Easy Christmas Craft- DIY Frosted Trees

Hello!

First off, thank you all for your kind and happy comments about our Christmas shelves. We love them too! 😉

Today, I’m showing you how I made my super easy and super cheap Frosted Twig Trees. (Say that three times fast!)

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Like I mentioned in my original post, I really didn’t want to spend any money on decorations this year. So, l did what I normally do, and went outside to see what I could find.

Because we have about 5 trees that shed like crazy, my first thought was to use the sticks and twigs for something. I gathered up as many as I could find, which ended up being a large amount.

Once I brought them inside I figured they would look pretty awesome is they were “frosted”. Ding! The light bulb went off and I envisioned trees.

What a good little light bulb it was! 😉

For this project you will need:

-Lots of sticks in about the same size length

– Hot glue gun & glue sticks

– Snow spray, white spray paint would work, but I wanted a little “rougher” texture

– White glitter

– Spray adhesive

Step One:

Grab four sticks that are the same length. Take two of them and hold the top of the sticks (which will be the top of your tree) together. Spread them apart at the bottom (with your fingers holding the top of the sticks together) to form one side of the tree. With your free hand, grab the hot glue gun and drop some hot glue on one of the sticks at the top. Stick the two sticks together. While the hot glue is still wet, spread the bottom of the two sticks as far apart as you want the base of the tree to be.

Step two:

With the top of the two sticks attached with hot glue, break a stick so that it fits snugly in between the bottom of the two sticks. Hot glue it in place. I used this as a brace to hold the sticks together at the bottom. See the picture below.

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Step three:

Now, hot glue the other two sticks at the top, placing them on the opposite sides, like the picture below. Be sure to spread them apart at the bottom, giving the tree its form.

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Step four:

Grab several of your sticks and start hot gluing them to the form of your tree. Be sure to hot glue in between some of the sticks, as well as gluing the top. You don’t want your tree to fall apart!

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To give the tree some dimension, I decided to leave some areas open. And because not all of my sticks were long enough, I glued some shorter ones to the top and middle of my tree. It gave it some awesome depth and texture!

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You’ll probably also notice that not all of my sticks are straight. Mother nature isn’t perfect and my trees aren’t either! They have curves and bends and a lot of the sticks have different texture. It makes it all the better!

With the big tree done, I made my second tree, which I wanted to be smaller. Same steps, but this time I didn’t use a brace to support the bottom since it was going to be a smaller tree.

Just glue the tops together and spread the bottoms apart…

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Then add your other sticks and hot glue in place…

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With both of the trees done, let’s add the snow!

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Step five:

Now, with the snow spray, give your trees a nice coat. How thick you make it, or where you spray the snow is entirely up to you. I tried to think about where the snow would land naturally and spray in those areas.

*A fair warning: make sure you have some sort of paper or card board set up to catch the over spray. The trigger on this isn’t nearly as nice as the one on spray paint and the snow comes out full force- whether you want it to or not. 🙂 Not like I know from experience or anything.

Step six:

Sprinkle on the glitter and let it fly. You can pick how thick and even you make it. I kept shaking the bottle until I thought it was covered.

Step seven:

Spray on a *light*, but even coat of spray adhesive.

Step eight:

Sprinkle on more glitter.

Step nine:

Spray on another *light* coat of spray adhesive.

Step ten:

Let the trees dry! I let mine dry for about 24 hours. The length of drying time will really depend on the thickness of the snow. However, the can says not to spray it on too thick or it won’t dry. I’d follow that!

Step eleven:

Be patient. You really want them to be as dry as possible!

*Side note # 1- The snow spray will seem like it won’t dry and that it could be easily be wiped off. The spray adhesive really helps with this, but make sure you don’t “man handle” the trees when they’re dry. The need to be handled gently and with care.

*Side note #2- Some glitter will fall off. It’s just the way it goes. The spray adhesive should help glue it to the snow.

*Side note # 3- The spray adhesive will make the snow crackle a little bit, but it only gives the branches more texture.

*Side note #4- Since you are using hot glue, you will have a few hot glue strands that will become noticeable after your spray on the snow and spray adhesive. I took a pair of tweezers and gently pulled them off. All better!

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Once they’re dry, gently place them where you want them!

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Really, these trees can’t be messed up. The hardest part is allowing them to dry.

And the price of these couldn’t be better! All the supplies I needed are found at Wal-Mart.

Sticks- Free

Glitter- $2.50

Snow Spray-$1.50- I think…

Adhesive- I had on hand.

Total Cost: $4.00

Boo Ya!

I’ve also been informed by several lovely readers that you can find these similar trees at Target, but I’m sure the price isn’t anywhere near mine! 😉

If anyone has a better method than using the snow spray, I’d love to hear it. I thought about using the white spray glitter, but it doesn’t provide the “snow” look, which is what I wanted and what really makes these trees shine!

Next up is the cotton and jingle bell wreath, which I did see at Target. Mine is definitely cheaper than Target and it’s too easy!

Big Smiles!

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Linking up to:

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It’s Overflowing Craft Link Party

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Christmas Shelves- AKA- My Mantle

You may remember that when we built our kitchen shelves all I could think about was decorating them for Christmas. Needless to say, I was quite the happy lady when it was time to decorate.  Ah, the joy!

I think I still might be floating on a cloud.

Admittedly, I did struggle with narrowing down my theme for this year. I soaked in so much inspiration that I wanted to include it all. That probably wouldn’t have turned out so great… Finally, I decided on a classic Christmas color duo: Silver & Gold. The only problem with my theme is that every time I say it in my head, I start singing the “Silver & Gold” song from Rudolf. Wait, that may not be that bad of a problem…  With the Silver & Gold, I decided to incorporate as much of nature as possible. That’s where its at. I’m nature inspired!

Let me also admit that I’m cheap. Like, I seriously didn’t want to buy a single thing, cheap. And for the most part, I really didn’t. I get a great thrill from re-using things we already have.

Because we don’t have a mantle, these shelves pose as mine instead.

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For one of my “nature” aspects, I decided to make my own frosted trees from sticks I found outside. Stay tuned for the tutorial. They turned out lovely!

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Honestly, saying that I love these trees is a HUGE understatement. I’m pretty sure they were the only thing I could talk about for two days. Feel sorry for my glitter hating husband…

Since I couldn’t get enough of my frosted trees, I decided to draw one on a little chalkboard too. (Seriously, I could have done a better job erasing my previous drawing… Make me feel better and pretend you don’t see that, okay?)

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Again, those trees. AKA, my new best friends.

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I had a lot of fun playing with different textures too. I really like how the soft, hard, fluffy and sleek textures all come together.

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For the top shelf, I made a REALLY easy wreath from cotton balls and jingle bells, tutorial coming soon! It couldn’t be more lovely. And the textures are stunning combined with the tumbleweed branches from outside.

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Practically perfect with a couple of DIY frosted pine cones beside it. Tutorial coming soon.

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I can’t wait to show you the rest of our house! And stay tuned for several new tutorials!

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Linking up to:

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Southern Hospitality

Breakfast Nook Dresser: Two Toned Transformation- How To

Last week I showed you our newly transformed dresser. And because I am so happy with the way that it turned out, today I’m showing you what I did.

First off, I headed to Walmart to buy some paint stripper. I followed the directions on the container and ended up doing it 2 times to remove most of the paint. Very easy, but just make sure you apply a nice thick & even coat!

After I scrapped off all the paint, I got busy sanding! With our large sander, going with the grain, I sanded down the entire top until the black paint & gray primer was completely removed. Be patient.

Because I was staining the top, I sanded down the front and sides as well. I also made sure the surface was super smooth.

After the sanding was finished, I wiped down the top & sides with a microfiber towel, followed by a cheesecloth. Leave no dust behind!

Next, I picked out my stain. I originally planned on using Minwax Early American, but I tested a small spot on the side of the dresser and it was REALLY dark!

(I freaked, which I shouldn’t have, because I could have just sanded it off….)

After that I played around with several different colors, some together & some not, and ended up with Provincial by Minwax.

I found that the sides of this wood (pine) stained darker than the top. I barely wiped the stain on the sides before I wiped it off again and it was DARK. It threw me for a loop. So, I tried about 4 colors on the side, but I didn’t like any of them. They were too light. The dark color looked the best, so I decided to do it on the top.

Thinking it would do the same as the sides, I wiped it on and off again quickly. It hardly touched it. So the next time I let it sit a tad longer…. still not as dark as I was going for.

I could see that I wasn’t going to get the color I wanted with the Early American stain, so I grabbed the darkest stain in our cupboard, Provincial by Minwax. Boy did this scare me… it was dark…

I spread the entire top with the stain, wiped it off, and it gave me a slightly darker color… rather than doing the same, wipe on, wipe off for the next hour, I decided it was time to just go for it. I put a thick coat of stain on the top and waited.

After about 10 minutes I wiped off the stain and could tell it was getting darker. I did it again and waited another 10 minutes. This time I wiped it off and it was perfect! Finally!

I called it a night and waited until the next day to spray on a sanding sealer. Once that was dry, I LIGHTLY sanded the top with 220 grit sandpaper, going with the grain, and wiped it down with cheesecloth. Then, I sprayed on two coats of a satin poly. I didn’t want a super thick or shiny coat, so satin was the way to go.

Once the top was dry, I taped off the edges with Scotch Blue Delicate Tape and started painting. For the color, I chose Martha Stewart’s Mourning Dove. I had it mixed in a water based enamel with a semi gloss sheen. Not too shiny, not too dull. Just right. 😉

When it was dry, I reinstalled my knobs and waited a day or so before moving it back inside the house.

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Honestly, nothing about this project was hard. A little time consuming, yes. But not hard.

It was totally worth the work and we love the outcome! Plus, it has totally changed my feelings towards our current table. Without planning it, the stain on the dresser matches the table. For now, the table stays.

Here’s my advice to you: if you have a piece of furniture that you really want to transform but are frozen with fear, quit it! Trust your instincts! Don’t let fear stop you. And certainly don’t be afraid of paint or stain. They don’t bite!

Now get out there and transform- you won’t be sorry!

Big Smiles!

Linking up to:

Thrifty Decor Chick

Laundry Room Console Table

I’ve been bitten. By the furniture bug, that it.

The laundry room is getting ready for a complete makeover. Remember? We talked about this. I shared everything that’s  been brutally bugging me since we moved in. Happy times.

Anyways, I was cruising around the great www and I ran into a lovely console table that practically had my name etched into it. It was completely perfect, except for the depth, oh, and perhaps the price…

Yes, at $1,099 this table is quite the catch.

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Ah, but look at all the loveliness! The thick wood top with the iron frame. It’s a perfect mix.

And, it’s similar to the original inspiration that I showed you before:

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But, like I stated before, my dream table is $1,100, which is way, WAY, way out of our budget. Luckily for me, the hubby is a welder by trade. I showed him a picture of my table and he actually laughed out loud, and then followed it with “I’m in the wrong business”. He can make it for mere dollars, but the most challenging, and perhaps the most expensive part, will be finding that thick of a wood top. I’m on the hunt.

I can’t wait to show you the finished project. And I can’t wait to see the finished price! I do love a good challenge!

Big Smiles!

The Laundry Room Saga…

The laundry room…. sigh…. one of the only rooms that did not turn out the way I had hoped. We’ve only lived in our new house for about 6 months, but for 6 months I have hated the way the laundry room turned out.

We were in such a rush to move into our house, that the builders got a bit sloppy with it… at the time I was just OVER the construction process and I wanted to move in desperately. So, I did what any desperate person would do, and I overlooked the glaringly obvious problems that were getting left behind.

Fast forward 6 months from move-in day, and I am irritated.

I should have made the builders re-do their mistakes. I should have made them pay more attention to the final details. And I shouldn’t have been SO EASY! I know what my thought process was at the time, so I can’t be too hard on myself but, darn it, it’s just not what I wanted.

However, I’m trying to look on the bright side by thinking that I wouldn’t have come up with my new solution, had everything been done right the first time. See how positive I am??

I’m going to show you why I’m so frustrated with the way the laundry room turned out. You’ll see…

Reason # 1:

They were suppose to build out the wall so that the upper cabinets looked built in. You were never intended to see behind them, or the bottom of the cabinet…. See the problem?

Reason # 2:

They didn’t do the tile correctly on top of the pedestal. See that lovely gap of thin set? You’re not suppose to see that.

Reason # 3:

This directly correlates with reason number 2. The grout has completely fallen out in spots on the face of the pedestal. They were instructed to use bullnose tile on the face so that it tied in with the top for a nice rounded edge. That didn’t happen. Obviously. And because it didn’t, every time I pull laundry out of the dryer my leg hits the grout and it falls out….. sigh….

Because I’ve been agonizing over this room since we’ve moved in, I’ve had plenty of time to device a plan of attack. And, luckily, it shouldn’t be too expensive.

Here’s the plan:

-To fix problem # 1 we are going to install plank paneling under the bottom of the cabinets and along the sides of the washer and dryer. This should hide the back and top of the wall that you can see with reason #1. Everything should look built in and finished.

-For problem # 2, since we will be installing plank paneling with quarter round on the bottom, this should hide the large gap on the side of the dryer.

-To fix problem # 3 we will install plank paneling on the left wall when you walk in the laundry room, carrying it across the face of the pedestal to cover the exposed chipping grout line.  Plus, it will give this wall a seamless look since the inside will be finished in plank panels as well.

After that, we plan on installing the cabinet hardware (which we’ve had for 6 months…), possibly repaint the walls… and make wood boxes to go under the pedestal. Add in a rug, some curtains, wall hangings and accessories, and we’ll have a finished laundry room… One that I won’t hate anymore!

Here’s some images that I’ve gathered for inspiration:

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No Source Found- Sorry!

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So there’s the plan! Hopefully we’ll get started soon! Since the hubby is so busy with farming during the summer, we have to squeeze all of these “bigger” projects into the winter months.

Let’s do it!

Breakfast Nook Plans

Lately I’ve been daydreaming of my most recent obsession: Sunny breakfast nooks with bench seating. Yes, you read that right. I’ve been obsessing over breakfast nooks. And bench seating.

It’s what I do… my mind is constantly changing, organizing or decorating something. You’d think that I would get tired of it. Actually, it’s the exact opposite. I thrive off of it! Honestly, the more that I let my mind wander, the better my ideas get.

Does that happen to anyone else?

Anyways…

Since we have a dining room and a breakfast nook, I’ve recently decided that I want to make our breakfast nook, well, breakfasty. I want to add a comfy bench with usable storage and numerous pillows, a  pedestal table with new chairs and a round sisal rug.

I can’t even begin to describe my excitement. The best part? My Mr. totally agrees with me! My smiles are endless.

Since I have this enormous amount of excitement, I couldn’t wait to share our plans and inspiration.

This is our current breakfast nook:

And here’s what we’re planning on doing:

-Make a bench out of existing cabinets the full length of the window. Hopefully I can find the cabinets at Habitat for Humanity to save on cost. Fingers crossed!

-DIY a bench cushion.

-Hem curtains to allow for bench.

-Get new pedestal table. I’ve been searching Craigslist and think I might have found one on the cheap. Just a little paint and elbow grease and we’ll have a show stopper.

-Find new chairs for the table.

-Find & install a new light fixture.

-Make new DIY artwork.

-Find new rug.

-Accessories, Accessories, Accessories!

I would love to be able to set a budget, but not knowing if I can get cabinets at the second hand store will be a total game changer.

This is ideally what I envision for our breakfast nook:

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Are you in love as much of me? This is my favorite…. and what I completely want to copy and paste into our space. It looks so inviting. I want to sit in the sun, sip on hot tea and nibble on a scone. Mmmm…

The bench is amazing. And the textures… wow!

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So crisp and clean, it makes me feel happy!

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This bench is nearly perfect…

Pottery Barn, but couldn’t find the direct source… SORRY!

Every one of these rooms has completely inspired me… They all make me want to curl up and soak in the sun.

I am beyond excited to get this project under way! I’ll be sure to keep you updated along the way!

Big Smiles!

DIY Stick & Twig Star

A couple of my favorite additions to our entry way have been the skeleton key art and the stick & twig star. They were both so easy! And completely FREE!

I knew that I wanted the addition of a star in the space, but I didn’t want to spend any money on it. Bring on the creativity!

The first place I turned was to the great outdoors.

What’s more free than sticks and twigs? Ummm….. nothing! Ok, maybe rocks… but sticks were the much better option… Although now that I’m thinking about the whole rock star thing it could be pretty cool. Hmmm…. thinking… thinking…

Anyways, this is so very easy! No joke!

Here’s what you’ll need:

-Sticks

-Hot Glue

-Piece of Cardboard, or even a piece of paper…

-Pencil

-Jute String

Here’s your step by step tutorial:

-First: Pick a few good length sticks in a color & texture  that you like. Mine are willow and aspen.

-Second: With your pencil and cardboard draw a star in the size that you want.

-Third: Begin breaking your sticks into pieces based upon your star drawing and lay each stick on the line that it was broken for.

-Four: Hot glue the ends of each stick piece together until the star is completely formed and glued  together.

-Five: Tie a piece of Jute string around the top of the star. Hang.

Love that star!

How awesome would it be to hang a really large star from the front porch? Or what about little tiny ones on the Thanksgiving table or hanging from the Christmas table? Awesome!

These little projects have truly made a huge impact, which makes me happy that money doesn’t always buy the greatest things!

Big smiles!

Entryway Updates

Oh Boy! I’ve been working on our entry way, trying to collect things here and there, but I’ve also been busy making a few things of my own! And I couldn’t be happier with the way it’s progressing!

It’s a rather happy feeling when your style comes alive. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve thought that our entryway has been making some seriously awesome progress, especially with the addition of our stripe wall, but that was just the base. It still needed the little extras that would take it to the next level. The things that would make it feel like ours.

I want our entryway, as well as every other room in our home, to reflect who we are as a couple and family. By doing that, our guests should get a welcoming and inviting feeling when they enter our home. After all, the entryway is your calling card to the world.

It all started with the stripe wall. It majorly changed the way that I looked at out entryway. All of a sudden I saw it in a different light. It brought new ideas, but most importantly, it brought change. It made me step outside of my current decor world, which was a safety net, and step into ideas that I’d been to afraid to try.

Sure, it won’t be everyone’s taste, but we love it. We live here, and if we like it, that’s all that matters.

The secretary, which has been handed down throughout my husbands family, recently had a makeover. It’s a huge part of our entry way, even though it’s kind of hidden from the main entry view. And the chair. Oh the chair. What a great thrift store find! It’s shape had me at hello and with paint and new upholstery it fits beautifully and even adds it’s own piece of flair!

It may just be me, but it seems the areas in our home have to “come together” over time. It feels natural to me. I like to collect and then edit what I’ve found.  Time and time again, I prove this to myself. Five months from now, I’ll probably be doing the exact same thing. It works for me. And it takes time. I have to be patient.

The skeleton key art is one of my DIY projects for this space. Tutorial is coming soon. I completely love it!

The stick star was another DIY project. It was so very easy. I’ll show you soon! I love the rustic vibe it gives the space.

I had leftover keys from my framed art and decided to hang them up. Perfection.

The white framed art was yet another DIY project, although it has been in the entry since we moved in. An update is in it’s future!

Is this space done? Definitely not. I still have my eye on a couple of DIY projects and we seriously need a new rug. I’ve looked everywhere, but haven’t been able to find anything I like in my price range.

In the meantime, I am head over heels loving our entryway! It’s such a happy feeling to walk into our home and know that this space reflects us! Big smiles!

Linking up to:

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Secretary Reveal

It’s a happy day around here! Our secretary is finally finished and we love it!

I’m still amazed at the power of paint and how quickly it can transform! Seriously.

Here was the before:

And the after:

I’m in love with this piece of furniture! It was practically meant for this corner and now it owns it! We couldn’t be happier with the way that it turned out.

Because I wanted the smoothest finish possible, we sprayed painted the entire thing except for the back at the top. I hand painted that with Chelsea Gray. Looove it!

Everything pops against the dark color, which was exactly what I was going for.

After finally talking my husband into painting his family heirloom, I think we can both agree that the finished outcome is lovely.  It went from a piece of furniture that received little to no use or attention, to a desk that is already getting used and admired! What could be better than that?

Here’s a side by side for comparison:

Yowza! Me likey the After! 🙂

Stay tuned tomorrow to see the rest of the entryway and a whole bunch of changes!

Big smiles!

I’m sharing this on: DIY Show Off, Alderberry Hill, House of Hepworths, The Shabby Creek Cottage, A Bowl Full Of Lemons, Thrifty Decor Chick

Decorating with Corn Stalks- Front Porch Style

Welcome October! Can you believe that Halloween is right around the corner? Which means that Thanksgiving is right down the street and Christmas is at the end of the block. Seriously! Where has this year gone?

Anyways…

I couldn’t help but think about Thanksgiving while I was adding corn stalks to our front porch. I’m looking forward to the Holiday’s this year (not that I don’t normally) because of our new home. I get excited thinking about it! And the corn stalks only add to it!

After all, a new home means new and exciting ways to decorate! And THAT is exciting!

It’s so very fall! And the perfect addition to our pumpkins!

Every time I drive up to our house, or walk out our front door, I get the warm and fuzzies inside. Who knew corn stalks could have that much of an impact on me? They’re just so festive! 🙂

Does it make you excited for Thanksgiving too?