Sunday, October 7, 2012

How To Make Your Own Handwritten Font

I'm not quite sure why, but for years I've wanted to be able to type on a computer in my own handwriting. I knew it was possible to do, and I'd seen websites where you could do it, but I guess I never had the means to do so.

Recently my boyfriend left his iPad with me...I use it much more than he does :) I immediately started looking for drawing apps, and found one called Paper that I really liked. It's so much smoother than any drawing app I've ever seen--on a touch screen OR a computer.

Anyway, I started writing words and realized I could finally make my font like I'd like to do, and now I'm going to pass on how you can do that, with a tablet or just plain paper!

First you'll need to go to There are other sites like this, but this was the best actually free one that I found (there's another that says it's free, but you have to pay like $10 to actually download your font). Download the font Template to your computer. If you're going to print it out and write on it with a pen, do so. If you'd like to do this with a tablet and Photoshop like I did, go ahead and open it as a 300 dpi, grayscale file in Photoshop.

Next, if you haven't already written out the alphabet and all the symbols you want to include, do that. Using the template as a guide will help you remember symbols you can use. I wrote letters and symbols on different pages of my book in the Paper app and then emailed them to my computer and opened them in Photoshop next to the template. If you're doing it this way, then you'll need to use the Quick Selection tool (shortcut "W") to select only the letter you're using. For some reason, mine came out a little fuzzy at first, so I expanded the selection by one or two pixels to really get the whole effect of the letters. You can do this by going to Select --> Modify --> Expand --> 1 or 2 pixels. Once you've gotten the whole thing selected, copy the selection and switch over to the template, where you'll paste it.

Find the designated space for that letter, and use Free Transform (Ctrl + T) to fit the letter into the box. I just matched it up with the gray letter, for the most part, to determine the size and spacing.

Continue this process for the rest of the letters and symbols until you fill the template. I added a few accented letters because I use one for my name and use the others on occasion :) Save your file when you're finished.

Go back to the website, and click Choose File to upload your file. Then name your font in the space provided.

Hit "Send File" and wait for your font to be processed.

Ta dah! You should see a preview of your font and a link (the part I circled) to download the TTF file. Click that.

Next, you'll need to open up the Control Panel and go to your Font folder. To make it easy, if you have Windows 7, you can just open the Start menu and search "Fonts" and you should see all the fonts on your computer. Drag and drop the file you downloaded to this folder to copy and paste your handwritten font to your font folder so you can use it!

You can test this out by going to a word processor to see if your font is now available, which it is on mine! :)

Congratulations! Now go type away or make a bunch of other fun fonts. I already have another one all written out! Now I just need to bring myself to do this long process all over again.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Update + Nail Art Inspo

Hellooo there, everyone!

Sorry I've been away so long! Headed back to school and got all settled in, of course without most of my crafting stuff :( Sad panda (my best friend says this to me all the time and it's caught on with me)! I went to Michael's the other day for the first time since being down here, but I wasn't able to buy anything. I have a few things I want to post soon, but haven't gotten the time.

I did want to thank everyone for 20,000 views, though! I never thought I'd get that many, especially within only a few months! So thank you all for the views, comments, shares, Pinterests, etc. They mean a lot! Glad to know I can pass along a little inspiration :)

Anyway, the point of this post! NAIL ART INSPIRATION wooo~ It's my favorite! I found this blog earlier today, and couldn't resist sharing. It's called Lucy's Stash. She does a fabulous job showing the steps of her nail decoration, and the photos are great too! Definitely go check her out when you can :) You might find something you like; or, if you're like me, you'll find way too many and want to do them all right away!

Hope everyone is doing well, and thanks again :)


Monday, August 6, 2012


I was fresh out of ideas for the polish colors I had, and my sister offered her coffee color, so I couldn't resister cheetah print. I mean, who can, right?!

This mani is super easy and doesn't have to be perfect by any stretch. (Speaking of which, you'll have to excuse the polish on my skin...didn't quite get around to cleaning it up yet).

I started out with two coats of this Taupe color from Love & Beauty by Forever21. Not exactly high-quality stuff, but I like to change my nails often so I'm not too worried. Then I mixed the Taupe with a drop of "Bowery Black" by New York Color, and used a blunt yarn sewing needle to dabble on some different sized shapes. They don't by any means have to be perfect dots. I did a lot of double dots to make a longer oval shape, some big, some small. Then once the spots dried, I used the needle again and went around the edges with the Bowery Black, enclosing the darker taupe in black circles and parenthesis-like shapes.

Once it all dried, I went over it with a quick topcoat of Sally Hansen's "Clear'd for Takeoff"!

And voila! Adorable cheetah print :D Consider yourself Cheetah'fied!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

DIY Double-Piercing Chain Earring

I'm pretty sure this is the quickest, easiest, cheapest, and least complicated DIY I've ever done. So easy, it makes me want to make 100 more of them! I'm in LOVE! I whipped this up right before work so I could wear it for my long shift, and I got so many compliments on it! People couldn't believe I made it. Definitely put a smile on my face! :)

Here's how to make your own.

You'll need:
  • 2 ball studs w/ loop (Jo-Ann, $1.11!)
  • Thin chain of the same color (again, grabbed myself an 18" chain from Jo-Ann for $1.11)
  • 2 jump rings (yet again, Jo-Ann, $1.11!) (yes, there are way more than 2 in the picture) (parentheses spree!)

Told ya it was cheap!

Now. Ready to whip it up in 3 steps?

1. Take your chain (unless you've bought very short chains, unlikely) and cut to the desired length. I held the chain up to my ear to decide how long I wanted it, and cut it just a tiny bit longer than what I wanted; Better to have to cut some off than to be too short & not able to add! I cut mine roughly 3.5" and 4" (like I said...roughly).

2. Attach the chains to a jump ring, and then slide the jump ring through the loop on the bottom of the stud. I only have one chain attached in the picture below.

3. Attach the other end of the chains to another jump ring, and attach that to the other earring!

All done! Now wear proudly! :)

I'm also thinking about using a little bit of the leftover chain to make another earring for my left ear (which is not pierced on the cartilage) so I can have a semi-matching one (I don't have a lot of gold jewelry to match this). Maybe two different length chains hanging from the stud, but a little shorter? Perhaps? I dunno, give it a try and add your own flair to it!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Vera Bradley-Inspired Chain Lanyard

The second I saw my friend's Vera Bradley lanyard, I was in love. I'd never seen one like it before, and knew I could make it myself, so I set out to do just that!

I haven't seen any other brand selling these, nor have I come across a tutorial for them. So here you go--maybe I'm first! Hope you all enjoy.

You'll need:

  • Fabric (roughly twice the length of your chain, to be safe) - I bought a quilting square at Jo-Ann Fabrics for $1 and had to cut it diagonally and double THAT up.
  • Chain (I bought mine at Michael's for $3.99) - The length is purely personal preference; I made mine 24" because I'm short and don't want a lanyard hanging down to my knees if I have it in my pocket!
  • Wire cutters - This is only if you'll need to cut off excess chain. I bought mine at 48" and knew I only wanted my lanyard to be 24".
  • Scissors
  • Swivel latch(es)/clip(s) - I chose to use 2, simply because I was copying the Vera Bradley model, but you could use 1 and sew both ends of the lanyard to 1 latch to make it easier on yourself. These can be found in the purse-making section of a craft store.
  • Key Ring
  • Needle & thread OR Sewing machine
  • It also helps to have a large sewing needle (yarn size) to thread the fabric through the chain.
  • Jump rings (if you don't want to sew the fabric to the latches)

Start by cutting the chain to the desired length, if it needs to be cut. If you have a heavy duty chain like I did, you might have to bend the chain a little while you cut to loosen it. 
Then cut the fabric as long as needed (better too long than too short!), about 1" to 1 1/2" wide. If you, like me, have to double up fabric, sew the two strips together at the ends, right sides facing together. Then, fold the strip in half, with right sides facing together again, and sew down the length of the entire fabric strip. This part is MUCH easier with a sewing machine. Now you're going to turn the strip inside-out so it's like a tube. Unless you're a beast at this, I'd recommend using a small safety pin or something, and hooking it to the edge of the fabric and threading it through the inside, thus turning the fabric right side out. Be patient and gentle, it does take a little time, and you wouldn't want to rip it.

Once you have the pretty side facing out, thread it through your big sewing needle (if you have one), and begin to thread the fabric through the chain as shown.

After you've threaded it through a few links, take the fabric at the beginning of the chain and thread it through the same link it's currently in again to secure it. That'll make it so if you're pulling, your previous work won't come undone.

Continue threading the rest of the chain, then secure the end just as you did for the beginning. Cut off any excess fabric, leaving yourself about 1" to 1 1/2" to put the swivel latch on. Thread this fabric through the ring on the latch, and double over before sewing (using either the sewing machine or needle & thread) to secure to the latch. 

Repeat for the other side, and then attach your key ring!

TA-DA! So pretty! Now go put all your cute little keychains on it (and your keys, of course...and maybe a school ID?). I couldn't resist adding my favorite keychain that I got when I was in Africa last summer!

Share (with credit, please!), comment, etc., and enjoy!


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Cherry Fest Week!

This week is the National Cherry Festival, and I couldn't resist making a cherry-themed iPhone case to go with my love for summertime in my city!

I know it's not a good photo at all, but I just wanted to share :) I found cherry stock and then put some darker pink stripes behind it, if y'all can't tell. The colors are pretty thrown off by the horrible quality webcam I have... Anyway, if you haven't seen my post about how to design iPhone cases in Photoshop, click here!

Hope everyone is having a fabulous July so far :)


Saturday, June 30, 2012

Rock On Concert Nails

Super quick post, since I'm about to leave for a concert (Andy Grammer & Gavin DeGraw!) with my sisters and mom! :) Sorry that I don't even have time to post a tutorial, but I just whipped these up and thought I'd share.

For these, all I did was use a sparkly silver polish (a cheap American Eagle polish from the Christmas season...took three coats to get it to be opaque!), and then let it dry. Once those dried, I masked off a line from the bottom corner of my nail up to around where the curve started; I used blue painter's tape and it worked great! Then I used this 3D glitter polish, Nails Inc. Special Effects in "Sloane Square" from Sephora, and painted the tips up to the painter's tape. After about a minute, I peeled off the tape, and got this cool look! I put a clear topcoat over it, and they look fabulous, if I do say so myself :)

Gotta run, though! Feel free to comment, share, etc. But please always link back!



Update: back from the concert and other festivities of the night! SO awesome. Definitely relived my childhood through Gavin DeGraw haha, especially when he sang "I Don't Wanna Be"--I got so pumped! Andy Grammer decided during his concert to run around the whole auditorium, and he for some reason squeezed through our row (mind you there was about a 12" space between me and the seat in front of me, so he really had to squeeze!) and my sister and I both grabbed his arm as he walked by, and he danced with my aunt! Too darn funny. After the concert we got Gavin DeGraw (who's one of my sister's favorites) to sign my sister's hat and my ticket stub, and he was so sweet! We had to work pretty hard to get autographs, but it was worth the wait :) All in all, an awesome night!

Monday, June 25, 2012

DIY Studded Cutoff Jean Shorts

I can never ever find shorts that fit me new from the store. I don't know what it is: some shorts are made for girls without butts, some fit perfectly in the butt but squeeze my legs like there's no tomorrow, and some I can't even get past my thighs until I go up a few sizes, and then they're way too big on my waist. Either way, for the past few years I've started just making old jeans into shorts. I decided a few weeks ago that I was getting tired of my old shorts and needed a new pair, so I made these!

First I went to Goodwill to find an old worn-in pair of jeans specifically for this purpose. I wasn't about to buy a $40 pair of jeans just to cut 50% of them off, and I didn't have any jeans I was willing to cut up at the time either. So I found this pair for $4.50 or so (I believe they're all around the same price), and thought they'd be perfect!

The first thing I do to make shorts out of jeans is take another pair of shorts that I like the length of, and trace the legs of the shorts on the jeans with the crotches matched up. I just used an old pair of Soffee shorts (love those!) and traced a line across the edge with a bit of chalk (so it'll wash off easily). If you want the shorts to be the same length as your other ones in the front and back, make sure you fit the example shorts accordingly--so when you're drawing a line for the front of your denim, trace the front of the shorts, and when you're tracing on the back, use the back of the shorts. Trust me, they are probably different (longer in the back, usually).

Cut a few inches below the chalk line. This will make it so you can try on your shorts and decide if the line is good, or if it needs to be raised/lowered. You can also see if you'd like to hem the shorts, or keep a rough edge so they fray. I chose to let mine fray.

Sew with matching (or close) thread along the final chalk line. This will make it so your shorts can still fray, but they won't keep fraying and getting shorter with every single wash. So wherever you put the stitches is where your shorts will stop fraying.

Cut off the excess fabric, leaving a little space below the thread. I left about a centimeter, because I wasn't sure how much they'd fray on the first wash.

Throw the shorts in the washer (especially if you get them from Goodwill or a thrift store like I did), and if you're not worried about shrinkage, you can put them in the dryer, too. I personally don't ever put my denim in the dryer, unless I'm really in a rush, so I let these air dry.

Your shorts will fray more with a few washes, so don't be discouraged if they don't look exactly how you want after the first wash.

I also wanted to add a little more flair to these since I have 3 or 4 similar pairs, so I added some small studs that I had left over from my studded shoes tutorial that I didn't know what to do with. I've worn my shorts a few times already and I love them! Hope this was helpful, and if you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Shoesday Tuesday! Stud 'em up.

I've had this desire for a while to create my own studded shoes. The initial inspiration came from Honestly WTF's tutorial. While the pictures shown in that tutorial were of light blue and pink Vans with gold studs, I opted for a much cheaper choice, since this was my first time trying it and frankly I just like cheap stuff! :)

  • First you'll need to get yourself a pair of sneakers, unless you have an old pair laying around that you want to use. I got my navy blue tennis shoes at Target for $12.99 (!). They also come in white, so if I decide I want another pair of these, I might end up going back and getting the white pair and just dyeing them! I wasn't up for paying 40 or 50 or 60 dollars for Vans, so these were the perfect replacement :)
  • Secondly, you'll need some studs. The studs I got were super cheap. On almost all of the tutorials I found, they gave links to online stores that sold studs. Most of these places that I checked out per the advice of these tutorials sold the studs for like $30 for 100 studs! So glad I decided to check eBay; I got 200 of them for $2.45 with free shipping! You can check those out here if you'd like. They come in all different shapes and sizes; I chose the 7mm pyramid style. The only thing about these studs is that they do have prongs that push through the fabric. If you don't want to pierce holes in your shoes, you may opt for flat-back studs, as the tutorial above did, and glue them to the shoes.
  • Tweezers are also a good thing to have, I found, to set the studs exactly where you want them. Maybe it's just me, but I was fumbling with them a bit and couldn't get them where I wanted them. So tweezers came in handy. They also helped in pushing down the little prongs of the studs on the insides of the shoes.

I took the laces out of my shoes, as you can see, to give myself easier access to the inside of them. Not a bad idea.

Start by lining your studs up along the bottom edge of the shoe (to give you a straight guideline all the way up), and determine how many you can fit. Do this BEFORE you start poking any through the canvas. You can see a little bit on the right side above that I misjudged my spacing, and the right side ended up being more spread out than the left side, where I tried to cram them all in.

Once you've figured out how you're going to arrange your studs, start poking them through the canvas one by one, and push the prongs inward to secure the studs, and so you won't feel them when you wear your shoes.

Continue building upwards and fit the studs on however you like. I'm not sure exactly how I did it, but somewhere along the way I miscounted, and ended up with a different design on the right shoe than on the left. I think they still look good, but it would've been better if they matched exactly haha! Hopefully no one will notice...

Continue on with the second shoe, and you've got yourself a brand-spankin' new pair of shoes for less than $15, when you could've spent nearly $200 from Vans or Converse! Congratulations, and wear 'em well :)

If you guys have any questions, I'd be happy to answer. And if you decide to make yourself a pair, I'd love to see how they turn out! :)

Happy studding!

Friday, June 15, 2012

The Two-Minute Bracelet

I had a few different inspirations for this bracelet recently. The first inspiration comes from a brand called Dogeared. They have a collection called "Karma Jewelry," which features very simple necklaces and bracelets with a circle charm on them. There was a cute quote with them that I liked:

what goes around, comes around... wear your necklace as a reminder to keep the circle positive, peaceful and loving...

I thought these were so cool, but for $56, I wasn't feelin' it. I also don't wear necklaces all that often, so I wondered if I could do something similar but in bracelet form. Then I saw Happy Hour Projects' tutorial for these adorable and incredibly easy bracelets on craftgawker. So I found a ring that I never wear, got some embroidery floss out of my stash, and whipped this up in less than 5 minutes! And I love it :)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

DIY iPhone Case Art

If you're like me, you get bored of your iPhone case way too quickly. I spend so much time on Etsy and Amazon and eBay looking at iPhone cases that are relatively inexpensive, but a lot of the time they don't offer any coverage/protection for my phone. I'm pretty clumsy, so I didn't want to just get a bumper or something that won't protect my phone if I happen to drop it. I've had my Speck case for 6 months (it's super boring in my opinion, just plain white and gray) and it's offered a lot of protection to my phone, but I'm just sick of it.

SO. My solution: buy a clear case and make my own designs! After searching for a decently priced clear case (I did my research to make sure whatever I spent money on would actually offer protection...I ended up buying this one from eBay), I realized that people had already come up with this idea, and had made some really cute case art! I started to search around for templates, because I saw that idea quite a few times (I honestly was just planning on tracing my phone on some cute wrapping paper or something). I found this template from See That There's blog, downloaded it, and started working in Photoshop to create some cute covers! So I'm going to share that with you, in case you're not sure how to go about it.

First, you'll need to download the template above, or find your own. Open the file in Photoshop. Since I want to be able to use the template over and over again, I'm going to select the entire image (Ctrl+A), copy it (Ctrl+C), create & name a new file, and paste the material (Ctrl+V). I cropped out the stuff I didn't need, just because I'm OCD like that.

Next, use the Quick Selection tool to select the shape, and choose "Save Selection" (Select > Save Selection...).

Now for the next step, I designed my own quick little pattern. If you have a free pattern or something else you want to use (you could use a photo, anything), you can skip this step.

To create the pattern, I started off with a basic 1" x 1" canvas.

I just made a quick little blue triangle design. If you want to keep things symmetric and orderly, it helps to use guides (do this by turning on the Ruler view and dragging lines left/right from the vertical ruler and up/down from the horizontal ruler). To make my design I used the Polygonal Lasso tool to make triangles, and the Paint Bucket tool to fill them. You can make any design your little heart desires here! Here's my 1x1 square:

Next you'll need to define the pattern. Go to Edit > Define Pattern... and give your pattern a name, then select OK.

Now go back to your template and go to Edit > Fill > Contents > Pattern, and choose your newly created pattern. If nothing was selected, which is ideal for being able to choose exactly what parts of the pattern you want to show, then you should not see the iPhone outline anymore.

Once you've filled your pattern or photo or whatever you want, you'll need to load the selection you saved (Select > Load Selection...).

 I want the freedom to be able to choose exactly what part of my pattern will be showing, so I'm going to enter Quick Mask Mode (via the Quick Mask Mode icon on the toolbar, or Select > Edit in Quick Mask Mode) and use the Move tool to decide what you want to show.

When you get it just where you want it, exit Quick Mask mode by clicking the icon again or via the menu. Then you'll have a selection of the design--select the inverse and "cut" the extra pixels (Shift+Ctrl+I and then Ctrl+X, or use the menus).

Now you have iPhone art that's ready to be printed, cut out, and placed in your clear iPhone case!

I'm sure there are other ways of doing this, but this is just my method. Maybe later I'll come up with something quicker and easier. I'd love to see what you guys come up with if you'd like to post! And if you have any questions, feel free to comment!