A blog to share all things craft-y....crafts, home decor, sewing, party decor, diy projects, garden ideas, and various other adventures in creativity. We're glad you stopped by!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Table Love for My Craft Room

In my house we have a unique (as in no heat/no ac) bonus room that leads to our charming (in other words...tiny) back deck. For most of the five years we have lived in this house it has been the "dog room". The place our two dogs would go when we weren't home, or had company over, or had inclement weather and they couldn't be outside.

Well, both dogs are gone now. So I have officially claimed it as my "Mom Cave" aka "the craft room". I cleaned it from top to bottom (literally) and I've thrown up a couple shades of gray on the wall to test out paint colors. I've chosen one, but haven't made it a priority to get to the store to purchase the two gallons it's going to take to do the whole room.

I have been scouring Craigslist and estate sales all summer looking for the perfect table for this room. I'm pretty sure I found the perfect table on Craigslist...but we couldn't agree on a price so I walked away. The table was an old Duncan Phyfe table with a leaf. The thing I loved most about it was that I could fold it down and tuck it against a wall for more space in the room if I desired it or open up both ends and put a leaf in for larger projects. I still might buy that table.

But, I digress....

So, as I was saying... I've been scouring Craigslist and estate sales and today I came across this fabulous set at an estate sale. There were four awesomely stylish chairs (one has a broken leg my husband promises he can fix). The fabric on the chairs has either been recently reupholstered or just incredibly well kept, or I suppose it could have also been just rarely used. The large hexagonal table is in perfect shape for its apparent age. The wood on all of the pieces is in terrific shape, except for that one chair. I was thinking I'd buy an old table and have it be a fixer upper, but I'm pretty sure I won't be painting this one any time soon. And, the best part about this table set? It was day two and this particular estate sale broker does half day prices on the last day. Lucky me!

Seriously the most comfortable chairs.

I paid $60 even for these beauties. So, what do you think? Did I score a good deal?

I'll be sharing more of my craft room as it comes along in the next couple of weeks. And, I'm linking up to this "What I Found Friday" link party over at Vintage Revivals. I thought I had a bad obsession with buying old, used, worn furniture. Then, I discovered Mandi's blog. I'm way overmatched against her! So, go check out all the other cool stuff!

We Can Do Hard Things Muslin Banner

Well, after another unsuccessful attempt at painting the wooden plaque I finally gave up and moved on to a different medium. I imagine I'll go back to it later, because I still think it has great potential. I've just got to figure out the right method for painting. Live and learn right? :-)

Truthfully, every time I make something I feel like I go from seriously inexperienced crafter to at least a novice crafter. Generally, when I finish a project I'm ecstatic to have 1) finished it. and 2) stoked it actually turned out good enough to actually give to someone. They're never perfect, but I've not once yet had a recipient turn their nose up at my work. At least not to my face anyway.... Haha!

The project I'm sharing with you today is my fourth rendition of a muslin banner and I think my best yet. I'm getting more and more comfortable with my sewing machine, which I've only been using for a few months. And, I'm still pretty obsessed with the ease of fabric rosettes, so of course those are included too. And, for this project I got to play around with my Silhouette some more. It's getting a lot easier to use. And, I've learned there are two different levels of sticky on the mats. I was using the very stickiest with the lightest paper. Whoops.

Some very good friends of ours are packing up and moving eleven hours south. They've no doubt got some trials ahead of them, so I thought by making this banner I could encourage them in knowing they "can do hard things". I presented it with a letter about all the things I admire about them and it was the perfect going away gift and something they can use in their new home.

I started out with a large piece of muslin (14" x 40").

Then, I designed a stencil on my computer and used cardstock to cut out the stencil. So that the stencil would stay on the fabric as I painted, I sprayed a little stencil adhesive on the back. You can find these little aerosol cans in the stencil section of major craft stores. It worked perfectly. There was zero moving around and zero leakage around the letters. I folded the piece of fabric in half before I placed the stencils and then stuck a sheet of freezer paper between to keep the paint from bleeding though to the back piece of muslin. Because I started painting at midnight, I just allowed the paint to dry over night. I used a cheap acrylic paint, so if it had been the middle of the day, I'd have given it an hour and then went to work sewing.

The next morning I folded the fabric the opposite direction (so that the paint is on the inside) and then sewed up the three open sides being sure to leave a two inch gap so I could turn it right sides out. After turning it out I folded the top over approximately two inches and sewed a fun zig zag stitch across the top to make the loop to hold the dowel rod. Be sure and back stitch a teeny, tiny bit on each end so it won't unravel over time.

Done and...


Or, not....

It just looked unfinished to me.
So, I added a grouping of fabric rosettes.

Ahhhh....much better.

So, what do you think? Have you used this "we can do hard things" phrase with any of your projects? Be sure and leave a link if you have. I love seeing how others incorporate it into projects.

I'll be linking up to these great parties this week. Check 'em out!

Hope you all have a GREAT weekend!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Wedding Shower Banner

This post is not what I had originally planned to share this week. I had wanted to share my super awesome "We Can Do Hard Things" plaque I made. But, getting the words stenciled on has become a major craft fail. It has been one disaster after another. I'm using a silhouette to cut a stencil but when I used freezer paper and tried to create a temporary adhesive using Elmer's craft spray adhesive the glue stuck to the painted wooden plaque when I took the paper off and the stencil paint bled right through the freezer paper and the letters turned out terribly! So, I sanded the whole thing down, repainted and am trying to find a good solution for my stenciling dilemma. I thought about cutting the design out on cardstock with the Silhouette and then just mod podging that to the plaque but the Silhouette keeps ripping the cardstock around the letters instead of cutting a clean line. Any help or blog post suggestions would be awesome!

Here's my back up post....

This banner went along with the towel cake and guest book I shared here and here for a wedding shower I helped to host.

I cut coordinating fabric into triangles and hot glued them to grossgrain ribbon. Done and done!

I hope all of you are having a better crafting week than I am! :-)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Bring in the Sunshine and Flowers!

Is your dining table feeling a little blah?

Are the summer time air conditioned blues getting to you (or the 112 degree heat)?

Then bring in the sunshine and flowers!

I am frequently changing up my dining room table top. It's an incredibly easy and cheap way for me to get my decorating fix for the day/week/whatever. You might remember a post from a couple of weeks ago using these blue Mason jars. They're pretty well a staple for summer decorating in my house. All I did was switch out the flowers and throw on a fun table cloth I purchased on clearance at JoAnn Fabric. And, voila! New, fresh, cheery look.

Don't the gerbera daisies just scream "Be cheerful!"?

If you haven't added fresh flowers to your decorating lately....DO IT! Go. Now. Get some fresh flowers inside to remind you that life does exist outside of 118 degree days.

You won't regret it.
Scout's honor.

Hope you're having a Magnificent Monday and staying cool!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bridal Shower Guest Book

Back in May my mom (my new blogging partner) and I helped to host a bridal shower for a cousin of mine. When we were divvying up duties I volunteered to make the guest book. The bride picked out some fabulous pinks, yellows, and grays for her wedding scheme. So, after some help from my sister I settled on some fabrics to use for the tiny fabric rosettes and set out making my guest book.

For this project I used the following supplies:

wedding ring charms (found in the bridal section at Hobby Lobby)
Sparkly scrapbook stickers
power drill (I'm sure there's a better way to get the holes punched, but this is what I had on hand)
hot glue gun
4"x6" scrapbook cardstock
sticky sided cardboard (I forget its technical name, but I found it with the picture mats at Hobby Lobby)

First I cut the sticky sided cardboard down to size. I wanted it to be a little bigger than the 4"x6" card stock so I believe the dimensions I used were 4 1/2" x 6 1/2". After the board was cut to size I cut two black fabric pieces at 5" x 7" and affixed them to the sticky cardboard. On the inside of the book I hot glued the edges down and then hot glued a piece of scrapbook cardstock on top so you don't see the ugly cardboard or unevenly cut fabric.

Then I put together a stack of cardstock in coordinating color patterns, binder clipped the stack between the black covers and had my studly husband drill two holes through the whole stack with his power drill. For the "binding" of the guestbook I tied ribbon through the holes.

Lastly, I embellished the front with glittery scrapbooking stickers, fabric rosettes, and two tiny wedding ring charms.

And, at the shower we asked the guests to leave their well wishes for the bride and groom.

Easy, peasy! And, if you know of a better way to get those holes punched for the "binding" please do share!

I'll be linking up to these great parties this week! Be sure and jump over to view all of the other awesome projects being shared.

And, this party which requires a direct link.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A New Contributor to the Blog!

Big news today! Some of you may have already noticed the second name on the list of contributors, but in case you haven't....please allow me to introduce my new Smith Craft Adventures blogging partner.

My mom!

My mom and I live three hours and one state line apart and I am so excited to have her join me on this blog. I think if craft/diy home stuff blogs had existed when I was an adolescent my mother would have had one. Well, maybe. I should probably rephrase that as my mother should have had one. I'm not sure with four of her own children running around and two nephews she watched full time she would have had time to blog.

Remember how cool puffy paint outlined appliques were in the late 80s? My sister and I always had matching shirts for every holiday of the year with the puffy paint outlined appliques. Halloween costumes? Yep. She did those too. My siblings and I hauled many a years of cash away from our local costume contests for it too. Matching Easter dresses complete with white gloves? Yes, those too. Then, there was that couple of years that dolled up teddy bears were really cool (she was doing it WAY before Build a Bear came along) and she made them as gifts for many. Fake flower wreaths and arrangements were also a specialty of hers during the 90s. Themed birthday parties complete with goodie bags and kid crafts were also enjoyed during her children's growing up years.

She's the seamstress in our family and it's very handy having her expertise while I'm learning to sew. As her family has grown to include dozens of great nieces and nephews and grandchildren she has honed her skills at making baby blankets and quilts. Handmade baby gifts of all varieties are right up her alley. She made the curtains for both nurseries her grandsons sleep in. She loves to garden too and she's planning on sharing her favorite spots around the yard with you soon. She's also tried her hand at wedding decoration for ceremony location and reception and been quite successful. Very recently she took on spray painting plumbing fixtures and lights to update her goldy-oldy 90s styled bathroom. Major improvement to the look of her master bath!

She's kinda shy about her work, but her work is way cool. And, when it isn't and she asks my opinion, she already knows I'm going to say it isn't (I can be honest with her...really), because she knows it's not quite right before she asks! Know anybody like that in your life? I hope so. Everybody needs someone to be honest about their work with them (kindly honest of course). She's sorta a perfectionist about her creations too, almost to a fault... Gee, where I have I heard of someone like that before? (HEL-LO....ME) I've been begging her to join me since the beginning of this blog because she has so many creative things going on and I know the blog world would love to see them.

There's no set schedule to posting, so I can't promise a date to expect her first post... I just wanted you to know who she was before she just popped up here. I hope you'll enjoy what she has to share and you'll leave her some comment love!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Summer Table Center Piece

Summer. I love it. And, it's here in full force. For me, it's been here since June 1 when school let out for the year. However, I've just gotten around to creating my summer center piece for the dining table.

For this table center piece you'll need the following:

Mason jars (estate sales are great places to find a variety of these)
fresh flowers
summer-y fabric (cause summer-y is a category of fabric)
khaki round placemat (found mine at the Dollar Tree, where everything's a DOLLAR!)


No instructions necessary. Just see photos. :-)

Happy Summer All!

I'll be linking up to these awesome parties this week. I love looking at everything being shared. Talk about creative inspiration!

And, this party which requires a direct link.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Bridal Shower Towel Cake

Planning a bridal shower soon?

Attending a bridal shower soon?

Then, have I got a fun and creative way for you to decorate your tables or present your gift.

And, of course I incorporated fabric rosettes into the design. Because I'm obsessed with them. As a matter of fact, these rosettes were the very first I ever made.

There's no photo tutorial, but it's a pretty simple process. This was a joint venture between my mother and I. She came up with the idea of a bath towel cake and I helped her decorate the cake. Wrapping the towels up and pinning them is absolutely the easiest part of this project. The base is one adult bath towel, the middle layer is a hand towel, and the top layer is a wash cloth. Each are simply folded, rolled, and then safety pinned at the back to keep the wrap together.

Honestly, the hardest part of creating this cake was choosing the decorations. My mother and I are sort of endless nitpickers when it comes to our own projects, sometimes to our own demise, and other times to our great satisfaction.

The pearls you see are floral pins used to hold the ribbon and rosettes to the towel cake. You can purchase these pins at major craft stores. I purchased mine at Hobby Lobby in the bridal aisle.

Pretty rosettes...
...well, expect for the hot glue you can see.

As I mentioned, it was my very first attempt at rosettes and I have since learned to perfect my hot gluing ways so as not to leave clomps of it uglifying my rosettes.

You'll notice we removed the flowers for the final cut.
Nitpicking that resulted in success in my opinion. :-)

Yes, much better.

Have a wonderful Fourth of July! I'll be linking up to a host of parties you can find here. There are tons of cool ideas on each one of them. Go. Be inspired!

And, this particular party requires a link on the actual post: Today's Creative Blog