Art & Craft Ideas, D I Y, Decoupage, Gift Ideas, Home Decor, Makeovers, Recyling, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., Reduce., Reuse, Storage, T U T O R I A L S, Technique, Trash to Treasure, WOODEN Projects

Tutorial -How to upcycle wooden puzzle blocks?

What do you do when some of your puzzle blocks are missing ?

What do I do ?

Why ofcourse, I upcycle them. But naturally  .. Problem solved !


My oldest son is extremely fond of solving puzzles. However with 2 younger brothers around him who enjoy tossing puzzles pieces more than joining them together .. the older one has had it difficult and puzzle blocks go missing. ūüė¶

Inspite of being incomplete, I kept them packed away for the longest time, until recently, when I decided to give them a makeover. (Its just NOT in my nature, to toss them out ūüôā )

So here is a simple pictorial of the transformation.

puzzle blocks makeoverpuzzle block makeover 4

I gently, wiped these blocks with a slightly damp rag.puzzle block makeover 3

Then applied two coats of indigo acrylic, on all sides of the blocks.

upcycle puzzle block

When the diecut machine is in progress, I like to cut a bunch of flowers, which i store in egg trays like this :upcycle egg tray to organizer

I found some diecuts that fit perfectly in the squarespuzzle block upcycle

I destressed the edges of the diecuts and stamped the letters which spelt FAMILY on one side and BE MINE on the other side.

acrylic rubber stamps

This how they look after adhering them on one side :- reversible blocks signreversible blocks diyreversible block repurpose

While one side has the letters which forms FAMILY, the other has letters which stand for BE MINE

valentine home decor

Inorder to make these beautiful blocks more durable – I gave them a single coat of modge podge.valentine decorvalentine blocks giftdoodle buddies upcyclebe mine blocksupcycle craft project2

So how do you like it ?

Isn’t it really easy ?

I continue to share projects that can inspire my friends and readers with ways to reuse/recycle/repurpose/upcycle household items.

Every decision starts with a very small but firm, first step. I hope you embrace the idea of recycling or repurposing this year.

If you have been recycling already,  I would love to read some of your ideas for eco friendly crafts too.

I am sharing this simple project with my blog buddies  here .

I’m delighted that you stopped by.  You can subscribe to my blog to read all my posts and projects.

I hope you stay a while and leave inspired.


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Alter Art, Art & Craft Ideas, D I Y, Decoupage, Makeovers, Mixed Media, Recyling, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., Reduce., Reuse, T U T O R I A L S, Technique, Trash to Treasure

Four techniques to Alter a glass bottle.

Hello friends,

Altering a glass bottle is fun. There are tons of ways to go about it. I am sharing four techniques here.   And in case, your wondering why are there only three bottles in the feature photo, the fourth bottle did not turn out as expected due to . . . . lets just say, my over indulgence with the spray can !

For the first technique, I soaked roughly torn strips of newspaper in PVA glue and adhered them to the bottle.  After two coats were dried . . . . . . 

I used “shoe polish” – thats right – you read it correctly, I placed some shoe polish on a brush and smeared the color on the bottle.

The idea is to give the bottle a vintage look.¬† The ‘veins’ have to look prominent and present a crackle effect¬†

Next step was to decoupage some tissue and add some lace and beaded ribbon on the bottle.

For the ‘Egg shell mosaic”,¬† i gave one coat of Gesso to the bottle, followed by sticking pieces of egg shell on the bottle.

Once the egg shells were dried and adhered strongly to the bottle, I decoupaged some fancy issue flower shapes on the bottle, followed by one coat of concealer (modge podge)

I ended the project with a fancy flower ribbon on the lip of the bottle. Voila !!

Although this project started off, pretty well. I got over zealous while using the paint can, without realizing that if too much paint is sprayed, it will spread thru the folds of the masking tape. 

I will recommend that if you must try this process, just give a quick splatter effect on the masked bottle. That is far better and will get amazing results.

Disaster ūüė¶¬†
In this picture, none of them have reached their completion stage.

By far the easiest technique.  Inorder to create a little friction, i painted alittle gesso on the bottom the bottle. Once dry, I started wrapping the yarn on the base of the bottle, with some pva glue.  If you wish to continue in the same color of yarn, you can complete the entire bottle in one color. I wished to break the monotony hence I used two colors.

Once the yarns were wrapped snugly around the bottle. I added two “quilled”¬† felt flowers .

Which technique did you like the most ?   Have you tried any one of these techniques before ?   

Have you tried altering bottles ?  Do you fancy painting glass ?  Which are your favorite products ?

Please drop in a line to tell me if and how, you liked this easy and fun creations

Recycled objects :-

  • Used Barbican Glass bottle

I am sharing this post with my lovely blog buddies here.

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Have fun and keep crafting .  Please subscribe to my blog (top right column)

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Art & Craft Ideas, Art Classes Students, D I Y, Decoupage, Dubai, Fairs & exhibitions in Dubai, Mixed Media, Technique, WOODEN Projects, Workshops and Classes

Creative Craft Mornings

Over the past several years, my skills have evolved.  I feel a sense of satisfaction after every completed project. Sometimes, even a little disappointed after a failed completed project Рnever the less, just the sheer joy of being able to create something with my own hands is exhilarating.

Till the period we were living at Arabian Ranches, I held craft workshop for ladies and art classes for children. That was, till 5 years back.  And then we moved to Al Warqa.

I missed my routine friendly creative exchanges with ladies and the young ones too.

There is such immense joy, when you have been instrumental in helping someone discover a latent talent.

Hence, moving to The Villa – Dubailand, gave me the opportunity to restart my workshops.

It was one of the best things about 2017, for me – CCM (creative craft mornings).

I was conducting craft workshops for women at my villa.

After a hiatus of nearly 5 years, I restarted this initiative and I was overwhelmed by the response.

In Dubai, we have sewing/quilt/crochet clubs, and we have quilling/papercrafting classes, however, I feel, there are far too many crafts that cannot be categorized and thats exactly, what I was offering.

There were ladies from the age group of 22 right upto 72 years !!  These were ladies, who had the zest to learn, inspite of busy schedules and running a hectic lifestyle, between career and family.   Ladies, who had to pick children from school, prepare a meal, manage their homes, attend meetings and yet they believed in giving the workshop, a chance.

I prefer to address all of them as my friends, rather than my students becoz, in essence, I learnt more from them than I taught them.  If we are really passionate about something, we will find a way to pursue it.  One of my dear friend came from Arabian Ranches and another friend from Mamzar while yet another from Jumeirah Beach Residence !!!

Finding a haven where you won’t be judged or laughed at, is precious. We learn better, we explore deeper, we grow further and we develop faster.

We did a project, where my friends had to hammer nails into a block of wood. I was really surprised to observe how quickly they learnt, steadied their hands and hit the hammer with firmness and not only that, its quite tiring having to hit the hammer 25 – 30 times.

Every project they attempted was remarkable, considering no one had attempted such projects before.

Every one learnt something new, a skill, a technique, a design,  especially me.

I learnt that, making friends with like minded creative people is A GIFT !!  And I cherish these friendships.

I was truly overwhelmed.

Enthusiasm, patience and perseverance are the only ingredients needed to brew any success story.

Needless to say, the results were amazing.

Here are some photos :-

I am determined to restart these workshops again this year as well.

I truly hope to be able to carry on with newer projects here in Mirdif too.

Do you enjoy a particular hobby ?  Are there any workshops close to where you live ? Would you like to join CCM in Dubai ?

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Thank you for visiting me today.



I’d love if you can¬†subscribe to my blog using any of the following media or simply ‚Äėlike‚Äô me or ‚Äėjoin‚Äô me¬†on the various platforms below¬†ūüôā

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Baby Arrivals, Baby shower favors, D I Y, Decoupage, Dubai, Fairs & exhibitions in Dubai, Gift Ideas, GIFT WRAPPING, Party favors, Party Organization, Treat bags

Gifts in Dubai.

Hello dear friends !

I’m an erratic blogger ūüôā¬† (But¬†you already know that, by now ūüėČ )¬† There have been times when, you could¬†read three¬†posts, back to back and then there are times, when you see me once in three months. In the blog-world, consistency is VERY IMPORTANT.¬†¬†I am yet to play by the book !

Over the past 11 years, I have been fortunate enough to have a beautiful relationship with any and all forms of art.

I did not restrict myself to water colors or decoupage ~ I am a restless eager soul, I have experienced and enjoyed every craft.

What started from card making has just made it way thru to DIY and home décor.

Sometimes I find myself going on a spin in a perplexed state¬†when ‘newbies’¬† ask me what I fancy most.

The past 5 months have been remarkably fantastic and have helped me, better define myself.

I cannot thank Almighty Allah swt enough for his grace.

November and December 2014~ were months dedicated to a dozen or more craft fairs. I love fairs and all the planning, preparation and exhaustion, that comes with it !

January 2015 ~ Gulf News published an article about me and my work !  I was beside myself.

January 2015 ~ We completed a 3-Day Art and Craft workshop.

February 2015 ~ Organic Café and Foods Supermarket, displayed my handmade greeting cards.

February 2015 ~ Aspen House Gifts, got the much needed boost it so anticipated, with several baby shower favors and wedding favors orders.

March 2015 РI was requested to be chief guest at the Arts and design Faculty of the American University of Dubai. It was an honor beyond words !

Over the years, I have been blessed to accomplish, all the creative adventures, I dive into, thanks to Allah swt and a lot of patience from my better half and boys. However, there are times, when I question myself, if I am, more of a mixed media artist, or a craft teacher or a carpenter, a card maker or a business woman or a DIY enthusiast. Perhaps, the past 5 months, have given me a glimpse of all who I am.

An amalgamation of all these endeavors.

Today, Let me share with you alittle about Aspen House Gifts.

Dubai is an exceptional city. It is as modern as can be yet, adherently holds to its cultural roots. Arabs, have been known thru out history for their strong traditions and hospitality.

Aspen House Gifts was initiated alittle over a year ago, as a gateway to introducing the latest, most innovative and personalized party favors, party supplies, corporate gifts  and one-of-a-kind personalized keepsakes.

We personalize party favors and custom-design gifts to suit our clients personality and requirements.

I trust you will help spread the word in the blog-world and ‘like’ our facebook page too.

Blog :- Aspen House Gifts

Facebook :- Aspen House Gifts

Whatsapp :- 00971-50-4545049

Having a creative background gives me an edge in designing, understanding color statements, and packaging and having been in Dubai for 22 years, procuring my supplies is relatively easier for me.

Three of the key principles, I adopted from the hospitality industry, for over a decade are, professional attitude, punctuality and exemplary presentation.

Here is a collage of some of our creative assingments :-

Aspen House Collage1

Elegant, vintage, classic, formal, fun or floral, we can design and personalize it for you .

I’m glad that I was fortunate enough to share with you something personal and something professionally about me.

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and comment.¬†¬†I really¬†appreciate it and I hope you get some time to do what you love to do this week. ūüôā

Before you leave, just a quick reminder :-

You can¬†subscribe to my blog using any of the following media or simply ‚Äėlike‚Äô me or ‚Äėjoin‚Äô me¬†on the various platforms below¬†ūüôā


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Alter Art, Altered Box, Collage Art, D I Y, Decoupage, Makeovers, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., T U T O R I A L S, Trash to Treasure, WOODEN Projects

Ikea Pigeon Hole Organizer Makeover Tutorial

Ikea pigeon hole organizer makeover

I love the Ikea pigeon hole organizer.  Not necessary for functionality but I just love the look of tiny pockets ! This pigeon hole organizer  has been in the family for a couple of years.

Buddy would keep his hot wheels cars in them.  Eventually He outgrew the toys and I was only too happy to be the next recipient. Ofcourse, by now, you already know, that few things get dumped in our home, until and unless the cats chew on them or pee on them !!!

A little tender, love and makeover is all it kept screaming out to me for ~ until finally I decided to decoupage it.

Decoupage sounds like a very fancy French word but in reality, it just means to stick objects with paper cut outs. So don’t¬†let the¬†French term, intimidate you ūüôā

The surface needs to be cleaned and sanded well. A layer of modge podge or any such medium can be applied. Then you can cut out pieces of tissue or paper and stick it on carefully. Make sure to get any air bubbles out.  When your certain, that its dried, apply another coat of modge podge to seal it. This is the tutorial in a nut shell.

Here’s the pictorial ūüôā


Hideous, isn’t it ??? Whats the connection between little boys and the skull face with two cross bones, still remains a mystery to me !!


Ugly paint sticking out from our previous wall paint on its edges.


First, I gathered design paper, in various patterns and colors and decided how the collage should be placed. This project is excellent at getting rid of good by small scraps of paper !


Took measurements and decided which cutouts would contrast with which patterns. Then came my drawer of amazing edge punches ! Oh how I love Martha stewart ūüôā ok ok Fiskars, I love you too ūüôā


One after the other, I distressed the edges and kept covering them all with modge podge. (I am quite the distress-addict ūüôā


For the top, side and bottom, I painted some off-white synthetic paint. Two coats got me the results I wanted.


Finally, I coated one layer of modge podge on the pigeon holes.¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† AND ………………………………………….. VOILA !!!!!!!!


Talking of decoupage, If your looking for decoupage supplies in Dubai. I am happy to recommend the decoupage specialist, Creativa Middle East. Located at Times Square, they have a huge array of art and decoupage supplies. Definitely the go-to place for Decoupage.








I love the transformation and hope you liked it too.

If you like what you see at my blog, you could subscribe to my blog using any of the following media or simply ‘like’ me or ‘join’ me¬†on the various platforms below¬†ūüôā


I am linking this project to the following parties HERE.

Savvy Southern Style  , Between Naps on the porch.

Have you attempted any transformations lately ? If so, I’d love to hear about it.

Thank you for dropping by.



Altered Wall hanging, D I Y, Decoupage, Gift Ideas, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., Trash to Treasure, WOODEN Projects

Face Qibla.

Hello friends.

It feels wonderful being back after my Ramadhan break.  I am grateful to be alive, in good health and happy to be able to fill you up with my creative endeavors.

Today I am sharing a simple plaque.  The message is the focus, and the message is deep ~ hence I did not want to add any fancy embellishments to distract the essence of this quote.

The definition of Qiblah is the direction of the Kaaba (the sacred building at Mecca), to which Muslims turn to, at prayer.

Muslims all over the world, pray towards the Kaaba, five times a day.  However the meaning of this quote is far deeper than that.



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Alter Art, Altered Pizza Box, Altered Wall hanging, Collage Art, D I Y, Decoupage, Makeovers, Mixed Media, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., Trash to Treasure

Upcycled Pizza Box into Mixed Media Canvas

Hello friends ! Becoz my sons’ summer holidays as well as the holy month of Ramadhan begins by the end of this month, my posts might be far and few in between from now on.

Today I am sharing with you a mixed media project. I love mixed media (mm) becoz it allows me to experiment without any inhibitions and rules ! I explore with colors, textures and patterns and somehow, it just ties in together.

I, rarely work on a canvas for any of my mm projects ~ being an eco-friendly person, there is always, some effort placed on upcycling or repurposing objects (which can be). Here I have upcycled a pizza box for the mm canvas. I use the back of a pizza box and I love the texture it gives. Two coats of gesso to begin with, and the texture is just so good.

Techniques used are :-

  • Sponging acrylics
  • Decoupage
  • Paper piecing
  • Recycled Pizza box

The quote is dear to my heart. Coz any place in the world is acceptable and bearable, just so long as I am with my husband.¬† ‘He’ is the best gift Allah swt blessed me with.

I hope you like this attempt.

DSCF6012 DSCF6014 DSCF6015 DSCF6016 DSCF6017 DSCF6018

Upcycle pizza box to canvas for mixed media

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Altered Wall hanging, Bulletin Board, D I Y, Decoupage, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., T U T O R I A L S, Trash to Treasure, WOODEN Projects

DIY Family Organization Board Tutorial.

Dressing up mundane objects with a little color, some craft paper, few embellishments and alittle TLC gives me a lot of creative satisfaction. Ordinarily we tend to throw a lot of packing material, pieces of fabric, and even things that can be easily recycled. But not me ūüôā¬† A large part of the “junk” is cleaned/washed and stored for future projects and ideas.¬†{and then hubby and I quarrel about the amount of “junk” being stacked up in the shed !! ~ sounds familiar ?}

Jokes apart ~ Its one of those things that I so wish to educate kids¬†about. A little change can go a long way in saving the state Mother Earth is in ūüė¶

This project is totally, an upcycle freak’s dream ~ Everything is recycled in this project ! I made this board a couple of days back¬†when¬†felt the¬†need of an organizational board to keep track of¬†some of the engagements, meals, doctors appointments¬†and reminders¬†for the week ahead.

I didn’t need something fancy ~ just something simple and reliable. I dived into my backyard wood stock and came across this thin sheet of cork wood. It seemed to be perfect. Alittle sanding here and there and it was ready for being dressed.


I’ve always been a sucker for polka dots and I had just the perfect, bright and happy design paper for the background.

I needed a couple of containers to hold pencils, pins, rubberbands etc ~ I reused milk cartons and some laban cartons to do the job.


With a little spray paint ~ they really perked up. For a more aesthetic look, I added some scraps of the polka dot cardstock and finished off the look with a few tiny clothespin. Has made an immense difference, isn’t it ??


Next a few clothespin were modge podged with co-ordinating stripes pattern.


I also placed one old cork coaster for pinning school circulars or reminders.


I had this title printed off my printer with some fancy font and layered it over a nice textured bright orange handmade paper.


Assembling the whole board was really quite easy.  Naturally the title went on top while the rest just fell into the place that could leave enough space to pin things, clip things and hold stuff in the containers.  They were all modge podged ( the word is a verb too !!! ) except for the cork coaster and the milk cartons. For those, I decided to use E6000.

Btw ~ do you know that you do get the duplicate of E6000 ? Trust ‘reliable’ China to come up with ANYTHING duplicate. Its E600 and the tube looks almost exactly similar to the original.

Once everything had dried ~ I modge podged over the board along with everything (embellishments ) again. That gave it a really nice and more professional finish.


And Voila !!!! Two holes were made on the top of the board {goof up :- those holes would look a lot better and less chipped, had I drilled them instead of hammering them } so as to hang it with a cord.

family organization board tutorial

family organization board

This project took nearly 2 – 3 hours including drying time. And all the materials are recycled so you don’t really have to buy any of the tools or materials. Its readily available in almost all homes.

Do you have an organization board at home ? Would you like to share the picture with me  ?

I’m sharing this board with the following fantastic parties here

If you like what you saw here, please join me at any of the following media platforms :-


Thank you for visiting me and hope¬†you leave a little inspired ūüôā


Art & Craft Ideas, D I Y, Decoupage, Makeovers, Party Organization, Recyling, Reuse, Reduce., T U T O R I A L S, Trash to Treasure, Window display

DIY Cupcake stand Tutorial.

Thank you to all of you who visited me and left lovely messages of encouragement in my last post about that amazing PVC storage solution for Paper. Cardboard can be a crafters best friend ! And if the words, upcycle, recycle, reuse, repurpose, sound like music to your ears, then this project will really excite you. This post is about a Cup Cake stand that I made out of cardboards, lying around in the house. I have used a sturdy double corrugated cardboard. Used three different sizes of round objects to make the various round shapes. ( Including the large clock in my studio.) When we moved into this house, the movers had used these huge rolls of plastic to cover most of the furniture which was rolled over a thick heavy circular pole. DSCF2054 DSCF2055 Next, I used my electrical jigsaw to cut the pole, which can be quite tricky since you want to get a clean cut so that the stand does not wobble, once the weight is placed on it.  I got two pieces of equal sizes from it. I dressed up the two round pole, with a nice colorful cardstock using some hot glue. DSCF2058 I am not a stickler for accurate  measurements, hence I just used my visual approximation to see if it sat well. I used E6000 to do the job of the gluing the base of the circle to the stand which will keep it upright. Took some red patterned ribbon and hot glued it all around the circumference of the stands. DSCF2063 DSCF2066 I kept some weight on the center of the stand and let it sit for nearly 2 days and later tested it with a couple of empty cups to check durability and stability. DSCF2067 DSCF2069 DSCF2071 So voila ~ here it is ! A cupcake stand made out of cardboard ! Something creative, innovative and making it convenient on the environment !

DSCF2173 DSCF2175 Although this is traditionally for cupcakes, but you can easily alter it to use it as a display piece in a store, or to keep jewelry on. The uses are only limited by your imagination ! DSCF2176 DSCF2177 I will be using a large doily before presenting the cupcakes on the cupcake stand ofcourse. If your wondering how to do so, just place the doily over the stand and roughly pencil out how much circle would need to be taken off in the center. Then make a slit any one side of the doily and cut towards the center and carry on cutting in the direction of the penciled out center circle. I did not want to place the doily already, since it might catch dust sitting on my study desk. Please give me your opinion ~ I would really appreciate it. I am linking this post to the following parties :- Party Time at The 36th Avenue,¬†Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home,¬†Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Creek Cottage,¬†Share Your Cup Party at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson,¬†Hookin’ Up with HOH at House of Hepworths,¬†Talkin’ about Thursday at Designed Decor,¬†Live Laugh Linky at Live Laugh Rowe,¬†Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life,¬†The Inspiration Gallery at Craftberry Bush,¬†Made U Look Linky at Made in a Day,¬†Creative Things Thursday at The Vintage Farmhouse,¬†Catch as Catch Can at My Repurposed Life,¬†Time Travel Thursday at The Brambleberry Cottage,¬†Catch a Glimpse Party at A Glimpse Inside,¬†52 Mantels,¬†Creative Inspirations Linky Party at Embracing Change,¬†Simply Create Link Party at Redfly Creations,¬†What To Do Weekends at Crafts a la Mode Simply Creations Link Party at My Simple Homelife,¬†Furniture Feature Friday at Miss Mustard Seed,¬†Inspire Me Please Link Party at Liz Marie Blog,¬†Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest,¬†Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage,¬†What Have You Redone at Redoux Interiors,¬†Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home,¬†Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove,¬†Simple and Sweet Fridays at Rooted inThyme,¬†Be Inspired at Common Ground,¬†Faunt It Friday at Chic on a Shoestring Decorating,¬†Frugalicious Friday at Finding Fabulous,¬†Fabulously Creative Friday at Jennifer Rizzo,¬†Show and Tell Friday at Romantic Home,¬†Junkin’ Joe Vintage and Thrifty Finds at The Cottage Market,¬†Weekend Wrap-Up Party at Tatertots and Jello,¬†Shabbilicious Friday Link Party at Shabby Art Boutique,¬†Tickled Pink at 504 Main,¬†Anything Blue Friday at The Dedicated House,¬†Rustic Restorations Weekend Link Party at Homespun Happenings, ¬†Great Idea Thursdays at A Handful of Everything,¬†One Sharendipity Place at The T2 Women Blog,,

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