Tag Archives: DIY

dip candle workshop at the Brooklyn Brainery

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to attend the dip candle workshop at the Brooklyn Brainery. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Brainery, it’s a Brooklyn gem that hosts all sorts of classes ranging from d.i.y., cooking, history lessons, financial education, and many other topics. They even taught me how to use my DSLR camera!

Dip Candle Workshop at the Brooklyn Brainery

The workshop itself was a lot of fun. Our fabulous teacher, Jessica Kaufman (above), was a pro at dip candles and she gave us the rundown. We learned a bit of history, technique, and how to make patterns with the wax.

After about ten minutes of introduction, we got right to work. The format of the class is engaging and hands-on. In two hours we received instruction and technique, then spent the rest of class socializing while dipping our candles. At the end of the class we walked away with a finished product and a new skill.

Dip candles are remarkably easy to make. If you’re at all interested, there are great tutorials on Youtube and the equipment costs are low. The basic process requires dipping a wick into a pot of melted wax in a double-boiler.

DIY Dip Candles

Wait a few seconds for the wax on your wick to cool slightly, then dip it back into the wax. You do this multiple times until you build the shape and pattern you’re looking for.

DIY Dip Candle

They start off small, but eventually grow in size as you add more wax.

DIY Dip Candle

At the end you walk away with absolutely unique tapered candles.

DIY Dip Candle

What do you think? Is it something you’d try? If you’re in the New York area, be sure to check out the Brainery!

the weekender 5/3/2014


(image via)

Happy Weekend everyone. We’re half-way through Saturday and I’m full of energy. My parents are coming this week, but we’re only partially unpacked, without furniture, and in need of a few essential household items, like a bath rug and trash can. We’re at that point in the move where we’ve put it off too long. We need to make that inevitable trip to Ikea, or at least Target, to get those final pieces a that make a house a home.

I’ve been in a flurry completing a few final home-decor DIYs. You should be seeing those in the next couple of weeks. I hope everyone has a sunny May weekend! Here are some of my favorite links this week.

Elise was dead on with her post Three Things I Know to be True about DIY ProjectsDo you agree?

This beet pizza crust pizza stopped me in my tracks. (Photo above).

Deb at Smitten Kitchen announced her brunch arsenal, and I’m inspired. Perfect for Mother’s Day.

Speaking of, these plant pots with gold foil lettering would make a great DIY Mother’s Day gift.

The cutest ice cubes.

Three nontraditional and pretty ways to use embroidery hoops.

This grilled pound cake is decadent.

And Lady GaGa has a flying dress! What?! (via SwissMiss)

the weekender 4/18/2014

Happy Good Friday and Easter Weekend! We’re in our (hopefully) last weekend of moving into the new apartment. We’re slowly getting settled, most notably because this morning we got internet! The new apartment has great lighting and white walls, which I’m thrilled about. In case you haven’t caught my complaining, my last apartment had pink and green walls. I could never get my photos right. Colored walls are a curse for me. The new apartment originally had orange walls, but I told the landlord I couldn’t move in until it was painted over. This is actually the second apartment I’ve lived in with orange walls, which makes me think they must give that color away for free at the paint store.

Red Thread Sock Easter Bunny

Since we’ll still be moving this weekend, our Easter festivities will be kept at a minimum. But here are a few Easter-themed links for your weekend.

I just love the egg shell candle trend, and these lavender ones are beautiful.

And more ways to display tea lights, hang them in whisks.

I adore these bunny softies (pictured above). They’d be a perfect for an Easter basket.

You could do so many variations on these stenciled hand towels.

Easter egg terrariums for your Easter fete.

Serve some springtime lemon petite fours at your Easter brunch.

Have a wonderful Easter weekend everyone.

Beyond the Dye – Easter Eggs 5 Ways

Every year Easter comes around, I’m always inspired by the many beautiful and unique egg designs around the web.I don’t normally decorate eggs for Easter, because what am I going to do with a dozen hard-boiled eggs? Still, there are some great techniques that surpass the traditional dye cup. Here are five Easter Egg dying ideas you can do yourself and not all of them are made with real eggs.

Easter Eggs

1. Tattooed | 2. Marbled | 3. Wooden | 4. Nail Polish Marbling | 5. Hand Painted

I’ve also always wanted to try traditional batik dying, but it seems pretty involved. What do you think? Which is your favorite?

deer string art

The past few months have been nothing short of chaotic, and it’s been a while since I’ve had time to finish a craft. Deadlines and to do lists take priority over “create” these days. And despite all of this, I couldn’t get past the nagging feeling that I need to complete something that: 1. I’ve made with my hands and 2. Is beautiful.

Deer String Art

I saw this deer string art months ago on this blog and went out immediately to buy the supplies. Since then, I’ve taken my sweet time hammering in a few nails here and there, but never really committing to complete the project. Then yesterday, something just snapped and I knew I couldn’t do anything else without finishing it. So, I spent an hour or so hammering away (pun intended). I’m so glad I did! It is probably my favorite d.i.y. project I’ve made.

Deer String Art

The supplies:
– 1 round cross-cut wooden plaque
chalkboard paint
1 inch wire nails (project nails), I bought a 100 pack, but didn’t use them all.
– finishing hammer
– embroidery floss or string (I used string, but I’ve seen this done with embroidery floss)
– paper and pencil for tracing

I used this silhouette for the deer stencil. You can enlarge it to the size you want and then print it out. Or in my case, I just held a sheet of paper against the computer screen and traced it.

Coat the wood plaque with two coats of chalkboard paint. Let it set overnight to dry.

Place your pattern in the center of the plaque. You can add a piece of tape to secure it.

Take your nails and hammer them into the plaque along the edge of your silhouette. I found it was easiest to make them a thumbs-width apart. This makes it easier to hold the nails anyway. To create the fine edges around the antlers, you’ll have to place the nails closer together.

deer string art

Once they’re all nailed in, remove the paper stencil and tie the ends of the embroidery floss around a nail. Wrap your embroidery floss around the edges until you’ve outlined the entire thing. Then continue to fill in the middle, hooking the floss around opposing nails.

Deer String Art

Once you’ve filled in the center, tie off the string on a nail. That’s it, you’re done. The nailing can be tedious, but it’s well worth it.

I just love the way this looks. It turned out way better than I expected. i wasn’t sure if I was on board with the string art craze, but now I’m sold. What do you think?

Love it? Pin it here!


the weekender 3/14/2014

Have a beautiful weekend! We’re taking it easy around the house since we had a whirlwind of a time last week for my birthday and we’re going to have a crazy couple of weeks going forward. I’m actually excited to have the chance to do some deep cleaning and laundry (exciting, I know). While I’m doing that, here are some links for your weekend.

Apple Pie from Elephantine

Happy Pi Day! This is the best step-by-step tutorial I’ve ever seen for how to make an apple pie.

I feel like I’m the last person on earth to get behind the avocado toast trend. I tried it for the first time this week.Now I’m obsessed and can’t wait to top it with goat cheese.

Best tip this week? Freeze caramelized onions to use them later!

These wall hangers are such a pretty and easy d.i.y.

And this homemade bar tray is so pretty and classy.

How amazing do these pom pom fruits look?

Oh, and just for fun. Would you ever put these lights in your house?

five great no-carve pumpkin ideas

There are only a few days left until Halloween. I haven’t had a lot of time to stop by a pumpkin patch, let alone carve a pumpkin, so this year, I might just pick up a sugar pumpkin at the grocery store (sigh). Luckily, there are some very cute no-carve ideas out there and some of these look like they only take a few minutes to make. Here are my top five (all with tutorials!).

No Carve Pumpkin Ideas

1. Button Pumpkins from Mom4Real
2. Donut Pumpkins from Studio DIY
3. Neon Ombre Pumpkins from Funky Time
4. Push Pin Pumpkins from A Subtle Revelry
5. Melted Crayon Pumpkins from The Swedish Records

What do you think? Aren’t they all so beautiful? Which one would you choose?

spooky halloween candle DIY

Halloween Candles

I snagged these candles at the dollar store and had serious plans to decorate them for Halloween. And how cute are they? I can’t stop smiling when I see them. Oh, and those fake leaves? Also from the dollar store. I felt like a rock star when I left. Cheap craft supplies and tacky photo props? Sign me up.


Candle Supplies

This craft probably costs less than $6, if you’re buying all the supplies from scratch.

– dollar store candles, with labels peeled off. I used white for the ghost, orange for the pumpkin.
– high gloss black acrylic paint (or black nail polish)
– sharpie. I used the fine-tip for better detail.
– paint brush
– Q-tip for fixing mistakes. 

Use your sharpie to outline your shapes. Tip: You can use a wet Q-tip as an eraser. It will take the sharpie right off.

Here are my outlines. They’re not perfect, because I was going to paint over them anyway.

Jack O

Ghost Outline

Fill in the outlines with black paint. Make sure you don’t have a lot of paint on your brush when you’re trying to do edges and corners. It will make the fine detail much easier. You can also use Q-tips here to fix mistakes. I did two coats, letting it dry for 10 minutes between coats.

And you’re done!

Halloween CAndles

This whole craft took less than 20 minutes. It’s so fun to create something from start to finish in one sitting.  My original intention was to paint these using black nail polish, but I didn’t have any. I’d like to find a black candle and do something with white acrylic paint.

Spooky Halloween D.I.Y. Candles

I hope you have fun making these. You can do all sorts of designs, but I decided to keep it simple with the ghost and jack o’lantern. Let me know what you make.

the weekender 5/4/2013

Hello friends. This weekend, I’m spending a lot of time at home. I just moved my cats into the new apartment and I want to keep an eye on things. My roommate also has a cat, so we’re spending a lot of times doing cat introductions. They can be such grumpy creatures. But it’s so worth it, especially when they take naps with you.

Sleepy Cats

(photo by ryan)

It’s a beautiful weekend. I hope to get a little bit of baking done and a little bit more unpacking. I hope to show you the place, when it finally comes together.

Erik Klein Wolterink takes photos of ethnic kitchens. There is so much to look at. How do they differ from yours?

This Anthropologie Plate Wall D.I.Y. is such a pretty way to decorate a wall.

I must have had a major sweet tooth while collecting links this week. First, Salted Caramel Ice Cream Cake Shots, and then this banana cake. I couldn’t decide!

I’m in the process of decorating the apartment, and this bean bag roundup has inspired me.

These D.I.Y. marquee lights look so professional, yet so easy to make.

This is really the best way to end the post. This giant sleeping cat couch is perfect.

a pom pom christmas wreath

The last of the Christmas crafts is here. I spent the weeks leading up to Christmas making hundreds of pom poms for this beauty for Ryan’s parents.

pom pom wreath

Begin with a 12 inch wreath, about 300 pom poms (using my tutorial)  and 300 red sewing pens.

Using the sewing pins, place the pom poms on the wreath. Once you’re finished, give it some flair with some glittery doodads. I bought them at Michael’s.

Pom Pom Wreath

And you know, put a bird on it.