DIY {batik printing}

I thought I’d share another idea…something I made for Christmas gifts. In middle school I had an art teacher named Jennifer Brown (I had her husband Rob Brown in high school too). In 7th or 8th grade she taught us how to do batik printing. I had so much fun and have always wanted to do it again…now decades later I finally did it! If anyone knows the Browns (I think they are still local) you should send them a link to this! It is pretty simple to do – in simplistic terms you:

Melt wax (I used beeswax from Hobby Lobby)

Apply wax to fabric (I used wood block and rods, flour sacks from Walmart for towels)

Dye fabric (I used Rit liquid dye, added HOT water & salt)

Dry fabric, iron out wax


Now those directions won’t really help too much. You can find better ones HERE courtesy of Martha Stewart.

Here’s my supplies, the wax melting, the fabric after the wax was applied

The dyeing process (some I dyed wine, then denim blue hence the purple), drying process

The final product…cute custom dish towels

There are endless options of what you could make and dye. This is a bit of a long process depending on how much and how big you do. It was a lot of fun for me though…I’m thinking of what I could do next!

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  • Michele V. - Those are adorable. You are one brave girl to do this inside your house. I’m thinking garage….

  • Lesley - These are so cute! Thanks for the set you gave me! I love how cute your pics are throughout the process! Thanks for posting, my only question, what did you use to make the patterns, or is it the wood blocks you mentioned?

    I had the Browns too, I never got this lesson!

  • Jeannette Swan - I love it and want to try – I don’t know if I’m brave enough though – it looks kind of hard. Maybe I will save it for summer when I can stay home all day and work on it!! I love reading the awesome ideas.

  • meg duerksen - these don’t even compare to mine!
    this is so much more work. you are funny. i love these. my sister would really love these.
    even though it’s a long process (and messy?) it looks like it must be very satisfying. i love big projects.

  • Kata - I LOVE your photography! Your blog is a total inspiration! I love to see the way other people look at things. Lovely.

  • Laura Meerholz - I made a batik in middle school also. I have always wanted to try it again. I just returned a book to the library about batik projects to do at home. You have inspired me to give it a try this summer!

  • Cat Thomas - love your ideas! :)

  • Hannah - These would be so cool with an all-over design…I can picture them made into purses or throw-pillows. In fact, pillow cases would be cool!

  • Mary O - I made one piece in collage and they kept it in their permanent collection. Wished I had taken a picture back then. Been thinking about trying it again. Thanks for the heads up and sharing.

Happy New Year

Funny to post Christmas pictures on New Year’s Day. Here’s a glimpse at our Christmas. We began at my grandpa’s house and had such a great time with family there. I love how interested all my grandparents are in my boys…it was fun to watch grandpa light up when the boys walked in the door. The next day we headed to Branson for several days to spend time with Chris’ family. We don’t get to see them very often, so it is always so great for all of us. My family postponed all their celebrations until we returned home. We were all spent after it was all said and done, but loved every minute of it. I do believe Big Brother now owns everything marketers created for Lightning McQueen lovers. I need to get a pic of him surrounded by it all….onto the pictures.

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  • Ang - I don’t know about 15, but definitely not old enough to have three boys! =) You look great. And so does Hudson’s new hair cut!

  • Courtney Connelly - Please tell Corbett I can’t wait to hear him play me a song on his guitar! Looks like you all had a wonderful Christmas with family.

  • Lisa - I was thinking the same thing about your age in the first family pic. You look amazing for having 3 kids and VERY young.

  • Jeannette Swan - I’m so jealous of the great pictures, why can’t we carry you around in our pocket and you take ALL our family pictures!! I do have to say that the new camera made a big difference in my ability to get good pictures (yes, I took a lot in manual mode!) But, I still have a lot to learn, I feel like it’s just chance if I get a good one! I can’t seem to get the color right – most of my pictures seem to have a yellow tint. Happy New Year to your great family!!

  • AshleyAnn - Jeanette, the yellow light is from the lights in your house. Look in your manual for how to change the white balance. It should have some options like tungsten, florescent, shade, outside, etc. You can set it to match whatever lighting you are using…

  • grandma campbell - Hey the pictures are all great and yes you look 15 and I look like 90, just realized that family picture I had not ever combed my hair that day, oh well, love them all and love all my children, their spouses and grandchildren. Thanks so much for doing such a great job as you always do.

  • Jamie - I got a Canon dslr for Christmas! I got it a few days early so I was able to use it during the holidays and although I’m just figuring it out as I go, the ones I took look so much nicer than Cmases past. Granted, I was in automatic mode the whole time, but I got an extra lens that makes the backgrounds blurry, and my pics look so much better. Nowadays, I’m all about the blur! Thanks for the excellent recommendations on your blog post about cameras :)

  • bopha27 - You guys look like you had a great time, I think we stay at that same place in Branson when we go. I never knew that you were such a young mother :).

  • Jeannette Swan - Thanks for the advice, I will take a look.

  • Carrie Sowell - How fun! Where is ridemakerz? Would it be a fun date night place or is it geared towards kids only?

  • meg duerksen - such a treasure these pictures must be to family. just think how everyone changes so quickly and now they were captured so perfectly…forever.
    looks like a really nice holiday!
    happy new year!

  • AshleyAnn - Carrie, we went to the one in Branson…there isn’t one in Oklahoma. It could be a fun date night, if you like building cars. They begin at $12.00 for a basic car and you can spend probably over $200.00 on customizations.

  • Carrie Sowell - We saw the same place in Branson when we were there for Thanksgiving. I thought we had one here and I was missing out. Maybe we should open one!! :-)

DIY {cakestands}

I haven’t disappeared…we just returned from spending time with family for Christmas. I have a ton of pictures, but haven’t even begun to get them off my camera and onto the computer. I thought I’d share one of the Christmas gifts I made this year. I posted a link to this idea before Christmas and I’ve heard several of you made these as well. It is so easy and addicting….they are so fast and it was fun searching for plates I thought people would like….

You will need:


Plate, platter, bowl, etc.

A base that is wide enough to make the stand stable

Books for weight

Step one: Wash and dry the plate and base

Step two: Find the center of the bottom of your plate and mark it

Step three: Mix your epoxy and apply a thin layer to the base

Step four: Attach the two, turn upside down and use books for a little weight

They dry in about 5 minutes and are ready for use. I bought candlestick holders from Hobby Lobby for my base and plates from Southern Hospitality on Main St. in BA.

For those wondering, yes one of the bases is an old coffee can. That is the one I made for myself. No one else likes it, but I do and it is in my house so that is all that matters to me. When I showed my mom she smiled and said it looks like something I would like….:)

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  • Mandy - I just noticed that I picked the same flowered plate for two of the stands that I made and paired it with the exact same base. Thanks for the idea, my mom loved it!! In fact the second flowered plate is going to be a gift for one of her friends.

  • Lesley - very cute! mine has fudge on it right now

  • jesse - Love it, I am totally going to give that a go! Glad to see a post, I have been missing reading! Happy New Year!

  • yvonne - I somehow over looked this idea for Christmas…..but it’s great for birthdays & mother’s day as well!!! Thanks for the tip!

  • Sandy - Thanks for the cake stand, I love it (mine is the flower plate). It looks great on the table and I can’t wait to bake a cake and use it. You come up with the neatest stuff.

  • Heidi - Just made one after hitting up the after Christmas sales. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Paper Dolls for Boys - I think the old coffee can is genius. So happy to have found your blog via AT.

  • Julia - Genius.

  • Cake Stands DIY » Picture Party - [...] to her blog for instructions and to see her other genius/cute [...]

  • Brooke Hoover - I LOVE the coffee can idea ! I am originally from Louisiana and obsessed with Cafe Du Monde coffee tins so now you’ve inspired me of an amazing way to use them! Thanks for your creativity – I have a crafty friend who was looking for affordable cakestands for a tea party – better yet – we can Make them!

  • Vivien Jordan - THIS DIY IS GODSEND! Thank you so much for sharing. I’m posting your doily runner tomorrow on my blog. I’m so thankful I came across your site…although I can’t remember how exactly. Maybe it was through the Love.Obsess.Inspire blog? Hmm…

  • Jessica Cudzilo - You are brilliant! I have had so much fun perusing your site tonight. I must go to bed! Thank you for giving me such inspiration! xo!

  • Kimberly - LOVE IT! I plan on making one this weekend, topping it off with some yummy treats, and it’ll be the perfect housewarming gift for my friend! Not sure how I found this blog, but you’re awesome :)

  • Christmas is a Craft: DIY Christmas Gifts « Room to Think - [...] Cakestands – These are so easy! I like to pick up cute plates and candleholders at the thrift store. [...]

  • Pilar - i just discovered your blog and i love it. congratulations.

  • Linda - fun tutorial…thank you! The coffee can plate is my favorite too…I love old tins! Happy New Year!

  • Judy - I love this idea! So creative! I can’t wait to search the flea markets and thrift stores for just the right combinations.
    Not sure how I stumbled on your blog, but so glad I did!

  • Best Home Improvement Blogs | Fix It Yourself - [...] the Sycamore is wonderful.  This project has totally inspired me with ideas for chicken wire, and this one I’m banking for holiday presents. Good With Style: It seems that many green design blogs are [...]

  • Embrace That Ol’ Camera :) | OhSweetWhatever - [...] And also do do do do check out {my all time favourite ever in the world blog} Under The Sycamore for Ashley’s cake stands.  [...]

  • Zelf maak idee: Taart Plateau | Wilma Boekholt, Interieur & Styling - [...] Ook een super leuk idee zijn deze taart plateaus die gemaakt zijn van vintage borden, blikjes, kandelaars en vaasjes. Lijm een bord op een stabiele basis (zoals bijvoorbeeld een blikje, kandelaar of vaasje) en klaar is je taart plateau! Je vind een werkbeschrijving op de website van Asley Ann Photography. [...]

  • Merciful Blessings - Hi!!! As a NEWBIE BLOGGER navigationg around the www can be a bit overwhelming BUT your page allowed me to slow down, relax, and enjoy a lil’ reading… I totally LUV do it yourself projects, even though I don’t get to them as often as I’d like :/. But of them all, your Coffee Can CakeStand got me… it is being linked to my FB && Twitter as soon as this comment posts – I TOTALLY LUV IT!!!

    Mercy of MB_WOO.MOM
    XoXo~Bless Up Always~XoXo

  • Susan P - I like your coffee can cake stand….unique & fun
    thanks for your great ideas, photos and posts…glad I found you. God Bless

  • Ebonie Sunier - To mislay substance you need to burn more calories than you consume and resistance training can help you do this. A fine still absent dilution training encode can evade your expand the amount of calories you burn all the way through the day. Hold a healthy diet diagram in place and you are thriving taking place your way to burning discarded fat.

  • Susan Swent - I love your ideas, your taste and style. Wow!