DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers {Quick Planner Tip}


DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers {Quick Planner Tip}

Here’s a Quick Planner Tip for my planner friends out there who love to decorate their weekly and monthly spreads. I love getting cute weekend banner stickers on Etsy, but I also like to switch things up by making my own with various materials, like washi tape.

How to Make a DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers

Simply draw a curved line across the weekend days of your planner as pictured above. Evenly spread small stickers of choice across the line. I used tiny hearts from a sticker book I picked up at Target. Naturally, you could use any small sticker, like circles, stars, etc. To make the spacing pretty even, I placed the center heart first and spread the others out from there.

I just added five stickers to be decorative, but I could have added enough to spell out “weekend”. Of course, you can spell out any word of choice or make a non-weekend banner, too. You could do one for a special event, holiday, etc. Use a fine-tip permanent marker to write a letter on each sticker or place a letter sticker on top of your shape sticker.

Have fun making your DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers. The possibilities are truly endless!

Click here to learn how to make a DIY Weekend Banner with washi tape.

Thanks for stopping by!

Planning While Traveling


Planning While Traveling

Hubby and I take frequent weekend road trips to see family. This is great since we get to spend lots of quality time with them, but it can make planning a little more challenging for me. I’ve come up with a couple things that have helped make planning while traveling easier for me, so I thought I’d share in case anyone else finds this info helpful, too.

I like to do my planning over the course of the weekend, which is why I bring what I need to get planning done while I’m out of town. And I am that Type A that I want my week decorated so I know how to best fill it in when I learn about upcoming events and what not. Heaven forbid I use the wrong color! Seriously, though…I used to color coordinate my planner by using a specific color for a particular category. I’ve recently begun to use colors based on the week’s color scheme, so I do like to have at least the colors picked out before I start writing in the week’s spread. This brings me to my first tip:

Tip #1: Choose Your Color Scheme and Coordinating Planner Decorations

I use the Erin Condren Life Planner, which comes with month and week views. When I’m traveling, I’m usually focused on the week view only of the upcoming week. One of the best things I can do in the days leading up to my trip is choose a color scheme. This reduces the amount of supplies I need to take with me, especially the more selective I can be. If I know I want to go with a pink and turquoise theme, then I don’t need to bring any of the supplies in other colors. I actually decided to bring all my Valentine’s Day supplies with me this past weekend, and I have a lot of those. A lot. Seriously, I’ve been raiding the Target Dollar Spot like whoa. So, I’ll do another post with tips on if you want to bring a bigger stash. To keep things simple, the easiest thing is to have a good idea of what you want to do and bring only what you need to make it happen.

I like to bring:

  • 2-4 washi tape options
  • 1-2 decoration sticker sheets (purely decorative – flowers, hearts, etc.)
  • 1-2 sticky note sets (usual 1 sticky note design and one of page flags)
  • my functional sticker sheets (to-do list headers, checklists, etc.)
  • my colored pen set
  • scissors

Planning While Traveling

Tip #2: Store Your Planner Supplies in an Accordion File

I picked up a cute turquoise polka dot accordion file from the Target Dollar Spot recently. Actually, let’s be real. I picked up a few of these. But, I find the short and long shape (there are three options that I’ve seen so far) works best for planning while traveling. It’s long enough to hold some of my taller sticker sheets. It can also fit my sticky notes and washi tape. Probably the best thing about it is that it keeps my stickers nice and flat so they don’t get out of shape or accidentally peeled off. I also like having most of my supplies in one easy-to-access place and the ability to keep my stickers separated. You could do them by color or theme, but I’m currently keeping my Etsy stickers grouped by shop. You can even put your scissors in here. It holds so much, and it was only $1.

Tip #3: Have a Dedicated Tote/Bag

I’ve been using planners longer than I can remember. It was always one of my favorite school supplies when I was a kid. I think I started using them as early as middle school. Since then, I’ve tried carrying it in various ways. I’ve tried jamming it into other bags containing many things. I put it in the same bag as a reusable water bottle one time, which was a big mistake. What kind of water bottle leaks!? The best thing to do is to have a dedicated tote to protect your planner from liquids, foods, pointy objects etc.

Keeping your planner in a separate bag will also help since you can treat that bag extra gently. You won’t put it at the bottom of your luggage or shove it into some crevice of space in the car. You can really take care of your precious…I mean…planner.

Tip #4: Go on a Planner Supplies Adventure

It’s amazing how different stores, even of the same big chain, can have a different stock of planner supplies. When I’m traveling, I like to go on mini shopping adventures. I love to check out the stores to see what goodies I may find. Inevitably, I find a new sheet of stickers of a style of washi tape I’ve never seen, so I like to use my trips to collect new supplies. I like collecting a couple different things (mugs, journals, etc.), and craft supplies is definitely high on my list of things to shop for when I’m out of town.

Planner Post Requests?

Hope you enjoyed my Planning While Traveling post! If you have any planner-related post requests, let me know in a comment below or shoot me an email at thechiclife at gmail dot com. I’ve toyed around with the idea of making a video because I think some things are just easier to show in video format, but videos terrify me! I keep hoping to muster up the courage over the years, but I may just need to stick with photo-blogging. We’ll see!

Thanks for stopping by!

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape


Whether you’re new to decorating your planner or you’re just browsing for new ideas, here are some simple tips on How To Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

{I’m decorating my Erin Condren Life Planner (my fourth one!) in this post, but you could apply these ideas to other great options: Kikki K, Filofax, Kate Space, Passion Planner, and others.}


Especially if you’re new to decorating your planner, things can be a little overwhelming. There are so many great supplies you can use to add some zest to your planner: washi tape, stickers, scrapbook paper, stamps, post-its, etc. The options are endless, but the budget is (at least for me) not. I remember when I first started scrapbooking many years ago. I wanted one of everything. But, especially if you don’t already have a lot of scrapbooking supplies, things can add up quickly. I decided to experiment with a spread of my planner to see if I could decorate a week of my planner with just washi tape. And since washi tape is so versatile, I was able to get a lot out of just two rolls.

I was able to decorate my planner for less than $5 by using a two-pack of washi tape I found at Michael’s. With coupons/discounts, I paid $3.14 for the pair, but you could pay even less if you used one of those 50% coupons I see frequently. The full price at the time of this post was $4.99, so you could get it for only $2.50 plus tax. If you’re like me, you’ll probably want more color options and to eventually add other materials (stickers, etc.), but it’s good to know you can do a lot by starting/going small and simple.

And speaking of simple, I generally like clean layouts, but you could really add as much personality to your planner as you want. Go crazy. Experiment. See what you like. Layer the tape on, use several different colors if you want. It’s your planner, so you should do whatever makes you happy because that will make you use your planner and motivate yourself to stay organized.

What is Washi Tape?

Washi tape is a decorative tape that is very thin and lightweight and comes is a wide array of colors and patterns making it great for coordinating colors in your planner decorations. One of the best features of washi tape is that it’s repositionable. I don’t recommend ripping the tape up too quickly, though, since it can actually rip your paper. Yes, I learned the hard way, so just trust me on that one.

Washi tape comes in many sizes, too. The most common sizes I’ve seen are 10mm and 15mm. The size you want to buy will depend on where you want to place the washi tape in your planner. I’ll list sizes below for the areas I decorated. I generally like seeing the original labels, numbers, and other words in my planner, so I usually stick with the more narrow tape sizes to cover up less.

I’m planning to do a separate post/page of my favorite places to buy planner supplies, but I get most of my washi tape from craft stores and Etsy. It’s pretty easy to find.

What You’ll Need

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You’ll want to at least have:

  • washi tape (I recommend 2 coordinating colors at least, but even just 1 would work)
  • scissors (the smaller size than pictured may give you a more precise cut, but I only have this size – the smaller version is on my shopping list)
  • ruler (optional for my fellow Type A-ers out there)
  • color-coordinating pen

I’m using a two pack off washi tape with one 10mm and one 15mm in size. I recommend using sizes 6mm, 10mm, or 15mm for the ideas in this post, but you may find a different size works better for you.

Before You Start Decorating

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Here’s what the planner looks like sans decorations so you can see where I started.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Before I start dropping tape onto my planner, I like to measure around the planner to determine the best size washi tape to use in the areas I want to decorate.

For example, one of the most common places to add washi tape is around the morning/day/night boxes, which is the main section of the weekly view. The washi tape is usually placed vertically on the left side to cover the polka dots and horizontally underneath to cover the “meal plans | exercise | daily dos…” line.

The vertical area is about 10mm between the top left calendar and the main box, but the polka dots reach wider than this, at about 15mm. I like to put 10mm or 15mm tape here. The 10mm won’t quite cover all the polka dots, but the 15mm will cover either some of your calendar or some of the main box, depending on where you place it.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

The horizontal area is about 10mm between the lines and the bottom of the main area, but you could use a really slim tape (6mm) to cover just the words. You could also use a much wider tape to cover the words plus a couple lines or even the whole lower section. I really like the lines at the bottom of the planner, so I try to cover up just the space between them and the main area with the 10mm tape.

It’s not really necessary to measure. You could eyeball it. But, I like to do this step to try to determine the best sized tape to use.

Adding the Washi Tape to Your Planner

Here are six examples of how to decorate your planner with washi tape.

As I mentioned earlier, you can really decorate your planner to your heart’s desire. There are no rules to where you can or cannot put the washi tape. I’ve seen people cover all of the printed numbers and words with tape or just run the tape around the page borders. Remember to experiment and have fun with it. The following are just some ideas to get you started.

#1 Borders


Working with washi tape is pretty easy, especially since it’s repositionable. For long lines, like these borders, I usually like to attach the tape at one end. Then, I slowly lower the tape down from the starting end to the other end, pressing lightly as I go. I also try to ensure it stays aligned throughout. Once it’s down and lined up okay, I press the tape into the paper again to ensure it’s really attached.

For this layout, I put the horizontal (turquoise) tape down first because if there was any overlap, I wanted the vertical tape on top. Then, I added the vertical (floral) tape vertically down the left side, covering the polka dots. If you use the 15mm washi tape as I did, you’ll have to decide whether you want some of that top left calendar or the Monday column covered. I went with the latter.

If you like a more minimal look, you could stop here (or skip the borders altogether), but I wanted to spread the color throughout the page more.

#2 DIY Page Flags

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Have you seen all the amazing handmade planner stickers there are on Etsy? I have some and will blog about my faves another time. Page flags are one of the most common sticker shapes I see (besides the obvious circles, squares, etc.) for planner materials. Many great Etsy shops offer them with words and cute graphics like this one or even blank so you can write on them. While I am planning to use some of those stickers, it’s good to know you can also make your own page flags with washi tape.

To make them, simply cut a rectangle out of the washi tape and then cut a triangle* out of the short end of one side. You can place them any direction you’d like. Most page flag stickers seem to have the pointy ends pointing down, but place them as you like. I used a really patterned tape that isn’t ideal for writing words on. I’d probably need to use bold lettering to make the words really readable. In this example, I used the tape more to bring some of the color from the left side of the planner to the right side. I put two page flags on the right and one on the left to try to balance the floral tape across both pages.

*NOTE: Save those leftover triangles! We’re going to use them in the next example. I don’t like wasting materials, so I’m always trying to think of ways to use up scraps instead of throwing them away.

#3 DIY Weekend Banner

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Another popular planner sticker is the weekend banner, like this one (I really want to order this one soon). There are non-weekend banners and single day banners, but the weekend one seems most common.

I got the idea to make a banner with washi tape from Belinda (check out her site and YouTube for some other cute planner ideas). But, instead of using page flag shapes, I decided to use the leftover triangles from the DIY page flags I added to the boxes.

To make the DIY weekend banner, use a color-coordinating pen to draw a line from the top left corner of the Saturday column to the top right corner of the Sunday column. You may wish to make your curve less swoopy and more flat so the tops of the triangles line up better.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Add the triangles so the edges line up with the line you drew, evenly spreading them.

#4 DIY Labels – Left Column

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You can add a little color to the left side of the planner without covering up too much by making some simple labels. I used a ruler to measure how wide I wanted them since I didn’t want to cover the paper from the edge of the paper to the vertical tape border. This helped me make sure each label was the same size.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Add the tape to the left column, spacing them vertically as you like (in case one list/section needs more space than the other). You can use these to simply divide the space. Write some words on the tape (“To-Do”, “To Buy”, etc.) to create a label instead of using them as space dividers.

#5 DIY Labels – Banners

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

To pull some more of the color of the turquoise tape throughout, I created a couple simple banner labels. To make these, simply cut a rectangle out of the tape and cut a small triangle out of each side. You can also reserve these triangles to add to your DIY weekend banner, if you’d like.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You can also add words to these. I used one for “Weekend!” and one for “Party!” (forgot to write the last one in before I snapped the next photo).

#6 Shapes

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

I guess this one is pretty obvious, but you can cut all kinds of shapes out of washi tape to just add pops of color here and there. I cut a couple short rectangles and then cut them in half on the diagonal to make some triangle shapes. You could use these as labels or just for decoration. I used mine to distribute the color a little more. You could also use punch cutters, etc. to make even more shapes. I recommend putting the washi tape on something else before using a punch cutter, though. Since the washi is repositionable, you could probably use any paper. I’ve seen others recommend using something the tape will come off of more easily, like vellum or wax paper. I haven’t tested either of these out yet, but they make sense.

All Decorated

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Anywho, here’s the finished product! I used color-coordinating pens to add in my notes for the week, and I’m really loving the color scheme. It not only makes me smile, but it keeps me on top of things, too.

Erin Condren Discount Code

I’ve been using the Erin Condren Life Planners for the last four years, and I absolutely love them. I haven’t seen Erin Condren discount their Life Planner in a long time. But, they do have a great referral program (open to anyone, not just for bloggers). If you’re interested in getting the planner photographed in this post, check out the Erin Condren Life Planner. You can save $10 by using my referral link and signing up for an account. If you use my referral link, I’ll also get a little credit, so we both win. ;)

More Planner Tips

Click here to learn how to make a DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers

Click here for my tips for Planning While Traveling

More Planner Inspiration

If you want to see what others are doing with their planners, check out some of these hashtags on Instagram:

  • #erincondren
  • #ecplanner
  • #plannernerd
  • #planneraddict

There are many more, but these will get you started, and then you can find others to also check out. There are so many creative planner lovers out there. I just love seeing what everyone is doing with theirs.

Erin Condren has a really active Pinterest account, and they’re always posting photos from their customers. A couple of mine have made the boards even! Click here to check out the Erin Condren Pinterest page.

I’ll be posting photos of my planner decorations and planner supply hauls on my Instagram account @thechiclife, but I also usually repost these to my Twitter and Facebook accounts if you use those instead.


What’s your favorite way to use washi tape? Do you have any tips I should try with my washi tape? Let me know in a comment!

Thanks for stopping by!

My DIY Wonder Woman Costume


I love doing themed Zumba classes, and for two years, I’ve waited for one of my favorite holidays to fall on my class date. This year, Halloween was the same day as my class. Finally! I knew I had to come up with a good costume, and I wanted it to have a positive message for my participants. I decided to pick something that was a symbol of strength and empowerment…with a playful feel, of course. It was for a Zumba class after all. My decision was pretty easy. I was going to be a super hero. But, which one? That decision was actually pretty easy, too. Did you know that Wonder Woman’s real name is Diana? Yup. Decision made.

Of course, there was still the task of figuring out the costume. I considered getting a pre-made costume at Party City, but they didn’t look very exercise-friendly, and they seemed pretty pricey for a one-time wear. After some googling, I found this cool chick who makes race-friendly super hero costumes. Click here to view her Wonder Woman version. Pretty bada$$, right? And expensive. Not to mention that I didn’t start searching for costume ideas till October, and she needed a few weeks notice since she makes the costumes by hand.

My next thought was to base the costume around things that were already exercise-friendly. I originally wanted to do the old-school Wonder Woman costume (blue shorts with stars on them, red boots), but my searches for blue shorts weren’t turning up many good options, and I wasn’t looking forward to sewing dozens of white stars onto a pair of shorts. So, I decided to turn to the newer Wonder Woman style (blue leggings, blue boots). I wondered if lululemon had blue wunder unders out since I already love teaching in them. Turns out, they did! If I was going to spend money on a costume, it may as well be something I could wear all year long. It seemed like a better investment.

As for the top, most of the photos I saw (I did a google image search on “Wonder Woman”) featured a strapless, red top. That wasn’t going to work for class, so I decided to just go with a red tank top. I considered making a racerback top (scary!) or sewing gold onto a red tank top (which I didn’t have). But when I remembered I had a red sports bra, I decided to keep things simple and just wear that.

So, I had the basic colors down, but the key to the outfit seemed to be all the gold accessories. I found a lady on etsy who sells a set of gold Wonder Woman accessories made out of fabric. Unfortunately, she was all booked for October. So, what was a girl to do but try to make them herself? And that’s exactly what I did. I remember standing in the fabric store with an arm full of fabric wondering if I’d be able to make anything usable or if it would be a huge train wreck. I was full of nerves but hopeful that I could pull it off.


Thank goodness it worked out! Here’s the finished result.


Somehow, I managed to turn a pile of fabric and felt into cool Wonder Woman accessories. Phew!


It started with lots of Google Image searches, followed by measurements and notebook sketches.


Then, I needed a trip to the fabric store. I decided to use shiny gold material for the front of each accessory piece and softer, cotton fabric for the back. I added some iron-on interfacing for stability and to make the pieces look more metal-like.


And I used almost an entire day for sewing these accessories together.


I used a paper bag to create a template for the arm bands, but the headband and belt were too big and had to be drawn straight onto the fabric.


I spent most of the day measuring, drawing, cutting, and ironing.


Bailey kept me great company.


And since I hadn’t used my sewing machine in awhile and I wasn’t sure how the shiny gold material would work, I used some scraps to run tests. I tested whether I should iron the interfacing to the gold or yellow fabric, how the two materials would sew together (and if they would), how the velcro would work (never sewed it before!), and whether I should use felt & glue or use sticky-backed felt for the stars. I was so paranoid that I’d spend a lot of time on a piece and ruin it with one step, so I used this material to test nearly everything.


Pins were essential since the gold material was slippery.


And though the project took awhile, the sewing was my favorite part.


I think I’m even inspired to possibly try my hand at making a quilt. I made a baby one once for a gift, but I’d really like a full sized quilt for my house.


The glue I bought ended up not working with the gold material, but this sticky-backed felt was perfect. I was seriously worried about ruining the pieces by messing up the very last part – attaching the stars. So, I just utilized the sticky backs, and I didn’t worry about sewing them on. Maybe I’ll sew them later?


The night before my Zumba class, I got the bright idea to come up with a creative way to attach something gold to my red sports bra. I didn’t want to sew anything permanent, but I came up with a couple pieces of gold accessories that I could attach to my sports bra temporarily using velcro. I ended up staying up till 1:30am finishing this project, but I really think it completed the look.


Here are my exercise clothing basics – blue lululemon wunder unders and a Margaritawear sports bra.


And here are my finished, handmade Wonder Woman accessories.



I got the gold rope from the fabric store, too, by the way!


My Wonder Woman costume took a lot of hard work and time, but it was so worth it! I’m just so thankful that it worked out!

Click here to view two more exercise-friendly Halloween costume ideas.

Did you like this post? Please consider hitting the Facebook like button or liking The Chic Life on Facebook.

Thanks for reading! :)

Reader question: Have you ever made a Halloween costume? What did you make and how long did it take you?

Easy DIY Holiday Mason Jar Decoration {Tutorial}


Tis the season of gift giving, and if you’re anything like me, you like to gift handmade goodies for the holidays. Even if you prefer to purchase your treats from a local store or bakery, this tutorial will work for you, as long as you plan to place them in a mason jar.


Here’s a super easy tutorial on how to festively decorate a mason jar for gift giving.

Mason jars are great for so many holiday gifts: cake/cookie/bread mixes, granola, BBQ sauce, jam/jellies, and the list goes on. This tutorial will work with any mason jar, no matter the contents. Fill it with your choice of treats!


Last year, i made some pretty traditional holiday treats – Cookies ‘N Cream Bark (click for bark recipe) and…


Pink Salted Chewy Caramel Candy (click for caramel recipe). I put a little of each treat into a mason jar so my gift recipients got the best of both worlds.

But, if you just google “mason jar homemade gifts” (or something similar), you’ll find plenty of other options and other ideas.

On to the tutorial!


This tutorial uses simple and affordable materials:

  • Mason jars (almost the same price as, if not cheaper than, those cute tins at craft stores)
  • Scrapbook paper
  • Kitchen twine
  • Fabric

The style is reminiscent of old-fashioned jam jars, so you’ve likely seen similar jars. This is just how I ended up decorating mine. :)


Using a large scrapbook shape puncher of choice (I just used circle-shaped tool), cut out cute scrapbook paper for your gift tags. If you don’t have a puncher, you can really cut any shape you like, even a square or rectangle.


Punch a hole in the top of the gift label.


Write down the contents of the jar on one side of the paper. If you made your jar contents, you may want to add the word “homemade” to your label. Also, maybe pay better attention than I did when I was paper shopping and get one that doesn’t have lines on the back. Oops. Moving on…


Cut a square out of some fun fabric. You want the square to be a little larger (by about 1 – 1 1/2 inches on each side) than the mouth of the jar. Some of the fabric will be covered by the top ring of the jar, so when you’re measuring, be sure to take that into account. My jar is medium sized, and my fabric is about a 5 inch square. For your first jar, just cut one square as your test square, screw on the top ring and see if you like how it looks. Adjust fabric size if needed.


With the silver, flat-disc-part of the top already on the jar, put the fabric on top of the covered mason jar.


Use your fingers to keep the fabric from shifting too much and screw the top ring over the fabric.


Tie on some kitchen twine.


Then tie on your label.


And that’s it! You’re done!


Happy holidays everyone!

Reader question: if you like making them, what do you put in mason jars for gift-giving? If you like receiving them, what’s the best mason jar gift you’ve received over the years?

How to Cut a Hip Hop Style Workout Tank


So…I may have been watching too many hip hop videos on Youtube lately, like the ones I featured awhile back on TCL, but I just love the style of all the dancers.

I wanted to bring some of that funky style into some of the Zumba classes I go to by cutting a new t-shirt into a hip hop inspired tank top.

I did a play on this video tutorial, which was fun to watch.



  • I started with an over-sized t-shirt from Michael’s craft store. It was on sale for only $2.50. Score!
  • Very sharp scissors. It’s best to use a pair that have only been used to cut fabric (those used on paper will be more dull and won’t cut as even a seam).

Step 1: Cut lower seam off of bottom of shirt. I only took off about 2 inches, but the exact amount you’ll want to cut off will depend on your personal preferences. To estimate, put on the shirt, or hold it up at the level you plan to wear it and figure out how many inches to take off the bottom. Then snip away!


Step 2: Use sewer’s chalk to mark long lines down the side – from the top of the shoulder and down the side. The photo above shows where I cut, since the lines were too hard to see alone. Remember, you can always cut more off, but you can’t really put any more back on. Cut through both top and bottom layers, following chalk lines, to remove sleeves and some fabric from the sides.

Step 3: Put the tank top on and see if you think you need to cut more off. When I tried mine on, the top area was very boxy and masculine looking. I decided to trim off a bit more from the sides to get the shape I wanted. Remember, you will cut out some of the neck in the next step.


Step 4: Use sewer’s chalk to mark how much of the neck you want to cut out. Cut out neck area, cutting through top and bottom layers. Try on the top and see if you need to cut any more from the neck area. Note: you will be stretching out the neckline, so it will get a little larger.


Step 5: Stretch neck area and sides.


The finished product! I love this top because it’s comfortable and an understated way to be sexy. The long cuts in the side give you lots of breathing room, too. Be sure to wear a fun and colorful sports bra underneath (and you will definitely want to wear something under this tank top – it’s definitely not meant to be worn alone).

Can you believe this only cost me $2.50 and a few minutes?!?

I had so much fun wearing this to Zumba on Monday!

Speaking of Zumba, I just registered for Zumba convention 2011! I’m so excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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