Thursday, December 22, 2016

Make your own fabric with Sharpie®




The other day I shared the new Sharpie® Color Burst Permanent Markers with you. Guess what? This is what I made with them! I designed my own fabric to use to reupholster a chair I found on Craigslist.




This was the inspiration board I made using the Sharpie®  Color Burst Markers. Testing out all the colours was a great way to also try different techniques for creating a watercolour effect. 

I decided to use the vibrant blue markers. I really like how the blue turned out. The colour is so vivid and the ink was quick-drying. The circles on the pillow remind me of Japanese shibori and the design on the chair has a Scandinavian country feel. It adds a nice pop of colour at my desk.







Here's how to create your own custom fabric and pillow using Sharpie® markers.



What you'll need:


  • canvas fabric
  • pillow cover
  • Sharpie® Color Burst markers
  • Rubbing alcohol aka Isopropyl alcohol
  • dropper
  • cotton swabs
  • cardboard or heavy paper to protect surfaces
  • upholstery batting
  • upholstery foam
  • scissors
  • staple gun, staples
  • spray adhesive
  • pillow insert
  • chair to reupholster

Step 1: Design a pattern



Lay the fabric on a flat surface. Ensure there is a layer of heavy cardboard between the fabric and table surface in order to protect the surface from the markers and later, the rubbing alcohol. You may want to practise your design and technique on a piece of paper or a scrap piece of fabric.

We stuck with a simple pattern of circles and dots for this project. Draw the design on the fabric. The more ink you apply, the more intense the colour in the end. Repeat the pattern over the entire surface of the fabric.


Step 2: Apply the rubbing alcohol


Use a dropper or for more precision, a cotton swab, and apply the rubbing alcohol to the ink. We used a cotton swab for this fabric design. Let the fabric dry completely.

To set the ink: Although Sharpie® Color Burst Markers are water, smear and fade-resistant you may decide you want to go an extra step and set the ink. When the fabric is completely dry, you can set the ink by putting the fabric in a dryer on a low to medium heat setting. Do not use an iron to heat set the fabric. Once the fabric has been set, you can launder the fabric in a cold water wash.

*Rubbing alcohol is flammable and is a skin irritant. Use in a well ventilated area. Not recommended for use by children. Please use care when handling.







Step 3: Prep the chair for upholstery & add batting


Remove the seat from the chair using a screwdriver. Remove old fabric, staples and if necessary, old foam or batting from the seat.  If replacing the foam, trace the seat onto the foam and use scissors or a utility knife to cut the foam. Adhere the foam in place using a spray adhesive.

Turn the seat face down on top of the batting. Wrap the seat with the batting. Ensure the batting is taut. Using the staple gun, staple the top and bottom first, then the sides and corners. Ensure you leave the screw holes to replace the chair seat exposed.





Step 4: Time for the fabric!


Lay the fabric on a flat surface. Place the seat face down on top of the fabric. If you have too much fabric, cut any excess fabric away. Ensure you leave enough fabric so that when you pull it up on each side of the chair seat you have at least a couple of extra inches. If you have a pattern, now is a good time to make sure it is straight. Attach the fabric to the chair using the staple gun. Start at the top, pulling the fabric so that it is taut but not too tight and staple in place. Repeat on the bottom and then each side. Save the corners for last. The corners can take some practise to get right. The easiest way to get a neat finish is to gather the fabric in delicate and smooth folds at the corners. Once you have stapled the fabric in place, trim away any excess fabric. Reattach the seat to the chair.



Ta-da!


Here is the finished chair.










The pillow ...

The pillow has more of a watercolour effect. To achieve this look, draw solid circles on the fabric. Apply the rubbing alcohol with a dropper. I found the most effective way to do this was to apply a small drop let it soak in and then apply a little bit more. The ink will gradually spread.






Let everything dry completely. 

As I mentioned earlier, Sharpie® Color Burst Markers are water, smear and fade-resistant however, you may decide you want to go an extra step and set the ink.

To set the ink: When the fabric is completely dry, you can set the ink by putting the fabric in a dryer on a low to medium heat setting. Do not use an iron to heat set the fabric. Once the fabric has been set, you can launder the fabric in a cold water wash.

*Rubbing alcohol is flammable and is a skin irritant. Use in a well ventilated area. Not recommended for use by children. Please use care when handling.

 
I love how the pillow turned out! Here it is on another chair. Isn't the colour amazing?!




Here it is again on the chair I reupholstered with the fabric I designed using the Sharpie® Color Burst Markers. 

I had some extra fabric left over so I made a bunch of ribbon for gift wrapping.

To make the ribbon, cut or tear strips of the fabric and have fun adding designs to the fabric. I used the same big dot technique for the ribbon using one of the pretty green Sharpie® Color Burst Markers.





The new, limited edition Sharpie® Color Burst Markers are available at Walmart, Staples, Loblaws, Deserres, Michaels and Amazon.ca and retail (MSRP) for $5.99 (5 pack) and $28.99 (24 pack).
 
Follow Sharpie® on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Disclaimer: Wear protective gloves.  Wear eye or face protection. Use in a well-ventilated area. Keep away from heat, hot surfaces, sparks, open flames and other ignition sources. Keep containers tightly closed when not in use.  Do not eat, drink or smoke when using these products.  Wash hands thoroughly after handling.




Tuesday, December 20, 2016

DIY Paper Tassel Holiday Gift Tags + Mrs. Meyer's ® Clean Day



Holiday prep is in full swing at our house. We are hosting Christmas dinner for our families so there is lots of gift wrapping, menu planning and tidying up on the calendar for the rest of this week. 
 

Mrs. Meyer's ® Clean Day products

I'm always making a mess around here with all my DIY projects so a cleaning product that is nice to use is appreciated. 

Did you know that Mrs. Meyer's ® Clean Day products are coming
to Canada?! I've been known to buy a healthy supply of them when I'm at a Target in the USA. Yes, I'm a nerd like that. So when I found out that they were re-launching in Canada I was a little excited. I love the scents. My favourites are basil and lemon verbena. Collaborating to create a DIY on their behalf seemed like a natural fit to me. I already use the products and I'm super excited I will be able to buy them in Canada. I'm told they will be available to purchase beginning in early January at most major retailers including Sobeys, Metro and London Drugs.




Last year I picked up a bag of amazing paper off cuts from a warehouse sale at The Japanese Paper Place. I wasn't quite sure what I was going to create with them but the colours were so pretty it had to come home with me. 
 


So I made these colourful paper tassels. They are a fresh, colourful alternative to traditional holiday colour schemes and are so easy to make.

I love to use plain paper when gift wrapping and make the gift tag the focal point of the package. It's fun to come up with ideas from materials I already have lying around the house rather than buying pre-made items plus it's cheaper!

I know you probably don't have a bag of colourful paper strips lying around ready to be transformed into tassels but you can still make these quite easily. If you have a paper shredder put it to use shredding paper that is lying around your house. Maybe it's those scraps of paper that you end up with after wrapping a gift, or you could recycle any old paper you have around your house. A package of colourful kraft paper from the dollar store could easily be used for this project.

Here's how to create your own paper tassels.


Step 1: Gather the shredded paper into neat little bundles and fold in half.


Paper Tassels Step 1


 Step 2: Tie the bundles together with string

Paper Tassels Step 2

 Step 3: Trim the ends

Paper Tassels Step 3



Step 4: Add a gift tag

 

That's it! You're done. Keep making more and add them to your wrapped gifts.



Happy wrapping!



*This post was created as a collaboration with Mrs. Meyer's ® Clean Day products.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Creating with Sharpie® - Part 1


Sharpie® watercolour diy

Sharpie® Markers always seem to magically disappear in our house.  With two creative kids and a husband who’s a teacher they get scooped up pretty fast whether it’s for doodling, art projects or marking. 

Sharpie® Color Burst Permanent Markers

You can imagine the excitement (and jostling for position) when two packages of Sharpie® Color Burst Permanent Markers arrived at our home for a DIY project I’m working on with Sharpie®.



I use the black markers all the time. They are great for keeping my office organized, and are a staple in my prop styling and crafting tool kits. When I saw the colours, I couldn’t wait to try them all.


I’ve used Sharpie® markers on a variety of materials. I love how versatile they are! When Sharpie® approached me to collaborate on a DIY project it seemed like a natural fit.  I pretty much knew what I wanted to do right away. 

Sharpie® watercolour diy

For my upcoming DIY, I really wanted to try using them on fabric.  When you add rubbing alcohol to the ink it literally does burst with colour.


 
Isn’t this pin board of the Sharpie® Color Burst markers pretty?! It’s like a pin board of fabric swatches. These swatches show the ink colours with a watercolour effect that you get from applying rubbing alcohol to the ink. I love the effect and can't wait to share how I incorporated this method into a couple of DIY projects with you in a few days.



It was fun experimenting with the colours, there are 24 colours in this new limited edition set including 5 Colour Burst markers (intense and bright!) in addition to the 19 classic colours. They are available in both ultra-fine and fine point. They are available at Walmart, Staples, Loblaws, Deserres, Michaels and Amazon.ca and retail (MSRP) for $5.99 (5 pack) and $28.99 (24 pack).



This is a sponsored post in partnership with Sharpie®. All thoughts and ideas remain my own.



 
Disclaimer: Wear protective gloves.  Wear eye or face protection. Use in a well-ventilated area. Keep away from heat, hot surfaces, sparks, open flames and other ignition sources. Keep containers tightly closed when not in use.  Do not eat, drink or smoke when using these products.  Wash hands thoroughly after handling.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Etsy Gift Guide - For The Hostess

Etsy Gift Guide - For the Hostess

December is peeking around the corner and rolling her eyes at me because truth be told I have not made very much headway with my holiday shopping. Eeek!

I try to do a portion of my holiday shopping online these days. At the end of the day I'm a much better shopper sitting on my sofa with a glass of wine rather than pushing my way through crowds at the mall. However, I also like to try to support small businesses as often as I can. Etsy is a great way to do that. You know you are supporting a talented artisan, often creating beautiful things from his or her kitchen table or tiny studio. I know, I was one of them. Christmas was always my busiest season and I really appreciated the support of people choosing handmade.

I'm hoping to share a few of these Etsy Gift Guides with you over the next week or so. Enjoy and happy shopping.

P.S. Many of these artists are Canadian. #shoplocal

Monday, October 17, 2016

Inside MacAusland's Woolen Mill - a century old family business making beautiful woolen blankets

MacAusland's woolen blanket


If you're lucky you only get a few rainy days during a holiday on Prince Edward Island, on one of these days my Dad and I headed west to visit MacAusland's Woolen Mill in Bloomfield, PEI located on the western end of the island.

MacAusland's is a family business that's been in operation for over a century. Impressive. It began as a sawmill in 1870; by 1902 it was producing yarn and in 1932 started producing its well-known, very beautiful woolen blankets.



I happen to have a bit of an obsession with blankets. I collect vintage ones picked up mostly at thrift shops. That's right. There are ways to deal with the ick factor that you might feel. Remodelista has a great post on how to do that right here.

So a trip to this family run business had to be done. In fact, I've been saying I want to go for years but I never managed to get there. I'm so glad I did. It was fun to visit the mill, see how the blankets are made and choose something special to bring home. Instant heirloom. Made in Canada. Love that.

If you happen to have some freshly sheared sheep wool you can bring it into the mill to be washed and turned into skeins of wool ready for your own projects or you can have the wool turned into a blanket. How cool is that?! 

MacAusland's Woolen Mill, inside the mill

MacAusland's Woolen Mill, inside the mill

MacAusland's Woolen Mill, inside the mill

The blanket I finally settled on (it was so hard to choose!) was woven by this lady right here, the latest MacAusland to carry on the family business. I love that I met the (lovely) person who made my blanket. It's heartwarming to know that local businesses like this are still thriving.




The good news is that you don't have to wait until you are on the island because they ship across Canada! So head over to their website and start browsing and then give them a call or email to order. Their old fashioned like that. 



P.S. In case you were wondering...this is not a sponsored post. I'm just a fan :)



Monday, April 11, 2016

Vintage hunting on Etsy



Two more weeks until outdoor antique market season officially kicks off around here. Woo hoo!

On Sunday April 24th you'll find me on the 401 headed west to Aberfoyle for my favorite outdoor market. I can already feel the anticipation building. You know that feeling when you are about to hit the market? Do you have it too?

If you are a new visitor to my blog, welcome! I'm just back from a blogging break. Feeling energized and ready to spend time here again. I've been busy with my freelance work (interior styling projects and writing for The Toronto Star both of which I love doing!) these past months but I've vowed to carve out more time for my blog. 

So back to the antiquing...I go year round. I have a few I regularly make a trip to visit. If you live in the Toronto area two good markets I visit all year are Freelton Market, on Hwy. 6 just south of the 401, and Southworks in Cambridge. For whatever reason I head west and I'm not as familiar with the markets east of the city. 

Etsy is also a great space to shop for vintage. So I thought I'd share some Canadian Etsy shops you might want to check out including a few finds I'm loving. By the way, you can also check out my Etsy finds here!

Granted this vintage Dansk flatware set is a little out of my budget at $1499 but they do have some beautiful vintage finds in a range of prices (especially mid-century/Scandinavian) and are located in Toronto.

Good Folk Vintage

 Another Canadian Etsy seller Good Folk Vintage is based in Vancouver. Love these brass cranes.

 
Gazaboo



How about this pile of vintage frames? These would be great for some DIY projects! From Canadian Etsy shop Gazaboo in Mallorytown Landing between Kingston and Brockville, Ontario.

Tiny Beaches Shop


I have a bit of an addiction to lamps, especially the pretty vintage kind. Love this sunny yellow "citron" enamel lamp from Toronto Etsy shop Tiny Beaches Shop.


Do you have any favorite Etsy Vintage sellers you want to share? If you sell Vintage on Etsy and are local please make yourself known to me by leaving a comment below!


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