While there are some things that cannot be duplicated, most things can be re-created for less money and the joy of saying ‘I made it myself’ These DIY’s are for those individuals who want to have the nicer things in life, but not the investment.
Make your own spooky candles for Halloween
Making these candles are sooo easy, you will wonder why you did not make them before. I went to the Dollar Store (fav) and bought some candles and that was all the money I had invested in these. The following post will show you how I have incorporated other candles that I made into my home decor.
I bought some candles from the Dollar Store, or you can use any candles you have around the house. I used a red taper candle for the blood effect.
Just light the red candle and let the red wax drip down the sides of the candles you are wanting to decorate. These are big candles I used but you can even use taper candles and do the same thing. Just be careful of the hot wax!
In the following post, I used battery operated candles from the store and used the red candle to drip wax on to them. So you can use any type candle and achieve the same effect
If you have been following this website, you all know how much I love Halloween. Maybe even more than Christmas (if that’s possible). Now I will admit that I am a fanatic about this holiday.
I will also admit that I love to surf Pinterest. If you are a member of this wonderful website, you know what I am talking about. If you are not a member, follow me on Pinterest and see what it is all about.
Anyway…..I get a lot of ideas from cooking to DIY’s. I am re-creating some of those wonderful ideas and adding my own spin to them. I am in the process of decorating my home for a Halloween party that I am planning. I started in my Den above the fireplace. Most of the decorations are self explanatory, but I will tell you how I created some of them.
This is the finished product. But everyday, I am finding a little more to add to this.
I started with a branch from one of the trees outside and painted it black. Then I added more branches to give it a fuller look. I bought some black crows, skeletons and candles from the Dollar store. I gave the candles a more haunting look (different post) and then I added some tombstones. The bats on the wall and in the picture are just cutouts made with black construction paper and then taped to the wall. The wings are lifted up to give a 3-D appearance. Below is another look at finished product.
The picture does not do the decorations justice (note to self….need to work on photography) By the way, the picture on the wall is what I painted about 3 years ago when I was in my creative mood. I felt this picture just added to the scene.
Give Mom something from the Heart this Mothers Day
Getting tired of just running out to the nearest Store and buying a bunch of flowers from their Floral Dept to give to the most important person in your life?
Well, you can put just a little effort and thought into something that will not take long at all to create. Mom (or anyone else) will be able to keep using it all season long. Better than flowers that will wilt in a week.
What is it…….
A Lettuce Basket…Of Course!
- Basket (any kind)
- Ribbon (any kind) I used this Christmas ribbon
- Weed Fabric (large enough piece to fit up the sides of basket)
- Plastic grocery bag, cut to fit basket with a few holes in the bottom
- Potting soil
- Plants–I used the following: Butter crunch Lettuce, Romaine lettuce, Red Sails Lettuce and for a little color I added flowers, Snapdragons and Coleus
- Line the basket with the plastic bag, then place the fabric in
- Fill with soil (don’t worry if fabric is still showing, lettuce will cover)
- Insert each lettuce in any order that you want. I used 2 of each kind
- Cover each plant with soil
- If you have any bare spots between plants, just insert some Spanish moss which will help retain moisture
All the lettuces that I used were grown in the greenhouse, but you can get these at a Nursery or local Greenhouses for about $1.00 a plant.
Plants – just the flowers $1.00
Basket – .50 at yard sale
Ribbon – 1.99 Craft Store 1/2 off
Weed fabric - .20
Potting Soil – .50
Total cost for my project —-about $4.50 — yours , slightly higher if you buy the plants
Think about doing this for Mom. You can even do this same thing using Herbs, or just flowers. Mom will love this more than just store bought flowers because you put it together with Love!
Cute Idea for Easter
Here is a cute idea that takes no time at all and the kids will love it.
Just get some different colored peeps and dip them into 8 ozs of melted chocolate and then sprinkle different types of candies on them.
I just set these onto some Spanish Moss, set a rabbit next to them. Instant decoration, and they are edible.
Want to try something different for Easter
How about making some Stained Glass Eggs
I saw this on Pinterest and thought ‘I know how to make these. They will be easy!’
Boil eggs and then crack them without peeling them, leaving the shells on. Then reboil them in colored water. Simple. Right? Don’t do what I did. Next picture, please
I thought ‘save myself some time’ put an egg in a cup with colored water and place in micro-wave to boil. After about 1 minute, I heard a small explosion and this is what I found after opening up the door (less the cup, that I took out immediately) And the smell…….well, I stopped everything, held a rag over my nose and cleaned it up. I know you are not supposed to place a fresh egg in the micro-wave without piercing it, but it didn’t dawn on me that a hard boiled egg would do the same thing.
Now, I don’t know if this was just a fluke, or it does happen every time even with a hard boiled egg. If anybody knows for sure, please drop a line and let me know. I am not going to test this again!!!
I saw a picture of this on Pinterest.com , so I decided to try and make one for myself. Although, it looks like the same one, I know I spent a lot less for it. I went to the Dollar Store (any Dollar Store in your area will have these items) and bought most of this and I only spent about $5.00 on this really cute Centerpiece and all my Grand kids love it.
Styrofoam Cone (half price at craft store)
Glitter eggs (3 bags at Dollar Store)
Easter Grass (had from last year, yea, that’s right, I even save the grass from last year)
Hot Glue gun
- Place a dab of hot glue on the side of a glitter egg, place it on the bottom side of the cone
- Keep adding eggs around the bottom of the cone
- Next row, add eggs in between the other eggs making another row
- Continue like this until you get to the top, then place an egg up right on the top of the cone. (don’t worry if the eggs are not completely straight at this point)
- Take some Easter grass and start tucking in every where you see a hole that an egg did not cover.
When you are done, it really looks very pretty. Place a ceramic Rabbit next top it and really add some whimsical to it.
Follow Frugal Creations on Pinterest and see all the creations, food, etc that people have pinned
(If you need an invite, let us know and we will set you up)
Make this Easter Wreath for about $5.00. Let me show you how
Now, I am not one to extreme decorate for Easter. Halloween and Christmas are my major Holidays. I do however like to make a few things that does not require a lot of time or money. It may not be the most extravagant, but it is pretty and it plays a dual role of Spring and Easter. This project is sooo simple to make. It took me all of about 10 minutes to put together with little effort
- Grapevine Wreath (any size)
- Various flower stems, pics or whatever you chose in any color
- Spanish Moss or raffia
- Candy eggs (yes, I used candy eggs on this one)
- Hot glue gun
- 2 pieces of floral wire about 6 inches long
- Separate the flower stems to create individual stems
- Insert each stem, alternating from different flower stems in one side of the wreath. Insert the stem until it is secure intertwined in the wreath.
- Add about 4-5 stems/flowers on the top of the wreath and the same on the bottom, bringing the ends of the stems to meet each other, as shown below.
- Tie a bow in the ribbon, leaving tails on each end to wind thru the wreath
- Tie one piece of wire around the bow and tie it onto the wreath where the ends of the flowers stems meet (this covers the ends of the flowers)
- Take the Spanish moss and shape it into a bowl like shape, (nest) hot glue it to the inside bottom of the wreath, so it looks like it is sitting on the wreath
- Hot glue 3 candy eggs inside the nest ( I used baby blue to look like Robin eggs) You can also add a bird to this, sitting on the nest
- Take the other piece of wire and hook on the top back of the wreath and hang on your door
I bought the flowers stems, ribbon and the wreath at Hobby Lobby for half off. I had the Spanish moss and the candy eggs. This project still onlt cost about $5.00. With all the Easter baskets you need tol buy or make, don’t spend a fortune on decorations.
Give something extra for Valentine’s Day
Want to give something different for Valentine’s Day, but still want it special and romantic?
Cook him/her a special little dinner and instead of flowers or candy, give a gift that says you can still be that romantic person they fell in love with.
On a budget? With this gift, all it cost is $5.00 at the Dollar Store and the cost of either Wine or Sparkling Water/Juice. The thought says much more.
- 2 wine glasses (Dollar Store or what you have on hand)
- Plastic clear bowl (Dollar Store)
- Bag of cellophane (Dollar store)
- Clear Basket Bags (Dollar Store)
- Balloon (Dollar Store-optional)
- Open clear bag and place the bowl in the center
- Add the cellophane
- Place bottle (your choice) in center of bowl
- Place one glass on either side of bottle
- I added a bag of Dove Chocolates (had to have those )
Pull up the bag around the glasses and tie it with a ribbon to close.
Now, maybe to some of you, this may not seem like very much. Just try it and then let us now how much they liked it.
For that last minute decoration just to add a touch here and there around the house, try this cute, inexpensive DIY project that takes no time at all, but adds that personal touch.
You can hang these on a door knob or in a window, or at each corner of a doorway or window. They are so simple to make and yet look like you spent a lot of time.
This will make 2
- 6 round ornaments (3 of each color, various shades)
- Strips of ribbon, various lengths, same color or shade of ornaments (I used sheer ribbon)
- 6 pieces of artificial greenery, about 3 inches long
- Tie ends of 3 strips on ribbon, same color, various lengths together
- Take one end of ribbon and put thru the hanger on the ornament and tie in a knot. Wrap the greenery around the hanger covering the knot of ribbon
- Do the same thing with the other two ornaments
- Tie a bow at the top where all three pieces are tied together
- Complete the other 3 ornaments in the same fashion
Hang anywhere in your house for that little extra touch of Christmas
Whimsical Door Hanging
Got an old pair of gloves that you don’t wear anymore and just hate to throw them away. Make a whimsical door decoration for Christmas and use year after year.
- 1 pair of gloves (cloth material works better)
- Artificial Greenery
- Needle and thread
- Ribbon (any color)
- Ornaments (5 to 6)
- Place the gloves together at an angle with the inside of the hands facing each other (as in a clapping motion)
- Sew the two inside seams at the top together ( each glove should still be open as if you could place yours hands in it.)
- Cut 4 pieces of greenery about 10 to 12 inches long with a pair of needle nose pliers
- Spread out the branches to make them more bushy.
- Place 2 pieces of greenery in each of the gloves at different angles
- Tie each ornament at different places all over the greenery
- Tie a ribbon into a bow and wrap loosely around the cuff of the gloves
- Use an ornament hanger and thread thru the back of the glove and hang on the door.
You can also use real greenery for this project, just be aware that the sap from the branches and the stems may stain the gloves.
No time to make an elaborate centerpiece for the table? Have company coming for dinner? Need something in the center of the table just to show some sign of the Christmas spirit? No worry. Just grab some decorations (maybe off the tree?) and add that special touch to your table.
Get a few ball ornaments (any color), grap some sparkly beads, and through in some bells or tinsel in a large glass vase or large glass bowl..
Just make sure that whatever color you chose, you stay in the same color scheme for everything you put in the vase.
For a little added romance, set a small candle in a glass candle holder down in the center of your vase. Just make sure that it sets level while burning.
Create and entertain in style
Here is a very easy way to take a hand me down metal tray and create something so beautiful that you want to show it off
Use this and serve drinks or snacks at your next Holiday get together. It makes a wonderful presentation and again, you can say that you created it, and it will last for years.
- Metal tray, any size, any decoration on it. (I bought this one at the second hand store for .99¢)
- Spray paint, 2 different coordinating colors. ( I used gold and silver here) Just make sure that it can be used on the type of material that your tray is made of.
- 2 or 3 sprigs of live evergreen (do not use artificial greenery here)
- Spray glue
- Spray paint the entire surface with one color of the paint. Make sure that you do this in a very well ventilated area. (I used gold for my first color)
- Allow to completely dry before continuing, about 1 hour
- Spray adhesive on one side of the live greenery and place down on the tray and hold into place until secure.
- Holding the other spray paint directly over the tray, (this will allow you to get the best outline of the greenery) spray in light spurts, moving back and forth, spraying the entire tray.
- Allow to dry before removing the live greenery. About 1 hour
This is a very simple project, but has a lasting effect
Every year I try to get crafty and start making things for Christmas, just to say, I did it myself. It gives me such satisfaction when I make homemade items. This year along with other items I made, I decided that I needed a wreath. This wreath is very simple to make, after all, with being so busy during this time of year, who has time or money to invest in a wreath.
This project took me about 1/2 hour to put together and I found one almost like this one in the craft store for $39.99. I paid about $14.00 for the material. Whenever the craft store had sales, that’s when I bought these items. Grab a lot of these items after Christmas and be prepared for next year.
- Green artificial wreath (I used a 16″ found at craft store)
- Small grapevine wreath (Just make sure that the grapevine wreath fits inside the green wreath)
- Floral wire (craft store)
- Pine cones (small and large) about 10 or 12
- Stem of artificial poinsettias (about 7 or 8 flower heads) whatever color you like
- Various Christmas ornaments, any variety
- Hot glue gun
- Roll of Ribbon (optional)
- Insert the grapevine wreath in center of green wreath and wrap floral wire around both to secure the two together
- Place pine cones on top of grapevine wreath with the flat part of pines cones sitting on wreath. Do not hot glue until you have measured the cones for placement.
- Once placed, take 1 pine cone at a time, put hot glue on the bottom, place and hold it back on the grapevine wreath until it is secure. Glue each one using the same technique.
- Pull the flower heads off the poinsettia stem. Place these around the green part of the wreath, again, do not glue until you have placed these so you can reposition if necessary.
- Once placed, put hot glue on the short stem of the poinsettia and push down into the green part and hold until secure. Continue until you have all the flower heads glued.
- Place glue on each ornament and insert into the greenery at different places
- If you have chosen to add a bow, just place it anywhere you want
- Fluff the branches of the greenery to have some show thru the flower heads for a more realistic look
- Wrap a piece of the floral wire on the back of the wreath for hanging
These wreaths can be hung on doors, walls or even in windows. These can be used as decorations for a grave site in lieu of a blanket.
Take keepsake kids ornaments that were made during school and place on this wreath instead of the tree (where they usually get lost with everything else so pretty on the tree) Make their creations the focal point.
Folgers Cookie Jar
Every year I bake loads and loads of cookies and candy to give as added little gifts. When we bake, we usually have a lot of this left over after making baskets and tins full of cookies and candy.
With all the baked goods left, my daughter and I take this to the local food pantries and soup kitchens for everyone to share. I have always run into problems about what I am going to use for containers (giving all my others out to family and friends.)
Problem solved! I drink a lot of coffee and I know other people who drink Folgers Coffee as well. When I found this on Folgers site, I started to ask people to save their containers for me. Now I have no problems with what I am going to use as containers to take all the goodies we make to give to other people.
Folgers has a variety of designs, you can even make your own design. Just print them out (I used self sticking paper bought at a craft store) tape or stick on the Folgers container and fill them to the brim with cookies/candy and make other people happy.
Recycle Folgers Coffee Cans into Cookie jars for Holiday gives. Just go to Folgers.com
Snowmen with everyday items from around the house
How about making these cute little snowmen and have the kids help. It is as simple as a button!
- 2 White Paint Rollers
- Various colored buttons
- Strips of material about 8 inches long
- 3 grey plastic connectors (available at building supply company)
- Bag of artificial snow (available at craft store)
- Hack Saw (I used an old serrated knife)
- Glass saucer or candle plate 8-10 inches in diameter
- Spray paint (optional)
- Glue gun
- Cut 1 paint roller about 1/3 in two, leaving the other one in tact. (this will enable the snowmen to be staggered in height)
- Spray paint the connectors and set aside to dry
- Wrap the material around each snowman about halfway up and tye to create a scarf
- Now get the kids involved and hot glue and assortment of buttons to make eyes and down the front of each snowman. (watch little fingers because glue will be hot, or you can use regular glue)
- Glue the connectors to the top of each snowman for their hat.
- Glue each snowman to the candle plate in a semi-circle
- Add the flaked snow letting it fall on top of the snowmen.
Set on a shelf out of reach of wondering little fingers due to the flaked snow.
Storage for Magazines
If you are like me, you save magazines because you don’t know when you are going to have to go back and refer to it for either a recipe, DIY project or just and article that you want to save. I had to clean out some of my magazines and it just about killed me. There are so many wonderful magazines with great articles in them. So what I have done, is I have started a file with all the items that I find and place them in it for future reference. The magazines that I did not have the heart to get rid of, I decided to make room for them.
This filing system is made with cereal boxes. It is as easy as wrapping a gift.
- Cereal Box, any size
- Wrapping paper, or Tissue paper
Directions for Assembly:
- Cut a Cereal box at an angle and invert the cut piece inside the other side of the box
- Wrap the entire box with wrapping or tissue paper. Place magazines in box and place on shelf.
I use book ends with this project an I categorize the magazines by either month or specific magazine.
Setting a Formal Table
Are you planning on having company for the Holidays and want to be a little more formal than usual. You can do this even if you are just using your everyday dishes. Its all in the arrangement of the flatware, glasses and plates.
The following is a guideline for a formal table setting starting from left to right:
- Salad Fork
- Dinner Fork (next to Plate)
- Charger (under dinner plate)
- Dinner Plate
- Salad/Soup Bowl
- Napkin (can either be on top or on the left side of Dinner Plate)
- Dinner Knife (next to Plate on right side)
- Soup Spoon (next to knife, add only if having soup)
- Coffee Cup and Saucer (top left)
- Bread/Dessert Plate with Butter Knife on top
- Dessert Fork and Spoon (top of Plates)
- Water Glass
- Wine Glass (small glass for White Wine)
- Wine Glass (large glass for Red Wine)
This is just a guideline. There are other Place Settings that can be used. By taking a few extra moments at the Holidays, your company will appreciate that extra little effort.
Create your own Winter Frame
You can do this in about an hour and that includes you looking for the branches. It cost me about $1.50 seeing that I already had the frame. If you shop at thrift stores, you can pick things like this up for almost nothing. It would also be nice if you had 2 frames the same size and did this.
- 1 picture frame, about 24″ x 12″
- 1 piece of material, about 26″ x 14″
- 3 or 4 branches. Shorter that what the frame is.
- Glue gun and glue sticks
- Remove backing and glass from frame
- Take backing and place over the piece of material and fold material up and around the sides of the backing
- Use hot glue gun to adhere the material to the backing.
Replace the backing into the the frame and secure
- Take a branch and hot glue to the inside of the frame
- Do this with the other branches and then hang on your wall.
This has an Asian feel about it, but it still works in my Den. It has a simplicity about the picture. It is a way of bringing the outdoors in when it turns cold.
How to Make Fabric Softener (with only 3 ingredients)
A friend of mine, Teresa H-C, has done it again. She not only made Laundry Detergent, (see prior post) she also made Fabric softener. Now I know it is hard to believe that you can do this with only 3 ingredients (4 counting the water), but she did and it works great.
- 8 cups water
- 6 cups vinegar
- 1 cup Baking Soda
- Essential Oil (optional) craft store
- Use an empty vinegar container and pour in 1 cup water
- Pour Baking Soda in using a funnel
- Add 6 cups vinegar SLOWLY (this will foam up and out of the bottle, so you MUST do it slowly)
- Add the rest of the water
- At this point you can add the essential oil.
- Do not put the lid on. Leave the mixture set overnight
- The fabric softener will look like this. Shake before each use.
Just remember, the baking soda and vinegar will cause the mixture to foam up at first. When left overnight uncovered, the bubbles (see above) will dissipate.
Have fun with the kids and make Memories that you will cherish
Make a Picture for Autunm–Family Project
Get the kids out in the yard and have them help you find leaves to make your own picture for Fall, (naturally, while they are raking:) ) Everytime they see it hanging on the wall, they will remember the fun they had and you will feel good about the quailty time you shared with your kids.
- Frame with either a glass or plexi-glass (whatever size you want)
- 2 sided tape or glue
- Gather up some different colored leaves from a variety of trees.
- Lay them on a solid surface to dry for about 1 day
- If they are already dry, lay them in between newspapers until they are flat. (about 1 or 2 days) You can quarter newspapers and stack the leaves in between and then place some heavy books on top.
- After leaves are dry, take the backing out of the picture frame and use 2-sided tape or glue to adhere them to the backing.
- Write names or whatever you want on the backing, just make sure you don’t cover it up with the leaves
Place the glass on top of the leaves and then put the frame on. Turn the frame over and fasten the backing down.
Hang in a place for all to see during the Fall months and enjoy the memories
Making Your own Laundry Detergent:
Teresa, a friend of mine makes her own Laundry Detergent and invited me over to watch how easy it is to make. So, you know what I had to do…. take pictures and post it for everyone to see.
This process was sooo easy, anyone can do it. It takes 3 ingredients!! Teresa makes this and gives it to family and friends. She gave me some to try and it is wonderful. Now, I don’t use the most expensive detergent, but I am still spending alot of money on this household necessity. I really don’t think I will be buying any more pre-made detergent from the store.
If you have some time, try this recipe. Thanks Teresa for the post!!!
Ingredients: Makes up to 10 Gallon
- 1 bar Fels Naptha, grated (grocery or department stores in laundry aisle)
- 1 cup Borax
- 1 cup Washing Soda
- 1 quart water
- 1 5-gallon bucket with lid, makes 5 gallons of detergent (more concentrated) or 2- 5 gallon buckets with lids, will make 10 gallon of detergent (available at hardware store)
- various containers to place detergent in, plastic or glass (do not use milk jugs, plastic containers need to be very thick) I suggest saving your empty detergent, gallon tea jugs or ask friends to give you theirs.
- Place the grated Fels Naptha soap in a large pot and pour in 1 quart of water.
- Bring to boil and simmer until soap dissolves.
- Add Borax and Washing Soda and stir until dissolved
- Pour this mixture into a 5-gallon bucket.
- Fill the bucket half full with warm tap water. Stir
- Cover with airtight lid and leave for 24 hours undisturbed.
- Uncover the soap mixture the next day and stir.
- If you want 10 gallons at this point, pour half of the liquid into another 5-gallon bucket and fill both buckets with tap water and stir
- If you want a more concentrated laundry detergent, do not separate, just fill the bucket with tap water and stir.
- Fill jugs or containers with the detergent, and make sure to label each one. I would also put a date on it for my own benefit.
Cost for this money saving DIY: per 5 gallon
$2.43 cost of ingredients (average)
$.0125 for each load of laundry (using 1/3 to 1/2 cup) About 240 loads
I had just paid $12.49 for a name brand detergent at Sam’s club (226 loads)
Some savings, huh!!!
Make your own Dry Erase Board
The other day, I had to leave a note for my daughter because I was not going to be home when she got here, and could not find a piece of paper to write on. Has this ever happened to you? No paper, no pen! Well, I came up with this project. I had everything to complete this in my office, even the Dry Erase pen.
- Frame ( I used a certificate frame 8″ x 11″)
- Velcro strips (cut to size)
- Small sponge (I had a small round one, but you can use any size)
- 1 piece of scrapbook paper (you can also use wallpaper or even material)
- 1 Dry Erase Pen
Directions for assembly:
Take the frame apart and use either the glass or the picture inside to cut out the exact measurement of the frame on your scrap paper or material.
Turn your empty frame face down and place the glass back in the frame and place the paper/material you just cut on top of glass.
Place the cardboard on top of paper/material in your frame and secure.
- Cut a small strip of velcro about 2″ x 1/2″ long and secure one side to your dry erase pen and the other side to your frame.
- Cut another piece of velcro about half the size of your sponge and secure one side to sponge and the other side anywhere on your frame.
- Hang on wall, lay on counter or even place magnets on back side of frame and place on your refrigerator.