Friday, July 6, 2012

Giant Wooden Spool Chair

D.I.Y- Giant Wooden Spool Chair

My neighbor left three large wooden spools on the curb yesterday. Lucky me! I only took two because one was rusted, and the boys across the street wanted one to use as a table in their backyard. Seemed fair to me!

When I saw the spools I knew I wanted to make a chair and off I went off to the local fabric store where I bought some staples and clearance fabric (1 1/4 yard, to be exact). I already had a few supplies on hand: a staple gun, black gloss paint, a paint roller and sand paper, which made this project fairly inexpensive. 

On my way home from the fabric store I stopped at the dollar store to buy one of those cushioned foam covers for a bed. They didn't have a queen size so I bought two twin sized ones. Actually, I bought one and had to go back for the second when I realized one would not be enough padding.

Once I got home, I started sanding the spool with 150 grit sandpaper to take off the rough edges. I gave the rest of it a nice once over to make sure my paint would adhere. Next, I used my tiny roller and started painting.

I used the sander to keep the spool from rolling down the driveway

It was 100 degrees outside so the paint dried quickly and I was able to add several coats. I didn't paint the bottom or the top of the spool because I knew it wouldn't be seen. There are slats and nail holes so I had to use a small paint brush to get to those hard to reach areas that my roller couldn't.

For the seat, I folded the twin sized foam in half and cut it the diameter of the spool top. I realized that there wasn't enough padding and that's when I ran back to the dollar store and bought the second one.

This time I decided I needed to make the cut bigger so it would cover the edge because I didn't want bare wood under the fabric. I cut it about two inches wider — I didn't take a photo.

Once I was set, I put my fabric on top and started to staple, but not before I figured out I had bought the wrong size staples. Instead of returning them to the store I went to a neighbor and luckily they had the right size staple gun for my stapling needs.

As I started to staple I realized the way I was doing it wasn't going to work because I had the spool right-side up and was blindly stapling. I didn't want to accidentally to staple a finger so I flipped it upside down. Then, I double checked the fabric to make sure it was taut and then I started stretching, folding and stapling.

The raw edges—not pretty

Halfway around I saw the raw edges and knew I needed to make it "professional looking," so I started popping staples and folding the raw edge under.. After re-stapling the whole thing, I hammered all the staples to be sure they were secure. 

Clean edges—very nice

You can see my folds are spaced evenly and folded the same direction... This is key to a good looking finish (it doesn't really matter though because no one will see it).

Here is the final product. I am very pleased with it. I have never upholstered anything before this, but many years ago my Grammy told that it was fairly easy to do. I'm glad I finally tried it out!

Trash to Treasure, baby!

xx Tyna xx

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Gradient Layer Cake

I made this cake for a surprise baby shower for one of the moms on my son's baseball team. I made it rather quickly so I didn't go to measures I normally would to make a smooth icing layer.

First, I used two boxes of Betty Crocker white cake mix and instead of using oil, I used applesauce (it makes the cake really moist). Next, I divided the mix by into six containers. Then I dyed them all different shades of blue. See the Tie-dye cake tutorial for directions.

I like to use the gel food coloring because it doesn't make the batter runny.
Note: I used regular blue food coloring for the darkest blue and I used a few drops into the one next to it.

I used my judgement when color each container of icing. I gradually lightened as I went.  The lightest color had a small hint of blue, but not enough to show up in pictures.

Not pictured is the of white buttercream frosting that was colored to match each batter container. I thought it would be cool if the icing was the same color as the layers.

I used a 9-inch round cake pan and baked each color for ten minutes. This took the longest because I only have one 9-inch cake pan.  Note: butter and flour the pan before you put the batter in or the cake mix with stick to the pan and it can break when you pull it out.

I didn't wait for the layers to cool like I normally would. I flipped the pan upside down onto my cooling rack and it popped right out. I don't recommend this, as it could have been a disaster.

Once one layer cooled to touch, I would ice it with the matching color of frosting. Then I added another layer, and continued for six layers. Once the cake was together, I needed to do a crumb layer and put it in the fridge/freezer to chill so when it's time to decorate it would be smooth.  Obviously I didn't do this. I actually decorated the cake at the baby shower, and finished right before the mom-to-be walked in.

I wanted the cake tto match napkins for the shower.

I used sugar sheets to make the circles.

I did the best in the time I had and I feel a little ashamed of the sloppiness.

 To make the circles, I used the inside of my icing tip to cut out the circle shape out of the sugar paper.

I knew I wanted the cake to match the napkins, but I also wanted it to be baseball related so I used my blue Food Writer pen and made stitches.

For the name I used piping gel, which I dyed with food coloring. It was my first time to use the piping gel, so my ratio of food coloring wasn't quite where it needed to be in order for it turn out as dark as I wanted. We live, we learn.

All in all, I am fairly happy with the turn out and I plan to make another one in the future.

Aren't the gradient layers lovely?


xx Tyna xx

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Tie-Dye Birthday Cake

Welcome to Tyna's Tie-Dye Cake Tutorial. 

So, I made a tie-dye cake for my friend, Lindsey's, 30th birthday.

I got the idea from Bird on a Cage. It was pretty cool, so I tried it. I will cut into it tomorrow and post an update of the inside, but here is what I have so far. *Updated with photo

I used:
Betty Crocker Super Moist Vanilla Cake x 2
Betty CrockerGel Food Coloring (Neon)
McCormick Assorted, Blue Food Coloring
CakeMate Squeeze Icing, Classic Colors Blue
Instead of oil I used Mott's applesauce. Used the called for amount 1/3 cup.
Egg Whites
Whipped Vanilla Frosting

Divide the batter into equal parts.

Add color to the batter.

Layer colors with 1/2 cup scoops one on top of the other. Repeat until gone.

(Very pleasing to the eye.)

To make a star-burst design use a toothpick and run it from the center out.

To make a flower design: 
Run a toothpick from the outside toward the center. Once in the center, make a circle.

When the cake is baked, cut off the top to make it level and munch the yumminess or make cake balls.

(The rainbow mess)

Ice it all over. A crumb layer isn't necessary.

I forgot to take a photo but on the top of the icing, but I made rings of each gel food coloring (lighest to darkest). I tried to do the same on the sides, but it came out clumpy, but the final product was still a success. 

I used a new paintbrush and made swipes from the center to the edge and then edge to the center, alternating between the two so it would look different.

(Note: make sure to wipe the brush after each swipe.
 Once I was done, I used the bottom edge of the gel coloring and made a spiral, starting from the center and working my way out.)

Then, I created a star-burst using the bottom edge of the gel.

I did the same thing on the sides.

And this is the final product.


The inside