steal this idea: diy reed scent diffusers

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Looking for a fabulous-yet-frugal gift for the moms in your world? Something easily thrown together in minutes with things you probably have around the house? Well, then let me suggest these DIY reed scent diffusers — they are way cooler than the ones you see for $15 each. I’d been thinking I should make my own ever since I saw the first crazy-expensive air fresheners in a specialty shop years ago. They just looked TOO SIMPLE. So this year, when wracking my brain for mom’s day gifts, I remembered my stash of used SanBitter bottles, and decided to give it a shot.

I did a bit of Googling to see how it was done, and I found this post from Young House Love in 2009, but I was disappointed to see that they had just used Mrs. Meyer’s Household Cleaner as their scent (nothing against Mrs Meyer’s — I SWEAR by the lavender products). I wanted to custom-blend my own scents. Thankfully I found this helpful post at TipNut to help me make my own uniquely scented gifts. I used a mix of grapeseed and sweet almond oils as my “carrier oil”, added a splash of vodka to help it diffuse, and my favorite essential oils, gave it a shake — and BOOM. That’s it.
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What you will need:
Bamboo skewers
small bottles or narrow necked vases
vodka
essential oils
grapeseed or sweet almond oil

Trim the pointed ends off the skewers with wire cutters or sturdy kitchen shears. To mix the scented oil, measure out 1/4 c grapeseed/almond oil, add a splash of Vodka and 12-20 drops of essential oil. Shake. Pour in your vessel (no more than 3/4 full), add the skewers, and flip them a few times to start the diffusion more quickly. Favorite scent combinations are grapefruit & sandalwood, lavender & clary sage, and black pepper & palmarosa. Have you ever made them? Share your results in the comments! — Megan B.

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steal this idea: orla kiely-inspired stencils

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Earlier this year I painted my boring white bathroom an awesome turquoise color and was really pleased with the results. But something was missing … I felt like it needed just a little more design oomph to make it perfect. After some web surfing and brainstorming, I came up with this Orla Kiely-inspired stencil pattern, and applied it on the walls using a slightly glossy version of the same paint color. I loved the results! The stem pattern added just a bit of extra visual interest to the room that I felt it was missing. Thanks to Ms. Kiely’s Scandinavian design, I now love my bathroom just a little more. What do you think? – Rebecca F.

Photo: Rebecca Firlik

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i have a crush on ikea fabrics!

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I don’t know a single person who doesn’t have a love affair (of some sort) with Ikea. Be it their inexpensive furniture, colorful home decorating accessories, or myriad of household items we didn’t know we needed, there’s something for everyone. My most recent obsession is with Ikea’s fabrics. The cheery colors and funky Scandinavian patterns helped me fight the blues through Chicago’s dreary winter — I picked up red-patterned Fredrika fabric (for less than $6 a yard!) and two pillow inserts and made these pillows in a single afternoon. Don’t they make you feel happier just looking at them? What’s your Ikea obsession? – Rebecca F.

photo: Rebecca Firlik

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steal this idea: paint chip easter garland

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Around here, we have a thing for holiday decorating. Last week we scouted the latest in Easter décor at some of our favorite stores, but if you’re looking for a crafty, quick and virtually free project for this week, look no further than this adorable paint chip Easter garland tutorial from Modern Parents Messy Kids. I love the simplistic pop of color this could add to a room, but unless I hit the paint store for some new chips, we’re looking at a greige garland strung together with dental floss. Neutrals. So hot right now.

Also, lest we forget, Easter marks the beginning of a very fleeting Peep season, so ready those pots everyone: It’s time for Peeps treats! –Sarah C.

Photos courtesy of Modern Parents Messy Kids

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steal this idea: custom flor coasters

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I have a huge glass coffee that I absolutely love. It’s perfect for a messy craft project, spreading out work papers, or having a casual dinner while watching a movie. But, after a while, I got tired of having to constantly clean it b/c my coasters weren’t measuring up. While cute, they didn’t absorb any moisture and left me with watery rings to constantly wipe away. But — ta-da — enter a crafty solution! I went to my local Flor store and picked up three 6×6″ carpet samples (for $5), cut each sample into quarters with a sharp utility knife, and voila – cute coasters that actually do their job! Flor has a huge selection of colors and textures that would fit almost any decorating style, and because they’re so inexpensive, than can be switched up when room styles change. So, what do you think of my new coasters? — Rebecca F.

Photo credit: Rebecca Firlik

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