Shades Of Words


Home made notice-board

Even though there are phones with reminders and fancy apps, I still like to see an old fashioned notice board in  my home. Now, the lovely jute bags in which we get our Basmati rice have been piling at home and I just wasn’t sure how to recycle them. Then one day I had a brain-wave – how about a foam notice-board with a bit of earthen tone. I got a few dollars worth of scrap book paper, foam board, glue and scissors from Michaels – as shown below:

After half an hour of cutting and pasting , I came up with this.

A couple of binder clips and my creation now adorns my bedroom wall. It’s not as finished as I would like it to be but I am happy with it. Next time I would avoid using the cello-tape and would like to get a better control on the scissors for a straight line cut



DIY Jewelery Boxes

I love recycling stuff, a habit which can be quite annoying for others as I find it hard to throw away junk. I am always sure that junk can be re-purposed into something else.

Take for instance, these body butter boxes from Body Shop. Pretty & Colorful!

Once I was through with the body butter ( which by the way was fabulous) , I cleaned them thoroughly with soap and warm water till the smell and the greasiness was gone. After that with a bit of sticker magic ( both the tape and the stick – ons) , I turned them into this (image below – click on picture to magnify). Just line these with tissues and keep your jewelery in this!


Turning a cable spool into a bedside/coffee table

Cable Spool table

Cable Spool table

I am always on a lookout for reusable stuff that can become into something really cool through a simple DIY project. When I spotted this spool table at the office basement cum junkyard I knew it had more potential.

I went to the hardware store got myself sandpaper, primer, turpentine,putty, paint of my choice (brick red in this case) and some brushes.

I started off on a sunny weekend morning with scrubbing of the dirt and un-evenness with sandpaper. Its hard work and after 2 hours of it my table looked much cleaner. To give it a smooth finish I applied a layer of primer on it and left it to dry for 6-8 hours. Once the primer is applied the uneven parts of the spool are visible clearly. Now the next stage is to apply putty on those gaps so that the wood is all leveled. Applying putty can be a messy and tricky job – one should attempt it to butter it across the surface. Putty will take another 6-8 hours to dry. The table will then be ready for another coat of primer.

Once you have applied the primer and it has dried – apply two coats of paint. My husband was not too happy with my choice of red but it turned out to be alright. Look at my brand new table.

The New Table

The New Table



Design your own furniture – stool

StoolPics-fullThis article will be of interest to those who have time on their hand, some hidden artistic desire, urge to design their own furniture and an understanding girlfriend/wife. Any of the above will be good motivating factors for this project. Also, the last one if not present can cause problems.

Anyways…So on a day when the rains were hitting Hyderabad I bumped into roadside vendors selling some ‘not so fine’ furniture. Though the furniture was not great but I needed a small stool and so I bought one. Later I got this idea to paint it and give it a bit of design. So I decided to go ahead with a chess board design. The how-to for this project is as follows:


Material Required

1.Unfinished wooden stool

2.Wood Primer

3.Paint (Colors of your choice)


5.Sandpaper (medium and fine)

6.Wood Putty and Putty Knife


8.Some cloth

 Now you can start. Choose a sunny day when you are feeling full of energy (It will be tiring!)…

  1. First, fill in all the holes/gaps in the stool with the Wood Putty and leave the stool for drying. When the stool is dry, all the rough surfaces need to be smoothened with the Sandpaper. Use the medium Sandpaper first and then the Fine Sandpaper for finishing. Figure A shows the final result.
  2. Now you need to apply one coat of wood primer. You can make the Primer thinner by adding some turpentine, very little that is. Let the stool dry. Once dry, apply a second coat of primer and again let it dry. Figure B shows the final result.
  3. Now you are ready to paint the stool. Start painting the legs and the area under the stool first. Remember that the color’s and design is your choice. Once painted, let it dry and then apply another coat of color and let it dry. Figure C and D shows the final result.

Now you can turn to the interesting and creative part of the painting of stool i.e. the top base. Choose your design. I chose Chessboard look. To draw a chessboard, use a ruler and pencil to draw squares. (Getting all 64 squares is not the key; design is). Having traced the design, start painting the squares with alternate colors and let it dry. Apply a second coat and let it dry.

Enjoy the stool, take pictures!

 This entire project costed me between Rs. 300-350. So with some creativity and color I turned around a Rs. 50 stool into what you see below.


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Tuning Acoustic Guitar

Guitar1. Without the aid of a piano or tuner:

  • Start with the E or the 6th string and tune it as low as gives agood tune.
  • For tuning the 5th String, place a finger directly behind the 5th fret of the 6th string and tune the open 5th string in unison.
  • For tuning the 4th String, place a finger directly behind the 5th fret of the 5th string and tune the open 4th string in unison.
  • For tuning the 3rd String, place a finger directly behind the 5th fret of the 4th string and tune the open 3rd string in unison.
  • For tuning the 2nd String, place a finger directly behind the 4th fret of the 3rd string and tune the open 2nd string in unison.
  • For tuning the 1st String, place a finger directly behind the 5th fret of the 2nd string and tune the open 1st string in unison.

2. Using software’s from Internet:

You can download Guitar tuner software’s from internet and use them to tune your guitar. Usually these software’s produce the sound of a tuned string and you can hear it and tune your guitar to match that sound.I found the following software’s useful:
Gieson Interactive Online Guitar Tuner
GCH Guitar Academy Guitar Tuner

3. For those who are okay with investing money

You can buy electronic Guitar tuner’s from market. I know of KORG brand guitar tuner’s. I am yet to explore this option so can’t say how much it helps. But these tuners make life really simple as the sound of your guitar shows a certain reading on these instruments and you have tune your guitar to produce a certain reading. And you’re done. Simpler than depending on your ears.

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Ipod Nano – Arrange Music & Upload Videos

Ipod_screen_music-full;init_I recently got a brand new Ipod Nano as a gift from my girlfriend. I was quite thrilled with it and yet quite clueless on how to arrange music in it and how to upload videos.

Here is some advice from my learning curve:

Arranging Music

1.Create play lists and add songs to it. It’s just like putting music in folders on a PC. We are replacing folders with play lists here. Whenever you want to add music to your Ipod, just assign to some existing play list and on syncing it will be uploaded. For new play lists, you have to add them for syncing in the Music tab of Ipod.

2.For uploading music to Ipod, you will have to go through Itunes. In Itunes, you can select multiple songs at once and change the attributes of these songs. Attributes like genre, Album name, Artist name etc. It’s like bulk rename of files. This option comes when you right click after selecting song(s), simply choose ‘get info’ and change attributes at one go. This helps in arranging the music album wise, artist wise, genre wise etc.

Uploading Videos

Ipod supports MP4 files and so don’t worry if initially you are not able to upload any of your existing videos files on your new Ipod. It’s because they are not in MP4 format. So the answer is simple. Download a software that converts the files into MP4 formats. I found Videora Ipod Converter as very useful for this purpose. It’s a freeware and you can download it here.