Raise your hand if you’ve ever bought the supplies for a DIY project….and then totally forgotten about it. That’s me with this tutorial. A few months ago, I went thrifting for a new denim jacket so I could cut my old denim jacket into a vest. The same day I was lucky enough to find a nice Levi’s denim jacket for a whopping $5!
There’s nothing better than a DIY project that takes less than 15 minutes. Wait. There is. What about a DIY project that takes less than 15 minutes AND costs less than 5 bucks?! Yes, they exist and I’m about to share one with you.
WANT MORE: Check out this DIY: Super Easy, Last Minute Mother’s Day Gift!
What you need:
- A mirror (I bought mine at the Dollar Tree – I’m not sure if they have them all the time so I think I’m going to go snag a few more for gifts)
- Stick on letters (mine were $2.50 at Target and I LOVE them. They were almost too big so if you want a longer phrase, but the smaller letters. I found these in the art supply section with the poster boards.)
- Washi tape to make it easy to line everything up (I’m sure other kinds of tape works too, but I know washi is really easy to remove so I think it’s the best bet. You can often find it in the Target dollar section).
- Measuring tape or ruler, which you should already have somewhere!
- Total cost: $4.50, assuming you have a measuring tape (less if you already have washi tape too!)
1. Clean your mirror! It’ll probably get dirty again but go ahead and clean it to get all the dust off. Of course let it dry completely before you start the project.
2. Choose your phrase. Make sure you have space for your words, I knew mine, Party Like Gatsby, would be three rows so I had to double check that the letters would fit since they were huge. Make sure it’s short!
3. Use a measuring tape and find the center of the mirror. I used washi tape to make a little cross where they intersect, it made lining up the letters super easy.
4. Start with the middle letter on the top and bottom rows. So I made sure I lined up the middle of the R in party to line up with the vertical piece of washi tape. Note: For some reason I thought Gatsby had five letters….which is why you’ll see the bottom row I had the letter T there. Oops!
5. Slowly and carefully add the rest of your letters! You can use a long piece of tape as a horizontal guide so your words are straight. You might have to move things around a bit (especially if you can’t count properly, like me!) I had to also move “LIKE” around a bit, because the I is so skinny.
That’s it! That’s the whole project! Now you have a cute little mirror to do whatever you please with! I’m planning on doing a second one that says “BOW DOWN” because everyone should feel like Beyonce when they put on their makeup….right?
What are you going to put on your awesome Dollar Tree mirror? Let me know in the comments!
Mother’s Day sneak up on you? Want to give mom something awesome, practical, inexpensive and personal (but not cheesy)? I have the PERFECT solution for you, dear reader.
For me, a good DIY project has to fit three criteria: 1. easy, 2. inexpensive and 3. quick. If a project costs me $40 in supplies or takes more than an afternoon, count me out. This project is one of the easiest I’ve done in a while, can be completed in a few hours and it will cost you around $15 (less if you already have spraypaint you can use). Need I say more?
Here’s what you need:
-cookie sheet ($1 at Dollar Tree)
-spray paint in the color of your choice (I like Krylon paint and primer in one; around $4)
-glossy clear coat ($4)
-patterned drawer liner ($3-$6, depending on where you get it. The black and white damask is from the Target dollar section and was $3 and will cover 4 trays, the geometric pattern was $6 for two rolls from Home Goods and will cover 10+ trays)
-sheet of felt (.25; of course I forgot to put this in the photo….sorry!)
Total cost: $15.25 but all of the supplies will make multiple trays so for $20 you could easily make 4-5 trays!
1. Get clean – wash the cookie sheets, use a degreasing soap to make sure you get all the residue off.
2. Spraypaint – no need to spray the middle of the top of the trays since you’ll be covering those. That being said, your liner might not cover the whole bottom so at least spray about .5″ in on all sides. I also avoided the middle of the bottom because it won’t be visible…no need to waste spraypaint! Feel free to cover it if you want yours to look a little nicer.
IMPORTANT: Follow the directions! If it says wait five mins between coats, do it. You don’t want tacky paint. Do 2-3 coats as necessary.
3. Get your gloss on – once your paint is TOTALLY dry, follow it up with your gloss. This is going to help seal it and just make it look a little nicer so don’t skip this step.
4. Cut felt squares for the bottom – You do NOT want to mess up your mom’s nice furniture so put something on the bottom of the trays to protect the furniture. I use good old felt – super cheap and gets the job done. You can also buy pre-cut felt circles to make it look a little nicer but it’ll cost you a few extra bucks. Your call!
5. Cut and measure – use a ruler or just lay the drawer liner on your tray and mark it (that’s what I did). The drawer liner will probably have a grid on the back (yay) so you can cut along those lines so it’s nice and straight. After you’ve cut, double check and make sure it’s the right size. Then round out your corners if your pan has rounded edges (I just eyeballed it, it doesn’t need to be perfect).
6. Peel and place – follow the directions for your drawer liner, mine said to wet the surface a bit so I just rubbed it down with a damp washcloth. Then peel the back off and slowly and carefully place it on the bottom of your tray. Make sure to flatten out bubbles as you go!
That’s it! SO easy! It takes a few hours but the majority of that is drying time for the spray paint. I love the versatility of these trays, they can be used as a bar tray, livingroom catch-all, jewelry holder or even to make the bathroom look a little fancier!
Any questions? Just leave them below!
Want purple hair? Don’t want to pay the salon big bucks to do it? Feeling brave and want to DIY? I’m here to help, folks. This post is pretty lengthy but hopefully will help some of you folks who are looking to DIY purple hair.
So my hair was supposed to be lavender, and it’s really not but I still love it. The good news is, bright colors fade so it’ll be lavender eventually (hopefully). Either way, if you like my shade of purple, here’s a tutorial! Even if you’re not aiming for purple, hopefully this will help any of you other babes who are thinking about playing around with Pravana.
Thank you SO MUCH to Stephanie Drenka for taking these photos and for helping me out with the back of my head so I didn’t end up looking like a crazy person. Life saver.
Disclaimer: I am NOT a hairdresser by any stretch of the imagination. Just a girl on a budget who loves her #1 accessory. I bought my Pravana on Amazon, which I know some people say is a no-no, so do that at your own risk. Basically this whole post is at your own risk. If you want to take the plunge, here’s what you need!
Shower cap | Wide tooth comb | Bowl | Hair color brush | Clips (if your hair is longer) | L’Oreal Color Vibrancy Nourishing Shampoo and Conditioner | Pravana Chromasilk Vivids in Violet (just a few drops) | Pravana Chromasilk Pastels in Mystical Mint (whole tube, more if your hair is longer)
After doing a hilarious amount of research, I opted to use Nicole Richie’s lavender formula. Known as an “antique lavender” I liked it because it was more blue than pink, which is exactly what I was wanting. Also her hairdresser went with this particular formula so it would fade gracefully – what more can a girl ask for? The formula is super easy – one tube Pravana Chromasilk Pastels in Mystical Mint with 3-5 drops of Pravana Chromasilk Vivids in Violet. Admittedly, I think my Violet drops were too big so keep that in mind if you want yours lighter!
My hair was lightened about a month ago, I’ve got about a quarter inch of regrowth but I’m not ready to get it bleached again so I’m just going with it. I wouldn’t recommend DIY bleaching just because of the SERIOUS damage you can do to your hair. If you’re trying to keep your budget lower, I would go to a beauty school and have them bleach it for you. You’ll want to get it SUPER light, like the inside of a banana peel. Mine is already pretty ashy because it was previously toned. I used clarifying shampoo to get rid of most of the previous color but it’s still not as yellow as it is freshly bleached. Either way, violet will cover it.
I mixed up half a tube of mint with 2 drops of violet. Again, mine was probably too much – I would say each one was around 3/8″ long. I ended up using the whole tube of mint, even though my hair is short I have a LOT of it but keep that in mind when you’re purchasing your Pravana. I would purchase two bottles of mint just to be safe if your hair is any longer than mine!
I applied the color starting on my roots, did the roots all over and then the rest of the hair.
After it was all applied, I put a shower cap on to keep some heat in and also to keep me from making a mess all over my house. 30 minutes later, I was ready to rinse! (You may want to check after 20 mins, that’s the recommended time).
Rinse, rinse, rinse. The good news is – this stuff is surprisingly easy to rinse out! It only took me a few minutes before the water was running clear. Then shampoo and condition with a color safe shampoo. I used what I already had, L’Oreal Color Vibrancy (unfortunately L’Oreal isn’t cruelty free and I totally forgot when I bought it so I definitely won’t be purchasing again. Otherwise it’s really great.)
I recommend either following up with either a deep conditioner or at least applying some kind of leave in. I’ve recently become obsessed with It’s a 10 Miracle Leave In per the suggestion of my hairdresser. I’ve used SO MANY PRODUCTS and it’s one of the few that I can actually tell puts moisture back in my hair and makes it more manageable. Totally worth the money.
And here’s the finished product!!! It’s more Indigo than Lavender but I really love the shade. Here’s to hoping that it fades into a lovely greyish lavender but if not, I think this color is going to really grow on me. I feel like a real life anime character – just call me James Rocket!!!
A few things to keep in mind:
- My hair has been bleached a lot and it’s REALLY porous so some parts of my hair are quite a bit lighter (Pravana actually says if your hair is too porous, it won’t take the color very well) but I kind of like the dimension it adds.
- If you’re going to do this at home…do a strand test. Don’t be like me.
- I haven’t had any transfer on towels or pillowcases but that doesn’t mean you’ll be so lucky. Make sure to use towels and bedding you don’t mind getting stained.
- A few days after coloring, I used Renpure Rosemary Mint Cleansing Conditioner and it hardly faded at all – I highly recommend it for retaining color (and it’s SUPER affordable at Target!)
- If you don’t want to do it yourself, you can always take this formula to your stylist!
And just for fun, here’s a before and after! Look how much shinier my hair is after! I kind of can’t believe it.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. AGAIN I’m not an expert but I can definitely tell you about my experience!
Confession: this project was so ridiculously easy I’m almost embarrassed to call it a “tutorial.”
Backstory: Our kitchen is laid out TERRIBLY and we only have two very tiny drawers. So tiny that a silverware organizer won’t fit in there. After lots of unsuccessful PInteresting, I realized that the easiest and most cost-effective way for us to organize our silver was to use mason jars! (I will never get tired of mason jars…don’t judge me!)
The problem: My ears. Y’all are going to think I’m so crazy but I literally can’t handle the sound of silverware against glass/plates/each other. I always DREADED having to help my mom empty the dishwasher growing up because the sound of putting away the silverware gave me chills. Actually, who am I kidding, I still hate it.
The solution: craft foam.
Initially, my plan was to glue felt on the inside of the mason jars and then spray paint them. Well, after my Edward Scissorhands costume (teaser alert) I had a lot of craft foam left and realized that I could use that instead to buffer the glass to silverware noise (you guys, I am SO CRAZY). Also it’s thicker than felt so it probably does the job better anyway.
Here’s the step-by-step process.
1. Spray paint the mason jars. Yes, they’re going to chip and scratch later but then I can just spray paint them again or buy new mason jars because they’re literally like a dollar a piece and I’m probably going to get tired of how they look soon anyway. Or I can “distress” them and say they’re supposed to look that way. Just make sure to do lots of really light coats so it doesn’t drip!
2. Cut the foam – you need a circle to go on the bottom and then a strip to go around the side. Super easy. I didn’t even bother measuring, I just eyeballed it and trimmed them down as needed.
3. Put the foam inside. I didn’t even glue it, you guys. I figure that way if something gross gets inside I can just take the foam out and wipe out the jar. Also: lazy.
That’s it. That’s the whole tutorial. Spraypaint, cut some foam, put it in the jar. Now I know sometimes spraypaint can come off onto other surfaces so I don’t recommend keeping these bad boys on your kitchen table unless you put something on the bottom of the jars. But that’s on you – this is a three step maximum tutorial.
Did I mention how cheap these were? Mason jars – $3.75, Spray paint – $5, Foam – $.89. Less than ten dollars and super easy DIY project? Yes please.
So now I have these precious silverware holders! It’s so convenient and looks a whole lot prettier sitting on the counter/table than the giant silverware organizer that’s been sitting out for the last six months (oops). I also like that if we have people over, the silverware is already out and ready to grab.
Anyone do on any cool projects this weekend?! I want to hear about them!
So, in case you haven’t noticed…I bleach my hair. As much as I absolutely LOVE the color, my hair becomes a dry, brittle nightmare if I don’t baby it. I have several tried and true products that I love and I only wash it 1-2 times a week, but it still needs more TLC. After reading some recommendations online, I finally decided to try coconut oil a few weeks ago and let me tell y’all, it’s a miracle worker.
So dry……also, I’m in the process of growing my hair out which is why it looks so awkward.
-First I measure out 1/4 cup coconut oil and put it in a bowl so I’m not putting my hands inside a jar of coconut oil – ew. You might need more but just start with that – your hair might not be as dry or thick as mine and you can always add more later.
-If there are any large chunks that aren’t melted, I just break them up in my hands. No need to microwave or anything like that.
-Next I just start rubbing that stuff all over my hair. I like to just pour a small amount from the bowl into my hands and then apply starting at the top of the head and working backwards. Then I add more to trouble spots that are particularly dry.
Make sure to get the pieces of hair right at your hairline-those baby hairs need some lovin’ too! Sorry this looks like an Instagram filter, the lighting is AWFUL in our bathroom.
-Once my head is totally greased up, I usually take a brush or comb and CAREFULLY run it through my whole head. This helps make sure I didn’t miss any spots. It also gets everything nice and slicked back so I’ve got that snazzy used car salesman look just in time for bed. (If your hair is longer you might want to loosely put it up in a pony tail or bun. You could probably even wrap it up in a small towel. Unfortunately I’m not an expert in the long hair area.) Gotta be honest, I made the husband take some pictures of me after I was done but they were WAY too embarrassing for me to post. Sorry boutcha!
-I don’t think coconut oil stains (don’t quote me on that!) but I usually put a grungey towel down on my pillow just to be safe. Also I try REALLY hard not to move around once I’ve laid my head down so I don’t wake up with a face full of coconut oil.
-In the morning, I usually have to shampoo 2-3 times (remember, I’ve got at least four days worth of product buildup in there PLUS a crapload of coconut oil) and then condition really well. If I can avoid heat styling my hair that day, I do.
-I usually try to do this once a week in addition to other deep conditioning and leave in conditioner on the ends between washes. In other words, if you don’t like babying your hair and conditioning a lot, you probably shouldn’t bleach it.
Let me know if you have any questions, hopefully between the ridiculous photos I made my husband take and the super long explanations, everything makes sense. 🙂
Since my husband and I moved into our own apartment in February 2013, we made a decision to not have cable. It just wasn’t worth the $60-$80 per month (in addition to internet) since we were on a VERY tight budget. Over a year later, we still don’t have cable and I wouldn’t change a thing. So how do we do it?
1. Fast internet – This was really a no-brainer for us. My husband does video game development and I have my own businesses (and blog) so having high speed internet was a top priority for us – even if we did have cable. We are able to stream videos on multiple computers and download things super fast. We pay less than $60 per month for the highest speed internet. Seems counter-intuitive if you’re trying to save money but I think it’s worth the extra $10-$15/month to have speedy internet, especially if you’re going to be streaming videos often.
2. Subscription services – My husband and I have chosen to go with Netflix ($7.99) and Hulu Plus ($8) but there are several other good ones out there too! Check them out, use the free trials and see which one best suits your needs. I love Netflix because it has most of my favorite tv shows I can watch reruns of, plus Netflix originals and my favorite AMC shows. And honestly, even if I had cable I would probably still pay for Netflix. Then of course we use Hulu Plus for our current favorites like Modern Family, Bob’s Burgers, Parks and Rec, The Mindy Project, etc.
I just really like Mark Wahlberg, OKAY?!?!?
Shows we watch regularly – RIP Michael J. Fox Show.
3. Don’t pay for what you aren’t using – Here’s a really important tip…don’t pay for Hulu Plus when new shows aren’t coming out!!! We make sure to put our account in vacation mode during the summer because we know none of our shows are on. You can do this for up to 12 weeks and it’s totally free. You won’t save a ton of money but you won’t be wasting it either and you’ll feel really smart 🙂 Also, if you get Netflix and don’t like it…cancel it! Don’t be lazy, save your money!
4. Ask friends for help! – This is a biggie for me. If there’s something I’m really dying to watch (like The Grammys Tribute to the Beatles they had a few months ago that I FINALLY watched last weekend…thanks dad!), I make sure someone DVRs it for me. Unless you’re constantly asking your friends, they will more than likely say yes. Offer to bring dinner so you can watch it together!
5. Get a Chromecast!!! – The best $35 you’ll ever spend. We bought one of these bad boys when they came with three free months of Netflix so it really only cost us $9 but I would happily pay $35 for one if I had to do it all over again. This little guy is AMAZING. You just plug it into your TV, do a quick setup (basically put in your wireless info) and it’s ready to go. Open up Google Chrome on your computer, laptop or phone (you DO have Google Chrome, right?), click the little button in the browser and it will “cast” whatever page is in that browser to your TV! It’s seriously amazing. So instead of watching TV on your computer you’re actually watching it on your television. You can get one here (or at Best Buy, Target or numerous other retailers).
I think that’s about it! If you have any questions, leave a comment! Do you have cable? Is it worth it? Let’s discuss!