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Naturopathica

Thursday, October 25, 2012

DIY Red Glittery Shoes

Photo 1: DIY Glittery Red Pumps

Transform an old pair of heels into glittery heels for $6 in one day!

Photo 2: Chew marks on heel.
Photo 3: Old Pumps


I am glad I never got around to throwing away one of my favorite pumps that my dog decided to use as a chew toy.  I wanted candy red glittery shoes to match my Halloween costume this year, and I didn't find the ones in the store  all that comfortable.

Not only are these shoes comfortable, but they look just as great as the ones I have seen in the store and cost a fraction of the price to make.  The key is too use extra fine glitter to give it a higher-end look.  Then using an acrylic red glitter glaze to seal in the glitter so that the glitter stays on your shoe.

Materials: 

  • Sandpaper (optional)
  • Shallow tray (optional)
  • Old pair of high heels
  • Old newspaper
  • 2 oz bottle of Glamour Dust (Ultra Fine Glitter Paint in "Sizzling Red") by Decor Art
  • 2 oz jar of Ruby Extra Fine Glitter by Art Minds
  • 1" wide paint brush
Directions:
  1. Optional: I omitted this step but if you have shiny, smooth shoes, I would recommend taking a piece of sand paper and slightly scuffing up the surface so that the paint and glitter has a better surface to adhere to.
  2. Lay out newspaper over your work area or work over a tray.
  3. Clean your shoes, and allow it to dry completely.  Then stuff crumpled newspaper or tissue in the pumps.  See Photo 4.
  4. Glitter-fying Your Heels.  Do the following two steps in sections to minimize messiness. I divided the each shoe into three sections: right half of the pump, left half of the pump, and then heel.
    1. Apply a thin layer of paint on the first section of each shoe.
    2. Generously sprinkle fine glitter over the paint.  Then tap the side of the shoe so that the excess sprinkles fall off.  See Photo 6.
    3. Repeat steps 1 & 2 until shoes are covered with a layer of glitter.  Then I did the process again so that there were ultimately two coats of glitter/paint on the shoes.  
    4. Allow shoes to dry for about an hour.  Rinse your brush and allow it to air dry.
  5. Seal in the Glitter.  Use the paint to seal in the glitter on your shoe.  I squeezed paint on to the shoe and then used the brush in a gentle tapping motion until the surface was covered with a thin layer of paint. I worked in sections again to reduce messiness. See Photo 7.
  6. Allow shoes to cure for 24 hours before wearing them.
Photo 4: Newspaper stuffed into pumps
Photo 5: Paint drizzled on to pump.
Photo 6: Glitter sprinkled on shoe

Photo 7: Paint to seal in glitter.  Appears red when applying, but dries clear.
Photo 8: Finished product




Thursday, October 18, 2012

Iris Growing in a Vase



I started an iris in a vase after seeing one in a plant catalog.  I've been growing it for a couple of months now, and so far things are going well.  The plant actually grew a new leaf!  I have only topped off the vase a couple of times.  I chose to top it off with water from my betta fish tank because fish waste water is a natural fertilizer for plants.


Materials:
  • Vase
  • Aquarium gravel
  • Iris rhizome or bulb* 
  • Water
  • Moss
Directions:
  1. Fill up the vase half way with gravel.
  2. Perch iris rhizome or bulbs on top of the gravel.  
  3. Pour water into the vase so that the water level falls just under the gravel.  The iris rhizome or bulb should not be in standing water (unless it is the type of iris that can be submerged in water).
  4. Place moss on top of and around iris.  The moss will absorb the water and keep the iris bulb or rhizome moist but not soggy.
  5. Place the vase in a sunny location, and enjoy!
*The rhizome I had already had roots and a leafy top.  I filled the vase 1/3 the way, placed the rhizome on top of the gravel and then poured gravel around the roots until the rhizome rested on the gravel. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Woolly Aphids Attacking Apple Tree

Photo: Woolly Aphids on Apple Tree

Photo: Crushed Woolly Aphids on a Napkin

I noticed something that initially appeared to be white fungus on my apple tree.  However, upon closer inspection, I discovered the white fungus was actually woolly aphids!  

Woolly aphids are aphids that feed on the sap of a plant and secrete a substance that resembles white cotton or wool.  Symptoms of feeding may include twisted and curled leaves, yellowed foliage, poor plant growth, low plant vigor, and branch dieback.

I pruned back what I could to slow down the aphid growth, and I will try out a recipe for homemade insecticidal soap on the remaining aphids.  If it ends up being effective, I will share the recipe in a later post.   

Note: To determine whether you have woolly aphids on your tree, all you have to do is rub the white substance.  If a purple stain appears, then you have a woolly aphid problem on your hands; not fungus.  


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Free Split Leaf Philodendron by Mail



Photo: Split Leaf Philodendron, Free Plant of the Month by freeplantsbymail.org

Free Plants By Mail (freeplantsbymail.org) was started by local growers as a way to use the surplus plants from nurseries and also as a way to support The Nature Conservancy.  Free Plants By Mail offers a new free plant each month.  This month they are offering a Split Leaf Philodendron.  

Although the plant itself is free, you do have to pay a small shipping and handling fee of $6.95.
This organization also has over 100 plants available for sale on their site.  100% of the proceeds from the sale will go to The Nature Conservancy.

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).