Temporary tattoos are back and they are ridiculously easy to make

A few days ago I was admiring some of Tattly‘s new tattoos. And then, randomly, I thought – wouldn’t it be so cool if I could just make my own temporary tattoo. So I did.

DIY temporary tattoo arm - Irene loves craftsI proceeded to design this cute crafty tattoo. You can download Home is where the craftstation is and make your own at home! Temporary tattoos are super easy to make. All you need is a design or drawing that you like and some temporary tattoo paper (for either inkjet or laser printers, they’re different!). If you do a quick search online you’ll be able find a provider in your country.

DIY temporary tattoo chest - Irene loves crafts

This is how you make it:

  • Choose your design and flip it sideways so once it’s transferred is readable and the right way round – if you download my tattoo you’ll see I’ve already done that for you
  • Print it on the temporary tattoo paper following the brand’s instructions
  • Cut out the tattoo as close to the design as possible. This will stop areas of skin where there’s no design appearing shiny
  • Apply as per instructions and show off!

Mexican inspired cardigan chain

Well hello there trendy world of cardigan chains. I have recently discovered this wonderful accessory, probably brought back to the public eye by actress Jayma Mays playing guidance counselor Emma in the TV series Glee, and I gotta say it is so old school that it’s totally back in fashion. I haven’t really seen them in stores but, the good news is that they are incredibly easy to make.

Cardigan chain detail - Irene loves crafts

So I thought – this is really ace but hey, in all honesty, I am probably not going to wear this. So I made a really cool one anyway as I know a few friends that would love one. It’s seems like a much bigger project that it actually is but, if you have some basic crafting supplies, you won’t need a lot more.


I made a Mexican inspired cardigan chain. Used some Sculpey to make two skulls and I decorated them Mexican styley with colouring pens. You could also use some pretty vintage clip on earrings and you could save yourself a whole lot of trouble. To make this cardigan chain you will need:

  • Chain
  • Two sculpey skulls
  • Two clips – I used blank clip-on earrings
  • Two metallic loops that mach the chain
  • Scissors, pliers and tweezers
  • Colouring pens
  • Glue gun or superglue

Cardigan-chain---sculpey-skulls Cardigan-chain---mexican-skullMake a couple of skulls – or your desired shape – out of Sculpey following package instructions. Decorate with colouring pens in awesome Mexican style.


Use some scissors to cut the chain to the length you like and attach to the clips with a metallic loop. Some plier action will ease things up.


I opted for the double chain look. With the chains and clips set up and my skulls decorated I am ready to go.

Cardigan chain - glue gun

Carefully glue the skulls to the clip. Keep in mind the clip has to open and close easily so make sure not to glue the clasp.

Cardigan chain - skull detail Cardigan chain - Irene loves crafts

You are now ready to rock that awesome chain or to give it away as a great homemade present!

Pretty things to look at: New Year’s eve mood-board inspiration

That last and first night of the year is round the corner. For those of you who are lucky enough to not be working on New Year’s eve, here are some pretty things to look at from around the web to get you in the party mood. If you are throwing your own party, they might help you out with those last loose bits you needed to sort out. Personally, I am not gonna be hosting a party this year, but I will surely be using these awesome ideas at some point in 2013.

DIY confetti sling

This DIY confetti slingshot from Green Wedding Shoes is my super-fave. So cool and easy to make.

Shiny stars drink stir sticks

How adorable are these shiny star drink stir sticks. You can find the tutorial and loads of other great ideas over at Somewhere Splendid.

DIY fringe garland

I love this DIY tissue paper tassel garland from Ruffled. It makes me want to have it up all year round.

Mini celebration milkshakes

Got some spare small-ish glasses that you aren’t planning on using? Or maybe you got a bit over-excited buying shot glasses? Why not make this adult-only tiny White Russian milkshakes from Camille Styles?

DIY pinecone placeholder

Oh handy pine cones, how I love you so. To me, they are a bit like pumpkin. A seasonal star that I look forward to all year and once it’s here I try to use it as much as I can. A bit of a random comparison but it works for me! Use them as these cute neon name tags also from Camille Styles.

Champagne and swizzle sticks

If, like me, you love a bit of fizz for any sort of celebration, you need these bad boys in your life. Rock candy and sugar swizzle sticks, picture from Sensationally Sweet Events, you can easily get them online.

Sparkling cranberry brie bites

These sparkling cranberry and brie bites from Annie’s Eats look delicious. I can’t wait to try them.

Glamorous and inexpensive table runner

Lastly, if you are still pondering on how to decorate your table, Bright Bazaar has some wonderful easy ideas which might suit your  adopted “last minute decorating policy”.

But for now, let me wish you all a great end and start of the year. Enjoy your celebrations, whether they’re wild or mild, and see you on the new year! Happy 2013 to you all!

All image credits belong to the links above

Show off with Furoshiki, the lovely japanese scarf giftwrap technique

The countdown to Christmas has now properly started. Soon, the last weekend before gift-giving day will be here. If you are still planning on how to giftwrap your presents, have you considered the super ancient but also mega cool japanese art of wrapping with scarves also known as Furoshiki?

Scarf Giftwrap Furoshiki - Irene loves crafts

Much easier than it looks and it’s two presents in one. Pop down to your local charity shop (if on a budget) or any clothing store (if not) and pick a few nice scarves, your presents will definitely stand out! I have tested out 4 wrapping styles which are suitable for four different shapes. Find the written tutorial after the  pictures


Kouse Tsutsumi – or the slender object carry wrap

Suitable for small piles of books of similar shape, a shoe box, a box of chocolates or any sort of rectangular shape.

Scarf giftwrap - Kousa Tsutsumi 1 Scarf giftwrap - Kousa Tsutsumi 2 Scarf giftwrap - Kousa Tsutsumi 3 Scarf giftwrap - Kousa Tsutsumi 4 Scarf giftwrap - Kousa Tsutsumi 5

How you do it:

  1. Put the item in the centre of the scarf. 
  2. Take the top and right corners of the scarf and tie them
  3. Take the bottom corner of the scarf and slip it under the knot, it’ll now be between the two other bits
  4. The same corner you just slipped under the knot, tie it together with the left over corner going above the existing knot – sounds complicated but it’s not, the picture should help
  5. You now have a super quirky pressie 

Otsukai Tsutsumi – or the basic carry wrap

Ideal for big books or boxes

Scarf giftwrap - Otsukai Tsutsumi 1 Scarf giftwrap - Otsukai Tsutsumi 2 Scarf giftwrap - Otsukai Tsutsumi 3 Scarf giftwrap - Otsukai Tsutsumi 4

How you do it:

  1. Put the item near one of the corners and fold the scarf over it
  2. “Roll it” so it’s about half way down to the scarf
  3. Fold the bottom corner towards the centre so you only have the left and right corners. Tie them up 

Bin Tsutsumi – or bottle carry wrap

Ideal for two bottles or similar shaped items, even if it’s small scented oil bottles like these, you’ll just need a smaller scarf.

Scarf giftwrap - Bin Tsutsumi 1 Scarf giftwrap - Bin Tsutsumi 2 Scarf giftwrap - Bin Tsutsumi 3 Scarf giftwrap - Bin Tsutsumi 4

How you do it:

  1. Make the two bottles/ items stand up in the middle of the scarf with about 1cm of separation. Tumble them over to their sides so they are laying horizontally on the scarf.
  2. Fold the bottom corner over the bottles
  3. Starting on the bottom side, roll the scarf and bottles towards the top corner
  4. Get both left and right corners together as you make the bottles stand up. Tie them up 

Yotsu Musubi – or 4 tie wrap

Ideal for square boxes. (note – the scarf I used was actually too big for the box, bare those proportions in mind if you decide to go for it)

Scarf giftwrap - Yotsu Musubi 1 Scarf giftwrap - Yotsu Musubi 2 Scarf giftwrap - Yotsu Musubi 3 Scarf giftwrap - Yotsu Musubi 4

How you do it:

  1. Put the box in the centre of the scarf
  2. Take the top and bottom corners and tie a knot on the top of the box
  3. Take the left and right corners and tie a knot on top of the previos know
  4. If necessary, re-tie the first (and bottom) knot over the new knot – so essentially it’s tied 3 times

After all this wonderful Furoshiki you can still decorate this lovely presents with some cool name tags, pine cones, baubles, anything you like really. Go crazy!

These tutorials and many more can be found at Furoshiki.com

If you want to find out more about Furoshiki, check out it’s Wikipedia page here

Dipping your way into homemade gifts

In preparation for the 10k run I participated on a couple of weeks ago, I decided to make a couple of “well done” homemade gifts for my running buddies. Being 100% on board with this year’s dipping trend and having a massive surplus of strawberry plants proved to be the winning combination.

The dipped look is so easy to achieve and can be applied to almost anything. These are some of my faves out there, like these clean and simple dipped stools, this great turquoise chair or this navy looking chair for the corridor which add an unexpected touch to a dinning area or just any lonely corner of your home.

I also love these wooden cooking utensils and bowls (pastels? Yes please!)

I decided to give each of my friends a baby plant in a DIY painted terracotta pot. They’re super easy to make and they are a really cute presents! All you need is acrylic paint or spray paint, masking tape and a cute flower pot.

After you have put masking tape marking the area where you want the paint to reach, I recommend giving the area a coat of white paint. Even though I skipped that step, it will make the colors stand out more.

These pots were really tiny which made them even cuter. The end result looked really nice and they made good presents. I think they would be great as a group, in different sizes, as table centerpiece. Maybe nice at a wedding, allowing the guests to take them home afterwards. I would love that!