Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Teenage Bedroom Redo

Don't you just love the difference paint makes!?!

From pink walls and girly-girl cutesy . . .

. . . to something a bit simpler, bolder, and "teen-ager-y"
Slightly off-white walls and squares in her school colors.

Oops! I still have to do something about those super pink baskets!

Well, we didn't make all the kid stuff go away!

Condensed version of all the steps!

I think this is the most important!
I cut and taped poster board squares to the wall in a way that I thought looked balanced and not too busy. The squares were too small the first time (top photo) and looked "too cute-sy" so even though I didn't want to - I cut more and bigger squares and re-did it (bottom photo)!

For the next step I called my husband in to help!
I penciled around the corners of the squares so I knew where I wanted them to be and then my sweetie used a level and drew the squares all perfect (and square!) for me - I hate measuring!

I managed to tape around the lines pretty evenly - I learned to tape slightly on the outside of the pencil marks.

After having the paint bleed and look awful I read online about taping, then paint the original wall color over the tape, letting it dry, and then painting the new color. This worked amazingly well! I only had a few places that I touched up with a tiny artist brush.

I did all of the red first - it took 4-5 coats!

Then the black. The taping was a bit trickier - I had to cut the tape and make sure it was perfectly straight where it met the red. And I had to paint over the tape in 2 different colors (original wall and red) to make sure there was no black bleeding onto the red or the white. The black paint was only 1 1/2 coats and went on super fast.

Now I just need to find the time for new curtains and bedding . . .

And the best part - I did this in 3 days while she was away at cheer camp (I used an oscillating fan to help it dry faster) - she was totally surprised AND loved it!

Domestically Speaking

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

New in my Shop

My first Christmas together ornaments were quite popular last year, so I've decided to add a customized version!

I'm adding more colors ready-made, but also listing an option for design your own!

And since they are now available in whatever colors you would like - wedding colors, school and team colors, or favorite colors, they are perfect for many different occasions.

I love the coastal/beach theme colors of this one!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Autumn Wreath - Part Two

Yes, I know I just made a new autumn wreath last year, but I found these fabulous flowers - zebra and cheetah - so cool!! - and just had to make something with them! (And wreaths are pretty much what I can make - my flower arrangements never turn out quite right!)

I started with my summer wreath that literally melted apart it was so hot this year - notice all the old hot glue - and fern and flowers that coordinated with the big ones that I love! The wreath at least was free, but even purchasing everything on a half-price day the flowers and foliage were around $30 (the animal prints are regularly $7 each - yikes!) Oh, I found everything at Michael's - the animal prints are from the "safari floral stem collection."

I really wanted the animal print flowers to go all the way around like my sunflower wreath, but they were quite pricey and since I went on the last day of the sale, they were down to these five.
I used the same steps as on my other autumn wreath - main foliage, big flowers, more foliage, and then the smaller flowers. (I didn't use the cream colored ones.)
Normally I just pull all of the flowers off and glue them directly to the wreath, but this wreath is on its last legs, so I cut the stem 3-5" on each flower so that I would have plenty of room to adjust them and make them do what I wanted.

I just couldn't wait and put it on my door tonight - sorry about the flash!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Homecoming Mum Making Experience - Finished !!

I'm so excited that they are finally finished - Homecoming seems early this year and I was so stressing about getting them done just right! They are for my oldest and her "big sis." These mum are both larger than my first one - about 40" long with 36" streamers and the mum flower is 6" across and 8" across with the backing. I think they are a really nice size without getting in the way too much.

And I have to share - When I was trying my youngest daughter's mum on her she asked - "And why am I wearing this again?" My husband (not a Texas native) thought this was too funny and rolled his eyes when I told her it was because she was a Texas girl and that's what she's supposed to do at Homecoming! I loved the mums I had at Homecoming (back when the flowers were real!) and I hope my girls love these just as much!
I put these together just like the smaller mum - I just added more embellishments.
I made some military braids (I looked at several sets of instructions and practiced quite a bit - I also had to adjust the ribbons more tightly after I finished, but they turned out just as nicely as the ones in the stores and as long as you are careful not to crease the ribbon the adjusting goes quite smoothly.) I also made some diamondback style braids that my daughter really liked. (Again, it just took a bit of practice after looking at instructions.) You can also buy the military braids at a craft shop if you'd like.

Before I got started attaching everything I made up some ribbons with footballs, bells, and megaphones. (I punched out some star shapes from glitter paper and attached them to the megaphones.)

I wasn't quite sure how to finish the ends of the braids, so I stapled and then used hot glue and ribbon to cover the staples.
I glued the ribbon and charm on the front and then wrapped and glued the ribbon that I tied everything with around the back.

I laid the flowers and ribbons out to see what I had and decide what all I was going to use. I used zebra ribbon, school spirit ribbon, 2 different braids, name ribbon, homecoming ribbon, gold star chain, gold cheer chain, curly ribbon with megaphones, bells, footballs, and skinny gold sequin ribbon.
Using 36" lengths, I began the streamer circles by attaching 9 (#9) ribbons (4/5 red and 4/5 black) to the fronts. My daughter felt they needed to be fuller, so I added 7 (#9) more ribbons (3/4 red and 3/4 black) ending up with 16 lengths on each circle. I also added 8 (#3) ribbons (4 red/4 black) to each.

I almost forgot - I found the cutest little lion head pens, ripped the heads off, and glued them to the center of the flowers. They weren't quite big enough all on their own, so I added a little embellishment to teach of them! I used different color accents since the bases are different colors (one is more red, one more black) and so they would each be unique.

I don't have a picture, but I then laid out all of the "fancy" ribbons and chains on top of the streamer base so that the colors and chains were balanced, not exactly symmetrical, but spread out so that one side of the mum didn't have too much red or too much black, etc. You can get an idea of how this looks by checking out my other mum post.
I used the homecoming ribbon for the center, attached the zebra and school spirit ribbons more-or-less evenly on the sides and then also placed a braid and gold chain on either side. I attached the braids, chains, and skinny ribbons on top of the fatter ribbons.
If you look at both mums you can see that one is more black and one is more red, but they are both balanced. I made sure everything was stapled down, glued the flower on top of the streamers (a lot of glue), and glued a plain circle to the very back to cover the staples.

I have tons of photos of the completed ones!

I angled the bottom of the ribbons just a bit to give it a more finished look.

Close-ups of the military braid and zebra striped ribbon. I found the star garland in the Christmas section at a craft store.

Sequin ribbon, cheerleader chain, and megaphone charm.

Close-up of the diamondback braid and a bit of the black velvet sparkly ribbon adorned with shimmery gold and white bows.
Mum #2!

Cheerleader chain and military braid.

Happy Homecoming!

Monday, September 5, 2011

My Kitchen Subway Tiles

This is how I dreamed my kitchen could look - like the gorgeous kitchen in the 2009 Coastal Living Idea Cottage.

I knew the honeycomb tile wouldn't be in my budget so I thought I'd try several colors of subway tiles (which I've always loved!).
I still have a long way to go, but here is my kitchen wall so far!
And I do have a stainless venthood just waiting...

I used 3 shades of white and off-white to replicate the various tones in the tile that I love. I laid out several rows at a time and then placed them row by row on the wall.

I chose dal subway tiles arctic white, almond, and biscuit in a matte finish.

I have moldings to finish (as similar as I can get to the ones in the idea cottage) and outlets to change out before I do more and I have to work up the nerve to try out a tile saw but I'm really excited to see that it is looking just like I hoped!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Looped Dimensional Homecoming Ribbon

Sneak Peek - I'm almost done!!

These are instructions on how I made the looped ribbon with the letters that spell Homecoming. You can alternate the colors of ribbon and letters, add layers in different colors, or even use larger ribbon with trim. You can also use thinner ribbon and smaller letters for garter-sized or petite mums.

I started by cutting lengths of the #9 (1 5/16") ribbon into 6" strips - I folded each one - pretty side out - together and stapled to form a loop. I made a total of 18 - 10 to spell Homecoming, 4 for the year, 1 to separate them, 2 more for the top to hide all of the staples as it leads to the top of the mum, and 1 from another ribbon that had a lion design printed on it.

I made all of the loops first and then placed each letter (each is 1 1/2" tall) so that the top of each letter is approximately 1 1/4" below the top edge where the ribbon is stapled together.
After attaching the letters on the loops so they appeared centered I tried measuring to see if I could apply the letters first - I thought it would be easier so I wouldn't smash the loops - but for me it was easier to apply after I made the loops. They just ended up looking better this way for some reason!

My mum's longest ribbons are 36", so I used that length and started about 5" or 6" from the bottom just because I hadn't decided yet on how I wanted to finish the bottom. (I ended up adding an additional ribbon loop with a lion's head and then cutting off most of the rest so that the ribbon appears to end in a loop.)

I stapled the bottom symbol first and then placed each number or letter approximately 1 5/16" above the previous loop. So, from the raw edges of one loop to the next is approximately 1 5/16" - your measurements might vary depending on the size of your ribbon and letters. I used 2 vertically placed staples on each loop. The back of the ribbon has the sharper edges of the staples, but doesn't really seem to be an issue since there are so many layers or ribbon beneath it. I tried to staple so that the staples were the other direction, but it was just too hard to see to line up the stapler with the ribbon edges. You can always hot glue another ribbon to the back if sharp staples are an issue on your mum.

This is how they look from the side. The farther one away has had glue applied, the nearer one has not.

For a nice finish and to make the loops stay where I wanted I applied a bead of hot glue right below the staple line after I had everything stapled.
Aren't they fun?! You can spell out whatever you'd like as long as your mum has the space!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

My Homecoming Mum Making Experience - So Far

Wow, summer has gone by so quickly and now that we have one in high school, football season is upon us!

This year we need to make a homecoming mum for daughter's "big sis" at school. I was so worried about messing up something that is so big, so I decided to do a "shakedown" mum to get the mistakes over with and gain some confidence. Since I knew my littlest one would just have to have one, too (who doesn't love ribbons and cowbells and glitter?!), a small mum seemed just the thing!

So, if you are tempted to make a homecoming mum, I hope my photos will help you get started!

I bought my supplies from a floral wholesaler and from a craft store and made my letters at a scrapbook store. I really recommend buying the ribbon from a wholesaler if you can (mine also sells retail) - the ribbon came in 100 yd spools and is so much cheaper in the long run, especially if you have more than one to make, will be making them for several years, or you're like me and worried about mistakes! And if you go in with a friend it will be cheaper and more fun!

Just to give you an idea of materials - I used for a small mum - about 18" in length total:
(1) 4" mum
(3) 4" cardboard backers
(1) package silver star garland
(2) small black megaphones
(3) silver cowbells
(5) red sparkle curling ribbon
(2) red floral grosgrain ribbon - 15"
(2) black/white grosgrain ribbon - 15"
(5) glitter letters
(1) glitter heart
(4) black #9 (1 5/16") ribbon - 30"
(1) black #9 ribbon - 15"
(3) red #9 ribbon - 30"
(4) red #3 (9/16") ribbon - 30"
(2) black #3 ribbon - 30"
About 3 yards each of #5 (7/8") black and #3 red to make the points for the base of the mum.
Stapler and glue gun.

I started by cutting 4" strips of the #5 black and #3 red (I needed 26 of each).

Layer the red over the black, fold to make a point in the center and staple. This takes a bit of practice to get them even and get the red flat against the black (and mine aren't perfect), but after a few, it's pretty easy.
(front view)

(back view)
You can also simply fold the ribbons in half and use them that way. I have seen mums alternate flats and points and some with just flats.
Begin stapling the points along the edge of the base (after the first few I laid my flower on top to make sure that it was going to look how I wanted).

I couldn't wait to go all the way around the circle to see how it looked, so I started the second layer before I finished the first! The second layer is a little farther in and is placed so that the points are in between the points of the first/outside layer

This is how it might look if you alternated flats and points.

This is how it looks when it's all done! I used 13 on the outside and 13 on the inside.

Using lots of hot glue, make sure the mum is centered and attached really well.

I made these letters using a die-cut machine and glitter paper that is peel and stick. The paper was a bit pricey, but still cheaper than buying each individual letter and I really wanted red and black! I had hoped for more traditional looking letters but these were the only ones that fit on the ribbon. I'm sure that some of the new cutting systems would be perfect for this.

Peel and stick!
(I used some extra bits of ribbon on the back of the heart to make it "not-sticky.")

Okay, now the second circle. The ribbons and fun stuff!
I only used the #9 and #3 red and black ribbons.
I cut double lengths and folded them (30" down to 15") because I wanted to make sure mine was at least kind of even and fluffy enough, but you can definitely staple them one by one - that is what I did with the grosgrain ribbon and the ribbons with the bells and megaphones.

I don't think there is really a right or wrong way to do this, just make sure the ribbons hang how you would like them to and that the colors are somewhat balanced - the first time I tried I had too much black on one side and had to staple on more red.
Totally unplanned, I ended up adding some grosgrain ribbon that I had on hand because I thought it needed some white (since the mum is white) and because I really like the flower ribbon!

Half-way done!
(Next step was putting the name ribbon on top.)

This is how it looks with just ribbon and no extras - still pretty, but I knew my little one would want more!

So, I added some star garland around the top.
I folded them into bow shapes and stapled them around the edges. (I think I need just a bit more for the bottom, but I ran out.)

I used the curling ribbon and added the cowbells and megaphones at different lengths on either side of the name ribbon. I tied the charm to one end, curled the other end, and stapled in the middle so that the curls could wrap around the end with the charm.

I also added a length of the silver star garland on either side of the name ribbon - I just lightly curled it around a pencil to give it some shape.

I folded a 5" loop to make the hanger (I just need to get a couple of corsage pins) and stapled it to the back of the circle with all the streamers several times to make sure it would hold.

My next step will be to glue the mum layer to the streamer layer and then glue one more cardboard circle to the back to cover up all those staples which get stuck on everything!
I'll probably trim up the ends a bit before I'm all done!

Since I'm now feeling quite brave, I have gotten started on the "big sis" mum - I used larger ribbon (#9 and #5) since it is bigger (6") and played around with the ribbon a bit. The streamers will also be quite a bit longer.

For this mum I'm going to add some fancier ribbons (in gold) and some plastic garlands and maybe some braided ribbon chains, too.

And just to be a little different I think I'll use a red mum!

If I left out something or if you have tips to share I'd love to hear from you!