Archives for 2012

Make a T-shirt Rug

how to make a rug from old t-shirts #recycled #crafts #DIY by One Dog Woof, featured @savedbyloves

Here is a take on making a rug from recycled T-shirts.  If you have basic crochet skills, and access to old t-shirts, you are set.  This is a perfect project for curling up by the fire for a night of cozy creating!  Go see One Dog Woof for the how to.

Want more T-shirt crafts?  There is a 50+ for that!

Recycled T-shirt crafts to make

A Woman & Her Weight Loss Resolution

Today I am sharing with you a dear friend’s weight loss victory (and the failures that preceeded it).  This is not the typical crafty post you find here at SBLC, but it is something I believe in and have witnessed firsthand.  Not only that, but it is an important topic on the minds of millions as New Year’s diet resolutions are being made for 2013.  I am the first to roll my eyes and change the channel when I hear weight loss miracle commercials, and if you ever told me I would be posting about one of those plans, I would have thought you were nuts.  Watching someone I am close to try everything under the sun to no avail, then find a healthy approach that works has made me a believer.

Meet Urusla

How to Lose Weight With Take Shape For Life; a real testimonial

We met in 2006 and became workout buddies right away.  Over the years, I have watched this woman eat like a rabbit, try this diet plan and that, run everyday, and not lose a pound.  Or lose a pound and gain 4 back, while still on the diet and exercise plan, feeling exhausted all the time.    We have trained for and run a half marathon together, done group classes and gym workouts regularly, all the while Ursula sharing with me her frustration with her metabolism, stubborn weight and high cholesterol.


Ursula and I with friends New Year’s 2008

I moved away, so haven’t been in regular contact with Ursula for the past 2 years.  Imagine my delight when she recently told me she had lost 30 lbs over 3 months.  I couldn’t believe it.  Not only that but she feels great and has seen a huge improvement in her cholesterol levels.  She did this with Take Shape For Life, which you can read all about by clicking the link.

In Ursula’s words

“I have struggled for years to lose those last 20 pounds and to improve my blood work – without success. Then I found this program. 6 weeks into it my cholesterol had gone from 244 to 184, my triglycerides dropped from the 200.s to 63 and my blood sugar is 77 – all without medication. After 11 weeks I have now lost 26 pounds and feel better than I have in years!”

I asked her what made this approach so doable, and she said “it’s just easy.”  No counting of anything, no going hungry or exercising obsessively – but instead a healthy, effective, sustainable way of life.

Ursula’s father visited from Germany, and as soon as he saw her at the airport, he wanted to do what she did.  He started TSFL, dropped 12 lbs in two weeks, and ordered meals for he and his girlfriend back home!  If weight loss was on my resolution list this year, I would be giving Take Shape For Life a go.

Printables & High Res Watercolor Background


Free butterfly watercolor printable, digital stamp, Dylusions ink, from @savedbyloves

Free butterfly watercolor printable, digital stamp, Dylusions ink, from @savedbyloves

Digital scrapbooking, dylusions ink background, art journaling

I have been a busy girl, playing with spray inks, stamps and my new printer (which I scored over the holiday for a steal)!  As a result, here are a couple of free printables for you to enjoy!  This is a watercolor paper sprayed with Dylusions for the background, stamped with inkadinkado Insect Amalgam cling stamp, and touched up with white gel pin and black Pitt pen for depth.

Just right click the link under the thumbnails to pull up the full res file and save it to your computer or print.  I also included just a watercolor background for you to play with in Photoshop.

***UPDATE:  After much research on printers for mixed media art, I landed on the Epson Artisan 837, and am loving it!  Gorgeous scans, prints, wireless, vibrant, perfect so far.






Free butterfly watercolor printable, digital stamp, Dylusions ink, from @savedbyloves




Photoshop watercolor background texture



Alter these any way you want.  Please do not sell or redistribute as your own, but instead, direct people here for the files!


Marker Art Fun

AlwaysHaveFaith2New Year’s Resolution time always makes me pause and reflect.  I realized I have put off some things I have wanted to do for awhile, and have decided to aim for more balance (same resolution every year… balance).  I am going to draw/art journal everyday in 2013, even if only for a minute.

Here is a piece I did this week for a Christmas gift.  I used bristol smooth paper, papermate flair pen for the outline in black, and prismacolor markers for the coloring.  Super fun.  Doodling is addictive.  I took a cool class for $25 called A Whole New Doodle from Stephanie Ackerman, and it has my pen moving.  It is kinda meditative, and perfect for this blizzard that hit today.  Plenty of time for artwork!

Prismacolor marker doodle art @savedbyloves

 What are you working on these days?  New Year’s resolutions?

Leaving you with my back porch…


Wood Pallet Mixed Media Art


Matt210CollageDIY mixed medial collage tutorial @savedbyloves[pinit]

This mixed media Christmas verse piece is made from recycled pallet wood, crepe paper circles, old sheet music, a wood tree, and upcycled soda can star.  It is so fun and challenging to see what you  can come up with from what you have in your stash.  With creative layering of paint, paper and ink, the possibilities are endless.


Here is how it went…


Acrylic paint in red, aqua, white

Paint brushes


3D aluminum can or other star

White Gesso

Old sheet music

Matte gel medium or mod podge


Pitt pen or other permanent black pen

Wooden tree silhouette

Adhesive dots

The “canvas” for my background came from this chevron pumpkin piece I showed you in the fall.  It is composed of pallet wood.


I wanted to update it to Christmas, and decided to cover the chevron with a festive, snowy background for my tree.  The inspiration for this piece came from Claudine Hellmuth’s holiday layers card over at

To start, I painted on a layer of Gesso.  I didn’t really care if the chevron peaked through, so I just did one layer.  Wben that dried, I used red fluid acrylic paint to lightly cover the gesso.  It is ok to leave parts white.  Not going for perfect here.


When the red paint was dry, I added pieces of torn sheet music to the bottom to form a hill shape.  Apply matte gel (or Mod Podge) to paper and adhere to canvas.  Once in place, cover with layer of matte gel.


I stamped aqua acrylic paint randomly.


Once I was happy with the background, I painted on a thin layer of matte gel and let dry.  I used my sizzix Assymetric rings die to cut rings and circles from white crepe paper and adhered them onto the layered background to create snow.



When I had all the rings I wanted, I touched them up here and there with white acrylic paint, then coated the entire piece with matte gel and let dry.


When that dried, I painted a blue scalloped edge at the bottom, outlined it with black Pitt artist pen and covered the entire piece with one more layer of matte medium.


To create the tree, I painted green acrylic paint and doodled the verse with pencil  first.  I  went over the text with Pitt artist pen.  There will be a tutorial on how to do this in the future.  I adhered the completed tree with permanent glue dots.

The star was made with Sizzix 3D star die from a coke can.  I dipped it in Mod Podge and sprinkled glitter on and let dry.  Adhered it to tree with permanent glue dot.


I am a little bit in love with it.  It may be the last transformation of the pallet canvas.  It is ok.  There are more pallet pieces in my garage just waiting to be pieced together for the next piece.

Holiday Topiary from Thrift Store Finds

#holiday centerpiece topiary from thrift store finds


#holiday centerpiece topiary from thrift store finds

Today I want to share with you this festive “Let it Snow” topiary that I created in a few simple steps with some thrift store finds.  I love how it turned out, and for under $4 at that.  There is so much potential at garage sales and Goodwill with some spray paint and creativity.  I rarely buy anything new because of it.  It feels good to reuse what has already had a life, and to transform the discarded into the beautiful!


How to make a centerpiece

I found this topiary for $1, and some nested planters (5 for $2).  One of the planters was the perfect size for the topiary, so I spray painted it red with Krylon Dual, painted the rim with black acrylic paint and stamped “Let in Snow” on the front.  That was it.  Topiary placed in updated planter and adorned with lights.  Magic.

Christmas Decor DIY

Holiday Mason Jar Chandelier

Holiday Mason Jar Decor Chandelier


Mason jar crafts have stolen hearts everywhere.  It is an epidemic.   That is why when I saw this wrought iron chandelier at a garage sale for $2, I immediately pictured mason jars where the hurricane glass would be.  I  showed you how I attached the removable jars in this mason jar repurpose chandelier tutorial.   The fact that the jars are easily unscrewed from the base makes it simple for me to change the color theme with the seasons.  I went at them with red glitter glass paint from DecoArt, and I loves loves loves them.

Remember the fall and rainbow versions?




Speaking of Mason Jar Decor Ideas, here are over 60 more!

Have the merriest of Christmases, my awesome readers!

Make an Easy Photo or Placeholder


I have a great placeholder DIY tutorial for you today using just a few supplies.  These can be created in no time, and are perfect for holiday and party table settings, as well as photo or holiday greeting card display.  Change the add-ons to accommodate any occasion!  Add a meaningful photo and give as a gift that will be cherished. The base wire holder is super easy to make, and embellishing possibilities are limitless.

Creating the Basic Stand


Wax or UTEE (ultra thick embossing enamel)

Ranger melting pot if using UTEE, double broiler if using candle wax (see this how to melt candle wax)

Silicone Cube Tray

18 guage craft wire

Wire cutters

Round mandrel or other object to form circle wire holder


The Wire

 Cut 10 inch segments of wire and wrap around mandrel or other round tube at one end.  Wrap wire twice to create the double circle that the card or photo slips into.


Bend wire at base of circle with your fingers as shown in photo .  Now it is ready to be inserted into the cube.


The Base

Melt your candle wax or UTEE per instructions, carefully pour into silicone square cubes and let harden.  UTEE sets up pretty quickly (just a couple of minutes), wax takes 15-20 minutes.

For this reason, if using UTEE, pour only 2-3 cubes at a time and insert the wire while base is still in tray.  You could also let it harden all the way, then pop it out and drill a hole in the center for you wire.  I prefer the in tray option (sorry no photo) since UTEE acts as a strong adhesive and will secure the wire without glue if placed before hardening.  Just make sure the wire doesn’t shift.  You may have to hold it in place for 1 minute.  If drilling, dip tip of wire in adhesive before inserting into drilled hole.

Here are UTEE cubes after hardening…

DIY place holder or photo display tutorial using wax and wire @savedbyloves

If using wax insert wire when wax is almost completely set.  This will be about 20 minutes.  Just insert the wire and make sure the wax is hard enough to hold it up.  Let harden fully, then remove your ready to embellish stand.

Thanksgiving Placeholders

The idea for these stands came to me when thinking of our Thanksgiving table.  I wanted everyone to have leaves to write gratitude/blessings on, to add to a “thankful tree” centerpiece I threw together.

To make the tree:  I grabbed a mason jar I had painted red, removed the ornaments from my Halloween paper ornament tree and put the tree in a hole I cut in the jar lid, added some stones to hold the tree in place, and topped it off with a fall bow.


Thanksgiving Placeholders; I embellished my stands with leaves I die cut from paint swatches with my Sizzix.  I hole punched them at the base and tied them to the wire with leftover hemp cord from a prior project.  For the name cards, I stamped cardstock circles with monogram letters and mounted them on scalloped circles.



 For Christmas placeholders, I attached a foil poinsettia (tutorial here) to the base, and a shiny silver bow.  I used the interference blue UTEE to create the cube because it looks like snow.

UTEE Ultra thick embossing enamel project tutorial

How to Make Place Cards


Guest Post: Paper Ball Ornament

Make a #DIY paper ball #Christmas ornament @savedbyloves

Irina from Irina’s Cute Box is back today to share another great project.  Paper ornaments like this are so fun to make and super inexpensive.  I love the festivity and uniqueness they bring to holiday decor.  Irina made hers large, for a table accent instead of Christmas tree ornament size.  The silver holographic paper she chose is just my kind of glitzy, sparkly awesomeness.

How to make a Christmas paper ball ornament

Hello SBLC readers!  I am excited to share this paper ball ornaments from my childhood with you today.  It was a fun project in kindergarten when we made them out of old post cards.  I don’t have any post cards to recycle, so I simply got in Michaels scrapbooking heavy paper with holographic finish.
This ball actually not a Christmas tree ornament, unless you have a really tall Christmas tree.   I simply used it as a home decoration.


First, you need flower templates. You can download them there in JPG file. Print the page and cut off one or all flowers. This particular home decoration ball was made using template 1 (the big one).

How to make a paper ball ornament

You’ll need 12 flowers. Make slots along the dashed lines.

How to make a paper ball ornament
How to make a paper ball ornament

Use the slits to join flower petals together. Keep adding more flowers. So all petals will be connected tho the neighbors.

How to make a paper ball ornament
How to make a paper ball ornament

First six flowers connected will look like a bowl 🙂

How to make a paper ball ornament

Keep adding flowers until the ornament will be a ball shaped.

How to make a paper ball ornament

And… your Christmas home decoration is ready!  Place it on a table or book shelf… or any other place. Add a garland or other decorations.

Happy Holidays to everyone!

50+ DIY Stocking Stuffers for Girls & Women


50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves


There are so many unique stocking stuffers to make for girls and women.  From treats to jewelry to hair accessories and photo gifts, this round-up will give you plenty of inspiration resulting in Christmas morning cheer.  The stockings were always my favorite part of Christmas growing up, because my momma gave it her all.  Those things were busting at the seams come time to raid what seemed like magical, bottomless socks.

Some of my favorites in the collection:

50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves

I am loving this Family Photo Go Fish gift idea from Brooke of The Crafting Chicks.  How cool for the kiddos to be characters in the game.  This is a winner.

50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves

Make a box of princess dolls for the girls on your list, with tutorial and free printable backdrop at Lil Blue Boo.  She can even color in the scenery herself.  So cute.

50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves

What girl (or woman still into hair flair reminiscent of her younger days) wouldn’t love these sweet snowflake hair clips from Torie Jayne.  Best part… they are super easy and inexpensive, oh yeah, and fast!

50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves

If knitting and/or crochet are not your thing, you can still make this repurposed sweater to lovely hat and mitten set.  Mental note:  must raid sweater section at thrift store!  Even if you do knit, you can make this set using the detailed tutorial at One Pearl Button in a fraction of the time, not to mention it is eco-friendly.  Bonus!

50+ #StockingStuffers to make #DIY for Girls and Women #Christmas @savedbyloves

When I saw this snowman poop stocking stuffer (words I never thought I would type) at Phar-Ma, I couldn’t take it.  Now that is creative.  See how to whip this lump of coal type gift using tic tacs and the free printable provided.


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