26 February 2010

Little Girl's Boa

My 3 year old is getting into Fancy Nancy.  Fancy Nancy has the coolest wardrobe, at least in the eyes of a 3 year old.  This fancy boa is sure to please any "Explorer Extraordinaire" (that's fancy for someone who likes adventure). ;)

A couple months ago I resurrected the ragamuffin garland my mother used to make after seeing a tutorial at The Nester.  Hard to believe it, but she (my mother) even sewed one of these around the neck of one of her hand painted t-shirt dresses (do you remember those?  heaven forbid they should make a comeback).  And that is how the idea for this boa was born.  It is made the same way, only with tulle and sparkles.

Here's one of the ragamuffin garlands I recently made for my little girl's room:

She wanted to wear this as a "scarf" until I came up with the idea to make this boa.

materials (for the boa - process is the same for a garland only with ribbon/fabric scraps):

tulle (on a spool)
hot glue

First I decided what length I wanted the boa to be by measuring around my daughter's neck.  And I cut a long strip of tulle that length.  Then I cut several short strips, about 8 inches long (which was a little long, but I'd rather trim back later than end up with something too stubby).  There's no way to know how many of these short strips you'll use.  So just cut yourself a hefty pile and if you need more later, you cut more later!

Here comes the tricky part.  You tie a short strip onto your long strip.  And then another.  And another.  And you keep tying.  Tie on some more.  And some more.  Go on now.  Ad nauseum.   If you get a cramp in your hand, shake it off.

All kidding aside this is super de-duper easy.  It just takes a while. I chose to alternate colors (light pink, hot pink) in blocks.  You could do every other strip a different color or go with just one solid color.  Experiment my friends!

(forgive the quality of these poorly lit pictures)

After I was done I hot glued little gems here and there down the boa.  Just a dab so it doesn't become a stringy mess.  And since tulle is sort of plasticy (is that a word?) it will melt with the hot glue and be plenty secure without globbing it on.  I also thought little flowers would be cute, but gems are what I had.

Here is Miss Fancy Schmancy modeling her new boa for you!


Linking up:

24 February 2010

Think Spring

I know, in most parts of the US Spring is the furthest thing from your mind.  The stores are displaying it, but you're just not feeling it yet.  Well I was thinking Spring last weekend when temps in TX hit 75.  And my kitchen table got the first Spring treatment this house has seen this year.

The Nester posted some great ideas a couple days ago on using your dishes in your decor.  Go check it out here.  And during Transforming Homes home tour last week, I found this darling idea to nestle your twine balls in candle holders at Whisperwood Cottage (8th picture down).  By combining these two great ideas I have a fun table all set for Spring.

This is my grandmother's white stoneware, mixed with some of Target's Easter plate collection (from the $1 aisle a few years ago).  Aren't the egg cups darling?

So yeah, I'm feeling all flowery and ready for capris, and then we get THIS yesterday!

Snow in TX.  A few inches, even.  Isn't that poetic justice at it's best?

Linking up:

22 February 2010

The "Good Mom Rule Book"

What?  You haven't read it?  Well, where the heck have you been hiding? 

In case you were wondering:

Good moms make their kids a school lunch every day.
Good moms go to story hour every week.
Good moms play with their kids all day.
Good moms put themselves last.
Good moms serve a balanced meal at every meal.
Good moms are the first to rise and last to go to bed.
Good moms have taught their children to read and write BEFORE they get to Kindergarten.
Good moms have the playdates at THEIR homes.
Good moms don't need breaks.
Good moms don't get sick.
Good moms' kids never act up.
Good moms never run late.
Good moms never freak out.
Good moms' kids are always well matched, their clothes are never holey, and they never have messy faces.
Good moms' homes are always clean and tidy.
Good moms don't let their kids watch television.

Just a few of the myths I let infiltrate my confidence as a mother.  I know that there are some moms out there who are able to follow some of these rules, easily perhaps.  Kudos to them.  But they are the areas I find challenging. 

What unrealistic rules are in your "Good Mom Rule Book"?

19 February 2010

Stamp Initial

This projected was entered into:

Visit thecsiproject.com

I love letters and I love typography.  Once upon a time I designed fonts for a scrapbooking website, now I design them for myself. :)

I have words and letters all over my house.  Actually, it's brinking on the edge of overboard, lol.  I came up with this idea while watching iCarly of all things.  Hey, you can spot a good idea just about anywhere, know what I mean?  Anyway, in their kitchen are letters all over the wall and some of them look like big stamps, the old kind like they used with printing presses.  And so this idea was born.  I needed something tallish and skinny for this window beside my front door and I think this is just perfect!

Want to make one of your own?  Here's how!

Materials I used:

6x12 in. canvas
3 coordinating scrapbook papers
(distressing) ink pad
mod podge

The first thing I did was cut a scrap piece of paper the same size as my canvas.  Then I sketched out my initial, using the edges of the canvas to dictate my size.  I wanted my letter to be as big as my canvas so I made sure it met all the edges of my "canvas".  I cut out my letter and then used it as a template on some cardboard.  If you have an old box, this is a great way to recycle it.  The purpose of the cardboard, in case it isn't obvious, is to give the same 3-D effect that a real stamp would have.

I cut out my cardboard initial.  Then I traced the template onto the scrapbook paper I wanted to cover my cardboard initial with.  When I traced the template onto the scrapbook paper, I traced it a little wider in size, so I had some edges to wrap around the cardboard initial.  It might have been more accurate for me to just measure and additional 1/4 in. all the way around, but I'm not very particular and like to be done already. ;)

I then traced my canvas onto a 2nd piece of coordinating scrapbook paper (for the base), and the edges of my canvas onto a 3rd piece of coordinating scrapbook paper (to hide the sides and add a pop of unexpected color).

Next I mod podged everything together!  Started with my base/canvas.  Let it dry well.  Then I mod podged the edges of the canvas.  Let it dry well.  Then the surface of my cardboard initial.  Let it dry well.  Then the edges of the initial, wrapping as I went (this is messy!).  Let it dry well (detecting a pattern here, are ya?). I inked (or distressed) the edges of the canvas, and the initial.  And then I hot glued the initial onto the covered canvas base.  Since the cardboard is thick, it is more secure with hot glue than with mod podge.

Lastly, I put one last coat of mod podge over everything.  Be sure the let the distressing ink dry before you do this, or it will smudge!  I have wondered if it is better to distress/ink on top of mod podge.  But I haven't tried yet.  Will it dry or is it like writing with marker on certain surfaces; it just stays wet?  If anyone has tried it, let me know!

I used a plate rack to display mine, stacked on top of some books... but the canvas will hang nicely on the wall as well.  If you're really ambitious, I think this would be a cute way to display a child's name in their room!


I am linking up with:

17 February 2010

Transforming Home's home tour

I have always wanted to participate in one of these home tours, but something always stops me.  It's kind of shameless, showing off your home.  That's not really the way I look at it, but I know that is how it is often perceived.  But I feel so strongly about making my home comforting, warm, and inviting.  It's my, no OUR, safe haven from the world.  And I know there are many women who feel the very same way about their homes, so it makes perfect sense that they would want to share that effort with others.  I love looking into other people's homes and seeing how they live.  A home says a lot about a person.

I just picked a few rooms and corners of my home that I particularly love, to share over at Danielle's place.  Not a day passes that I don't thank the Lord for this beautiful home we have been blessed with.  I am dead serious.  I am so happy here (we just moved in a little less than 2 years ago), and know that I will call it home for a long time.

First up is our main living area.

Our cat, Isabella, sitting in one of my favorite chairs.

There are so many things I love about this room.  It was all based around the rug, which I got for a steal from Target.  I made the pillow with the fabric flowers and I painted the Tree of Knowledge behind the leather chair.  Would you believe it if I said that everything but the curtains and torchieres/sconces followed us from our last home exactly as is?  The color scheme pretty much stayed the same, and yet it is has such a different feel in this home than in our last home. I love color and this room reflects that better than it did before.  And a few eclectic touches like mismatched frames on the mantle make my somewhat traditional furnishings seem funkier.  Which is exactly what I wanted.  The room is bright and open; it gets a lot of natural light.  But in the evening when I turn on those torchieres it transforms into a romantic, warm, comfortable area to relax. 

Next up, the kitchen.

The kitchen is our second most lived in area.  Which is nice since it opens right up into the living room I just showed you.  It's fun and quirky - lots of pops of color inspired by my pitcher collection (on top of my cabinetry).  And my drawer pulls are a never ending project.  They are all different so I have been collecting for a while.  I love to bake and my kids love to help me in here.  They are often found at the table painting and making fun little crafts.  And behind our table is an addition with built in desks where they do their homework.  So this kitchen is well used.

I switch things up in here a lot, right now I am loving to mix and match textures - glass, ceramic, stone, metal.  As well as country style decor with modern bits and pieces.

 That's an old washboard refashioned to be a magnet board.

Isn't this calendar fun?  I just realized it is hasn't been changed to today's date yet, lol.  But this was a rare find at TJ Maxx.  And I adore it.  I added a little scrapbook paper (with mod podge) to the square magnets that go around each day of the week/month.

Next up is the master bedroom.

These pictures were taken soon after we moved in (I don't take much time to get settled).  So, a few changes have been made.  But this picture is pretty accurate so I'm using it!  This room is a big change from our last master bedroom, which was red, white and black.  We also upgraded our bed/frame.  I love this new color scheme, it is so serene.  I am carrying it into the master bath, which I've redone about a billion times.  Bathrooms are kind of hard for me.

This was one of my favorite projects.  As you go upstairs there is this very large niche at the top.  I love collecting old ancestry photos, but they usually stay stashed away in a box.  I wanted to create an area where we could see, daily, our ancestors looking down on us.  This spot was just perfect.  

Last but not least, is this fun project I did in the playroom.

You can only guess how long it took me to collect/paint/mod podge all these letters (except the N and C which were purchased at a Farmer's Market in SLC).  The project was inspired by a photo in a Pottery Barn Kids catalog ages ago... they had all these wall letters jumbled together like a collage.  And I loved it.  But this playroom is huge, so I spread them out.  The border goes all the way around the room (minus a wall with a big window).  I have changed a few of the letters as time has passed.  Next on the list is Y, which will be spray painted to differentiate it from the W a little better.  I haven't decided on a color yet, though!  And if you are curious about the bulletin board in the 3rd pic, I bought some cork tiles at Target and covered them in fabric.

So there is a peek into my home.  Hope you enjoyed looking around.  I have more pictures on my home blog, which I started when we began building this house.  The pictures are pretty old and a lot has evolved since then, but you are welcome to check it out. :)  I have shared many pictures of other rooms in this house on this blog as well, the most recent being my new design room.  

I hope you'll head over to Danielle's place and look at the other great homes that are featured there!  It's a lot of fun to see the different tastes and sense of style represented there.

16 February 2010

Lost Pines

This weekend my husband and I stole away to the Lost Pines Resort in Bastrop, TX. We had an amazing time - no children, no responsibility, no schedule. It was the first time we'd been away from our children in nearly 10 years! So we were definitely due for some alone time.

Here are some pictures from our trip (disclaimer: point and shoot pictures ahead, NOT professional quality):

This was taken on our hike... that would be a mirky Colorado River behind us in the first shot.

I couldn't believe how big this place was... I had been there once at night for a party, but in the daytime it is really a site to see.  And there is so much to do... we opted to keep things low key but you can go horseback riding, swimming, biking, there's even a community area for marshmellow roasting!

I loved this little reading knook near our room.

And the inscriptions in the carpet - this one says "Birds sing in the bushes, which always remain green."

As we came in and out of the lobby we noticed many couples cuddling in front of these fireplaces.  And all I got was this lousy picture!  Lol!  Maybe next time!

 View from our balcony.  Great place to sit under a starry night.

The food was FANTASTIC.  Oh my goodness I took more pictures of the food than this (it was that amazing), but the pancakes were by far my favorite.  Seriously though?  Everything I put in my mouth was scrumptious.

Thanks honey.  I loved every relaxing minute,  and I love YOU!

12 February 2010

Sneaking in one more Valentine's Idea! #8

I really wanted to make a milagro for my husband for Valentine's Day, and I managed to do so yesterday (we're leaving town for the weekend, so it was a little close!). I had so much fun with this! Inspiration from Heather Bullard.

Linking up this weekend with Tatertots and Jello!