Adventures in homemade, budget aware cooking.

Seasonal Crafts

Summer

TIN CAN PLANTERS

In my homeland of BC, Canada, recycling is a big deal.  Here, in Orem, UT, it isn’t.  I finally got tired of sending so much recyclable stuff to landfills.  I found out that there is a Habitat for Humanity Recycling Center 2 minutes from my house (yay!) and I also found that I could make cute herb planters from my old tin cans.

This project is so easy, but it feels so great to recycle and grow your own herbs, especially when space (or a garden) is limited.

What you need:

  • Tin Cans, empty, labels removed, and washed
  • Acrylic paints
  • A paint sealer
  • Wooden skewers
  • Cardboard
  • A hammer
  • A nail or screwdriver bit
  • Potting soil
  • Seeds (or 4 inch plants)

Once your cans are clean and dry, hammer several holes in the bottom of you can for drainage with the nail or screwdriver bit.  Paint them however you want.  Apply a generous layer of sealer (or varnish) so that the can doesn’t rust.  Use the cardboard and skewer to make a label for your planter.  When the can is completely dry, fill with potting soil.  Add some water.  Plant the seeds following the instructions on the packages.  Top with soil.  Water so that it drips out the bottom.  Put in a warm, sunny place and don’t forget to water them!

I’ll post some more pictures once they grow!

Fall

AUTUMN PILLAR CANDLES

What is it about lighting a candle that makes “that place you happen to keep your stuff and sleep” into a cozy home?  I don’t know.  But I do know that when I lit these candles last night, I instantly felt better.  They are so easy too!

You need:

  • Pillar candles (I got these from thrift stores for fifty cents each)
  • Leaves
  • A candle heater (or a tin can with melted wax in it… or wax paper but I don’t think the paper works nearly as well.)
  • Wax (aka a candle in a neutral colour)
  • White glue

To preserve the leaves you collected, you can iron them between two pieces of wax paper (I tried this, but didn’t like it…) or you can dip them in melted wax to coat them.  I just dipped them into the melted wax in my candle warmer and it worked like a charm.  I dried them on a sheet of waxed paper.  Once your leaves are safely preserved, glue them with normal white glue (Elmers) onto your candles.  If the wax coating on the leaves cracks when you curve it around the candle, just blow it smooth with a blow dryer.  That’s it.

CENTERPIECE JARS

For easy (and cheap) fall decorations, fill jars and vases up with whatever you want.  I put brown penne in one with a small tea light candle on top.  The middle vase is filled with pine cones, dried orange slices and cinnamon sticks.  The right one is filled with dried strawberries (that ended up slightly burnt when I tried to dehydrate them in my oven).  Fill your old jars with candy corn, acorns, small candles, or buttons in autumn colours.  Anything will work.  Make sure that if you use them as candle holders, the material won’t melt or catch fire.  If you don’t have jars laying around, clean out your fridge.  Last week, the small jar was full of artichoke hearts and the other one was half full of a gross curry sauce.

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