Crafting for Sanity: The Definitive Guide
My favorite DIY crafts: custom wine glasses, Instagram frame, magnetic chalkboard
It's no secret that I suffer from several forms of anxiety - especially social anxiety. I've found that crafting keeps me from eating myself alive when I'm alone, and also gives me a way to connect with other people without anxiety. Crafting gives me confidence. Yes, I craft to preserve my sanity.
I love arts and crafts. I love learning new things that I can teach my daughters. I have a lot of DIY projects I want to talk about, but here I'll show you my top three and teach you how to create them yourself.
DIY glitter wine glasses
Glitter wine glasses are gorgeous, make a wonderful decoration, and are usable and washable. You can make your glasses any color you want - think wedding favors, birthday gifts, holidays. Making stripes of colors is as easy as using painters tape. I personally love the ombre look: pick one color and use different shades of that color for the stripes.
First, gather your items. You can find almost everything at your dollar store or Walmart and do this project on the cheap!
What you'll need:
Wineglass - I used Libbey All Purpose Wine Goblets for this project, but you can pick some up at the dollar store for next to nothing.
Glitter - I suggest using a fine glitter. Chunky glitter is harder to seal. I used Martha Stewart
Crafts Hexagonal Glitter, but it took an extra two coats of sealant to finish completely.
Mod Podge - You can use any finish you want, but I would suggest Gloss Finish. Matte finishes take away from the shine of the glitter.
Paint brushes - Don't skimp on quality brushes or your finished product will be full of bristles. I use Sargent Art Natural Hair Brush - inexpensive yet they get the job done right.
Sealant - To make your glasses fully washable, the glitter needs to be completely sealed. I use Rust-Oleum Lacquer Spray.
To make the glitter glass, start by wrapping the stem and cup of the glass with plastic wrap. Use
painters' tape around the bottom of the stem to hold the plastic wrap and create a straight line of glitter.
For single colors: Use a paintbrush to apply Mod Podge all over the base of the glass, and sprinkle your glitter generously all over.
For stripes: Use painters' tape on the base of the glass to create stripes. Start by taping off the sides of the base to create the middle stripe. Apply the Mod Podge and first glitter color, then remove the painters' tape while the glue is wet.
Gently shake off excess glitter and allow to dry for about five minutes. Next, apply glue to one of the sides of the base and add the second color of glitter; gently shake off excess and repeat on the other side.
For ombre (as shown): Choose a base color, and select 3 shades of that color. (For pinks, I used red, dark pink and light pink.) Follow same steps as stripes, placing shades in order of lightest to darkest.
When your glitter is applied, remove the painters tape from the stem (leave the plastic wrap on). Shake your lacquer for two minutes to prepare it, and find an open, well-ventilated area to seal your glitter. Follow directions on your lacquer regarding re-application time.
You will need to apply at least two to three coats of lacquer to completely seal in the glitter - leave the plastic wrap on until your last coat is applied. Chunky glitter may need an additional two coats of lacquer to seal completely; gently press the glitter into the glass after each coat of lacquer dries slightly to help seal it in.
Allow the glass to dry for 24 hours before using. Once dry, they can be washed (gently) by hand and are safe to use!
DIY Instagram display
I love Instagram. Mainly because my "good" camera broke and now I rely on my phone, and the only way to get "good" pictures from a phone is to edit them. Instagram makes that easy. Now, Printstagram makes it easy to get your awesome pics off Instagram and into your home. Now... how to display them?
I had this old frame with no glass and no hanging device. It's actually moved to two different homes with us. As far as I know, it never even had a picture in it. I really don't know why we had it. But when I printed my Instagram pics, I was glad we had held onto it.
What you'll need:
Instagram Prints - Printstagram is the easiest program I found, but there are many other Instagram photo printing services available. Printstagram offers two sizes: 24 4-inch prints, or 48 2.5-inch prints. Printstagram links directly to your Instagram account and you can easily change the quantity of each photo.
Frame - If you order the 4-inch prints, you want a bigger frame. However, if you order the 2.5-inch prints, you have more room to work with a smaller size frame. My frame is pretty huge - about 48" x 12".
Craft wire - I used tarnish resistant, 24 gauge. Using a smaller gauge will create a flimsier line for your photos to hang on.
Mini clothespins - I suggest using 1-inch clothespins for this project. They work great for either size print and the natural color is easy to paint. I used BAZIC Wood 50-pack and they worked perfectly.
Paint - Whatever colors you want! It all depends on the design you want. The colors in my living room are black and red, so I wanted to coordinate with that a little bit. I used Martha Stewart Acrylic Craft Paint in gunmetal to stencil "Family" onto the bottom and red acrylic paint for the heart.
First, you want to paint your clothespins. Paint each side and let them dry, then paint the outside edges and inner edges. Let the clothespins dry completely.
Next, paint any decorations you want on the frame itself. As you can see, I decided to do this step at the last minute - I recommend painting and letting it dry before moving to the next step. I used reusable stencils to create my look.
When the paint has dried, flip the frame over. Use small screws or trim nails to attach the craft wire. If you're using a small frame, you might only need one line. You can use additional lines for larger frames; just be sure to space them apart enough to fit your pictures in them.
Be sure to place the top line closer to the top. Lines should be three to five inches apart, depending on print size.
Add your photos with your finished clothespins and voila! You have a lovely way to show off your Instagram pictures.
DIY magnetic chalkboard
This magnetic chalkboard is so cool because you can customize it any way you want. Add ribbons, flowers, pockets, magnetic pen holders or whatever you want. The design is totally up to you! I recently made one for my daughter using a flat cookie sheet, which I taped off and only added a section of the chalkboard. Then I hot glued a K&Company SMASH Folder Pocket and pink pencil holder onto it.
For this design, I simply painted on a chevron design and filled in the outer triangles with a contrasting color, then stenciled our name.
What you'll need:
Pizza pan - You can usually pick these up for cheap at the dollar store. Also, check the clearance section at Walmart or your favorite department stores. I used Heavy Gauge Steel 12" Pizza Pan.
Chalkboard paint - I used Rust-Oleum Chalkboard Spray in black, but you can choose a brush-on paint or even different colors of chalkboard paint. I simply find spray paint easier and faster for my needs.
Stencils - You can choose whatever stick-on, reusable stencils that you like.
Paint and brushes - Again, you don't need to shell out a lot of these, but the better quality product you use, the better your final result will be.
Apply three or four coats of your chalkboard paint, following manufacturer's instructions. I recommend letting each coat dry completely before applying the next, and let it dry overnight before adding decorations.
Paint the inner part of the pan, from top to bottom, to avoid any smudging or smearing. I applied the adhesive stencils and used two coats of red acrylic paint for the letters (peel stickers off carefully while the second coat is still wet) and gunmetal gray for the stars.
When that is dry, you can paint the outer ring. As you can see, I simply went around the outer ring with the same red in a chevron pattern. Imperfection is okay - it adds character! Then I filled in the outer triangles with the gunmetal gray and left the inner triangles black.
To "prep" your chalkboard before first use, rub a piece of chalk over the unpainted surfaces, then dust clean.
Leaving comments is so easy - just enter your thoughts, feelings, questions or favorite project below! Commenting is another way I like to battle my anxiety. I'd love to hear what you think!