Rustic Romantic

creating beautiful things


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Homemade Soaps

For a really long time I wanted to learn how to make soap. I am not sure why it took so long for me to do it. I think that I thought it was going to be very hard and time consuming. It wasn’t until a friend of mine made a batch of soap to sell as a fundraiser that I realized how easy soap making can be! Her and I went on a mini shopping spree to get all the supplies you need to make soap:

Soap base (I purchased an oatmeal base and a cucumber avocado, but there are many more bases as well as plain glycerin)
Soap molds (I found some nice rose molds and molds that say “Handmade” and “Natural.”
Soap fragrance(s) (I purchases vanilla soap fragrance, but essential oils work well too)
Optional Soap additives (I added brown sugar to my oatmeal soap. It made sense, plus it gives it also makes it an exfoliant!)
Optional organza bags (I use to store the little soaps in to give to people, you can wrap in cloth, tissue paper or burlap or whatever else you have/want to wrap them up in)

collagesoapsupplies

 

Making soap is very easy, however you need to allow yourself enough time to let the soaps cool and harden. It works best to pour the soap into the molds and let stand for a little bit and then transfer the molds onto a tray and into the freezer to completely harden and cool for a few hours.

Directions:

1. Cut off a chunk of soap base and put into a microwavable safe container and melt in microwave until bubbly-be careful to not let it overflow!
2. Add in fragrances and stir
3. Fill mold half way and add your additives. I used brown sugar. Some of the sugar goes right to the bottom and some stays suspended in the soap and on top
4. Finish filling your molds, be careful not to overflow them and then let stand for a few minutes before transferring to the freezer for about an hour at least
5. Pop out your soap from your molds
6. Store in organza bags, wrapped in burlap or tissue paper or in ziplock bags or containers or on a soap dish in your bathroom.

collagesoapHandmade soaps make great gifts for friends and family. They are fun and easy and you can get your children involved in the soap making process as well! You can get really creative and make all sorts of different kinds of soap. Never again will you need to go buy some plain, boring soap from the stores! You can control exactly what you put in your soap so you do not need to worry about harsh ingredients! Enjoy!

 


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Colorblock Candles

In an effort to craft more and get rid of some of my crafting supplies, I took a long hard look at everything that I have. My hope was to bring some things to work with me that I could easily work on between cleaning and binge watching Undercover Boss on Netflix. I have no idea why that show has become so addicting!

Anyway, I found these little square shaped glass candle holders at Dollar Tree. Using left over wax, colorants, essential oils, wicks and wick keepers, I created these fun little color blocked candles:

DSC_0097Here’s how to make them!

You will need:

Glass jar/container
Microwavable soy wax
Wick(s)
Wick keeper(s)
Colorants (liquid or solid form, or crayons)
Essential oils or other perfumed oil

collagesupplies

 

Directions:

1. Measure and melt wax in a microwavable container

2. Add colorants (if any) to the wax and allow to melt

3. While colorants are melting/mixing attach one side of the wick keepers to the bottom of your wick

4. Using the other sticky side, attach your wick and wick keeper to the bottom of your candle

5. Mix wax to evenly distribute color

6. Slowly pour into candle(s)

7.  Add in essential oils or other fragrance and allow the mixture to completely dry

8. Repeat steps 1,2,5,6,7. Basically, melt more wax, add more color, pour over your first layer and add fragrance. Allow to completely dry again before adding more layers

9. On your final layer, allow to completely dry and then trim the wick so that its just an inch or so above the wax, your candle is complete!

 

collagecandles

 

 


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The ‘Try new things Challenge’

I was at a new Asian grocery store in my town buying around $8 worth of things that I needed, when the lady at the cash register informed me that in order to use my debit card I had to spend $10. I didn’t have $10 cash on me so I looked around seeing what I could add to make my total be $10. She suggested I try a Dragonfruit. The  try new things challenge was born.

I had seen Dragonfruit before and have marveled at its beauty. It really is a pretty fruit. Inside I mean. The outside just looks kind of weird. I just had never tried it. It’s not like I can go to a Walmart and pick up a Dragonfruit. Or maybe I can? Does Walmart sell Dragonfruit? Anyway, I am very glad she suggested it to me.

What I did not realize is there are different kinds of Dragonfruit. Some varieties are white inside, others are light pink. Mine was a dark pink. I also kind of expected it to taste sweeter than what it was. It definitely isn’t bad, but it wasn’t what I had expected.  It tastes like a pear mixed with a kiwi. I would definitely eat Dragonfruit again!

So this month is the beginning of the ‘try new things challenge’ in which I will try at least one new thing a month for a year and blog about it.

collagedragonfruit


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Fourth of July Wreath

Happy 4th of July everyone! I am back from a very long break! Lots of things have happened since my last post. I have moved (again), I got accepted into another job for the end of August and I just got accepted into the Darby Smart Designer program! So yay! This calls for more crafting! What better way to get into the ‘Merica spirit than a wreath?! I saw this idea on Pinterest and a few of my friends from a makeup group on Facebook, so I decided to try my hand at re-creating this festive wreath. (Shout out to my Club House friends!)

You will need:

-1 wreath frame. I used an 18” frame. You can use whatever size frame your heart desires
-Clothes pins. I used 72 pins for my frame. Depending on frame size you might need more or less
-Paint. I used 2 ounces of red, white and blue acrylic paint
-Wooden stars. You could also use stickers, but the wood “pops” out more
-Festive bow
-Hot glue gun and glue
-Paint brush or sponge brush
-Newspaper or a plastic sheet to protect your surface of paint

materials After gathering your materials, start laying out the clothes pins on your wreath. I divided them into sections. I had 17 blue clothes pins, and then I divided the red and white into groups of 5. Your numbers will vary depending on the size of your frame.

Next it is time to start painting!  I started by painting my stars white. I only applied one coat because I liked the rustic look of them. If you want yours to be bright white let dry and apply a second coat of paint. I then painted all the blue clothes pins. Then proceeded to paint the red and white ones, keeping them all separate from each other.

After your paint is dry you can begin assembling your wreath. I hot glued my pins to the wreath itself, however you can just clip them on. I didn’t like how it angled out and flared a bit when I tried doing that. I wanted it to be flat.  Depending on your frame you can decide what works best for you.

After I attached all my pins, I started to hot glue my stars onto the blue pins. I just put them all over with no particular design in mind. You can scatter yours or you can align them in rows.

Once your stars are on you can attach your bow to the bottom of the wreath. My bow came with a little twisty wire on it, which I used to fasten to the frame itself. If your bow does not have this you can just use a bit of wire to attach yours to the frame and viola! It is ready to hang! You can let this wreath adorn your door (or wall!) every fourth of July, memorial day, during the Olympics or whenever you are feeling patriotic! If you didn’t attach the pins with hot glue you can switch them out and have a frame for every occasion. Which is something I might consider doing with my next wreath!

Parents- this is a kid friendly project. Allow your children to count the clothes pins into groups of five, and then paint them. However, you probably shouldn’t let them play with the hot glue gun… collagewreath


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Springtime Elephant Bracelet

The snow is melting! Now that it is getting into the high 30’s and low 40’s it FINALLY feels like spring is coming! I don’t know about you but I associate spring with colorful pastel-y things. So to show my appreciation and excitement for spring, I made this colorful elephant bracelet:

DSC_0076

This was super easy to make. You just need jewelry wire, beads, crimp beads and end clasps.

collageelephant

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Attach your end clasp to a jump ring and thread your jewelry wire through the ring

2. String on your crimp bead and create a tight loop around the jump ring

3. Clamp it shut using pliers

4. String on your beads

5. Attach another jump ring to your last end clasp

6. Thread the wire through the jump ring, keeping everything nice and tight and close to your final bead

7. Clamp it shut and put it on!

 


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Cookie in a mug

Sometimes I just want a cookie. Not a whole tray full of them. And I don’t want to wait to mix all the badder and let it bake. So when that mood strikes, I turn to my trusty mug. Like a few other mug recipes (here and here) this is super easy and really fast and is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth while entrusting that you don’t consume a whole batch of cookies (or the badder, because c’mon….that’s almost just as good.)

INGREDIENTS:

1 TBSP melted butter
1 TBSP white sugar
1 TBSP brown sugar
3 drops vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup flour
2 TBSP chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a mug, microwave the butter until melted

2. Mix in your white and brown sugar

3. Add in the vanilla and egg yolk and mix

4. Slowly combine the salt and flour

5. Stir in chocolate chips

Dough should be similar to a regular batch of chocolate chip cookie dough.

6. Microwave for 40-60 seconds or until cookie is cooked through.

This cookie is simply delightful. I’m not sure if I’ve ever used that word to describe a cookie before but it really is. It is so moist and delicious! I apologize for the crappy pictures. I made this at work one night and I only had my phone to take pictures.

collagecookie


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DIY Detox Bath

With so many people getting sick lately and feeling stressed out it is time to relax. It is important to take some time away from our busy schedules and relax. It is especially important if you have PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome) like myself. You can read this article here to learn why it is so important for us to not stress out. Those who know me well know that I tend to stress a lot about basically everything. Knowing that stress can cause further imbalances in my body and cause my symptoms to flair up, I tend to stress out about being stressed out and how and when i’m going to de-stress myself. It’s a crazy cycle!

One of my favorite ways to relax and de-stress is to take a long, hot bath. While you are in there, why not detox as well? The Epsom salt and ginger in this bath will help draw out nasty toxins from your body making you feel better and the lavender will help relax you. Make sure you drink a glass of water both before and after you have this bath or you might become dehydrated!

INGREDIENTS:

1lb Epsom salt (16 oz)
2 TBSP ground ginger
10-12 drops Lavender essential oil
Jar or container with a lid

DIRECTIONS:

Pour your Epsom salt into your jar. Add ground ginger and essential oil. Cover your jar and shake it thoroughly to mix.

INSTRUCTIONS:

Draw a bath, make sure the water is as hot as you can stand it. Pour 1/4 cup of your detox mixture into the bottom of the bathtub. Soak for at least 20-30 minutes. Note, you WILL sweat! This is good for when you are sick or stressed. Add a label and these instructions to a jar and give to your friends as gifts.

For added stress relief: light a few candles, bring a good book in with you and/or a glass of wine and play some soft music.

collagebath