Tag Archives: DIY

DIY Halloween Inspiration

21 Oct

What are your Halloween costume plans this year?!

Unicorn. Rabbit. Loofah.

Lady Bird. Orange Owl. Child Owl.

Mr. Fox.

Masquerade Mask.

Frizzy Halloween Hair.

Peacock Tutu. (I’d love to do an adult version of this!)

DIY Découpage Television Tables

17 Sep

I’ve been living with Henry (my apartment) for about seven months. This charming little apartment is finally starting to feel like home.

I haven’t purchased any sort of side or coffee table since I’ve moved in with Henry. Side tables were a luxury item that I didn’t think were necessary. After placing two wine glasses on the floor, accidentally kicking them over, and shattering them into tiny pieces, I realized side tables do, in fact, serve an important purpose.

I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on side tables and went searching online. I bought these simple, wooden, television tables off of kijiji. I paid $20 for these tv tables with a découpage, DIY makeover in mind.

Découpage makeover supplies: tv trays, art print or patterned paper, mod podge (I used Golden Acrylic Medium instead of mod podge), a paint brush, a pencil, a ruler, and scissors.

Découpaging is really easy. Step one: clean your soon-to-be-découpaged item. Step two: experiment with different papers and patterns. You can cut paper into tiny pieces to make a fun pattern. Overlap your paper for a collage look. Use a favourite poster to cover the surface of your DIY item. You don’t have to limit yourself to paper; you can use fabric, lace, doilies, stickers - any crafting odds and ends you have in your “I’ll use this someday for an awesome craft” supply box.

Step three: (my favourite part) get messy! My hands were covered in glue. Twenty-four hours after this craft project I was still peeling dried glue off of my hands.

Once you have made a creative decision cut paper for your furniture makeover. Cover the surface of the furniture item with the glue using a paint brush. The glue should be wet when the paper is positioned on the surface. Apply more glue or an acrylic polyurethane over the finished product. Ta-da! A little messy, but super easy, DIY project. Your friends will definitely compliment you on your fabulous, découpaged furniture (hint, friends please compliment me on my side tables when you visit).

All three television trays turned out nicely. I don’t love the baby blue and red television trays (above). I wish I picked different paper. But they are still cute and functional.

This blue checkered table is my favourite. I like the classic pattern and contrast of the periwinkle blue and pale wood on the table’s surface.

This is my favourite space in my apartment. It’s so sweet and cozy. Having a side table is a nice addition to this sunny nook. No more broken wine glasses or spilled tea for me! Hooray!

Happy crafting. XO.

Thoughts on Murals and Such

9 Sep

Murals are fascinating.

Montreal Mural: somewhere near the waterfront

I love the culture behind street murals and graffiti. Murals belong to the do it yourself creatives; there are no rules, no galleries, no elitism, no curating authority. Murals are accessible. They are for the people. They make ordinary and dull public spaces interesting, challenging, and often, beautiful. They can help us reevaluate the way we use and see urban spaces.

Murals and graffiti also challenge the controversial question: Is this art?

NYC Mural: somewhere in SoHo

NYC Mural: near the New Museum of Art

NYC Mural: near The Highline

Since my urban vacation I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about the arts. I sit and daydream about artists, musicians, actors, stage designers, dancers, photographers. These people are so intriguing. They dedicate their lives to a cause, to learning, to refining their practice. This requires so much thought and patience. There is so much uncertainty to dedicating your life to the arts.

Montreal Mural: near Saint-Louis Square

Montreal Mural: near Old Montreal

There was a time in my life that I wanted to dedicate my life to the world of art. I wanted to be a painter, to design theatre sets, to become a professional stage manager.

In Montreal I met up with a friend from high school. He is an incredibly talented pianist. He studied piano during his undergrad and masters. I imagine he will continue his studies and complete his doctorate. Whenever I see him he asks about my artwork, which is sweet, but also embarrassing. He is a professional pianist and I barely pursue the arts in my free time. I never really know how to respond.

I enjoyed university and am happy with my chosen profession (communications). I enjoy, and am good at, coordinating communications, marketing, and events. I don’t know if I could have survived a career in the arts. I enjoy routine. I enjoy my expansive shoe collection. I would make a terrible starving artist.

When I told my friend I am a communications coordinator I was met with a blank stare. I sighed. It is hard to describe what I do. I explained to him I am a stage manager for business people. He nodded and smiled. Apparently this is a good job description (at least for people who know what stage management is).

NYC Installation (not a mural but still very cool public art!): The High Line Zoo

People in suits have replaced actors in sweatpants. Maybe my career isn’t as far from my high school aspirations as I once thought.

Happy Wedding Anniversary!

8 Jul

Last year I shared all of Vanessa and Jason’s lovely wedding details on my blog. I was completely delighted that Vanessa asked me to be her maid of honour and play such a special role in this momentous day. I was equally ecstatic about helping Vanessa plan her dream wedding and documenting all the fabulous details on The BB Creative.

I am proud to share that Vanessa and Jason have been happily married for one year – Congratulations! I can’t believe your wedding day was only one short year ago.

This week I received a surprise gift in the mail from the happy couple. Vanessa made me a super sweet iphoto album full of beautiful memories. Thank you so much Vanessa! The photo album is perfect.

Here are some photos from my super sweet album!

These photos with Vanessa’s old station wagon are my favourite! So fun and playful.

Here are more photos from Nicole Gerhardt Photography. Vanessa you were an incredibly gorgeous bride. Happy Anniversary!

More from Vanessa and Jason’s magical day: Nicole Gerhardt Photography. Eclectic & Lovely DIY Wedding Projects. Wedding Stationary & Design. Birds, Spring, Love. The Invites are Here! Primary Colours (Vanessa’s wedding colours). Lino Cutting. WANT – Handmade Weddings.

I read this quote on sweetsugarbean this afternoon and think it is quite appropriate for this occasion: “That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me.  But it is the same with any life.  Imagine one selected day struck out of it and think how different its course would have been.  Pause, you who read this, and think for a long moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on that memorable day.”
- Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

Love really is sweet. XO

Coral Sunset: Rediscovering I can still paint

8 Jul

I have been thinking about painting a canvas since February when I first met my handsom Henry. I’ve been mindlessly browsing blogs and pinterest for inspiration. There has been a lot of “creative research” but not much action. I needed a deadline; I included starting and finishing a painting on my summer to-do list.

I bought myself a canvas and some paints a couple of weeks ago. This Friday evening I had no plans and spontaneously opened a bottle of chardonnay, put on my Osheaga playlist, prepared my canvas, and pulled out my paints. I didn’t have an end product in mind; I just started slapping painting onto the canvas (literally). I haven’t painted a canvas since high school. It felt sooo good to paint with no agenda. I thought that I would be frustrated with the process but it was actually quite liberating. Yes – I can still do this!

My brush wasn’t doing an adequate job and I ended up using my hands and fingers to move the paint around the canvas. I made a gigantic mess and it was awesome.

I will admit; this painting is a little generic. You can probably buy something similar at Ikea or Winners. But I love the bright, vibrant, sunset colours, I love the geometric shapes, and I love the fact that I made it.

There is no critical theory or feminist message hidden within the layers of paint and nail polish. This painting is a combination of Henry’s empty walls, tasty chardonnay, Florence + The Machine, Feist, MGMT, and a girl trying to rediscover her inner artist.

P.S. – Coral Sunset is also the name of these gorgeous peonies. How perfect and girlie!?

Obsessed: Embroidery Thread + Friendship Bracelets

24 Jun

Last week I shared my summer to-do list. One of the things on my to-do list is to plan a summertime crafternoon for my lady friends. I found some DIY ideas last week but am still searching for the perfect summer crafternoon project.

Friendship bracelets are hot right now. They are all over pinterest and etsy. I love friendship bracelets. Friendship bracelets were the topic of one of my first blog posts and I am so pleased this bright trend has been building over the last two years. These colourful bracelets are no longer for nerdy girls trying to fill their Girl Guide sashs with DIY badges at summer camp. Yes – I think it’s time for my new crafty ladies to break out the embroidery thread!

Check out these awesome tutorials. So fun and colourful!

one. two. three.

one. two. three.

one. two. three.

I think I found my summer crafternoon party craft.

Saskatoon Summer To-Do List

17 Jun

Can you believe it’s already June 17? There are only two and a half months left of summer! I have so many projects to start, parties to plan, and events to attend before the end of August arrives.

I am a very organized person and am a huge fan of goal setting and to-do lists. Soooo here is my Saskatoon summer to-do list full of fun summertime goals!

- Start and finish a painting. I bought a 20”x40” canvas yesterday. This summer I will complete my first large acrylic painting since my first year of university!
- Read at least three books. Sometimes I am so exhausted at the end of the day it is much easier to watch television or mindlessly surf the interwebs than read a book. I want to spend as much time as possible reading this summer (preferably outside in the sunshine at the beach or park). Any good book suggestions out there?
- Organize a potluck. After living in Saskatoon for nearly five months I have accumulated enough furniture to have more than one person over at a time. Par-tay!
- Play bocce ball. I have a bocce ball set that has only been used a handful of times. It needs to be used more often.
- Go stargazing. Vancouver was terrible for stargazing. I can’t wait to spend an evening outside with a quilt looking up at the stars and dreaming about the future.
- Organize a photo shoot. I promised my friend Elysse that I would organize a photo shoot with her when I moved back to Saskatoon. This needs to happen soon!
- Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan. I loved Bard on the Beach in Vancouver. I can’t wait to check out the Saskatoon equivalent.
- Check out Saskatoon’s best summer festivals: Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, Wake Ride, A Taste of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Folk Fest and fireworks! I just realized that I’m not here for the Finge Festival, which makes me a little sad.
- Visit the Mendel Art Gallery. I seriously can’t believe I haven’t been to this gallery yet, it is only a few blocks away from where I live. Shame on me.
- Plan a crafternoon for my Saskatoon girlfriends! I haven’t had a crafting party since my birthday. I hope to have a crafternoon sometime in July. Ideas include: Cake Stands from Table Legs, Colour Blocked Coasters, Fish Scale Pendant Lamp, and Hemp Hoop Earrings.

Phew! On top of that long to-do list I am visiting friends in Vancouver and planning a vacation to Montreal and NYC! I’m looking forward to an amazing first summer in Saskatoon and a fabulous vacation exploring some of the best cities eastern Canada and America have to offer.

There is a lot of text in this post so here is a cool video for some visual stimulation:

I COULD HAVE DONE THIS.. from Briar Mark on Vimeo.

ps – please don’t judge me too much for creating a summertime to-do list!

Saskatoon Blog Round-Up

10 Jun

Once again I am complaining about the prairie rain. It is damp and ugly outside so I’m spending most of my day catching up on what is new in the blogosphere and watching Netflix.

Despite the rain I do want to show Saskatoon some love. Here are some awesome, random finds from bloggers and people who call this (currently) rainy City of Bridges home.

Puddle Vision in London by Gavin Hammond (found via City of Skies)

Go Green! Lentil Salad with Sorrel & Asparagus (from Renee at Sweet Sugar Bean)

S’more Stuffed French Toast (from Bob at BS in the Kitchen)

Coffee night with Cathy Terepocki (organized by Flock & Gather)

Saskatoon’s craft collective is hosting an evening chat with artist Cathy Terepocki to discuss the perks and challenges of selling handmade goods by consignment and wholesale June 19 at the Mendel Art Gallery.

Matt HunterObservations

This week I had the pleasure of working with acoustic guitar player, Matt Hunter, for a work event. Matt recently created this charming music video; not only is the music lovely but the video highlights the quiet beauty of Saskatoon.

Happy Weekend! 

Jill Bliss + Handsome Henry

27 May

Some good friends of mine recently bought a house together and I wanted to give them a fabulous gift to celebrate this momentous occasion. I had no idea what to give them. Luckily the weekend before their housewarming party I found some fabulous prints by artist Jill Bliss at Luna + Hill in Saskatoon. These prints are bright, charming, and will last much longer than the cheese and crackers I originally planned to give the happy homeowners.

Jill’s prints are gorgeous, whimsical, bold, organic, honest. I immediately knew a Jill Bliss print belonged in my friends’ new home. I purchased two prints of onion, beet, carrot; one for the new homeowners and one for me and Henry (my apartment).

I love Jill’s work and think she is an incredibly thoughtful artist. Here is a little blurb on her creative process:

in my mind, “people, plants and animals” or “art, craft and design” are not so different from one another. i believe that everything and everyone are interconnected and similar—it’s just a matter of each functioning with a different set of materials, and at varying speeds and scales. i hope to call attention to these ideas in my work, and to celebrate the small overlooked details that showcase these interconnections and samenesses.

Check out these Jill Bliss lovelies!

the douglas fir print-to-order poster

the melon, pumpkin, squash print-to-order poster

the kale, chard, lettuce print-to-order poster

the sunflower notecard

the onion, beet, carrot offset poster

Jill shares, “all of my creative output finds its inspiration in the intricate details of the natural world, while exploring the colors of humanity. my deceptively simple, nature-inspired style stems from a childhood romping through northern california orchards, and then going to art school in new york and san francisco.”

I decided to hang my copy of onion, beet, carrot in my living room next to my clock and vintage wall art from my dad.

It is really lovely to display artwork that very beautifully depicts the intricate and fascinating details of the natural world.

I’ve noticed that I have a definite preference for artwork that is made with organic materials (like my apple and potato stamp prints) or has organic subject matter (like onion, beet, carrot).

It is a beautiful thing when you can incorporate a little bit of nature or nature-inspired artwork into the places you call home.

I have to admit, every day Henry feels more and more like home.

Happy Mother’s Day Sharon

13 May

It is Mother’s Day. The sun is shining, the grass is growing, and the trees are budding. It is a beautiful day.

I called my mom this morning to wish her a Happy Mother’s Day. Unfortunately that call and this (late!) blog post is all my mom will receive from me for Mother’s Day this year.

When there are momentous milestones in my life my mom creates gorgeous, handmade cards for me. My dad says these cards take her hours to craft. And I am not organized enough to purchase and send her a card in the mail before May 13. Shame on me!

To make up for my lack of Mother’s Day thoughtfulness I’m going to share with you how awesome my mom is.

My mom is extremely hard working, kind, generous, supportive, and creative. She is an amazing role model. Growing up she planted a DIY spirit in me. My family was living on the 100 Mile Diet before the foodies made it trendy. My mom was making my brother and I clothes before sewing was fashionable and kitschy (in a good way). Springtime was for planting, autumn was for harvest, and the seasons in-between were for sewing, crafting, cooking, constructing, and baking. I thought everyone grew up planting gardens, canning beans, and making piñatas for their birthdays. Now I know not everyone was so lucky.

We didn’t have a lot of money growing up and I am thankful for that. Growing up we did-it-ourselves because it was cheaper. Now DIY is an anti-consumerist movement people are embracing with open arms. We are realizing how important it is to support local farmers, artisans, buy organic, and/or do-it-ourselves. I am thankful my mom taught me to support our local community and to do-it-myself. These are very important life lessons I cherish! Thank you Mom!

Now that my brother and I are (trying to be) adults my mom has indulged in a fancy camera and has been taking some photography classes. Here are some of my favourite photos she has taken the past two years.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY MOM! You are a talented, smart, and lovely lady.

I learned on the Etsy Blog this week Mother’s Day originated with activist Julia Ward Howe in 1870. Julia wrote the Mother’s Day Proclamation calling women to come together and rally for peace. If my mom was alive in the 1870s I would like to think she would have joined this important movement.

To all the amazing women out there – Happy Mother’s Day. You are loved and appreciated.

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