Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cupcake Party: All in the Details

In an effort to wrap up the 'cupcake party' posts, here are a few of the details that I haven't mentioned yet.

  • I am a big fan of the FREE-to-download subway art found at eighteen25, this is a Birthday version
  • Small cupcake stands were made with plates and candlesticks found at the Dollar Store, then glued together and spray painted.  I have seen several tutorials for this.
  • Caraffe's seem to be popping up all over too!  I found these at Smart and Final as a set of two.  They are plastic and have a lid.   
  • I had grand plans of making this pennant banner, but my time started running a little short.  My wonderful friend Brooke swooped in and sewed several of them for me... and I am SO thankful!  She is much more detail-oriented that I am so I wouldn't have been able to pull them off as beautiful as she did!  BONUS: I can use them in the future or lend them out!! 
  • I kinda splurged a little on these paper straws from Sugar Diva.  I am a little bit obsessed with them.  We served pink (strawberry) milk, chocolate milk, and plain milk... so I felt the straws were such a cute addition!
  • And finally, I found this awesome idea in several places, but really liked the look of the Cupcake Garland tutorial found here, I was so sad to take it down after the party... it was just so pretty! 

So, there you have it!  Cupcake party fun!!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

iLoveToCreate: Large Paper Accordian Award Ribbons

My uber-crafty friend Alice volunteered to make the award ribbons for her kid's school family picnic.  She enlisted my help (of course I am ALWAYS up for a crafty challenge!) and after much brainstorming we got to work!

We gathered the supplies:
  • Chipboard flower books (found at Tuesday morning)
  • Scrapbook paper, scored and folded like an accordian (12 inches long)
  • Chipboard/cardboard circles
  • Various types of glue: Aleene's Quick Dry Tacky Glue, Hot Glue, and Aleene's Fast Grab Tacky Spray 
  • Various die cuts, stickers, letters, ribbons, etc.  Anything that you want to attach to the award to distinguish what it is a prize for.
  • Cut the scrapbook paper into strips, the large award above uses paper about 3.5 inches wide, the smaller circle in the center uses 2.5 (or so) strips... we did a variety of sizes
  • Score the paper with a scoring board.  We have no photo, but this was done ahead of time with a borrowed board.
  • Fold the scored paper into accordians... then stop and take photos of all the fun colors and textures.
  • Glue 2-3 strips together, end to end.  Hot glue worked best for this step... quick drying time is a MUST! 
  • Grab the Tacky Spray and liberally spray the individual chipboards... this should be done one at a time to avoid the spray drying too quickly.  Also, do this outside or in a very well ventilated area.
  • Add glitter to the freshly sprayed boards 
  • We were making several boards, so we used a variety of colors! 
  • While the glitter is drying, take your folded accordian strips and make a circle as shown.  Glue the ends together with hot glue.  **This step is pretty frustrating, enlist the help of a friend if possible ;-) 
  • Have your chipboard on hand and ready to go.  Add a circle of hot glue around the outside. 
  • Add the chipboard to the BACK center of the now-circle accordian paper.  Hold it in place until the hot glue dries.  The chipboard keeps the circle in place and keeps it from popping up.  If you get to this step, you will understand! 
  • Repeat for as many circles as you are making.  Large, small, and in-between they are all the same process.  We used the Quick Dry Tacky glue on some smaller ones and it worked just fine.  This might be a better option if you are doing this project with kids.
  • Stop and admire your hard work, thus far.  So fun! 
  • Lay out your pieces and arrange them how you would like.  We did large accordian, glittered chipboard, medium accordian, then the top piece on some (left side photo) and on the right we put the glittered chipboard, then layered accordians and chipboards to give deminsion and fun! 
  • Add your finishing touches... looped ribbons and this super-cute frog sticker were PERFECT for this 'Frog Jump' race ribbon... but the sky is the limit!!  
  • Cut 2.5x12 inch strips of the same scrapbook paper as the accordians are made from, and add them to the back to make the ribbon tails.  

Monday, May 9, 2011

iLoveToCreate: A Variety of Tie Dye Techniques

Last weekend my sister and I decided to have a quick tie dye afternoon.  I wanted to dye some swim covers for the girls and had a few other things that were a little stained and ready to be revamped.  I had a tie dye kit and a few extra bottles of Tulip Tie Dye sitting in my cabinet and was itching to use them!

We gathered our supplies (most of which aren't shown here... )

The kit includes: dye in bottles (just add water and shake!), plastic gloves and rubber bands.
You will also need to grab some plastic (I used large garbage bags) to cover the table or workspace, Ziploc bags to hold the completed projects overnight, and paper towels.  I specifically needed a spray bottle for one of the techniques I was planning.

I also made sure it was a nice day and we were able to work outside. 
I looked up some different techniques online.  A good resource is the iLoveToCreate website.  Just look under projects and search for tie dye.

This is an old shirt - rubber band style
  • Tie two rubber bands to a dampened shirt, basically dividing it into thirds. 
  • Generously douse each end with dye and roll it up into a garbage bag being careful to not have the red and blue ends touch. 
  • After 24 hours, rinse each end of the shirt until the water runs clear
  • Wash it with a little detergent, and dry in the dryer.

The next project was the swimsuit covers - graduated dye style

*Note the type of material when dyeing clothing.  The dye doesn't take to polyester very well so make sure it is blended with natural fibers like cotton.  These were 85% Cotton and 15% Polyester, found at Target.*
  •  Lay the damp swim cover on a garbage bag and mix the dye 
  • Generously douse the fabric with the bottled dye, but only on the bottom... do the front and back of the swim cover
  • Pour out half the dye and add the remaining to a spray bottle, filling the rest with water (basically diluting the dye)
  • Spray the middle of the swim cover generously, front and back
  • Pour out more and dilute the dye even more, then spray the top generously on the front and back.
  • Roll into a large garbage bag and let set 24 hours
  • Rinse, wash, and dry
While this was the proper technique, I didn't dilute the dye enough for the top so the middle and top look very similar here.  Never the less, I am happy with them and might even add another tie dye design another time. 

Next, I did a plain old t-shirt - swirly style
  • Pinch the damp shirt near the middle or off to one side and spin until it forms a nice little roll like the one shown below
  • Tie a rubberband across the middle and then another going the other direction across the middle creating 'pie' pieces
  • Dye every other 'slice of the pie' a different color using the given dye bottles.  In my case, I went red, blue, red, blue.
  • Make sure to douse GENEROUSLY getting the bottle nozzle down into the folds of the shirt.
  • Put in a Ziplog bag and let set 24 hours
  • Remove rubber bands, rinse, wash and dry 
The final project was a kids cami - scrunched style
  • Lay the dampened shirt on a paper towel (on top of some plastic) and scrunch... see the photo on the left
  • Add the bottled dye all over the shirt, dousing generously
  • Move to a Ziploc bag for 24 hours
  • Rinse, wash, and dry
*The photo on the left was my sister's project, similar to the first technique shown above, however I thought I would point out her gloves.  She was smart and wore them.  I, on the other hand, did NOT and ended up with very red hands for a few days.* 

Many fun projects

Save your bottles! You never know when you will need them.

The final results!  All in an afternoons work :-)

Sunday, May 8, 2011

iLoveToCreate: Butterfly Mother's Day Card

and thought it would be perfect for a gift for my Mom and Grandma from the girls. 
(I'm a big fan of handprint projects... here were the girl's Valentines this year to my family.)

There was just one problem.  I didn't want each girl to make one for each Grandma... that seemed excessive.  I also didn't want one handprint from each on each one... that seemed lopsided. 

So, I came up with a little tweak to the idea:  Stack them up!

I put the oldest's handprint in back and the youngest's in front.  I think this totally makes the butterfly look fun and colorful! 

I reached into my iLoveToCreate stash and grabbed the Aleene's Stiffen-Quik for the ribbon.  I love how it keeps the butterfly's antenna sticking straight up!! 

The poem reads:

This isn't just a butterfly, as you can plainly see.
I made it with my hand, which is a part of me.
It comes with lots of love, especially to say
I hope you have a very
Happy Mother's Day

We attached the card with the poem to the butterfly with a mini clothespin and the Grandma's Loooved them!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cupcake Party: Cupcake Decorating Bar

As part of the on going saga that was my daughter's 6th birthday party, here is the next installment!
the Cupcake Decorating Bar

The idea was to have each child decorate two cupcakes... one they would take home and one they would have at the party.  I have to say, it worked pretty well... and I love the way it looked. 

  • Variety of Sprinkles... I had 6 different types found at a local cake decorating store
  • Chocolate and Vanilla frosting, portioned into individual sized cups
  • Vanilla frosting and food coloring, mix different colored frosting and add to smaller piping bags with fancy tips or decorating squeezers like the ones shown below (they are from Pampered Chef)
  • Cherries
  • Plastic spoons and Knives for spooning sprinkles and spreading frosting
  • To-go containers, preferably with a spot to put a name
  • Sticks or flags to add to the cupcakes to be eaten at the party
  • Premade cupcakes... I had 5 different types
The directions read:
Decorate 2 (cupcakes)...put 1 (cupcake) in a box to take home,
add a stick to the other one to eat at the party
The five types of cupcakes... they chose two
The birthday girl (on the right) decorating with a friend.
Completed cupcakes ready to be eaten at the party.
The to-go containers ready to go home with each of the party-goers!

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