SMP Craft
26 Jun

DIY Hanging Plant Holder

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For those of us who live in the city, in “cozy” dwellings and with no access to a backyard, roof, deck, or balcony to grow plants or a vegetable garden, how do we bring nature and all the endless benefits that go with it into our small living space?

Where do we put it? We use the often forgotten area above our heads to maximize our space and find ways to hang things from the ceiling.

Like this DIY Hanging Plant Holder.

With just four leather shoelaces, a flat metal disk from a generic ceiling light, and the double overhand stopper knot, we’ve made a simple, stylish, minimalistic perch to showcase our plants without sacrificing limited square footage.

Total Cost: under $15. Assembly Time: 30 minutes

Currently, we’re hanging one of our favorite low-maintenence, no soil, drought-tolerant airplants. Earlier, we hung this medium sized terracotta potted aloe vera plant on it.

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Here’s what it looks like from the underside:

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Here’s how to assemble it:

1. Make sure the lengths of your laces are even.

2. Using a double overhand stopper knotstart with attaching each lace, equally spaced, onto the disk. Try to make the knots as similar as possible–same size and tightness–to ensure your disk hangs on a horizontal plane.

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3. Gather the loose ends of the laces and, using the double overhand stopper knot again, knot all of them together, making one big knot.

4. Hang the holder.

5. If your plant is hanging lopsided, adjust the knots on the disk.

We found the leather laces, 1/8 inch square, at a shoe repair shop, which had them in various colors and lengths–brown, black, blue, red, green, and gray. The metal disk was a surprise discovery and an impromptu purchase at our local hardware store. One of the employees said it was a standard disk used to mount a ceiling light and that you could probably find it at any hardware store or home improvement megastore like Ace, Home Depot or Lowe’s.

For something equally budget friendly though slightly more polished and elegant, try Vintage Revivals’ $15 DIY Brass and Leather Teardrop Planter.

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Whatever vessel you choose to make or buy for that matter, when you’re looking for ways to grow an indoor garden with limited space, remember to first look up. Ceilings the limit!

Oh, and that double overhand stopper knot? Well, it sparked a flame. We want to master all kinds of knots now.

Stay tuned!

Tagged with: airplants, Crafts, DIY, DIY Hanging Plant Holder, free project, gardening, hanging plant holders, how to knot, how to plant holder, indoor plants, interior decorating, Knots, overhand stopper knot, smp craft, smpcraft
21 Jun

Men Who Knit and Crochet

Most of us, if asked to assign a majority sex to a particular hobby or activity would probably have a few if not all of these on their list for men–football, hunting, golf, fishing, chess, poker, model making, car tinkering, and smoking cigars.

But knitting and crocheting? Unlikely.

This Father’s Day, we’ve decided to shine light on the community of men and boys who knit and crochet–a community of over two million in the US alone, according to a 2014 survey conducted by the Craft and Yarn Council.

Let’s be clear. No, we don’t think Men’s Knitting is the New Yoga. Or that men’s knitting and crocheting will overtake Football as America’s favorite national pastime–in the near future.

But “thriving” and “vibrant”? Indeed. However way you choose to see it, in this century, women aren’t the only ones who knit and crochet as a leisure activity, men are returning to the craft, and we couldn’t be more excited about it.

Numerous online articles feature this trend:

Men who knit can join the very active online community of the same name that was formed to “promote and inspire knitting amongst men” and includes blog links, instructions, features finished and ongoing projects by members, and information on Men Knitting and Crocheting Retreats and Clubs, of which there are more than a handful in the US and UK.

On Facebook, there are a few Community pages for Men’s Knitting Retreats groups. Below is an image of the Men’s Mid-West Knitting Retreat attendees from last November.

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Scanning through the comments section of Real Men Crochet! a youtube video on Action Wipes’ channel, which has garnered nearly 23,000 views, we find men of all ages, young boys, and teenagers excited about crocheting and knitting.

Cheskydivision shared a story about his teenage son “who gets teased a lot for crocheting as much as he receives praise from friends but never comes home with his creations as they end up being gifted.”

Joetherocku2ube: Dude, I really enjoy working with my hands too. I make tons of beanies as well as survival bracelets. Male, married, 44 years old.

TheRommannEmpire: I’m 12 now and I’ve been crocheting since I was 7. I learned to crochet from a book with no help from anyone.

Explore Pinterest, like Carrie Carpenter’s channel, to see images of movie stars, musicians, and sports celebrities knitting and crocheting, including David Arquette, Ryan Gosling, George Lucas, Laurence Fishburne, Ewan McGregor, Russell Crowe, Kurt Cobain, Paul Rudd.

Hollywood Knit for Breast Cancer Research featured David Arquette on their mission statement cover, as he’s known to be an avid knitter.

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AuntPeaches.com includes Ryan Gosling in a post titled Sexy Men Who Knit.

ryan-gosseling-knitting-640Several online articles and a podcast pop up about Gregory Patrick, formerly homeless, and now has a book out about his story. Here’s his blog, where he also sells his book: Mad Man Knitting.

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We’ll end here with Moral Courage Project’s recent youtube video featuring Alvin Irby: I Crochet in the Subway and I Don’t Care What People Think. 

Inspiring.

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If you’re interested in reading more about the history of knitting, Knitty.com’s History 101 by Julie Theaker is an excellent place to start.

Happy Father’s Day!

Tagged with: celebrity knitters, Crafts, crochet, crocheting, Father's day, knitting, madmanknitting, men who crochet, men who knit, smpcraft, summer
20 Jun

The Secret to Making Your Father’s Day Gift Super Special

This Father’s Day, probably the best gift to show Dad how special and loved he is, is to spend more time with him, participate in his hobbies, and help him with household chores and big projects since what dads really want is time and attention from the people they care most about.

For many of us, we can’t actually be physically present to make this happen. But we can still keep this in mind and show thoughtfulness and care in the gift we give.

Whether you’re donating money under his name to a cause he feels strongly about, or helping him manage that wild beard with a membership to the Dollar Shave Club, ordaining him Top Chef with a new Global or Henckels or Shun Chef Knife, or signing him up for the Custom Golf Clubs he’s been (not-so-secretly) coveting–what will REALLY show Dad how special he is?

What’s the secret?

Finish the gift with a follow-up that shows up a few days or even a week or two later, something personal and handmade that shows him that your appreciation for him goes beyond one national holiday.

This one simple act will bring a smile to his face and resonate long after Father’s Day. Why? He won’t know it’s coming. It’s unexpected. A wonderful surprise.

Admittedly, it’s not a secret really but a reminder to look beyond what’s immediately in front of us and find ways to act meaningfully.

You probably have some ideas of your own as a follow-up to your Father’s Day gift. But if you need a little guidance, we have a few suggestions. Just a few since the point is to really think about YOUR father.

Each of these takes less than an hour to accomplish:

Send him a handmade post card. Even if he lives next door. It can go with the theme of your gift, or be a picture of you and him together, or stenciled with his favorite saying or phrase. Don’t forget to convey the message: Wish you were here!

Here’s the postcard I made to send to my stepdad, a former pilot. He got me into flying and it’s a subject the two of us have killed considerable hours talking about.

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Show ongoing support. Wish him luck on a project–career or personal–that he’s battling. Buy seven or 30 $1 scratch-off lottery tickets. Wrap each in a sticky note labeled for each day of the week. Instruct him to scratch one ticket every day. He’ll have at least one thing to look forward to every day, a fun moment of distraction. If you want, fold an origami crane, a symbol of luck and fortune, and send everything in a cool origami box. Click here for instructions on making the box. And if you’re feeling ambitious, click here for some instruction on making moveable origami.

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Did you know you can make a custom iPhone Case in less than an hour? Acknowledge his hobbies or favorite pastimes or TV show, or use a funny phrase he’d appreciate like: Will Trade Wife for Whiskey to accessorize his phone. The Cheese Thief shows us how.

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Crafty Morning had a terrific idea. Even if your dad doesn’t grill, this spatula with a personalized message using the phrase Flippin’ is simply brilliant as a summertime gift.

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If you still need more ideas, check out our post from last week–10 Beer Bottle Crafts to make with empty beer bottles and caps.

But whatever you decide on, always keep in mind the age-old adage: It’s the thought that counts.

Happy Father’s Day (and after)!

Tagged with: Advice, books, Crafts, DIY, DIY gifts, Father's day, gift ideas, howtocraft, smpcraft
18 Jun

Goodreads Giveaway: Zendoodle Coloring Inspiring Zendalas!

Enter this week’s Goodreads Giveaway for a chance to win a copy of Zendoodle Coloring: Inspiring Zendalas, illustrated by Julia Snegireva.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Zendoodle Coloring by Julia Snegireva

Zendoodle Coloring

by Julia Snegireva

Giveaway ends June 25, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Zendoodle Coloring: Inspiring Zendalas is not just a series of doodles; it’s a Zen-focused form of expression that brings out your artistic style. Noted artist Julia Snegireva has created 60 original mystical circles ready to color. Feel the stress melt away as you create one-of-a-kind artworks to display.

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Don’t want to press your luck? Pre-order a copy now!

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Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Powell’s Books

Tagged with: adult coloring books, art therapy, coloring, doodling, mandalas, smp craft, smpcraft, zen, zendoodle
13 Jun

10 Beer Bottle Crafts

Are you throwing or going to a barbecue this weekend? For 4th of July or before the end of the summer? Will there be beer?

Before you or your host toss those empty beer bottles and caps into the recycling bin, visualize making one or all of these 10 DIY projects that turn your empties (caps, too) into something really cool and useful. Remember Father’s Day is just around the corner… CHEERS!

1. SIX PACK OF SOLAR-POWERED “LIGHT” BEER: Popular Science’s Dave Prochnow

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2. SALT AND PEPPER SHAKERS: S. Pres, Oh!

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3. CANDLE HOLDER: Threadsence

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4. BOTTLE CAP CANDLES: Draft

BeercapCandles5. CLOCK: Apartment Therapy

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6. BOTTLE CAP HOT PAD | TRIVET: My Amphetamines and My Purls

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7. MODULAR SHELVING: Instructables Ten Green

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8. BRACELET HOLDER: Gliter, Wits & Grits 

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9. WASHI TAPE SUMMER VASE: Sweet Paul

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10. BOTTLE HERB GARDEN: Design Sponge

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Tagged with: beer bottle crafts, candles, how to, how to make a clock, interior design, recycle, salt and pepper shakers, shelving, smpcraft, solar power, trivets, upcycle

Author of the Month

This month, we sit down with Marisa Edghill, craft designer, washi tape aficionado, and author of Washi Style! Make it with paper tape. Marisa grew up in a house filled with glitter, pretty paper, and an inherent love of craft. Which is to say her love of all things handmade started early! Well-known for her washi tape creations, Marisa blogs about her crafty adventures online at omiyageblogs.ca.
Click below for more...

Marisa Edghill author of Washi Style

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Your little monster will be the envy of the bus stop with this Project of the Month: a little lamb hat and neck ruff with matching legwarmers and mittens from More Monster Knits for Little Monsters 20 Super-Cute Animal-Themed Hat and Mitten Sets to Knit.In a stylish cream color (not as white as snow) people will be asking, Mary who?

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