Category: DIY

7 Days of Crochet: Monster Hat

The hat I chose for Crab was a little Monster because it was just so fitting for this age. At some point, I’ll be making him a crab hat, but that pattern isn’t in the books I own. I have a few ideas of how I might work up my own pattern for it. Look at me, thinking up my own patterns!

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7 Days of Crochet: Octopus Hat

The beginning of my crocheting journey wasn’t pretty. My first attempt at a scarf…

Last January, I finally learned how to crochet.

My Mom was always one who I admired for her crocheting and knitting skills. She could whip up a baby blanket in one afternoon with a pattern from her head. Or she’d watch a football game and work on her creations without looking down.

Always fascinated, I could never seem to learn from her left-handed attempts at teaching me. This time last year, I was talking with a colleague who was an avid crocheter. She offered to show me, even though left-handed as well. After her short lesson in January, I took to YouTube and started talking to my mom and other crocheters I work with; learning where they find free patterns online.

My first ever baby blanket!

My Mom lent me a J crochet hook and a ball of white yarn. I made horrible creation upon creation until I started to get the hang of it.

I began making hats, and scarves, and anything else I saw that looked interesting. My favorite was a soft cuddly nautical baby blanket I gave away as a gift and a comfy, colorful winter hat for myself.

In July, for my birthday, I had asked Chris for a few crocheting books I found interesting. Two were animal hat pattern books for children and adults, and one was a bootie/slipper pattern book for newborns and infants.

Cut to this fall, and I decided to tackle a major project that would test my time management, my skill, and my ability to learn entirely new patterns. After all is said and done, I made seven hats! It wasn’t easy, but the result is so beautiful and fun! I hope my nieces and nephews love them for years to come!

This first hat was created for my niece Julia who just has such a huge fun personality in a small package.

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DIY Opening a Wall doesn’t have to be costly

I mentioned the other day that we opened the wall to our kitchen. It’s been a decision I am so very pleased with, but Chris was adamant against for two years before I convinced him to do it. After trying to hang shelves on that side wall for the second time unsuccessfully, I said either open it up, or I’ll do it myself. I’m a tough project manager to deal with. And this project cost $0 and just time.

We didn’t want to have to rerun electricity and the thermostat on the opposite side of the wall, plus a vent, so that’s why we made a window vs. opening it completely. Continue reading…

DIY Tiling Your Kitchen Backsplash

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A pained smile, as I did this with an upper respiratory infection.

I finally did it! After a year with our renovated kitchen complete, I finally made tiling the backsplash to our kitchen a priority. I’m trying not to say here, “I didn’t have the time,” because when you make time, you have the time.

Over a year ago, we picked out a tile sample we both liked. I held onto that sample until last week when I had hoped to return to the home improvement store to find enough sheets that I needed to fill the kitchen. I was in luck and found just over 25 sheets that I needed to purchase.

Since I had tiled the backsplash to the bathroom sink as a learning experience, I already had the self-adhesive, grout, float, nippers, sponge, and several other mini tools needed for the job. I purchased the sheets of tile for $275 and set out on my adventure.

This project took two days to complete. The first day: laying out all of the tiles, cutting them to fit with a nipper (I avoided renting a wet saw) and letting it dry. The second day: a quick work of the grout, sponging, and fitting all of the outlets back in with extenders beyond the tile.

I can completely understand now why some people chose to have others do the labor on a variety of tasks. This was the first home improvement project I took on completely myself. Chris kept the Monkey and Crab busy both days and helped me nip a few tiles I couldn’t quite squeeze hard enough. On top of it, I was suffering from what ended up being an upper respiratory infection and double eye infection, go me. To be honest, I probably couldn’t stomach the cost of having someone else do it though.

In the future, I’ll just be the project manager and have Chris do all the labor! I kid. I kid. I want to learn woodworking next.

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