Custom Throw Pillows – 10 Unique Pillow ideas!

Custom throw pillows with hand embroidery, screen printing, and illustrations. Great gift ideas for a variety of occasions. Thank you to UncommonGoods for sponsoring this post, which may also include affiliate links. Click here to see my disclosure policy.

10 Custom throw pillows from UncommonGoods - great gift ideas!

You can never have too many pillows, right? I have 7 on my bed, 8 on my couch, and…. wait maybe I should stop there. I’ve decided I should start GIVING throw pillows instead of hoarding them. When UncommonGoods reached out to me about their home decor products, I was immediately enthralled with all the custom throw pillows! They have hundreds products in their home decor section including floor coverings, clocks, vases, lights, and storage and organization. They are a unique company in that they work with designers, artisans, and artists from all of over the world. They’re building a community of passionate people with unique stories and connecting them to consumers like you and me. They feature handcrafted pieces and strive to focus on sustainability in all aspects of their business. You can read more of their story here.

I found 10 custom throw pillows that I think would make great gift ideas! Holidays, birthdays, weddings and showers – there are tons of options:

Custom Throw Pillows – 10 Unique Pillow ideas!

Hand Embroidered State Pillow

hand embroidered state pillows - custom pillow ideas

These beautiful pillows are HAND EMBROIDERED! I love the detail and the colors on these. They would be a perfect housewarming gift for someone moving to a new state so they will always remember home.

Personalized Storybook Pillow (Brave)

personalized storybook pillow brave - - custom pillow ideas

A darling gift for a child. Give a custom pillow for your favorite brave little person! They let you choose the hair and skin color to customize the illustration for a little boy or a little girl.

Custom Family Pillow
custom-family-pillow

Customize these pillows with your family name, city/state, address, and a personal message. These would make a great anniversary gift!

Personalized Family Pillow

personalized-family-pillow // custom pillow ideas

This is one of my favorites I found on UncommonGoods!  It’s a hand-embroidered hemp pillow that features stitched illustrations of your family – including your furry friends! I would love to have one of these once our family grows a bit. They remind me of the stick figure families people put on the back of their cars – just classier 😉

Custom Family Name Pillow

custom-family-name-and-date-pillow

This is a simple pillow design, but would make a great shower gift for a couple getting married! If a bride takes her husbands last name, it’s always fun to see it on something!

Custom Map Pillow

custom-map-pillow

At first, I thought this would be a great way to commemorate a place you lived like your home town or where you went to college. But I noticed the map in the example photos featured Rockport, MA which is were we celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary! What a great way to remember an amazing vacation spot as well!

Personalized Blue Book Pillow

personalized-blue-book-pillow // custom pillow ideas

This would look great decorating a dorm room of a new college student! Or maybe as an encouragement for a struggling student of any age. This pillow is hand silk screened and can be customized with someones name.

Personalized Storybook Pillow (Adventure)

personalized-storybook-pillow-adventure

Another cute storybook pillow but this one features your favorite tiny adventurer. Can be customized with skin and hair color for an infant or young child. I also love the “reviews” on the back “cover”!

Custom Pet Pillow

custom-pet-pillows // custom pillow ideas

This pillow is going to the top of my Christmas list! I would love a custom Barkley pillow! In fact, I think I need a few so he can be in every room 😉

Hand Embroidered College Pillow

embroidered-college-pillows

The detail on these pillows is gorgeous. They make a ton of these hand embroidered college pillows, including one for my Alma Mater- Oklahoma State University! I love how they tie in all the colors and traditions in a playful design!

Which of these custom throw pillows is your favorite? Visit UncommonGoods for more pillows and home accessories!

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Decorate Your Walls (WITHOUT Shiplap!)

Seems like everybody is making the pilgrimage to MAGNOLIA. I have a confession to make – I am not obsessed with Chip & Joanna Gaines. As a blogger and a DIY lover it’s assumed that I want to shiplap all the things. I think shiplap is getting a little overdone – it’s pretty but I’m seeing it everywhere. Pretty sure it’s replaced chevron as one of the most popular ideas on Pinterest! I’ve teamed up with 20+ other home and DIY bloggers who want to show you some awesome alternatives to shiplap. We’re calling it the Anti-Shiplap blog hop! If you’re stopping by from Domicile 37 – welcome! Be sure to click on through to all the link up participants – lots of amazing decorating ideas that are alternatives to shiplap! I’m sharing 3 ways I’ve decorated my walls that are not shiplap:

Gallery Wall

In our apartment, I was limited to what I could do to cover the walls. We had high ceilings and plain yellow/cream colored walls. I didn’t love it, so I found a way to cover a large section of the living room wall. I shared in this post how we put up a huge and inexpensive gallery wall.

DIY Gallery Wall using in expensive frames

 

Large Art

One problem I’ve had are the hard to fill wall spaces. The ones that definitely need something but the layout doesn’t work for a stencil or some other all over wall treatment. One such area was in my dining room, where we have a large opening to the kitchen. To fill a long skinny section, I created cheap and easy DIY wall art. Check out this post to find out more about the “magic stain” I used to create this piece.

DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy!

Easy DIY Wall art using wood shims. Made even easier with Amy Howard Better With Age Vintage Wood Mercantile Salvaged Timber

Fabric “Wallpaper”

One of my all time favorite DIY projects is the accent wall in my home office/craft room. I did a major makeover for the One Room Challenge, and one of the goals was to find an amazing wall paper for that room. Unfortunately, my husband was laid off right in the middle of the makeover so we had to scale back. A perfect alternative was to do a DIY fabric covered wall. This brought the cost well below what ONE roll of wallpaper would have cost and was a non permanent option. I share a full tutorial on how I did this in this post.

Office Makeover - Amber Oliver. Bright and cheerful office space with floral fabric wall. Photo by thinkelysian.com

Office Makeover - Amber Oliver. Bright and cheerful office space with floral fabric wall. Photo by thinkelysian.com

For more wall treatment ideas check out this awesome bloggers!
Monday, September 19th

 
Tuesday, September 20th
Wednesday, September 21st
Thursday, September 22nd

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Drab to FAB Dresser Makeover with Metallic Paint

This post is sponsored by DecoArt and Michaels.

DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels

I’ve had this chippy, old, white dresser for years. I’ve held onto it because the size is perfect for our dining room and the drawers are great storage for extra place mats, tablecloths, and cloth napkins. But the color? Blah. And the condition? Ehhh. This drab little dresser could really use some love. When DecoArt challenged me to use their new Americana Decor Metallics, I knew I had the perfect project!

BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels

To begin this dresser makeover, I had to strip away all the old paint. This piece had been repainted at LEAST 3 different times. I used paint stripper and a paint remover tool to get all the old paint off. I was surprised how quickly this stuff started working. You can see it bubbles up and most of the paint basically starts falling off. Some places were a bit tougher and we had to use the scraper to really get in there.

removing-the-paint

I used an electric sander to be sure the surface was as clear and smooth as I could get it. I removed the drawers, placed the piece on its back, then then applied a coat of primer.

After the piece was primed, it was time to get that gorgeous Metallic paint on! I put 2 coats AND touched up several places and only used 1 can of paint! I used a roller to cover the majority of the piece, and a small brush to get in the places the roller couldn’t reach. This helps get a smooth finish!You can find these 8 oz jars at Michaels – I used Pewter for my dresser makeover!

metallics

I love that the dresser looks darker or brighter depending on how much light is in the room. The metallic finish make this a total statement piece that I built the room around. As you can see, I’m not afraid of a little color and LOVE how this turned out.

BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels BEFORE and AFTER of DIY dresser make over with DecoArt Metallics from Michaels

On your next Michaels run, grab a jar of this Metallic paint. What project will you use it on?

michaels-ad-campaign-graphic-v2

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FREE DOWNLOAD: Pink Abstract Background

Desktop-and-Iphone

Desktop iPhone

Happy Friday! I’m celebrating the weekend by sharing a free download with you! I don’t do it often enough, but painting can be super relaxing. I’m no artist, but there’s something therapeutic about putting a brush to paper and seeing the paint move around. I painted this along with my brush stroke circles for a little pop of color in my first apartment years ago. During the One Room Challenge I was cleaning and decluttering my office when I found it. I decided to scan it in and turn it into a cute background. It’s available as a free download for your computer or for your phone. Enjoy!

How to download: 

  • For the desktop:

    • Click on the desktop link.
    • Save the image or drag it to your desktop.
    • Once saved, open up System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver.
  • For the iPhone:

    • On your phone, click on the iPhone link.
    • Hold down on the image and click Save Image. It will be saved to your photo library.
    • Once saved, Go to Settings > Wallpaper > Choose a New wallpaper.

This download is available to you FREE! It’s for personal use only. If you use one, drop me a note below, on Instagram, or Twitter and let me know!

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DIY Emoji Air Fresheners

This blog has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #StimulateTheSenses #CollectiveBias

I don’t think I can send a text without an emoji. In fact, I probably overuse them! Emoji’s have been around the PC for years but really gained popularity with the iPhone. Did you know you can even hashtag an emoji? I created a DIY that combines my favorite emojis and Nature’s Truth Essential Oils to make some DIY emoji Air fresheners for my car!

emoji-air-freshener

Materials-Needed

Felt (Yellow, red, black, and white)

Sissors

Glue

Nature’s Truth Essential Oils

Instructions

Use a cup or small bowl to trace a circle on the yellow felt and cut out the circle that will serve as your smiley face.

diy-emoji-car-air-freshner-3-of-38

For the heart eye emoji: cut out 2 small squares from the red felt, fold in half, then cut half a heart (the same way you made Valentine’s in elementary school!) Repeat on the second square so you’re left with 2 similar hearts out of red felt. For the mouth: I cut a small black rectangle, left one side flat, then cut an arch from one corner to the other to create the smile.

diy-emoji-car-air-freshner-22-of-38

For the tongue out face: Cut the mouth from the black felt (same as above). Cut one small circle from the white felt and use a sharpie to make a small black dot in the middle. For the winking eye, I used a small scrap piece of the black felt and cut it into a slight arch.

Use glue to attach the face to your emoji. Then thread a string through the top so you can hang from the rear view mirror of your car.

diy-emoji-air-fresheners-8-of-10

The last step is to sprinkle on several dabs of Nature’s Truth Essential Oils. I have Mental Clarity and Calming. Both have scents that are helpful for dealing with the stress on my commute to and from work. Mental Clarity is great for starting the day – its scent is focusing and centering. Calming has a botanical blend of pure, soothing oils with a scent that calms your senses and is great after a long day. I try to use my time in the car to relax- either before a long day or after one. I picked up Nature’s Truth Essential Oils from CVS in the vitamin aisle!

in-store-photo

These DIY air fresheners are great for the car, but oils can be used in many ways around your home as well. Other ideas include soaps, candles, and even my sugar scrub recipe! Aromatherapy has been used for centuries for soothing, uplifting, or many different ways as there are different oils to meet your needs. Use this coupon to try Nature’s Truth Essential Oils for yourself!

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Our Third Anniversary + A Giveaway!

This post is sponsored by JORD Wood Watches.

There are so many reasons for me to love September. My top reason: it’s the anniversary of our wedding! This year marks our 3rd wedding anniversary on September 28th. For our 1st anniversary, we celebrated with a trip to the Northeast. We visited several cities in Massachusetts including Boston, Rockport, and Salem. (Salem in October was SO MUCH FUN!)  Because of a few big purchases this past year and some big things we are saving for, we scaled back and have decided to celebrate at home. We love to have coffee dates at home, where we take the time to sit and chat, catch up on how our week has been, what goals we have, and how we can help each other. Quality time is in each of our love languages so we try to take the time to sit down, put our phones away, and just talk.
JORD Wood Watch - a very unique watch // Amber and Eric Oliver JORD Wood Watch // Amber and Eric Oliver JORD Wood Watch // Amber and Eric Oliver JORD Wood Watch // Amber and Eric Oliver

When JORD Wood Watches reached out and offered me one of their watches, I knew I had to give it to Eric! The wood watches are stunning and so unique. As avid DIYers we build with wood all the time, so we loved that these watches are made out of WOOD! I gave Eric the DOVER series Zebrawood & Dark Sandalwood for our anniversary. You can shop other great watch designs here.JORD Wood Watch - a very unique watch // Amber and Eric Oliver JORD Wood Watch - a very unique watch // Amber and Eric Oliver

GIVEAWAY:

I’ve teamed up with JORD to giveaway a $75 GIFT CARD to JORD Wood Watches! Everyone who enters will receive a $20 e-gift code just for entering! ENTER HERE. The contest will close 9/25 at 11:59pm. Both the $75 and the $20 codes will expire on 1/31/2017.


Luxury Wooden Watch

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DIY Luggage Tag – free cut file!

I’ve had the same luggage for years. My mom gave me a full set a few years ago and those bags have been around the world with me. Before my last trip (earlier this month I traveled to Atlanta for Haven!) I realized my luggage tag hadn’t been updated in some time. Not only did it have my maiden name, it had an old Oklahoma address on it! Luckily, I’ve never needed the tag. I realized that was a lot of personal information about me. What if someone stole my bag with my address and found my keys in my suitcase? Instead, I decided to make my own DIY luggage tag, and add my online handle (@a_m_b_o). Nowadays, most every knows what an @name means. If you check out my Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest they all have a link to my blog and email address. Honestly, this is the best way to contact me and I prefer not putting my address on the tag anymore!

This post contains affiliate links. If you shop from my blog, I may be compensated for clicks or purchases that you make. Thank you for your support – it means I can keep crafting! Please refer to my disclaimer page for more information.

DIY Luggage Tag - make your own luggage tag!

Materials-Needed---Black

Vinyl (I think the minimum cut is 1/4 yard but if you have scrap that’s what I used!)

Silhouette or other cutting machine (optional)

Luggage Tag cut file (free download!)

Spray Glue

 Sewing Machine (This is the one I use!)

Instructions logo---black

Start by opening the DIY Luggage Tag cut file in Silhouette Studio (or your machines program). Outline and cut 2 of the luggage tags. I used the spray glue to make sure it stuck to my mat.

*Note: you could also use an Xacto knife to cut this – it’s a pretty simple shape.

DIY Luggage Tag

After the files are cut, I had to use an Xacto knife to cut a few spots. Since the vinyl is pretty thick, it didn’t go all the way through. If you have a new blade you’ll probably be ok.

IMG_2942

When you have your 2 pieces, line them up and use the spray adhesive to stick them together. This will make it easier when you run them through your sewing machine.

DIY Luggage Tag

Use the sewing machine to run a quick stitch around the outline of the tag. This step took me all of 2 minutes 🙂

DIY Luggage Tag DIY Luggage Tag

The last step is to add your @handle to your new DIY Luggage Tag! Cut it out with vinyl or if you have pretty handwriting use a metallic sharpie! Now if you ever lose your luggage, someone can get a message to you instantly online 🙂Amber signature //amber-oliver.com

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DIY Wall Art – Cheap and Easy Wall Art Using Wood Shims

I have the most awkward wall in my dining room. In fact, it was so awkward that we weren’t able to make that room the living room and resigned it to be the dining room. It’s actually worked out really well having the dining room the first room when you come in our home, but there was a big. blank. wall. that greeted you. With a big ‘ol hole in the middle. Which made it really difficult to decorate. Besides, if i’m completely honest, I kinda hate decorating anyway. So I put it off. Now we’ve been in our home for over a year and decided it was time to do something – enter my DIY wall art. While the materials used in the project are pretty genius (umm hello – less than $20!!) the paint/stain was the BEST part. But it actually wasn’t paint or stain. I used Better With Age Vintage Wood Mercantile Salvaged Timber by Amy Howard – whew quite a name but it’s seriously amazing! I wanted the look of different color woods for my DIY wall art, but did NOT want to spend the time staining each of the pieces individually. This stuff made the process SO SIMPLE.

This post contains affiliate links. If you shop from my blog, I may be compensated for clicks or purchases that you make. Thank you for your support! Please refer to my disclaimer page for more information. 

Close up of Wood Shim Wall Art Closeup of Wood Shim Wall Art DIY shim wall art - DIY wall art using wood shims - DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy! Closeup of Wood Shim Wall Art DIY shim wall art - DIY wall art using wood shims - DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy! DIY shim wall art - DIY wall art using wood shims - DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy!

DIY Wall Art Using Wood Shims

Materials-Needed---Black

Hardboard Tempered Panel

2 – 1 in. x 2 in. x 8 ft. Furring Strip Board

2 packs – Wood Shims

Wood Glue

Paint brush

Amy Howard Better With Age Vintage Wood Mercantile Salvaged Timber

tools-needed--black

Miter Saw

Speed Square

Clamps

Instructions logo---black

I used a hardboard tempered panel for 2 reasons: 1. I already had it and 2. It’s thinner and more lightweight than plywood. We cut ours to 2’x4′. Home Depot will cut this down for you in the store!

DIY Wall Art using wood shimsDIY Wall Art using wood shims

You are about to make a LOT of miter cuts. Crank up the radio so you can hear it through your earplugs and get to cutting. The miter saw used to scare me a bit (I had a little accident with one last year and shed a little blood) but after about 150 cuts I was feeling pretty ok with this tool! I used the ruler on the miter saw to cut my wood shims in half. I had to make 2 cuts to make sure they were even. I simply lined it up with the groove on the left, made a cut, moved the piece on the right over, and made a second cut, then hoarded for an undetermined future project discarded the tiny left over piece.

DIY Wall Art using wood shims. Simple and cheap wall art!

I had Eric line it up so I could take a photo, but I made all the cuts 😉DIY Wall Art using wood shims. Simple and cheap wall art!

After you’ve made all your cuts, it’s time to lay out your design. We used a speed square so we had a 45 degree angle to line up the first board. After the 1st board is lined up, the rest fall into place. Lay the 2nd piece at the end of the 1st, pointed down, to make an arrow up. Then put the 3rd piece under the 1st and repeat the process.

DIY Wall Art using wood shims. Simple and cheap wall art!

We laid our design out and then started gluing. Your pieces will overhang the edges, but you’ll trim those off later. Make sure you give the wood glue plenty of time to dry. We didn’t use clamp or anything heavy on the pieces, simply applied glue the pressed them into place gently. Be very careful not to push your design around, you want all your pieces to line up so you’ll get the cool herringbone look.

DIY Wall Art using wood shims. Simple and cheap wall art!

Once you get to the edges, you’ll need the wood clamps to hold some of the pieces in place. Don’t worry if there are tiny holes, we are going to cover that with trim pieces.

Note: the wood shims are angled so one end is thinner than the other. We alternated the thin and thick pieces so it really gives this piece of DIY wall art some dimension.

DIY Wall Art using wood shims. Simple and cheap wall art!

The last building step is to attach the “furring strip boards” to make a frame. We cut the top and bottom at 2 feet and adjusted the sides to a little less than 4 foot so they all fit around. After you are done building it’s time for the paint/stain!

Easy DIY Wall art using wood shims. Made even easier with Amy Howard Better With Age Vintage Wood Mercantile Salvaged Timber
THIS STUFF IS AMAZING! Simply brush it on and watch as the magic happens! It reacts with the tannins in the wood so some pieces turn out darker. It gives the piece an amazing look! Just what I was going for, but I didn’t have to paint or stain each piece individually! I even shared a quick video on Instagram!

After you get it stained, let it sit for a day or so to make sure it’s dry and to let it air out a bit. Then hang your DIY wall art with these d-ring picture hangers.

DIY wall art using wood shims - DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy! DIY wood shims wall art - Wall art using wood shims. DIY wall art ideas that are cheap and easy! DIY Wood Shim Art a cheap and easy wall art idea

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DIY Abstract Clock

I brought home so many fun things from Haven conference! One of my favorite parts of this conference was all the hands on activities. Many of the booths were set up with fun crafts and DIYs. I was so excited to go by the DecoArt booth and meet the awesome ladies there. We made DIY clocks and I thought I would share the one I made: a DIY abstract clock! We used DecoArt paint and Walnut Hollow hardware to create this fun DIY Abstract clock.

Materials-Needed---Black

Walnut Hollow Paneled Wood Clock

Walnut Hollow Clock Movement

Painter’s Tape

DecoArt Paint (I used: Americana Decor Outdoor Living Paint 8 oz- Wildflower, Succulent, and Poolside along with  Americana Decor Color Stains 8oz-Fuchsia)

Instructions logo---blackSet up your clock panel.
DIY Abstract Clock

Use painter’s tape to tape off the surface. Alternate the tape around to make different sections. DIY Abstract Clock

Fill in the sections with alternating paint colors. I love how the Americana Decor Color Stains 8oz-Fuchsia looks on the wood!
DIY Clock Tutorial

Remove the painter’s tape after your paint has dried.diy clock tutorial - DIY Abstract Clock

At this point, I initially planned to fill in the lines with white or silver paint, but after seeing the raw wood lines I loved it this way! DIY Clock Tutorial

Attach the Walnut Hollow clock face according to the package instructions. It’s super simple – they give you a diagram on the back!DIY Clock Idea

Install a single AA battery and set your clock! I opted to leave the numbers off, but you could easily add numbers with a stencil or with vinyl. While I did an abstract design on mine, you could use these materials and come up with your own unique idea!

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DIY Plant Markers

Clay is one of the few craft mediums I’d never worked with. I had a few good years with play dough (around years 4, 5, and 6…) but now that I’m a little older I thought I would try grown up play dough – oven bake clay! I’ve seen tons of tutorials on creating a marbled look with clay (which is totally on my to-do list) but I wanted a simple project to start with so I can get the feel of working with this product. This tutorial for DIY plant markers is perfect for someone (like me) who has never used oven bake clay before.

This post contains affiliate links. If you shop from my blog, I may be compensated for clicks or purchases that you make. Thank you for your support – it means I can keep crafting! Please refer to my disclaimer page for more information.

DIY Plant Makers made from oven-bake clay \\ by Amber OliverDIY Plant Makers made from oven-bake clay \\ by Amber Oliver

DIY Plant Markers

Materials-Needed---Black

Oven bake clay

Nonstick Rolling Pin

Xacto Knife

Stamps

Silicon Baking Mat

DecoArt Patio Paint and Paint Brush

Instructions logo---black

Begin by rolling out your clay. It’s much more firm than playdough but same general idea. You can roll it into a ball with your hands, then use a nonstick rolling pin to roll it out flat until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. I created these DIY plant markers with one package of blue oven bake clay.

After you’ve rolled the clay flat use the xacto knife to cut out a long rectangle with a pointed end. You could measure this out to make sure the size is exact, but there’s no reason to. I just eyeballed it and mine were fine. If for some reason you mess up, just roll it back into a ball and start over! I cut mine on the silicon baking mat, but that’s not recommended on the mat’s package. What can I say, I’m a rebel 🙂 Just be careful if you do this not to cut your mat.

After you’ve got your makers cut, you are ready to stamp them! I put the names of herbs on the ones I made. I used small alphabet stamps.

DIY Garden Stakes

Next up, it’s time to bake. Follow the baking instructions on your clay package. I put mine on a silicon baking mat so they’d be easy to remove. Side note: does anyone have a clean oven? Is that a thing? Because mine is never clean.

DIY Plant Markers

After they’ve “cooked” let them cool before handling them. Then you’re ready to add paint. I added paint to fill in the indents from the stamps on each of the letters and wiped off the excess with a paper towel. This made it much easier to read! I used DecoArt patio paint since these will be outside!

DIY Garden MarkersDIY Garden Markers

Your last step is to put them in your garden and enjoy! I gave these as a gift and they would be a perfect housewarming or hostess present!

DIY Plant Markers by Amber Oliver

Amber signature //amber-oliver.com

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