May 31, 2013

Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series: Scrub Your Bath Tub Like Martha

Homemade Bath Scrub Myth or Miracle Cleaner | Tried & Twisted

I grew up in the generation that associated Martha Stewart less with domestic perfection and more with Saturday Night Life sketches and jailbird punch lines. I'm thinking that I may perhaps owe her an apology...

At the beginning of the month, I asked for suggestions for a Mystery Homemade Cleaner to be featured at the end of the month and Kim Vealy from the Soliloquy of Food & Such was good enough to suggest a bath tub scrub made from baking soda that she learned from Martha Stewart

Since I had unfinished business with my old rental bath tub with 20-some years of stains that weren't quite eliminated by a basic homemade cleaner, I thought I'd give this heavy hitting bath scrub a try.

So, I put Martha's scrub to the test to see if I can't clear away that yucky stain without calling an was considered my final option.

Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series: Shower Head De-Clogger

Homemade Shower De-Clogger Myth or Miracle Cleaner | Tried & Twisted

Little problems are sometimes the most annoying. Noisy neighbors, a spot of mold growing underneath what was a perfectly good head of lettuce, clogged shower heads

Keeping it in perspective, most little problems come with an easy fix. While a clogged shower head certainly isn't a dire problem, there's no reason not to remove the little annoyance of errant water streams sputtering into my face interrupting a relaxing shower when the fix is so easy.

For this next post in the Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series, where I give homemade cleaners a try to find out if they are too good to be true, I'll tackle my sputtering, clogged shower head with a soaking method suggested by Frugally Sustainable. Let's give it a try!

May 24, 2013

Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series: Clean Dreaded Toilet with Baking Soda

Homemade Toilet Cleaner Myth or Miracle Cleaner | Tried & Twisted
Welcome back to this month's series on Spring Cleaning using ingredients and supplies in your kitchen cupboard.

Cleaning the house with baking soda, vinegar, and other items from the pantry claims to have the advantage of saving money from all the household cleaners you won't need to buy and to be greener and more environmentally friendly than the toxic chemicals found in the average cleaner.

While most of the all-natural cleaning methods worked wonders, today I'll share about a dud: cleaning the toilet with baking soda.

The claim, according to blogs like Life Hackery, is that you sprinkle 1 cup of baking soda in the inside of your toilet and voila! It's shiny white, clean, and odor-free. With no scrubbing, you'll be able to wash away stains, grime, and dirt.

Such a claim just had to be put to the test!

May 17, 2013

Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series: Shine Your Stainless Steel Sink with Baking Soda and Vinegar

Homemade Sink Cleaner Myth or Miracle Cleaner | Tried & Twisted

Step 1: Remove all dirty dishes so you can actually see your sink.
Step 2: Shriek at the grime and mess in your sink!
Step 3: Return all dirty dishes to the sink and walk away. Perhaps open a bottle of wine and pretend you don't have a sink anymore.

The kitchen sink is like the eyes to the soul of the kitchen and shows a very public face for guests. It should give a good first impression.

But evil things grow in the sink.

The kitchen sink takes a lot of abuse and if you have an older stainless steel sink, this abuse is very evident with smudges, hard water deposits, coffee stains, scratches, and sometimes rust stains that make you want to run screaming from doing the dishes to update to your tetanus shot. You don't have to call an exorcist, break out the bleach, or even buy expensive cleaning products to chase away the demons.

Today, I tried out a recipe for a DIY homemade stainless steel sink cleaner that claims to buff and shine the steel like new. Our sink has seen better days, since our older rental hasn't always received TLC, so it will be the perfect guinea pig to test out The Happy Home's tutorial for cleaning and bringing the shine back to a stainless steal sink.

May 10, 2013

Myth or Miracle Cleaner Series: Clean Your Bath Tub with Vinegar

Homemade Bath Tub Cleaner Myth or Miracle Cleaner | Tried & Twisted

Hello, my name is Sara. And I am a Pinterest addict.

Pinterest lists tons of cleaning shortcuts and homemade remedies: dozen uses for vinegar, clean your kitchen with baking soda, etc. I've often wondered if these DIY cleaning methods work, if they are better than store-bought cleaner, and if it's worth the extra effort for a little savings in money.

One of my goals here on Tried & Twisted is to test out new projects and to share if it's worth your time and effort. This month's series is all about DIY cleaning methods.

The first challenge for my Spring Cleaning series: Homemade Bath Tub Cleaner!

You may have seen a graphic floating around on Pinterest promising dramatic results by a simple cleaning method of combining vinegar and dish soap. Just spray on, spray off, no scrubbing, and the shower is instantly clean. It will even take soap scum off of shower doors, so it claims. Let's see how that theory works out in practice.

May 6, 2013

Myth or Miracle Cleaner: A Series for Spring Cleaning

Myth or Miracle Cleaner? DIY Cleaners | Tried & Twisted

Life doesn't always work out the way you'd like. There are disappointments, broken expectations, dashed dreams.

Much like cleaning products. The infomercial promises amazing results, the before/after images astound, and then you try it on your own house and it doesn't quite work out like that.

It's disappointing experiences like this that cause trust issues.

Being a skeptic has made me curious about the all-natural, money-saving, DIY home cleaning methods which circulate on blogs and Pinterest like a good meme. They promise a simple process of mixing together a few common items from your cupboard to create an instant clean!

Do they work? Are they better or more convenient than store-bought cleaners? Can you actually save money in the process?

This month's series is all about DIY cleaning methods. Not a glamorous series -- certainly not as appetizing as macarons or as pretty as a craft. But part of the purpose of my Tried&Twisted blog is to test out new projects and to share if they are worth your time and effort.

So in preparation for Spring cleaning, allow me to test out these "great" ideas for you so you can save your own time, money, and a little elbow grease.

Check in with me every Friday this month as I put a new DIY cleaning project to the test.
You may have noticed that I listed a mystery post. Here's your chance to get involved -- tell me what DIY cleaner you've seen on blogs or Pinterest that you'd like to see tested out. I'll pick a tutorial from your suggestions for the end of the month.

Update: The winner for Mystery Topic is Bath Scrub!

See you on Friday!

May 2, 2013

DIY Custom Etched Glass Gift: Invite Design to Wedding Gift

DIY Custom Etched Glass Gifts for Weddings: Part Two | Tried & Twisted

Creating Unique & Personalized Wedding Gifts Thru Etched Glass: Part Two

Yesterday, I shared how my friend Suzanne introduced me to DIY etched glass gifts with a unique twist. For a more traditional wedding gift, the bride and groom's name and wedding date are often etched into glass.

To make the gift even more special, why not incorporate elements of design from the wedding invitation? The bride and groom put in a lot of effort picking out the invite or designing it themselves, so it deserves to be commemorated and, luckily, you already know it is an embellishment they'll like!

May 1, 2013

DIY Custom Etched Glass Gift: The Baron Samedi Rum Bottle

Custom Etched Glass Gifts | Tried & Twisted

Creating Unique & Personalized Wedding Gifts Thru Etched Glass: Part One

April showers bring May flowers and wedding season! If you're an average twenty-to-thirty-something woman and not a hermit hiding in a mountain cave, then chances are that you know someone getting married this year. The odds are in your favor.

Searching registries for the best gift becomes second nature, but after a while, all the matching towel sets and Pyrex blur together and I become bored with my own gift. Which is a sad predicament, indeed, because I want to give something that screams my enthusiasm for their important day, rather than yawning like a pair of Christmas gift underwear. 

So I'm often torn between my desire to give the bride and groom something practical that they need, but also to give them something memorable, so they can laugh at our inside jokes and know that we cared to add a special touch just for them.

Lately, my solution to this dilemma has been custom etched glass gifts. I was introduced to this craft on Make It & Love It. By adding a creative element to a practical gift, no piece of glass is safe! Any bottle, vase, or Pyrex can become classy or hilarious in less than half an hour.