Monday, May 7, 2012

A custom gift for Mother's Day... by Lisa Leonard

I love playing with my camera. So when I spotted this sweet charm, I knew it would be mine one day.

What about you? Do you have a special hobby? Or perhaps desire a special piece for a special someone?

Lisa Leonard Designs is your girl!

Lisa's custom pieces are avail in MANY different designs and come in either fine pewter or sterling silver.

Here are a few of my favourite pieces with moms in mind.

Molded Heart

every person in our lives changes us and molds our heart. melt her heart with our custom, hand-stamped molded heart necklace. it's hand-molded and cast in sterling silver {and absolutely gorgeous}. customize both sides with names, a phrase or special date--up to 32 characters. a pretty, easy piece for every day wear. the heart is about 1" in size!

Marked By Love

Some lives, though short, profoundly change the world and leave a mark on our hearts. for moms who have lost a child, their hearts are forever marked by love. this beautiful necklace was created in collaboration with angie smith {bring the rain} who lost her baby girl, audrey caroline. 

Celebrate Mom

Motherhood is a beautiful thing--full of laughter, tears, worry and joy. Celebrate mom and all she does with our brand new necklace! Hand-cast in fine pewter and strung on sterling plated chain, it's absolutely gorgeous and full of meaning. Pendant measures about 1" in length.

You're the Cream in my Coffee

inspired by the nat king cole song {and my extreme love of coffee}, this necklace is the perfect way to capture your loved ones and keep them close to your heart. our exclusive coffee cup is hand-stamped on a hand cast sterling pendant, paired with a custom tag and topped off with a freshwater pearl. add additional tags if you wish!

There are other lovely things to choose from other than jewelry as well!

My own piece came tucked inside a sweet little cotton bag. Just like a little gift within a gift. LOVE.

Would you like to either treat yourself or perhaps another to a custom tailored gift? 

Two ways to save...

Use the code funky20 for 20% off on your order!

(offer good until Mon May 7 12:00 PM midnight PST)

Order HERE.

Sign up to Lisa's newsletter for an extra entry HERE
to get 15% off your order anytime!

Stay on top of Lisa Leonard's new reveals etc with the above links!

What hobby would you love to see on a necklace?

Disclosure statement: I was compensated to highlight these lovely items, however my opinions are my own.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A rustic tray for Mother's Day... with Martha Stewart Crafts

 (Intro on main blog was here )

Creating something out of reclaimed lumber is a given on my blog. 

But the challenge before me was to create something for Mother's Day with Martha Stewart Crafts by Plaid. Fun!

Being that my mom loved the outdoors, I decided to create a woodsy branch handled tray, complete with coasters, perfect for dining outdoors on the porch or in the yard down below.

Everything you could imagine arrived!

 Brushes, stencils, stencil tape, sponges, tubes, containers, cleaners, even a heat tool so you could make your own stencils. I need to play with that!

... and the shining star... the paint. Guys, the paint. Oh my.

This craft paint goes on glass, wood and fabric. And the line even has a sprayer attachment option! 

But first up, I needed to create my projects.

The tray build

1. Find a board of choice. Scrub and sand well. Cut it down to the desired size. (I just cut one in half)

2. Brace the two boards together with smaller boards, attaching them with screws from underneath. (as shown)

3. Cut down some branches the depth of the tray. Cut four smaller chunks to support the branch handles.

 4. Predrill the branch handles and branch supports.

5. Screw the long branches into the smaller supports from the tops.

6. Flip the tray over and screw the handles in from under the tray.

Done! But it's about to get a whole lot prettier. :)

Crafting with Martha  :)

I wanted to keep with a nature inspired theme, so I chose a vine styled stencil, trimmed down to work in the exact location desired.

The paint was thicker than regular craft paint which made it fabulous to work with. I even mixed two aquas and a brown together and the result was a gorgeous olive green. (not used for this project)

A spray adhesive was used on the back of the plastic stencil. This stuff was just awesome! You spray it on, and within a minute it was ready to use. The stencils were really lovely to work with. Not too flimsy and the designs were just gorgeous.

At one point I needed to reposition the stencil and there was enough adhesive left in order to do that. Cool.

A guy design (dragonfly for my son) and a girl one (doily for me) created two coaster designs, made from scraps of wood.

The stencil tape was pretty awesome. It's a little thicker than typical painter's tape and didn't leave any adhesive on the wood. Loved it.

So cute!  Darker teal was used in the middle of the dragon fly, fading to a lighter tone as the design extended out. The doily was darker around the outer perimeter and lighter inside.

All the painted graphics got hit very gently with a palm sander to further enhance the weathered effect. My plan is to use a satin sealer or wax on the works.

The tray and coaster reveal

Are you ready to go on a little picnic? Me too! 

A funky little nest styled basket layered with a mason jar vase made for a cute centrepiece.

A couple of stubby mason jars made for some cute cups! A piece of junk tied to each one with twine would have guests remembering which cup was theirs.

We'll indeed honour my mom on Mother's Day with a picnic under the big willow tree beside the creek out back.

And I can hear her words already in the most delightful of ways... "It's very Donna-ish!"

I couldn't disappoint her now could I? :)

"Thanks for making it happen, Martha! Coffee and a little junkin' later?"

Disclosure: I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Plaid and Blueprint Social. The opinions in this post are my own.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Kwikset Smartkey review from Home Depot - Part 2 - the install

Welcome back to Part 2 for the install of our Kwikset Smartkey lock system from Home Depot!

Part 1 was HERE.

BUT... it comes with it's own story. Of course. :)

The install

(actual Kwikset install video is below after my story)

Kit is 100% complete.

Everything you need is in the kit right down to the last screw. All you need is a Phillips screwdriver.

I was sooooo smart. I put everything in a tray, brought out my pretty tools, hired my son to help with photography and we were going to do this in minutes!

Until I realized I had lost the instructions.

Ah well. How hard can it be, right?!

1. Remove everything that has to go. 

Everything that has to go is attached with just screws so it's all easy to remove.

2. Insert the new deadbolt latch.

This is where I went wrong... so heed the following advice.

I inserted the new deadbolt latch but it didn't fit.  It was suppose to slide in all nice like but the gears wouldn't align with the hole. Hmm..

So I pounded the door jam out with a wood chisel and made it work. 

PERFECT. (not really)

It still didn't align right so I beat out ALL the wood inside the door. It was right about then I turned to my son and said, "We may be shopping for a new door."

TIP: The deadbolt  has an adjustment feature. You can choose which measurement works best for your door hole location. Oops!

Unfortunately I lost my photographer at this point and I was kinda busy worrying about breaking my door.  No matter. It still worked out! (but I still really want a pretty new door darn it anyway)

3. Everything else just snaps together effortlessly.

So without instructions,  I put all the pieces together like a puzzle. Most of it was pretty self explanatory. Once the alignment in the hole worked out, everything snapped together PERFECTLY. 

4. Set the keyless code and insert the 4 AA batteries (done together - see video below)

But without instructions, I couldn't figure out the keyless lock settings. 

Until I attempted to find something online. And that's when I found this goldmine that could have really sped things up! You do NOT need the paper instructions with this amazing tutorial.

Original Kwikset video on install, code setting and keyless feature is HERE.

This beauty now resides on our front door and it works as well as I hoped it would! We gave it a real life test run today and it worked to perfection for both of us!

Some very cool features:

To get in, you punch in your code.

To leave, hit the little lock icon. That's it!

The system accepts two codes which are VERY easy to change. 

You can set the system to relock after so many minutes automatically. 

The system allows you to rekey your lock anytime you wish as well.

The finish is exactly the same as our original set so it was a flawless match.

Heads up:

Kwikset is under Weiser in Canada.

The keyless keypad takes 4 AA batteries.

Not any key will work with the rekey system. It has to be a Kwikset key or possibly an original that has not been recut. All my house keys are poor copies so I'll be taking one to a locksmith to see if they can cut one that will work. 

But honestly? We don't need it with that amazing keypad.

Aside from the small key glitch, I totally approve this keyless entry system we have 110%! We LOVE it!

Thank-you so much Kwikset Smartkey and Home Depot!

·        Have you ever loaned out a key that was never returned, or would you like to be able to grant temporary access to neighbors or a contractor? The Home Depot can help. SmartKey rey-key technology is the solution. The Kwikset SmartKey lock gives homeowners the ability to quickly and easily re-key their own locks without removing them from the door. 
·        Increase your home’s safety and pick up a Kwikset SmartKey lock from The Home Depot today. SmartKey offers increased security and peace of mind because lost, loaned or unreturned keys become useless. It also offers one-key convenience for your home - you can re-key your front, back and side doors to the same Kwikset key.
·        Kwikset SmartKey’s re-key technology features a patented side-locking bar, central to the locks’ ability to be rapidly and easily re-keyed. The bar replaces the traditional pin and tumbler design that is particularly vulnerable to increasingly popular lock-bumping attacks. 
·        Delivering outstanding strength and protection, SmartKey deadbolts have passed the most stringent lock picking standards and offer ANSI/BHMA certified Grade 1 security. Grade 1 security is the highest level of tested residential security available in the industry.
·        Based on performance and features, Kwikset SmartKey deadbolts earned the prestigious Best Buy rating from Consumers Digest Magazine in the residential deadbolt lock category in February 2010.  
·        Kwikset SmartKey deadbolts can be purchased online at and at your local The Home Depot store. 

1.        Kwikset locks on   
2.        The Home Depot on Facebook:
3.        The Home Depot on Twitter:

The Home Depot partnered with bloggers such as me to help promote their KwikSet Lock product. As part of this promotion, I received compensation. They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about the products. The Home Depot believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. The Home Depot’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.