Last month, we took a trip to the other side of the world! Over the span of two weeks, we visited the city of Tokyo, Boracay Island (in the Philippines) and Manila, Philippines. We returned home just two weeks before the hurricane hit the southern provinces of the country. Many are enduring hardships as the provinces try to recover. Fortunately, the friends we made in Manila are okay as the worst weather did not go through the north.
Before the trip, I got a request from a coworker to bring back sand. He has started collecting it from various places and it’s the one thing he asks of anyone traveling to a beach destination. I didn’t want to add to the pile of Ziploc bags he has in his office so I came up with another way to deliver his souvenir. I put the sand we grabbed, from White Beach on Boracay Island, in a narrow glass bottle and was excited to use my Martha Stewart etching kit to customize it! I purchased the bottle for $3 from the Container Store, but I’ve seen similar items in Marshalls and HomeGoods.
I placed the stencils on the glass bottle, spelling out ‘Boracay’, and brushed the etching cream on. Since the word has two A’s and I only had one letter A stencil, I just used another letter as a placeholder.
Using the container to identify where the sand came from just made it seem a little more special than handing over sand in a flimsy plastic bag.
I left the etching cream on for about 30 minutes and then washed it off. I used a funnel to pour in the sand, corked it, and tied a ribbon at the top – super-duper easy. And this idea can be used for other handmade gifts, homemade limoncello maybe?
This is “Take 2″ because I already gilded a set of real agate coasters a few months ago. It was a quick and easy project that totally took the coasters up a notch.
I found another set of agate-like coasters made by Threshold on sale at Target. These are faux agate. They seem to be made out of glass, not real stone, but they look and feel pretty similar. Because they aren’t natural rock, the plain edges are pretty smooth. So, I decided to use my Krylon gold leaf pen on the edges instead of actual gold leaf.
This was an even easier, even quicker solution than applying gold leaf. Instead of applying adhesive, waiting for it to become tacky, then applying and smoothing the gold leaf, I just applied the marker directly to the edges, going over it twice to make sure there were no visible streaks. The result is still a glamorous, golden touch, but the gold leaf pen results in a less shiny finish.
I’m giving this set to friends so I bought a pretty, round box from Marshall’s and placed the set of four coasters in burlap, tied up with a twine bow. I think gilded coasters make a great gift either by themselves, framed, or perhaps as part of a cocktail gift basket.
Would you use a set of these as coasters or frame them to display on the wall?
Paint Colors We’ve Used