Monday, May 1, 2017

3G2S posts may contain commission-yielding affiliate links.

How to Make Your Own Light-Up Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden Tutorial

DIY Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Thank you to Oriental Trading Company for providing some of the supplies for our Beach Fairy Garden project.  All opinions expressed are my own.

I'm not sure if I know anyone who loves the beach as much as my mother-in-law.  She goes to Florida for the winter and comes back to her home near the beach for the remainder of the year.  That's why my daughter and I thought it would be a fun project to create a beach fairy garden for my mother-in-law to enjoy year-round.  I decided to create it in a window box, so it can sit on a windowsill for all to see without taking up too much valuable space.

Want to make your own Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden?  Here are some of the supplies you might need, although it will vary depending on your own personal preferences.  For example, our beach is rocky just like the ones around here, but you might want to create a beach without any rocks at all.  It's all up to you!  I found much inspiration looking through the fairy garden supplies on Oriental Trading Company.

SUPPLIES NEEDED:

DIY flower box
grey/silver sand
aquamarine crystals
river rock
metallic acrylic paint markers
fairy garden decor
mini LED string lights
pencil
large cardboard box
scissors
packing tape
old newspaper (or other scrap paper)


How to Personalize the Window Box . . .

1.  Decide what personalization you would like to add to the flower box.  Then sketch it out lightly with a pencil on the front side of the box.  (Ours says "Grammy's Beach".)

2.  Choose an acrylic paint marker for your lettering.  I chose a set of DecoColor™ Metallic Acrylic Paint Markers because the colors were very beachy.  The blue turned out to be the perfect color for the lettering.

3.  If you would like to add a little something to your lettering, here is a super-easy way.  Wait for the lettering to dry completely.  Then go back and add dots of a contrasting color paint to your lettering.  I chose to use silver.
DIY Personalized Window Box for Beach Fairy Garden  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

How to Create the Beach Fairy Garden Foundation . . .

1.  If using this particular flower box, take a large cardboard box and cut it into a rectangle, approximately 23" x 19".  Then shape the cardboard into a 4-sided rectangular prism that's 23"W x 4.5"H x 5"D.  Secure the cardboard with packing tape. (If using a different flower box, then you will need to cut the cardboard to match the interior dimensions of the flower box, leaving a 1-1/2" to 2" lip at the top. (See photo below.)

2.  To add sturdiness, stuff the square tube you've created with old newspaper, old homework, or other scrap paper.

3.  Insert cardboard into the flower box.  The top edge of the flower box should be about 1-1/2" to 2" taller than the cardboard insert.

4.  Cover the entire cardboard surface with a thin, but even layer of river rock, making sure that no cardboard shows through. You can find river rock in the aquarium section at your local pet store.

5.  Add a layer of grey/silver sand where you would like sand, and aquamarine crystals where you would like a representation of water.

6.  Add a little more river rock to even out the landscape around the areas of sand and crystals.
DIY Window Box for Beach Fairy Garden Tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Customize Fairy Garden Decor with Acrylic Paint Pens . . .

Using the same DecoColor™ Metallic Acrylic Paint Markers that we used to personalize the flower box, we were able to put our own personal touches on the fairy garden accessories pictured below.  Here's what we chose to do, but the possibilities are really endless.

1. I used the gold paint pen to outline the edges of the petals on the roof of the gazebo.  I also accented the veins in the leaves and the stem at the top.  Then I added dotted gold lines down the length of the petals.  Finally, I used the silver paint pen to add specks along the bottom curved edge of each flower petal.

2.  My 13 year old son used the gold paint pen to paint the four posts on the bridge gold.

3. My son also added the monograms in cursive to the backs of the Adirondak-style beach chairs.  He also added blue and gold stripes to the arms of the chairs and the top edge of the chair backs.  Then I added dots on top of the monograms to match the lettering on the front of the flower box.

4.  On the stepping stones, my children painted a dragonfly, a seashell, a leaf, a flower, and a starfish.  Then I added stripes around the edges of the stepping stones to match the arms of the beach chairs.

5.  On the fence, I added some blue, white, and green flowers plus some blades of grass at the bottom.
How to Decorate Fairy Garden Items with Acrylic Paint Pens  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Adding Lights to Your Beach Fairy Garden . . .

If you've never used mini LED string lights, they are very easy to work with because the lights are on a thin wire.  There is a box that holds batteries and the on/off switch on one end of the light string.  Place that box behind the window box, so that it is accessible, but out of sight.

The gazebo is a natural starting point for your lights.  We strung ours up and down the posts all around the gazebo.  Then we ran the lights up to the roof of the gazebo and secured it around the stem.
How to Decorate a Fairy Garden Gazebo with Acrylic Paint Pens  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
From the top of the gazebo, we ran the lights all the way to the other end of the beach fairy garden and secured it around the bridge post.  From there, we ran the wire around the right side, the front, and the left side of the flower box, back to the birdbath and the gazebo.
How to Make Your Very Own Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Window Box Beach Fairy Garden Inspiration  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Beach Fairy Garden Painted Stepping Stones and Fence  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Beach Fairy Garden Painted Stepping Stones and Bridge  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
At night, the lights look just as lovely from the outside, as they do from the inside.  They also add a touch of whimsy and magic to the display.
DIY Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden with Mini Lights  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

DIY Light-up Beach Fairy Garden  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Painted Beach Fairy Garden Adirondak Chairs with Fire Pit and Seashell Birdbath  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Cool Fairy Garden Finds . . . 

Fairy & Gnome Garden Set - I found this fairy garden accessory set at Oriental Trading.  These pieces really were the perfect blank canvases, and would easily work in a regular fairy garden as they did in our beach fairy garden.

Light-up Seashell Fire Pit - I bought this item from one of my favorite crafters, adorablyimperfect, who also made the pretty shell birdbath.  I feel like a working fire pit is a must-have if you are using lights in your fairy garden.


Like these fairy garden ideas? PIN THIS post for later . . .
DIY Personalized Window Box Beach Fairy Garden with Fairy Lights  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

How would you personalize your own beach fairy garden?  Share your ideas with us in a comment here.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

3G2S posts may contain commission-yielding affiliate links.

Turn a Vera Bradley Crossbody Bag into a Shoulder Bag in Less Than 5 Minutes { No-Sew Project }

No-sew way to turn a Vera Bradley crossbody bag into a shoulder bag  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
A few months ago, I was at the mall with my family because my oldest was taking a coding class at the Microsoft store.  The class was an hour long, so I went across the way to browse at the Vera Bradley store.  It had been awhile since I had been in there.  I asked my daughter to join me.

Big surprise!  My browsing turned into buying.  My daughter and I both loved the Lilac Tapestry print and I couldn't pass up a chance to have another set of mother-daughter coordinating handbags.  I went pretty, but practical, and picked out the Small Trimmed Vera Tote.  My daughter had a little more trouble though.  She used to be all about crossbody bags, but now that she is a little older, she really wanted a shoulder bag, like a mini hobo or something with a shorter strap.  The problem was that Vera Bradley didn't carry any smaller bags that weren't a crossbody style at the moment.  We looked at the Vera Bradley Little Crossbody bag, and I decided I could probably do a little altering and shorten the strap on that bag for her.

When I got home, I had a feeling of doubt.  What if I shortened the strap on that bag and my daughter changes her mind?

How I shortened the strap on our Vera Bradley crossbody bag with no sewing . . . 

Step 1.  Adjust the 56" strap to the desired length, even though you will have a tail of excess fabric.  (I would say that ours was adjusted to have a 6" or 7" drop.)
Step 2.  Tie a knot at the base of the strap to keep the strap from being lengthened or shortened any further.

Step 3.  Tuck the tail of excess fabric into the exterior pocket on the backside of the bag.  Secure it inside the pocket with a small safety pin to make sure it stays put and does not interfere with the functionality of the pocket.
How to turn a Vera Bradley crossbody bag into a shoulder bag tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
That's it!  The tail blends in well whether you have a print or solid fabric bag.  Because the tail is tucked into the pocket on the backside of the bag, it really isn't noticeable at all.  My daughter was very pleased with the result, and I feel good that I can easily turn this bag back into a crossbody bag if she so desires.
How to easily turn a Vera Bradley crossbody bag into a shoulder bag with no sewing  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Although I haven't tried this with other styles of Very Bradley crossbody bags, it should work if you have the following:
  • An adjustable strap
  • A strap that is not too wide to tie in a knot neatly
  • A pocket on the backside of the bag that runs the nearly the full width of the bag.
What easy no-sew projects have you tried?  Share them with us in a comment here.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

3G2S posts may contain commission-yielding affiliate links.

Create Fairy Garden Magic with DIY Fairy Dust Bottles

Add a touch of magic to your fairy garden with DIY bottles of fairy dust  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
My daughter and I have been having a blast shopping for the perfect items to add to her fairy garden.  Since she and I also enjoy crafts (of the easy variety), we decided to try our hand at creating our own miniature bottles of fairy dust.  We had seen bottles of fairy dust for sale that were filled with brightly-colored glitter.  They looked pretty cool, but we wondered how could we expand on that idea to make our bottles of fairy dust even more magical?  This is what we came up with . . .


How to make your own Magical Fairy Dust Bottles:

SUPPLIES NEEDED:
White Glue
Sticky Notes (or Small Funnel)
Scissors

OPTIONAL:
1/8" Satin Ribbon (Any Color)

How to make DIY fairy dust bottles for your fairy garden  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 1.  If you don't happen to have a small funnel handy, you can make your own by rolling a sticky note into a cone shape.  Use the self-adhesive or a small piece of tape to keep the cone from unrolling.  Don't have a sticky note?  A regular square of paper will do.

Step 2.  Place the funnel into an open bottle.  Then fill the bottle about 2/3 with white or clear glitter.
DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 3.  Using scissors, carefully snip off the very tip of the corner of the pouch holding the color glitter you have selected for your fairy dust.
TIP #1:  Since these pouches of glitter are not resealable, keep some tape handy.  Once you're done with the glitter, fold the opened corner of the pouch down at least twice and secure with tape.
DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Craft Tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 4.  Place the funnel into the bottle containing the white or clear glitter.  Fill the bottle to the base of the neck with the fine colored glitter.

Step 5.  Cover the mouth of the bottle tightly with your index finger and shake the bottle vigorously to mix the two types of glitter together.  Continue to shake until well-blended.
DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Craft How-To  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 6.  You'll notice that the glitter has settled a bit after all the shaking.  Place the funnel in the bottle.  If the color of the fairy dust is to your liking, fill the bottle to the base of the neck with the clear or white glitter.  Then shake to blend.  If you'd like to have more color, add a little more colored glitter.  Shake to blend.  Repeat if needed.
TIP #2:  Do not overfill the bottles.  This will ensure there is room for the cork stopper to be inserted securely.

Step 7.  When your bottle is filled to the base of the neck with glitter, apply a small bead of white glue around the circumference of the cork stopper (as pictured below).  Then insert the stopper into the filled bottle, making sure it's snugly in place.  The glue should dry clear.
Easy DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Craft  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 8.  (Optional) Choose a star from your glitter sample pack.  Then punch a slightly off-center hole through the star with your hole puncher.
TIP #3:  I found that it was common for 2 or 3 stars to be stuck together.  It would be a good idea to double-check that you are punching a hole in a single star only.
Easy DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Craft Tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 9.  Cut a 5" to 6" length of 1/8"-wide ribbon.  Then cut one end at a sharp angle, so you have a point.  Thread the ribbon through the whole in the star.
Easy DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Fairy Garden Craft  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Step 10.  Tie the ribbon around the neck of the bottle.  Double-knot the ribbon in the back.  Then trim the tails of the ribbon to match the width of the bottle's neck.  Then you're done!
TIP #4:  If you plan to use a different color of glitter for your next bottle of fairy dust, be sure your funnel is completely free of the previous colored glitter, otherwise traces of the previous color will appear in your next bottle.  If you are using a paper funnel, you may consider discarding that funnel and making a new one for each color of glitter.
DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Fairy Garden Craft  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Cool Fairy Garden Finds . . . 

Cat with Butterfly - If you shop around on Etsy, you'll see this black and white cat from several sellers, but fairyinthegarden1 made hers special by adding a butterfly.  This extra handcrafted touch is what made me fall in love with this cat.

Sitting Fairy - There are actually four of these adorable little fairies to choose from at the FairyBestWishes Etsy shop, and I ended up purchasing them all.  They are each in a different pose, wearing a different color dress, and holding a different colored gem.

Magic Wooden Chest - I found a cute little toy chest in the MLSLaserEngraving Etsy shop.  I inquired whether I could have the word "Magic" engraved in a chest in place of the word "Toys."  The seller happily accommodated my request.  Originally, I thought my daughter would paint or add gems to the chest, but she seems to like it the way it is for the time being.

Miniature Cupcake - These cute little pink cupcakes came in a set of 4.  I found them in an Etsy shop called BeesKneesMiniatures.  This shop has the most adorable miniatures.  I'll be sharing everything I purchased from this shop soon.


Like this fairy garden craft? Pin It for later . . . 
DIY Fairy Dust Bottles Fairy Garden Craft Tutorial  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Have a cool fairy garden craft or find to share?  Leave a comment here.

Find more fairy garden inspiration here.