Anthro {Reverse} Knock Off & A Sneak Peak

Craftivity Designs | 31 January 2013 | Be the first to comment
What's a {Reverse} Knock-Off? Well, I made it up. At least I think I did. It might exist somewhere else out there in cyberspace. I didn't copyright it or anything. :)

In January, Anthropologie opened in Lexington. Based on our upcoming Anthro Love Series, you can probably guess I was excited.

We headed there the day it opened. I didn't come home with anything but I loved just checking out the new store.

While I was browsing I came across this lovely window art hanging in their window...

...which reminded me an awful lot of my Sunroom Window Treatment.

So, clearly, Anthro copied me - a {Reverse} Knock-Off.   :)

I do hope you will join us for our Anthro Love Series! Here's a sneak peak of a few of the projects we'll be sharing.

See you on Tuesday!

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Coffee Swirl

Craftivity Designs | 30 January 2013 | 12 Comments so far

So I have a confession....I love coffee! Actually, Lora and I both love coffee and when we get together it's pretty much guaranteed that a Starbucks run will be made. Sometimes, I have bottled coffee like the one shown below.
I always thought the little glass bottles were cute and hated to throw them away but I had no clue what to do with them until....Pinterest came along and I saw this:
preppy & pretty & easy

I decided to save some Starbucks bottles and paint them. To achieve this look, simply clean out the bottle, pour in paint in a color of your choice (start with a small amount first), and swirl it around until the paint completely coats the inside of the bottle.  The key to making these bottles is making sure you don't put too much paint in and that you let the bottle dry completely. You can use any kind of glass bottle or jar to do this project. I chose to make a ivory bottle which I added a number "7" decal to and then I also made colored bottles in Craftivity colors-Coral & Mint! Below are my finished products:

What items has Pinterest inspired you to make lately?

Don't forget...Anthro Love starts next week!!

Linked up at The Young House Love Pinterest ChallengeThe Dog Days of Winter are Over "Make It" Challenge, Crafty, Scrappy, Happy Inspiration Link Party, and these parties:

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3 Ways to Preserve Photos & Memories {Other than Scrapbooks}

Craftivity Designs | 28 January 2013 | 6 Comments so far
After my son was born, I realized I needed to come up with some other ways to preserve memories besides just scrapbooks. I love to scrapbook, but we have tons of photos of our little boy and life is busy, so I try to only scrapbook the most precious photos and significant events.

Thanks to Pinterest and flash deal sites like Groupon, there are 3 other ways I preserve memories, besides traditional scrapbooks.
  1. A Perpetual Calendar for everyday memories
  2. Mini Books to keep mementos
  3. Photo Books for big events (such as vacations, Christmas and birthdays)

#1 Perpetual Calendar
I saw this idea on Pinterest from Design Sponge. Each index card represents a day of the year and the vintage postcards act as a divider between each month. Each day you document one memory. After several years you will have a bunch of memories, recorded day by day.

We keep it out on the kitchen table, to remind us to fill it out each day.

I picked up the vintage postcards at a shop in Paris, Kentucky on Main Street. There are some great little shops there and it is worth a visit if you like small towns and antiquing. The postcards were about $0.10 each and I tried to chose ones that had significance (like this one of Venice, which Mike & I visited for our "Baby-Moon" in 2010.)

I tried reusing an actual berry basket that I got at the Farmers Market but it was nasty and gross and couldn't be cleaned. I wasn't sure how well it would hold up anyway.

I had my eye on a gorgeous little ceramic berry basket from Anthropologie, but felt it was a little steep at $20 (speaking of Anthropologie, the Anthro Love series starts next Week!). But then I happened upon Sur La Table which offers similar baskets for less than half the price - I even got mine on sale!

This project is pretty straightforward, but I did have to make some tweaks to fit the basket. My index cards and post cards were both a little wide and needed trimming. Not such a quick task when you are talking about 365 index cards.

Postcards - $1.20, thrifted
Berry Basket - approx $6, Sur La Table
Index Cards - approx $4, 4 sets of 100 ($1 each)
TOTAL = less than $12

#2 Mini Books
I also got the idea for making the Mini Books off Pinterest from Close 2 My Art. This is a brilliant, compact, method for saving random mementos. I've been using them to keep special greeting cards, such as those from my baby showers, the birth of my son and photo cards at Christmas.

I bought this pack of book rings off Amazon and keep them handy for when I want to put together a quick book.

In this Christmas Mini-Book, I am keeping the photo cards we receive each year. I am using our yearly Family Greeting Card to separate the photos in this book by 2011, 2012... etc.

For my baby showers, I designed a cute cover from scrapbook supplies and adhered it to chipboard for a front cover. Inside the Mini-Book are each of the invitations and any special mementos from the baby showers.

#3 Photo Books
I use Photo Books for multi-day events, like our road trip to Memphis & New Orleans, that have a lot of photos. If I were to try to scrapbook that trip, there would probably be enough photos to put together an entire album. So instead I upload them to a photo site and create a book.

We did invest in 12 books for my son's 1st year to capture how much he changed each month. I plan to do the same for future kiddos.

We buy all of these books with Groupons, Living Social Deals and other flash deals. There is no need to pay full price for a photo book because these deals pop up rather frequently.

The Photo Books require a little more time and effort, compared to the Mini-Books and the Perpetual Calendar, but still a tiny amount of time in comparison to a scrapbook. And they give me the peace-of-mind to just enjoy putting together my scrapbooks, without worrying that I'm leaving out precious memories.

What other ways do you save your memories?

Linked up at YHL Pinterest Challenge, The Dog Days of Winter are Over "Make It" Challenge and these parties:

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Thrifty Finds and Re-do's

Craftivity Designs | 25 January 2013 | 2 Comments so far
As if you can't tell already from our previous posts, Lora and I love using thrift store finds in our home!  Below is an old chalkboard I found at a Peddler's Mall in Louisville a couple of years ago. 

The chalkboard started out looking pretty rough, I'm talking covered in funky black wall paper with fruit all over it rough.  I really wish I had a before picture to show you but two years ago I didn't think about needing a picture for a future blog post.  So below is the finished project and here is what I did to it:

1. Cleaned it up, washed the frame and chalkboard parts
2. Took apart the backing and fixed the screws and broken nails (with help from dear ole' dad)
3. Covered the black fruit wallpaper with floral and scalloped cardstock
4. Added a type writer picture that I purchased from this shop on Etsy, it says "Choose Happiness"
5. Used an aqua blue chalk marker like the one here, and wrote one of my favorite verses which is found in Proverbs 31:25

I love the way it turned out and I love that I was able to make it my own!  

Lora and I spent last Saturday making plans for the blog and of course, checking out the local Thrift/Antique/Vintage shops.  Two shops we visited were YesterNook and Seek and Find Treasures.  These are definitely two of my favorite shops in Louisville to visit when it comes to finding cute, unique, and affordable finds for your home. Below are the items that came home with me last weekend.  The best part is the total for all of these pieces was less than $20! Follow our blog by e-mail or on Facebook to read future posts about how I use these items in my home.

1. Green glass antique bowl (YesterNook), 2. Milk glass cup (Seek and Find Treasures)  3. Coral antique candy dish & Old Skeleton Keys (Seek and Find Treasures), Gold Heart Tray (YesterNook), 4. Milk glass mirror (YesterNook)

Another favorite store of mine is Anthropologie.  If you love Anthro too, be sure to check out our February blog series....Anthro Love!
What are some of your favorite stores for home finds?

Linked up with Dog Days of Winter Thrift It Challenge and:

HouseofHepworths It's Overflowing
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DIY Botanical Chart

Lora | 23 January 2013 | 3 Comments so far

I really like the look of Vintage Botanical Charts but hadn't come across them in thrift stores or flea markets. I love these examples below, but authentic charts are definitely out of my price range.

1. Etsy, $180
2. Empirical Style, $289 USD
3. Ebay, $140+

However, on a recent trip to a flea market in Lexington I came across this botanical-style poster for $2. I liked the colors and thought it might look nice in our guest bedroom.

Instead of sticking it in a frame, I thought I'd try to turn it into a Botanical Chart. The paper had a nice texture, which I thought would make it even better suited for this DIY project.

To create the chart effect, I purchased 2 dowel rods at Michaels for about $1 each. Mike cut them down to length and then I applied some dark stain (by the way -- if you don't have those little red painter's pyramids, you can get them here. they. are. wonderful.)

I reinforced the back of the print with some heavy duty tape prior to stapling the print to the dowel rods. I also used a few thumbtacks to hold the print in place while I stapled.

As a final touch I used some twine to hang it up. I love how it looks hanging in our guest bedroom. I'm not sure if it will stay in this spot yet, I like the scale of the print over my mini-office, but I like my little bird print too.

For less than $5 I was able to recreate a look I love - that could have cost me over $100!

Speaking of saving money - Erica and I are so excited to share that during the month of February we are planning a special series all about recreating items from Anthropologie. We just love that store, but can't afford all the great items that we'd love to have.
So if you love Anthro too... make sure to subscribe to our feed or follow us on Facebook and you won't miss all the great knock-offs we'll be attempting (here)!

What item would you like to have that is out of your price range? How could you recreate it?

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