Archive | August, 2011

Roll-Up Sunglass Wedding Favors

30 Aug

This weekend, thanks to the help of my lovely friends Mickayla and Lila, I completed my first wedding project.   It feel a little Type-A to be doing craft projects for a wedding that’s eight months away, but I want to make sure the lead up to the wedding is as fun and relaxed as possible.  Waiting until the last month or two to start the real dirty work will basically ensure I turn into a B-word (Bridezilla, duh) and freak out daily.  So it’s just best to get a head start.

In thinking about what to do for favors, I wanted to find something inexpensive but also fun and useful.  I started thinking about things people might use at the wedding.  It’s outdoors and in the middle of the summer, so it’s sure to be hot and sunny.  Bugspray?  Sunscreen? Sunglasses! I remembered a pair of roll-up sunglasses made from what looks like camera film and a handmade store in Chicago.  I wondered if I could make something like them, or find them online.  A little research revealed that you can definitely find them online— and they’re cheap ($40 for 100)!  Turns out, they’re mainly used by optometrists who give them to patients to wear back home after they dilate their eyes.  These were perfect!  Useful, cheap, portable and bound to create some fun photo opportunities!

Next, I got a bunch of small linen bags– you can buy these online or at party supply stores for about 50 cents apiece if you look around.  I carved two stamps- one with a pair of sunglasses and one with three little hearts.  Then we started the assembly line.

We stamped the bags (black ink for the glasses, red for the hearts), added gold foil stars to each of the glasses, stuff the glasses in the bags and were done!  Each favor cost about $1.25 and we made 100 of these puppies in a couple of hours.  These will make great favors for a summer wedding, but would also be fun for a beach party or cookout.

For more projects like this one, check out the Entertaining section of the Domesticity page.

A Porch Makeover

29 Aug

It’s starting to get cool enough that we can actually enjoy sitting on our porch (my hands-down favorite place) in the evening.  In preparation for our increased porch activity, I decided it was time for a little porch redux.  I “reupholstered” our table and cushions with some cheap fabric, a staple gun and some rudimentary sewing and bought a pretty new plant I actually intend on keeping alive.  That, plus our new hanging plants makes it a pretty pleasant place to be!

new upholstery + repurposed cushions = brand new love seat

fabric + staples = matching table

porch plant + porch cat

For more posts like this one, check out the Domesticity page.

Make Window Cork Strip

26 Aug

My desk is great- it’s made from a door we took off one of the frames in the house, it’s huge and (my most favorite part) it faces the window.  Some people prefer not to face a window because of glare and distraction, but I say bring. it. on.  I love having things to gaze at while I’m bored and working and I love the light, especially in the morning (when I usually blog before heading to work).

There’s only one problem with my little arrangement- there’s no where for me to post notes and lists on the wall in front of my desk.  I tried adding strings with cards pinned to them on either side of the windows to alleviate this problem, but while I love this, it’s purely decorative and doesn’t help with posting reminders and more utilitarian-type notes.

It occurred to me this week I didn’t need a full-blown cork board- I could buy cork squares, cut them to the width of the wood strip between my two windows and stick them to the wall to create a surface for pinning.  Hooray!

Draw on Your Netflix Envelope

25 Aug

I really enjoy little surprises for strangers- a book on a park bench, a section of a Walt Whitman poem, paying the tab of a stranger, so naturally I was drawn to the idea of doodling on Netflix envelopes to surprise your mail carrier or some Netflix intake worker (full disclosure: I’m not really sure about the innerworkings of Netflix.  They probably have a machine sorting this stuff).

I decided to try a doodle of my own to try to cheer up our unusually surly mail carrier (seriously, I’ll be sitting on the porch reading when he comes to drop off the mail and will totally ignore me when I say hello).  He may be a lost cause, but at least it injected a bit of whimsy into my day today.  I might just make a habit of this.

Treats for Visitors

23 Aug

 

I so love putting together little welcome gifts for guests when they come to visit.  Mainly because it involves two of my favorite things- buying gifts and having visitors.  This weekend our lovely friends Tim and Laurie came to visit and I put together a bunch of purple themed gifts to matched the sheets they’d be using over the weekend.

Have visitors coming to stay?  Consider putting together a little welcome gift including some of the following: card, snacks, wine/spirits, Gatorade (in case of overindulgence in said wine/spirits), tea, toiletries or other travel-type gifts, little knick knacks from your favorite local shops and perhaps a map of/brochures from your town if guests will be spending time alone.  Any other ideas?

At Work

22 Aug

It was such a pleasure to put together this collection of people at work.  Over the course of 5 days, twenty-five of you sent in pictures of yourselves hard at work and hardly working.  In this collection there are media makers, non-profit workers, desk-jobbers, a librarian, teachers, an accountant, bloggers, a shopkeeper, home renovators, writers and, in the first photo a group of people working in the 60’s sent in by a writer/expert thrift store scavenger.  Thanks so much for sharing these.  Hope it makes your work day just a little more interesting.

Make a Planter Out of a Speaker

19 Aug

A quick note before the post:  I want to do a blog post featuring a gallery of pictures of people at work. If you have a free minute in the next few days, take a picture of yourself at work (however you define that). It can be a simple picture from your computer’s camera/a mobile device or you can stage an elaborate portrait of you fixing your roof or discovering the cure for cancer. Possibilities = endless. Then email it to me at mackeyda@gmail.com. Come on, it’ll be fun!  I’ll be posting it on Monday  And now, on to the speaker planter…

After making a hammock last month, I realized I needed a little table to set a beverage (and my book, when I decide it’s time for a nap) and was using an old speaker off of which Shawn had taken the woofer thinking we could make it into something cool. Once we set a bowl of chips in the empty hole where the woofer had been, attached wheels and used it as a rolling chip cart.  We soon discovered there is not much need in our lives for a rolling chip cart.  So we removed the wheels and the chip bowl and I’d hauled it out back for my makeshift hammock side table.  But I knew we could do more with it.

Inspiration struck after making the hanging planters and I was thinking of what I could do with the leftover coconut husk lining.  I realized if I turned the speaker on its side and stapled it to the top, I could leave a little dip where the woofer had been and use it as a combination planter/hammock side table.

I cut the liner to the approximate size of the speaker.  I was lucky because since it was made for a rounded planter, there was already a bowl-like dip in the liner.  If not, I would have had to do a little cutting and sewing to allow it to dip down enough to accommodate soil and plants.

I then folded it over and stapled it to the edges of the speaker.  After that, all I had to do was add soil to the “bowl” area where the woofer was, plant my plants and add a little moss. I then hoisted it onto two cement blocks so it’s a comfortable height for drink/book resting on the hammock.  I tested it out last night and am happy to report that it did not disappoint.

For more posts like this one, check out the Domesticity Page.