You are browsing the archive for February 2012 - Crafted Niche - a lifestye blog that shares DIY crafts, recipes and tutorials.

Super Simple Dog Feeder

February 20, 2012 in Building and Repurposing, Do it your Dog-Gone Self, Gettin' Crafty, Pups, Uncategorized

If you follow this blog, then you’ve probably seen a couple Roxy-focused projects (Bed 1 and Bed 2)…. I love that sweet ol’ gal. She’s 15 this year. Still going strong, but starting to show her age. (Admitting our pets are getting older is never easy. Frown town.)  She’s always been a little pistol, so it’s tough to see her slowing down. I try to do things to make life easier for her when I can.

(Sidenote – No…. I wouldn’t call getting a Boxer puppy 3 years ago making Roxy’s life easier…. but getting a lab puppy a year ago DID! Quinn became the perfect play partner for Emma and finally Roxy was able to nap in peace.)

Last weekend I was aimlessly wandering Michaels completely overwhelmed by sensory overload. It’s a good thing I don’t buy the supplies for every project I think of while I’m in that store… I swear sometimes I walk around just looking at things, playing a “What could I make with that?” game in my head!  Anywho… I found my way back to the wood/woodworking section and stumbled on a GREAT deal!  Ready-to-paint wooden stools on clearance for $2. Yup…. TWO. DOLLARS. Hmmmmmm I don’t have kids… and I’m already tall…. so what could I use a little wooden stool for?  How about a RAISED DOG FEEDER!  Roxy would love that!  (Yes, I was very excited at this point in Michaels!)  …and just in case you thought that deal was too good to be true, I snapped a picture of the price tag on the shelf:

Do you see that?  They had 2.  Yup…. totally bought both. I couldn’t help it. It’s the craft hoarder in me. It’s a sickness I’m not ready to address. Baby steps, people, baby steps.

So after I squealed ridiculously maturely composed myself, I checked out and scooted on over to Walmart to pick up a dog bowl. I thought these stainless steel bowls had the perfect (forgivingly-wide) rim and at $2.50, I couldn’t go wrong! Dollar store might have had something too, but Walmart was my first thought.

Gettin’ Handy -

  • I found a food container lid that seemed the right size for the hole and traced a circle on the top of the shelf.
  • Using a spade bit, I drilled a “starter hole” in the top of my bench. Don’t quote me on these terms guys… I have no idea what I’m talking about!
  • No photos of this part… my hands were busy! I used a jigsaw to cut a circle in the top of the stool. Go ahead and laugh… I’m not exactly proud of the ummmm exactness of the shape. It was my first time using a jigsaw though… learn as you go!

Like I said…. it wasn’t pretty!  …but that’s where the wide rim on the dog bowl comes in handy. Wiggle room!

I gave it a quick sand with my random orbital sander and then slapped on a coat of grey egg-shell paint. I already had the paint on hand… it’s the same color I used on her dog bed.

I let it dry overnight and by the next morning, Roxy was happily munching out of her bowl.

Fast forward a week…

Plain grey dog feeder with a stainless steel bowl.  Functional? Yes. Fun? Not so much.

On Saturday I made another trip to Michaels in search of inspiration. My first thought was to stencil the top. All of the stencils I liked were $8, and that was WITH a 50% off coupon. I couldn’t justify spending more on the stencil than I did on everything else. Hmmm what else?  Ding ding!  Scrapbook paper! Couldn’t I just mod-podge some scrapbook paper on the top and then add several layers of mod-podge to help seal it?  I don’t use it for a water dish… dry dog food only… so there wouldn’t be any moisture. Oh this just might work.

I picked out a scrapbook paper I liked. It was a splurge. $1.  Yep… I spent an entire dollar on a single piece of paper. Seemed crazy when the stool was only $2, but I’ll let it slide. It was the perfect shade of grey and added some fun pops of color.

  • I flipped the stool upside down and traced the outer edge and inner circle onto the paper.
  • Cutting carefully, I trimmed the excess paper and then plopped it on top to check my fit. Good enough!
  • Following the instructions on the bottle, I mod-podged the heck outta that paper. Layer, upon layer, upon layer.

Forgive the night time pictures please.

By Sunday morning, the feeder was ready for it’s big debut!  This paper doesn’t match anything else in my kitchen, but that’s ok. It’s not for me… it’s for Roxy! I like the bold colors and the fun print. Oh wait… I mean Roxy likes it. :-)

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She likes it! She really likes it!


What is it about simple projects for my pups that make me smile so big? Seeing her eat her breakfast and dinner out of that dish every day will make me a happy girl… and hopefully make her a happy girl too. It’s the little things, right?



Be sure to stop by and visit all of the great Link Parties that I like to frequent.


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…and here’s a Pinterest-friendly pic for anyone that wants to mark this project to make later:


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I Mustache You a Question…

February 19, 2012 in Gettin' Crafty, Kitchen

Don’t you LOVE a good MUGSTACHE?!

I know THIS girl does! I giggled uncontrollably while I made this fun and easy project. To all of my family… don’t be surprised if you get mugstaches in your stockings this Christmas. I’d love nothing more than to come downstairs next Christmas morning to a room full of mugstaches smiling back at me. I’m laughing just thinking about it!

I’ve seen this project everywhere… I can’t take credit for the idea. It’s not a Dana Original by any stretch of the imagination. I just didn’t want to pony up to buy one when I could make several for the same cost. I picked up a taller, skinny mug at the dollar store and another shorter, wider mug for $.50 at a thrift shop. I’m sure you could scope out yard sales and other thrift shops and pick up some mugs for even less!

So here’s the scoop…

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What you’ll need:

  1. Mug – any color… any size…
  2. Porcelain paint pen. I picked mine up at Michaels.
  3. Optional – chalk markers. You could also probably use dry erase markers or something like that too…

Up close look at the porcelain paint pen (for shopping purposes, of course!):

I didn’t use a pattern or stencil, but you definitely could!  I just googled mustache clipart and found a couple good shapes to try to recreate.  I used the chalk marker to draw on my rough sketch. This made the process a LOT less scary for me. If I messed up, I could just wipe off and try again… and again… and again…

Once I was happy with the outline, I just grabbed my porcelain marker and went to town! You’ll see some of the “brush strokes” when it’s all dry, so be sure you’re happy with the way you’re coloring it in. What you see now, is what you’ll see later.

See the blue lines from the chalk marker?  No worries… they wiped right off!  As I was making them, I kept running back and forth to the mirror, holding the mugs to my mouth and laughing. How many mugs can you say that about, right?! Here are a couple of the pics I snapped on my cell and sent to my sisters that night. Please forgive the grainy night-time iPhone quality… of course I tried adding an effect to them to make them look cooler. Hah!

Following the instructions on the marker, I let the mugs dry for 24 hours and then popped them in the oven to seal the deal. Now they’re DISHWASHER safe!  Woop!

I can’t tell you how much I love these things. Yes, they’re totally silly… but they DEFINITELY make me laugh.

….and for any of you that have seen these mugs and wanted to make your own, but were unsure… I whole-heartedly encourage you to dive in and DO IT!  What do you have to lose?  A .50cent mug? :-)

….and one more look at my new mug sporting my morning coffee. Squeeeeal!

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I’d love for you to pop in and check out some of the awesome link parties where I like to hang out:

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Cheery Silhouette (re)Prints for the Office

February 5, 2012 in Do it your Dog-Gone Self, Gettin' Crafty, Pups

I’ve been a bad blogger. A bad, bad blogger. I started a new job last Monday and I’m oh-so-excited about it, but it made for a tough week. Trying to get into a new routine, dogs at home all day and officially a commuter once again. BUT – I promise to do better! I just needed last week to get things in order. PLUS – once I get settled in my new position I’ll be able to take the pups with me to the office. Amazing right?!  What are the odds that a girl can find not one, but TWO jobs that let her share her workplace with her favorite little munchkins.

So my office…. It needs a little kick. A little personality. A little Dana. :-)   I don’t want to go walking int here with armloads of DIY, so I thought I’d play it safe and start little. I have a small shelf in the office above a cabinet that would look cute with a couple little things. Hmmm but what things?  Well… you’ve probably figured out by now that I’m OB-SESSED with my dogs. BONUS – everyone at my new office is as dog crazy as me. Being short on time this week, I needed quick and easy so I decided to re-use some of my previous elbow grease. Take a look at this!

Do those faces look familiar?  Hmmmmmmmmm…… How about now?



Man… what a difference daylight makes in pictures!  Check out the difference between the first and second pics above. Night time…. Daytime…. Literally night and day. :-)

So all I did was resize my silhouettes and print them directly on scrapbook paper as 4×6″ prints. Simple as that! I chose green because that’s the main office color. We even have bright green conference room chairs. Fun right?!

Missed the silhouettes tutorial the first time around?  No worries!  Here’s the photo editing portion and here’s the printing/assembly!  Enjoy!

Have a great week everyone. I promise not to stay away so long. …and once I get some things settled in my office space, I’ll snap you a few pics so you can see where I’ll be spending my 9-5.

As always, I’d love for you to stop by some of my favorite link parties…

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