With Christmas fast approaching, I decided it was well time for an ornament DIY project! This is our first year with a full-size tree and I wanted it to have some personal touches. Store-bought ornaments are perfectly fine but we all have unique tastes and my goal was to find a way to spice up our tree with a few of my favorite patterns and symbols.
Joey and I got to work with a handful of simple, graphic designs we are so happy with the way they turned out! Now it’s your turn — we promise that this is super easy and much more manageable than the shakeboard D.I.Y. he came up with last time!
Let’s get started! First, we found these oversized silver ball ornaments at Target. Have you seen their Christmas decor section this year?! It’s AWESOME. Since these were going to be the main accents for our tree, we wanted them to be larger than the rest of our ornaments.
For designs, it’s best to stick with angular, bold shapes and patterns that can easily be masked off on spherical surfaces. Think along the lines of varying stripes, symbols, letterforms, chevron patterns. To customize your ornaments, first mask off the ornament surface completely. Secondly, trace on design. Next, cut design out of tape. Once that’s finished, spray in design in the color of your choice. And once it’s completely dry (we let ours sit overnight just to be sure), peel off tape. See, that was easy!
I am SO excited to finally have a cross ornament! And a Helvetica A! I’ve used both elements in my design projects for a long, long time and it’s nice to have those special additions to our tree. I’m sure we’ll come up with even more for next year.
This is the first year that we’re all ready for Christmas early enough to actually sit back and enjoy the decorations!! How about you? Have you decorated yet?
A huge thank you to ScotchBlue™ Painter’s Tape for collaborating with us on this post! All thoughts and ideas are our own. To join the creative community, visit Facebook.
Two weeks ago, I was waxing poetic about Poppin and their rad, brightly colored office accouterments. I’m a firm believer that a clean workspace translates to a less cluttered mind and was over the moon when Poppin reached out and let me pick out one of their holiday gift sets.
I was in need of some brightening up in my very black and white office so I chose the Pencils of Promise Pack which is named after the organization Poppin works with to build schools for children living in poverty. I love that they give back to educational institutions. There are lots of other brightly colored bundles to choose from as well.
As a native Portlander, I’m accustomed to the six months of overcast drizzle we’re in the midst of but at the same time, it does get old fast. Being surrounded by all these bright colored accessories is making me feel way better and I feel so grown up at 31 finally having a matching pencil cup, tape dispenser and stapler!
I always feel like I’m lacking in the basics — my favorite part of the bundle is the ruler. It’s thick, weighty and the numbers are massive. I can’t seem to draw a straight line to save my life so I see it getting a lot of use.
If you’re seeking a more organized, color coordinated office space as well, I’ve joined up with Poppin to share the holiday cheer with you! Receive $25 off orders $50 or more on Poppin.com + free shipping sitewide! To activate this discount, simply enter the coupon code HappyHoliday during checkout on Poppin.com and start off the new year in style!
I’m one of those girls who admires fancy beauty tools from afar but I always question if they’re really any better than the basics. Will they really improve my life in some way? I tend to mix up my beauty products fairly equally between the high-end and low-end but when it comes to hair, to me it’s just hair. My hair has always been long and straight and it grows really fast. I don’t do a whole lot to it (but let’s be real — if I had the time and funds, I’d get it styled all fancy once a week). For the last five years, I’ve used a basic Conair hair dryer that probably cost a max of $25.00. It does the job but admittedly, it’s not great.
That’s where the Super Solano 232X hair dryer comes in. When Beauty Supply Online offered to let me try one out, I thought sure, why not — it’s a splurge I probably wouldn’t normally invest in on my own and I was really curious. Was it actually superior to my standard-issue dryer?
After trying it out for a few weeks, the consensus is a resounding yes. Let’s start with the superficial — this is a hair dryer I’m talking about, after all! The Solano is way better looking than a standard-issue dryer. It’s sleek, all black, imprinted with a gold coat of arms logo and not too bulky. But beyond that, it’s way quiet, which I love. The Italians sure know what’s up when building anything with a motor, that’s for sure. The first time I turned it on, I was a bit blown away (haha). Imagine starting up a Ford. And then a Ferrari. One sounds like a basic car, the other one purrs.
A bit embarrassingly, my Conair can overheat big time. I often feel the back of my neck burning and if I get it too close to my hair, this weird clearish smoke comes out in plumes. Kind of scary! The Solano has more precise, dialed settings (it’s not just ice cold air or third degree burn hot) and even on the highest setting, I don’t get that dreaded scorched hair smell. Yet, my hair dried about five minutes faster. The time savings was by far the biggest selling point for me. Finally, I should mention that the cord is super heavy duty which has led to a lot less tangles. The OCD Virgo in me loves that big time.
In closing: This hair dryer is the equivalent of a luxurious Italian sports car. It probably won’t change your life but it will definitely make your hair drying experience much more enjoyable. I like using a hair dryer that leaves me feeling like I’m in a fancy salon. The sad reality is that I step foot in a salon perhaps every six months so it’s nice to have a pro quality dryer. While your current hair dryer might work perfectly fine, if you can step it up down the road, consider treating yourself.
Readers, I have a question for you: Do you have any extravagant, pricey beauty product or tool that you absolutely swear by? I’ve always had the mindset of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” but in my older, wiser age, I’m starting to see that there often is a difference.
When ScotchBlue Tape invited me to take part in their D.I.Y. creative challenge, I was both honored and flattered but I’ll be honest here: my mind when blank when it came to dreaming up a project. I’m used to spending my days designing behind the computer but feel like a fish out of water when it comes to handcrafting most things — luckily, this is Joey’s strong suit! He started his own line of skateboards last year and we’d often talked about collaborating on a design but it was one of those projects we never seemed to get around to. We quickly realized that this was our chance to finally make it a reality!
To get started, I built out some inspiration boards to give Joey and idea of the direction I wanted my design to take. Pinterest is great but I thought it would be WAY more fun to curate my ideas on cork boards. I knew I wanted the design to be geometric, have at least one pop of color and include my old standbys, type and stripes.
These are the supplies that are needed:
• Blank Skate Deck. Joey carved mine himself (see above) out of reclaimed wood from a furniture shop that was 9 ply but you can pick up a blank deck at most skate shops.
• Print-outs of Design. We printed out my design in three 11×17 inch sheets (black and white is fine on normal paper) that were then taped together as a stencil.
• ScotchBlue Tape. The thinner width was especially awesome for knocking out our stripes.
• Spray Adhesive: You’ll need this to affix the paper stencil to the tape. We used a 3M version.
• Spraypaint. We used Krylon brand with a gloss finish in black, white and yellow (see above) and finished with a clear coat to seal it.
• X-acto Knife. You’ll need to cut out the pattern so you can spray paint the design.
• Prep: Joey cut this deck out with a jigsaw himself, measured and drilled the holes for trucks and sanded it to a smooth finish. If you purchase one from a skate shop, the holes will already be drilled.
1. Start with a base coat of spraypaint (we used white) and let it dry for a full day to make sure it isn’t tacky.
2. Cover the entire bottom surface of the skate deck in ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape.
3. This is the surface that the stencil will be cut out of.
4. Cover the entire taped surface of the skate deck in spray adhesive.
5. Next, affix the stencil to the tacky surface and cut off the excess.
6. Cut out the black portions of the stencil using an X-acto knife. Remember to cut through both the stencil AND the painter’s tape. The stencil and tape are affixed together so peel both off to reveal the painted surface.
7. All black portions of the stencil should be removed EXCEPT for the A.
8. The first coat of black spraypaint is applied. The A was masked over with ScotchBlue Tape because we were going to apply a different color to it later in the process.
9. Remove the rest of the stencil.
10. This is the result.
11. Peel off the A section of the stencil and SAVE IT!
12. Create a fresh, inverted circle stencil.
13. Use paper and ScotchBlue Tape to mask the entire skate deck with exception of the circle and a single stripe (these are the areas we want to make yellow).
14. Spraypaint the yellow sections. Let this dry for a few hours to ensure nice, crisp edges.
15. Remove all paper and tape to reveal the yellow. Then, replace with the A that was set aside earlier. Mask off everything that should NOT be black. Apply one final coat of black paint and let this dry for a few hours.
16. Once surface is dry, remove all masking to reveal your final design!
Joey wasn’t quite finished yet, though. Before I took my deck out for a spin, he applied grip tape to the surface and sliced out my trademark cross symbol. The perfect finishing touch! Get creative here — you can cut out anything in the grip tape you can dream up!
I loved my finished design so much I put it on display in my office. Nothing beats a piece of functional art! If you have any questions at all about the process, please let me know in the comments and we’ll do our best to respond! And if you make your own skate deck design, let us know — we’d love to see it!
This post is a collaboration with ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape. Visit Scotch Blue Tape on Facebook to learn how to win rad stuff and check out the other participants’ projects in the gallery. All concepts and designs within this post were created in partnership with Joey Maas.
In case you haven’t noticed, I have a thing for shoes. It started at a young age. Beginning at the tender age of four, my mom would pay me a few dollars to arrange her vast collection of stilettos which she seemingly had in every color of the rainbow (hey, it was the 80s). I was big on organization even at that age and would carefully arranged them by height and color.
During college, I ditched my first office job where I was constantly tasked with doing hours of filing to work at a shoe store at the mall instead. The store sold comfort shoes and I mostly worked with fitting old ladies but it was way better than being trapped in suburban office hell. Later, I got a job at an even better shoe store and took pride in helping people pick out the perfect pair of shoes.
A few years back, I started doing freelance work for Solestruck and shot and designed many of their landing pages as well. When they recently asked me to take part in a blogger collab with one of their exclusive brands, To Be Announced, I was like HELL YES. I didn’t want to go the straight “what I wore” route though — there had to be a story line. I called up my friend Shaun and we shot at Mutt Studios, our first collaboration together. I hopped, skipped, danced and jumped into the night…
I'm Shauna, a graphic designer and entrepreneur. I spend my days as the Creative Director of Branch, a boutique design studio. This is my personal blog, which has been going strong since 2007. I'm obsessed with shoes, squirrels and traveling. Read more…
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