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Thursday, June 16, 2016


Whether it's for your Fisherman's man cave, to hang by his favorite chair or to light up his desk, this is a fun and useful re-purpose that will definitely make a statement! This project is super simple and took less that 2 hours of time! The Only part of this project that is not re-purposed is the 11' wiring kit I used for the light itself.

List of items to collect:  1 bait can
                                         1 fishing pole (I used a deep sea pole, with a high weight limit)
                                         1 metal clip stringer
                                         1 fishing rod mount
                                         several spinners or lures to hang from stringer
                                         1 - 11' or 15' electrical light kit
                                         16" piece of bailing wire (sturdy wire)

Tools you will use:         Tin snips
                                         Manual can opener
                                         needle-nose pliers
               I Gathered what I needed

A bait can is normally a galvanized can with another galvanized can inside of it, both with handles. The can that fits inside the other is the liner and usually has a lot of holes or dashes. (Something perfect for emitting light from.) It also has a hinged lid that also has holes in it.
 My particular can also had a Styrofoam section that I removed.

 I used the can opener to cut the bottom out of the liner can.

 I used the needle-nose pliers to crimp around the edge of the can to get rid of any jagged edges. This worked perfectly and now the edge is smooth and I don't have to worry about cutting myself when I change a light bulb.

This is what it looked like after cutting and crimping.

I don't have a picture of this next step sorry, but I traced around the light socket on the lid of the liner with a sharpie, and used the tin snips to cut that small hole.

This picture is blurry but it shows the light socket from inside the liner can and how it was centered on the lid. The light bulb will hang down from this point.

So all of my cutting is done and now I take apart the light wiring to string it through the fishing poles eyes. Just like a fishing line. Adjusting the wire and leaving enough hanging down so that the can has the clearance it needs to hang straight. I have had packages of wiring that have the instructions to remove the socket on it, but this one didn't have them. Luckily you can just look at it and see how it comes apart. The key is remembering how to put it back together. Make yourself a step by step list if necessary. Don't be scared! It really is simple.

My light wiring package.

You want the part of your wiring that plugs in to be down at the fishing pole handle end, and the light fixture part coming out of the top, and usually the smallest of holes at the opposite end of the pole.

Shows how I fed the wiring through each eye on the pole just like fishing line.

This one shows my socket as I put the pieces back on the wire.

This one shows how I left some wire hanging between each eye. I think it exaggerates the fact that it's thread on like the line would have been.

This one again to show how the socket went through the lid and is screwed securely to support the can. Just to be safe, you need to know that there is a 4 lb. weight limit put on the connection of the socket to the wiring on most of this type of kit. That is why I used an additional security measure by adding a piece of scrap bailing wire to run from the last eye to the handle of the liner can. This supports all of the weight. 

This shows what it looks like with the electrical wiring done.
By this point in time, I have spent about an hour and a half. 
Including adjusting my wire up and down to get my desired effect.

Next I clipped the metal stringer on with the clips and then hung some old lures, a bobber and a couple of spinners. Just a suggestion here you might want to remove the hooks from these or you might risk snagging something else.

Put them on which ever way looks good to you. You could even punch a small hole in some fun family fishing photo's and hang them from the clips to remind them of a great time!

This is what it looks like hanging from your pole. 

 And with the light plugged in.

 This is the fishing rod holder that is usually mounted on a boat. If you are going to mount it to a wooded section of wall, you can do so directly to the wood. If your wall is only drywall, mount it to a piece of wood and then to your wall. Make sure to set it screwed to a stud in your wall to support the weight of the entire fixture.

 To a wood wall... with the wiring going down through the pole mount.

 To a drywall wall... You can also see my wiring has a toggle on-off switch.

 Just imagine what you can do. Here is a thought about using the outer can to decorate with. Use it to hold snacks, his favorite magazines, or a litter pail for peanut shells or Post-it-notes! It's also magnetic!! So many possibilities!!!  

 Well... What do you think?

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Our Old Box-Fan Gets Autumnized! (my new word)

I had a small 14" old metal box fan that looked like it was ready for the trash bin. It was yellowed and so rusty, and no amount of cleaning changed that. But the thing still worked! As a "fan" of all things autumn, I love rusty colors and textures so I decided to just enhance it a little, by painting a few fall leaves and acorns on it.

Take a look.

This little guy is very powerful too!

Now, I can't get rid of this... summer is coming, and who doesn't need a little fan?

Well, what do you think?

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Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Friday, March 18, 2016

Antique Tape-Measure Cross Plaque

It's the perfect gift for anyone, and for any occasion!

Do you ever just need a little something to give as a gift? Make my Antique Tape-Measure Cross Plaque. It is super simple, and if you have what you need around the house it may not even cost you anything but a little time!

I hand cut 9 crosses out of 1 antique folding tape-measure.  
I had scraps of dowel and barn wood. 
I drilled a hole about 3/4 the way through the board at the bottom, the size of my dowel. 
I used E6000, and glued the cross on the front of the board. Let dry. That's it! 

Pair this with a personal note or card and give it away, for ANY reason!

Make a batch of these and keep them on hand for your gift giving moments.


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Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Saturday, March 12, 2016



I have been asked several times to re-post my Mason-Jar-Lid Pincushion Project.  They are a great gift for the person that has everything, and are a quick and easy to make!  Get as creative as you like and design your own custom pincushion.

Mason Jar Lid Pincushion Tutorial

Please read through all of the instructions first before gathering supplies.
There are some tips that may help you decide what you need.
Step 1
Because this goes pretty quickly you need to gather all of your supplies.

For each pincushion you will need: 
                1 Mason or canning jar lid with the screw on ring (pint or quart size)
                1/2 of a Styrofoam ball (pint size = 2 1/2 inch ball or quart size = 3" ball)
                Small scrap of fabric enough to cover your Styrofoam and tuck underneath
                Package of about 50 - 1 inch straight pins 
                4 - 1 1/2 inch straight pins or decorator pins with pearls on head of pin
                Approximately 50 pearl beads or just pins with pearl heads optional
                Matching gimp or trim to cover ring
                Hot glue
                1 jar to rest ball on while gluing
                Something to cut your Styrofoam ball with
                Ice pick or nail and hammer to punch small holes into the lid
                Optional additional embellishments
Step 2
Depending on the size of your jar lid, cut the appropriate size Styrofoam ball in half. I use a fine blade hack saw because the blade and teeth of the saw are small and they cause the least amount of damage to the ball. This allows you to use the second half, for another pincushion.

Step 3
Cover your Styrofoam with your fabric scrap and glue in place. (Glue on the round side of the ball around the very edge of your cut, not on the flat side. This makes a kind of ledge that keeps your ball from falling through the lid.) Make sure to pull fabric tight to eliminate any puckering of the fabric above where the ring will cover the ball. I glue and pin to help keep the fabric from pulling  away from where I've already glued. Then take the pins out after the glue cools. 
Step 4
Place the ring on the ball and position it so that the rounded part of the ball is protruding through the top of the ring and before you glue it in place, make sure that you have room to glue your fabric down later and still end up with room for more glue and the lid. You want your lid to end up even with the bottom of the ring. If it doesn't go up into the ring far enough it won't look right and if it goes up too far your legs will not show.  Once you've made the room you need glue it in place. but don't glue the underside of your ball yet.
Step 5
Take the lid and mark the largest triangle on the under side of the lid that you have space for. The three points on the triangle are where your wholes need to be punched for the feet of the pincushion. I use an ice pick and hammer. Just a tap or two and you'll have a small hole that your pin can push up into to support your legs. If you don't have an ice pick, use a small nail. Just watch out for your fingers.
Step 6 
On the underside of your ball, trim the fabric to about 1/2 inch all the way around, and glue and pin it down. Allow it to cool and remove the pins.
Step 7
Next take the lid with the three holes punched and glue it in place to cover the fabric edges. Making sure that the writing on the lid is where it will show on the bottom of the pincushion. I use a jar to rest the ring upside down on so that gluing is easier and the glue doesn't pool to one side, making a level place for the flat lid to rest. This is where I use the most glue. You want your lid to end up even with the bottom of the ring. If it doesn't go up into the ring far enough it will stick out and won't look just right, and if it goes up too far your decorative legs will not show. Allow it to cool.

Step 8
Decorate your pincushion. Use the straight pins to pin pearls or beads around the base of the ball. Make the legs by using the longer straight pins with multiple beads of varying sizes allowing for some pin length to glue up into the Styrofoam ball. Glue gimp or trims of your choice around the ring, and add any embellishments you want to make you treasure perfect.  

This photo shows the triangle for the leg placement. 

This photo shows that the lid ends up flush with the bottom of the ring with the writing side down. 

This photo shows the leg height and gimp on ring. 

This photo shows the pins and pearls around the ball.

  These next two photos show different embellishments.

I hope you enjoy making your pincushions as much as I did.

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Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

A Rustic Frame Made From Scrap Wood For Under $1.00

When I build projects, I save any left-over bits and pieces that I think I can use later, whether I have something in mind at the time or not!

This project is totally from my bits and pieces bins.

Want to make one? 

 How-To make your own Rustic Scrap Wood Frame for under $1.00

What you'll need:

  • Any piece of wood larger than your picture
  •  I used six or eight cut-off/broken nail heads (another option is upholstery tacks)
  • A 4-inch piece of 3/8-inch wide dowel
  • One piece of Plexiglas or glass the size of your picture (mine is 4" x 6")
  • Any Paint, stain and decorations that you like
  • Hand drill and a 3/8-inch drill bit
  • Hot Glue Gun and glue stick
I used a piece of scrap pallet wood, that came out of my bin measuring, 4 3/4" wide and 9 3/4" long, I left it that way so that I had plenty of space to add some decoration to it. Use what you have. You may have a scrap of pine or plywood, it doesn't matter as long as it is larger than your picture. Sand it and clean it up.
On the back side of the board,  I used my hand drill and a 3/8 inch drill bit, and in the middle of the board about 1/4 inch from what will be the bottom, I drilled the hole for the dowel. Make sure that you do NOT drill all the way through the board! Check it to make sure that your dowel fits and that it's deep enough to stay in.

Make sure that your drill bit is the same size as your dowel.

Make sure that you do NOT drill all the way through the board!

Cut your piece of dowel 4-inches long. (I use a scroll saw, but use whatever you have)

A snug fit will ensure the support of your frame.

Paint it now if you want to. I just dry brushed on a little bit of white chalk paint for this one.

Now, position your Plexiglas on the front side of the board where you want it to be. I marked where I wanted to put my nail heads that would hold the glass in place.

TIP - When I take apart a pallet, I use a reciprocating saw with a blade that cuts through metal. After I have finished cutting up the pallet, I use an awl and tap it in the nail holes on the back side of the board and the cut portion of the nail falls out the front. I have saved hundreds of these rusty nail heads and I reuse them in lots of projects.

Once you've marked your spots, set the glass aside and hammer in the nail heads that will be at the bottom of your picture. Make sure that you only hammer them in just far enough for your glass to rest on the nail shaft, so that the actual nail head will hold the glass in place. Then put your picture and your glass back in place on the board. Cover the glass with a wash rag or thick cloth so that you don't scratch it when you put the last nail heads in. Go ahead and carefully tap in the last nail heads that will hold your photo and glass in place.

Now all that's left, is to decorate it!  I used left-over parts of a Christmas pick for this one, but the sky is the limit here, get creative!

Saving your bits and pieces saves you lots of money.

Finished and displayed

Here is another quick idea, I used the same basic construction just different decorations.

You can see that they are really quick to make, and with fun and personal photos, they make great gifts!

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Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

How-To make you own Jewelry Display Frame

Do you keep your jewelry in a box? I did, and because of that, I hardly ever wore any of it! It wasn’t convenient.  I didn’t normally have time to search through my jewelry and then possibly have to untangle a piece. I had to get to work! And, you know the saying, “out-of-sight out-of-mind”, well, that’s true too. Most of the time I didn’t even think about my jewelry!

Well, when I remodeled my house, I took a whole room and customized myself a closet. I carefully thought out how I wanted everything displayed, and when it came to my jewelry,  I decided, that I would probably wear my jewelry more often if I could see it and remember what I had. So I made a display frame to hang on the end of my shoe shelf unit.

Lots of people have asked me to tell how I made this so…

How-To make you own Jewelry Display Frame

This one is mine.

What you will need:
  • Frame (that will fit your wall space)
  • 1/4 or 1/2 inch plywood (cut to fit the inside lip of your frame, leaving 1/8 inch clearance for fabric)
  • 4 flat steel braces sized according to your frame and screws to fit the braces but not go through the other side of the frame (my braces are ½” x 3”, and my screws are #10 screws that are 1/2 inch long)
  • Quilt batting (cut the same size as your plywood)
  • Enough fabric to cover one side of your plywood plus wrap around the edges by 2-3 inches (I used black velvet. You can use anything you like.)
  • Staple gun with 1/4 or 3/8 inch staples
  • Glue Gun and glue sticks
  • Hammer
  • Ice Pick or thin nail
  • Scissors
  • Plain brown kraft paper
  • 2 - “D” Ring Hangers with 1/2 or 3/4 inch screws (depends on the thickness of your frame)
  • Enough Brass cup hooks or decorative knobs to hang your jewelry from (I used the cup hooks because I wanted the jewelry to be the focus and they don’t take up as much space as a knob)

Step One: Find the frame that you want to use and prepare it. Remove any hardware, and glue any loose parts. If it has glass that is unbroken you can trace the outline onto the plywood that you are going to cut. Or you can measure it and have the wood cut at the home store when you purchase it. If you want to paint or stain the frame, now is the time.

Step Two: Cut the plywood (mine was 1/2 inch thick) to fit inside the frame leaving about 1/8 inch space so your fabric will also fit, and sand the edges to remove any splinters.

Note: If you are going to use knobs instead of hooks, now is when you start playing with placement of the knobs, and mark and drill the plywood for the screw holes.

Step Three: Spread out the quilt batting, and smooth out any wrinkles. Lay the plywood on top of the batting, and mark your cutting line. Remove the wood, and cut out the batting.

Step Four: Iron, and then spread out your fabric, good side down, and smooth out any wrinkles. Lay your piece of batting on top of the fabric. Cut your fabric, leaving a good 3 inches of additional fabric showing all the way around the batting.

Step Five: Lay the plywood on top of the batting. Start at the corner, pull the corner of the fabric over the edge of the wood, and staple down. Do all four corners before doing the sides. Make sure you’ve gotten them pulled snugly - not too tight or the fabric will pucker - then fold over the sides. Do one side, then the opposite side, then an end, then the opposite end. When all your sides are stapled, check the fabric on the good side to make sure it is smooth. Make any corrections by removing the problem-staple if necessary, and re-stapling.

Step Six: Lay your covered piece of wood into the frame, just like you were replacing the glass. It should be pretty snug, and you might have to work it to get it set down into the frame. This is when you secure the wood into the frame using the steel braces. It really doesn’t matter where you put the brace. Sometimes I go across the corner, this time you can see that I put them in the middle of each side.

Note: If you’re using knobs instead of hooks, this is when you would start installing them. Put the screw for the knob into the wood from the back until it starts to apply a little pressure to the fabric. Using a razor or an Exacto knife, make a slight cut, just enough to get the screw through the fabric without snagging it, and put the knob on and tighten it up. Do this for each knob until you’re done. Make sure you’ve gotten them all good and tight.

Step Seven: After securing the wood into the frame, cut a piece of brown Kraft paper to cover the entire back of the frame. I staple the first corner just to hold it in place, then I used hot glue, working around the rest of the frame. After it’s glued down, I go back and staple a few spots just to secure it in place.

Step Eight: Decide which of the sides will be your “top”. I use “D” Ring Hangers, because they can support the weight of the frame and the jewelry. Attach one to each side of the frame, a few inches down from your top side.

Note: I don’t put picture-hanging wire on the frame because I don’t want to have to re-balance the frame every time I hang something on it or take something off of it. I hang it directly from the “D” Rings.

Step Nine: I arranged my jewelry a little bit, before deciding where to start putting my hooks. I start by putting the ice pick point where I want the hook to be, and then give it a tap with the hammer to give the hook a starting point. Then, when I put the hook into the fabric, I can feel the dent that I made with the screw end of the hook. This makes it a lot easier to start screwing in the hook. Then you just work your way around the frame installing your hooks. If you have pins or brooches, just use the actual pin to display itself.

Step Ten: Now hang your frame and start displaying your jewelry!

There you have it! Your very own artful jewelry display - there will never be two exactly alike in this whole world! And, just so you know, I really do wear my jewelry a whole lot more, now that I see it every day!

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Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!