Archive of ‘DIY’ category

Sharpie Dog Bowls

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My dog, Sammy, has had the same doggie bowls since the day we brought him home nearly 6 years ago. Time for an upgrade just in time for Christmas. I found these square bowls at Home Goods a few weeks ago and thought they’d be perfect for Sammy’s new bowls. Obviously the bowls needed some sharpie accents. Here’s what you’ll need to make these sharpie dog bowls:

  1. Ceramic Bowl(s)
  2. Sharpie (color of your choice)
  3. Rubbing Alcohol
  4. Cotton Balls or Tissue

I found some fonts online and decided to just freehand it. It just seemed like too much work to trace or figure out how to transfer a copied font. I basically started with the middle letter in the center then moved outwards towards each side. So that method’s not fool proof…

Fail 1:

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Fail 2:

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I didn’t worry too much about making it super perfect. After I got the basic shape of the letters down, I thickened up the lettering with a sharpie to fix all the imperfections and crooked parts.

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Next up, the water bowl. I repeated the same process again. This time with the word “thirsty”.

Fail 1:

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Only 1 fail later, success!

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Really, I just wanted the letters to be centered. Low bar. I repeated the same process by thickening up the lettering and fixing up the imperfections.

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To clean up all my screw ups, I put some rubbing alcohol on a tissue and wiped off all the fails. It came off super easy.

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Next, I popped the dishes into the oven, turned it up to 450°F, and let it bake 30 minutes after the oven was done preheating. After 30 minutes of baking, I turned off the oven and let the bowls cool off inside.

I pulled the bowls out of the oven and wiped them down with a wet paper towel to make sure there was no burnt Sharpie residue in them. Tah dah! New doggie bowls for Sammy. He LOVES them. Look at that face!

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The little dog is a craft project the neighbor’s kids made for him. Looks just like him!

Repiped Sprinklers

So…last week it rained in LA. A LOT. So much rain that it turned the rock hard dirt in my yard into nice soft diggable dirt. It was definitely time for a backyard project now that it was finally possible to dig more than one mm into the ground. I decided to repipe the sprinklers so I’d have water for my brand new grass when it will inevitably not rain for months and months on end again.

I didn’t quite think to take pictures until I dug everything up. Oops. It wasn’t the exciting part anyway.

Here’s what I used for this sprinkler project:

  1. Shovel
  2. Spray paint (optional)
  3. 10′ sticks of 3/4″ PVC Pipe
  4. 3/4″ Couplings (straight, 45°, and 90°)
  5. 3/4″ coupling to 1/2″ 90° coupling
  6. 1/2″ riser 2″ length
  7. 1/2″ connector between riser and sprinkler
  8. PVC Pipe Glue
  9. Plumbing Tape
  10. PVC Pipe Cutters
  11. Sprinker Head(s)
  12. Gloves (optional)

Okay, so I have this stupid sprinkler smack in the middle of my small circular grass patch (painstakingly planted by me from itty bitty seeds). So if you’re staring at the grass patch from the house, I wanted to move the sprinkler from the center to what would be 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock. I began digging. My shoulders, arms, abs, body, glutes HATE me. So much. Skip the gym, dig trenches in the yard.

I dug a nice hole around the original sprinkler and exposed 3-4″ of the pipe that leads back to the water source.

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Then I dug a trench about 10″ wide and 6″ deep in both directions away from the original sprinkler. Now, you’d think that digging in a straight line would be easy. Its not. After digging a super crooked line in one direction, I came up with the bright idea of spray painting the dirt to give myself a guide. Hence, spray paint optional. You don’t need it, but if you can’t dig in a straight line, I recommend it.

Repiped Sprinklers_03  Repiped Sprinklers_02

This took me a few hours. I took a break and piped the sprinklers the next day. I was pooped.

So the next day, I drew a super hokey mapping of the backyard and wrote down measurements of the trenches (the distance between original and desired location of sprinklers). I went to OSH and looked like my helpless self and got an associate to help me gather supplies.

Here’s what I learned:

  • Sprinkler pipes moving water from the source to the sprinkler are usually 3/4″
  • The connection from sprinkler to water pipe is only 1/2″ so you’ll need a converter
  • You must get a connector that converts from 3/4″ to 1/2″ at a 90° angle to turn the pipe upward for the sprinkler
  • Buy extra couplings (things that connect the pipes together) because you don’t want to get half way through and have to run back to the store

Okay, so I got nine 10′ sticks of 3/4″ PVC pipe, a bunch of couplings in varying angles, two 3/4″ to 1/2″ couplings at a 90° angle, two risers, and an extra sprinkler head. I re-purposed the old one to one of the new locations. I had all the other stuff left over from my front yard re-piping project.

Time to connect the pipes. This is like putting Legos together. Its super easy. If you mess up, cut it off and try again. To start, I cut off the original sprinkler using my pipe cutters. This is super easy to do. You just clamp down, release, and reclamp down until it cuts all the way through. There was some water left inside the pipe, so I let it drain out before moving on.

Next, I opened my glue up. There’s a stick attached to the lid of the jar. The stick has a round cotton ball thing attached to the end and you use that to apply the blue goo. It’s super stinky so wear a mask if you’re starting to get loopy (or maybe before that happens).

I recommend gloves for this part, unless you want to accidentally glue your fingers together or have dried blue gunk stuck to your hands for awhile. I smeared a bunch of glue around the PVC pipe about 1-2″ in length, making sure to cover it well. Then, I shoved a coupling on and twisted it slightly to wiggle it into a good connection. Basically, continue until you connect all the pipes the entire length of the trench!

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Thankfully, PVC pipe bends a little so my crooked digging wasn’t a big problem. Looking at the picture, it was SUUUUPER crooked.

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Once I connected the pipe all the way to the sprinkler location, I attached the connector that converts from 3/4″ to 1/2″ at a 90° angle. The 1/2″ end should have threading to attach a riser. This is to elevate the sprinkler out of the ground and high enough to spray what you want. If you get a less crappy sprinkler where you can adjust the spray angle, you might not need the riser.

Before I screwed in the riser, I wrapped it with plumbing tape. Its super thin and silicone-y and I just wrapped it around the threading 3-4 times on each side and screwed one end into the 1/2″ end of the converter and the sprinkler into the other end. I did the other side and I was done!

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Next up, I tested my work. I turned on the sprinklers and checked for any leaks. I checked all the connection points and the sprinkler area. NO LEAKS. I literally squealed with joy. No repeat visits to the hardware store! I’m still amazed that they work.

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Last step, bury everything. I used a rake to scrape the dirt back into the trench and stomped on it to make it flat. Real professional. With each stomp I was chanting NEW-GRASS-NEW-GRASS (in my head). YAY!

In total this whole project cost me less than $35. I went back to the hardware store to return all the extra parts I bought. I thanked the associate who helped me pick out all the parts. He told me he was so proud of me for doing this. I’m so proud of me! So excited for more grass!

Ikea Drawer Handle Installation Hack

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This is a post about my Ikea drawer handle installation hack with my hack saw. GRIN. I have a love/hate (maybe even a stronger word than hate) relationship with Ikea. NOTHING ever works out the way its supposed to. Ever. Last year, I bought some Ikea Besta furniture and never got around to installing drawer handles for some reason. Well I finally buckled down and decided to put them on.

First battle: I drove to Ikea (a feat it in itself), walked around trying to find the same handles only to find out they were discontinued. REALLY!? I found the discontinued ones on Amazon at a money gouging price of $10 a piece (honestly could have purchased Restoration Hardware ones for a few bucks more). Why buy Ikea stuff if its not going to be cheap?! The struggle begins.

Second battle: I measured the placement of the handles, drilled the holes, TRIED to put them on and figured out the screws were too long. Struggle is getting so real. I have no idea why they don’t make shorter screws! So, my husband told me I could to go the hardware store, buy some new shorter screws and put them on. Logical.

Third battle: I went to OSH and found out that IKEA screws have custom threading! You can’t buy shorter screws! The struggle is real. This is the hate part of my relationship with Ikea.

Husband sent me to the hardware store to buy screws, I came home with…A HACK SAW! WOOT! So after consulting a sales associate, he told me I could cut them shorter with a mini hack saw. Here’s what I used:

  1. Stupid Ikea screws that are too long
  2. Mini Hack Saw
  3. Wilton 3″ Clamp

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I had a mini lesson at the store and then tried this at home by myself. I started by clamping the clamp onto my coffee table. My table is made of a palette so I didn’t care about denting or scratching it. Make sure you clamp onto something you don’t mind messing up a bit.

Next, I put the screw into the side of the clamp and tightened the clamp. It was kinda crooked, but I just wanted it to hold still while I chopped off the excess. The sales guy warned me that nobody has fingers strong enough to hold it while sawing. I believe him.

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Next, I took my mini hack saw and lopped off the extra part of the screw! Basically I put the saw on the screw and started sawing away.

Warning: It gets super freakin hot. Don’t touch the screw right away. Definitely burned my fingers once. Or twice.

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Also make sure to keep the saw in the same place to make sure there aren’t any kinks in the cut. Otherwise, you won’t be able to screw this into the drawer handle. About 20-30 saws later, I was cut threw the screw. I cut 5 more of these and installed my drawer handles!

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