Cast a sinister glow over any setting with a cluster of white tapers dripping with "blood" (actually red candle wax). Fill a cup or a small pail with sand, and plant white candles inside so they stand upright. Light a red candle and tip it over the white candles so the wax drips down the tops and sides, being careful not to burn yourself. Let wax cool completely before removing candles from sand.
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All we did to transform a mere 7-year-old boy to a mighty magician was use a fabric marker to draw a tie and collar onto a white T-shirt, affix a fake carnation to his lapel, and tie a black-and-red satin cape around his neck. And lo and behold: a levitating maestro ready to make piles of candy disappear.
This unadorned cape falls just above the knee. You will need black satin and red satin fabric and two 14-inch pieces of red satin ribbon for ties. Make the cape following the basic directions. Stitch the ribbons securely to either side of the neck.
SourceMartha Stewart Kids, Volume 9 2003
Transform an inexpensive flower bucket into a nice-looking umbrella stand by painting the bottom of the bucket with glossy oil-based enamel paint. In addition to providing color, the paint will help disguise any rust caused by dripping umbrellas. Mark the bottom third of a tall galvanized bucket (available at garden centers) with painters' tape; prime and paint this area and the bottom of the bucket. Let dry 24 hours before removing tape.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, April 2008
Hanging a dish towel from an oven door makes sense -- the towel is always at the ready, and the oven's warmth quickly dispels dampness. Here's a way to improve on the idea, keeping the towel from slipping off:
Make it into a loop by attaching Velcro strips to two ends, one on the front and one on the back, below. Stitch in place, or use iron-on Velcro strips.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, September 2009
For many of us, knitting is relaxing. But when the yarn inevitably becomes tangled, it can feel more like an exercise in frustration. Here's one way to keep things from getting knotty. Gather empty cookie tins left over from the holidays, or purchase new ones. Apply a coat of oil-based enamel paint in any hue to outside of tin and lid; let dry overnight. Using a grommet kit (available at hardware stores), attach a grommet to the lid's center. Place ball of yarn inside, and thread an end through the grommet before securing lid.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, January
While you have your eraser and fabric paint at the ready (after making game boards), why not give some plain-Jane napkins a little personality? Stamp a bright border in any pattern and palette you fancy.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, August 2010
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