Category Archives: The Hacker’s Girlfriend

A corner of the internet for the hacker’s girlfriend! He hacks, she crafts.

New Jewelry Holder

Over the past couple of years (and moves), I have begun to subscribe to the idea of “less is more.” Less clutter is more free space. Less stuff is more time and money saved. I’ve stopped buying (for the most part), cheap, inexpensive clothing that won’t hold up for more than one season. I am also an avid fan of second-hand clothing stores and thrift shops. With these ideas, I have been (very) slowly trying to remove clutter from my home/life.  These ideas inspired my latest craft project.

I used to have a giant jewelry tree that took up a significant amount of space on my dresser. While functional, it ended up being a collection of a lot of pieces that I never actually wore.

Old necklace tree

Old jewelry tree

Last weekend, I went through the jewelry on my tree. Turns out, I only wore about half of what was hanging on it. I put these pieces aside and will be donating the rest to a charity.

As I was left with about 10 necklaces and 5 bracelets, I realized I didn’t need that giant tree to display them all! So I brainstormed (and briefly poked around on Pinterest) until inspiration smacked me upside the head. MAKE SOMETHING, SILLY!!

Since I LOVED the decoupage frame with buttons I made earlier this year, why don’t I make a bigger one, fill it with cork board, and hang my jewelry on push pins?

So I did.

New, bigger frame with buttons!

New, bigger frame covered with an old book and buttons!

I even managed to NOT get decoupage glue everywhere (this time!). But, I did burn my finger a bit on the glue gun. C’est la vie.

And now with cork!

And now with cork!

I bought the cork sized to fit perfectly in the frame. If I make more of these, I will probably end up buying cork in bulk and cutting it to fit the individual frame size. For this frame, I hot glued the cork into place. As the cork was still a bit flimsy, I cut a piece of cardboard the same size as the cork and fitted it into the back of the frame. This provided the extra structure needed in order to successfully hang jewelry from the cork board. I found some cute push pins at Target in the dollar section.

Finished project!

Finished project!

Currently, the frame is resting on top of my dresser, but it could also be hung on the wall. All of my necklaces, and most of my bracelets, fit on the frame. This visual reminds me that in order to purchase new jewelry, I need to give up a current piece. Or make a larger jewelry holder….

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Wedding Decor Decoupage

Earlier this spring, I was asked to help make decorations for a wedding! The lovely bride-to-be shipped me some wooden ampersands “&” and bases to “decorate as I pleased,” so long as I followed the red, white, silver, and black color scheme. Decoupage, I thought! Decoupage it all!

So I did!!

Starting materials.

Starting materials.

I learned that covering curvy 3-D items with tissue paper takes a significantly longer time than covering one flat surface. It is also quite messy, as my poor table was sticky with Mod Podge for a period of time.

Working through it with my trusty side-kick.

Working through it with my trusty side-kick.

The cat was quite helpful during the process. She added her own flair (read- cat hair) to the pieces and kept the tissue paper warm for me.

Judging my mess.

Judging my mess.

This project took significantly longer than I anticipated. I am glad I started weeks before the wedding date, otherwise it would have been a scramble to finish in time!

Overall, I did 5 ampersands and 5 “bases”, each with a different color or pattern of tissue paper.  I found some silver glitter spray paint at Home Depot that I spritzed over the solid colors to jazz them up a bit. Note to others who use this spray paint: IT IS VERY GLITTERY! You only need one or two quick passes over your piece to add a bit of glitter! It is very easy to over-do it with the glitter!

Finished Products!

Finished Products! And some beer….

The wedding itself was beautiful! It was a private ceremony held at a lake-side mansion out in the country. The bride looked spectacular and the groom was quite spiffy.

In action! The cakes were delicious, if you were curious.

Ampersand in action! The cakes were delicious.

Much to my delight (and horror of Doyler), I caught the bouquet!

Bouquet success!

Bouquet success!

Overall, it was a beautiful weekend celebrating a wonderful couple. I was very honored to be asked to be a part of the affair and relished every moment. I will definitely be open to crafting for other weddings, but will no longer underestimate the amount of time or prep work that goes into them!

 

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An Ode to Modge Podge

I recently stumbled upon an old favorite in the dollar section at Target: Modge Podge! Small bottles of Modge Podge for $1 each? I’ll take 8, thank you! Growing up, my mom was always crafting around the house and was always on the look-out for child-suitable crafts for my sister and I to “help” her with. One of our favorites was decoupage- the glue is harmless, easy to clean, and you end up with a (potentially) beautiful piece of artwork! We even had a decoupage birthday once, where all of our friends came over to cover picture frames with various pieces of paper.  Once I got into the upper grades of middle school, though, all time for creativity was lost to homework, band practice, and sleeping.

I was reminded of my love for creating something with my hands a couple years ago on a trip with extended family. One night, my aunt brought out a bunch of little cardboard boxes, scraps of paper, paint brushes, and Modge Podge. Three generations of women proceeded to sit around a table, crafting, chatting, and enjoying vacation. The love had survived, and grown!

Little box of Modge Podge magic.

Little box of Modge Podge magic.

I am finally at a place both mentally and financially where I have been able to really explore my creative side again, and I am looking forward to sharing it with the world! Pinterest, Etsy, and other specialty blogs have shown me that you can decoupage most any solid surface. I’m going to be testing out this theory this year. I’ve been accumulating tissue paper, construction paper, napkins, and decorative scrapbooking paper and will be gluing it (hopefully in an artistic fashion!) to whatever I can get my hands on.

My first experiment was a Valentine’s gift for Hacker Boyfriend. It’s a mixed media collage on a 5″x7″ canvas. I used tissue paper, scrapbooking paper, white card stock, and Modge Podge. I think it turned out well! I know Hacker Boyfriend loves it. He hung it up in his apartment near his front door- I suspect so that he sees it on his way in and out every day.

Mid-project progress.

Mid-project progress.

Here’s where I try not to get glue on my camera while taking photos 🙂

The finished product! I also added sweet sayings written on white card stock along the sides of the canvas.

The finished product! I also added sweet sayings written on white card stock along the sides of the canvas.

My second experiment was a bit of a whim this past weekend. I was having trouble calming my mind, so I decided to try an art project. I’m so glad I did.  I picked up an old book at a scrap sale a few weeks ago with the intention of using the pages for a Modge Podge project. I also picked up an old picture frame that had seen better days.

The beginning of the project.

The beginning of the project. Not pictured- scissors for cutting shapes out of the book pages.

You really don’t need a lot of space for these smaller types of projects– I was using the narrow end of a coffee table to work while watching a movie.

I covered the frame in book pages... now what?!

I covered the frame in book pages… now what?!

At this stage, I felt as though it was missing something. Some sort of embellishment. I tried cutting out small pictures of birds and posing them along the edges, but I just wasn’t feeling it. Then it came to me. This frame needed some BUTTONS!! Went off to The Scrap Exchange the next day to pick up some decorative buttons (and some more arts and crafts supplies). Came home, fired up my glue gun, and finished my masterpiece:

BUTTONS!!

BUTTONS FOR THE WIN!!

I’m very pleased with the outcome and am looking forward to finding the perfect picture to go in the frame.

Looking forward to more Modge Podge in my future!

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by | March 14, 2016 · 3:07 am

The First Coloring Roundup!

First Coloring Book Roundup!

I received a couple coloring books for the holidays, as well as the one or two I already had. When I’m feeling creative and just don’t have the energy to get out all the craft supplies to create, I color. Coloring is also a great activity for relieving stress and anxiety- it has helped me a lot!

Here are some of the things I’ve been working on:

 

Circus cat. Inspired by my own feline.

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Latin American Mandala. Actually saw this very image as the backdrop of the menu at a Mexican place I ate at a couple weeks ago. Cool!

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Cool shades knot.

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ATHENA! How did you get in here? You always have to be the center of attention, don’t you.
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She sells sea shells by the sea shore

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Tree of life!

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That’s all for today, y’all! Check back soon, as I have a couple more projects in the works!

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Introducing Hacker’s Girlfriend!

Hi! Thanks for stopping by! I am going to be posting about my creative endeavors, whether it be coloring, decoupage-ing, or refinishing furniture. I’m hoping to use this blog to keep track of my projects, to share successes (and failures), and to inspire others to create!

Upcoming posts will include:

  • Coloring! Yes!
  • Decoupage creativity
  • Re-finishing furniture
    • end table
    • barstools
    • dressers
  • My cat, Athena. Because she is always in the way.

A big thanks to Hacker Boyfriend, Doyler, for setting me up with my very own blog and encouraging me to write about my projects.

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The Hacker’s Girlfiend

An initial test post for the new category for my (now our) site: The Hacker’s Girlfriend. He hacks, she crafts, and now my girlfriend even has a place to blog about it.

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