Is there anything better than soaking in a bubbly bath with a good book and a cup of tea? We have teamed up with My Thrifty Life by Cassiefairy to create a step-by-step DIY project which shows you how to build a little bath-side shelving unit by recycling leftover materials. The resulting driftwood-style bathroom shelving unit is the perfect place to store bath products and provides a handy stand for your mug (or wine glass!).
You don’t need much timber for this project – we’ve upcycled small 20cm offcuts of scaffold board and broken broom handles to create a compact unit, but you can make it any size and shape you like, as long as it is securely assembled and feels sturdy. The sanded and waxed timber creates a soft, driftwood finish that’s ideal for coastal-style bathrooms, or you could paint and seal the wood to coordinate with your interiors. The creative bathroom shelf unit is a great storage hack for small spaces – and is cheap and easy so can cater for everyone.
In the plant fibre family, I love raffia. Inexpensive, solid, aesthetic and natural, this material is used both outdoors (raffia string is used in particular to hold a graft on a tree) and indoors. It can be hooked and woven to make bags, hats and other decorative or fashion accessories. It is tied to decorate lampshades, placemats and sun mirrors. But here, we will make a DIY raffia mirror by simply gluing and cutting raffia to give a round mirror a more bohemian look.
Materials needed to make your DIY raffia mirror
To make this fringe mirror by hand, you will need :
How to make your round mirror with raffia fringes?
Step 1: Glue the raffia fringes to the back of the mirror
Cut pieces of raffia to the desired length with a 10 cm margin. Add a trickle of hot glue to the back of your mirror and immediately attach a few strands of raffia to it. Gradually cover the entire surface of the bottom of the mirror without trying to glue too much at once.
Once the glue dries, add successive layers to the back of the mirror, attaching strands of raffia on top of each other. Check on the front that there are no holes in your fringes and that they are dense enough. So that it sets nicely, I suggest you finish with a thread of glue at the back above your last strands of raffia.
Step 2: Cut the fringes
Once you are satisfied with the result, cut the bottom of the fringes to the desired height. Try to cut as straight as possible. You can use a ruler if necessary.
Comb the fringes with your fingers to set them in place and check that nothing is sticking out – you can always trim a few strands. Et voilà, enjoy your homemade raffia mirror!
Written by Vert Cerise:
As a creative writer raised in a family of DIYers, I like to rack my brains to figure out how to make the things around me myself.
If you want to organise the family, keep track of the kids’ activities and make lists of tasks and shopping all in one place, why not have a go at turning a door into a family organiser? It’s a handy space to make to-do lists and to keep an eye on what tasks need doing each week, whilst increasing your home’s storage space by utilising every possible nook and cranny. Children can use the chalks to add their own lessons to the planner and will enjoy drawing you a lovely picture at the bottom of the door.
This space saving family door organiser makes use of any odds and ends of DIY materials you’ve got lying around, such as a small section of guttering to store essentials, and copper pipe leftover from a plumbing task to hold a roll of paper for shopping lists and pots full of pens and chalk. You could use the door under the stairs, inside the kitchen pantry or your office door to keep on top of tasks while working from home. It might even encourage your teenager to make a revision planner if it’s painted onto their bedroom door!
Check out the step-by-step photos to DIY this handy doorganiser here.
Christmas is a time of love – no matter where we find ourselves this extraordinary year, we will still hope to have a special time. You can make it extra memorable by creating a DIY Christmas present that is handy and unexpected, with the help of The Handy Mano.
This Christmas, we set a challenge to plan and create a handy and unexpected present which was #MadeWithLove for a special someone. The idea was for the present to take pride of place in a loved one’s home, as a way to ‘be there’ even when physically we may not all be together.
We’ve shared one of the #MadeWithLove creations below, alongside some insight into the creative process. We have also shared links to the video below so you can see each part step by step.
Dan Lovatt – A wall-mounted cabinet for his mum
Back in March, my mum got Covid and was quite ill which wasn’t a nice experience as we couldn’t see her. So, this Christmas I want to make her something special. As she is obsessed with cosmetics, I wanted to make her a wall mounted cabinet that she can use to house all her lotions and potions and keep them all contained. Excited to get started on this!
Work out all the parts you will need to make (sides, the back, and shelving) and the size of the cabinet (the cabinet I made was 518mm x 518mm x 120mm). I opted to use 18mm birch ply which has the most beautiful soft grain.
Step 2 – Seamless edges
I planned for all of the joins to have mitered edges to create a seamless effect. To do this, I used the Makita circular saw for extra precision, which means you get the sharpest of cuts. The saw is great as it’s precise, lightweight and packed full of power!
Step 3 – Groove it
Clamp the pieces of wood down, then using the router, press it gently down to create grooves for the shelves to slot in. The cabinet I designed had 3 shelves but you can adapt this according to how big you want it to be.
Step 4 – Glue it up
Put each of the parts together and check it all fits. To attach each piece, I used Gorilla wood glue and clamped each piece together to help it stick nicely.
Step 5 – Smooth it over
Sand over the pieces in 120 grit to smooth over the surface, which also prepares the wood to be treated.
Step 6 – Bringing it together
Attach the backpiece to the shelving using Gorilla wood glue, then clamp together. I then hammered in some nails around the frame to make it extra secure. Handy tip – when you are driving nails into something, use grips to keep the nail in place whilst you protect your fingers! Your cabinet will now be taking real shape.
Step 7 – Treat it
To emphasise the natural grain of the 18mm Birch Ply, use light coats of Oslo Oil Clear Mat to protect the wood and give it a warmer finish.
And voilà! A wall mounted cabinet which was #MadeWithLove for Dan’s mum! A great idea for a DIY Christmas present and easy to make. You can take a look at Dan’s Instagram Reel to see the tutorial in action.
If you’ve got family visiting your garden this winter, why not build this snowman target game to entertain them outdoors? This fabulously festive family Christmas game makes use of an unwanted pallet rescued from a skip and turns the wood into a DIY snowman decoration for the garden. The snowman is freestanding thanks to the stakes attached to the back, so always take care to ensure that the snowman is solidly fixed into the ground and can’t fall over, no matter how hard you throw snowballs at him!
If you add holes of various sizes to the front of the snowman, he doubles-up as a family game. The aim of the game is to throw snowballs through his ‘buttons’ and mouth to score points. It’s quite a skill to form the snow into a suitably-sized snowball to fit through the holes! If it’s not snowing, you can use homemade pom-poms, faux snowballs or tennis balls instead. Family members can take it turn turns to throw their ‘snowballs’ and most points scored with five balls wins the game. Check out the DIY Christmas game guide with step-by-step photos to make this snowman target game here. Enjoy!