DIY Project: Wine Cork Stamp

Did you know wine corks can be turned into stamps?

With Valentine’s Day approaching, I thought it would be fun to make a heart-shaped stamp. Aaron’s preschool is requesting that each child bring a Valentine for the whole class. That’s 33 little Valentine’s that we need to make! I refuse to buy them from a store (because yech), so am going the simple, homemade route.

To make your own stamp, all you need are a wine cork and x-acto knife. It takes just a few minutes, and you end up with a cute little handmade stamp! Use it to make cards, or give it away as a gift. I’ll be saving wine corks from now on!

DIY Wine Cork Stamp

Materials:

  • Pen
  • Wine cork
  • Sharp x-acto knife (like this one)

Instructions:

1. With pen, draw your design on one end of the cork. Make a simple design or shape, so it’s easy to cut.

2. Cut around the design by sticking the knife about 1/4 inch down, tracing the entire shape.

3. Slice into the cork sideways about 1/4 inch, slowly slicing out the edges from the design. Carefully chip away excess cork bits with knife. 

DIY Project: Sweater Laptop Cover

I needed a laptop case to fit my new Macbook Air. Rather than purchase one for $20-$50, I repurposed a sweater into a cozy cover. It cost $3 (for the thrifted Banana Republic sweater), and took about 15 minutes of simple cutting and sewing.

The sweater cover isn’t going to protect a dropped case from being damaged, but I think it will do for my needs. Now I can slip the cover on, insert the laptop in a bag or purse, and rest assured that it will transport safely to Starbucks with me. In your face, expensive laptop covers! Mine has a cool sweater belt bow.

Below is my simple tutorial. Sorry that it’s not more precise, but hopefully you get the gist of how to do it yourself.

DIY Sweater Laptop Cover

Materials:

  • Sweater (ideally with a belt)
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Scissors

Instructions:

1. Lay sweater flat on a table. Cut off sides and arms of sweater, reserving the back side of the sweater. You should have a piece of fabric that’s roughly rectangle-shaped. Lay it flat, and fold in half. 

2. Lay laptop flat onto folded sweater fabric, and trim around it so that it is 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch larger than the laptop.

3. With a sewing machine, finish one side of the fabric (this will be the opening that will slip onto the laptop.

4. Turn the fabric inside out, match up the edges, and finish the remaining two sides with the sewing machine.

5. Use belt to wrap around the covered laptop, and tie securely in place.

Homemade Natural Easter Egg Dye

It’s Holy Week!

Aaron’s school (which is Catholic) has a week and a half of Easter vacation, so I have my hands full with our two kids right now. Pray that we all experience lots of grace and patience up in here!

In preparation for Easter, I’ve been doing some fun, creative things with the kids. We have been reading about Jesus from The Jesus Storybook Bible, decorating and sending Easter cards, and dying eggs.

We tried something new this year – homemade, all-natural Easter egg dye. Though I do have fond memories from childhood of those store-bought neon-colored tablets fizzling in cups of vinegar, I was excited to make our own natural dyes. We spent the morning finding ingredients around the house, and simmering the dyes. I think the blueberries and turmeric made the most vibrant colors. The green from the spinach was more grayish than anything. You can experiment with all sorts of spices and foods – beets, raspberries, coffee. It was a fun kid-friendly activity, and we were quite pleased with our colored eggs.

As we celebrate Easter with church, a potluck, Easter egg hunt, and Easter baskets for the kids, I am reminded of the new life, freedom, and joy we receive from Jesus.

Happy Easter to you!

Homemade, Natural Egg Dye
print this recipe

Hard-boiled eggs
Vinegar
2 tablespoons turmeric (for yellow)
2 tablespoons paprika (for orange/red)
2 cups blueberries (for blue/purple)
2 cups torn spinach (for green)

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil, and add your chosen color ingredient. Let simmer on medium for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and let cool. Strain the liquid into cups or bowls large enough to hold 1-2 eggs. Stir in 1 tablespoon vinegar into each dye. Set your hard-boiled eggs into the dyes, and let stand in fridge for 30 minutes to a few hours, depending on how deep you want the color. Remove eggs from dye, and wipe dry with paper towels.