Tag Archives: Handmade

DIY: Wreath

DIY Wreath | Tiffany Lane Handmade

This project is so quick, simple and cheap! Just the way I like ’em.

If you’ve ever wanted to make your own wreath, there’s no reason to wait. Head over to your nearest craft or hobby store. Right. Now. I’ll wait.

All you need is a wreath starter, mine is grape vine, and some florals and/or other garb of your choosing, hairspray or other spray adhesive, then top if off with some ribbon, twine, rope to hang it. Easy as pie.

But for those of you who need structure, here’s the breakdown in an easy to read format.

Time: 15-30 minutes

Materials
wreath starter (grape vine, foam, etc.)
florals/decorations (dried flowers, feathers, moss, etc.)
scissors
spray adhesive

ribbon/rope/twine

Process

Weave/attach your florals/decorations into your wreath starter until it’s perfect. You may need to weave and/or trim the ends back through the wreath on the backside so they don’t stick out too far. Spray with adhesive, especially if you used dried flowers, so everything stays in place. Tie your ribbon/rope/twine from the backside, being sure it’s long enough to allow the wreath to hang as low as you prefer.

Wah-lah!

DIY Wreath | Tiffany Lane Handmade

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Homemade Gift Guide: Body Care

Wow, can you believe it’s almost Christmas again already? I’m feeling a little behind in the gift department this year, mostly for my lack of planning ahead. Serious shocker for a seasoned planner! But never fear my friends, I’m getting it together finally, making lists and crossing off to-dos.

One of my must do favorites every year is homemade gifts and this year I happen to be keen on body care. Today I’m sharing two simple, inexpensive, and quick recipes: sea salt body scrub and salt bath soak.

ORANGE BASIL SEA SALT BODY SCRUB

Orange Basil Body Scrub | Tiffany Lane

Orange Basil Body Scrub | Tiffany Lane

Orange Basil Body Scrub | Tiffany Lane

Ingredients
2 cups sea salt
1 cup oil (sweet almond oil* or olive)
2-4 tablespoons orange essential oil

2-4 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

The basic ratio is 2 parts salt to 1 part oil, plus essential oils of your choosing for scent. For this recipe, I used orange essential oil and chopped, fresh basil. As always, feel free to adjust ratios to your tastes. You could always use basil essential oil instead of fresh basil. I happened to have fresh basil on hand and I also think it looks pretty.

Salt is a natural preservative so no need to worry about the oils or basil going rancid.  I know some of you may be into substituting recipes for what you have on hand, I am a huge advocate for that.  But in this case, please do not use sugar in place of the salt or you may need to refrigerate it (because of the fresh basil) which just isn’t very convenient for something you’re going to use in the bathroom.

PEPPERMINT SALT BATH SOAK

Peppermint Bath Soak | Tiffany Lane

Peppermint Bath Soak | Tiffany Lane

Peppermint Bath Soak | Tiffany Lane

Ingredients
2 cups salt

2-4 tablespoons peppermint essential oil

This is probably one of the easiest homemade gifts I’ve ever made.  Two ingredients and stir or shake to coat. It doesn’t get much better than that. I used both rock salts and fine salt for a lovely combination, then added in a bit of peppermint oil until fragrant. Endless possibilities for scents, use whatever you have on hand.

Need some more homemade gift ideas?

Candles are another great homemade gift that would go along nicely with these.  I can see myself now soaking in my salt bath, hands and face scrubbed smooth, and a refreshing candle glowing away. Check out my recent post for the full candle making DIY.

And don’t forget about the lip balm to round it out. This one is definitely on my gift list. As a matter of fact, I already ordered my containers and labels, just waiting for them to arrive so I can begin the preparations!

If you’re looking for a bigger ticket item, most women love massages and they make great gifts.  Go for a gift card to a local spa and add on a homemade body care gift or two for a cute package.

READER FEEDBACK: What are your favorite homemade gifts to give and receive?

P.S. This post can be found at Holistic Home Link Party!

*Tiffany Lane Handmade is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

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DIY: Candle Making (Again)

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Katie and I made these candles earlier this year and for her birthday I decided to make her a special one with the 2 pounds of soy wax flakes I had at home waiting for good use.

In my browsing for something to give her, I found this bowl at Anthropologie, one of her favorite stores.

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Materials
Wax Pouring Pot
Large Metal Spoon
Soy Wax Flakes
Wicks &Tabs
Essential Oils

Container

What To Do

The first step is to measure your wax to make sure you have enough. Per our calculations, the wax flakes melts down to about 5 ounces per cup or 21.5 ounces per pound. For Katie’s candle, the bowl will easily hold about 2 cups of liquid.  For ease of calculations I went with 15 ounces of liquid as my base, requiring about 3 cups of dry flakes.

Before melting my wax, it’s a good idea to get the wicks ready. Since they don’t like to stand up on their own, I used tape to create a sort of divider, keeping them in place and something for them to lean on.

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Melt the flakes a cup at a time over low heat, then take the pot off the heat and add any essential oils for scent a teaspoon at a time.

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

Once the wax cools, I’ve found the scent dissipates a little, so I made the warm wax stronger than I actually wanted the candle. For Katie’s candle, I decided on orange eucalyptus and ended up using 1 1/4 teaspoons eucalyptus and 3 1/2 teaspoons orange essential oils. Keep in mind that some essential oils have color and others are clear. Orange essential oil is definitely orange in it’s concentrated liquid state, but will turn a pale yellow once the candle has cooled.

Pour almost all the wax into your container, reserving a little to top it off once the initial pour sets.

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

The initial pour tends to dimple or crack since the volume of the wax doesn’t cool evenly, but a thin top layer should cool more evenly preventing dimples and cracks. It will take a while for the initial pour to cool.  Once cooled, remelt your reserve wax, if necessary, and top off your candle. This layer cools much more quickly as there is less wax to cool.

After the top layer has cooled completed, you can remove the tape (or whatever you used to hold your wicks in place) and trim the wicks. As a finishing touch, I added some babies breath flowers and fern hairs. Wallah!

Candle Making | Tiffany Lane

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Real Wedding: Jodee + Alex’s Rustic Wedding Stationery

wedding stationery TD17

Burlap and kraft paper. I’m in crafting heaven.

Jodee and Alex were married this past weekend and what a lovely affair it was.

Leading up to the nuptials I had the honor of creating their wedding stationery.  The wedding featured burlap textiles and khaki tones with soft pink accents all in a gorgeous outdoor setting complete with my very favorite flower: baby’s breath.

So much fun it was to be a part of their special day, from planning the details, making their stationery, celebrating at her bridal shower, partying during the bachelorette weekend, coordinating on the day of, and most of all, standing at her side as they said “I do.”

I can’t wait to see their photos to relive the day with them over and over, but for now we can enjoy the stationery.

wedding stationery TD3

wedding stationery TD2

wedding stationery TD6

wedding stationery TD15

wedding stationery TD11

wedding stationery TD14

And here’s the card I made for us to sign for the lovely couple:

Love Wedding Card | Tiffany Lane

Love Wedding Card | Tiffany Lane

Stick around the blog and check back often for their wedding photos.  I can’t wait to see them and you know I won’t hold out on you for long!

Did you miss a few of my planning posts along the way?  Not to worry, catch up here!

Are you in the market for stationery or rustic home decor?  I hand make all sorts of things: cards, invitations, book marks, tags, jar labels, burlap and paper garlands, and wall decor.  Check out my Etsy shop, Tiffany Lane Creations, and feel free to message me with any questions regarding custom orders.

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DIY: Rustic Framed Chalkboard

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

It’s been way too long since I’ve posted a DIY for you guys and I also waited way too long to make this!

Materials
sound/particle board/ply wood (something with a smooth surface)
wood trim
chalkboard paint
paint brush
nails
wood glue (optional)

wall mounts

Tools
saw
sander/sand paper

hammer

What To Do

Saw your sound/particle board to size or have your local hardware store cut it for you.  I know The Home Depot will saw materials for free upon purchase. Mine is 24″x36″.

Now it’s time to paint the board so the first coat can dry while you cut the trim.  You want long, smooth strokes here so it’s as smooth as possible, paying attention to the edges.  Be sure to paint the sides too since they may show a little from certain angles (I forgot this part and had to go back after I was done, oh well!).  You will need at least two coats of paint, so after the trim is cut and the allotted time (per your specific paint’s instructions) has passed, go ahead and apply the second coat.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

For your wood trim, decide how you want the corners to come together (i.e. both corners angled like most picture frames or both squared like blocks). For ease and preference, I decided on squared corners.  Next, measure your wood trim to size and saw. My length trims are 37″x3.5″ and width trims  20.75″x1.75″.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

My width trims are thinner than my length trims simply because I repurposed an old piece of wood for the trims and it was not long enough to wrap all the way around the sized backing I wanted.  So we cut off the lengths from the piece of wood then cut one piece for the width, which we then sawed in half lengthwise.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

Time to sand your freshly cut edges (and any other sides that need sanding)…

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

…then arrange your trim pieces where you want them directly on your painted board. Because I wasn’t exactly sure how much overhang of the trim I wanted, we opted to wait and do a final cut of the smaller width trims until we arranged the pieces on the board.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

In the shot below you can see how much overhang we have; about 1.5 inches on the length edges and a .5 inch on the widths.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

Once your trims are perfectly sized and placed (and after you’ve applied the second coat of paint and it’s dried), start adhering them to your board.  You can use the wood glue here in place of or in addition to nails.  We opted for no glue because I was getting impatient and I figured the nails would suffice, but looking back I should have opted for the glue for security.  Apparently the particle board we used doesn’t take well to nails (they don’t hold in very tightly), so we ended up using more nails than I had planned on.  While the trims are secure now and I am not concerned about them falling off the wall, I am a little worried if we ever move, I’m not sure they’ll hang on during transit. Use your judgement. If in doubt and you have more patience then me, use the glue!

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

Here are the nails I used.  I like them because they’re a little more rustic and not so shiny like they were freshly manufactured. This is important because the nails will show if you put them through the trim. If you put them through the backing, they either may not go through the trim enough to hold it up, or the end of the nail will push through the trim. In the latter case, you could hammer the the nail tails sideways into the wood, which could look cool too.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

Now before you get all crazy and start writing all over your board, you need to condition it.  The paint I used instructed to wait three days before conditioning to allow the paint to set.  After conditioning, I can write on it, but have to wait seven days (from painting day – not an additional seven days) before wiping it down with a damp cloth for cleaning.

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

Almost there! Before you can hang this baby on the wall, you’ve got to attach your wall mounts.  We used two standard picture hanging mounts, one in each corner.  Be sure you note the weight capacity of the mounts before buying, your chalkboard probably isn’t as light as a standard picture.  Measure your placement from the top and sides to make sure both mounts are aligned correctly.  Once the mounts are attached to your board, measure from the top of the trim to the middle of your mount and note the measurement (this will be helpful once you’re ready to hang it). 

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany LaneHold the board against the wall where you want to hang it, and mark the wall with a pencil where the top and sides of the board are.  Now measure your wall from the ceiling, noting how far down and in the mounts are on your board, then mark on the wall where the nails should go.  Once the first nail is in, I would remeasure to be sure before you nail in the second. If you measured correctly, your board should fit on the wall nicely!

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

DIY Rustic Framed Chalkboard | Tiffany Lane

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Spring Crafting

outdoor shelves craft - inspired by charm Photo Courtesy of Inspired By Charm

It’s been Spring for more than a month now, so I hope you’ve had a chance to do some Spring cleaning, or at least added it to your to-do list, or at the very least thought about it.  I did some cleaning out a couple weeks ago, tossing clothes, shoes and beauty products I no longer wear or use, and it felt great!

But as cleansing as Spring cleaning can be, crafting is so much more fun!  Gear up for some craft inspiration and head over to Pinterest’s DIY & Craft section as well as my Pinterest DIY Project board.  Check out my crafting section right here on the blog too!

I always have lots of ideas on my craft to-do list.  Right now I’m looking forward to making a few bug repellent soy wax candles for the backyard, luggage ID dog tags, a workout shirt from old t-shirt, an essential oil diffuser, a pallet coffee table, wine bottle candles and wine bottle candle covers (with our new bottle cutting kit).  What’s on your craft to-do list?

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DIY: Candle Making

candle making 11 - tiffany lane

This is just another one of those DIYs that I am asking myself why I waited so long to do.  Candle making is so easy, it just takes a little prep work and patience.

These adorable little jar candles will be favors at Katie and Jon’s wedding next month.  Neither of us had made candles before and luckily Katie did a little research beforehand so she had the appropriate hardware available (which I wouldn’t have since I failed to do the research, way to go Katie!).  For candle making supplies and tips, check out Candlewic.com.

You’ll want to get a wax pouring pot and have a large metal spoon on hand as well for stirring.  In addition, you’ll need wicks and tabs.  It’s easier to purchase wicks with tabs already attached and there are also a few different types of wicks, two of which I am familiar with.  Katie bought cotton wicks with no coating, which are a more economical route, especially if you’re making 120 candles.  One of the drawback is that they do not stand on their own so you either need to purchase wick holders or reset the wicks as the wax hardens.  We did the latter and it turned out just fine.  On the other hand, I have some cotton wicks coated in wax at home, which are a little more pricey, however they are more sturdy so no resetting or holders needed.  The burn time may also vary depending on wick coating and braiding.  A bunch of factors come into play with regard to burn time and Rustic Escentuals has a pretty good write up if you’re interested.  Below is an example using the wick holders, which we ended up not really needing, but they do help.

candle making 5 - tiffany lane

Another tip regarding the wicks and tabs: using a tacky glue, adhere the wicks/tabs to the bottom of your jar(s) before pouring in your wax so they don’t shift.

candle making 1 - tiffany lane

Speaking of the wax, it would be helpful to know how it melts down, measurement wise.  We chose to use soy wax flakes, (but you can also use wax blocks ) and as you can imagine, measuring a cup of dry flakes melts down to a considerably less amount.  We measured 10 dry cups of flakes melting down to approximately 50 ounces, about 5 ounces per cup.  But since the wax is measured in weight versus volume when purchased, you may like to know that we also measured 20 pounds of wax melting down to approximately 430 ounces, about 21.5 ounces per pound. We made 123 3.5 ounce candles in 4 ounce jars.

candle making 2 - tiffany lane

We found that the most efficient way to melt the wax is a cup at a time, adding a cup of dry to the already melted wax, up to about ten cups.  One cup melts much more quickly than ten at a time as too many flakes all at once just clumped together.  But when you pour a cup of dry flakes into already melted wax, they don’t clump at all and since each flake is surrounded by hot wax, they melt exponentially faster.

candle making 3 - tiffany lane

Once the wax is melted, take it off the heat before adding your scent since you don’t want your scent to burn in any way.  Apparently there is a particular heat to reach or not exceed when melting your wax, adding your scent and pouring, but we didn’t get that scientific.  Winging it worked for us.  We used a scent made particular for candle making, but you can also use essential oils, which I plan to try out soon.  Eucalyptus anyone?

As far as how much scent to use, our scent suggested anywhere between 2% and 8% scent to wax.  Using our approximate average of about 6% scent to wax, 32 ounces of scent made all of our 123 3.5 ounce candles.

candle making 7 - tiffany lane

When pouring your wax, it’s helpful to keep a paper towel or napkin on hand since the wax may drip off the edge and down the side of your pouring pot.

candle making 4 - tiffany lane

Also keep in mind when pouring your candles to leave a little room in the top of your jar or mold after the first pour, because it is recommended to top it off with a thin layer.  Basically, the wax will harden as it cools, but many times the top layer will be wavy or have air bubbles; however, when you are pouring a very thin top off layer, the wax dries more evenly since it is such a small amount of wax.

Wax beginning to harden after first pour:

candle making 6 - tiffany lane

Hardened wax after first pour (notice the dimpling?):

candle making 8 - tiffany lane

And after the top off layer dried:

candle making 9 - tiffany lane

Then just trim the wick:

candle making 10 - tiffany lane

And your done:

candle making 11 - tiffany lane

Stay tuned for an upcoming bottle cutting DIY where we upcycle empty food jars and bottles to candles and candle covers!

P.S. – thanks for not minding my cell phone tutorial photos.  We made the candles on a whim (sort of) and neither of us had our actual cameras.

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Filed under Crafting, DIY + Tutorials, March National Craft Month