Baby Shower Preview #2 + DIY Staining Clothespins Tutorial

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I can’t believe that my baby shower is just around the corner (3 days from now!). In addition to that I finally began my maternity leave today which will allow me to be able to completely focus what little energy I have to spare nowadays to the actual preparation of the shower.

There are little details that I’ve been able to work on such as putting together all of the little centerpiece items that I will be using the day of. The only thing I need are the fresh flowers, which will have to wait until the day of to assemble.

This is the second in my series of preview posts for my baby shower, and with each post, I feel even more anxious about pulling off the event. It’s like I’m putting all this unnecessary pressure to impress especially because I am a little bit of a perfectionist. I’ve reserved myself to not be too disappointed if I can’t put every last little thing together with my main excuse of having to take care my health being the foremost worry.

Moving on, as seen in the preview photo above, I’ve been doing a lot of little DIY projects which include:

  • Coloring Mason Jars
  • Making origami boxes for favors
  • Staining Clothespins for…

I’ve been the most happy with the way the Clothespins have turned out. Here are the supplies and steps that I did to create them.

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Supplies

  • Clothespins
  • Food Coloring
  • White Vinegar
  • Boiling Water
  • Container (must be microwavable safe)
  • Paper Towels
  • Parchment/Wax Paper

Instructions

  1. For this project, we went ahead and disassembled the clothespins so that the wires did not get submerged. The reason for this is that vinegar tends to oxidize metal and give it a more rustic look. If you’re going for shabby chic, you can leave it on.
  2. Next, sort the clothespins into microwavable safe containers into what colors you want to stain the clothespins. We choose food coloring as opposed to hand painting them with acrylics because we wanted the wood grain to still be seen. There is something about being able to look at this beautiful natural patterns that really appeals to me. Examples of how many drops I used to get the colors I have:
    • Orange: 8 drops of red + 3 drops of yellow
    • Purple: 7 drops of red + 4 drops of blue
    • Green: 9 drops of yellow + 2 drops of blue + 1 drop of green, this created more of a yellow green
    • Red: 10 drops of red
    • Blue Green: 6 drops of blue + 2 drops of green
  3. After the clothespins are in their groups, combine boiled/warm water with 1 tablespoon of vinegar and your preferred mixture of food coloring. Whatever deep and rich colors the water creates will be less intense on the wood once it dries, so don’t worry if the color doesn’t come out exactly how you want it. Make sure it is mixed well and pour into the corresponding containers.
  4. Let the clothespins soak in the mixture for at least an hour so that the wood can absorb the mixture. The vinegar helps to seal in the color.
  5. Once the clothespins have soaked for a little while, lay out parchment paper onto a flat surface that you’ll be laying out your clothespins to dry. Next lay the paper towel over the parchment paper. As the paper towel gets soaked, the parchment paper will save your counter tops from getting stained.
  6. With the area prepped, take out the clothespins to dry. This process will take several hours to air dry. If you get impatient there are ways to speed up drying, but I preferred the air drying process. This took about overnight for me since it’s really cold here in the middle of a California winter. Cold enough that you need to put a sweater on in the house, but warm enough to not have to run the heater all the time.
  7. Lastly, once the clothespins have dried, reassemble them and admire!

You can then use the clothespins for pretty much anything expect to hold up wet clothes because the color can run and stain it once it gets wet again. However, there shouldn’t be any issues with using it for other day-to-day items, and the color won’t run off on your hands if you’re handling them.

Enjoy my simple DIY steps and if you use my instructions, please let me know!

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