Friday Loves The Summer DIY

Ah…the summer.  Hockey season is FINALLY over.  The Stanley Cup has finally been lifted and I can go back to my normal life…

Oh wait…my life’s not so normal. 

The first question someone asked me the day after the Stanley Cup was lifted was: now that you’re retired, what are you going to do with your life?  Well…ask me that in a month after I’m back from vacation.

In the meantime, here’s what I plan on doing this weekend.

1.  DIY Chalkboard Paint.  Well, in the chaos that is my bedroom right now (still rotating my wardrobe because the cold days are still lingering around; packing for Italy; redecorating for the summer months; and needing to do laundry for the last two months) I ended up smacking the suitcase right into my full length mirror and it came crashing down.  Yep…it broke.  7 years of bad luck for me, right? 

Well, instead of lamenting over the bad luck, I took one look at the smashed up mirror and thought…DIY PROJECT!

Instead of throwing out the mirror, I’m recycling it.  The mirror frame is being turned into…a chalkboard!

The Idea Room shared her recipe on how to make chalkboard paint in just about any color under the rainbow.  It’s really easy.  I still have some leftover paint from the time that I painted the apartment.  This will help recycle some of that leftover paint, too.

As for the broken shards of the mirror itself, it will go towards a mosaic table I’ve been thinking about doing ever since the roofers smashed my Hermes toucan plate into the kitchen floor!  I couldn’t bare to part with my first Hermes…even if it was broken.  So a mosaic (Hermes) table is definitely in the works this summer.  Now I have some more pieces to add to the table.

2.  Garage/Yard Sales.  One of the great things about summer is that you can find a lot of things being tossed out for next to nothing at garage/yard sales.  I’m in the market for a new side table for cheap because I need it for my mosaic (Hermes) table I’ll be constructing this summer. 

There are a lot of blogs out there on how regular joes like you and me found something at a yard sale for less than $5 and turned it into a treasure. 

Take for instance A Pinterest Addict’s post on how she changed this dull chair she picked up for $5 and turned it into an incredibly new and beautiful chair.  All it took was a little fabric paint.

Hitting up garage/yard sales allows those inner home decorators a chance to try out something new for next to nothing.  For those who are furnishing or decorating a home for the first time, garage/yard sales allow you to quickly furnish your home without spending thousands upon thousands of dollars.

Where to start?  Craigslist!  You’ll be able to search for and find notices of yard sales in your community listed on Craigslist.  Just make sure you write down the time (always sucks to show up early…you can’t browse).

My favorite hits are always the ones where more than one household is hosting a yard sale.  It then becomes a community yard sale.  So always try to put those sales at the top of your list to hit up first.  You may find everything you’re looking for and more in that one stop.

These are the exact Mason Jars I picked up. While I use them for canning purposes, they can also be used in various ways…like adding sand at the bottom with candles to create a new tablescape.

Thanks to garage/yard sales, I’ve found flip top canning jars from the 50s and 60s for $1 a piece just days after seeing how they were listed for $35 each in a magazine.  I’ve also found gorgeous pieces from all over the world (like a geisha bust and a wooden vase from Indonesia).  I also found a beautiful crystal globe vase for $3.  The owner would only sell it to someone that she knew would cherish it.  She was really attached to the piece.  The fact that she was willing to sell it to me, and the fact she cried when she let it go…makes me cherish that piece even more.

A lot of my favorite treasures were found at garage/yard sales.  I always like things that have a little bit of history to it and isn’t just on some clearance rack.  These items are being given a second life.

3.  New uses for PAINT.  Oh, leftover paint…what am I going to do with you?  I painted my apartment five years ago, and because of the laws governing waste removals like paint, I can’t seem to get the leftover paint out of my apartment.  So what’s a girl to do?

INSERT…new DIY projects. 🙂


For the painted vases, Oh So Lovely explains just how she was able to create these beauties.

I also saw another pin on pinterest where someone used old glass tea light jars to create a similar look like you see in the picture with the cans. 

If you can’t tell…I like simple DIY projects…like something that can be done in just a few steps.

4. Where In The World Have I Been?  If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m a bit of a jetsetter…always running all over the world.  Well, I also photograph every place that I’ve visited.  My problem is…what do I do with the thousands upon thousands of pieces that are so good…they’re worth putting up?

While I realize that as a photographer, I may be sitting on a gold mine of work that can be sold…as the person that took the shot, it’s a moment from my memory of the places I have been.  That’s something I want to see on a regular basis.

But how does one go about seeing it all on a regular basis?  Well, just perchance I had an epiphany.  I took one of my new Paris magnets from off of the refrigerator and went to my front door and stuck it on there.  Surprise, surprise…it stuck.

So now I’m in the market for little circular plain magnets…and a lot of them.  It’s an easy way to put up all of the really remarkable photos I’ve taken over the years and put them in a place where I will see them all of the time.  I can probably put up 50-100 photos on the door.  When I get tired of looking at a few of them, I can just easily remove them and put a different group up. 

Believe it or not, I’m actually putting the photos up based on color scheme.  This summer, the door will match the summer decor of the whites and blues (so photos from Santorini, Greece will flood the door, along with the blues of Morocco).  In the fall, I’ll probably change the photos to the more gothic pieces from Paris and the photos of Prague in the fall.

As for that great big picture…the search is on to decide which photo I’m going to supersize and put up on the wall.  The above idea comes from Design Darling.  I think something from Paris would do the trick.  We’ll see what wonders I bring back from Italy.

5. DIY Seasonings.  Now, why didn’t I think of this?  Want a non-preservative seasoning?  Why not DIY? 

The one seasoning that gave me a D’OH! moment was the taco seasoning.  I always order taco seasoning when I order my groceries because I come up with about a zillion ways to come up with the taco stuffings without using meat.  I never even thought about making the seasoning myself. 

Thanks to Self-Reliance by Jamie for sharing the recipes she found!

Although, since these will be staple items in my pantry…I plan on upcycling some of my jars and creating a few labels to give them a gorgeous and French kitchen worthy touch. 

Thanks to The Painted Hive, she lets us in on how you can create these dishwasher safe labels.  For the jars pictured here…she found these SLOM jars at Ikea.

I love these kinds of jars.  They are perfect for just about anything and everything you need for storage purposes.  They’re even great when you’re canning the summer’s bounty. 


So my first weekend in retirement = catching up on all of those DIY projects I’ve been pinning since I got on Pinterest.  There are so many things I want to do that I can’t wait to start. 

Just wait until I get back from Italy.  I plan on buying a sewing machine so that I can start my next DIY project…turning all of these damn NHL t-shirts into something I actually love…PURSES. 

Although, I’m saving that Clarkson t-shirt for something special…I’m thinking a skirt. 

And people thought I wouldn’t have anything to do in my hockey writing retirement…

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