DIY: 8 Unexpected Things to Do with Duct Tape
Posted 6 months ago by Amanda Raye
Low on funds, but feel your home and closet need a makeover? Duct tape might just be your saving grace, because Scotch now sells it in fancy patterns and colors! Adiós dull metallic grey.
Below are eight things we bet you didn’t know you could do with duct tape:
1. Make a Coffee Sleeve
Who knew? Just follow this easy tutorial here.
2. Decorate Boring Candles
Bored with your white candles that are on top of your mantle or dresser? Just add duct tape in the color or pattern of your choice for a brand new look!
3. Revamp Old Ballet Flats
Transform your ballet flats by using a fun color or pattern of duct tape. If you’re extra girly, add a fashion forward bow for a fun style statement.
Instructions for Ballet Flats:
1. Choose the colors and/or patterns you’d like to transform and decorate your ballet flats.
2. Cut a 6” long piece of Scotch Pattern duct tape and place the tip on an edge of a desk or craft station.
3. Place tape strip lengthwise on the side of the flat, trimming edges and pressing firm to ensure the tape adheres.
4. Repeat step 3 once or twice more to cover entire flat.
5. Repeat steps 1-4 for other flat in pair.
6. Slip on ballet flats and smile at your new style!
Instructions for Bow:
1. Choose the colors and/or patterns you’d like to create your stylish bow.
2. Cut two strips of Scotch duct tape that are the same size. Any size will do – you choose.
3. Place the strips on top of each other, sticky sides together. Round the edges if you’d like by trimming off the corners.
4. Repeat step 3 then place the two resulting pieces of tape together.
5. Cut a smaller, narrow strip of tape for the center of the bow.
6. Pinch the center of each side of the tape to meet in the middle and then wrap your small strip of tape around to secure it.
7. Optional: Continue your stylish makeover by adding a bow to each ballet flat.
4. Make a Wallet
Didn’t you always want a duct tape wallet as a kid? I did!
Instructions for Wallet:
1. Choose the colors and/or patterns you’d like to use to craft and decorate your wallet.
2. Cut two 7” long pieces of Scotch Pattern duct tape and separately place adhesive-side up on your flat work surface.
3. Slightly overlap the second piece of tape over the first.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have four strips overlapping.
5. Turn the sheet sideways so the strips run vertically across your flat work surface.
6. Cut a strip to lay across the adhesive-side up strips. Start at the top and repeat, working your way down.
7. Being sure to overlap the edges, continue laying step 6 strips adhesive-side down until all of the step 4 strips are covered. Trim off the edges.
8. Fold the wallet in half so the shorter sides line up evenly.
9. Keeping the wallet in the folded position, trim any excess and tape the other side.
10. Optional: Continue your stylish makeover by adding a bow to your new wallet.
5. Decorate an Old Vase
Have one too many clear vases under your sink? Adding fancy duct tape to one of them will make everyone do a double take at your dining room table!
6. Make Office Containers
Does your work desk lack a pen/pencil holder? Take a can that’s sitting in your recycle bin or an old jar and cover it with some duct tape! Be even more fancy by adding fun designs to your boring brown clip board.
7. Update your iPad Case
This one’s so simple. Simply add a strip (or two) of your favorite pattern to your case. This also works with iPhone and laptop cases.
8. Cover an Old Cosmetic Case
Don’t throw it away, just cover it up!
Find this fancy new duct tape at your local office supply store! Which one of these are you dying to try? Let us know in the comments below.
Broke Decor: How To Create a Wall Collage
Posted 7 months ago by Amanda Raye
Wall collages are super trendy at the moment. They can give your home that “I paid for an interior designer” feel, without actually having to hire one. And believe it or not, they aren’t pricey!
Unfortunately, many people are scared of them because they look difficult — but they aren’t! Below are a few tips so you can start hanging:
1. Figure out the look you’re going for
If you want a “put together look” like the image above, definitely get all your work framed. I recommend going to a thrift store, as they usually have an over-load of frames. You might also find a few pictures or painting less than $10 that you’ll want to add to your colleciton!
If you want an edgy look, hang your photos up with letter clips.
2. Figure out what you want displayed
Gather all of your favorite paintings, photos and posters. If you don’t have much, I recommend going to Graphic Fairy and printing some out. It cost me only $20 to get over 15 images printed out in color at Fedex!
In order to get that wall collage look, you’re going to need to hang up at least three items.
3. Gather your supplies
- Small Letter Clips
- Large Letter Clips
- Leveler for framed images
4. Collage them on a floor first
Once you’ve gathered all of your supplies, start collaging them how you think you want them on your wall…on your floor. That way there won’t be any surprises and unnecessary holes in the wall once you start hanging them up.
I recommend you start in the middle and work your way out. My middle piece was a heart mirror I got from Ikea a few years back. Once that was in place, I built my collage around it.
This is a rough draft and will most likely take a while since you’ll keep rearranging everything until the fit is perfect.
5. Hang them up
You might want a friend to help you with this, especially if you’re standing on a ladder or chair.
6. Final look
This is the final look of my living room wall collage! I decided to use a lot of images in order to add color since we’re aren’t allowed to paint.
Do you have a wall collage in your home? Submit your photos to email@example.com for a possible feature!
Budget Decor: Sara’s Stylish Salt Lake City Home
Posted 10 months ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Salt Lake City-based Sara Charlesworth, the voice behind lifestyle blog Chalk White Arrow. We at Broke & Chic are huge fans of her budget style, beautiful photos and great eye for decor.
Sara’s home has recently been nominated for best home design on Apartment Therapy. Way to go Sara!
Check out her amazing home as well as our Q&A where she dishes her decor secrets!
- Bed Frame: $60
- Dresser: $300 Ikea
- Clothing Rack: $20 Ikea
- Side Table: $150 at a local boutique
- Comforter: $90 West Elm
- Map Above Dresser: $39 Urban Outfitters
- Light Above Nightstand: $4 Urban Outfitters (She then tied the yarn on the edges)
Broke & Chic: How did you get your inspiration?
Sara: I knew I wanted the house to reflect a definite style. I would find an item I knew I wanted to use in each room that I really liked; whether that was a piece of art, a light fixture, or even just a pillow, and then build from there.
Did you get any of your stuff from thrift shops?
Yes! We found both our coffee table and foot stool at thrift shops. A few of the wall hangings and light fixtures were thrifted, as well as a bunch of other decorative items. I love mixing new things with old pieces to give a well-rounded, eclectic, mid-century modern feel (if that makes any sense).
Moving is never fun. How long did it take you to get your new place the way you wanted it?
Seriously, so much longer than I excepted. Between painting all of the walls and ceilings white, organizing and finding all of our things, waiting for some new furniture and getting the whole place settled and put together, I would say it was a good 3-4 months before I finally felt like we had finished.
- Couch: $1,200 Restoration Hardware
- White Chair: $0 (she had it since she was a kid)
- Coffee Table: $90 thrifted
- Foot Stool: $45 thrifted
- Brown Chair: $150 Paisley Pomegranate
- Credenza: $1,400 Thrive Furniture
- Rug: $600 Dwell Studio
- Lamp: $30 Ikea
- Lights over Credenza: $90 for the pair at Paisley Pomegranate
In your picture frame collage, where are the photos and frames from?
Honestly, most of the frames are from Target and Ikea. The photos are randoms I have collected over the years. Some are from small Etsy stores, a lot of them are photos I have taken on my own (family photos and vacation spots) or inspirational quotes I liked and had printed.
- Dining Table: $200 Ikea
- Chairs: $240 for the set on Amazon
- Rug: $250 Ikea
We love the black paint and chalk board wall! Was it difficult to do?
No! It was really extremely simple and on our smallish walls it only took me (by myself) a few hours to complete. It goes on fairly easy and drys pretty quickly. The only difficult part was that it tended to splatter when rolling it on the wall. I would recommend using a good drop cloth and wearing grungy clothes.
What advice would you give someone who’s on a budget, but wants to re-decorate their home?
Shop around. Visit thrift shops first. Make places like Ikea and Target your friend, however, don’t purchase something just because it is inexpensive.
If there is a quality item (furniture, decor, etc) that you can see yourself using for years to come, I recommend taking more time saving up for that instead of settling for a less expensive piece you’ll replace a year later. We made this mistake so many times, and in the long run we ended up paying so much more than we would have if we had just purchased the item we loved in the first place.
What was your favorite room in Sara’s home? Let us know in the comments below!
3 Design Inspirations for Your Bedroom
Posted 10 months ago by Michelle Obrien
People are crafty and love to share their unique ideas and experiences. Whether you’re decorating your bedroom in your new home, or want to freshen up your current one, there’s nothing to spark your inspiration better than getting ideas from others. From rugs to lighting and blinds, a few small changes can create a completely different feel to any environment. No matter how much or how little space you’re working with, you can use these ideas to transform your space into a room that you enjoy being in. Here are three ideas to get you started:
1. Go Monochromatic
You probably know that wearing all of one color from head to toe gives you the appearance of looking slimmer; but did you also know a monochromatic color scheme is a great way to decorate your room? While you shouldn’t decorate your room completely in light aubergine (shades of purple), sticking to the same color family will do a lot for your room. The smaller pool of options will also make choosing items easier, especially if you’re a person who gets overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices available.
2. Open the Room Up
If your room is on the small side, keeping it as free of furniture and clutter as possible is the easiest way to make the room look several square feet larger. A cluttered room makes for a cluttered mind, and your room should be a place of solace. Indiscriminately purge your room to get rid of all non-essentials. If you can’t bear to part with family heirloom furniture and sentimental items, look into the pricing of storage space units to keep non-essentials safe and out of the way.
To make your bedroom look larger and more inviting, DesignSense.com suggests putting the bed against the wall opposite of the door. If you can’t do that, then leave as large of a walkway as possible between the bed and the door to give the illusion that there’s more space than actually exists.
Consider hanging your television on the wall, if it isn’t there already. This will allow you to remove the table or dresser on which it was sitting, adding more space to your room. You can easily put your clothing into the closet by using any one of the multiple shelving and storage space solutions that are available. If you don’t have closets, or they aren’t large enough, choose the tallest wardrobe or armoire that will fit in your room. This will make the ceiling seem higher than it is. Finally, use lights that mount on the walls, rather than floor lamps, as they don’t take up precious floor space.
3. Copy Luxe Hotels
A night at a posh hotel always seems to give a person a sense of peace, calmness and bliss. You probably wish that your budget would allow you to permanently move into one of those beautiful rooms. The good news is that you can copy their looks from photos of hotels that you see in magazines, online or booking a room.
One of the tricks that hotels use to give a crisp and clean look is to cover the bed with top-quality white linens. Opt for pima or Egyptian cotton and get a thread count that’s over 300. Place an abundance of pillows on your bed, adding a few in accent colors or patterns to spice up the mix. Add storage options so that your clothes and belongings can be kept out of sight, to give the room an airy, uncluttered look, suggests CasaSugar.com.
Egyptian cotton and 300-thread count sheets are expensive, but we at Broke & Chic believe we need to prioritize needs versus wants. We want ten new outfits from Forever 21, but we need a comfortable bed more. Why? Because you spend 8-9 hours a day in there. How you sleep at night can dictate the type of person you’ll be during the day. Definitely save on trendy clothing, and splurge on things such as nice bedding and comfortable shoes.
As you go about redoing your room, make sure that you absolutely love what you’re doing. It’s important that, above all else, you feel comfortable because that’s where you’ll spend most of your time relaxing and sleeping. You are the queen of your castle, so use these home decor ideas as inspiration to create your own designs.
Budget Decor: 5 Friends, New City, One Amazing Apartment
Posted 1 year ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Zach, Helene, Larry, Erin and CJ. Five creative friends who recently moved to NYC after graduating from Indiana University.
They landed this loft style apartment in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn — a beautiful neighborhood known for its great food, architecture and community.
When B&C first stopped by their apartment the other day, this is not what we expected; most NYC apartments are extremely small and cramped. Their 3-bedroom 2 bath apartment, however, was spacious, bright and impeccably decorated.
With a group of 5 people, you’d think there’d be conflicts when it came to decorating, but according to CJ:
We had a spreadsheet we shared on google docs to keep track of who was bringing what since we were all living in different cities before we moved.
After receiving a tour, we noticed right off the bat that quite a few things were from Ikea, craigslist and thrift stores. Their most expensive item is the teal couch (above), purchased for $500 at a antique shop in Bloomington, Indiana.
Our favorite part of the apartment? The decorated wall behind the couch, of course. Because all five roommates are in a creative field, everything on the wall was either original art from one of them, something belonging to a family member or something found in a thrift store.
All the picture frames were from Goodwill. All of our savings accounts were run dry after moving here so we couldn’t really afford to buy anything new during our first month.
For many people it would take months, if not years to actually have their homes this put together, but Erin says that wasn’t the case:
It took us about five days to decorate the apartment to look like this. We didn’t have internet installed during our first week so we had to find some way to stay productive.
We asked the group to offer some advice to Broke & Chic readers about moving to New York City. To which Erin said, “move with a group of friends. That way you’ll have a built-in support system.”
What do you think of this chic Brooklyn apartment? Let us know in the comments below!
*All photos by Zach Hetrick
Budget Decor: Paul and Evi’s Modern Amsterdam Apartment
Posted 2 years ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Paul Veugen, the founder and CEO of Usabilla, a startup located in the heart of Amsterdam, and his fashionable girlfriend, Evi van Splunder, a corporate young talent recruiter.
Their beautiful Amsterdam apartment radiates modern minimalist Dutch design. From the unique white wood floors to their stunning kitchen with rustic wood cabinets. Every room follows an avante-garde black and white theme with dashes of color, namely from tulips, fruit, plants and lamp shades.
Kitchens are always the most important room in a Dutch home. As a culture, we very rarely go out to eat.
Love the look? According to Evi, “almost everything is from Ikea.”
Many people believe modern design to be very expensive, but great design can be very affordable if you know where to look! What’s your favorite part of Paul and Evi’s home? Broke & Chic loved all the tulips!
Broke & Chic hits up Amsterdam
Trend Alert: High Top Sneakers
Budget Decor: Katie’s Eclectic Bedroom
Budget Decor: Katie’s Eclectic Bedroom
Posted 2 years ago by Amanda Raye
Last week, Broke & Chic meet up with one of New York’s most stylish residents: Katie is a 25 year-old budget friendly fashionista living and working in Manhattan. She loves good design, organization and diy projects.
I’d rather make something myself than pay for it. I hate going into Urban Outfitters and West Elm and seeing things that are $250 dollars that I could easily make myself.
Katie has lived in this Washington Heights apartment for about 2.5 years. Her room reminded me of those cute boutiques in the East Village with artfully displayed vintage jewelry, accessories and even furniture. Each corner has it’s own personal touch. Nothing has been left unstyled. She even spent an afternoon putting up shelves to display her shoes instead of just throwing them into a corner or closet!
Learn how to make your own clothes line photo display here.
B&C: Where did you get all these vintage treasures?
K: Every time I go on vacation I always try and purchase a vintage scarf. The rest are either from my grandma or the small vintage store where I’m from.
B&C: What’s your favorite part of your bedroom?
K: I love the chalkboard wall. Chalkboard paint is really cheap and you can have endless fun with it.
B&C: What are your favorite accessories?
K: Head accessories such as hats, headbands, and flowers. They’re my new fashion obsession!
B&C: What DIY project are you most proud of?
K: The shoe shelf!
What’s your favorite part of Katie’s bedroom? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Budget Decor: Allie’s DIY Wonderland
Posted 2 years ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Allie, a high school sophomore living in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan. She moved here over a year ago with her mom from a small southern town.
Moving to New York was a big change for me. Not only did I have to say “good bye” to lifelong friends, but I had to learn an entirely different lifestyle. New York has really helped me figure out who I am. I think it’s giving me a head start on my future!
Allie is in a positon where she can’t paint, and as a teenage girl, her room means everything to her! Broke & Chic got an inside look as to how she made it all her own.
I really had to use my brain to make it all my own. I love spending my weekends doing d.i.y projects to make my room more represent me. I’ve gotten quite a lot of my inspiration from Pinterest and my stylish older sister. I love being true to myself, so after we moved we had a popular artist, Eliza B. Askin, draw a picture of our old house so I could always remember my southern roots.
B&C: What’s your favorite thing in your room?
Allie: My favorite thing in my room is the a canvas I made!