Thursday, March 19, 2015

iPad/Tablet Stand from Repurposed Paper Towel Rolls

I always love being part of the Craft Lightning Series hosted by my blog friends Angie from the Country Chic Cottage & Carolina from 30 Minute Crafts and I was especially thrilled to hear about this one showcasing Recycled Crafts!

As most of my regular visitors already know...I love to make things from materials that would otherwise be disposed this edition of Craft Lighting is right in my wheelhouse!

One of the things I "collect" and mean to someday cardboard toilet paper and paper towel rolls and my hubby always wonders WHEN I am going to use some of them up and unburden us from all the mass of cardboard!

He will be thrilled to see that I have made good use of a couple of the paper towel rolls and created this awesome iPad Holder/Stand:

The idea for this came out of necessity we do a lot of traveling to auto swap meets and races in our Motorhome and I like to watch episodes of my favorite TV show of all time (Friends) on my iPad when I am going to sleep.

I have never found a good way to get the iPad to sit-up on the bed in the MH, even with one of those pad covers that is supposed to make them stand up. The mattress is just too squishy and it never stays up!

So I tried to think of something I could make that would keep the iPad upright and still let me view the entire screen.

For some reason the cardboard rolls popped into my mind...I figured if I could put two of them side-by-side and somehow secure them to hold the weight of the iPad then I would have a good solution to my problem and it would be a "recycled" craft!

I picked the brains of my family a bit for ideas on what would work best to stabilize it and we decided on rocks and rubber bands!

The rocks give it weight to balance out the weight of the tablet and the rubber bands keep the glued down rolls from taking on too much pressure from that weight.

I covered the cardboard tubes in duck brand duct tape to strengthen the cardboard and make it look prettier of course!

I made the base from an old Capri Sun cardboard box because it was a fairly thick cardboard and would hold-up well.
I covered the base in duck tape also for added strength.

I glued the covered rolls down on the base using E6000, which I recommend because of it flexibility, even after it has dried.

Some heavy duty glues can become very hard when dry and would not work as well for this project, but the E6000 performed great and allows for any pushing/pressure that may be put on the rolls.

I tried to put an even weight of rocks into each tube, I didn't weigh them, but just tried to pick 10 rocks of similar size and put 5 rocks in each tube.

You can glue these down inside the tube if you like, but I did not.
I left them loose and just shake them slightly to align evenly before I put the iPad in between the tubes.

To seal off the tubes I used old baby food jar tops spray painted silver to compliment the colors in my Flying Pig Duck Tape.

After letting the glue on the tubes and base set for a bit I put shims in between the tubes and let it dry overnight. (This was to be sure that I had some extra flexibility with the size of the slot to input the tablet.) For shims, I just used some mini cardboard baby books that I have on hand for my Grandchildren, but you can use thick pieces of cardboard or wood shims if you have them.

This project came together fast (minus drying time) and was so easy!

I recycled three different items (cardboard tubes, baby food jar lids & a cardboard juice box) that would normally be thrown away and the best part is...I made something I really needed and saved some money (have you seen the price of iPad stands??!! Yikes!).

Here is a collage of the steps I took to make this project (click to enlarge): 

Here are the tools/supplies I used for this project:

Cardboard Tubes (from Empty Paper Towel Rolls) - 2 ea.
Duck Brand Decorative Duct Tape, 1.88", Flying Pigs Design
Spray Paint, Sterling Silver, Enamel, Champion Sprayon
Small Smooth Rocks, 10 ea.
Cardboard Box, Capri Sun (Med. Wt.)
Baby Food Jar Lids, 2 ea.
Rubber Bands, 2 ea.
Ruler (Not shown in photo above)
Utility Knife, Husky
Adhesive, E6000
Marker, Sharpie, Black
Toothpick (to help place glue on lids)

Hope you enjoyed my post and are inspired to create something from recyclable or throw-away materials!

For more crafty, recycled inspiration be sure to check out all the cool projects featured on the blogs below by clicking on the graphic.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Dr.Seuss Inspired Chalk/Magnetic Activity Board

As a child I loved Dr. Seuss books and my children loved them too!
So I always enjoy this time of year when we all celebrate the Dr. Seuss legacy and I can re-live some childhood and early Mom memories!

I am now a Grandmother and have the pleasure of introducing my Grand little ones to the great books of Dr. Seuss, so I was excited to participate in this Craft Lightning Edition and wanted to create something "Seussical" for the little ones!

I came up with this cute and handy little activity tray that I knew the Grandkids would love.
It was so quick and easy to make and the best part is that it was made from an old cookie sheet I had that had gotten ruined in the oven, so it is a recycle/upcycle project to boot!

Check out the collage photo below to see the "before" won't believe how yucky this pan was!
In most cases, you would be able to just hit an old pan with a piece of sandpaper to get off any baked on high spots...but in this case, the pan was so bad that hubby had to use some of his power tools to get it clean.

I used Krylon Chalkboard Spray Paint and it worked beautifully!
I couldn't believe how smoothly it went on and how quickly it dried.
I sprayed two coats, front and back and it covered good.

I taped it off and added the red trim around the sides.
I hadn't originally planned on doing this, so I had to "borrow" hubby's engine enamel!
(Hubs to the rescue again...what would I do without him??!!)

I added some washi tape accents on the sides and then added the foam sticker & button magnets for the kids to play & learn with.
(TIP: You could also add alphabet beads with magnets for spelling games for kids, or old scrabble tiles!)

The Grandkids were at the house when I finished the project and they were all pretty excited about it...we gathered them for a group shot...and their "Poppy" (aka: Grandpa) was standing behind me making funny faces to get them to laugh!

Here are the steps for making the project: 

Here are the tools and supplies I used for this project:

List of Tools/Materials:

Old/Used Metal Cookie Sheet (Not shown in photo)
Die Grinder Power Tool w/Sanding Disk (Not shown in photo and not necessary in most tray was extra dirty!)
Krylon Black Chalkboard Spray Paint
Dupli-Color Engine Enamel Ceramic (Red)
Craftsmart Premium Satin Acrylic Paint (color: Pacific Coast)
Creatology Paint Brush
Water/Water Jar (to thin acrylic paint)
Absorbent Pad/Towel
Blue Painters Masking Tape
Brown Paper Bag (can also use Kraft Paper or Butcher's Paper) (Not shown in photo)
Recollections Wide Washi Tape (9.1m)
E6000 Adhesive
Mini-Wooden Clothespins (WalMart)
Buttons, Red, 1/2" (10 ea.)
Dr. Seuss Themed Foam Dimensional Stickers
Magnetic Strip, Crafters Choice, 1/2" wide
Magnets, Small, Round (2 ea.), (for the mini-clothespins)
Cutco Heavy Duty Scissors

Be sure to check out all of the other great Dr. Seuss Crafts being featured this week by clicking on the graphic below:

Thank-you for stopping by my blog, hope you enjoyed your visit and felt inspired to create!

This project/post is linked to the following sites/link-up parties:

Skip To My Lou

Friday, November 28, 2014

Matching Aprons for a Child and Doll

One of the best gifts you can give during the Holidays is one made from your heart and hands!

I love to sew and was happy to have found this great printed fabric pattern of a child's apron with a matching doll apron for an American Girl Doll (18" Doll).

It was on clearance at Hancock's awhile back and I immediately thought how cute it would be for a gift for my Granddaughters!

Unfortunately, they only had one set left, so I made a pattern out of tissue paper of the one that I had so that I can make another one in the future and use different fabric if I so choose.

I really did like the fact that it was printed on fabric though. It takes a big step out of sewing...the cutting and pinning of the paper pattern! What a great idea!

I had seen the "panel" type patterns before for stuffed animals and such, but had never seen one for an item of clothing like this, so I was really excited when I saw it.

The printed fabric pattern and directions were easy to follow.

This made for a great gift and was quick to put together, you can probably finish it in an afternoon and you don't need to be a sewing expert!

Supplies/Tools Used for this Project:

Singer Superb 2010 Sewing Machine
Bobbin Winder
Sew So Simple Pattern, Top Drawer, Westminster Fibers Inc., Hot House Child and Doll Apron
Scissors, Fiskars, Large
Scissors, Fiskars, Small
Thread, Coats and Clark, Cotton/Poly, Dual Duty Plus, Blue 
Hook and Loop Fastener, Sew-On, 100% Nylon, 3/4", Pink
Straight Pins
Rubber Heat Resistant Fingertips
Marking Pencil
Measuring Tape
Seam Ruler
Seam Ripper

This project is part of the 99+ Handmade Gift Ideas Hop Hosted by: 365 Days of Crafts and Always Expect Moore.

Don't forget to enter the awesome giveaway for a $100.00 Amazon gift card also by completing the Rafflecopter widget below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you would like some great inspiration for more handmade holiday gifts, just click on the projects below and visit each site for more details!

Thank-you for stopping by to visit!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Duck Tape Soap Dispenser

I always look forward to another Craft Lightning round to inspire me and get the old wheels turning to come up with a cute crafty creation in 15 minutes or less (minus drying time of course!).

The Holiday version is my favorite but seems to challenge me the most as I struggle to find something I can whip up in a jiffy but yet still make it somewhat unique.

I don't know how unique this one is...I'm sure someone, somewhere has thought of it...but I love to upcycle/recycle household items so I decided to go with it anyway...

I used an old plastic soap dispenser and decorated it with Duck Tape and ribbon to spruce it up for the Holidays!

I suffered a lot of indecision in deciding what embellishment to use on the front and made a big mess trying to figure it out...

Fortunately my sweet Granddaughter B was with me when I was finishing this up and after snapping a few photos of possibilities and then showing them to her, she decided the Gingerbread Man looked best!

Collage of Steps to make this project:

Materials/Tools Used in this Project:


Empty/Used  Plastic Soap Dispenser Bottle (Different Size/Shaped Bottle shown here from what I used in project)
Razor Blade
Duck Brand Duct Tape, Red
E6000 Glue
Craft Ribbon, Big Lots, Poinsetta Print, Gold Edged, 7/8", 100% Polyester
Craft Ribbon, Michaels, Green Glitter Stripe, Celebrate It, Holiday, 5/8", 100% Nylon
Wooden Embellishment, Small, Gingerbread Man, Mfr. Unknown, from Stock-on-Hand

Notes and Tips:

Because this finished project is subject to getting wet, you'll want to use a permanent type glue such as the E6000 I used, but be careful when using thin ribbon like I did...I didn't realize that if I put it on thick it would seep through and show a bit on the front (you can see my craft "mini-fail" if you look closely at the pictures! Yikes!) After gluing down the first piece of ribbon I was more careful with the second piece and put smaller amounts.
You might be able to use a glue gun on this if you use it at low temp, but I wouldn't recommend using one unless it's your only choice. There is always the possibility of melting the plastic and the resulting smell could be toxic as well.
Another nifty use for this container would be filling it with sanitizer!

This project was super easy and quick but still makes for a sweet little accent in your bathroom or kitchen to spread some Christmas Cheer for the Holiday Guests to enjoy!

Be sure to click on the graphic below and check out all the other great Christmas and Holiday Ideas at The Country Chic Cottage and 30 Minute Crafts!

Thank-you and Happy Holidays!


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Ribbon Fan Ornament

Making Christmas Ornaments has always been a great way to get in the Holiday Spirit for me and I was pretty excited to be participating in this Handmade Christmas Ornament Blog Hop, hosted by Diana over at "The Girl Creative".

Just look at all the cute and creative ornaments that the participants have come up with!

This year I wanted to make something simple and fast since I am on a time crunch because of my crazy schedule.

I still wanted the ornaments to look somewhat elegant though, because I always dream of having one of those fancy designer trees where all the ornaments coordinate!

Of course purchasing ornaments for these type trees can be a huge financial hit to your pocket book especially if your tree is big...and who has tons of free cash hangin' around during the holidays??!!
(Not me, that's for sure!)

I thought about what craft materials that I already have on hand and that I would have a lot of and the first thing that came to my mind was ribbon.

I am swimming in a sea of ribbon!

I started playing around with some of my really wide fabric Christmas ribbon and this is what I came up with...a fan ornament!

I decided to make a few different one's for experimentation since I have no clue what kind of "theme" tree I might decide to do...

These were so fast to make, you could make a whole slew of them for your themed tree in no time at all!

I was pretty happy with the outcome considering it was so fast and easy.

I have been collecting lots of jewelry pieces, beads, buttons and nick-nacks over the last couple of years from all the yard sales and thrift stores hubby and I visit and what a perfect way to compliment these ornaments than with some pretty embelishments!

For one of the ornaments I actually used some lace ribbon that was not stiff enough to hold the fan shape, so I added a coat of fabric stiffener to it and wah-lah! I was able to make it stand up and the lace perfectly complimented my Mardi-Gras themed ornament.

There are so many possibilities of what you can make and so many cute ways to embellish them.

Here is one where I used a button from my stash for accent:

Here is a collage of the steps in making these ornaments:

(NOTE: If you click on the photo collage, you can see a larger version of the picture for clarity)

Here are the supplies and tools I used to make this project:

List of Tools/Materials used:

Ribbon (I used 81/2" - 9" of each for the fan base)
Ribbon, Offray Ribbon Treasures, Cloth, 2-5/8" wide, Christmas Pattern
Ribbon, Gold Braid (Brand unknown, scrap piece from stock on-hand)
Ribbon, Lace, Black, Yellow/Gold, 3-1/2" wide, (Brand unknown, scrap piece from stock on-hand)
Ribbon, Sheer, White, Gold Trim, Wired Edged, Gold Patterned Swirl, 2-1/2" (scrap, stock on-hand)
Ribbon, Nylon/Lace, Old Gold, Scalloped, 5/8"
Ribbon Trim, Beaded, Red Cord/Gold Beads (Brand Unknown, scrap piece from stock on-hand)
Trim, Gold Cord
Decorative Trim, Bead, Gold, Plastic
Jewelry Piece, Old Earring, Holly w/Bell and Gold Bow
Jewelry Piece, Jester Face from Mardi Gras Costume Jewelry
Button, Faux Gold w/Pearl Inset (from stock on hand)
Scissors, Heavy Duty, Cutco
Scissors, Med. Size, Westcott (from WalMart)
Glue Gun, Multi-Temp, Ad Tech
Jewelry Tools, Cutting Dikes & Pliers
Rubber Finger-Tip Protectors
Paper Clips (to hold fan bottom while glue dries)
Paper Weights (to assist with some gluing tasks)
Glitter Glue Pen, Gold, (from set), Advantus Corp, (from Ross)
Glue, Fabric, E6000 Fabri-Fuse
Glue Sticks, Multi-Temp, Full Size, Ad Tech
Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid, Aleene's
Foam Brush
Plastic Container (for ease in applying fabric stiffener)
Toothpicks (for help in precise gluing)

I hope you liked my project and are inspired to create some ornaments of your own!

Be sure to check out all of the other great Christmas Ornaments in this blog hop by clicking on the link-up below!

Thank-you for visiting my blog!
Hope you'll stop by again soon!