Thursday, December 24, 2009

DIY Gifts for Christmas

Hello, everyone! Well, since I'm almost done giving everyone our "made with Love" Christmas Gifts, here are pictures of some of them. I wasn't able to take pictures of all of them. Mostly I made all the gifts this year because we are saving for our wedding in May, but I also love to do this type of thing as you may have noticed. I took pictures of some of the gifts in a hurry before I wrapped them. So sorry about the quality. Take a look.....

These are travel bags I made for the men and some of the women in our family. The ziplock bags are great for storing a multitude of things. I saw this idea on Create (Public Channel) on Donna Dewberry's show. She often has some really good ideas for non-painting projects. This one was really easy, and just like with most sewing projects the cutting and preparation took a lot longer then the actual sewing.

This is a Tote I made especially for storing a scrapbook project. It has pockets inside for scissors, markers, etc.

Sorry about the lousy pictures. I was pretty busy making these and had to squeeze in pictures before I wrapped them. This is a purse I made. It looks a lot better in person.

This is a smaller version of the brown purse from above.

This is a purse I made for my Mom. It also looks better in person.

Finally, this is a Yoga Mat I made. I did end up finding a black shoe string to use at the end instead of the white one in the picture. I made a couple of other totes. One was a messenger bag for my sister, Anna, to store her sketching supplies and take to the beach. The other was a Large Tote for my other sister, Suzie. Unfortunately, I couldn't take any pictures of these before I wrapped them and gave them away. All in all making the gifts was fun but a lot of work. I hope my family will enjoy them as much as I enjoyed making them.

Christmas Images from our Home!

Visit Cindy from My Romantic Home's Friday Show & Tell. I have linked up this week again!

Welcome to our home for Christmas! I had some grand plans for Christmas decorating this year, especially since it is our first year here. However, making all our Christmas gifts this year took up more time than anticipated so those decorating plans didn't work out. I did the best I could under the circumstances.
Enjoy some Christmas images! By the way, our tree has "holes" within the branches because of our two cats. They took to climbing the tree early in December. I was finally able to get them to respect the tree by training them with with a spray water bottle. We plan to get a new tree next year. Merry Christmas!!

Welcome home for Christmas!

Put your feet up on our coffee table while you have some egg-nog!

Sorry about the distorted tree-blame our cats, Apollo & Rocky.

I used plastic ornament clips to protect the cats.

I plan to start collecting nutcrackers. This is my first one!

Cheap & Easy Christmas Pins!

Merry Christmas Eve Everyone! I had planned to travel home to Texas today to spend Christmas with my family...unfortunately, I am stuck at home because of inclement weather. We have ice, sleet, snow....blizzard like conditions in Oklahoma. Travel not advised either North or South. What bad timing, I was really looking forward to seeing my family for Christmas especially since I haven't been able to do that for a few years now. Hopefully, I will still be able to travel in a day or so. In the meantime, I have the time to upload some of my Christmas projects. This is a Christmas pin which I made for my co-workers. I made 42 of these. I made different color combinations but forgot to take pictures. Anyway, I thought I would share this Super Easy project!

I purchased these round wooden pieces from Hobby Lobby and the pin backings as well. I hot glued the pin first so that I could have something to hold while I painted the pin with acrylic paints. After the paint dried I applied glue and then glitter. Finally, I hot glued the bow on. Easy! Easy! You can also use square wood pieces and make little presents. It was a fun and cheap little project!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Cinnamon Stick Christmas Ornament

This is a cinnamon stick tree ornament that we made on Sunday. This project was brought to us by Amy from the craft group. They were very easy to make. You take one cinnamon stick and hot glue pieces of garland to create that tiered look on a christmas tree. Then just hot glue pieces of ribbon which you have knotted in the center to make look like bows and add the buttons in the center. The stars at the top are actually buttons. Finally, we added the ribbon hook with hot glue. I loved how easy and rustic these are!

This is my Shabby Chic Christmas cinnamon stick tree!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Roses on Christmas Tree

This is our 2008 Christmas Tree. I was on a really tight budget so I made all the "ornaments". I decorated this tree with roses, pine cones, cinnammon sticks, cotton for snow, green checkered fabric and some sage colored ribbon. I really liked how it turned out. By the way, sorry about the picture quality. I didn't know as much about camera lighting when I took this picture last year so you can't really see much detail on the tree.

I'll be sure to update with pictures of this year's tree and Christmas decorations. We put up our tree a couple of days after ThanksGiving. Unfortunately, I had to interrupt decorating our tree this year so that I could re-train our two cats to leave it alone! We have successfully retrained them by using the spray bottle--they hate that! It only took a couple of days for them to get the message that the tree is off-limits. Stay tuned for more Christmas images...

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Bottle Whimsical Snowmen!

Hello, everyone! For this post I will be joining My Romantic Home's Show & Tell Friday post. This is the result of our latest craft group meeting. Jessica showed us all how to make snowmen out of vintage bottles and salt shakers. We filled them with tinsel, beads, buttons, glitter, and sequins. We made the heads out of some type of clay that air dries. We used toothpicks for the noses. It was alot of fun and the first time that we got to hang out in the little cottage behind my house. It was pretty cold outside and I just bought a new utility room heater and I was very pleased with how warm it kept the room. It kept it at a cozy 73 degrees. I finally moved all my craft stuff out there last week. I plan to update with some pictures of my craft room once I get it nice and organized.

These are Jessica's snowmen. I love how whimsical these turned out!

Some more snowmen....

Amy made this group of Snowmen mostly to give away as gifts for friends and family. They are all way cute!

These are my Mr & Mrs Clause figurines. Mrs Clause started out as an angel. I didn't like how that was turning out so I made The Clauses instead.

Happy ThanksGiving!

Happy be-lated ThanksGiving! I apologize for not upadating my blog sooner. I have been very busy making my Christmas gifts this year. Time has slipped by so quickly. I will update pictures of all the gifts I make after Christmas. But for now I would like to show you pictures of the first ThanksGiving Brian and I have hosted at our house! It was a lot of work preparing everything but really worth it! Brian's Dad, Mike, made the green bean casserole-yummy! Sitting next to him is his good friend Pat.

It was a great day and was wonderful to be able to spend it with family. The guy in the green shirt at the end of the table is my brother-in-law, John and sitting next to him is my sister, Suzie. Jon had just returned from a year long tour in Iraq so we were very thankful to have him back home safe and sound. All in all, a great day! Stay tuned for a Christmas decoration project.....

Buffet style service....

Here is a shot of our family members patiently awaiting a very late ThanksGiving lunch.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween Pot-Luck

Happy Halloween everyone! We had a very small get-together at our house last night for Halloween. It was fun and pretty casual. It was a pot-luck with a Halloween theme so everyone made a "creepy" dish. I made the main course which was the gory looking skeleton dish. Jessica made the creepy lady finger cookies. Amy made the breadstick pepperoni fingers and these yummy cumin spiced cheese biscuits. We had lots of fun and gave out lots of candy. We had to make an emergency candy run as I understimated how many kids would show up. Also, I bought the lamest Halloween candy ever and it was decided that from now on Brian will be in charge of that in our house. Had a great weekend!

Monday, October 26, 2009

"Affair of the Heart" Craft Fair Weekend!!

I finally had the opportunity to check out the "Affair of the Heart" craft fair in OKC. It was so much fun! I was invited to go by the ladies in my craft group who happen to have an extra ticket. We got lots of great ideas for upcoming projects and had a really good time. We did lots of walking as we visited most of the six buildings.

These are pictures of some of the things I purchased at the craft fair. I mostly purchased from the antiques dealers. I bought these things from a vendor who said this would be her last year at the fair so she had great deals! She used to make stained glass lampshades so this cherub lamp base was one of many she collected over the years for the lampshades. I love it! The rose candle holder was only $1! Finally, I bought the box with the globes because I liked that it was masculine looking which is nice since most of the things I purchase have pretty feminine shapes. I thought it would be great to keep my cell phone and keys in. Overall, we had a great weekend!

Monday, October 19, 2009

First Crafting Group Meeting!

This Sunday was the first day our crafting group was able to meet. I led the first meeting and taught Donna Dewberry's one-stroke painting method. It was a bit of a challenge to get out of my head and try as best I could to explain what I was doing as I was painting. I recently taught myself how to paint using the one-stroke method by checking out books from my public library and by watching videos of Donna on You Tube. I hope everyone had fun and hopefully learned something new. Everyone has promised to send me pictures of their finished projects so that I can post them on this blog. The pictures above are some of the projects I finished this weekend. I have the most trouble with the leaves. I guess I will have to keep practicing. Thanks to everyone for coming and I am looking forward to the next time we meet! Next time someone else will lead the group and I will get to learn something new!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I love Painted Vintage Tole Trays!

Painted Vintage Tole Trays have been a favorite of mine for a long time! Aren't these gorgeous? Since I cannot afford to buy them right now, I have taught myself to paint using Donna Dewberry's One-Stroke Method. Here is a sample of a flower I painted on a trash can a few months ago.
I'm excited to try my hand at painting my own beautiful tole trays. I plan to paint a few to sprinkle around my house. I have a small craft group meeting at my house this weekend and this will be our first project. I think it will be fun! By the way, these trays are on sale right now on E-bay. My favorite is the one with the robin's egg blue background!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

DIY Fall Topiaries

Ta da!! Here is my most recent project. I made these fall topiaries a few weeks ago, I just hadn't had time to take pictures. These artifical floral topiaries are almost 4 feet tall. Each topiary only cost around $10 in materials! Not bad cost for the size.
I permanently attached the green roses but made the sunflowers and fall leaves removable. I will probably switch these with red roses, pine cones and berries for the Holidays. The bows can also easily be switched out according to the seasons.
I purchased most of the materials at the Dollar Tree except for the sunflowers and fall leaves which I purchased at Michael's. Making the base for a topiary is the most challenging part. It's especially challenging if you are trying to save some money and are trying to recycle materials like I did. Here are the instructions for the bases I made.
First, I applied a stain to the basket by mixing dark brown acrylic paint with a little bit of red and diluting with water. After it dried, I used a small empty coffee can (11 oz) and placed it in the center of the basket. Then I stuffed grocery paper bags around it to wedge it in place. After that, I hot glued the empty cardboard ribbon spool to the bottom of the can. Then I grabbed the dowel (also painted brown) and applied hot glue to the end and glued it into the spool's pre-existing hole. I wedged more strips of grocery paper bags into the coffee can to stabilize the dowel. The rest was easy. I filled the basket with more crumpled strips of paper sacks until I got about 1/10 from the top. Then I simply hot glued spanish moss on top of that.
That was the hardest part of making these topiaries.
The actual floral ball is easy and fun to make. Simply hot glue moss to a round floral foam and apply the chosen flowers with hot glue or cut the stem to size using wire cutters and stick them into the foam so that they are removable. Here is a simple way to make the cheapest round floral foam out of a $1 square foam. This was a fun project but a bit time consuming. I love that I can change these according to season! I am pretty happy with the results! What do you think?