Posts in “DIY”

DIY West Elm Inspired Rug

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

I’ve been eyeing a gorgeous area rug from West Elm for the past few weeks; the colors and design print is just perfect for my children’s bedroom. But since area rugs are one of the last things that my husband wants to purchase in our house. I have to be creative on how to meet my design needs in decorating our children’s room. That is why I tried to do a DIY West Elm Inspired Rug instead. I found an old canvas type of fabric rug from our church garage sale a couple years ago. And here’s the original design…

I’m not a fan of the design of the rug (it’s a bit strange don’t you think? 😉 ) so I just wanted to use the back surface to paint it in the future.

Here are some of the images from the process and materials that I used to create this West Elm inspired rug. 

Old area rug 

Acrylic paints

White latex paint



Cardboard as stencils

Mixing containers

It’s my first time to paint on rug material. The blending was challenging for me since the fabric absorbs the paint easily, not like when I paint acrylic medium on canvas. I used tons of water to mix the color and with quick brushstrokes.

I found a fabric paint on my tools so I also used it to color the lighter blue part of the rug.

I cover the fringe tassels with tape on each side to protect from the paint.

I’m not satisfied with the color of white acrylic paint so I opt for an exterior white latex paint to keep it visible.

bunk bed from Bel Furniture / teepee crate & kids  (similar)/ floating shelves /

This is the original rug from West Elm called Sunkissed Landscape Rug: If you have the budget for this rug, go for it, it’s on sale! I think it’s cute for nursery room, kid’s bedroom, playroom and even living room!

What do you guys think of this DIY? 

I haven’t washed the rug yet, so I’ll update you all if something changes with the look. 

If you’ll try to paint your rug like this, don’t forget to tag me @helloislandmama so I can see it 🙂 

See you in the next blog post! Stay safe and God bless!



DIY Hot Wheels Car Parking With Lift

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Before I throw cardboards, I asked myself first.. “Do I need this for something?” and I always said “Yes!” haha My husband knows how I’m a cardboard hoarder. But.. I do inspect the cardboard first before I keep them. I make sure it’s a good quality cardboard that will be good for making diy toy for my kids and even for a storage bins just like the ones I made for my children’s playroom. I think it’s fun to make something out of the cardboard before I tossed it in the trash 🙂

Last week, my sister shown me a doll house toy for her daughter, and because I have three boys, I searched for a playhouse for boys and I ended up watching a DIY cardboard hot wheels with lift in Youtube. Here’s the Youtube video if you’d like to see the tutorial. I copied the main concept of the car parking with lift except for the tracks since my kid’s already have hot wheels tracks. If you already have your own tracks and connectors, this concept will work! The idea of this DIY is that to allow the kid to choose a car from the parking lot and use the lift to pull up the car and have a fun car race competition.  My boys really enjoy it! And yes, I’m not expecting that this diy toy would stay for a long time. My husband already warned me about it 😉


This is the place where you will connect the two connectors of the tracks. I used a glue gun to stick the long pieces of cardboard on each sides. Make sure the connectors will fit in the empty space.

Apply the top with same width but extend the length around 2 cm so there will be no gap between the connector and the cardboard.


I use different colored papers on each tracks just for fun. I also made a stopper using Popsicle stick (see below image)


The lift is fun to play! Not as perfect as you move them but it still works. I used couple of milk lids to attached a wooden stick inside with hot glue.


I hope this post inspire you to make something out of cardboard box too! You can check some of my old cardboard works that I made for my kids: DIY cardboard Playhouse / DIY carboard Play Kitchen / DIY School Bus Costume

Follow me on Instagram where I post other DIY projects for my kids and other motherhood related topics 😉


Family Halloween Costume: The Hobbit

Friday, November 1, 2019

This year my husband was the one in charge to pick what theme we’ll do for Halloween since I chose the costume from last year . He was always keen to do The Hobbit since he wants to be Gandalf (Hello Lord of the Rings fans!). It was such a fun, messy, and challenging experience to prepare our costumes. I tried my best not to spend for the materials as much as possible. I mainly had to buy the wig and ears since I don’t know how to make them from scratch.

Here are some behind-the-scene images I took from weeks of preparation. I hope you enjoy, get inspired, and learn something from it! 🙂

I’m thankful that there was a week when my mother-in-law was in town so she taught me how to sew the kids’ cloak and Gandalf costumes. I found all the fabrics in a thrift store. The cloak is  mostly made from window curtains.

DIY Gandalf costumes using an old bed sheet.

DIY Gandalf Hat. I used cereal boxes and wrapped an old pillowcase with a different fabric.

Testing the Gandalf hat.

My husband loves Halloween…

Gandalf Beard. It was made of wool which means it can be pretty messy….it shredded a lot, so beware.😉

Brent told me to use my hairspray to lessen the shredding. I used a mix of water and Elmer’s glue instead. I don’t want to use my nice hairspray you know? 😉

For the hobbit feet, I used their own shoes to mold to create the hobbit feet. These are made of paper and I finished it with a brush of  mixed water and Elmer’s glue.

Fun part! Painting! To add some hair, I used black threads and trimmed it into small pieces.

Our friend Clint of @boyd.woodshop helped us create these cool wooden swords for our kids!

The cute vest was from old button shirts.

The only DIY for myself is the headpiece of Galadriel.

My husband told me that I’m the dark elf version, so I did my makeup in a lighter way 😉 My dress was given by Susan from our church. I found the shawl in thrift store and used an accessory that came from my wedding dress. Thanks to Photoshop for my colored eyes 😉

So thankful for thrift stores! There are many things that I found that made these Halloween costumes less expensive, yet creative. 


These are the links if you’d like to see where we found these items:

Elf ears

Galadriel Wig

Light Ball for Gandalf Staff


Happy Halloween! Stay warm in this cold weather!



Before and After: Our Entryway Makeover

Tuesday, August 27, 2019



When we moved to our own new house, I was excited to have enough space in our entryway for a comfortable bench to sit on and space to store our shoes.  I thought it would be great if our bench could serve as both seating and storage.That’s why I decided to decorate our entryway with the help of Simpli home, who sent me this sturdy and fashionable storage bench for me to feature on today’s post.

Simpli Home has tons of benches to choose from.   I chose their warm shaker entryway bench because it has everything I was looking for: enough space for two people to sit on, longer than the other benches, made of  solid wood, and with plenty of storage for our shoes. We used to have a shoe rack, and all of our shoes were exposed – it’s wasn’t very attractive. I love having an entryway bench with closed storage now: it makes the space look clean and organized.

I’ve been going back and forth between having a long hook rack on the wall or having a stand coat rack for our bags, hats, keys, and coats. I decided to go with a decent size hook rack to save space, and added a quick painting I did to add some color.

I love greenery inside our house, as it’s inviting and lovely to see! But… I’ve recently realized  I don’t have time to take care of real plants. Haha! So this year, I’ve been grabbing faux succulents and other faux indoor plants for the house. So busy here, you understand right? 😉 

This DIY hanging planter is so easy to create. I used macrame rope and a small slice of a log from Hobby Lobby,and simply tied a knot on the bottom and secured the top to hang.


To finish up decorating this area, I added a long pillow for the bench that I made using a pretty scarf I saw in a consignment store as a pillow case. I also added a perfect-sized area rug as well. 

The kids’ shoe metal container we used before was too open and the shoes were too exposed so I decided to use a wicker basket instead so that all their shoes would be covered.

I love the bench that anchors our new entryway for so many reasons., It is a great size for shoe storage, easily fitting at least 6 pairs of shoes plus flat sandals on the side. I also love that it has enough space underneath the bench for me to put our everyday slippers. It comes in4 different shades of colors (the one I chose is called Distressed Grey). The seating is comfortable, and when guests enter the environment feels much more welcoming.

I hope you enjoyed this little tour of our entryway, and that you are  inspired to redecorate yours too! 

In partnership with Simpli Home. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible.


5 days of fun school lunches for kids

Saturday, August 10, 2019

This post is sponsored by adidas. All my opinions are my own.

We have a child who is entering kindergarten this month! With all the busyness before the first day of school, wearing comfy tops like this one to do some errands or cooking in the kitchen certainly helps me in more ways than one. For today’s post, I’d like to share these five school lunches for kids with a twist of fun and creativity! If you’ve been a reader of my blog or been following me on my Instagram stories, you know that I love art and design and I sometimes share some creative lunches for my kids since I’m a stay-at-home mom. I thought why not apply my art background on food so my son will get more excited to eat them. 

Thankfully, my kids are good eaters. It takes practice, lots of patience, and training to turn our kids to one. Credit goes to my husband who has a background in Child Psychology 😉 Anyway, scroll down and enjoy these five days of fun and homemade school lunch for your kids!

Lunch: Cheese Sandwich with Pepperoni 
Theme: School bus

When my kids think of school, one of the first things that comes to mind is a school bus! Here’s how to make an edible school bus: grab a knife and trim the top left and side of two sliced of bread to create a curve. Make three small square holes in the front as bus windows. I added a few pepperoni as wheels and a stop sign that says ‘K” for kindergarten. I threw some steamed broccoli, almonds, raisins, and cherry plums for a fruity treat.

Lunch: Avocado Cheese Quesidilla
Theme: Fish

Tortilla is a hit at home especially for my kids. I grabbed a fresh tortilla in the grocery to make this easy and healthy avocado cheese quesadilla. After I made them, on the same iron skillet pan, I fried corn and black beans with oil, some cumin, and paprika for a few minutes. The other side is sweet pepper (as fish skin), more avocados, and fresh mangoes.

Lunch: Mini Bagel Pizza
Theme: Owl

One of the easiest lunch that I actually give to my kids is pizza bagel. The best part of it is that my kids can join and help create their own. You can make these bunch and freeze it for later after you baked them. I think this will be my eldest son’s on-the-go lunch!


Food: Pasta Salad
Theme: Writing K for Kindergarten

Another easy and healthy lunch idea is pasta salad. I know, I know.. salad for kids? Well, the good side of pasta salad is that you can experiment with ingredients — olives, cube cheese, zucchini, cherry tomatoes. For protein, we usually use marinade chicken but this time, summer sausage as it’s easy to chop and add on the salad. The adorable cheese pencil I got from Pinterest! You can add apple sauce and some crackers as side dish.

Lunch Idea: Koren Beef with Rice
Theme: Bear

This 30-minute korean beef that I found in Pinterest is one of the meals that my family loves. You can throw some veggies like broccoli, carrots, green onions, and red peppers. Since I’m from the Philippines and my husband spent some time living in Asia, we love having rice at least once or twice a week! And yes, we love leftovers so it doesn’t go to waste! Any left is what I will pack for my son’s lunch.

I hope this post inspires you to create your son’s lunch with a twist. Whether you want a creative lunch or just a simple one, the important thing is the effort you make for your little one(s) and that it comes from the heart <3

adidas kid’s shirt (similar one)

blue tank top

Feel free to share with other moms. Happy weekend!


CATEGORY DIY, Family, Food

DIY Storage Box for Your Home

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

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DIY is something that is really close to my heart. The frugal crafter in me enjoys the process and the creativity that goes with it. The feeling of completing a project, no matter the size, is always an incomparable feeling.

A few months ago, I shared my children’s playroom makeover featuring DIY storage boxes. The most challenging part was sorting all their toys! I’ve mentioned before that I think my kids have more stuff than me. And I can honestly say that it still rings true. With all their whatnots lying around the house, I decided to make my own storage box.

I made my version of a cube bin out of recycled cardboard boxes and a few other things I found in our home. It’s been a few months and I’m happy to report that my DIY bin is still in good condition. I’m so glad I was able to pull this off. It definitely saved us a few bucks! Sharing with you a step-by-step guide on how to make your own.


Heavy Duty Boxes

Duct Tape




Adhesive tape

Fabric Tac

Fabric (got them in Hobby Lobby)

Cotton Rope

Eyelets (extra large)

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diy storage box home tutorial 1. Cut your preferred size for your bin. Here are my measurements for my cube storage:

*Front and Back is 12.75 “ x 13”

**Right and left side of the box is 13” x 15”

***Bottom is 12.75” x 14.75”

Tape the sides together using duct tape or packaging tape to create a cube.

2. Punch two holes in front of the box. You can also use hand-held paper cutter. The two holes will serve as your bin’s handle later.

3. Use old newspapers to protect the surface of your work area. Measure and cut your chosen fabric for the **right and left side of the box (I added extra 1-2 inches for the measurements) and use adhesive spray to cover the sides. I used Fabric-Tac to secure the edges in its place.

4. Prepare your fabric for the cover of *front, back, and bottom.  Fold at least half an inch of each sides of these fabric covers, iron the sides and then sew together or use Fabric-Tac. I connect all the covers for the front, back and bottom by sewing them together. It should look like a table runner. 

5. Start to spray the adhesive and place the front, bottom, and back cover of the box. I used Fabric-Tac to secure the edges in its place.

6. Cover the hole we punched earlier with an eyelets to protect the fabric. It doubles as a subtle design too!

7. I used a white cotton rope and laced it together. Mine is 24 inches in length.

8. It should look like this once you’re done with the knot. You can use washi tape to secure the folds of your fabric inside, it can also add a bit of style. 

I know life can be busy, especially if you are a parent. Here’s a list of ready to buy cube bins at your convenience.





diy storage box home (1)

diy storage box home (2)

I hope you enjoy this DIY cube bin tutorial!


Turning 5 at Pump It Up

Monday, April 22, 2019

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My son recently celebrated his 5th birthday at Pump It Up of Webster. I’m so thankful that I was able to organize everything and that the kids’ actually enjoyed the party! Let’s face it. Entertaining kids is a challenge these days. With all the gadgets around, it’s quite hard to find an activity that they would really enjoy.

My son was so happy to celebrate with his friends from our church. They definitely loved climbing and sliding down the huge inflatable slides. I didn’t need to worry at all about everyone’s safety. Pump It Up’s friendly staff were always present to supervise the area and attend to the kids whenever they needed help with something.

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What I love about Pump It Up though, is that they’re really clean and organized. As mothers, we don’t want our kids playing in areas with questionable sanitation. So this was a huge plus for me! This is one of the first things I’ve noticed in their facility. They keep the play areas really clean!

They also helped me with the e-vites including sending a reminder to my guests before the actual party. This really took a load off my plate and allowed me to attend to other things. It’s always nice to have a little helping hand when setting everything up is getting overwhelming. The part I super loved about all this is, I don’t have to clean up after the party! Parties are fun but the clean up after is a feat. My family and I can just have a good time without worrying about the mess we need to clean up after. It’s like having your cake and eating it too! 🙂

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Since my son is into Ninjago lego 😉 He also requested for Lego cupcakes just like I did for his brother last year. “Lego Birthday Theme”. It’s easy to make and you can buy ready made fondant in grocery stores. Use a small icing stainless tip to create small rounded shapes for the brick Lego effect.

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To complete the party favors, Bitsy’s sent these delicious and healthy snacks for the kids!

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If you’re thinking of a kids’ party that even the adults will enjoy, I highly recommend Pump It Up. It’s simple, stress-free, and private. The Glow in the Dark, Balloon Drop and Bubble Experience are just so much fun that you surely would want you and your kids to experience. The reservations are quick and you can choose from different packages for all party sizes. You can browse their packages and play areas here. Book a date through their online calendar and you’re good to go!

Thank you to Pump It Up of Webster for this fun and cool birthday party! You made my family and friends super happy!


My House Cleaning Schedule with Printable To-Do list!

Friday, March 22, 2019

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While cleaning and organizing sounds impossible with small kids running around almost all the time, having a guide (aka to-do list) helps me keep tasks on track. Ticking off everything from my list, of course, doesn’t happen all the time. But I still like my chores and errands where I can see them. With all the stuff I need to do, a physical reminder is a great way to keep everything in check.

I divided my to-do list in three sections: daily, weekly, and monthly.

Daily is for stuff that needs to be done every single day like making the bed, wiping countertops, and so on. For weekly, I try to focus on vacuuming and mopping our kitchen floor every monday. Tuesday is for organizing and decluttering our closet. Wednesday is for bathroom cleaning. Thursday is for changing and washing towels and bedsheets, the rest of the laundry will be friday. Saturday is for checking my “monthly” to-do list and Sunday is just for church and family day.

Monthly is for the rest of the things I can do that doesn’t require immediate follow ups like cleaning and organizing the garage, washing my children’s stuffed toys, and maybe cleaning up my photo gallery 😉

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I love it when our home is extra neat. It gives us positive vibes – emotionally and mentally.

You can download and print this DIY to-do list if you’re having trouble remembering which tasks you should do first. You can also laminate them and use a dry erase marker so you can use it again.

There’s nothing quite as satisfying as checking an item off your to-do list after a hard day’s work. To-do lists are great for tracking your progress and boosting your confidence in your ability to complete important tasks everyday.

Are you a fan of to-do lists too?


Welcome to Hello Island Mama! I love to share about motherhood, makeup, DIYs, home styling and faith. Based in Houston, Texas. Originally from Philippines. Thank you for your time to read and don't forget to subscribe above! - Em

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

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