Sunday, May 20, 2012

Suspended Herb Garden DIY

aka my millionth attempt at gardening.

I was inspired by a DYI tutorial I found online to create my own. It's a pretty simple concept and after browsing the web a bit, I realized that a lot of tutorials out there make it sound a lot more complicated than it really is.

Here's what you need (click on the picture to zoom in):

Start by punching holes in the bottom of your cans for drainage using the nails and hammer.

Then, find a soft surface you won't mind poking a few holes in (I chose a pile of dirt in your backyard) and carefully punch two holes 2 to 3 inches apart about a quarter of an inch from the edge puncturing from the inside of the can.

Next, pass a length of twine's both ends through the holes and tie a couple knots or a heavy-duty one. You can always tweak the length of your twine later by pulling on the end from inside the can tying another knot and cutting the excess twine.

Then I hung up the first can and figured out the height and how I was going to lay them all out. I trimmed the twine to the proper length and hung them all up to see before filling them with herby goodness.

And voila!

Today's Style - 20 May 2012

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Pimp my file cabinet

Inspired by a post I came across on Pinterest on creative ways to use wallpaper in your home. It featured a picture of a file cabinet where they had covered the two drawers with wallpaper. Challenge accepted!

Our file cabinet is old as dirt. It used to by my mother's when she lived in Ottawa in 1979... so you can imagine it's traveled quite a bit and has suffered the consequences. So covering two drawers would not do...

Here's a quick tutorial on how to transform your old file cabinet into something a bit more stylish and modern.

I got some Con-Tact brand sticky paper/plastic covering thing from Wally World for about $7. They did not have a huge variety of patterns or colors. I'm sure if you shopped around you could find something to suit whatever your style needs may be. In my case, I just wanted to get rid of the eyesore at this point. Yes, those are tape marks and a huge lips magnet from the Dollar Store.

You'll need one roll and you'll have plenty to coordinate whatever else you'd like as well. If you have a three drawer file cabinet, you might have just enough or run a bit short.

First, you want to clean all the surfaces, nooks and crannies. Evaluate how/if you're going to remove any hardware and figure out how to remove the drawers in advance if you can. I left the drawers in when I was working on them because it was easiest but removed them when I did the frame. You'll need a good pair of scissors, a box cutter type tool and that's about it.

Start by lining up the contact paper to the front of your first drawer.
It should be wide and long enough to be about 1" to 1 1/2" over the edges.
Use the handy dandy grids on the back to cut a straight line.

Jack says it tastes good too!
 Peal away about 3 inches of the back paper from the top and align to your drawer face.
Tape each corner gently to secure it in place and start from the middle "petting" the con-tact paper on to reduce air bubbles. Don't worry too much about them because you can always fix them later. 

Peel away the back paper slowly and make sure not to cause any creases or folds as they will show even if you pull off the paper and reapply.
Pretty straight forward so far...?!

When it comes to the corners, simply fold them as you would when wrapping a birthday gift.
Fold in every corner and then fold back each side of extra con-tact paper.

Now, if you have the types of pulls you can remove and then reattach on top of the con-tact paper, more power to ya! If you have sucky, inset pulls like my cabinet does, the next few steps are for you.

Feel around with your fingers to find the "alcove" and poke and cut a line down the center leaving about one inch on both ends. Then, cut some lines from the ends of your line to the four corners so that when you fold the top and bottom flap, you end up with something looking like this:

Before you fold in the two little triangles, you'll want to snip the end of it before you fold them in because they'll likely be longer than the pull is deep. Easy-peasy...

There ya go! Drawer numero uno is completed! :)

If you're lazy like me, you'll want to use the back paper from the first drawer to measure out the con-tact paper for the second one. :)

High-efficiency Laze.
The only tricky part that came with the drawers was getting around the key lock.
I tried to remove it but it was impossible (read: the tools were in the garage) so I thought I would work around it. Literally. It just so happens that the key lock was exactly the same size as one of the dots on my con-tact paper. Magic? I think so. I placed the paper on the surface and found the little dot landing closest to the key lock. I carefully cut it out using my husband's military issued survival knife - but any old utility knife will do! :) Again, laze wins!

Pull the back paper a little bit passed the key hole and start applying the paper from the key hole out to make sure you're aligned properly and you won't run any creases.

To cover the frame of the cabinet, remove the drawers and start measuring your con-tact paper from the top down. Leave a bit extra length to allow you to fold it back on the bottom to get a nice finish. Press along the frame, top to bottom covering both drawer alcoves. 

Take your time pulling the back paper and wait until you are done the front before folding the sides.
When you get to the bottom, you can carefully cut the back paper leaving you a few inches to work with along the bottom. Then, tip the cabinet onto it's back allowing you to fold in the paper underneath.

Cutting the back paper will allow you more flexibility and freedom of movement when you're tipping the cabinet on it's back. Also, makes it easier to align the bottom and make sure everything is nice and straight.
Now, poke the drawer alcoves with scissors or a knife in the shape of an X going right up to the edges.

Cut the excess off the triangle leaving about 3 inches to fold in. Be careful of the inner hardware workings when you fold the con-tact paper in. I had to cut around a bit to make sure the rails would still work properly for the drawers.

And voila! You're done! :)

Here's my file cabinet back in it's natural habitat with his besties Wedding Gown Bag and Winter Jackets. :)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Enough, hallmark!

Society makes it very hard for me to avoid all things "mother's day" as I discovered last year. It's not that I don't believe in making a day all about your mom and taking the opportunity to recognize her hard work and all the good she does in the world. I totally get the need to do that, now more than ever. I just don't like it when things are forced onto me for things that I feel are really personal and unique.

This year my perception is a bit different. Sure, I still miss my mom more than words can say. Actually, its not really a "miss" feeling - more that of an overdue hug. Our struggles with fertility have really shown me a different perspective on what parenthood is or can be. I'm kind of annoyed that we only take one day out of the year (or two counting father's day) to stop and take notice.

Every time I get emails with "the perfect gift for mom!" as the subject line, I puke a little. I know that if I could give my mom a hug and a hand drawn picture of a house with purple clouds and a heart she would feel like the luckiest mom in the world and when my time comes to be a mom, I will make it my goal to feel all the same love and joy in her honor. If I can accomplish that, maybe I can forgive hallmark.
Sent on the TELUS Mobility network with BlackBerry


Related Posts with Thumbnails