The Reality of DIY

I love to take on projects I have had on my mind for our weekly DIY or Buy posts. This week was no different. I actually had 3 projects I was going to finally get done this week. I had all of my supplies, tutorials and a whole lot of motivation to create. 

Here are all of my inspirations:

I had planned to make my first attempt at shibori. I was at an art store with my kids when I came across blue dye. It was a sign!! I was just admiring a piece of shibori art from Japan, trying to figure out how they did it. I have dyed a lot through the years so this seemed like a no brainer. I would have a pile of pillows like these in no time.

I recently found an old piece of pottery my sister in law brought home from Africa one year. I had it safely packed up when we moved (4 years ago!) but had lost track of it. I never knew where it was until just last week. When I found it, I was immediately reminded of a small planter that one of my indoor plants lives in. It has very similar markings in the clay but it was a faded greenish taupe. It needed to be black, and I was planning to use a small brush and paint the indentations white, just like these authentic African pots. Totally simple.


I have also been craving new artwork in my living room, and with all this paint out, why not just whip up a masterpiece? Like, no big deal. It will probably be done in 20 minutes.




So what happened???

How could all of these seemingly easy projects go so horribly wrong???

As is the uncomfortable reality of DIY, sometimes things don’t go as planned. All of my projects failed…… miserably.

First was the shibori. I followed all of the tutorials. I had all the same supplies recommended.


I’m not sure when, but somewhere along the way it all went wrong.

I ended up with this:

shibori fail

Next was the soon to be African art planter.

I painted it black. It was really cool and seemed to be heading in the right direction.

matte black pot

As soon as it dried my daughter and I started painting in the lines. Ugh. It was soooo bad. Staying in the carved marks was nearly impossible and the white would not stay white. It was a disaster. Even my daughter recommended we stop and paint it back to black. She is 5.

To be honest painting that pot, even though it was a bust, was very therapeutic and put me in the mood to get to my artwork. I pulled out a big old canvas that has been painted on about 20 times because I canvas! In the course of time it must have been  damaged, because as soon as my brush touched it…! Who has ever had a paint brush rip canvas?? I kept on going, thinking I can tape it from behind and you won’t ever see it. Ha! I put forth a real effort, but as I kept going and the kid’s brutally honest comments kept coming, I had to give up. No photo necessary here.


So there you have it.

This weeks DIY or Buy. It’s not from a lack of trying. It just wasn’t my week. I would be willing to try these projects again however. Perhaps refine my tools, find different tutorials. But at this point they are all a BUY!!

Go buy that amazing shibori throw you saw on Amber Interiors.

Go buy that African pot on eBay!

And definitely buy that amazing abstract artwork you saw at Home Goods for $100. It’s all worth it.


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