Friends forging a course together through the unexpected

4 Minute Project June 3, 2014

Filed under: Kelly — Uncharted @ 10:52 pm
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Today I have a super quick project to show you.  I took some recycled cans and turned them into adorable pencil holders.   Although it’s easy to do, I love the way it looks and am excited for these to be a fixture on my new desk.  Literally all you need are clean recycled cans and washi tape of your choosing.  Oh and I used an x acto knife too, but that was just me being a perfectionist.

photo 1

photo 2


Make sure the cans are clean, dry and have no sharp edges before you start taping.  I started at the seam of the can and wrapped the tape around once only.  I left a little tail and tore off the tape.  Then I used the knife to cut the tail so there were no jagged edges and it looks uniform.  I decided not to cover the whole can up because I liked the look of it.  You could use multiple colors or patterns, but I wanted something simple and stuck with black polka dots and grey and white stripes.  After I was done with the tape, I grabbed some empty toilet paper rolls and arranged them in the wider can.  This helps to keep the Sharpie markers I store in there standing nicely, plus I organized them by color which gives a nice visual effect.   So simple, and the only real expense is the washi tape.  I’ve seen it available in most craft stores, Etsy, and even places like Walgreens.  You could even use duct tape which I’ve seen in a lot of interesting colors and patterns lately.  There is really no limit to what you can create!




Jewelry Display Board March 11, 2014

I am very excited to share this project with you.  I got the idea from my sister when she moved into her new apartment.  She put together her new bedroom and wanted a place to display her jewelry so she’d know what she has.  Anyone else have that issue?  You don’t know what you even own?  I am guilty of that, so my interest was piqued when I saw her fabric covered bulletin board as a jewelry display.  It took me awhile to get my act together, but I finally did and now I want to show you how to make your very own jewelry display board.

Items needed:

Bulletin Board in the size you prefer.  I used 3ftx2ft
Fabric of your choice
Hot Glue Gun
Glue Sticks
Lint Roller
Push Pins

This is actually a super simple project.  The hardest part for me was picking a fabric I liked.  I looked for at least an hour in a fabric store and when I finally found the one I wanted, it was only available in quilting squares.  In the end I found the exact same fabric in an Etsy shop and had it mailed to me.  When I received my fabric it was nicely folded in the package, but this meant wrinkles which I didn’t want to show up on my board.  So I grabbed my mini steamer, draped the fabric over my shower curtain and got to work steaming out all the wrinkles.  I think this step is important and once you glue the fabric you really can’t go back and do this so I suggest you take the time.  If you don’t have a steamer you can use an iron {I bought my steamer so I could avoid ironing forever!}.

Once the fabric was wrinkle-free I laid it out on a clean flat surface.  I turned on my glue gun to get it heated up.  Then I unwrapped the board from its packaging and laid it in the middle of the fabric.   I proceeded to wrap the board with the fabric as if it were a birthday present while using the hot glue as I went along.  See my photo below to see what I mean:


It doesn’t have to look beautiful in the back because that part will be hidden.  They key is to make sure all the sides are taut before you glue.  You don’t want the fabric to sag later when you hang or stand up the board.  I flipped mine over once it was done and of course it was covered in cat hair so I grabbed my lint roller and removed all the unnecessary fur.


Look at all that gross cat hair!

Then it was time to get to work displaying all my necklaces!  I opened up the wooden set of pushpins my sister gave me for Christmas {aren’t they cure?} and started playing around with an arrangement that would fit everything.  After awhile I was pretty happy with how it looked so I stopped messing with it and declared the project done.  You’ll notice I ran out of the pretty wooden pushpins near the bottom and had to use the classic red, blue, and yellow pushpins.  Hopefully I can find some more wooden ones so the whole board matches.  The only issue is now that I have a way to display necklaces, and I’ve already created an earring organizer, it has become clear to me that I need a way to display bracelets.  I’ll add it to the list of projects!

set upjewels



Recycle & Reuse = Drawer Dividers August 13, 2013

After rushing to pack everything up for my dad, I felt like I needed to start packing up my apartment.  I at least wanted to start so I won’t be frantic as my move date looms closer and closer.  Moving everything he has has made me much more aware of how much stuff I have.  It really bothered me so I’ve decided to go through my things in order to organize what I’m keeping and either trash or donate the rest.  Last weekend I was going through a drawer to my dresser and remembered a pin I saw on Pinterest {surprise surprise right?}.  I opened up Miss Jen’s  I heart organizing blog on my phone and proceeded to make some drawer organizers!

All you need is:
Decorative paper-scrapbook or wrapping
Empty boxes

Using your marker, mark the place the drawer hits the box you are measuring.

drawing lines

I strayed from Jen’s instructions in this next step because I didn’t have very many boxes and I didn’t have a box cutter .  I had to get creative!  I turned the boxes over, measured the top end of the box and then broke down the boxes and easily cut right across with scissors.  I ended up making use of more box with this technique which made me happy.

cutting boxes

The marks I made while measuring are circled in green

After they were all cut I got out my tape and put the boxes back together and planned their arrangement inside my drawer.  You can sort of see below that I didn’t fill up the whole drawer with the organizers.  I didn’t want a whole drawer of them, but rather a section.  The beautiful thing about this project is there is a lot of room for customization.


Once you have your paper picked out you can set to work cutting the paper to wrap the boxes.  I had to do a bit of patchwork on my boxes which annoyed me.  Jen’s instructions made it look so easy, why was I struggling!?  Her instructions said to cut two strips of paper, place the paper in the bottom of the box, wrap it around the outsides, and tape the paper flaps to the bottom.  Then repeat in the other direction.  Check out her post, she has nice pictures to illustrate this.  I believe it ended up being harder for me because I started off using scrapbook paper and the 12×12 size was a bit too small for all my boxes.  I switched to wrapping paper on the last two boxes and it was so much easier.  In fact I would say don’t try to use scrapbook paper unless you have very small boxes to cover.


After a little time on the Struggle Train I managed to get all my boxes covered and organized in my drawer.  Don’t they look pretty?  I almost couldn’t bring myself to fill them up.


Wedding Shower Reflections July 17, 2013

Filed under: Karla — Uncharted @ 9:46 pm
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This past weekend was amazing! Sorry you didn’t get to hear about it in Kelly’s post this week. Hopefully next week she’ll post about it….unless another bottle of wine pops! How crazy is that?!?!

I did want to fill our readers in on a few tips for enjoying a bachelorette and shower weekend.

Crate and Barrel and REI exploding!

Crate and Barrel and REI exploding!

  1. Enjoy every little moment!

  2. Relax and don’t freak out if you don’t know everything…your bridesmaids will eventually tell you.

  3. If you have a lot of out of town friends/family consider holding one weekend for your bachelorette party and wedding shower.

  4. Have a go-between to help diffuse potentially tense situations. My Matron of Honor was a huge help handling delicate situations with my family during the wedding shower. I don’t know what I would have done without her!

  5. Be sure someone is writing down all gift information for the bachelorette and for the wedding shower.

  6. If you have a crafty friend, have them help to combine all of your gift ribbons for your rehearsal bouquet.

  7. Bring a few guys to the wedding shower…they’ll come in handy helping pack up all the gifts. I brought my dad, Matt’s dad and of course Matt 🙂

  8. Depending how OCD you are, try to get things organized as soon as you get home. Matt and I unpacked all of our gifts, washed them and put the majority of the items away in one night. We removed everything that we weren’t going to keep and started piles for Good Will or for our friends who called dibs on a few items.

  9. Arm yourself with thank you cards ready! My goal is to write at least six a night. I try to do a few more if time allows.

  10. Get excited, after the bachelorette and wedding shower the next big event is the wedding!

    Matt and I

    Matt and I


Weekend of Kanban June 12, 2013

Filed under: Karla — Uncharted @ 10:00 am
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Of course we got a beer while waiting for our parents to show up ;)

Of course we got a beer while waiting for our parents to show up 😉

Friday night Matt and I took both of our parents to Two Brothers Roundhouse for dinner. We wanted to treat them for all their help with the wedding plus neither set of parents had been to the Roundhouse before. The evening couldn’t have gone better. Weather was perfect, great beer on tap and fabulous food. There was even a wedding going on! The real funny story came into play when I found out the following day that I went to high school with the bride! It’s such a small world.

That same night riding on our high of excitement, we consolidated spreadsheets. Don’t get me wrong, the spreadsheets have been great but I needed even more of a visual. As we approach our date my biggest fear is forgetting something. Enter Kanban. It’s an organizing system that is pretty darn basic. For our version, you just need note cards, painter’s tape and a wall. We started by reviewing what was left to do on the spreadsheets and writing each item on a note card. We also indicated on the card when the item is due (month) and whose responsibility it is to complete. About 75 note cards later we were done. Hopefully next week I’ll have a picture to show you of the completed wall!

We’ve even completed a few tasks without the project wall. One is that we secured a musician for the ceremony. The guy is awesome and was totally on par with the type of music Matt and I were looking for. I really can’t wait to see what he comes up with!

Food & Beer, the perfect pairing

Food & Beer, the perfect pairing

The second item was our reception tasting. Yep, we’ve been hanging out in Aurora a lot lately. Monday afternoon we headed out to meet with our coordinator, who we both love! She’s absolutely hilarious and offers wonderful suggestions and ideas. We started the appointment be finalizing a few details like our linens, decor, set-up and our other vendor information. Then we got to the fun stuff – the food! And we even got our choice of beer with the meal. Not only were Matt and I impressed with the food but we both left stuffed! It only made us more excited for the big day.

So that’s the update for now, stay tuned for what we come up with next!


Wedding Update November 7, 2012

Filed under: Karla — Uncharted @ 8:43 pm
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To give my elbow a break from ranting this week, how about some wedding updates?

Last time I checked in with you it was to inform you of all the craft making for my best friend, Jill’s wedding, and when I said yes to my dress. We’ve made quite a bit of progress since then.

What have we done?

  • Selected our ceremony site
  • Selected our reception venue
  • Booked a photographer
  • Choose our wedding colors
  • Finalized budget
  • Pretty much finalized our guest list
  • Choose our attendants
  • Selected components of our centerpieces
  • Took our engagement photos with Redwall Photography – check them out! I’ve got one example for you below as a teaser.

  • Engagement Shot courtesy of Redwall Photography

On the horizon

  • Choosing a DJ
  • Selecting a hair/make-up artist
  • Securing lodging (finalizing this week)
  • Choosing flowers (hopefully in two weeks)
  • Selecting bridesmaid dresses (getting some ideas this weekend!)
  • Creating our “brand” for the wedding

We’re making great progress. We’re setting goals and achieving them realistically within our budget. I’m glad we’re getting a lot of the major components out of the way now to avoid potential wrinkles down the line, because we all know how things can come up at the last minute!

Going through the process with Matt has also been really fun. We’ve had great conversations about what we want and what we definitely do not want. Having his involvement has been wonderful. He keeps things light and funny, from not knowing “branding” was necessary for a wedding to getting just as stoked as myself about our potential centerpieces.

Stay tuned for more updates!


DIY- Ribbon Organizer October 23, 2012

Filed under: Kelly — Uncharted @ 10:49 pm
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Last night I saw this picture my friend pinned on Pinterest:

Click on the picture to find Shannon Wight’s blog post

I instantly loved it because right now this is my current ribbon storage solution:

Needs some work huh?

I thought it seemed like an easy project and it would create instant impact {visually and organizationally}.  I was so excited that I immediately started looking online to purchase my own glass straw holder so I could make my own ribbon holder.  I found a few on Amazon that were a good price, but I really wanted to do this project ASAP and online shopping = waiting for it to ship.  So I actually stopped at Bed Bath & Beyond on my way home from work today to pick up my own glass straw holder.  It was a bit pricier than ordering online, but after I used my handy five dollar coupon it was about ten dollars with tax.

When I got home I took off all the stickers and took out the straws that came with the thing {what do I need those for?}.  I removed the lid and realized that the bottom section had some washers holding it to the main pole that runs the length of the canister.  I found a wrench {I think that’s what it’s called} and easily took off two sets of washers and spikey rings {sorry I don’t know hardware!}.

After that I realized that most of my ribbon spools would not fit in the canister.  I got out my scissors and started trimming the edges of the spools.  I took the bottom tray and used it as a ruler to figure out just how much to trim each spool.

Spools of Ribbon and their Trimmings

I organized the ribbons into a rainbow order and reattached the bottom tray onto the main pole.  I slid the whole thing into the glass holder and:

Voilà, my very own ribbon organizer!


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