Lisa Leonard Designs

Archive for the ‘DIY’ Category

willow and sage magazine feature!

January 30th | DIY, features

I have fallen in love with a new magazine! I’m sure you’ve heard of Stampington–they create magazines such as Where Women Create, Artful Blogging and Somerset Life. Such beautiful publications! They have a new magazine called Willow and Sage–and they featured my sister weekend in there. I am so excited! Take a look.

These magazines are worth keeping for years. The photos are high quality with a matte finish. So inspiring!

In August I snuck away for a magical few days with my sisters. We stayed in an airstream trailer and had so much fun talking, laughing and eating amazing food. I want to go back. So bad.

I surprised the sisters with some handmade foot scrub and we soaked our feet. It was so fun and relaxing.

The foot scrub is incredibly simple. It’s just brown sugar grape seed oil and if you want, a splash of almond or mint flavoring for a nice scent. I use it all the time in the shower. It makes my skin so soft and moisturized. Love it.

For a gift, just put into a mason jar and make a little tag. Seriously simple, pretty and practical.

Click here to follow Stampington on Facebook. And here to follow them on Instagram.

And if you want lots of inspiration for homemade bath products, hop over here and get a copy of Willow and Sage. You won’t be sorry!

What’s your favorite make-at-home beauty treatment? Please share!

hello california snowmen

December 8th | christmas, DIY, hello monday

It’s been warm here in California BUT lately we’ve had some rain and things have cooled off a bit. We need the rain so badly and we’re feeling thankful and cozy. Since it doesn’t snow where we are, we have to get creative with making snowmen. This year, the cousins painted snowman ornaments. I found these at Target and they were a HIT!

It’s a brand new week. How about some hellos?

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

Hello cousins gathered around the table. This is the stuff memories are made of!

Hello finding a craft project that works with three year olds and twelve year olds. Victory!

Hello taking this project very seriously.

Hello letting the paint dry and then hanging them from the tree.

Hello planning for other Christmas crafts. It’s our tradition to make gingerbread houses and cut snowflakes.

Hello wanting to eat healthy this month BUT being way too tempted by sweets at every turn. January is a new beginning, right?

Hello busy busy workshop! We are kinda crazy over here!

Hello quiet evenings at home. We’re working through all our favorite Christmas movies…Elf, Rise of the Guardians, Polar Express, and more!

Hello wanting more coffee because the mornings are gray and chilly.

Hello planning gifts for teachers, aides and babysitters. They are such a blessing in our lives!

Hello haircuts. Didn’t we just get haircuts? It’s already time again?!

Hello to YOU! What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

hello cottages and bungalows

October 13th | blog friends, DIY

I picked up Cottages and Bungalows magazine at Barnes and Noble this weekend and was so excited to see my DIY heart branches inside! It’s a brand new week. How about some hellos?

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

Hello Cottages and Bungalows. It’s one of my favorite mags! Like them on Facebook here.

Hello loving fall and leaves crunching underfoot.

Hello David’s eyes getting better. We’re using a topical steroid and it seems to be working!

Hello Matthias being obsessed with Spiderman lately. He’s one of my favorite superheros too!

Hello craving salted butterscotch pudding. Yum!

Hello big announcement and hello feeling so thankful for your amazing response!

Hello 25% off the entire site today!  Some of you are already knocking out your Christmas list. Use code earlybird for 25% off! Click here to shop.

Hello new things to share with you this week. I CAN’T WAIT!!

Hello praying for rain. California needs it so badly.

Hello brand new beautiful week. It’s going to be a good one, I can feel it.

What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

DIY arrow sign

September 2nd | decorating, DIY

My sister and I saw the most adorable, vintage arrow sign at a boutique in Paso Robles a couple weeks ago, but it wasn’t for sale. So we decided to get crafty and do make one ourselves. It was really easy. Don’t get turned off by the measurements–basically, you just want everything to be centered and symmetrical

 We used balsa wood, red paint, a ruler, pencil and sandpaper.

1. Measure the center of your sign and draw a line all the way down. This will be the center of your arrow.

2. Draw lines on either side of your arrow, equal distance from the center. This is the width of your arrow.

For the detail at the end of the arrow, we decided how far from the edge each tail feather should go, then drew a pencil line. Measure 1/2″ or so between and draw dots, connect all your dots and you have symmetrical lines.

Erase all extra pencil marks and begin painting the edge of your arrow with a clean line. I small paint brush makes it easier.

Once it was dry, I heavily sanded it to give it an aged feel.

It points the way to the kitchen, which is where we all hang out. So it’s perfect!

Are you ready to make your own arrow?

art projects and letting it be imperfect

July 18th | DIY, matthias

If you have been following along for a while, you know Matthias loves art. He is constantly drawing, sketching, planning and making lists. I love his creativity and I want to nurture it.

Meg did this awesome continuous line tutorial and I was so inspired! Watch her video too! I jumped into this project with Matthias and half way through ended up screaming at him. Ugh–what was supposed to fun went all wrong. I can’t even remember what made me so mad. I quickly apologized to him and was was forgiving. It took me a little longer to forgive myself. Being a mother is a process of growing, grieving, grace and forgiveness!

Isn’t his owl awesome?

I decided to try the same concept with a heart theme. You know I love hearts.

Next time we do an art project together I’m determined to stay patient. Sigh. Life is so imperfect–but there is beauty.

sprucing up the backyard

June 17th | decorating, DIY

With summer here I’ve been wanting to spruce up the backyard and get it ready for BBQs and hanging outside in the evenings! I didn’t spend much time or money, but I the small changes made a big impact!


Before the pillows were faded and I picked up that table at a garage sale. It needed some color!

I painted the table yellow, added a couple brightly potted succulents and some new pillows. What a difference!

The pillows and the pouf are from Target. I love that navy chevron!

It’s just a simple seating area but it adds color and another spot to hang out when we have guests.

I love succulents but Steve isn’t much of a fan. But I can keep them alive, so they have found a home with us!

The boys have a play structure that we call ‘the treehouse’. It came with the house and needed some reinforcing when we moved in. We also built a new ladder–but that was years ago! I just added this canvas drop cloth {found at home depot for $10} to the roof and it really finishes off the treehouse. So fun!

I cut a kitchen sponge into a circle and painted some dots on the drop cloth, then used a staple gun to attach it.

Happiness!

The new roof is a hit with the boys {and their friends!}

And of course, a string of white lights to add some atmosphere in the evening. Such a happy space now!

 Does your family spend time outside in the summertime?

hello shelf makeover

June 9th | decorating, DIY, hello monday

Hello friends! We are on summer break and enjoying all the crazy that comes along with that! I’m home more and in the workshop less during the summer, which means more tome for projects and more time for playing with my boys!nIt’s Monday, how about some hellos?

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

Hello new {to us} shelf. This was a $29 thrift store find!

Hello having a place to store DVDs and toys.

Hello before and after. Isn’t it fun to see the transition?

Hello bright and cheery!

Hello new books and old books. Have you picked up Rubyellen’s book yet?

Hello baskets from TJ Maxx.

Hello sweet, vintage covers. I couldn’t resist these books at a flea market.

Hello encouraging the boys to read this summer. {we’ll be reading to David}

Hello russian dolls {thrifted}. David likes to carry these around the house.

Hello trying to come up with lots of activities and toys to keep David busy this summer!

Hello stop sign and a bright corner of the house. Doesn’t that shelf fit perfectly in front of the stairs?

Hello having girlfriends over for dinner tonight.

Hello chicken and veggies for dinner. Simple and straightforward!

Hello plugging in the twinkle lights in the backyard.

Hello watching X-men with Matthias. He loves it!

Hello three loads of laundry waiting to be folded.

Hello getting sheets washed and beds remade for guests next week.

Hello EXCITING things happening in the workshop and new designs to share this week.

Hello dreaming big and jumping into a brand new week! Are you ready?

 It’s Monday! What are you saying hello to this week? Share some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

let’s sew together!

May 27th | blog friends, DIY

Oh friends! Rubyellen of the adorable blog My Cakies has just released a book! And it’s beautiful! The photos are so inspiring and her voice comes through in the pages. If you sew or want to learn more about sewing, this book will spark ideas!

Ruby and her husband have four girls: Brave, True, Soul and Glow.

I want to make the robot for David’s birthday! And below, how AMAZING is that world map quilt?

Ruby has some no-sew projects like this bunting hanging on my mantle.

I’m thrilled for Ruby and her book. It’s simply lovely and sure to inspire you creatively!

Make sure to watch her trailer–it’s BEAUTIFUL!

Read Ruby’s blog here and shop her new book here!

decorating with branches {diy}

May 13th | decorating, DIY

Lately I’ve been so inspired by branches!

I love their texture, and if you live near trees, they’re free and plentiful!

Last week I created this heart out of branches and hung it in our family room. {DIY instructions further down}

I love how it makes an impact visually but isn’t overpowering because of the negative space.

Texture–look at all that beautiful texture!

I hiked up the hill near our home and gathered some stray branches.

All you need is some wire and cutters for this project. I used 22 gauge wire from Michael’s.

First, I laid out the branches to create the heart shape I wanted. If a branch was too long I just broke it to the desired length with my hands.

Then I started wrapping wire to connect the branches.

Those branches that go across the center of the heart give it a lot more stability and structure.

It’s simple, organic and messy. Just like real love, right?

hand-stamped jewelry care

May 1st | DIY, jewelry

Hello friends! I think this post might be overdue. I get a lot of questions about how to care for hand-stamped jewelry. I’ve got some easy tips to keep your jewelry looking brand new and absolutely beautiful!

1. Keep your jewelry organized. I’m not going to let you peek at my dressing area {hint, it’s a mess; organization is not my strength} but I try to keep my jewelry orderly so I can find things easily and keep them from tangling. If you can’t find it, you can’t wear it. I’m talking to myself right now!

2. Ziploc baggies are your friend. Especially with sterling jewelry, you’ll want to keep it away from air and dust if you aren’t wearing it regularly. Snack size ziploc baggies are a great way to store jewelry {one in each bag} to keep them from tangling and tarnishing.

3. The more you wear it, the better! Sterling will stay shiny if you wear it regularly. Same with pewter! Just polish sterling silver with a polish cloth and see details for fine pewter below.

4. Both pewter and sterling can be polished with triple zero steel wool. Don’t use a sterling polish cloth on pewter–it just smudges and dulls. Triple zero steel wool gentle buffs the metal to a soft shine. If the piece needs to be re-antiqued, color in the hand-stamped letters with a marks-a-lot marker and then polish with steel wool. We use chemicals in the workshop to antique, but marks-a-lot markers a great, non-toxic way to keep your jewelry looking brand new!

Color in the letters completely, then buff with triple zero steel wool.

Rings loose their antiquing faster than other pieces because hands get washed so much. I re-antique my rings every month or two.

You might already have a marker and steel wool at home, but if you don’t you can purchase a polish set here.

And if you just need a new chain, you can find one here.

And that’s how to keep your jewelry looking BEAUTIFUL! Have any questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll answer them there.