Monday, December 31, 2012

Little apron for a Big Princess!

Just being a mommy is inspiration for many projects... especially as the children grow and their imaginations soar... so does mine along with them.  Our little Princess is a mini hostess with a love for tea parties... so for Christmas, I made this sweet apron and found a wooden kitchen set on craigslist that was destined to be pink!  (Another project for another post).  I love making aprons... and my dd loves wearing it while she serves cookies and cupcakes...
Dena Designs created the birds... they are so sweet.  At $10.50 a yard, I bought just 1/4 yard of it and saved it for something or some one special. 

Butterfly ribbon and ric arc are from Hancock's Fabric ribbon bins.

The pocket is Bari J. Ackerman's first fabulous line of fabric, called Full Bloom.  I am in love with this fabric line and I wish I would have purchased bolts of it.  

Tanya Whelan's Ava Rose ruffles and waist ties.

Heather Bailey zig zag fabric from Pop Garden made the straps and adorned with cupcake grosgrain because I love hearing my dd say, "I love cupcakes!" in her sweet little 2 1/2 year old voice.  The under side is Princess Cinderella from Hobby Lobby! $3 a yard! I love a deal!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Decking the dining room Chandelier... a before and after!

I enjoy thrift shopping... and saw this light, but I passed it up the first time I saw it.  Thank goodness it was still there when I went back to get it.  

$13 total! no tax... perfect for our dining room.  I painted it with some metallic paint that I bought at Michaels.  
I used an antique bronze from Tricoat's sophisticated finishes line.  At Michaels, a small bottle of this is around $7 or $8 and goes a long way.  It is cheaper if you use a 40% off coupon.  Use your smartphone because Michaels honors online coupons from their competitors!  It goes on with the consistency of nail polish remover and looks great.

Finished product...
I enjoy using this light as a centerpiece for the room and every year is different. For Christmas, I wrapped 2 garlands around it and then hung ornaments from it.  Pretty and festive.

Don't disgard those dated brass lights... you never know what you might have with a new finish.  With some patience and a paint brush... you can save yourself some money.

Christmas Stockings with a touch of Personality

For our first Christmas as a growing family, I wanted to make something special for my husband and son.  I have a heart for a certain barn that doesn't necessarily sell pottery, so I used their gingham toed stockings for inspiration.  My husband and I bought a 70's dated fixer upper and he has been on project since... who would have thought that we have been here almost 8 years already!  The tool belt served well.  Christmas morning, I had this hanging on the mantel. I couldn't wait for him to see it.

I used wonder under for some of it, felt for other parts and and embroidery floss for details.
I made this one for our son.  We have two golden retrievers, so they are represented by the snow pups. I  still have some handiwork to do... but it holds candy and treats from Santa, so my son isn't too concerned about it.
By the time that our dd came along... I didn't have the same amount of sewing time available as I did with 2 children, let alone one... so we went to the barn and bought the fuzzy kitty and then I added some details.

She got a pink box-pleated ruffle in satin, pink bow, and a butterfly, and the lace collar on the kitty is from my baptismal dress my dear Aunt Marie made for me... I also added details to the kitty's eyes... they match my little Princess' blues.

Matthew, our second son, has the energy of a rocket and loved robots and the color orange.  So he got a robot snowman.  He really loves that his stocking has a rocket on it!  I love him!

Next year, we'll have another stocking for a baby boy!  I'll have to find the time to either personalize a store bought one... or start from scratch.  I love that ours resemble the style I heart, but have a little personal touch that sets our apart from mass production. I hope you do too!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Tree Sugar Cookies dipped in Chocolate

I love sugar cookies. They are a staple for special occasions our home.  I use a full proof sugar cookie recipe  found on and it makes a ton of cookies. I love the biscuit like texture and taste... and they bake perfectly to the shape of the cutter, they NEVER spread, and you don't have to chill the dough! EASY!  This idea for Christmas trees is from Pinterest and links here.
I enjoy my rolling pins.. this one is from Great Grandpa Raleigh.  I added regular green food coloring to color the dough.

A smart friend suggested when dipping anything in melted chocolate to use a mini crock pot and it is a very EASY thing to do!  I dipped one side, decorated with sprinkles, then dipped the second side.
I love sprinkles!  This batch made about 5 or so dozen.  It's a good sized batch, but they go fast!
These pink and purple ones are for my princess. She helped me with the larger ones.

My little pink and purple fan! She gives them a thumbs up!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Decorating Gingerbread Houses!

It's a tradition in our home to decorate Gingerbread Houses for Christmas... this year we found some clearance Halloween kits for different shaped homes and my boys loved them.  The kits are a great start... to make things easy, I hot glue the houses together and let the children enjoy being creative.  I like to follow Bakerella's advice on having tons of different sprinkles on hand.  To spark creativity, some of the best things to spruce up your  gingerbread kits are... food writers, fondant and fondant molds! The kids had fun, made a mess, but it was worth it.
I am baking junky... I love having tons of sprinkles, a rainbow of gel colors, fondant, fondant molds & cutters and tubs full of cookie cutters and cake pans!  It gives me options and I love to share with friends.  Fondant is so much fun... it is like playdoh. Anyone can do it and Wilton's fondant molds are fantastic!  My children had a blast making different shapes.

Joe Joe's house (6 years old), Brooke's Creative Cottage (2 1/2 years old) and Matthew's Magical House (4 years old)...  They make my heart sing!