Category Archives: Link Love

Balsa Wood Tutorial Round-Up

I saw tons of balsa wood ideas for Christmas decor floating around the internet this year. I don’t have a ton of experience with it, but it seems like exactly what I need. It’s wooden, but can be worked like cardboard. It’s light-weight, can be cut with scissors or a craft knife, and painted, stamped, printed on, etc. like you would wood. So I went and looked up some non-holiday related tutorials. Maybe some new projects in the future!


DIY Balsa Wood Planter from Fall For DIYThis planter from Fall For DIY might be my favorite tutorial I found. I love how easy the project is and how amazing the end product is. The texture that comes from layering so many not quite perfect circles together is wonderful!


DIY Wood Matting from Eat + Sleep + MakeThis Balsa Wood Mat technique from EAT + SLEEP + MAKE would make an exceptional frame job.


Gemstone Garland from Tell Love and PartyYou know I’m sucker for garlands. I like the Gem Stone Garland from Tell Love and Party, but I can see this as a gateway to creating garlands of all shapes and sizes from a little paint and balsa wood.


Print onto Wood DIY from Oh The Lovely ThingsThe last is a technique more than a project tutorial, but I think it expands the sorts of things I’m thinking about doing with balsa wood. This tutorial from Oh The Lovely Things shows how to transfer any inkjet printed image onto wood.

Photos in this post all belong to their respective, linked sites.

Napkin Ring Tutorials

One of my favorite things about Thanksgiving has always been setting the table. Growing up it was one of the few times that we brought out the fine china and I was tasked with making place settings and decorating the table. While it might have been an excuse to keep me busy and out of the kitchen, it was also something that I loved.

If you’re planning to bring out the china and cloth napkins for the upcoming holidays, here are some lovely napkin ring tutorials for you.

Popsicle Stick Napkin Rings from RuffledThese colorful napkin rings from Ruffled are made from popsicle sticks. You could decorate them to match any color scheme.

Faux Ceramic Napkin Rings from Almost Makes PerfectAlmost Makes Perfect has an easy tutorial for these Faux Ceramic Napkin Rings. They’re made from oven-bake clay with a glaze painted on top to give them a professional ceramic look.

Fresh Flower Napkin Rings from Paper & StitchThese Fresh Flower Napkin Rings from Paper & Stitch look pretty spring-like, but with the right flowers and leaves, they could be entirely autumnal. I love the fact that they use natural materials.

Cranberry Wreaths from Say YesFresh cranberries make a beautiful place setting, as Say Yes shows in this tutorial, but would also be lovely as a napkin ring. While it was originally intended for a Christmas DIY, cranberries scream Thanksgiving to me, maybe without the bit of pine though.

All photos in this post belong to their respective and linked sites.

Upcylcing Book Crafts

As it starts to cool off outside, I’m thinking about being a homebody; curling up with some tea and a book. In honor of these autumn days (and lack of sunlight), here are some crafts to make out of discarded old books. I like to use the weird books you can find at the thrift store for these kinds of crafts. Cheap and probably if it’s ended up at the thrift store no one wants them for the quality writing anyway.

Book Clutch DIY Tutorial from See Kate SewThese cute clutches from See Kate Sew use the outside from a hardbound book with all the pages cut out and any kind of fabric you can imagine. Kind of makes me wish I’d thought of using this for a Librarian Halloween costume, last month.

Origami Christmas Ornaments | Red Circle CraftsIf you buy a whole book for just the cover (to turn into a clutch of course) save the pages and make some origami out of them. I made some really fun origami ornaments for Christmas a few years ago. They were great pops of interest on our Christmas tree.

Invisible Book Ends DIY from A Beautiful MessA Beautiful Mess has a great tutorial for Invisible Bookends using complete hardbound books. The perfect disguise! I’ve also seen something similar with L-brackets to make a vertical bookshelf.

Hollowed Book Tutorial from Salt TreeThis Hollowed Book Tutorial for an e-reader from Salt Tree is brilliant and easy to follow. J made one of these a few years ago and definitely could have used some of the hints included in this tutorial to take it from serviceable to stylish.

All of the photos in this post belong to their respective and linked sites, except the origami ornament which belongs to me.

Pumpkin Carving Ideas

I’m having a pumpkin carving party tonight. I suspect we’ll get a whole bunch of crazy pumpkins. Last year we had multiple sugar skulls. I’m interested to see what people come up with this year.

In case you need a little help deciding what to carve on your pumpkin this year. Here are some suggestions with instructions and stencils too.

Anatomy Pumpkins from Brit + Co

These anatomy pumpkins from Brit + Co are sufficiently creepy. I love the lungs, but it looks like pretty finicky cutting work; I wonder if my skills are up to it. Also you can find a round up of great stencils from Brit + Co here.

Frankenstein's Monster Pumpkin from Better Homes and Gardens

I love the creepy cuteness of this Frankenstein’s Monster Pumpkin from Better Homes and Gardens. It would make me happier if they realized this isn’t actually Frankenstein, but the monster Frankenstein made, but you can’t have it all. Click through the slideshow for lots more stencils of ideas ranging from simple to complex.

Cross Stitch Pumpkins from Design*Sponge

Design*Sponge has a tutorial for Cross Stitch Pumpkins! Aren’t these amazing? I’m pretty much in love with them.

Still looking for some more ideas? I’ve got a bunch more pinned on my Halloween Pinterest Board.

All photos in this post belong to their respective linked sites.

Halloween Decor Ideas

It’s time to start decorating for Halloween. I’m fond of the creepy cute or elegantly spooky look and tend to stay away from actually terrifying. And I love handmade decorations. Here’s a round up of some great ones if you’re looking to add some Halloween fun to your home.

Halloween Scrappy Bunting | Red Circle CraftsRemember this Scrappy Halloween Banner I made last year? It’s still super cute.

DIY Halloween Transfer Wood Plaques from The House That Lars BuiltNatural looking objects make great decor and the imperfections in the wood slices add to the general spookiness in these Wood Plaques from The House That Lars Built. Maybe I’m just a sucker for skulls and old fashion scientific drawings.

Witches Broom Treat Bags from Two Crafting SistersIt’s certainly more work, but I think parties for adults should have more goodie bags. Like these adorable and cleverly designed witch broom treat bags from Two Crafting Sisters.

Mrs. & Mr. Skull Cameo Free Printables from Persia LouSeriously the skulls do me in every time. I love these Skull Cameos from Persia Lou. Part free printable part DIY project and they look perfect.

All the photos in this post belong to their respective and linked sites, except the first one which is mine.

Halloween Costume DIYs

So it’s October 1st. I’m sure you also have this marked on your calendar as the day you have to start making your Halloween costume. But in case you don’t, you might, maybe, want to start thinking about it. Unless you aren’t into it, then you can just look at the people being silly. But here are some great costume DIY ideas.

Strawberry Halloween Costume from Studio DIY

Studio DIY has a ton of awesome, well put together, and yet easy to do Halloween Costume DIYs. I’m beginning to think they’re as crazy about Halloween as I am. The one pictured is of course a strawberry.

Robot Costume from Paging Fun Mums

This robot costume from Paging Fun Mums is amazing! Maybe the best I’ve seen since my friend built one in a scene shop with working lights and a ledge to hold his drink. He didn’t really think about getting through doors though and had to go sideways. In any case, this one may be for a child, but would be super amazing on an adult too.

Deer Halloween Costume from Flattery

I know everyone always wants to do current events, movies, or pop star Halloween costumes, but I love it when people dress up as animals. This deer costume tutorial from Flattery is super sweet and really well done. I want to make myself one of those antler headbands.

Where's Waldo Halloween Costume from Say Yes

Yes, this is a family costume, but any of those one their own would be amazing too. No crazy construction either. The post from Say Yes on this Where’s Waldo costumes has some good ideas on how to put it together and where they sourced their clothes from.

All of these photos belong to their respective, linked sites.

Fall Decor DIYs

As of yesterday, we are officially into fall. After the hottest summer that Portland has ever seen, I’m pretty happy to move into some cooler, rainier days. I’m ready for cozy sweaters, piles of leaves and hot drinks.

Here are some fun DIY projects to get your home into that fall feeling.

Twig and Pom Pom Fall Wreath | Red Circle Crafts

Last year, I made an Autumn wreath to hang on my front door. I’m definitely putting it back up ASAP.

Fall Leaves Mobile from The Style Files

This beautiful table setting from The Style Files doesn’t have a tutorial for the amazing fall leaf mobile. But it looks like someone just hung some leaves from the ceiling with thread. And to beautiful effect!

Wood Slice Chalkboard from Craftaholics Anonymous

While this tutorial for a Wood Slice Chalkboard from Craftaholics Anonymous is styled for Halloween decor, I think it’s something you could put up long before Halloween comes around and could likely transition all the way through Christmas with just a different saying written in chalk.

Deer Stenciled Door Mat from Hi + Hello

I love this doormat from Hi + Hello. Although the possibilities are endless, I think this makes great seasonal change just like it is.