Thursday, February 17, 2011


I LOVE multi-tasking! If something can be used in one way, it can probably be used in another. Which is why, when I started this project, I decided that if the front was good, the back could be used as well. But, I wanted to make sure it would work before I did two. Since it did, I made a back side to my word blocks of yesterday.




Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Inspiration in the form of a wooden board

While eating breakfast this morning, I looked out the window and saw this board on my back porch. It isn't unusual for me to see random pieces of wood on the porch - when my parents moved they left us a bunch of wood to be burned in the fire pit, and Paul likes to haul it out to build bridges. What is unusual is for me to be inspired by said wood. And, that is what happened this morning. I'm not sure why, but some days are just more inspirational than others.
So, with an idea in mind, I set to work. I measured and found the board to be 2.5" wide and 0.75" wide. I pulled out my handy-dandy saw and started cutting.
The idea was to cut them into squares, and that worked, for the most part. So, now I had a bunch of 2.5"x2.5" squares.
Next comes paint. Lucky me, I had a bunch of black left from Halloween. A few coats, and all my squares were black.
And, this is the part where I forgot to document steps. I recently made labels for my dry goods containers on the counter, and I really liked the font. This font was perfect for my inspiration, so I pulled my spandy new Silhouette out and got to cutting. Since my blocks were 2.5" squares, I cut the font about 2.25" tall. Then, I painted a layer of Mod Podge on each square. On to each square I stuck a letter. And ended up with "LAUGH" and "LOVE". Add another layer of Mod Podge, and now my blocks are shiny as well as black with letters. Almost there, I thanked my lucky stars that I picked up eye hooks at Home Depot this morning. So, in the top and bottom of each block I screwed in an eye hook. Whew! Now a picture.
With the hooks in, all that was left was to attach the letters to each other. I bent the bottom hook out -
and slid the following letter on.
I repeated this process until I got the whole word together. And hung.
With "LOVE" I decided to hang them staggered. Due to their location, I couldn't get a good picture front on. They are really more even than they look. I promise.
I still haven't figured out exactly how to hang them. I mean, they are on the wall, but they need something more. Anyway. My favorite part of this project was the price. $2. Really. I bought the eye hooks for $2 this morning, but that was all I had to buy. The wood was scrap, the spray paint left over from Halloween, and the paper some of my stock on hand. Yeah! (One day I will have to learn to take pictures well so that you can really see how cute these babies are!)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Alphabet Blocks

You may have guessed by now that I have a child who is obsessed with letters. So, for Christmas I made a set of alphabet blocks for Brigham. Here they are.
I made them by cutting a 1.5"x1.5" board into cubes, sanding, mod-podging on paper, and then adhering vinyl lettering. If I did them again, I would not use the letter paper in the background, it makes it just a little too busy. But, overall, I was pleased. And Brigham was ecstatic. Thanks Brya and Erin for cutting my letters!

(And yes, I do know that there is a "w" in the alphabet. Much to my chagrin, the dog has already gotten hold of one of Brigham's blocks!)
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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Easy Ruffle tutorial

Okay, I have been working on a little project that I decided needed a pleated ruffle on the outside edge. I have never done a pleated ruffle, so I just decided to wing it. And, it was super easy and looks great when finished! So, I thought I would share.

First, I pulled out a handy-dandy craft stick. I have a million of them on hand because Brigham is slightly obsessed with them. Then, I added some marks. I just eye-balled what looked good, but in case you are interested, the measurements are 2" for the length and 0.75" for the fold. (I am sure that must be some mathematical ratio of some perfect form!) Anyway, I laid the craft stick down and put the "length" mark at the top edge. If you are just starting, this would be the edge of your ruffle fabric.
Then, I folded the fabric from the bottom back over the stick until it got to the "fold" mark.
Pull the craft stick out, and pin your fold down.
Repeat as many times as you need to get around your piece.
Then, you put your seam in, and flip it out. This is what the finished ruffle edge on mine looked like...
Aren't you dying to see what I made? Oh well, you will have to wait until I get Joy's done too...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Sock Puppet tutorial

So, you want to make super-fantastic sock puppets that all the neighbor kids will be jealous of? Well, I guess I can let you in on my little secret. It is a piece of plastic in the mouth.
Here's how it works: Get an old milk jug and cut out a section of flat surface.
Now, fold that piece in half and cut a couple of ovals out. The size of your flat space will determine how many ovals you get out of it. And, your ovals should be about the size of your little one's finger-to-thumb space where they would normally stick the sock puppet mouth.
I can usually get two ovals out of a large flat. One..
and two. These don't need to be perfect, they are just going to be inside the mouth to give it some permanence.
Now, this step is really important if you want to spare your fingers glue gun misery. Push the toe of the sock inside to make a pocket. Don't go too far back, just a couple of inches. Test the space by sticking your plastic oval in it. The folded edge goes in first and should hit the toe of your sock, the rounded edges should about sit on your socks lips.
Now that you have your sock in position, take your cut and folded plastic between finger and thumb,
and run hot glue along the edges of both sides. Don't worry about that spot where you are holding, you can go back and get that later.
Now, this is the trickiest part of all. Really, it is persnickety. And I am not just saying that 'cause I like the word. You need to slip that hot-glued plastic into the pocket you created for the mouth, but you don't want the hot glue to touch the sock until it is in place. Just slide it in and squish it down. But, don't squish too hard or you will glue his mouth together. (If you need to do this for therapy since you can't do it to your kids, go ahead, glue those lips together.)
When you have this done, you can go back and glue those little spots on front and back where your fingers where.
Once you get the mouth in, it is the traditional stuff - eyes, hair, etc. Okay, I only do eyes and hair. But let me tell you, this little plastic bit makes the sock puppet SO much more functional! It will get played with far more often, because the mouth works! Hope you have fun!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy Birthday Banner

Did I mention my most favorite gift for Christmas this year was a Silhouette? Well, I got one, and am in LOVE! Today was Joy's birthday, so I whipped out this super cool pendant banner, and she LOVED it! And, it was pretty easy.

To make it, I cut triangles from cardstock, and then cut her letters (500 pt Curlz font) out of coordinating paper. I glued the letters on with good old-fashioned Elmer's Glue (since I didn't have anything easier on hand). Then, I punched holes in the corners and threaded them through on 5/8" grosgrain ribbon. All in all, it was a pretty easy project, and the receiver appreciated it, which is even better.

I ordered a laminator which was supposed to have arrived on Friday, but when it gets delivered tomorrow, I will be laminating these puppies so this can be pulled out every year. I have decided that, when I do the boys, I will use darker colors for the background, they stood out much better. And, since they are boys, I will use a chunkier font so it shows up better. Who knows, I may even redo a few of Joy's. Nah, who am I kidding?
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Monday, November 15, 2010

Corn husk wreath

I found this cute wreath on HowDoesShe the other day, along with instructions. So, I tried it. And, although the copy of their copy of someone else's wreath didn't turn out perfect, it wasn't too bad. And it was really easy to accomplish.

I am not sure how I am going to store it, but I am certainly going to try!
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