Tuesday, February 7, 2012

DIY Recycled / Upcycled Paper Magazine Coasters

If you are anything like me, you have tons of magazines you have already read just laying around your house without any purpose.  Now you can change all that and add a great DIY project to your file!

This tutorial will show you step by step directions for making your very own woven magazine paper coasters by hand.  They will look something like this:
So, here is how to get started.  First, find magazines:

Second, pick the color you want for your coaster.  It can be anything.  Pink, purple, blue, yellow, green, black & white, yellow & black, pink & purple...whatever floats your boat.  Once you have selected the color theme for your coasters, you'll want to tear out SIX pages in your color for each coaster (so, 24 pages if you want 4 coasters as a set).  I picked blue, so here are some of my pulled pages in blue:

Now you want to cut each of your six pages (or 24) in half long ways, like so:

If you had six pages before you should now have 12 half strips of magazine pages (or 48).  Now fold each strip in half (keeping in mind that your color theme color should be face DOWN on your work surface):

 Now we fold into thirds.  Fold the ROUGH edge half way up the middle of the page:

Then fold the top of the strip down to the bottom of the fold you just created:

Finally, fold the strip in half longways:

You will want to follow this process for ALL of your half magazine pages.  You should end up with a stack that looks like this (for one coaster - 12 strips):

Now you want to take 2 of these strips and cross one side of the strip over only one side of the OTHER strip:

Using a third strip piece, weave it on the opposite side of the strip you are covering:

See how the strip on the back side is OPPOSITE the strip at the bottom which is covering the front o the vertical strip?  This is what you want it to look like.  Continue weaving the remaining strips opposite of each other like this, until you reach SIX strips on each side:

If you want, I use a trick and only finish putting six strips on one side and "lock" it into place before putting the sixth strip on the other side.  Why?  Because I noticed that the sixth strip being on each side at the same time makes it harder to handle.  Whichever way works for you is just fine!  But if you notice, I leave the sixth strip off my unfinished side in the following pics, that's why!  So...this is what you should roughly have right now with all your strips used:

See how my bottom side has 6 strips and the far left side only has 5?  This helps me.  Again, whichever way works for you - rock it!  Just be sure that if you do use my trick that you start finishing up the side that has 6 already in place (i.e. you would begin finishing the far right side of this picture, NOT the top!).  To begin wrapping up your DIY coaster, notice how the weave pattern creates a "pocket" that you can tuck a strip into:

The side that has this "pocket" is the side that you will cut short ONE side of your strip on:

Be extra sure you don't cut both sides of the strip, or you'll have nothing to tuck into that "pocket."  Cut the strip down about an inch or so, just below the weave pattern going opposite the one your cutting.  See how my scissors are just below the strips going up and down in the picture?  That's where you want to cut.  Now take the other side of the strip that you did not cut, and fold it over and tuck it into that "pocket" (You are more than welcome to use glue to hold these pieces in place if you desire to do so.  Hot glue, super glue, glue stick, Elmer's glue...they all work great!):

Do this same process again with the next strip that has a "pocket" on the same side (so in the picture above it would be the one that is THIRD down:

Now, if you flip the entire work over, you will see that there are "pockets" on the other side for your remaining strips.  Cut the one side and tuck these in as well, but be sure you only work this side if you used my cheat that has 5 on the one side of the coaster.  Otherwise you'll have a lopsided coaster.  This is what the opposite side of your coaster should look like after cutting away the one side of the strip for a few of the weaves:

Now wrap up the one side and here is what you should have:

Yeah!  We are looking good.  If you don't have all 6 strips in place on this side, now would be the time to add it in!  Alright, now do the same thing with this side that you did with the other.  Find the "pockets," cut the one side of the strip and tuck, tuck, tuck!

Now if you get to about here and get confused, don't worry!  You have to do a little alternating work to complete this coaster.  Just take a look to see where a "pocket" already exists and cut the one side of the corresponding strip and tuck.  Then look for another pocket and continue.  You may have to flip back and forth at first to get the hang of it, don't worry, I did the same thing.  Just take it one strip at a time, and you'll get it!

 You are at the last cut!  Don't give up now! 

 Fold that last piece in and sit back and admire your finished coaster!!

You can always spray the finished product with Acrylic Sealer to make it water-resistant, but you do not have to!  Besides you are an expert on making these now, right?  So, if it gets a little wet or damaged, just whip up a new one in a fresh and fun color!

Let me know if you have questions!!

DIY: Finger Knitting!

I have always wanted to learn how to knit / crochet / do pretty much anything with yarn...so I decided to look up finger knitting tutorials to get a start on things!

Much to my dismay the videos that I was able to find weren't to clear and were mostly done by younger people that talked far too fast for me to pick it up. So...that being said, here is MY video on how to finger knit! Let me know what you think (I hope you like it)!!

Want to request a tutorial on a project??  Leave me a comment here or on my YouTube page, subscribe, and I'll see what I can do!  I love new challenges!