Showing posts with label About Us. Show all posts
Showing posts with label About Us. Show all posts

August 19, 2014

DIY Sub Irrigated Planters (SIP)

I'm going totally off topic today to bring you a quick DIY for any container gardeners out there. Amazingly, my most popular post of all time is another off topic DIY about my pipe clothing racks!

I'd like to give you a very brief introduction into the world of sub irrigated planters. I don't have a green thumb but I decided to grow some fresh herbs & peppers this year so I started looking for watering methods for container gardens. I quickly became intrigued with the idea of sub irrigation, which waters your plants from the bottom up through the root system. I found a great DIY that also explains the benefits of Sub Irrigated Planters (SIPs) as quoted below. Thanks so much to Running With Guts for getting me started!
  • They have the capacity to hold large volumes of water without over-watering plants.
  • You don’t need to water as frequently. Just fill it up until the planter starts draining from the overflow tube, and you’re good to go for a week or two (depending on capacity and your regional climate). Going away for a week or two, but can’t find someone to come water your garden? No problemo!
  • They’re portable; I can start plants that are vulnerable to hard frosts sooner, because I can move the planters inside at night/on colder days.
  • The built-in reservoir system gives your plants’ roots access to much needed oxygen, in addition to the water.
I went with the second method described in this post with a few modifications. Instead of seltzer bottles I used this corrugated perforated pipe and this bulb guard tube from Lowe's.
Materials List
Cut lengths of corrugated perforated pipe as pictured below and secure a bit of plastic bag over each end with rubber bands. The plastic bags help keep dirt out of the pipes. Place in your plastic tote.
Next cut a hole in one of your corrugated tubes that is just big enough for the bulb guard tube, which will be used to water your plants. You'll want to cut the bulb guard tube about a foot taller than your tote for ease of use in the future. You should now have something similar to the picture below.
Next you'll need to drill a few drainage holes in your tote. I used 1/8" holes about 1" below the top of your corrugated pipe to allow for 3" of water and 1" of air in the finished planter.

Last step is landscape fabric to cover the corrugated pipe. You don't have to be too perfect or fussy here, just cut a section large enough to tuck in a bit around the edges. Don't forget to cut an x in the fabric for your fill tube.
Now you're ready to add whatever soil & plants you'd like! I went with a combination of basil & peppers in each of my totes & everything went great. Below is a picture of the very moist soil after I pulled up a basil plant that had gone to seed. Very cool to see such wet soil when I haven't watered from above at all!
This version isn't very nice looking but I plan to make either wooden or welded steel plate containers  on stands for each tote in the future.
Thanks for reading & let me know if you have any questions about the process of putting one of these together.

April 4, 2014

Banana Cake With Fernet Branca Frosting!

I usually stick to nail polish but every now & then I like to show a bit about my world. Last week I made a birthday cake for Will that got a thumbs up from our guests. Will loves Fernet Branca, an all natural bitter liqueur made with over 40 herbs and spices sourced from five continents. It's not for everyone but I decided to see if I could incorporate it into a delicious cake since I love to bake with booze!

The first step was choosing a cake flavor that would go well with Fernet Branca's complex & strong flavor. I considered lemon but decided to go with a simple banana cake (no spices just a hint of vanilla) since we had some very ripe ones on hand. Then we mixed up a traditional cream cheese frosting & just kept adding fernet until we got it just right. We ended up using 4 TBSP for a frosting made with one 8 oz package of cream cheese, enough for a 9" x 13" sheet cake. A delicious combination!

Thanks for reading!

November 10, 2013

Why My Blog Is Called Concrete & Nail Polish & OPI Done Out In Deco

People who stumble across my blog probably wonder about the curious name. It's actually very simple; Ashley & I make concrete! I snapped this spicture of her nails after we poured a few batches. OPI Done Out In Deco is her all time favorite polish (she's gone through two bottles & has two backups!) and it looks lovely even covered in concrete. I love this snapshot of my hard working sister!You can see some of our concrete work in our Etsy store, The Makerage.
Thanks for reading!

November 1, 2013

Zoya Maria Luisa & A Ghostbusters Halloween!

Zoya Maria Luisa was originally created by Rafael Cennamo for his Fall/Winter 2103 NYFW show. (You can read all about it here at Gothem Polish's excellent post.) Now it's available to the general public as part of Zoya's Satins - Fall 2013 collection.
Zoya Maria Louisa is a warm gold flakie polish that I decided to try out alone since it's so dense. Shown here at two very easily applied coats, especially for a flakie! I think it looks fantastic on it's own since it's so very reflective & will take on a hint of whatever color you're wearing. I think it will look fantastic paired with pretty soft white polish or maybe a red for Christmas. Definitely my favorite from this collection & a must have for any flakie lover. 

My friends & I decided on a Ghostbuster theme this year for Halloween. My friend Drew made patches for the jumpsuits & the rest of the guys costumes came from things we already had or that could be picked up inexpensively at Harbor Freight. My friend Melanie transformed her normally stylish self into Gozer the Gozerian & I turned into Zuul for the evening. Lots of fun & Zoya Maria Luisa looked great with outfit!
Thanks for reading!

This polish was sent to me for review. All opinions are my own & were not influenced by Zoya! For more information you can read my disclosure policy.

October 9, 2013

Purchase Your Very Own 3D Printed Crown!

I posted about my day at the Tulsa Mini Maker Faire recently and shared a photo of myself wearing an amazing 3D printed crown, modeled & printed by good friends of mine. Everyone loves it so much that we've decided to offer them for sale just in time for Halloween! You can choose to your crown printed here in Tulsa in a few different colors of plastic from our Etsy store, The Makerage. Or try out Shapeways for a wide variety of materials.
Thanks for reading!

October 5, 2013

Cupcake Car!

Some friends of mine decided to make a cupcake car for Maker Faire! Much of the work took place in my workshop so I have lots of photos. Congratulations Angela, Scott, Andrew, & everyone else who helped make the cupcake a reality!

Thanks for reading!

May 31, 2013

Concrete & My New Etsy Store!

Some of you may wonder why my blog is called Concrete & Nail Polish. The reason is very simple; I make concrete & I paint my nails! I've recently teamed up with some of my favorite fellow Tulsans to open our new Etsy shop, The Makerage! We'll expand our product line soon but here's a sampling of what's available right now, starting with my Concrete Sphere Bookend.

Drew's Wooden Penrose Puzzle Coasters!
Andrew's Sterling Silver Ring With Retro Reflective Thread!

White Concrete Lazy Susan!
Thanks for reading!

October 28, 2009


I love Halloween! I want to know what you ladies are going to do this year.

Are you dressing up yourself? Your pets? Your children? I want pictures of any costumes that you thought turned out great.
Carving pumpkins?
Decorating your house for trick or treaters?

If you want to dress up, but are stuck for ideas, Beauty Newbie has tons of MAC Halloween facecharts. I did a simplified version of the very last one a couple of years ago and I really loved the effect. Plus it only took about 10 minutes and was easy to maintain throughout the day.

I also had the third annual pumpkin carving party at my house over the weekend. The results were awesome. I wasn't feeling inspired, but Ashley told me she would dump the rotten pumpkin guts on me if I didn't carve one. (One of Ashley's pumpkins was really gross and smelly for some reason.) So I just did the fastest thing I could think of. I still think he is cute though.

My awesome boyfriend Will is a pumpkin carving master! These are all his.

He used power tools to help create last years Parasite Pumpkin!

And this year he went all out and made a pumpkin that shoots blood out of it's head! (it has a fountain pump)

Thanks for reading ladies and please send me photos of your pumpkins and costumes! They make me happy!

October 9, 2009

7 Choices Tag

We were tagged by Naive Nails & Amarena's Blog and the color was blue both times!
April couldn't find 7 blue things she wanted to put up, so I'm doing this one by myself.

1. Weights - I bought these a couple of years ago from Target and never use them. I think I get pretty good excercise lifting and shelving books all day though.

2. Clock - It goes in my kitchen.

3.Tote bag - Another Target purchase

4. Pepsi - I always have pepsi!

5. Glass Hand - This is one of my favorite items. It's from a store called Pryde's in Kansas City. They sell Kitchen and Home Goods. We think it's a holder for your rings when you're doing the dishes.

6. Globe - This came from an awesome antique store in Kansas City. There were at least 4 floors. It took us a long time to get through it and I know there was still a lot of stuff to see.

7. Jacket - One of my favorite jackets. And it also came from Target!


October 5, 2009

Tulle Clothing

This is a non-related nail polish post today. For the record we have never received any freebies or payment of any kind from this website. We wanted to tell everybody about our favorite online clothing store - April found this website through one of her most trusted blogs, Lifehacker about 6 months ago in their Gadget & Gear Deals of the Day post. We saw a red pea coat for $6.99 and Ashley decided to get one since they have FREE RETURN SHIPPING! This purchase far exceeded our hopes, great quality, nice fabric, and as you can see below the coat is gorgeous ! $6.99! We signed up for Tulle's newsletter and discovered that the first Tuesday of every month is Tulle's Day, a 24 hour sale with a small assortment of their beautiful clothes at ridiculously low prices.

We've purchased things every month since then and are continually amazed by the super nice quality and unique styling. Our only wish is that their pants and skirts came in larger sizes! Now all three Brooks sisters look forward to this sale with baited breath. Yes there are 3 of us, April, Alisa & Ashley! We just haven't been able to get Alisa to start wearing nail polish. Yet.

Here are just a few of our favorite items! We could spend a few days taking pictures of all of the amazing things we've gotten. Let us know if you want to see more! And check out the sale which starts tonight at midnight PST. They will have 11 items priced between $5.99 & $8.99. The sale is not advertised on the website. Just go to the sale section and sort by price with lowest price first and you will find the super specials. Check out the rest of the site as well!
Thanks for reading.

This red coat was the first purchase. I love it a lot.
It's so well made and it only cost me $11 including shipping!

We call these the Art Deco shirts.

April & I wearing our matching dresses, which we would never do in real life. These dresses have pockets! Yay!

Puff sleeves! Lots of Tulle's shirts have them and we think they are very flattering.

The gingham shirt came in black and green and of course I got both colors.
I love them both a lot and have already worn them quite a bit.

April is wearing her favorite Tulle purchase in this one. Crazy dress! We think it looks super expensive.