30 Minute Slippers

I can’t take credit for this tutorial at all, but it’s too cute not to share! Alisa Burke shared this tutorial with everyone here on her blog. Personally I think hers are to-die-for, but I lack the patience to put as much effort as she did into her beautiful slippers!

These easy slippers took 30 minutes and only some felt and minky fabric that I had in my sewing cabinet!

As you can see by the blur of toes and blue pjs, I had a little help making these. ūüôā

I traced my existing slipper onto felt.

I started by tracing my existing slipper onto some felt. For some reason, months ago I thought it was a good idea to purchase 2 yards of pink felt. (Probably because it was on sale.) I had no clear objective in mind for this, but somehow I must’ve¬†known there would be a fabulous tutorial in my future. I also had some left over girly minky from a tag toy that I made B after he was born.

Minky layers on top of felt.

I cut the tops to be slightly larger than the bottoms, by tracing wider around the bottoms. I cut out whimsical hearts and used some felt ribbon to the trim them.

The Tops

These are nothing fancy and obviously homemade. As you can see by Alisa’s tutorial, you can really make these beautiful!

The end result of these is pretty cute. They are really warm and very soft. They can also be easily tossed in the washing machine for cleaning! Consider making some of these as gifts! I think they would make a fabulous Christmas present!

For me, these were eco-friendly. I used only materials that I already had. I realize not everyone has a sewing room with lots of fabric, but if you were to purchase to make these, you wouldn’t spend a lot! Felt sheets are on average 29 cents per sheet. You’d need 2 sheets for the bottom and one for the tops. One quarter of a yard would be plenty in your choice of fleece or minky fabric. You could cut up old sweatpants even! Be creative!

Happy sewing! I am off to finish Christmas pillowcases!

Again, this tutorial is NOT my own. Please view Alisa Burke’s original work here for your own inspiration!

Advertisements

Calling all Eco-Enthusiasts and Readers!

Journey to "Green"

I don’t always have the time to write the quality posts that I want to write or complete the numerous eco-friendly projects I have lying around the house and home improvement has come to a halt with the holidays here and money at a shortage. I want to keep the mix for you guys so that¬† it’s not the same reviews and product ideas all the time. I realize I’m not the only one with ideas on how to be eco-friendly and frugal so here’s where you all come in…

If you want a place to share your knowledge, Journey to “Green” is open to YOU!

Share your knowledge, crafts, WAHM products, eco-friendly upgrades, and so on with thousands of readers!

Some ideas of what you can submit:

  • A photo of your cloth diapered cutie
  • A DIY craft that’s eco-friendly (pictures, tutorials, links, etc.)
  • A tutorial on a personal beauty product that’s green (i.e. shampoo, deodorant, etc.)
  • See a great coupon? Let us know! Have a link for a related site? Share that too!
  • A recipe
  • A WAHM¬†advertisement. If you make cloth diapers, upcycled clothing, mama cloth, etc., feel free to email me! I’ll be glad to help you advertise. I can post pictures of your latest products and advertise specials.
  • An eco-friendly art project
  • An eco-friendly home improvement project or upgrade! (i.e. a picture of that shiny new kitchen with Energy Star appliances, etc.)
  • Do you have a trash to treasure before and after!?! Let’s see it! Who doesn’t love a trash to treasure find? I do! I love seeing your projects as well!
  • Did you score an amazing deal while shopping today? Show us the goods and tell us how you did it!
  • Any ideas for living Green and Frugal are welcome! Feel free to send me whatever!
  • ÔĽŅ

Will [you] receive credit for work published?

Yes! You will receive credit for that which you submit and/or write! I will link to your site, business, blog, or whatever. You will be named as the contributor unless you wish to remain anonymous. The idea is to help you out! I love hearing your suggestions and ideas and chances are that readers will as well! If I can help promote your creativity, products, or site(s), I am glad!

How to submit?

Send me an email at: palaciosamantha@yahoo.com with your stories, photos, coupons, links, businesses, projects, crafts, etc.

What to submit:

  • A way to contact you if I have questions
  • Applicable pictures
  • Links to reference
  • A full name (unless anonymous)
  • Your story, directions, explanation, how-to, etc.
  • Any other pertinent information

I  look forward to hearing from you ALL!

DIY Christmas Ornaments

I store our Christmas ornaments in one of those divided ornament protecting boxes. It turns out it will protect them as long as they don’t fall from a tower of boxes five feet off the ground. Eek! Sooo… I broke the majority of our glass ornaments shortly before we moved when they fell off a tower of storage boxes. Now I’ve got to make some ornaments!

I found these whimsical wooden “frames” at Michael’s ages ago on clearance. I had no idea what I’d do with them at the time but they were around 30 cents each so I couldn’t resist. Using some recycled ribbon from my baby shower and some photos of my favorite guy, I turned these frames into cute ornaments in just minutes.

These were plain wood. I painted them Silver.

Sorry for the grainy pictures. I miss my camera. ūüė¶

I used my heavy duty stapler to staple the photos to the back. Easy Peasy!

I think these turned out pretty darn cute! An idea like this would make great gift tags as well! Personalize presents by making ornaments to use as tags instead of purchasing those sticker labels and such!

all crafts Handmade Projects ~ Tip Me Tuesday

Last Minute Thanksgiving Decor

Thanksgiving Crafts eBookCheck out this FREE E-Book with 30 DIY Thanksgiving crafts from Fave Crafts. Print it out or print only the crafts you want to try. Several can be accomplished using supplies you already have!

Redesign some of those boring white dishes with some glass paint and creativity! If you don’t have any, think about picking up some inexpensive ones at a yard sale. You could create some as beautiful as these:

Leaves Detail

Use toilet paper/paper towel rolls and felt to create cute napkin rings like these:

Easy Thanksgiving Napkin Rings

Use old holiday cards to create a collage with the kids. (Christmas or Thanksgiving) Glue them onto poster board and cut to place mat size. Laminate, and you have your own custom, festive holiday placemats! Think about using photos, decopauge papers, and recycled mail as well!

Disney Family Fun has DIY crafts and printables.  I love these doilies:

Turkey Place Cards for Thanksgiving

And these adorable turkey chair covers:

Turkey Chair Covers

Laurie at Tip Junkie has also compiled 16 frugal ideas for you here.

 

DIY Draft Guard & Winterize Your Home: Save Money and Live Greener

This article was published by Real Simple Magazine:

How to Save on Winterizing Your Home

The average American household spends a bone-chilling $2,200 annually on energy bills. Learn how to keep your costs as low as the temperature outside.

by Amy Chen

Hunt for air leaks. A total home energy audit includes this service, but it‚Äôs pricey‚ÄĒaround $350. Instead, try the Black & Decker Thermal Leak Detector ($50, amazon.com), which identifies drafty areas in a home. Once you seal the problem spots, you could save up to 20 percent on energy costs.

Don’t overinsulate. Depending on where you live, you may not need insulation with the highest R-value (a measure of its ability to resist heat flow). For example, outfitting an 800-square-foot attic in Florida with high-quality R-60 fiberglass loose fill would cost about $2,480, whereas using R-30, which is sufficient in warmer climates, would run only about $1,120. To find out how much insulation you need, go to energystar.gov.

Change your filter only when it’s dirty. Install a whistle on your furnace ($1.70, amconservationgroup.com) that alerts you when your filter is partially clogged and will soon need to be replaced, says Ed Pollock, a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Energy.

Opt for a weatherproofing kit. If you buy plastic shrink wrap, weather stripping, and electrical-outlet sealers individually, you’ll pay about 30 percent more than if you buy them in a set ($58, amconservationgroup.com). Use all the components and you’ll reduce your energy costs by up to 20 percent.

TV Offer Twin Draft Guard

Don’t pay $19.95 for one of those twin draft guards, when you can make your own! (Or have a friend who’s crafty, make it for you!)

Draft Guard

Here’s your source.

Here is a tutorial in picture form. Thanks Not Martha!

Another idea: cast off garden hose or any old small tubing you (or the hubby) may have around the garage! I really want to try this myself!

Fall Wall Art

Our living room is already nature-themed with browns and tans and leaf covered curtains. I still feel that it’s in need of some sprucing up for Fall so I’ve been scouring the house and our storage shed for things in Fall colors. This tutorial is not at all eco-friendly unless you consider that it’s handmade from things I already had and the pumpkins are printed on recycled paper, but it was really easy and inexpensive.

Starting Supplies

These pumpkins are courtesy of Disney Family Fun. Disney Family Fun has some really cute printables throughout the year for personal organization, home decor, crafts for the kids and more. Check it out!

Mix a little

Next I mixed some acrylics. I started out with no plan for this project. I had a blank canvas that has been mocking me and loved the pattern on these pumpkin “doilies.” My fabric way to paint is just to put paint to canvas and see what happens.

I ended up with a wash like this.

Three Pumpkins

And this was the end result…

 

_______________________________________________________________

I apologize for the poor clarity of pictures. My camera is broken and my phone is all I have to work with at the moment.

DIY Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Vinegar is the obvious choice for a DIY natural toilet bowl cleaner, but I personally can’t stand heavy doses of straight vinegar. Not to mention, I prefer a little more suds in my “clean.” To make your own toilet bowl cleaner, feel free to follow my recipe below:

1/8 cup castile soap. I use Dr. Bronner’s.

1/2 cup vinegar

1 cup water

-optional-

Add 10 drops of tea tree oil for antibacterial purposes. I like this for spraying the toilet seats themselves.

You could also substitute castile soap with a bar of soap to cut down on cost or use what you have. If you’re using a bar of soap, you’ll want some type of grater dedicated to shaving soap. You’ll only need 1/4 of the soap bar for this as well.

This will yield enough to fill a small bottle. Add to a recycled spray bottle for really easy cleaning.

_____________________________

I apologize for the lack of pictures! My camera broke today and has been sent off for repair. I hope to be up and running soon!

Wipes Solution

Lately I’ve been using Honey Bun Drops by Chubby Cherubs, LLC because I had them on hand. Of the many different scents and¬†ingredients that she¬†carries, I like the Milk and Honey best. They do¬†work well and smell really well. They cost $10 for a 5 oz. bag and with shipping will run¬†$15. ¬†

When I’m not so lucky to receive a product like this, I make my own wipes solution! My first DIY wipes solution consisted of:

1/2 cup of water

3-4 drops of tea tree oil

3 drops vitamin E

NOW ADDED:

4 drops of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap

I’ve found that over time I like to add some Dr. Bronner’s to this as well. There’s an extra added clean feeling to it if you add a little squirt of castile soap!

Picture Framing

In the age of digital picture frames, I can’t give up my “old-fashioned” printed photos. It’s a toss up, in my opinion, as to which option is really more eco-friendly. I have two digital picture frames in my house, but to truly enjoy the pictures I have to keep on 24/7 which uses electricity. Not to mention there is the time and resource spent changing the pictures frequently. On the other hand, the prints are a use of paper, machines, etc. In the end, I still like having the printed pictures. I’d love to know of a company that uses recycled paper to print them! If you know of one, let me know!

That brings me to today’s topic and tutorial. I have a plethora of frames around the house and as we take new photos, I just switch the pictures out and back into photo albums. As a rule of thumb however, I don’t print any photo that I don’t love.

B had Halloween pictures taken early in October and I didn’t have a free 8×10 frame to fit it in. I did have an 11×14, but the existing mat was too large. So to make my picture fit,¬†I used recycled newspaper as a mat.

I started by tracing the existing mat, measuring to fit around an 8×10 picture and cutting it out.

I put the old mat behind the newspaper and photograph to hold it in.

The end result is pretty cute.

You could easily use stickers, markers, embellishments, paint or anything else to change the color! You could even give the mat to your kids to draw art work on and frame a piece of their artwork or your budding artist themselves. The possibilities are endless. Use it as a signature mat! Display baseball scores from your son’s game. Have fun with it! It’s free and recycled. Gotta love it!

Recycled Wrapping

To help you get started on planning this holiday season, check out Tip Junkie’s printable Christmas Planner! Save money and resources by printing your own planning system at home on recycled paper!

I have blogged about my experience with the Executive Homemaker binder system before. Though I do still use and actually daily planner, I use the Executive Homemaker system for many organization purposes such as keeping up with phone lists, shopping lists, the Christmas Planner, our Property Binder, and Birthday lists, etc.

If you’ve got an old cookie sheet, think about repurposing it into a Christmas Advent Calendar!

For gift wrapping ideas… here are just a few:

Add some markers, some paint, some fabric, & a lot of imagination! What a fun, recycled way to give!

I am not affiliated with Tip Junkie, though my ideas have been featured!