Do-it-yourself

DIY Crate Coffee Table

Bring some character into your home by designing and creating your own bespoke coffee table. Okay, this might seem rather difficult, but it’s actually really simple, especially if you have a few crates laying around the house.

RELATED: DIY Floating Shelves Tutorial

Follow our easy tutorial to create your own coffee table, side table, or even some storage for the laundry room.

What you need

  • 4 wooden crates
  • 2 (1×4) pieces of pine wood
  • 4 casters
  • Stain

Instructions

  1. Before you get started on actually building the table, make sure to stain the crates first. Use a homemade stain (vinegar, steel wool, and brewed tea) or choose a ready made stain which requires a little more waiting time.
  2. When the stain has dried, create a frame by nailing each piece of pine wood into a small square (looking somewhat like a window). This will also dictate the size of your coffee table.
  3. Then, simply arrange each crate over the top and use a drill, nails, and a hammer to secure them onto the frame. You might want some storage in the centre (for snacks or remotes), so make sure to leave some room in the centre for that.

Image via Instructables

March 26, 2015

DIY Floating Shelves Tutorial

One of the hottest interior design trends over the last few years is floating shelves. They basically give the illusion of unhinged wall ornaments which fit easily into any part of the house.

Not only are they really easy to install, but most homeware centres come with some type of variation if you don’t want to battle it out by yourself.

RELATED: Living Room Inspiration From 5 Famous Interior Designers

What you need

1 sheet of 1/4 plywood

10 1×2 pine boards

1 inch brad nails (tiny tack nails which don’t require a hammer)

2 inch screws

3 inch screws (for mounting onto the wall)

Wood filler

Sand paper

Paint (your desired colour)

Tools

Measuring tape

Drill with countersink and drill bits

Saw (not essential if your wood is already made to measure)

Hammer

Sander

Paint brushes

Stud finder

Level

Instructions

1. Cut the plywood into 7 3/4 inch strips from the hardware store, or simply just do it yourself at home. We are essentially creating the foundation for each shelf, and want each piece of wood to be level.

Screen shot 2015-01-12 at 9.11.22 AM

2. Pre-drill the countersink into the frame, then use glue to keep it all together. Work from the inside out, and keep edges flush.

Screen shot 2015-01-12 at 9.11.26 AM

3. At this stage we’re building the trim, so it’s important to fasten the trim ends to the face.

Screen shot 2015-01-12 at 9.12.09 AM

4. Tack the plywood to the top and bottom of each shelf, and make sure it fits well into the sleeve. Sometimes you may need to slightly sand it down before it fits in perfectly.

5. Fill all holes with the wood filler for a flawless finish. Then make sure to sand it really well to create an even base.

6. Prime your shelves, then move onto paint once they’re completely dry. This may take up to 2 hours until everything has dried.

7. Look for any beams in your wall, and locate the anchor point in the muddle of each shelf. Keep everything straight by using a level.

8. Once you’ve made at least 6 incisions into the beam, slip the shelf sleeve over the frame. It should fit tightly and without any issues.

Images and tutorial via Young House Love, and Shanty 2 Chic

January 15, 2015

The Best Chocolate Brownie Recipe Ever

As if we needed another excuse to share a delicious dessert recipe, but with the festive season just around the corner, who doesn’t want something to treat their guests? This time we’ve found the best chocolate brownie recipe which is gluten-free, and tastes so yummy!

RELATED: Dark Chocolate – Bad or Beneficial?

Ingredients

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate

1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)

1/4 cup honey

3/4 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup almond flour

1 tbsp coconut flour

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup chocolate chips

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 350ºF (180-200ºC), and grease a baking pan with canola oil.
  2. Set aside, and melt the unsweetened chocolate and coconut oil over medium heat. Stir until you have a smooth consistency.
  3. Remove from heat, and place the melted chocolate into a food processor. Then add the honey, sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda. Pulse until the entire mixture is smooth in consistency.
  4. Evenly spread over the greased pan, and sprinkle with chocolate chips.
  5. Cool for 20-25 minutes, and cool down before serving. The inside should be soft and moist by the time you take it out.

Image and Recipe via Whole and Heavenly Oven

December 2, 2014

Homemade Coffee Scrub Recipe

Why spend endless amounts of money on coffee scrubs that aren’t tailored to your skin type and condition? There are many scrubs on the market which promise to erase all signs of cellulite, stretch marks and uneven skin tone – but how often does this actually work? Make your own personalised scrub at home with ingredients straight from the pantry, and avoid these unnecessary purchases.

Ingredients

2 cups coffee grounds

1 cup coconut oil

15 drops of essential oil

Directions

  1. Start with the 2 cups of coffee grounds, ensuring that all excess liquid has been removed from the mixture. You can choose to squeeze the liquid out with your hands, or even use a nut bag for a quicker solution.
  2. Add 1 cup of coconut oil which will create a smooth paste when used on the skin. Be sure to mix well before adding 15 drops of essential oil.
  3. Feel free to choose any kind of oil that you prefer – lavender, sweet orange and lemon grass are all popular choices which work well on even sensitive skin. These scents will also overpower the coffee smell if you just aren’t it’s biggest fan.
  4. After you have stirred in the essential oils, pour the mixture into ice-cube trays or muffin trays, then refrigerate. This allows the entire mixture to set, and will feel fresh every time you need to use it!

Image via Savy Naturalista

July 23, 2014

3 DIY Face Masks For Dry Skin

Treating dry skin can often be a nightmare, especially since the cold weather will often cause more breakage on the skins surface. If you prefer to use natural products on your skin, face masks are easy to prepare at home and can be personalised to your particular skin type. Only a few ingredients are required to create a hydrating face mask which will repair the appearance of your skin and soften any harsh lines.

Honey and avocado

Both of these ingredients are perfect for dry skin since they are hydrating, but also brighten the appearance of dark circles under the eyes.

Ingredients

1/2 avocado (ripe)

1/4 cup honey

Method

  1. Mash the avocado in a small bowl, then stir in the honey and mix well.
  2. Apply onto the skin and neck and leave for 10 minutes. Try and relax until the mask has penetrated the pores of your skin.
  3. Wash off with cool water then moisturise as usual.

Banana

Works for both dry and sensitive skin, this mask will decrease the appearance of spots and keep the face feeling cool and hydrated. Not only do bananas work to naturally exfoliate the skin but combined with egg yolk, helps to prevent future breakouts since they are packed with zinc, vitamin B2 and vitamin B3.

Ingredients

1 egg yolk

1 mashed banana

2 teaspoons olive or coconut oil

Method

  1. Combine the egg yolk, mashed banana and 2 teaspoons of oil into a small bowl. Then mix well until they create a clump-free paste.
  2. Apply onto the face in a thin layer and work into dry areas such as the t-zone. Allow the mixture to set for 20 minutes before washing off with lukewarm water.

Seaweed

This revitalising mask is easy to create at home and will help to repair inflamed skin while also targeting clogged pores. Gentle enough to use on any skin type, the mixture is packed with essential vitamins and minerals which leaves skin feeling youthful and soft.

Ingredients

Kelp powder

Aloe vera gel

Distilled water

Method

  1. Mix 2 tablespoons of kelp powder and 1 tablespoon of water into a small bowl.
  2. Squeeze out the juice from one aloe vera leaf, or use aloe vera from a bottle. Then mix it all together until there is a fine paste.
  3. Apply onto the face and neck, then leave it on for 15-20 minutes or until the mixture hardens.
  4. Remove with lukewarm water and pat your face dry.

Recipes and Image via Delighted Momma, DIY Confessions, All Women Stalk, Metro

July 18, 2014

5 Quick Ways To Dry Nail Polish

At home do-it-yourself manicures are a great option to save some money, and also get creative with your nail art. The downside to this, is waiting for your nails to dry completely. We’ve all had those experiences when we think the nail polish has dried, but get a dent (or two) on freshly painted nails, oh the agony! Here are some quick ways to dry your nail polish, which won’t feel like an eternity.

1. Cooking spray

Pop into your local hair and beauty supplier and grab a can of nail enamel dryer. This miracle spray is cheap and cheerful, and will dry your nails in no time. If you find yourself without this miracle in a can, head into your kitchen and look for some cooking spray. Yes, cooking spray. Lightly spray a coat onto your nails and sit back and watch them dry in no-time. The mixture also works wonders on repairing broken cuticles.

2. Ice

Running your hands under cold water helps the polish to dry faster, but if you have a little more time on your hands, use ice instead. Fill up a small bowl with water and ice, and keep your fingertips dipped in for about 2 minutes. Beauty is definitely pain! Remember to moisturise your hands after this step, to avoid any cracks or broken skin in the making.

3. Hair dryer

Using your hair drier on the cool function will help to dry nails faster than ever before. Remember not to focus just on one area, and hold the hair drier 30cm away from your nails for best results.

4. Freezer

This step is similar to trick number two, but probably a little less painful. Stick your hands in the freezer for a few minutes, and quickly watch how fast your nail polish sets and dries. This is a great tip if you’re on-the-go, and need to head out of the house as soon as possible. Leave out the top coat if you’re short on time.

5. Wait it out

If you choose to apply 1-2 layers of nail polish, try and wait until the previous layer has dried completely before adding a new one. This will prevent any smudging down the line, and will help to set and dry faster than just layering everything on at once. Stick to thin layers of polish, and if the consistency is thick, it’s time to throw the polish out.

Do you have any tips to dry nail polish?

Image via Beauty Bulletin

By Felicia Sapountzis

May 26, 2014