DIY wood canvas frame

Hey guys! Quick project on the blog today. We’re going to be walking you through how to make a simple, simple frame for any art you have laying around. We did it for a wrapped canvas, but we’re pretty sure you can use the same method for anything else you might frame (a poster, a print, etc). Here’s the finished product:

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

Custom frames can easily cost a couple hundred bucks (which is like, dozens of chickfila spicy chicken sandwiches). Our frame only cost us a few dollars. Meaning I have a lot of spicy chicken in my future.

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

Here’s what you’ll need:

Tools used:

So here’s how we did it. We started by measuring the outside edges of our canvas. We wanted the corners of the frame to meet at 45 degree angles, like in the graphic below. When you are measuring, make sure that the inside of your frame pieces is what matches up with the canvas measurement, and draw a 45 degree line out from that. The outside of your frame pieces will therefore be a little longer than the inside.

Alternatively, you could forego a 45 degree cut and just have them meet perpendicularly.

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

After marking on our trim wood pieces where the cuts needed to go, Evan quickly sliced the wood on the miter saw but you could use a simple jigsaw instead if you have a steady hand.

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

Once all four pieces were cut, we put wood glue at each corner where the pieces met. We used right angle clamps to hold the pieces together. You don’t have to buy four: if you have patience, you can just get one and do one corner at a time. Make sure to wipe off any excess glue that squeezes our, then let them dry overnight.

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY wood canvas frame - evanandkatelyn.com

When we took the clamps off everything was nice and sturdy. Then we used an old rag to wipe on some Minwax stain in Dark Walnut (our favorite!) and let that dry for the recommended drying time.

The easiest thing about this frame? It just pops right onto the canvas. Simple tension holds the canvas in place, so there is no glass or hardware needed.

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If making the same frame for a print or poster, you can simply tape the print/poster to the back of the frame or staple it in if you want something a little sturdier.

Hope this helps you out with some of that art you’ve been meaning to frame!

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DIY Faux Fur Tree Skirt (and Garland!)

In yesterday’s Christmas decor post I mentioned we added some faux fur in both tree skirt and garland form. As promised, today I’m sharing this quick DIY you can do in an afternoon (ie you can finish it before the Christmas!) Bonus: this tree skirt only cost about $15 as opposed to the $69 versions elsewhere and you get a free garland out of the material too.

First my mom (thanks mom!) picked up some faux fur fabric from Jo-Ann’s. I opted for a tawny light brown color, but a warm white would look great too. The size you need will depend on your tree, but for our 7.5ft tree we went with a 60″ x 60″ square (human below for reference).

Then we flipped it over and marked the center.

After we had our center point, we could trace out our circle. There are several ways to do this: eyeball it, trace something big like a hula hoop, etc. My husband is an engineer so of course it involved magnets, a ruler, and pure precision.

So we put magnets on top of the center point and one under the fabric to hold them in place. Then we placed one end of our yardstick, which had a hole in it, over the magnets and used it as a compass. You could do the same thing by tying a string to the magnets in the center and using that as your compass.

By placing a marker at the end of your ruler (or your string) and rotating it around the center point, you’ll create a perfect circle.

Tada!

I’d recommend taking it outside to cut it because you are gonna get fur everywhere. I may look like I’m simply draped in a luxurious fur hanging out in my garage, but really I’m trying to cut it and not let it touch the ground at the same time. Evan only laughed at me for a minute before snapping a picture and helping me hold it :P

We cut along the circle and we also cut one line from the edge of the circle to the center point (so you can slide the center to the base of the tree).

Side note: our garage is insane. Lotsssss of different projects in progress. We’ll clean it… one day.

After cutting the circle out, shake it like a crazy person in your driveway or wherever you think you’ll gather the most attention from curious neighbors.

Bonus points if you get airborne while shaking it out.

We wrapped it around the base of the tree, putting the cut to the center in the back. Some of our edges were a little rough but we kinda feel like it gives it a more realistic look.

Of course… once we added presents you can barely see it.

But I know it’s there and I love it and that’s what matters!!!! Plus, as the presents disappear, the tree won’t look so sad and barren.

Part two of this tutorial is what we did with the scraps! We had a big ring of fur left, so I trimmed off the corners which left a circle of fabric. I took that and wrapped it around the baby tree in our office. It’s a nice tie in to our big tree, and it’s a super easy way to add visual impact to a without needing to hang ornaments.

Well there you have it! This was an easy and fun project that took very little time to complete – aka the perfect thing to tackle when you’re already counting down the days til Christmas!

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Our 2016 Christmas Decor

Hey guys! We’re not a proper home DIY and design blog if we don’t show y’all our Christmas decor (not that being proper has ever been our forte). The big news this year is we finally upgraded from our tiny 4-foot, apartment sized Christmas tree to a massive 7.5-foot tower of pre-lit glory. Hello Handsome!

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our ornament situation is pretty simple. A mix of snowflakes, silver and red balls, and a sprinkling of homemade ornaments/ones we’ve been given over the years.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Don’t mind the fuzz all over my leggings… right before this we made a DIY faux fur tree skirt (we’ll post about that later) and clearly I can’t be bothered to lint roll mahself. You can see the tree skirt peeking out in the photo below.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Luckily, not too much on our tree is breakable (at least on the lower tiers) since we have this little munchkin claiming her new favorite spot.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

It’s hard to imagine what our little OG tree used to look like in this spot, so I’ll just show ya.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

So teeny right? Now the little tree lives in our office. I could see it traveling to a new spot each year… this one works for now though. We opted to forego ornaments on this one (mainly because we needed all of them to fill our big tree… haha) but we did wrap it with a DIY faux fur garland (we’ll post on that later too).

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Some Christmas decor also landed on our coffee table. We got this little burlap wrapped tree from Michaels earlier this season before the holiday aisles looked like a post-apocalyptic raided drug store, and while chances are they’re out of stock, this one on Amazon looks the exact same AND is actually cheaper than what we paid for it… dang it.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

We’ve had this little JOY glitter sign for years, and it happily sheds sparkles wherever it goes, but I think it’s super cute. These looked nice and wintery paired with our white constellation hurricanes from West Elm.

We also sprinkled some Christmas vibes on our dining table. We actually went with a look that was more wintery than Christmas-y so we can leave it up for a while.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Evan made these copper balls out of wire. We need to post about those as well; they look great on the table, in a bowl, or as ornaments.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

On our back door we’ve got one of the wreaths we made for our West Elm pop up shop. We had to hold onto one for ourselves!

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our deer is looking extra Christmas-y with the holiday decor as well. So purdy.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

I love this view of the tree with our art wall behind it. After taking the deer pic above, I had to take this tree photo as well.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

And as always, Jack Skellington in his holiday garb is making an appearance.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

And Christmas is not complete without a giant explosion of wrapping paper and ribbon! Let the wrapping party with mom, Evan, and beer commence! Merry Christmas y’all.

Our 2016 Christmas Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

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4

Living room fan swap

Hey guys! So I’m continually realizing that there are projects we’ve completed that never got shared on the blog. Until some recent changes at Evan’s job, he would frequently have to work 11-12 hour days, and therefore I’d take on all the home/life-related responsibilities when I’d get home from work, so basically we had like zero time. We were honestly lucky to get any projects done, we just didn’t have time to blog about everything. So I’m here to gradually get you guys up to speed with the changes we’ve made.

First off is something we thought would be minor but ended up being a big upgrade in our eyes: swapping out our old living room fan.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

We’ve done a few fan swaps in our time, like the one in our office and the extra-difficult one in our bedroom, so we’re no strangers to the process.

It’s always good to start by turning off the power, you know, so you don’t get electrocuted. Then we laid down a drop cloth to catch any ceiling dust or screws that fell onto the couch. Caught a cat instead.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Next we unscrewed the glass globes and lightbulbs since they’re the most breakable. Then we started removing the fan blades (you just unscrew them).

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

After the blades were off, we went to work on the drop rod and base of the fan. There aren’t tons of pictures of this because we needed two pairs of hands (that’s where the motor is, so it’s heavy!).

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

We disconnected the wires and reconnected them to the base of the new fan (you can see a great step by step of this here).

Then it was time to put the new fan together. First off, this is the one we got. We did a lot of research about what size fan we needed in order to get air circulation and light in such a big room, and this one fit the bill and our style. We’ve had it for over two years now and we still love it! I guess you could say we’re big fans…

To install it, we first added the drop rod and base of the new fan. The bulbs and glass light coverings were part of the main body of the fan so they were up at this point as well.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Then we screwed the blades into place. It’s a pretty simple process.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Last but not least, we swapped out our ugly 70’s dimmer, which we couldn’t even use because the old fan bulbs buzzed but were too high for us to bother swapping them out. We replaced it with a crisp white switch.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Here’s the new fan!

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

So remember earlier when I said this swap ended up making a bigger difference than expected? It’s because our new fan has down lights AND up lights – and that is amazing! See, 90% of the time we only have the uplight on. Unlike our old fan (and most fans) that only shine down and cause harsh shadows on everything, the up light shins up on the ceiling and the light is diffused indirectly throughout the room.

And if we need bonus light (like when I’m making ornaments at the coffee table watching Gilmore Girls), we can turn on the down light and gain some bonus brightness.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Updating fans and light fixtures may seem like minor projects, but that kind of stuff has a huge bang-for-your-buck (and effort) effect on making your home feel fresh and updated. What do you guys like to do to your house that feels like a nice update, but really isn’t that hard?

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2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Y’all- it’s almost December. How did this happen? I’m already feeling behind on gifts, and I’m still full on turkey. For anyone who is is in the same boat, Evan and I put together our very first holiday gift guide! *sparkle sparkle sparkle*

This is a mix of things we have/love and things we want. Of course, whenever possible we’re linking to things on Amazon Prime because we all know you’re gonna wait til the last minute and be thanking your stars for 2-day shipping.

Katelyn’s gift guide:

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

So we’ll start with my gift guide and get into Evan’s farther down in the post. Here are some of my favorite things!

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
1) Turkish hand towels

These are on my wish list right now! We recently added Persian rugs to both of our bathrooms and my still-have-them-from-college hand towels are just not feeling up to par anymore. I’ve had the itch for Turkish towels for a while and did a lot of hunting, and these seem like the best priced, highly rated ones on Amazon.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
2) Mornings Away Minted print

I loooooove this print. It can be seen as chilly and wintery or warm and summery depending on what mood you’re in. The colors are so pretty and neutral enough to go with anything you have (green counts as a neutral in my book). I think this could live as part of a gallery wall or on it’s own in a larger size, depending on what wall space you need to fill.

PS- Minted has a Black Friday sale going on that lasts til Sunday the 27th! Use the code BF2016 to get 15% off if you spend less than $150, 20% off if you spend more than $150, woot!

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
3) Lavender soy candle

This is one of those candles that is so good you don’t even need to light it and it smells amazing. It’s like “spa in a jar.” Evan got one of these for me about a year ago and I’ve since bought a few more. Right now, we have one in our guest bathroom and we don’t even light it, but every time we walk down the hall we get a nice lavender-y whiff. And even though it’s little, when we light it it’ll fill up a larger room like our bedroom.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
4) Watercolor throw pillow cover

Isn’t this throw pillow cover classy? I love the watercolor look and linen-y texture. Plus the navy and natural tones have me swooning. Definitely an item I’m putting on my wish list this year!

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

5) Sticks wall coat hanger

We have two of these textural coat hangers in our office/entry butted up next to each other and we get questions all the time about where we got them. It’s cool because certain pieces fold down to be used for hanging coats, purses, etc, but you can fold them up when not in use. They’ve held up nicely for years, even to Evan’s super heavy backpack.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
6) KitchCo silicone cooking utensil set

We cook a lot, like 90% of our meals. So finding cooking utensils that are made without seams/joints is so dang awesome. Why? Because cleaning is soooooooo much easier! No foody bits getting stuck in the seam where your spatula meets the handle or anything like that. Plus they don’t melt. Plus they’re semi-squishy, which is fun :)

Yeah, it might seem silly to get somebody a cooking set when they probably already have (sub-par!) cooking utensils. But this is the set that made is donate all our other hand-me-down and cheapy cheap stuff.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
7) Candles on timers

Ok, this is one of those things that you don’t really need, but once you have it you feel so dang fancy: candles on timers. I’ll admit, it took me a long time to come around to the idea of LED candles. It seemed like more trouble to go around clicking them on and off than lighting and blowing out actual candles. But y’all. The timers. change. everything.

When you turn these on, they’ll stay on for 6 hours and come on at the same time every day. So basically, I come home to a warm house full of lit candles and they turn off right around the time we’re heading to bed. It’s the best.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
8) West Elm alabaster bookends

Geode bookends are popping up lots of places right now, but I’m loving these alabaster bookends with brass inlays from West Elm. A slightly different and more modern take on it, but still with that natural stone earthiness. Love!

Evan’s gift guide:

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
Hey guys, Evan here now! I’ve put together my own gift guide – all items that would be awesome for the DIYer/tool junkie in your life, with a bit of home-tech thrown in too.

1) Dewalt Power Drill

No DIY tool kit is complete without a power drill. I would get the brush-less variety too, as they are more power efficient and longer lasting. And now that the price difference has dropped, it’s not hard to justify the ~$20 upgrade. For those serious about their DIY tools, this Dewalt is the upgrade. It adds multiple speeds and can be used as a hammer drill too, making it three tools in one (screwdriver at low speeds, drill, and hammer drill).

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
2) Phlip’s wake up light

We wrote about this a few months ago and our love for this wake up light still holds strong! Waking up is not easy for us but this makes the days of waking up to a harsh phone alarm seem barbaric. It slowly lights up the room using different tones of light to mimic the sun, which makes waking up wayyyyyy more pleasant. We’ve recommended this to so many family members and friends already.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
3) 100 Piece Neiko bit set

This is not only a budget friendly way to get access to a whole bunch of bits (I especially love the hex set), but it is also a great holder even if you’re upgrading your existing bit collection. A great addition to any of your favorite bit drivers.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
4) 30-ft Retractable Extension Cord

This ceiling-mounted extension cord is an awesome addition to your garage. Just plug it in next to your garage door motor (where most houses have an outlet). Instead of searching for an extension cord every time you need it, just reach up and grab this! This has saved me so much time when working outside and in the garage. And since it’s retractable, winding it back up is easy.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
5) Digital calipers – 6 in12 in

Sometimes your traditional tape measure is not accurate enough, especially for inner or outer diameters, or precise work. Calipers like this are what is needed. They’re like that next-level upgrade if you want to get something for the person that already has all the basic tools. They are also great for identifying bolts and determining depths of holes. Once you have one in your arsenal, you can’t do without it!

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
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6) Knipex 10-inch Pliers

This great tool combines the best of adjustable pliers with the parallel movement of a wrench. It quickly adjusts using a push button. Turning a bolt/nut is also a breeze as you don’t need to take the tool off with each turn, but can instead just relax your grip, letting the tool move to the next position. For those stuck nuts this is also great as you can apply force to the stuck item by squeezing the handles, like pliers.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide
7) Super Glue + Insta-set combo pack

Not only great for DIYers, but basically everyone. Once I found out about this (thanks Adam Savage!) I have been addicted. The thicker superglue has much better performance and usability than the cheap ones, and the accelerator makes fixturing and clamping obsolete since it sets in about 1 second!

Still wanting more ideas? Check out our Evan & Katelyn products!

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Lastly…. if you’re looking for a gift you won’t find anywhere else, you could snag one of our products! Here are a few of my favorites that would make great holiday gifts.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

1 & 4)  Faceted 3D printed deer bust

Deer busts are trendy all year round but they have an especially holiday-ish vibe this time of year! Pictured above are our silver deer with hand painted backing, and copper deer with raw wood backing. You can create any combo you want on our blog shop here, or you can check out these two specific ones on Etsy here (silver) and here (copper).

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

2 & 6) Topographical Texas ornaments

Ornaments are always a safe bet. You can check out all our Texas ornaments on our blog shop here, or you can see the specific ones pictured on our Etsy shop here (copper) and here (silver). We can also make custom state ornaments (just contact us!)

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3) Modern triangular wreaths

Our take on a modern wreath! Each one we make is a little unique. We 3D print the “joy”, paint the wooden frame with gold leaf paint, and hand-wrap the flowers with copper wire. Again, you can find these on our blog shop or Etsy.

Evan & Katelyn 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

5) Wood-mounted topographical Texas’s

Lastly, these little wood-mounted Texas’s have a cozy cabin vibe. Perfect for popping onto your styled shelves. You can find them on our blog shop or on Etsy here (silver) and here (copper).

Well there you have it guys! May your gifts be bountiful, your bellies be full of delicious Thanksgiving leftovers, and your holiday shopping be as stress-free as possible.

Note: This post contains affiliated links. Thank you for supporting our blog!

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DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable

Hey guys! Today I’m super excited to share a quick and easy DIY that you can do after work this evening (and still have time to make pasta for dinner… mmmm pasta). It’s a cute tabletop menu that’s perfect for Thanksgiving, or really any get together where food is involved (aka, the best type of get togethers). It could also be used as an easily changeable display for art, photos, even a mini calendar printout for your desk! Here it is:

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

As you know from our post about how we prepped for our pop up shop, we made various pieces of signage for the event. I’m a big fan of creating multiple uses from our DIY projects, so rather than letting it collect dust in between pop ups, I put this piece to work. The piece I’m talking about is our little pricing sign.

In the photo below, it’s the shorter wood sign (with E&K at the top). It’s a simple piece made of wood, glue, and a few magnets. AKA it’s super easy y’all.

dscf1956

It’s a nice size – big enough to stand out, but not so big that it will overpower the rest of your tablescape. I created a menu design and swapped out the price sheet for the menu sheet, and it looks right at home on our little sign.

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

First off, you can download the free printable menu by clicking here. It’s already sized for this stand so it’s easy peasy. And no, the download does not include my amazing sample menu already on it… although a meal involving tacos, donuts, and bacon sounds like my idea of a good time.

So let’s get onto the DIY shall we! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • About 11 inches of 1×6 wood
    (you’ll cut this into 2 pieces, it doesn’t need to be exact)
  • Super glue or wood glue
    (we looooove the super glue we linked to because it comes with an accelerant: you put the glue on side A, spray accelerant on side B, pop em together, and it sets pretty much instantly – aka no clamping required)
  • 8 cylindrical 1/4″ Neodymium magnets
    (if you already have other magnets they might work, but we like these 1/4″ ones because it’s easy to drill an exactly 1/4″ hole)

Tools used:

  • Miter saw
    (but you could get the pieces cut at Hone Depot or Lowes, or use a jig saw or hand saw if you did it carefully)
  • Power drill
  • 1/4″ drill bit used to get the circles for the embedded magnets
    (Evan recommends getting a 29 piece set like this one instead of buying individual bits)

So we took our piece of 1×6 wood and cut it into two pieces: a 3″ long piece for the horizontal base, and a 8″ long piece for the vertical display. Your pieces don’t have to be exactly the same lengths as ours; the final product just has to not topple over (which might happen if you made the vertical piece too tall or the horizontal base too skinny).

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

Before we attached the two pieces of wood, we created recessed holes for the magnets. The magnets are what hold your printed menu onto the stand. We bought these 1/4″ magnets and Evan used his 1/4″ bit to make holes the exact size of the magnets.

In order to not drill too deep, we use a white paint pen to mark on the drill bit itself what depth we want to go to. You can place your magnet next to your bit and make a mark on the bit that’s the same height as your magnet. Another alternative is using a drill stop, which is a little bit more fool proof. You don’t want to drill too far; it’s better to have to go back and drill a little more.

Before gluing, do a test fit by dropping the magnets in your holes. They should fit perfectly flush with the wood (so satisfying!). If they fit, put a drop of super glue in each hole and popped in the magnets. If they don’t fit, drill a little more out.

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

Then we placed our menu so that the corners were over the four magnets, and we took the other four magnets and popped them into place over the menu. Technically it’s probably better to add your print out later, but we are impatient. Plus, magnets are fun :)

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

Next up is gluing your two boards together. You can place the vertical piece on the horizontal piece (without glue) to get it centered, and then lightly mark on either side of the vertical piece so you know where to glue it. Next, apply super glue or wood glue to the bottom of the vertical piece and place back on the horizontal piece using your guide lines.

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

We did super glue (+ the accelerant) so after holding it on for a few seconds, the glue was set. If you use wood glue, you’ll need to clamp it and leave it drying for the time specified on your bottle of wood glue.

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

And there you have it! I love that this DIY isn’t holiday specific – really it could be used to display any menu, photo, art, mini calendar… so many things you could do with it!

DIY Tabletop Menu + Thanksgiving Printable - evanandkatelyn.com

Free calendar printable graphic from LollyJane blog.

Note: This post contains affiliated links. Thank you for supporting our blog!

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DIY Cat Scratching Post

Today we’re sharing a post about a post. A scratching post, specifically. We love our fur baby Mochi but we also love our couch, which she has gradually tried to destroy over the years.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

We didn’t realize how bad this one corner of the couch had gotten until the light caught it just right one day and it literally stopped me in my tracks. Pretty sure a single little tear fell from my eye. It was a sad sight.

So we decided to take action before it got any worse. Part 1 of that action was to casually toss carefully place a throw over the arm of the couch. It may look like it was just thrown there, but you best not move it. Part 2 of the action was to give our girl something else to pull her claws on, stat!

There are a lot of DIY cat scratching posts out there, and most of them require an actual post (i.e. something vertically standing up from the ground or hung vertically from a wall, door, etc).

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

I wasn’t crazy about the idea of something standing vertically on it’s own. Our Mochi is not the most graceful kitty, and chances are she’d find some way to knock it over, freak herself out, and never go near it again. The door hanging ones might wobble and they’d bounce around every time we had to use that door, so those didn’t appeal either. And wall mounted ones had to actually be attached, and we wanted a solution that we could put away if we needed the house to look nice without leaving vacant nails in the wall.

So we came up with a horizontal scratching post instead.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Spoiler alert – Mochi actually uses this thing!!! If you’re a cat owner, you know that a cat actually using something you buy/make for its intended purpose is a big win.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

So, onto how we did it. This is definitely a quick afternoon project, and comparatively quite cheap to anything modern looking you could buy online. Plus, it’s built in a way that will allow you to easily replace the scratching material if it gets too worn out. Here’s what you’ll need

Materials:

  • 1×10 wood (we cut ours to 23″ long, but anything around that size would work)
  • 1×3 wood (two pieces, cut about 11″ long each. Again, sizing is flexible, just make sure it’s longer than your main board’s width so it overhangs)
  • Twine
  • 4 screws

Tools used:

Below is a quick overview illustration of what was involved/what we did. We’ll break the steps down further using more graphics as we go.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

The sizing of the wood can totally be adjusted depending on what you have. For us, this project was essentially free because everything we used was scrap wood we had in the garage, so definitely do utilize material you have on hand if you can and don’t feel like you have to match our measurements exactly.

We started by cutting our main piece from a 1×10 to about 23″ long (long enough that Mochi would have room to sit on it while pulling her claws). I think as long as you have a piece that’s big enough for your kitty, it should work just fine.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Next we cut two 11″ long 1×3 pieces that we screwed in at either end of our plank. We used two screws per side, like you see in the illustration above. The 1×3 pieces overhang length-wise about 1/2″ on each side.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

The purpose of these two end pieces was to give the twine something to hold tight against (we worried that without some kind of footing at either end, the twine might slip off the edge).

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Next we drilled two holes through the main body, picking one corner on each end (see graphic below). We chose a side of the board to be the back, threaded the twine through our drilled hole, and tied a knot on the back side to secure it.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Here is a photo of the back side. After threading our knotted twine through the hole, we wrapped it tightly in circles around the board. We didn’t use glue because we thought Mochi might not like the smell. Plus we wanted the twine to be removable in the future if she roughed it up too much and we needed to replace it.

Annnnnd then we ran out of twine. Which is what we get for using a roll of it we already owned with an unknown amount left on the roll. At the end of the twine, we did a couple quick staples with our staple gun to secure it to the back side of the wood. Again, the staples will be easily removable (with pliers) if we need to replace the twine in the future.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Luckily, we had a second roll of twine so we repeated the same process on the other end of the board. It also was not enough to complete the board, so we stopped wrapping when it was about the same amount of coverage as the first piece of twine.

I actually consider it a happy accident because we kinda like how the wood looks in the middle. Plus, Mochi is likely to only pull her claws at either end anyway because of how she sits on it. Though when we replace the twine eventually, we might try doing the full board.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

To replace it down the line, we would just need to remove the staples with pliers, knot and thread in new twine, and either re-staple the end to secure it or pull it through the other hole and tie it off. But we’ve actually had this scratching post almost a year so far and we haven’t had to replace the twine yet.

Our girl loves it! Of course… she still loves the couch too… but at least she has options haha.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

Side note, if your kitty doesn’t seem impressed at first, spray some cat nip on it to get kitty interested. Once they figure out it’s something for them, they’ll keep going back to it!

Side note two, the two types of twine we used were different: one was a looser/rougher looking twine, and the other was more tightly pulled and cleaner looking. Mochi seems to prefer the rougher/looser twine to pull her claws on, so eventually we’ll use that type again as a replacement.

DIY Cat Scratching Post - evanandkatelyn.com

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Pop up shops for noobs – what we learned

Hey guys! A few weeks ago after our first West Elm Pop Up Shop, we asked if y’all would be interested in hearing the behind-the-scenes scoop: how everything went down and what we learned in the process. And your response was a big “yes!” across the board! So today, as we prep for our next show on November 12th, we are here to spill the beans.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

It all started with a quick call to our closest West Elm. We knew they supported local artists (which is awesome) but we didn’t know how to get involved. We also didn’t know what exactly we’d make as said local artists, or anything about pricing, selling, quantities, packaging, advertising ourselves, etc. So hopefully we’re coming at this “guide” with the eyes of someone who didn’t know much and had a lot of questions.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

But before I ramble on, I’m going to inject a bit of structure into this post because #iloveagoodlist. What I’m going to cover will of course vary from pop up to pop up, but these are the things we’ll talk about today:

  1. What products to sell
  2. How we priced our products
  3. How we promoted our pop up
  4. What we needed for our display
  5. How we dealt with packaging
  6. How we set up a payment system
  7. How we set up our shop
  8. Miscellaneous stuff to remember

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

So let’s dive in shall we!

What products to sell

We spent a good chunk of time brainstorming what to make. It needed to be sellable at a reasonable price (we’ll get into pricing later). It needed to be something we were good at making. And we wanted it to be a product we liked enough to display in our own house – just in case we ended up with a bunch of unsold goods am-I-right? Kidding, kidding, we just wanted it to feel like “us.”

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

We started with the deer head, which was based on a present Evan made for me years ago (more on that here). We added the Texas designs because a) Texas is awesome, and b) we hoped that having a Texas product would make our shop feel even more local and personal.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

How we priced our products

This was a hard one, so we worked backwards. We originally thought we would sell handmade marquee letters because we often get requests to make/sell/rent ours. But the West Elm folks (huge thanks to Will Williamson for answering all our questions!) told us that usually products over $100 don’t sell as well at their events, so those big marquees were a no-go. This number of course is going to be different for any venue, but we learned that talking to the people in charge is a good place to start when it comes to your price point.

Once we had products in mind that we knew could sell under that $100 mark, we calculated the cost in materials/time and picked a price that was above that number, but not higher than what we’d pay for the item in stores (we asked a bunch of friends and family to let us know what they’d pay in stores too).

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

How we promoted our pop up

This was another new adventure… how do you actually get the word out about your event? The obvious answer is to just tell people, which we definitely did, but we also relied on Instagram and Facebook. Being a graphic designer, I mocked up some product photos with the pop up info (location, date, time, etc) and we posted those a week before and a day before the event.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

We also created a Facebook event and invited all our friends that live in the area. This is stuff we’re still figuring out, so hopefully the combo of Facebook and Instagram was enough to remind people/provide info, but not so much that we got annoying (sorry friends if we got annoying).

What we needed for our display

This ended up being a decent amount of additional unexpected work, but luckily everything we made can be used in future shows. Again, we relied on the advice of Will from our West Elm store when it came to what type of stuff to bring.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

We decided to make outdoor signage, an “About Us” sign for our table, pricing signage, business cards (plus a holder for them), displays for our products, and a sign up sheet for custom orders.

For the outdoor signage, we built a chalkboard A-frame that you can see in the photo above. We’ll post a tutorial later on the blog – it was really easy to make and could be used for tons of other events (showers, parties… shower parties… wait, what?)

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

We also built custom wood displays that we could mount our pricing sign and “About Us” sign to. The larger “About Us” sign is displayed between two acrylic sheets, mounted on wood. The pricing sign, since we didn’t have small enough acrylic, is held to the wood with magnets. Again, we will post tutorials on how to make these since they could be used for tons of different stuff (holiday menus anybody?)

We even turned a chunk of old branch from our yard into a business card holder. This is from the same branch we cut down forever ago to make our silver painted mantel branch… yep, it’s been in our garage attic for three years!

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

To display our deer and Texas’s, we brought some of these acrylic stands in a couple sizes. We also built a custom display stand for the ornaments using wood and brass pegs. I kinda want to mount it on a wall and hang keys/sunglasses from it one day.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

West Elm was nice enough to lend their artists things like books and crates for adding height to our table displays, which helped a lot. But if you’re doing a pop up that doesn’t provide that stuff, bring some items to create elevation (boxes, books, crates, baskets, cake stands, etc). It will add visual interest and make your products easier to see.

How we dealt with packaging

We had to provide all of our own packaging for the event. For us this meant two different sized paper bags, stickers (to close the bags), boxes (for the deer), and tape (for the boxes). We wanted to brand our boxes and bags so they looked a little more custom, so we made a stencil of our logo and spray painted our bags.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

When coat after coat of spray paint warped our stencil, we wised up and made a stamp. We 3D printed it, mounted the print to foam, and mounted the foam to wood. This was WAY easier (plus we weren’t dying of fumes). We used the stamp method for the remaining bags, boxes, and even the backs of our products (which we also signed).

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

Side note – the boxes were big so we brought them flat packed, hid them under our table at the pop up, and assembled on site. Maybe there’s a better way to do this – we are still figuring things out.

How we set up a payment system

Collecting payment was another item we were responsible for. To take credit card payments, a lot of people use Square but we opted for PayPal Here since we were already set up with PayPal. It was free, really easy to use, and it tracks things like how much you sold of each product variation and what times of day you sold the most.

We didn’t want to forget that some people prefer to pay in cash though. So we made sure to bring some cash monies with us to use as change if necessary. Fun fact, only one person paid in cash, so I think if you can do credit card you’ll cover most of your bases.

An added complication of selling physical goods is that in Texas, you have to pay sales tax. Which meant we had to fill out some forms to register with the state. I’m sure it’s different per state, but definitely something to look into if you want to keep to the straight and narrow.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

As part of the whole getting paid thing, we also started an online store. That way, if people told their friends about us and their friends wanted to buy a product too, they wouldn’t have to wait for another pop up.

How we set up our shop

Our best advice about setting up: get there early! It took us several trips to/from the car to carry everything, plus then we had to actually figure out how we wanted our table to look.

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

We thought it would take us half an hour max, and it definitely took more like 45 minutes. Maybe because we are noobs. Maybe we brought too much stuff. Which brings me too….

Miscellaneous stuff to remember

There are tons of little miscellaneous things we brought to help the day run smoother. Some of them we needed, some of them we didn’t need, but having all of them made us feel better.

We brought:

  • Extra tape
  • Extra scissors
  • Extra twine (for the ornaments)
  • A sharpie (just in case we forgot to sign a product)
  • Our Yetis!!!
  • A nice camera
  • A tablet and a laptop… just in case (didn’t use either)
  • Our stamp and ink (for any boxes/bags we may have missed)
  • Some tools (to assemble the deer heads – we let people choose what head color and backing type they wanted, and we assembled on demand)
  • Extra chalk (in case our chalkboards outside got messed up)
  • Spare phone batteries (the payment system is run on your phone so keeping it charged is extra important)
  • Duct tape (always necessary)

We know we still have a lot to learn, but hopefully this helps anyone who is considering doing a pop up shop. If you guys have any further questions just ask below in the comments and we will answer everything the best we can!

Pop Up Shop for Noobs: aka what we learned from our first pop up shot - evanandkatelyn.com

Note: This post contains affiliated links. Thank you for supporting our blog!
2

2016 Halloween Decor

I love Halloween you guys. If it was socially acceptable to Trick-Or-Treat at the age of 29, I would. But it’s not, so I make up for it with for it with creepy movies, our annual Scare for a Cure adventure, dressing up, and decking our house out with pumpkins, ghosts, and skulls :)

To get a bigger decor bang for our buck, we like to do all the decorating in the main areas of our house instead of thinning it out over the entire square footage. Side note, you’re not going to find any Martha-Stewart-level stuff going on here. More like Target-post-Halloween-sale level stuff with a healthy dose of DIY, but we make it work y’all emoji-deal-with-it  So why don’t we jump right in!

Our 2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our dining table got a handful of pumpkins that we painted and fixed up (tutorials here and here) to go along with our usual IKEA planters. I also used some of the felt from our old pumpkin placemats and cut out little bats to sprinkle around. I like that after Halloween, I can remove the bats but keep everything else the same for fall (until Christmas takes over!) The warm tones of our new butcher block table top give everything a cozy vibe.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

We also added a little hint of Halloween to our built ins with my Z-Gallerie bling skull. My mom got him for me back when I was in my first apartment and he’s one of the coolest dudes I know (aside from my husband, who is definitely THE coolest).

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

In the living room, our L.O.V.E. letters are now home to a felt pumpkin like you saw last week. He’s still standing up on his own in the O, which makes me pretty happy :)

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our coffee table got a little dose of fall with this target pumpkin and my favorite World Market raven. Also, Evan made the small copper wire ball out of some wire we got at Michael’s.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

You might see a little Jack and Sally peeking out from our media center on the left side of the photo above. These two are actually on our shelf all the time, so they’re not technically Halloween decor, but they sure fit in this time of year #grownupscanhavetoystoo.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

My Tim Burton art book is also always on display, but the addition of another pumpkin makes it that much more Halloween-y :)

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

The fireplace got our spray painted hurricanes, my favorite little ghost candle holder from, you guessed it, Target, and our West Elm constellation hurricanes/candleholders (they look like they’re dotted with stars!). These all work well with our DIY’d silver branch, which we still love.

Side note: the whole deal is made even better by these awesome LED candles we have with built in timers…they come on every evening and stay on for 5-6 hours. Not gonna lie, I feel pretty freakin fancy coming home to a house with lit candles everywhere.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our carved Jack Skellington and Domo funkins live near our faux ficus. (they’re sporting more of our LED candles too but they weren’t lit for the photo). You can read here how we painted Jack to look more realistic and gave Domo a metallic ombre look.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Our entry is home to the DIY felt pumpkin garland I threw together along with a few other Halloween faves. I love Jack and Sally, obvs, so they have a spot here as well, along with a couple black glittery Target pumpkins.

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

2016 Halloween Decor - evanandkatelyn.com

Well this about sums up our Halloween decor this year! Now to go scope out everyone else’s… :D

Note: This post contains affiliated links. Thank you for supporting our blog!

0

Feeling Batty – DIY Felt Bats

Hey guys! The quickest of quick Halloween post today. Here’s the story: Girl meets felt placemats. Girl cuts out pumpkins from placemats and turns them into a garland. Girl is getting ready to throw out the remaining felt scraps when a lightbulb goes off/her cheapness takes over and she thinks “I can make something out of this felt!” And hence, 36 tiny bats were born.

Feeling Batty - DIY Felt Bats - evanandkatelyn.com

Before I started cutting, I made myself a bat template. If you want you can grab my cutesy simple bat below (just right click and save the image to your desktop, then print at whatever size you want) or you can google “bat outline” and find just about any type of bat you can imagine.

Feeling Batty - DIY Felt Bats - evanandkatelyn.com

I cut out my template and used it as a guide for cutting the felt. Because I was doing teeny tiny bats, it was easiest to use a little binder clip to hold the template in place while I cut (when my cut made it around to the clip, I’d just move the clip).

Feeling Batty - DIY Felt Bats - evanandkatelyn.com

On a side note, I started this project with the Fiskars I’ve had in my drawer for a few years. Ended up with carpal tunnel (not really, but oh the hand cramps!). Then Evan busted out his favorite pair of scissors (yes, we’re the types of people that have favorite pairs of scissors) and they were soooooooo much better. I’m converted. Bonus: they are only $8.73 on Amazon.

I cut and cut, and cut some more. Not a bad way to spend some time when you’ve got Netflix on in the background and a fall candle burning within sniff-range.

Feeling Batty - DIY Felt Bats - evanandkatelyn.com

My original intent was to turn these into a garland, but then seeing them strewn about the table I thought they actually looked pretty good as table top decor. I’ll do another post in a few days with lots more photos of where these and all of our other Halloween crafties live around the house. For now, here’s a round up of all the Halloween projects we’ve done so far:

Sprucing up faux pumpkins with puffy paint, a bit more realism, and metallic ombre.
Upgrading our Halloween hurricanes with metallic insides.
Turning felt pumpkin placements into a felt pumpkin garland.
Fixing some messed up gourds with Sugru and paint.
Bonus 1: our DIY floating outdoor ghosts from a few years ago.
Bonus 2: our Halloween decor from a few years ago.

Bonus 3: this silly video

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