MAKE YOUR OWN PERSONALIZED SIGN

Once upon a time, we had some very crappy table nests in the house. They were bought when we were very young, foolish (somethings never change) and we didn’t have much money. We needed little tables around the house so the nest was bought.

The years passed by and the tables survived few moves and many different uses before the legs broke. Despite having no emotional attachment whatsoever to these not-so-nice set of tables, I decided to keep the top of 2 of the tables as they were made of solid wood and I knew (ok, I thought? I hoped!)  they could be up-cycled at some stage and become a whole new product.  6 years later, I feel vindicated.
Make your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comI always liked old signs. Whenever I see an old sign in a second-hand shop I have to stop myself from buying it because, as much as I like old signs, I don’t want a sign that says nothing about my family in my house. I feel like I need to have some sort of personal connection with it, something that reminds us of something but as that was looking very hard to find, I decided to make one myself.

I knew exactly where I wanted to place it : crowning the gallery wall (does it sound posh or what!?!).

I wanted the sign to feel like an extension of the gallery wall but a tad bit different. Same but different, very clear, right?
Make your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comFor the “same” part, I decided to paint the background of the sign, aka the top of my table, with the same colors as my gallery wall: grey and white. I painted the stripes with Autentico Chalk Paint (Soft Grey and Casa Blanca) and then I distressed it by sanding it with fine grit sandpaper to make it feel old. Lastly, I gave it a coat of clear wax to seal the paint and to make it smoother. I love it!
Make your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comMake your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comI just wanted a simple but meaningful sign, a number and a letter. I got the 4 because there are 4 of us and the letter B because all our surnames start with B. It doesn’t get any more personal and simple than that, right?

I  also painted the letters with Chalk Paint. First with the grey and then some pink (Antique Rose) so when I distressed the edges by lightly sanding them you can see the grey underneath ever so slightly. To give it a more romantic tone, I added some floral washi tape to the letters. That’s just me, a romantic at heart…
Make your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comMake your own personalised sign - OrganisingChaosBlog.comI then only had to glue the letters to the sign. It was a tough decision though… 4B or B4… I ended up going for 4B thus avoiding having to explain that the sign did not say “before”… which of course was going to happen…

I totally love the contrast between the rough grey and white background, and the vintagy (totally a word!!) and romantic feel of the letters.

So there it is, my very own, personalized, hand-made and full of meaning sign.
How easy was that? very!

Chaotic Itzi

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DECORATING PUMPKINS, 4 WAYS

I didn’t grow up celebrating Halloween. It is not something that was big in Spain when I was a child but since moving to Ireland and having children, Halloween seems to be getting bigger and bigger in my house. More decorations, more lights, more sweets. Bigger is better according to my kids and I kind of agree. I usually find myself buying bags of sweets with my shopping, keeping black pieces of paper so we can make bats to hang around the house and planning costumes from about mid September onward. We can safely say that I have totally embraced this Irish pagan festival.

Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways

When it comes to the traditional Halloween pumpkin, I usually carve it.  The problem is that if you submit to peer pressure from the kids and carve it few days in advance, the pumpkin gets a bit yucky by the time Halloween comes so my options were to hide the pumpkins or to decorate them in a different way to avoid the unwanted pumpkin soup…

1. PAINT IT

The main advantage of this way of decorating your pumpkins, is that you can literally use anything you have around in your house. Any color and any type of paint as it is not something you are going to keep long-term. Painting the pumpkin will also help disguise any ugly or brown parts that the pumpkin may have.
Paint it all or just a little bit. You choose how much work you want to take on.

Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 waysOrganising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways

2. DRESS IT UP

So many ways you can dress the pumpkin up: cut out shapes, bandages, buttons, bows, washi tape… Make it as cute or as scary as you want. It’s Halloween, anything goes really….
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 3 ways
3. CARVE IT

Carving is the most traditional and popular way of decorating pumpkins around this time of the year, but that doesn’t mean that carving has to be boring. You can have funny, scary, cute and evil faces. You don’t have to limit yourself to carving faces. You can go for different designs, it all depends how handy you are with the knife.
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
4. DRILL IT

Drilling a pumpkin is a similar technique to carving in that you still need to empty the pumpkin and put a light inside, but the drilling gives the pumpkin a more contemporary and a slightly grown up look. More sophisticated, maybe?

Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways
Organising Chaos - Decorate pumpkin: 4 ways

What are your plans for Halloween? Have you bought your pumpkin?

Share your designs and plans with us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with the hashtag
#chaoticpumpkin #chaotichalloween

Chaotic Itzi

Craftsy

UPDATING FRUIT BOXES

When we were planning our 20 year anniversary, Mr B and I realized that at least 1/3 of our guests would be children. Most of our friends and family are at the similar stage in life as us, with kids, and we wanted to make sure that the party was very inclusive and that both parents and kids would have a great time.
Kid's area at the party
I decided to set up an area for the kids. I organised some entertainment for them and I set up a little table for them to help themselves and to have fun. As the table was very small, I needed more surface in which to put food and drinks as well as carry them from the house to the field where the party was held.
Updating a fruit box to use as a tray
I decided to use some fruit boxes that my local fruit shop kindly donated. I love the wood mixed with the different designs and colors in the fruit boxes but I also wanted to personalize them and also to make them fit into my design scheme.

I used some paint to color the sides of the boxes in some of them as some of the designs weren’t to my taste.  I used washi tape to decorate the sides of the box.
Updating a fruit box with washi tape
Updating a fruit box to use as a tray 3
I covered the bottom of the box with some pretty paper matching the washi tape. It looks pretty, don’t you think?
Updating a fruit box to use as a tray
They were extremely useful on the day to carry food and beverages around and to display food. It also helped us in the tidying up the following day. I am currently using them in my room (I have glued some felt at the bottom of the box to avoid scratching the shelves).
Updating a fruit box to use as a tray
I love the idea of extending the life of something that has already done a great job. It now looks prettier and it will last for another good few years. Up-cycling at its best!
Updating a fruit box with washi tape
Have you up-cycled anything recently?
Chaotic Itzi

Paper Crafts Supplies

PAINTED WOODEN SPOONS

I was looking at my kitchen utensils the other day and I realized that most of my wooden spoons and spatulas were cracked, broken or burnt. They have been hard at work for far too long so it was time to retire them and buy new ones, and since I had to buy new ones, I decided to give them a splash of color by painting them.
Painted Wooden Spoon - OrganisingChaos
I spend good few hours a day cooking and colorful utensils will definitely put a smile in my face, especially during those grey days that we can’t seem to shake off.
Wooden spoons ready to paint
Painter's tape for painting wooden spoons
This is a very easy and budget friendly project. All you need is your favorite color paints, wooden utensils and some painter’s tape. I decided I was going to paint some stripes, so I used the painter’s tape to mark the lines.
Organising Chaos - Painted Wooden Spoons
I would suggest not to paint too low down in the spoons if you are planning to use normal paint for this project, you don’t want your paint and your food mixing.
OCB -  - Painted Wooden Spoons
Aren’t they looking pretty? They really put a smile in my face – and some people say that I am hard to please,,, I don’t know what they are talking about…
Painted Wooden Spoon - OrganisingChaos
Have an amazing day,
Chaotic Itzi

PAINTED WOODEN HANGERS

I always love those images in magazines with kid’s clothes hanging from a cute hanger in a beautiful room but pretty hangers are hard to come by and when they do, they are usually way beyond my price range.

The boys have cool clothes, but with my medically confirmed allergy to ironing, shirts tend not to feature in their (or our) wardrobes but I still feel that their rugby, football jerseys and their jackets deserve pretty hangers.
OCB - Painting Wooden Hangers
All you need for this project is wooden hangers and some paint. A tip not to spend too much on paint is to buy some tester pots, this way you get a variety of colours for different projects that don’t take up too much space, for a small amount of money.
OCB - Painting wooden hangers
I bought these painted wooden hangers in Penny’s recently – cheap and cheerful indeed (you can find similar ones here) and I just painted them with dots and flowers.
OCB - Painting wooden hangers
OCB - Painting wooden hangers
I am totally in love with the result – the colours and pattern. Pretty hangers and pretty things make us happy.
OCB - Painting wooden hangersOCB - Painting wooden hangers
What puts a smile in your face around the house? What projects make you happy?
Happy day lovely people.
Chaotic Itzi
Organising Chaos

UP-CYCLING A PLAY HOUSE INTO A CHILDREN'S SHED

When Big Monkey was 2 and a bit, we got him a play house for the garden. Back then we didn’t get to go out for walks as much as I would have liked as Chaotic Monkey was only a baby napping a lot, so it was important to me that Big Monkey would have somewhere to play in the garden. This house has been a house, a shop, a garage, a tent… so many stories and plots have developed in that house, both of them have enjoyed it, played on it, climbed it… until one day, when they realized they were both too big to get in and out of it.
OCB - Up-cycling a play house
It was around the same time when the number of kid’s vehicles with wheels (ie. flickers, bicycles, scooters) started to increase and I was starting to get tired of bringing them in and out through the front door, folding them, removing dirt from my hall floor and storing them under the stairs. I needed a different storage solution – a house extension, a garage maybe?

Since I had the play house and I needed a space to store children’s vehicles, I decided to transform the play house into the boy’s shed to store the bikes, that way they could bring their bikes through the side gate and totally bypass the house and they would still be protected (ish) from the elements.

OCB - Upcycling a play house into a kid's shed

After so many years outside, the colors in the play house were already fading. The sides of the play house were a faded orange color which is pretty much the same color as ours (by design, I know, you need to question our decision making), so I decided to leave it. This meant I only had to paint the red roof black in order to have a mini shed for the boys.
OCB - Up-cycling a play house
OCB - Up-cycling a play house
I decided to use Rust-Oleum Crystal Clear Protective Coat on top of the black spray painting in order to give it another layer  of protection against the elements and the kids.
OCB - Up-cycling a play house
The mini shed has worked a treat. We have had it as a working mini shed for about a year now and it is as functional and fun as the first day. They can get the bikes and scooters in and out themselves, there are no more wheels though the house and we got to up-cycle this lovely play house that has given us so many fun memories – how good is that?
OCB - Up-cycling a play house
We are also re-using the kid’s turtle sandpit as their garden. It is there where they get to plant whatever they wish and they love been responsible for their own patch of land – it must be an Irish thing…

Have you got any up-cycling projects that you would like to share?
Chaotic Itzi

Organising Chaos

UPDATING A TIRED WICKER BASKET

Few years ago I bought some wicker baskets as they were a very economical way to keep things tidied up around the house. Over the years I have used these baskets to store anything and everything, from toys, to shoes, to balls, to children (I may or may not be joking about the last one).

As we are still using these baskets for a number of things nowadays, I wanted to give them a new lease of life, to refresh them a little bit and to make them fit more into our current lifestyle.

I love using different textures around the house, wool, wicker, wood, glass, ceramics… and I wanted to incorporate different textures to the basket so I decided to cover the top rim with green wool. This took more patience than skill 😉
Updating a tired basket with wool - OrganisingChaosBlog
In order to add more contrast to the basket, I painted the bottom part white, it is an easy job with instant results, perfect. I glued some felt at the bottom of the basket in order to avoid scratching the floors (something I should have done years ago… oops!)
Updating a tired basket with wool - OrganisingChaosBlog
This basket is currently in my hall being used as a flower pot for one of my favorite plants. I am loving the contrast.Thinking outside the pot - an updated wicker basket - OrganisingChaosBlog
Because even old things deserve a face lift.
What do you think?
Chaotic Itzi