ALL POSTS IN Handmade

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We’ve talked about elevating old magazines before, but where’s the love for old newspapers? If you still have a hard-copy subscription to the local newspaper, then you likely have even more raw material on hand. Here are some ways to use up that looming stash that don’t involve papier mache or packing ceramics.

Newspaper gift bag

Personalized, green, and cheap, this handmade gift bag serves as the perfect vessel for an equally clever gift. Hand over those presents with pride!

Newspaper Nails

You can show off these wordy nail designs everywhere. In case your stack of old newspapers is dwindling, they require little actual newspaper. Just use rubbing alcohol to transfer the newsprint to your nails, then seal it on with a shiny top coat. A light gray base coat will make the print pop.

MORE NEWSPAPER TRICKS

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So, as you’ve probably heard by now, we’re throwing a holiday party — and not just any holiday party — a crafty holiday party where we’ll make the decorations, drinks and nibbles then show you guys how we pulled it off.

Our event space has a massive stone fireplace flanked by shelves so I decided to finally tackle a project I’d been planning for a while and cover a few of my coffee table books in leather. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m *all* about antiques and naturally wanted my leather books to look like they’d been around for a few decades so I originally planned on covering them in leather from an old bomber jacket. After unsuccessfully scouring thrift stores for the perfect piece of vintage leather, I decided to just purchase new leather then age it myself using the same tricks I use for distressing furniture.

And, voila, they turned out great — and the process was actually easier than I thought it would be. So easy, in fact, that I may have to make a few of these expensive-looking antique tomes to hand out as handmade holiday gifts: Leather-Wrapped Books

Want to make your own antique look-alike leather books to add a timeworn touch to your home or as a cool handmade gift? Get crafting with all my tips and complete step-by-step instructions>>


We’ve teamed up with our friends over at DIYNetwork.com’s
Made + Remade to throw a holiday party, and you’re invited!

Follow along as we craft the party decor, set the holiday table and cook up the menu. Along the way, you’ll get the step-by-step instructions and tips to throw a great party in your home. Catch up on all the posts here.

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If your recycling bin is so full of aluminum cans you find yourself crushing them to save space, here are some ways to make that chronic soda habit work for you! Lightweight aluminum is easy to work with for a variety of cute, kitschy projects.

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Have any ceramic tile squares lying around from a recent home improvement project? Turn them into eye-catching coasters with soda can prints — perfect for entertaining.

Soda Can Barcode Earrings

These earrings, while stylish, aren’t shy about their soda can origins. This pair came straight from soda can bar codes. The Crafty Soccer Mom’s ideas call for minimum crafting skills, allowing the can designs to shine through. Check out her other ideas and safety tips.

CHECK OUT MORE CUTE CAN CRAFTS

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The Knit Parade by Rebecca Rymsza showcases 12 original knitting patterns for motif sweaters from the creative team behind the Wheres Me Jumper brand. These patterns make a bold statement and encourage knitters to personalize their sweaters as much as they like. Each pattern is inspired by a song, ranging from musical notes (“On Repeat” by LCD Soundsystem), to a leopard print (“Me Jane” by PJ Harvey) and dripping paint (“Paint It Black” by The Rolling Stones).

The additional six customizable graphic swatches are practically begging to be played with. “Use one or use them all, however you like. You might be a polka-dot prince, or princess, and choose to stick to one pattern … or you might want to channel the Fresh Prince, circa 1991, in which case, we salute you,” Rebecca says in The Knit Parade.

Take a peek into the funky patterns you can expect. (Hello, handmade Christmas gifts!)

The Knit Parade Sweater Pattern

Pattern: Bad Girls
Inspiration: “Bad Girls” is a song from alternative electronic hip-hop artist M.I.A’s fourth studio album, Matangi, in 2013.

The Knit Parade Sweater Pattern

Pattern: Weather Experience
Inspiration: “Weather Experience” is a song from English electronic band The Prodigy’s debut studio album, Experience, in 1992.

The Knit Parade Sweater Pattern

Pattern: Are ‘Friends’ Electric?
Inspiration: The song “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” is by English new wave band Tubeway Army from the 1979 album Replicas.

Who’s ready to get out their knitting needles and speakers?!

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Made By Hand, the newest book by Lena Corwin, is a collection of projects based on the classes held in her studio. Her first book, Printing By Hand, showcases a modern guide to handmade printing with stamps, stencils and more. In her newest book, she decided to expand her curriculum and even invited some of her talented friends to teach classes on everything from dyeing and sewing to weaving and jewelry making. In 26 studio classes, Made By Hand introduces readers to ageless crafting techniques with modern projects. Take a look at some of my favorites straight from the book:

Lena Corwin's Made by Hand - Rotary-Printed Cloth Napkins

Project by Lena Corwin

Rotary-Printed Cloth Napkins: ”While planning this book, I spent time experimenting with printing techniques that were new to me, and I have become especially interested in the concept of rotary printing,” Lena says in Made By Hand. “When manufacturers produce rotary-printed fabric, a large cylinder is carved with impressions and is used to print on long, continuous rolls of fabric.”

To make a smaller rotating stamp, Lena attached pieces of foam to a rolling pin. The foam pieces soak up the ink, allowing the design to easily transfer to the fabric. Here, she chose a fun polka-dot design in neon hues to create napkins.

Lena Corwin's Made By Hand - Crocheted Garland

Project by Erin Weckerle

Crocheted Garland: To create this garland, Erin used three different doily patterns and chose muted, vintage colors. You can hang the garland anywhere around your home — on a mantel, headboard, window, etc.

Lena Corwin's Made By Hand - Crocheted Rugs

Project by Cal Patch | Braided rug, top; Crocheted rug, bottom

Crocheted or Braided Rugs: “For this project, Cal and I decided to show two great rug-making methods — braided and crocheted. Both methods use the same fabric but produce distinctively different looks,” Lena says in Made By Hand. “Braided rugs … have a classic, old-fashioned appearance, while crocheted rugs … look more modern.”

SEE MORE HANDMADE PROJECTS

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Halloween is just eight days away! Have you stocked up on sweets? Planned out costumes? Decked out the porch for trick-or-treaters? If not, have no fear. There’s still a weekend in between to get everything done, and we have lots of easy-to-make ideas you can knock out before your Sunday primetime shows (hello, The Walking Dead!). Or, throw in one of your favorite Halloween flicks and craft up your little one’s costume. Check out some of our favorite ideas for kids of all ages:

Baby Bull Costume

Baby Bull: Get the step-by-step instructions >>

Homemade Ladybug Costume

Ladybug: Get the step-by-step instructions >>

More Easy-to-Make Costumes for Kids

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The changing season means I can start reaching for hot toddies instead of ice-cold libations. And there’s nothing I love more than a spiked chai tea or an Irish coffee to pair with dessert at night. What are some of your favorite seasonal cocktails? Share them with us!

ORANGE SPICED CIDER

Orange Spiced Cider Recipe

Created by James Labe for Numi Organic Tea

Ingredients

1 Numi Orange Spice tea bag
8 ounces apple cider
2 ounces dark rum
1 cinnamon stick, for garnish

Directions

Heat cider until very hot. Steep tea bag directly in cider for five minutes, covered. Uncover, add rum and stir. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

PEAR HONEYBUSH

Pear Honeybush Recipe

Created by James Labe for Numi Organic Tea

Ingredients

1 Numi Honeybush tea bag
2 ounces bourbon
4 ounces fresh pear juice
maraschino cherry, for garnish

Directions

Infuse tea bag in bourbon for thirty minutes, then remove bag, squeezing out excess. Pour ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into glass. Serve with a maraschino cherry.

HOT APPLE CIDER

Hot Apple Cider Recipe

Created by celebrity caterer Andrea Correale

Ingredients

2 ounces tuaca
hot apple cider
cinnamon stick, for garnish
cranberries, for garnish
whipped cream (optional)

Directions

Pour two ounces tuaca in an Irish coffee glass and fill with hot apple cider. Top glass with whipped cream (if desired) and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Pumpkin Pie Martini

Pumpkin Pie Martini

Created by celebrity caterer Andrea Correale

Ingredients

1 ounce coconut rum
1 ounce coffee liquor
6 ounces milk
1/3 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 to 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie filling (depending on desired taste)
candy corn, for garnish

Directions

Mix all ingredients together in a blender with a few cubes of ice. Serve in a martini glass with a candy corn garnish and a sprinkle of cinnamon on top.

Credit: Orange Spiced Cider and Pear Honeybush recipes courtesy of Numi Organic TeaHot Apple Cider and Pumpkin Pie Martini recipes courtesy of Elegant Affairs Caterers

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A little over a year ago, I bought a beautiful (though in need of a lot of help) vintage dollhouse at an estate sale, hoping to redo it and bring it back to its former glory. Unfortunately, with two moves and several full-size house projects on my list, the dollhouse renovation has fallen behind. But when I saw this magnificent handmade hobbit hole dollhouse, I couldn’t help but be inspired. Seriously, I could look at these images for hours, reading every detail of how this tiny hobbit home was fashioned.

hobbit hole

The creator, Maddie Chambers, is truly an artist. She made all the tiny food by hand, did her own floor and light work, and even made itty-bitty maps, mimicking the look of the Hobbit home as seen in the movies and portrayed in the books. But honestly, I could never describe this dollhouse in a way that could ever demonstrate just how amazing it is, so check it out for yourself. You won’t be disappointed.

hobbit hole

>>See even more mini marvels at HGTV Dollhouses.

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After Lili posted this Daily Delight about these gold log tables, I’ve been on the lookout for a tree stump. Recently, I found a perfect little trunk (!) washed ashore at my family’s lake house. As a MacGyver, I wanted to check out all my DIY options before I started working on my new prized possession. I was blown away by all the crafty ways people have used tree stumps (glow-in-the-dark stool, anyone?). Check out a few of my favorite finds:

Log Slice Table
This rustic log slice table would add natural charm to any room. And doesn’t it look lovely adorned with a vase of fresh flowers? Head on over to Seakettle for Jessica’s tutorial.

Wooden Pencil Holder
Talk about crafting in style! Andrea’s rustic pencil holder would be the perfect addition to any craft room. I’m all for storage that’s easy on the eyes.

MORE TREE TRUNK TRIUMPHS

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Last Wednesday, I spent all day moving everything I own into my new apartment. Although I loathe moving (my muscles still ache), there’s an air of excitement that comes with knowing you have a fresh, barren space to decorate however you please. As I looked around the blank walls in my new room, I decided I was definitely going to need some new artwork to spice things up. My inner MacGyver knew that with a little Pinterest research and a lot of patience, I could make my own wall art and save some serious moolah. Take a look at my favorite finds:

DIY Ombré Wall Art
I don’t know about you, but I’m definitely still a fan of the ombré trend when it’s done this beautifully. This quirky sign would make a bold statement on an otherwise boring wall, and Sarah of Sarah Hearts says it only took 15 minutes to make.

DIY Gold Leaf Monogram
This DIY Gold Leaf Monogram is perfect because it’s just enough bling – it’s not overwhelmingly gaudy but it has enough pizzazz to make an impact. Check out Brittany’s quick and easy tutorial.
More DIY Wall Art

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My college dorm room was not particularly cute. It was less about style and more about function. (There were lots of wire shelves and cloth bins.) Plus, my roommate and I did the whole matchy-matchy thing in a bad way. It worked in our 10-by-10-foot space. Needless to say, I was more than happy to jump in and offer design advice when my sister moved into her first college living space last fall. Her place turned out much better than mine. If you can believe it, move-in day is right around the corner. We know students are constantly looking for easy ways to make their temporary digs a cozy home. Our brand-new Back to College package has everything you need to design your dorm room (or college apartment) on a budget. Take a look at my favorite picks:

Dorm Room Decorating Ideas

Chic + Functional Dorm Room Decorating Ideas

Dorm Room Decorating Ideas

10 Ways to Transform Your Space With Washi Tape

Dorm Room Decorating Ideas

6 More Easy DIYs

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Let me start by saying I’m aware bicycles aren’t exactly everyday crafting materials. Not many people have bicycle parts lying around the same way they do scrapbook paper. But with that said — an old bicycle isn’t too difficult to come by. If you don’t have one sitting in your garage patiently waiting to be re-loved, try a thrift store, garage sale — or maybe your granny’s garage.

Bicycle Garden Planter
If you’re looking to add charm to your garden area, consider creating a bicycle planter to display your prettiest posies. Simply paint an old bike the color of your choice, and attach a basket to hold your flowers. With a display this pretty, you may find sudden inspiration to garden all day, every day.

Bicycle Wheel Clock

This unique clock is made from an old bicycle wheel and a vintage yardstick – talk about industrial charm! I also love how Karianne placed her clock on a chalkboard wall. Check out the full tutorial on East Coast Creative.

More Ways To Upcycle a Bike

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August is quickly approaching, and that means one thing: soon-to-be college freshmen are running all over town, desperately searching for finishing touches to make their dorm room as stylish and homey as a 15′ x 10′ room can be. When you’re working with old, outdated furniture and walls that can’t be painted, that’s a difficult task.

It’s important to find ways to personalize your room, and one of the easiest ways to add personality is to add color. If painting is out of the question, why not use washi tape for instant color? Our design experts have come up with a few crafty ways to use tape to spice up your dorm room. Since it’s easily removable and leaves no damage or residue, it can be used to cover anything from side tables to electronics.

Washi Tape Table

Cover small furniture like this side table in washi tape to create a custom pieces for your dorm room. Simply place tapes in various sizes next to each other in a diagonal pattern.

Washi Tape Jewelry Tree

Not only can it be difficult to make a dorm room seem homey, it can also be tough to find a place for all that stuff you couldn’t bear to leave behind. If you’re anything like me (an admitted jewelry hoarder), you might be searching for jewelry storage in your cramped dorm. Use washi tape and thumbtacks to create a jewelry tree on your wall. I’m all for storage that’s easy on the eyes!

5 WAYS TO USE WASHI TAPE

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Halloween may still be months away but that doesn’t mean I can’t tempt you with a few of the devilishly delicious treats we’re cooking up now. Our entertaining pros are busy whipping up both sweet and savory party snacks your Halloween guests won’t be able to resist!

Here’s a small sampling; I’ll share the actual recipes when we get closer to All Hallows Eve. In the meantime, check out our Halloween feature for more spooky inspiration: HGTV.com's Halloween Party Recipes

MORE HALLOWEEN IDEAS:
Halloween Sneak Peek: Outdoor Decorating Ideas
Halloween Sneak Peek: Kids’ Costumes
4 Halloween Crafts to Make Now
Halloween Cut-Outs: Spook Up Your Yard
Crafty Indoor Halloween Decorations
Free! Halloween Printables
Home Survival Skills: Prepare Your Home for Halloween
How to Make a Fall Felt Leaf Wreath

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I know what you’re thinking: “How could you possibly make plumbing materials into something lovely?” Well, I’m here to tell you it’s possible. Although PVC pipe may seem like a strange choice of crafting material, it fits key criteria for avid MacGyvers — it’s lightweight, easy to work with and relatively cheap.  Whether you’re looking to make inexpensive decor updates or searching for a new summer activity for your mini MacGyvers, we’ve got you covered.

DIY PVC Pipe Vases

These PVC vases seem so simple to create, yet they would add an instant punch of pizzazz to any room. Pick up some vibrant spray paint and get to crafting, MacGyvers!

PVC Pipe Camping Stools

These mini camping stools are so adorable, and Elizabeth from Simple Simon & Company swears they’re incredibly easy to make. The best part? They can be made for $6 each.

More PVC Pipe Crafts

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It seems like just last week the school year was coming to an end, yet somehow, the start of the new school year is just around the corner. Our friends over at Paging Supermom are readily prepared and already planning a fabulous back-to-school party. Luckily, they’ve offered us an exclusive sneak peek at the Paging Supermom Back to School With Neon Party that will be unfolding on their blog all week.

Paging Supermom Back-to-School Party

More Party Decor

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Here in the South, cobblers are a summer staple — and according to Yahoo! searches this month, folks all over are on a cobbler hunt.* With peaches in season (and peach as HGTV’s color of the month), there has never been a better time to try your hand at peach cobbler.

My family easily tries two or three new cobbler recipes every summer, but this recipe has stood the test of time. It only requires a few ingredients, and it’s simple enough for any baking novice to succeed. (Can you see why it’s my favorite?) So, pick up some peaches and give this recipe a try!

Peach Cobbler

GET THE RECIPE

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Halloween may officially be more than 3 months away but here at the HGTV offices (or in my cube, at least) the countdown to All Hallows Eve has begun. Our talented designers have been hard at work coming up with fresh ideas for all things Halloween — from party food and games to kids’ costumes, pumpkins and, of course, spooktacular indoor and outdoor decorations.

I know that Halloween die-hards like to get a head start on outdoor decorations, in particular, so I thought I’d share a sneak peek of a few of the projects we’re currently working on. No links yet, but be on the lookout for our new Halloween feature in early September:  Outdoor Halloween Decorating Ideas

MORE HALLOWEEN IDEAS:
Halloween Sneak Peek: Kids’ Costumes
4 Halloween Crafts to Make Now
Halloween Cut-Outs: Spook Up Your Yard
Crafty Indoor Halloween Decorations
Free! Halloween Printables
Home Survival Skills: Prepare Your Home for Halloween
How to Make a Fall Felt Leaf Wreath

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Nothing quite counters the way I feel when I open my mailbox to find a brand-new magazine, hot off the press. A magazine’s arrival may occasionally cause me to neglect my entire to-do list. I’ve even been known to *accidentally* collect a pile of magazines in my shopping cart when stuck in a grocery store line. Sound familiar? (Or is it just my journalistic roots?)

Needless to say, I’ve stacked up quite a pile of magazines over the years. While a magazine remains glamorous for a few weeks — and in some cases, months — after a few years, it generally loses its charm. Although recycling is always a noble option for outdated magazines, why not consider upcycling? After some thorough Pinterest research, I’ve rounded up my favorite crafts for your old magazines. (Just promise me you’ll spare HGTV Magazine this time!)

DIY Paper Flowers

These handmade paper flowers are adorable, and they’re inexpensive to make. They would serve as a beautiful centerpiece or even desk accessory — either way, I’m all for flowers that never die! Check out RockNRoll Bride for all the DIY details.

Magazine Page Bowl

This bowl is the only acceptable reason to use the word ‘nifty.’ It’s not only functional (a perfect place for your kitchen counter strays) — it’s a piece of art. Stroll on over to Do It and How to see how it’s made.
More Crafts for Your Old Mags

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