and I’ve never made resin jewelry before either so knowledge of those two isn’t required but I would recommend researching safety for epoxy resin. I also have no idea why I decided this would be a great DIY to do in the Fall when all the really awesome flowers were over but there are plenty of Fall flowers too that work just as well in this project but you may want to hold off until next year. Another idea that I thought of as well is for those you with friends getting married or getting hitched yourself this is a great way to preserve your bride/bridesmaid bouquet. As well beside a few photos this tutorial is mostly done by video which is new for me so let me know in the comments what you think.

What You’ll Need:monthly diy

  • Epoxy resin
  • Dried flowers
  • Bracelet mold
  • Plastic cups
  • Stir sticks (toothpick, popsicle stick…)
  • Sand paper (120, 600, 1200 grit)
  • Straw
  • Mask, gloves, newspaper and wax paper
  • Tweezers (optional) Continue reading %s
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Monthly DIY: Vintage Slide Lamp

monthly diy slide lamp

This month’s DIY project is a slide lamp made by replacing a regular lamp shade with vintage slides. I found out about slide lamps this year while I was searching for other projects to do with slides because I purchased a whole bunch to make slide curtains (future DIY project).  When I was looking I found all these Etsy stores that sold various versions of this idea and had to make my own (especially considering I would never pay that much for a lamp).  I thought I’d show you how I made it because the project is really easy and once you have the materials it’s not expensive to make more. There is also so much room for creativity when it comes to this project because there are many types of lamp shades and you can choose slides of various themes from butterflies to cityscapes depending on the room. I have been so excited to do this project and I’m in love with how mine turned out. Let me know in the comments if you have any additional questions.

Time:

Depends on the size but I made mine in roughly 2 hours.

What You’ll Need:monthly diy (2)

  • lamp with detachable lamp shade
  • slides
  • 1/8th hole punch (or a drill with 1/8th bit)
  • jump rings (10mm & 8mm)
  • 2 needle nose pliers
  • scissors or excato knife
  • ruler
    Optional:
  • paint and brush

Price and Material Information:

The price of this DIY really has to do with what materials you are able to start off with and what type of slides you want to use. If you don’t have slides try thrift stores, Ebay or Etsy. I bought 100 random slides for $10 on Etsy. If you want particular slides like say only sunsets most shops will sell sorted slides but at an increase of price. It can be cheaper to buy large amounts of random slides and simply sort them yourself (no guarantee you will get what you want).  As for the lamp, I actually didn’t purchase mine. From what I recall I found it on the street or someone left it in one of the apartments I moved into years ago. If you don’t have a lamp you want to destroy I highly encourage you to look at a thrift store, walk around the neighborhood on the 1st of the month, or hey Ikea has $15 lamps. You just need a lamp shade with a top wire rim, square or circular are both fine. The jump rings are available for super cheap on Ebay in a variety of colors, sizes, and quantity (like here).  For the other items you need most of them are common household things except the hole punch which can be picked up from a craft store or Staples for $6. If you don’t have two needle nose pliers but do have one and another type that should be fine. As I’m making multiple slide projects the price of this project for me is zero as I had all these materials already as leftovers but I’d say $30 is a good base price.

Steps:

  1.  Calculate how many slides you need using the existing shade as a reference.
    *for mine I made 7 rows of 3 but my lamp shade is quiet small. 
  2. Detach the shade from the lamp and remove the cloth part of the shade leaving only the wire behind.
    TIP: You can spray paint the metal wire any color (I didn’t but I think I will go back and do it as the white clashes)
    monthly diy (3)monthly diy (4)
  3. Taking the slides that you’ve chosen to use and create a pattern so you know what slide you will want in each row. I decided to use mostly slides of sunset and silhouettes and created an alternating patter of horizontal and vertical slides. Make sure you have more than enough slides just in case.
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  4. Taking a pen/pencil and a ruler mark a point at 4x4mm or 5x5mm on each corner of the slide. Repeat for all slides except on the bottom slides which will only need two markings at the top corners. I used a triangle ruler as it made measuring quick. You can free hand each hole with the hole punch instead as well and skip this step.
    monthly diy (7)monthly diy (8)
  5. Now using the 1/8th hole punch simple punch each slide with the marking in the center of the hole punch.
    TIP: You can use a drill with a 1/8 or smaller bit instead to save time. 
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  6. This step is optional as I think the regular white side of the slides look pretty great just on their own. However the ones I am using had lots of writing on them so I painted the cleanest side of each slide with silver metallic acrylic paint (you can do both sides if you’d like). I simply did 3 layers of paint and waited for them to dry.
    TIP: If you get paint on the inside slide simply use a soft cloth to wipe clean again. (I used a camera lens / glasses cloth so as not to scratch the image)
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  7. Taking your pliers and a 10mm jump ring,  twist a jump ring open and attach the slides to each other and twist to close again.
    TIP: Since I don’t own a pair of needle nose pliers I’m using one with another type of pliers instead. Keep in mind though this takes a little longer and is tougher to do so for a larger lamp shade you will want to use two needle nose pliers instead.
    monthly diy (15)monthly diy (16)
  8. I decided to punch the top holes of my slides at the end because I wasn’t sure on where I wanted the placement of the top holes. However you can simply do this in Step 4&5.
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  9. Using the pliers again, twist the 10 mm jump rings open and this time attach to the top metal ring of the shade and close.
    monthly diy (21)monthly diy (23)
  10. After all the slides are attached to the top you will want to secure each row of slides together with a jump ring. For mine I used a smaller sized jump ring (8mm) and placed one hole in the middle on each slide. I’d suggest doing this once the rows are done as the slides will each hanging slightly differently and you can adjust the placement at this point so both slides beside each other are even. This gives the slides a more finished shape but you can skip this step.
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  11. Attach the lamp shade back onto the light and you are done!

Finished Vintage Slide Lamp:

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a little video of me twirling it around because it’s really fun:

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Monthly DIY: Paper Switch Plates

paper switch plates (10) jpg

July’s Do It Yourself project for paper switch plates came to me last week while I was deciding what to do with the ugly beige switch plates I have all over my house. I went to Canadian Tire to pick up new ones after disappointing not finding anything better than plain white online. It wasn’t until I was re-watching a DIY video made by a vlogger I like doing a project with manga switch plates (here) that I realized how easy it was to customize my own! What better to go in my purple living room than a cherry blossom light switch? As soon as it occurred to me that I could use scrapbooking paper to make mine more interesting and to match my pastel house I was set on this project (and scraped my other DIY idea for next month). This is a super simple beginner project and a nice way to accessorize your house if like me you’ve went a little unconventional with the wall colors or for a kid’s room! It’s also great if your a renter because switch plates cost around 26 cents so it’s an easy way to decorate the house in a non-permanent way. Let’s get into it…

What You’ll Need:monthly diy (2)

  • Mod Podge
    *you can use any glue&sealer
  • Origami paper, scrapbooking paper, comics, wrapping paper…
  • Foam brush
  • Ruler & pen
  • Scissors / exacto knife
  • Switch plates
    *found at your local hardware store or your wall

Price: Under $15
*if you craft often you may not need to buy anything

Steps:

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Monthly DIY: Silk Dyed Easter Eggs

silk easter eggs

For this month’s DIY I wanted to make something in celebration of one of my favourite holidays – Easter! This DIY project has been around for a long time and hit the mainstream due to Martha Stewart years ago so it’s not the most original but I wanted to show you guys anyways. I’ve wanted to make these ever since my friend showed me a photo of silk dyed eggs last year. It was the first time I had ever seen them before and was blown away with how cool they were. I make pysanky eggs almost every year because my grandmother was obsessed with them and it’s just a really fun activity to do with friends.  Plus dyed eggs make great decorations either for Easter or year around in a bowl (I keep mine in a glass vase on my bookshelf).  For my version I will be blowing out the eggs so the eggs can be kept permanently however if you are using them just for Easter hard boiling will be fine, just remember that silk dyes are toxic so the eggs shouldn’t be digested (the worst part of Easter for me was being forced as a kid to eat my decorated eggs – not a fan). I would consider this project intermediate level and not very kid friendly but if you want an easier and quick way to decorate eggs I have another DIY coming up on Wednesday that might be better!

What You’ll Need:silk easter eggs (2)

  • Eggs
  • Silk ties or scarfs
  • Egg blower kit
    *I bought my locally from a Ukarine store but available online here 
  • Muslin or scrap white fabric
  • Vinegar
  • Twist ties or piper cleaner
  • Seam ripper or scissors
  • Pantyhose
    Cost: $20 approximately
    (the price for all the items required except the silk)

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Monthly DIY: Polaroid Chalkboards

polaroid chalkboard

This month’s DIY project is a little niche and silly but I think it’s adorable. I love chalkboards and nowadays you can make anything a chalkboard. I had painted a wall in my old apartment into a chalkboard a few years ago and have been missing it a lot (although FYI chalkboard walls are so messy and not ideal if you are a clean freak). One chalkboard I had never seen though is instant film chalkboard which is strange because instant film is a paintable surface and already has a cute frame built in which makes it ideal. I’ve also been wanting  to find a project for instant film because my vintage Polaroid camera is a monster and jams at least once per roll so I end up with tons of over exposured or unexposed film. Now if you don’t have access to instant film, this is pretty much exactly what you’d do with any other surface anyways so it’ll still make a good reference.

What You’ll Need:polaroid chalkboard

  • chalkboard paint
    *comes as either paint or spraypaint
  • chalkboard chalk
  • tape
  • newspaper
  • blank Fuji instant film
    *I am using over exposured Fujifilm FP-110C Continue reading %s
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Monthly DIY: Photo Booth Moustaches

photo booth moustaches (15) copy

It seems like everywhere you go nowadays there is moustache related paraphilia. And what better than incorporate moustaches into your next party whether it’s a birthday, wedding, you name it. Who doesn’t want a moustache themed photo booth? Today I am going to show a super simple way of making your own moustaches on sticks for a photo booth or shoot. I made these for my friend Nicole’s bachelorette party that happened in July. I wanted to make unique moustaches to match her personality so no standard boring black ones here.  She loves animal prints so I went with leopard and zebra print so use your imagination and have a look at your local art or craft store for ideas.  Let me know what you think in the comments below, and check out my mini photo-shoot I did with Nicole’s daughter with them, here!

Cost: $10

What you will need:moustache photo booth (1) (800x530)

  • Scissors
  • Pencil or pen
  • Tape or hot glue gun
  • Computer and printer
  • Craft sticks
  • Craft paper, card stock or scrapbooking paper (1-3 sheets)
    * keep in mind if this for multiple use as you will want to buy sturdier paper

Steps:

  1. Using Google search for moustache cut-outs that are in a style you like and save to your computer*you can also find cut-out shapes for glasses, pipes, hats, etcetera!
  2. Using an editing program like Photoshop resize the moustaches to be the size you would like whether for adults or kids. *you can play around with smaller moustaches and more comically large ones, keep in mind you may need to print some out to check on the size and make sure they will fit.
    *
    TIP: don’t want to spend your time searching and resizing cut-outs, check out Etsy stores like this
  3. Print out your final moustache designs and cut out
    (Keep in mind if you are great at drawing and can free hand moustache outlines, you can skip these step)moustache photo booth (2) (800x576)
  1. Take your moustache cut-outs and lay flat on the paper (none patterned side if you have patterned paper). Trace around moustache.
    *TIP: if you have plenty of cut-outs I like to lay them all out at once and organize where they will go to maximize how many can fit on 1 piece of paper before tracing.
    moustache photo booth (3) (800x530)
  2. Now that you have the moustaches traced out on the paper, simply cut out.
    photo booth moustaches (20)
  3. Take the cut out moustaches and apply the craft stick to the back (non-patterned side) using either hot glue or tape
    *if you wish to reuse the moustaches I suggest investing in hot gluing them, plus it will be easier to do those tricky thin moustaches
    *TIP: make sure you are putting the sticks in a good place as to not obscure the face, that means with some items like hats or lips you may to attach them on a diagonal.
    *TIP: alternate between putting the sticks on the right and left hand side, that means people can hold multiple items like a pipe and a moustache, and it’s always good to accommodate those left handers (like me – hehe)
     photo booth moustaches (1)photo booth moustaches (21)
  4. A look at all the different designs I did for moustaches, hats, tiara, sun glasses and a pipe.
    photo booth moustaches (4)photo booth moustaches (7)photo booth moustaches (2)
  5. That’s it, the only thing left now is to take silly photos with your photo booth moustaches

Shots from the Bachelorette Party:

bachlorette party bachlorette partybachlorette partybachlorette partybachlorette party

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