If you’re like us, you’ve got a life list. Everyone does! And a huge part of that is aspiring to live every day more beautifully than the next. Whether that’s pursuing our passions, working towards personal health goals, or getting our hands dirty in new creative projects. That’s why we were thrilled to partner with ZICO Premium Coconut Water and discover ways to Crack Life Open, and live a more fulfilled life.
How does this take shape at Brit HQ? Glad you asked! :) We’re pleased to share the stories of five Brit + Co staffers who cracked their DIY goals wide open thanks to ZICO. These five stories involve five Brit + Co staffers learning five new DIY skills, and making stellar cakes, bouquets, lamps, cards and skirts along the way.
The best part is, you too can learn each of the skills you’ll see below. In fact, each one is offered as an e-class right here on Brit.co, and you can take ’em in under an hour. How sweet is that? From calligraphy to sewing to flower arranging to electronics and even to baking, let’s head behind the scenes to see how each of these classes went down.
First up, our resident DIY expert Roxy Taghavian opted to take the Calligraphy class. Even though she knows just about everything there is to know about figuring out how to make things, she’d never taken any official lettering courses. Calligraphy had always been on her LIST! :)
Here’s what Roxy had to tell us about her experience:
Back in 5th grade (about a million years ago), my amazing teacher, Carol Bigby, taught us some basic calligraphy. I remember loving it but I didn’t continue with the craft. In the last few years I’ve seen some incredible hand-lettering in the wedding and paper goods industries and I’ve been super inspired to try it out again. This class was perfect for me.
As a DIYer, I hope to use it at work, and of course in my personal life I’d love to use it to make cards and perhaps a poster if I get really ambitious.
I loved taking this class! I got all of the basics I needed, some great supplies, and I feel like I can get the hang of it if I practice.
You can take the class yourself by signing up right here!
MAKE A BEAUTIFUL BOUQUET
Next up, Alexis Monson decided to get fancy with florals. In addition to being an incredible writer and managing our army of contributing writers, Alexis also happens to be a maker as part of the company Second Sun Check her glam 3D printed goods in the B+C Shop.
Now, why did Alexis want a primer on flowers?
My mom is a big floral gardener. So I spent a lot of time going to greenhouses and sipping lemonade and Kool-Aid surrounded by TONS of flowers when I was young. Now that I live in a city, a flower garden isn’t really realistic, which has kind of made fresh cut flowers a new need in my life. (Yes, need… they really do affect your mood.) I’ve tried my hand at going to the flower market and doing my own arranging, but my big discover is, like most things, it’s not as easy as it looks.
The Brit + Co class gave me good tips on basic techniques, ways to make your flowers last longer and simple tricks to achieve the look you’re going for. Obviously, by taking the class, I’m nowhere near calling myself a pro. But it’s giving me a good starting point for experimentation to get to the point where I impress the pants of people with a bunch of peonies. #lifegoals.
We love the combination of colors she chose and are excited to see if this new floral expertise makes its way into Second Sun. Sign up for our Flower Arranging class here to flex your own flowery skills.
CREATE YOUR OWN CLOTHING
Sewing 101 anyone? B+C Shop Merchandising Maven Alicia Cox has been wanting to learn how to sew ever since she was little, and this project gave her the perfect opportunity to do just that!
More from Alicia on why she wanted to learn to sew:
I wanted to take the class because my mom is the BEST sewer ever and I wish that I had learned from when I was growing up. Now that I have moved away from home, this class gave me the opportunity. She made all of my Halloween costumes growing up – (and it didn’t stop at halloween – even costumes for my sorority events), pillows for my dorm, curtains for my first apartment and so much more.
I am getting married soon and would love to be able to make some pillows for our first place and maybe even some placemats and matching napkins!
The class was easy to follow and I am really excited about wearing my skirt on my honeymoon and love that I can say that I made my clothes.
We love the idea of learning a new skill as part of starting a new life with your partner. The possibilities for creativity in and around the home are endless. Head here to get your own sewing skills on!
BUILD A CUSTOM LAMP
Editor extraordinaire Lisa Raphael decided she wanted to really light things up in the electronics department. Since she writes about tech on the daily, creating her own techie project has been long on her list of personal to-dos. After taking our LED Electronics class, she can officially call herself a tinkerer.
Lisa, on what she might do with her brand new skills:
One of my favorite beats here at Brit + Co is tech, but I’ve never really gotten more hands-on with electronics than trying on wearables and test driving drones (okay, those are both pretty cool #humblebrag). Taking the e-class was a fun reminder that, hey, I can MAKE that stuff, too. Eventually — I definitely have the bug now, and have started brainstorming what to hook up next.
Look for my line of Bluetooth connected heels that use haptic feedback to help you nail the right moves on the dance floor. Kickstarter, 2016 ;)
We’re digging the geometric pattern that she chose to use, but you could also go with a photo, a quote or any other digital design. Sign up to take the same class by heading here.
BAKE AND DECORATE A COLORFUL CAKE
We’re all about epic cakes here at Brit HQ. Brand new intern Maddie Bachelder couldn’t wait to get her hands dirty in the world of well-designed desserts, so she chose to take Cake Baking 101.
What was it like to bake and decorate a cake from scratch?
I’ve always wanted to decorate my own cakes, but the task seemed too daunting and time consuming. This e-class showed me a surefire (and super fast!) way to make a DIY cake look professional, every time.
I love how the class uses fondant and stencils to decorate the cake. Before I would always use frosting, which could easily turn out sloppy if I wasn’t careful. But with fondant I could go as simple or as intricate as I liked and it would still look great. I’m so going to use these tips in future cake-making ventures.
We can’t wait to see what other creative culinary things Maddie gets into in the months to come. And we’re loving the neon polka dots on this cake! Interested in your own polka dot layer cake? Take the class, duh! ;)
What DIY skills are on your life list? Talk to us on Twitter and Instagram (@britandco + @zicococonut) and be sure to tag #CrackLifeOpen!
This post is a collaboration with ZICO© Premium Coconut Water.