Embroidered Wall Hanging (From a Placemat!)

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So, I was strolling through Target, admiring ceramic snails and galvanized metal trays (seriously, Target’s Threshold line is my favorite ever), when I happened upon a lovely section of clearance items. This placemat immediately caught my eye – I loved the colors, and loved the price tag even more!

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I grabbed the only remaining two, but with very little intention of using them as actual placemats. Here’s how I created this super cheerful wall hanging for around $2!

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Supplies:

Cloth Placemat

Embroidery Thread

Square Dowel

Wood Glue

Needle (with a bigger eye for the embroidery thread)

Not pictured – straight pins & twine

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I printed out a nice large “hello” in my favorite font – Sacramento – and pinned it in place.

I doubled the thread to ensure my letters stood out nicely, and then began to stitch along the center of the lettering. (I added an inch or so of lead in to the h).

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I did not worry too much about keeping the stitches consistent – I found it worked nicely to do longer stitches for the straight parts of each letter, and smaller stitches around the curves.

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After I traced all the letters, I tied the thread off securely in the back, and then very carefully removed the paper. I cut the excess paper away, and carefully pulled/tore the paper in pieces while making sure the stitching stayed intact.

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The final step was to use the wood glue to attach the dowel to the top of the placemat, and then to tie a piece of twine for hanging it.

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I am so, so happy with this. The colors are so springy and fun!

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Make anything awesome for two bucks lately? Or find a fun new use for something ordinary, like a placemat?

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Birch Slice Monogram Art

I love combining natural elements with a little touch of glitz. I also love monograms. So, basically, I love this little guy a whole lot!

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To make this little monogram artwork, I used:

A birch slice (purchased at Michael’s, because I live in the city).

A wooden letter C  – I have like 7 “C”s in various sizes & materials. I love my last initial, because I love that I share it with my hubby!

Craft Paint – White (Folk Art) & Gold (Martha Stewart) & a little paint brush

A photo hanger

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First, I nailed the picture hanger into the back of the wood slice.

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Then painted the C gold – two coats.

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And I carefully painted inside the wood slice with the white.

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I attached the letter with wood glue, and hung this baby on my wall!

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I’m sort of obsessed with this. Like I want to make about twenty five more and create a whole birch-slice-alphabet-wall.

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How about you? Make anything cool lately!?

Rustic Valentine’s Day Decor

I know, I know – Valentine’s day is still a month away. But this is not a very valentine-sy post. I just didn’t really know what else to title this post. Since it’s that awkward time of the winter, when Christmas decorations are gone, and it’s really too cold to break out all my yellow springtime stuff – I’ve put together a rustic, wintery/sorta valentinesy vignette above the buffet cabinet in our dining area.

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One of my New Year’s resolutions this year was to buy less & create more – and so this scene is compiled entirely of things I had, plus a few newly crafted items.

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I’m still in love with burlap, in case you hadn’t noticed. I will show you how I made the burlap arrow art tomorrow. The second piece is a burlap wrapped canvas (how exciting is it that Michael’s is carrying these now?) with a red felt heart glued to its center. I am debating adding something to that one – but for now I enjoy it’s simplicity and contrast.

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The lantern is one of the pair I purchased on craigslist for our wedding (originally from Ikea, I believe). The large mason jar is rockin’ some feathers, the baby jar is filled with moss & a tea light candle, and I stuck one of my Print Studio photo squares of me & the hubs into a third jar for a fun twist on the traditional picture frame.

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Two of these books (Paper to Petals and Modern Rustic) were Christmas gifts that I am so in love with. Those birch candles are from our wedding reception centerpieces. Ahh…memories!

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I threw a simple burlap runner on our pedestal table, and my three Pottery Barn mercury glass vases (a wedding gift) are serving as a centerpiece for now.

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So there’s some of my decor for the winter months – and since I threw in a red heart, it should last me a good month or so!

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How about you? Have you packed away all your holiday decorations? Do you decorate for Valentine’s day, or just hold out for the cheery colors of Spring that we get to bring back in just a few months?

Have a wonderful week!

A Lesson in Hanging Things

Remember how proud I was of my little Monogram Wall Art created after a particularly lovely Saturday at the craft store? It found a home on the door to our coat closet, and was a nice touch to our living room. FH loved it, and my future in-laws (FILs?) admired it as well.

I’m not sure if this was some don’t-make-crafts-with-your-future-monogram-until-you’re-really-married-and-have-changed-your-name karma, or just poor hanging technique on my part, but either way my little frame spontaneously fell from it’s nail in the middle of dinner last night.

Sad face.

I hope it is not future-last-name-related karma, or my L.L.Bean tote bag initialed with my future initials may meet a similar fate…

(p.s. this tote holds EVERYTHING.)

The frame broke- however the burlap-covered glass piece & letter remained intact and well-glued.

No matter- I’ve been jonesing to return to Michael’s anyway, so I guess I’ll just have to swing by this week & pick up another frame, then simply pop the glass out and stick it in a new frame (after I paint it white- the original frame was a black oval).

Then, I will hang it ‘properly’, as FH says I put the nail in wrong. How many ways are there to hammer a nail into a door? Apparently a wrong and a right way, at the very least.

As long as I hammer the new nail in with my trusty pink hammer, I’m sure it will hold this time.

(My pink hammer & screwdriver have been with me since my college days. Once I installed a window air conditioner all by myself, in a third floor/oddly shaped bedroom window on a 90 degree plus day in late July. Impressive, I know.)