1/23/13

New Year...new project: DIY jewelry board organizer cork board!

So, I took a little blog break over the holidays, and it was nice! I needed to step away for a few weeks, take a breather, and refocus. Well, at least TRY to refocus. That counts, right?

Bargain shopping is definitely a passion of mine. It's hard-wired in my DNA, I'm sure of it! But it's not just about saving money for me. It's about being WISE with my money, and using it the way it's suppose to be used.

Our family has recently come into a SUPER tight time financially. Yes, we've been tight before, and we've made things work. But this is different. I lost my source of steady income (a.k.a. my job) back in August of last year. Thankfully I've had a few odd jobs here and there that have helped to fill the gaps. Anyway, I don't want to be a Debbie Downer right now (wah-wah), so I'll move one. Because of our financial situation, we've had to really tap into our bargain shopping skills, which (at times) has meant NO shopping--at least for all those little extras that eat up our monthly surplus.

Part of my contribution to our scaling back has been to try and find alternative uses for things we already have. I'm always trying to define my home decor style, try new things, and make our house look the way I want it to look. But, we just don't have the budget for things like that right now. I love Pinterest, BHG, and other resources that have really keyed in on those of us who love DIY, repurposing, and up-cycling! There are just so many resources out there now, for how to live frugally, and I love it!

One of the projects I see a lot is creative ways to hang jewelry. I have an old jewelry box thing that I'm dying to revamp, but I love some of the framed displays I've see, too. Some people use cork boards and put picture frames around them. Which made me remember an old cork board we had stored away in the garage! Jackpot!! It was very much like this one, before I got my hands on it--very plain and ordinary.
I like to go into local fabric stores periodically, to see what kinds of remnants they've got on sale or clearance, because you just never know what you'll find! I've found fabrics to use for pillow covers, etc., for $1 and $2 before. It's a great resource! So, after locating and dragging out my old cork board, I took a little trip over to the fabric store, and found this upholstery beauty staring at me from the remnant stack at $6/yard, and I had just over a yard!


Now, yes...I could have tried to get the exact dimensions that I needed for my cork board and paid less, but honestly! I'm just not one of those perfect DIY-ers who gets it right on the first try, people.

Before I go much further, here are the supplies I used:

  • Large cork board
  • Spray paint in your choice of color
  • Fabric of your choice
  • Hot glue gun & glue sticks
  • Push pins of your choice--I used larger T-shaped ones.
  • Spare beads from a broken bracelet and earrings that lost their matches
  • Spray adhesive/bond
  • Some sort of edging ribbon, lace, chord, etc.

I started by painting the cork board frame with white semi-gloss Rustoleum spray paint. While the paint dried, I grabbed a handfull of these pins that I had on-hand.


I then grabbed my hot glue gun, and some beads from a bracelet I had that broke, and some beads from an earring that lost its match, and some faky pearl string that my grandmother had used on the ringbearer pillow for my wedding (11-1/2 years ago)! I mean this was a major scrap project. I used my glue gun to adhere the beads to the pins like so:





Then, I used some Elmer's spray adhesive to cover the surface of the cork board (AFTER the paint had dried), measured out my fabric, and applied it to the cork board. Now, it wasn't as easy as all that...at least for me. Remember me saying that I'm not a perfect DIY-er? Well, here's where it comes out. I just couldn't seem to measure the fabric out right. The first piece I cut was majorly too short on all sides. How does this happen? I don't know! So, with the second one, I just cut it out to be slightly bigger than my cork surface. The unfortunate part of all of this is that the frame of the cork board was not easily removable. Otherwise, this would have been much simpler. So, instead of trying to get the board out of the frame, I opted to just try and stuff the excess fabric into the frame. That worked ok--not great, but ok. But, then I thought it would be AWESOME if I could cover up those rough edges with some sort of piping, ribbon, lace, or....CHORD! Wait a second! I have some old chord that I used for curtain tie-backs YEARS ago, and they're still stuffed way down in my craft bag! PERFECT! So, I took my trusty old glue gun and glued that sucker around the edges to cover up my imperfect stuffing job. Sweet! And voila!!!


It's not often that I can say that a DIY project turned out exactly as I envisioned it, but this one did! The fabric was exactly what I wanted, and the pins turned out looking FABULOUS! Here's a close-up of one in action...it blends right in, doesn't it?!


And here's the chord that I used around the edges:


Another close-up of the pins workin' it:


And the finished project again:



I have some more extra beads laying around to make more pins with, and I plan on hanging some of my bracelets up there, too. It's so fun to look at! I just couldn't be happier with the end result. Here's a breakdown of my costs:

  • Cork board = FREE (already on hand)
  • Spray paint = >$4
  • Fabric = $7.50
  • Beads = FREE (already on hand)
  • Glue = FREE (already on hand)
  • Spray adhesive = FREE (already on hand)
  • Pins = FREE (already on hand)
  • Chord = FREE (already on hand)
  • TOTAL = ~$11.50!!

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