Boho Black Out Blinds

I had every intention of doing this project on our master bedroom black out blinds. But as luck had it, someone left an old roll of white black out blinds right behind out house yesterday (I love our magical back alley!). So this project is a bit of a tester. Because so much of DIY is trial and error, I’m going to do this project on a throw away set of blinds and if it goes well I’ll redo it on our master bedroom ones later on.

A bit of backstory now that you know about my habits of picking up other peoples discarded belongings (which some might call garbage). When we moved into our home, the previous owners left all their window dressings. I really mean dressings, it was as if the house was getting ready to go to the fanciest of balls everyday! Unclear if they were vampires, but they certainly wanted absolutely no light to enter the house at any point! I really do hope they never read this blog! They not only had black out blinds on every window but they also had the heaviest ceiling to floor, wall to wall, drapes as well. We took down the drapes right away, but seeing as the house is old, and nothing was built to today’s regulation, we kept the blackout blinds. We didn’t want to have to have custom sized blinds made.

W4278858_13.jpg**They must have opened the black out blinds behind the curtains for this shot of the bedroom  You really had to look past the decor to see the potential for this house!** Fast forward a year later and I’ve had enough of these stark white blinds…but still don’t want to pay for new ones. So here is how I converted my stark white basic black out blinds to whimsical, soft, boho inspired window coverings. Remember my post from last week? Well this is where we are going to use those Natural Tea Dyed Pompoms. 

What you will need for this project:

–       Blackout blinds

–       Non bleached cheese cloth

–       Adhesive spray

–       Fabric scissors (or any scissors)

–       Trim, I used pompoms

–       Plastic gloves

–       Hot glue gun

Any size wood. We used 1x8x8 unfinished pine.png

Firstly you’ll want to remove the blinds from the wall and make sure you clean them. Nothing sticks well on a dirty surface. Once clean and dry, bring all your materials outside. You will not want to do this project inside. The spray adhesive will certainly not just land on your project and you definitely don’t want to inhale it.

Heres what I started with

Heres what I started with

Unroll and lay your blinds on the ground about 5 inches longer than they ever would be in your home- most blinds are made longer than you will need them for, so no need to do this on the entire length of the blinds, just on the length you will see. I did this in the back alley, but if you were doing it in your yard I would use a tarp to protect your ground/lawn.

Spray time! This adhesive dries really fast so be prepared with everything you need. Get your gloves on (things are gonna get sticky!) and spray your blinds from about 10 inches away making sure not to hold the nozzel in one place for too long, keep it moving! Once sprayed, immediately lay your cheese cloth. Start at the bottom and lightly brush out the wrinkles with your fingers. Move your way up until all the wrinkles are gone…Or most are gone! I found it dried so fast that I couldn’t make it the entire way. Once it was dry I sprayed the entire thing again and brushed out the remainder of the wrinkles until the entire thing was smooth. I then gave it a good once over spray and left it to dry. Make sure to do light layers of spray adhesive or it won’t dry properly.20200623_101631.jpg

Once fully dry you’ll go ahead with fabric or very sharp scissors, and carefully trim the excess cheese cloth from the edges of your blinds. You may need to spray after wards again to make sure none of your sides came up during the trimming.

20200623_145233.jpg

Once trimmed, measure to see how much trim you’ll need and cut 2 inches longer. It’s easier to trim excess off after instead of gluing it in the exact correct position.

Take your hot glue gun and add glue to the bottom edge, 5 inches at a time. Adhering the trim as you go. Only doing 5 inches at a time will help the glue stay hot until the fabric hits it and give you enough time to get it into the perfect position. Trim the overhand once fully dried.

20200623_145646.jpg

Let dry completely.

And finally hang!…Or in my case, redo the entire project on blinds that we can actually hang in our home. Haha.

20200623_194748.jpg

Enjoy!!

Yes, that's Matts hand holding it up so I can take a picture without installing the blinds!Yes, that’s Matts hand holding it up so I can take a picture without installing the blinds!

Tips:

*If you decide to not use cheese cloth and instead pick a different fabric, make sure that fabric is as thin as cheese cloth. If it’s too thick, the blinds will never roll up properly

*Don’t wear gloves when you’re using the hot glue gun, only when using the spray adhesive. If hot glue hits plastic gloves, it can melt the gloves to your finger and it will not feel good!

*Get creative and add as much or as little trim as you like. Or even go crazy and mix and match different patterns of trim.

*Use non bleached fabric for a warmer boho lookPS. How do you take pictures of blackout blinds?! Its so dark!PS. How do you take pictures of blackout blinds?! Its so dark!

If you try this project, make sure to tag us on instagram for a chance to be featured in our stories. @talldorkandmatching

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

Natural Fabric Dying With Tea

Dying fabric with tea is great because for the most part you don’t need a mordant! Tea is rich in tannins which acts as mordant, giving the dye great staying power.

Tea is still a natural dye so it will fade slightly over time, especially if you use stain removers or detergents with bleach.

For our dying project we used pure white pompom trim in anticipation for another project (you’ll see soon! I’m excited for it!)

What you will need for this project:

– White fabric

– Black tea bags (I used decaf orange pekoe but you can use anything you have around)

– Pot

– Water

– White vinegar

– TongsAny size wood. We used 1x8x8 unfinished pine.pngWe are going to be putting these pom poms somewhere where they will be in direct contact with natural light (hint hint). So even though I didn’t NEED to use a mordant, I did decide to give it an extra boost of staying power buy boiling the pom pom trim in white vinegar before I started the dying process. You can skip this if your project won’t be in direct sun light or in a high traffic area. 20200614_100750.jpgThis project is basically like making a very large and very strong cup of tea!

If you wanted the tie dye look (who doesn’t these days!?) you would want to tie the cloth off now before you start the dying process.

You’ll bring a large pot of water to a boil and add your fabric. I like to get the fabric wet first so it absorbs the natural tea dye more evenly.

Once your fabric is fully saturated go ahead and put your tea bags in.  I started off with one tea bag and let it steep for 5 minutes to get a sense of what the color would be like. For me it was too light so I added a second tea bag and let steep in the boiling water for another 5 minutes. 20200614_111237.jpg20200614_112335.jpgYou can pull the fabric out slightly with a pair of tongs to see how the color is setting and get an idea of the final product. I loved this color so I took the pot off the element and let the fabric sit in the tea bath for 24 hours.20200615_101728-1.jpgAfter a day of steeping I pulled out the fabric and rinsed it under cold water until the water ran clear. If you are doing this with clothing you will want to add an additional step here and launder it on a cold gentle cycle. 20200615_101806.jpgHang to dry- it was a beautiful day here in Toronto, Canada so I hung ours outside to dry.

I love the color and can’t wait to show you what we do with it next week!20200615_102225.jpgHere’s the natural tea dyed pom poms beside the original20200615_170943.jpgExcited about natural fabric dying as much as I am? Heres a list of other natural dying projects from us at Tall Dork and Matching

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

DIY AC Unit Cover

When we moved into our new home a year ago, our backyard was completely hardscaped. We couldn’t wait to get started on some DIY backyard projects and breathe new life into our outdoor space. 

The first thing we needed to do was figure out how to hide an AC unit. The exposed air conditioner in our patio was an eyesore in an area that otherwise had so much potential! 
And so, a new project was born: a beautiful, chevron patterned DIY AC unit cover.

Here’s how to build an AC Unit Cover —

Materials:

  • 1×6 planks of fence wood
  • 2×3 inch framing studs (we cut them in half, so you can buy them thinner) 
  • pencil 
  • measuring tape
  • carpenter square
  • 2.5” nails
  • L brackets 

Tools:

  • nail gun 
  • mitre saw 
  • hand saw
  • sander 
  • safety equipment (please be safe!)

Ready? Let’s get to work!

Steps:

  1. Get your measurements. 

First things first –– you will need to clear out the space around your AC unit. Make sure to remove any grass or barriers that could get in the way. 

Now, put your framing studs up as placeholders to see where you want your cover to go. Measure how wide and high each panel of the cover needs to be. There should be four in total: the front, two sides, and the top. 

When we measured, we found that all our walls would be squares. Your measurements will vary depending on the size of your AC unit. 

Update: Thank you to our wonderful DIY community – your feedback helped us realize we made a few mistakes here! When we built our fence, we didn’t account for proper spacing around the AC unit, and there wasn’t enough ventilation. We have since removed one of the three walls enclosing the AC unit (meaning there are only two walls now) and moved the whole cover 1 foot further away from the unit. We are also working on making the top board removable, so that we can take it off during the summer when we use the air conditioner constantly. 

We recommend leaving plenty of room (2-3 feet) around the AC unit to ensure good ventilation. You can also make your fence taller and just keep the top open so the AC unit can breathe.

  1. Build your front frame.

Start by cutting your wooden framing studs. We bought our studs at 2×3” and cut them in half, but if you get them thinner then you don’t have to worry about this.

Once your framing wood is cut, you can create your first frame. Place two framing studs at a right angle, and use your carpenter square to make sure the edges are at a perfect 90 degrees. Then, grab your nail gun and nail them into place. Repeat this step until you have nailed together four studs to form a square (or rectangle) frame.

Now that you have one full frame, add one more framing stud down the middle. This is to create the framework for the chevron pattern. If you are opting for a different design, you can skip this part as it is not a structural necessity.

3. Cut your wood slats.

Time to cut the wood slats into shape! We chose a chevron V-shaped pattern for our AC unit cover, so we used a mitre saw and trimmed off one end of a fence wood panel at a 22-degree angle. This gave us a starting point. We aligned the angled side with our square frame and marked where the wooden slat had to end (in the middle). This is how we measured and cut our slats –– so much easier than calculating angles and doing math, right? Continue this process, working your way down the square. 

As you hit the corner edges, you will need to cut your wood at slightly different angles. Just keep marking them as you go. For some pieces, you may need to use your hand saw to cut, if the mitre saw is not big enough. 

4. Attach the slats to your front frame.

Once you have all your panels cut, lay them in position on the square frame. We used a 1.5-inch wood piece to separate each plank so they were all evenly placed. When you are happy with the placement of all your wood pieces, use your nail gun to attach them to the frame. 

If you’re going chevron like us, we recommend nailing in order left-to-right –– nail the left plank, then the right, and so on. This way, you can make sure the planks align perfectly on both sides as you go down row by row, and you won’t have to go back to move things around.

5. Build your sides.

Now that you have the front wall of your AC unit cover done, let’s build the sides. To start, attach the sides’ top and bottom framing studs to the front panel. You’ll want to use L brackets to affix these –– they will help to keep the cover intact and stable, and prevent it from falling over.

Then, close the squares by connecting the last framing stud on the back of each side. You don’t need brackets on the back corners, so simply use your nail gun.

Congratulations! You now have a complete frame for your new AC unit cover. Just measure, cut, and nail the wood slats for your sides exactly as you did for the front. We followed our chevron pattern, and matched the ends of the side planks with the front slats so everything would flow seamlessly. 

6. Add your top. 

For the top, you’ll want to leave it as open as possible to allow air flow. You definitely don’t want the AC to overheat! 

We skipped the chevron design this time and just placed straight, horizontal planks across the top, approximately 6 inches apart. Feel free to add even more space between them if you want to maximize ventilation. In fact, if the top is not as conspicuous in your outdoor area, you can omit the top panel and skip this step altogether. 

With the same method we used for the front and side panels, measure and mark where you need to cut. Use the mitre saw to cut it to size. 

Use a plank of wood to space the slats out evenly (6 inches apart, or however much you choose). And then, you know the drill –– nail away!

7. Sand it down. 

Phew, almost done! Once fully assembled, go ahead and sand down the entire air conditioner fence with a sander to get rid of any rough spots or scratches. 

At this stage, you can even paint or decorate your AC unit cover to your liking. We chose to keep ours as is, since it went well with our natural patio aesthetic.

Voila! A simple yet gorgeous DIY AC unit cover for your outdoor space. 

This was a heckuva DIY backyard project, with all the intricate construction. But it had such a big and wonderful payoff. With this one flourish, our backyard already looks significantly better!

Did you build this AC unit cover? We would love to see! Tag us @talldorkandmatching for a chance to be featured in our Instagram stories.

Sprucing up your home? Check out more of our DIY home projects.

We’re excited to share more of our outdoor projects with you soon – stay tuned! 

~ Tall Dork and Matching ~
Don’t forget to follow us @TallDorkandMatching on Instagram and Facebook for more DIYs and creative adventures.

Avocado Dying Crib Sheet

Last week I was given two large jars of avocado dye by my pall at @Backyardbedding and I showed you our ‘Ombre Avocado Dyed Macramé Cord’ project. Today I’m going to show you how you can make your own avocado dye so you can start turning your own house millennial pink.

**So far I’ve only done 3 projects with the dye, which I think is very conservative considering how much time I have right now, how easy it is, and how beautiful the dye looks. **Pats self on back**20200520_134747.jpgWhat you will need for this project:

–       Avocado pits

o   We freeze ours so we can use them as needed, just clean, pop into a ziploc bag, and you’re good to go until you need them.

–       A large pot

o   Do not use ceramic or porous material as it will stain

–       Mordant-

o   White Vinegar -1 part vinegar to 3 parts water

–       Tongs

–       Natural fabric

o   The dye will not absorb well into synthetic material Any size wood. We used 1x8x8 unfinished pine.png1.     You will place your avocado pits in a non-porous pot filled with water. Some of our pits had come apart, but no need to intentionally split them. We used about 20 pits for this pot of water (thank god baby C loves avocados!). Bring your water to a boil and let simmer on low with a lid on for 60min. Remove from heat and let sit over night for maximum color extraction. In the morning, removed pits and discard them.

o   Don’t start step 2 until step one is completed.IMG_7513.jpgIMG_7515.jpg

2.     You will need a mordant to prepare your natural fabric. A mordant is a substance used to set natural (and unnatural) dyes into fabrics. For this project we used white vinegar. Measure out 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water into a large pot, and place on stove top to boil. Once boiling gently, and carefully, using your tongues, place the fabric you are dying into the boiling pot of vinegar water. Place a lid on the pot and turn off the heat. Let fabric sit in the water bath for 1 hour.

o   After an hour, remove the lid and let water and cloth cool. About an hour. Ring out the excess water well. 20200517_175343.jpg3.     If you want to create a pattern and tie dye, this would be the time to do this. I tied off just the centre of the sheet with an elastic band. I wanted to keep it fairly simple.20200414_132929.jpgSorry this is not the crib sheet, its a previous piece I dyed to make masks out out. But just wanted to give you and idea as I forgot to take a picture of what I did for this project.

4.     Place your fabric in the avocado dye and let sit at least overnight. You can stir it around and disturb it a bit if you wanted to get the dye in everywhere. I like having the color a bit blotchy, like a very subtle tie dye, so I just shoved the cloths into the pot and left them to sit.20200518_121039.jpg5.      In the morning you can remove the cloths from the dye and rinse well under cold water until the water runs clear.

6.     Wash with gentle detergent on a cold setting by themselves so they don’t discolor any of your other cloths.

7.     Hang to dry indoors. The heat and the sun can remove some of the color.

8.      Enjoy! And tag me in your creations @talldorkandmatching on Instagram 20200520_134631.jpg20200520_134825.jpg

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

Ombré Avocado Dyed Macaramé Cord

When my good friend over at Backyard Bedding gave me 2 large jars of avocado dye, I had to take some deep breaths and slow down before I avocado dyed everything in my house!

I’ve vowed to do one project at a time before my entire house turns millennial pink.

Here is the first of most likely many avocado dye projects: 

It’s been a year since we put up our Industrial Copper Macramé Plant Hangers. With the new gallery wall behind it, it was looking a bit monotone and crowded. So I decided to take down 2 of the hanging plants and dip dye every other fringe to add a little color.

*** I have since done a post on how to make your Avocado Dye yourself and how to dye fabric as well. Link here.**20190925_210804.jpgI will do a separate post breaking down how Backyard Bedding prepared the Avocado Dye for me. You can use any fabric or natural dye for this project.  Honestly I feel a bit silly even writing a blog post about this as it’s so very simple, but here it is!!

What you will need for this project:

–       Macramé cord

–       Avocado dye

–       Tall water containers – I used pint glasses

–       Paper towelAny size wood. We used 1x8x8 unfinished pine.pngI wanted a bit of an ombre affect to mine so I dyed my cord twice in order to intensify the color in certain areas. It takes a bit longer but I wanted a softer line where the dye started.

1.     Filling a pint glass with avocado dye I fashioned a sturdy base so I could place the pint glass under the cord and have the cord bath in the dye overnight. 20200510_163356.jpg *If your cord is not attached to anything you can simply place it into an avocado dye bath. No need for these elaborate structures.

2.     In the morning I transferred the cord from the dye bath to a cold water bath for about 5 minutes so the excess dye could leak out. I then scrunched the cord with a paper towel to get the excess water out so it wouldn’t drip on my counter and stain anything. You can use a towel is you like, just make sure it’s a towel you don’t care about or a darker color as it will stain. 20200510_162644.jpg·      This project works for macramé hangings, or ornamental fabrics as they do not need to be washed regularly. If you were using avocado dye for clothing you would need to pre-treat the fabric so it wouldn’t fade in the wash.

This made a beautiful light rusty pink on the cord. So Beautiful!

3.     I then unbraided the cord to a couple inches under where the dye stopped. This created an interesting tie dye look as the dye wasn’t able to get into the centre of the cord. You can leave it like this if you like that look, but for this project I wanted an ombre look. Once the cords were unbraided I dunked them back into the avocado dye bath overnight. This time only up to where I had unbraided to.20200511_181529.jpg20200510_163352.jpg4.     In the morning I repeated the cold water bath again. This time after I scrunched the water out of them with the paper towel, I gave the bottom of the cord a scrunch with my hand. This helped bring back some of the wave from the braid and made it look less stringy.

5.     Let dry! And Bravocado (couldn’t help myself), it’s so easy and so pretty.

We love the pop of color, its subtle and so pretty! Would love to see if you use this technique. Tag me on Instagram @talldorkandmatching20200511_181652.jpg20200511_181502-1.jpgHave you tried this project? Tag us on Instagram for a change to be featured in our stories! @talldorkandmatching

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

Gallery Wall “floating” Shelf

Keeping on our gallery wall theme. Here is how we made the “floating” shelf.20200506_115232.jpgWhat you will need for this project:

–       2 plywood storage boxes from the dollar store

–       2 planks of wood

–       Wood glue

–       Clamps

–       L shaped brackets and screws

–       Sander or sandpaper

–       Jig saw or drywall knife

–       Circular saw

–       Electric drill Any size wood. We used 1x8x8 unfinished pine.png1.     Prep your wood boxes and wood planks:

For the dollar store plywood boxes, you are going to want to remove the bottoms so they are just the 4 walls. For me, the bottom was in very tight so I made a hole in the bottom with a drywall knife and used my jigsaw to cut out some pieces to lessen the pressure. This allowed me to slide the bottom out.20190922_143830.jpgOnce you have your 4 walled box without a bottom you’ll want to sand it down until its smooth. 20190922_144009.jpgFor your wood planks you’ll want to cut them so they are the width of your boxes and a bit longer. I decided to add one boxes worth of length extra and split them up so we had extra space on both of the sides. Once cut, sand down any rough edges using an electric sander of sandpaper.20190922_153917.jpg·      If you are wanting to paint or stain your pieces, this would be the time to do that. We decided to leave ours natural as it esthetically made sense with our gallery wall.

1.     To make this a floating shelf you will want to hide your L shaped brackets behind the walls of the box. The best way to do this is lay your bottom piece of wood on a flat surface. Place the 2 plywood boxes in place and mark left and right behind the outside walls of the plywood boxes. While you are here, also mark where you want your boxes to be. Once marked, place the boxes to the side and attach the l brackets to the bottom wood plank. Note that they will still stick out a bit which will allow you to drill the into the wall easily. But make sure they stick out on the inside of the outside wall, so they are more hidden. 20190923_123019.jpg·      Put the brackets on the bottom so that the shelf can hold a bit more weight.

1.     Time to glue your boxes to your planks of wood. Use wood glue and using the guides you previously marked to attach the bottom plank to the box. Repeat this step for the top plank as well. Once they are both glued either clamp until dry or use something heavy on top to keep them in place until dry.20190923_123207.jpg20190923_123234.jpg20190923_123258.jpgOnce dry you can hang on the wall. You will want to either drill into studs or use anchors.

·      This is an ornamental shelf. Not a load bearing shelf. We use it for our crystals and some display objects. It would also be good for keys and wallets by the front door. But do not put a large amount of weight on it.

·      We have had ours up for a year now with no problems and it is home to about 10 crystals and stones, a beaver scull, a small vase, and 3 jars. 20190925_203414.jpg20200506_115213.jpgHave you tried this project? Tag us on Instagram for a change to be featured in our stories! @talldorkandmatching

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

Quick and Easy Dried Flowers

We’ve been wanting do a gallery wall in our front hall for a while now. First step is finding enough interesting pieces to make up a nice gallery! So I decided to make a few pieces myself using a very easy and very quick flower drying technique.

I love the simple look of specimen art so I decided to recreate that using dried flowers.

I experimented with a bunch of different flowers using a bouquet (thanks Matt) that was about to turn. I tried different ones until I got the look I wanted.QUICK AND EASY DRIED FLOWERS copy.pngWhat you will need for this project:

–       2 heavy microwave safe plates

–       Paper towel

–       Flowers or greenery

–       Frames Copy of Untitled.pngI used heavy clay plates for this project.

You will want to first prep your flowers by cutting them as close to the bud as possible. You will want your flower to be as flat as possible so get rid of anything that isn’t visually appealing and adds bulk.

You will then want to line your plate with a few sheets of paper towel. The paper towel will absorb and pull away the excess water from the flowers, allowing the flower to dry. 20190913_203215.jpgAfter the paper towel is in place you can place your flowers on the paper towel lined plate. Remember that this is how your flower is going to dry and harden so place them with care and adjust as you like. 20190913_204150.jpgPlace an additional paper towel on top of the flower and secure in place by adding the second plate on top. Like a flower sandwich with the plates as bread!Not happy I forgot to clean the microwave before I took this pic! hahaNot happy I forgot to clean the microwave before I took this pic! haha

Next is to start microwaving, this will be a bit of trial and error, so go slow. This depends on the strength of your microwave. I placed my flower sandwich in the microwave for 30 second intervals and checked them. A few of the pieces I used had a lot of moisture in them so I left them in a bit longer, and replaced the paper towel in between sessions so they would be sitting in soggy paper and were able to crisp up nicely. My average microwave time was between 1 and 1.5 minutes.

When you take your plates out of the microwave please wear gloves and be very careful. They will be very hot!

After my flowers were removed from the plates I carefully moved them to a fresh and dry paper towel to cool off and crisp up. I left them out overnight and they were perfect in the morning.20190913_204419.jpg20190913_205547.jpgI placed them sparsely in simple frames and I’m so happy with how they turned out.20190926_221423.jpg20200429_142111.jpg20200429_142130.jpgHave you tried this project? Tag us on Instagram for a change to be featured in our stories! @talldorkandmatching

As a blogger, our content includes affiliate links from advertisers. We may earn money from actions readers take on these links, such as a click and purchase. However, these are the tools that we recommend fully and have helped our blog tremendously

Tree Stand Holder

Featured on Hometalk.com</a

This is our first Christmas in our new home. Starting new, and going from condo-sized Christmas décor to home-sized Christmas décor is such a treat. You know what else it is though?! It’s not cheap. Buying everything new this year seemed like too much. The bucket we put the tree stand in was an easy and inexpensive project to spruce up the spruce (I know, I know! I couldn’t help myself).

I went to the dollar store and got everything I needed for this project!

● Glue gun and glue sticks

● Scissors

● Jute rope

● A table cloth

● A plastic bucket (make sure its wide enough to hold your tree stand)

I laid the table cloth on the ground underneath the bucket and pulled up the sides to make sure it was sized correctly.

I wanted a pleated look so I firstly pulled up one side of the fabric and folded it to the left creating a pleat. I then hot glued the edge inside the bucket. I repeated this with the fabric directly across from my first pleat. Once 2 sides were glued, I did the same for the other 2 sides

(yes I know it’s a circle, but for this exercise just imagine it’s a square!) Once I had created 4 pleats, I folded any remaining fabric to the left and glued it inside the bucket. I did this until there was no loose fabric left.Photo_1576456711860.jpg

To create the rope loops I used hot glue to secure the end of the rope, waiting until it dries before hot gluing the other side down, creating a loop. I used one long piece instead of small pieces for each individual loop. To make sure each loop was the same size, I doubled back one

loop to measure and then glued it forward.Photo_1576456710387.jpgOnce you’ve created loops along entire perimeter, you can start to string the rope around the entirety of the basket to cover the ends of the loops. For the first few rows you will have to use a lot of tension and wait for the glue to dry fully as you go. But once you are no longer putting the rope over the loops, it’s fast! I only used a bit of hot glue every quarter rotation or so. Just make sure to have good tension and secure every so often!Photo_1576456707886.jpgTo secure the end, I cut the rope at an angle and glued it to the rope above it so it didn’t stick out.Photo_1576456707160.jpgIt looks great and we love it. However it is a bit of an invitation for baby C to pull at it as they are little handles right at baby level! Thankfully she’s not that strong yet!!

Happy Holidays!

For more holiday inspiration, check out our Dried Floral Tree Topper

Have you tried this project? Tag us on Instagram for a change to be featured in our stories! @talldorkandmatching

Dried Floral Tree Top Bouquet

This post is a little late, as it’s close to Christmas I can’t imagine many of you have a plethora of pre-dried flowers around the house. I will take a moment to brag and say that Matt gets me flowers on the regular and it’s my favorite thing. And like most things in this house, they must have multiple lives. I started hanging them weeks ago over our back door to add a pop of colour. Our back door leaves much to be desired, so I it would help would help!20191127_122957.jpgOur tree topper has always been an adorable Super Mario Brothers star kindly made from Matt’s sister-in-law. But with our evolving style and celebrating our first holiday season in our home, we decided to try something a bit different.20161206_204302.jpgThings you will need for this project:

● A Christmas tree that is a bit sparse nearing the top

● String lights

● Lots of dried flowers still on the stems

● Dried greenery

● Floral twist ties

We made sure to buy a Christmas tree that was a bit bare at the top, if you can’t find one, you can always trim it down.Firstly you will want to string your lights around the tree. Dried flowers are very fragile and will break if you try to string the lights over top of them. It also creates beautiful twinkling lights as I then began attaching the greenery I had previously dried. This was helpful to create a base and shape. You want to make sure the foliage you add still forms to the silhouette of the tree. Making sure to become more narrow as you move to the top. (trying to maintain the A-frame

shape of the tree is important for balance)they shine through the dried petals and leaves.I then began attaching the greenery I had previously dried. This was helpful to create a base and shape. You want to make sure the foliage you add still forms to the silhouette of the tree. Making sure to become more narrow as you move to the top. (trying to maintain the A-frame shape of the tree is important for balance)

To attach, simply tie a floral (green or brown) twist tie around the stem of the greenery and the trunk of the tree. I started at the very top of the tree, adding more volume as I worked my way down to connect it with the tree’s own branches.

Once I had a perfect silhouette using the greenery, I began adding the dried flowers. Some I slipped in existing twist ties and some I added a new one. This part you will want to add a few at a time and then step back and have a look. This will allow you to really see where additional florals need to be added so you don’t end up with a patchy top.Photo_1576111239009.jpgEasy peasy! I love how the lights twinkle through the petals and add a warm glow of pinks and purples to our tree.Check out our tutorial for our Tree Stand for more inspirations!

Zaitley Family Barn Quilt

Something you may not know about us…We are not married but are common-law partners. Though when we decided to start a family, we wanted to share a last name. But rather than one of us take the others’, we wanted to show our unity – a way for us to identify as our own family, separate from the families we grew up in. We were creating something new and wanted a new name to show that. So, after much thought we combined our respective last names and came up with the name Zaitley. We are now the Zaitleys and couldn’t be happier! But being a new family, we have very little history of our own.

One of our first trips together was to Prince Edward County. This was the first time we were introduced to the concept of Barn Quilts. It seemed every building we passed had one proudly on display. We learnt that they are made in the design that appeals to the creator, but also could be a representation of career or history. For us, we decided that best way to visually represent us was through are already established design esthetic.

So to start us out on our new path we decided to make a family barn quilt. So without further ado, here is how we made the Zaitley family Barn Quilt.

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What you will need for this project:

–      20” x 20” piece of wood

–      Around 70” of 1”x 2” wood

–      Measuring tape

–      Linseed oil, an old cloth

–      Pencil

–      Stain – we used Provincial by Minwax

–      Clear drying craft glue

–      Acrylic paint – We used shades of gold

–      Icing coloring

–      Squeeze bottle for paint applications

–      Chisel

–      Mitre saw

–      Wood glue

–      Sander

–      Air compressor

–      Nail gun and nails

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We started out by drawing the design. We used a pencil and tape measure to mark 4 equal sections both horizontally and vertically, creating a 4×4 grid, with each square 5 inches wide. Having those square blocks gives it the consistency it needs to look like a quilt. Beyond that you can get creative and connect them any way you choose. We left some triangle, squares and diamonds to create this look. There are endless combinations you could choose from!

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This was our first attempt at using a chisel. It went very well, even though it make a huge mess and Abby cut her hands a lot.

Please don’t be like Abby and chisel towards your fingers, it isn’t safe! (only mild cuts resulted! No fingers lost)

We chiseled along all of the lines creating grooves in the wood according to our pattern.

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Once chiseled and cleaned, we gave it a quick sanding and started to mix the color.

We wanted the design of our barn quilt to be a rose gold color. In an empty squeeze bottle we filled it with craft clear drying glue, acrylic gold paint, and a few drops of pink, yellow, and orange icing coloring.

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We then slowly squeezed the paint into the grooves of the wood, moving very slowly as the icing coloring will stain the wood the second they touch.

[We left that to dry overnight. Once it was dried we gave the board a sanding. This was a good way to remove any stain that landed in the wrong place. After it looked cleaner, we applied linseed oil to the entire board to brighten the wood back up.

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Now to frame!

We cut 4 20” pieces of 1x2s at a 45 degree angle. This will allow them to fit snugly around the quilt and create a frame.

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Once cut to size, we lightly sanded and stained the frame with Minwax Provincial so it would stand out and contrast the quilt (instead of looking like and extension of the quilt)

Photo_1569712708978.jpgPhoto_1569712705872.jpgOnce dried we used the nail gun to secure the frame in place around the barn quilt.

Photo_1569712702755.jpgAnd done!Photo_1569712699995.jpgPresenting the Zaitley family Barn Quilt

What we learned from this project:

–      Don’t use a chisel inside! You may have guessed this, but it makes a huge mess. Thank god baby C started crawling a week after we finished this project as all the mess was just out of reach!

–      Don’t chisel towards you hand. This seems very obvious, yes. But when using a hand tool we can sometimes forget they can be just as dangerous as motorized ones.

–      Buy a lot more framing then you need if you are bad at measuring….. haha. At least we have lots of scraps left over for another project!!

Have you tried this project? Tag us on Instagram for a change to be featured in our stories! @talldorkandmatching

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