DIY Affordable Book Art

As I mentioned in my last post, I've got a serious lack of artwork in my home! I wanted to find some cute and colorful cocktail-related images for above my bar, but everything was either cheesy or expensive. Also, the space is a weird size- there's a light fixture above and a light switch below, so I only had about 2 feet in between for art. I had a book of cocktails that I rarely used, which had some GORGEOUS photos inside. That's when it hit me- why hide the images in the book, when I could display them proudly on the wall?! I went to Michael's to pick up some cute and simple white frames with a mat so the images would take up enough space while also "popping" against the frame. I'm sooo happy with the result that I decided to show you guys exactly how I did it.

 Got a spot that needs some artwork? Why not save some money and use some artwork from your books?! It's affordable and easy as can be. Click for the full how-to.

The best part is that you can use any type of book or magazine that you have. My suggestions? HGTV books and magazines for cool and colorful homes, Cooking Magazines or Recipe Books with tasty recipes for the kitchen, and Artwork Books and Magazines for the rest of the home. Even National Geographic would be great with its artistic animal photos!

*This post contains affiliate links

You will need: 

Frame (from Michaels, similar here)
Books (here)
 

Directions:

 Got a spot that needs some artwork? Why not save some money and use some artwork from your books?! It's affordable and easy as can be. Click for the full how-to.
  1. Flip through your book or magazine to find your favorite images. Tear them out as close to the spine as you can.
  2. Remove the back of your frame and take out the placeholder image and the mat.
  3. My mat was double layered white and gray, so I carefully pulled off the gray one from underneath to leave only the white one. It worked perfectly!
  4. Position your artwork within the mat, and tape in place if needed.
  5. Place the mat and artwork into the frame, and close up the back. Make sure there is no dust or hairs on the inside of the glass before you do!
 Got a spot that needs some artwork? Why not save some money and use some artwork from your books?! It's affordable and easy as can be. Click for the full how-to.

I mean... how cute does this artwork look?! This is such an affordable way to add some artwork to your home, especially if you have gorgeous books that you occasionally look at but don't use. This way, everyone can see the beauty within- right there on the walls! I also styled my bar with some really cute, colorful stuff. That blog post is coming later this week, so stay tuned!

Are you planning to create your own book art for your home? Let me know what you plan to use in the comments below!

Must Have Craft Supplies

For those of you who are unaware, I'm in the process of cleaning & organizing my craft room. Let's just say, it's been an adventure. Although I have a whoooole lotta stuff, some people may want to know, what do you need to get started? After all, not everyone ends up with a whole room full of craft supplies overnight, right? To help all you aspiring crafters, I've created this list of my must-have craft supplies, along with a FREE printable you can download and take with you to the craft store! This way, you can start your post-apocolyptic craft bunker too ;)

Creating your Crafting Arsenal

Ok, way back in March of 2017, I told you how to be efficient to get all our crafts projects done in time. Now, let's talk about the supplies we need to do them! Here are some of my favorite, must-have items in your craft stash.

 Starting a craft stash? Click to find out my must-have items for crafters of any skill level, plus some tips to save money and to rock a DIY party!

1. Glue Gun 2. Jewelry Tools 3. Cricut Explore Air 4. Paper Cutter 5. Circle, Heart, Star Paper Punches 6. E6000 Glue and Photosafe Glue Stick 7. Glue Gun Caddy 8. Mini Iron 9. Small Scissors and Large Scissors 10. Washi Tape 11. Paper Roll 12. Self-Healing Cutting Mat 13. Fringe Scissors 14. Craft Caddy 15. Paintbrushes and Paint Tray

1. Glue Gun- this one needs no explanation, but I'll give you one. Glue guns are handy for almost everything! They're good for craft projects, sure, but you can also use them for temporary fixes, party decor, etc. I've used it on nearly every project I've done, including my Pineapple Garland, Snowcone Party Hats, and Cotton Candy Garland. I guarantee if you buy one, you'll find a reason to use it. So, go get one!

2. Jewelry Tools- I purchased these for making jewelry once upon a time, but they're just handy to have around. I've used them for several crafts projects already on the blog, like my KS Inspired Bracelets and Wood Bead Tassel Necklace, but they're also good for cutting fake flowers and even for fixing your own jewelry when it breaks! Unlike regular tools, these are smaller, so they're better for tiny objects and precise fixes.

3. Cricut Explore Air- I resisted buying a Cricut for a while, but it's so handy to have! I used it for the Rapunzel lanterns at my Disney Themed Engagement Party, for my sister's Halloween costume, and for my Mean Girls Conversation Hearts. I'll probably be using it for my wedding too! It cuts a whole bunch of materials as well, not just paper and vinyl! It's an investment for sure, but I think it's really fun to have.

4. Paper Cutter- This little gadget is perfect for cutting a straight line. It's great for making banners and cutting out Printables from the internet. I've used it for my TGIF 90's Themed Slumber Party and my Nautical Notecard Birthday Banner. It's easy to use and small to store. Remember those giant paper cutters we had in school that looked like a guillotine? This is a much smaller, safer version of that. 

5. Paper Punches (Circle, Heart, Star)-  These punches are great to have on hand if you need to spruce up a project. So far I've used them on my Nautical Notecard Birthday Banner and Rock Candy Christmas Trees. They're easy to use and small, so they're easy to store!

6. E6000 Glue and Photosafe Glue Stick - E6000 is my second favorite glue, after glue guns. It adheres to nearly everything! It's a little smelly, so you need to use it with a window open, but it's great. I've used it for my DIY Dollar Store Candy Jars, my Zebra Party Tray and my Circus Animal Drink Stirrers. The photo safe glue stick is great for scrapbooking projects, making cards, and making collages! I used them for my DIY 90' Pun Valentines.

7. Glue Gun Caddy- I actually found this product while creating this blog post, and HAD to buy it. It holds your (hot!) glue gun, glue sticks, and protects your table. It's amazing! Never again will you be holding your half glued project mid-air while trying to remember where you left your glue sticks!

8. Mini Iron- A mini iron is great for small craft or sewing projects. I used it for my Mean Girls Conversation Hearts, the eye masks in my TGIF 90's Themed Slumber Party, and for touching up a wrinkly tablecloth on my Glam Friendsgiving Dinner. It's perfect for iron-ons!

9. Small Scissors and Large Scissors- I love that these scissors are so dang cute. Can we start with that?! I don't need to tell you why scissors are handy, so I'll just say that these small ones are great for when you need to do something precise, like making tassels, since they have pointed blades. These larger ones are great for cutting pieces of paper, cardboard, or other large things that require a straight line. I've used them in nearly every blog post, but they were especially useful for my Cotton Candy Garland and Rock Candy Christmas Trees.

10. Washi Tape- Washi tape has so many fun uses! It's great for temporarily sticking things together, for spicing up a project, or even organizing your planner! I used it to paint my beads for my Wood Bead Tassel Necklace, and it was super handy.

11. Paper Roll- This paper roll is great to avoid making a mess. You just need to pull a sheet long enough to cover your workspace to keep it clean. Ever dripped paint on your desk, or written with a marker that bleeds? This will help prevent them from staining! Sure, you can use newspapers but that means that 1. if you take photos of your project it won't look clean and neat, and 2. you'll have to find the newspapers. I highly recommend having this on hand!

12. Self-Healing Cutting Mat- This is one of my newest purchases. I haven't really used it yet (except as a really pretty backdrop for some craft projects) but it's got a ruler, which is great for measuring projects while working on them. It's also really thick and reversible, so you get twice the use and durability! Plus, the pink is SO much fun.

13. Fringe Scissors- Back when I made my Mini Faux Pintatas, I didn't have a pair of these scissors and I regretted it. They're so handy for making pinatas, fringe, and shredding up paper. It has 5 blades, so it makes more cuts and gets your project done faster! Again, VERY good for when you're making multiple projects at once!

14. Craft Caddy- A craft caddy is great for holding all your supplies and keeping them organized. I highly recommend having a spot that you use to store everything so that you can find it when you need it. There have been so many times that I lost my glue sticks, my paintbrushes, or my paper punches when I needed them. These crafting supplies are only useful when you can actually find and use them (duh). So, be sure to find a place where they can all stay together, like one big happy crafting family.

15. Paintbrushes and Paint Tray- These paintbrushes have a variety of uses! It's great to have multiple sizes so that you can do broad strokes quickly, but also have a nice thin one when you need to be more detailed. I really should invest in a new paint palette because mine is old and full of dried paint ("invest" = probably $3!) but paint palettes are really useful for pouring out just a little bit of paint or mixing colors. I've used paintbrushes on so many projects, including my DIY Donut Party Platter, my Colorful Leaf Garland, and my Circus Animal Drink Stirrers.

How to avoid going broke on craft supplies

I know what you're thinking- craft supplies can be expensive! I recommend adding a few items at a time, or using coupons! Michael's has plenty of sales and coupons you can use. There's also stores like A.C. Moore, Jo-Ann Fabric & Crafts, and Hobby Lobby. If you want to save even more, your local dollar store and even Walmart has a huge craft selection for cheap! Target also has some craft supplies, but not as many as Walmart. However, Target has some really CUTE stuff! Start small and keep adding more over time. Your crafting empire wasn't built in a day, right?

Do you already have a craft stash? What's in it? What can you NOT live without? I think for me, it's my glue gun. I even have one at work! Let me know your faves in the comments below.

DIY Colorful Abstract Artwork

Nothing makes a house a home quite like artwork. It really completes the look and helps to show some personality. Unfortunately, I've got a whooooole lot of empty space on my walls, and I really want to change that! Or, I guess fortunately... since now I get to have some fun with artwork! For starters, I made this super easy abstract artwork using a spare canvas I had and some paint. It was basically free! The best part about this type of art is that you can really get creative and free by painting any way you like! For those that want a similar look to mine, here are the steps that I took.

 Create easy abstract art with just a flick of your paintbrush! Click for the full how-to.

You will need:

Canvas Panels (here)
Paints (similar here)
Metallic gold paint (here)
Brushes (similar here)
Newspaper or similar to cover workspace

Directions:

Abstract Art Painting Collage.jpg

 

  1. Using a large paintbrush, start painting thick lines of your first color. I went from light to dark, since it covered better. I tried to cover as much of the canvas as I could the first time around.
  2. Using a thinner paintbrush, paint smaller strokes of all the colors once again. This is a good time to try to cover any blank spots.
  3. Once I painted all the thinner lines, I went over them again lightly with a dry brush to “blend” the colors and make it less streaky. 
  4. Using a medium thickness brush, paint on some white paint to lighten up the whole look. Be sure to have enough on the brush so that you’re adding some white, not just smearing around the paint already on there.
  5. Add more thin strokes of color to reduce the giant white streaks, then grab a wide brush for your gold accent.
  6. Paint on your gold strokes, then add more white if you want it to be a little lighter once again. And you’re done!

To hang up your canvas, add a hanging string using glue or purchase some inexpensive 3M Velcro. You can also put it in a frame!

DIY Painted Notebook

This weekend I went to Michael’s to grab a few items for upcoming projects, and I had a sketch book on my list. I realized that I didn’t really have anywhere that I could keep all my project ideas together, so I usually scribbled on a sheet of white paper that ended up who-knows-where when it came time to actually create the project. One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to be more organized, so I knew I had to take care of this! However, when I went to Michael’s I didn’t love the selection of sketchbooks available. I grabbed this one because it was the most affordable at $5, and figured if it couldn’t be cute, at least it was cheap. WELL… while creating another paint project, I realized that this notebook (with its canvas-like surface!) was wishing for a new look. Lo and behold- here it is! I love this sketchbook now, and I can’t wait to use it for my project sketches, room upgrades, and any ideas that pop into my head! Best of all, it’s so easy and cheap to make with products you probably have on hand!

 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.

 

You will need:

Notebook (from Michael’s, or here)
Paints (similar here)
Metallic gold paint (here)
Brushes (similar here)
Newspaper or similar to cover workspace

 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.

 

  1. Open your notebook to the center and place it pages-down on your workspace. Paint on thick strips with your first paint color. I wanted to do a rainbow palette, so I decided to do half the rainbow on one side, and the other half of the colors on the other side.
  2. Paint your whole notebook cover as much as you can, and let dry just a little. I thought it looked kinda mehhh without a pop of color, so I went back and took 1 color from each side to add a jolt to each side. 
  3. Using your white paint, add some thick stripes to your notebook cover. I found that the white ended up with a cool rainbow effect, so I used it to paint the spine.
  4. Add your pop of gold to the notebook and spine if you’d like. Let dry fully, then go back and do any necessary touch-up.

You can spray it with a finishing spray to seal it, or just be careful with it. You can also get a small pouch for it so it doesn’t chip paint everywhere.

 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.
 Give your ho-hum notebook a new look with just a coat of paint! Add a metallic accent and you're golden! Click for the DIY.

Related: DIY No Sew Embellished T-Shirt

I'm really loving this sketchbook now! It's so cheery and fancy. It really encourages me to create more, and I love taking a sketch break to think up new ideas, spruce up a room, or just brainstorm! How will you use your notebook? Let me know in the comments below! 

DIY Polly Pocket Iron-On Tee

Ah, Polly Pocket. The choking hazards of our childhood. Something about the amazing little world they could create in such a small space was seriously enticing as a kid. I was more into Barbies, but I did have one Polly Pocket toy that I loved- Vintage Polly Pocket Waterpark Fun which had an awesome pull-out slide! I don’t know how much I really played with the Polly Pocket, but I know I did often open up the case and stare at its interior. Usually Polly was a “Barbie” for my Barbies, but that case had its own special place in my heart. 

 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!
 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!

To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, inside and out, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! We’ve got 2 sizes (kid and adult) and 2 orientations (backwards and forwards) so that it works for everyone! I picked some of my favorite shapes including my turquoise flower, a heart (perfect for Valentines Day and Galentine’s Day!), a sea shell, a star, and a regular 'ole square that looks somewhat like an ordinary pocket. Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!

 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!

You will need:

Tees (here, here, here)
Sweatshirts (here, here)
Iron-on for dark fabrics (here)
Scissors (here)
Fabric marker with disappearing ink (here)
Iron
Parchment paper
Fun earrings to wear them with! (here)
Free printable (see below)

The printable is available in my resource library, which you can get totally FREE access to, just by signing up. What exactly do you get? Access to all my printables, including party planning guides, checklists, and my projects. By signing up, you'll have access to all projects- past, present and future! 

 

Directions

 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!
  1. Print out your Polly Pockets according to the instructions on your iron-on paper. I used the one for dark fabrics, and it worked perfectly on my white shirts too. It required printing the design the normal way. Often, light colored fabric iron-ons require it to be backwards. Just be sure to follow the instructions on your papers!
  2. Cut out each design, then trim off all the extra. The paper is white, so anything left over will show! I stayed as close to the edge as possible.
  3. Try on your shirt, and mark where you want your Polly Pocket to go. Remember that when you look in the mirror, everything is backwards ;)
  4. Put your shirt on a flat surface. Remove any hairs with a lint roller, and iron your shirt to be free of wrinkles.
  5. Peel the back off your Polly Pocket decal, and place it in the spot that you want. Cover with parchment paper
  6. Iron according to the instructions on your package. Mine said to iron for 40-60 seconds with a lot of pressure. Let cool completely.
 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!
 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!
 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!

The printable is available in my resource library, which you can get totally FREE access to, just by signing up. What exactly do you get? Access to all my printables, including party planning guides, checklists, and my projects. By signing up, you'll have access to all projects- past, present and future! 

 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!
 To commemorate my love for Polly Pockets, I made these super cute printable iron-ons that you can put on pretty much anything you desire! Get your printer out and your iron ready- we’re making some tees!

PS- For anyone that missed my Instagram stories, I decided that I'll be "the ugly blogger", because trying to take photos where I am actually pretty proves to be a challenge for me. So, get ready to see some awkward pics like the one above. They're just so much more fun to take than fake laughing so that I look happy!

Sources: All Earrings, Seashell Cup, Diamond Ring, Heart Sunglasses Similar, Vintage Polly Pocket- Waterpark Fun