DIY Decorative Glass Bottles

February 16, 2015


Occasionally, I have big bursts of artistic inspiration and I break out my paintbrushes,whip out my paint and get to crafting. I also decided that I wanted to spruce up my room a little bit for when spring arrives, so with the help of my sister we created this set of decorative glass bottles, with a nice crackle effect. It was really  simple to do, all you need are the following tools, patience, some good music and room to leave your bottles to dry where they won’t be disturbed.



Once you have gathered all of your supplies, you’ll want to set a mat down in order to protect the area where you will be working.

Bottles:

First, you are going to want to make sure that your bottles are well cleaned. Remember, once you begin and the bottles are all decorated there is no going back! Clean the insides, and remove the labels by soaking it in a solution of warm water and vinegar, and make sure that it is dry before continuing.

Next, grab a paintbrush and two different paint colours. Then using the brush, paint two layers of the base color (mine was coral) and let it dry completely.



Now comes the tricky part, depending on the type of crackle medium you have you will either have to paint it on before the main color, or afterwards. For mine, I had to put the medium on beforehand, but either way, make sure to read the instructions on the back of your bottle in order to successfully achieve the crackle effect. Once the medium is well dried, paint on the top/main color, watch the crackle effect to kick in and let the paint dry.

Finally, use the foam brush to spread the Mod Podge or a sealant over the bottles to give them a final glossy finish and to seal in all of the color! Let this coat dry and voilĂ !

Bottle Caps:

Now, if you are feeling extra crafty you can decorate the bottle caps too! Get the caps, the paint that you used previously and a glue gun. First, you’ll want to choose a word whose length corresponds with  the amount of caps that you have. Then plug in the device and once the glue is sufficiently heated, proceed to spell out the word on the top of the caps ( one letter per cap). Once the glue is dried and has cooled down, you can either follow the same steps as when you decorated the bottles, or just paint them one solid color and seal it with Mod Podge.



~Alexandra

How do you like to decorate your room?

My Funny Valentine (and Valentine Card Templates)

February 09, 2015

Happy-Valentine's-Day-Logo





Valentine's Day has always given me mixed feelings. I loved the holiday in elementary, because we would exchange Valentine themed goodies and treats, decorate the class and have a red, pink and white themed party. It was a holiday right next to Christmas and Halloween that I looked forward to with impatience throughout the year. I chose my outfit in advance to make sure that it corresponded with the holiday. I ensured that my each card had a message unique to every person, and that each candy was secure within it. When the big day came, I was ready, armed with treats and determined to hand them out as if I was some sort of candy cupid.

With time and the lack of classroom candy swaps, my perspective on the holiday has definitely changed. While I don’t morph into some sort of Valentine’s Day version of Scrooge who yells, “Bahumlove!” to all of the couples I see, or avoid anything remotely Valentine-like – this would be almost impossible since the majority of the items I own are pink or red – my feelings are pretty neutral towards the holiday. If anything, the 15th is my favourite day this month because of all the chocolate that will be on sale. But see, within my last remark lies my whole problem with Valentine’s day. After so many years of seeing people struggling to find the perfect gifts for their partners, movies about people finding true love on this day and the seemingly endless pink, red and white themed aisles in almost every store, I thought that this date was only reserved for those who have found their perfect other half, which can elicit some Scrooge-like behaviour in even the most loving of people.

Somewhere along the way, somewhere between the days in elementary when I would exchange cards with everyone and we would get all dolled up, and now when the only thing that I really look forward to is the half priced chocolate, I’ve lost the “Valentine’s Day Spirit”. I let myself get caught up in all of the hype and material things that come with the promotion of this holiday that I forgot that it is in fact a holiday. It is a day of celebration, a celebration of love in all of it forms. Whether you have found The One, have a few someones that you love to hang out with at school, or only have two people whose one great joy was raising you, Valentine’s Day is the time to be a bit creative in telling and showing those around you (including yourself) that you care.

I guess that my elementary school teachers were trying to teach us a lesson when they would allow us to spend the day celebrating and playing with our classmates. They were trying to show us how the Valentine’s isn’t really about all of the intricately designed chocolates, the cute cards or the festive colors, it is about the people and making them feel good special on this day. In retrospect, my best memories aren’t of the receiving the cards or having my mother let me eat all of the chocolate that I got, it was the feeling of finally getting home at the end of the school day, dumping a mountain of cards out of my bag and reading every single one of them with a big smile on my face. It was seeing my friends the next day and having them hug me and thank me for what I had written in their card, and knowing that all of my hard work hadn’t been in vain. So, this year I’m going to try and recreate this feeling again, whether it’s getting my sister a stuffed animal, or giving my parents some cards. Maybe, I’ll give my friends some chocolate, or even just treating myself  to a special cup of tea and a croissant, either way if it makes someone smile it makes Valentine’s Day worthwhile.

Love,

Alexandra :)

P.S. Get a headstart on spreading the love by downloading these templates for Valentine's cards (they look like the one above)! Click here for the template with words in the background and click here for the one without. Simply download  and save the picture, then print it  and write your message or, open it up in photoshop and type it up.

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?

Ice Ice Baby: DIY Ice Facial

February 02, 2015


1-WP_20150202_1523


Usually I find that other than the occasional snow day, Christmas and the opportunity to skate outdoors, that winter isn’t of much – unless you’re the type of person who finds having a runny nose and chattering teeth helpful. It doesn’t offer the warm sunshine and lengthy holiday that the summer brings, nor the blooming buds and pretty sights that comes with the spring, nor the multitude of pumpkin flavoured foods that comes with autumn. Believe it or not, I’ve realized that the wintertime and all of the good (see above) and bad (the cold, the cold and the cold) associated can actually be an advantage when it comes to taking care of one’s skin.

I’ve heard how hot water opens pores and cold water closes them and how I should rinse my hair with cold water to seal the follicle, and have incorporated these little nuggets of beauty wisdom into my daily routine, but I never made the connection between beauty and ice before a few weeks ago. While scrolling through Brit+Co, I came across a post in which they showed several ways to use the cold in your beauty regimen (two of which I mentioned above). Seeing as I was feeling in a particularly crafty mood, I whipped out my cute ice trays, brewed some tea and collected my essential oils and made two batches using tea tree essential oil (the stars) and orange essential oil (the flowers), and green tea.

I generally use plain ice cubes whenever I feel that I might have a pimple, to reduce the size of one or, to de-puff my eyes but now the green tea gives them an extra kick by rejuvenating the skin and reducing puffiness. Not to be outdone, the orange and tea tree oil boost the skin thanks to their own anti-inflammatory, anti-acne and antiseptic powers! Ironically, orange oil helps to relieve dry skin that is often associated with the cold.


What you will need:

Luckily the instructions are pretty simple and quick so you can get right to beautifying! Firstly, gather all of your tools around you, and rinse your trays to make sure that they are clean! Once you’ve made sure everything is well-rinsed and dried, add 2-5 drops of essential oil into each container within the tray. Next,  pour the green tea until the desired level and pop it into the freezer until their nice and frozen.


2-WP_20150201_6192When they are ready, you simply have to let them sit for a minute or two at room temperature before applying it to your face. This is just a precaution in order to ensure that they’re not too cold and cause any damage to your face.

3-WP_20150201_5139 Afterwards, simply massage in on your skin using a towel or gloves – it is still an ice cube after all – sit back and relax!

6-WP_20150202_3342

(Note: These ice cubes are for external use only! Don’t use them in your refreshments, or get it into your mouth or eyes, no matter how cute them may look!)

P.S.For more DIY frozen treatments click here.

How do you like to pamper yourself? 

@itsalamb