Monday, October 19, 2009

Halloween Tutorial- Bat Chandelier

When I was flipping through my Pottery Barn Kids catalog, I saw this great bat chandelier but there was no way I was paying that much for a seasonal decoration.....I am just funny like that.

It looked easy enough to reconstruct so that is what I did.

Supplies needed:

3 embroidery hoops, various sizes
black acrylic paint
tacky glue
black embroidery thread
large hand sewing needle
black pom-poms
black cardstock or felt (stiff felt preferred)


First Step was taking the inside hoops and painting them black
Next I cut out about 31 bats. I used black cardstock because I can cut 4 at a time versus one at a time with felt. Since this was an experiment, I didn't want to invest too much extra time. I just created my own bat stencil/template but if you'd like to use it, just email me at and I'll send it to you.

Then I tied strips of the black embroidery thread approx 9" long around the hoop eyeballing them about 2 and 1/2 to 3" apart like this: After all the strings were attached, I took tacky glue and applied a little to the ends to make it stiff and much easier to thread. Then I put a small amount on each knot (around the embroidery hoop) to make it more secure.

To add the bats and pom poms, I threaded each strand (one at a time) on a needle and then I strung the bat and two pom poms. I tied a thick knot at the bottom so they wouldn't slide off over time and trimmed any excess. You can really play with the length of each strand to get the effect you want.

For the top and bottom tiers I used the pattern above, for the middle tier I did an alternating pattern of one bat and on pom pom with the other stand being two pom poms.
Once all the tiers were finished, I attached them with the embroidery thread and added glue to each knot again for extra security. Viola, your own bat chandelier for under $10!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Too cool for his own good

My almost 6 year-old is a naturally cool kid. He can throw on some of the strangest clothing combos and totally pull it off! Yesterday he decided blue hair would be even cooler and he achieved this with his older brothers shower gel .....ugghhhh

and P.S. whoever taught Chase to Vogue is in BIG trouble

Friday, August 28, 2009

Flower Frame Tutorial

This is one of my favorite quick & fun projects to make. I have had so many requests for the tutorial that I promised ages ago so I finally threw on together today! I love to give these as gifts with an inspirational quote in the center.


unfinished wood frame (I purchased mine for $1 at Michaels)
(1) 12" by 12" piece of patterned card stock (for frame)
(1) piece of card stock for the flowers (solid or print)
cutting mat and x-acto knife
ink pad (i used a copper/gold color)
circle punches, circle cutter or a plain old pair of scissors
sanding block
decoupage glue (i.e. Mod Podge)
3 bead or button (for flower centers)
hot glue gun
clear polyurethane top coat (spray can)
pick out your patterned paper. Please note the pattern shown. The opposite side is blue pods which you will see in the tutorial. *I prefer to use a thick card stock to help prevent bubbling.
Spread a thin layer of decoupage glue on the front side of the unfinished frame. Place the right side of the frame (with glue) onto the wrong side of the paper and press firmly. You can also turn over and rub lightly to be sure to remove any bubbles. Allow glue to set.
Place frame on cutting board and use an x-acto knife to cut around the frame. Don't worry about any small tears, you will be sanding the edges next and imperfections add character to the distressed edges!
Sand the outside and inside edges of the frame
it will look like this:
Now use an ink pad to go along the sanded edges. You are just going along the edge, not the entire depth of the frame. I use the fancy art technique of dipping a finger in ink and rubbing it on the frame to get the inside corners.
Now it should look kind of like this:
Now it is time for your flowers. You will want three "nesting" circles. My largest circle has a 3" diameter. I used a Marvy Uchida circle punches but you could use and circle cutter or even a compass or trace some household objects.
I normally use solid card stock for the flowers but I really like the print on the opposite side of the card stock so I decided to use the excess as my flowers. You will cut out three sets of circles. You need to use a thick card stock to really get a good shape to your flower when "squishing" it
Before squishing, I use a q-tip to color the center of the smallest circle to emulate "pollen"
Now for the fun part, squishing!I layer each flower then put my thumb in the center and "squish" the flower around my thumb. This is not a science and don't be too critical, it is adorable and does not need to be asymmetrical!
Now I ink the edges of each circle. I like to "squish" before I ink so the ink catches in some of the folds and wrinkles!Now you can assemble all three layers of each flower with a small dot of hot glue in the center of each layer.
Then in the center you can hot glue a bead or button. Once done, I like to figure out the placement of each flower. Sometimes I do a cluster, sometimes they all go on top and sometimes on one side. Be creative and see what fit with the design.
Once your flowers are affixed with hot glue you can seal and protect your beautiful frame with two coats of polyurathane. Put a picture or a quote in the center and it is ready to go!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Bridal Shower go please

I received an invite to a bridal shower for a friends daughter and at the last minute my schedule cleared up so I am able to go! I refuse to use a registry for a bridal shower since this is a day for the bride and since I don't really know the bride, I was at a loss.

Then it came to me, a cute spunky apron for the soon to be newlywed. I have had this pattern for awhile but had not found the time to use it. This apron is simple yet has a beautiful drop waist and flutter to it. Add a few fabric flower pins and viola, it is ready to go! I hope she loves it and wears it during her first "domesticated" years so it can be a part of her fond memories.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thursday Thought to Ponder

"When you come to the edge of all the light you know, and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on, or you will be taught how to fly."

Barbara J. Winter

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

500 Days of Summer

I have not seen this movie yet but I love the soundtrack! Plus I just adore anything with Indie darling Zooey Deshanel or her big sister. I came across this video she made and can see myself developing quite a crush on Joseph Gordon Levitt.

p.s. I really want her outfit!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

I'm Lovin' it Monday

I am doing this I'm Lovin' It Monday while laying in bed recovering from a sinus cold (pity me yet). While surfing the web from my sick bed, I came across this wonderful product that made me smile.......Happy Tape!

The ideas and uses for this product are endless, I must have them all......well, at least a lot!

Another thing I am lovin' is It is like your personal online shopping bargain hunter. You sign up, pick your favorite brands and sizes, how often you want your "salemail" and you get notified of what items are on sale. My favorite part is that you get a picture of each item so you can just browse through the email to see if there is anything that you must have! Since they only display what is available in your size, there is none of the disappointment of finding a great deal just to discover they only have it in the smallest or largest size available!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Anthropologie Inspired, Ready for Baking!

I fell in love with this apron at Anthropologie and fun would that be with Amy Butler fabrics?
So here is my interpretation of the Spring Mix Apron. I would change a few details if I ever made another one but I am happy overall with how it came out!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

No Peeking Mom

I just thought I'd share one of the fun projects I did yesterday as a birthday present for my mom. I had picked up this adorable turquoise embroidery hoop from JoAnn's ages ago with an idea in mind to use it with my kids hand prints.

So last night I traced my kids hands on to card stock for a template. Next, I used some fusible interfacing on the fabrics for stiffness and durability then I attached them to some white cotton that I put in the hoop with some embroidery floss. For fun, I added the button border this morning and voila, an adorable keepsake stitched with machine required! Oh, and I almost forgot...I did use a small amount of batting to add some dimension.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

An Apple a Day.....I wish

I have a very serious relationship with fashion, just look at my closet that is ready to burst. I love that fashionable modest clothing is getting more and more accessible even when mini's and cleavage are becomin more and more mainstream.

Now for my guilty pleasure, a store to splurge in once in a while, and drool at often.....Shabby Apple . I have decided to share my personal top four picks with you:Broadway Upper East Side

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Reluctant Blogger

So I have been a bad cyber friend (we are friends, right?). Not only have I not been posting, I have become a lazy to post a comment after being amused by your posts, so rude of me....I know. I promise to do better.

Has it really been a month since I last blogged? I have had the summer lazies accompanied by multiple vacations, teaching three classes for a Super Saturday, and trying to squeeze in some great reads while working on my tan!

I even braved a 14 hour car ride to Idaho with just myself, a five-year old and two two-year-olds. It was worth it to see my good friend Kelli and her family. I love them so much I even tried to tell my husband we might need to move there...... It takes a dear friend to make you want to leave sunny San Diego, even for a moment!

p.s. am I the only one that dreads school starting again?

p.s.s. here are a few shots from the rest of our summer

Monday, July 6, 2009

I'm Lovin' It Monday

It is so hard to find fun fabrics for little boys so I am lovin' the new line "Oh, Boy!" by David Walker for Free Spirit. I love the colors and fun designs and I really love the great stripe!

I also had the very RARE opportunity to have a girls night out at the movies and we saw "The Proposal" and it outdid my expectations. You can't go wrong, in my mind, with Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds but there were also some comedy gems from the supporting cast...especially Betty White and Oscar Nunez (from The Office). I thought this movie was hilarious and well done. It was more of a comedy then a romantic comedy and it felt very fresh and new. I am not going to pretend it doesn't follow the predictable plot line of any romantic comedy but they are able to do it in a way that doesn't seemed forced.... I highly recommend it!

Friday, June 26, 2009

100 Inchies Project- Wings

Here are my latest inchies from the 100 inchies project. I was inspired by the wings theme to more of a tattered, shabby chic interpretation with lots of glimmer mist, stamps, paint dabbers and crocheted lace

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Dear Santa...or my husband

I have worked really hard to be good this year and I am out of special occasions so I am writing this letter to plead for my early Christmas gift.

You see this Meet-Cute Tee and Await the Day jacket have become essential to my continued success as a wife and a mother. They fill my daydreams and I am sure that I will be able to cook better meals, build better leggos and vacuum more often with these in my closet.....

p.s. I wear a size 8(M)

Happy Fathers Day....a few days late

We celebrated Fathers Day with our annual tradition of going here after church for my husband's favorite apple pie! We also made yummy breakfast in bed and spoiled him rotten, what else are Father's Days for? I never managed to get a group photo between no nap and a sugar high but you get the picture :o)

Thursday Thought courtesy of Regina Spektor

No one can make me sing dreamily in my car like Regina Spektor and she has done it again with her new album Far. The song I am playing on repeat right now is Laughing With, can you blame me? I have posted the video and lyrics so you can sing along with me!

Laughing With

No one laughs at God in a hospital
No one laughs at God in a war
No one's laughing at God
When they're starving or freezing or so very poor

No one laughs at God
When the doctor calls after some routine tests
No one's laughing at God
When it's gotten real late
And their kid's not back from the party yet

No one laughs at God
When their airplane start to uncontrollably shake
No one's laughing at God
When they see the one they love, hand in hand with someone else
And they hope that they're mistaken

No one laughs at God
When the cops knock on their door
And they say we got some bad news, sir
No one's laughing at God
When there's a famine or fire or flood

But God can be funny
At a cocktail party when listening to a good God-themed joke, or
Or when the crazies say He hates us
And they get so red in the head you think they're 'bout to choke
God can be funny,
When told he'll give you money if you just pray the right way
And when presented like a genie who does magic like Houdini
Or grants wishes like Jiminy Cricket and Santa Claus
God can be so hilarious
Ha ha
Ha ha

No one laughs at God in a hospital
No one laughs at God in a war
No one's laughing at God
When they've lost all they've got
And they don't know what for

No one laughs at God on the day they realize
That the last sight they'll ever see is a pair of hateful eyes
No one's laughing at God when they're saying their goodbyes
But God can be funny
At a cocktail party when listening to a good God-themed joke, or
Or when the crazies say He hates us
And they get so red in the head you think they're 'bout to choke
God can be funny,
When told he'll give you money if you just pray the right way
And when presented like a genie who does magic like Houdini
Or grants wishes like Jiminy Cricket and Santa Claus
God can be so hilarious

No one laughs at God in a hospital
No one laughs at God in a war
No one laughs at God in a hospital
No one laughs at God in a war
No one laughing at God in hospital
No one's laughing at God in a war
No one's laughing at God when they're starving or freezing or so very

No one's laughing at God
No one's laughing at God
No one's laughing at God
We're all laughing with God

Monday, June 22, 2009

I'm Lovin' it Monday

So if you ask me what I am really lovin' right now, I'd have to say summer! No school to rush the kids to, no homework, and no real schedule...heaven. And with vacation #2 coming up this week, I thought I'd make it summer/travel related.
I am lovin' Gamewright games. They are fun, educational, unique and broken into age categories. We have become huge fans of card games like Cuckoo Zoo, Play Ball and Slamwich and dice games like Space Race. They are all travel sized an easy to store. Lighthearted family fun, what more can you ask for? If you live in the area, you can pick these up at the Totally Thomas Toy Depot in Carmel Mountain Ranch but they are also easy to find online.

Now for just the grown-ups.......go out and rent Taken with Liam Neeson. It is a really well done action movie that is not over the top or full of special effect explosions and unbelievability. It has (on top of everything) a strong storyline that will grip you from the first moment and hold you all the way through.
Oh, okay one more just for us ladies since I will be out of town next Monday. I am lovin' the Layla Dress from Layers Clothing. It is cute comfortable and will get you a lot of compliments at a price that won't break your budget.