Create your own design – DIY silk scarf painting class!

DIY painting silk scarf - workshop When textile designer Rekha Krishnamurthi told me she had a DIY silk scarf painting workshop in New York I immediately signed up. Play with paint? Tsst, of course I’m in! The class was yesterday, I took a few pictures to share with you. She supplies every-thing (including hair dryer to speed up drying our work-of-art), we just show up and choose from a plethora of pretty colors to use for our one-of-a-kind scarf. If you are familiar with my interior design projects you know that I aim for straight lines (sleek, balance, cohesiveness even in eclectic rooms). So, it was kinda HARD for me to paint the scarf at first. The “I don’t want to mess up” fear popped in, as it did to my fellow scarf painters (we so declared).  But when we let go of the concept of ‘perfection’, (oh and with the awesome guidance of Rekha!) guess what showed up? Fun appeared with it’s party hat. Below are several photos – the materials used, how my scarf “abstract” scarf turned out, peek inside the class, and how you can design your own scarf. Plus special discount just for you.

DIY painting silk scarf - SUPPLIES - workshop


1. prep scarf (pin down / stretch fabric / choose paint color)

2. paint (with Rekha’s guided techniques) // Psst, we can even use SALT (yeah, crazy-pants fun technique for a grainy look)

3. dry - we use hair blow dryer <– added step so the class doesn’t turn into ‘paint your clothes + face + everything the scarf touches class’

4. iron to set the painted design

At home we are to gently wash the scarf + iron again to set the color/design in.

DESIGN_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi 8_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi_490
3_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi 7_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi 6_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi 5_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi 4_Ada gonzalez DIY painting silk scarf  with Rekha Krishnamurthi

The best part of this class is the lesson of “letting go” in order to create your very own one of a kind design. And that my friends I believe is priceless. My design is definitely no Picasso, but isn’t that what makes it unique. That’s it’s original. Check out where/ when / how much are Rekha’s next workshops here. Ooooh I almost forgot -> for those that want an intro to silk scarf painting that cannot attend in person, she just launched craft kits that you can order and have shipped within 10 days. I’m ordering one for mom (especially since I am keeping the DIY painted scarf that I planned to give to her).

SPECIAL DISCOUNT CODES: For the craft kit:  20% off  – enter code 20OFF at checkout | For Intro to Silk Scarf Painting Class: 50% off – enter 50OFF at checkout 

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A nudist (yet adorable) sheep taking off it’s coat

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Sheep-to-Shawl is a cool event that occurs annually at the Philipsburg Manor in Sleepy Hallow, NY; set up to educate us on how sheeps’ wool were sheared with a scissor-like tool back in the 1700s (no electric razors back then since they didn’t have electricity). Also, no ouchies for the sheep. Wait until you see the photo I took of the sheep, I think it was giving me a peace sign with it’s hoofs. Seriously. You have to see the photo. There were stations set up showing how to weave wool into yarn (using a hand spindle), how to dye the yarn different colors using logs, how linen fabrics are made from flax, and more.  I’ll give you a quick visual tour via photos, I’ll even show you the nudist … the sheep. Who was not shy happily frolicking around naked after the event with a big fat adorable smile. I hope you enjoy the tour. Sorry, I don’t have any headsets to give you so you can listen to each photo, but for more events you can go to their site here.


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Waterproof DIY Photo Garden Tags (and what I stole to make it)

Above is a peek at the water resistant garden labels I made. Do you likey? Steps are simple, first …. I had to go to Starbucks and steal “obtain” (wink wink) wood stirrers for “my coffee”. You can use any wood sticks …. like from popsicles (the yummy kind), or salads (the healthy kind!):

My kind …..

My goal:  to create water resistant labels with photo + name of flowers … so when the plants haven’t flowered yet (next year) I would still KNOW what’s to come. I remembered that I had purchased these cutie-pie clothespins from Erin at Knot & Bow. I figured these would be great to use so I can clip the labels on instead of gluing them to the wood sticks.

Aren’t they ADORABLE???

Then it was time to get PHOTOS OF each bloomed flower! Since I wanted to showcase EACH flower I took a pic of each (makes sense right?), but I didn’t want to include the leaves, etc. … I wanted to showcase the actual flower. So, what’s this gal to do? I grabbed white copy paper and teared it in 1/2 to slip the flower in between and give it a white background, then I became a paparazzi …. shoot shoot shoot:

See the torn white paper hugging the flower?

Then, I cropped the photo and added text (the name of each flower) in Photoshop, saved it as a jpeg, then … print time for LAMINATION:

Dont’cha love lamination! Laminate then … snip snip snip time:

Then I added the clothespin to hold the label onto the wood stick (hmmm, I am craving Starbucks now. I wonder why .. wink wink).

Then to the garden ……

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Do you like the garden tags I made? Of course that now means I need to HUNT more FLOWERS to add to our garden.

Here’s a recap on how to make waterproof garden tags / markers:
(1) buy or ‘obtain’ (wink wink!) wood sticks,
(2) take pics of each flower,
(3) u/load pics + add names,
(4) then print + laminate them to make them water resistant:

(photo credits: Ada’s Interior Design ) Every comment is read, appreciated, and loved. To leave a comment please scroll down!

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3 gorgeous lamps (hint of gold!) plus how I lost 5 lbs in 1 day

Check out the 3 GORGEOUS lamps I spotted for one of my client’s office. A black shade mounted on a white horse, a hint of gold in the vintage brass lamp that sings acappella opulence, and the sleek floor lamp that has a marble base to contrast the dark wood floor.  I can’t stop staring at the vintage brass desk lamp. I may need to get my sunglasses to stare at it some more.

Office - gold desk lamp _ black shade lamp- ADa Gonzalez 490

Resources: Horse Head // Vintage Brass // Marble Base Floor Lamp 

For this office, the sofa is going to be removed, and the mega large rug which hid the beautiful wood floors is going to be replaced with a smaller Persian rug that my client brought from his home. I love when my clients ‘shop’ within their own home.

The large rug (which you can see it placed at the corner of the wall was SO HARD to roll up. I think I lost about 5 lbs in the process. It was heavy, plus we had to pull it from under the HUGE sofa  (I felt like one of the 3 stooges trying to pull – tuck – roll – slip – start again without smacking myself in the face). Oh, and I was wearing a dress. But we finally rolled it up … and then finally …. the beautiful wood floors SHINED! If I’m able to get more photos of the progress I will share them with you. Tentative list = adding a desk, a desk chair, a side table, ottomans, possibly temporary wallpaper, artwork and saving money by keeping the button tufted side chairs.  In the interim, aren’t the colors in this rug so beautiful (a happy beautiful kind of color) . . .

Persian rugs with hard wood floor - Ada Gonzalez New York copy

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It’s fun time with food! Fruit shaped deviled eggs

1 Veggie shaped deviled eggs

I was aiming for the deviled eggs to look like a pumpkin, but I was too busy eating them (soooo hard to resist with this recipe) that I didn’t add too much paprika (burnt orange color) to make it look more like a pumpkin color. So, you may need to squint a little (um, or a lot) to visualize it. I used CLOVES as the STEM and used a fork to give the “pumpkin” lines (like the indented shape of pumpkins).

2 Veggie shaped deviled eggs

INSTRUCTIONS on making your very own veggie or fruit shaped deviled eggs is as follows:

1. decide what design you plan on making:
– pumpkin (use paprika)
– yellow squash (no spices needed)
– tomato (add cayenne pepper spice is ya’ll can handle it)
* you can also try food dye if you don;t want your tongue to fall off from the spicy hotness of the cayenne pepper

2. choose spice topping to reflect the veggie / fruit of your choices coop the already prepared filling onto the egg white. Make sure you end up with a round chubby shape for pumpkin or follow the shape of your intended fruit / vegetable

3. with a fork rack the filling to give it a shape

4. sprinkle the spice (sprinkle a LOT, don’t be a cheapo like me)

5. insert the clove to represent the STEM

6. eat them all and don’t share with anyone share the creative deliciousness, and remember that the GOAL is to step out of your comfort zone and HAVE FUN trying something NEW

3 Veggie shaped deviled eggs_by Ada Gonzalez

Oh, check out how you can make a HEART SHAPED EGG here in this 1 minute video using just an egg, chop stick, milk carton, and rubber bands . I HAVE TO try this soon.

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Folding a napkin into a leaf (psst, just 3 steps)

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I was inspired by all the tips Marie Forleo shared here when speaking with Oprah Winfrey, she mentions “the secret to finding our passion, ironically, is to bring passion in everything that you do”.  Isn’t that beautiful? It’s basically a shift in our mindset. So, we can even bring passion to setting a table, even folding a napkin, and we can even take it up a notch and make that napkin super pretty and creative. Today’s I’ll show you how you can fold a napkin into a leaf in LESS THAN 1 MINUTE (it’s quick and easy, and look sooo pretty).

1. napkin (cloths or paper)
2. string (i’ll provide 5 ideas for a string)
3. optional -> add a cute decorative item (I used red berry branches).

Oh yeah, you also need your hands to pinch, twist, tie .. “and wave them in the air like you just don’t care” (Oh sorry for my singing, coffee was veeeeery strong).  2 prepped_folding a leaf into a napkin_Ada Gonzalez 3_folding a leaf into a napkin_Ada Gonzalez 4_folding a leaf into a napkin_Ada Gonzalez


1. fold (fold twice to get a small square shape)
2. pinch (each side in an accordion style)
3. wrap (to hold the shape of the leaf)

Go “shopping in your home” to see what you can use to wrap / tie the leaf (ahem, napkin) together.

Here are a few ideas:
– twine
– bakers string
– ribbon
– rubber band
– hair (just kidding, that’s totally gross! Again, maybe I should cut back on my coffee).
– washi tape (they are strong enough to hold, and gentle enough to open)

Any more wrapping ideas that you come up with, let us know.

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If you create your very own cool Leaf Napkin post it to instagram (show everyone else your talent!) and sent it to me  @adasdesigninc so I can admire it too.

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the MUSTACHE universal knife block in our kitchen


Since hubby is the chef king of our kitchen I added a mustache to our knife set holder as a reminder to me to stay away from the ouchie knives that don’t cooperate when I try to use them to cut veggies. You would think the knives would be nicer to me esp since I got them their cozy home (the knife holder block!). The cutlery/knife block is AMAZING bec it doesn’t have standard “slots” to place the knives in. It’s universal. It has flexible black fiber strands (similar to skewers) so u can insert knives into ANY area on top and SQUOOSH as many knives as possible. Cool huh. Oooooh and I purchased it for just $29.99 from here. I’ll be sharing more of our kitchen transformation pics soon (I just have to find them and tie myself to the computer with a jug of coffee to upload them for you). Remember the hideous (eek eek) kitchen floor that we used to have? -> here.

I hope you have a GREAT weekend and here are 3 DIY ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS to make your very own universal knife block for your home:

1. You can use spaghetti pasta, like Brianna did here.

2. You can cut and use bamboo skewers like seen here. <- for this one, I suggest that the FLAT end is the top of the block so you don’t prick yourself (as I probably would) when placing the knives in.

3. You can go awesomely unique and use these beans instead of skewers.

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4 animal swimming pool accent tiles (hello fish, turtle etc!)

joy - glass oasis tile_pool accent tiles - styled by Ada Gonzalez

Did you know that you can order already designed swimming pool accent tiles such as mosaic tropical fish, crabs, coral reef? Yep, how swimmingly awesome, right! It’s a life made easy design with the help of Glass Tile Oasis. They sent me their catch of the day, this cutie-pie surgeon fish tile to share with you. No, you can’t cook it (sicko!), but you can ooh and aaah at it’s detailed mosaic beauty. Isn’t it beautiful? The fish already comes in a meshed back so it’s a crazy-simple-beautiful installation process. Less time installing, more time swimming in your pool, or shower! Yep, don’t restrict your creativity to just the pool area, you can install these in your bathroom too. The colors, details, and sizes (like a 51″ long dolphin) is a design to wow at in my book. So, let’s wow together some more . . . check out some of their other designs at the end of this post (oh, did I mention that they also have ‘sea grass’ and ‘sharks’. I know, crazy cool.

3 glass oasis tile_pool accent tiles - styled by Ada Gonzalez These accent tiles in a pool are like a treasure hunts for pool aficionados, diving in to find the mosaic treasure. Dive in to find … this mosaic shark accent tile staring at you. YIKES.  Oh, but you can then declare that you have a ‘shark’ in your pool (wink, wink!).  They also sell:

* crabs
* koi fish
* gecko
* frogs
* octopus
* coral reefs
* sea grass
* dolphins
* other stuff

I love their dolphins bec they are designed with a shadow, which gives it a cool 3-dimensional look. I believe some of their turtles and sharks have shadows as well. But, hey even this cutie-pie surgeon fish is spectacular . . . is it trying to bite me?

2 glass oasis tile_pool accent tiles - styled by Ada Gonzalez Time to take out your underwater camera and snorkel into the pool with me as we check out these meshed back pre-designed swimming pool accent tiles . . . (4 images courtesy of Glass Tile Oasis):

5 glass oasis tile_pool accent tiles - styled by Ada Gonzalez

Here are direct links to the koi fish, surgeon fish (the one I played with), 36″ x 51″ dolphin tiles, and turtle tiles.

SAVE MONEY – (1) Add discount code “Springdiscount” to your checkout and you can save 10% this season. You can also (2) go to their general coupon menu tab here (psst, free shipping on some orders), and for (3) latest sales check out their menu tab called $15 Corner where you can find a vast selection of economical tiles.

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Bunny ear napkin fold in 1 minute (must make it today!)

0_bunny ear napkin fold for appetizers_Ada Gonzalez

Happy Easter! Ready to impress your friends and family today with a cute craft? Not only are these bunny ear napkin folds ADORABLE but they can be done in 1 minute! Seriously, just 1 minute ..  yep, I actually timed myself. Once you know the steps it a hip hoppity quick creation. So go grab a napkin and hop to it  . . . Oh, just note: you can use any size as long as the shape is SQUARE, I used small size napkins and turned the napkins into an appetizer holder. So instead of grabbing appetizers in one hand and napkin in another I combined it so once you finish eating the appetizers you have the napkin handy. Adorable, right and sooo simple:

1. make the bunny ear
2. attached a round chocolate (for the nose) to the toothpick end
3. insert the toothpick w/nose into the bunny head
4. attach appetizers to the toothpick – done!

Scroll down to see how it turned out and the step by step instructions for you to have fun experimenting making these today . . .

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1. napkins
– paper napkins (I got the pink one for $0.99 here)
– cloth napkins (starch it if it’s too flimsy)
– paper towels (yep, even paper towels can be used as long as you it to a square shape)

2. toothpicks

3. candy coated chocolate -or- marchmallows
(any edible treat that the toothpick can insert/attach to, I used Sixlets which are colorful in the outside and chocolate soft yumness inside, I purchased it from here at $1.00 for 15 packs … I just needed 2 different color packs, but hey’s it 15 for $1.00 so I just “had to buy it”, right!

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It may look like a lot of steps, but once you know the steps you can makes these SO QUICKLY! A hop and a skip away from making your very own. Go get a napkin and follow each step . . . .

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And, these bunny ear napkin folds can be used for different reasons.

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A gorgeous gold headband for spring in just 3 steps

3 steps - golden DIY regal headband

Instead of shopping around aimlessly for the perfect item (like a gold headband or home accents), why not make your perfect accessory (for your hair or home) … psst, it’s usually TONS more economical too. And guess what, is it super easy too! Here’s the scoop on how my DIY came to life –  I had been looking for an adorable headband to go with a gold trimmed collar shirt and had no luck finding the perfect match for me (that didn’t cost less than $30!). So, off to Joann’s I went and BINGO … the ribbon was absolutely beautiful – sparkly, intricate, detailed, and looked expensive, but it wasn’t. I scored it at just $2.00. I know, crazy-sauce, right?!  in just 3 steps I had my very own one of a kind DIY gold headband, plus extra materials to decorate around my home. See details below.

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1) ribbon (one that makes u drool over the design)
2) elastic (one that matches your ribbon)
3) needle
4) thread
5) scissors

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1. measure your head (or wrangle down the person u want to gift this too and measure their head.

2. cut 1/2″ overhang on each side of the elastic

3. sew and wear and skip around town singing “i made this lalala I made this la la la” . Ok, u may want to skip the last part,

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$2.00 for the sparkly gold ribbon (I got 1/2 yard, just 18″ was plenty)
$3.99 for the gold shimmery elastic

* plus tax
* plus I was able to use the EXTRA shimmery elastic for other projects
* plus no need to fight with my sewing machine bec I simply used needle and thread

2_a_golden DIY regal headband That’s it! Not too bad for a one of a one-of-a-kind gold headband design where you can USE THE EXTRA MATERIALS to add lovely accents to your home as I did – I used the extra elastic to decorate a lamp shade, used it as curtain ties, and gave a white vase a sprinkle of color (without having to paint it). If you have any questions please let me know.

7_1_golden DIY regal headband_ideas for elastic gold ribbons

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