20 Ways to refresh your wardrobe with lace

20 ways to refresh your wardrobe with lace

Do you have a piece of  clothing that needs a little revamping? Instead of throwing it out, add a bit of lace! There are so many different ways to refresh your wardrobe with just a little bit of altering. Here are some great free tutorials to upcycle and refashion those worn jeans or misfitting top.

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DIY succulent planters and gifts

I know succulent projects are everywhere, but I just can’t get enough! I probably have 10 pots of succulents in the backyard and I started a succulent garden in the front yard, but I still bought several different varieties when I went to the home improvement store this weekend. My husband doesn’t agree that you can never have too many succulents.

Forget flowers and chocolate, I would much rather have succulents! In fact, that’s what my husband brought me for Mother’s Day; the large hen he bought is now finally producing chicks! I’ve surpassed my exclamation mark limit, but I really love succulents, especially sempervivums (the “hens and chicks” that produce babies). They are easy to grow, and the babies they reproduce are easy to replant. This makes succulents great to cultivate at home then make gifts and creative planters. Need a hostess gift? New neighbor? A friend’s birthday? Grab some succulents and throw them together in a cute way and you have a unique gift that will literally, keep on giving. The hard part is figuring out exactly what to do with your plants.

So here are just a few ideas!

DIY succulent planters and gifts

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Thrift-shop terrarium centerpiece

terrarium

Last week, for the first time, I ventured into a thrift-shop that was literally around the block from my house. I’m not sure why it took my so long to go inside, but I was pleasantly surprised and took home an armful of puzzles, a vintage top, an awesome purse, and a bag of Mega Blocks. I also found out that on Tuesdays, everything is 50% off! This week I went in there and bout a vase, a glass bowl, a crystal tea cup, a wicker platter/basket, and some odds and ends. I knew exactly what I was going to do with the glassware – make a terrarium!

Terrariums have been a trendy DIY project for a while, but I hadn’t participated in it as of yet. Finally, with an abundance of baby succulents growing in my garden and a renewed interested in pinned terrariums, I decided to look into it a bit more and give it a go.

Directions and care instructions after the jump!

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My treat stands

The other day I posted 9 different treat stands and I finally finished some of my own! These were REALLY easy to make. Honest!
Treat stands

Supplies:

  • Light sconces from a ceiling fan or a glass or vase for the base
  • Plates or chargers (got mine at the dollar store)
  • E6000 glue or another all-purpose industrial strength glue

Directions:

  • Glue base to plate
  • DONE!

11 Days until Christmas!

How to create pendants and charms using resin

It can be easy to make quality photo pendants and charms using resin. Some resin can be tricky to work with, but I’ve found that Castin’Craft’s Easy Cast Epoxy is actually very easy to use. You just need a few supplies and before you know it, you will have fun charms or keepsake photo pendants for you or for gifts!

Supplies:

  • Castin’ Craft Easy Cast Epoxy
  • Cup (disposable or only to be used for resin0
  • Stir stick/plastic knife/Popsicle stick/tongue compressor
  • Toothpick
  • Scrabble tiles, picture frame charms, cabochon settings, or other setting (I used  charms like THESE)
  • Glue (if using a bail or glueing a frame or scrabble tile onto another setting, use e600 or something similar)
  • Scrapbook paper, digital negatives, small pictures, or other paper-type item
  • Blow dryer (optional, but recommended)
  • Optional – chain, key ring or ball chain, bails, or cufflinks

Epoxy, digital negatives, and frame charms

For this project, I used Costco’s 5×7 digital negatives and frame charms. In the photo on the top of this post, there are cufflinks made out of scrabble tiles, using pictures from a vintage bug dictionary. You can also do photos or scrapbook paper on scrabble tiles and glue a bail onto the back, or use a cabochon setting.

To make tiny pictures: In a photo editing software or PowerPoint create a 4×6 inch shape, insert the pictures you want to use and minimize them to your setting’s shape. Do a couple different sizes to play around with, fill up your 4×6 shape and have printed at a 1 hour photo place.

Directions:

  • Follow the Easy Cast directions and mix your epoxy. The amount you need will determine how many items you are using. A little bit goes a long way, so do several pendants at a time.
  • Cut your paper/photo to fit your setting, tile, or frame; glue into place.

  • Using your plastic knife, small spoon, or stick, carefully drop a small bit of resin on top of your photo. Use a toothpick to spread it into corners and sides. Add more if needed. Resin is thick enough to “dome” on to of a surface, like water on a penny.
  • Using a blow dryer on low, directly above your pendant, carefully blow out any air bubbles.
  • Keep in a warm, dry, place for 24+ hours until no longer sticky
  •  Glue a bail on the back of your tile, attach chain or key ring to your pendant, and enjoy!

Ideas:

  • Charms for jewelry
  • Lockets
  • Key chains
  • Cufflinks
  • Necklace pendant
  • Glue tiles onto bobby pins with settings, or other berets
  • Wine glass charms
  • Napkin ring charms
  • Pins
  • Glue settings onto rings
  • Glue onto picture frames
  • Make 3D stickers by coating store-bought or handmade stickers with resin
  • Use in goodie-bags and stocking stuffers

Quick and easy photo charm keepsake

Don’t forget to “like” The Life of Lulu Belle on Facebook for extra goodies!

 

 

 

 

 

How to make Christmas cards, scrapbook pages and other goodies without special photo editing software

I know it’s not even November yet, but before you know it, it will be time to send out Christmas cards. If I don’t start on things now, they will probably go out late! Besides, you don’t have to make just Christmas cards with this tutorial, you can make any card or invite or layered graphic.

My computer has Photoshop on it, but it’s on the fritz, so I have been using my husband’s computer – he doesn’t have Photoshop on his computer and I have been procrastinating on installing it. I’ve been doing all my icons and graphic layering using POWERPOINT! Microsoft does make a flyer making software, but I don’t have that on my computer, either.

Some things are actually easier to use PowerPoint than Publisher or Photoshop or any other fancy photo editing software. I’ve including the following step-by-step tutorial on how to do your own Christmas cards (or birthday, or Easter, or scrap booking or electronic invitations) using PowerPoint. I made my wedding monograms some years back with this technique.

Printing pictures as Holiday cards can be more economical and can offer you more creativity and variety. You don’t have to follow a template! You can even make your own postcards this way by gluing cardstock to the back of one of your pictures.

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Adventures in Breastfeeding + Altered Shirt Tutorial

Little man is 7 weeks old now; where has the time gone!? Actually, much of it has been spent sitting on the couch watching Netflix and breastfeeding. Not many complaints here, though. My wonderful husband has done a great job with most of the cooking and house upkeep so that I can feed Gabe and keep him happy.  Plus, I get to stare at his sweet face on cuddle him. And steal lots of baby kisses, don’t forget about those.

It has been nice, though, that he has started going longer between feeds. It’s nice to have a little break!

Breastfeeding for a new mom can be a bit of a surprise (at least for me and those that I have talked to). Much of the time you expect it to be such a natural thing, but it can be hard work! Between getting that baby to latch correctly, worrying about supply, and having sore and sensitive nipples, it’s no wonder our breastfeeding rate is one of the lowest in the world. Having said that, nowadays there is so many resources available to new moms that can help. Le Leche League and hospital run courses are just the tip of the iceberg – just do a Google search!

Get through some of the tough patches and the benefits of breastfeeding make themselves more clear. Besides the health benefit of the milk itself, the amount of money we save, and the bonding experience, I really think little Gabe would cry much more if it wasn’t for breastfeeding. We are lucky that so far, he has never been inconsolable. If he starts to cry, it is usually because he is hungry. If he is crying for another reason, then breastfeeding automatically fixes the problem. Nothing the boob won’t fix and it’s always a pleasure having a happy baby.

My biggest breastfeeding problem currently? Trying to find clothes I actually want to nurse in (and can afford)! I think I have finally found the solution: altered camis/spaghetti-strap tanks with a nursing bra under a loose or stretchy shirt. This makes nursing easy and discreet and way cheaper than buying specialty nursing clothes. Sometimes nursing tanks don’t offer much support; by altering these tanks it is easy to choose the support you want by wearing it with a nursing bra.

All you need is:

Easy!

All the tanks I used were fitted, so there was no droop in the back. It is so easy to nurse in any top!

Decorative Throw Pillows

My husband finally relented and let me add some yellow into our already gray and black bedroom. It may be overdone, but I think a yellow, gray, and black bedroom looks great. To celebrate, and to actually add some of the color, I started off by making some throw pillows for our bed.

I had 2 square pillows and 1 rectangular pillow already, I just needed to make covers for them. Instead of cutting out several pieces and adding a zipper or button, I went with the envelope style pillow cover. An envelope style pillow cover is probably the easiest pillow cover and you only need to cut one piece of fabric!

I could attempt to draw you out a tutorial, but so many already exist. You can find some HERE or HERE or search for yourself. All you need is a piece of fabric a little longer than 2x your pillow and slightly wider. You could use your sewing machine, but if don’t have one, you could try the iron on hemming tape or maybe attempt the hemming glue as well.

I made two yellow pillow covers and one black one, and then decorated them with flower accents

It's a good idea to iron the fabric before you sew...

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