Burlap Wreath Saves Ugly Front Door!

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A front door says a lot. Mine is the ugliest. Really, really, U-G-L-Y because it has no alibi ugly. Worn dingy green paint job finds door with no structural character, topped with a silver number plate that makes it look more like a motel front than a home.

So I wanted something to jazz it up. A wreath I could make, and the pinecones I found while hiking the Lincoln National Forest Trails in New Mexico in October inspired me to move on this endeavor. 20131028-215028.jpg

I went to pinning. I found plenty of ideas, most of which featured wire bases with burlap wrapped around the outside. But it takes a lot of burlap to build a big, full wreath as well as a lot of patience–once you find out that burlap falls apart quickly and leaves little strings everywhere. When I went to Hobby Lobby, I found an alternative I liked much better.

Here’s the easiest little wreath you can make and one you can accessorize every season. Come Thanksgiving I’ll be adding some red, orange, and yellow ribbons. Christmas might be more green and red by removing the ribbons and pinning on ornaments, but who knows. Go where the wreath takes you, right?

Materials

1 wreath base (bunched twigs)

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2-3 pipecleaners

string from burlap or clear fishing line

Baubles and ornaments you want to decorate with

Note: I chose pine cones, a wooden J, and a faux white branch, but you can play around with this as much as you like, as noted above.

Directions

Start with your burlap. Cut the burlap into 2.5 inch-wide strips that all link together by alternating the sides you cut down. So you don’t want your burlap to look like one large tasseled end. Instead, cut down the first strip, stopping about 2 inches from the end of the first row. Flip sides and cut from the other end; continue to alternate until you have a longer, connected fabric that almost snakes or zigzags. 20131028-215039.jpg

Wrap the burlap onto the base. To secure the first part, use one of the pipe cleaners, sliding it through the twigs on the backside of the wreath to secure the fabric. Continue wrapping upwards to cover the entire wreath, but you might leave out a few twigs or gaps to show the twigs, if you like. Secure the final end with another pipe cleaner.

Next, I attached by white sprig branch by wrapping the wire stem around one lower part of the base. That wrap around stem I used to attach my other baubles. So I used the extra burlap strings to tie the pinecones onto the sprig branch’s wire, and did the same with the J.

Depending on what you use, yours could be very different, but as it stands, this might be the easiest wreath you could put together, and I think it’s lovely. I’m glad to have a chic, country touch on my ugly motel-esque front door. My only piece of parting advice might be this: In picking your baubles or even burlap color, consider the color of your front door and the colors around it. White works well to distract from mine without clashing, but if you’ve got a white door, you might want something different.

Administrative Professionals’ Day Craft

Baby Flower Headbands

DIY Fabric-Covered Canvases

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Broke Girl DIY: Fabric-Covered Canvas

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I really enjoy crafting. That being said, don’t take that to mean that I’m good at crafting… The two really are different.IMG_1201

I’m a drive-by crafter. My inner perfectionist gets a kick out of small projects that are easy to do. It helps me relax and feel like I’ve accomplished something.

Dealing with fabrics happens less frequently. This is because I’m a novice sewer with a mild phobia of sewing machines–those stitchers look like they could really take a few fingers off!

But I can do this fabric craft. Seen on Pinterest, accomplished in my own study, no sewing involved, and fingers remaining in tact.

What you need:IMG_1202

An old canvas (or new if there’s nothing hideous you want to cover)

Enough fabric to cover that canvas and it’s edges, plus a little extra

Flat push pins

ScissorsIMG_1203

An iron

The ability to fold

Directions:

Lay out your fabric on the ground or a large flat surface. Place canvas on top. Cut around this leaving about 3-4 inches extra fabric around the edges for folding.

Iron the fabric so it’s nice and smooth and will lay flat. Place the canvas evenly in the center and beginning folding your corners, wrapping as you would the edges of a present with gift wrap.

Pin down each corner lightly but not all the way. Why? you may need to make adjustments if the fabric pattern appears crooked or is laying too loosely over the canvas.IMG_1204

When you’ve gotten the fabric to lay as you like, push your pins down.

Hang and bask in your craftiness. Or folding abilities. Or just your abilities to choose aesthetically-pleasing fabric patterns that add to your interiors.

And if you’re feeling crazy–or need a visual change next month–do it all over again with another fabric pattern! 

 

Broke Girl DIY: Baby Headbands

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I have this adorable niece. Her name is Lydia.SAM_5060

Okay, I actually don’t have a biological niece, but this one may as well be my own. I’ve talked about her before (remember Lydia & Zydia??) and I’ve gone on about my best friend Sareena, her super sweet momma.

I could go on forever about all of the nice, completely unnecessary, but appreciated beyond words, things Sareena has done for me. She is the most thoughtful person I know, always picking up something for me because it made her think of me. I know no one kinder.

So when I saw a bunch of adorable plain headbands and Hobby Lobby, I thought: “I want to make a headband for Lydia and Sareena. It’s perfect.” Can’t be that hard, right?SAM_5053

It certainly wasn’t. I’m no sewing expert, but I can pull together a solid stitch. So armed with my headband, sewing kit, flowers of choice, and a few buttons, I attempted to reciprocate my friend’s kindness.

If you can make a stitch, you can do this. And if you can’t, I promise you can. Just YouTube or Google some simple instructions.SAM_5071

I went with a bright purple-orange combo for the coming summer months and because I knew Sareena would love those colors. I stitched the flowers on with a clean white button holding them in place, somewhat lopsided for effect.

I didn’t remember to pick up an equally cute gift bag, but I did make one quickly with a brown paper bag I had lying around and some ribbon.

Simple, easy, and thoughtful. Isn’t that the way all things should be?