Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Short & Simple Tutorial on Making Colorful Coffee Filter Flowers

Coffee filter flowers are so popular because of the endless possibilities you can create with them. I'm going to show you how I'm making mine for an upcoming Cinco de Mayo party we're having. It's so simple, even kids can help with this one and they turn out gorgeous!


First, get your coffee filters painted! Watercolor is gorgeous and works best because it's a lighter medium than acrylics. My daughter helped me paint some filters before taking off outdoors to play. Nice weather is hard to come by these days so I didn't mind being dumped. =) Then get your glue dots out and ready to use.

Take two painted filters and cut spirals, making each strip at least 1" wide for ease of handling.

When you get to the center, cut into it a little deeper so the next step is easier to do.

Wrap the centers of each filter around each other, kind of like they're hugging. If the cut into the center is too shallow, they won't hug very well so snip into a little more if needed. You can add a glue dot here so the two pieces stay together.

Then start wrapping or rolling or twisting, whatever you wanna call it. I moved counter clockwise but if you're a lefty, you'll probably roll the opposite way. Add glue dots as you go to keep the emerging flower intact. 

One end will be slightly shorter than the other. Just add glue dots to that and press it to the longer end.

I love glue dots. They're my latest adhesive addiction! Not even lying- they're pretty neat and work great for putting coffee filter flowers together! Press the last long end to the flower and you're done-zo!

I used a scallop edge scissor to add interest to this one. Reminds me of a Japanese block print painting of ocean waves and blossoms.

I'm obsessed with these! I originally wanted to use them as a garland but because they're so delicate, I decided to just use them as centerpieces on our taco bar buffet. Scattered everywhere, they'll look gorgeous, don't ya think?

The color combinations are endless! Have at it and brighten someones day with these little pretties! 

They make a great replacement for the usual bow on a box, too! Party favors for a garden tea party, perhaps? They remind me of a Monet painting almost. All right, I'm going to go make some more- Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner! =)

Here they are scattered on a Dollar Tree place mat that I plan to use for our Cinco de Mayo party. I'm in love with all the bright pretty colors of this little holiday! And I loooove Mexican food so it's going to be as stomach-pleasing as it is eye-pleasing. =)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Take a Look at Our New Craft and Play Loft!

 I'm sooo excited about all the space we have now that the man has finally let go of his old bachelor sectional sofa! It was well past time since we were all becoming as tightly packed as a can of sardines in here! And once that sofa was gone, I was able to transform the upstairs loft into a true craft and play room for us. One side of the loft is devoted to the kids and the rest is for my craft storage, table and desk. Despite all the large furniture, we still have plenty of play space right in the middle of the room. The kids looove the space- both upstairs in the loft and downstairs where I've made some changes as well. I've got tons of pics so I won't keep blabbing anymore! Ok- maybe just a bit here and there so you know what's going on. =)

This is the kids corner. I placed the 6-cubby shelves on their sides and placed them back to back to create a "wall" of separation between their area and mine. The caterpillar and butterfly are party decorations from my son's VHC party last month and because my kids have so many pillow pets, I set 3 of them in the corner to lounge on while they read.

The kids took to the new set up so quickly! Now they don't even want to watch tv- they just wanna keep on playing in the new space!

I placed their larger puzzles in a wire tray that I bought from HomeGoods years ago. 

Her side (and some of baby's stuff too).

His side.

Here's an old dresser that I made over so I could use it as storage for scrapbooking stuff. The bottom two drawers hold board games. 

My desk.

I love color. It makes me happy so I put it right in front of me at my desk. The pom pom wall was a decoration from my daughter's birthday party last year. 

A makeshift ironing area at the end of my desk. It works pretty well for small stuff. For the big stuff, I pull out the ironing board from the laundry room, which, luckily, is right next to the loft so I don't have to venture too far.

I love that this north-facing window brings in so much light throughout the day. Makes sewing and taking pictures so easy.

Part of my fabric stash and on the right, a bin of scraps. I keep anything that's 2" wide or bigger. You can make fabric flowers or rag skirts with them!

I love clear jars and glass containers. Anything you can see through is fantastic so you don't have to label everything!

My homemade bias tape...and extra cardboard to wind up more!

This is the corner right behind my sewing/craft table. It holds just about every crafting item you can think of, as well as kid's educational games, my printer, felt sheets...and so much more, I can't even remember! The white cabinet houses the kids' dvds among other things.

I had to place this shelf on top of the white cabinet because my 1-year old would destroy all the bins in seconds! In fact, everything in this craft/play room was designed with him specifically in mind. We nicknamed him the "Lord of Destruction" because when he gets his hands on something, he goes instantly into destroy mode! It's amusing until it's your stuff he's tearing apart! =/

I've still got to figure out where I'm going to put the kid's art easel...or if that's even a good idea since the Lord of Destruction would probably be knocking it over every 2 minutes. Maybe it's best to keep that packed away until he's 2 or 3!

Hope you enjoyed the tour of our new craft/play loft. I'm going to be adding to it in the next few weeks because right now, it's just organized chaos and what I'm aiming for is just organized- not even an ounce of chaos. The life of a perfectionist, huh? Smh!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

I Love Candy and Ruffles Outfit

My girl loooves candy and ruffles. I love polka dots, stripes and color. I thought this outfit reflects both of us together and thus, the name: I Love Candy and Ruffles. This, by far, is K's favorite outfit I've made for her. How do I know? Because she wore it every other day over the past week and I even had to launder it already so she could wear it again today. She says it's comfortable (jersey knit top) and the skirt is just so fun and she gets complimented on it every time we go out. She loves the attention despite being shy with strangers. =) I've discovered that she's also afflicted with the same obsession that I have: a love of visually stimulating design, colors, and patterns. In other words, we love pretty things, no matter what form it comes in. If we find it pleasing to the eye, we want it to be ours. Now that I stay home, I have time to devote to this mutual obsession through sewing and man oh man, we are gonna need a lot more space in our house to devote to this!

Now about the outfit: 90% of the fabric was thrifted. The pink ruffle at the bottom is a scrap from a fabric quarter that was on sale last week for 99 cents at JoAnn's (I used that fabric for a shirt/skirt set); the purple polka dot fabric was a remnant and the yellow ric rac trim is also from JoAnn's. Overall, I'd estimate this whole outfit cost about $5 in materials and just a day to complete (don't forget to factor in the meal preps, diaper changes, and chores to that day as well!)

I really lucked out when I found the colorful polka dot fabric at Goodwill. It was about a yards worth for only $1.99 and I still have enough leftover to make something else...hmmm.

Ahhh, ruffles. So girly and sweet. As long as it's used in small doses, it can be so freaking adorable and adds just a touch of pretty to a simple top. A wrinkled top actually! Sorry- it was taken out of the dryer last night and left in the basket until I got around to folding clothes this morning. As soon as K saw it, she said she wanted to wear the outfit again so I just put it on her without ironing. Ah well, kids don't care anyway, do they? 

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A Summery Blue Vintage Floral Dress

I finished this dress a couple of weeks ago but never got around to having pictures taken. It's one of my favorites that I've put together and it's also only the second dress I've made with a zipper.  I mixed a modern blue chambray fabric with a vintage pink and blue floral fabric that I picked up from a thrifting expedition. I envisioned a drop waist summer dress when I saw the floral fabric and I even had enough to make myself a hi-low maxi skirt that I will enjoy wearing this summer. (I'll post that up another time!) 

I love how all the little details make the dress. The back is simple and modern.

The pleats on the straps took surprisingly little time to accomplish and give so much interest to the simple top. 

A layered skirt is a must for my daughter. She has a princess complex- don't all 4-year old girls? =)

Simple, modern, with a vintage touch thanks to the beautiful floral fabric. That's why this dress is my favorite so far. =) If only I were ambitious enough to make one for myself!