Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Project Kid: 100 Ingenious Crafts for Family Fun

I received a book to review, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

We love creating here in our house, and sometimes it's helpful to have a good list of ideas to inspire us.

When given the opportunity to check out Project Kid: 100 Ingenious Crafts for Family Fun, I was was pretty sure we'd all love it. 

Author Amanda Kingloff currently contributes to FamilyFun, Parents, Women's Day, All You, Parent & Child, and HGTV Magazine, among others. She says "This book teaches kids that objects they interact with every day, from the yarn pom-pom on their winter hats to mosaic tile on the shower wall, can be handmade." What's better than watching your kids get excited about something they've made, or seeing them make new connections in the world around them?

I let the kids look through the whole book to pick something to do first. It was perfect for our week of Spring Break!

They voted on some colorful butterflies. After quick trips to the craft store and hardware store we had all of our supplies.

The kids loved their painted butterflies! 

We can't wait to work on more of the ideas in the book. It will be great for summer vacation, and maybe even craft camp. Where are your favorite places to find kid's craft ideas?

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Monday, April 21, 2014

Glitter Bottomed Canvas Tote

So blogging is kind of a funny thing. It can take regular (and sometimes very normally shy and reserved people) and turn them into "Look-at-Me's" who will post everything from what they ate for breakfast to how they decorated their bedroom or the inside of their fridge to the inside of their head. 

It will even get some of them to dress up in wacky 80's gear for a prom-themed party. I in fact will be wearing a dress I pieced together with pink and orange taffeta from the thrift store exactly 1 week from today at such a party :) And I can't wait.

Along this same theme, I decided to make myself a bag to take to SNAP that has my own blog title on it. That way everyone will know who I am. Or at least my bag can be returned to me when I lose it or something.

In case you find yourself needing a large tote with your blog name on it, or just want a big bag for carrying around whatever it is that we like to put in big bags...or really, the main question...you want to know how to glitter it without making a huge mess (a little mess, but not a huge one) then read on. Also, I don't have a ton of pictures because I was in more of a "get it done" mode than "create a tutorial" mode.

I used:
canvas drop cloth 22 inches x 34 inches -- for outer bag
regular fabric 2 pieces of 22 x 18 inches -- for lining
canvas 4 x 34 inches -- for handles

gold spray paint
gold glitter
Mod Podge (matte and Outdoor)
spray lacquer

Start by taping off a 13 inch strip down the middle of the canvas piece. When folded, this will be the bottom of the bag. Spray with gold spray paint, at least a couple of coats. Let dry.

Mix about 1 TBS glitter with 2 TBS Mod Podge and brush onto the gold painted portion of the fabric. Make more and continue if needed to cover the whole area. Let dry.

Brush on a coat of plain Mod Podge and let dry again.

Using 1 inch seam allowance, sew down the 18 inch sides of the lining (right sides together), and also a few inches from each side on the bottom, but leave about 7 inches open.

Sew (right sides together) up the sides of the canvas.

Make box corners in the canvas and the lining, measuring 2 1/2 inches from the corner.

Trim corners and turn right side out. DO NOT use your good fabric scissors when cutting the canvas! The glitter on there will ruin them. Use some junky paper scissors...they will get the job done and your fabric scissors will be spared :)

Make straps by sewing 1/2 inch seam making a long tube. Turn inside out, iron and cut in half so you have 2 straps. Pin to the right side of the canvas portion, about 5 inches from each side seam of the bag.

Pin right sides of the bag lining around the edges of the canvas. Sew all the way around, 1 inch seam, reinforcing at the straps.

Pull the bag through the opening left in the lining, fold seam in and sew closed. Iron around the top edge of the whole bag and the sewing is done!

Through the sewing, I did find a few pieces of glitter had ended up on my hands and the table, so here's how I finished sealing it.

Take the bag outside and spray on 2-3 coats of the spray lacquer just on the bottom/ glittered part of the bag. No need to tape off the rest of the bag, just do your best to spray only the bottom. I found that this helped to give some more structure to the bag bottom also.

When that is all dried, brush on 2 coats of Outdoor Mod Podge and let dry. This will keep any raindrops from showing cloudy spots on your bag.


Finally, I used heat transfer vinyl to cut out my blog name and cute little umbrella and ironed it onto the front of the bag. Now if someone asks who I am, and I've just stuffed part of my lunch in my mouth, I can just point to my bag.

I'll have to let you know how this holds up at the conference (and if all my friends there end up hating me because they get gold glitter on them and they have no idea how :) But when I run my hands over it now, not a single thing comes off.

And if you see me at SNAP, you must come say hi :)

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Summer's Coming to Dollar Tree!

We just finished our Spring Break, but it's never too early to dream about summer, so I'm partnering with Dollar Tree and showing off their new summer products.

Dollar Tree Summer Fun is a collection of brightly colored party supplies, toys, and table ware to help you kick off all your summer celebrations. These would be perfect for a neighborhood BBQ, birthday, or picnic. 

The event begins April 21 in Dollar Tree stores and at DollarTree.com with the Flip-Flop frenzy. Stores will open 8 am (or if your Dollar Tree is located inside a mall, check their posted hours).

Of course since we're talking Dollar Tree, all items are only $1, and selection may vary by store. Get there first for the best selection! Since these items are BRAND NEW, once they're gone, they're gone.

And then there are the flip-flops! I'm already thinking ahead to Craft Camp this summer, and these would be perfect to have for the girls to decorate.

They are available in solid colors (blue, pink, turquoise, lime, purple, yellow, orange, and black) as well as other colorful styles and patterns, which may also vary by store. Available in children's, women's and men's styles, your whole family will be warm-weather-ready.

To learn more about Dollar Tree products and contests, you can sign up for weekly emails or find them on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. And speaking of contests, Dollar Tree is running a contest where you can submit a photo of your original flip-flop craft at DollarTree.com and be entered to win a $500 Dollar Tree gift card! That would get you a lot of goodies.

What are you most looking forward to this summer?

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

15 DIY Leather Projects

{Craft projects to make with leather}

Find leather pieces or bags of scraps from craft stores even Etsy shops. Click each link below for the tutorial.

Off Tract

Carolyn's Homework

The Country Chic Cottage

M&J Trim

Henry Happened

A Beautiful Mess

Say Yes

By Wilma

Crafting in the Rain

Creme de la Craft

Saint Salvage

Whimsey Box

Crafting in the Rain

Melissa Esplin

Vintage Revivals

Which of these leather crafts is your favorite? Have you done some of your own you could show me?

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Handprint Spring Art

{Handprint flowers for kids}

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Kids love painting and making messes, so today we're combining the two for a huge spring poster.

To make this hand print spring art you just need a large piece of paper (we're actually using a paper roll from Ikea) some paint and paper towels.  Acrylic or finger paint would both work.

I just put bits of paint on a paper towel and spread it over their hand, they'd press it down, and then repeat.

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Pink and yellow handprints made flowers.

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Blue paint stamped down with the side of the hand and curved pinky gave us clouds. 

A fist and then lines drawn out with our fingers created a sun.

My hyacinth was just finger dots in light and dark purple.

 photo fingerprint-hyacinth_zpscdfe994e.jpg

We drew stem lines with fingers and added some leaves too.

Then it was time to clean up, so I put together a quick sugar scrub to help us get all the bits of paint off of our hands.

What's your favorite thing about our spring poster?

I first posted this at Brassy Apple, and you can see my last post over there now where I talk about no-phone time with kids. 
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