Monday, April 14, 2014

DIY Solar Light Jars - Beach Theme

Here is a great craft for the whole family. Solar light jars. They will make great conversation pieces. This is a great way to reuse those old jars instead of throwing them away. I love to recycle and that is why I wanted to come up with this idea. They turned out much better than I expected and my husband loved the idea so much that he wanted to help me make them. LOL  You can watch us create these fabulous jars in our video!

For this project you will need:

*Glass Gem Accents (Found at the Dollar Store)
*Solar Lights
*Jars (Mason Jars work too) 
*Drill bit and drill
*Play Sand
*Summer Embellishments (mine were handmade but you can buy them or you can use sea shells)

Before starting my project I made all the embellishments that I wanted to use in my beach themed jars. You can be creative and make your jars any theme you would like to make them. I like the idea of saving some seashells from a beach vacation and using them in the jars to remember the good times that you had. I used foam sheets and cut them into pieces to make palm trees and umbrellas with beach balls. I did not have any sea shells so I used my polymer clay to make my own sea shells. We thought the beach theme would go great on our porch by the pool. 

I also made a couple of flower jars and one with a dragon fly and butterfly in it. I used green gem accent beads to represent the grass. This gave me another creative theme to put on my back porch. If you use your imagination, you can come up with endless ideas. 

The next thing that I do is unscrew the top part of my lights.

Then my husband drilled small holes in the center of the lids and helped me by attaching the light with the Amazing Goop on the top of the lid. Pick the size of the drill bit that will allow your light to fit inside of the lid.

We put the adhesive around the bottom of our solar light and then pressed the solar light on the lid. 

My husband also helped me spread the Amazing Goop on the lids while I put the twine on them to give it a decorative look.

I wrap my twine in rows around the lid like this and then pushed the twine into the adhesive with a pair of scissors. You can use your fingers too, but I think it is less messy to use the scissors. hehe When the whole lid is covered with twine I cut the twine and push the end into the adhesive to make sure that the end won't come loose.

Next I get my jar and fill the bottom part with play sand to give it that beach look and to weigh down the jar so it won't blow over easily.

Then I add a small amount of accent gems on top of the sand and then put my embellishments into the jar where I want them. You want to give yourself room to wiggle the embellishment where you want them and the small amount of accent gems will help hold it into place until you have all your embellishments placed. Then you add the rest of your accent gems and screw the lid on.

This is what my jar looked like when I was done. :)

  We hope this tutorial will inspire you to give this really cool craft a try. Please take time to visit our YouTube channel. Thank you so much for visiting our blog. :) 

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Monday, April 7, 2014

DIY Solar Light Craft

Here is a creative way to give your Dollar Store solar lights a makeover. This is a fun way to change your solar lights to make them look more natural. You can light up your deck and give it that creative touch by only using twigs, twine and solar lights. Use your imagination to make this idea your own. You can even paint them to match your outdoor furniture. The possibilities are endless. 

You are going to love how easy this craft is! 

Here is a step by step video that will show you how to make these adorable lanterns to hang on your porch or fence. 

Give this creative solar light craft a try.

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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Learn the Basic Stitches for Loom Knitting - Dish Cloths

Looming Made Easy
I will be showing you how to make a couple of the basic stitches so you can make these easy homemade dish cloths. I chose a dish cloth to make for this tutorial because they are so EASY. Once you know the basic stitches than you can make anything. :)

I got a loom kit for a Christmas gift last year and I have had so much fun learning to make all kinds of things on my looms. Dish cloths are one of my favorite things to make because I never have to worry about counting stitches and I can always relax while making them. They also make great gifts. Homemade dish cloths are so nice to use too. 

I will be pulling photos off of the video tutorial that I made for the EasyMeWorld YouTube channel. If you have questions about how to do these steps, click the link below and it will take you to the video where I will show you step by step how to do these stitches.

Lets get started
All you will need is:
*Cotton String (I use Peaches & Cream brand)
*Yarn Needle
*Loom hook

The first thing that I do is make a slip knot and put it on the peg on the outside edge of the loom. I will be working to the right side of my loom to start off with. I hold the string with my thumb and start wrapping the string onto the pegs. I use 23 pegs to make my dish cloths but you can experiment with how big you would like your dish cloths to be. 
I put 2 loops on the 23rd peg and then I pull the bottom string over top of the the top loop for the last stitch on that row. 
That is a knit stitch. I will show you more closely what a knit stitch is later. The first and last stitch of every row will always be a knit stitch because it will make the edges of your dish cloth straight and even. 

We will be alternating each row with a purl stitch and then a knit stitch until we are happy with the size of our dish cloth. Let me show you what a purl stitch is.

Purl Stitch
The purl stitch starts by taking your working string and laying it across the bottom of the loop on the next peg. (We are working to the left of our loom now) We take our hook and go under the top loop and grab the working string and pull it up under the top loop.
This will form a new loop. I use my fingers to grab the new loop and pull the top loop off of the peg. 
Then I put the new loop on the peg to replace the old loop. 
That is the purl stitch. 

You do a full row of purl stitches until you get to the last peg. That will be a knit stitch.
On the last stitch you will place your working string over top of the existing loop on the peg. Then you pull the bottom loop over top of the working string.

Knit Stitch
Now I will show you how to do a knit stitch. The first thing that I do is push all of the loops on my loom to the bottom of the pegs. 
Now we start wrapping the string around the pegs to the right like we did when we first started. 
Once we get all the pegs wrapped and there are 2 strings on each peg we start pulling the bottom loop over the top loop with our loom hook like this...
That is the knit stitch.

I always stop knitting when the dish cloth fits over my hand. I do not count my stitches but you can count your stitches if you would like to make your dish cloths perfectly the same size. I totally enjoy making my dish cloths with no worries of having to count. That is what makes these so easy. :)  

Now let me show you how to "cast off". That is when you take all the stitches off of your loom and finish your dish cloth.

Cast Off
I work from left to right when I cast off. I have seen it done from right to left too. I will show you how I do it. After you finish your row of purl stitches and your dish cloth is done we will begin our cast off. 
We will be using 2 pegs for each cast off stitch. The first peg is on the left and the second peg is on the right. 
I wrap my working string around the second peg and pull the bottom loop over top of the top string. 
 Now I take the loop off of the second peg and put it onto the first peg like this.
Next I take the loom hook and pull the bottom loop over top of the top loop.
The last thing that we do is pull the loop off of the first peg 
and put it onto the second peg.
You continue to do this until your dish cloth is off of the loom.

The last step is to get your needle and thread your end strings onto the needle. I loop a knot in the corner of my dish cloth to make sure it wont come undone. Then I weave my end strings into the edge of my dish cloth to tuck the strings neatly. 
 That is all you have to do. :)

Here are some of the things that I made on my looms so far. 
This is my first hat. It was a bit tight so I knew I would need some practice. :) 
 This is my second hat and I made a scarf to match it. It was not tight and turned out perfectly. 
This is my favorite hat! I love how this one turned out. I wanted this hat to be longer and chunky so I just used a pattern from a small hat and just kept going with it to make it long. Don't be a afraid to change the patterns that you find to make your projects your own. If it doesn't turn out... You can just pull it out and redo it. hehe To me this is a fun hat and very different. That is what makes me like this hat so much. :)

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Once you get the hang of using a loom, the possibilities are endless. Be patient and enjoy yourself. 
Happy Looming!
Don't forget to check out the video:

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