November 17th, 2011
Anyone on your gift list can use a new kitchen towel, I promise! Let’s face it, kitchen towels are extremely functional, but have constant turn over… so, why not make them fabulous too? Hi, Janell here for another idea for a quick and thoughtful gift–make one for your own home while you are at it.
I am sewing with Jen Allyson’s fabulous Christmas fabric line: Holly Jolly from Riley Blake.
- Fabric for decorating towels
- Towels to be embellished
(helpful hint: when possible pre-wash and dry your fabric, especially when using dark colors to prevent them from bleeding color onto your towels)
- Additional trim such as ribbon, lace or rick rac
- Scissors, sewing machine, measuring tape, thread and straight pins
- Measure the width of the towel. Cut the fabric strips the width of the towel, plus one inch. I like to layout my towel with the fabric and trim so I can see what the over-all effect will be.
- Measure trim the width of the towel plus 1/2 inch and cut.
- Turn under 1/2” on each long edge and press with your iron. Turn under 1/2” on each short edge and press.
- Load your bobbin with thread that is the same color as your towel and the top thread the closest color to your trim and fabrics. You may need to switch colors for the same towel, but keep the bobbin thread consistent.
- Pin your fabric and additional trims with straight pins onto your towel. Now you are ready to sew!
- Start with the fabric and edge-stitch along front pressed edges of strip, through all thicknesses.
- Decorate with more fabric strips and embellish with coordinating ribbons, lace, or ric-rac.
Pair your finished towel with your favorite bottle of hand soap and you have a wonderful gift that you’ll be proud of giving and the receiver will be pleased to get!
November 14th, 2011
Karen from The Bald Dragonfly here, and I happen to think that nobody describes the iconic holiday image better than Clement Clarke Moore from his poem, The Night Before Christmas. The image portrayed in Lost & Found Christmas is the spitting image of what is written…”…He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf…” It became a great focal point to my hand crafted holiday gift tags and ornament holder. The beautiful textures and patterns from the Lost & Found: Christmas line offer a nice vintage vibe, while the red glittered accents add a touch of sophistication and glam.
To make the tag/ornament holder, I started with an upcycled package from my boys’ toys. After washing and cleaning the inside and out, I carefully measured the Santa paper and cut to fit inside the packaging. After rounding the corners, I simply added a bit of repositional adhesive in strategic locations to secure the image to the clear packaging. I repeated for the back side of the packaging as well with the same sheet of paper. Then I wrapped some jute twine around the outside of the packaging, having secured that with hot glue.
The tags were created from various designs from the Lost & Found: Christmas collection and scrapbooking/cardmaking tools such as corner rounders, label die cuts, twine and fasteners. I found a bit of red, glittery ribbon that had been recycled from my mother-in-laws holiday arrangement from last year that was a perfect match to the red glitter accents! I simply added a strip of the lighter patterned paper to the back of the tags as a place for the address of the gifts.
Once the person that I gift this to has used up all the tags, the decorated box remains as a perfect place to store precious and delicate ornaments. It’s is like two gifts in one! The possibilities are endless for tag-making with this line. Mix and match patterns and shapes to add variety to your tag line-up or let your tags become more vintage by including such things as lace and buttons.
October 21st, 2011
Hey everyone! As we all know, Halloween is just around the corner! And we know that because the stores are already full of Christmas gear! I think Costco had Christmas lights out in July.
But first things first.
At my house, we give out FULL SIZED candy bars. My husband wants to be “that” house, so who am I to say no? Especially when 30 full sized bars is less than $15 at Costco.
Behold the yumminess….
In order to dress the candy bars up a little bit, I went to Jen’s awesome designs at Design House Digital. Specifically the Spooked line. Vintage Findings would work great for this too. Just depending if you want to go traditional or vintage Halloween.
I printed out a couple papers from the Spooked Collection.
I used Microsoft Publisher to do this. I simply created an 8.5×11 document and inserted the digital papers as a jpg. You could use MS Word or any version of Photoshop for this as well. I am not very well versed at digi scrapping, so I tend to choose the easiest way. I printed the documents onto white cardstock.
I cut each 8.5×11 piece in half the long way, which left them just a little bit short of the length of the candy bars. I made a quick template with each candy bar and simply wrapped and secured with adhesive!
Here are some pretty bars wrapped and ready to go home with some new costumed friends!
Have a happy Halloween everyone!
October 20th, 2011
I’ve never really decorated for Halloween before, so that’s why I’m doing it in phases this year (see part 1 of my Halloween decorations). I’m having to design, make, and acquire everything for the first time, so it takes a lot of creative energy, planning and shopping! The main look I was going for was a more realistic feeling with a muted color palate. I also want to have a lot of small details because I find that those are the most memorable parts of decorating.
I have always loved apothecary jars and I have a small collection of them, so I knew that I wanted to create an apothecary display. I gathered my existing jars and then purchased a few more at Home Goods (where they are super affordable). to balance out large and small. I also got some tiny jars at a local antique/consignment shop.
I was so excited when I found the antique postal scale and it’s definitely my favorite new piece. Oh and forgive my circus posters in the background… the artwork is phase 3 of decorating so I haven’t quite gotten that far yet!
These two jars sit on the mantle (the sparkly one I use for christmas with those very same sparklies).
The next step was to design my Apothecary labels. I had a lot of fun making these, and I created them with the scale and contents of my jars in mind. And since they coordinate so well with my All Hallow’s Eve digital line, I packaged them up and released them in my digital shop this week:
Once all the labels were designed, I printed them and cut them out.
Then I used my glue runner on the back of each label and stuck them on the jars:
Once all the labels were on, I had to fill up the rest of my jars. I stratigically bought items that I WOULD NOT EAT. Mostly so I won’t eat them and partly so that I can keep them for years to come and can just set up the display really quickly.
These are the fillers I used:
black licorice for the “lizard legs”
chocolate sprinkles for “bat toes”
peppercorns for “eye of newt”
white beans for “tooth of wolf”
black beans for “black locust poison”
gold tinsel glitter for “scale of dragon”
coffee water for “tincture of hemloc”
Not appetizing at all…
So that’s my halloween apothecary collection! Maybe I will add one or two jars every year and eventually have a giant collection! What kind of Halloween decorations do you collect?
October 19th, 2011
I will use my Holiday Planner to keep myself organized this Holiday season. I have big plans for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Thanksgiving dinner will be served at our house this year. So I will be including a shopping list and menu. I will also start collecting any recipes I think I might want to use. This way I can find it all in one place and have them available when I am shopping. How will you use your planner?
Here is a Free Downloadable Shopping List + Menu from Jen Allyson for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and general Holiday that you can put in your Holiday Planner.
Click on the images below to download the PDF files.
Before I can get too excited about the menu, here at the Lake house we are starting a new project…. We need a new wall oven. This means we get to pull out the old one, demo some sheet rock and cut a new hole. After 23 years, wall ovens have changed in size. Lucky for me, Jen posted the most wonderful Project Master List and Project Notes for free download.
And when that new oven is installed, here is a fall family favorite recipe my Grandma Norma always made for us kids.
Persimmon Drop Cookies
1 cup persimmon pulp
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup sugar
½ tsp. ground cloves
½ cup butter
½ tsp. nutmeg
1 egg beaten
1 cup nuts (we use a mix of walnut & pecan)
½ tsp. salt
1 cup raisins
Beat till creamy: pulp, soda, sugar & butter
Add: egg & beat well
Sift flour & spices
Add: flour, raisins & nuts to creamy mixture
Drop by spoonfuls on greased cookie sheet
Bake 375° 12-15 min. Makes 3-4 dozen
Click on the form images above to download a PDF version of my printable holiday menu forms. The downloadable PDFs in this article (and across my entire site) are free for personal use only. If you would like to blog about this free download, please accompany and images from my site with a credit and link back to this article. As a courtesy please do not link directly to a downloadable file but rather to this page. At this time, no customizations of this or any of my forms are available. Forms are a free download AS IS.