Creative Craft Mornings

Over the past several years, my skills have evolved.  I feel a sense of satisfaction after every completed project. Sometimes, even a little disappointed after a failed completed project – never the less, just the sheer joy of being able to create something with my own hands is exhilarating.

Till the period we were living at Arabian Ranches, I held craft workshop for ladies and art classes for children. That was, till 5 years back.  And then we moved to Al Warqa.

I missed my routine friendly creative exchanges with ladies and the young ones too.

There is such immense joy, when you have been instrumental in helping someone discover a latent talent.

Hence, moving to The Villa – Dubailand, gave me the opportunity to restart my workshops.

It was one of the best things about 2017, for me – CCM (creative craft mornings).

I was conducting craft workshops for women at my villa.

After a hiatus of nearly 5 years, I restarted this initiative and I was overwhelmed by the response.

In Dubai, we have sewing/quilt/crochet clubs, and we have quilling/papercrafting classes, however, I feel, there are far too many crafts that cannot be categorized and thats exactly, what I was offering.

There were ladies from the age group of 22 right upto 72 years !!  These were ladies, who had the zest to learn, inspite of busy schedules and running a hectic lifestyle, between career and family.   Ladies, who had to pick children from school, prepare a meal, manage their homes, attend meetings and yet they believed in giving the workshop, a chance.

I prefer to address all of them as my friends, rather than my students becoz, in essence, I learnt more from them than I taught them.  If we are really passionate about something, we will find a way to pursue it.  One of my dear friend came from Arabian Ranches and another friend from Mamzar while yet another from Jumeirah Beach Residence !!!

Finding a haven where you won’t be judged or laughed at, is precious. We learn better, we explore deeper, we grow further and we develop faster.

We did a project, where my friends had to hammer nails into a block of wood. I was really surprised to observe how quickly they learnt, steadied their hands and hit the hammer with firmness and not only that, its quite tiring having to hit the hammer 25 – 30 times.

Every project they attempted was remarkable, considering no one had attempted such projects before.

Every one learnt something new, a skill, a technique, a design,  especially me.

I learnt that, making friends with like minded creative people is A GIFT !!  And I cherish these friendships.

I was truly overwhelmed.

Enthusiasm, patience and perseverance are the only ingredients needed to brew any success story.

Needless to say, the results were amazing.

Here are some photos :-

I am determined to restart these workshops again this year as well.

I truly hope to be able to carry on with newer projects here in Mirdif too.

Do you enjoy a particular hobby ?  Are there any workshops close to where you live ? Would you like to join CCM in Dubai ?

I am sharing this post with my friends at the following links :-

Tuesday
Lou Lou Girls Fabulous Party – Lou Lou Girls
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Tutorials & Tips Link Party – Home Stories A to Z
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Tuesday at Our Home – Our Home Away From Home
From Dream to Reality – The DIY Dreamer
Hit Me With Your Best Shot – Just a Girl and Her Blog
Fluster’s Creative Muster – Fluster Buster
Inspire Me Tuesday – A Stroll Thru Life
Awesome Things Tuesday – My Craftily Ever After
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Friendship Friday Blog Hop @Create With Joy
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At The Fire House Linkup @ A Fireman’s Wife
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Brag About It Link Party @ Across The Blvd.
Best Of The Weekend @Little Miss Celebration
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Friday

BFF Open House

Bloggers LinkUp – anything goes

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Fit and Fashionable Friday – fitness and fashion

Flaunt It Friday

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Home Matters Linky Party

Live Life Well Link Up; Encouragement for the Journey

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Off-Fridays Mental Illness Blog Share (every other Friday) – mental health themed

Photo Friday (Thurs 8p)

Pretty Pintastic Party

The Weekly Postcard – travel related posts

Ultimate Pinterest Party (12p CST)

Weekly Wrap-Up (6a EST) – Homeschooling families can share the highlights of their school week

Fabulous Friday / Friday at the Fire Station / Friday Favorites / Welcome to the Weekend Blog Hop / Friday Frivolity / Friday Favorites / Flaunt it Friday / Creativity Unleashed / Feathered Nest Friday / Sweet Inspiration / Foodie Friday / Create, Bake, Grow, & GatherFiesta Friday / A Morning Cup of Joe / Weekend Potluck / SITS Girls Sharefest / Five on Friday / Friday Favorites / Friday Favorites / High Five for Friday / Friday Faves / Pretty Pintastic Link Party / Domestic Dayz / Blogger’s Pit Stop / Home Matters

Bloggers LinkUp – anything goes

Saturday

Snickerdoodle Make-Bake-Create /

Best of the Weekend (Fridays at 8 PM EST) /

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Financially Savvy Saturdays

Make My Saturday Sweet (Thursday eve)

Our Mini Linky Party

Saturday Sparks Link Party

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Happiness is Homemade

Sunday Features

Sunday Fitness & Food Link-Up

Weekly Wrap – fitness

 

Thank you for visiting me today.

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Upcycled chalk board tray.

Hey friends ! How’ve you been ?

If you’ve been following me, then you know, that the past couple of weeks have been nothing short of a roller coaster ride for me. I have been participating in several weekend fairs and exhibitions. Not only has it been exhaustive but for a change, we have been such an “outdoorish” family !!

I have been loving the fairs, interacting with people, getting little hands to try out crafts and just having a blast letting these events dry the creative juices out of me !! Its been fun.

I am one of those people who works best under pressure. I have a tendency to try out a dozen projects for a couple of days, and then there are those ‘slumpy’ days when I am glued to pinterest/fb and almost never enter the studio for weeks.

This particular chalk board tray was from ELC, I think. The boys used it for a couple of years until we moved into Warqa House and then, it gave in 😦  I loved the thin wooden tray used to keep chalks and dusters on both sides.  It was a shame to let it go, given it was made of wood and I really like those cheerful snakes/worms. So I unscrewed the trays and it remained as a stationery organizer sitting parallel to eachother on Sawaab’s desk.

Long story short. While the past few weeks have been full of finding dumped tree trunks and branches and utilizing them in various ways.  I decided, I could give that tray a facelift. The best way to organize on a busy study desk is to go vertical  ! I cut out two chunks of wood trunks and used the drill machine to drill some holes in them from above and bottom.

From not having a place to keep the pair, we not have 2 boys quarreling over who gets to keep it to display their stationery !!

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I decided against painting the trunks ~ Love the rustic look against the comical child-like colors of the trays.

Upcycle chalkboard tray

I love how the little branch protrudes from the main trunk. I deliberately trimmed it and kept it that way. I feel it adds character to piece. Do you ?

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This was one of my fastest projects to date !! It was over in just a matter of minutes. So if you too have any two pieces of shelves that could be given a similar look, please share it with me.

I am sharing this project with my friends at the following parties including Creativity unleashed & Funky Junk Interiors

Thank you for visiting me today & I hope you enjoyed my little creative idea.

If you like what you see at my blog, you could subscribe to my blog using any of the following media or simply ‘like’ me or ‘join’ me on the various platforms below 🙂

                 

 

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Ikea Pigeon Hole Organizer Makeover Tutorial

Ikea pigeon hole organizer makeover

I love the Ikea pigeon hole organizer.  Not necessary for functionality but I just love the look of tiny pockets ! This pigeon hole organizer  has been in the family for a couple of years.

Buddy would keep his hot wheels cars in them.  Eventually He outgrew the toys and I was only too happy to be the next recipient. Ofcourse, by now, you already know, that few things get dumped in our home, until and unless the cats chew on them or pee on them !!!

A little tender, love and makeover is all it kept screaming out to me for ~ until finally I decided to decoupage it.

Decoupage sounds like a very fancy French word but in reality, it just means to stick objects with paper cut outs. So don’t let the French term, intimidate you 🙂

The surface needs to be cleaned and sanded well. A layer of modge podge or any such medium can be applied. Then you can cut out pieces of tissue or paper and stick it on carefully. Make sure to get any air bubbles out.  When your certain, that its dried, apply another coat of modge podge to seal it. This is the tutorial in a nut shell.

Here’s the pictorial 🙂

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Hideous, isn’t it ??? Whats the connection between little boys and the skull face with two cross bones, still remains a mystery to me !!

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Ugly paint sticking out from our previous wall paint on its edges.

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First, I gathered design paper, in various patterns and colors and decided how the collage should be placed. This project is excellent at getting rid of good by small scraps of paper !

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Took measurements and decided which cutouts would contrast with which patterns. Then came my drawer of amazing edge punches ! Oh how I love Martha stewart 🙂 ok ok Fiskars, I love you too 🙂

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One after the other, I distressed the edges and kept covering them all with modge podge. (I am quite the distress-addict 🙂

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For the top, side and bottom, I painted some off-white synthetic paint. Two coats got me the results I wanted.

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Finally, I coated one layer of modge podge on the pigeon holes.              AND ………………………………………….. VOILA !!!!!!!!

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Talking of decoupage, If your looking for decoupage supplies in Dubai. I am happy to recommend the decoupage specialist, Creativa Middle East. Located at Times Square, they have a huge array of art and decoupage supplies. Definitely the go-to place for Decoupage.

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I love the transformation and hope you liked it too.

If you like what you see at my blog, you could subscribe to my blog using any of the following media or simply ‘like’ me or ‘join’ me on the various platforms below 🙂

                 

I am linking this project to the following parties HERE.

Savvy Southern Style  , Between Naps on the porch.

Have you attempted any transformations lately ? If so, I’d love to hear about it.

Thank you for dropping by.

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Face Qibla.

Hello friends.

It feels wonderful being back after my Ramadhan break.  I am grateful to be alive, in good health and happy to be able to fill you up with my creative endeavors.

Today I am sharing a simple plaque.  The message is the focus, and the message is deep ~ hence I did not want to add any fancy embellishments to distract the essence of this quote.

The definition of Qiblah is the direction of the Kaaba (the sacred building at Mecca), to which Muslims turn to, at prayer.

Muslims all over the world, pray towards the Kaaba, five times a day.  However the meaning of this quote is far deeper than that.

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QIBLAH PLAQUE

I am linking this plaque at the following fantastic parties.

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Thank you for visiting me today.

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Wooden Crate Makeover ~ Tutorial.

This wooden crate is from ELC had been a resident in Eman’s room (the youngest son)  till last year,  where a couple of Action Men has established their headquarters in it.  As Eman grew older so did his collection. I made him a more suitable place as the headquarters of his Action Men. (that’s another later post)

You already know that very few storage items find their way to my trash can, hence that also meant that the little box was again at the mercy of yours truly.  I decided to work on its appearance before qualifying it to enter the “girl” domain (my craft studio)

Naturally (darlings as they are)  my boys always come to my rescue  (or should I just say, I have my ways of persuading them !!) We got all those hideous stickers out, alittle sanding, 2 coats of matt pink paint, some stencils on the longer edges and some chalk paint on the shorter edge and we have a pleasant looking crate !

 

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I think, all the pictures are in the way of a self-explanatory pictorial. I hope you like the new look of the charming little crate. It has been housing several tiny buckets of paint brushes, copic markers, and stationery.

I am sharing this crate transformation with the following link parties here.

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Thank you for visiting me today.

Until we meet again in the virtual world,

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Repurposed Bedside table to a CAT TREE / Tower.

Hello friends. My last post was about the cat tree that I built with some left over wood.

You already know, there  is no dearth of cats in my home as well as outside my home. Hence, ‘ONE’ cat tree/scratching post is not going to suffice all our needs.  I’m always on the look out  for stuff that can be improvised/repurposed/upcycled and used as a cat home or shelter.

Summers in Dubai can be rather cruel. The stray cats around the house, find protection from the scorching heat under cars or the few trees in our area.

I knew that this summer, I wanted to provide Charlie and Oreo, the kittens outside our yard, a safe space to hide in the afternoon.  The first cat tree had been quite a hit with all my fur babies and it was time to try out something different and better !  God helps those who help themselves couldn’t be far from reality in this case. I found this red bed side table and knew instantly, this was my answered prayer.

That afternoon, I got to work on it ~ ofcourse with my super helpful sons (those lovely boys who are constantly lending a hand to their madly creative mom 😦  )

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So this is how we found it. We removed the leftover drawer and the steel rails too.
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The table was sturdy but missing two drawers. My base had to be very strong so that when the cats jumped on the higher levels, it shouldn’t knock the base and this easily qualified it.

 

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Ofcourse, I dived into my pile of wood and pallets and came up with some pallet wood which was then cut to equal size and glued and nailed to a large piece of thin cork wood. (the kind that forms the back of Ikea Billy bookcases )

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After gluing and nailing all four wood supports, I cut an MDF wood similar in size to the one already used with the same dimensions.
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We then drilled 2/3 screws into the MDF and adhered it the four supports. My son is hammering some nails on the corners for extra strength, This guy is my wing man 🙂
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……..and its already turned night 😦 We nailed the thin side of the ‘trunk’ onto the side table. Then we stapled the pieces of left over carpet onto the two, bases, above.
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Ofcourse we do have a quality inspector, without who’s consent, the product is not released forward 🙂
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Voila !!! There you have it !!
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I stapled a tiny cat toy, made with some yarn ~ Just to lure them into trying out the new ‘hangout’
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My youngest had it trolleyed to the main gate. That’s my Dad in the background. He’s one of my biggest inspirations, whom I have watched for years, churning out amazing projects.
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Found its resting place close to the gate.
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That’s Sofu, sharpening his nails on the carpet ~ exactly like I wanted him to do with it !!
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Miscki is third in line, to inspect the “watch tower” 1st level # checked !
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Second level # checked !! Miski has given her approval too 🙂

 

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I love it when a project works out as I had envisioned it.  I am happy to report that the cat tree/watch tower has survived for the last three months but is inhabited totally by Pepper – my Tom. He has laid his claim on the watch tower. Its his throne becoz its placed at the point of entry into the house. He guards the house from atop the tower !!!  There are times, when I believe, there is a watch dog somewhere inside Pepper and at other times, I convince myself that he’s just a very very very territorial Tom.

What started out as an attempt to make Charlie and Oreo comfortable, turned out to be Pepper’s new turf. Oh well, that just means, I have to work on another cat tree in the near future 🙂

I am linking this cat tree idea to the following link parties here.

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Best wishes

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DIY Cat Tree Tutorial.

Once upon a time, we lived in a lovely home at Arabian Ranches with our sons and two cats ~ the Arabian mau, we called Pepper and an elegant but snooty calico called Keiki.

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My handsome 7 year old Pepper. (rather fed up of the constant intrusions in the house )
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My beautiful princess ~ Keiki. Doesn’t she look glamorous ?

After 8 beautiful and blissful years, we moved to Al Warqa house ~ a much larger home and decided that we could earn extra blessings by fostering homeless new-born kittens with their mama in the summer, till they were old enough to be adopted.  Long story short ~ Two little ones who never got adopted last year, are still with me.  ENTER ~ Sofu and Miski.  Sofu is a super friendly but reckless boy while Miski has reservations about EVERYTHING ! While sofu prefers to sleep right on top of my face ~ Miski prefers to remain at a safe distance by my feet !  While Sofu is fearless and highly energetic  ~ Miski fears EVERYTHING !!   They both are loud ~ oh so loud !!! They are such a delight to have around ~ but then, aren’t all cats ??

Introducing ………….. Sofu and Miski  { at 4 months age }

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Sofu and Pepper are the two boys in the house while Keiki and Miski are the girls.

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Pepper and Sofu ~ each claiming his own place on the porch.
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Pepper and Sofu ~ have claimed many a chairs, this way.
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Miski, Sofu and Pepper ~ basking in the sun. They even claimed who would sit infront of the tyre and who would sit behind it.

Pepper my tabby ~ took 3 months to get used to their presence ~ Keiki still cant stand them 😦   Reserved as she is, she just keeps hiding from both of them. The new babies are a year old now, while my older ones are 8 and 7 years respectively.  . . . . . .  and you thought this post was about a Cat tree ?????  Hang on ~ Just kidding ~ IT IS about the CAT TREE  !!

I noticed the turf wars between Miski and Sofu occurring more frequently and decided perhaps giving Miscki her own little space would be a good idea, since Sofu (the boy) is super dominating and super possessive, she always got the shorter end of the stick.  After checking out some of the Cat trees prices in a couple Pet stores ~ I decided I would have to try and build a simple cat tree by myself ~ after all, necessity IS the mother of all inventions !!

So off, I jumped into my pile of planks, pallets and chunks of wood in the backyard and grabbed two large sturdy pieces of mdf.

The base has to be a larger rectangle while the other piece can be 30%  smaller. I had 2 pieces of grey-colored carpet left over from another project which came in handy. I cut out two pieces to the size of the planks.

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Measuring the carpet to the size of the planks.
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Dont try to cut the carpet using a normal scissor ~ It WILL break ! Use an x acto blade or a scissor for fabrics.
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This large piece of wood was chopped down to a short size. This would form the trunk of the tree.
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I marked the center of the rectangular wood to figure out where I would be drilling the holes.
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Before drilling the holes, the carpet needed to be fixed to both the base as well as the roof of the tree. Here, I have applied some white wood glue and let it settle for just a bit.
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After allowing the carpet to stick to the planks, I stapled the edges from all sides ~ this is necessary becoz the cats would be pulling/clawing/scratching the carpet a lot and we wouldn’t want the carpet to get pulled out easily.
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Here both the pieces are ready having been glued and stapled. I let them dry all night.

The next morning ~ I drilled 3 holes in the base of the tree from the side which did not have the carpet attached to it and had the ‘trunk’ attached to it. The same process was carried out for the roof of the tree, but from the side of the carpet. I did not color the trunk, becoz the cats would be using it to stretch and file their nails, anyways.

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As if, she knew all along that this was going to be her favorite spot !! She jumped right on !

And Finally !!!!

CAT TREE DIY

Poor Sofu, is showing just how neglected he’s feeling !! Quite an actor ~ that sofu 🙂

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CAT TREE

This project was fun and so creatively gratifying. I loved that my cats appreciate and fully utilize it too.  If you have cats and planks at home and are not intimidated by the drill machine, then you could easily try out this project too.

Don’t you just love such trash to treasure projects ?? I know I do !!

I am linking my cat tree to the following fantastic link parties here, as always.

Thank you for visiting me today ~ I hope you leave alittle inspired.

If you liked what you saw, kindly subscribe to my blog or any of the following media platforms to keep in touch with my current projects and ideas.

Till we meet again ..

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DIY Family Organization Board Tutorial.

Dressing up mundane objects with a little color, some craft paper, few embellishments and alittle TLC gives me a lot of creative satisfaction. Ordinarily we tend to throw a lot of packing material, pieces of fabric, and even things that can be easily recycled. But not me 🙂  A large part of the “junk” is cleaned/washed and stored for future projects and ideas. {and then hubby and I quarrel about the amount of “junk” being stacked up in the shed !! ~ sounds familiar ?}

Jokes apart ~ Its one of those things that I so wish to educate kids about. A little change can go a long way in saving the state Mother Earth is in 😦

This project is totally, an upcycle freak’s dream ~ Everything is recycled in this project ! I made this board a couple of days back when felt the need of an organizational board to keep track of some of the engagements, meals, doctors appointments and reminders for the week ahead.

I didn’t need something fancy ~ just something simple and reliable. I dived into my backyard wood stock and came across this thin sheet of cork wood. It seemed to be perfect. Alittle sanding here and there and it was ready for being dressed.

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I’ve always been a sucker for polka dots and I had just the perfect, bright and happy design paper for the background.

I needed a couple of containers to hold pencils, pins, rubberbands etc ~ I reused milk cartons and some laban cartons to do the job.

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With a little spray paint ~ they really perked up. For a more aesthetic look, I added some scraps of the polka dot cardstock and finished off the look with a few tiny clothespin. Has made an immense difference, isn’t it ??

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Next a few clothespin were modge podged with co-ordinating stripes pattern.

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I also placed one old cork coaster for pinning school circulars or reminders.

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I had this title printed off my printer with some fancy font and layered it over a nice textured bright orange handmade paper.

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Assembling the whole board was really quite easy.  Naturally the title went on top while the rest just fell into the place that could leave enough space to pin things, clip things and hold stuff in the containers.  They were all modge podged ( the word is a verb too !!! ) except for the cork coaster and the milk cartons. For those, I decided to use E6000.

Btw ~ do you know that you do get the duplicate of E6000 ? Trust ‘reliable’ China to come up with ANYTHING duplicate. Its E600 and the tube looks almost exactly similar to the original.

Once everything had dried ~ I modge podged over the board along with everything (embellishments ) again. That gave it a really nice and more professional finish.

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And Voila !!!! Two holes were made on the top of the board {goof up :- those holes would look a lot better and less chipped, had I drilled them instead of hammering them } so as to hang it with a cord.

family organization board tutorial

family organization board

This project took nearly 2 – 3 hours including drying time. And all the materials are recycled so you don’t really have to buy any of the tools or materials. Its readily available in almost all homes.

Do you have an organization board at home ? Would you like to share the picture with me  ?

I’m sharing this board with the following fantastic parties here

If you like what you saw here, please join me at any of the following media platforms :-

           

Thank you for visiting me and hope you leave a little inspired 🙂

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Upcyle Pallets to Sign Boards.

Hello friends !  Since the majority of my visitors are from USA, I hope you guys are enjoying the spring. Bet all your soil beds are ready and the herbs planted already.

Today, I’m sharing a few sign boards, I made, from pallets.

I have a brand-spanking-new silhouette machine which has found its way out of the box and 8months later, I am still no closer to using it than I was, the first time, I pulled it out of its carton 😦      Any guidance, inspiration or ‘push’ will be highly appreciated 🙂

I have free-handed the writing. It was rather difficult becoz I wrote with the sharpies and the wood was not smooth. I cant say, I’m very pleased with them but I liked the ” herb garden” quite a lot.

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I am sharing these sign boards with my friends at the following parties here.

Have you upcycled any pallets this week ??

If you liked what you saw in my blog, please subscribe to my blog posts by any of the following media :-

                    

I’m so glad you stopped by my little blog corner. Please stay a while and be a part of my creative adventures.

Peace

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