Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Eight & Sixteen Projects... July

es july 14

Two months already?! I'm not sure where the time has gone but here's a quick recap of the DIY/craft projects I've shared over on Eight & Sixteen this month...
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Monday, 28 July 2014

July Reads & Reviews

july reads 2014

Butter, Erin Jade Lange (2012)
Butter, as he is known to everyone at school, is a sixteen year old unhappy with being overweight. The opening paragraph catches your attention with Butter’s bold statement… he is planning to eat himself to death live on the internet. As word of Butter’s plan spreads his peers take him under their wing, encouraging the idea and in a twisted way he gains the popularity that he has been longing for.
Although there were some tougher scenes to read, such as the description of how Butter got his nickname, generally speaking his story plays out like many contemporary novels, following him around on his day to day life, tackling school, relationships and family life. In addition the underlying sinister element makes for a unique, interesting and perhaps most importantly thought-provoking read. ✯✯✯1/2

Shattered, Teri Terry (2014) 
Shattered is the third and final book in the Slated trilogy which follows Kyla, a teen who's memory was erased after the government claimed she was a terrorist - but is this the truth? When we catch up with Kyla in book three she is on the run with a new identity and a mission to seek out her real parents.
I didn't have such high hopes for Shattered after being a little disappointed by second book Fractured however I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed the conclusion, which to me felt much more alike to the tone of the first book. Full of little twists and turns Shattered reveals answers to some of the big questions of the series and most importantly who Kyla really is. ✯✯✯✯

Also read this month...
  • Let's Get Lost*, Adi Alsaid (2014) ✯✯✯✯ - review to follow on BB soon!
  • Say Her Name, James Dawson (2014) ✯✯✯✯

Reviews posted this month...

Books marked with a * c/o Netgalley, cover images via Goodreads

What did you read in July?

Sunday, 27 July 2014

DIY Beaded Tassel Anklets

diy tassel anklet jewellery making tutorial

Last week I shared a Duct Tape Tassel DIY over on Eight & Sixteen which also inspired me to create today's jewellery project. These cute tassel anklets are perfect for the summer months and one of the great things about them is that they are really versatile as they can also be worn as necklaces!

If you like this project but don't fancy a DIY I now have some similar designs available in my shop Sawyer & Scout & custom orders are also welcome! :)

diy tassel anklet jewellery making tutorial

How to make the tassel
You will need: embroidery floss, a fork, jewellery wire or extra floss

1. First up find a fork or similar object which is around the size you want your tassel to be. Tie on your chosen embroidery floss and wrap around the fork until you have built up the thickness you want for your tassel

2. Take a small piece of wire - a contrasting colour works well - and wrap it around the embroidery floss between one of the fork prongs, creating a hanging loop for your tassel. Alternatively use another piece of embroidery floss

3. Before you remove the tassel from the fork, thread a jump ring through the loop you created in step 2 - this will be much easier than trying to add it on later! Then remove the tassel from the fork

4. Chop through the loop at other end and you should have a tassel! Trim off any excess threads to neaten and set aside whilst you make the anklet

diy tassel anklet jewellery making tutorial

How to make the anklet
You will need: jump rings, a clasp, tiger tail, tube crimp beads, seed beads, jewellery pliers

1. First up you'll need to decide on what length you want the anklet to be. Measure around your ankle, times this number by two for a double wrap design like the one shown in the photos, then finally add on another  3"and cut your length of tiger tail.

For example - my ankle measures 8" so I would times that by two to get 16" and add on 3" to get a total length of 19". Once the clasp has been added my final anklet measures approx. 17.5". 

If you're unsure on the measurements you can always cut a longer length just to be on the safe side and check it against your ankle as you go along. Alternatively you could add on an extender chain to make the anklet adjustable!

2. Thread on your tube crimp bead then thread the end of tiger tail back through it creating a loop. Use pliers to secure in place - later on you'll use this loop to attach on your clasp

3. Thread on your beads until you reach around 1" before desired length. Add on second tube crimp bead and create another loop just like at the other end of the anklet. Thread the remainder of wire back through the seed beads then secure everything in place by squashing down the crimp bead

4. Use pliers and jump rings to add on a clasp

diy tassel anklet jewellery making tutorial

5. Finish by attaching your tassel, and any other charms, onto the anklet & wear with pride!

As always I'd love to hear from you if you try out this or any other project from my DIY Archives - if you enjoy them please subscribe to my blog via Bloglovin' to make sure you don't miss any posts! :)

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Let's Talk Something Different...


Today I thought I would take on a subject I've never really blogged about before... music! It's never really been something I'ver thought to write about as my collection mainly consists of the same things it did ten years ago and I'm terrible with keeping up with new releases. My iPod selection, although a somewhat strange mixture of things, is very limited!

Earlier this year I stumbled across a notebook with lots of my old gig tickets taped inside and it got me thinking about all of the bands I've seen, which ones were my favourites, which I'd like to see again and even those I never got to see. So, with that in mind today I'm posing three questions to myself, and all of you as well!

1. If you could see any band/artist you've already seen again who would it be? 
I'd have to go with Foo Fighters... actually I'm going to be cheeky and pick two answers for this one (its my question so I'm allowed to, right?!). Although I was lucky enough to see them live a handful of times I'd also really love to see Taking Back Sunday again - I'm disappointed I missed out on that earlier this year!

2. Which band/artist have you never seen live but would love to?
Definitely Incubus. I almost got to see them a few years back but they had to reschedule and unfortunately the new date happened to fall on my very first week at Uni so I wasn't able to go.

3. Which one band/artist do you wish you could have seen but will never get the chance?
I'm sure if I sat and thought about it for a while I could come up with a long list but I have to go with my first instinct and an obvious choice, Nirvana.

I'd really love to know what your responses to these questions would be so don't forget to leave them in the comments below! Alternatively feel free to run with the idea as a sort of 'mini tag' and post about it on your own blog - just don't forget to send me the link if you do! :)

Sunday, 20 July 2014

DIY Upcycled Stackable Storage Jars


Today's project is a cute and quick upcycle that's perfect for storing small bits and bobs. Not only are we upcycling the jars but we're also going to be using recycled papers to do so! As you'll see in the photographs below I've used my new trio of jars to store hairbands and clips but you can use them for a variety of things from cotton pads to paperclips! These jars are great space savers as they're stackable and will also look pretty sitting on your desk or vanity - what's not to like?!

You will need: stackable glass jars (mine are from Gü Puds!), a mini heart punch, patterned papers/wrapping paper, Mod Podge or PVA glue, a sponge brush, scissors, a ruler

diy upcycled stackable storage jars

1. First use a craft punch to create your mini hearts from your old papers. I've used old sheet music for my jars but alternatively you could use old newspapers, books, magazines or wrapping paper

2. Add small blobs of glue to the inside of your jar and stick on hearts. You can create a pattern here or just place them randomly like I have!

3. Once you have added hearts all the way around the inside of the jar, set aside to dry for 5 minutes or so then brush over the back of them with a little more glue to secure them in place and set aside to dry fully

diy upcycled stackable storage jars

4. Whilst they're drying prepare your coloured paper strips. I've chosen to use a plain coloured wrapping paper but again, you can choose whatever you like!

To make sure they're the right size measure around the outside of your jar. If you're using the same type of jars as I did you'll need these to be 1" wide and approx. 11" long

diy upcycled stackable storage jars

5. Add a layer of glue all the way around the inside of your jar, carefully stick the strip of paper in place and set aside to dry

diy upcycled stackable storage jars

6. Repeat the process for your other jars. Don't forget to think about your colours and how they will look once they're stacked up together!

Although they are stackable I found that just three jars worked well and wouldn't advise towering too many as they are glass and this may be dangerous!

7. Once dry fill with bits and bobs, stack up and proudly display your new upcycled storage!

diy upcycled stackable storage jars

For alternative glass jar decorating ideas check out my Tinted Glass, Wrapped Pencil Jar & Upcycled Jars tutorials!

As always I'd love to hear from you if you try out this or any other project from my DIY Archives - if you enjoy them please subscribe to my blog via Bloglovin' to make sure you don't miss any posts! :)

Sunday, 13 July 2014

DIY Colourful Geometric Corkboards

A little while ago I shared a project idea for colourful drawing pins that would brighten up your workspace and today's post is another 'make organising more fun' idea. Instead of creating colorful pins why not change the board itself into something a bit more exciting?

By adding a fabric cover or painted design to the corkboard you can create a pretty patterned background for all of your memos and to-do lists! Its really simple to make your own with just a few supplies and today I'm going to show how to create these graphic/geometric style designs.

You will need: acrylic paints, corkboards, washi tape, a paintbrush & sponge brush, ribbon, a drawing pin

Tip! Don't have a corkboard? These round boards are actually heat-resitant cookware pads, designed to protect your kitchen surfaces against the heat of pans, however they work perfectly as mini corkboards and are easy to get hold of too!

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

1. Use strips of washi tape to mask off areas on your corkboard, creating a geometric style pattern

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

2. Use a sponge brush to carefully paint each section of the corkboard, making sure to try and keep within the taped off sections

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

3. Once you have painted all of the sections set aside and leave to dry completely

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

4. When the paint has dried peel away the washi tape to reveal your final design!

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

5. To give a neater finish for hanging, carefully paint all around the edge of your corkboard using a brush and set aside to dry

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

6. If you want to hang the board take a short piece of ribbon, fold into a loop and use a drawing pin to secure it in place on the back and your new corkboard is finished!

diy geometric corkboards upcycle crafts bold modern home decor

Happy DIY-ing!

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide To Modern Quilt Making

*Review copy c/o Netgalley, image via Goodreads

lucky spool's essential guide to modern quilt making

Lucky Spool’s Essential Guide To Modern Quilt Making is a craft book filled with beautiful yet unusual ideas and designs for modern quilts.

Rather than just showcasing these modern and stylish designs, instead the book contains ‘classes’. The clever idea behind this title is that those unable to attend popular classes by well-known teachers will still be able to learn the techniques from the teachers themselves. The lessons come complete with templates, full colour photographs and all the information you’ll need to make your own versions. Topics include how to successfully use colour, improvisational patchwork, modern machine quilting and tackling tricky circles and curves. These are just a few examples of the wide range of lessons so there really is something for everyone.

The book is designed for intermediate quilters and therefore doesn’t include basic instructions and would unfortunately not be suitable for beginners. However if you are not an experienced quilter the books states that you can download a pdf guide including basic techniques from their website. Perhaps once you had mastered the basics you could then revisit the projects shared in this book at a later date.

This inspirational book is packed with information and is definitely worth picking up if you are interested in finding out more about modern quilt-making techniques and designs. Although I’m not yet at the intermediate stage myself I would love to pick up this book again in the future.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

DIY Ticket Box

I'm one of those people who keeps a lot of their tickets, particularly cinema ones (fun fact: I still have my Mean Girls ticket from 2004) so the box frame turned ticket display is one of those popular Pins I knew I had to try out. A few months back I picked up this simple square box frame from IKEA and turned it into a ticket box which now sits out on display on my bookshelf.

It's inexpensive and easy to make your own ticket box, plus they look great hanging on a feature wall or sitting on your bookshelf! Here's how to do it...

diy tutorial ticket box home decor crafts memories keepsake

First up you'll need to cut a small rectangle into the top of your frame so that you're able to add in more tickets when you get them. To do this you will need to use a jigsaw (or do what I did and ask someone else to use one for you...!). For safety make sure you remove the glass etc first! Once you have cut into the frame you'll need to sand any sharp edges.

It can be tricky to cut into the frame but don't worry the rectangle doesn't need to be very neat as you won't see it once the frame is on display!

If you want to you can skip these steps and just open up the back of the frame to add it tickets, it's up to you.

diy tutorial ticket box home decor crafts memories keepsake

Next you'll need to create the background for your tickets. I used a filmstrip print scrapbook paper for mine but any paper will work. Cut to size by using the wooden back of the frame as a guide, pop it into the frame and reattach on the back.

diy tutorial ticket box home decor crafts memories keepsake

Finally, fill with tickets and your new display box is complete!

As always I'd love to hear from you if you try out this or any other project from my DIY Archives - if you enjoy them please subscribe to my blog via Bloglovin' to make sure you don't miss any posts! :)

Thursday, 3 July 2014

DIY Washi Tape Page Markers

diy washi tape page markers crafts

This quick and simple DIY is the perfect way to help keep your notebook or diary organised and looking pretty!

Simply cut small pieces of your favourite washi tapes and use them to mark the edges of important pages. As washi tape isn't super sticky like normal tapes, you can easily peel it off again if you no longer need it - perfect for organising your blogging to-do lists!

For more simple washi tape ideas check out my 'Five 1-Minute Washi Projects' & 'Washi Tape Macbook' posts. Happy DIY-ing!
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