Halloween Crafts: ‘Pumpkin’ Carving

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Sometimes, I actually have to remind myself that I’m not 10 anymore, but I can’t help it, I still get ridiculously excited about the holidays.  With Halloween fast approaching, I’m trying to find the time to put together a costume (so much more important than uni work and making money), which I will be sharing once finished.  In the meantime, I figured I’d share a cute little Halloween project I made a couple of years ago.

It’s a cheap alternative to a pumpkin and also makes the room smell really nice!

What you need:

  • An orange
  • A small, sharp knife
  • A tooth pick and green sharpie
  • A small tea light

How to: 

1.  Cut the top off and hollow out the bottom part of the orange, keeping the top for the lid.

2.  Carve your design into the orange.

3.  Colour the toothpick with the green pen and stick into the lid to create a ‘stalk’.

4.  Light the tea light and ta-da, a super quick and easy ‘pumpkin’.

(Just as a safety precaution, it’s probably best not to leave the lid on while the candle is lit in case it sets your house on fire – mine seemed fine while I took the pictures, but I wouldn’t risk a whole night)

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DIY ‘bat country’ Mouse Mat

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I did say that I would share what I did with the other cork pot stand – so here we go, a more manly mouse mat made as a birthday present (see my original one here)!  I’d like to mention that I have never read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, so I’m hoping that this is an alright representation.  This time I experimented by drawing on the cork with Sharpie instead of the acrylic paint I used on my own mat and I actually think it turned out better.  The mouse glides much more easily over it.

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Bedroom Makeover 2: Wall Art Picture Frames

wall art

If you follow me on Pinterest, you’ll probably have noticed that I’ve been a little bit obsessed with pretty walls full of picture frames lately.  I’ve been collecting cheap box frames and colourful postcards in order to make my own version, and thought I’d share the (kind of) finished result.

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I filled the frames with pretty postcards I picked up at Paperchase (and used the Fitzgerald inspired frame I made a little while ago), found some picture hangers and a hammer, and got to work.  It was much harder to get the frames level than I had anticipated, but I don’t think it looks too bad.

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I think this will remain a bit of a work in progress, and switching the pictures will be an easy way of updating my room.  In the meantime, I’m enjoying the colour and brightness that they bring to my walls.

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Bedroom Makeover 1: DIY Cork Mousemat

DIY cork mousemat

Lately I’ve been trying to turn my bedroom into a place that I look forward to coming home to, rather than a place that I dump my stuff in while I’m not at work or uni.  I’ve recently received a new desktop (first blog post on this baby!), but the mouse is useless on my desk.  I thought making  a cute mousemat would be a good place to start with my bedroom makeover and luckily found a couple of cork pot stands on sale that were the perfect size (in case you haven’t noticed, I really like the look of cork – see my cork noticeboard and cork coasters)

What you need:

mousemat supplies

  • Cork base
  • A design (my mum kindly created a stencil for me using her fancy-smancy printer)
  • Acrylic paint and paintbrush
  • A piece of felt
  • Glue

Here’s how: 

1.  Paint the design onto the cork (I stuck the stencil on, used a brush to stipple on the paint and peeled the stencil off once the paint was almost dry).

step 1 cork

2.  Paint around the edges (use tape if you want a straight(ish) line – mine still isn’t perfect, but I tried).

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3.  Cut the felt slightly smaller than the cork and glue onto the back.

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4.  Leave to dry properly before using.

Ta-da!  This seems to be working well so far.  I was a bit worried the paint would need fixing with something, but I’ve been using it for a bit and nothing has come off on my mouse.  I’m turning the other cork mat into a present for a special someone, so I’ll probably be posting about that later.

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Experiments with Washi Tape

washi tape experiments

Jumping on the bandwagon a little late, but isn’t washi tape cool?  I was dying to try it out, so after a little googling I  discovered that it can be used to dress up tea-lights.

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Yay for 5 minute crafts!

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‘Things go glimmering’ Picture Frame

glimmering DIY

My theory is that when a whole lot of people get together in the best places things go glimmering all the time’ –  F. Scott Fitzgerald, ‘Absolution’.

I’ve become a wee bit Fitzgerald obsessed this year, and figured my room needed a little bit of him to remind me of the months I spent studying and writing about his short stories.  My mum received a silhouette cameo for Christmas, and also kindly bought home a cheap picture frame for me to dismantle, so we set about cutting out some letters and circles and this is what I came up with.  I definitely prefer it to the original glittery butterflies.

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Basically, I took the frame apart and peeled the butterfly picture off the backing board.  I then re-covered the board with some black paper and decorated it with the letters and circles made using the silhouette cameo.

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Simple, but I like it. (Also, the glass on the frame is so shiny it acts as a mirror and it was SO SO difficult to take pictures of).

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Winter Craft Challenge: Glitter Candle Holder

winter craft challenge

So Karel and I decided that our Fall Craft Challenge was so much fun that we would make the challenges a seasonal thing.  I’ve already done a load of crafty things for Christmas, so decided to go for something a little simpler that could be used throughout the winter and not just for the one holiday.  I loved the look of these DIY Glitter Votives and decided to give it a go.  I don’t think my turned out as nicely as the original post, but it is sparkly and smells great nonetheless.

DIY candle holder

What you need:

supplies for votive

  • A plain candle
  • Mod Podge
  • Glitter
  • A pain brush to brush away the extra glitter

How to:

step 1

1.  Using a brush spread the Mod Podge over the area of the candle you want to glitter.

step 2

2.  Shake the glitter over the glue (it helps to put a sheet of paper underneath).  To cover the rim of the holder, dip it in the extra glitter on the sheet of paper.

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3.  Leave to dry for a little while.  Then using a clean brush, brush off the excess glitter.

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Happy Holidays everyone and don’t forget out to check out Karel’s post when she has the time to post it!