First Week of Couponing for 2015!!

I was going to wait until late Saturday night to post about my first couponing trips of the year, but I figured I would go ahead and do it on Friday instead since I had the time and motivation.

So without further ado, here is part of my haul for the month so far. Not everything is pictured because it’s either in use or I ate it 🙂 This is the majority of it, though. So far I have spent $39.73 and got $147.90 worth of stuff! Not bad so far, but after this week I will be getting back into my $10 and under per week couponing and No Coupon Extreme Couponing!!

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I also snagged these adorable dog jackets on clearance at CVS! Price details below! IMG_3602

Note: I’m using “local” and “work” to differentiate between transactions done at the store I work in, and the one near my house. I put the original value of the items next to the store as well. Also, an asterisk (*) is used to indicate a clearance item.

CVS (local) ($14.91)

4 – Henna N Placenta packets @ $0.62 each *

1 – Gold Emblem gummy bears (blue bag)  @ $1.77

1 – Oak Farms 1/2 gallon 2% Milk @ $2.99

Used:

$2.50 Quarterly ECB

Employee Discount

Paid $4.40

Saved 71%, or $10.51

Commissary ($3.99)

1 – Simple Facial Wash @ $3.99

Used:

$2/1 Simple {Military Store Coupon}

CVS (work) ($60.83)

1 – Jack Link w. cheese @ $1.00

1 – Essence of Beauty Mini Lotions gift set @ $2.49 *

2 – Dog Jackets @ $3.25 each *

1 – 1 pound Reese’s @ $3.25

3 – Dawn Hand Care @ $0.99 each

1 – Grandma’s Vanilla cookies @ $0.50

1 – Lean Cuisine, Sesame Chicken @ $4.79

Used:

3 x $0.50/1 Dawn MQ

$3/$15 email coupon

$1/ body lotions {sent to card}

Employee Discount

Paid $15.81

Saved 75%, or $45.02

Target ($2.48)

1 – BIC Cristal pens, 10 ct @ $1.47

1 – BIC whiteout @ $0.97

Used:

2 x $1/1 BIC Stationery product

Paid $0.48

Walmart ($22.38)

6 x Midol Complete @ $3.73 each

Used:

2 x $10/3 MQ (any listed on coupon)

Paid $2.38, or $0.39/box

CVS (local) ($43.31)

1 – Stayfree w. Wings, 36 ct @ $4.49

1 – Stayfree w. Wings, 32 ct @ $4.49

1 – Carefree liners, 36 ct @ $3.99

2 – Shea Moisture Curl and Style Milk @ $10.99 each

1 – Hask Argan Oil  Treatment  @ $2.27

Used:

2 x $3/1 Stayfree

$1/1 Carefree

$3/$12 Pad, Liner purchase {sent to card}

Raincheck – Shea Moisture, Buy One Get One Free

Employee Discount

Paid $14.67

Saved 68%, or $28.64

 

Thank you so much for reading! My latest wash day post will be up probably Monday, or maybe Sunday night when I get home from work.

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Closet Makeover

 

In all honesty, I should have written this post a long time ago. For some reason, I kept thinking I did. Then, I kept putting it off because of school or work. But today, I finally had a little time to sit down and type this one out: my closet makeover. My closet has been in a state of disarray for several years, and has only just now become more easily managed and it stays clean longer! Go figure!

I took a trip to the container store (after browsing online) and picked up a few things. In all I spent about $40. The first thing I took care of was my major shoe issue. I had too many pairs. So, I went through and tossed all the beat up pairs that I can’t weat anymore. I actually bought this shoe organizer from WalMart about a year ago for $5. DSCN4544

Next, I have some before shots for your entertainment…

I thought storing my scarves like that would work, but it just looks messy.DSCN4546

This dresser became a crap catcher pretty quickly, so I moved it.

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This poor dresser became a crap catcher as well, so I moved it out of my closet completely.

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My messy shelf….(thank god you can’t see the full extent unlike the earlier photo)

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Here’s the closet totally emptied out. Well, except for the black dresser in its new location.

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I chose to cover the main wall with wrapping paper from Marshalls ($2!) and some pink tissue paper I already had, along with some more wrapping paper (probably also from Marshalls at some point). I didn’t worry about getting the edges perfectly straight/even because it would all be covered with clothes anyway.

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Here, you can see what I bought at the container store: a sweater organizer and a double hang closet rod. These two additions were MAJOR lifesavers!

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I took a picture tonight of the finished closet because I never took one! It’s a little dark, but you can see that I ended up moving the double hang rod to the other side. It works better towards the front. The sweater organizer holds my camis/raceback tanks, some sweaters, all of my scarves, and some blankets. I also swapped out the majority of my hangers with green and grey velvet hangers I picked up on two separate occasions from two different Marshalls stores. You can also see my bin of sewing patterns and my pink zebra print fabric bin that holds misc. cords and all of the device cases I am not currently using. The bag on top of the dresser is a JoAnn reusable bag and it holds all of my leftover hangers.

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Thanks so much for reading and I hope you like my closet makeover!

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I Got Nominated for a Liebster Award!!

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*cue cheers*

I was nominated by kangopie for a Liebster Award! What is it, you ask? Well, it’s really about blog community involvement and helping out other small blogs, like mine. I’m so happy to be a part of this, as I am always looking to gain more exposure for my little home on the web. 🙂 Without further ado, I must answer some questions:

She wanted to know:

1. How long does it take you to wash your hair?

Generally, only about 20-30 minutes. As far as ALL rinse outs  I do on my wash day, about an hour or so total. It’s the drying that takes forever! 🙂

2. What is your #1 hair tip?

Go with your gut. Don’t act on a whim with anything having to do with your hair. See #5….

3. What’s the craziest hair myth you ever heard?

Black people’s hair doesn’t grow. Come ON.

4. What is your #1 hair regret?

Relaxing my hair recently after I had made serious progress with my natural growth. Now I have to start pretty much from scratch!

5. What is your favorite kitchen product to put in your hair?

Grapeseed oil!!! And then my DIY deep conditioner has a base of honey, coconut oil, and olive oil.

6. Who is your current favorite blogger?

Just Grow Already! I also follow a DIY blog called Two Twenty One! Both are wonderful and I’m subscribed to their updates on Facebook so I don’t miss anything 🙂

7. When did you start your hair journey?

Roughly late 2012 – my first semester of college.

8. Are you relaxed, natural, or texlaxed?

Texlaxed, and I only say that because I tried the “egg and vinegar strips relaxer” trick and it did work to a degree — some of my curls came back.

9. What is your current hair length goal?

As long as I can get it naturally! I WILL succeed in transitioning my hair! Those curls are too beautiful to ignore!

10. How long is your hair currently?

Above shoulder, that’s for sure. It’s been this length for several years. I just keep letting it grow and chopping it back down when I get too hot in the summers.

11. What is your favorite protective style?

Buns! I also love braiding overnight so I can still have curls whenever I want.

 

And my twelve random facts:

1. If I had only one app on my phone, it would be Pinterest.

2. I used to really hate cats.

3. I am terrified of snakes. And spiders.

4. I have had 6 hamsters, a rabbit, and a betta fish.

5. Two of said hamsters were both named Frisky.

6. My very handsome boyfriend is Mexican and a year younger than I am.

7. I want to be an English professor or school principal someday.

8.  I keep flopping between wanting three kids, to wanting one, to wanting none at all.

9. I was obsessed with Little House on the Prairie when I was little.

10. I don’t tell customers at my job that  I understand Spanish because I like listening to their conversations to test my translating skills. (shh!)

11. I am horribly introverted until I get to know someone VERY well.

12. Not many of my friends know about this blog or my creative talents.

I nominate the following lovely ladies:

Pecan Pie & Pin Curls

The Random Phoenix – LOVE her shiny, silky hair!

Kreamy Curls

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You ladies must answer (I didn’t change much):

1. How long does it take you to wash your hair (full wash day routine)?

2. What is your #1 hair tip?

3. What’s the worst product you’ve ever tried?

4. What is your #1 hair regret?

5. What is your favorite kitchen product to put in your hair?

6. Who is your current favorite blogger?

7. Why did you start your hair journey?

8. Are you relaxed, natural, or texlaxed?

9. What is your current hair length goal?

10. How long is your hair currently?

11. What is your favorite protective style?

 

Thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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DIY Flower Wall Art Project

The next project I decided to pull from my stash is my DIY flower wall art, which was created completely by accident. It’s very simple and easy to do, and can be made with materials you may already have laying around the house.

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I started by gathering up a bunch of paper towel rolls and cutting them into rings. Then, I covered them in bright green masking tape and zebra print tape.

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They looked a little plain (and I still has no idea where I was going with them at this point), so I decided to grab my nail polishes (I was out of paint at the time), and painted the insides in different colors. 2

Once they were all dry, I sorted them off by color and hot glued them in groups of four. I think this is the point where I figured out that these were going to be flowers. 😉

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After the glue cooled, I hot glued the sections together into a random design. 4

I hot glued the entire thing to a piece of cardboard that I painted to match the other decor in the room and hung it up on the wall with push pins. Nails don’t work, it will fall off!!!

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Thanks for reading!

-N.

Quick Bookcase Styling

I was going through my picture folders on my laptop today and realized I had alot of projects I never posted about! And here I was thinking I didn’t really have much to write about lately! So, I thought the first one I would share was my new bookcase and it’s styling.

I got a new bookcase a couple of months ago — I can’t believe I forgot about it! It’s a 5-shelf cheapo one from Walmart. I definitely should have gotten one at Target and paid the few extra dollars, because THIS THING. I have my scissors sharpener between it and the wall at the moment because it is LEANING. But, it does still look cute. I spray painted the inside gold and the outside light blue. The gold is scratched in places because I didn’t seal it and I’m lazy, and the blue is kinda sorta covered with green tape in a few places because I…..yeah…..I’m not getting into that. BUT. I will be repainting the outside eventually. If I can move it without it breaking. 🙂

Here it is before I styled it, with everything just kind of….everywhere:

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This box is from Marshalls. Oh my goodness, it really does pay to go out of your city to another Marshalls! While my mom and I were visiting my brother about a half hour or so from home, I went into the Marshalls and found this little gem. I love the fact that it’s something I would totally put on a box like this if I made it myself! It holds product manuals and other things, I’m honestly not sure, as the box dictates. IMG_1514

After taking everything else off the bookcase, I relocated a few things to my little blue cabinet, and gave my green paper organizer a new home right on top. I realize it’s an expanding file, but it really does hold all of my different craft papers. IMG_1515

And here is the finished product. See how I hid the paper and cabinet behind my mirror? And oh, how I wish my newest addition was in the photo! I picked up a bright pink ‘N’ at Michael’s on clearance! It lives on the top shelf 🙂 IMG_1516Thanks so much for reading!

-N

 

DIY Notebooks {Back to School 2013}

My goodness, how exciting! I get to write a post and publish it when I get done, instead of it being super late at night and I just schedule it for the next day…..

Anyway, isn’t it exciting that school starts up again soon? I start classes next Thursday, and I will finally see what it’s like to work part time and go to school full time (opposite of my dad right now, how funny!). Today, I wanted to share with you the notebooks I finished up a couple of days ago.

You need fabric, scrapbook paper, ribbon, mod podge, a brush, scissors, and any other embellishments you want to use. Oh, and spray adhesive, if you have it. I rarely buy it because it’s hard to find cheap sometimes, but I got it at JoAnn with a coupon since I love using it so much!

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I started by snipping the ribbon off of a jelly roll I made months ago. I arranged the strips in a sort of design and used spray adhesive to apply them to the notebook cover. Then, I sprayed some on the inside cover and folded over the excess fabric.

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Here are all four notebooks that I did. The top two are fabric, and the bottom two are scrapbook papers.

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And now, here they all are with ribbons added. (again with spray adhesive)

 

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Then, I coated the front of each notebook with mod podge. I printed out cute little monogram (made in MS Word), and stuck them to the front of each notebook.

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Then I remembered I had this wonderful stuff….

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And now, I have one shimmery notebook! The next day, I added another coat of mod podge to all of the notebooks. I did not take a picture of the finished notebooks, because they look like they do above, just with monograms. I used a matte mod podge as well.

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My New Pencil Bag!

Update: My pencil bag has been featured as a part of this list!! Go and check it out, you won’t be disappointed! 🙂

Hello, everyone! In my last post, I mentioned that I had plans for a pencil bag. Well today, I am going to show you how I made my TOMS bag into a lined, boxy pencil bag! I kept seeing the ones on Pinterest that were just regular flat pencil bags, but I love the box style, so I set out to make it without much of a guide. To make my Lined TOMS Pencil Bag, you will need: a TOMS bag, lining fabric of your choice, zipper, pins, scissors, and a sewing machine or needle and thread.

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The first thing I did was square up my lining fabric. The edges were a little uneven, but I couldn’t find my rotary cutter, so I just used shears. I still haven’t found it. And the blade is getting dull. Bummer.

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I then centered my lining fabric on top of the TOMS logo so I could cut the bag to size.
I lined up each piece of lining, wrong sides together, with an outer piece and pinned it to keep it from sliding while I pinned and sewed the zipper in place.

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It wasn’t until after I stitched the first side that I realized the zipper should have been sandwiched between the lining and the outer piece.

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Since it is for my personal use, I just sucked it up and kept rolling with the punches, as they say. I also went ahead and pinned and stitched the bottom since there wasn’t the convenience of a fold. So now we have this:

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Then, I moved the zipper pull out of harm’s way, flattened the “bag”, and stitched the “sides”. Cut off the excess zipper, and this could be a finished bag, if you wanted!

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But I didn’t. So now, I can measure and pin my edges for the boxy shape that I want. after stitching them in place, I cut off the excess fabric with pinking shears to help prevent fraying. IMG_1656
And here is the finished bag! As you can see, the letters are cut off, but I love this bag. It’s adorable, I made it, and it didn’t cost me anything extra in supplies. The lining fabric is a cotton print from a grab bag I found at Goodwill.

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What? You want to see actual supplies in it? Darn…I mean, okay!

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Oh, by the way, here’s a shot of my pen collection…most of them, I mean. I grouped them by color just for you, my dear readers! I have a partial pack of pens in my drawer, along with several strays laying around in my room, but this is the bulk of it!

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ALSO. I wanted to show you what I decided to put in my “Kit” I was talking about in my last post. Again, go to the link in that post for the full details on it, and I promise, you will love her blog!

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Everything fits nicely in this Arbonne makeup bag. I have no idea where I got this from, but I’m pretty sure someone gave it to me.

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Thanks so much (as always) for reading!

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Oversized Pillowcase Tutorial

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Hello! Today, I am finally sharing with you my oversized pillowcase tutorial. I say finally because I somehow kept overlooking it when I was working on photos. Totally went over my head. Up until I made this pillowcase, I have had a plain white lace trimmed sham on my pillow. And since I have this new bed set, it looks very strange. The sheets and pillowcases are a pale yellow, but the white sham makes them look dirty!

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So, I set about to fix the problem. The bed set came with the standard two pillow shams.

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Oh yeah, and here’s another view of the white sham:

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On to the new case! I picked apart the seams on the sides and bottom of one sham. This took FOREVER, it seemed. I had to rip through two sets of stitches, which I wasn’t expecting. The last sham I took apart had one set of stitches and I was done!

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Then, I laid it on top of the old sham to figure out how much of the second sham I would need. Just as I thought, I only needed one more panel!

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I marked the section from the side with the interfacing since it was see-through, and for obvious reasons I couldn’t just unpick the stitches from this side. More seam ripping!

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The section is free! I opened it up and smoothed it a little. A very little….Then I pinned it along the green edge of the other sham and stitched it together!

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I matched up the edges as best as I could, and pinned the WHOLE thing together, RST.

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Since I left the original opening alone, it ended up in almost the exact same location as on the old pillowcase. All I had to do after stitching was turn it and iron it! I shoved my pillow back in and I was finished! Super easy, right?

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Thanks for reading as always!

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DIY Desk Repair

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My mom got a new desk over the Mother’s Day weekend. I stayed up until 4am that Sunday helping her put the desk and hutch together, and then got back up around 8am to help finish it up and secure it to the wall. The icing on the cake? I got her old l-shaped desk. It’s a cheap-o desk from Wal-Mart, and it’s definitely seen better days. Like, before my nephew decided to pull off the “finish” like tape. It kept getting messed with and finally came all the way off one day. So now, I had this nice desk with a “slight” cosmetic defect. What to do, what to do?

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Well, I started by scuffing up the surface with sandpaper, so the glue would have something to “grab” I had originally wanted to use homemade mod podge and scrapbook paper (and had already applied a small amount after this – too watery, boo), but chose to use a stronger alternative…

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I started by making a square template for my glitter paper by cutting a small scrap of red cardstock to the width of the leg and squaring it up as best I could. I am going to need to cut a bunch of these squares, so a paper template was a no-no this time around.

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Then, I cut out the glitter paper squares. I am alternating gold and silver, but there wasn’t enough to do the entire leg, so I grabbed some tiny scraps and a small scrap of scrapbook paper.

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By the way….you need these four lovely items – E-6000 adhesive, a cheap paint brush you can toss after using it with the E-6000, black electrical tape, and a paper plate. Newspaper to work on top of is nice, too. Just saying.

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Apply the E-6000 to each square and attach it to the desk front. Fill in the scraps and scrapbook paper until the entire piece is covered. If it isn’t totally straight, that’s okay. I know my cuts were off and I have zero sense of straight lines, it seems.

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Apply the black electrical tape in between the pieces and around the edges to give the desk leg a slick, cohesive look. Unless the desk is brown, so the black looks weird. But then again, the way the desk faces in my room, it’s not obvious at all.

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By the way, do you like my super high tech system for holding my tape after I cut the pieces I needed?

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And here is the finished desk leg! Tres chic, no? Just kidding. I’m not bilingual. No French, no Spanish, no Italian, nothing. I took three years of Spanish in high school and I remember very little. I know the common French words – bonjour, qui, and mon ami. That’s it. I think. Spanish – I can follow certain conversations, it depends on the subject. But I couldn’t tell you an exact translation.

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Umm…where was I? Oh! Thanks for reading, and come back soon!

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DIY “Keep Calm” Print

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I love the Hunger Games trilogy. It’s amazing! I approached it with much reserve during my Twilight phase, and I was totally against reading it because every fan of the trilogy was bashing the Twilight Saga and I hated it. People kept bugging me to read it and I wouldn’t give in at the time. I kept saying I would later on down the road so I’m not jumping on the “OMG read this book before the movie comes out!” bandwagon. I ended up doing the same thing I did with Twilight. I read the first book the year after the first movie came out, only with Twilight I got the other books over time. Since I read The Hunger Games on my Kindle, I ended up buying and reading all three books within a week; they were so addicting!

Okay, I’m turning this into a book review. This is supposed to be a tutorial. Oops. Sorry, guys. Anyway…

Like everybody else, I have been obsessing over all of these “Keep Calm” images, prints, and quotes all over Pinterest and “le interwebs” (if you recognize this from Ragestache, you are awesome!) I wanted my own after seeing *this* pin on Pinterest. I tried typing up my own and adding the image in preparation to just have it printed at a photo place, but it simply was too expensive for my tastes! So, I went to the next logical step (in my mind), and began brainstorming total DIY ideas.

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I could’ve bought black posterboard and used gold paint pens or Sharpies, and was all prepared to do so, when I stumbled upon the rest of my mom’s desk box packaging. The perfectly-sized piece of cardboard was just lying there, ready to be trashed. It started out at 25 inches long by 17 inches wide. I actually just had to run and dig for the paper I wrote this on. Hehe.

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See my awesome fake lightbox setup? My dad hooked up one of our older (read: slower) computers to the TV, so I Googled “mockingjay”, opened the image, taped up a sheet of mint green paper, and traced away with my Sharpies!

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Next, I added the lettering with Sharpie. This part scared me because I planned it out on paper a few times, but it still made me nervous. Perfectionist anxiety, I guess.

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I then carefully cut out my little mockinjay and positioned him on the top of the poster. Since I didn’t want to use tape or glue, and I wanted whatever I used to be hidden, I colored some staples with a red Sharpie and stapled the birdy in place. I did stupidly forget how thin the cardboard was, though. I had to pry the cardboard loose before I could do anything else…

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I hit the staples a few times at an angle with my dad’s hammer and covered all of the points with tape. No scratching my paint finish! You can also see my hastily scrawled layout…

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I chopped of the excess cardboard, so now the length is 22 inches, a pretty do-able size for a poster. I then covered all the edges with black electrical tape. Then I had to open the garage door. Why? Well…

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I chose to seal the poster. Why? I have no freaking idea. But I did it anyway. I sprayed the whole front and let it dry for an hour before moving it. It’s obvious where I taped down part of the Mockingjay…awkward. But it’s up on my wall and it looks awesome! So now, go make a “Keep Calm” print for yourself! Or a friend, maybe? Who cares, it’s so easy and cheap, you can just make up a bunch!

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Thanks so much for stopping by!!

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