Cement Doorstop

Summertime is meant for open doors to let the breeze flow. And I definitely spent many summer days with my front door open to let the air circulate. But once in awhile a gust would come through and I wished I had a door stop to hold my door open. It’s a little late for open doors (now that Fall is here) but at least I’ll be ready for the next warm day!

 

MATERIALS

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Step 1: 

If it hasn’t already been cut, cut the leather strap to be a 1″ wide x 14″ long piece. I found some pre-cut straps on Etsy.

 

Step 2: Punch the anchor holes.

Punch an 1/8″ hole, 1/2″ away from each end of the strap.

 

Step 3: Punch the rivet holes.

Punch one 1/16″ hole, 2 1/2″ away from each end of the strap. (Note that in the end I added TWO rivets instead of one. So if I was going to make another one, I would add another rivet hole below this one. So one at 2″ and another at 2 1/2″)

 

Step 4: Attach the rivet.

Fold the strap in half (wrong sides facing in) aligning the holes. The anchor and rivet holes should line up.

Insert the rivet post through the back side through the front. Place the cap on the rivet post and set the post on top of the curved edge of the anvil. Gently tap the rivet with the mallet to set the rivet.

 

Step 5: Attach the screw post.

Insert the screw post in the bottom hole and screw it together. You don’t have to screw it too tight. This additional element is to help anchor the strap into the concrete. If you don’t add an anchor, the leather may just slip right out of the concrete.

 

Step 6:  Create the brace.

Take two popsicle sticks and place them perpendicular to the strap, about 3/4″ down from the brass rivet. Take some painters tape and secure the two sticks together on each side, making a brace for the leather strap.

 

Step 7: Prepare your mold.

Go outside and spray a light layer of the Smooth-On Universal Mold Release into your candle mold. (Why does my hand look like a crabby old witch hand? ugh.)

 

Step 8: Mix your concrete.

Now get ready to get dirty! Using a couple plastic cups, scoop out 1 part concrete, and 2 parts sand. Mix up those two dry materials in the larger plastic container before you add your water. When the dry parts are mixed thoroughly, add your water slowly until you get a super thick milkshake like consistency. You should feel a little give when you stir it up.

Note: Always wear your mask when you are dealing with the concrete powder. You don’t want to inhale it, and it will pretty much get everywhere.

 

Step 9: Pour the concrete.

Now carefully pour your concrete mixture into the mold.

 

Step 10: Let it dry.

Carefully place your prepared strap into the top of the concrete, bracing it on the top of the mold with the popsicle sticks, and securing it in place with some masking tape. Gently set the mold aside to dry. I let mine dry about a two full days in my garage.

 

Step 11: 

Once fully dried, carefully wiggle your doorstop out of the mold and begin using it as a doorstop!

 

Gold paper clip stand

I’m not a blogger full-time. My day job is working at Microsoft. Over the past nine years working there I have worked in a number of different groups. One of those groups was Office. And in Office there is a running joke internally about bringing back Clippy into our software. You remember Clippy right? He is notorious in the world of software. :) This is my DIY version of Clippy. He holds your stuff for you. He’s shiny and gold. He helps you organize your stuff. He doesn’t say a word. The perfect man right?!? hah hah! Maybe not completely perfect. He did turn out pretty great in my opinion though. He’s my next best cement job since these Cement & Wire Stands.

MATERIALS

TIME TO COMPLETE

1 hour to prepare, mix, and pour. Plus 1-2 days to completely set the cement.

INSTRUCTIONS

Step 1:

Prepare the cardboard brace – To hold your paper clip in an upright position, I created a little cardboard brace. To make this, print out the template, trace it onto your cardboard, and cut out along the dotted lines.

Take both “A” pieces and tape the short sides together.

Take both “B” pieces and insert “A” into the slots so you have a little stand.

Step 2:

Prepare the paperclip – Cut a 5″ piece of wire. Fold it in half (using your pliers). Wrap it around the bottom of the paperclip, and use your pliers to twist it tight about 2 rotations. Then take each end of the wire and bend each end down to make a “T” shape.

Take each end and bend to create a spiral to form a stand.

Insert the paper clip from the bottom in-between the taped cardboard stand, inside the round mold, and set on a flat surface.

Step 4:

Prepare the mold – Using a tiny amount of vegetable oil, grease the inside of the mold. You can use a paper towel to clean up any excess.

Step 4:

Mix/Pour your concrete – Using your plastic spoon, mix 1 part concrete, and 2 parts sand. I used 2 heaping spoonfuls of concrete mix and 4 spoonfuls of sand. Stir these up well (and gently) before you add your water.

Add a small amount of water at a time, until you get a smooth thick milkshake consistency. You should feel a little give when you stir it up. (The image on the right is the right consistency.)

Now carefully pour your concrete mixture into the mold. Fill it up almost to the top. Let it sit in an undisturbed warm/room-temperature location.

Step 6:

Let it dry about a day (or two) until the concrete is set. Then wiggle it out of the mold carefully. It should come out pretty easily. If the top edge is a little sharp, you can use some fine grit sandpaper to gently give it more of a smooth corner. Don’t sand too much…or you’ll start to see more of the sand instead of the cement texture.

Use them for displaying postcards, photos, or even table place cards. I think they turned out super cute, and there is one already adorning my desk at work!

 

cement wire stand

Cement & Wire Stands

It’s already September, which means the first day of school is coming up for students. I remember going shopping for all my school supplies, picking out my binders and pee chees to match. I loved visiting the office supply store with my Mom and my sister…roaming the aisles to pick out my supplies. :) But when it came for junior high, and high school…the most exciting part was figuring out how you were going to decorate your locker. I remember one year everything in my locker was pink. Weird, cause I’m not much of a pink person now. :)

So instead of a new locker to decorate, I had a new desk to accessorize a few months back. I decided to go minimal and modern. I picked out some cement accessories from FMC Design on Etsy which are gorgeous. I love the pencil holder and tray I bought, and maybe will extend my collection with a concrete canister soon! :)

So with this new cement theme in mind, I slowly gathered materials to create some cement wire stands using Merchant & Mills Provision Pins and Silicon Ice Cube Trays. The result? Awesome-ness. :)

Since this was the first time I’ve worked with cement (on my own) of course I roped my friends into getting their hands dirty with me!

Photo disclaimer:  I look completely disheveled in these photos. This craft was done after a full day of cleaning, organizing, and moving at the Craft Cabin. It was hot and there were more spider webs than I would like to discuss. So please don’t judge me from my sweaty, dirty appearance. :)

MATERIALS

materials part 1

materials part 2

TIME TO COMPLETE

1 hour to mix and pour. Overnight + a few days to completely set the cement.

INSTRUCTIONS

Step 1:

To hold your pins in an upright position, and still be able to remove the cardboard without disturbing the pins we created a little cardboard brace. To make this, print out the template, trace it onto your cardboard, and cut out along the dotted lines.

step 1

step 2

Step 2:

Now get ready to get dirty!

This process was pretty comical. It took three of us ladies to move the concrete bag from my car trunk to the ground. :) This sucker was HEAVY. None the less, we got it done cause we are rock-stars.

step 3

Using a couple plastic cups, scoop out 1 part concrete, and 2 parts sand. Mix up those two dry materials before you add your water.

step 4

When you are all mixed, add your water slowly until you get a super thick milkshake like consistency. You should feel a little give when you stir it up.

step 5

Note: Always wear your mask when you are dealing with the concrete powder. You don’t want to inhale it, and it will pretty much get everywhere. This super hot photo was POST scooping of the powder. :)

ME

Step 3:

Now carefully pour your concrete mixture into the silicone trays. The one pack of Provision Pins is eight, so there was enough for all squares except the center one. Do something creative with that extra one! We stuck a scrabble tile in it. :)

step 6

Step 4:

Carefully center your cardboard template on top of the silicon tray. Insert your pins into each of the squares and set aside to dry.

step 7

Step 5:

We let ours dry about a day and a half and they were pretty much set up. They are really easy to get out of the tray, just wiggle them a little and they’ll shimmy out.

step 8

Use them for displaying postcards, photos, or even table place cards. I think they turned out super cute, and there is one already adorning my desk at work!

cement wire stand