Easy DIY Dill Pickles

Easy DIY Dill Pickles

DJ made homemade pickles as a kid, and has been asking if we can make them again every fall for a few years. This past weekend, I picked him up 8 cucumbers, 12 jars, and a bunch of dill. We followed this recipe from The Kitchn pretty loosely. We used normal cucumbers sliced into thin chips on my mandolin, and fresh dill instead of dill seed. We chose this recipe because it was easy and we wanted to use cider vinegar for the taste.
Any questions? Try it and let me know how it goes!

How to Make Dill Pickles


1.5 lbs Kirby or Persian cucumbers
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
2 tsp dill seed
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 c cider vinegar
1 c water
1 1/2 TBS pickling salt< or kosher salt


Chefs knife, Cutting board, 2 wide-mouth pint jars with lids, Large pot if canning


  • Prepare the jars: If you are planning to can your pickles for long-term storage, bring a large pot of water to a boil and sterilize the jars and their lids. If you are planning to make refrigerator pickles, simply washing the jars and lids is fine.
  • Prepare the cucumbers: Wash and dry the cucumbers. Trim away the blossom end of the cucumber, which contains enzymes that can lead to limp pickles. Leave the pickles whole, cut them into spears, or slice them into coins, as preferred.

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How to Make Your Own Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less than $15!

How to Make Your Own Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less than $15!

I love flowers! Practically the first thing I did when we moved into our house was plant a ton of them. I got a huge bag of wildflower seeds from the local Home Depot and went crazy. I planted them in the front on both sides of the door, next to our back deck, and in the flowerbeds in the back and side of our yard. I actually ended up emptying 2 of the bags of seeds before I was satisfied. They grew pretty quickly when I remembered to water them everyday. Now, we have crazy flowers all around our yard. They’re different shades of purple, orange, yellow, white, blue, red, every color. All different shapes and heights and kind of leaves everywhere. They’re so beautiful, but really wild. They were almost as tall as me, climbing on to the front steps and the back deck, hanging into the driveway even. I actually ended up with a lot of flowers! Sometimes when I’m pruning the garden, I’ve cut some flowers to arrange inside. And then I started buying them at the grocery store sometimes once I realized they were only $4.69 a bunch. After putting bouquets together step by step from directions online and getting used to the process, these are some of the flowers I’ve put together.

I Made this Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less Than $15 I Made this Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Only $5 I Made this Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less Than $15 I Made this Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less Than $10

This is how I arrange a bouquet of flowers quickly, and cheaply in 7 easy steps

How to Make Your Own Gorgeous Flower Arrangement for Less than $15: Step by Step

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My Fall 2014 Capsule Wardrobe

Happy first day of Fall! I don’t know about you, but Fall is my favorite season. I love all of the seasonal events and fashion. I love Thanksgiving and am looking forward to throwing my first one ever this year! I love sweaters and boots and back to school! The worst part of fall is having nothing to wear. That’s the worst part of at least a couple days of the week, honestly. I’m on a personal quest to never have nothing to wear. 

When I read about capsule wardrobes on Caroline’s blog, Un-Fancy, it sounded like the perfect idea for my wardrobe. She keeps only 37 fashion pieces in her wardrobe and trades them out each season. It actually reminded me of how I used to keep my clothes in a laundry basket after I moved out of my parents’ house, since I didn’t have a dresser. Though having only a few choices seems like it’d be very limiting, it was actually a whole lot quicker and easier to get dressed.

I also decided to work through her free wardrobe planner. Here are my results:

My Fall 2014 Capsule Wardrobe

I thought doing the pie chart was a great idea, though I cheated and used Word. Thinking about what I am getting dressed for was extremely helpful.
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DIY Tutorial Marilyn Monroe Costume from Men’s 5XL T-shirt $5!

My costume a few years ago was awesome! I sewed an easy Marilyn Monroe inspired dress from a men’s 5XL T-shirt that I found at walmart for like five bucks. It was easy to put together, and with some lipstick and heels, it looked great!
Here’s a couple pictures I dug up:

DIY Marilyn Monroe Costume from Men's 5XL T-shirt $5!

And, here is how I made it!

Keep in mind that I am pretty short and usually wear a size small. You may need to make alterations to accommodate yourself better. I got the shirt at Walmart for around $5 and just made it up as I went along. The whole project took me less than two hours. You don’t need a sewing machine, its way easier by hand. Remember that its only a halloween costume, it doesn’t have to be perfect! Just have fun and enjoy it : )

DIY Marilyn Monroe Costume from Men's 5XL T-shirt $5!

    So, I took the shirt and cut it off right underneath the arms.
    Then I sewed by hand using large stiches all around the top raw edge. I pulled the thread and arranged it so that it was gathered nicely.
    I measured a piece of thick elastic to my waist, then sewed it together. I pinned it to the skirt in a few different places, then sewed it to attach it to the top of the skirt.
    I used the left over scraps to cut triangles that would be the top and an extra strip of fabric.
    I gathered them until they were the right width, pinned in place.
    Then I sewed them to the center top waistband, and sewed the top closed in the back.
    I made my sash by just sewing the ends of the extra strip together on my machine. I just slipped it over my head and arranged it to cover the elastic waistband and raw edges.
    After that I just had to find some eyeliner, lipstick, and heels.

This dress looked awesome, and I probably would wear it again if I could find it!

This year I want to make another t-shirt dress! I was thinking of maybe being a strawberry hahaha. A red swingy dress with a green leafy headdress.

If you have any questions about the tutorial, let me know!

instagram: my favorite necklace

Work grind

A post shared by laura kensil (@laurakensil) on

I am really picky when it comes to jewelry. At my sister in law’s Premier jewelry party, I took a risk and got this necklace. I am so glad I did, because its quickly become my favorite piece to wear anytime. I wear it to work almost every week, I can’t help it.

15 Easy Ways to Wear Your Flannels

15 Easy Outfits with Flannels

The best part of flannel shirts, besides that they’re fuzzy and warm, is that you can wear them so many different ways! They’re one of the most versatile pieces of clothing. You can wear almost all year round. There are 15 ways listed here, and there are a few for every season. Starting with summer…

flannel and shortsflannel and shorts
Flannels look adorable with shorts, and leaving your shirt unbuttoned will keep you stylish but not too hot. I like to keep it laid back with a white tee and white sneakers. I would add some delicate jewelry or a graphic tee to give this look even more personality. The white sneakers are definitely trending this fall, and I found this version at Old Navy for less than $20.

flannel over dressflannel over dress
Another easy way to phase into fall, wear your floaty sundress with an unbuttoned flannel thrown on top and break out your go to boots and sunglasses.

flannel tucked into high waisted shorts flannel tucked into high waisted shorts
A flannel tucked into high waisted shorts defines your waist really well, and doesn’t show too much skin. Black flats and classic sunglasses play on the contrast between the preppy, tucked in shirt and the distressed shorts.

flannel with tights and shorts flannel with tights and shorts
If you want to make your legs look long, black tights and black booties are the way to go. This outfit promises to flatter. If you feel too grungy, you can always tuck the flannel in like the outfit above.

all black with flannelall black with flannel
I love an all black outfit, because its so easy, yet looks put together. The black jeans,v-neck tee, and boots contrast with the necklace and flannel so well.

flannel with bf jeans and loafersflannel with bf jeans and loafers
I have to say that worn out boyfriend jeans are my favorite fall bottoms. They’re so fun to dress up. Loafers don’t look too stuffy when paired with boyfriend jeans, a flannel and a gray v-neck tee.

flannel with graphic tee and hatflannel with graphic tee and hat
The boots and skinny jeans keep this outfit feminine, while the graphic tee, cap, and flannel are laid back and comfortable! The flannel and tee are from the mens’ section at Aeropostale. For me, the mens XS has such a classic, fitted look. I love that you can always find classic colors in the mens’ section, instead of all the trendy colors and fits.

flannel with high waisted jeans and heelsflannel with high waisted jeans and heels
I’ve had this pin on my fall/winter board for a long time. The girls look almost french to me, I don’t know why. The well fitted flannel tucked into tight high-waisted jeans is a surprisingly good combo with the thin black belt and pumps. For pumps or any heels, Nine West is the only brand I will buy. They’re always so comfortable, and they have great sales.

flannel with cardiganflannel with cardigan
Wearing a flannel under a cardigan is a great idea- I’m always looking for ways to layer in an effort to keep warm! I would add some interest to the look with cute shoes and jewelry.

flannel and maxi skirtflannel and maxi skirt
I would have never thought to wear a flannel with a maxi skirt, but it could be a really great combo. Its especially cute how she knotted it right at the waist. I would sneak some comfy wedges under the skirt to make the outfit even more flattering.

flannel with flared jeans and heelsflannel with flared jeans and heels
Wearing flares and heels is a great combo because you’ll look super tall and thin! The little half tucked flannel is also super flattering. It makes a longer line, making you look even taller still. Also aviators are the best.

flannel, sweater, and beanieflannel, sweater, and beanie
If its too cold, sometimes I’ll throw a flannel on top of a sweatshirt. Beanies are also a favorite of mine when its chilly out. To keep the outfit from seeming too grungy, I would pair this with dark skinny jeans and heeled booties.

flannel under sweaterflannel under sweater
flannel under sweaterflannel under sweater
Sweaters with plaid underneath can sometimes seem overdone or overly preppy, but I think that if you do your own take on it instead of piling on the trendy jewelry with your sneakers and beach curls, it can still look fresh. Beige sweater, red sweater.

flannel with fair isle sweaterflannel with fair isle sweater
This outfit is perfect for winter. Layering a flannel under a fair isle sweater is sure to keep you extra warm!

What other ways do you wear your flannels? I always find as many outfits as I can using every piece in my wardrobe, in an effort to always have something to wear.

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15 Easy Ways to Wear Your Flannels