s November 2015 - The Kim Six Fix
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Easy Upcycled DIY Cable Knit Sweater Pillow

Is everyone else in the throws of holiday decorating right now?  I know I am!  And even though I have been busy busy busy, today’s tutorial is something I threw together LAST NIGHT in less than 20 minutes!   It was the ‘perfect storm’ that actually brought it together.

I was setting up the tree and decorating my living room and realized I didn’t have a decent Christmas pillow to go on my dark brown club chair.  I had a small square one, but I wanted something bigger and brighter that would stand out against the dark (faux) leather.   
Knit pillow for christmas
And, in what happens to be a fortuitous twist of fate, I also recently pulled an old cable knit sweater out of the dryer only to realize it had a big latte stain on one of the shoulders.    The writing was on the wall.  Turn that sweater into a throw pillow! Of course!
Knit Sweater PillowThe process couldn’t be easier.  You really only need to sew two straight lines.. nothing else.

12 Awesome Star Wars Inspired Furniture Pieces

This is a totally random post because I was surfing around the internet looking at fun Star Wars stuff trying to come up with a gift idea for my husband.  I wanted to build some sort of furniture piece but I didn't know quite what.  We are both big Star Wars fans (here is the proof), and the more awesome furniture pieces I uncovered, the more I thought "Dang! This would be an awesome roundup for the blog! I should try to write one." 

And since there is no try.. only do or do not.. I did it. 

There really isn't much rhyme or reason to this collection. They are just all fantastic pieces of furniture inspired by Star Wars.  (I didn't include anything that was decor or accessories, that would be a whole other post).  They are things I thought were really cool, and some are handmade, some are pre-made furniture that is customized, and some are even currently commercially available.  But they are all AWESOME and clearly the force is strong with them. 

DIY Scrap Wood Crate Christmas Tree Stand

Scrap Wood Box Christmas Tree Stand
For Christmas this year I built a wooden crate to hold one of my Christmas Trees.  You also could use it as a planter (I may add a boxwood or something to it after Christmas is over.)

If you aren't a builder but would rather BUY a wooden crate, scroll to the bottom of the post to see where you can find them commercially! 

Christmas tree on reclaimed wood boxRight now it is in the playroom with of my smaller trees, but for a while I had it set up outside on my front patio.  I actually want to make another one for my other trees!
Christmas trees without tree skirts
I also love the weathered driftwood finish.  This is the first time I attempted that and I know I will be using it more often, I love how it came out. Rustic x box christmas tree stand
So how did I build it and stay within the rules of the challenge (no new materials.. only use scraps you already have lying around)?
Well, needless to say, I had a ton of pieces of scrap lumber, since I never throw anything away. .
Random scraps of woodFor me the biggest problem is that they were all random sizes, widths, and even THICKNESSES.  I had 2x4s, 1x3s, 1x5s, old pieces of pallets, some fencing, 2x2s, trim boards and a ton of cull lumber that was in bad shape or warped.
After standing back and studying my stash I realized I had the most length in the left over pieces of tongue and groove boards I used to make my West Elm Inspired Mirror.  I used the “groove” side and cut off more than half the board with the tongue (the large pieces in the photo below).

I wanted to reuse those boards but I had to cut the tongue off and make them all a standard width.
Ripping down tongues off boards
Kreg RipCut instead of table sawOnce again I used my Kreg Rip-Cut.  and it worked great.   I was left with “nearly 2x4” boards.  (they were more like 2x3.5)    Because these boards are cut down by hand,  I’m not including measurements for this post.. since none of this is standard lumber. 
Scrap lumber cut down to build box
I didn’t have enough of my ‘2x4s’ to build the whole box, so I had to improvise with some 2x2s on one side.  Scrap lumber box
Next I had to make the inset boards for the flat areas of the box.  I didn’t have enough plywood but I did have LOTS of random boards in various widths.   Enter the pocket hole Jig (in this case the Kreg K4)
Kreg jig for pocket holes
I laid the boards flat on the ground and attached them side by side with pocket holes.  The key was keeping one side FLAT adjacent the floor.. Since the boards were all slightly different thickness the backside of the boards are not level, but that doesn’t matter since it is the inside of the box.  Once I had bunch of boards put together, I snapped a line for the correct total width and ripped it down with the Rip CutConnecting 1x4 boards with pocket holes
Next I had to insert the panels into the frames.  I used blocks to make sure the overhang of the frame was exactly the same for all the boards.  Since some of the boards were warped and different thicknesses, once again, it only mattered what they looked like from the outside.. Using blocks to level boards
So you can see the inside is kinda a mess of random boards. Ah yes.. the beauty of working with junky scrap lumber. Using pocket holes to build boxI assembled the final box and then it was time to trim it out.  (The box has no bottom or no top.. I may convert it to a planter later so I didn’t think it needed a bottom)Building a wooden crate as a christmas tree stand alternative
Since (per the challenge) I couldn’t buy trim for the outside, I used some old shims I had leftover from my valentine’s day heart I made last year.  They weren’t long enough to go end to end so I had to butt them up end to end and then cut the corners off with a box cutter.  Because they are shims they are tapered, so I always had the thick end in the center of the X and cut off the thinner end.  Cutting shims for cross bracing
I used glue and finishing staples to hold them on. Using shims to create x shape on box
And here is the finished box.  I didn’t want it to be raw wood so I used a sample of “Driftwood Weathering Finish” I received at a blog conference.   Wooden crate with cross braces
That stuff is really cool.   You just add the powder to water and then paint it on your piece.  It gives a different result depending on the wood type (you can see the one dark redwood boards on the left side of the box in this photo) I loved how it looked old and sunbleached.  Like this was really an old crate.
Rustic x box christmas tree stand
So.. how did I get the tree to stand up in the box?  Well.. I couldn’t use the stand that came with the tree.. I had to create a smaller one.  For that I used a small trick or treat bucket and a length of PVC pipe I had leftover from the DIY Soccer Goal.  I first taped the bottom of the pipe so no concrete would get inside.
Embedding PVC in bucketThen I mixed up some mortar mix and inserted the pipe into the center.
Mixing concreteLet it dry a few hours and cut the pipe down with a pipe cutter or hacksaw.
PVC pipe in concrete post stand
I put it in the center of the box (I had to prop it on top of a paint can to be high enough)
Concrete tree stand inside box
And I added my tree.
Vintage crate tree stand
You guys.. I just love this so much!  I may use it on my real full size tree next year.  (this is my space saving smaller tree that goes in the kids’ playroom) because it came out so much better than I thought it would.  I’m so glad Sandra challenged us to this! Burlap and berry rustic tree



Commercially Available Christmas Tree Boxes:

ETSY: Click on any image to go to the listing






Balsam Hill:



A cottage in the city: 








Now it is time to share your projects, or see the other bloggers who stepped up the sCrap wood challenge.

Here are the details for the sCrap Wood Challenge: Anyone who want to participate is welcome to join. If you blog, you can link up below.

 If you don’t blog, share your project on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and use #scrapwoodchallenge and tag @SawdustGirl so she can see what you made and maybe feature you!

Rules: No new lumber can be purchased, it must come from your scrap wood pile or some free wood you found on the side of the road.
You may use new fasteners, glue, paint, stain or whatever finish you want.
This is a building challenge, so no refinishing projects. Sorry.

This is a “Just for Fun” challenge to use up some of those scraps.  There is no judging and no prize other than your own satisfaction for a job well done! (And hopefully a smaller scrap pile.)

The link up will close next Monday (Nov 29th) so you don't have much time..

Thanksgiving to Christmas Pinecone Wreath Sign

You guys! My heart is exploding with excitement over my newest contributor. Steph from The Silly Pearl is so fabulous and when she agreed to write the occassional post for my blog I was so thrilled.  She is AH-MAZ-ING!   She paints, sews, crafts, cooks, creates printables, hosts a party...  I will admit to being jealous of her craft room!

She does it all!  And I know you are going to love her as much as I do.  Okay.. enough gushing.. let me present her project for you guys!  


Hello everyone! My name is Steph and I blog at The Silly Pearl. I'm thrilled to be here on The Kim Six Fix today and every other month to share a craft with you! Thank you Kim for having me on the blog! Today I'm sharing how to make this Thanksgiving to Christmas Pine Cone Wreath Sign. The pine cones and felt leaves are neutral enough to transition from one season to another, and all you have to do is swap out the sign in the middle! Here's how I made it.

Pomegrante Juice Bottle Snowman

Pom Bottle Snowman Craft
Today’s post came about when I was rinsing out a POM juice container I had left over from my Pomegranate Martini Mocktail post.

The bottle the juice came in was just so fun that I didn’t want to throw it away.  (Based on all my KCup, frappucino bottle and other repurposing projects, you can probably tell I have a hard time parting with would-be recycling.)
Empty pom bottle for craft
The bottle sat on my counter a few days until it struck me: The shape of the container reminded me of a short squat snowman. So just for kicks I wondered what it would look like if I spray painted it white.  And this was the result:

Gift Ideas that Kids Can Make Themselves

Gift Ideas That Kids Are Able Make Themselves. Since every child likes to give presents to friends and family, especially if they have made them with their own hands.
As the holidays approach my kids have started to create a long list of school friends and family members that they want to give presents to.  But my kids don’t have any money to spend on gifts from the store, and in actuality people like daddy and grandma and grandpa, they don’t really want or need anything my kids would purchase.  So this year we have been encouraging the kids to ‘create’ their own gifts.  Just because something is homemade by 6 and 9 year olds, doesn't mean they aren’t great gifts.

If you are looking for ideas on things kids can create I’ve rounded up a few ideas.

Easy Quilted Table Runner

I am so happy to introduce my newest contributor to The Kim Six Fix.  Pam is a fantastic fiber artist whose work I just love.   It is an honor to have her sharing her tutorials with my readers and I know you will learn a ton.  And make sure you are following her on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and of course on her blog.   WELCOME PAM! 

Hi everyone! I'm Pam from Leaves & Stitches and I'm excited to be sharing my first tutorial with all of you.

Quilted Table Runner Tutorial

I'm going to show you how to make a simple quilted table runner. This is a great beginner quilt project - it's just basic patchwork and a straight binding, and I'll share a few of my favorite tricks as we go along. If you already have some experience quilting, you can easily finish this in an afternoon.

Ready? Let's get started!

Milk Bottle Flower Box Centerpiece

So, you all know I have a small coffee addiction.  And that isn’t limited to regular brewed coffee. I also love bottled Frappucinos.  This means I have a LOT of the cute little bottles laying around.  I’ve repurposed them before.. a few times actually, but since I have a constant supply, I am always looking for new uses!  (God forbid I recycle them or anything!)
Frappucino bottles turned milk bottles
I wanted to make a cute little box centerpiece to house them (you may have seen various versions floating around on other blogs), but I wanted to use wood I had in my scrap pile already.  Lucky for me I had a long 1x4 prefinished board left over from when I installed crown molding on my bathroom cabinets (this board was part of the backer board for the crown)

The bad part was that it as only finished on 3 sides, so I knew I couldn’t just use butt joints like most other tutorials or else the cut edges would show.  So I had to get snazzy and miter the corners.

Pomegranate Holiday Sparklers


Serving pretty cocktails at your holiday parties is always a fun way to personalize and customize the experience.  You can serve them with appetizers before dinner, or right along side the main meal, cocktails (and their alcohol free counterparts “mocktails”) don’t have to be hard to create or require a ton of ingredients.  

Very similar to the cranberry-based Cosmopolitan, a pomegranate martini (or Pomtini) is a tart and sweet drink with a touch of acidity.   It only typically contains 3 ingredients:  Vodka, Pomegranate Juice and Orange Liqueur.
Fresh pomegranate arils
Because the holidays are already loaded with excessive calories, I’ve modified this recipe from from the traditional alcoholic version, by removing the alcohol and replacing it with 7UP.   Not only can 7UP replace the Vodka, but it also brings the citrus flavors of the orange liqueur. That means this mocktail only includes 2 ingredients:

Loaded Baked Potato and Chicken Casserole

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Foster Farms.  The recipe, thoughts and opinions are mine.  For my full policy on sponsored content, see this post. Loaded chicken and baked potato casserole Tracking Pixel
I am pretty sure I have the pickiest husband ever.  For example, my husband doesn’t like mashed potatoes AT ALL.  He doesn’t like the creamy texture, but he loves the toppings. (Seriously? Who doesn’t like mashed potatoes?)  He would rather have loaded baked potatoes, but I’m not a fan of baked potatoes since it is a hassle to prep them all individually for the kids and they end up throwing half the potato away since they don’t want to eat the skin… (am I the only one with this problem?)

So today’s recipe is the best of the both worlds: a cross between loaded potato skins or a baked potato and cheesy breakfast potatoes. And with the addition of chicken I turned what would typically be a side dish or appetizer, into a complete meal. 
Ingredients for baked potato casserole
As always, I’m partnering with Foster Farms since they are my favorite brand of chicken.  In this case I actually used Foster Farms Sauté Ready Chicken, which is 100% natural.  It is one of their newest products, and features frozen raw chicken that is already seasoned and pre-cut.  Yes, I used frozen, pre-seasoned chicken intended for a sauté in a baked chicken casserole. And it works perfectly. That is how easy and versatile this recipe is! I baked the chicken, but when sautéed it cooks in about 10 minutes.
Loaded baked potato casserole
Ingredients:
1/2 Bag Foster Farms Sauté Ready Garlic Herb Marinated Chicken (14 oz)**
5 Medium Potatoes (I used Idaho) cubed
3 Tbsp Olive Oil

Spice Mix:
1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1/2 Tbsp Paprika
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1/2 tsp pepper

1 Cup shredded cheddar
1/2 Cup cooked crumbled bacon (i used bacon bits)
3 Green Onions sliced
Sour Cream (optional)

**You could also use fresh chicken cut into one inch pieces, but it would be less flavorful – and way more time consuming!  And right now you can save $1 off any one package of Foster Farms Sauté Ready or save $2 when you share the coupon with a friend (through Facebook, Twitter or Email.)
Seasonings for chicken and potatos
Preheat oven to 400ºCutting potatos for recipe
Cube potatoes and add them to a 8x10 baking dish which has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.  Drizzle them with the olive oil and toss to coat.  Then sprinkle with spice mixture.
Seasoning potoatos before baking
Toss to evenly coat and then add 1/2 the bag of Foster Farms Sauté Ready chicken (There are 7 servings in a bag so this is enough chicken for our family.  If you want to increase the number of servings, you could use the whole bag. Since the chicken comes in a re-sealable bag, it is easy to pour out what you need and save the rest for later.)
Adding frozen chicken to potato casserole
Bake for 50-55 minutes or until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165º.Oven roasted potatoes and chicken
Remove it from the oven and sprinkle evenly with cheese, bacon and green onions.
Loaded baked potato toppings
Return pan to oven for 5 more minutes or until cheese is melted. Baked potato casserole
Wait 5 minutes before serving.
Cheesy potato and bacon casserole
You could serve it plain.. Loaded potatoes with chicken and bacon
…but I wanted to make it a truly loaded baked potato, so I added sour cream:Cheese bacon chicken potatos
Sprinkle with a few green onions as garnish and it is perfection! Loaded potato skin casserole


This was as sponsored post by me for Foster Farms (because I really do love it!).  For my full policy on sponsored content see this post.

Here are some other Foster Farms Chicken Recipes You May Like: 

Grilled lemon chicken and asparagus skewers




 
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