Dreamcatcher

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Dreamcatchers originated with the Native Americans, but are loved by just about everyone nowadays. Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to make one!

 

History of the dreamcatchers

Dreamcatchers originated with the Native Americans, became popular with the hippies of the 1960s and 1970s, and are now loved by just about everyone everywhere.

According to Ojibwe legend, there was a spider woman known as Asibikaashi, who took care of all the children on the land. But as the Ojibwe nation expanded, Asibikaashi wasn’t able to reach all of the children every night. So the mothers and grandmothers crafted dreamcatchers for the children, using willow hoops, natural twine, and feathers. They would then hang the dreamcatchers above the beds of babies and children. These dreamcatchers were thought to filter out the bad dreams, only allowing the good dreams to pass through and reach the minds of the children. When the sun rises in the morning, the bad dreams disappear. Cute, right?


Materials you need to create a dreamcatcher

Making a dreamcatcher is a fun project you can do by yourself. This is the list of materials that I used (however, you can use different ones):

  • A hoop (it can be a cross-stitch hoop or a metal hoop)

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  • Macrame cotton strings (a thicker one and a thinner one – 3mm and 2mm)

 

  • Decorative materials (beads, feathers)

 


How to create a dreamcatcher

 

1. Start by wrapping the hoop with the thick macrame cotton string

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Tie a knot at the top of the hoop and then just wrap the macrame cord around the hoop, covering all the wood and trying to keep it as tight and close together as possible. Tie another knot once you have finished.

2. Create the web by weaving the string along the frame of the hoop

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Start by tying a knot at the top of the hoop. Tie a double or triple knot to ensure that the string is secure. Then loop the string around the hoop and back over itself to create a hitch. Make sure to pull the string tight to secure it before moving on to the next loop. Be careful – by pulling too hard on the string, you may warp the shape of the dreamcatcher.

Loop the string around the entire frame until you reach the top of the hoop where you started. As you do this, go slowly to make sure the loops are evenly spaced. Once you reach the top, loop the string around the hoop next to the starting knot. Pay attention: There should be an odd number of loops.

Then, create the second layer of web. Loop the string around the midpoint of the first line of thread. Using the same technique, loop it around the string and over itself to create a hitch. Continue weaving the thread this way until you reach the top of the hoop.

3. Finish the dreamcatcher by decorating it with your favorite accessories

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You can also loop beads into the web. You will need to do this as you make the web. Place a bead on the string before you loop and hitch it to the next string. You can either space them out randomly or create a pattern by placing a bead on every other string.

Continue the weaving until a small circle forms in the middle. As you weave the web, the circle in the middle will get smaller and smaller. Weave the string until only a small circle is left in the middle of the dreamcatcher. Make sure to pull the string tight to secure the web.

Once the circle is small, about the size of a penny or dime, tie a knot around the next string instead of hitching it. Tie a double or triple knot to make sure the string is secure and will not come undone. Then trim off any extra string with scissors.

Cut a piece of suede lace. Tie the loose ends into a knot to make a circle. Secure the lace around the top of the hoop by pushing the knot through the loop. Then pull tight to create the hanging loop.

Finally, you can hang some feathers. Group four to five feathers together. Use a small binder clip to hold them together while you tie and knot a string around the tops of the feathers to secure them. Then tie and knot the string along the bottom of the dream catcher.


My first dreamcatcher

I didn’t have any feathers, unfortunately, so I had to improvise a bit. Even though it is not perfect, I was still very pleased with the final result and proud of myself. It was definitely a fun project that I intend to repeat again soon!

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Candle Making

Candle Making

This is a very basic homemade candles guide. Scented candles are easy — and cheap! — to make. You can get all the materials online, or at your local craft store, and you can buy candle fragrances online, too, in small or large batches.

Materials

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  • Heat-resistant pouring pitcher
  • Old saucepan
  • Canning jars
  • Cooking thermometer
  • Soy wax flakes
  • Candle wicks
  • Fragrance or essential oils
  • clothespins (to hold wicks in place)

I used some jam jars I was going to throw away. As for the rest, I bought everything online on AliExpress.

I bought 60pcs of candle wicks and stickers for €2,95. The cooking thermometer cost €1,34. The pitcher – in this case, a wax melting pot 400ml was €7,98. Finally, 200g of pure soy wax flakes were €4,10. In total, I spent €16,37. It might seem like a lot, but most of the stuff I bought will last long. Also, scented candles are crazy expensive nowadays!

I could only make two candles with the amount of wax I bought so I do suggest you buy a bigger pack of wax online. I didn’t buy more because I didn’t know how easy it is to make candles, but trust me – it is pretty easy!

Instructions

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Melt 450g of soy wax in the pitcher over a double-boiler with the saucepan. Heat to 85°C.

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When the melted wax is at 85°C, add 30g of your favorite essential oil. Remove from heat.

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As the wax cools, place the wicks inside the jars, centering it as best you can. Secure it in place with clothespins.

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When the wax has cooled to 57°C, carefully pour it into the prepared jars.

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Let the jars cool overnight. Before lighting your candles, trim the wicks to 6mm.

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Light and enjoy!


This was my first attempt it went pretty well! I used cinnamon essential oil to give it a warm and cozy winter feeling aroma. Give it a try as well and tell me how it went!

Air Dry Clay

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The other day I went to Flying Tiger, a shop that sells a lot of random stuff, and saw this pack of air-dry clay for only 3 or 4 euros and decided to buy it and try something new. It looked more or less like the one in this image.

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Air-dry clay is a versatile product that can be used in many craft projects. It does not need to be heated, unlike traditional clays that need to be fired in a kiln at a high temperature, or polymer clays that need to be heated in an oven to cure.

How to work with air-dry clay

This kind of clay hardens and cures at normal room temperature and it has a permanent shape after drying. Usually, air-dry clay will be dry to touch after 24 hours. The thicker the clay is, the longer it will take to fully dry. It can take as long as 72 hours.

Once the clay is dry, it can be painted and decorated in a variety of ways. There are many ways of adding surface decoration to air dry clay. One of the best ways to add texture and design is to use rubber stamps. Air drying clay can also be used to fix damaged items and fill in cracks.

The not so good thing about this material is that your air-dry clay sculpture is most likely going to crack. Accept it. Cracking is normal in air-dry clays: it’s caused by shrinkage because of the loss of the water inside the clay body. It is also important to know that air-drying clay is not food safe or waterproof, but applying varnish will help prevent your finished item from cracking if it is going to be used outside.

Equipment Required

You won’t need any special tools to work with air dry clay. A rolling pin that is dedicated to crafting use, plus a knife, will be all that you’ll need for most air dry clay projects. If you are rolling out the clay to work with, then a flat and clean work surface will be useful. A dedicated chopping board may be a useful surface to work on.

Coloring air-dry clay

In addition to using tempera and acrylic paints, air dry clay can be colored with marker pens and inks. Other embellishments including glitter glue can be added. Just remember that air dry clay is porous and the finished item should be sealed with a varnish.

Using Rubber Stamps with air-dry clay

If you are looking to try something different, you can use rubber stamps with air-dry clay and quickly make great-looking items ranging from ornaments to home decor. Deeply etched stamps leave a clear and precise image, while others are good for creating texture. You can also cut a potato in half and carve your design there to be used as a stamp!

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When using rubber stamps to make impressions on air dry clay, it is important to remember that the stamped image works in reverse to how the image will look on paper. The raised part of the stamp sinks into the clay. This means that very different looks can be achieved from your favorite stamps. Remember to cleaning them well after using them.

My first experience with air-dry clay

With the pack I bought, I managed to create three different things: a plant vase, a candle holder and a cactus to put small jewelry, like my rings. This is how they looked once they dried:

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Since I didn’t have any stamps and didn’t feel like creating some, I just used textures of other objects I had laying around the house. For the plant vase, I used these two objects for the texture: the little holes all over the vase were taken from the head of a buddha statue (you can still see some pieces of clay in the picture) and the maltese cross was taken another candle holder. You just have to look around your place and see which objects have a nice texture!

The next step was painting them. I used some watercolor paints I bought from Flying Tiger as well, and this is the end result. Even though I didn’t quite like how the candle holder turned out, I fell in love with the plant vase and the cactus.

So now you know. When you feel bored, just go out and buy something that will allow you to pass the time and let your creativity run wild! Feel free to share your experiences with air-dry clay here.

Bullet Journal

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 Thinking of starting a bullet journal? You’ve come to the right place! Here you’ll learn what a bullet journal is, why you need one and some cool ideas to be creative and adjust your bullet journal to your needs!

 

What is a bullet journal?

Thanks to Instagram — and mounting stress levels — millions of people have ditched their basic planners for a bullet journal and consider this method the best way to plan, reflect, and meditate. And while for some people this is just a journal full of confusing symbols and shorthand, it’s actually a mindfulness practice disguised as a productivity system.

Equal parts day planner, diary, and written meditation, bullet journaling turns the chaos of coordinating your life into a streamlined system that helps you be more productive and reach your personal and professional goals. With sections to log your daily to-do’s, monthly calendar, notes, long-term wants and more, your bullet journal is customized to your life and your needs.

By updating it daily, you learn how to get rid of things that are distracting you and add things you care about. But it’s really built with you in mind: the only thing that the bullet journal needs to be is effective, and how it can best serve its author is entirely up to them. Customize your bullet journal by selecting symbols that are easy for you to understand and creating sections (called “collections”) that align with your long and short-term goals such as a fertility tracker, fitness log, diary, and more.

And for everyone who’s panicking about their art skills, a bullet journal is always about function over form. And to be very clear about that, form can mean sloppy or beautiful. It doesn’t matter what your bullet journal looks like. It’s about how it makes you feel, and how effective it is in moving you towards the things that matter to you.

That’s where the mindfulness connection comes in. Unlike traditional organizers and planners, this method encourages authors to examine how their goals, tasks, and responsibilities make them feel. Instead of a standard checklist, bullet journaling requires daily, monthly, and yearly reflections along with bullet points and asterisks galore.

 

A bullet journal is good for…

  • People who have a million little to-do lists floating around
  • People who like pen and paper to-do lists
  • People who are into goal-setting and habit tracking
  • People who like stationery, journaling, scrapbooking, beautiful pens, etc.
  • People who really love planners
  • People who want to really love planners, or who want to be more organized
  • People who would really like to keep a journal/diary but are having trouble sticking with the habit

 

What tools do I need?

  • An A5 dotted notebook
  • Pen (Micron fineliners)
  • Fine point markets
  • Calendar stickers
  • Washi tape sets
  • Stencil sets

 

How do I start bullet journaling?

Ask yourself: what do you want the bullet journal to do for you? Once you have a general idea, build a system that suits your needs and art skills. If you’re overwhelmed about the flexible format, start with a monthly log where you can prioritize responsibilities to meet monthly goals. From there, flesh it out with a daily log.

Index:

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This section is at the front of your notebook and serves as a table of contents with page numbers to different collections and a symbol key that you update as you go.

Future Log:

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This four-page spread is a year-at-a-glance calendar with future events, goals, and long-term tasks. Add birthdays, travel plans, and major holidays.

Monthly Log:

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This two-page spread includes a calendar with a bird’s-eye view of the month and a task page with things you want to tackle during the month. You can also add other monthly tracking pages (“modules”) including a food, fitness, finance, or book log.

Many bullet journalers have at least two pages devoted to the big-picture view of each month: a monthly calendar page, and a monthly tasks page:

Calendar Page: Use this to write down your events and/or add a note of what happened. The calendar is laid out this way to give you enough space to write a short snippet of events you may have going on and also to note anything you may wish to remember. This will allow you to get a snapshot of what happened.

Task Page: This list consists of tasks you want to get done this month and tasks from last month that you migrated.

Daily Log:

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This is your day-to-day to-do list.

 

Which other collections can  I create?

Collections are a group of related ideas. Every single page in the Bullet Journal is by definition considered a collection. This includes the monthly log, daily log, future log, and any page you give a topic to. You can make a list of anything! Here are some suggestions.

 

List of things you like:

It can be, for example, a list of songs you like. If you recall, in the Daily Log there are these songs with a Note Bullet, that were then migrated to a Collection to keep them in one place, as per the Bullet Journal guidelines when you find yourself writing down the same kind of idea over and again in your Daily Logs.

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Gratitude Log:

Collections can be logs of some kind. Here is a gratitude log to write down 3 things you are thankful for each night, seeing them all in one place makes my heart happy.

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Log & Tracker:

Another idea for a collection can be a log & tracker – to write down, for example, notes about how you feel after your daily run.

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Goal Plans:

Goal plans are fun to create with a bullet journal. You can write about your plan, including your motivation, S.M.A.R.T. game plan, and color-code it to connect the ideas on how you would follow-through.

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Tracker:

You can also create a tracker as a system to help you reach your goals and complement your plan. A tracker is the perfect thing to help you reach your aims! Here’s a week-by-week tracker related to the goal plan from the last photo.

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Sketches:

Sometimes you just want to turn the page and sketch. Simply make an entry in your index called, “Sketches: 22, 45-49,…” and add to it to keep track of your collections that span across several pages.

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There are many, many other forms and types of collections I’m sure you could come up with! It’s a notebook, first and foremost, and the blank page is a canvas to create anything you wish!

 

Bullets and Signifiers in Bullet Journaling

While you should create a key that fits your needs, you can use the following symbols as an example to create consistency:

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Of course you can choose to create your own Bullets and Signifiers as you see fit. It’s your call!

Putting the pieces together

  • When you create a collection, you add it to the index;

  • You use bullets & signifiers to the left of the bullet points as needed;

  • You migrate tasks between collections as needed on a monthly basis. At the end of the month, look over through all of your collections (this includes the monthly and daily logs) to assess whether they are worth doing. If they are worth doing, Migrate them to the new Monthly Log. If they are not worth doing then cross them out, remove the noise. If they are worth doing, but at some other point in time, schedule them in the future log (either in a specific month or in a blank future log page).


 

Design Ideas for your Bullet Journal Collections

 

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Beer Caps

Beer Caps

What is it about bottle caps that makes them so intriguing? Maybe it’s the fact that they are little souvenirs of our favorite drinks. Or it could be their compact size & ready availability make them easy to collect.

It’s time you get your bottle cap collection out, and turn them into something beautiful. Even simple beer cap crafts, when skillfully executed, turn into nice DIY projects.


Fridge Magnets

One cool idea is to create and decorate fridge magnets using beer caps. You need to resize some images you like so they fit the interior of the caps and print them out. Use puff paints or glitter to decorate the caps. Once you’re done with painting, you can use a two-part resin called Envirotex Lite in the cap covering all the paint. Lastly, glue a magnet on!

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Picture Frame

Using a similar concept, you can print out pictures of you and your boyfriend/girlfriend, fit them inside beer caps and place them in a picture frame. You can add some initials or special dates to create some variety. This can be a nice Valentine’s Day gift idea!

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Christmas Ornaments

It’s Christmas time! If you think Christmas ornaments are too expensive, why not make them yourself? Beer caps can look pretty cool on a Christmas tree! All you need is some rope and lots of imagination!


Table

If you have a love for bottled beer and DIY projects, then making a beer bottle cap table is likely going to be right up your alley. It’s functional, unique and a fairly easy project if you know what you’re doing. If you have a bar or pub, this can also be an interesting addition to the decoration of your space.

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Chalkboard Edges

Another nice idea if you have a bar or pub is to write the menu specials or funny quotes on a chalkboard with edges decorated with beer caps.

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Wind Chime

Wind chimes are commonly used to maximize the flow of chi or life’s energy. Try creating your own wind chime with beer caps. You haven’t heard true music until you’ve experienced the delicate clankity-clank of metal slapping together in the breeze.

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Bookmark

If you enjoy reading a book and have the bad habit of folding the edge of the page to know where you stop, try creating an original bookmark with a paper clip. Know any avid readers? They might appreciate this bookmark as well.

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Mini Statues

If you are really crafty, you can give it a try and make some small statues with beer caps. As you spend 8 hours a day at your desk, these little statues will help you daydream about your favorite pass times.

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Pallets

Pallets

Recycling is not only thrifty these days, it’s trendy too. There are so many useful things to make with a wooden pallet. Enjoy this list of ideas!

Materials for DIY projects with pallets

Wooden pallets have quickly become a favorite building material for savvy do-it-yourselfers. The pallet wood boards are unique and there is rarely a need to distress this wood since most of it gains a natural, rich patina from exposure to the elements.

There are a lot of fun and economical ways to create a lively home and garden using pallets. Most projects require only tools that you may already have handy. With little more than a prybar, hammer & nails, cordless drill, and saw, you’ll be able to construct most of these do-it-yourself pallet projects in a day or two.

 

DIY Project Ideas using Pallets

Here are some ideas to craft up wall planters, sofas, bookshelves, and so many different things. The only downside is trying to decide which of these awesome inexpensive projects to start with first!

 

Wall Planter

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Keys/ Mugs Hanger

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Bed for Cats

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Outdoor Sofa / Table

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Shoe Rack

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Bookshelf

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Swing

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Desk

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Garden Walkway

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Clock

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Washi Tape

Washi Tape

If you’re not familiar with all the things that you can do with washi tape then you need to start exploring. This is such an inexpensive way to decorate anything!

I’m not even kidding, you can just stick it on and peel it off so you can change it up all the time. It will stick to any smooth surface and it’s removable, so it’s not a huge commitment either.

Washi tape is an acid free tape that is made out of paper. Not your average paper, every paper you can possibly imagine. Every color, every pattern. You. Can. Imagine.

Check out some ideas of stuff you can decorate below and get inspired!


Decorate Keys

Do you always mix up your keys? Use washi tapes with different colors and patterns to identify your keys and to make them pretty.  This should be on every organizer’s list!

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Decorate Tea Lights

With this easy and simple diy, you can perk up your plain tea lights. For a special occasion, you can pop your washi tea light candles into classy glass votives. Then again, dressed up in their washi tape, they will also look great without a candle holder!

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Decorate Notebooks

Use washi tape to trim the edges your notebook’s sheets so it forms a colorful rainbow! Not only does it look great, but it can really help organizing the content and making it easy to find a specific page.

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Decorate Phone Cases

You can pick up a clear phone case and use washi tape to decorate it any way you want.  Or you can just stick the tape right to your phone. You can change that pattern every time you change your clothes!

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Make Postcards

Make your own unique postcard with washi tape. These cards are fast to make and look really nice!

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Make Gift tags

Same goes for gift tags. Next time you have a birthday, why don’t you use the same washi tape for a birthday card and a gift tag to create some nice consistency?

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Organize Bullet Journal

Washi tape can help you creating the layout for your bullet journal while adding a nice pop of colour to it! Use washi tape to make pretty pages or to design the actually boxes and banners for your bullet journal planner. Read my post about Bullet Journal if this subject interests you.

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Make Bookmarks

Just add some washi tape to regular clips and you’ll have some super cool and creative bookmarks!

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Decorate Pencils and Pens

Have old pens and pencils lying around or want to spruce up some new ones? Just add some washi tape around them and they will look completely different and prettier!

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Decorate Cables and Chargers

If you want people at the office to know that the charger is yours, just wrap it around some washi tape! This way it will look really cool and nobody can take it and say it’s theirs anymore! You can also create some tags around the cables at home with the names of the devices they belong to (‘iphone’, ‘tablet’, ‘kindle’, etc.) so you don’t get lost.

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Create Mini Bunting

Bunting is always a fun item to use for decorations and it’s so easy to make your own.  You can make mini bunting celebrations – for a cake topper or on a greeting card.  All you need is some string and some washi tape. Ready, set, go!

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Create Desk Cup

After you have modified your pencils and pens, it’s time to create a nice desk cup for your office supplies! All you need is a simple Pringles can and some washi tape!

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Decorate Frames

Tired of your old plain photo frames? Just give them a new life with some washi tape! Your pictures will come to life and you can match the frames with the decoration theme you have going on.

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Decorate Plant Vases

Are you a fan of plants? If you’re like me, you have a lot of small plants lying around your house. With washi tape you can give them a new look!

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Decorate Nails

This is so much easier than using polish to decorate your nails! Go ahead and stick your pretty tape on and put a coat of clear polish over the top to make them a little more durable. You can make them match or make them all different. This is another project that you can change with every outfit!

Did you know that you can use washi tape to decorate your nails?  via @washimoshi featured on WildflowersAndWanderlust.com

Decorate Clothespins

You can use clothespins for all kinds of things! To close a bag of chips, to have a string across a wall or window with clips, etc. With washi tape they will look even nicer!

Decorate your own clips and  use them for holding photos or chip clips  via @premipro_arts featured on WildflowersAndWanderlust.com

Decorate Light Switches and Outlet Covers

The small details matter too! Decorate your light switches and outlet covers at home and see what a big difference it makes in the vibe of the place!

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