Hello Friends – It’s Suzanne, Rebecca’s Momma, guest blogging this week. Today, we are going to talk about a little sewing project I recently completed for a friend who asked me to make her some pillow covers. I am not a seamstress by any stretch of the imagination, but I have a sewing machine, know how to thread it and can sew straight lines. I also think I can figure out how to do anything, so I said I’d give it a go.
My friend provided the pillow forms (26 inches square) and the end of a bolt of fabric with which she’d already had a bench covered. She wanted the pillows to match.
There were a couple of things I knew going in to this project. First, I wanted the covers to be removable for cleaning and, second, I did not want to have to learn how to put in a zipper. I thought about how pillow shams for beds often have a crossover opening in the back, so that’s what I decided to do.
This is a very straightforward way of making a very simple cover and is adaptable to any size pillow. I’ll describe my process and you can easily replace my measurements with your own for the size pillow you have. I’d venture to say that you could even use a glue gun with glue sticks suitable for fabric (there is such a thing – I just googled it!) rather than sewing.
First, figure out the size of your pillow. As I mentioned, mine are 26 inches square. Check the depth of your pillow as well. If it is very plump, you’ll need to figure the thickness of it into your measurements as well. For the width of your fabric, you will need a piece the width of the pillow, plus about one inch for every two to three inches of the thickness of the pillow, plus an additional inch for the seam allowance. For me, this was 28 inches. The length of the fabric will need to be 2.5 times the length of your pillow. For me, this was 65 inches.
Then, turn a small hem along one of the short ends of your piece of fabric. This will end up being the upper side on the crossover opening.
Next, fold your fabric with the good side in, roughly in half, but with the two short ends overlapping each other. The hem you just sewed should be under the end with the unsewn sort end, so that it ends up on top when you turn your cover right side out. You are trying to make the long length of the fabric the size of your pillow. In my case, I have square pillows so I folded my sandwich of fabric diagonally to make sure I had a square.
Next, pin the open edges so they don’t shift and sew straight from one end to the other. Remember, you’ve added an inch for the seam allowance, so try to stay about ½ inch in from the edge of the fabric. Sew the other open side straight from one end to the other. Now you can turn the cover right side out through the opening left by the two short ends overlapping each other. Use a chopstick or an unsharpened pencil to push the corners out square. Stuff that pillow form in through the overlapping opening and you are done. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy!
Sewing does not need to be intimidating. Most household items, like these pillow covers or curtains, can be made with just a few short, straight seams. I hope you give it a try.
What sewing projects have you attempted? Let me know in the comments below!
Hello again friends! Today we will be revisiting a topic that I wrote about a bit ago: the marvelous and mighty macaron. I freaking love macarons and basically only ever go to Whole Foods to buy the macarons they have in the little freezer case right when you walk in. I LOVE THEM. Last time that my fiance and I tried to make macarons, things didn't go too badly but the filling did leave much to be desired. This time we decided to try a different recipe, from the Nerdy Nummies cookbook made by one of my favorite YouTubers, Rosanna Pansino. We followed her recipe almost exactly, but I will let you know where we made small changes.
The first steps were related to getting the batter ready. Macaron batter typically involves dry ingredients mixed with a meringue. Rosanna called for almond meal, but we could only find almond flour at the grocery store so we went with that. We mixed the batter as she described; the only small additions that we made were to add a small amount of gel food coloring, as well as some raspberry extract to the batter.
Once the batter was mixed, we piped the cookies into onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets. The cookies were supposed to be about an inc, but I I have not concept of time or space so I would say ours ended up being closer to 1 1/2 inches in diameter or radius or circumference or whatever word means from one end of a circle to another. After a quick Google search, it appears that diameter was the word I was going for. We then set the cookies out to rest for about 45 minutes. We got crafty and moved my puzzle table into the bedroom with the AC blasting to ensure that the cookies didn't melt. For those of you that do not know, leaving the cookies out allows them to form a skin on top which means that when you put them in the oven, they bake "up" rather than "out." You will get a taller cookie, rather than one than has spread out.
Once the cookies had rested, we baked them according to the recipe and then got started on our filling. This frosting was cream cheese based as opposed to the butter based frosting we tried last time. This frosting was SO much better than last time and did not immediately start melting. If making this type of cookie, I would highly recommend going with the cream cheese frosting. We changed up the frosting slightly by added mashed fresh raspberries, which required us to add more powdered sugar than the recipe called for to balance out the extra moisture from the raspberries.
The final steps were sorting the cookies once they had baked and cooled to make nice top and bottom pairs and assembling everything. To assemble, all we had to do was pipe a small bit of frosting on the bottom cookie and then gently press the top cookie on top, ensuring that we did not push hard enough to break either cookie.
Here are some nice action shots provided by my mother. These were DELICIOUS and the cream cheese frosting worked out so much better than our previous buttercream frosting attempt. I would highly recommend this recipe! Macarons are not that hard if you don't mind giving over a few hours to the project.
What have you guys been baking in quarantine, especially as hotter weather is setting in?
Hello friends! Today I want to share a quick card idea that uses nearly a full sheet of 6 by 6 paper and some adorable stickers from the Dollar Tree, also known as my favorite place to buy cheap craft things. To start off, you will need some plain card bases and sheets of 6 by 6 paper. Each card needs two different patterned sheets and I would suggest you use ones that coordinate. Below are the stickers from the Dollar Tree, which look like small jars; these are translucent and you can see through the jars.
The first cut of the 6 by 6 paper sheet will be to create a large piece that covers most of the card front. I cut (and when I say "I cut", I mean my mother cut because she is much better at math) mine to leave a 1/4 inch bit of white all around when placed in the middle of the card front. This leaves two small strips of paper. It helps to make at least two of these cards at once, as you can use the small strips of the coordinating paper as accents on the opposite cards. Does that make sense? You'll see, I swear!
Now it is time to stamp the sentiment and the accent that will be used with the jar stickers. If you don't have stamps, you can also feel free to use additional stickers to get the same effect. I went with "thank you" as the sentiment and then stamped out some flowers. You will see what we do with the flowers in a second! The sentiment can be mounted on the paper that coordinates with your base paper.
You can feel free to color in the flowers or not. Now here is the fun part! Cut out a rectangle from the white paper around your flowers, leaving enough room at the bottom of the paper for a jar sticker. Stick a jar sticker over the flower stems to make it look as though the flowers are in the jar. I had to lengthen the stems a bit with a black marker for them to look proportional. I also added a small gem to the bottom of each flower. Aren't they ADORABLE? Mount the white paper with your flower on the same paper you mounted your sentiment on.
Using dimensionals or regular adhesive, attach the sentiment and flower piece to the front of the card wherever you would like. Here are two that I made!
You will be left with the tiniest pieces of paper from the original 6 by 6 sheet and you can either keep these for future projects or use them to decorate your envelopes. See what I mean about coordinating papers? Below are some examples of cards which have a similar style, but with slight alterations.
Give these cards a try and let me know how they go in the comments below!
So today, I am here with a cooking post highlighting some fun cooking tips and tricks to utilize during quarantine. My fiancé and I, like so many others, are working on expanding our cooking skills during this time at home. I am by no means a chef and honestly think I am much less knowledgeable about food than I am about crafts. Regardless, I wanted to share some quick and easy things that I am doing which are making cooking more enjoyable, especially when home cooking has become a necessity as of late.
1. Use something pre-existing as the base for your culinary masterpiece. I know that everyone and their mother is trying to do crazy things like make sourdough from scratch, but you don't always have to start from the ground up to make something yummy. My strongest example here is ramen. I am a huge fan of instant ramen and will gladly eat it uncooked (don’t judge me) or cooked according to the package instructions with just water and that sodium-laded packet of chicken flavor. Obviously, when I just say ramen I am talking about chicken-flavored ramen because that is the only one that counts. Don’t you dare fight me on this. Although I will eat ramen the “normal” way, I have found that it is such an easy canvas to add things to that can take it from a late night snack to a full-on meal that satisfies you and makes you forget about the copious amount of sodium you are consuming. I also do know that both instant ramen and the ramen creations that I have made are an abomination compared to real, traditional ramen so don't give me your sass about that. Same goes for oatmeal. You can use either instant oatmeal packets or some oat-fashioned oats which are honestly just as simple to cook and have 8000% less sugar. Throw some chia seeds and a banana on there and you've taken your oatmeal from edible wallpaper paste to healthy(ish) breakfast. Here is a recent bowl of ramen which I leveled up with a medium-boiled egg, some toasted cashews, peas and caramelized (and slightly burnt) onions.
2. Plating makes a big difference. I think that especially given the lack of options for sit-down dining anymore, we are all missing that special feeling that you get when your food just looks pretty as hell. Plating something up nicely takes maybe 3 more minutes of your time and makes you feel like a fancy lady or gentleman (gentlehuman? why isnt that a word we use?) when consuming it. Also take pictures of the food to document the fanciness. I know that taking pictures of your food seems a bit "extra" but honestly we need to all focus on simple pleasures right now and if taking a picture of your food does that, then freaking go for it. Below are some meals I tried to plate up a little nicer than I usually would have. One the left is some maple kielbasa with potatoes and peas and on the right is a salad that I made look awful pretty.
3. Try something new. This goes for both the food you are eating and the way you are preparing it. If you had asked me 6 months ago how I wanted my eggs cooked, I would have said scrambled or over-hard with absolutely no runny yolk in sight. Squishy yolks were the enemy. However, lately I have been trying things again that I decided I didn't like years ago to see if my opinions have changed. I have also been trying to change up the recipes that I am making and the ingredients I am using. I subscribe to a UK-based cooking channel on YouTube called SortedFood and they have an app which guides you through recipes. They aren't paying me to tell you they are good, I just like them :) Anyways, I have been using this app as well as cookbooks I have bought and then proceeded to never open to try out recipes that I would have assumed were too hard or that we wouldn't like. I have been encouraged to try out styles of cooking that I wouldn't have been comfortable with before and have bought things that never used to be part of typical grocery list but I now really enjoy. Below is my first attempt at Chicken Kiev which is a recipe that I might have looked at a few months ago and thought was too hard.
And as a bonus tip, always put salt on your chocolate chip cookies. Just do it. That is all.
What tips and tricks are you all using to up your cooking game in quarantine?
Hi All! Welcome to Guest Blogger: Quarantine Edition. It’s Suzanne, Rebecca’s Momma, here with some springy decor. Since craft shopping is a no-no right now, this project was definitely a “Trash and Stash” project. Even if you don’t have a big stash of crafting supplies, these projects could easily be made with items that might otherwise end up in your recycling bin.
To start, I had two blocks of wood (4 x 5.5 inches) and two tin cans (3.5 inches tall). In addition, I used some paint, a glue gun, some twine, fabric and greenery. A little later, I also grabbed some stickers, flowers and some wooden spools.
First, we’ll tackle the cans. Mine are from corn, but any would do. Just wash then out carefully and you’ll be all set. I painted the middle portion with some white chalk paint. I wasn’t worried about the very top or the very bottom, because I knew I was going to cover them. After the paint was dry, I sanded the ridges in the center to make it look a little distressed and then dry brushed a little black paint on to add to the distressed look.
I then wrapped the bottom of the can with some twine, starting with a drop of hot glue to hold the beginning in place. A little hot glue was added here and there to keep the twine in place (especially around the bottom of the can, so the twine would not fall off the edge) and I finished with another small spot of glue to hold the end in place.
For the top of the can, I ripped a small piece of black and white gingham fabric (so that the ends were frayed) about two inches wide and long enough to wrap around the can, with a little overlap. With the tiniest line of glue around the rim of the can, the fabric was glued on. I then put a little glue on the inside of the can and folded the fabric in to make it look like the can was lined with the fabric. With no floral foam in my stash, I cut up a few paper towel rolls and placed then down in the can, to hold the ends of the greenery in place. I tucked a little faux greenery in the can and called it done.
Let’s talk a little about alternatives. No twine or fabric in your stash? How about yarn or ribbon? Or, if you have one and not the other, you could use the same embellishment at the top and the bottom. You could also paint all the way to the top or all the way to the bottom and use something only on the opposite side. Or, paint the whole thing and add nothing to the top and the bottom. Your can planters will be a cute addition to a little vignette any way you finish them off. I had some faux greenery in my craft room, but everything is starting to grow. You could easily add some natural greens into your planters.
Now it’s time to pretty up those wood pieces. First, using a baby wipe, I wiped on some brown paint. Using a baby wipe instead of a paint brush gives more of a stained look. Once the paint was dry, I painted just the middle of one side, leaving the edges of the black paint a little jagged, so that the pieces looked a little like a chalkboard.
I wanted more height differentiation between the can planters and the wood pieces, so I dug out a couple of wooden spools to make pedestals. Pedestals seemed to call for little finials for the top of the pieces, so I also grabbed two smaller spools and two screw plugs (little pieces of wood that would be tapped into a screw that’s been countersunk). The screw plugs were glued to the little spools and everything was painted with the same white chalk paint used on the cans, then distressed with a little more black paint.
It was time to add some words to my chalkboards. I don’t care for my handwriting, so I found some white letter stickers. Using a piece of tape to make sure the letters stayed straight, I spelled out ‘grow’ and ‘bloom’ then added a thin coat of Mod Podge over the stickers to be sure they didn’t lift up. I hot glued the pedestals and finials on and it was time for decoration. I wrapped some twine around the blocks and added a knotted piece of the gingham fabric. A leaf and a couple of buds was glued on the ‘grow’ block and a leaf and larger flower was glued on the ‘bloom’ block.
What are the alternatives here? If you have no wood pieces available, you could use a box. My wood pieces are about the size of a box of Pop-Tarts. You could also layer several pieces cut from a larger corrugated cardboard box and wrap the stack in decorative paper or even a paper grocery bag. Small jars (like for spices) could act as your pedestals and any small cover could be a finial. These could also be left off, depending on the scale of your “chalkboard” piece. Flowers and leaves can be cut from paper. These pretty flowers are actually just a number of circles, layered on top of each other with the edges curled up. Decorative paper or magazine pictures with bright colors would make lovely flowers.
Here’s the finished product, styled with a couple of small votive holders. I added a tiny piece of fabric around the votive holders to tie everything in together. We have two small, high windows in our living room and these pieces add a nice spot of color there.
I hope today’s post has helped you to look at your “trash” in a new light! Happy crafting!
Hello everyone! I am finally back with some wedding centerpiece content! I ended my last post on the centerpieces with some frames that need more painting and some pages and numbers that needed to be added to the frames. We finally started getting some spring weather so I was able to give all of the frames another two coats of paint to make sure they were fully covered. Once they were dry, I took some gold paint and dry brushed it onto the frames lightly so that some of the designs and patterns on the frames would be highlighted.
Then, I went ahead and added the pages in, making sure that the colors alternated. So table number one was in a red frame, two was in a blue frame, three was a red frame and so on. If you are doing a craft similar to this, I would highly recommend somehow keeping track of which piece of glass goes with which frame. Although these frames were all the same size, the pieces of glass are all a bit different so it was super fun to painstakingly try each piece of glass in each frame until I got the right ones. Once the pages were in the frames, I then hot glued the numbers and additional gold accent pieces to the front of the glass itself to provide some fun dimension to the frame. I am SO proud of these and love how they are a fun Harry Potter touch to the wedding without being in your face.
I also made a similar frame to go on Sean and I’s sweetheart table; we are just going to have a table for the two of us rather than a big, long head table so I wanted a sign that was similar in style to the table numbers. Since the table numbers featured some Harry Potter pages, I felt that it would be fun to have a nod to Star Wars in our own table sign as Sean is a big Star Wars fan. Over our years together he has been slowly converting me into a Star Wars fan while I have been doing the same to him with Harry Potter. For this sign, I just used an 8 ½ by 11 frame I happened to have and painted the frame, as well as some little decorations, gold.
I printed out a paper with some iconic Star Wars love quotes to put into the frame and aged it a bit with some brown paint as I had with the other pages. Finally, I painted a wooden R and S with some burgundy and navy blue and we were ready to assemble. This frame has a similar feel to the table number, but on a larger scale.
Finally, I have also been working on painting some small little risers that will be part of the overall centerpiece. I got these little wooden stands, which I believe are supposed to be individual cupcake stands, in the dollar section at Target and I just felt like they would be a nice touch if a vase or candle needed to be elevated slightly in the final centerpiece. I went ahead and spray painted them gold. Once they had dried, I felt that the spray paint was a bit too much of a yellow-ish gold as opposed to the champagne gold that I had been using to paint other things so I went ahead and sponged on a bit of the champagne gold paint onto the stands to mute them a bit. And here they are!
These centerpieces are really coming together! Let me know what you think in the comments below!
Hello friends! This week we are here with a quick Easter craft. I have made progress on the wedding centerpieces and was planning on sharing that with you guys this week, but my mother and I made an Easter craft recently and it seemed like it would be better to share that before Easter came and went! This blog will not be so much of tutorial as people are not likely to have the same things in their crafty stash, but this will hopefully show you how easy it is to whip up something for spring. This type of craft can be customized to be more Easter-focused or more generally springy if you are not an Easter celebrator. Here is what my mother gathered up from her stash for us to use:
We have some pieces of wood, little ceramic bunnies, plastic eggs and carrots from the Dollar Tree, some paint, hot glue and stickers. We also went back into the stash to augment with some faux grass, stickers and other wood bits. I started off by sanding my wood and then painting it a whitewashed light blue. I also painted my little bunny a warm white rather than the greyish white that the ceramic originally was.
I decided that I wanted my sign to be for spring in general as I don't have much spring decor at the moment. I used some wooden letters that I painted pastel colors, as well as some spring stickers that I propped up on wooden pieces. I also painted my bunny's nose pink because he needed a cute nose!
I hot glued the painted letters to the eggs and then glued the eggs standing straight up on the wood. I then hot glued the little bunny and additional wood/sticker pieces to either end. Then for a finishing touch I hot glued some faux grass around the bottom to cover up any other glue globs. My mother went a different route and used rub on letters on her eggs and gave her wood and bunnies a brown wash for a more country feel.
And here they are! I love how my mother and I used fairly similar supplies and came out with two different decor pieces. Mine is the SPRING sign and hers is the HAPPY EASTER sign. Go raid your stash and see what you can make for spring!
Hello friends. Wherever you are in the world, I assume that you are trying to stay at home as much as you can to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Let’s not beat around the bush: this is a crappy time and most of us are spending almost all of our time indoors. Even introverts such as myself are struggling with the general lack of social interaction. I have come to realize that I don’t necessarily like being alone, but I like being alone with other people. I like to be in my own zone and focused on my work, but have the option to talk to one of my coworkers if I want to. Anyways, we are all doing what we need to do to help shut this thing down and we need to make the best of it that we can. For today’s blog I wanted to focus on some of the little creative things that you could be doing whenever your mind needs a break.
I understand that for many people who have the option to work from home, your kitchen table or your home office or your crafting area or your coffee table has been turned into your makeshift workspace. My company is having us all work from home until at least early May so my craft desk has been turned into a workspace for the time being.
Even if your work area feels like it is crowding the places where you usually go to express your creative side, it is important to find ways to let your brain do something besides work. Below are some examples of things that I am doing to pass the time:
1. Use up any craft kits that you have stored away. In the picture below, my mother and I are working on a card kit that she recently got. Go ravage your closets and find the random sewing, pottery, painting, or color by number kit that you bought once because you thought it would be fun and then never did it. If you have children, look through all of the kits they may have received as gifts and see if there is anything that you could do together.
2. Send someone a card. For those of you that do not necessarily have a large pile of craft supplies to fall back on, this takes almost nothing at all. Grab a piece of cardstock, construction paper or even white printer paper and some pens or markers and go to town. If you have stamps or stickers, go wild and add those on there! This is a great way to expel some creative energy while also putting a smile on the face of someone that you aren’t able to see in person for a while. My grandmother is in a nursing home which is not currently allowing visitors in so this is a card that my fiancé and I wrote in and sent to her to hopefully make her smile.
3. Redecorate with only the things you already have. Since you will be stuck in your home for an extended period of time, why not make some small changes to freshen up the space? Switch the pillows on your bed and couch, move your plant to a different shelf, rearrange the pictures on your wall. Little things like that can make you feel like you’ve accomplished something big.
4. Make some cookies. If you don’t like cookies then I really don’t know what to do with you. But most cookie recipes only need flour, sugar, butter, salt and either baking powder or baking soda to work. If you don’t have chocolate chips, throw sprinkles in there. Or make sugar cookies. There are approximately 18765 cookie recipes online so you will be able to find one that fits the ingredients that you have available. Below are some cookies that I made last night which were delicious!
5. Of course, if you are more of a seasoned crafter who has the supplies, this is also the time to do the big projects that you haven’t had time for. Refinish the dresser. Paint the cabinets. Sew new pillowcases for the couch. We have all the time in the world right now, so use it.
6. My final suggestion is not really crafty related, but just something that I have been trying to do with all of my extra time: find a new book, Youtube channel, podcast or blog. Or just revisit one that you really love. I am a Harry Potter girl so yesterday I picked up the third book and just started reading. For me, taking small breaks from staring at my computer screen really helped me get through the day. Find a new blog on a topic that has always interested you or on a topic that you want to improve on. Might I suggest this blog: Managerine Leadership: https://www.managerine.com/#/. My wonderful, talented, badass friend Julia just recently started a blog on female leadership and empowerment and is also offering a subscription box with leadership books and products from women-owned businesses every month. Take this time to invest in yourself and find a new outlet that feeds your passion and gives you a chance to focus on something other than work or the state of the world right now.
And finally, given the state of the world right now, I need to take a moment to thank all of the people in my life who don’t have the time to just sit back and relax right now. Thank you to my fiancé who is a police officer and my two cousins who are healthcare workers and to all of the grocery store workers I know who still have to go to work every day so you can get supplies. If you have any essential workers in your life, go thank them, because they need it.
Next blog we should be back to regularly scheduled content with, hopefully, an update on how wedding centerpieces are going. Stay safe my friends!
Hello everyone! Just a quick intro from Rebecca before we get into the blog. Typically my mother does a post every other month on the even months, but she swooped in to help out this week as I was away on vacation last week and didn't have the time to prepare anything. She's the best! Now on to the good stuff:
Hello! It’s Suzanne, Rebecca’s momma, back today with a quick and easy craft that can be applied to any holiday. We don’t decorate much for St. Patty’s Day here in this French-Canadian household, but I’ve developed a bit of a reputation at work for having something seasonal on my office door, so I thought I’d whip up a quick and easy shiplap shamrock. I’m not really into glittery and shiny décor pieces, so this is going to have a rough and rustic country look. This is also a very forgiving crafting style, so any imperfections just add to the charm of the piece.
For this piece, I’m going to use a wooden shamrock shape and craft sticks (from the dollar store). I’ll also need some paint (black, white and olive green) and brushes, a craft knife, scissors, sand paper and some gloves (because I just had my nails done). I’m also going to need a glue gun and some glue sticks. Later, I added some burlap to the mix, to make a quick rosette.
First, I determined that I needed 24 craft sticks to make the shiplap – I did this by laying a bunch of them over the shamrock shape to see how many it would take to cover it. Then, I painted the shamrock black. I knew I was going to leave some slight gaps, so I didn’t want the raw wood to show through. While the shamrock dried, I cut the rounded ends off the 24 craft sticks and I painted 6 each of the craft sticks in shades of white and green. First, I painted the white ones, then added a little green paint to the white to make a sage-y green for 6 more, added a little more green for a darker sage for 6 more, then finally used the same brush I’d used for the black to paint the full strength olive green on 6 more.
Once those were dry, I laid the painted craft sticks over the shamrock to create the shiplap. I cut some sticks in half, some off center. I mostly wanted to mix up the colors and make sure the gaps in the rows were not lined up directly over each other. When I had an arrangement that I was pleased with, I started to glue the craft sticks in place. I didn’t measure the little bit of a gap between the ends of each craft stick and between each row – I just eyeballed it and it worked out just fine.
Once the glue was dry, I started to trim the ends of the craft sticks with the knife. The craft sticks from the dollar store are not very thick, so it was pretty easy to follow the outline of the wooden shape and trim away the overlap. Using the sandpaper, I sanded the edges to make them smooth and sanded over the top of the sticks, concentrating on the edges, to distress them a little. Some of the craft sticks did splinter a little, which was OK with the rough look I was going for. I then went back around the edge with the black paint to blend the raw edged of the craft sticks in with the base. I’ll be honest – I wasn’t in love with it at this point, but I continued to sand and smooth here and there, added a little more black paint to the edges, touched up some of the white and got it to a point of grubby chic that satisfied me.
I glued a small piece of jute (this was the original hanger on the wooden shamrock shape) to the back of the base and sandwiched the end under a couple of leftover pieces of craft stick to keep it secure. I wiped the whole thing down with a damp paper towel to remove the dust and it was done, but a little boring.
It definitely needed a little something more but I don’t have much in my stash that is St. Patrick’s Day related, so I poked around and found some burlap. Rustic shiplap and burlap seemed to be a good combination, so I decided to make a rosette of sorts for the center of the shamrock. I started by cutting a circle of cardstock just slightly smaller than I wanted the rosette. I then cut four circles of burlap and folded each in quarters, gluing them with the points to the center of the cardstock. I made a second layer with smaller circles and glued those over the spaces made by the original four folded pieces. I fussed and trimmed and pulled stray strings until I got a shape and size I liked. I then cut a small circle for the center, to cover the intersections of the folded bits and glued the completed rosette in the center of the shamrock. That nicely finished it off the shamrock without it being too over the top. Though not intentional, the whole thing hangs a little askew so the shiplap effect is slightly slanted, which I really like.
Cost wise, this was a very economical craft. The shamrock shape cost $1, the bag of 60 craft sticks was also just $1 and I used less than half of them. The rest of what I used are basic craft stash items and able to be used over and over. My suggestions after having completed this would be to keep the shape simple and leave as little overhang as possible when gluing down your craft sticks. The simpler the shape and the less you have overhanging it, the easier it is to trim the craft sticks to shape.
This is a technique that you could use for any holiday. Shades of pink and red would have made a sweet Valentine’s Day heart. Pastels for an Easter egg would be super cute. If you can’t find a wooden base shape to suit your theme, you could even cut one out of poster board. I hope you’ve enjoyed this idea and give it a try!
Hello there everyone! I am back from my terrible sickness with a chatty, short, low-key blog for you. Surprisingly, I am here to talk to you all about how it is more than okay to not DIY sometimes. What? How? Not DIY? I know, right? As I am preparing for my wedding and sharing with you all many of the craft projects that I create for the wedding, I think it is just as important to talk about how sometimes it is more than okay to buy rather than DIY.
I think there is sometimes a lot of pressure for crafty people to hand make everything and there can be some shaming either from yourself or from others if you don’t. It can be easy to feel like if have the skills to do something yourself, you have to or should do it yourself. But I am here to tell you that is not the case. I have felt this way for a while, but I recently had an “aha” moment in a real way when thinking about wedding invitations.
The original plan had been for me and my mom to make the invitations as we are crafty ladies who think we can do anything. However, after some thought and research, my fiancé and I decided to get invitations made through a website. For someone who loves to craft and takes pride in it, it can be hard to give up that control, but it doesn’t make you any less of a crafter. Sometimes going with a product that is professionally done just makes more sense. The wedding invitations that we have chosen have gold foiling on them, as well as a handy tri-fold shape with attached RSVP card. The amount of time, energy and stress that it would have taken my mother and I to make something comparable would be insane. I can’t even begin to imagine trying to add intricate gold detailing to over 50 invitations. The website we are using also provides free address printing and I must say that I am overjoyed to not have to hand-address each invitation and RSVP card.
Being crafty doesn’t mean that every single thing you do must be done by hand. Buying invitations doesn’t make me any less of a crafter! I love to be creative and inspire others to craft their little hearts out, but its also important to remind everyone that DIY isn't always the most logical and/or cost effective option.
What do you all think about buying vs DIYing? Let me know in the comments below!
I am a 23-year-old crafter and baker from New Hampshire!