Photo Coasters DIY

Photo Coasters

So the holiday season is still a few months away, but this year, I have decided to try making most of our Christmas gifts.  Living on a budget makes Christmas an extra stressful time of year, so I thought I could cut some of that stress, and save some money by making my own gifts.  I started searching online for ideas, trying to avoid the standard embroidered pillow case or basket of homemade quick breads, and I found some very unique and creative projects that are simple enough anyone can do them.  This is the first one I have attempted and I am happy to say they look fabulous!!  Before we get to the instructions, let me just say that I consider my skills in crafting to be beginner at best…so if I can make these, I know you can too.  Oh, I almost forgot the best part…I made three sets of these for less than $8 total!!

What you’ll need:

4×4 tiles (we used ceramic but tumbled stone would work also)
Mod Podge
Printer paper (not photo paper, just plain white paper)
Foam Brush
Water Based Polycrylic (we used clear satin)
Felt bumpers (3/8 inch)

Step 1:  Choose the photos you would like to use and print them off.  There are 2 different ways to make your photos fit the tile.  If you have photo editing software, you can scale the pictures to fit the tile.  We just printed the photos in 4×6, measured, then cut out the part we wanted.  You can size your photos to 4×4 and they will cover the entire front of your tile or you can leave a border like we did.  Our pictures are 1/4 inch smaller all the way around.

Step 2:  Apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to the tile with the foam brush.

Step 3:  Center the photo over the tile (this is especially important if you are using photos the exact same size as the tile).  Press the photo onto the tile.  While the Mod Podge is still wet, you will be able to move the photo a little bit to get it centered.  Using your fingers, work any air bubbles out of the photo (if you have Mod Podge on your fingers, it might smear the ink on the photo so use a cloth instead).  Let them dry for 5 or 10 minutes.

Step 4:  Apply a coat of Mod Podge over the surface of the tile.  Allow to dry for 30 minutes to an hour.  Then apply a coat of Polycrylic and let dry overnight.

Step 5:  Apply felt bumpers to the bottom of the tile.

And Voila!!  You have a set of coasters that no one else in the world will have!  We are also going to be making a rack to store and display the coasters.  I will post a tutorial for that as soon as it is finished.  Happy Crafting!!

Adapted from Crunchy Betty, who is awesome and has some really neat stuff…go check her out!


DIY Jewelry Cleaner

DIY Jewelry Cleaner

There are not very many things more exciting than when the love of your life drops to his knee, asks you those four simple words you’ve been waiting to hear, and presents you with a gorgeous, sparkling diamond ring.  You want to show it to everybody and they all exclaim over how beautiful it is, and how much it shines when it catches the light.  Well it’s been five wonderful years since the love of my life gave me that amazing ring, and lately it hasn’t been sparkling as much as it used to.  So I set out to find a solution that would restore it’s luster while staying CENTSIBLE.  Well, I am happy to report that this solution cost me absolutely nothing!  It’s made from ingredients that almost everyone will have in their kitchen, and it is so easy!

DIY Jewelry Cleaner

1 TBS Salt
1 TBS Baking Soda
1 TBS Liquid Dish Soap
1 Cup Water
1 Piece Aluminum Foil

Small bowl

Step 1 – Heat the water in the microwave for about 2 minutes.

Step 2 – Cover the bottom of a small bowl with the aluminum foil.

Step 3 – Pour the hot water into the bowl. Add the salt, baking soda, and liquid dish soap to the water. Stir together gently.

Step 4 – Place jewelry on the top of the foil and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse with cool water and dry with a soft cloth. Discard solution after each use.

Before                                                              After – although it did clean the diamonds too, the biggest difference I could see was the band, it looked almost brand new

Before                                                             After

Enjoy proudly displaying your ring to anyone who will look and bask in their ooos and aaahs over it’s sparkle and luster, all the while smiling to yourself because you know that the secret is simply a few kitchen ingredients.

Adapted from Pinching Your Pennies