This month’s craft project : Toilet paper rolls?

Since I moved into my apartment in September, there has been a very annoying empty space on wall right above my bed. Each weekend, I tell myself I’m going to fix that with a picture, poster, painting…ANYTHING. And each weekend I reach into my empty wallet only to find that I have to choose between my Sunday night casserole ingredients or that Mae Chevrette poster to go above my bed. Until my new-found friend pinterest introduced me to toilet paper crafts.

So for about 2 months I saved up toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls (I even asked my mom to save hers for a while and bring them to me next time she visited). So last weekend, I finally decided that it was time to craft my tp roll piece of art. I spent about $7 on spray paint and primer (mostly because I had a lot of different colored rolls and I wanted the paint to look the same on all the rolls / I was expecting the cardboard to just absorb the first 3 coast of paint), and the rest of the project costs $0! I did have to invest in a hot glue gun earlier this month so I had just bought one for $10 or so. TECHNICALLY then, I suppose the project is $17 if you don’t already have a glue gun. Additionally, my mistake tip #1- don’t waste your money or time with the primer…especially if you paint your TP creation gold! So tops the project is $17, and least $3.50 for the can of spray paint you choose….either way, not too shabby for some wall art. Plus, it was a lovely weekend project!

First, I cut each TP roll into fourths and each paper towel roll into eighths by flattening the rolls and cutting them with scissors.

Then, I flattened each fourth even more, creating as many TP flowers of 4 petals each ( as seen below) I usually could just put one thick application of hot glue on one of the petals and stick all four together by holding the flower in place for a few seconds. I saw a lot of other blogs suggest using tacky glue held together with clothespins overnight. I’m sure that works, too! But I’m far too impatient to wait overnight for glue to dry…I definitely found the hot glue to be sufficient.

Then, I started placing all my flowers in different patterns and designs, ultimately deciding upon the below diamond/square design. I started with one flower at the bottom of the diamond with a petal facing perpendicular to me, then built it upwards with a row of  2, then a row of three, a row of 2 on top of that and one more flower at the top.  Then I just glued any touching petals you see below with hot glue the same way  I glued the flowers!

Once my diamond/squares were glued together and dried, I dragged them outside and applied 2 coats of the primer, waited 30 minutes, then applied 3 coats of a metallic gold spray paint at 20 minute intervals. I let them dry for about 2 hours. It’s a bit tough to get an even coat on the inside of the petals, which is why it took 3 coats…if you’re a better spray painter than me you can probably get it done in 2 coats!Image

Once they were dry, I couldn’t wait to hang them on my annoying empty wall! After some debating as to what design/order to hang them in, I nailed 3 nails into my wall and you can see the finished product below!! (instagramed, of course)



They’ve been done for over a week now and I still squeal when I walk into my room and no longer see a boring annoying white wall above my bed! It’s hard to believe they’re just toilet paper rolls EVERY time I look at them!

If you have any questions or suggestions, please let me know!  I enjoyed this little project and will do it again if I ever had a boring annoying white wall to fill.

Stay tuned for my next craft project post-holidays!! (I can’t give away the project without giving away my boyfriend/family/friends’ presents this year)


My Happiness (observation) Project

Over the past summer, as all good restless post-grads do, I panicked. My original plan was to teach English in Spain for the 2012-2013 school year,  mostly because I was mildly obsessed with the country and its people after my study abroad in 2011. Unfortunately,  the program in Spain was cancelled just days before graduation, leaving me jobless,passionless and directionless.

One week during the summer, my restless cabeza decided to read the book “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin. I read it in probably less than 24 hours, thirsty for a quick-fix answer to post grad unhappiness problem. Then, of course, I spent another 24 hours making my own happiness project (posters, flowcharts and inspirational quotes included), only to quit what I had outlined to be a year long project in about 4 days.

Here I am, 3 months later. I’m employed at a pretty neat company, living in  an adorable and surprisingly affordable apartment with two close friends from college and quickly falling for my new amazing and super sweet boyfriend. Yet this past week I found myself feeling somewhat unhappy.

My solution? A new (more feasible) happiness project of my own!

I’ve decided to make a chore chart of sorts to increase my happiness. Only this chore chart doesn’t need to have every box checked by the end of the day! In fact it’s more of an “observation chart, ” if you will.

Essentially, I took every good habit I’ve ever tried to start over the past 6 years and every bad habit I’ve tried to break, and wrote them on a gigantic checklist. At the end of everyday, I’m going to check off all the good habits I did that day and all the bad ones I avoided. No rules as to how many I need to check, I just want to hold myself accountable for reflecting on my day. Then I’ll summarize my happiness level that day by rating it on a scale of 1-10, and reflect back at the end of the month to see which activities I did that consistently created happiness in my life, or which ones are habits that might just be rumored to make me happy but do not add to the smile on my face at the end of the day. This way I can stop feeling guilty when I don’t stop snacking past midnight or I finally get in the habit of making my bed. If I try often to do those things, and I realize they make me happy…GREAT! If not, I can officially say that habit has nothing to do with my happiness and never feel bad that I don’t do it ever again. Or at least that’s the plan.

A few examples on my Happiness Measurement Project are below:

Clean something

Go to the gym

Go for a walk

Go to a yoga class

Ask for help

Do it now

Get 8 hours of sleep

Take a picture

Call a friend

Don’t expect praise

Give proofs of love

Eat Intuitively

Show up

Don’t gossip

There are a few more happiness factors on my list, including “blogging”, which is one big reason I started keeping a blog again since my blogging in Spain during my study abroad had brought me so much happiness. I thought this was a good place to start to introduce you all to myself and what kinds of things you can expect to hear from my ramblings, so I’ll keep you updated as my project progresses (or if I quit by Thanksgiving)