Quick DIY: Desk Drawer Makeover

Once upon a time I made the mistake of lending my brother a set of drawers from Ikea that I wasn’t currently using. He used it when he moved off campus in college, and when he returned the furniture came back a little beat up. You can’t totally blame him though, Ikea stuff is cheap and not meant to be permanent.

I thought of ways to cover up the dings, but I felt that strategically placed stickers wouldn’t look too classy. I remembered I had some vintage contact paper i’d been saving and thought i’d be a perfect & easy solution.

All you have to do:
1. Take out one of your drawers and trace around the front of it on a large piece of paper or a couple paper bags taped together. Cut a little past the line (towards the inside) and you have a template.
2. Cut a piece of contact paper for each drawer using your template. Peel the backing off the paper and press onto the drawer surface starting at the middle (make sure the drawers are clean!) I wasn’t sure if it would stick too well since my contact paper was old, it did for awhile but started peeling back a bit so I used some spray adhesive to keep them in place. Worked like a charm.

Easy, cheap update. (I have to replace my leopard print chair now because it clashes!)

Make Your Own External Hard Drive

Recently my portable external hard drive kicked the bucket. Like anyone would, I immediately felt panic by not having any backup of my things besides some important files I had in Dropbox. So, I needed to buy a new one pretty quickly. I remembered my brother showing me that hard drive enclosures exist (big props to him) and I removed the perfectly working drive from my old Macbook to turn it into an external one, instead of buying something new. This is especially good if you already have an old hard drive like I did! Saves a lot of money. Here’s a quick how-to.

You will need:
- An internal hard drive, brand new or used
- Hard drive enclosure
- Small screwdriver

If you have a SATA hard drive (most are) make sure that you purchase an enclosure that supports it. Also, be sure it is the correct size (2.5″ is usually laptop drive size.) I bought a cheap enclosure off Amazon–most come with the USB cable as well. You may not even need a screwdriver as some cool enclosures are tool free. The hard drive I used is a 360GB Seagate. When I removed it from my old Macbook I had to unscrew it from a piece of metal casing so it was totally freed.

If you don’t have an old drive and are buying a new one, I would recommend a laptop drive if you want it to be portable. If you get a desktop drive you will need to connect it to a power source.

The rest is easy peasy. It varies by what you purchased–in this case you match the connecter with the hard drive and slide it in the enclosure. Screw it in & you’re ready to connect via USB.

Now it’s time to format it!

Too Short Dress Makeover

I bought this adorable used handmade dress on eBay. It was a bit long for my liking so I took the scissors to it. The dress has a circle skirt so it was challenging to hem & I ended up taking too much off leaving me with too short of a dress. The solution? Eyelet lace trim!

I bought the widest trim I could find to give the skirt the extra length it needed. It worked out perfectly! I was afraid the white would stand out too much but it looks nice with the tiny white contrast stripes in the plaid. I really love the color combo.

The dress is a bit big for me size wise but a belt definitely helps. The person who made it even included belt loops :)

Crafty: Modcloth DIY Dress Challenge // + Tutorial

I wasn’t quite sure what to call this post– but here goes anyway!

I luckily snagged this dress when it went on sale on Modcloth probably a year ago: Record Store Sweetheart Dress made by YA Los Angeles.

record store sweetheart dress

I love the cute casual summer dress, but I wished I could have another one in different, darker colors and a not-so-sheer bottom. That didn’t exist, so I decided to challenge myself to make my own! This is how it came out:

finished dress

I documented the process of figuring out how to make the similar styled frock and wrote up a tutorial. It has quite a bit of steps so I put it up on Flickr as a set.

6- Elastic casing

Plaid & Ruffle Front Summer Dress Tutorial on Flickr

9- Final, hem bottom

Let me know if you make one!

Happy Summer + DIY Tank Tops

It’s finally officially summer! To get in the spirit of the new season (not like I needed to) The boy and I spent Sunday afternoon refashioning some tees into tank tops.

1 // I’ve been hoarding this crazy cool printed shirt I got thrifting for a long while–so glad I waited to cut it up because I love it in this style. What are these kind of shirts even called? ‘Side exposing shirt?’ ‘Slouchy tank?’ I have no idea. I’ve always wanted a tank like this to secretly show the tattoo on my ribs [Is it weird that out of my 6 tattoos my very first one is still my favorite?] Sometimes it makes me sad that I can’t see it :)

I just measured down from the bottom of the sleeves a few inches, followed the bottom line to the top of the sleeves seam & cut the sleeves off. Now that you have a shirt with wide armholes–keep trying the shirt on and cut the arm holes lower & lower until you’re happy with it. I say to gradually keep cutting so you don’t take off too much! You want to make sure there’s still enough coverage in the front. Then cut the neckband off and cut a new neckline. Super easy.

2 // For the guys tank, or a regular girls tank, we just traced a tank top that fit well and cut the sleeves and neckline accordingly. I sewed some tshirt ribbing on for a finished look.

3 // For this shirt, I chopped the top of the tee off below the sleeves & sewed contrast black knit fabric to the top. I used a standard t-shirt pattern (Burdastyle) but omitted the sleeves & took the sides in a bit. Added some buttons at the end.

Fun fact: I NEVER wear flip flops unless i’m at the beach or something. I’m more of a sneakers/flats girl all the way. Why am I wearing them in these pictures? Look what you did to me, summer.

Also, while taking these pictures we were reminded about how mosquitos existed. I had almost forgotten. Boo!

I’m going to make a couple skirts next! What summer DIYs are you working on?