Sunday, September 14, 2014

How To Clean Out A Candle Jar DIY

Hello Everyone,
Fall is right around the corner which means you will probably be burning a ton of yummy smelling candles (who is ready for pumpkin spice!). Since fall is candle season, you will mostly likely go through these three phases:

Phase 1: You will sniff out every possible candle in the store until you find that one amazing/yummy candle that satisfies all you nostril senses.

Phase 2: You will bring said candle home and burn it every night for about 4 hours.

Phase 3: You'll get to that point where there will not be that much wax left to burn but all your crafty senses will be tingling because you will not want to throw the jar out. 

Once you have reach phase three, you may be asking yourself, how can I reuse this candle jar and how in the world am I going to clean it out? That where this handy dandy blog post comes in. Today I'm going to be showing you my method for cleaning out candle jars. Then I'll be sharing some fun candle jar crafts from around the world wide web.

Candle Jar
Butter Knife/Plastic Knife

Step 1: Put your candle jar in the freezer and let it sit either over night (if you have the time) or 2 hours if your in a bit of a time crunch.

Step 2: After time has passed, take your candle jar out of the freezer. Now very carefully, start cutting into your candle wax with your knife. You will kinda want to do a chisel type motion. Depending on how much wax is in your jar, will determine how long this step will take. Most of the time, I will just make a few ''chisel cuts'', flip my jar over, hit the bottom and all the wax will pop out.  

Also on a side note, you can use a real knife for this step. I just like using a butter/plastic knife because it won't leave any scratch marks on your glass jar. 

Step 3: Once all your wax is removed, clean out your jar with some soap and water.

When you jar is cleaned out, your ready to craft! 

Now that you have a clean jar, what projects should you make? Personally, I'm a fan of this blog post that shows you seven (yes seven) different ways to upcycle a candle jar. I have also have written two blog post about upcycling candle jars. You can check out this candle jar to candy dish DIY or this decorative rub on candle jar DIY.

Whats your favorite candle scent in the fall? I'm definitely a pumpkin spice girl! 

xo Katie

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

3 Tips For Writing a DIY Post

Hello Everyone,
About a month ago I wrote a post called 25 DIY Ideas For Bloggers. It was basically a post that gave you 25 DIY ideas that bloggers (both crafty and non-crafty) could make for there blog. Well, that post became really popular so I thought that it would be fun to give you my top three tips when writing an actual DIY post. 

Link Previous Product Reviews In Your Supply List
Tip 1: Link Up

I know what your thinking, ''how can linking be helpful when writing a DIY post''? Well, I personally think that by taking the time to link certain products (let say in your supply list) or video techniques (let say in your instruction) really makes your reader feel like you care. You've taken the time to find alternative supplies or helpful videos, that can make your readers feel like the project is truly makeable. 

This is also a get way to share your past blog content with a potential new follower. For example, did you write a review on Mod Podge and now are using it in a DIY post? Well in your supply list, link that Mod Podge review. Most of time (especially in crafting) readers come across products that they never even heard of, so linking your review posts are a great way to really get that reader engaged with your blog. 

On a side note, I also think by linking to other bloggers content (that you like) creates good blog karma. For example, if your writing a DIY post about how to make a tassel garland (lets say your showing your technique in pictures) and you know of a ''how to video'' that might make the process (like learning how to make your basic tassel) easier to understand, then link it. 

Some many not agree with this idea but I think if your DIY post is unique and creative, that linking a video or post to another blog won't take away from your ''readership''. I think it will show your readers that you are really thinking about there needs and (again) are trying to show that the project is truly makeable (no matter what your crafty skill level).

Find your inner director when writing DIY directions.
Tip 2: Learn How To Give Direction 

Writing directions for a DIY post can be a little bit intimidating. You don't know whether to write a whole bunch or just a few sentences. In all honest, the best tip I can give you is to write directions the way you would want to read them. 

Most likely your readers are going to be very ''similar'' to you which means they will probably like reading directions the same way you do. So think about the way you like to read DIY directions and apply that to your writing. If your having trouble, think about what DIYer/craft bloggers you gravitate towards to and see if the way they write (DIY directions) is something that you would like to apply to your post. For example, if you like Erica Domesek (from P.S I Made This), then you may like writing short and sweet DIY directions. On the other hand if you like A Beautiful Mess, then you might like writing directions with a little more DIY meat in them. 

With that in mind, there are going to be those time when you need to explain something more. So when those times come, just say what you need to say and move on to the next step.  All in all, just test out your writing skill and over time you will see what you like and what your readers response to. 

1 / 2 / 3
Tip 3: Clear Photos

Nothing is worst then an amazing DIY idea with lousy pictures. This is an area that I'm constantly improving on because I cringe every time I go back through my own archives and look at previous DIY post. 

I'll be honest I don't have a fancy DSLR camera but that doesn't mean I can't take good photos with a point and shoot camera. In my experience I found that it not necessarily the camera but its the background, lighting and surroundings that make a good, clear photo. For example, in the beginning I would take DIY pictures in my poorly lit, closet (which was my craft room). Then I realized nature light was important, so I moved out of my closet and to the kitchen table (where there is a nice big window). Finally, I realized that a white background really makes DIY steps look more clearer, so I bought a cheap .50 white poster board (from the Dollar Tree) to use as a background.

Having a clear photos is so important because it can really make or break your DIY post. You need to put in as much effort into taking good photos as you do in creating an awesome DIY. All you need to do is experiment and find out what photo techniques work for you.

To find some inspiration, look at some of your favorite DIYs (from other crafters/bloggers) and see what you like about there photos. Personally, I love the way Jenni Radosevich (from I SPY DIY) does her photos because they are full of bright colors. I also love photos from StudioDIY's because they always include interesting backgrounds or props. These types of techniques would be great to use not only for step by step photos but for that one photo which shows off the completed project.

Also (on a side note) I've learned that clear pictures not only make your DIYs easier to understand but can get your work noticed by readers, websites and brands.

So those are my three simple tips for writing a DIY post. What tips do you guys have for writing a DIY post? Leave your comments below or on the blog's facebook page!

xo Katie  

Sunday, August 31, 2014

An Attitude Of Gratitude

Hello Everyone,
Since its the end of the month that means its time to have an attitude of gratitude. As I was going through my past post, I realized that I didn't get to write one of these at the end of July. So to make up for it, I'm including more things that I'm grateful for (hence the long list). 

The things that I'm grateful for this month are:
  • Getting Closer To God
  • Hanging Out With My Best Friend
  • Having Two Weeks Off Between Semesters
  • My Health
  • My Families Health
  • Sparky's Health
  • The New Pepsi (Made With Real Sugar)
  • Pizza
  • Surprise Gifts (like this new Scotch dog tape dispenser)
  • New Followers
  • Blogging Opportunities
  • Possibly Finding ''That  Transfer College'' To Finish Up My Degree (I'll keep you posted)
  • Watching Old Movies
  • Finding Time To Blog
  • Surprise Food (like cherry cokes from Steak n Shake)
  • Being Happy
  • Season Changing (anybody else excited for pumpkins, scarves and cooler weather?) 
  • Family Time
  • My Parents For Always Making Me Laugh
  • God's Many (many) Blessings

What are you grateful for this month?

 xo Katie

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Darby Smart: Free Gift

Hello Everyone,
Long time no see! I know I've been a little absent on the blog lately. College is in full swing and I'm still trying to adjust to my new schedule/studying time/blogging time. Since this weekend will be nice and long (Saturday + Sunday + Labor Day), hopefully I can get some blog post published or written.

In the mean time, I thought you might like to know that right now when you buy my craft kit from Darby Smart you will get a free pair of poppin scissors! Just used the code CUTSMART to get your free pair with a purchase of $20 or more. There is only a limited quantity and the offer ends September 3 at 11:59 PM EST. 

Aren't those scissors cute? I just love the color! If you want to learn more about Darby Smart (like who they are) and my craft kit (like what you get in it), then click here for more info.

xo Katie 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Darby Smart Designer Contest

My Craft Kit
Hello Everybody,
Darby Smart is have an awesome contest for its Darby Smart designers (which I am). The contest is for redesigning a room and the winner will get 5k! I would love to win and redesign my bedroom and my craft room which is currently in my closet. 

How you guys can help me win is by visiting this link and thats it! You don't have to sign up for anything, answer any questions or nothing, all you have to do is click. For every click I get it equals one entry. 

Any help from you guys would be greatly appreciated! So if you want help a crafty college girl out just click here

xo Katie 
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