How to Build Custom Rustic Box Crates | Pretty Handy Girl

Making custom rustic wooden box crates is super easy. You can build your crates to fit in a book case or use them as drawers in a cabinet. When I was giving my IKEA cabinet a makeover, I chose to remove a door and build custom box drawers instead.

How to Build Custom Rustic Crates | Pretty Handy Girl

Here’s the super easy tutorial so you can build your own:

Materials:
(some links are affiliate links)

Tools:

Instructions:

Begin by cutting the 1/2″ plywood into four pieces the size you want for your crate sides.

How to Build Custom Rustic Crates | Pretty Handy Girl

Test fit the sides together. Add a line of glue to the ends of the plywood. Read more

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

Two weeks ago was Teacher Appreciation Week at my son’s school. Every year I have a bit of a knee jerk reaction to this week. Is it because I don’t appreciate my sons’ teachers and administrators? Definitely not true! I appreciate them more than I can ever show. It’s a joke in our house that if I homeschooled, we probably wouldn’t have children. We all need that time away. And, my kids are so headstrong, that they learn much better from talented educators that don’t tuck them in bed at night.

So, why you ask do I have a knee jerk reaction? Let me explain.

Two weeks ago I spent less than 20 minutes whipping up some really cute vases using recycled jars painted with Farmhouse Paint. Wait…What is this paint?

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

Well, it’s “paint formerly know as chalk paint”  (don’t even get me on the soap box about everyone else not being able to call it chalk paint anymore because a particular company has trademarked the name. I mean, that’s like saying that no one can call it latex paint anymore because Brand X trademarked it. Sorry, I get riled up easily.)

Anyway, back to my story, I made these adorable little vases by saving up a bunch of recycled jars.

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

Then I painted them with two coats of Farmhouse Paint. I’m in love with this paint. The colors are vibrant and you don’t need to wax after painting. Just a light sanding with fine grit sandpaper and it give you the same soft sheen as waxing would.

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

After the paint has dried I sand some areas (especially on any writing).

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

Finally, I added some fresh cut flowers from my yard and tied a string around the neck with a personal message.

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

These little vases were adorable. They were cute and they seriously took me less than half an hour to put together (20 minutes to paint and a few more minutes cutting flowers in the yard.)

When I arrived at school, I began distributing the flowers. First the principal’s office — her desk was filled with more flowers vases than a florist’s counter. And the overflow was on her conference table.

     Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

The assistant principal’s desk had the same overcrowded vase problem.

I made my way around to my sons’ classrooms. Tins of cookies and more vases littered their desks. I was sad. Although I knew they appreciated the kind gifts, it must be overwhelming to get everything on one day or one week of the school year.

After the week is over and the cookies are gone, what is there? Nothing. Desks filled with papers to grade of course. But, no gifts; no notes of appreciation; no flowers…nothing.  That appreciation day is long forgotten.

That’s why I’m doing something different next year. Heck, I might even do some appreciating at the end of this school year!

Where are the gifts and flowers during the first week of school when the kids are scared, tired, disappointed, weepy for their Mom and Dad? Where are the gifts when the principal and other administrators have to deal with outraged parents because the school bus didn’t come on time to pick up their child? Or worse yet, what about the day after a weeknight Halloween? I know the children pour into their seats sleep-deprived and burned out after a high sugar evening. Heaven help me this year when Halloween falls on a Friday night. I might check into a hotel for two nights.

Anyway, I’m vowing to appreciate the staff and teachers at my sons’ school on any old ordinary day from now on. I’m sure that a small recycled jar turned into a sweet little vase of flowers will surely brighten the day of one tired educator. I may even slip a little gift card underneath. I know in our state, teachers are not paid nearly enough and we are facing a crisis as teachers leave schools searching for better paying jobs.

To all the teachers, school staff and administrators out there. I APPRECIATE you more than you will ever realize! Please forgive me if I don’t bring you a gift during Teacher Appreciation Week. I’ll surprise you some other time. 😉

Farmhouse Painted (chalk like paint) Jar Vases | Pretty Handy Girl

What do you say? Why not whip up a little painted vase to appreciate your child’s teacher on Monday. Or the last week of school? Or just on one ordinary not celebration day. Am I crazy? Doesn’t this make sense to you?

PHGFancySign

P.s. Did you like the chippy paint board backdrop I used? It’s not real wood, it is actually a vinyl backdrop made by my good friend Leen the Graphics Queen. It rolls up and stores neatly away. She should be selling them soon.

 

Pin for later!

DIY Chalk Paint Mason Jar Flower Vase

vintage coca-cola crate turned dog bowl

I met Katie & Jon at Haven recently and fell in love with their DIY Tutorial blog, Sew Woodsy, immediately. This fun couple really write great tutorials, like the DIY Corn Hole Game

…and a Sew Your Own Yoga Skirt tutorial.

So give it up for the FAB DIY duo! Sew Woodsy!!! Read more

My kids like to raid our recycling bin. They make the most imaginative things out of milk jugs, strawberry pints and toilet paper rolls. In fact, my five year old has been making his own Halloween costume from paper bags and tape. So, when #CollectiveBias sent out a challenge to make trick or treat bags with Elmer’s Craft Bond Glue Spots and Elmer’s Foam Board, I knew right where to head for supplies: Walmart AND the recycling bin! I hereby invite you to join me (and my escort) as we gather the supplies for this project.

Materials:


Instructions:

Start by removing the handles from the paper grocery bag and then cuff the top of the bag by rolling it under two times.

Pick out two sheets of newspaper (I used the obituaries. Truly Halloweeny don’t you think?!) and bring the paper bag and newspapers outside and spray them with spray adhesive.

It is important to wrap the paper bag with the newspapers as soon as possible for a maximum bond.

Wrap the bag neatly like a present with the newspaper. Use clear packing tape to tack any loose edges down. Also add a strip of packing tape to the inside of the bag cuff for extra support for the handle (should your child bring home pounds of candy!)

Take out your sharpie pen and draw lines in a spiderweb pattern on the bag.

Set the bag aside and collect the orange foam board, x-acto knife (with a fresh blade), pencil and the letter print out.

Set the letter on top of the foam board. I usually line the edge of the letter up with the edge of the foam board for less material waste.

Press firmly with the pencil as you trace around the letter. When you remove the print out you should see an indented outline.

Using the x-acto knife, cut out your letter shape. Use a metal ruler to cut straight lines. If your knife starts to tug and pull at the foam board, put a new blade in.

Clean up any ragged edges with the x-acto knife.

Use a few Elmer’s Craft Bond glue spots to affix the Elmer’s foam board letter to the bag.

To create a little spider, glue two pom-poms together with another glue spot. If you have black twisty-ties you are good to go aren’t you special, you don’t have to color them. (I only had white ties so I colored them with the black sharpie.) Wrap four twisty-ties around the middle to create the spider’s eight legs.

Use another glue spot to glue the spider to the bag.

Print out a bat silhouette downloadable template and layer it on top of black poster board. Cut out a few bat silhouettes.

Use a glue spot on the center of each bat to glue them to the bag. Fold the bats wings up for more dimensional interest.

Add stickers (or pre-punched paint chip stars using Elmer’s Glue-All multi-purpose glue) to the bag.

I incourage you to decorate your bag anyway you like. Bust out your craft supplies for inspiration.

If spiders and bats aren’t your thing. How about spooks and spirits?

To add the handles, follow the directions on your grommet kit. 1. Punch a hole in the bag at the top of the bag using a hole punch. 2. Insert a long grommet through the hole. Lay a short grommet on top. 3. Hammer the grommets together using the metal rod tool that came with the grommet kit.

Cut off the sleeves from a t-shirt. Cut two 2.5 – 3″ wide strips. Then stretch the sleeve loop in opposite directions. This will make the shirt material roll.

After you have stretched and rolled the sleeve loops, cut them at the seam. Then thread each end through the grommets on the bag and tie a double knot on the inside of the bag.

Now gather up your little trick-or-treater and give him this unique candy collection bag! My sons’ had the biggest smiles on their faces. Definitely worth the effort to make these bags.

This eency weency spider is my favorite!

Way more personalized than these generic plastic pumpkins, don’t you think?!

Which one is your favorite? I can’t decide, because I love them equally as much. Spook or Spider?

Eeeeeekkk, we can hardly wait for October 31st!

Disclosure: This project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Elmer’s #gluenglitter #CollectiveBias #CBias. The ideas and opinions shared in this post are purely my own from my own crazy creative head.

Follow up: Well, my youngest loves his bag so much that he told me, “Mom, we should decorate every side with a different holiday.” And that is exactly what he did today during quiet time. I just want to stop time and keep him five forever!

Do you remember that cute little blue striped bin in Renee’s storage unit? The one that she uses for junk mail and recycling.

How much do you think she paid for that? Would you believe nothing?! I made it for her out of a cardboard box and art supplies I had on hand.

Materials:
Cardboard Box
Black Spray Paint (or other color)
Spray Mount (Spray Adhesive)
Elmer’s Glue
Scissors
4 sheets of scrapbook paper (wrapping paper, fabric or wallpaper)

Instructions:

1. I started with a square Huggies Pull Ups box. I knew you wouldn’t believe me, so here is the picture to prove it.

 

2. Spray paint the inside of your box (be sure to wear gloves because the spray will coat your hand since it swirls around inside the box.)

3. Spray adhesive on the back of 2 sheets of scrapbook paper.

4. Attach them to opposing sides of the box.

5. If your scrapbook paper wraps around the sides, that is good. Be sure to snip the top of the paper at the corners of the box so it can fold over inside the box.

6. Cut your other two sheets of scrapbook paper to the exact width of the uncovered box sides. Spray adhesive on those two sides and attached them to the box. Then fold over the top edges of the paper.

7. If the folded top edges don’t stay glued, put a little elmer’s glue underneath and then use a book, clothespins, or binder clips to hold it down while it dries.

And you are done! Cute, easy and cheap! That’s how I like my men projects.