Sunday, September 23, 2012

Slow Progress

I am slowly making progress on my to-do list. The biggest item is Little Man's big boy room!!! To make Little Man's big boy room I need to empty out everything that is in the office / craft room and move it all into the guest bedroom to make a combined craft room / office / guest bedroom. AND to make matters even more fun I need to figure out what to do with all of the stuff thats already in the guest room closet to make room for the billions of craft supplies I have.

It's been a SLOW process but I am slowly clearing out the craft room. From the picture below you can see it's almost empty.... I still need to move the computer to the new room and a bunch of odds and ends things I need to figure out what to do with. I am also making a big St. Vinny's donation with this transition!!
That also leaves the new craft room / guest room looking like a huge mess!!!! But again there is so much extra baby stuff that I don't know where to put until I get Little Man moved out of the nursery so I can hide it all in there until we need it in February.

I can't wait until I get to the fun part of decorating Little Man's big boy room!!! Almost there but still a lot of organizing and holes in the wall to fix.... blah blah blah .... so much to do!!!!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Stained Wall Art

I have had an almost empty frame in my dining room since we moved in. I have changed it out for Holidays... and all summer it held artwork I made for my son's 2nd birthday (in April) that was all about cars!!! And its been on my to-so list to make something more permanent for the space!

AND I wanted something different!

I had some left over wood veneer from another project and thought this would be the perfect place to start! I stained the veneer the same color as my dinning room table (since it was going to be in the same room....)

Once my stained dried, I cut out a design with my Silhouette Cameo.

I was a little nervous with painting over the stain, because if there was bleeding I would not really be able to fix it.... BUT it turned out perfect!! I did use a wet paper towel to clear a little smudge
I am really happy with how it turned out!!! (And I can cross another item off my to-do list!!!! YEAH!!!)

Monday, September 10, 2012

How NOT to sew a zipper

3 hours before I was supposed to be at my parent's house for my sister's birthday get together I decided I should start sewing the little zipper pouch I was going to give her. (I would have started earlier but was dealing with a toddler who did not want to sleep in his new big boy bed....) This was my first time sewing a zipper EVER!!! I figured how hard could it be, I could figure it out by myself.....

My how NOT to sew a zipper!!!!

1. Don't try to teach yourself how to sew a zipper 3 hours before you need the item finished.

2. Don't try and teach yourself how to sew a zipper when you are already slightly stressed.... (taking 3 hours to get a toddler to take a nap....)

3. READ the directions on your sewing machine, the instructions that came with your zipper and maybe a few tutorials online!!!!
Don't ignore these directions!!! They are ACTUALLY useful!
4. Maybe an Invisible Zipper is not the place to start? It's were I started and it was a PAIN in the a$$!!!! Having only sewed one zipper I don't know if a regular zipper is easier, but it would have to be!!!!

5. When sewing an invisible zipper and using your invisible zipper foot, UNZIP the zipper. If you put the zipped up zipper through the foot bad things will happen.... (broken needle, jammed machine, lots of extra thread and just a whole big mess) Worst part, I think I tried this like 5 times and could not figure out why it would not work!!! Then I had a DUH moment.... I unzipped the zipper and it worked a whole lot better!!!!

Unzip your zipper!!! Or you will have a mess!!

Opps, I broke a needle, because I didn't unzip the zipper!
6. Even though at this point it might look pretty, when you have one side of your zipper sewed in place, its probably a good idea to test the zipper and make sure it zips... or you will be back at step 3 like I was.
Looks good, but does it work? NOPE!
7. READ the directions or you will be using your seam ripper a lot!! This was the first time I ripped the seam out on what I thought was a completed side only to have to get out my iron. I failed to read the step on the zipper directions telling me to iron my zipper..... 
My seam ripper was my friend.... or enemy, either way it was used too much!

Started over again!
8. Re-pin and PRAY PRAY PRAY that this time it will work!!!! And again test the side to make sure it actually zips!!! When it does, do a happy dance!!!!!! Sewing a zipper is easy right???
Sewed over the zipper, this time the seam ripper fixed it!

9. NOPE! Side two does not cooperate, and then its time to trouble shoot again.... 

I finally sewed my zipper, and man was in a pain!!! I wasted so much thread, broke one needle, had the needle pop out several times, used my seam ripper way too many times.... but I did it!!!
My mess!

I am confidant the next time can't be as bad!!!! BUT if I had read the directions and not just tried to figure it out myself I think I might have saved myself a bit of stress, (plus the unrealistic timeline for how long it would take and already being stressed)

I would love to share an actual tutorial on how to sew a zipper, but trust me Google it and find an expert on the subject :) 

And my finished product ACTUALLY looks pretty good!!! I will save that post for another day!! And with all of my hard work I kind of don't want to give it away... or I could make myself a second one, for practice of course!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Fishy 3rd Birthday

When my friend asked me to help her with her son's 3rd Birthday party I jumped at the chance! I love party planning and was very excited with the opportunity. It was also a good challenge since I am not great about that little B word.... Budget!! She gave me a $100 budget and I was actually able to stay within the budget!!

The theme was blue and green fish! I am so happy how it turned out and I hope Collin and his mommy are just as happy with it! 

I started with a back drop of streamers. So easy and I really like the look!!! I then cut out a TON (seriously no clue how many I cut out) of circles in paper of white and blue. And sewed and sewed and sewed them together into four strands of garland and attached it to the streamers. I then used my Silhouette Cameo and cut out green fish spelling out "Happy Birthday Collin" I repeated the process for making garland to line the shelf. I have to say I am really happy with how this turned out and this was really just paper, streamers, ribbon and lots of time sewing!!

I bought these cute but boring blue buckets from the Target dollar isle. But a little vinyl and they look like cute custom party favors!
Inside each party favor bucket was a custom made wrapper for Gold Fish, a sucker with a vinyl sticker cut from the Cameo and a small container of bubbles (because what kid does not LOVE bubbles!!!)
The birthday boy's mommy made this fabulously cute cake!!! And it was surrounded by more green and blue candy!! (Do you realize how hard it is to find blue and green candy :) ) I used my Cameo and some ribbon to decorate the glass jars.
Don't you love the cupcakes the birthday boy's mommy also made!! I tried one, they tasted as good as they looked!!
I also made some candy fish. I sort of have this strange obsession with liking to make these chocolate candies.... even though I don't actually like the taste of this chocolate.... but I find them fun to make... and I love how cute they turned out!!!

More circles sewed together and hung from the ceiling.

I made the pendant banner from scrapbook paper and washi tape. So easy to make! We added some cute blue and white striped straws (with a little fish attached of course) to some simple kids cups from Target.
I also made water bottle labels, but I didn't take a close up picture of them! I seriously love these little cups with the fish straws!!

Happy Birthday Collin! I hope you enjoyed your fish party!!

Epic Room Makeover

I desperately need to win the Epic Room Makeover and Mandi's  help to make our living room an awesome functional room in our house!!! We have lived in our house for almost two years and its been pretty much empty the entire time.... AND of course it's the first room you see when you walk into our house, talk about embarrassing!!! I took the week off that we bought our house and the Monday I went back to work, I lost my job. Talk about stressful with a new mortgage, so it's left little in the budget for major decorating... or FURNITURE!!

The room is a blank slate for creativity!!! Look at this:
  • No window coverings what so ever!
  • A train table is pretty much the only piece of furniture in the room (not that my two year old minds that) 
  • No over head lighting makes for a pretty dark room
  • A confused lamp shade
  • Seating is two ottomans.... that were moved from the family room because someone thought they were good for jumping on

Two comfy seating options!!
For my son's birthday party (in April) I painted clouds on the wall. They are still there with gray spots and red lines..... (I thought I would paint the wall right away, so it wasn't going to be a big deal)

My big clock and entry table. But again more messed up painting!!!
One of the BIG reason's this room has stayed empty since we moved in, is that it is right next to our "Family Room"(they are connected) and so this room is the room where we have our small couch and chair, and the TV. AND MORE TOYS.... if you can't tell my son has taken over the house!!! So because of the two rooms being right next to each other, I am not sure how to decorate the first room.... a "formal" living room??? (And by formal I think only a room with out a TV :) ) Some day I would not mind tearing down more of the wall that sepeates the two rooms and making more of a single room.

Our Family Room is not without problems though..... We had friends over stay with us for the weekend and our small couch and soon to be broken chair are not enough to sit 4 people, let alone when it's just my husband and I we can't both recline and lay down for TV watching.....
Too small of a couch...... and as our main couch it's really getting abused..... AND it's a sleeper sofa.... I am tempted to be really classy and use it as a sleeper in our Family room.... classy, right?
Tears in the leather that I try and cover with a blanket.....
I REALLY need this makeover!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE projects and know I would have tons of fun with Mandi and learn a lot from her!!!! We are hosting a Christmas party this Christmas and I would LOVE to not have an incomplete first floor this time around!!

Pluses to why I should be picked:
  1. It's a blank slate!!!! Besides the train table, there is NOTHING in this room!!! = no prep work!!!
  2. I am in desperate need to figure out what to do with this room and need the motivation to get it done!
  3. I love color and patterns and love Mandi's style and would love to learn from the best!!! AND I WANT IT IN MY LIVING ROOM!!!
  4. Without help it's going to take me at least five years to turn this into a living space
  5. I NEVER win anything and this would make my YEAR!!! 
  6. Living with two "boys" I need some alone time where I can relax... and let's face it the boys won't leave the TV so this would be my quiet space!!!!