DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

I love mirrors. But not in a "vain and want to stare at myself way," more a "mirrors make rooms bright and pretty" way. So when I had blank wall space in my bedroom, I knew a mirror was the perfect thing to add. And when I saw these Anthropologie jewelry organizers, an idea was born.

For whatever reason, I feel the Anthropologie jewelry organizers are dying for a mirror in between them. I'm also somewhat outraged that they're tiny 12" long things sold as two separate pieces, but since I decided to make my own, I suppose I'll get over it.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Mounting Logistics

Note: I'm putting this section first, even though it's the last thing done because I want to make sure you understand how this works before starting the project.

The DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer actually gets mounted in two separate pieces: the bottom shelf will be secured first. Then the mirror will be slid into place, and the second piece (the top piece) will be secured on top of it.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

There will be a groove in each wood piece for the mirror to rest on. I accomplished this by adding a 1/4" scrap plywood piece to the back of each main wood piece. However, if you have a table saw, you could saw a groove in the back of the wood as well. The plywood option was easier for me, but either method works.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Finally, the top piece is secured over the mirror. Note that no screws go through the mirror, they're all placed either above or below the mirror.

DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer

Materials
This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking
  • Brass Cup Hooks
  • 2" Thick Wood Pieces - 2x4s and 2x6s could work for this, although I cut scrap pieces I had. 
  • 24" x 30" MirrorThe linked mirror comes with plastic mirror clips for hanging. I used these for extra security, but they were probably unnecessary.
  • 1/4" Dowel Rod
  • Gold Spray Paint
  • 2 Screw Eyes - Make sure these are large enough to fit the 1/4" dowel rod through.
  • Pocket Hole Jig and 2 1/2" Pocket Hole Screws
  • 1/4" Plywood Scraps
  • Countersink Drill Bit
  • Optional: Wood Stain and Finish
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Part 1: The Bottom Shelf

Step 1: Cut and Prep Wood Pieces

All my pieces were cut down from an old 2" x 10" that I think was once a part of a bedframe. This method requires a table saw, but if you don't have a table saw, using 2x4s and 2x6s instead would have a very similar look.

The two pieces making up the bottom portion of the mirror were cut to be 30" long, and 3.5" and 5.5" inches wide.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

The wider piece ultimately makes up the shelf, while the smaller piece will go underneath the shelf and attach to the wall.

The piece at the top of the mirror is also 30" long, and is cut to be 4.75" inches wide.

At this point, I did a ton of sanding, since this was "reclaimed" (aka, I purchased it used from the Habitat Restore) wood. Go check out my system for cleaning up wood if yours needs a little work as well.

Step 2: Spray Paint Dowel Rod and Screw Eyes

Cut the dowel rod to be 30" long, then spray paint the rod and the screw eyes gold. I purposefully ordered brass cup hooks, but if your cup hooks are another color, spray paint those as well.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

You'll need to flip everything over and get the backs at some point, which I did while working on the rest of the project.

Step 3: Attach Bottom Pieces Together

Add four evenly spaced pocket holes to the back of the 3.5" wide piece. Then connect the 3.5" piece to the bottom of the 5.5" piece using 2 1/2" pocket hole screws.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

If you have a clear opinion on which sides of your wood face up/out, make sure you're thinking about that here.

Step 4: Stain the Bottom Piece

I did a ton of testing with different stains before I started to make sure I got a color that I liked. I always recommend this, since stain looks different on each piece of wood. I did the tests on the back of my shelf.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Note: You might notice there are mirror clips in the above photo. These weren't necessary, and actually made things more difficult when I hung the project, so ignore them.

Once I'd decided on a stain, I applied wood conditioner and stained the piece.

Step 5: Add "Groove"

If you're using a table saw to add a groove to your piece (as discussed in the "Mounting Logistics" section,) do that now. Instead of that option, I decided to add a 1/4" piece of plywood to the back of my piece. This has the same effect as the groove, bumping out the shelf so that the mirror has a spot to rest.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

I secured the plywood piece to my shelf using wood glue and brad nails. When the shelf is ultimately hung on the wall, the mounting screws will go through the plywood, providing a sturdy connection.

Step 6: Add Mounting Holes

I've seen some organizers at Target that mount to the wall with obvious screws that have been countersunk into the wood so that they look nice. I've decided if this look is good enough for Target, it's good enough for me. Thus, I added three countersink holes to the front of my shelf to ultimately mount the piece to the wall.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

IMPORTANT: I have plaster walls. Therefore, I didn't have to worry about getting into a stud - as long as I hit lath (horizontal pieces of wood behind the plaster) when securing my shelf, I'd be fine. However, if your walls are made of drywall, you'll need to make sure your screws get into studs. Find your studs on the wall using a stud finder before drilling the countersink holes, then make sure your countersink holes are spaced appropriately. You'll probably only want two screws/holes instead of the three I used.

Step 7: Add Accessories

I spaced the cup hooks two inches apart on the bottom of the mounting piece, marking the places with a pencil and drilling pilot holes in each spot before adding the cup hooks.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking
This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

I mounted the screw eyes on the bottom side of the shelf piece a couple inches from each end, then slid the dowel rod through the screw eyes.

Part 2: The Top Piece

Step 1: Cut, Sand and Stain

My top piece actually measures 4.75" wide, which is not a size you can purchase at Home Depot. That's okay. 2x6 pieces measures 5.5" wide, which I think will look good too.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

I sanded my piece considerably the same way I did with the bottom shelf, then stained it.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking
Step 2: Add "Groove" Piece

Just as I did in Part 1, I added a 1/4" piece to the back of wood to create a "groove" for the mirror to rest in. This piece was smaller than my Part 1 piece, because I wanted more overlap between the mirror and the wood. This was purely for aesthetics.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Once again, this piece was secured with wood glue and brad nails. 

Step 3: Add Countersink Holes

I added a countersink hole on either end of the piece, making sure my hole was placed such that it went through the 1/4" plywood. If your walls are drywall, make sure you've taken the location of your studs into account before drilling these holes.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

I didn't have any accessory parts on my top piece (although you could totally add some if you wanted!) so once my countersink holes were in place, I was ready to mount!

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

I love how it turned out! The shelf is the perfect place for my makeup and brushes, and the hooks and dowel rood are perfect for corralling all of my jewelry!

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

My dad also thinks it'll help me sell the house, which is cool too.

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Regardless, it's super handy to have around, and wasn't that hard to make! If you think you might make a DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer too, be sure to save this post to Pinterest so you can find it again later! And if you love organizers, check out my other organizer builds here!

This DIY Mirrored Jewelry Organizer is easy to make and a super practical addition to any girl's bedroom! An easy afternoon scrap wood project! #DIY #Woodworking

Easy DIY Slipcovers

Cool fact about my BFF: She's a chef. Pretty much anytime there's a gathering at her house, she goes all out with the food. I always offer to help, but if there's nothing for me to do, I'll sit in the kitchen and keep her company while she works. But recently, my favorite spot disappeared - the counter-height barstools in the kitchen fell apart and were regulated to furniture heaven. This was unacceptable to me.

Now, I'm not really sure if my friend wanted new barstools. She and her husband seemed perfectly okay barstool-less. But they didn't protest when I offered to add barstools to my project calendar, and I wanted my favorite spot back, so here we are.

Lucky for me, I found a pair of barstools at my local Habitat Restore for $10 each. Honestly, they're a little too-nice; I really struggled in the beginning with what to do with them. The leather was high quality, the finish was a little worn, but not terrible... basically, I was truly afraid I'd make them worse.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

So I decided to make slipcovers for them instead of doing anything major. My friend has a toddler and another daughter on the way; washable slipcovers seemed to be the way to go. And if they move or prefer the original style of the chair sometime, they can just take the slipcover off. Win-win.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

DIY Barstool Slipcovers

Materials
  • 9' x 12' Dropcloth - I washed (but didn't bleach) this before I started working. Each dropcloth will make slipcovers for three chairs. Look for 100% cotton dropcloths with no seam in the middle. I purchased mine at Harbor Freight, but they have at least three different dropcloth manufacturers, and one of them does put a seam in the middle. If you can find Item Number 38109, that version is 100% cotton and doesn't have a seam.
  • General Sewing Supplies (Thread, pins, scissors, machine, etc.) - I have this sewing machine, and it is easiest thing to use... which is good, because I am not that good with sewing machines. If you're looking for a good beginner machine, check it out.
Get Started!

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Step 1: Cut Out Fabric

Start by cutting a 10" strip of fabric off the edge of the long side. Meaning: You should have a 12' long strip that's hemmed on three sides.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Do this on the other end of the fabric as well, so that you have two 10" wide, 12' long strips. We'll use these later to make the decorative knots.

Then fold the fabric into thirds and cut. I didn't measure here - each third is more than enough to cover one chair.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Finally, lay your fabric (now 1/3 of the total dropcloth) out on the chair. If your fabric has a "right side," that should be facing the chair. Make sure everything is fully covered with extra fabric to spare, then cut the fabric between the back and the seat of the chair.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers
Step 2: Make Back of Slipcover

Pull the fabric taut at the sides of the back of the chair, and pin in place, right sides together. In fact, every stitch you make in the project is right sides together, so I'm going to stop saying it.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Once both sides of the chair have been pinned, sew. I tested the fit of after the first side was sewn, but never had to do any adjusting. Also, as you can see in the photo above, I had a ton of extra fabric; I trimmed it before I sewed.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers
Step 3: Attach Seat to Back

Pin the seat fabric to the base of the back fabric.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Because the sides of the seat need to go a couple inches further back to reach the back of the chair, you'll have some extra fabric at the crease area between the back and the seat of the chair. That's okay, just trim it off after everything is pinned. Here's a closeup of the side area so you can see exactly how everything comes together:

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Sew in place. This was the hardest part for me, but I just did my best (and I am NOT an expert seamstress) and it all worked out.

Step 4: Finish Seat

Make the corners of the front of the chair by pinning the excess fabric together. Then cut off the extra fabric and sew along the pin line. 

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Once the corners are done, fold up the bottom of the four sides of the slipcover, and hem.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

The bottom of the slipcover isn't hemmed in the above photo, but you get the idea. At this point, the main part of the slipcover is done. I trimmed any excess fabric off so that there was only a 1/2" or so extra at all of the seams, then turned the slipcover so that it was right side out.

Step 5: Make the Knots

Take the strips of fabric you cut at the beginning of the project, and knot them around the chair to determine how long your knot fabric should be. I didn't measure mine (theme of this project, apparently,) but each knot used about half the length of one of the strips.

I also cut down the width of the strip to about 6.5 inches at this point as well. I originally cut 10 inches off of the main fabric just to be safe, but I liked the look of the 6.5" strip. Go with what looks best to you based on your chair.

Finally, cut your strip to the correct length, then pin and hem any loose sides.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Knot the strip around your chair, and enjoy your new slipcovers!

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

So, as I mentioned above, these are actually barstools, but they were easier to photograph in the dining room, so just ignore the fact that they're way too tall for this table.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

I love the simplicity of the knot on the back of the chair. Which is good, since the back is what's seen, given that the front of the chair is mostly covered by the counter anyway.. That said, the front looks nice too.

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

Overall, I am so pleased with how they turned out! And if you were wondering, I got to test out the new barstools on New Years Eve, and yes, they're the perfect thing for chatting with my BFF while she hustles around the kitchen. If you like these simple DIY slipcovers, be sure to save them to Pinterest so you can find them again later! And if you make them yourself, let me know how it goes in the comments below!

Sew slipcovers for your dining chairs and barstools with this easy sewing tutorial. A great beginner project, these DIY slipcovers are both practical and a great way to improve your sewing skills! #sewing #slipcovers

DIY Flower Artwork

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

A few weeks back, I was browsing Anthropologie and came across this "Cascading Flowers Wall Art." It was pretty, but not $1000 pretty, so I moved right along. But then I did a double take and realized that the $1000 price tag was for only one of the pieces in the two piece set. Were these flowers made of pure gold or something? In my mind, they had to be to justify that price.

Partially because I needed art, and partially out of spite of Anthropologie's ridiculous pricing system, I decided to make my own version. I can make a white box. I can make gold flowers. And guess what, Anthropologie? It won't cost me anywhere near $2000.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

Anthropologie-Inspired DIY Flower Artwork

Materials

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject
  • 1/4" Plywood - I purchased a whole sheet and had it cut down at Home Depot since the scrap wood is useful to me, but you can purchase smaller panels as well.
  • (3) 1" x 2" Furring Strips
  • Polymer Clay- I made about 100 flowers (way more than I needed) out of 1.75 lbs of clay.
  • Gold Spray Paint
  • Surebonder 9001 High Strength Adhesive
  • Caulk
  • White Latex Paint
  • Wood Glue
  • 3/4" Screws
Get Started!

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Part 1: Make Flowers

Step 1: Make Clay Marbles

I started by rolling out four clay balls. These will ultimately form the petals of the flower, and if you wanted to make more intricate flowers, you could totally add more petals and layers to this design. That said, I wanted to make sure I had plenty of flowers, and didn't want to spend my whole life making them, so I only did four petals per flower.

The clay balls were each slightly smaller than a marble. I did my best to make the pieces even-sized.

Step 2: Press Clay Into Petals

I then used my thumb to press each piece into a petal shape. I'm sure any other finger would work just as well, but fingernails get in way here, and my thumbnail had just recently broke, so...

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

I'm working on parchment paper, so the clay doesn't stick to my workspace.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject
Step 3: Arrange Petals and Add Center

Once I had all four petals, I arranged them neatly. I did my best to stick the ugliest petal on the bottom each time. Then I rolled a small, pea-sized piece of clay, and flattened it in the center of the flower.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject
Step 4: Repeat Steps 1-3 and Bake Flowers

I listened to podcasts, videochatted with a friend, and watched numerous youtube videos while I worked. It's a really brainless task, so line up some shows to watch while you work!

Once you have enough flowers to justify turning on the oven, bake the flowers for 20 minutes at 265 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 5: Paint Flowers

I laid the flowers out in my basement, and spray painted both sides of them with gold spray paint. Theoretically, I would have done this outside where there was better ventilation, but it's winter here, so that's out. I let the flowers sit at least 24 hours before attaching them to the frame in order to make sure the paint was cured.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

Part 2: Make Frame

Step 1: Cut Plywood and Frame to Desired Size

I initially intended to put these over my queen sized bed, so I made them 22" wide by 32" tall. The plywood pieces were each cut to these dimensions on my table saw - if you don't have a table saw, Home Depot and Lowes (but not Menards... step it up, Menards) can both cut the plywood for you.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

I cut the frame pieces to span the perimeter of the plywood. These cuts were done on my miter saw, but Home Depot and Lowes can cut these as well.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject
Step 2: Secure Frame to Plywood

After sanding the furring strips considerably (they were rather rough,) I glued the the frame pieces to the plywood with wood glue. I let them dry for 20 minutes, then flipped the pieces over and added screws from the back for long-term stability.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

By doing it this way, I could make sure the frame pieces were aligned properly from the front when I glued them in place. Then when I added the screws after the glue was dry, I knew everything was in the right spot.

Step 3: Caulk Gaps

You might be inclined to skip this step, but don't! Caulk is really easy to work with, and it makes everything look much more professional. I added caulk at all the joints, and between the frame and the plywood pieces. It makes everything look so much better!

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

The secret to working with caulk is to use all-purpose, water-soluble caulk. Dip your finger in water, then smooth it in place. 

Step 4: Paint Frame

I used some old white paint I had sitting around that was custom matched to my kitchen cabinets, so if you're wondering what I color I used, I unfortunately won't be able to help you.

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject
Step 5: Glue Flowers to Frame

I laid all the flowers out on the frame, then used Surebonder 9001 to glue them in place. 

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

Then the art was done!

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

I love how it turned out, although funny story, I don't actually love them in the place I originally intended to put them. They're a little too modern for my bedroom, I think, so I may end up switching them out with some art in the living room. We'll see!

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

Regardless, I consider this DIY Flower Artwork a win! If you think so too, go ahead and save this post to Pinterest so you can find it again later! And if you're looking for more art for your home, check out my Farmhouse Sunflower Mirror, which is a really simple project that adds a ton of style to your home!

This DIY Flower Artwork is easy to make and the perfect DIY Decor for your home! #DIYDecor #DIYProject

DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

Does anyone else absolutely hate when your mattress scooches forward and the pillows on your bed fall into the gap between the headboard and the mattress? Just me? 

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

I can’t be alone here, so I came up with a simple headboard mattress gap filler to keep pillows from falling behind the bed. 30 minutes and a few scrap 2x4 pieces is all you need. Alternatively, you could pay a small fortune for this super gimmicky mattress wedge. Guess which one I chose?

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler

So, full disclosure, this gap filler technically goes between the foot board and the mattress, not the headboard and the mattress. It pushes the mattress all the way up to the headboard so that the gap doesn't occur at all. Win.

Materials
  • Scrap 2x4 Pieces (probably two 8' lengths worth, if you're buying it new)
  • 2 1/2" Wood Screws
  • Pocket Hole Screws/Jig OR Angle Brackets
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Know the cost of your project before you start with our FREE Project Budget Worksheet. Simply click the button below to get your Project Budget Worksheet delivered straight to your inbox!

Step 1: Check Pieces and Determine Measurements

I started by checking to see if the 2x4 would fit between my foot board and the box spring. It did, so I opted to have the structure span the entire distance between the top of the foot board and bed frame below. If it hadn’t fit, I would have made a shorter structure that rested on top of the box spring. Do what best fits your bed.

I also measured the length of the space (58”) and determined the cuts of my pieces based on that. I've provided my measurements below, but once again, do what best fits your bed.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject
Step 2: Cut All Pieces

I used a miter saw, but this is a pretty basic project that doesn’t really require precision. A circular saw or even a jigsaw (although this would be slow going) would work as well.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject
Step 3: Build Left Half

I added two 2 1/2” wood screws at each joint to form a rectangle as shown below.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject
Step 4: Build Right Half

The right half won’t be able to connect to the left half with normal screws, since the opposite side is inaccessible. There are two options. If you have a pocket hole jig, you can add pocket holes to the two longer pieces, and connect that way. This is what I’ve chosen to do. Otherwise, you can put an angle bracket at each joint.

If using pocket holes, drill two pocket holes into one end of each of the long pieces before starting to assemble.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

Secure the two longer pieces to the remaining short piece with 2 1/2” wood screws.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

Then attach the right half to the left half using either pocket hole screws or angle brackets.

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

Place the structure between the mattress and the foot board, and enjoy!

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject
Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

It's super nice to not constantly be losing pillows to the gap between the headboard and the mattress. And considering this took less than 30 minutes to make, I consider it a win! If you do too, be sure to save this post to Pinterest so others can find it too! And if you end up making this, please tell me how it goes in the comments below!

Wondering how to keep pillows from falling behind your bed? Check out this easy DIY Headboard Mattress Gap Filler, made from scrap wood pieces! Done in under 30 minutes, it's the perfect fix to your problem! #ScrapWoodProject

7 Genius Pinterest Ornaments I Tried Myself!

One of my favorite parts of the holiday season is crafts! So many cute, seasonal things to make! So, each year, I spend at least one evening making ornaments, sometimes with friends, sometimes by myself, depending on the year. This year I picked seven of my favorites on Pinterest, and gave them a shot. Here's how they went:

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Glass Ornament
- Orange Felt
- Black Spray Paint
- White Acrylic Paint
- Googly Eyes
- Hot Glue and Gun

Admittedly, I didn't follow their instructions at all. I had glass ornaments, and didn't have foam balls, and my frugal self was not about to spend money when I could make a similar craft with what I had. To see how to make the foam ball version, visit A Little ​Craft In Your Day.

​Regardless, my version turned out pretty well anyway. I spray painted my glass ornament using black spray paint, then painted on the white stomach with white acrylic paint. I cut out and glued on the orange feet and nose, then glued on the googly eyes.

Challenges: Cutting out out the feet for the penguin was tedious and required sharp scissors (I used my fabric scissors.) Spray painting the ornaments was also annoying - it's difficult to cover everything without spray painting your hands too. Overall, though, the penguins were super cute and made me forget all about the irritating parts.

Overall Rating:

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Glass Ornaments
- Toddler Socks
- Scissors
- White Acrylic Paint
- String
- Black and Orange Sharpies

So pictures of these super cute snowman ornaments have been floating around on Pinterest taunting me for weeks! I finally got around to buying some toddler socks, and making the ornament. I followed the instructions pretty much exactly; the instructions start at about the 4:50 minute mark in the youtube video linked above.

This was easy enough to make, even with my mediocre snowman face drawing skills. However, I was seriously saddened by the fact that the snowman face, no matter what I did, was on the bottom of the ornament. If you hang it on a tree, it needs to go at the top so that you can see the face! Otherwise, you'd see a sock covering most of an ornament, which was not what I was going for. 

Challenges: None. This was super easy.​

Overall Rating:

The Clothespin Snowflake Ornament, by ??? (aka, pretty much everyone)
These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Wooden Clothespins
- Wood Glue
- Spray Paint
- Snowflake Button Things
-String

So, full disclosure, I actually made these two years ago, hence why I have no idea where I found them. I tried to hunt the blog down, but there are so many people who have blogged about these ornaments that I really have no clue. Regardless, they were such an ornament win that I had to include them.

The general idea is that you glue a bunch of wooden clothespins together (I used wood glue,) spray paint them, and then put some sort of cute thing in middle to cover up the glue spot. I used some snowflake buttons. The ones I used are no longer available, but these look pretty similar.

They're the easiest things to make, and two years later, they're still alive and brightening up my tree. The wood glue has weakened in a couple places, and on one of my snowflakes, a "branch" fell off. This was easily fixed with more wood glue.

Challenges: It's a bit tricky to get the clothespins situated with the wood glue in the right spots when you're gluing it all together (without making a total mess, at least.) It's manageable though, and totally worth it!

Overall Rating: 

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Wooden Blocks
- Sandpaper
- White Paint
- Small Paint Brush
- Black and Orange Sharpie (or acrylic paint)
- Ribbon (for bow)
- Twine or String (for hanging)
- Screw Eyes
- Hot Glue and Gun
- Drill and 1/16" Drill Bit

These are super cute and don't require any real skill to make, but they take a few more supplies than the other ornaments listed here. A drill is required to add the screw eyes for hanging, and if you're not comfortable with that, this ornament is a non-starter. That said, the result is undeniably adorable, so given you have a couple hours and aren't scared of a drill, they're the perfect craft for a holiday afternoon!

Challenges: Bows have always been difficult for me, so that's the part I struggled with the most. I found a tutorial that was really clear and helped me out, which is linked in the post. Because this is my project. I snuck it in. #sorrynotsorry

Overall Rating:

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Glass Ornament
- Black Spray Paint
- Mod Podge
- Glitter
- Paintbrush
- Something to catch the glitter
- Something to balance the ornament on while it drys (I used a small wine glass)

This looks like the worlds easiest ornament. Spray paint ornament, cover with Mod Podge and glitter, let dry. And it was simple, and my ornaments look decent. But it wasn't the super easy ornament I thought it would be, so I feel like I have the right to complain.

Challenges: Spray painting the ornament evenly without getting covered in paint is difficult. I ended up holding it with a giant paper towel covering my hand. But even then, how do you lay the ornament so that it can dry? I never really figured this out, and all of my ornaments have a small unsightly spot where the ornament rested while it dried (including my penguins from above.)

Then, painting the circle of Mod Podge evenly and not lopsidedly was challenging. Maybe I was just being a perfectionist, but the whole time I was convinced my ornament was going to have glitter higher on one side than the other. Turned out okay anyway, though, so maybe this isn't as hard as it seemed.

Overall Rating:

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need
- Two 3" Embroidery Hoops
- Stain or Spray Paint
- Twine

This is another one of my projects, but I will do my best to be unbiased! It's not going to sound that way though, because these were ridiculously easy to make. Arrange circles. Tighten. Stain/spray paint. It's that easy. If rustic farmhouse is your thing these are the ornaments for you.

Challenges: None. These were super easy.

Overall Rating: 

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

What You'll Need:
- Hot Water
- Salt
- Flour
- Straw
- Paint
- Glitter
- Animal/Pet

So, when I was 11 years old, I begged and begged for a puppy. I made my mom promise me that if I was good for an entire year, we could get a (second) dog.  A year later, I demanded my mother keep her promise (even though I probably wasn't perfect.) And so we found a 1-year-old Kiki at the local SPCA. Fast forward 15 years, and Kiki is, by some miracle, still with us. At 16 years old, she's a little slow, and not very good at climbing stairs, but still a pretty happy dog. 

Since all bets are off on how much longer Kiki will still be with us, I was determined to get her paw print on an ornament this Christmas. I now also have a cat, Penny, who joined us for this adventure. It was easy enough to mix up the dough, roll it out and cut out the circles. It was not so easy to get suitable paw prints on the dough.

I realized quickly that Kiki's ability to stand on three paws instead of four is pretty much gone, so getting a paw print while she's standing was near impossible. My dad ended up picking her up and holding her while we pressed the dough into her paw. Poor Kiki was terrified, and I felt awful. 

Penny, on the other hand, saw this commotion going on and immediately ran to hide under my bed. I had to lure her out with food and then hold her wiggling, protesting self while we shoved her paw into the ornament. Penny doesn't really bite or scratch, so this wasn't dangerous, but if you have a more ornery cat I could see you taking a major risk with your arms here. Also, I felt a bit bad. Not that much, since I then gave her the fancy canned food that I lured her out with, but a little.

Challenges: Getting a decent pet paw-print, and not feeling guilty that you're manhandling your pet into this situation. Not for geriatric pets.

Overall Rating:

Final Thoughts

Honestly, when I went on this mission, I was hoping/expecting to have some sort of major #PinterestFail moment, and it never happened. I'm almost disappointed, but on the bright side, that means there are now 7 tried and tested ornament crafts for you explore this holiday! Give them a shot! And if you do, let me know how it turns out! Did I miss anything? is there something I should add? Let me know in the comments below!

Finally, if you found this post useful and/or entertaining, please save it to Pinterest so other people can find it too!

These 7 DIY Christmas Ornaments are genius - I know, because I made them myself! The perfect Pinterest Ornaments to get you started this holiday season! #DIYOrnaments #Crafts

DIY Cross Ornament

Side effect of making my own DIY Bamboo Shades a couple months back: I had a lot of leftover twig pieces. Like, a ton. I could've thrown them out, but my basement is a large, useful storage place, so I stuck them in a box and put them off to the side in hopes they could be useful eventually. 

That day has come. Twig ornaments are a thing. Most people have to scrounge around in their backyard to find some twigs. I just grabbed the box from the basement. Easy-peasy, and I have enough twigs to make every twig ornament my heart has ever dreamed of.

First up: this super easy DIY Cross Ornament. Done in 5 minutes or less, given your glue gun heats up in less than five minutes. Because that's the longest part...

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

DIY Twig Cross Ornament

Materials
  • Twigs
  • Scissors
  • Glue Gun and Hot Glue Sticks
  • Ribbon
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Step 1: Cut 6 Twigs

Cut six twigs to be the exact same length.

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments
Step 2: Glue Twigs Together

Arrange three of the twigs on top of the other three twigs so that they form a cross shape. Glue in place.

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments
Step 3: Make and Attach Bow

Tie a bow (I like these bows,) and glue it in place on top of the cross.

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments
This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments

Attach string and you're done! Super easy ornament, no?

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments

Definitely worth the 5 minutes of time it took to make!

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments

If you're a fan of simple and easy DIY ornaments, make sure you save this post to Pinterest! And if you're looking for more projects, check out my DIY Embroidery Hoop Ornaments, and Simple Cardboard Flower Ornament!

This easy DIY Cross Twig Ornament is an easy 5-minute craft for your Christmas tree! #crafts #DIYOrnaments

Easy DIY Cardboard Flower Ornaments

Want to know a secret? I am a serial purchaser of blackout liner. This sounds silly, I know, but I love the stuff, and it's cheap, so pretty much any curtains/shades/window treatments in my home get blackout liner added to them. Blackout liner typically comes on a tube/roll. I don't know why Joann's doesn't just fold it up, but they don't, and as a result, I have a collection of thick cardboard tubes chilling in my house.

I could throw them away, I know. But they seem useful, so I've hung onto them. Today, that paid off.

These cardboard flower ornaments are easy. Really easy. And they get rid of something that was otherwise trash. Win.

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

Easy DIY Cardboard Flower Ornaments

Materials
  • Cardboard Tube - I used a thicker tube that came with blackout liner, but I bet a paper towel or toilet paper roll would work as well.
  • Saw/Scissors - For cutting the tube. I used a miter saw for my thick tube, but if your cardboard is thinner, scissors would work too.
  • Glue - I used this wood glue, but in this case, I think Elmers would probably be fine too.
  • Binder Clips - These are for holding the flower together while the glue dries. 
  • Paint - Optional. For painting your flower the desired color.
  • Book/Heavy Flat Object - For evenly smooshing the cardboard petals.
  • String/Twine - For hanging the ornament
Get Started!

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Step 1: Cut Out Petals

Cut the cardboard tube into 3/4" pieces. I used a miter saw, which made the edges a bit fuzzy, but I just picked the fuzz off with my fingers, and all was well.

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

I needed five petals per flower, but if you're using a different sized tube, you might need more.

Step 2: Flatten Petals

Grab a book or other hard, flat object. Place it on top of one of your newly cut cardboard circles, and evenly push down. This evenly flattens the circles. Remove the book, and shapen as you see fit. 

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas
Step 3: Glue Petals Together

Put a dot of glue on the side of each petal, and attach the petals together using binder clips. Leave this in place for at least 30 minutes.

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

I also put a paper towel underneath to flower just in case any glue dripped out!

Step 4: Paint and Finish

Remove the binder clips, and paint the flower any color you'd like. I left my a "rustic cardboard," but you could totally spray paint it as well!

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

Then tie some string or twine into one of the petals to allow the ornament to be hung. Enjoy!

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

This was a super easy ornament that used up something that otherwise would have been trash! I loved how it turned out!

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

If you love making easy Christmas ornaments, check out some of the other projects I have! These snowman block ornaments are some of the cutest things I've ever made, and these embroidery hoop ornaments are perfect for a farmhouse tree! And if you think you might make these flower ornaments, be sure to save this post to Pinterest so you can find it again later!

Love making DIY Christmas ornaments? Than this DIY Cardboard flower ornament is for you! Done in 20 minutes this Christmas ornament is perfect for the holidays! #DIYOrnaments #Christmas

How to Strip Furniture Like a Boss

The very first time I tried to strip furniture, it was an unmitigated disaster. I lived in California at the time, and had a tiny little balcony as my workspace. The desk I was refinishing barely fit out there, so I had pretty much no room to move around. If that wasn't enough, it was a sunny 90+ degree day, so I was miserable the whole time I worked.

I started by dumping Citri-Strip on the top, just like the friendly internet people told me to. I let it sit for 30ish minutes, as instructed. But when I went to remove the stuff, instead of a nice goopy stripper/finish/stain combo, I found a completely dried mess that would not come off the desk. Somehow I fixed it. I don't really remember how. But I was terrified of stripping furniture for years afterword.

Eventually, I got over it and tried again. And again. And again, until I had a rock-solid method for removing old finish. Multiple times I posted projects and brushed over the stripping part, telling you that someday I'd feel confident enough to show you my method. That day has finally (finally!) come. 

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

Materials

  • Finished Furniture - I've stripped both painted and polyurethane covered furniture, and this process works for both types!
  • Citristrip - I firmly believe this is the best stripping agent on the market. See above.
  • Plastic Putty Knife - The plastic aspect is important. A metal putty knife runs the risk of scratching the wood.
  • Mineral Spirits - This helps remove any remaining stripping goop after the majority of it has been scraped off.
  • ScotchBrite Pads - I cut these in half to make them easier to use. Additionally, I buy them in bulk, since I'll run through a 20-pack in 3-4 projects.
  • Orbital Sander - I have a Dewalt, and it probably my favorite and most used tool. I can't imagine stripping a furniture piece without a functioning sander - any flat areas of wood would be difficult to get the same shade.
  • Assorted Sandpaper - You'll need a variety between 40 and 240 grit.
  • Cheap Foam Brushes - I like using disposable brushes for this, so that I don't have to mess around cleaning them with mineral spirits when I'm done. 
Get Started!

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How to Strip Furniture

Step 1: Add CitriStrip

Pour a liberal amount of stripping agent onto your piece. Goop it on. A little does not go a long way here. You need a thick layer of stripper everywhere, else the stuff will dry out before it's had time to work. The thicker the layer, the better.

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

Do you see in the above photo where the goop is visibly thick and orange? It should be like that everywhere. To be totally honest, the above photo was only an "okay" job of gooping on the CitriStrip; some of the thinner sections dried out and didn't remove the paint as well as it should've.

Step 2: Cover With Plastic Wrap

Cover the CitriStrip with plastic wrap immediately after finishing applying it to a section. Don't wait until you've applied stripping agent to the whole piece - it's likely to dry out before you've covered it up. 

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip
Step 3: Wait Thirty Minutes

I've found 30 minutes to be the perfect amount of time to let the stripping agent work. It's enough time for it to be effective, but still short enough that the CitriStrip doesn't dry out.

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

If you're stripping paint off of a piece, it should be pretty obvious when it's time to remove the CitriStrip. If you poke with your finger, and the paint shifts around, it's ready to come off. It can be a bit harder to tell with clear finishes, but if 30 minutes has passed, it's probably ready.

Step 4: Scrape Off Finish

Using a plastic putty knife, scrape the stripping agent off the piece. This gets messy quickly, so be sure you have a tarp or blanket on the ground, and a designated bin for the used goop to go. 

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip
Step 5: Clean with Mineral Spirits

Remove the remaining residue with mineral spirits and a ScotchBrite pad. The mineral spirits help break down and separate the residue, while the ScotchBrite pad scrapes it off the piece without damaging the wood.

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

While the photo above is of a different project, you can see how there isn't any CitriStrip residue left, although there are still a few areas of finish that didn't get scraped off. It'll come off in the next step!

Step 6: Sand

Starting with the lowest grit sandpaper you have (I typically start with 40 grit, but 60 grit is fine too,) sand the piece. Do not move onto the next sandpaper grit until all the finish, goop, and stain is removed from the piece. I typically clog up 1-2 pieces of 40 grit sandpaper with residue on each project, just to give you an idea. 

Once piece is sanded down to the bare wood, I'll start working my way up in grits to smooth it out. I typically go up to at least 180 grit sandpaper, sometimes I'll do 240 if I want the piece extra smooth.

And then your piece is ready for stain! It's going to look so pretty!

Extra Tips for Success

  • Weather Matters - A key part of my first furniture stripping fail is that I attempted to strip furniture on a hot day, in the full sun. The stripping agent dried up and was ineffective before I even finished applying it to the rest of the desk. Always strip furniture in the shade to prolong the drying time of the product, and try to be in an environment that's between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Product Matters - I am one of those people who buys the generic brand of almost everything. I am rarely convinced that one particular brand is vastly superior to another. But, friends, do yourself a favor and use Citristrip. This post is not sponsored by Citristip. I have never talked to a single Citristrip representative, nor have they ever sent me anything free. But I have tried a variety of stripping agents, and I always come back to this one. It's strong enough to break down finishes, but won't irritate your skin. You can cover it with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out, while other stripping agents will eat right through plastic wrap.
  • Work in Sections - Work in small sections when applying or removing the stripping agent. The more time the CitriStrip is exposed to the air, the more opportunity it has to dry out. Keep it covered with plastic wrap when you're not actively working with it.
  • Intricate Details are Hard - While stripping down intricate details isn't too difficult, sanding them so that they match the surrounding wood can be a major pain. While sometimes I'll use a Dremel sanding attachment to sand intricate areas, this can risk sanding away the pretty details. Most of the time I'll just hand sand the area and decide that imperfections add character.
Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

Final Thoughts

It took me forever to come up with a fail-proof system that worked for me. Hopefully it works for you too, but if your first furniture stripping attempt isn't successful, keep trying! You'll get there! It just takes a bit of practice. And anything you screw up can probably be fixed - don't panic, just do some research and keep trying.

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

I'm so glad I kept practicing; stripping furniture is a beautiful way to restore a piece!

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

I'll be writing another post on staining furniture soon... so make sure you're following me on Pinterest so you don't miss out! And if you want to see more of the two projects pictured in this post, check out the dresser here and the nightstand here. Finally, if you found this guide helpful, be sure to save it to Pinterest so you can find it again later!

Stripping furniture is tricky. Learn all the tips and trick about how to strip furniture in this detailed guide! #furniturediy #furnitureflip

How to Make a DIY Cat Hammock

The whole time I was designing my cat tree, I knew one of the feature accessories would be a cat hammock. I was aiming for something mostly enclosed, since my cat like hidden cubby areas where she can see out, but nobody can see her.

When I was thinking about how to make this, I thought of box cushions, which I've actually written about twice. If I sewed a hammock the same way I'd sew a box cushion, but without the bottom plate, it should create a mostly enclosed swing. 

I also wanted a pillow bottom to entice the cat to actually use the hammock. My cat is iffy about the human hammock chair in my office; I was going to go through all the hassle of making this hammock, I wanted it to actually get used. Anything I could do to up that probability would would help.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

Materials
Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats
  • Fabric - I used a bleached drop cloth for the outside of the fabric, and JoAnn's Sew Lush fabric for the inside pillow portion, but pretty much any heavy-duty fabric should work.
  • Grommets/Grommet Kit - This was my first time using a grommet kit, and despite watching numerous videos, I used it wrong and ended up with a bunch of deformed grommets. Opps. Better luck next time.
  • Pillow Fluff - I cut up thrift store pillows and take the fluff out of them to save money, but polyfil purchased from your local craft store works too.
  • Sewing Machine and Thread
Get Started!

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How to Make a DIY Cat Hammock
Step 1: Measure and Cut Fabric

Determine the dimensions of your hammock. I planned for a 8" x 22" hammock, with a 9" depth. Honestly, the 9" depth was way too much, and makes it difficult for my cat to comfortably enter the hammock, so I'd recommend a 3-4" depth instead.

Cut the inside pillow fabric to be the size of the hammock plus a 1" for hemming. So, for my 8" x 22" inch hammock, so I cut the fabric to be 9" x 23".

For the main hammock portion, follow this formula for the dimension of each edge:

(Desired Hammock Dimension) +2(Depth) + 1 = Dimension of Side

So my two sides were:

(8) + 2(9) + 1 = 27"

(22) + 2(9) + 1 = 41"

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats
Step 2: Cut Corners and Pin Fabric

Pin three of the four sides of the pillow fabric to the center of the hammock, folding the edges under 1/2" to hem the fabric.

Then cut a square the size of your depth measurement out from each corner. For example, I cut 9" x 9" squares out from each corner.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Finally, fold and pin the top edges of the main hammock fabric to create a hem. Don't worry about the raw edges formed from the square cutouts - those will get sewn later.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Full disclosure: I actually only needed to hem two sides; the other two were already hemmed.

Step 3: Sew Pillow Fabric and Hammock Hems

Sew the things you've pinned, basically. Make sure to only sew three sides of the pillow fabric, since we still need to stuff the fabric with pillow fluff.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats
Step 4: Stuff Pillow and Sew Closed

Stuff the pillow with pillow fluff, and pin closed, being sure to fold the edge over to create a hem.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

My pillow looks kind of janky at this point (sewing is not really my specialty,) but I figured it probably wouldn't be noticeable by the time the hammock was complete (an I was right!)

Sew the pillow closed.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats
Step 5: Sew the Corners

Align and pin the corners together, right sides together, as seen in the photo below.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats
Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Then sew each corner.

Step 6: Add Grommets

Add grommets to each corner, just underneath the top hem of the hammock. I'm not going to give detailed instructions on this part, since this was my first time with grommets and I totally screwed it up, but there are lots of tutorials and videos on the internet that go into detail. I watched this, and this (for whatever its worth... since I still managed to mess it up.)

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Then hang your hammock!

Final Thoughts

So I mentioned back at the beginning that my hammock was a little too deep - my cat can't test her weight on it easily, so she's hesitant to fully enter it. I might remake it a little bit shorter, since this was a pretty easy and fast project to do.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

Regardless, I wanted to get this post out now since I have no idea when I'll get around to making a new hammock and/or fixing this one.

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

If you found this interesting or useful, I'd absolutely love if you shared it to Pinterest so other people can find it too! And if you're wondering where you should put a cat hammock, check out my DIY Cat Tree for some ideas

Love your cat? Make them a DIY Cat Hammock! An easy sewing project perfect for beginners! #Sewing #Cats

How to Build Your Own DIY Cat Tree

This fall, I decided to enter the Instagram Builder's Challenge for the very first time! The Challenge works by sending out a set of woodworking plans to everyone who enters. Then the contestants build the plans, putting their own spin on it. Part of the fun is seeing all the different ways people can modify the same plans!

When I first got the plans, I actually wasn't sure if I would participate. The plans were for a bar cart (you can see and download the challenge plans here.) The thing is, I really don't need a bar car. I don't entertain often. I don't drink coffee. The only alcohol in my house is cooking wine. Basically, I couldn't think of a single thing I would do with a bar cart. And since I am philosophically opposed to spending time and money on something that had no use to me, I questioned if I should participate.

But then I thought about the plans a little more, and remembered that I was in need of a cat tree! If I made cart taller, and added an extra tray, it would make a great cat tree!

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Note: This blog contains affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive compensation (at no additional cost to you.) I only recommend products that I personally use and love, and any support helps keep this little blog going!

Planning the Project

I spent a significant amount of time editing the plans for the cat tree before starting the build. There were two main pieces I was unsure about: 1) the appropriate distance between the top and middle trays, and 2) the height of the hammock.

I pretty much guesstimated the distance between the top and middle shelves. There needed to be enough room between these two shelves for the hammock to hang and for the cat to move around. Additionally, the shelves needed to be close enough together that the cat could jump from the middle shelf to the top shelf without issue.

The downloadable plans I provide contain the exact measurements I used. That said, if I could redo this project, I'd place the second shelf 4-5 inches higher. While there is plenty of room between the middle and top shelf, and my cat can jump to the top shelf, it's not a natural jump. I had to place some food up there to get her to jump up the first time, and every time she's done it since, she stops and thinks about it a bit first. I'm not sure heavier/older cats could make the jump, which is why if you build this cat tree you should probably place the middle shelf a little higher.

The hammock height was another piece I was unsure about. I'll be writing a separate post on making the hammock, since it's a multi-step sewing project, but I wanted to mention here that I'd change the dimensions on that as well. I wanted the cat to be able to stand up in the hammock, which is why I made it 9 inches deep. But, because it's so deep, the cat isn't able to test her weight on it first, which makes her disinclined to enter the enclosure. If I could build it again, I'd make it 4-5 inches deep instead.

Get Started!

Get all the information you need to build a DIY Cat Tree with our FREE printable plans. Simply click the button below to get the DIY Cat Tree Plans delivered straight to your inbox!

DIY Cat Tree: Materials

Cat Tree Structure
  • (3) 1" x 12" x 8'
  • (4) 1" x 4" x 8' 
  • (4) 1" x 8" x 6'
  • (1) 1" dowel rod
  • Wood Glue
  • 1 1/4" Pocket Hole Screws
Accessories
Tools Used
  • Miter Saw
  • Jigsaw
  • Circular Saw
  • Table Saw - If you have a circular saw, you probably could get away without this, but it'd be a lot more slow going.
  • Drill/Driver
  • Pocket Hole Jig
  • Speed Square
  • 1" Spade Bit
  • Staple Gun
Get Started!

Get all the information you need to build a DIY Cat Tree with our FREE printable plans. Simply click the button below to get the DIY Cat Tree Plans delivered straight to your inbox!

Part 1: Building the DIY Cat Tree

Step 1: Cut, Sand, and Prep All Pieces

See the free downloadable plans for all dimensions and pocket hole placements!

The legs are a little trickier to cut than the other pieces, so I want to talk about them a bit here. The Builder's Challenge bar car plans details one method of cutting the legs, however that method requires a router which I don't have, so I used a circular saw instead.

To cut the legs, I drew them onto the 1 x 8 pieces. This requires knowing the angles of the leg polygon and measuring them out on the board using a speed square. If your geometry is a little rusty, I've included the angles in the downloadable plans. 

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Then I aligned and clamped a scrap board so that when I used my circular saw it followed the angled line.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

The smaller angles I cut with my miter saw.

For the arms, I did pretty much the same thing, drawing the polygon on the board using angles and a speed square. But instead of using a circular saw, I cut all the angles with a miter saw because the piece was short enough to allow this.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Step 2: Build the Trays

Start by gluing the three or four (depending on the tray) sides together using wood glue. To make sure everything would fit, I placed the bottom piece of the trap in the middle of the sides while the glue dried. 

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

It was my first time trying mitered corners. Theoretically, everything should come together at perfect 90 degree angles, but that certainly didn't happen for me. Someday, I'm sure I'll figure it out, but in the meantime you'll have to read someone else's blog if you want your corners to have perfect miters.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Once the glue is dry, attach the bottom piece to all three/four sides of the tray using pocket hole screws.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial!

Repeat for the other two trays.

Step 3: Build the Leg/Arm Structures

If you have preferences about which legs/arms are the front or back of the cat tree, be thinking about that as you complete this step.

Properly align two legs and an arm flat on the floor. Use wood glue and pocket holes to connect these pieces together once you're satisfied with their placement.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Repeat this step for both leg/arm sets.

Step 4: Prep Tray Bottoms

The trays will attach to the legs with pocket hole screws on the bottom of the trays. Therefore, pocket holes need to be added to the bottom of the trays.

To figure out where to place the pocket holes, I laid the trays down on the leg structure, and marked where the legs intersected the tray. Then I added the pocket holes in those places.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Additionally, the top tray needs a hole to allow access to the hammock, as well as four screw eyes to hold the hammock in place. Open each screw eye slightly with pliers before adding them to tray, so that you can later place the grommets on them. Then cut the hammock hole using a jigsaw after drilling access points at each corner. 

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Step 5: Assemble the Cat Tree

Once all the tray bottoms have pocket holes, assemble the cat tree. I did this by laying one leg structure on the ground and attaching all three trays to it with pocket hole screws and wood glue.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Once it was secure, I flipped the cat tree over onto the other leg structure. Then I secured it with pocket hole screws and wood glue.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Then I stood it up and admired my cat tree! Side note: I was super excited to get to this part. There were a lot of firsts for me in this project, so the build was pretty slow-going. It was such a relief to have the main structure built!

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Optional Step 6: Stain/Paint/Finish the Cat Tree

I wish I could give you the exact stain I used, but it was actually a Sherman Williams mistint that I picked up for $2 at Habitat for Humanity... One of a kind, unfortunately.

Get Started!

Get all the information you need to build a DIY Cat Tree with our FREE printable plans. Simply click the button below to get the DIY Cat Tree Plans delivered straight to your inbox!

Part 2: Cat Tree Accessories

There were six accessories that accompanied the cat tree: The bottom water dish tray, the twine scratching post on one of the legs, the two cushioned areas, the scratching cardboard boxes, the hanging strings, and the hammock. The hammock was a bit more involved, so I'm going to cover it a separate post, and the scratching boxes were purchased off Amazon here, but everything else I'll cover here.

Water Tray

I spent some amount of time on Amazon looking for a pair of white ceramic dishes that had a small lip on them, eventually settling for the replacement bowls of this stand. To make my own stand, I cut a board to be the same size as half of the bottom tray. Then I outlined the bowls on the board.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

To account of the lip of the bowl, I drew another circle 3/16" inside of the first circle. That smaller, inside circle is what I ultimately cut out with the jigsaw.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

I sanded all the pencil marks off the tray, then glued legs to each corner.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

I'll note here that I only used wood glue, which alone, makes for a pretty weak joint. I don't anticipate these legs encountering much side pressure, given that this tray will stay entirely in the bottom tray of the cat tree. However, if I'm wrong about this and the legs fall off, I'll add an angle bracket to each joint.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Twine Scratching Post

This is exactly as simple as it looks. I wrapped twine around the leg until it was well covered. I started and ended in the exact same place, so when I was done, I could add a few discrete staples that secured both loose ends.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial!
Cushions

To make each cushion, I cut a piece of scrap wood to be the size I wanted each cushion. Then I used spray adhesive to attach foam to the scrap wood.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

I sprayed the foam with spray adhesive, then wrapped the whole thing in batting, using a staple gun against the scrap wood bottom to secure it in place.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial!

Finally, I wrapped the cushion with the chosen fabric, securing it place with the staple gun/staples.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
Hanging Strings

I cut the 1" dowel rod to match the distance between the two arms. Then I inserted it place, where it was snug. I tied three pieces of rope to the dowel rod to hang down for my cat to play with. This was the very last thing I did and I was so excited to finish the project!

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

Final Thoughts

This project was a ton of work, but my cat loves it, and I love that I don't have an ugly, carpet-covered cat tree in my home.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

My cat loves perching on the top level, and actually having a scratching thing she's allowed to use.

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial!
Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY

If you think this is a cool project, be sure to save this post to Pinterest so you can find it again later! And if you think you might make your own cat tree, be sure to download the free printable plans so you know exactly what to do!

Build your own DIY Cat Tree with these free printable plans and detailed photo and video tutorial! #Woodworking #DIY
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