I have lived in quite a few rentals in my day. With every new new place challenges arise on how to decorate it. One thing that is seems always typical of rentals is the hollow-core sliding doors for the closet. I absolutely hate, hate, hate these things. If I have the opportunity, my usual response is to remove and hide them, and hang a curtain, tapestry, beaded curtains, something besides those ugly fake wood doors. Unfortunately, in my current home there is no place to store them. So, staring at my closet doors one morning, which my bed faces, I couldn’t take it anymore. I
decided needed to dress them up. But I did not want to spend a lot of money doing so. We are thinking about making a move soon(ish) so I did not want to spend a lot of money, also I needed to do something that would not risk my security deposit. I have seen projects where people add trim and paint and make these doors look fantastic, but that is just not an option for me (no painting here, wah!). So looking around and deciding to use what I had, I came up with is pretty cool way of dressing up these doors without risking your security deposit.
First I whipped out my gold duct tape. This stuff is great. It comes in many different patterns and colors, it’s super cheap, and 1 roll took care of the whole closet. I decided to use a simple triangle themed pattern, but you can do whatever you would like. I measured the width of each door and the width of the closet opening as a whole, because there is some overlap with two doors. Then I figured out how many rows of triangles I wanted, and divided the whole with width by that number to get how far apart to make each row. I decided to go with 6 rows in total, three on each door. I got out my level and a pencil and lightly outlined where the triangle rows would go, to ensure a fairly straight line. Next, I took my duct tape and cut squares from it and then took those squares and sliced them in half diagonally, making triangles. This way there was no waste. Then I got busy sticking them on the doors. I didn’t measure the space between each triangle, I was trying to keep the look casual and organic, I just tried to ensure that the triangle rows were relatively even and relatively straight. Every once in awhile I would switch up the direction of the triangles, just for fun. I really like how it came out. The color of the duct tape is kind of a brassy gold, is so from one side it seems subtle but when you tilt your head or move towards the light and the light will hit the reflective duct tape and each triangle shines very brightly. It’s pretty cool. And of course , you could make a more complicated pattern or something with more contrast. I think this would look cool with white duct tape, or maybe a black Swiss cross or sun ray pattern. The sky is the limit.
But it was still missing something. This was a good start, but it still wasn’t there. So I began roaming my house, digging thru my craft stash when my eyes alit upon our recycling bin and I got an idea. I grabbed up 9 aluminum cans (already rinsed out) and got to work.
I began by slicing open each aluminum can. I used a craft knife and a pair of sharp scissors for this part. It was pretty easy, but be careful, cut aluminum can be sharp. I sliced down the length of the pop can with the craft knife and then cut around both the bottom and the top piece with the scissors and it opened up no problem. Next I cut out a star shape about the size that I wanted out of cardboard. I taped that to my aluminum and outlined it with a stylus, leaving an outline on the aluminum. After the star was outlined, I used the scissors to cut each star out. It’s easier if you cut from each point into each corner rather than trying to turn the scissors in the corners. Now I had my star shape, but I wanted them to be more dimensional. So I took my stylus and drew a line from each tip to the center of the star, flipped the star over, and drew a line on the opposite side from each corner to the center. This made valley and mountain folds on each side. Then I grabbed each point and bent each one in the direction of the fold I had began with the stylus. There are many tutorials on how to get dimensional stars out of paper online, this is the same idea, just using aluminum.
After I figured I’d had enough (I used one can for each star) I spray painted them a metallic silver. Then I took a small nail and tapped a small hole at the top of one point on each star and ran a thread through each. Next I took some cream colored yarn I had tucked away left over from another project. I made simple tassels with it, using a DVD case to wrap the yarn around. This actually worked out really well, especially because of the indent on the case where you put your fingers to open the case makes a great spot for the scissors to slip under the yarn. To make a tassel you simply wrap a length of yarn around the DVD case (I wrapped each one about 40 times each) and snip off the excess. You take a small length of yarn and slide it under one side of the wrapped yarn and pull it up towards the top and make a knot. Next you snip through all of the wrapped yarn on the opposite side of from where you died the first knot. You take another length of yarn and tight around the top of the tassle about an inch down towards her fringe. That makes the little ball on top. You wrap the excess around the knot and hide the remaining yarn in the rest of the tassle. Then trim and you’re done. For the base of my garland I simply took 3 10 foot lengths of cotton clothesline and braided them together, tying off each end in a knot. I laid it out on the floor and attached my stars and tassels wherever I felt they looked good. Then I hung it up above my closet, added a couple of brass lanterns I found the next day while thrifting, and I was done!
I think it looks pretty awesome especially considering I used what was available in my home. And when you think about it, making something this pretty out of duct tape and pop cans is something you can always be proud of! And when we finally do move, we can just peel them off! (If there is any residue left from the duct tape after removal, simply take a fresh piece of tape and lay it over the residue, rub your finger over it briskly a couple of times, and rip it off like a Band-Aid. The new piece of tape will pick up any leftover residue from an older piece. Works great! You can also use WD-40 on old residue to soften it up and make it wipe right off!)Have you ever made something awesome from something odd? What was it? I would love to see pics of your projects!
As always, go nuts! Have fun! Get messy! Amazing things can happen when you do! XO- Caroline
P.S. Here are the fun parties I link to!