raori

living handmade


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Gold and silver garland from cake box paper

bar garland

Sometimes we have relatives coming over, and they always bring cakes. Inside the boxes they bring from the bakery are of course the creamy pastries topped with all kinds of jellied fruit, marzipan or Belgian chocolate, but it is what you find in the bottom of the box that interests me: a thick paper with one side gold, one side silver. All you need to do is: wash it up, cut small triangles and stitch them together on the sewing machine (or by hand) into this pretty little bunting!


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New bathroom shelf

shelf

The lack of storage in our shower room was driving me nuts, so I grabbed some left-over fabrics in my studio and a piece of wood and made this!

The shelf contains of two fabric bands with a button hole for the screws on each end. Fold them together and balance the plank on a straight line. When you are happy with your shelf you could also nail down a few nails through the fabric underneath the plank for extra security.


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Barbie house rehab!

barbie house-8barbie house-7 We have a beautiful wooden Barbie house, but they kids never played with it. The house had painted furnitures on the wall and my kids didn’t like that. They said they wished it had wall paper like in real rooms instead. We decided to do a mega clean up of the house we had instead of giving it away. First, we through away half of the dolls. Plus a lot of the half-broken plastic furnitures that came with it. All the small things that comes with a Barbie house; clothes, bags, food, glasses, make-up etc, was thrown into a big box next to the house where they had been long-gone forgotten. My philosophy when it comes to toys is: the less they have, the more they play with it! Therefore, they got to keep 6 of their favourite Barbie dolls, two boys and two girls, plus 2 small Barbie kids. The box went away. Anything they wanted had to fit into the house, if it didn’t we threw it away. I took down my old dollhouse furnitures and small things from the attic instead (I made lots of miniature things in my late teens) and we got to work on our new house. We found some pretty printed Japanese rice paper in DIY shop which we mod-podged to the walls. We added drawer lining to the floors, apart from the bathroom, which we painted. We also painted the outside walls in plain white. The plants are painted and cut masking tape glued to metal wire, put into a flower pot made of clay before drying. The closet of the balcony is made from a BBQ stick, attached to the ceiling with looped screws. The hangers are metal paper clips that we re-shaped. The shoes and bags are stored in a storage furniture for my old dollhouse. The result is an original and pretty Barbie house that they finally play with a lot. It feels like a real house now! barbie housebarbie house-2 barbie house-3 barbie house-4 barbie house-5 barbie house-6   barbie house-9


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DIY – Dip dyed fireplace basket

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Isn’t this nice? I’m crazy about dip dyed stuff at the moment, so when my fireplace basket needed an update, I bought some spray paint, some masking tape and got to work. Just tape where you want the color to end, put the basket upside down on some newspaper outside and spray away! This could be such a pretty decoration for a wedding, to store gifts or confetti. Or perhaps you could use it in the garden or as a pretty basket to take along to the Farmer’s market. OR imagine how great it could look on one of those beach bags… endless opportunities…

 


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DIY – Polka dot water bottle

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Living eco-friendly and zero-waste, we often buy juice in glas bottles. As we didn’t have a lot of serving carafes and because I love these bottles (they look like old milk bottles!) I figured that I could make something cute with it and use it on the dinner table.

You need: 

-A water pitcher, glas bottle or something similar.

– Ceramic or glass paint (or nail polish! I’ve heard about people using that although it might not stay forever…)

– Small brush.

How to make a Polka dot water carafe:

– If you want your dots to look evenly round, you can use some sort of template. I used the label stickers below, but you can draw by hand or cut out any size of polka dots that you want on plain paper, although you might have to tape them to the bottle. Add your templates on to your bottle, randomly or with a calculated distance, whatever you want.

– Paint inside your template and let dry for 24h. Once dry peal of your stickers or taped templates. You can also strengthen the color by putting your glass bottle on a plate in the oven on medium heat for about 15-30 minutes. The glass / ceramic color will indicate further.

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DIY – Memo board and washi-tape clothes pins

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It was a rainy stay-in-bed Saturday morning, a few years ago. I had just returned from the kitchen, ready to serve my little family breakfast in bed, when I  tripped and managed to tip over, not just the breakfast tray fell to the floor, but also the huge mirror that was leaning against the wall… No! Seven years of misery! Lucky for me, I don’t believe in superstitious nonsense, however a waste of a perfectly good mirror, darn. The frame has been standing since then in our garage, waiting to be fixed. Last week I finally figured out what to do with it!

 

How I made it:

After several years in a humid garage, I decided to roughly paint it white, to cover the humidity stains. I added metal string between two screws at the top back for hanging. I added some metal string that I attached between evenly divided nails vertically and finally hung it up. It’s really great as a board in our bedroom and with the washi tape clothes pins I made to match the frame, I can pin/hang some jewellery, pretty pictures and my favourite art, drawings made by my daughter. The picture hanging there at the moment is a portrait of me and my man. I love how realistic she made his messy wild hair! The fab broken mirror earrings are made by my friend JustineJustine. I thought it fitted the occasion 😉

 

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washitape clothes pins-1


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DIY – All natural heating pad

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Did you know that heating pads are CRAZY easy to make by yourself? You can do them in any size you want and using any scraps of fabric you might have lying around, even old and broken clothes, which is why this project is perfect for recycling. You could also make very small ones for you children and have them decorate them with textile pens. Any kid will love a warm little bag on their bellies before bed time, especially if they helped making it.

Here is my version of a microwaveable rice (sweet lavender-smelling) heating pad that you can use for your neck, belly, leg or head! Or just to cuddle with 😉 Heat it up by putting it in the microwave oven for about 5 min on full speed.

 

 

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What you’ll need:

 

* Cotton or linen fabric (if you use anything else, it might melt!)
* 1 kg – 2,2 pounds- of any kind of rice from the supermarket
* matching thread
* sewing machine
* scissors
* lavender oil (optional)

 

 

How to do it:

 

1. Iron your chosen fabric. Cut out as much as you need, following the grain line of the fabric. A good size to start with could be 20×40 cm (7″8 x 15″7).

 

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2. Fold the fabric right side to right side and pin the edges. Leave an opening of about 10 cm (4″) on the short side. (I always mark out my openings with double pins so that I don’t miss them 😉 )

 

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3. Stitch around (remember to leave the opening open!) with normal straight seam, about 1 cm from the edge. Zig zag the edges. (again, not on the opening!)

 

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4. Get help from someone to fill the pad with rice (my daughter is always my extra hand!). A good trick is to “hook hold” the opening with your fingers and then carefully pour in about one kilogram of rice (2,2 pounds). If you want to add lavender oil, now is a good time to do it. A few drops will be enough. Drop the oil into the rice, close the opening with your hand and shake so that the rice will mix with the oil.

 

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5. Close the opening: Fold down the seam allowings of the opening with an iron or with your fingers and pin the edge nice and neat. Stitch on top of the pad, from the right side with a normal straight seam, about 3-5 mm (0,2″) from the edge.
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Finished! Now you can go and warm up that aching belly of yours. Good luck!