Friday, August 31, 2012

DIY Maison Martin Margiela's inspired halter top

MMM's FW 2012/13 runway show was truly spectacular

Starting from the bejeweled face-masks 
to the pull knobs on the clothes: 
yes, pull knobs.

The hardware store made it, once again, to the runway.

left pic: - collage by moi

I have these two glass drawer pulls that I purchased at Anthropologie awhile ago, and I figured I could make something fun, very MMM inspired, to wear over this long week-end.

With a scarf, two pull knobs, some packing tape and {optional} a safety pin: 

the MMM-inspired halter top... why not? 

(No knobs were hurt in this DIY... they can still pull out drawers)

* Align the two knobs together by the screws, 
* Use the width of the packing tape as your guide
* roll the packing tape over and over until you have a nice, smooth surface

 I used a turquoise linen scarf, which is a bit thick, so I did a simple knot. If you're planning to do this with a thinner fabric, you can play around tying the two ends in different, more chunky ways.
... for obvious reasons I'm doing the step-by-step demonstration with a tank top underneath!

1* scarf around your neck - just in the middle
2* bring the two sides of the scarf in the front center, keep the knobs on top of the scarf
3* roll over the knobs the ends of the scarf, passing through the loop around your neck
4* tie it so that the knobs will be balanced and horizontal
5* keep the two parts of the scarf apart, wrapping around your breasts
6* tie on the back
7* if you want to make sure that the scarf will stay in place, use a safety pin
8* halter top in 3 minutes!

Hope you like it!
Happy Labor Day eeek-end!

xox, d.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

DIY three keychains (his, hers and the spares)

new home, new keychains.

When we got our new home, I made a "his" and "hers" keychain.

...And later, because of several guests coming and going, I made a couple of spares.

Because it's a summer house, I made something colorful and easy to find in beach-bags.

Here they are all "hanging-out" on the dog's tail hooks:

HERS keychain

12" of nylon cord, a split ring and a superball...
* drill a hole in the superball (need to be a wide hole, because the nylon cord needs to pass twice inside the ball) detailed tutorial on the superballs necklace;
* tie a knot on the bottom of the superball, and use a match to burn the ends
* tie another knot at the top, insert a split ring

HIS keychain

It's a monkey's fist knot, and you can choose to make it with one colors or using two different colors nylon cords: you pick!
Mine is one color, used about 3 feet of nylon cord, and put a marble in the center.

the spares: two-ways minimal keychain

Inspired by the "ghost keyring" featured few days ago, I made two different versions.
Mine are definitely less stylish, and more "red neck", but for the spare keys are just fine!
Very light weight, big enough to find in a tote bag, and best of all... free!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Do-Inspire-Yourself #9

last SunDIY of August... 

The weather is still gorgeous, so all I'm going to do is kick back, relax and enjoy the outdoor 
(and only plan for things to do when the weather will keep me inside!).
For now: these are my selections!

when art meets fashion.

You haven't seen on my blog any collars, although I know they are being all the rage for quite some time. Reason is... I'm not really that into it.
I should say: I wasn't ...Until now.
Painted collars just like a watercolor. 
Need: white collar, fabric paint, steady hand: designer and fashion illustrator Bianca Raffaela di Pascale has them all.  This is my favorite, but there are 5 more.
These collars aren't for sale, but one of her fashion illustration on a shopping bag is.

DIY chairs (but there is much more).

Designer and architect, Wholman has an amazing parade of "trash to treasure" DIY projects.
the step-by-step instructions and pictures are very well detailed, and he said that this tennis ball chair is really comfortable, too. 
Besides, Looks fantastic.
He has his own blog {and love the name he came out with}: Object Guerilla, check it out!

unique key rings.

Two completely different designs and concepts, but like them both so much: both perfect for a house warming gift. (and totally DIY-able!)

Felt, two grommets, and two split rings: simple and genius.
Green boy  is an award winning design by Vladimir Kibardin @ kibardindesign.

Wire-wrapped minimal chic: a keyring with a shape of a key: Ghost by Chihawoo Design. I'm coveting this!!

indecision, indecision...

Liz couldn't decide which color paint her white-white wall.
She figured out the most inexpensive way {although not the fastest, I might say!} to make it into something unique, colorful, and free! {and I'm pretty sure now the Home Depot nearby have her picture as "Wanted" on their wall!}. 

Enjoy your last day of August, and enjoy my favorites for this week! 

xox, d.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

DIY wannabe rug: it's a trivet

I need a small rug: I love ropes and celtic knots

I thought I found the perfect way to put the two together 
when True Blue Me and You posted this {pretty} necklace which uses this REALLY easy to follow  

here is my wannabe rug:

Why wannabe? 

Check it out! 
A bit too small to be a rug, but it's the perfect trivet for my morning coffee fix!

I just followed the instructions on my screen.

Most of the time these knot-websites show you everything... but they forget to tell you
which thickness your rope has to be, and how many feet you need.
Result: I ended up with a trivet rather than a mat.

The rope used in the tutorial is thicker than the rope I used, (mine is a cotton covered clothing line) but I thought by keep wrapping around the rope more than the 4 times showed in the tutorial, it would be just fine. ...It wasn't.
I wrapped the knot 7 times... it's still a trivet!

Don't get me wrong, I like my trivet!
...But I still need a rug for the back door! :)

To make this trivet I used 50 ft of clothing line, the cotton covered polyester kind. ...100 ft for 4.99$.

This is the way I ended the two tails: 
* once the two ends are meeting at the bottom, leave about 1/2" extra and cut
* cut the inner core of the rope for about 1" (so the rope wouldn't be as thick and hard where needs to be overlapped)
* overlap the two ends and add a drop of glue or stitch in place (I used a drop of E6000)

Lesson learned! off to buy a big chunky rope to make my rug!

xox, d.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Do-Inspire-Yourself #8

It's time for some inspiration for next week!

This week is about some cool round-ups. ... Ready?

lots of things to make with old vinyl records.

Bowls, book-ends, bags, light fixture, wall clock and more. And don't forget to use the covers as well. 
Oh my. I have to get some more dremel tips and get busy. Love vinyl records, and some of my old ones are so scratched there's nothing to do anymore.
Check diy gadgets for some good ideas, and curbly for some more.

...and last but not least: what about this side table? (first seen on truebluemeandyou )

reuse these old faucets into hook hangers.

These will look good either indoor and outdoor. And they would look good even if mis-matched.
They would just look good.
And you can find them cheap at garage sales and thrift stores.
5 very good ideas on shelterness.

.... and what about this nightlight? Love this one. Too bad I'm awful when it comes to electricity.

DIY your own Tiffany-inspired lamp.

This concept is so good. 
Designer  Bernardita Marambio B. came up with the Lamp T1895, a kit to build your Tiffany-inspired lamp,  with a "color by number" shade that will match your color palette. 

...something I need to figure out: recycling bins.

Something I need to work on: my recycle bins at the moment are cardboard boxes - not that pretty.
I love these recycle bins. I wonder if I could re-create the look with glue and spray paint.
Or maybe I need to shape the forms with papier maché, to avoid have too much weight on the top.

Brainstorming: ideas, anyone?

I hope you will enjoy this week's selection!
Have a great SunDIY!!

xox, d.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

DIY knotted knobs

I'm not going to buy new knobs for all the closets and cabinets!

my plan consists in lots of DIY (not surprising!)

When we got this house, we both saw "a lot of potential"... You know what that means: house has good bones, but will be a lot of work!

One of the {small} thing that was really bothering me were these knobs on each closet and cabinet.

It's a beach house, so I was trying to make something nautical, and I was starting by trying to wrap the knobs into a monkey fist knot.
...something like these: here's a great  DIY monkey fist knobs.

That didn't end up so well, because my knobs are flat and the knot wasn't covering the surface of the knobs. 

Then I found this tutorial
It's meant to be for making buttons: 
this is my adaptation for knobs!

Because of the shape of the knobs, I had to help the grip by pouring few drops of E6000 glue on the stem of the knob and onto the sides. That is the only "cheat sheet" to the original tutorial: at the end I just wrapped the twine around the stem of the knob, and use one drop of glue to seal the end of the twine.

After the first one, it took me about 5 minutes for each knob. 
Not bad, considering that I'm using cotton twine 
that I already had, so they turned out {FREE}. 
And much, much prettier.
...4 done, 16 to go!!

xox, d.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Do-Inspire-Yourself #7

here something to transform a lazy-Sunday into a SunDIY:

(although I only have two links this week:
blaming a hamster-powered-internet connection 
and surely the fact that I'm in lazy-mode myself)

go away, I'm reading. Say it loud and clear... and pretty.

You're reading a book, and you're into it.
Don't want anyone to disturb you, you don't even want to give the "death-stare"?
These dust jackets are what you need! ... Ready to download in PDF form.
This one is from Erin Bowman's site, where you'll find links to two more options.
go away I'm reading dust jackets @Erin Bowman

I'm still looking for ideas for light fixtures.

I stumbled upon this UK based store, Folklore, which has so many good finds.
Of course my favorite page is the lighting one, where between papier maché, crochet, and a mason jar tripod lamps I was completely taken.
But then I fell totally in love with the recycled cardboard pendant
I'm seriously digging this one. 

Box Pendant @ Folklore

Enjoy your August-lazy-SunDIY!
xox, d.

Friday, August 10, 2012

When my dog got pythiosis

in memory of my dog, Greta

In hope to create awareness:
a real story, and a bit of a runt.

I can't stop thinking that:
IF the vets were more aware, 
IF she would have been diagnosed on time, 
IF she would have been treated for the right disease, 
IF, IF, IF... she would probably be still here.

I will start somewhere closer to the end:

what's pythiosis?

I'm not a scientist, nor a doctor: therefore I never heard about PYTHIOSIS (until few years ago).

Pythiosis is something that most vets don't know anything about.
The ones that heard about it often aren't taking it 
into consideration because "it's a rare disease".
Well, it's not that rare anymore.
And can be fatal not only to animals, but to humans as well.

Pythiosis results from the infection with the fungal-like organism Pythium insidiosumand occurs in Equines, Canines, Felines, Bovines, Humans and other species.   This disease is also known as Phycomycosis, “Florida Horse Leeches”, Swamp Cancer and other colloquial names.  The disease is worldwide in distribution and is especially prevalent in tropical regions. Recently, numerous cases have been reported in theMidwest and Northeast United States and as far north as Wisconsin and Washington State.

Symptoms include loss of appetite, vomit, diarrhea.

To have an early diagnosis there is a rather inexpensive test (ELISA) (it was about 40$ at the time).

This is a brief introduction from
If you want to know more, 
for accurate information, 
statistics, technical papers, go to: 

11/18/2006: the first day

One day, we decided that we could finally have a dog.
We adopted her from the city's shelter and named her Greta.
She was really skinny, about 1 year old, and incredibly sweet.

The day after at the vet clinic, they told us that she had to gain weight, but she was in good shape.
Small, but frequent portions would have done the trick.

two days later, she started to be sick

Frequent vomiting and diarrhea. 
These symptoms can be normal for a dog that has just change life style and diet.
But she would refuse any food, water, anything.
Another stop at the vet clinic and (a different vet) found a lump in her belly.
Although she was really skinny she advised to give her surgery to find out what that lump was about.
She had major surgery, while they removed a portion of her intestines. 
I've got a call few days later from the surgeon that said: "The good news is: it's not cancer. The bad news is: it could be anything else, and we don't know what it is"
They couldn't figure out what this lump was about, and started giving her antibiotics.

In the six months I had Greta, she has been misdiagnosed and treated with different kind of antibiotics for a number of diseases, including:
- gastroenteritis 
- colitis 
- Crohn sindrom
- pancreatitis 
For a total of 4 vets, expensive meds, ultrasounds, x-rays, biopsies and follow appointments and check-ups about every 10 days.

The diarrhea was still there, very frequent and bloody, and the vomiting too.
(and I spent most of these nights on the couch because she had to go out every 20-30 minutes or so)  

PavLab & Bob Glass

One day one of the vets at the clinic told me that she ran out of options, and the last thing was to take her to a veterinarian oncologist , because at this point (she said) maybe it could be cancer, after all.
The oncologist (which I didn't like as a human being, but was indeed way more capable than all of  the other vets) told me just by reading all what she's been through, that she most likely had gastro-intestinal pythiosis.
And he told me to leave her there to be euthanized because there was nothing to do.
Which of course, I didn't do.

Instead, I took Greta home (driving slowly while crying all my tears) and sat down at my computer.

I found  Dr. Mendoza's email address at Michigan State University, and he responded few hours later giving me the contact to Bob Glass at PavLab in Texas which is a Lab completely dedicated and focused on research about pythiosis.
Dr. Bob Glass is caring, dedicated and incredibly available.
The dream is to find a cure or even better, a vaccine for this awful disease.
Bob Glass & Rever, a pythiosis surviver that was given only few months of life

She got tested: and the result was positive.
He sent a serum to my vet to start Greta on an immunotherapeutic treatment  consisting on three shots over three weeks. 

Greta completed the first round of three shots, and was doing better. 

This treatment has been given high rate results treating horses, 
while for dogs is still and undergoing battle with a 35% success rate 
(mostly due to the lack of awareness by veterinarians
with lots of misdiagnosed cases  
which lead to a chronic stage)

5/13/2007: the last day

A couple of weeks later, one night, she started to get worse. She could barely breathe, she was clearly in pain, and she had to go out with bloody vomit every few minutes.
I left a voice mail on Bob Glass' phone and he called me back around 6 am: after explaining him all the symptoms, he figured that all of her organs were shutting down. 
I could only try to let her not be in too much pain.
An hour later she was on my lap, with a needle in her leg and I was saying good-bye forever.
She was about 1 year and 1/2 old. Too young to die.

Check these links:

PavLab technical papers: all you need to know about phytiosis (and wish you'll never need to face). 
Facebook Group where dog, cat and horse owners are sharing informations and tips (and hope). dedicated to Rusti, another black beautiful dog that lost his battle to pythiosis. 

Below you can download or print a flyer that Janie wrote, 
which summarize early symptoms and how to proceed.
She is one of the most active people on the Facebook group: she lost three of her dogs to pythiosis.
Please print or forward this flyer to your vets, dog parks, agility classes... anywhere where a word of mouth would be helpful to create more awareness: that's the only thing that will help save the life of more beloved dogs.

Pythiosis Insidiosum - FLYER

xox, d.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

DIY wrapped bracelet

another bracelet: silk, stars, beads and it's a wrap

wrap bracelets are a big number this summer

...And they are so DIY-able!
This is the one I just finished: with lots of turquoise and blue, two charms and few beads.

Designers with all kind of price-tags 
have a wrap bracelet this year: 
these are my favorites from polyvore

left picture: polyvore - right picture DIY by moi 


Look in your ribbon box-drawer-stash: 
I'm sure you have what you need! 
Mix texture and colors, cut about 20 strands in 11" length 
one lobster clasp + one ring

from my instagram: @iamdonatella

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Do-Inspire-Yourself #6

I hope you'll love this week's inspirations as much as I do

a fingerprint is unique: but these are even more so.

Artist Cheryl Sorg creates collages that are so eye-catching you can't stop looking at. 
Her love for art and books meet half way while she cut and paste snippets of books, poetry, maps, anything that you can think of with words. 
Read the interview on the Etsy blog, to know about the technique that goes behind these collages. 

custom thumbprint portrait

the paper shelf.

I like to mix vintage with modern, and this is no exception. 
A father and daughter collaboration, called Communication Through Time, where a vintage typewriter and some MDF shelves that resemble a stack of random paper. 
A sketch of the MDF measurements and some more instructions on how the shelf and the typewriter are hang on the wall are in the comments below the post on Design-Milk.

the paper shelf @ Design Milk

giant cross-stitch.

It's no secret that I like traditional form of stitching, knitting, crocheting when they are taken to the next step: the giant form.
This is no exception: designer Charlotte Lancelot figured out, using extra thick, perforated felt and wool felt ribbon, to mix traditional and modern.
These rugs are hand cross stitched.
Some of her designs are produced by Gan-Rugs.
I'm jaw-dropped at every one of these pieces.

Charlotte Lancelot - embroidery

himmeli mobiles. 

I stumbled upon these two mobiles and now I'm looking at my ceilings in hope that I can find a place to hang a mobile. 
Tutorial found on Hope Helms blog, and the red version on the The Red Jet
Can you guess what they are made from? 
Un-expensive, modern, clean lines. On my very-soon-to-do-list!

Wish you a great SunDIY!

xox, d.
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