Tag Archives: diy

How to: Henna for (absolute) beginners

Let me just start off by saying: it is more so people in Western society, who have no cultural ties to the history of this ancient art form, that refer to it as “henna” or a “henna tattoo”. I am one of those people. Mehndi is a term that carries much more cultural significant when used.

I look at it as a way of doodling on myself (in a nontoxic way) like I used to when I was younger. By the time a teacher would finish a lesson I’d have my hand and part of my arm covered in multicolour ink marks. Often times an ocean or forest scene, usually a flower here and there, and once I decided to do the American and Canadian flag side by side.

I also look at it as displaying my artwork. This being said trying to draw even and straight lines on your self whilst attempting to squeeze paste out of the $3 tube is not always easy and does not always make for the best results.

Pre-Henna Design

(which are all based on my own personal opinion, and therefore might not apply to you)

  • try to go with a smaller tube, especially if you are not planning on using it up in the next year to year and a half
  • was your hands and do not put lotion on right before applying the paste
    • this being said if you have dry hands (like my self) which get even worse in the winter the henna won’t come up as good on dry skin so be careful of that

Design Process

  • Start farthest away from where you will finish. Basically, don’t draw the structure of the design the go in for details. You often or not end up smudging what you already go
    • Again this being said if you “sketch” the design out first then going for details that is one way to ge4t around that

The design its self. If you are literally looking to doodle on your self then have at it, but if you are looking to attempt some traditional designs then here a few basic ones


I tend to just pick out aspects of one Pinterest picture and combine it with another. A lot of times the stuff they have on there is simply beyond my capabilities

Post Design

  • A thin line of henna should be dry between 15-30 minutes, this might take over an hour
  • when it does dry gently rub/roll it off, into a garbage can that is not made of mesh, totally haven’t made that mistake before, just know that this stuff stains


Valentine’s Day Gift Guide — Personal and DIY

Doesn’t Valentine’s Day always seem to sneak up on us? If you’ve been too busy to prepare a gift earlier, here are some personal gift ideas for your special someone.

1. Jigsaw Puzzle 

Jigsaw puzzles make for great future night-in dates and they can be framed after they’re done! They can double up as a great memory and an excellent home decor.

2. Personalized Book/Story or Card 

Write and create your own personalized book. This can be a cute story of your relationship with inside jokes or a couple coupon book (ex. coupon for one back rub, a movie night — your pick). If you have writers block or are worried about your artistic skills, LoveBook provides great guidelines and compiles everything into a hardcover book.

3. Succulent or Preserved Rose Terrarium 

Succulents are so cute and extremely easy to care for. Terrariums are relatively simple to make (lots of guides online) and they’re really customizable. If succulents aren’t a good fit, then maybe a preserved rose is a better option. It incorporates the classic Valentine’s Day flower gift but this one can last for many years and makes a great decor item. Terrariums can be a quick one day DIY gift that is still thoughtful.

Check out my DIY airplant terrarium tutorial. A lot of the same steps apply if you need some guidance.

4. DIY Painted Mug

DIY painted mugs are great because your special someone can be reminded of you every morning when they use the mug. If you want to be extra adorable, you can create two matching ones for both of you. You can find a plain white mug in most department stores or dollar stores. I found my mug at Winners HomeSense. The markers I recommend using are the Pebeo porcelaine markers, which I found on Amazon.

5. Jewelry 

Necklaces, rings, earrings, watches… Jewelry is a classic Valentine’s Day gift and can still be personal. Gauge your partners style and find something to fit their lives. You can even take it one step further and engrave your gift with a personal message.

6. The Night Sky Star Map

A map of the stars on a special day such as when you first met your significant other, when you got married, or your partner’s birthday can make a touching gift. The Night Sky allows you to easily get the map of the stars of a date and location. The design of the poster is simple and aesthetic and you can even write a short custom message.

7. Gift Cards 

Lastly, don’t be afraid to give gift cards. Especially if you’ve already been together for a while because it’s difficult to come up with a unique gift every Valentine’s Day, Christmas, Birthday and Anniversary. Gift cards can be like a mini shopping spree. What are your significant other’s hobbies? Where do they like to shop at? What restaurants do they frequently eat at?

Hope this gave you some ideas for the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. Also, don’t stress out too much because anything from the heart should be well received. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

The post Valentine’s Day Gift Guide — Personal and DIY appeared first on Simply HelenJ.

DIY Air Plant Terrarium



Air plants make extremely easy houseplants. They don’t require any soil — so it saves you the hassle and mess of having to pot something. They require misting every 2-3 days and thrive in bright, indirect sunlight. LED and florescent lights can help as well if you live in an area where it lacks sunlight. Air plant arrangements can add some life to your home/work desk or they can be really pretty hung next to a window in your home. In this DIY I have provided two design examples but be creative because air plant arrangements are so customizable!


  • Globe or small vase
  • Plastic spoon (or something to help scoop up sand and rocks)
  • Sand
  • Aquarium rocks (blue for a beach design)
  • Preserved moss or reindeer moss
  • Air plant
  • Decorations of your choice (bark, shells, dried flowers, etc.)


Air Plant Globe with a Beach Setting

Step One. Use a plastic spoon to scoop some blue aquarium rocks into the left side of the globe. It helps the rocks stay on one side if you tilt the globe slightly. Then, scoop some sand into the other side of the globe. Very lightly shake the globe to level the rocks and sand.


Step Two. (Optional) Add a section of preserved moss into the back of the globe.


Step Three. Add your desired amount of reindeer moss to fill up the back of the globe. Don’t be afraid to rip sections of the reindeer moss if it is too large.


Step Four. Finally, add in your air plant and decorate as you please. To keep with the beach setting, I added a seashell and a small section of bark in my terrarium. You can even add in a small figurine or dried flowers if you want to customize further.


Mini Air Plant Vase

Step One. Use a plastic spoon to scoop in your desired colours of sand into the small vase. You want the sand to fill up about 3/4 of the vase. You can create fun designs by layering different colours of sand!


Step Two. Layer a few aquarium rocks on top of the sand.


Step Three. Finally, gently settle your air plant on top of the rocks and decorate! Adding a small section of reindeer moss and a seashell makes it even cuter.

The post DIY Air Plant Terrarium appeared first on Simply HelenJ.

How to: Jeans to outfit

If you click the link below it will take you to a page of instructions I have made, including drawn pictures and a colour coded key.

From an old pair of jeans to a pair of shorts or a skirt, a tank top and a choker.

Keeping in mind i am not a photographer. At all. Here are some pics of what mine looked like

jean chocker

The story behind it (the contents of this story is not vital to the DIY project)

I grew up wearing yoga pants, track pants, leggings, even a skirt once or twice, but not jeans. Not because I didn’t have the option, quite the opposite really. I just found them uncomfortable in comparison to my favorite pair of black yoga pants and everything else in my closet. It wasn’t until grade 6 that I finally got a pair because everyone else was wearing them and I knew they looked better than what I was wearing. (Upon reflection later on in life I realize this is not true. One looks awesome in what ever they am comfortable wearing). The pair I got were okay, I say in a very monotone way. They certainly weren’t comfortable, but they looked nice. So at the time I figured I’d choose fashion over function. By grade 7 I had outgrown them. There was some mixed feeling surrounding their departure. On one hand I was glad to see them go, on the other it meant I was going to have to get a new pair. Even now pants shopping isn’t always something I enjoy. For some strange and completely unknown reason the pants never look as good on me as the do on the model wearing them.

My mom took me to gap. Both of us picked up a bunch of pairs, semi guessing at my size and therefore having to grab 2 or 3 of the same pair of jeans, just in different sizes. Naturally when trying on guessed jean sizes some tend to go 3/4 up the leg then stop. Kind of just makes you want to give up and find a top you life. That’s always easier.

Never the less I perceviered until I tried on their boy friend jeans. Unfortunately they don’t make the exact style that I got anymore, I checked ? . They fit, they were reasonably comfortable, so I got them. End of story. I was so done. Shopping’s only fun when your liking what your trying on.

A year later starting in grade 8 I noticed everyone wearing leggings. So I readily jumped on that bandwagon, still occationally wearing the jeans when I felt like it. Grade 10 I started wearing paracute pants and really bulky sweat pants, which were both amazingly comfortable. Still occatioanlly wearing the jeans. That summer I went to Thailand for 5 weeks, and parachute pants were everywhere. A got a few of the generic pairs that i saw many travelers wearing.

For all of grade 11 it was parachute pants, sweet pants, and still the occational boy friend jeans.

Grade 12 rolled around and I got a job were sweat pants and parachute pants weren’t the desired work attire. So I started wearing the jeans again. Usually 3 times a week. For all those 6 years they had fit and felt comfortable enoguht I would voluntarily, but occasionally, wear them. I guess someone for got to give them the “you still fit me” memo. On the inside upper thigh it started to fray and rip. It wasn’t something that could be sewn back together. My mom wouldn’t even let me try, but to her defence they were done. I was just in the denial stage It was also getting to the point of inappropriateness, considering that I was wearing them to work.

I went to winners (after I found out that Gap no longer had they same style of boy friend jeans anymore), found a pair that fit and felt okay enough, and bought them. Now that I had a new pair the old pair were obsolete, but had been with me for so long and they were actually some what comfortable.

I messily cut the legs off. Messily because I honestly didn’t think anything wearble would come of it. I think half of me just needed an excuse to through them out. Yet my goal was still to cut enough of the tear away to make them into jean shorts. I soon became busy and put the legs and the hacked at shorts in my “do be fixed box”. When I came back to them just less than a year later not only were the short too ripped on the inside the use them, but I had finally grown to the point that they no loner fit. I, however still wasn’t prepaired to give them up. I started with the legs just cutting them open at the seam. I realized that with a little extra fabric at the sides they could fit as a top.

And thus I started. Guess work, it was all guess work. So basically you could heavily modify the instructions and you’d still be good to go. Modification might also be require depending on body type so try on  as you go.

Before you click How to

Do to technical difficulty (my lack of technical skill) the pages got uploaded in the opposite order. There’s only two so just scroll down a bit and start at 1.

How to