How to repair interior window sills damaged by dogs

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The huge front picture window of our home needed some love because we have a curious German Shepherd, Kara, who is constantly putting her paws up there as she conducts Neighborhood Watch.  This has meant our builder-grade window casings (just texture and paint right over the metal flashing) were torn up and dirty.  So we put up window moulding with an interior window frame in wood to prevent the damage. So now we know how to repair interior window sills damaged by dogs. Being a home owner comes with a steep learning curve.

Kara the window ledge ruiner -

This is a photo of the culprit: “Kara: ‘The Window Sill Ruiner'”.  She seems so sweet and innocent with her deer-like ears … but she is a mad dog when it comes to the neighbor’s cats sitting on her lawn. That is her lawn and she will bark and freak out until they respect her authority and leave her property.  That lawn is hers and no other animal’s.  Sadly, the window ledges have taken the abuse she wishes she could hurl at those cats.

Ruined Window ledge -

I know, that looks nasty. Trust me, I know.  But that was as clean as I could get it due to the texture of the wall coating, and the fact that Kara has literally dug her claws into the window ledge and removed a lot of that coating, leaving the flashing exposed (the darkest parts on the corners)… as well as gotten dirt into every possible crevice. Yuck.  So we decided the best thing to do was to put some moulding around the window, including a flat board on the bottom of the sill which we thought would be easier to clean than this textured non-sense.  And if worse came to worse, we can always remove the board and replace… and opposed to this sill which technically cannot be removed and replaced.  So after measuring the length, width, height, and breadth of the window and sill…off to Home Depot we went:

How to install window trim -

The moulding section is cray. I see why some people shy away form home improvement projects and home improvement stores. Moulding comes in huge long pieces, towering over you.  But no fear. You can cut it down to the size you need right there in the aisle with a saw provided… just add about 6-10 inches to your window dimensions in case you make a cutting error… no big deal.

Flat board for inner window sill -

We chose this 1/2 x 2-1/2″ primed pine for the bottom of our sill.  I decided on a pre-primed piece because it saves me work :)


For the moulding we went with this 3″ Del Mar MDF – also pre-primed.  I am a fan of MDF over wood for a few reasons: 1. MDF is more affordable 2. pre-primed saves me labor 3. MDF is usually very straight as opposed to natural wood which is often warped and can cause me headaches.  Obviously I am a lazy DIYer.

Here are the tools we used at home:

How to install window moudling

Arrow Pnumatic Brad Nailer PT18G
Box cutter
Brad Nails 18GA 1-1/2″
Saftey Googles
Measuring Tape
(not pictured, air compressor & saw)

How to install window moudling

The husband came home and marked off the measurements for the boards.  FYI, I feel like I should mention a few things: 1. If you are an avid illistyle reader you are probably wondering why the pink dresser is under the window? 2. What is that piece the TV is on? 3. And what is on the wall opposite the window? 4. Where’s the sofa?  Lemme ‘splain: we were given some nice sofas, guest room furniture, and that TV stand.  So here’s the plan:  1. We have friends getting married who want the guest room furniture 2. Once they pick that up the pink dresser will be moved to the guest room 3. We want to build some sweet shelves and mount the TV over the fireplace, so the current TV stand is temporary.  Everything is always temporary, am I right? lol.  But back to the moulding.

How to install window moudling

We then cut the boards (and by we, I totally mean Evan), leaving them slightly longer than we thought needed, so we could trim as necessary. You can always shave more off, but if you cut a board too short, you cannot put any back on.  Ya know what I mean?  And *safety first guys: make sure you protect your eyes by wearing googles.*

How to install window trim -

We then worked as a team to hold up the moulding, place it, and use the awesome pneumatic brad nailer to keep those bad boys in place.  Oh goodness.  This was my first time using a pneumatic gun and I loved it. I wanted to nail all the things… but Evan said no. I will say, at first I was a little intimidated… but once I tried the brad nailer, I loved it.  It’s light and easy to use. Lighter than a regular hand drill so your arm doesn’t get fatigued.  It only took us a few minutes to actually install the boards once everything was cut.  The whole project from measure, to purchase, to cut, to install was less than 2 hours.

How to repair window moulding after dog scratch damage -

This is what the board and moulding look like next to one another with caulking and paint (additional time was required for that).  Much cleaner and nicer than that metal-showing, dirt-catching, scratched-up mess it was before, right?

How to fix window trim -

If you have a dog who you love, but has messed up your window moulding, then this fix is easy to do. We are keeping our dog, but have found a way to protect our window sills from her scratches and dirt.  The window sill is now easy to clean, looks awesome, and can be replaced at minimal cost/labor if our dog really tears it up.

creative lifestyle blogger southern caifornia -

Thank you to our sponsor, Arrow Fasteners, for providing the pneumatic brad nailer for this project.  All opinions are my own.

How to conceal window trim damaged by dogs -

How to make mini pom poms

How to make mini pom poms tutorial -

If you guys have ever seen those cute little teeny tiny pom poms and thought, “How do I make those?”  I am here to tell you: “easily.”  Making mini pom poms is a breeze.  Here’s how to make mini pom poms:

You will need:

Yarn (any color you want)
Yarn Needle
A Fork

How to make mini pom poms -

Here’s how ya do it:

Place yarn through middle tongs of fork, with tail of yarn on the neck of the fork

How to make mini pom poms -

Wrap yarn around fork – I did this approximate 50 times. More wraps = thicker, fluffier pom pom

How to make mini pom poms -

Cut yarn and thread through yarn needle

How to make mini pom poms -

Push needle through middle of wrapped yarn

How to make a mini pom pom -

Wrap yarn around outside of wrapped thread and tie needle end to starting end

How to make a mini pom pom -

Slide bundle off fork

How to make a tiny pom pom -

Cut loops which were created by looping yarn around fork

Easy mini pom pom tutorial -

Trim any stray long pieces and trim to shape your pom pom uniformially

How to make mini pom poms -

Now you have a little pom pom ready to be strung for a mini pom pom banner

MIni Pom pom banner -


These darling Mini Pom Poms are so easy to make and take almost no time at all.  Once you make a few you will be able to fly through them and make them in just a few minutes.  This is the kind of craft I like to do while watching TV with the hubby because my hands can work without having to think too hard about what I doing.

What’s your favorite mindless craft?

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How to Make a GIF in Photoshop

How to Make a GIF -

Hey guys!  Recently I posted my How to Make a Tissue Paper Tassel Banner tutorial, along with this sweet GIF.

how to make a tissue paper tassel banner GIF -

FYI: I made that.  The banner.  And the GIF. Obviously I am feeling real good about myself right now.  I used to be intimidated by making GIFs, but they are easy, lemme show you how to make a GIF in photoshop:

Step 1: Open all your images

How to make an Animated GIF in photoshop -

Step 2: Create a new (duplicate) layer for each image on your first image document placing them in reverse order – first image on bottom, last on top.

How to make a GIF -

How to make a GIF -

Step 3: Go to the “Window” Tab and choose “Timeline.”  (Timeline will open at the bottom of the screen)

How to make  GIF in Photoshop -

Step 4: Turn off all image layers, except your first image

How to make  GIF in Photoshop -

Step 5: Set your image delay below your timeline layer (time this image shows before switching to next image)

How to make  GIF in Photoshop -

Step 6: Create a new timeline layer by clicking the page button below, and then turn on your next image layer

How to make  GIF -

Step 7: Repeat step 6 until you have all your images in your timeline

How to make  GIF -

Step 8: Save your GIF by pressing CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + S or by Selecting “Save for Web” then choose your GIF option from the drop down menu at top of the pop up window

How to make  GIF -

Look, I even made this tutorial into a GIF.  It took about 8 minutes, start to finish.

How to Make an Animated GIF in Photoshop GIF -

See, only 8 steps.  Making a GIF in Photoshop is not difficult at all.  Now you can use it on your blog for tutorials and look just as geeky as me.

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DIY My Little Pony Masks with Printable Templates

MLP DIY Masks with Printable Templates -

Hey yo to all the My Little Pony fans out there!  If you have ever dreamed of being Twilight Sparkle or any of her pony friends? Well, now you can!  I made these felt masks for Ava’s 5th birthday (if you wanna check out the other MLP crafts I made, check out this post.)  And because I L.O.V.E. love you guys, I made printable templates so that you can make them too! Check em out- DIY My Little Pony Masks with Printable Templates (10/17/14 All Masks are viewing and printing correctly, please let us know if you experience any trouble and we will fix ASAP):


Twilight Sparkle DIY Mask and Printable Template -


MLP Mask Rainbow Dash Mask -


MLP Mask Pinkie Pie Mask -


MLP Fluttershy Mask -


Apple Jack My Little Pony Mask -


How to make a MLP Mask Rarity -


Felt in desired color (indicated by photos above)
Printable PDF of desired Pony Mask (available by clicking desired Pony Mask above)
Fabric Glue

Black Sharpie

General Directions:

1.Click on desired mask
2. Download PDF
3. Print PDF
4. Cut out peices
5. Using a pencil, trace around peices, onto felt
6. Using fabric glue, attach pieces to main mask
7. Using sharpie, draw on lashes as shown in photos above
8. Using glue, attach string
9. Wear with Pony Pride

All of the masks can work for kids and adults.  I realize that Rarity looks funky around the eyes in the photo above, if you are making the Rarity mask for an adult, please feel free to widen the eye holes in order to get your peripheral vision back.  Also, you will want to cut the top of Rainbow Dash’s head to connect to her ear (as shown), this will serve as the backing for her bangs. Trust me, it is a necessary thing.

All of these masks are free for personal use.
I would love to see the photos of your masks!
Tag @illistyle in your FB / Twitter / Instagram photos!

Who are you gonna be for Halloween?

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DIY Giant Confetti (with Silhouette Cut Files)

Easy DIY Giant Confetti with the Silhouette Cameo -

Well hello again! Here we are with Day 4 of our My Little Pony Week and today I am going to show you how I made this DIY Giant Confetti. Actually, I am just gonna straight up give you the Silhouette cut files to make your life easy. You’re welcome. Each piece of confetti is approximately 1.25″ in diameter. On the whole sheet you can cut 65 of these bad boys. I made these using my Silhouette Cameo, and since I am a hippie at heart and don’t want to waste, I actually made them at the same time I made Ava’s My Little Pony Happy Birthday Banner and used all the extra space around the pennants for the confetti.  Instead of wasting that excess card stock around the pennant piece I got 35 pieces of large confetti out of it.  Boom. I obviously expect a Thank You card from Mother Nature any day now.

Giant Confetti Silhouette Cut Files -illistyle.comGiant Confetti and Pennant Banner Silhouette Cut Files


Card stock in your party theme colors

Silhouette Cameo

Full Sheet of Giant Confetti (cut files)

Pennant and Giant Confetti (cut files)


1. Download the desired Confetti cut file (either the full sheet or pennant banner sheet above)

2. Open your Silhouette Studio software

3. Open your cut file into a new document

4. Load your media into the Silhouette

5. Cut

6. Confetti the heck outta your life

It’s so so simple.  If you are making a banner for a party … then you obviously need confetti too, so use the Pennant Banner cut files (above), and have coordinating confetti. Peer pressure. But if you are anti-confetti and just want the pennant banner cut files you can find those here.

DIY MLP Happy Birthday Banner -

DIY Giant Confetti-

 creative lifestyle blogger southern caifornia -

How to Make a Tissue Paper Tassel Banner

Hi guys! Welcome to day 3 of My Little Pony Week here on illistyle.  If you missed day 1 or 2 you can find them here and here. Today we are talking about how to make a tissue paper tassel banner like this one I made for Ava’s 5th birthday. This banner looks great and sis o so festive.  I have seen for sale online and in stores for sale for a LOT of your hard earned dollars… but why, when you can make so easily and tailor it exactly to your party’s color scheme/theme.  Here’s how we do it:

how to make a tissue paper tassel banner -

Tissue Paper in desired colors (3-4 is usually enough, unles syou want each one a diffrent color – which is cool too)

Instructions (to make one tassel):

1. Take one sheet of tissue paper and lay flat

2. Fold in half toward you

3. Fold in half to the left

4. Fold in half again to the left

5. Cut up the folded edge of tissue, stopping 1.5″-2″ from the top seam

6. Fold in half a third time to the left

7. Repeat Step 5

8. Cut line up the middle of the tissue, stopping 1.5″=2″ from top

9. Unfold tissue

10. Starting from the side, tightly roll the tissue along the middle (uncut) portion of tissue

11. With tissue in a cylinder shape with tassels at both ends, graps the tissue at top of each tassel and twist

12. As you twist the tissue a natural loop should form, go with that

13. Secrure loop by twistting tissue back on itself

14. Repeat as needed

15. Hang all tissue pompoms from a string

16. Get this party started

What colors would you use?

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(PS don’t forget, I will be back tomorrow with DIY Cutie Mark Temporary Tattoos for you guys!)

How to keep your electronics safe with the Dremel Micro

How to Keep your electronics safe with engraving with the Dremel Micro -

We are so grateful that the summer is over. Every time summer camp ends we find something that can be improved for the next season.  This year we realized that our walkie talkies kept getting confused with other camp centers’ walkie talkies… this is because the camp as whole has purchased the walkie talkies in bulk and programmed them so each camp center can speak to one another by switching to designated channels.  But this means they look identical to every other camp centers’ walkie talkies. At the beginning of the summer we tried spray painting the walkie talkie belt clips blue in order to easily identify our walkies form other peoples. But the blue paint did not fair well.  So we decided that the best way to keep our electronics safe is engraving them. If you want to easily keep your electronics safe, I have a tool for you: the Dremel Micro.

Walkie Talkie and Dremel Micro -

I love that this Dremel is light-weight (read: no hand fatigue), cordless, and has a halo light built-in (that used to be an optional accessory you could purchase.) Plus you can just throw it on the base to charge it, which means you can leave the base plugged in on your work table and your Dremel Micro is ready right when you need it.

Cordless Dremel Micro with light -

How to keep your electronics safe - engrave them with the Dremel Micro -

For the walkies we simply took a sharpie and drew the ID we wanted (in this case “HS#”) and then used the Dremel to engrave directly over the sharpie lines. Easy engraving to keep your electronics safe and sound.

I have had a long love affair with Dremel tools.  So when my husband and I were married (11 years ago – wait, what?!) we received a BUNCH of Home Depot gift cards and the first thing we bought? A Dremel. It is so useful for so many things – DIY projects, sharpening knives and scissors, cleaning, polishing… so we knew we needed one. We also got all the accessories, cuz you never know what you will need to complete a project (idk if they sell this exact set anymore, like I said, we got married a few years ago):

 Dremel Standard Accessories fit the Dremel Micro too -

 Here’s the good thing – the awesome new Dremel Micro 8050 is fully compatible with all Dremel rotary tool accessories. Way to go Dremel, now I have an awesome lighted little tool and allthe accessories already. Get yours at Amazon or HomeDepot.

And because Dremel wants to celebrate its fans’ brilliant projects, work and ideas! Now through October 12th, share, tweet, or post photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram that depict your brilliant ideas using the hashtag #MyBrilliantIdeaSweeps for the chance to win weekly prizes, including free tools and handmade gifts, or the grand prize: a custom-engraved Honda scooter and a Micro 8050. Visit for rules and to learn more.

 What would you use this handy little tool for?

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I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

april in deer mask -  Color Block Pumpkins -   Pumpkin Spice Rice Krispies -

DIY Animal Masks   Color Block Pumpkins   Pumpkin Spice Rice Krispie Treats

How to Follow your favorite blogs

how to easily follow your favorite blogs -

Hi friends! Often times, when people find out I am a blogger one of their first questions is, “How do I keep up with my favorite blogs?” When I first started reading blogs I had a folder on my browser bookmark bar where I would go and check each blog each day to see what was new…. my oh my did that take a LOT of time!  Now I have found much easier ways to follow my favorite blogs … there are varying opinions on how to follow your favorite blogs, so I will discuss each with pros and cons so you can find the method that works for you:

1. Facebook: For the reader this is not my favorite option because FB as a company throttles (reads: limits to the extreme) what a reader sees of pages she or he “likes.” As a page manager I can see how many people like the illistyle fan page, currently 4,500+ people, BUT I also see how many people get to see any give post in their feed, usually between 100-400 people. So, on average, 2%-10% of my readers who have liked my page will actually get to see something that I post to the illistyle Facebook page… unless I want to pay FB to allow more people to see it.  Since most bloggers are working for free (like I am right now as I write this post) or nearly free and therefore do not have the budget to promote (pay for) posts to be shown to more readers it is unlikely that you will actually see what is going on with the blogs you love. Major bummer for you, the reader, and major frustration for me, the blogger.

How to follow your favorite blogs facebook -


2. Twitter: If you are an avid twitter user and know how to set up lists, this could be a good option for you, since you will have a streamlined feed that shows what is posted by your favorite people in real time.  Personally, as a blogger, posting to the illistyle twitter account is not super effective when it comes to getting people to actually click through and read a post, so I do not put very much effort into Twitter.  That is a personal thing I do because as a blogger I have to choose where I spend my time and energy… but I know some bloggers who LOVE Twitter and the community. So if you love Twitter and use it regularly this could be great for you.

how to follow your favorite blogs on twitter -

3. Instagram: I love to follow my favorite bloggers on Instagram. If you are a visual person, this is a great way to get a quick idea of what bloggers are doing because you literally get a snapshot of the post.  I also like the fact that most bloggers will include photos form their everyday lives, so you get to know them through their IG feeds.

illistyle instagram on phone -

4. Newsletters: A lot of bloggers offer newsletters for their readers.  I offer the illistyle newsletter with the promise only to bring you the best and to send it in non-annoying intervals (plus I will never share or sell your info.) Every blogger does their newsletter differently, some are just quick recaps of their most recent posts with links to read the whole thing, others have special offers or tell you what is coming up on the blog. The illistyle newsletter is a combo of the two since I like to give you guys a heads up (when I can) about upcoming posts or giveaways you might be interested in entering and to show you some of the posts you may have missed if you don’t use a service like Bloglovin (see #5). The only downside of this is that some bloggers are sporadic in their newsletters, others are way overboard and send you emails everyday, and still others will never send a thing… plus, you might end up with an inbox chocked full of blogger newsletters. Ain’t nobody got time for that… well, some people might, but I do not. Therefore I only subscribe to blog I absolutely LOVE.

how to keep up with blog newsletter -

5. Bloglovin: This is my absolute FAVORITE way to follow the blogs I love.  I like it because a) I never miss a blog post from those I follow, b) it is a free service, c) I get to choose HOW I see my favorite blogs’ new posts. Here is a screen shot of the actual settings page on Bloglovin:


Personally, I choose to receive a daily email that shows the new posts made by the bloggers I follow.  But you can also choose to get all new posts as they happen, or choose no emails and simply visit Bloglovin and read your feed to find out what your favorite bloggers are up to. Here’s an example of what the Bloglovin feed looks like:

how to follow blogs using bloglovin -

Your Bloglovin feed (and the emails they send, if you so choose) will show the posts from your chosen blogs in chronological order with the newest post first. You get the title, a snippet preview, and the featured image.  You can click the post title, image, or anywhere in the post preview box (the white box) to be taken directly to the full blog post on that site.

I love that each day I can read all the posts from my favorite bloggers without having to spend an hour checking each individual site to see if he or she had posted anything new that day. It is a HUGE timesaver. (if you want to follow illistyle on Bloglovin, click here)

However you choose to follow the blog you love, please know this: BLOGGERS THANK YOU! We do what we do because we love it.  I love blogging.  I am a maker, a communicator, and relational by nature.  I love connecting with you guys, seeing your projects, reading your questions and comments, getting emails and messages that I have helped in some way. Thank you for supporting illistyle and allowing me to do what I love.

how to easily follow your favorite blogs -

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