How to Make A Potpourri Mix

Recently, I sliced and dried red pear and orange slices for simple holiday decorations. Soon after, I realized that the dried fruit would look pretty in a bowl of potpourri, too. It is so simple to make, y’all! Therefore, I decided to share how to make a potpourri mix with y’all.

Making potpourri is fairly easy and a great way to add a seasonal scent into a room. Plus, it is an inexpensive, eco-friendly gift idea for friends and family. Simply, place in sachets or jars and tie with ribbon.

Spritz. Store. Enjoy.

How to Make a Potpourri Mix

Potpourri is a mixture of dried, naturally fragrant plant materials displayed in a decorative bowl or basket. There are many different kinds. Therefore, you can choose from this list of suggested materials what goes into your potpourri. First, choose any greenery, spices, or herbs for natural scent. Then, add color with dried flowers and fruit. Woody materials are absorbent and will hold the scent well. Lastly, extra oils will elevate the scent.

What You Need:

  • Dried greenery – pine, eucalyptus, bay leaves
  • Dried fruit – sliced citrus, apples, pears
  • Dried spices or herbs- cloves, cinnamon sticks, star anise
  • Dried flowers – rose buds or petals, lavender
  • Woody filler – pinecones, nutmeg, driftwood, sola wood flowers
  • Essential oils in spray bottle or oil based room spray
  • Airtight container or gallon ziplock bag

How to Dry Oranges

You can find more ways to use dried oranges and tips to drying fruit on my friend Susie’s blog. For example, click here to read “How to Dry Oranges” or this blog post for beautiful Natural Gift Wrap Ideas.

1. Preheat oven to 170°F. 

2. Cut oranges into 1/8 inch slices. 

3. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a baker’s mat. Then, pat orange slices with a paper towel to dry. Next, lay them on the cookie sheet in a single layer. 

4. Bake for approximately 4-6 hours or until dry. To ensure the slices dry evenly and not curl, turn them over every hour. Remove from oven and allow to completely cool before using.

The rose buds are dried from Valentine’s Day years ago.

Essential Oils

You can use a combination of your favorite essential oil scents like citrus or cypress. I purchase essential oils from Doterra, because I know that they are pure and high quality. In addition, I love the Krumpet’s home sprays for the holidays. Find them, here. My favorite scents are the cinnamon, ‘Christmas’ (sweet berry) and shiplap (woodsy).

When working with oils, be aware that some may stain or can be irritable to skin and eyes. Therefore, it is a good idea to wear gloves when handling materials directly covered in oil. However, I wash my hands thoroughly after this project. In addition, I do not spray directly on my wood table or use containers that are used for food.

What You Do:

  1. Gather your materials and spread them out on newspaper or in a flat bowl. Spritz your materials with 15+ sprays of your choice of essential oil.
  2. Wait a few minutes to dry, and store mixture in an airtight container. For example, a lidded jar or ziplock bag works great. Leave this to ‘marinate’ for 48 hours.
  3. Then, pour mixture into a decorative basket or bowl to enjoy for weeks. Once scent begins to dissipate, simply respray.

You can use my code CUTER10 for 10% off everything in the shop, From: Susie. For instance, I display my potpourri in this vintage bread basket that Susie and I found in Round Top, Texas.

If you enjoyed this learning how to make a potpourri mix, save this to your Pinterest board for ‘Things to Make.’ Happy crafting, y’all!

Antiquing Christmas Bells with Rub N Buff

Learn how I gave these inexpensive Christmas bells, found at any dollar store, a makeover. By adding realistic greenery, velvet ribbon, and the secret sauce to getting an antique finish, ‘Rub N Buff,‘ these bells went from cheap to antique.

Rub N Buff is available in antique gold, gold or silver leaf, spanish copper, European gold, Grecian gold, Autumn gold, ebony and pewter. Typically, I use the antique gold finish. Initially, the Christmas bells were a yellow gold and aged tin finish. However, I believe the warm, antique gold adds more character.

Rub N Buff is a wax based metallic finish that easily glides onto a variety of different surfaces, predominantly, but not limited to metal. Therefore, use it to update old light fixtures or furniture hardware. In addition, it works on glass, wood, and even some plastics. So, add an antique or metallic finish to furniture and home decor like wooden frames, mirrors or painted furniture.

What you Do to Antique Christmas Bells:

It’s demo day! To prep the Christmas bells, cut and remove the jute, tinsel like greenery, bow and unwind the burlap from the plastic ring. However, if your bells look different than these, just remove any unwanted or cheap looking parts.

  1. First, hot glue a life like sprig of faux greenery to the ring.
  2. Second, tie a velvet ribbon into a bow and hot glue the bow onto the greenery. Next, cut and glue 3 additional strands of velvet ribbon behind the greenery.
  3. Third, using a paper towel or finger, wipe ‘Rub N Buff’ onto the bells and ring. Then, buff to create a lustrous finish. When dry, hot glue bells to the bottom of the ribbon at varying lengths.

Tip of the Day: If you craft or DIY often, rubber finger cots will protect your fingers from paint, stain, inks, caulking, etc… Typically, I use my fingers to directly rub the stain on, and it takes a day to wear off. However, if you keep your nails manicured, these are handy and disposable.

Thank you for stopping by the blog to see how I transformed these Christmas bells in 3 easy steps with Rub n Buff. If you love antique finishes, be sure to read how I use vintage Christmas decorations in my home. Lastly, follow me on Instagram, Tik Tok or Pinterest for more holiday crafts and DIYS.

Fall Craft: How to make DIY Acorns

If you are looking to make your own Fall craft, these DIY Acorns are simple to do. The key is to build a few layers of paint in different shades of brown to create a realistic texture. So, if you can apply paint and hot glue, you can create these acorns that look beautiful in a wooden bowl.

How to Make this Fall Craft

What you Need: 

This Fall craft is a great way to reuse plastic Easter eggs with just a few craft supplies you probably already own. Reusing old items means less waste and less chance of impulse buys. Therefore, you are saving money, and the planet!

  • plastic or foam Easter eggs
  • wooden skewers
  • styrofoam block or cardboard box
  • white primer spray paint
  • 3 shades of brown acrylic paint 
  • jute string 
  • scissors 
  • paint brush 
  • hot glue and glue gun
  • 1 inch cut twigs 

What you Do:

  1. First, pierce styrofoam or plastic eggs into wooden skewers. Then, push skewers into a styrofoam block or cardboard box to hold in place. These plastic Easter eggs already had a hole on the shorter half.
  2. Spray paint eggs with a white primer in a well ventilated area. This ensures that acrylic paint will adhere better to a painted surface and cover any brightly colored eggs. Then, allow to dry.
  3. Next, paint eggs a warm brown color with acrylic paint. Dry completely. 
  4. Then, ‘dry brush’ thin layers of one or two lighter shades of brown paint to create texture onto the eggs.  To dry brush, dab an old paintbrush into a small amount of paint, then dab off excess paint onto paper, before applying quick short strokes to the surface of the egg. Dry between each layer of paint. Remove from skewers once dry. 
  5. Cut 6-8 feet of jute and coil into a tight circle about the size of a dime. Next, hot glue the jute onto the rounder, shorter half of the egg covering the original hole. 
  6. Lastly, clip a few real twigs from a tree branch and hot glue in the center of the jute wrapped egg. 

More Fall Craft and Styling Inspiration

This is a simple, yet beautiful Fall craft that I initially shared in my bestie Susie’s magazine, Homemade and home decor blog. She has an online shop featuring handmade, artisan, and vintage finds for the home. Use code CUTER10 for 10% off anything in her shop, From: Susie! Consequently, it’s a great way to support a female owned small business while buying American made products with sustainable materials.

Looking for more seasonal styling tips? Then, read Fall Decor Ideas, 5 Ways to Style Pumpkins, or How to Make your Home Cozy for Fall. Lastly, be sure to save this to your Pinterest board. Then, follow me on Instagram for more doable DIY’s, like these succulent filled pumpkins and affordable home decor.

DIY Water Propagation Station & Tips

While I still have a lot to learn about plants, I have an easy DIY water propagation station and a few water propagation tips to share with you!

Thank you to DAP, who partnered with me to try their new RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel Adhesives with Gel Control Applicator. All opinions and ideas are my own. The RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator is perfect for this DIY. The adhesive is better than super glue! In addition, the thick gel doesn’t drip and can easily be applied with the control applicator.

Typically, I decorate my home with faux plants, trees, flowers, stems… all fake! Last year, I challenged myself to become a plant lady! However, my goal was simple… to keep at least one real plant alive. I have not only kept a handful of succulents but an Alocasia (elephant ear) plant alive, too. The elephant ear was originally planted in my flower bed, but the sun roasted it every summer. So, I replanted it in a large pot, and kept it indoors, mostly in my shower for the humidity. It has been thriving for over a year!

Since then, I have acquired several additional house plants, like Pothos (devil’s ivy), and have become interested in the benefits of plants. As a new ‘plant lady,’ I began reading more about plant care, gardening and water propagation tips. For years, I have grown vegetable cuttings in the kitchen window. It’s satisfying to watch roots grow or vegetables regenerate.

DIY Water Propagation Station

This water propagation station is hanging so I can display it near kitchen window. In addition, magnets make it possible to remove the tubes to refill or change the water. When working with magnets, it is important to use a glue that is stronger than the magnetic force. DAP RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator is water-resistant when cured, so it is perfect for this project.

What To Do:

  • Gather your materials from your favorite craft store. You will need a hanging backboard, neodymium magnets, glass tubes or jars, and DAP RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator. For the backboard, you can use almost any blank sign because the RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator works with wood, metal, plastic, rubber, fabric, stone, tile, ceramics, glass and more. I covered an inexpensive wood sign in grasscloth wallpaper.
  • Take Measurements. Measure the width & height of the backboard and glass jars to determine where each magnet will be placed. For example, if using three tubes, place one in the center of the board. Then, split the difference between the center jar and edge of the frame.
  • Make your mark. Next, mark location of magnets on the board and on the glass jars with a marker. Remember that opposites attract, so pair up two magnets and note which side to glue down.
  • Glue the magnets to the board. RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator doesn’t set instantly, so you can pull apart and reposition before it sets if you don’t get it right on the first try. However, it sets in 30 second when pressure is applied to join substrates.
  • Glue the magnets to the glass jars. Allow to cure 30 minutes before placing magnets together.
  • Cut plants to propagate.
    • House plants, like the Pothos, have nodes where new growth is happening. These will begin to form roots in the water.
    • For succulents, pluck a stem and allow to dry out on a damp paper towel for a few days before water propagation.
    • Soft stem herbs like basil, mint and cilantro are great for beginners learning water propagation.
    • Vegetables like green onions, celery, or leeks can have the roots or head placed into the water.
  • Propagate! Fill the glass jars with water and plant cuttings. Lastly, connect the two magnets together to adhere the glass jars onto the water propagation station.

Same DIY – Different Materials

The RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator bonds virtually everything. Therefore, I wanted to see if it would work with an acrylic sign and plastic tubes. It worked perfectly! (For polyethylene, polypropylene, or PTFE plastics, use the RapidFuse primer prior to using the gel adhesive.)

For this water propagation station, I used an acrylic sign, 3 plastic tubes and ceramic magnets from the craft store. I used the same technique, as above. First, take measurements to determine where to glue. These cork tops acted as temporary markers for the magnets. Next, use the RapidFuse Fast Curing Gel with Gel Control Applicator to glue the magnets onto the acrylic frame. Then, adhere the magnets onto the plastic tubes. Allow to cure 30 minutes. Lastly, fill with water and plant cuttings to watch them grow!

These larger tubes are great for vegetable cuttings like green onions or celery.

Water Propagation Tips

The fun part for me of water propagation has been ‘trial and error.’ I can read all the tips on the internet, but doing it myself has been the best learning experience! For instance, seeing the celery head begin to rot, noticing the murky water and finally, realizing I should change the water often. Some stems may not regenerate and that’s okay.

Here are a few more water propagation tips:

  • Place in bright, indirect sunlight. Avoid really warm window sills.
  • Change the water every 3-5 days. Use filtered or spring water if desired.
  • Be patient! New growth takes time; once formed, roots take off.
  • Observe! From the nodes on the plants before cutting to the water clarity.
  • When transitioning water roots to soil, consider a mix of half soil and half water to acclimate the roots.
  • Transfer to a good, organic potting mix with fertilizer made specifically for that plant: succulent, houseplants, vegetables, etc… in a pot with good drainage.

Want to see how I press herbs in the microwave for inexpensive art? Read this blog post: How to Press Plants, Flowers or Herbs. If you love learning new things, save this to your Pinterest board for water propagation tips and to build your own easy DIY water propagation station.

DIY Basket Wall Art

Do It Yourself

What DIY means is that you can create one of a kind looks for your home without spending a fortune. What DIY means is that you can Do It Yourself!

I am an avid DIYer, from crafting to home decorating and renovating. I create a lot of things from my home. Therefore, I thought it would be fun to start a new series, Buy or DIY??? For today’s post, I’m sharing basket wall art. First, I’ll share my inspiration. Then, I’ll show my DIY version of basket wall art.

3 hyacinth plate chargers with yarn stitching hung on wall

Buy Basket Wall Art?

Here’s my inspiration pic from Pottery Barn. I love these natural woven wall baskets with yarn detailing. But y’all, these are $379 for the set of 3.

3 woven wall baskets with stitching
Image from Pottery Barn

DIY Basket Wall Art?

I saw these hyacinth plate chargers for $3 each from Dollar General. Initially, I passed them by because I have plenty of chargers. However, I loved the woven material, so I stood in the aisle considering what else I could use them for. Then, I remembered the basket wall art that I loved. Upon closer inspection, I noticed that the chargers were made of circular rows. This would allow me to wrap yarn around each section to create unique patterns.

Here’s what you need:

Here’s what you do:

  1. First, double thread the yarn needle with thick yarn. Then, knot the end.
  2. Assign a front and back to the charger. The back will be where the needle is inserted and the ends of the yarn are tied off. The back can get a little messy.
  3. Next, decide on a pattern. Push the needle between the row of the woven material and wrap in yarn. Then, push the needle back through. Ensure the yarn lays flat. Use the rows to act as a guide for the desired design or pattern.*
  4. Tie ends of yarn together to continue wrapping. Then, knot the ends on the backside of the charger.

*The design will determine how many rows are wrapped with yarn. For example, wrap the outer row completely. Or, wrap row one, three times; then wrap two rows, three times; then wrap three rows, three times. Repeat pattern to create a symmetrical design. What DIY means is that you can create any design to fit your style.

If you love this boho inspired look, take a look inside my home office. Or follow me on Instagram @cutertudor to see a video of how I made this basket wall art.

I would love to hear what DIY means to you! Please leave a comment to tell me if you would rather buy or DIY this basket wall art. Or, email me your ideas for decor that I can recreate on a budget at amy@cutertudor.com.

How to Clean a White Couch

How to Clean a White Couch with Slipcovers

I have had a white slipcovered couch for almost three years. It’s my favorite, because it’s versatile to decorate and fairly simple to clean.

However, I admit that it was easier to keep clean before I had to mini dachshunds. While Scooby and Scout know that they are not supposed to lay on the couch, they find exceptions.  For example, they crawl right into my lap or onto a throw blanket. Therefore, they are not technically ‘on the couch.’ But lately, they are napping right on my white couch! So, I find myself cleaning the white couch more often. 

How to clean a white couch:

  1. Vacuum pet hair as needed. In addition, I like to vacuum the hair off prior to washing just to make sure extra dog hair is not swirling around in the washing machine.
  2. Pretreat any stains. For this, I use a spray stain remover like Spray ‘N Wash or Resolve. Spray liberally and allow 5+ minutes to sit.
  3. Remove slipcovers. I find it easier to treat mild stains before removing the slipcovers. However, for heavily soiled stains that need more product saturation, remove prior to treating.
  4. Then, place in washing machine with cleaner.  Specifically, wash the seat and pillow covers separate from the couch slipcover as to not overload the machines. I prefer to use the Tide laundry powder, but pods work, too. Then, add in a scoop of Oxi-Clean OR a cup of bleach into the dispenser. Don’t add bleach directly to fabric. If white couch is a creamy white color, rather than bright white, I don’t recommend bleach because it will affect the shade of white. 
  5. Wash… Use the ‘bright white’ setting and or set to the hottest temperature of water.
  6. Dry on low heat for about 15+ minutes. I don’t recommend fully drying, but remove when slightly damp to prevent shrinking and allow more stretch. If needed, hang or lay flat for 30 minutes. 
  7. Replace slipcovers on couch.  I like to put the slipcovers on before they are completely dry as to prevent wrinkles from forming. In addition, I use my hands to flatten the fabric.

For small stains, especially between cleanings, use a Tide To Go stain removal pen or Folex carpet spot remover spray.  The Folex cleaner can also be used on most upholstered furniture, as well. 

For tough stains, try dish soap, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Always test fabric in a inconspicuous place.

Thank you for stopping by the blog! I hope these tips are helpful if you have or are considering a white couch. Please share this post for anyone looking to learn how to clean a white couch!