Posts Categorized: DIY

collaborations + Design + DIY + hats + Projects / Wednesday, 23 Jan 2013

In her hair Part 2

Part 2 of my collab with Jessica Peterson and Rubi Jones. Again, I didn’t have much time to prepare for this one, so most of our selection was from going through Caitlin (our model and my sister)’s closet. For her BFA final last year her theme was patterns and she made her own patterns and turned it into clothing and then made outfits for everyone in attendance. (I wrote about her show, She Comes In Color here). I thought it would be fun to use them for the shoot. She had also made a number of belts (see below for DIY) which Rubi styled into her hair as a turban. I love how it turned out! Caitlin made the geometric background on Jessica’s great blackboard backdrop. Rubi made an awesome tutorial on how to get her curls (she didn’t use a curling iron!), which you can find on her blog, She Lets Her Hair Down.
Caitlin was kind enough to show us how to make these belts. And you’ll never guess what they were made of. Go ahead, scroll down to the materials. 

Materials: two large plastic trash bags (are you kidding?!), yarns in the colors of your choice, scissors
Step 1: Lay flat one of your plastic bags on your workspace.
Step 2: From the bottom right corner, fold the corner like you would a bandana until you reach the other top left corner. This makes it so you have one large trash bag to work with.
Step 3: Twist your trash bag. You will repeat the same process to the other one later.
Step 4: Grab the end of your trash bag and fold the end in about an inch or so.
Step 5: Now grab one of your yarns and tie a knot.
Step 6: Wrap the yarn so you go up close to the end of your folded trash bag and then come back down so you cover your fold. Make sure your wrap is good and tight here so your end won’t fall apart.
Step 7: Keep wrapping your yarn, giving a good 6 inches of length.
Step 8: Making the loop: Fold the end of the already wrapped trash bag. Make sure you have a good sized loop about 2-3″ hole.
Step 9: Pinch it tight.
Step 10: Wrap yarn tightly around your pinched bag. Wrap up towards the loop and then back down. This will make it secure.
Step 11: Keep wrapping your yarn another 2-3 inches. You can keep going longer but you can also change the color.

Changing the color of your yarn
Step 1: Cut your yarn, allowing it to have a good length of tail.
Step 2: Grab another color of yarn and tie it around the bag where you ended the last color. Give it about 1/2″ space.
Step 3: Make sure you knot the new color so the tail of the last one is under it.
Step 4: Wrap up the yarn close to where you last ended your previous color and then come back down and keep wrapping for as long as you would like.
TIP: The pressure of your wrapping can vary. This helps make it different widths throughout the whole belt.
Step 5: Change up the color whenever you wish to follow step 4.

Joining together
Step 1: Stop your wrapping until you are about 3-4″ from the end of your first trash bag.
Step 2: Grab your other trash bag. Repeat step one.
Step 3: Fold the end of the second trash bag so you have a good clean end.
Step 4: Take your first wrapped trash bag and your new one and overlap the ends.

Step 5: Start wrapping around both of them.
Step 6: Tightly wrap your yarn in multiple places on both of the ends.
Step 7: Now you can go backwards to cover the first bag and keep wrapping until you come bac to the second bag. Keep on wrapping.

Step 8: Keep going until you have a strong joint.
Step 9: Repeat with all the colors you would like.

Folding the end
Step 1: Steop when you are about 2″ away from the end.
Step 2: Fold the end and wrap around the yarn to secure it down.
Step 3: Wrap until you reach the end.

Finishing up
Step 1: Fold the end about an inch against the bag.
Step 2: Pinch it tight and wrap it tightly so you cover it all.
Step 3: Once you feel like you covered everything up, tie a knot through the hole of the pinched end.
Step 4: Cut your yarn so you have about an inch of tail.
Step 5: Grab your scissors and use it to tuck your tail in the little hole of the pinched end.
There you go! Use it as a belt, headpiece, necklace. The sky’s the limit! 

Photography by Jessica Peterson
Hair (and tutorial on how to get her non-curling iron curls) by Rubi Jones of She Lets Her Hair Down
DIY  by Caitlin Watson
Concept and styling by me

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DIY + holiday + Projects + valentine's day / Monday, 21 Jan 2013

Send a Valentine’s day care package

Being married to someone from another country we’re always away from family in some way so care packages are of utmost importance (remember the Ultimate Care Package?). And because you can pretty much send anything through the mail I got to thinking of all things heart shaped, which lead me to the idea of making a box, which lead me to think of paper mache boxes. I thought they’d be a fixture at Michael’s, but turns out they only sell small little 3 inchers so I had to buy one on Amazon. I’m sure it will get a bit of damage in transit, but I don’t really care because I think it would be a joy to receive if I do say so myself.
You will need: paper mache heart box 12″ (see link for where I bought mine), paint brushes, acrylic paint (choose your own, but definitely get a white), goodies to fill the care package (conversation hearts are a must!), pencil, eraser, white paint pen
Step 1: Paint the outside of the box pink. Paint inside if you’re hard core.
Step 2: Use a pencil and write in simple lettering your phrase.
Step 3: In a darker color, paint on the letters.
Step 4: Use white on the outside of the letters to create a relief.
Step 5: Do your goody thang.
Step 6: I used a white paint pen to write on the address onto the other side. 

I’m kind of stoked to take it to the post office and ship it on it’s way. There’s a chance it might be cheaper to send it with one of those flat rate boxes, but I’ll give it a go this way for ultimate impact. I’ll let you know. Paul’s brother is in for a treat.

Wanna see some more Valentine’s surprise ideas?
Heart attack idea
Heart attack in the lawn
Heart attack in the snow

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DIY + Life + Projects + Review / Thursday, 10 Jan 2013

Top 3 of 2012

I’ve been going through my pictures of the last year to make a synopsis in the next few days and I’ve noted two things: 1) If you didn’t know me in person it appears that I only make pretty things and go on trips (I wish!) 2) I’m getting better at what I do. And I don’t mean that in a “I’m the best in the whole wide world” way, but sometimes I’d cringe at what I was putting out there into the universe with my work because things didn’t work out as perfectly as I had imagined, but looking back though some were inevitably lame, I’m overall pleased with my oeuvre. I can see how I’m more mindful of a successful DIY from concept to styling to photography. Mind you, I worked super hard last year in coming up with my DIY concepts and execution so I guess it was a natural product of time and hard work. I got to work with some really stellar photographers (who I miss dearly!) and I got to make projects for some really great magazines and websites.

Based on page analytics, these three projects were the most visited on The House That Lars Built. I’m always so surprised at what is more successful over another project. What were some of your favorites? Would you have guessed these ones?

1. Friendship bracelet chevron rug won be almost double
2. Heart attack package beat #3 by almost double again
3. Kissing bridal clothespin

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DIY + Life + My Scandinavian Christmas + Projects / Saturday, 15 Dec 2012

My Scandinavian Christmas day 15

Day 15 of My Scandinavian Christmas is with….drumroll…me! Check out the other guest contributors to My Scandinavian Christmas here. There are some pretty awesome blogger and projects.
Ok, this holly and ivy balloon garland is not Scandinavian at all, but it’s one that I recently did for Hello Bee and it’s a super easy Christmas decoration to make for a party or for kids. I modeled it after my fruit balloon DIY. It’s pretty much the same concept, but with different shapes.

You will need: balloons, tape, scissors, twine, green paper for leaves, glue gun

Step 1: Blow up some balloons aso they are small enough to group in small clumps as berries.

Step 2: With scotch tape or double-sided stick tape attach a little to the balloon and stick to another. Clump in threes or twos.

Step 3: Cut out holly leaves in proportion to the size of the balloons. Draw or paint yellow veins on the leaves.

Step 4: Tie the groups of berries onto the twine and leave extra twine at the front and back.
Step 5: Glue gun the edges of the leaves to the edge of the balloon and a bit to the twine to secure it in place.
Donzo! That’s it! So simple!

Check out the rest of the amazing Christmas stories and projects for My Scandinavian Christmas here.

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DIY + Life + My Scandinavian Christmas + printable + Projects + Scandinavia / Friday, 7 Dec 2012

My Scandinavian Christmas Day 7

We’re already on the 7th day of Christmas! Welcome Eva Jorgensen of Sycamore Street Press! I first met Eva at the very first Alt Summit and we had a lot in common so we’ve stayed in contact ever since. It’s been fun watching her beautiful letterpress company and cute little family grow. Eva lives in Utah (where we’re heading!) but her family is Norwegian so her work is very Scandinavian-inspired so I thought she’d be a perfect fit.


Growing up, our home was always full of cheerful Scandinavian decor for Christmas. My great-grandmother stitched, sewed, and wove table runners, quilts, baskets and more while my Norwegian great-grandfather did all kinds of woodworking. Every year, they’d sell their handiwork at the Christmas bazaar put on by the Norwegian Seaman’s Church, and every year, my parents would pile my siblings and I into the car to attend the event. We’d put our names down for raffles, sample the cookies, and listen to the older folks speak in their melodic native tongues. We would purchase colorful ornaments, candlesticks, and pillow covers. Once in a while, we’d get lucky and win something in the raffle. Either way, my great-grandparents would always give some of their handmade goods to us, which we would proudly display in our home. 


CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE TEMPLATE

For Brittany’s “My Scandinavian Christmas” countdown, I made a couple of illustrated ornaments that you can download. Simply print them, cut them out, punch a hole in the top, thread some ribbon or string through, and hang them up. Easy! My illustrations are inspired by the ornaments I remember hanging in my home growing up. One features a traditional Swedish Dala horse, and the other reads “God Jul”, which means “Merry Christmas” in Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian. 

Thank you SO much Eva! I LOVE these ornaments and will be making mine soon! Check out the wonderful collection of Sycamore products and their blog here.

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