Along with catching up on blogging in general, I need to catch up on blogging about all the DIY projects I did before my daughter was born. True, I’ve done a few homey things since she came into my life that blessed September day, but for the most part it’s been 16 months of laundry, dishes and more laundry (and of course playing!).
The laundry sitch has been particularly hairy of late because our washing machine is on its way out (and BTW, this is our second laundry machine to futz out on us this year).
The first one was nearing that magical ten year mark that somehow in appliance years equals 90 human years, so that was that. Then, we got a replacement free of charge thanks to some lovely family members. Unfortunately, that one didn’t belong to said members originally and thus we don’t know how old it actually was. And now it’s dying too. Sob.
Basically what I’m trying to say is I do a lot of laundry. The clothes/diapers/towels come out of the wash absolutely soaked and therefore must be wrung out before heading into the dryer, yet still take about 17 hours to dry. (Aka three trips in the gateway to Narnia.) Oh, did I say that the dryer is also now pining for the fjords? So, a lot of laundry doing means not a lot of craft doing because apparently running a household is more important than spray painting stuff. Whaaa?!
And speaking of spray painting stuff… This tree branch mobile hangs in my aforementioned daughter’s room. It’s made out of a piece of poplar I scarfed from the land (I really don’t think “scarfed” can be used in this instance – it actually makes no sense at all, but I’m rolling with it), some fishing line and three little stuffed birdies I whipped up. (Using a pattern similar to this one here – I can’t find the link for the one I actually used.)
Painting the branch was a bit of a challenge because, as it turns out, spray paint is a horrible, horrible substance and says right on the can: “This product contains a chemical known to the state of California to cause cancer and birth defects, or other reproductive harm.” Umm, yeah. And since at the time of spraying I was smack-dab in the middle of reproducing… I made my husband do it. But I really wasn’t too worried about him because we don’t live in California.
The other challenging part of this tree branch mobile project, which also involved my hubs (eww, gross, I just wrote “hubs”), was the hanging of the mobile. We had to tie the fishing line in just the right places so the mobile didn’t wildly spin out of control. And then oh-so-carefully place the birds (causing Devin to declare them “delicate geniuses”). Several times they leapt from the branch – I’m assuming in an attempt to fly – but instead plummeted tragically to the floor.
An observation my husband made after we hung it: “Do you think the baby will be scared? It makes shadows that kind of look like a creepy hand.” So far we haven’t had to worry about that as she ignored it for most of her first year and only started to notice it in the last few months. Her response? Just like with the curtains from my last post, “oooooooh.”
Truthfully, as I said right from the beginning, I didn’t actually design her room for her. I designed it for me. And thank god for that – I’ve spent a lot of time in there. Almost as much time as in the laundry room.
To create your own tree branch mobile you’ll need:
– a piece of tree branch (which you can either find outside or purchase here)
– spray paint, or a less toxic product like chalk paint (which you can paint on with a foam brush)
– fabric for birds (my dear friend Valerie has a wonderful online business called Fabric For Less)
– stuffing for birds
– fishing line (or another type of string)
– eye hook for hanging (which I also painted white so it would blend with the ceiling)
– sewing machine (you could also sew the birds by hand)
– a printout of the bird pattern
1. Paint branch and let air dry.
2. Use pattern to cut out fabric for birds. Then sew along edge, leaving a small opening. Once done, turn each bird inside out, stuff and hand-sew the small opening closed.
3. Use fishing line and eye hook to hang branch. Carefully arranged bird on branch. Stand back. Admire. Give yourself a high five.
Psst… You. Yeah, that’s right. You. People who visit this blog, but don’t comment. Won’t you help a sister out? I’m trying to “start a conversation” or something lame like that. So let’s conversate. Down below. In the comments. Okay? And, oh yeah, don’t forget to subscribe for more crafty posts as well as posts on architecture, interior design, DIY projects, sustainability, gardening, home decor and healthy eating. You can also now follow my blog with Bloglovin!
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Posted on January 13, 2015
Former architectural technologist. Current Treehugger.
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