Nightstand: Clever + Hip + Repurpose

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Recycling a drum set no longer being used.

Hello my Awesomenesses! (A Koko word) 😉

Remember the post on DIY Dog Bed; I made it out of an old drum set? Well, this nightstand is made from more of that same set.

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This is also a great way to “store” drums. Nostalgia says, “Don’t get rid of it!” And besides, you never know when you might want to play them again. Just for old times sake!

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Isn’t the grain of the natural wood beautiful? My son lovingly refinished it. This was his first set given to him when he was five! The snare is at the bottom. Makes for a nice sturdy base.

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Can you see the iPhone charger? Very handy!

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One more look!

Nightstands can be made from many things; A cute wooden chair, old suitcases piled up one on top of the other, stacks of books, magazines, wooden crates, and even an old drum set!

Let your imagination soar! Now, go create your own unique nightstand!

Thank you so much for reading!

Love and Peace,

Koko

DIY Laptop Case

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Making your own laptop case is easier than you think. This method can be tailor-made not only for a laptop, but for an iPad, iPhone, iPod…etc.

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This is an old quilted blanket. I’ve had it for about 20 years! It’s really stood the test of time! I love the weight of this fabric and the feel of it. This blanket’s backing had started wearing and I used it folded in half for years (I could have sewed a good sheet or nice fabric to it…No, not really lazy, but you know…life takes over and some projects and things are more important.), until a dog I rescued got a hold of it…big un-repairable tears!  It’s been such a good blanket, I hated to let it go and thought of all the many things I could make out of the still usable parts. And so the story goes…a project was born! (Come back and see a few more things I’ve made from one blanket. Stay with me!)

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There are many styles to try…Do I want the laptop to slide from the top or the side? What type of closure do I want…zipper, button, leather strap? Do I want a closure at all??? I cut many types of patterns using “wholefoods” paper bags. I’m serious when I say, “No big secrets here”…Making a case/cover is truly easy. If you can sew a fairly straight line, you can sew this! All you do is measure what you want to make. For this, I’m making a laptop sleeve/cover for my MacBook. So basically I figured an “envelope” style was the way to go. (In pic above, you see a bubble wrapped envelope? My laptop actually fit in that and I was going to “wrap” the fabric around that for protection, but I decided the blanket alone was really good protection on its own. 

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No need to make box corners for more space. Picture an envelope. Really, that’s all there is to this! I gave myself a 1/2″ seam allowance. You can also stitch along the edge and let the seam show without turning the fabric inside out. “Rough” edge look!

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You can go a million ways with the closure. I went with a simple flap that I could just flop over or tuck in. 

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Here it is with the flap, flopped over. 

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And here it is, flap tucked in.

Tips: If your fabric isn’t padded enough, try doubling the fabric, or adding batting in between the fabric.

Don’t limit yourself to just fabric you can buy at the fabric store. Try vintage tea-towels, a cool towel you got from somewhere, sheets that have torn, an old sweater, jacket, hoodie, jeans…the many “fabrics” you can use is really limitless…oh i’ve also done this with old leather (Up-cycled from leather furniture! You’d be surprised how many people toss out leather sofas. You can up-cycle the leather and not only make laptop case, but, clutches, purses, wallets an ottoman! Let your imagination go wild!)

If using leather, pleather, vinyl, felt…(basically, material that doesn’t fray) Try “whip stitching” along the seams for a unique and fun look.

As I’ve mentioned above, have fun with the types of closures…zipper, leather strap, a belt, buttons (and the buttons don’t have to be round!) Have fun showing off your creativity!

I’ve had this cover for over a year now and I still love it just the way it is. I love the flap concept.

I hope this has inspired you to see things a little differently. Something old can be made into new again!

To all you old and new followers, my wish today, for you…

See this life a little differently in the way that with each unpredictable moment, you dwell not on the chaotic parts, but the precious moments that allow your breath to be taken away.

Hugs and Peace, Koko

 

DIY: Make Your Own Eco Friendly Seed Pots

Hello all you AWESOMENESSES! (It is a word in the Koko dictionary!)

I want to share with you how I plant many of my seeds. The video below says it all, or you can scroll down through the pictures…

I’m pretty sure you can guess what this “special” container is…

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This lovely container is…yes, you guessed it, the end of a toilet paper roll. It makes for an amazing plant container. Let me show you what I do!

What I like about using this as a container for seeds is, it’s re-usable, compostable, and practically free!

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Start by crimping one end of the tube. You want to create a “bottom”. Keep on crimping until the tube is closed…

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Like this! Once you get your container bottoms all made, you will need to put them in something to hold them all upright. I’ve used a plastic salad container, egg cartons, shoe boxes…Use your imagination! Most anything that will keep them upright will do.

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To fill the container, I use a make-shift funnel made out of thick paper. The T.P. rolls are in a paper (cardboard) “gomacrobar” box. If you haven’t tried a gomacrobar…do it! So delicious! Oh and see that adorable cup? It’s designed by Molly Hatch. Aren’t the polka dots just the cutest?

 

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Fill em up!

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Don’t forget to label. Again why I like using the cardboard containers, you can simply scribble right on the tubes!

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If you are planting in ceramic or other types of containers, you can make labels like the ones you see here. I just wrote on paper and taped them to a toothpick.

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These labels are made from plastic knives and I used a sharpie.

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   I couldn’t resist showing off one of my favorite bowls. My sister in-law made it! Isn’t it a beauty?

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Like the cups says, “something good”…whether it’d be for yourself, (a nap, hot bath, a yummy drink) or for someone else, (catching up with an old friend, taking your mom out to lunch, donating towels and blankets to your local animal shelter)…whatever it is, make it something good!

Love and Peace, Koko

Tip: The theweeklyday asked a question and I wanted to share with you my answer. He was wondering how long they last indoors before the t.p. rolls fall apart. It really depends on the rolls and how you water them. They all are not created equal. However, if I have a “sad” roll (falling apart), I will take another roll and slice along the side and just “wrap” the “sad” roll. This method works really well to hold them together! Save the ends of paper towel rolls. Those are great for doing this with as you can cut them to size. But, you can do that with t.p. rolls too! Great question “theweeklyday”.

DIY Cat Tree, House and Scratching Post

Spencer, King of everything!

Spencer, King of everything!

I was given a great spool. You know the giant spools electricians carry massive amounts of wire wrapped around? Well I was given one, and not gonna lie, the array of ideas that invaded my head of all the things I could do with said spool. This is what I came up with…

Cat tree...bed and scratching post. See they love it!

Cat tree…bed and scratching post. See they love it!

Off to my wood pile I went…

I went to my scrap pile and found some 1×6’s. It would do nicely to make the “lid” or rather the top to my kitty condo. I laid out three pieces of 1×6 boards and drew a circle using the “spool” as the template. You can use any size width wood and lay however many pieces it takes to get to the size you need. You could also use a piece of plywood and cut a whole circle instead of using the tree boards. But as I mentioned I wanted to use up my scrap wood. 😉

I clamped down each board and used my jigsaw to cut the shape.

I clamped down each board and used my jigsaw to cut the shape.

One more to go!

One more to go!

All cut out.

All cut out.

Finishing the lid, I used 1×2 to connect the three pieces together. I wish I had a kreg jig to make pocket holes. But this method works too. 🙂

As you can see I used a lot of screws!

As you can see I used a lot of screws!

I set the lid aside and started to assemble the sides. Again going to my scrap lumber pile I was able to find 1×4’s.

Sanding all the pieces…I had to sand quite a bit, to rid them of the dents and discolorations. After sanding the boards I used a chop saw to cut the boards the height I wanted the “cat house” to be.

I contemplated using “L” brackets to hold the boards in place while I screwed each 1×4 to the top of the spool, however I ended up just screwing them straight to the spool using two screws per board.

I screwed two screws per board from the bottom. See the "L" bracket? I removed it as I found it wasn't necessary and the clamps really didn't help much either! :)

I screwed two screws per board from the bottom. See the “L” bracket? I removed it as I found it wasn’t necessary and the clamps really didn’t help much either! 🙂

You can see from this pic that the boards are wonkie. Don't let that discourage you! It will all work out in the end! Promise.

You can see from this pic that the boards are wonkie. Don’t let that discourage you! It will all work out in the end! Promise.

After all the boards are screwed from the bottom, I put the lid on and began to move boards into place so I could screw down from the top of the “lid”.

The wonkie boards will come together...wait for it...

The wonkie boards will come together…wait for it…

I knew the screws would be showing. So I spaced them apart to be appealing to the eye!

I knew the screws would be showing. So I spaced them apart to be appealing to the eye! And see all the wonkie boards are in place as promised!

Onward!

To the base of the tree…I used sisal to give the kitties an awesome scratching feature! I achieved this by using hot glue and good rope. You don’t have to glue the entire base. You can glue a few inches, wrap the rope, glue a few more inches, wrap rope…and so on…Keep going until you’ve reached the desired look!

This is the rope I used. It's sisal; a natural fiber. There was no odor on the rope. I've bought sisal before via online and gosh was that a mistake! The smell was so awful that no amount of soaking it in any type of solution would get the stench out! I make a point now to only buy rope if I can touch it/smell it. This was from HomeDepot.

This is the rope I used. It’s sisal; a natural fiber. There was no odor on the rope. I’ve bought sisal before via online and gosh was that a mistake! The smell was so awful that no amount of soaking it in any type of solution would get the stench out! I make a point now to only purchase rope if I can touch it/smell it. This was from HomeDepot.

I started right under the sleeping quarter.

I started right under the sleeping quarter.

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My helpers!

Glue and wrap, glue and wrap.

Glue and wrap, glue and wrap…

Another helper...

Another helper…

I stained the whole thing with dark walnut left over from a flooring job I did.  I put three coats of water based poly after.

I stained the whole thing with dark walnut left over from a flooring job I did. I put three coats of water based poly after.

As you saw I stained the piece before I added the sisal. If I were to make another I would probably stain and seal beforehand. Though in the end, I was careful not to get any on the rope. This was an easy project that really didn’t take long at all. Maybe a couple of hours? The longest part was waiting for the stain to dry and the smell to dissipate.

The kitties really like it and this piece doubles as an end table! Remember the lamp shade I made? Here I staged the lamp on that. But since then, I’ve moved it about the room where ever an end table is needed!

This was a fun project and I was happy to create something for my furry friends. They really do like it and love scratching their claws on the sisal. I hope you enjoyed this post and it inspires you to make something for your pets too!

And as you can see...not just for cats!

And as you can see…not just for cats!

Please like, follow, and share, your support means the world to me. It really does! ❤

From my furry friends to yours…All the best, Koko❀

DIY Pillow From Old Pants!

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I made this out of a pair of slacks. Crazy, I know! Tossing out good things just doesn’t make sense to me. I don’t keep stuff around long. I have a plan for all the “stuff” so I keep my house from looking like I’m collecting stuff for the next zombie apocalypse. I knew the stack of slacks would come in handy, I just had to let the ideas flow and make a plan and put it into action! This is what I came up with…✿

I have about ten of these!

I have about ten of these!

I cut off the legs...

I cut off the legs…

I then seem ripped it down one side.

I then seem ripped it down one side.

You can sew leg pieces together to get a really large piece. (Stay tuned to see what I made with leg pieces I sewed together!) You can play around with the angles of the original stitching too. (As in, no need to have everything in a straight line. You can have fun with angling the stitching to go at a diagonal for interest!

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This leg was just the right size for the pillow I am using! Woohoo! 🙂

Also it could be neat to sew the fabric at all angles kind of like a patchwork quilt!

For this pillow I added ruffles using scraps from a sheet I that was a curtain in it's past life! :)

For this pillow I added ruffles using scraps from a sheet I had that was a curtain in it’s past life! 🙂 I made an opening in the center for ease of washing the case.

Ta-da! A pillow out of a pair of pants! This pillow took one pair. I did mention I had a stack of 10...Yay the possibilities!

Ta-da! A pillow out of a pair of pants! This pillow took one pair. I did mention I had a stack of 10…Yay the possibilities! (Notice tiny paw on left? Belongs to cute kitty!)

To ruffle or not to ruffle was the question...Couldn't decide. I did both!

To ruffle or not to ruffle was the question…Couldn’t decide. I did both!

There you have it…Pillows repurposed from slacks! I hope you can find ways to reuse, recycle, rethink the things you have laying around your home. Until next time…Have a glorious day! ✿Koko✿ Please like, follow, and share! I do appreciate your support ❤

DIY Lamp Shade

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I have this lamp shade that has cracks and dents in it. (Actually I have a few shades with cracks and dents in it.) A casualty of the kitties turning every surface and object into their obstacle course. This lamp has been knocked over more times than I can count. I’m surprised the lamp even works! The shade, well it has seen better days.

This is actually its good side.

This is actually its good side.

Today this post is about taking a broken, cracked, dented lamp shade and making it brand new again. Here’s what I did… (Items used: 1 dinged up lamp shade, fabric, scissors, glue gun, glue sticks, measuring tape, lint roller, and a magic wand or a pencil, whichever you have on hand!)

Lint roller is for all the kitty hair attached to said shade. Evidence it was them!!!!

Lint roller is for all the kitty hair attached to said shade. Evidence it was them!!!!

I cut out circles out of fabric I had on hand. (It was a curtain “made from a twin sheet” I fabric painted grey circles on for my daughters bedroom). We’ve moved from that house but I kept the curtains. I cut circles…many, many circles. I sorted out the circles that had any grey in them and set them aside for another project. Really, once you have your circles cut out, you are good to go.

Lots and lots of circles...

Lots and lots of circles…

Find the center using a pencil or magic wand...

Find the center using a pencil or magic wand…

Work the fabric around the pencil...

Work the fabric around the pencil…

I chose to start at the top of the lamp shade. I measured out about an inch between each little “flower” (that’s what I will call them from here on out✿.

And the fun begins! Start hot glueing.

And the fun begins! Start hot glueing. (Please pardon the dire need for a manicure. I work way too much with my hands!)

Yay, first flower! One down.

Yay, first flower! One down.

Then I glued a line of flowers in a straight line to the bottom of the shade. Measuring about an inch apart.

Then I glued a line of flowers in a straight line to the bottom of the shade. Again measuring about an inch apart. This way it gave me a guide to eyeball the rest of the flowers without having to measure. I still kept in mind roughly an inch all around each flower.

And glueing...

Keep on gluing…

And glueing...

Keep on gluing…

Keep on...well you get the picture.

Keep on…well you get the picture.

Almost done.

Almost done.

After you are done, adjust the "petals" (fluff them up)

After you are done, adjust the “petals” (fluff them up) and look for any bare spots.

Bare spot! Oh no.

I found one here… Bare spot! Oh no! Teehee, never fear. Easy fix…

All done!

Glue more as needed… All done!

And there you have it.

Yippee! ❀

And there you have it. A lampshade that was destined for the trash. Now recycled, remade, renewed. All it really cost me was my time.

It really lights up my life and the corner of the room too! ;)

It really lights up my life and the corner of the room too! 😉

You can do this technique with many types of fabric as well as tissue paper! You can cut the shapes into circles or even squares. Technique stays the same. I hope you’ve enjoyed the post. Please “Like, follow and share”. I really do appreciate you popping in!

I hope you find things that will light up your life today! ❀Koko❀

DIY Dog Bed Easy as 1-2-3

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Thinking outside the box can be really fun when creating pet beds. This one is made out of a bass drum.  (My son’s very first drum set when he was five!) He didn’t want to get rid of it so he donated it to my many causes…Stay tuned for what I’ve done to the rest of his drum kit!

So what I did here was simply take off one of the heads and added a pillow.  Her blanket was in the washer at the time, but you get the idea.  Lay something soft down and your pup will know what to do! Not only do I find all my dogs loving this bed (except for the great dane and that’s because only her head would fit), but the kitties love sleeping in it too!

This drum was lovingly refinished, sanded and stained by my son, to allow the natural wood to shine through. You did a fabulous job son!

It’s a conversation starter and looks very stylish anywhere in the home. Get creative…re-think…re-purpose!

What creative ways have you used in making pet beds? Please let me know what you think. Be sure to check back, I have plenty more bed ideas for your furry friends! Paws and kisses…Koko

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Ambiance lighting done simply!

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Lighting doesn’t have to be expensive. A few of these around the house can really add some fun and intimate lighting. As you can see here…all this is, is a large jar with a string of white lights stuffed into it. My favorite is the white lights. I have them pretty much year round, but during holidays, it’s fun to put in purple lights or orange or pink! They are on my mantle as you see here. I also have a couple on top of tall bookshelves and it really adds a nice touch. Makes for great night lights for guests that need to find their way to the kitchen or to the bathroom during the middle of the night. Have fun with it! It’s like fireflies in a jar!

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Even in the bathroom!

Organizing…The Key To A Less Hectic Life…

Organizing…The Key To A Less Hectic Life…

I can’t say enough about organizing.  I’ve said it for years; “An organized life is a happy life”.  (I know there are other things that make for a happy life. 😛 ) But really, how many times do you have to lose your keys before you simply make a hook beside your door?  Or have that one spot you drop your keys onto every time?  Where is that bill?  Under the stack of newspaper only to get accidentally tossed out in the recyclables?  Where is that shirt…only to find it underneath the mountain of clothes you keep tossing, hoping one day you will make it into the Guinness book of world records as the highest pile of laundry!

I find having a place for everything is the key to less stress, as well as, putting things back in its place is equally as important.  I will be posting a series of organizing tips, tricks, and ideas to hopefully help you in your home and life.

I also find being organized helps keep the house cleaner/neater.  Now I am not OCD about organizing.  My books are not alphabetically arranged (though that could be cool…hmmm maybe one day…), I don’t break down if something is out of place, but here at Chateau Koko’s, things do have their place, which makes my life easier as I cheer/care for/and love the people and myriad of animals that come into my world.

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Jars are mixture of bought and reused. Have fun writing on them!

Of course I know what is inside the jars…but when others need to cook, I am not asked, “What/where is the flour, sugar, baking soda, etc.! It does help my life a lot when I can label and others can read! 😀

The top picture are glass jars with lids, that I purchased at Target.  They come in different sizes. I love the way they look on top of the counter.

Tip: I write on the glass with a Sharpe.  Washes off easily if I need to switch out and put something else inside.

Reuse good glass jars.  To clean the labels off I use olive oil (any will do).  I will lay the jar down onto a plate and pour a dollop of oil over it.  Wipe it on and leave for a day or two.  Some labels are more stubborn.  Soaking the jar in water can work too, but some labels don’t come off too well with that method.  I pretty much only do the oil method.  And hey no toxic chemicals.  Just olive oil and if it gets all over my hands; well now I just moisturized them!

If jar lids have an odor from whatever product was inside, you can try soaking them in baking soda or vinegar or one day baking soda and the next vinegar.  Regular dish soap can work too.  If lid gets rusty, then I just don’t use it all together.

Here’s to having a stress free life!  Stay tune for more.  Have a happy day everyone! Koko ❀

Please like, follow and share…your support means the world to me!

Take Care of Ones Own Garbage.

Take care of ones own garbage.

With landfills filling up at astronomical rates, does anyone wonder what will happen next once it’s filled? Do we pollute our oceans by tossing cubes of garbage in hopes that our fish will learn to like to eat cans, paper, and various “garbagie” things? Will we send our garbage out in space? Why not? We won’t see it. But what if we inhabit space one day? Will our views be seas of crumbled wastes floating haphazardly by?

I am most certainly not perfect in this department, though I do think about what I throw away. I agree with recycling. Why don’t our cities have three waste cans; one for green waste, one for plastic and paper, and one for things you can’t put in the other two? When I lived on the west coast, this was how it was done. It was great. The city used the green waste to make mulch and they recycled the “recycled” things. It may not be totally perfect but what a great start! When I moved to the south I noticed many differences. Trash was one of the main things that got to me. When this billing cycle runs out I will be discontinuing my trash service. In my home we already compost all our food waste and paper. When I mow the lawn it goes back into mother earth. I collect the grass once the compost bin gets low to make more mulch and I also use the newly cut grass as mulch in certain areas in my yard that doesn’t mind the “burn”. Branches that fall off the trees on the property get collected/saved for when we do out-door fires (smores and other roasting fun). We take our cardboard and plastic to a recycling center. Yep, it’s more effort and yes I wish they’d come to collect it since they are the one making the money off the paper and plastic people drop off at the centers. Old clothes get remade into things that can be turned into something else or simply donated. I make most of all “cleaner” type things such as counter top sprays, room sprays, bathtub powders, body lotions, etc. And by doing this (Well for me, it is better on my body, as in; I am not ingesting harmful chemicals through breathing or through my skin. For instance, my body lotion is safe enough that if I ate a spoonful I won’t die and I know what touches our skin invariably goes into our body.) By making most of my products I am cutting down on the amount of “bottled” “boxed” things I buy. And most of the things I do buy is in bulk, ie; my baking soda comes in a 13.5 lbs bag. I don’t buy bottled water; I reuse a glass one. I grow a garden. I do wish I could have animals as I would love to have a milking goat. I am also careful of what I do buy; do we really need another???   Bottom line;  I try and continue to try and look for ways to help out this earth. Does my difference help? Does it matter? Well, it makes a difference to me. It matters to me. I am not perfect, but I try, and I do my best.

Recycle where you can. Conserve where you can. Perhaps if we all did a little something, that will be the difference and that does matter. Peace, Koko