Aug 21, 2013 | DIY
DIY kit company Darby Smart recently sprung onto the scene and is making waves with their fashion-forward packages of fun DIY projects you can make at home. Instead of a monthly subscription to their kits (which many other companies are using as a business model as of late), you can buy a Darby Smart kit any time, and for anyone! Inspired by Pinterest projects and catering to the community, the kits provide the materials and supplies to make chic and polished crafts for accessories, jewelry, and home decor. And at Darby Smart, anyone can become a kit designer! Designed by amazingly creative designers, bloggers, and crafters, the submitted projects are voted on by the Darby Smart community and then the most popular are turned into kits for sale.
I was recently sent the You-Nique Monogram Tote Kit to play with and create my own DIY stenciled tote. I decided to create a tote with a badge, with my personal mantra “DREAM IT / MAKE IT / DO IT” emblazoned on the front. Using the stencils and the glitter pen provided, I added some paints and glitter from my collection to create something with a throwback 80’s feel. And that’s the piece I created!
I had a lot of fun with the kit, which was easy to use, and I was impressed with how long the glitter pen held up and how much ink was in it. Plus – and here’s the BIG PLUS, folks – the tote is not the cheap kind of canvas tote you’d find for $5.99 at the craft store…it’s actually a heavy-duty canvas piece from Baggu, with inner snap, pocket, and adjustable shoulder strap. An extremely good value for the price of the entire kit.
And Darby Smart is also graciously offering 2 You-Nique Monogram Tote kits to give away to my readers!
Edit 9/1/13: Giveaway is now closed and winners are announced. Thanks!
How To Enter
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Also, please Pin your favorite kit from the Darby Smart website to show extra enthusiasm! (Not required for entry into giveaway)
FTC Disclosure: I was sent one You-Nique Monogram Tote Kit (retail value: $31) to review, and 2 Tote Kits will be sent to the winners of this giveaway, courtesy of Darby Smart. I received no other compensation, and the opinions above are my own. See my full Disclosure Policy here.
Apr 1, 2013 | DIY
Declare your love for the Big Apple! Take that shirt showing genuine NYC pride and remake it into a stylish totebag. LOVE is in the details! Here’s how to make your own:
I Love NY T Shirt (mine is a unisex Large) / White Thread
Tools: Tape Measure / Chalk / Sewing Machine Needle for knits / Scissors / Pin(s) / Serger /overlocker (optional)
Feb 19, 2013 | DIY
I picked up this iron-on decal set last Spring when I visited Japan.
Japan is such a treasure trove of nonsensical English. I find it summarily hilarious.
So of course I could NOT pass up this “Beau Chat” iron-on decal. I am a crazy cat lady at heart (who happens to unfortunately currently reside with this crazy Ewok-lookalike dog instead of a big pile of cats, which is my someday personal goal).
So I can only surround myself with cat-themed items and try to be consoled in the meantime. A stern-looking tabby sporting the crown jewels is an excellent addition to my collection.
I figured the title of this iron-on image was French.
“Good Cat,” I believe, unless my French is really terrible (which, okay, it is…a kind reader told me it is “Handsome Cat.” Whoops.). “Since 1902” it also proclaims in English (making it one very OLD handsome cat, apparently).
And then follows a chopped-up paragraph in German. I don’t speak German, but the online translator says it is something about being outdoorsy, wine, and making a blunder over a duration of time. Maybe.
But the back of the bag is the best.
My cat is only active at night.
YOU ARE BLOWING MY MIND
I mean seriously, who could resist a bag that accuses people of blowing the owner’s mind??!? I always feel that my mind is blown by the amazing-ness (and sometimes craziness) of other people. I think this accusation is excellent in a proactive sort of way.
I made the bag following a pattern from a Japanese pattern-book I have; you could also use this pattern here and come up with a similar result. The faux leather handles were also from Japan; you can buy similar ones here. The grey Essex linen I used for the outside I bought from this Etsy shop (I LOVE this stuff!), and the toile-print lining I bought from the fabric store. The iron-on is of course uniquely Japanese, but you can find something similar here and add some crazy paragraphs in a variety of languages on the computer if necessary.
This little, crazy tote is the perfect size for a quick run out, or just a wonderful conversation-starter.
From one crazy cat lady to all of you~