How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success


How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success


It was during The 12 Days of Christmas. And I had this amazing idea to make a snowflake cutlery ornament.

Don’t let the above amazingness fool you now. We aren’t quite done yet.

vintage cutlery / Snowflake cutlery ornament via

I had collected all these vintage forks, knives and spoons.

But I rather lucked out. There was a spoon wind chime needing something to do, so I used the spoons with the predrilled holes in the handles as the one that would hang the works.

Snowflake cutlery ornament via

Each utensil was layered at the join and flipped around until they sat as flat and natural as possible.

Snowflake cutlery ornament via

Being ‘that ultimate repurposer’, I chose to hot glue them so I could pry them apart after Christmas and use them over again. Genius, right?

Snowflake cutlery ornament via

I shot the works with spray snow to cover the glue and called it done! Perfection! 

These were going to be gorgeous on my 7 garland twigged out Christmas tree!

Snowflake cutlery ornament via

So that night, I hung a few up in my kitchen windows for fun and head to bed pretty pumped about it all.

While in bed, I kept hearing something but kinda shrugged it off. Cats playing I’m sure.


In the morning, all that’s left were hanging spoons gently swaying in the air. 

Not desiring a spoon themed Christmas tree, I moved on to….

Vintage yardstick star fail / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via


It all started innocently enough. This thing was going to be AMAZING.

Vintage yardstick star fail / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via
Even the photos turned out so nice! Don’t you love that?

Vintage yardstick star fail / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via

And then I even came up with a VERY Christmas version!  I was ready to quit the day job after this baby.

Vintage yardstick star fail / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via

And then I stepped back, scratched my head and asked,

“What IS IT?!”

It was SUPPOSED to be a junk star. But instead, It’s a Junk A. Or maybe since I’m Canadian, Junk Eh?

Or is it a Junk Eh Star?

Star Junk Eh?

The next day the rolling pin nearly flattened my foot as it fell off. What a fabulous ending to that mess.


Purging your kitchen cupboards / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via

Right about this time I decided to quit while I was (clearly not) ahead, and gut a cupboard instead. I #DIDNOTFAIL on this one as you can see. 

But… duty calls. Back to work…

Silver bling Christmas tree bathroom shelves

Remember my bathroom shelves? Looks easy enough, right?

Attach small chunks of wood to sides of window frame, plunk on a pre painted board and you’re done.

Shelf fail / How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success via

This was my first draft. I was so stunned I had to take a picture. With my mouth open the entire time in utter shock.

Do you get all pouty like when a project doesn’t turn out? I do!

But I generally just gut a cupboard chill for a bit then tackle it or something else later. The show must go on after all.

How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success. Click to read inspiring post.

Like so.

How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success? Easy.

Don’t take an oops! for a final answer.

How do failures make you feel? How do you climb out of your own slump?

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Categories: 12 Days of Christmas 2013, Blog Series, Blogging, Christmas, DIY, Inspiration, Junk Drawer, Seasonal
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27 thoughts on “How to make a DIY #FAILURE a success

  1. I am with you on the shelves. For some reason I can not hang anything straight. Every picture I hang, every board I put up, everything ends up crooked! In the end you saved it girl!

  2. This makes me feel so much better about when this happens to me! On tv and blogs they make it look so easy, but it isn’t always like that! Gotta keep trying! LOL

  3. I was wondering if your wood star MIGHT work better, be more star-like, if you had the wooden hanger flipped upwards, instead of down. Just something I thought of while looking.
    Last night, I finished redoing a cork board. I had found an old cork board at a yard sale. But, the cork was old, find new cork. Had 2 pieces I had bought at another yard sale. Cut to fit. Not quite enough. Shop a couple of stores to find more cork. Found. Fit all pieces, like a puzzle. Cut and stretch fun fabric over, get the great idea of using my desk stapler to tack it down. Easy. Turn over, run fingertips over tiny, staple ends, nope. Turn over, take out staples slowly, using packing tape to hold opposite ends, so staples keep fabric tight. Put glue on old cork, flip new cork onto glue and wait.
    Than, spend part of the evening looking through my stash of interesting “junk and jewelery” to find something to cover slight gaps, since the original , old corkboard was warped.
    When purchasing new cork, notice that BRAND NEW corkboards, are cheaper than the cork sheets I am purchasing. Why am I doing this? Oh, and I painted the frame, got paint on my sweatshirt (had to spot clean), got paint on my computer desk, my computer and hard drive tower. But, it looks great and I am proud of it!

  4. I find that I was much more fearless in my creativity when I was single… because when I was single, there was no one else to see the “oops” phase. I would just rework it until the fabulous shined through and then show it off!
    Now, 7 years later I am starting to find my fearless-ness again… and slowly, my hubs is starting to trust my instincts (cant entirely blame him, when we met I had a lime green and white kitchen with red cupboards and tree branches as handles! It rocked! Apparently not everyone’s style though! ha ha!)

    Love what you do here Donna! 😉

  5. I do what you did, blog about it. 🙂 One of my utter failures was a rose painting tutorial, my finger was in the way of many of the photos of the step by step. I know it does make others feel better that everything we do does not always turn out. What spawned the idea of blogging some of the failures was a comment from a reader that said it seemed like I lead a charmed life and I had a magic touch to create. I snorted in disbelief and realized it could seem that way when all we post is the good. So I decided to blog the good, bad and the ugly too. I endeavor to make people feel good so showing that I can totally botch something seems to do that. Plus it makes blogging a bit more fun for me.

  6. Failure is all a matter of perspective and you see it as an opportunity to create something else so really, it’s not a failure at all; perhaps more of a challenge or a blip in the process to the final creation!!!

  7. We have a saying in the shop….
    “If you made it and &8@!’d it up, you can fix it!”

    (pardon the language, but I work with ALL ADULT MEN! and that’s how it’s said! lol)

    I personally LOVE the star…. and the shelf, well that’s why the hardware store sells wood filler putty… I bet the spoons looked great on the tree by themselves… SPOONS rule!!! Who needs a fork and a knife anyway! 🙂

    Thanks for sharing!

  8. As I’ve gotten older I’ve managed to keep my fails on a short leash.

    Use to be I’d try something, i.e. project or decorating, and let it stand a week to see if I really liked it.

    It got to be a daily,

    Sometimes I’d wake up the next morning and wondered if drunken elves had broken in and had their way.

    then hourly…

    Now I just read your blog.

  9. If it’s a project i really want to see finished and I know I will love the end result I soldier on and try a new approach – like using E6000 glue to redo those snowflakes. If I was a bit ho-hum about it anyway I move on to something else and try to get something to turn out quickly so I don’t get too down-in-the-dumps about life in general!

  10. How do failures make me feel you ask? I usually throw head back and my hand up to the skies and yell WHHHHHHHYYYYYY????! Then after I’ve scared all the birds from the trees, I take a deep breath and try again. LOL Thanks for this post. I’ve had about 2 hours of sleep last night and was feeling cranky and this post made me laugh 🙂

  11. Thank you so much for sharing your fails…. made me laugh and sympathize with you and your projects. Glad to find you today via pinterest I’ll be a new follower from now on.

  12. Failures??? What are those??? Oh yes, I’m sure I’ve had my share. Thankfully we live out in the country where no one can hear me scream at the top of my lungs or occasionally cry like a baby, but after my break down I get right back up and try again and again until I have success! It happens that way sometimes…One of my favorite sayins is “Don’t Give Up” so that’s what I hear myself sayin…it helps me get through. Love the Junk Eh Star btw, LMAO! and I agree with #3 Susan, maybe turn the hanger upside down and then try to predrill holes and use screws or a bolt and nut to hold that rolling pin together, remember “Don’t Give Up” you are Awesome! Thanks for sharing, love the post! 🙂

    Cindy@Glass Slipper Restorations

  13. Girl, you have no idea how much this reinforcement was needed! And here I thought I was the only one with a list of failures to my credit. Thanks for being so open and honest and humorous too! When my next failure occurs, I won’t cry. I’ll just think of you laugh and start again! Keep up the good work. Love your blog.

  14. That is so funny! I am not sure I would have had the guts to post my fails…and there are many, lol! I actually love the junk star (Eh) and it will make a great wreath of sorts (sorts as in not round). I think it’s a keeper!

    Gigi @ Old World Patina

  15. Well, you are so much more creative than me that it was, I must admit, rather fun to see some of your fails. Mine usually are of what I like to call the “monkey do, monkey finally see” variety. I have tons of ideas, but very often do not have the environment (currently a one-bedroom apartment) or the skills or tools to carry them out. But I can be very determined if I really want to accomplish something and I think you just have to keep trying and sometimes going off and leaving a fail for a bit is a good idea.

  16. “Don’t take oops for an answer”… That could be my motto! Most of the things junkers pick up are someone else’s “oops” anyway, giving up because it’s not perfect kind of goes against the code!

  17. Did you redo your utensil snowflakes? Because they look awesome! I’ve had a number of fails too…and I just try, try again like they say. Eventually something good does come out of it. And I’m laughing at myself because it took me forever to figure out your fail on the window shelves…forever to realize the shelf was not level!
    Debbie 🙂

      • I really like the silverware stars idea…brilliant! Like you, I would have stated with the glue gun. Funny, I was thinking that wiring the utensils together would hold them in place. Did you wrap the wire over and under each of the pieces so the force of each wrap supported the next piece? I ask, so I can eliminate that try if it will not work…i guess all that is left is to commit the silverware pieces perminately ans solder each piece onto of the other one at a time then spray with the snow to cover the solder. Thanks for all of your amazing ideas!

  18. ooohhhh Donna…once again… make my day. Yes I am laughing again, not in fun of you but in fun with you, it is so wonderful we can laugh at ourselves. I do it a LOT! Somehow I missed this post. Glad you guided us back here.

    Please do share your misses with the hits again soon.

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