Friday, 29 June 2012

Tinkerbell tutu

After the nearly fail of Izzy's last friend's gift I really wanted to make something awesome, but still not spend a penny.

I used the same method as this scrappy tutu, but this time just used a window panel from Ikea cut into strips. (£2 I think when I got it about 2 years ago.)

I did ask Izzy to model it, but she refused saying that it wasn't hers :) well taught obviously!

So instead you just have different angles on my (newly painted and recovered!) kitchen chairs!

It does looks really cute on. Plus...

took me about 30 mins from start to finish! Even with my gorgeous four year old assistant.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Birth stats coasters (from old tiles)

I mentioned a little while back that I was able to pick up some old tiles for cheap. 

I knew exactly what I wanted to do with them!

I mod podged on a square of dark blue tissue paper, let it dry, then added a light blue sheet of tissue paper. I didn't mind about a few wrinkles as I thought it was a cool effect.

Once they were dry I stamped on my granddad's birth date and later sealed it with two or three layers of mod podge. 

It didn't take as long as it sounds. I just left them out and did a coat/stamped every day.

And added a square of felt on the bottom with a hot glue gun.

Another gift down, and quite enjoying the challenge of no spend summer!

Monday, 25 June 2012

Mini Doughnut Stuffed Chocolate Fudge Cake

Aka: Heart attack cake.

This is the beast of a cake I made for my little brother's birthday.

It was kinda last minute, my mum rang the night before his birthday meal and asked if I could bake one. My sister had earlier brought over some mini chocolate doughnuts and we had some spare, so...

I stuffed them inside an already decadent cake. 

I started by making two chocolate fudge cakes (recipe here).

Then I whipped some double cream (about 100ml, you might like to use more, I'm just not a cream fan!) and pushed doughnut halves into it. 

Izzy would like me to mention that she cut them in half by herself.

I did an inner circle of them too so the top layer wouldn't slump in the middle.

I'd already made the topping while the cake was cooling by melting together about 300g dark chocolate with 200ml of double cream (so it could cool and thicken before using it). I spread a little of it on the top of the second cake, then very carefully, and quickly, turned it over and place on top of the doughnuts.

I then got my beautiful assistant to spread the rest of the chocolate fudge topping over the cake, pushing it to the edge so big drips would come down the sides.

We had ten adults and two kids at my brother's birthday meal.

We stuffed ourselves.

And we still had half the cake left. :)

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Partly Free Kids' Present (Vinyl Bag)

So I wussed out (partly) on my no spend summer.

Only on one gift though. It's not all over! :)

I used Make it and Love it's tutorial for a vinyl storage bag.

By the way, hardest thing to photograph. ever.

After I'd made it, and did love it, but I couldn't make it into a proper gift for a four year old boy.

So after an evening and morning of whinging at my husband, he insisted that we bought something to go inside.

So I picked up these three cars for just over £3. (also my hubs' childhood fave!)

I paired it with the card Izzy made for her friend and....

A proper gift for her friend.

I know I kind of failed NSS with this one, but £3 for a little boy's gift is still pretty good I think! :) 

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Leather Journal Tutorial (the easy version!)

I've been wanting to try to make my own book for a while now, in fact ever since I saw my sister with a really cool looking leather bound writing book, especially when I knew how expensive it was!

The one sentence that has my husband's eyes rolling more than (most) any other: "I could totally make that myself!"

And so I did!

Here's how to did it, I got:

Leather remnants (from the luggage tag and Flynn Rider bags)
Printer paper cut in half (A4) there's four stacks there not pieces!
I also used my unpicker (used in sewing, not sure what it's real name is...)
A piece of coordinating card 
Needle and coordinating thread

First fold your paper in half to your desired page size.

Use your paper as a template for how big you want your leather cover, but add a little on the top and bottom.

I used my "unpicker" to make holes through all the paper (I just placed each pile inside each other).

Cut a piece of card slightly smaller than your leather, smear with PVA/white glue and stick in place.

Fold in half while it's still wet, but don't crease, you just want a bend like below...

Then place the paper inside the book.

Using the holes in the paper as a guide make holes in the cover so they line up.

Then sew through your holes tying a knot in the end (you can see mine on the left). 

Go through a few times till it feels secure, then tie a knot and trim.

Aaaaand you're done!

I'm actually quite pleased that I was able to not only make something for my 22 year old brother that he liked, but also be able to do it without spending!

Friday, 15 June 2012

Father's Day Quote (Free Printable!)

As soon as I saw this quote I knew it would be perfect for my dad.

I used one of my car boot (£1) frames...

painted it with navy acrylic paint, cut a piece of card to fit the frame and stamped away! 

And I think it looks quite nice next to the letter art I made my hubs for valentines!

Aaaaand, because I love all of you too, here's a version you can print off!

There you go, the gift you forgot about sorted ;)

And one of my many man gifts done for NSS! (the frame I'm counting as not a cost as I bought it on a car boot sale that was already in our budget! ;) though even if I do, £1 for a gift is a figure I'm okay with!)

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Free Fun (for me!)

In honour of NSS I decided to tackle some around the house things that wouldn't cost any money, Ethan's wardrobe/catch all for the house:

Sorry, the before pictures were on my phone, once I decided to do it I was too excited to go and get the camera!

It had gotten kind of out of control! It was a dumping ground for towels (bottom right shelf), old bedding (middle shelf) and "to donate" clothes (bottom left, yes, under the toy box...). 

Poor boy!

So I donated the clothes and now only the toy box, wellies and his bag live here.

I love having one of his toy boxes out of sight. His room is the smallest, so one more box out of the way makes a big difference!

The hung up things stayed about the same. If you've been following since Ethan and Izzy's room tours you'll know that I'm a little OCD about having short sleeved, long sleeved, shirts then jackets...and in colour order. 

Sorry about that weirdness, moving on :)

The top shelf did have three piles of clothes at the front (pjs, jeans and trousers) and everything else behind (socks, pants - no we're not quite there yet!, arm bands, swimming suit, shorts etc.

Now I have shorts at the front with pjs, which will be switched out for trousers in the winter. The socks are in a box which you can just about see in the middle, and pants and swimming things are in a box to the left of that. SO much easier. Its just a square shoe box and lid. Not covered, but it makes such a difference to 5ft 1 me being able to get socks on a morning! His jeans and trousers are now on one pile at the back right.

I tidied up the bookshelf a little and donated some we didn't use any more.

I went through Ethan's bedding, donated some extras and put away his old cot sheets that were still in there. On the left are his dressing up "accessories".


The bottom two shelves now just have large toys and a couple of spare towels.

Such a big improvement!

Before and after?

Love it! :) (and not just for the quality of the photos!)

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