Posts Categorized: DIY

collaborations + DIY + giveaway + laura ashley + Projects / Monday, 24 Jun 2013

Make a camera strap & Laura Ashley giveaway

Happy Monday! I’m happy to kick this week off a brand spankin new collaboration for Laura Ashley’s blog. I LOVE Laura Ashley and grew up on their florals (didn’t we all?), so this is a perfect marriage. Over the next six months I’ll be creating some DIYs and floral-related posts on their blog to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the iconic brand. Wahoo! First up: a camera strap made from one of their super soft floral scarves. I’ve had my ugly black camera strap for a year now and it was time for an upgrade.
Supplies: scarf, 2 split rings, 2 chain closures, scissors, sewing machine OR needle/thread, scrap of leather, pen
Step 1Draw your shape on the leather with a pen making sure the smallest point at the fold fits through the split ring. You’ll be folding it over, so mirror one side to the other and trace it. 
Step 2: Cut the leather on the folded line.
Step 3: Repeat to create two of these leather pieces.

Step 4: Connect the chain closure to the split ring.

Step 5: Slide the ring to the middle section of the leather.
Step 6: Fold the end of the scarf in an accordion fold, small enough so that it fits into the leather.
Step 7: Stick the leather to the scarf in place.
Step 8: With your sewing machine, stitch around the edge of the leather (as indicated in the picture)
Make sure you have a special needle that works for leather. Otherwise, hand stitch it.


To kick off the series, Laura Ashley is giving away this same scarf to one reader. The iconic floral scarf is 100% modal (modal=so soft) and is lightweight, so it’s a perfect summer scarf.

1. Check out the Laura Ashley site and “follow” The House that Lars Built on Instagram (@HouseLarsBuilt)
2. Leave a comment here on the blog telling me that you’ve entered.
3. Bonus votes if you share this giveaway.

The giveaway will end one week from today, Monday, July 1st.

Good luck!

project and photography by Brittany Watson Jepsen

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DIY + gift wrapping + holiday + paper + Party + Projects / Thursday, 13 Jun 2013

Father’s Day gift wrap

My dad works in finance and says that the best gift we can give him is no gift at all. I’m ALL about that–I’m totally cheap. But, I’m guessing there are some fathers out there who love a good gift and this gift wrap idea takes the form of a card too, so consider it part of the gift. My dad’s really good at putting up scanned photos of us as kiddies on Facebook, so I just collected them and printed them off in black and white. Bada bing, bada boom.

Supplies: box, kraft paper, pictures of your dad (make sure you shrink them down to a small size that will fit the size of the hole you create–I made mine 2×2″), scissors, x-acto, circle template, tape

Step 1: Cut the kraft paper to the size of the box and wrap it to find out where you should put your holes. You don’t have to wrap it all the way.
Step 2: Using your circle template (I used the cap of a Mod Podge bottle), trace onto the kraft paper and repeat for all the photos you want to use.
Step 3: Cut out half of your circle with an x-acto knife and crease the circle over so it opens half way.
Step 4: On the back side, select a photo and affix it into the frame of the half circle.
Step 5: Secure it with tape.
Step 6: Repeat for all the circles.
Step 7: Finish it off with a ribbon.


Isn’t it so fun?! It’s like a trip down memory lane AND a gift all in one. I’m a big fan of this pop-up method and I can envision it for so many things. Remember the Valentine’s hearts? The fun never ends.

Happy Father’s day to all you dads! And a special early Father’s day to the original Lars.

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DIY + Party + Projects + Wedding / Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Make a tassel boutonniere

Here’s my latest for Brooklyn Bride. I created an alternative to a traditional boutonniere inspired by military epaulettes–in the wake of Memorial day and all.

For full instructions, check out Brooklyn Bride.

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DIY + Projects / Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Sewing kit DIY & template

Here’s the deal (or “dill” as some Utahns like to say): Last year I attended the blogger’s conference in Berlin, The Hive. As I recall, the hem of my vintage dress was unraveling and I was overjoyed when I found a sewing kit in the bathroom. Someone was thinking ahead! Because I love nothing better than multitasking, I decided to take the kit with me and sew it while I was listening to the speakers. I’m classy like that. Well, that turned into me putting it in my bag, which turned into me taking it home that night. Which then turned into me taking it home with me to Copenhagen. Nice, Brit. Well, needless to say, I felt horrible. I told the organizers of the shindig and they said something along the lines of how we should make a new one and pass it down each year. Like a spirit stick at summer camp. I was all about that. So, here it is! You can even download your own sewing kit, but don’t worry, it won’t have the same confessional on it. 
Supplies: sewing box (I found one that’s magnetic so the pins stay, perfect for traveling! Get it from Amazon here), muslin bag 8×5″ (from here), travel scissors, mini sewing kit with needles and thread, measuring tape, safety pins, big safety pin, patches, hem tape, templates, iron-on transfer paper for light fabrics (from Amazon here), sticker printer paper (from Amazon here)
Step 1: Print out your templates. The Inside template goes on the box and you can print that on sticker paper (see supplies list above for recommendation). The outside template goes on the muslin bag and can be printed on an ink-jet printer.
Step 2: Trace the paper to the size of the box and cut it out.
Step 3: Stick it onto the box.
Step 4: Insert your materials into the kit. The metal objects will stick to the magnet for easy transport.
Step 5: Follow the directions on the package for the iron on transfer. My tip: Make sure you don’t hold the iron on too long like me and burn it a bit. And cut completely around the parts of the text.

I hope someone has a need for it this year at The Hive. Wish I could join you, ladies! Have a wonderful time! 

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DIY + flowers + Projects / Monday, 13 May 2013

3 ways to arrange lilacs

I’m back from the East Coast and now I’ve had a bit of time to detox now and enjoy the Utah spring. It’s GORGEOUS! The cherry blossom stage is done here, but the lilacs are in full bloom and you know I love me some lilacs (my ode to Danish lilacs should make me embarrassed, but I’m shameless) Thanks to our unknowingly generous next door neighbors, I snagged some lilacs for every room in our house. Oopsies. As much as I love seeing flowers in their natural state, I think it’s such a shame not to enjoy it inside too, so…call me a thief with no shame. I know lilacs are donzo in California but maybe they’re still going at it where you are? Take advantage of them. Snag some! Here are three ways to arrange them, no professional flower arranging skills needed.
1. Lilacs arranged in one big vase. The beauty of lilacs is that they are clumpy so they naturally fall in a beautiful, full way. Mine is sitting on my table for all the smell and enjoy.
2. One lilac stem in a teeny tiny vase. I got this “vase”, which is actually a battery jar from the original Thomas Edison company, from the local antique store. Isn’t it adorable? I placed it on my owl side table, which you can’t really see, but it’s awesome and should make an appearance in the future.
3. Lilac clumps in a mug. I took off all the leaves from these lilacs and stuck them in my brand new mugs by Michelle Christensen of My Little Belleville. She paints them and sells these on her Etsy shop here.
He’s too precious.

Supplies: To achieve this look, you’ll want a collection of vases in various sizes. I love using jars, those battery jars I mentioned above, mugs, cans, pickle jars, peanut butter jars. I only own one real vase from Ikea. You’ll also need flower cutters, lilacs, and floral tape if you really want to be fancy. I didn’t use floral tape here because they worked out without it. The floral tape is to create a grid across the tops of the jars to make sure they even spread out.

To arrange the flowers: Start by criss-crossing the flowers and then inserting the subsequent stems at angles. This will help them keep their shape.

Easy squeezy. Do you have lilacs where you live? I don’t ever remember seeing them in Orange County growing up so moving to DC where it grows like weeds, was a revelation.

Spring, I love you.

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