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No Sticker Shock
Part of letting kids go as they grow is letting them decorate their own rooms. Within reason, of course! That's why we asked ace crafters Kitty and Jennifer O'Neil (ONeilSisters.com) to come up with decorating projects that kids and moms would love. The ideas have just enough style to satisfy tweens' and teens' budding sense of style, but aren't so out there (or permanent) that they can't be updated or replaced in a few years. Fun idea: If you're looking for an original gift, give your child the supplies to create one of these projects!
For starters, a huge wall decal can transform a kid's room without a lot of sticker shock (we're talking price or permanent damage). Such decals come in all sorts of shapes and styles, including boy-friendly skateboarders, windsurfers, or snowboarders in mid-air. Another idea: Cover the front of a dresser with a massive decal and slit it so the drawers still open. Now that's cool!
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Surrounding themselves with friends and memorabilia is a rite of passage for tweens and teens. Help them do that without making a zillion holes in their bedroom walls with this fun photo hanger. Here's how to make it: Tack strands of ribbons onto the back of a wooden sign or plaque. Make wooden clothespins super cute by dipping them in RIT dye, then gluing buttons to the tips. Kids can clip up their faves and swap them out for new ones anytime!
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Even though your kid thinks it would look killer, spraying his or her entire room with graffiti is probably not an option at your house. So let your child trick out a big old trunk instead. Here's how to do it: Use masking tape on the hardware, then tag that bad boy. Whether your artist is inspired by camo or Keith Haring, the design will be original, that's for sure. Just be sure to paint it outside.
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A window is a blank canvas just waiting for a little glitz and glam. It's easy to make it sparkle with window jewelry. Here's how to do it: String glittery craft birds and butterflies on fishing line with beads tied in between, then finish with a big crystal. Pretty!
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Here's an easy way to organize jewelry into a pretty wall display. It's as simple as covering a cork bulletin board with fabric. You can go with a cool vintage print or create your own design with fabric scraps. Here's how to do it: We started our woodland theme by stapling blue cotton fabric to the back of the corkboard. Then we cut a trunk and leaf shapes out of brown and green prints and used iron-on adhesive to attach them to the background. The final touch: Hang earrings and necklaces from the branches with pearl-tipped pins. (Our corkboard came with Command Damage-Free Hanging Strips. No marks on the wall!)
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Magnet Note Board
Who doesn't need a place to post important notes and to-do lists? Even the kid who's reluctant to get organized will dig a magnetic board with a racecar theme. Here's how to do it: Use a cookie sheet or an old metal tray. (Test it with a magnet to see if it's steel.) Spray it with red car paint and glue magnets to the bottom of Matchbox cars. This racecar memo board is so tough it doesn't even need to be mounted. Simply set it on your desk and lean it against the wall.
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Jazz up a lampshade with self-stick appliques! Here's how to do it: Trim the bottom edge with felt-fusion flowers and add bling with pink rhinestone swirls. Look for initials in half-pearls or gems for an elegant monogram!
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Make bedding a little more personalized with inexpensive pillowcases and your favorite photos. Here's how to do it: Just print a picture on an inkjet image transfer sheet, then trim it and iron it on a pillowcase. Your daughter will have a one-of-a-kind bed that's as adorable as she is!