Hang Stockings Without a Mantel

Hang Stockings Without a Mantel

Hang Stockings Without a Mantel

Hello, it’s Jessica here from Decor Adventures, back this month with a simple solution for holiday decorating. These days we see all kinds of lovely homes with Christmas stockings hung beautifully from the mantel or staircase. But what if you don’t have either in your home? I’ve come up with an easy way to display stockings that you can put together in less than an hour. Here is how to hang stockings without a mantel – frame them!

Materials:

Hang Stockings Without a Mantel

  • Large empty picture frame
  • Foam board
  • Fabric
  • Chicken wire
  • Wire snips or sharp scissors
  • Gloves
  • Paint (optional)
  • S-hooks
  • Glazier’s points and tool (or a wide flat head screwdriver)
  • S hooks
  • Stockings

Instructions:

1. For this project you’ll use a large empty picture frame that doesn’t have glass. You can find them at thrift stores, craft stores, or just reuse one of your own. You can paint or stain the frame to your liking, but that is optional depending on your style.

2. Cut a piece of chicken wire one inch larger on all sides than the inside of your frame where the glass would rest. Make sure to wear gloves for this part as the wire can be sharp. Most chicken wire comes with natural lines where the wire is twisted. You can use those as your edges. If you want to spray paint the wire to blend in, that would create a nice look too.

Hang Stockings Without a Mantel

3. Place the frame front side face down on a table and insert the wire into the back of the frame. Set that aside for the moment. [Read more...]

DIY Snow Globe Ornament

snowglobe ornament 1

snowglobe ornament

Jaime here today from That’s My Letter and it’s officially holiday prep time!  Today I’m sharing a DIY snow globe ornament with a wood base that makes a perfect gift for anyone big or small.

This snow globe ornament is constructed on a wood base where all the interior pieces can be glued to the base and then the clear globe is placed over the scene.  The globe is plastic and the entire ornament is very lightweight so it won’t weigh down your tree branches!

snowglobe ornament 4

You can put nearly anything inside the snow globe as long as it fits under the dome.  I used bottle brush trees, wire candy canes and a wood dowel sign with the family name printed on cardstock.  Add a little faux snow and you have the cutest little winter scene.

snowglobe ornament 2

The faux snow will cover any unsightly hot glue and adds just that tiny bit of sparkle.

snowglobe ornament 3

Add a small wood ball on top to compliment the wood base with a string for hanging and you have a keepsake ornament that will look beautiful on or off the tree.

snowglobe ornament 1

Materials:

snowglobe ornaments supplies

  • 3″ clear plastic craft ornament
  • 2″ circle (cut from cardstock, only used as a template)
  • 3″ wood square (1/4″ plywood)
  • mini pom poms
  • mini wire candy canes
  • mini bottle brush tress
  • 1/8″ dowel
  • small wood balls with hole in center
  • red string
  • white glue
  • paint brush
  • faux snow
  • x-acto knife
  • sandpaper
  • hot glue gun & glue sticks
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • black sharpie marker

Instructions:

Step 1: Using an x-acto knife cut around the ornament opening enough to remove the neck portion.  Don’t worry about being neat here the goal is to remove the neck and have a wide enough opening for scissors. [Read more...]

DIY Restoration Hardware Weathered Gray Stain Recipe

Gray Restoration Hardware Stain Recipe | Pretty Handy Girl

Gray Restoration Hardware Stain Recipe | Pretty Handy Girl

I’ve fallen in love with the Restoration Hardware Salvage Gray wood stain. But, try as I might, I haven’t found a pre-mixed stain that produces the same look. That never deterred me, and I don’t like to give up. Therefore, I created my own recipe for approximating that Restoration Hardware Weathered Gray stain. You may have seen this beautiful gray stain on my Sports Gear Storage Shelves the other day. Because I love you and I love to share, here is the DIY Restoration Hardware Weathered Gray Stain Recipe.

Materials:

Glaze: 

Instructions:

Premix your glaze in a jar or bottle. 1 Part Valspar Arid Pains with 3 parts Valspar clear glaze.

Sand your wood smooth. Put on a rubber glove and slip an old sock over the glove. Dip you hand into the stain and wipe the stain onto your wood. Always wipe on stain with the grain.

Gray Restoration Hardware Stain Recipe | Pretty Handy Girl

After the first coat has dried, repeat by adding a second coat of Minwax Provincial stain. Let the stain dry.

Gray Restoration Hardware Stain Recipe | Pretty Handy Girl

Lightly sand the wood before applying the glaze. [Read more...]

Aging Galvanized Metal Quickly

tape off bucket

galvanized metal bucket aging

Hey everyone, it’s Jacque here from The DIY Village!  I am so excited to share this DIY tutorial with you.  I love the look of old metal buckets, but finding them with the nice patina is easier said than done. I am constantly coming across nice, bright and shiny buckets. I finally found a bucket that I liked the shape of and decided I would age it myself. Get ready to learn the quick process of aging galvanized metal that allows you to age it in minutes instead of decades!

Materials: 

  • Galvanized Metal Bucket
  • Painter’s Tape
  • Spray Paint
  • Cotton Balls
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Nail Polish Remover
  • Sand Paper
  • Zep Toilet Bowl Cleaner
  • Steel Wool

Instructions:

Start with a clean galvanized metal bucket.  Make sure all debris is removed by wiping the bucket down with a damp rag.

metal butcket

Decide where you’d like your painted stripe to appear on your bucket.

sand band

I positioned mine where the bends in the bucket are.

Sanded

Tape off the rest of the bucket leaving a metal band showing through.

tape off bucket

Spray a couple coats of spray paint in the color of your choice on the band area. (Red would also be a fun option for a vintage look.)

[Read more...]

Sports Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Sport Gear Storage in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

My home is protected by ninjas! Well, actually Tae Kwon Do athletes, but they are ninjas in training. So, don’t even think about breaking into our house or they will open up a can of whoop ass on you! ;-)

Unfortunately, where my boys are plentiful in kicking and punching skills they lack in the picking up your stuff department. Which means that the bottom of the stairway to our bonus room is usually the dumping ground for their gear bags, clothing and gear.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

I knew I could “up” the amount of storage we had in this small unused space by going vertical. I designed and created Sports Gear Storage Shelves in the small space at the base of our bonus room stairs. Adding mesh siding gives the storage system a locker vibe and allowed for better air flow around stinky sports gear.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Want to know how to build your own Sport Gear Storage Shelves? Hang out for a while and I’ll walk you through the step-by-step tutorial.

Materials:

  • 6 – 1 x 3 x 8′ poplar boards
  • 1 – 4′ x 4′ x 3/4″ finish grade plywood
  • 2 1/2″ wood screws
  • 1 1/2″ cabinet screws
  • 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws
  • Wood shims
  • Wire mesh
  • Stain (or paint)
  • Wood glue
  • Finish nails
  • Wood putty
  • Putty Knife
  • Kreg Jig
  • Hand saw or coping saw
  • Power sander and sandpaper
  • Nailgun
  • 1 1/4″ finish nails
  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • Pencil
  • Painter’s tape
  • GRR-RIPPER 3D Pushblocks

Cut List:

  • 5 – 15″ x 24″ plywood (shelves)*
  • 5 – 1 x 3 x 15″ (shelf cleats)
  • 5 – 1 x 3 x 23″ (shelf cleats)
  • 2 – 1 x 3 x 88″ (sides of support frame)
  • 2 – 1 x 3 x 4.5″ (top & bottom of support frame)
  • 1 – 5.5″ x 84″ piece of wire mesh
  • Rip edge banding 1/4″ thickness from one 1 x 3″ board

* You should be able to get a sixth shelf cut from your plywood if you wish to use it for a base.

Instructions:

Before beginning to build, sketch out your design with painter’s tape. Take note of the height of any baskets or gear bags you will store on the shelves. This should give you the ability to visualize the storage shelves and make any alterations to your design before you build. Once you are happy with the layout, write down your shelf heights.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

You may wish to clad the walls in wood planks like I did before you build the shelving. If you decide to add the planks, here’s the tutorial for planking your walls.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Measure and mark the heights of your shelves.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Using a level, draw a pencil line where the shelves will rest.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Secure the 1×3″ cleats below the pencil line using 2 1/2″ wood screws into studs.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Continue securing shelf cleats to the wall with screws into available studs.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Paint or stain the cleats to match the wall color.

Sport Gear Storage Shelves in a Small Space | Pretty Handy Girl

Building Curved Shelves with Edge Banding: [Read more...]

#DIYCourage Twitter Chat

#DIYCourage Twitter Chat

#DIYCourage Twitter Chat

You know when you meet someone who likes to get her hands dirty. And she’s not afraid to pick up a power tool. And, there’s not a DIY project that scares her. You know this person is just like you and you want to reach for the stars and give her a super pumped high five because you know she’s got #DIYCourage!  I’m talking about the DIY power house Sara Bendrick!

That’s how I felt when I met Sara Bendrick. Well, truth be told, we met online, not in person. Sara is the host of DIY Network’s “I Hate My Yard.” She’s also a woman on a mission to change a few lives. Wait, let’s make that “we” are on a mission to change a few lives. We want to give you the #DIYCourage to take on that next DIY project.

sara-in-arch

We want more people to take a leap off that fence that they never would have dreamed of building themselves? We want to empower someone who is new to DIY to learn a new skill? We want to give you the power to DIY!

Sara and I are also thrilled to have Duluth Trading Company as a sponsor for this chat. The folks at Duluth Trading Co know how to make rough and tough clothing strong enough to stand up to the work of DIY Women (or men!)

I hope you’ll join us for one of these first two Twitter chats:

  • Thursday, November 13th 1pm EST / 10am PST
  • Wednesday, November 19th 8:30pm EST / 5:30pm PST

Mark your calendars and don’t miss it! We’ll be giving away a $100 Gift Card to DuluthTrading.com during each chat. And we hope you’ll walk away with a big fat dose of #DIYCourage!

Get ready for the Twitter chat by following Pretty Handy Girl,  Sara Bendrick and Duluth Trading Co. on Twitter.

PHGFancySign

Day 21 – DIY Laundry Detergent

DIY Laundry Detergent | Pretty Handy Girl

31 Days of Handy Home Fixes | Pretty Handy Girl

Today’s tip is one that is gentle on your washer (HE and regular), but most importantly it will save you money! If you’ve ever looked at the cost of laundry detergent, you may have choked at the cost. I have a wonderful recipe for DIY Liquid Laundry Detergent that will cost you 20¢ for 75 loads! You read that right, not 20¢ per load, but per 75 loads!!! And the detergent is low suds and low residue which will keep your washer and clothes cleaner.

Day 21 – DIY Laundry Detergent

If you think this detergent couldn’t possibly work on dirty clothes, think again. I can tell you that I’ve been using this recipe for 2 years on my boys’ clothes and it works! Whatever stains don’t come out in the wash are no match for my DIY Miracle Stain Remover.

DIY Laundry Detergent |Pretty Handy Girl

The ingredients for the laundry detergent are simple and can be purchased at your grocery store. Just look on the high or low shelves in the laundry detergent aisle.

To make the detergent, you only need about 15 minutes and then let the detergent sit overnight. The next morning, you stir, add more water and you are done! Do you think that’s too much time to devote to making laundry detergent? What if I told you that this batch lasts our family of four (did I mention two of them are young boys) six months or more.

Here’s the recipe:

DIY Laundry Detergent |Pretty Handy Girl

I bought a big glass drink dispenser and a small bottle with a stopper at Home Goods. The small bottle is filled and used for dispensing detergent into the washer. The large drink dispenser holds the excess detergent.

DIY Laundry Detergent | Pretty Handy Girl

Once you try this DIY laundry detergent, I know you’ll love it. And then you’ll want to share this recipe with everyone you know! I like to share the recipe with a small sample amount in a laundry themed basket.

DIY Laundry Detergent |Pretty Handy Girl

If you want more uses for that big box of Borax, check out my 2 Ingredient Ant Killer!

PHGFancySign

I’m participating in Nester’s 31 Days Challenge. Check out all the other bloggers who are participating!

31 Day Writing Challenge

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Other tips in the 31 Days of Handy Home Fixes series:


Folding Laptop / Writing Table Tutorial #DremelMaker

Folding Laptop Writing Desk | Pretty Handy Girl

Folding Laptop Writing Desk | Pretty Handy Girl

My favorite place to write my tutorials is outside on our screen porch when the weather is pleasant. I love listening to the birds and feeling the breeze blow through the screens. Up until this weekend, I was using an old card table as a desk. But, it was heavy, large and awkward. I wanted a table that was the perfect height and that I could fold and store away when I wasn’t using it.

Folding Laptop Writing Desk | Pretty Handy Girl

As a brand ambassador for Dremel, I enjoyed the challenge of designing plans for this simple farmhouse style folding laptop/writing table. The materials are simple 2 x 4′s and 3/4 inch plywood. The majority of the steps can be done using simple handheld tools like a drill, Dremel Multi-Max and the Dremel Ultra-Saw. (Feel free to use other tools or alter the plans to fit your size preferences.)

Be sure to read to the end of this tutorial to enter to win a Dremel Multi-Max MM30! It’s one of my favorite tools!

Materials:
(contains some affiliate links)

Cut list:

Folding Laptop Writing Desk | Pretty Handy Girl

Top:

  • 3/4″ finish grade plywood cut to 18″ x 36″

Apron (use 1×3 boards or you can rip excess plywood):

  • 2 – 1″ x 3″ cut to 14 1/2″
  • 2 – 1″ x 3″ cut to 34″

Legs:

  • 2 – 2″ x 4″ cut to 28 1/4″
  • 2 – 2″ x 4″ cut to 26 3/4″
  • 1 – 2″ x 2″ cut to 14 1/2″ (if ripping a 2″ x 2″ yourself, remember actual size is 1.5″ x 1.5″)
  • 2 – 1″ x 4″ cut to 14 3/8″

Hardware:

Tools:

Additional materials:

Instructions:

Cut your lumber to the size specified above in the cut list. [Read more...]

Announcing Pretty Handy Girl Shirts & Gifts – How to Set Up a Zazzle Store

mug-back

Pretty Handy Girl DIY Gifts & Apparel

Happy Friday everyone! I’m so excited to be launching my own line of graphic t-shirts, clothing and gifts. I’ve dreamed of having a line of DIY themed shirts and clothing that would allow those of us Handy Girls and Handy Guys to show off our DIY muscle. One of the main obstacles was my lack of desire to purchase shirts in bulk and hope that I wouldn’t be stuck with leftover inventory. Plus, I used to run a baby carrier business and knew how time consuming it was to ship out multiple packages every day. I vowed to never run a shipping type busines again.

A few months ago, Zazzle contacted me about working with them to launch my own product line. They were the answer to my hesitations! It was so easy to create my own designs and set up the shop in an afternoon. (Granted, I spent several more days enjoying the creative process of designing new graphics and products for the store.) Zazzle takes care of all the details. You can upload your own graphics, photos, and designs. Or you can create your own custom graphic text designs with their “customize it” tools. Then they print and ship the orders! You don’t have to lift a finger. Plus, you earn a commission on each item purchased from your shop! AND, to sweeten the deal, you can sign up to become an associate and earn more.

If you think you don’t have the time to figure out how to set up products, you are in luck. I took a bunch of screenshots to show you EXACTLY how to list your products step-by-step.

But before I get to the tutorial, I want to share some of my favorite products from my Zazzle store! I ordered two shirts and this one gets the most comments:

I Saw Enough funny DIY shirt | Pretty Handy Girl

“I Saw Enough” Shirt

I Saw Too Much funny DIY shirt | Pretty Handy Girl

“I Saw Too Much” You have to giggle at the double meanings. This shirt is the perfect shirt for any gal or guy who likes to build and use the power tools.

Power tools are for chicks shirt | Pretty Handy Girl

In my house my husband knows he’s not allowed to touch my power tools. This “Power Tools are for Chicks” is a funny reminder that power tools aren’t just for the boys!

Here’s the coolest part (in my opinion) about the Zazzle shop. If you see a design you like, but would prefer a different color or a completely different shirt style, you can customize it on your choice of clothing or products!

Pretty Handy Girl Shirt Options on Zazzle | Pretty Handy Girl

Zazzle has more products than I can name! But, to give you a little taste: pillows, phone cases, office products, art prints, cards, accessories, t-shirts and much much more! You’ll have to peek for yourself!

Zazzle Customized Products You Design!

The last item I purchased for myself was a custom coffee mug. I thought an empowering message was a great way to start each day. This famous quote is printed on a blackboard texture background and imprinted on a stylish mug that has a variety of interior colors you can choose from. [Read more...]

DIY Interior Cedar Shutters

interior cedar shutters closed 1

interior cedar shutters

Hello Pretty Handy friends, Jaime from That’s My Letter here today to share how to build functional interior cedar shutters using inexpensive AND readily available hardware.

I have been itching to build some cedar shutters for our living room for quite some time now.  I had two requirements: 1) they had to be completely functional to block out the hot summer sun (which also makes them great for privacy) and 2) use no fancy hardware.  I didn’t want to special order any shutter hardware and I like to build using readily available supplies.

interior cedar shutters partial open

You can find the cedar planks and hardware at your local home improvement store.  Ready to learn how to build the shutters and install these beauties?

interior cedar shutters closed 1

You can see just how much light the shutters will block out once closed.  I plan to keep the shutters open except during the extremely hot summer days.

interior cedar shutters front view

Interior cedar shutters make a great alternative window treatment if you’re not into fabric panels.  They truly are a statement piece (and hopefully distract from the fact that my windows don’t match!).  I also built the sliding door console last Spring, a link to all the details on that piece is in this post.

Materials:

  • cedar boards (1×6 and 1×4)
  • saw
  • nail gun
  • 1 1/4″ finish nails
  • 1×2 pine board
  • 2″ wood screws
  • drill & bits
  • pencil
  • measuring tape
  • wood putty
  • sandpaper
  • paint
  • hinges (pictured below) & screws

interior cedar shutters hardware

Hardware: (for one pair of shutters)

  • 2 – 2 1/2″ hinge (spray painted oil rubbed bronze) & 12 screws
  • 2 – 4″ decorative tee hinge & 12 screws

Instructions:

MEASURE YOUR INTERIOR WINDOW SPACE.  MEASURE IT AGAIN.  MEASURE IT AGAIN. The top of the window may vary from the bottom. [Read more...]

How to Build Custom Rustic Wooden Box Crates

How to Build It Gallery

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...]

Rustic IKEA Hacked Cabinet

Rustic IKEA Hack Cabinet Transformation | Pretty Handy Girl

Rustic IKEA Hack Cabinet Transformation | Pretty Handy Girl

Rustic is not usually a word used to describe IKEA. IKEA is better know for their modern furniture, simple lines, meatballs and funny Swedish words. Today I’m going to change how you perceive IKEA furniture forever! Are you ready for this? Well, hang onto your hästes (Swedish for horses) because you’re going to see a transformation nothing short of amazing! You too can customize your plain jane furniture by adding legs and cladding the exterior with reclaimed picket fence wood.

This tale starts with a hunter green stained IKEA storage chest that I bought for our first apartment and stained myself (can you tell what decade it was? Hint: hunter green, honey pine, throw some burgundy in there and I’m sure you’ll be guessing no more.) It moved from room to room each time we settled into a new home. But, it never really fit in.

ikea chest in guest room

The cabinet was short and not very deep. Plus, it bore the mark of the popular 90′s hunter green. It was ugly. Why didn’t I get rid of it years ago? Maybe I was attached to it because it was the first piece of furniture I ever stained myself. And it brought back fond memories of calling the fire department because I smelled gas. Turns out you aren’t supposed to use an oil-based stain indoors, especially if you have a gas stove. Lesson learned.

Rustic IKEA Hack Cabinet Transformation | Pretty Handy Girl

Fast forward two decades and it’s still hanging around. The other day as I was lamented the fact that our foyer is too small to fit a cute dresser, I found myself looking at this sad little IKEA chest. I picked it up and put it in our foyer. The fit was perfect in the small space behind the front door! But, it was short and let’s not mention the hunter green again. Plus, it just wasn’t cute. And it doesn’t reflect my warm and weathered style. But, you know me, I wasn’t deterred.

I did some mental gymnastics and began to hatch a plan to create a marriage that would last longer than two decades.

Old picket fence pieces

It began with some pieces of old picket fence that I found by a dumpster. They were perfectly chippy and rustic! Luckily the 3M Lead Check results were perfectly negative. I carefully took the fence apart and removed all the nails.

Lead check picket fence paint

Ready to see how I convinced the two polar opposites that they belonged together — rustic and modern — to create a match made in heaven? Let’s explore this couples’ counseling further:

[Read more...]

DIY Built In Shoe Shelves

Built In Shoe Shelves

Built In Shoe Shelves

Hello, it’s Jessica from Decor Adventures and I’m back this month to show you an easy project to bring some organization to your home. Now that fall is approaching, you might be thinking about getting your closets, foyers and mudrooms in shape for the changing weather. One project that can make your space nice and tidy is adding built in shoe shelves. Today I’m going to show you how to easily build shelves to keep those sneakers, sandals and boots neat and tidy. Plus, it will save you some space too.

Materials:

  • Miter saw
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Level
  • 1″ x 2″ wood, for supports
  • 12″ deep MDF or pine boards
  • Cordless drill with drill bits
  • 2.5″ Wood screws
  • Primer
  • Paint

Optional:

  • Wall anchors
  • Paintable caulk

Instructions:

In our side entry to our house we have a small landing at the stairs leading up to the kitchen. It’s a perfect place for shoes, coats and accessories. Unfortunately, our method of lining up our shoes wasn’t working. I thought built in shelves would be a great solution. The shelves ended up saving us space and giving us more room.

Before Building Shelves

Sometimes those awkward spaces can be a blessing in disguise.

Instructions:

1. First, prep the area by removing anything you were storing and sweeping it out. If you want to add a fresh coat of paint to the walls, now is a great time to do that.

Preparing to Build Shelves

2. Measure how wide and deep you want the shelves to be. (Most shoes fit on 12″ deep shelves, unless you are Big Foot.) Mark the walls at the height of each shelf. (We made the lowest shelf tall enough to fit boots underneath on the floor and the highest shelf about half that height for items like sneakers and shorter shoes.) [Read more...]

DIY Block Print Stamped Tea Towel

diy block print tea towel

how to stamp with potatoes

Hey there! It’s Melissa from The Happier Homemaker back again with a fun and easy DIY tutorial you can even get the kiddos involved with! I’ve been noticing block printing coming up a lot in my home decor magazines and catalogs lately. Last week when I was prepping a little rainy day potato stamping activity for my 3 boys, I decided it may be time to try a little block printing DIY of my own.

Supplies:

  • Flour Sack Tea Towels
  • Large Raw Baking Potato
  • Knife
  • Craft Paint
  • Fabric Medium
  • Iron and Ironing Board

Instructions:

Cut your potato in half and use your knife to {carefully} cut your design.  Simple shapes work best for this type of stamping.

diy potato stamped towel

On a paper plate, or paint palette, mix your craft paint with fabric medium in a 2:1 ratio (or according to fabric medium instructions.) [Read more...]

Install Security Film to a Glass Door and Protect Your Home

How to Add Security Film to Glass Doors & Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

How to Add Security Film to Glass Doors & Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

The folks at Allstate Insurance have graciously sponsored this post, which will help you learn how to install security film to safeguard your doors (or windows) from a potential break-in! It’s a simply DIY solution that could potentially save you the heartache of having your home burglarized.

I’ve noticed an unsettling trend in our area. There are more thefts popping up around our neighborhood. Luckily the majority of them are burglaries with no violence. But, it’s still unsettling. If you want the latest on crimes around you, sign up for SpotCrime.com. Simply enter your address and you’ll get emails when crimes are reported around you. Then again, this could lead to a bit of paranoia {raising hand.}

SpotCrime.com map

Regardless, there are two doors in our home that have always caused me some concern. We have two half window doors that needed some added security measures. The first one is the entrance to our mudroom. The second one is the back door to our garage (and you know I’d be heartbroken if anyone stole my power tools!)

How to Add Security Film to Glass Doors & Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

If you have a door like this, a burglar can simply break the pane of glass closest to the knob, reach in and turn the deadbolt and handle. One option is to install a two-sided keyed entry deadbolt lock. Because we have little children, I worried about them not being able to find the key and get out of the house in the event of a fire.

How to Add Security Film to Glass Doors &  Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

This past week I happened to hear about security film and did a little research. I was skeptical until I tested the material myself. The results seriously amazed me! You can watch my test in the video later in this post.

In the meantime, here are the supplies you’ll need and the very simply installation instructions!

Materials:
(contains Amazon Affiliate Links)
  • 8 Mil Security Window Film
  • Spray bottle with water and a few drops of dish soap (or baby shampoo)
  • 4 inch Squeegee
  • Paper towels
  • Razor blade
  • X-acto knife (or scissors)
  • Metal Ruler
  • Ball point pen or fine-tipped sharpie
  • Cutting surface

 Instructions:

1. Begin by removing the grill if you have one solid piece of glass with faux dividers (see my video below for more details on removing the grill.) If you have true divided light, move on to the next step.

2. Measure your windows. Reduce the size by 1/8″ to leave space at the edges for the water to escape. Transfer the measurements onto the film with pen. Cut the window film with the x-acto knife and ruler. (You could use scissors in a pinch.)

How to Add Security Film to Glass Doors &  Windows | Pretty Handy Girl [Read more...]

DIY Personalized Wall Shelf

personalized wall shelf 1

personalized wall shelf

Happy Wednesday Pretty Handy Readers!  Today’s project is a DIY personalized wall shelf and I’ll show you how to make it.  I’m Jaime from That’s My Letter, a fellow DIY blogger who builds, paints and sews.  I made this wall shelf as a gift for Bryce’s birthday, it makes a great statement AND it’s useful too!

personalized wall shelf 1

Just a bit of painting and assembly to make this awesome, personalized wall shelf.  And of course you can adjust the paint colors to fit your scheme.  Bryce happens to have navy painted walls in his bedroom so I know this wall shelf will really pop once hung in his space.

personalized wall shelf 2

The stained wood shelf adds just a touch of warmth and coordinates well with the hardwood floors.  For a deeper shelf, use a wider board. I used a 1×3 but you could use a 1×4 or larger.

Materials:
(Amazon affiliate links included)

personalized wall shelf supplies

  • 1/2″ or 3/4″ plywood cut to desired size (approx. 2′ x 4′)
  • scrap piece of 1/2″ plywood approx. 4″ x 36″
  • 1×3 pine board cut to width of plywood
  • 9″ MDF Pre-cut letters
  • Single robe hooks
  • French cleat kit
  • paint, roller & brush
  • stain & foam brush
  • sandpaper
  • tape measure
  • pencil
  • wood glue
  • 2″ wood screws
  • 3/4″ wood screws
  • drill & bits
  • nailer & finish nails

Instructions:

Before beginning, layout your letters onto plywood and cut the plywood to size based on the length of the name.

Step 1: Apply stain to the 1×3 shelf piece on all sides using a foam brush. Wipe off the excess.  Set the shelf aside and let it dry.

personalized wall shelf step 1

Step 2: Paint your letters.  Paint your plywood back (not shown).

personalized wall shelf step 2

Step 3: Distress the edges of the letters using sandpaper. [Read more...]

Beef Up Door and Window Casing with Back Band

Beef Up Door and Window Casing with Back Band | Pretty Handy Girl

Beef Up Door and Window Casing with Back Band | Pretty Handy Girl

Want an easy way to add more architectural interest to your standard colonial door and window framing? Adding an extra piece of moulding, called back band, can add that extra boost of architectural interest.

Add Architectural Interest to Casing | Pretty Handy Girl

And the good news is that you can do this to your existing trim moulding. No need to remove or start fresh! The only thing you will need is paint on hand to paint the moulding after you BEEF it UP! In essence, We’re gonna PUMP it UP!

Materials:

  • Back band moulding
  • Finish nailer
  • 2″ finish nails
  • Caulk
  • Paint
  • Miter saw or  hand saw with miter box

Instructions:

There’s really not much to this tutorial. Line up the back band against your existing door or window frame. Measure or mark the back band where you need to cut your miter. [Read more...]

DIY “Eat Your Veggies” Cloth Napkin Gift Set

hostess gift idea sq

DIY Message Cloth Napkin Gift Idea

Bringing a hostess gift to someone whose home you are staying in is apparently a pretty universal thing.  I had never heard of such a thing until I was in my late 20′s.  It’s not a mind blowing concept but I have come to appreciate the simplicity of the thoughtful gesture.  Granted, if you are a “Real Housewife”, then I’m pretty sure if you don’t show up with a bottle of Cristal you get the stink eye.  Hostess gifts don’t have to be spendy, they just need to be thoughtful.  Today I am going to show you how to create an inexpensive gift for the hostess with a sense of humor. Gather around and learn how to make these “Eat Your Veggies” cloth napkins.

Materials:

  • Silhouette Cutter
  • Computer
  • Iron on Heat Transfer material
  • Napkins
  • Iron
  • Ironing Board
  • Towel
  • Tape Measure

Instructions:

Start by pre-washing the napkins.  Measure how big the lettering should be by folding the napkin (half fold or quarter fold napkins) and measure the printable area.

hostess gift idea

Arrange the words as you would like them to appear on the napkins.  Watch your dimensions!  Duplicate the image as many times as you have napkins.

hostess gift idea

Right click on the image and flip the image horizontally.  This will be the mirror image allowing the words to be read once they are applied to the napkin.

hostess gift idea

Send the wording or images to the Silhouette or other craft cutter.

hostess gift idea

Once the image is cut,  weed out the negative spaces. [Read more...]

Chalkboard Memo Board – The Time I Made a 4th Grade Teacher Use a Power Tool

DIY Chalkboard Memo Board (4th grade project) | Pretty Handy Girl

DIY Chalkboard Memo Board (4th grade project) | Pretty Handy Girl

Before the end of the school year a REALLY GOOD friend of mine asked if I would give a talk in her daughter’s class about what I do for a living. I hemmed and hawed because I rarely have the free time. But, the main reason I was hesitant was because I didn’t know how to talk to 4th graders about what I do. Saying I’m a blogger is something that is hard for me to vocalize. “I write a blog” sounds simple and easy. But, in actuality, I do so many other things to make this blog a reality. Just a few of my job descriptions are: writer, photographer, builder, crafter, teacher, photo editor, business woman, manager, social media coordinator, graphic designer, web designer and all around handy girl! How could I explain all of that to the students?

Suddenly, an idea hit me! I would waltz into that classroom and use my platform to break down the stereotypes about women and handy people within 30 minutes (or less!) Then I’d empower the 4th grade students by letting them build their own chalkboard memo board AND use a power tool! Lofty goals, but I felt sure I could do it. Little did I know that the students wouldn’t be the only one empowered.

The quiz:

I started out by talking to the kids about what a handy person is. They shared terms that fit the definition of a handy person: fixes things, builder, carpenter, plumber, woodworker, and home improvement specialist. Then I showed them a slide presentation and gave the kids a quiz asking them to tell me which of these people are handy:

DIY Chalkboard Memo Board (4th grade project) | Pretty Handy Girl

I showed them one picture at a time and as expected, they got all of the answers wrong.

The answers: [Read more...]

DIY Clock

DIY Clock

DIY Clock

August means getting ready for the upcoming fall season, back to school, sports season and the holidays. Hi everyone, it’s Jessica at Decor Adventures and I have an easy project to keep you on time for all the activities you and your family have planned these next months, a DIY clock. Did you know you could make your own clock? It’s super easy to put together and you can paint or decorate it to perfectly match your home’s decor. Let’s get started.

Materials

  • Clock kit
  • Double sided tape
  • Wooden tray to make your clock
  • Paint (optional)
  • Decorative paper
  • Spray adhesive (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Drill and drill bits
  • Hanging hardware

Instructions:

1. To make this clock, I found a 99 cent tray at the thrift store. I knew it would be great for this project because it can hang on the wall and will conceal the clock kit inside the tray. You could also use a picture frame without glass or even some other creative object you’d like to use for your clock face. Make sure it’s something flat so your clock kit will fit into it.

Thrifted Tray

2. The back of the tray will actually become the face of my clock. To prepare it, prime your tray.

Make Your Own Clock

Decide where you would like to put the hands of your clock. It can be in the exact center of the tray or off center for a different look. Mark where the center of the clock will be placed. [Read more...]