Category Archives: For Home

Pretty Paper lanterns

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Paper lantern balls are all over and are used for almost any occasion in different shapes and colors. They are fun and easy way to decorate any space. In India, the lanterns are associated with the festival of lights – Diwali. But they can be used for any event/occasion to bring in the celebration mood 🙂

img_8212-1They can be just hanged by themselves or create a focal spot by grouping them together. Or even can be used to place it on a surface like a table top. Well, I made these large festive lanterns for Sankranthi Bommala Koluvu ( Doll festival in January) to cover LED candles on the wood candle holders.

Materials you need :

Choice of paper or poster board – 2 ( pref contrast colors)

Cutting mat

Craft Knife

Glue gun/school glue

Ruler and pencil

Rhinestone lace (from dollar tree)

Step 1: Take 2 sheets of paper. I used the poster board (22×28 inches)from dollar tree . You can make 2 large lanterns 11×14 inch each.

Step 2: Keep 1 sheet 11×14 inches and cut the other (contrast piece that goes inside as a tube) to 11X11. The tube length should be couple of inches shorter than the outer design sheet.

Step 3: Out of contrasting colored sheet mark 1 inch from the bottom of the sheet and draw a line. And on the line mark 1/2 inch dots all through on both the sides.

Step 4: Using a craft knife cut it lengthwise 1/2 inch apart from one end of the marked point to the other end. Carefully separate the strips and Glue the ends to the inside contrast sheet. Fold the sheet to form a cylinder and carefully pull and bend the strips to form different shapes like below.

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Step 5: Glue the rhinestone trims to the both ends of the lantern.

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Step 6: Punch holes at each end of the lantern and add a satin ribbon to hang it on.

These lanterns are just not hanging like traditional way – they also worked well to cover the LED candles

Aren’t they beautiful and  versatile.

Woven bamboo mat

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Today I am going to share this bamboo sticks mat woven from the scented decorative sticks available @ IKEA. They are in 4 fun colors and I can’t wait to make more projects with these bright n colorful ones.

The packet has 20 sticks priced @ $1.99 and many months ago I randomly picked them and have been waiting for the right project.  Inspired from sushi mat and ikeahackers.net I gave it a try and it worked perfect.

Materials you need – 

SALTIG Decorative stick – 1 pack

Cotton Yarn 

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Step 1 : Arrange the sticks making sure they all lay flat.

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Step 2 : Take a piece of yarn double the size of the width of the sticks and make double knot on the first one.

Step 3 : continue making knots on each stick on both the sides and cut the extra thread. And turn it upside down

And Tadahhh……

Isn’t that cute mat to display and brag about 😀

Cheers!

Easily remove bottle labels and repurpose

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I love to reuse/repurpose  glass jars/bottles. It may be just because of the size or shape or for some craft and sometimes even as storage for pantry. But the labels on them can be quite annoying 😦

So, Pinterest has countless ideas and tips on how to remove them -but for me the most important was mess free. I tried couple of them but the one I am going to share is absolutely “ZERO” effort.

Isn’t that awesome – the glass bottle is absolutely clean and looks new 🙂

This magic lotion is absolutely mess free and the stickers slide off without leaving any residue on the bottle.

To make the lotion you need –

1 tsp – liquid Dish soap

1/4 cup – Baking soda

1/4 cup – Vinegar

Enough water depending on the size of the bottle/jar

And all you have to do is – 

Fill your sink or a container big enough to submerge the bottle with hot hot water. Add liquid dish soap and give it a gently mix. Then add baking soda and vinegar.Once you add vinegar it will get fizzy for couple of seconds and that’s when the magic begins.

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Leave the bottles for couple of hours or until you see the labels off the bottle like here 🙂

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And Tadahhh….they are ready to use 🙂

You can use them to store homemade lemonade or get inspired from pinterest and upcycle them for some fun home decor.

Here is a shampoo bottle that was up cycled couple of years ago to a cute vase using some spray paint 🙂

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Cheers!

Clay Urli pot for Diwali

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Diwali is incomplete without diyas,rangoli (traditional Indian chalk art), bright and  beautiful decorations, yummy food, family gatherings and fireworks. When I think of decorations – the first on the list is illuminating every corner of the home with diyas/candles and the second is urli pot filled with rose petals/fresh flowers and candles 🙂

Living away from home, I miss having this decorative piece for Diwali and this year I decided to use a terra-cotta cactus/round dish as a substitute. It will not replace the traditional brass uril but for sure warm and welcoming.

Here is before and after picture 🙂

This clay cactus dish is available @ home depot and has perfect depth and width to use it as urli pot. Since it is a garden pot it has drainage hole and all you have to do is to fill it with some waterproof silicone sealant/caulk.

Place the pot upside down and use some duck tape to close the hole.

Turn it right side up and squeeze out some Silicone sealant to fill the hole.

Use a toothpick to spread it making sure the hole is filled without any gaps/vaccum.

Instructions on the silicone caulk says 30 minutes to dry, since the hole is large and we squeezed quite some I would suggest to leave it to dry overnight.

Once dry you have the pot ready 🙂 You can decorate the pot in multiple ways – go with a solid spray paint or give some details with acrylic paints and embellishments.

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Isn’t that perfect and beautiful for Diwali….

You could use it in multiple ways – indoor or outdoor, on floor or on a platter stand.  All you need is to fill some water and arrange fresh flowers. Don’t forget to use some floating candles for Diwali 🙂

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And here is a picture from Diwali 2k16 with the urli pots filled with flowers and floating candles 😍


Happy decorating!!

Door/wall hangings with homemade clay…

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My favorite of all wall hangings is traditional Rajasthani ones. Specially, the string decorations are absolutely beautiful and comes in various designs and sizes. They add so much warmth, color and most important festive feel 🙂

Well, it is easy buy stuff from India, but I was itching for a project and decided to “DIY” and here is the result – a cute and traditional flower string door/wall hanging 🙂

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Aren’t they cute and colorful. They are about 24 inches (2ft) in length and add color and style to any room.

Well, before initiating this project,  I was looking at clay options to make the flowers. The ideal pick was polymer clay as it is light and break resistant. This time I wanted to go for an inexpensive option.

After some search, I found this recipe to make clay at home. That was super exciting.  It is easy-to- make, easy- to-work, inexpensive and can be used in variety of projects.

Here are is a video tutorial from youtube.

I couldn’t wait to get started and bought glue from dollar tree and corn starch from local grocery store for less than $3.

Homemade clay is ready and the other supplies you need are –

wooden beads (hobby lobby)

Cookie or fondant cutter

decorative mirrors (hobby lobby)

Bells (optional)

Lace or string of your choice 

Super Glue 

Step 1 : Condition the clay and roll it out until it is 1/8th inch thick approx. Here i used a fondant cutter for flowers. Choose a cutter of your choice and make 10-12 flowers.

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Step 2 : Let the flowers dry overnight. Once dry they are very light, unbreakable and almost look like resin. Color the flowers with acrylic paint and glue a decorative mirror in the center.

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Step 3: Take a string or decorative lace and few wooden beads. I added random and used multi colored beads. Once you add couple of beads glue the painted flower like shown above.

Once you string beads and glue flowers add a decorative bell and you have beautiful string wall hanging decor ready to use 🙂

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Clay Mural Art on Cardboard

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I was introduced to clay mural art by Fevicryl Hobby Ideas (FHI) page from Facebook and since then I was looking for an opportunity to try my hands. There are many tutorials available on youtube on how to make beautiful piece of art using this technique.

After watching couple of videos I learnt that this can be done on almost any surface. Of course, in India it is easy to find the traditional MDF cutouts. Also, this tutorial on  Kalash clay mural art on cardboard helped me to take up a project for Sankranthi Bommala Koluvu 2016.

It is my first time so picked a kalash image from web as a reference.

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What you need is –

Print of an image on A4

Cardboard

Air dry clay (crayola)

Elmer’s Glue

Acrylic paints

Decorative rhinestones and lace/bead ball chain

Step 1: Trace the image on to a cardboard and cut it along the outline .

Take some air dry clay and start filling the details . For 3D effect – the thickness of the clay shouldn’t be consistent. Also, use glue to make sure it bonds well to the cardboard.

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Step 2: Let it dry overnight. Paint the kalash base, leaves and coconut. Get creative and add decorative rhinestones/fancy beads. Regular glue works well to stick the rhinestones.

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Soda can tab can be used as a picture hanger. Use hot glue or super glue to add the pop to the cardboard like here.

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Isn’t that pretty? You can make almost anything and this kalash wall art can be used in multiple ways for multiple occasions. I can’t wait to try more projects on mural art and share it with you all 🙂

Happy Monday!

Ganesha Door Hanging/Wreath

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Ganesh Pooja/Chaturthi is fast approaching and I am sure all of us are getting ready to celebrate the festival with full gusto.

It is one of the biggest Hindu festivals of India and personally my favorite one and I don’t miss a chance in making it special every year 🙂 So, when it comes to decorations all of us want to have something new every year and if you are in India it is easy to go shop for festive decorations.

Staying abroad, it may not be easy…so, why not make one by yourself.

Here is an easy and quick project that you can make with very few supplies.

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This is just not a wreath or door hanging but can be used as wall decor or even prayer/puja room decorations.

Lets see what you need :

Cardboard piece (round shape)

Glitter foam sheets  from Hobby Lobby/dollar store

Scissors (foam/fine tip preferably)

cardstock or scrapbook paper

Ganesha silhouette printed on A4

Glue, carbon/transfer paper, glue gun, fancy ribbon

Step 1: Pick an image of Ganesha silhouette and flip it (mirror image). Flipping the image is necessary because when you stencil the ganesha image on to the foam sheet you will be doing on the wrong side(non-glitter) of the sheet.

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Step 2: Use a carbon/transfer paper and transfer the image on to the wrong side of the glitter sheet

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Step 3: Using fine tip scissors or foam scissors cut the foam pieces 

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Step 4: Cover the cardboard piece with matching cardstock/scrapbook paper and glue the ganesha foam pieces and add a string to hang it. I made this for last year Diwali so I  glued some foam diya cut-outs around the wreath base. 

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And you have a cute wreath/wall decor ready to use. This can be used for any festival or auspicious occasions.

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial.

For other wreath tutorials click here , here  and here

Cheers.

Personalized wine glasses!

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Pinterest has lot of etching glass projects and they looked pretty easy. However, I was always apprehensive and never thought about it until last December I was looking for personalized wine glasses.

Then, thought it would be fun to DIY them for our 5th wedding anniversary and open the wine we got on our wedding year (2010).

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Yayy, I am  so glad to attempt it and was very happy with the results. Here it how they look after etching our initials 🙂

These are quick and adorable for wedding or christmas gifts too. There are multiple tutorials available on Pinterest – however, here is my version.

Supplies needed :

Wine Glasses – mine from Dollar tree

Self-Adhesive Contact Paper/shelf liner – Dollar tree

Etching cream – Craft store

Popsicle stick or plastic spoon

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Pick glasses of your choice. Since it is the first time using etching cream, I decided to go with dollar store wine glasses. Clean and dry before use.

Then on the contact paper I have handwritten our initials ‘S’ n ‘P’ and cut them using Xacto knife.

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Make sure you use a self adhesive vinyl/sticker because you don’t want the stencil to move around while applying the etching cream.

Since the surface of the glass is curvy, find the right spot , peel off the paper and stick the initials.  To create a border for the letter I used masking tape like shown below

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Now comes the etching part. Use a popsicle stick/plastic spoon/foam brush and apply a generous layer of etching cream. Make sure you leave extra tape as the glass is curvy they tend to run.

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Let it sit 10-12 minutes.  Then rinse it throughly under cool running water.

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And once dry peel off the vinyl and all I am left to say is “cheers”

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You can etch so many cute things with different patterns. Say it from simple initials to names to complex designs using stencils 🙂

Have you tried glass etching or did some etching projects?

Tip Thursday – Sparkling Silver

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All of us have silver things at home and most of us do not use them everyday.  Indian households have silver stuff that are very specific to certain festivals. After the occasion, you will never get a chance to use until next year. Even after wrapping them carefully they tend to tarnish and darken over time.

And it is usually not easy to remove the tarnish and get the original shine.

So, in my TIP Thursday series I have an easy and very inexpensive way to bring back the sparkle.

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Lets see what you need :

A big bowl ( spacious enough to immerse the silver thing)

Baking Powder

Aluminium foil sheet

Warm Water

Step 1: Fill the container with warm water and add a full spoon of baking soda. Mix until it dissolves and immerse a sheet of aluminum foil.

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Step 2: Now immerse the tarnished silver object. Since foil is light weight it floats but don’t worry let it sit in the baking powder water mix.

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Step 3: You will see the color of water changing to grey. It means it is working and silver object is ready to shine. It took close to 25 mins for a heavy tarnished object.

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Take it out and gently buff it with a cloth and wash throughly under running water.

That’s it you have it ready sparkling and looks almost new.

Isn’t that cheap and super effective way to remove the tarnish.

Cheers!

Festive Foam Wall Decal!

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Using glitter foam sheets for Indian festival decor is the most easy, quick and cheapest option. Specially, if you are like me who always crave for new decorations 😉

Well, today I am going to share a very budget-friendly project with foam sheets that can instantly add a cultural feel.

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Don’t they look pretty?? And the total cost of the project is $2 (scissors already on hand)

Material required to make these –

2 Glitter foam sheets from Hobby Lobby – 99c per sheet

Foam Scissors or Micro Serrated Scissors (Optional)

Image of your choice – the one I used is here 🙂

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 Step 1  Crop the 2 elephants and take prints on regular A4 sheet

Step 2 – Trace the image on to the wrong side of the foam sheet. Best thing about foam is if you trace it hard, it will leave marks and makes it easy to cut the desired shape.

Step 3 – Cut the traced pieces using a sharp scissors or foam scissors(surrogated scissors)

Step 4 – Use a small piece of painters/masking tape on each piece of foam sheet.

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That’s it – Glue the pieces referring the image.  Using a right color foam sheet ( based on the wall paint color) gives it a beautiful look 🙂

Isn’t that easy and quick.

And comes 2nd day of the challenge and my favorite quoteScreen Shot 2016-01-30 at 9.47.05 PM

And the nominees for the day are:

http://www.pinkstripeysocks.com – has some awesome kids crafts

http://cookingwithawallflower.com – for some delicious recipes

https://sewkatiedid.wordpress.com – get inspired to sew

Rules for the challenge:

  • Thank the blogger that nominated you.
  • Share one new quote on three consecutive days on your blog. They can be from anywhere, anyone or anything.
  • On each of the three days, nominate three more bloggers to carry on with the fun! No pressure; nominees are free to decline.

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial and don’t forget to leave your thoughts 🙂