Archive | DIY RSS feed for this section

Do It Yourself Image Transfer/Turn A .49 Dishtowel Into A Fabulous Dishtowel Tutorial

12 Jan

What do you get when you have a .49 Tekla dish towel from Ikea and some transfer paper from Avery?



Beautiful dish towels! 


Step 1:  Get your graphic ready.  I suggest you search Graphic Fairy, but maybe you have yours ready.  Or, if you want, you can Click to download a PDF file of the graphics as I used them.

Step 2:  Make sure it is a mirror image!  It’s easy, flip the image horizontally when in the transform mode on Photoshop (google search mirror image [insert name of program you are using here] for other programs). 

Step 3:  Do a test print on a regular sheet of paper.

Step 4:  If all is good, put in your transfer paper and print your image onto the clear side of paper. 

Step 5:  Find a surface to work on and put a couple of pillow cases on it.  Make sure it’s not a wooden surface–this project will yellow your wood (sigh…). 

Step 6:  Iron pillow cases to make sure there are no wrinkles on the side you will be putting your transfer on.

Step 7:  Iron the material you will be transfering on for a few minutes.

Step 8:  Clip your image and leave a fine border around it.  Make sure to round edges. 

Step 9:  Put your image face down on your material and iron in 20 second passes from left to right and then top to bottom for about three minutes.  Play close attention to the corners and edges.  Make sure the whole image gets equal attention.  How good the transfer comes out depends on how hard you press down and the heat. 

Step 10:  Take material off the hot surface and let it cool for at least 2 minutes.

Step 11:  Peel paper.  Don’t let the paper break or tear! 

Step 12:  Enjoy your work!

FIY – I plan on making some burlap wall art and burlap pillows with these soon.  Be on the look out!


DIY Make Your Own Candle Project!

6 Nov

Yesterday afternoon I noticed Design Sponge had a great feature from Ashley Ann Photography about using old tin cans as candles and thought: I have wanted to do that with my Harrods tin cans! Finally, something to inspire me to get off my chair and over to Michaels for some candle making supplies!  The Harrods tin cans I have had for years—YEARS, people!  They have literally just been floating around without any real function from apartment, to house and now over to the Mango House.  And ever since I wrote an article on the effects of lavender on stress hormones in the body for a newsletter at work I have been completely obsessed with finding a pleasant lavender candle.  Really, I have just been obsessed with lavender.  Remember the lavender growing in my garden?   But, I am extremely picky with how my candles have to smell.  At some point in the last two months I started to entertain the idea of making my own lavender candle and so I started to collect jars and different containers for candle makings, but it was not until today that I finally did it!  My review: it’s great!  So after much ado here is the run down:


  • Premium Wax (I only had 1 pound on hand)
  • Double boiler (or pouring pot and normal pan)
  • Thermometer (I think you could do it without this)
  • Some form of candle dye (optional)
  • Essential lavender oil
  • Vanilla scent block (you can also use another essential oil)
  • Wicks
  • Container for candles
  • Wooden skewer or similar object


1. Clean your containers out and dry them. I used these:


2. Melt wax in double boiler.  I melted a total of a pound of wax.  I used a pouring pot that you can purchase at any crafts store.

3. Some suggest that you should glue gun the wick to the base of the container (I did not do this step because my new glue gun did not work).

4. Continually stir or move pot with wax.

5. Once wax is melted and at approximately 150 degrees Fahrenheit, put in color dye.

6. Once color is fully mixed in pour in scent (note: if you want to see how intense your color is, just pour a drop onto something.)

7. I used 45 drops of essential lavender oil (from Wholefoods) and half of the vanilla scented block.

8. Heat containers in the oven at 150°.  I just put mine in there for a bit until it felt hot to the touch.

9. Once the wax is fully mixed in, pour into container. Make sure to save a small amount to pour later.

10. Let sit for about five minutes and insert wick into container.

11. If you need to move the wick use a small wooden skewer or similar object.

12. Hold wick with wooden skewer, chopsticks, measuring spoon or whatever else you have on hand.

13. Leave it alone for 20-30 minutes.

14. Melt the amount that you left in the pot in step 8.

15. You will note that your candle has an indentation in the middle near the wick.  Pour in the remaining amount of the wax to fill in the indentation.

16. Cut wick at about ¼ inch.

17. Let dry for 4-6 hours at room temperature (I prefer to leave it overnight).

18. Enjoy!

Things I learned/Things to Note:

  • Don’t move the candle until it’s dry.  The wax will move with you.
  • Gluing the wick with a hot glue gun is probably a good idea.
  • Wax does not boil, blacken or smoke up it just explodes if it is too hot, so be careful!
  • 1 pound of wax is nothing.  I only made those two candles with one pound of wax.  Check out the matchbox in the picture below for size comparison

If you make your own, make sure to leave a comment with a link to your new candle!