How to Make An Oversized Wood Ruler

How to make a DIY oversized wooden ruler as home decor or for a growth chart #diy #tutorial #create2educate #backtoschool

It’s almost time for school to start back.  I’m actually really looking forward to having a schedule again.  We are still working on our small cottage here in the mountains and something I thought would be nice touch was a large rustic ruler.  We can use it as a growth chart for Boo and it also makes a great statement piece for the house.

How fun would this be in a classroom:

Large Wood Ruler Growth Chart Tutorial

 

First I started with a large piece of wood that I picked up from the local hardware store. It was an 8 foot long 2″x10″….and we cut off a foot to make it 7 feet tall.  I used ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape to create my inch marks along the wood.  I tore piece in half so I could get an approximate width for each notch:

Here’s the wood completely taped off:

I masked off all the areas that I didn’t want to paint. Then I took chalkboard spray paint and sprayed a few light coats over my masked off areas. I prefer chalkboard paint because it doesn’t bleed through the wood grain:

ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape project ideas: Oversized Wood Ruler Growth Chart

The best part is removing the tape to see the design left behind:

 

To make my numbers I just printed off some samples in Powerpoint and traced them over white transfer paper to leave behind a template:

How to easily paint letters and numbers onto wood #diy #painting

I carefully hand painted each letter with a small brush and some black acrylic craft paint:

How to easily transfer and paint letters and numbers onto wood #diy #painting

 

To make the ruler more realistic I wanted to add a hole and a metal ring. I was able to find these plastic snap together grommets that look just like metal from Michaels:

The grommets come with a template to cut the hole:

Adding a metal grommet to an oversized wood ruler

My husband used a 2 1/8″ hole saw drill bit to cut straight through the wood:

How to cut a hole into a piece of wood using a drill

2″ is pretty thick so he used a chisel to break out sections in between drills:How to cut a circle or hole into a piece of wood using a drill

I used Golden Fluid Acrylics in Raw Umber to make my own wood stain:

Golden Liquid Acrylics Project Ideas - How to make your own wood stain

To make an easy wood stain I mixed steel wool with white vinegar in a mason jar and let it sit overnight. The vinegar reacts with the steel wool to create a barn wood color.

How to make wood look rustic without all the toxi fumes!

 

I just squeezed drops of the Burnt Umber straight onto the damp wood and brushed it into the wood in different ways to make it seemed aged:

How to paint rustic wood

One the wood was stained and dry I glued on my grommet using E-6000.

How to add a grommet to the large oversized ruler

The finished grommet:

A realistic oversized ruler - How to add a grommet to the large oversized ruler

The finished ruler:

Vintage and Rustic Ruler Project Ideas

Great for an indoor decor piece in a classroom or any room of the house:

Rustic Home Decor Project Ideas

Or for outside decor:

Rustic Chic - A Giant Wood Ruler - Home Decor Project Ideas

 

Also, Michaels is inviting you to create your own back-to-school project and upload a photo to your Instagram using the #Create2Educate and #sweepstakes hashtags before August 15 for a chance to win a $50 Michaels gift card!

One winner will be chosen each day!

If you don’t have an Instagram account you can also submit your photo via www.michaels.com/create2educate, which will be live on August 1.

Michaels will highlight fans’ submissions on social and on Michaels.com throughout the two week entry period.

Have fun! And Happy Back to School!

Disclaimer: I do receive occasional product from Michaels in exchange for crafty ideas. All ideas are my own.

The Casita Office Makeover

DIY office makeover ideas via lilblueboo.com #decor #office #diy #homedecor #organization #thrifting

I’d never heard of a “casita” before I moved to California. It’s a little detached guest room off the house.  Nice because if you don’t use it you can leave the air conditioning off and save money!  We turned ours into a sewing studio a few years ago but then we outgrew it and now it’s the official Lil Blue Boo office.

Here’s the before:

Office Makeover Re-decorating BEFORE via lilblueboo.com #decor #office #diy #homedecor #organization #thrifting

Office Makeover Re-decorating AFTER via lilblueboo.com #decor #office #diy #homedecor #organization #thrifting

 

I love how the neutral palette turned out.  I am still trying to figure out what kind of chairs I want to use….but they have to be comfortable!  This is my side of the office. It doesn’t get used a lot right now because I have my “dining room” office too: [Read more...]

Organizing and Recycling Junk Drawer Contents

 

Organizing and Recycling Junk Drawer Contents via lilblueboo.com #recycle #organization #organizing #diy

I can’t stand clutter around the house….so my junk drawers can tend to get out of control.  I also have more than one. They are located around the house.

 

The first thing I do is consolidate all the drawers in one place…..with a large work area.   I use paper plates to sort through everything.  Then I split the items up by drawer and return everything else to it’s right place.  Anything I’m not quite sure what to do with goes in the JUNK JAR. (see the junk jar tutorial here)

steps to organize a kitchen junk drawer via lilblueboo.com #organization #organizing

 

I like for the containers to match the insides of the drawer if possible (makes the drawer look less cluttered)….so I use spray paint to paint various boxes and containers that will fit well:

how to make drawer organizers via lilblueboo.com

 

My newly organized junk drawers:

how to organize your junk drawer via lilblueboo.com #organization #organizing

 

I went through every single marker, pen, highlighter etc to see which were working and then sorted them into bins within these large wood caddies:

organizing art supplies via lilblueboo.com

 

The hardest part about my junk drawers is that I don’t like to throw anything away because I know it will end up in a landfill.  I found everything under the kitchen sink: medications, over 50 dried up pens, tons of old batteries. These are things I don’t want to throw in the trash because:

:: Over 10 billion writing instruments are sent to landfills every year.

:: Over 100 different pharmaceuticals have been detected in lakes, rivers, reservoirs and streams throughout the world.

:: 3 billion batteries are bought a year…and contain harmful metals that leak into our water and soil.

 

It takes a little more work to recycle and donate….but it’s worth it.  I created a little recycling station in our laundry room to make it easy on the rest of the family. I painted large coffee tins and added a simple paper label:

create a recycling station for batteries and other items via lilblueboo.com #recycle #tutorial #DIY

 

This can is for random items that need sorting: writing instruments, old blades, medications etc:

 

 

Here’s where you can easily recycle items from your junk drawer….the links are below the images.  For office supplies that are still working and in good condition consider finding a local non-profit to donate them to!

 

[Read more...]

Organizing Ribbon

How to organize ribbon, washi tape etc. via lilblueboo.com

 

This ribbon was out of control. I used to hang my ribbon under shelving using wooden dowels in my old office but there are no shelves in my new office….so I had to come up with another plan. Here’s the before:

Diy ribbon storage ideas via lilblueboo.com

 

And the after: [Read more...]

The Office Makeover: Craft Storage (Free Vintage Label Download)

Martha eat your heart out. I labeled 70 boxes yesterday with vintage-inspired labels.  It’s part of my big office makeover. I can’t show you the office yet because it’s a disaster. Anyway, it took almost all day to organize the boxes and create the labels but I feel really organized now:

Craft and Art Supply Storage (with free vintage label printable) via lilblueboo.com

The shelves were an early Christmas present from Mr. LBB.  This area is a hallway behind my office….technically it’s a “butler’s pantry” for serving food and storage but it’s the perfect area to store supplies right off my work area.  The wall space above the countertop was just empty space.  The area used to be a huge sunken living room before we remodeled a few years ago. We added a wall at the end of the room to create the storage space.

Here’s what it looked like two weeks ago:

[Read more...]

Evolution of a Dress (A Digital Short)

Time Lapse video of a dress being made from start to finish via lilblueboo.com

A Lil Blue Boo dress from start to finish:

Visit the 411 on industrial cutters here!

Check out more Lil Blue Boo videos:

The Mona Lisa in Buttons

Frida Kahlo in Buttons

Rite of Passage

 

Photo of the Day: Graffiti

Boo and I spent all day watching movies. I had Mr. LBB move my thrift store desk find to right by the back patio and every once in a while I’d walk out and graffiti it with a few words. Layers and layers and layers of spray painting later it looks just right! It’s going in Boo’s playroom so I can work there and she can use it as a homework desk one day. I’ll show more photos of the process when I can get photos of it in its final place! It would make a cool photo prop right?!

 

Photo of the Day: Video Conferencing

Hee hee…..I snapped this funny screenshot today of Lisa and I today while on a video conference chat with my friend artist Stephanie Corfee. We are working on some top secret fun projects…..that probably won’t come to fruition for a long time…..but it’s fun to chat about them. Yes, Lisa is always that happy-go-lucky. She also has a super, super polite phone voice. Ha. I’m now wishing maybe I’d put on some makeup, brushed my hair and changed out of my pajamas….maybe next time.

 

 

My sister Perry is addicted to Facetime on the iPhone. She calls every night. I hand the phone to my mom and she doesn’t get the whole Facetime thing…..and holds it up to her ear. It’s hilarious:

“MOM, stop showing the side of your head!”

Ask Lil Blue Boo: A Typical Day

As part of my ongoing small business series I’ve been compiling questions from readers. One of the most often asked questions is: What is a typical day like…..how to you fit it all in? Sometimes I never fit it all in! Couldn’t we all use another 10 hours a day?

 

What’s a typical day like for you? Do you work weekends, too? – Amy

I don’t know if I have a typical day….I’m usually all over the place never focusing on just one project. I start working at 8:30am and work up until 5pm. I have 2 full time employees that show up at 9am sharp every morning and a few part time helpers that come and go throughout the week. Lil Blue Boo would be a disaster without them.  I’ll work late at night for an hour or two on the computer once Boo goes to bed.

If I work on the weekends it’s only on creative fun projects that the whole family is involved in. For example, we might build something fun or start some artwork. It’s not work to me though….it’s more of a lifestyle. I just like to make stuff and so does the rest of the family. I don’t watch sports and I don’t enjoy shopping so that frees up a lot of time!

One day last week I took photos of everything I did to try and document what a “typical day” might look like:

 

(more after the jump)

[Read more...]

Boom Town Busy Bees

Our second fall collection is designed and being sent off for photos next week!

A few behind the scenes photos since I know you like them…..

 

A stack of bubble skirts

[Read more...]

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