Tagged with crafts

Fabri-Kate: Easy, quick, and uniquely yours – DIY earring holder

DSCF2595By Kathleen Neafsey

February is nearly over!  Short month, so short project — this is, by far, the easiest project that I’ve done!  The supply list is also super-short … two items, to be precise! Here’s the background on how this came to be: I’ve had this earring holder; I don’t know where it came from or how it ever made it into my house, but I have it.

Neither of my daughters claims to have ever owned it, but one day I came across it and I needed one, so I started to use it. As you can see by the photo, it’s pretty juvenile, but it served a purpose, sadly, I went with it.  For years I’ve been saying that I’m going to replace it, but haven’t found anything that I liked enough. I’m finally at the point where I just can’t stand looking at it anymore, and have been on the hunt for something new, so I’ve been scouring DIY blogs for inspiration.  Who knew there could be so many variations of earring holders?! Here’s the one I chose because it looked simple, and can be easily adapted to match your style and decor.

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Fabri-Kate: Kisses and hugs for Valentine’s Day, plus a bit of trivia too!

By Kathleen Neafsey

Baby, it’s cold outside!  January is nearly over, and February is fast-approaching!  With that in mind, I wanted to make something new for Valentine’s Day. The idea for the craft came easily to me, but when writing this post, I got curious about the history of Valentine’s Day. Why do we exchange Valentines? And why do we use X’s and O’s as hugs and kisses? Overthink things much, Kath?

Although I went to Catholic school, and was taught by nuns, I don’t recall St. Valentine being one of the saints that we learned a lot about — of course, I went to grade school back when dinosaurs roamed the earth so it’s quite possible I’ve forgotten much of what I learned. Hence, the Google search — I won’t bore you with the minutiae of it all, but here is a sample of what I found – things that I never knew (or knew and forgot):

One story suggests that Valentine may have been killed for trying to help prisoners escape from harsh Roman prisons, where he had becomee a prisoner himself. History.com says: according to one legend, an imprisoned Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl–possibly his jailor’s daughter–who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today.  Whichever legend you choose to believe, Valentine is seen as a heroic, romantic figure. According to the Greeting Card Association, an estimated one billion Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year, making it the 2nd most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas!

As for the X’s and O’s – nearly all of the explanations I read agree that the X symbol refers to a Christian cross and dates back to the days of a less literate society, where marking an “X” on a document served as a signature.  The “X” was then sealed with a kiss as a sign of good faith.  It seems that the most agreed upon explanation for the “O” represents arms encircling another as an embrace.  There you have it, trivia you didn’t bargain for in a craft post!

Let’s go!  On to the easy-peasy wreath I’ve created. Let’s start with the supplies you’ll need:

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Fabri-Kate: Candy corn without the calories or the cavities!

By Kathleen Neafsey

That’s right — I said it — candy corn without the calories.  October means: Halloween, ghosts, goblins, witches, and most importantly, candy!  Although I know that candy corn is available year-round, I really only indulge during the month of October.  Like Buddy the Elf, I too am convinced that it’s one of the four food groups.  Now I’ve found a way to enjoy it — or the idea of it, anyway — without the sugar rush.

Truth be told, this project should also be called Plan B — it wasn’t the original craft I’d set out to make.  Sometimes I have really great ideas in my head, but by the time they reach my hands, they don’t turn out the way I’d hoped.  So instead, we end up with an embarrassingly quick and easy craft.  Live and learn.

Here’s your supply list:

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Fabri-Kate: Here comes the bride!

By Kathleen Neafsey

I would be remiss if this week’s column was not wedding themed; simply because my niece, Megan, is getting married on Friday.  Naturally, there is a lot of hustle and bustle that surrounds this momentous occasion, not to mention trying to keep track of what’s done and what still needs to be done.  I was trying to think of what I could do to alleviate some of those last minute preparation concerns.  My thought was this:  Megan is going to need something to bring to the reception hall that will hold her makeup (as I’m sure it will need to be touched up at some point), flat shoes — for dancing — as well as a few other miscellaneous items.  She can give it to her mom, or perhaps her favorite aunt (hint!), to bring to the hall. And here you have it!

This project is super easy and quick.  If you’re ambitious, you could even make them for the whole bridal party. A big bonus is that the supply list is very small, depending on how you choose to embellish the bag.

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Fabri-Kate: Makeup and magnets = genius!

By Kathleen Neafsey

When moving my daughter into her dorm room earlier this month, I was astonished at the amount of “stuff” teenagers consider to be essential.  Everything had to go with her.  However, dorm rooms were not made to accommodate all the “essentials” of two teenage girls.  Although, I admit they have made it work for them, and that’s what counts!  Hence, this week’s project is born:  a hanging makeup organizer! I’ve seen similar ideas on other craft blogs, and decided to try my hand at one or two of my own. It’s a great way to make use of the vertical space in the room, and alleviate some of the clutter on top of the dresser – I only wish I had done one while she was still living at home!

You can express yourself so uniquely through this project so I’ll tell you the necessary supplies.  The rest will be up to you, and how you choose to modify it to make it your own.

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Fabri-Kate: Show your true colors!

By Kathleen Neafsey

It’s September!  That dreaded time of year for students … and some teachers.  For me, however, inspiration was everywhere this week! I was really torn; there are so many ideas floating around in my already-overcrowded head that it was hard to choose which one to do this week.  On top of that, there were new ideas being borne from the old ones that are still waiting to see the light of day.

If you’ve read this column before, you know that I’m a fan of recycling and repurposing when I can. In the Fabri-Kate post from July 3, I bought some blank canvases to paint and decorate in an effort to change things up in the house, and still had some of those on hand.  Combine those with a stockpile of crayons in the house that my daughters no longer use, and you have this week’s project.

TA-DAAAAAA!!!!! Super easy, and incredibly quick!

Here’s all you’ll need:

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Fabri-Kate: Magazines, mirrors and glue … oh my!

By Kathleen Neafsey

I’m learning to  let go … of my magazines.  The majority of the magazines that I read are cooking related; my problem is that I save them because I’ll see a great recipe and think that I’m going to make it one day.  Rarely, if ever, does that happen.

I’ve learned to tear out the recipes that I’m interested in, and toss the rest of the ‘zine.  I’m definitely a fan of passing them on to someone else to read or donating them to anywhere that will take them and, of course, repurposing them.

We’ve all seen those Urban Outfitters recycled magazine picture frames and vases.  Those, however, come with a hefty price tag.  Yours can be made for the price of a mirror, a magazine, and a glue stick.  You’d think that it would take 400, 525,600 pages to achieve … but actually it just took 35 rolled up magazine pages to frame this mirror.

Here’s what you’ll need:

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Fabri-Kate: A fun way to display your favorite photos!

By Kathleen Neafsey

I have to start off by saying: FINALLY! I thought this weekend would never get here!  My niece’s bridal shower was this past Saturday – and while I’m sorry that the shower is over, I’m relieved that I can talk to her and not worry about letting the cat out of the bag. And I no longer have to hide all the projects that I hav going on every time she walks into my house!  That being said, I wanted to make a Scrabble board like the one I posted in this column in June.  I started by asking the bridal party for words or phrases that would be meaningful to the bride and groom, and I also asked for some photos of the happy couple.  I received so many great photos, but knew they wouldn’t all fit on the Scrabble board; hence, another idea is born: A Megan and Joe – through theyears – photo board.

Here’s all you need:

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Fabri-Kate: Show off your magnetic personality

By Kathleen Neafsey

If you watched the season premiere of Breaking Bad, then you know where my inspiration came from for this week’s project.  To make the epic “Magnets” quote my tagline would probably seem crass, so I will refrain.  As always, I wanted to share with you something affordable, easy and useful. And, if you’ve read this column before, you know how I enjoy making things personal and one-of-a-kind.

The running theme in my house these past few months has been getting my eldest daughter, Deirdre, ready for college — I’ve been trying to pick up all those little things for her that you don’t realize you need until you go to use them and they’re not there:  sewing kit, flashlight, safety pins, magnets for the dorm fridge, etc. The other big to-do in our family is my niece, Megan’s, wedding — again, new home, new fridge, magnets!  Okay, enough, you get the picture.

The short list of must-have supplies should include:

  • Clear glass gems. I found mine in the dollar store – 25 in a bag for, you guessed it, $1.
  • Alene’s Clear Gel Tacky Glue
  • Magnets
  • Scissors. A circle punch or craft knife will also work.
  • Gorilla Glue. Or an equally strong adhesive
  • Toothpicks. For spreading the Clear Gel glue smoothly and evenly.

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Fabri-Kate: Enjoy your favorite book long after you’re done reading it

By Kathleen Neafsey

If you read this column a few weeks ago, you already know how much I love my Kindle.  Prior to owning a Kindle, I loved my books … in a healthy, inanimate sort of way.   In an effort to do my annual home purge, whereby I try to get rid of clutter in my home, I look around at things that should go.  The operative words are “try” and “should” – there are some things that I just hate the thought of losing. BOOKS, for instance.  Logically, I know that I’m not going to read most (any) of them again so I wanted to find a way of recycling them, aside from just giving them away.  There are some that I would never part with – autobiographies, my favorite being Me by my very own Kate idol, Katharine Hepburn, or books that you can go back to over and over again: my beloved Selected Letters of Dylan Thomas, which was given to me by my sister, Eileen, 25 years ago.

After searching the web, and scouring Pinterest, here’s what I came up with—a book wreath.

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Fabri-Kate: Make your own wall art

By Kathleen Neafsey

Summer’s here!  Yes, I know it’s that time of year when we’re supposed to be spending more time outside, catching rays, doing … stuff.  Unfortunately, the oppressive heat and the pale skin that I inherited from my Irish ancestors keep me indoors more often than not. And so: I decorate.

Being indoors, I get bored looking at the same old walls.  I used to spend my summers painting my girls’ bedrooms — their rooms probably appear a good six inches smaller all-around than they used to thanks to all the layers of paint.  In the rest of the house, I like to change things around too.  I’m constantly switching-up accessories: throw pillows, candles, flower arrangements, etc.

A couple of summers ago, I thought it would be a good idea to paint my living and dining rooms a café au lait-ish color.  Word to the wise: unless you have lots of windows and light in the room, the color is kind of blah. Hence, colorful accessories — for fall & winter I like to use reds and oranges, while in spring & summer I prefer blues and greens.  You’d be hard-pressed to find any yellow in my house, the result of a bad experience in Kindergarten. But other than that I’m open to most colors.

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FabriKate: A Kindle cover with personality, for pennies

By Kathleen Neafsey

Summer’s almost here!  Which means, it’s time for beach reads and trashy novels.  I don’t know about you, but my Kindle goes everywhere with me.  Before the Kindle, it was a book.  Books have saved me from many boring waiting room visits or, what felt like, interminable show rehearsals and soccer practices.

Recently I’ve been thinking that my Kindle cover is so boring — practical and functional, yes — but boring.  I’m not so bothered by this fact that I would run out and buy another (like the Kate Spade designs that I covet), but it got me thinking … What could I use to make my own cover?  It would have to protect the e-reader, be lightweight, colorful, and inexpensive. My first thought: padded envelopes would be lightweight, would offer protection, and would be inexpensive – but still boring.

Then in a flash of genius, actually two, it came to me:  gift bags!  Contact paper!  Nearly everyone has a gift bag or two lying around, and there’s some really cute contact paper out there these days!

Here’s all you need:

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