Craft #6: Friendship bracelets
I realized just a couple days ago that FOUR of my girlfriends’ birthdays are coming up, and I had no clue what I should get them on such short notice. To make matters more difficult, we’re all in different places this summer, so sending something big via snail mail just isn’t very practical. But luckily I found a Teahab tutorial for making these beautiful braided bracelets and thought they would make for lovely gifts on a budget and time constraint. I tweaked the method a bit: instead of using cotton cord, I used cotton crochet thread, which is thinner, so I could use more of it to create a fuller braid.
- Cut six pieces of crochet thread (size 10), each about 30 cm in length. Do this for all three colors you want to use in your braid.
- Attach the six pieces together with glue and a box clasp at one end. Repeat for the other two colors.
- Take a piece of large link chain around 18 cm long and measure it against your wrist. Add or take off links with pliers until you are satisfied with the fit.
- Open the first link and thread on the three box clasps in any order.
- Start braiding, making sure that each color is threaded through the chain links in sequence.
- Stop braiding three links before the end of the chain and attach three more box clasps on the ends.
- Open up the last link of the chain, thread on the box clasps and a lobster clasp, and close the link with pliers.
The pink and white bracelet was something I came up with myself, but I used the same crochet thread with box clasps attached at the end. For the third line of the braid, instead of using another crochet piece, I glued 3 pieces of a thin chain to a box clasp. I hooked the three box clasps to a circular link, then braided the pink, white, and chain lines to the length I wanted. I finished by gluing box clasps to the ends before attaching the clasps to a second circular link and adding a lobster clasp.
I absolutely can’t wait for them to get to their respective owners! Let me know if you have any questions, and I will be happy to help!
Cooking attempt #3: Nutella marble cake
Here’s a recipe I came up with for an easy Nutella marble cake using store-bought cake mix! The recipe below makes one 9-inch round cake.
- 1/2 package (7.6 oz) Betty Crocker Super Moist Cake Mix
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon Nutella hazelnut spread
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare cake pan by coating it with non-stick spray.
- Beat cake mix, milk, oil, and eggs in a large bowl on low speed. Note: the instructions for the cake mix calls for 1/2 cup water, but I find that substituting with milk gives you a tastier result.
- Separate 1/2 cup of the batter into a smaller bowl. Mix in a spoonful of Nutella until consistent.
- Pour the yellow batter into the cake pan. Add the Nutella batter on top and marble with a spoon.
- Bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- You can decorate your cake with your own icing or use a glaze (mix water and sugar) and top with sweetened coconut flakes like I did.
I was bored the other night and decided to give this a try. This took me several attempts but it turned out to be easier than I thought! After painting my nails white and letting them dry, I just put some Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Mint Sorbet on a makeup sponge and blotted the tips of my nails until it looked like the two colors start to blend.
If you want to try this look, work quickly, and change sponges often or else you might find little bits of the sponge start to come loose and stick to your polish. Finish off with a top coat to regain smoothness!
Cooking attempt #2: Bacon, cheddar, and onion quiche
I personally LOVE breakfast food no matter what time of the day, and I’ve been dying to make a bacon quiche. Here’s an adaptation to something I found on allrecipes.com. The recipe below makes 6 quiche muffins. Great for sharing at a gathering! :)
- 1/2 package (1.5 oz) cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped green onions
- 1/2 package refrigerated Pillsbury crescent rolls
- 3 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Dash of black ground pepper
- In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and milk until smooth. Add the eggs, cheese, green onion, salt, and pepper; mix well.
- Separate dough into six triangles; press onto the bottom and up the sides of greased muffin cups. Sprinkle half of the bacon into cups. Pour egg mixture over bacon; top with remaining bacon. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees F for 18-22 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.
Cooking attempt #1: Oven-roasted garlic and cilantro potatoes
Just the other day, the AC in our house broke at the very worst time possible, and so my family and I decided to enjoy a peaceful dinner out on our deck. My mom made some fried chicken and asked me to prepare a light side dish, so I decided to try out a recipe I found on Pinterest.
These potatoes were super easy to cook! It only took 15 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes in the oven, which was perfect since I wanted to spend as little time as possible inside the sauna that was my house (it goes without saying that I was out the door as soon as I put those potatoes in the oven!). Anyways, I highly recommend trying this if you are a potato lover like me :)
Here’s my take on the recipe:
- 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 medium size Russet potatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Preheat oven to 475 degrees and prepare baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil coated in cooking spray.
- Combine garlic and olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove garlic with a strainer and set aside in a bowl.
- Place quartered potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle garlic oil over them. Toss to coat the potatoes.
- Arrange potatoes on prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown; toss halfway through cook time. Remove from oven and place into serving dish.
- Combine reserved garlic and cilantro. Sprinkle mixture evenly over potatoes. Season with salt and pepper (to taste).
Craft #3: Tribute to Home
I only have 2 months left before school starts, and I wanted to make something to remember my hometown by when I move into my new apartment. I saw this cute project on Pinterest the other day, and decided to give it a try. It took me about 3 days to complete, but it was totally worth it!
Instead of making the plaque like the OP did, I just bought a precut one from Michael’s for about $9. I used a thicker crochet string and put in the nails first before painting—personal choice. I noticed that you didn’t need to wrap the string very tightly, since the tension started to bend the nails lining the heart. So learn from my mistake, and you can avoid warping the hammer job you worked so hard on :P
Craft attempt numero dos:
If you live in a dorm like I have, you’re probably tired of the dull and boring walls you’ve been given but are forbidden to paint! You can add some color and brighten up your room with a quick and easy paint chip mosaic:
Just collect about a hundred or so paint samplers from Lowe’s or Home Depot, cut them into identical squares, arrange the colors to your liking, and then glue them onto a poster board. Frame your masterpiece in a simple frame (I got mine from Target for $13), and you got yourself a pretty splash of color.
Pro tip: When you’re done with gluing everything on, flip the poster board over and iron on low heat to smooth out the wrinkles in your work of art. I skipped this step… oops!
Craft attempt #1:
So for my first post, I decided to start with this super simple and super cute Mod Podge coaster DIY. I got some ceramic tiles from Lowe’s (only 69 cents each!) and just layered on a thin coat of Mod Podge (Walmart) before adding a square cut out of scrapbook paper on top. Then I brushed on 3 more coats of Mod Podge, letting each layer dry before adding the next, and finished off with a water-resistant acrylic spray. I also superglued felt squares to the bottom of the tiles to cover up the harsh texture underneath.
This is definitely the most cost-saving and unique way to go if you need a housewarming or birthday gift idea! Let me know what you think :)