We’re always listening to our customers and working hard to provide the materials, tools and supplies you need to complete your projects. That’s why we’re especially excited to let you know that our online shop is now open! We’ve stocked it with a selection of some of our favorite items for you to choose from. Plus, when you shop online you’ll get the added convenience of domestic shipping, which is free with orders of $75 and up. You can even select in-store pickup and we’ll have it ready for you at our retail shop.
You’ll want to keep checking into our shop on a regular basis. We’ll change and add inventory as time goes on. Right now, to help with holiday gift shopping, the online store features a few Metal EarthⓇ models, Project GeniusⓇ puzzles and ImpressArtⓇ kits and tools.
So, make it easy on yourself. Finish your holiday shopping with a couple of clicks. We know it will put some extra “merry,” into your Christmas!
Every year, right after Thanksgiving, my house is filled with holiday music and the smell of pine as we put up the tree and start celebrating the season. Another thing we love to do is create homemade decorations. From coffee filter snowflakes and popcorn garlands, to paper chains for the tree, Christmas is the prime do-it-yourself holiday. We’ve got just the thing that you and your family can make to get in the spirit of the season: a 3D snowflake. Follow along as we show you a simple six step tutorial so you can create your very own.
Before building your snowflake, customize your panels. You can use acrylic or spray paint to make your pieces truly one of a kind. To create a more vibrant color, add a layer of white (the primer layer) on each panel before painting. Primer will not only help the color pop, but will give a nice, even surface to paint on. Let all the pieces dry completely before you start to build.
Identify the first, second and third panels as shown in Picture 1. The hook panel is pictured first with a top slit, followed along by the middle panel that has two slits, and the last panel that has a bottom slit.
Take the flat hook panel [Picture 2] in both hands and begin moving the non-hook side backwards about an inch [Picture 3]. This step will help the other two panels slide easily into each other.
Now that you have bent the hook panel, take the middle panel and slide it directly down the middle of the hook panel shown in Picture 4. Your snowflake should now look like Picture 5 (The snowflake will be a little loose)
Take the last panel and slide it diagonally into the middle slit on the hook panel (make sure the hook panel is still slightly bent to allow the middle panel to slide in easily). You may have to wiggle this piece down as seen in Picture 7, but once it is placed it will fit snugly.
Now that the snowflake is built, it is time to bend the first panel back into place. While you push it back into place, push the hook part under the last panel’s edge to lock the snowflake in [Picture 8].
Your beautiful new 3D snowflake is done! Add a string or ribbon and use it to decorate your Christmas tree or inside or outside your house where you and your friends, family and neighbors can enjoy.
Are you interested in creating more holiday decorations? Stay tuned for information coming soon about our holiday class we’ll hold on Saturday, Nov. 20.
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October is officially here and that means it’s finally time for warm apple cider, pumpkin patches, caramel apples and of course, Halloween. This is my favorite time of year because it is the start of the DIY season for holiday decor. What better way to get in the spooky spirit than creating your own decorations; plus when you do, you’ll likely become the talk of your neighborhood.
Halloween is a great holiday for the diy-er. From carving pumpkins to making costumes, it’s a lot of fun to compete with your neighbors for the most creative Halloween decor.
Where do you go to get ideas? I often find myself on Google, searching for easy, kid-friendly crafts that are also affordable. But, for something readily available, at DIY Steel we have many cost-effective kits and materials that are simple to make and fun for all ages. One of those is our happy 3D bat. Here’s a six-step tutorial so you can create your own.
2 feet panels
2 leg panels
1 back panel
1 middle panel
1 front panel
Approximately 10-15 Minutes
Make sure you have all seven panels ready to customize. Picture 1shows the panels and what they should look like. This is the time to customize your panels. You can use acrylic or spray paint to make your pieces truly one of a kind. To create a more vibrant color, add a layer of white (the primer layer) on each panel before painting. Primer will not only help the color pop, but will give a nice, even surface to paint on. Let all the pieces dry completely before building your bat.
For this step, take the two leg panels to create your base. As seen in Picture 2, each leg panel has a tail tab with a slit on it. Notice the left panel has a bottom slit, while the right panel has a top slit. Pick up both panels and slide the bottom slit panel into the top slit panel as seen in Picture 3. The base may be a little wobbly, but that’s okay. Your finished base should look like Picture 4.
Now that the base is done, it is time to start the body of the bat. Take the back panel, as seen in Picture 5, and slide it into the back slits of the base, Picture 6. You may need to wiggle this panel into place. Once it is set, the integrity of the base will solidify and the result should look like Picture 7.
It’s time to give your bat some wings! Similar to Step 3, take the middle panel (as seen in Picture 8) and slide it into the middle slots of the base, Picture 9. You should now have the outline of the bat, wings and ears included as seen in Picture 10.
Now, bring your bat to life with its friendly smile. Take the front panel as seen in Picture 11, and slide it into the front slits as shown in Picture 12. You should now have a footless bat smiling back at you (Picture 13).
Let’s complete the bat! You should have two small panels left, these are the bat’s feet (Picture 14). Using the foot pieces, slide them into the two empty slots, as seen in Picture 15 and Picture 16. Now, you have a fully built 3D bat to help celebrate Halloween (Picture 17). Be careful where you put it, he might fly away!
What’s the October holiday that brings with it all things scary and sweet? It’s Halloween, of course! Its popularity continues to grow, making it one of the most anticipated U.S. holidays of the year. In fact, according to a recent Harris On Demand poll (conducted on behalf of The Hershey Company), 86% of Americans ages 35-44 “are either more excited or as excited about Halloween this year than in previous years.” Plus, nearly 60% of those who are parents with kids under the age of 18, plan to do more for Halloween than in the past and for months have already been thinking about Halloween celebrations.
Even with the sometimes frightful elements, the holiday is just plain fun and that’s something everyone can use more of in 2021. At DIY Steel, we’re here to help make your Halloween decorations especially “spooktacular,” with some appealing kits and projects that are right on trend this year. In fact, we carry the top two Halloween decor trends for 2021 cited in Charleston Crafted: “modern black” and “metallics.”
All of our cutouts and Halloween kits start out as matte black metal. We’ve included photos here so you can start thinking of ideas about how to incorporate these metal pieces into your holiday decorations — both inside and out.
How about some larger-than-life spiders to make arachnophobes’ skin crawl. Our big tarantula cutout will look awesome on webbing or a wreath that you create, or climbing up your home’s exterior (we’ve got a black widow cutout, too). Leave it black or choose to paint its body a bright red with our supply of high-quality paints and patinas.
Next, you can go a little “batty,” with our 3D bat. We really think it is kind of cute, so it could be appropriate for homes with younger kids who might find it a bit more charming than scary. What fun to get the kids to help put it together and then paint and decorate. Perfect for a Halloween party and as a favor the kids (even adults) can make to take home.
Of course, it’s not Halloween without pumpkins — and we’ve got two great ones for you. These pumpkin cutouts can be painted, and we’ve also got materials to help you make a platform to stand them on with candles to set a dim-light mood. Then place them on your porch, inside, or again, use them for a party decoration game. We’ve got steel tubing you could also use to attach to the pumpkins (or any of the other decor items we’ve featured) to create yard stakes.
To safely hand out candy to trick-or-treaters, you might want to set up an outdoor station. Along with sweet treats, make the station festive with our scary black cat and skull cutouts (or any of the other items we’ve shown you here). Again, you can leave these matte black or we’ll help you look through our large inventory of paints and patinas to find the perfect colors to make these decorations pop. Another idea is to incorporate several cats within your design to create a litter of felines that will make your yard the best on the block. Consider putting battery-powered lights behind their eyes to add to the spooky factor or entwine them with twinkle lights for some extra fun.
These are only a few of the ways you can make your Halloween home the best decorated it has ever been. For more inspiration, this HGTV article will give you additional ideas about how to decorate with the items you pick up in our shop. Come see us soon, so you can be ready on Oct. 1, to wow the neighborhood with your creative and eye-catching Halloween decor.
I love to craft and create things by hand. When I need some inspiration, I will turn to online crafting communities for help with ideas and motivation. There, I find tons of ideas for easy metal crafts for people of all ages. I especially like to find kid-friendly metal craft projects that I can make with my nephews. Who doesn’t like creating fun usable art while bonding with your family?
I like to work on craft projects that I can use in everyday life. Making candles, soaps and even items like paper towel holders are just a few examples of the projects I love, plus they make great gifts. Working in the metal industry has taught me there’s no limit to the usable steel crafts you can create. Today, I’m excited to present you with an easy, six-step project that even kids can do (with assistance): A pencil holder.
Clean your material of metal shards, grease, and dirt. You can use isopropyl alcohol (also known as rubbing alcohol) to remove any grease, however, make sure it has completely dried before decorating or it will cause the material to rust. We use Sculpt Nouveau Metal Degreaser (Picture 1) A clean surface allows paint to be evenly distributed on your finished piece. You’ll see grease, metal shards, and other inconsistencies if the metal isn’t properly cleaned (Picture 2)
1 piece of 6″ x 6″ base plate. You choose thickness
3 or 4 small square or round tubes. [2″ -5″ tall -1″-2″ wide]
Paint [Acrylic or Spray paint]
Clear Top coat [Matte or Gloss]
Approximately $5-$10 dollars, depending on the materials you purchase.
Stage your square or round tube pieces on your baseplate in a design you like (Picture 3 & 4) You can play with the angles and the sizing to create a unique, working art piece. Settle on your design before you apply the epoxy, because once it is dry, although clear, it may not give you the texture you want.
Now it’s time to mix your epoxy. (Picture 5) Remember, a little goes a long way when it comes to epoxy. Quickly mix in quarter size amounts: one part epoxy resin and one part hardener (You can mix directly on the sanded baseplate.). Make sure to apply a generous amount to your pieces (Pictures 6)
After applying the epoxy to the baseplate, set your square or round tube piece into place. Apply a little pressure to each piece as you affix the tube to the base. Set aside in a safe place to dry. The drying process will differ depending on the type of epoxy you use. In the piece I made, I used a two-part epoxy that needs to dry 12-15 hours before decorating. (Picture 7)
Prime your completed pencil holder. Priming your material acts as a bonding agent, which allows the paint to adhere better and last longer. If you are using spray paint for your piece, use a spray primer. If you are using acrylic paint, prime your material with a white base paint. Acrylic paint will not bond correctly without a porous surface. Let the primed piece dry for two to three hours. (Picture 8)
Once primed, your piece is ready to paint and decorate. Really let those creative juices flow and make a piece that is uniquely you! See Picture 9 for inspiration!
Need more help making a functional piece like a pencil holder? Come in to DIY and let us help you. We not only have a great selection of material for this and more projects, but we also have several ways to customize the colors. From spray paint, to acrylic craft paint, to patinas and metal coatings, we have endless ways to make your project truly your own.
Inspiration can come from all sorts of places. The Internet can cause us to spend many an hour pouring over images that spark creativity. And, we also want our online channels to serve as a source for inspiration. That’s why we love learning about how our customers take the materials we offer and transform them into amazing — and often functional — creations.
Here are three recent projects that we hope inspire you.
Teepee Circular Base
Imagine our surprise when we saw this completed project! Our customer had the idea to create a teepee in their backyard as a spot for quiet reflection. But, how to keep the structure from sinking into the soft ground? The solution was to create a circular base that would stand up to the teepee’s weight and hold it firmly in place. This customer used our 1/8 x 5” solid edging as the perfect outline for the base, along with rebar stakes to strengthen it. We love it!
Take inspiration from these beautiful side tables made by a DIY Steel customer. With polished wood slabs as a top, our customer used our metal pickets and square flanges to serve as the “legs” of the side tables. Individual pieces of wood and metal objects collectively transformed into unique and outstanding treasures.
At DIY Steel, we share a strong commitment to caring for our customers and our community. That’s why we were especially excited to see one of our customers create this gorgeous gate for the nonprofit “Forward Stride.”
Located in Beaverton, Forward Stride enhances quality of life through horse-centered activities and therapies. For more than 15 years, using the healing power of horses, Forward Stride encourages its participants to face life’s challenges head-on. Through riding therapy, emotional, cognitive, and physical milestones are reached.
For this project, our square box tubing, 3/16” solid plate and 3/8” round stock products were used. The nonprofit’s name and image were incorporated into the 3/16” solid plate by using a Computer Numerical Control Router. Square box tubing was used for the border and the 3/8” round solid stock was used to create the gate’s woven checkerboard design. We think you’ll agree, this beautiful gate is a wonderful way to support a worthy nonprofit.
If you’ve got ideas about projects you want to create, come let us help you put your vision into reality. You may even gain a little notoriety on our channels if you agree to it being showcased.
Home, sweet home. That saying has never been more true than throughout this past year when we’ve all likely spent a little (a lot?) more time at home than usual. Along with some understandable cabin fever, home really is where the heart is. It can be a refuge as well as a place to share joy with family and friends. That means you want to make it as comfortable and beautiful as possible. Our DIY ideas can be used to spruce up your home and yard for summer and outdoor living.
You’ll be the envy of the block when you work with us to give a fresh look to the exterior of your home We’ve got what you need to create the following projects, which are just a few ideas to get you started.
We’ve got plenty of ready-made numbers in stock for you to choose from. Or pick up some of our 16 gauge base-plates to cut out your own numbers and shapes.
Is it time for your mailbox to get a makeover? At DIY Steel, you can find the materials to create a unique — and secure — mailbox, whether wall- or post-mounted.
A more advanced project, but one that will make you feel accomplished when it’s done: create your own porch light fixtures to brighten your entryway.
Take a look at your entry door handles and knobs, are they looking a little worn and ready to be replaced? Or maybe you want to make your own door knocker to express your personality. Bring in a photo of your doors and entryways and we’ll help you give them some new life.
Colorful blooms are so eye-catching. Have you thought about making your own window boxes? Creating a window box (or porch planter) is a good beginner project. Using our solid stock and cut-outs, you can build wonderful window boxes that will cause everyone to take a second glance.
Porch seating and tables:
With our relatively mild Pacific NW weather that includes low humidity during the summer months, it’s a treat to be able to sit outdoors and relax. Come explore our materials to discover what you can use to make chairs, benches, porch swings and side tables.
Gutters, downspouts, and rain catchers:
While they might generally go unnoticed, if you step back and take an overview of your home, it may reveal the opportunity to replace your gutters and downspouts and even make your own rain catcher/chain. You’ll be surprised what a difference these items make to your home’s aesthetic when they are freshened up. We’ve got the materials and supplies you need to make decorative rain chains in whatever design you can envision.
Now that you’ve taken care of the front of your home, what about the yard? We’ve got a list of some projects below that you might want to give a try. And, for more inspiration, check out this link to The Spruce online.
A nice neat edge on your lawn and planting areas looks so appealing. We’ve got flat ⅛ x 4” edging that can be used for that crisp look. Measure the areas you want to edge and then come in to pick up just what you need.
Do an online search and you can find plenty of ideas for designing your own garden trellis. Imagine beautiful clematis, vine roses and sweet-smelling jasmine winding up your creation. You provide the vision and we’ll provide the materials.
If you create some lighting for your front porch don’t forget about lights for your walkway or patio, too.
Adding colorful blooms around your house is a sure way to spread some happiness and joy. Even better when they are planted in containers that you make yourself. With our solid stock, tubes, scrolls and cut-outs, imagine the amazing containers you can make for planting flowers, herbs and veggies.
Take your yard to the next level by making unique art. Whether a wall hanging or a stand-alone structure, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the pieces you can create. As you browse the materials we have in stock, let your imagination run wild as you envision your finished piece.
Both rain and sun can take a toll on your fence, deck and gate. A great way to update your home’s look is to refresh the perimeter. We can help you choose just the right items to replace — or add new:
Gate panels and hinges
You’ve got the place looking great! Now, it’s time to invite friends, family and neighbors over for some fun. Here are a few ideas of the projects you might undertake to make your backyard THE place to be in the neighborhood.
How about making your own picnic table? We can show you samples of what others have done so you can collect all the materials you need to make a table that is just right.
Once the sun goes down, you can keep guests warm, create some ambience and maybe even make s’mores with a fire pit you’ve created yourself. Of course, we have some ready-to-assemble fire pits that you can purchase — or use as an inspiration to make your own.
Food cooked outdoors always seems totaste just a little bit better. How about creating your own BBQ kettle or smoker? It’s an advanced project, but one we can offer both materials and guidance for as you embark on this ambitious adventure in DIY.
And, for something really different, consider making some yard games. Think cornhole or croquet and you’ll be the champion of the ‘hood with the games you created yourself.
Late spring is a perfect time to get started on your home spruce-up projects. Then when summer gets into full swing, you’ll be able to sit back and enjoy all the fruits of your labors.