Category Archives: DIY

DIY Wood Stain

June 4, 2014

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I am so excited today to write about my most recent DIY and possibly one of my most impressive ones. I had a lot of doubt behind this project especially since there were mixed reviews online. Even with this doubt, a few nights ago I got bored and decided to try it out. Seriously, at like 10 at night which will explain the less than amazing original photos.

Anyways, the DIY is for all natural coffee wood stain. I started by making a coffee, water and vinegar mixture. I used :
2 cups hot water
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 cup ground coffee

I let this sit for about 20 minutes. Although this is what I originally did, I ended up adding an additional layer of “stain” later on by simply making a cup of coffee and then mixing it with the left over coffee grounds. So, I guess you could do that as well for your original mixture.

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Once the mixture set, I used a large painting brush and wash cloth to apply the mixture to the wood. I noticed that on many DIYs a lot of people just used the liquid but I decided to place the ground on the wood as well so that the wood would get darker since I wanted the darkest result possible.

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After I put the first layer on, I let it sit for about 30 minutes. Then, I applied one last layer of the stain and let this set over night. The next morning, I took the board outside to brush off the coffee grounds and chipped part of the board where there was a knot… so, I decided to put one last layer on the board to help cover up my accident. Once this layer was dry, which didn’t take long because it was thin and outside in the sun, I brushed off any of the excess coffee grounds and let it dry some more. It took probably a total of 1-2 hours in direct sunlight. Once it was completely dry, I wanted to put some kind of finish over it so it didn’t scratch or fade too quickly seeing I will be using the board as a photography backdrop.

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Seeing that I did a natural satin, I wanted to stay with natural items for the finish. I had read about coconut oil as a polish or olive oil. I decided to go with an olive oil mixture. I ended up using a 1 part olive oil, 1 part white vinegar with a splash of fresh lemon juice for the polish. The end result is above. At first I knew that I had changed the color a little but it wasn’t until I put an original board next to the new board that I realized how well it worked out!

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I am so impressed and excited about this project. It turned out just like I wanted it to and on the first try! I definitely plan on playing around with natural wood stain ideas a little more in the future!

Homemade Beeswax Candles

November 21, 2012

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I’m finally getting around to posting about my beeswax candles that I had on my Instagram a little while back! It’s been a busy few weeks and it’s only going to get crazier as the holiday season approaches… just kidding… it’s here already!! Oh, well. Anyways, Candles! I made a small batch of these the other day and I’m loving them! The best part? They are lasting forever! During Hurricane Sandy I decided to give one a try… I let it burn close to 10 hours and it’s not even an inch down the jar! Amazing. I love my Bath and Body Works and Yankee candles but I’ve been looking for a good “plain” candle for storms and emergencies or if my allergies are getting to me… I found it. I had debated on soy vs beeswax for a while and I’m glad I decided to go beeswax!

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So, what will you need? I used 2 lbs of beeswax (you can get it here or here). I also ordered wicks and wick tabs. I thought a grater may help (like with my body wash) but it didn’t so scratch that from your list of things. Lastly, I brought out my pot that I use to make body wash in. I find it easier and less gross to have one big pot for DIY projects so I don’t have to worry about messing up regular cooking pots and pans.

I started off by putting the two bricks of beeswax in the pot and putting it on medium heat. Different instructions say different things. One place said to keep the wax at a specific temperature… I didn’t have a thermometer though so… yea. One thing to keep in mind is that you are warming wax so make sure you do not have it any farther than medium heat because then you’ll lose some. Mine was on low to medium the whole time.

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While the wax was melting, I prepared my other items. One of the things I did was get the wicks around for the jars. You don’t have to get the wick tabs if you don’t want but I prefer them so I got them!

After everything is prepared and wax is melted, you’re good to go. I used a small pitcher to get the wax from the pot to the candles. Remember to be prepared because the wax will harden on you if you don’t move fast! I set the wicks first with about a half inch of wax and let them harden. Then, I went back and filled the jars to about an inch from the top. I probably would’ve gone closer to the top but I ran out of wax. Also, I did use some masking tape to hold the wicks in place while the candles cooled. Just a heads up, they take a while to cool completely. I ended up letting mine sit overnight.

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So, that’s it! It’s pretty simple. If you’re trying to plan how many to make 2 lbs of wax made 4 candles for me (two large masons and two small). At first I was a little disappointed that it only made a few but now, after burning one, I realize that these four are probably going to last me a while! Oh, and I almost forgot to mention… they smell amazing!

Honey, Cinnamon, Nutmeg… Mask?

October 24, 2012

I did a little experimenting yesterday and decided to give this facial mask a try. I always love finding new at home beauty ideas on Pinterest and haven’t tried one in a while. Plus, one of my favorite things is if I already have all of the ingredients! So, I whipped this little concoction up and gave it a try…

   

The original recipe calls for 2 tablespoons honey, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon nutmeg. The photo to the right is the result. It looks like a paste… but once on (for 30 minutes), it was a mess! Plus, I had a lot left over!

   

As you can see I have almost half of the mixture left over and on the right gives a small preview of what happened once on my face. A complete mess! So, what did I learn? Try using only 1 tablespoon of honey next time. Also, luckily I was wearing just an old t-shirt… I will continue this method while conducting new face mask experiments!

Pinterest Boards : DIY Home

July 30, 2012

It’s Pinterest time and today I have another amazing DIY board for you! Here’s a few of my favorites from the DIY Home board! Enjoy and Happy Monday!

Source: curbly.com via Vanessa on Pinterest


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Pinterest Boards : DIY Crafts

July 16, 2012

DIY Crafts. I’m not even sure how to even feature a few of my favorites today because I pretty much love the whole board… but I’ll give it a try. For the full board, check it out here.

Resist Dye. Source: abeautifulmess.typepad.com via Vanessa on Pinterest


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Pinterest Boards : DIY From Scratch

July 2, 2012

My DIY from scratch board doesn’t get much love but it definitely has a few good gems on it! I love the idea of doing something from scratch. It’s usually less expensive and most of the pins I have on the board are more natural and organic than the stuff you’d buy in store. Here’s a few of my favorites but for the full board go here.

Remember this? My version of DIY scrub. Source: pinerly.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

I actually use this all the time and LOVE it! Source: dumpyourfrump.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

I’m game for anything with honey! Source: petitelefant.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

Seriously, I love honey DIYs! Source: petitelefant.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

One of the next things on my To Do list. Source: onegoodthingbyjillee.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

Perfect for summer. Bug spray. Source: simplycadence.blogspot.com via Vanessa on Pinterest


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DIY Sugar Scrub

June 15, 2012

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I thought I’d end this week with a DIY. And a great one at that! I ran into a DIY sugar scrub a little while back on The Beauty Department and have been meaning to give it a try. A few years ago, I did a similar scrub for my feet and loved it… unfortunately, that was before Pinterest and I haven’t a clue where that recipe went. But, luckily, I ran into this recipe, I guess you could call it?

It was super simple to make! All you need is a mason jar, coconut oil, raw sugar (or brown sugar) and almond or jojoba oil plus some roses. For the portions, you place 1/3 coconut oil then top that with 1/3 rose petals. My jar above looks a little out of porportation but it’s actually because my rose petals ended up going straight down the middle – ops! Anyways, after the rose petals are placed, you want to top with 1/3 raw sugar or brown sugar. Once the sugar is added, pore either almond (my choice) or jojoba oil on top. And you’re done!

Like I said, it’s super easy and I can’t wait to give it a try! Coconut oil is one my all time favorites as I’ve mentioned multiple times before, top that with roses and almond oil… perfection?

For the original recipe and pin:

DIY Vanilla Extract

June 8, 2012

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This week I decided to post about a DIY I started a few weeks ago. It’s a DIY Vanilla Extract. If you follow me on Pinterest than you’ve seen that I actually ended up pinning FOUR different recipes for this. Ops!

Anyways, it’s a super simple recipe. Vodka and vanilla beans. That’s it! I used 2 cups vodka (or you can use rum according to some sources) and I currently have 2 beans. I plan to add a few more as time goes by but it’s already getting a great caramel color.

The picture above is about 1 1/2 – 2 weeks of soaking. Also, if you’d like to see one of the original recipes, check out the pin below.

Dr. Bronner’s

May 29, 2012

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If you haven’t heard of Dr. Bronner’s soap then this post is a must read! I love this stuff. It’s amazing. I had been seeing things all over the internet about it and it’s all over Pinterest when it comes to homemade soaps for your face, body and even laundry. So, I finally gave it a try and wow! I’m pretty much in love. The above are two of the bar soaps I purchased a little while back and haven’t gotten around to using. I typically use their liquid soaps. I have a big bottle of almond right now. I’ve been using it for months and I would dare to say that less than a tenth of it is gone! A little really does go a long way with this stuff. I use it for everything… seriously. An every day hand soap, face wash, makeup brush cleaner… you name it. It’ll do the job! I’ve also used the lavender and I have a mini bottle of peppermint which came into a lot of use when I had bad allergies at the beginning of spring. Next on my list is the liquid soap in rose! After all, I love my rose fragrance!

Dr. Bronner’s is known for being an 18 in 1 use soap. Here’s what their website says about that…

Dr. Bronner’s version:

Always dilute for Shave-Shampoo-Massage-Dental Soap-Bath!

  1. Always dilute for Shave-Shampoo-Massage-Dental Soap-Bath!
  2. Peppermint is nature’s own unsurpassed fragrant Deodorant!
  3. A drop is best Mint Toothpaste; brushes Dentures Clean!
  4. A dash in water is the ideal Breath Freshener & Mouth Wash!
  5. Peppermint Oil Soap for Dispensers, Uniforms, Baby, Beach!
  6. Dilute for ideal After Shave, Body Rub, Foot Bath, Douche.
  7. Hot Towel-Massage the entire body, always towards your heart.
  8. Pets, silk, wool & body tingles head to toe – keeps cool!
  9. 3 dashes in water rinse most Sprays Off fruit & vegetables!
  10. 1/4 oz in qt H2O is Pest Spray! Dash, no rash Diaper-Soap!

Paraphrased:

  • For everyday body-washing: Get wet and pour soap full-strength onto hands-washcloth-loofah. Lather up, scrub down, rinse off, and tingle fresh & clean.
  • For other uses, dilute from one part soap into 40 parts water for light cleaning, to cutting it in half or using it full strength for heavy-duty grease-cutting jobs.
  • For shampoo, though we now recommend our new Shikakai soaps for this, many people are fond of using it as such. The method of application is to wet hair and scalp very thoroughly, squirt some soap into hands and work into a lather. Wash hair, then rinse well. Afterwards use our new citrus hair rinse and leave-in conditioners as directed.
  • For the laundry, use 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup for one regular load; adjust as needed depending on hardness of water. I’ve been told that adding a dash of baking soda makes it even better.
  • For toothbrushing, apply a drop or two of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap to a wet toothbrush. Brush as you normally would, rinsing accordingly. Be careful about using more than a couple drops of soap, as you might start foaming at the mouth. Many people with sensitive or softer teeth like to use our soap as a toothpaste because it lacks abrasives.

** Also, don’t forget to enter my e.l.f. giveaway going on! Only a couple days left!

Pinterest Boards : Holidays

April 3, 2012

For my Pinterest board feature today I thought I’d focus on my Holiday board! It’s a rather small board (for me) with less than 100 pins right now but it’s definitely growing day by day and I’m loving the little finds I have on there! It’s all about the holidays and when I say holidays I mean all of them! Here’s some of my favorites currently on the board and make sure you check out the whole board here!

How gorgeous are these eggs! Wow. Source: jonesdesigncompany.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

New Years Even Invitation Inspiration. Source: youaremyfave.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

I’m absolutely in love with these tags! Source: etsy.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

And this advent calendar! How simple yet pretty! Source: vanillaandlace.blogspot.com via Vanessa on Pinterest

I was loving the warm weather last week but this has me ready for Christmas already. Source: yvestown.com via Vanessa on Pinterest