How to: fabric covered Mod Podge drawers

fabric drawersWhen I first discovered Mod Podge, I knew that my old school desk would be the first item of furniture I’d have to transform. Don’t get me wrong – I love a good dark wood and metal handle combo, but it just looked so dark and gloomy in our spare room. It needed a little splash of colour to keep me inspired when I’m working from home on magazine commissions or personal projects. Want to have a go?

It’s so simple, you’d be a fool to give this a go at some point. But just in case you need some visual guidance on your Mod Podge journey, here’s some quick snaps and tips to get you started.

Steps 1 2 3 41. First you’ll need to gather together enough scraps of fabric to cover your drawers. I just used standard printed cotton in similar shades.
2. Remove the handles from the drawers and clean the front surface with soapy water. Make sure this is completely dry before you begin.
3. Cut pieces of fabric approx 3″ larger (all the way around) than your drawer  front. You’ll need enough to wrap over the edges.
4. Cover the front surface – and top/bottom edges – of the drawer in an even layer of Mod Podge using a paint brush. Place your fabric on top and smooth in place using your brush to get rid of any air pockets or lumps.

Steps 5 6 7 85. Make sure the front of the drawer has been smoothed out as neatly as possible and apply a coat of Mod Podge on top of the fabric.
6. Trim the edges of the drawers so you have approx 1″ ‘hangover’ to fold and secure. Again, brush over another layer of Mod podge.
7. Carefully cut around the handle area with small scissors so that you can fold the fabric neatly inside. Test with your handle as you go.
8. Push the handle back in place, making sure you don’t catch and drag and fabric as you go. Screw in place and leave to dry overnight.

Now my old 80s desk doesn’t look like a depressing headmaster’s office anymore. Pheweeee.
You can see some more of the random DIY ideas I come up with if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook.

Blogtacular 2014

Blogtacular7It’s going to be hard to describe the inspiration and overwhelming delight of Blogtacular (as sponsers of the event), but I’m going to try and explain anyway – from my side of the fence. I’m not an avid blogger, but I love to read blogs. Having worked on magazines for five years, I’d be lying if I said that bloggers hadn’t somewhat influenced our industry. Unlike before, we look to bloggers for project submissions, copy writing and often find ourselves relying on their expert craft skills to make sure we can cover a wide range of topics. Well, we can’t be experts at everything can we?

On Mollie Makes we feature, on average, at least three new contributors every issue. Often it’s much more. And there’s still hundreds of talented people out there we’ve yet to work with. The content bucket available to us is well and truly brimming and the turnout at Blogtacular certainly confirmed this for me. I didn’t even get a chance to meet 1/2 of the attendees, but the ones I did manage to chat to have truly inspired me this weekend. Kat Molesworth and Kat Goldin did a sterling job to organise this event, bringing likeminded creatives together for a conference of tips, advice and, of course, a stella line-up of speakers.

Here is Joy Cho (the keynote speaker) with our lovely team. And below that, the Secrets of the Editors panel – including our very own, Editor Lara Watson (far left) alongside Caroline Rowland of 91 magazine (Guest Editor of Mollie Makes Home – yay!), Guardian Life & Style Editor Kate Carter and Interiors Journalist Heather Young.

Blogtacular3 Blogtacular5Money was certainly a hot topic for the weekend with some bloggers advising to avoid non-paid work at all costs (or at least ask for payment), whilst other were keen to share that they started life with a few freebie placements. I have worked for free, although I must add it wasn’t on anything I didn’t feel passionate about doing. In this line of work, the proof is in the pudding and sometimes that means giving someone a spoonful of dessert before they pay for the full gateaux. It’s certainly worth baring in mind however, that free work on a lengthy basis only harms the potential for paid work in the future – and in some way could undermine any experience or training you may have had. It’s definitely a topic worth keeping for another post, but it’s something I’m not afraid to say that we do struggle with it.
(Read: we’d pay everyone lots more money if there was more to spend!)

Blogtacular8 Blogtacular2 Blogtacular1On a lighter note, there were plenty of colourful things to remind us that it’s our creative skills that have brought us all together. My favourite hour of the weekend has to be Xanthe Berkeley’s photo walk (with balloons!). It’s the first time I’ve done anything like that, but I absolutely fell in love with the idea.

So don’t worry if you spot me wandering around with a lonely balloon… I’m ok. I’m just using it to inspire me to open my eyes so I can rediscover (and photograph) all the beautiful things around me.

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Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 9.36.57 PMPhotos (expect three above) by Will Ireland, courtesy of Mollie Makes