Category: crafts

Chalkboard cutting board DIY

www.nestinthewest.comAm I the only one still loving the chalkboard paint trend or do I have some company? There are so many fun projects to take on (as you may have seen here, here and here) that I’m still rolling with it. This weekend I whipped up a couple of chalkboard painted cutting boards which I think are ideal for labelling your offering at a pot luck or for a fun message at snack time.
The supplies are simple and readily available:

  • A cutting board
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Paint brush
  • Painters’ masking tape

www.nestinthewest.comUse the tape to mask off a portion of the board for painting. With larger boards, I left about a 3″ strip on one long edge. On the snack board I did a narrow strip on each short side following the pattern of the board. Wrap the tape all the way around the board as you’ll be painting the front, sides and back. Burnish the tape well onto the board. Now you’re ready to paint! I did 4 light coats allowing each to dry for about an hour between coats. Don’t be alarmed if your first 2 coats are a bit streaky. The later coats will even this out. You can set the wet board on top of the roll of tape to lift it off your painting surface and allow all painted bits to dry at once. When the final coat of paint is dry, remove the painters tape carefully. Allow the paint to cure for a good 24-48 hours. Then condition the chalkboard portion by rubbing a layer of chalk over the entire surface then brushing it off. This will leave a bit of a cloudy finish, which is good. This step is important! If you skip it, the first message you write on the board will never completely erase. Once you use the cutting board, just wipe it clean with a damp cloth, do not soak or put it in the dishwasher. How easy was that?
www.nestinthewest.comwww.nestinthewest.comThis is an ideal project for a day off. You can get all 4 coats of paint on in a day then let it dry overnight…or 2. I think they’d be good presents for weddings, housewarming or just for foodie friends…be sure to pass on care instructions too. I’ve had great luck finding bamboo cutting boards at the dollar store for less than $5 and I use Martha Stewart’s chalkboard paint, bought at Michaels with a coupon. Economical, functional and fun…my favorite kind of craft!

Saved a fave – t shirt upcycle

Do you ever find yourself emotionally attached to a piece of clothing? I know it’s silly but I have this long sleeve t-shirt that I just love. It’s the perfect weight to wear under a cardigan, on its own or over a tank. I’ve worn it a lot. So much so that I noticed this hole. Dang!
www.nestinthewest.comI just couldn’t part with this one. We’ve spent a lot of quality time together and travelled to London, Hawaii and Seattle at least. So, instead of throwing it away, I followed a whim and gave it a new life, actually two. I cut the shirt just under the armpits and presto-magic, had an infinity cowl. But wait. There’s more. I cut each sleeve, also just below the armpit and had instant leg warmers! These are great for keeping warm while letting newly painted toes dry or for an extra layer with skinny jeans or tights. www.nestinthewest.comwww.nestinthewest.comNo need to pull out the sewing machine, the jersey knit fabric doesn’t fray and just kind of curls in on itself making a finished enough edge for these casual projects. I wear the cut side of the cowl closest to my neck while the finished edge is at the bottom. For the leg warmers, the cut edge is on my foot and the narrower finished edge holds them up on the calf.
www.nestinthewest.comIt’s times like these when I almost wish my Scottish parents read the blog – they’d get a kick out of my resourcefulness. Must admit that I didn’t actually reach for the scissors until after I’d found this replacement!!
www.nestinthewest.comWhat about you?…any clothes you just can’t part with? How do you prolong their life?

All shirts are from the Gap.

Whatever Craft Weekend

I can still hardly believe I got picked, took multiple flights, met 15 wonderful ladies and spent a weekend with Meg and Kimberlee at the craft house in Kansas. It was an epic weekend of color, creating, crafting, eating, antiquing, swag and making friends. One I will not soon forget.
nestinthewest.comnestinthewest.comnestinthewest.comWe all met up at the craft house early Friday evening. The house itself is stunning with lots of wood, white, great art and a welcoming feel. Yup, pretty much my dream house! Rooms were assigned, roommates met, dinner was had and the crafting began. We each made a ruffled apron…all different, all adorable. I may have pranced around in mine.
nestinthewest.comSaturday was a full day of fun starting with an amazing breakfast including Kimberlee’s famous cinnamon buns (she does not disappoint), an antiquing trip to Bearly Makin’ It and the barn in Marion. Unbelievable stuff to be had there. Then it was back to the house for show and tell, dinner and crafting into the wee hours! It was so fun to see everyone’s projects. We all had the same instruction and supplies yet all turned out unique. I love that!
nestinthewest.comnestinthewest.comnestinthewest.comnestinthewest.comSunday was bittersweet with laughs, packing, photos and good-byes! Meg and Kimberlee were the hostesses with the mostest for sure and helpers Sara Jane and Jenny were the sweetest! They’re the kind of girls you want to hang out with, for much longer than a weekend.
nestinthewest.comThis whole adventure was a total splurge for me financially and travel-wise and took me out of my introverted comfort zone. It was soooo worth it and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. I came home inspired, happy and full of joy. I’m feeling confident enough to dust off the sewing machine and tackle a project, ready to sit down and paint more often and am redecorating my house with more color! Most of all, I feel so blessed to have met these amazing women and hope to keep in touch. I’d say we bonded! There was no drama, no egos, just a great group of gals brought together by our love of creating! Reunion anyone!?