Last-Minute Gift: Aspen Candles

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Do you still have an unfinished gift list? Are you running short on cash? Think you have no time to make anything in time for Christmas? This project or multiples of this project can be completed in less than an hour.

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I used scraps of aspen branches I have been toting around since we moved to Kansas in 2000. Seriously, what took me so long to do this? The length can be anything you want. The ones I used ranged between 4″-6″. Don’t have aspen? No problem. You can use any branches you have available or fence post scraps. Really. As long as it is a block of wood…you are golden.

You need a 1 1/2″ paddle drill bit. If you don’t have one, ask friends or neighbors before heading to the store. No sense paying for a bit you may only use one time.

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Center the bit on one cut end of your “block” and drill to a 3/4″ depth. Spoiler Alert: To be honest, the bottoms of my drilled holes were a bit uneven. I chose not to worry about it. You shouldn’t either, because they won’t be noticeable.

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Center, wrap and hot glue whatever ribbon you desire around the block. Wrap jute over the top of the ribbon about four times. Knot and fasten off. Alternatives to ribbon could be strips of ripped fabric, a strip of wrapping paper, scrap book paper or a cut strip from an old pair of jeans. Alternatives to jute could be yarn, string, wire, a shoelace or a thin ripped strip of fabric or thin ribbon.

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The things used in this project, thus far, are things you probably already have or can borrow. The next item is the only thing I actually had to buy. The battery operated tea lights. They come two to a package at the Dollar Tree, so your total expense for a set of two candle holders could potentially be only $1. Insert them in the drilled holes and you are done.

I love the way they turned out. These were made for gifts, but after Christmas I am making a set for me.

Enjoy!

Merry Christmas!!

Yay! Another gift done and it didn’t break the bank.

Fall Crafts 2016

Candy Corn Bowl FillersWow! Yep, it’s been a while since I last posted, but I have a good excuse. The last few months have been spent on purchasing a new/old home and moving. It’s a fixer upper so there will be lots more on that at a later date. For now, craft shows are in full swing and I want to share some of the things I have been working on.

dscf9271New Halloween Pillow

I made these using tea stained chenille bedspreads. They have been a big hit.

dscf9275My New Halloween Sign

DSCF4953I also made more of these. I’ve made them the last few years and they have sold really well.

dscf9277Autumn Shutters

Since I seem to collect shutters like dust bunnies, I’m always working on new shutter designs. I tried something a bit different with this one by turning it on its side. I really like the way it turned out.

dscf9281Burlap Wreaths

My plan for this one was to follow a tutorial I had found online, but I ended up coming up with my one plan. The wreath form was supposed to have three space rows. I ordered wreath forms and was bummed to see when they arrived that they only had two space rows. If I can avoid returning something I will so I came up with my own technique to make the “oops” a winner.

dscf9285Old Painted Jars

While this craft isn’t necessarily just a fall craft, it is a new one for the shows this year. The jars came from an old house from a few years ago. They are very cool, but the glass was too discolored to leave plain. They got a coat of creamy paint and then sanded to distress. I finished up with the addition of burlap bows and some stars from my stash. What do you think?

dscf9283Stuffed Pumpkins

These have been a popular seller for a few years now.

Enjoy!

Shell Crafts

Shell CraftsShell Crafts
Check out LoveToKnow for my tutorial article on crafts to make with shells.

Read on for the story behind this article.

DSCF8579A lot of times when I have a new assignment I don’t have all the items I need. I have to decide on whether it is more economical to purchase things I need or pass on the assignment. Usually I send out requests to local Facebook friends, but most of those things are borrowed for photos and measurements and can be returned in the same condition. The shells for these projects were a different story. You know what they say, as soon as you get rid of something you will need it. That was the issue here so…off I went to Walmart to see if a bag of shells would cause me to pass on the article.

DSCF8519There was a lady in the same aisle as I was looking at the shells and trying to make my decision. Out of the blue she said she had a bag of shells at home I could have if I wanted them. She didn’t know me and had no idea what I was going to do with them, but she made my day with her random act of kindness. We exchanged phone numbers and she gave me her address. I know, right? She gave me (a stranger) her address without knowing a thing about me. We arranged a time later that day for me to pick them up. Meanwhile, when she got home she took pics of the shells and sent them to me to make sure they were what I wanted. This lady was so sweet on so many levels. They were fabulous! Of course I picked them up and used them. Since that day I have been on the look out for a pay-it-forward of my own. I haven’t come across the perfect opportunity yet, but I will.

DSCF8573After all the horrible stories I am constantly seeing on the news, the complete randomness of this kind act has renewed my faith in humanity. Thank you again, Dawn!

Click on any highlighted text in this article to take you to Crafts to Make With Shells.

Enjoy!

Skinny Side Table-Western Style

Skinny Side TableSkinny Side Table-Western Style

Since my friend passed away my husband has helped to fill the void by doing things with me that she would have done…like looking for bargains. I appreciate his thoughtfulness so much.

DSCF8700He went with me to some yard sales a few weeks ago and we came across this little gem. It had great bones and the price was right!

As we drove away I told him how much I loved the little drawer.

Hubby: Did she say that was where she kept her stash?
Me: (One eyebrow went up and I looked at him cross-eyed.) Uh, no. She said that is where she stashed the remote so the kids couldn’t find it.

Yep, me thinks my hubby needs his ears checked.

After a good cleaning and sanding I painted it white. White seems to be my go-to, but it’s a great base for several finishes and besides, I like it.

DSCF8704I then sanded it again to shabby it up some. Another good go-to, but it needed something more.

DSCF8740-002I got out my waxes and and gave the finish a cool vintage-western look.

But then there was that drawer. (There was no stash…I checked. 😉 )The whole project had been such a no-brainer that I wanted to do a little more. I had just finished a project that used the cover of a book and the pages inside were just sitting there waiting for me to notice them. The book was an old Emily Post etiquette book and the pages were pretty hilarious. I picked a couple and decoupaged them into the bottom of the drawer. I love that drawer even more now!

Enjoy!

Football Purse

DSCF8330Football Purse Tutorial

Okay, the guys in my house may have cried a little when I did this one, but it came out pretty cool. Totally worth the tears. Suck it up buttercups! 😉

Click on any highlighted text in this post to take you to the tutorial of my football purse on Love To Know.

Enjoy!