12 DIY Kitchen Ideas to Craft Before Company Comes Over

We’re fast approaching that time of year where it feels like we have visitors over all of the time. Whether it’s family or friends, our homes are a hubbub of activity during the holidays, and while we frantically rush to clean up our homes before Cousin Teddy stops by with his family, we often feel at a loss. If you’re like me, you rush to dust, vacuum, and jam as many items into the closet as possible. No matter how many times you tell yourself that it’s going to be different, that last-minute dash to spruce up the joint is habitual. I don’t know about you, but when I’m racing against the clock to rid the house of dust mites, there’s one room I always forget to tackle: the kitchen. I’m usually good about cleaning the dishes and putting food away, but when company comes over, my kitchen isn’t much to look at. It’s dull. It’s boring. If I sweep the floor, the kitchen might look better, but it’s still a room in dire need of color. That’s why I’ve been compiling a list of DIY kitchen ideas.

I’ve spent many hours sprucing up the home decor for my living room. When cleaned, I’m proud to say that the living room looks great. It’s comfortable. It has a sense of atmosphere and style. People can see all of my cool DIY room decor and be amazed. My kitchen, as you now know, is another story, and I wanted to change that. What if Cousin Teddy and the family wanted to raid my fridge for snacks and sodas? In looking for DIY kitchen ideas, I put together crafts that either looked great, were practical, or could wear both hats. Some of these crafts, like the Coffee Pot Homemade Terrarium, were also a neat way to recycle spare items I no longer needed. Featured below is my personal to-do list. The next time those family members or friends want to check out my home, these crafts will make me feel like my kitchen is dressed up enough for company.

12 DIY Kitchen Ideas to Craft Before Company Comes Over

12 DIY Kitchen Ideas to Make You Feel Stylish

  1. Wooden Spoon Wall Art
  2. Coffee Pot Homemade Terrarium
  3. The Dreamiest Treat Jars
  4. Crochet Beer Cap Hot Pad
  5. Colorful Crochet Dishcloths
  6. Permanent Marker Art Bowls
  7. DIY Vintage Sign
  8. French Seed Packet Printable Art
  9. Brewtiful Coffee Printable Art
  10. DIY Laminated Placements
  11. Delectable Donut Coasters
  12. Recycled Milk Carton Organizers

If these 12 DIY kitchen ideas inspired you to track down some more neat projects, you should check out this 39 Low Cost Kitchen Crafts eBook.


I’ve opened up about my last-minute preparations for company. How do you prepare for guests?

6 Cute Kitchen Crafts You’ll Love!

I’ll admit, I’m not much of a cook. I can make pasta and eggs but anything out of that skill level is a challenge. My family will never let me live down the day when I burned soup. Who knew you could even do that? I didn’t, that’s for sure.

The funny thing is that as hopeless as I am at cooking, I love to bake. Cakes, cookies, brownies, you name it I’ve baked it. I guess I like how scientific the recipes are, basically if you follow the directions you end up with a delicious treat!

This summer, I’m moving into my first apartment and I’m excited to have my very own kitchen to let my baking fantasies run wild. The kitchen itself is a little drab but I know with some cute crafty projects I’ll be able to liven the decor up a bit. That’s why I’m loving these quick and easy pot holder sewing patterns. Not only are they practical but they will look great hung on the shelf over my sink or even just on the counter. Just looking at these cute potholders makes me want to bake. Or even learn to cook!

You won’t be able to find these fun pot holders in stores! Not only are these sewing patterns unique, but they are super easy to make:

  

“Let’s Eat” Potholder – I’m in love with the fun applique utensils on this pot holder. Not only does it have a pocket for my hand but it’s so cute it makes me want to cook something!

Retro Potholder – Right now I’m really into anything with a vintage or retro feel. This pot holder has a fun pattern and colors that remind me of the 60’s and 70’s.

You Are So Hot Potholder – This is such a clever pattern. It’s silly but it’s sure to make you smile every time you see it.  I’m a sucker for puns so I think this pot holder is hilarious!

Double Potholder – This potholder is longer than most and protects your wrists and part of your arm from the heat. It’s great for me because I’m not the most graceful when it comes to maneuvering pans out of the oven.

Polka Dot Pot Holders – Polka dots are such a fun pattern and it makes these pot holders really pop! I want to make a set of these in coordinating colors to give to my friends as housewarming gifts.

Dishtowel Potholder – These are made from dishtowels which makes it a thrifty pattern that’s really useful. I’m going to buy some  dishtowels from the dollar store to make these on the cheap.

If you are looking for more  easy sewing projects to add some spice to your kitchen you should check out these 10 Kitchen Projects: How to Make Potholders + 3 New Ideas.

Which pot holder is your favorite? Share with us below!

 

 

 

 

How To Make a Potholder or Hot Pad

I love potholders. I do a lot of cooking, so I have a lot of hot pads in my kitchen. But I also like a coordinated kitchen, so having the ability to make a potholder to match my decor is appealing. And when I give kitchen-oriented bridal shower gifts, I like to make a potholder or two to match the couple’s kitchen decor.  I’ve learned to stop myself from making big wedding gifts, but making a pot holder doesn’t take a lot of time and you can always use an extra potholder!

When I was a child, we made potholders often — the woven kind shown in the video below from YouTube. (Though the demonstrator refers to them as “rubber bands”, they’re actually stretchy cotton loops which are much more heat resistant than nylon ones.) I don’t remember using a crochet hook when I made them, but from the looks of things in her video, it’s a useful tool for weaving through more easily and finishing off the edges. If you haven’t tried making woven pot holders yourself or with your kids, give it a shot.


Weave a potholder video from YouTube

Now, if you’d like to learn to sew a potholder, here’s a video from Nancy’s Notions as to how to make a potholder. This potholder uses some good basic sewing and quilting techniques, such as fussy cutting a motif in a print fabric, quilting, binding, and more.


Creating a simple quilted potholder from Nancys Notions on YouTube

The key to the success of sewn potholders, in my opinion, is the heat-resistant Insul-Bright Insulating Materials — it’s a must for pot holders safety. Not one to dictate brands to our readers, Beacon has some heat-resistant materials as well, both quilted and unquilted. Your local fabric store should be able to help you find something that will work for you.

Sometimes, it’s useful to have potholder-like pad to put under casserole dishes or platters to protect your table when you’re entertaining. If you often cook and serve using a 9″ x 13″ dish or serve on a certain platter, it might be useful to create a hot pad for under the dish. You could even make it using different prints for each side if you wanted to — one that matches your kitchen or dining room and the other a holiday print. Here’s how:

    1. Use your platter or dish as a pattern, trace the shape on the wrong side of one piece of fabric. Cut out that piece of fabric and use it as a pattern to cut the other piece of fabric.

 

    1. Use the fabric as a pattern to cut two layers of the heat-resistant material.

 

    1. Layer the fabrics and heat-resistant material. The heat-resistant surface of the heat-resistant material should face the wrong side of the fabric and the right sides of the fabric should be facing out.

 

    1. Keeping the raw edges even, quilt the layers to stabilize them. This does not have to be elaborate quilting — just a simple X or some horizontal or vertical lines will do.

 

  1. Bind the edges. If the edges are rounded, you’ll want to use bias tape or binding which you can purchase, or you can make your own bias tape. If the edges are straight and you have 90-degree corner angles, you can use either bias tape or straight-of-grain strips to bind the edges.

And there you have it, a finished potholder that is perfect for protecting your table as well.

Recycle Crafts for Kids and Adults: How to Make Magnets

Homemade magnets using household materials are some of my favorite thrifty recycle craft for kids. Homemade magnets are all set to display on the fridge, just as kids want to do with all their art work. Magnets projects using materials like little plastic bottles, juice lids and bottle caps are quick and easy little recycle crafts for kids. These magnets projects are also perfect for special occasions where kids want to help make gifts. Keep the kids entertained on long summer afternoons with these homemade magnet recycle crafts for kids.

Magazine/Junk Mail Magnets Projects

Magazines and junk mail are the perfect material for recycle crafts for kids. With a few additional materials, you can make truly attractive magnets for the fridge or bulletin board. You will need:

  • Colorful magazines or junk mail
  • clear glass flat-back marbles or gems (often used in flower arranging)
  • permanent clear adhesive or silicone glue
  • round magnets
  • a circle cutter or craft punch that will create paper circles the size of the your magnet backs

Kids can search out small, colorful images to punch out with the circle cutter or craft punch. Use a toothpick to spread a little glue on the back of a paper circle and glue to a magnet. Spread a little more clear glue on the front of the picture and press the back of the glass gem/marble on top. Continue to make a whole set of these glass magnet recycle crafts for kids.

Juice Can Lid Magnets Projects

Aluminum cans are always a useful tool for coming up with thrifty recycle crafts for kids. After making a batch of OJ from concentrate, keep the tin lid to make magnets. Kids can decorate the juice lid with photos, paints and glitter. Use a toothpick to swirl painted stripes or circles together (such as several circles around a photo.) Attach a magnet to the back of the lid and place on your fridge.

Plastic Bottle Planter Magnets Projects

Small yogurt drink containers, prescription drug bottles or film canisters can be used for magnets projects and other recycle crafts for kids. At simplest, you can clean and decorate the bottle, add a magnet strip and use to display a small flower bud or paper flowers on the fridge. For something a bit more fun, use a clear canister to watch a fast-growing vegetable grow. Bean seeds work especially well for this project.

Decorate the bottle and add a magnet strip to the back. Place two cotton balls in the bottom of the plastic container. Sprinkle a few drops of water onto to the cotton balls, place a few bean seeds on top and sprinkle with a little more water. Hang the container on the fridge. You want to keep the seeds moist but without water collecting in the bottom of the canister. Transplant the plant to a pot or your garden when it outgrows the canister.

Felted Sweater Magnets Projects

Old or damaged sweaters can be used for fun recycle crafts for kids. To felt in your washing machine, throw an old sweater with at least 20% wool into a delicates bag (100% wool will give a nice sturdy felt) and wash on high heat. Dry on high-heat cleaning the lint trap frequently. Some sweaters will require two washes to felt.

Use this sturdy material to make your magnets. Kids can cut out shapes using the help of a template or cookie cutter. Make flowers in several sizes and layer to create your magnets. Buttons look especially cute glued to the center.

For more recycle crafts for kids to fill lazy summer afternoons, see 16 Recycle Crafts for Kids.

Home Decor Tuesday: Kitchen Projects

Your kitchen needs some lovin’ too so don’t ignore it. Spruce it up, add some decorations to it. Be brave and add some bold and vibrant colors.

The Cinco de Mayo plate is perfect for your fiesta in May. It’s colorful and your guests will love it. The chili pepper is the center of attraction and it makes everything look so festive.

cincodemayoplate
Another great piece to present to your guests is an olive cocktail serving tray. The pattern is adorable and you can leave it out all the time to decorate your kitchen. It’s a fun painting project you will love to do.

olives-servingtray

If you’re looking to decorate you kitchen walls then this decorative heart plate is perfect for that. Not only does it add some color, but it brings out your personality. This is a cute craft for the Valentine season too.

heart-plate

How to Make Turkey Time Aprons

If you have kids or if you remember when you were a kid then you know exactly what I’m talking about. Back in the day my mom and I would always put some kind of craft together. I liked painting and I liked making messes, so we would always find some kind of craft where I can do both of those. Every Thanksgiving we would work on a holiday craft, whether it was to give as a gift or decorate our home. We always went to my aunt’s house, so sometimes the gift would be for her.

This year, I found a neat craft that mother’s can work on with their children; it’s a turkey apron. It’s a really easy craft to make and once again, it allows the kids to get messy with fabric acrylics. There are few materials needed in order to make this apron:

  • DecoArt Products Required
    • SoSoft Fabric Acrylics
  • DSS41 – Burnt Sienna
  • SoSoft Dimensional Writers
  • DD102 – Cadmium Yellow
  • DD104 – Festive Red
  • DD115 – Black
  • Foam plate
  • Small round brush
  • Paper towels
  • Water
  • 3/8″ and 3/4″ round foam pouncer brushes
  • Natural canvas aprons, Loew-Cornell “Totally You” (APGN-3636, adult; KDAPN-3636)

Here’s how to make it:

You first have to prepare by laying newspaper out as it will get a bit messy. Aprons must be flat on surface. Be sure you have wet paper towels and soap ready to clean hands at sink.

Adult Apron
1. Squeeze and spread Burnt Sienna onto foam plate. With fingers spread slightly, press hand flat into paint and then press hand flat onto apron bib area. If more solid handprint is needed, use small brush to lightly fill in hand shape.

2. Use 3/4″ pouncer brush dipped in Burnt Sienna to stamp random dots over apron surface and around handprint. Repeat with Cadmium Yellow and Festive Red Writers. Allow to dry.

3. Use Cadmium Yellow to create small triangle for beak shape on turkey head; paint lines for legs and feet. Use Festive Red to paint small heart-shaped waddle under turkey head and to paint words below turkey.

4. Use Black Writer to paint dot eye on turkey and curved line for wing shape.

Child’s Apron
1. Repeat same instructions as above, but assist with stamping handprint and use smaller pouncer brush when stamping dots on apron.

This apron reminds me of a time when I was little. You can make this for any special occasion. My three sisters and I made a sweatshirt for Mother’s Day. I believe the only material we used was a sweatshirt, paint and puffy paints.

Here’s what we did:

1. We poured the paint into a tin of some sort, of course it was sitting on a table covered with newspaper so it wouldn’t get too messy.

2. We stuck our hand into the paint to be sure the entire hand was covered.

3. We firmly pressed our hands onto the sweatshirt so the paint would stick and then slowly pulled our hand back as to not mess up the pattern.

4. Once our hands were dry on the sweatshirt we used the puffy paints to design the rest of the sweatshirt with squiggly lines and polka dots. We also wrote happy Mother’s Day on it along with each of our names next to our hand print.

Keep in mind, this can be done for any special occasion. If you want to make a Thanksgiving sweatshirt or apron, you do the same thing. Get paint on your hand and make the handprint. Then use puffy paints to draw in the rest of the turkey. It makes for a nice homemade gift or decoration.

For more great Turkey and Thanksgiving crafts click here!

More Kitchen Crafts

In my daily browsing of Etsy today, I was excited to see that they are highlighting handmade goods that reflect the slow food movement. As a budding pastry chef, I was of course intrigued and thrilled to browse these great items. Some of my favorites are below.

lurearts has a great set of 4 dessert bowls that she made on a wheel and then glazed. I think these bowls are beautiful and there’s no such thing as having too many bowls for ice cream.

This tempered glass trivet/cheese tray/cutting board from kermitbiggs would be a bright and beautiful addition to any kitchen. These would go perfectly with the green hanging lights above the island in my kitchen.

Over on FaveCrafts, we have a number of great decorating ideas for your kitchen. I like this harvest topiary for an autumn accent or centerpiece. It adds some brilliant color to any table.

Cute Kitchen Decor Idea

Now that I’m settled in my new apartment, I can shift from unpacking mode to decorating mode! Since the kitchen is my favorite room, I’m eager to start decorating that area first. I’ve got so many kitchen gadgets and cooking utensils that I’ve already filled every drawer in my kitchen (which is a lot), so I need a way to keep mail, reminders, coupons and similar items organized. I found this adorable ladybug memo board on FaveCrafts that I think is perfect for my kitchen. It’s a simple design, but unique enough not to look like every other store-bought memo board.

More Great Craft Ideas for Earth Day

Since today is Earth Day, I thought a would post a few more eco-friendly craft ideas. (If you missed my first post about recycled crafts for Earth Day, you can read it here).

Over at FaveCrafts, we’ve got plenty more great recycled craft ideas. One of my favorites is an article by Caley about 10 different ways to reuse wine bottles for craft projects. The article covers everything from what to do with old bottle labels to how to create a lamp from a wine bottle. Be sure to check it out!

How will you be participating in Earth Day this year?

A Very Cool Kitchen Craft

By now you know that I’m into both kitchen gadgets and recycled crafts. So I was pretty excited when I saw this cutting board/bird feeder project today on several different blogs. I love this because it uses recycled items and it keeps you from having to worry about crumbs and scraps everywhere! I guess you would probably have to own birds, or let birds into your home for this to work effectively, but I still think it’s pretty cool. It might be a good project to build outside next to a grill.

Don’t forget to take a look around on RecyclArt, which has some pretty great ideas.