Washi Tape Mat

Hello Friends!

Long time, no DIY! Well, we are working hard on changing that :-) The crew here at Unglued is going to make it a priority to do DIY blogging more often – so consider this the start!

I was browsing on Pinterest the other day (let’s be real, I browse on Pinterest everyday) where found this pin and I immediately thought PERFECT DIY! Seems easy enough, minimal supplies, quick, cute and useful. I don’t know about you, but my rule with DIY is that it had to be useful. I enjoy making things just to make them but my home would be full of like a billion DIYs if I didn’t set rules so that is my rule – useful. Useful to me or as a gift for someone else (that’s how I get away with just making beautiful things!). So, anyways, this fit the bill.

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First of, I gathered supplies- box cutter/scissors/exacto knife, a pencil, a piece of matting, and washi tape of various colors/patterns/sizes. I think the link suggests a frame, which would also work nicely, but I didn’t have a frame so I just used some scrap frame matting that we had in the shop. I also think that cardboard or foam core board would also work nicely.
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Since I used the matting, I needed to cut a hole to make it a frame. I lightly traced the picture (lightly being the keyword, you’ll see why later), then drew another line just a bit further inside of that and cut out that hole.
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I ended up with some weird rough edge but just tried to pick off the bits with my fingers – it’s okay if it’s rough because it will be covered in tape. It just shouldn’t have big divots or chunks missing as tape probably won’t cover that as well. Recap so far – we have measured, cut, double checked that the picture fits.
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Next is the fun part – tape! I picked the flower tape and just went from there. With the edges, I made sure to have enough tape to fully wrap the edges. Once the whole frame is taped, I also put some tape over the ends on the back, just to make sure that the tape would stay stuck.
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I ran into another snag here. Once all taped, I could still see my pen marks from tracing the original picture. This could be easily avoided it if I had used a pencil and erased the lines OR if I had flipped the mat after cutting but before taping (so it would be backwards). It was too late for these ideas so I just added some glitter tape on top as an accent. Now it totally looks like that was the plan, right? :-D
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VOILA! All done! So easy! Now you have a frame or a matte for an existing frame. At the end, I decided to draw a different picture for it, and it still looks great.
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So go!
Just make it!
And have an awesome day!

Handmade Holiday Tips from Pearl: Handmade Art & Design (Part 1!)

We caught Ashley’s instagram posts on her great handmade and vintage decorating and asked her to share some photos and handmade decor tips with us!  Ashley is the awesome artist and designer behind Pearl: Handmade Art & Design.  This is Part 1 from Ashley – we are stoked for Part 2 as well with some DIY gift tips coming soon!
From Ashley:
It’s easy to create a handmade home every holiday! It’s especially heartwarming when you have little ones that love everything sticker, glue and pom pom related. We have lived in our home for a little over 5 years and I truly feel like it is finally starting to feel like our little humble abode.

The first quick home deocr project is an easy printed banner to accent any space. The font used is MTF Banner and a simple plaid stock photo placed into the font. After it is cut out, easily hot glue it to a piece of thrifted pom trim and adorn. This vintage window above was found at our parent’s lake place and we had glass inserted into it for our entryway.


The second fun project is a wood wall plaque (above). The best part of these wood plaques is the metal clip. The web and pinterest have hundreds of fun free printable prints that you can change very cheaply and quick. This print I designed as an inspiration from one of my Holiday cards in my Etsy shop.

This wood plaque was found at Michael’s but it would be even more amazing with a fresh cut tree slice. The metal clip was found at Office Depot and had a suction cup attached to it which is removed. The metal clip is then easily screwed right into the wood. Print and trim your print to hang and you’re done!


Credits for the wall are: Barn Painting is by Brock Drenth

Keep Christ in Christmas is from: Wildflowers, Inc.

And the Live Simply print is from: Katie Daisy

And the “&” sign I made from an old North Dakota map and modge podge.


The last fun quick DIY is for the littles. Our little lady just turned 3 and is very curious about what this amazing Holiday is all about. I picked up this fun advent calendar for .99 cents and the tree skirt for .49 cents at the Dakota Boys & Girls Ranch in West Fargo. It only held a little yellow tree to move from day to day and we knew that wouldn’t be enough for her to understand. We took a special trip to Hobby Lobby to find some little ornaments to stash into each pocket. The nativity scene along with some additional candy canes to fill up the 24 pockets.

The tree was a tad sad and needed some color. We found these fun sparkly poms for 1.00 at Michael’s, the beautiful red embroidery thread and needles from Modern Textiles and made a very fast string of ornaments for her tree!


The last project is having your kids help with mailing your friends and family with Holiday cards. What toddler doesn’t love stickers? To some sending holiday cards may seem cumbersome or too time consuming but with good tunes, plenty of washi tape and snacks it can actually be fun! I design our cards and print them locally at Short Printer, as well at the return address labels. The washi tape always comes from Modern Textiles!


Thank you so much Ashley for sharing your handmade decorating with us!!  Watch for Part 2 with some great DIY gifts Ashley is going to share later this week!  You can check out her Etsy site here and also her great prints at our shop in Fargo and Sioux Falls!

How to get you and your work noticed when filling out a juried show application

So it’s time for you to fill out an application for a show that you’re just dying to get into and it’s juried. What is a juried show you ask? They’re typically very competitive shows that get more wonderful applicants than they have room for so they have to narrow down their selection through a juried process. They place each applicant’s work in front of a jury and carefully select the best and widest array of work possible; trying their best to keep the vendors selected completely different from one another.

If you have to win over the jury on your product before you are accepted into this amazing show, how do you do that when the jury can’t physically hold, touch, and inspect your product? You do this through having excellent photographs. Don’t just set your product on your kitchen table and snap a picture. Have fun with it! Here are a few pointers for wowing the jury with your product photography:

1. Show off your product!

• Think about your favorite aspects of your product and be sure you highlight those in your photos. Are you drawn to the delicate features you’ve individually hand drawn onto your product or are you in love with the simplicity of your elegant accessories? Photograph that shit.


2. Put thought into it. Create a layout.

• Don’t just set your product on your kitchen table, snap a photo, and call it good. Put some thought into it! Think about where your product will be used or worn. Perhaps your photography skills would be best utilized in your product’s natural environment. Or perhaps, your product would shine best with a simple background; having the sole focus be on your product. What about incorporating simple props into your photo to add variety and show the scale of your product? There are many ways to have an excellent photo!

• As an example, for my small accessories I like to use a smooth-paper sketch pad (texture can be distracting) and fold it into an L-shape between the wall and the base of my photography station. I then set my product in the center and photograph close-up, making sure to crop out anything in the background that might be distracting.


3. Play with the lighting.

• In my opinion, this is probably the most important factor to having an excellent photo. Indirect natural daylight is key and whatever you do: NO FLASH! The flash on your camera is just like putting your product in direct sunlight; it gets bleached and washed out and your photo loses so much of it’s potential luster. I like to photograph my jewelry in my studio, with my photography station against the east wall that lets in light through our south-facing window. As nerdy as it is, I study when the best time to photograph is and in my studio with the set-up I have, the best photos are taken between 11:00am and 1:00pm. Play around with different spots throughout your home and decide where the best place (and time of day!) to photograph your work is!

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4. Show your product’s versatility and variety.

• Typically, juried shows ask for a submission of 3-5 photos of your best work. If you have a ton of work, it can be super overwhelming trying to narrow down your photo selection to just 3-5 photos! What I like to do is submit one close-up, one with my branding displayed, one of my product in its natural environment (so for me, a jewelry artist, I have a photo of my work being modeled), and then 1-2 photos that I think will be the icing on the cake.

•If you make many different items, choose a few favorites and be sure to include a photo of each one. You never know which one will catch the jury’s eye!


5. Don’t procrastinate!

• Being a procrastinator myself, I struggle with this one! But if you want excellent photos, you must plan ahead and take your time. Carefully select each and every photo that you submit. And hey, submitting your photos and application in a timely manner looks great in the eye of the jury!

A few last minute pointers:

• You don’t have to have an amazing high-tech camera or expensive photo-editing software to achieve a wonderful photo. Work with what you have. I usually use my Nikon D3200 for my online photos and edit them with the simple editing features of Iphoto; however, the camera on my Iphone takes wonderful photos as well! If I use my Iphone to take a picture, I like to play with the lighting using the PicTapGo App (best $0.99 I’ve ever spent!). There are also many free photo-editing programs online!


•When editing your photos, it’s important to not overdo it. Keep the colors, textures, etc. as close to their truest state as possible. With this in mind, it’s amazing what a little brightening up of a photo can do!


• Slow and steady wins the race! A steady hand will snap the best photo. Keep your camera as still as possible while photographing; any movement will cause your photo to be blurry. I typically sit on the floor with my kness pressed against me and rest my camera on my knees (it’s not a pretty sight, but it does the trick!) otherwise you can rest your camera on a stack of books at the height you want your camera to be or use a tripod. All of these will greatly improve the quality of your photo.

•Lastly, if you’ve done all these steps and still didn’t get into the show you applied for, don’t be hard on yourself! Everyone is going to have a show that they don’t get into. Use that application as experience and have at it again the following year! Practice makes perfect, right?

– Dana is the artist and maker behind botny and an awesome part of our Unglued Crew this year!  She has been in every Unglued: Craft Fest since its existence and also in shows like Craftstravaganza, No Coast Craft-o-rama, Alley Fair, and more.  As an animal lover she regularly volunteers with 4 Luv of Dog Rescue and is a pitbull advocate and black cat lover!  You can also follow her animals and family with instagram on their adventures.


Ashley’s note:  Thank you, Dana!!  Unglued: Craft Fest applications open up on our website on Nov 1 – Dec 8, 2014!  One of our biggest changes to the application is that we are only taking submitted photos (3-5 photos emailed) of your work rather than also having the option to submit a website.  We wanted to “even out the playing field” between those that submit websites with unlimited amounts of product photos for the jury to check out versus those that submit the 3-5 emailed photos (and to have a more accurate view of which products you are submitting for the Fest).  So get those photos ready!  We can’t wait to see them!

Handmade Home Tour Fun

“This is the kind of day that changes your life.” Handmade Home Tour Participant


We had such a blast during our first-ever Handmade Home Tour!  Especially because the tour sold out and we had so much interest in it we wanted to be sure to share with you some of our favorite photos from the tour on August 23.  It was a rainy afternoon so the bicycle portion of the tour didn’t happen, but we carpooled with over 40 attendees around to 5 different homes and apartments in the Fargo area and ended with an inspiring workshop at the Green Room Design Lab.

PicMonkey Collage attendees

Each tour was guided by one of us from Unglued.  At each of the 5 homes on the tour attendees got a chance to explore the space and home, enjoy desserts and drinks, and then gather around to have time with the homeowner/renter to hear about their style inspiration and handmade elements to their home – and also ask questions.  It was a home tour restyled to allow time to truly get inspired, get to know the homeowner, and see how the “story” of their home fits them.  It was awesome!

PicMonkey Collage snacks

Below we recap the 5 homes with some photos by the talented Kelsey Sargent from Songbird Illustrations!  Thanks for checking it out and check back for next year’s dates in early spring!



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Check out our Pinterest Handmade Home Page here for some great curated inspiration by our Unglued crew!

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Home #1 was Dana and Adam’s home where they reside with 2 wonderful pups and 2 cats.


Dana has been one of our crafters at Unglued and working at the shop as well!  It was completely awesome to walk through her and Adam’s home and her studio.   Sooo many great handmade, vintage, and upcycled items.  We loved the variety in the decor and how it was all cohesive and each item had its place and fit perfectly.  They had just finished some larger items they had DIY’d like their credenza and told the story of using a local hardwood shop to create their coffee table with pin legs they sourced.  We also got to check out their super cute patio area complete with hibiscus flowers even!  The thing I remember the most that Dana said  was that they keep their clean aesthetic by if they buy something new it should replace something they have.  It totally follows the quote “Have nothing in your house you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” (William Norris).  You can also see Dana’s home tour featured on the Etsy blog a couple years ago here!

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“Getting ideas to decorate your home, getting that inspired feeling that helps to drive a vision into taking place and getting to meet so many creative people!”

- a “favorite thing” by a Handmade Home Tour Attendee


dana large collage

Home #2 was The Cloud House – home to Regin, Megan, and their adorable daughter.


The Cloud House has been featured in our local paper before and is famous for the cloud room that floats over the entry way into their house.  The cloud room is used for yoga, movie-watching, guests, and more.  This energy efficient modern and Scandinavian-styled home has an unbelievable story that we got to learn about from Megan!  They basically built a home around a home to flood proof it with a concrete wall (they are located close to the Red River).  Inside the home areas are reminiscent of the previous home such as exposed walls and stucco.  Megan’s own beautiful original art is also in the home along with others – even their sidewalk pieces were made by their architectural students that were left at school!  Just about everything from the Cloud House was sourced locally such as security glass from the Fargo airport!  You can read more of their story from the article back in 2012 here.
PicMonkey Collage cloud house inside


PicMonkey Collage stepping stone

“Seeing and hearing about the cloud house from its owner was inspiring in a way I never thought it would be (I didn’t think uber-modern Scandinavian would be my thing, but that’s the place I can’t stop thinking about).” – Handmade Home Attendee


PicMonkey Collage cloud house

Home #3 was Lauren & Robby’s home with their sweet baby girl!


Lauren had been featured in the Forum’s home tour section and came highly recommended!  Leading up to the tour some of Lauren’s friends had stopped in and were raving about the level of handmade beauty in this home – most done all by Lauren herself – and it was just awesome in real life!  Lauren had made so incredibly many pieces throughout their home that complimented other handmade pieces and art she had bought/received or even found during clean up week!   From their adorable grey/yellow nursery to their hanging book chandelier in their kitchen to the repurposed photo globe we all had questions how everything was made and were inspired to take home ideas for our own homes!  It was such a great inspiration of how projects from Pinterest can be made (like seriously for real made, not just pinned!) and in turn made in such a way that tells the story of your home by personalizing pieces and choosing ones that represent things and styles you love.

Laurens collage


“I really enjoyed seeing that there are so many unique places in our community. I also like that these are not all brand new homes like the Parade of Homes, but instead places that the homeowners have put time and effort into making it perfect for them.” – Handmade Home Attendee

PicMonkey Collage lauren


Home #4 was the apartment of Sophie who is an incredible local artist!

Sophies collage

Sophie’s apartment came recommended to us by local artists in town!  Her use of space, original art by herself and other local artists, and the plentiful amazing plants throughout it complimented vintage and found pieces and furniture.  The highlight of her main room was this huge vintage map from Midmodmadhaus here in Fargo.  The apartment resides in a historic area of Fargo with a view of a large park here right from her fun, chill porch.  People were so interested in the build of this unique apartment place with the walls that had bump-out stripes, the pink 50’s bathroom tile, and to learn from Sophie about her favorite types of plants and which she’s had the most success with.  The next biggest question was where she got the amazing twig ball from (Zandbroz!).


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“I think our homes should reflect who we are, and this tour was fun as it allowed us to see that in many different ways. And who would not have loved all the special treats! Yum!!! I also met some really nice people and it was fun to share this experience with them.” – Handmade Home Attendee


Home #5 was Katie’s home from The White House Boutique where her family resides on historic 8th Street.

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Katie’s home is a vintage-lovers and upcyclers dream…like seriously a dream!  The home itself is incredibly unique with rounded door ways and windows, wood walls, original wallpaper, breakfast nooks that were for house staff in the past, and huge sun room.  Katie’s style and decor coincides with The White House Boutique taking vintage items and creating something new out of them.  Things like upcycling a suitcase or even hollow vintage TV to become a bar cart/holder, adding washi tape to piano keys to add a hint of whimsy, or even something as simple and beautiful as displaying Rifle Paper Co. wrapping paper in an antique bin can totally change up a room and fit perfectly.  This house must have been built for entertaining and all of her found and created items curates an atmosphere of inspired home parties and warm fuzzies!  Check out more on The White House Boutique’s blog!


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“All of it!”

- Handmade Home Attendee response to “What was your favorite thing about the tour?”


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Seriously what an awesome day!! 

Afterwards we headed to the Studio  to meet up with Leanne from the Green Room.  We enjoyed more desserts, a fancy cocktail, and a DIY to finish off the evening with inspiration!!  We emphasized to not go home wishing away where you live but to think about the most inspiring pieces, decor, and styles that hit home to each person individually and to find ways to use those things in their own home to be a place each person loves and wants to simply call home.  Can’t wait for next year!!

PicMonkey Collage post diy

Flower Potluck Gold Leaf Mason Jar

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On Thursday, July 31 we are pairing up with Prairie Petals for a Flower Potluck inspired by Kinfolk!  Below we have our DIY for gold leafing a mason jar but you are welcome to join us on this beautiful summer night to make your own, enjoy desserts and drinks, and learn to arrange flowers based on what you have in your backyard, the wild, and from a shop!  Your “hot dish” to bring to the potluck is 12 stems of flowers in water to share. These can be wild flowers, from your garden, or bought (Prairie Petals will get you set with 20% off a dozen flowers as well when you mention this workshop!). This beauty of an evening will take place at Elevate Executive Meeting Suites at 210 Broadway on the 4th floor.  You can register for tickets HERE!

crab apple flower potluck

Gold Leaf Mason Jar DIY



Mason Jar (we used a quart size with regular mouth)

Masking Tape/Painters Tape

Foam Brush

Gold Leaf (ie. metal leaf)

Gold Leaf Adhesive Size

Gold Leaf Sealer (spray or brush on)

gold leaf mason jar DIY-01

1.  Tape off the top with your tape.  Be sure to press down well so no adhesive sneaks under.

2.  Apply gold leaf adhesive size.  We’d do an area big enough to lay down a full sheet at a time.

NOW WAIT!  Allow the size to get less milky looking and actually feel tacky to touch.

3.  Apply gold leaf sheets.  As you lay it down on the jar you’ll begin to smooth it down more with your fingers and can tear off pieces that aren’t covering adhesive to use in other areas.  The letters are a little tricky on the mason jar and require more intentional smoothing with your finger.  Be sure to not use fingers that have the adhesive on them as you smooth out the leaf.

4.  This photo is an example of what happens if you don’t wait for the adhesive size to be tacky enough – it’ll slip around in areas.  This is totally fine because you can wait longer and apply more adhesive size over this area and gold leaf sheets/pieces.  It’s just annoying;)  So wait, really.

5.  Once you have all the gold leaf on you want apply sealer.  Leave your masking tape on.  You can brush on or use a spray sealer specific for gold leaf.

6.  Remove tape!  We usually don’t wait for everything to dry so just be sure to slowly pull the leaf off.

flower potluck edited

Add flowers!  And come to our Flower Potluck – it’ll be a beautiful night to hang out with old and new friends as well!  This is a part of our Handmade Home Series so check out more plus our Handmade Home Tour by bicycle as well on August 23.

Happy leafing!

Late Night Craft Party Recap DIY

late night craft party

As part of our Handmade Home Series we hosted a Late Night Craft Party…our first-ever with more to come quarterly!  Gold leafed agate coasters were created, bitters for cocktails were made, and a new garden & tonic drink recipe found.  Below is a recap of how this fun was created for you to try out this summer!

It’s no secret we LOVE GOLD LEAF!  We also love agates.  Two of the ultimate tutorials we learned from are here and here!  Chelsea Thorson of Raine Design instructed with some helpful hints we learned from her as well:

agate coasters

1.  Get your agate slices.  Make sure you have clean fingers prior to touching gold leaf!

2.  Apply gold leaf adhesive (we used a foam brush but you can use a paint brush).  This is the most important step!  Be sure to avoid areas you don’t want the gold leaf to go.  Allow to get tacky prior to the next step.

3.  Lightly take pieces of gold leaf and carefully tap onto the edges of the coaster where adhesive was applied.

4.  Use a non-sticky finger to rub edges to flake off extra pieces of gold leaf.

5.  Apply CLEAR adhesive stickies to bottom of coaster.

6.  Apply gold leaf sealer.  Since this is metal leaf and not real gold it will tarnish without sealer.


Bitters!  Our Late Night Craft Party included making 2 bottles of bitters – the “spice” of cocktails.  We had 4 oz and 2 oz glass dropper bottles, vodka, and a variety of spices (star anise, cardamom, coffee beans, cinnamon, orange zest, cacao nibs, and more!).  People chose their spices to put in the bottles and filled it with vodka.  We also had ways to decorate the bitters bottles with gold leaf, wax seals, and more.  About a week after these sit the spices can be strained out and the bitters mix filled back into the bottles.


Cocktail Recipe!  Mixologist Sophie Johnson crafted up a Garden & Tonic Cocktail Recipe that she also designed an adorable recipe card for below.  All ingredients were mixed and enjoyed!

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Have a beautiful summer!!  Be sure to join us for more of our Handmade Home Series coming up this summer and our next Late Night Craft Party this fall!

Etsy Craft Party: Fargo 2014

“photography is the beauty of life captured.” tara chisholm

etsy craft party logo

Fargo, ND joined the Etsy Global Crafty Party this past June 6, 2014!  We had such a sweet turnout that we didn’t really anticipate – thank you all for coming and creating!  Here’s a little photo recap of the wonderful night of recapturing old photos (amazing photography by Penny Burns of Northern Stories!).  We had such a great time working with photos to get them off our phones and computers and onto our home walls that look forward to more photo workshops in the future!


Our party was held at the Elevate Executive Meeting Suite downtown Fargo.  It was a tish dreary outside, but we still were able to open it up to the beautiful patio!



kodak to nodak

(print by Lens & Limestone of Moorhead, MN!)



Workshop instructor and coffeeshop manager Angelique guided attendees through a wall banner that could be sewn or glued.  We were stoked how many people chose to try out a sewing machine who hadn’t done much sewing (or any!) before.  Super cool.

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Taea Made’s Emily manned the embroidered photo station with her sweet background in embroidery and needlework!  Initially we planned for mostly teaching French knots but Emily was blown away by how adventurous people got in wanting to learn more stitches.

jenni photo

polaroid room

cutting photo


Attendee Brandi brought a HEDGEHOG.  Finley was a great creative inspiration.  SERIOUSLY.


polaroid necklace supply

polaroid necklace create

My personal favorite is the tiny Polaroid necklace…super adorable.


polaroid coastesr 2

etsy big party 2

Chelsea of Raine Design had the popular Polaroid coasters and tiny Polaroid necklaces.  At one point so many coasters were being created we had to run back to our shop to improvise with supplies to get everyone finished projects to take home!



showing banner

nichole coaster

me polaroid

friends embroidery

We included this event as part of our Handmade Home Series kick-off!!  Check out more kick ass inspired home workshops to round off your summer to creative perfection.  We’re here for your creative outlet and connecting with other crafty people moments!  Huge thanks to Etsy for their big help with supplies for the night, our Unglued crew, our sweet instructors Angelique, Raine Design, and Taea Made, AMAZING PHOTOS by Penny Burns of Northern Stories, the Kilbourne Group and Jenn & Cass for your sweet venue help, and all of you for participating in this beauty of a night!

Campy Craft Project Party

We are joining the North Dakota Today Show Monday morning (watch here!) to share about our downtown Summer Camp along with some crafty camp-inspired projects.  We’d love for your campers to join in the fun for one heckuva summer – below is some inspiration with a science project with bouncy balls, adventure project with our explorer book, and an a-frame tent with the coolest fabric.  As a bonus at the very end we’ve got some healthy camp snacks as well!

Bouncy Balls

Throw in a little bit of science with your household items to create a bouncy ball!  These little guys need to be stored in a ziplock bag when not used and will last a couple weeks.  “Real” super balls are made by compressing rubber with thousands of pounds, but this is a great DIY you can do with any age right at home.



Borax (in the cleaning aisle near detergents)



Elmers Glue

Food Coloring

Also:  2 cups/small bowls to mix in, 1/2 cup measuring cup, tablespoon, popsicle stick or something to mix with, paper towel, ziplock baggie to store in

bouncy balls-01

1.  In one bowl/cup mix 1/2 cup of very hot tap water and 1 tablespoon of borax.  Mix until it mostly dissolves.

2.  In another bowl mix 1 tablespoon of Elmer’s glue and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.

3.  Add 1-3 drops of food coloring and mix.

4.  & 5.  Drop the glue mixture into the borax mixture.  Let sit before mixing for 20 seconds.  Stir around a bit for 20 seconds.

6.  Use a fork or popsicle stick to get the glue mixture out of the container.

7.  Begin to knead and roll with your hands.  Little air bubbles will maybe pop and feel re-sticky.  Drop in borax mix again and stir around.  Take out again and it’ll be less sticky.  Pat your hands occasionally on a paper towel to start to help the ball to dry.  Balls will not maintain shape – reroll each time you take out of baggie!

8.  Balls will bounce best on tables and against wall!  They won’t bounce very high directly on the floor while standing.


*Put a few mason jars together and try to bounce balls into certain jars for certain points!

*Bounce balls off garage!

*What to do with all that borax?  Try monster slime, silly puddy, or grow crystals!

*Create different shapes to see how angles affect the bounce.


Explorer’s Book

treasure book 12-1


Variety of envelopes, little bags, sketch paper

Scrap leather (can substitute paper grocery bag, cardboard, thick fabric, etc. instead of leather)

Glue (hot glue or tacky…I hate tacky glue because I don’t have patience, but just give your drying time longer if you use it!)


Hole Punch


Accessories like feathers, beads

explorers book-01

1.  Cut sketch paper down to largest envelope size.  Line up papers how you want them to go in the book.

2.  Cut the leather or substituted material to be a little wider on all sides than the papers/envelopes (big enough for a hole punch to go on both short sides).

3.  Optional:  Sew around edges to embellish or add any fun stitching for interest!

4.  Glue a full side of envelope to each wrong side of leather to anchor the insides.

5.  Glue the rest of the papers/envelopes together to these but only glue up to the middle on each to allow for easy opening.

6.  Punch a hole on both sides of the short ends of leather on both layers.

7.  Pull your cord/twine through your hole punches.

8.  Use scrap leather or fabric to glue on a “binding” to the end of the book.

9.  Tie some feathers together.  Glue a small piece of twine to the back.

10.  Tie feathers to the main cord to allow it to move back and forth to allow easy tying still of main cord.

Then go take your explorer book to the park, beach, or on your summer trips!  Collect any fun nature items and create other fun projects with your collections.  Maybe even create a scavenger hunt with items that would fit slick in the explorer book as well!

treasure book 13-1

A-frame Tent DIY

For this tent we pretty much followed the instructions found with this blog post.  We’ll show you a few things we focused on below as well!  We did skip the hemming of the ends of the tent as we wanted to make this as easy as possible, but you sure can go for it!

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We used 4 – 1″x 2″ x 48″ pieces of standard lumber from Menards – the beauty is they come this size already!  Same with the dowel – we used a 48″ x 3/4″ dowel.  You certainly don’t have to drill the hole through the 1″ x 2″‘s and could just use more twine to hold the dowel in place on top of the sides.

tent drill

But if you do drill be sure to do it through all 4 1″x2″ about 6″ from the top.  This was exciting to me to try with a 3/4″ spade bit.  No joke.  We did it on our way out to a fancy evening;)

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You’ll see in the full blog tutorial more details, but we decided to sew on the elastic pieces with 2 zig zag stitches that we went back and forth on quite a few times to strengthen it.

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We also are obsessing over Modern Textiles fabric of course…so we also had to buy mini pom poms instead of twine!!

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It’s like a perfect little reading nook, play area out of the sun, perfect for indoor rainy days, and whatever you want!  The frame came to about $12 for the wood pieces so it’s really up to whatever fabric/vintage sheet/twine you want to use for the rest.  We used 83″ x 44″ of fabric and it worked perfectly :)

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Bonus Snack Time!

Roasted Strawberry Parfait 


Check out the full recipe we used here.   Loved this!  Roasted strawberries are to die for.  No measuring was involved here, but we combined quartered strawberries with brown sugar.  Put them on parchment paper to bake at 425 degrees for about 8 minutes.  Combined Greek yogurt with local honey and then layered!

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Layer with the yogurt mix, strawberries, and granola (we used a delicious organic blueberry/apple grandola) and top with mint.

Fruit Cone

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For this we used a teaspoon to make little half balls of melon!  Ultimately we were going for blueberries but the grocery store was out?!  So blackberries won.  We put greek yogurt again combined with honey in the base and then layered with the fruit using the yogurt as the “glue.”  We also topped it with a little piece of mint.  It’d be fun to substitute some cool whip as well!

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