Monday, August 20, 2012

Disney baby toys

Our family vacation is close! We leave sooner than I can believe...six months of waiting and it's finally here!!

I made these for my son for our trip. I have been collecting Disney treats and prizes for my daughter (details in a post after we return) but didn't have much for my son. I know that an 8 month old will never remember the trip or know that he didn't get any special treats during it but I wanted to include him anyway.

But, what could I give to him? I was having no luck finding inexpensive trinkets appropriate for his age so I made my own.

First I made him a crinkle toy. Made from simple black felt and some ribbon taggies. I put some plastic wrap inside of it for the noise. I like to use the bags that microwave popcorn comes wrapped in...perfect sound and level of crunch.

 The other toys I made are my favorites. I personally can't believe how good these turned out. For once the way they turned out looked as good as they had looked in my head! I used felt squares and made all my own 'patterns'. I cut it all out and glued it together with my glue sewing for these prizes!
Now, vacation just has to get here so he can have them!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Tangled Inspired dress

Our Disney World vacation is fast approaching. I have been trying to finish all of my projects and shopping for would think that having planned this since March I would be a little more prepared. Not the case, my friends.

I was very proud of myself for finishing my daughter's 'princess' dress for our trip last week. I wanted her to have something special and princess themed for when we have breakfast with the princesses.  I didn't really want her to wear a dress up dress or anything that looked like one of the princess dresses. I figured there would be plenty of those there and I wanted her to stand out :)

I got the idea from etsy. I go there for inspiration and figure out how to make it myself for much cheapper. I found a sundress with appliques on it and made my own version. I found pictures on Google of the sun and Pascal and free handed the tower myself.
I made the dress in a pillowcase fashion for my own sanity. I am not crazy about them but I knew how easy they were. So I did it. Except I used a flat sheet. I found it for $2.99 at Salvation army and now I have plenty of fabric left for yet another Tangled idea I have for her. I used pieces of scrap out of my stash for the rest. It's all Steam a Seam on there and then hand stitched in place.  I also used the top of the flat sheet, you know where you would fold it down on the bed, for the bottom of the dress so it already had a hem and I didn't have to sew it myself.

I know it looks homemade and very amatuer but I'm happy with it. But, the best part is so is she!

Ribbon Organization

A few months back my husband and I took some time to organize each of our 'work rooms'. They are both in the basement and are both a mess most of the time. We do a organization day every few months. My room is a 'craft room' that also stores much of my holiday decor and baby/kid items and clothes. My room is also not as much of a disaster as his!

On this particular day I asked for his advice on how I could store my ribbons better. I have too many spools of ribbon. I use them mostly to make hair bows but I find other uses for them from time to time too. But, my collection had outgrown my original storage for them and they were everywhere and always unwinding. My wonderful husband came to the rescue and came up with an idea to utilize some empty wall space and some leftover peg board he had laying around. I am such a lucky lady! After taking this picture, he and my mom both asked me not to buy any more ribbon for a while ;)

Ribbon,ribbon,ribbon...So pretty!

 In the back there is a wire strung holding all of my holiday ribbons....

In front of that is a tiny dowel for all of my tiny ribbon spools...

You can get those metal rods to stick in the peg board like they have in stores...did you know that? I don't remember where he found them but he bought a bunch. And I have plenty of space to hang my ribbons. I have different sizes, all different textures, all different colors.....

And, plenty of patterns to choose from.
The best part is that this freed up a bunch of storage space for new craft supplies!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Princess Tea Party

This month my niece turns 6. I have no idea how we got here so fast but in a few weeks she will be six. And starting first grade. Whoa.

Because she is six she got to have her very first friend birthday party. Growing up we got a celebration with the family every year. Our grandparents and aunts, uncles and cousins would come over for dinner and cake and ice cream. We only got a birthday party with our friends three times. In first grade, when we were ten (sleepover!!!!) and when we were sixteen. This worked so well for my mother and I plan on doing the same thing. So does my sister.

My niece wanted a 'princess Kate' party for all of her friends. She is enamored with the newest member of the british royal family. So we explained to her how very popular tea time is in England, where Princess Kate lives and she wanted a princess tea party.

We were happy to oblige. And, we did it on the very cheap too!

Most of our decorations I found around my sisters house. Never underestimate what you can take off the wall and use for a party!

For starters, we told each of the girls to dress up on the invitation. I made an invitation using Word and some clip art and saved it as a picture. I then uploaded them to Walgreen's and my sister had very inexpensive invitations...this is my favorite party tip to date!

The day before the party we starting prepping and setting the stage. This is our 'tea room'. The green fabric is actually two sheer panels my sister has on the window of the playroom. My mom and I joined them together with a rubber band to make that pretty rosette and used 3M hooks to attach them to the wall. We hung some pretty beaded necklaces in the middle for some bling. The table was covered with vintage tablecloths that once belonged to my grandmother. I made the tissue paper poof balls hanging from the chandelier. My brother in law brought the chairs in after the picture :)

We decorated my sister's fireplace with the two pink sheers that go with the green ones in the previous picture. That castle is somethinng we found at Hobby Lobby for $2.80!! It was missing a few pieces and was very scratched up but with my good old Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and some scrapbook paper I fixed it all and you could never tell! The turret is actually a storage piece from the girls' bedroom my sister got at a garage sale a few years ago. The princess chair was something else they already had.

For atop the mantle I simply took some inverted bowls in varying heights and covered them with my sister's pink scarf. Then I added her tea pot from her fine china (first time it has ever been used for anything!) and some tea cups she has from her grandmother in law. The finishing touch for this was when my sister went and got her tiara from her wedding (I wore it too!) and we put that at the base of the tea pot. 

We all searched thrift stores and garage sales and found a great collection of different tea cups. They ranged in price from $1-$4 depending on where we were shopping. Each girl got her tea cup to take home as part of her goody bag and they were very excited when they found that out! My mom found the cute plastic plates we used. They looked like crystal candy dishes and the little girls thought they were eating on the 'good' stuff ;) Each girl also got a fascinator/hat that I made after reading about them here. 

I came up with the idea for the placecards at the last minute. Literally, after working from 10:00 on Friday morning we were putting these together at 4:00 that afternoon! I made a template for a tea bag, wroter each Princess' name on it and we made the 'tag' part (does that have a name???) with a piece of ribbon and a princess sticker.  My niece loved picking out the best seat for each of her friends!

The centerpiece on the table was the cake stand we covered with the cupcakes. The middle cup cake is sitting on an inverted wine glass to give it height. My mom and I found those cupcake wrappers for $1.80 at Hobby Lobby! They were on clearance from $5.99!!! My sister got the pics after my niece found them at the party store.

On to lunch!!! We gave each girl her own cup of veggies and dip. I wanted to put the dip right in the bottom of the veggie cup but I was overruled :) The veggie cups were another Hob Lob find on clearance in their summer section. I think we paid $1 for 8! Each girl also got an edible tea cup filled with candy that I found via Pinterest on the Disney Family website.

Of course we also had lots of finger food! The fruit pizza's were my favorite!

Three kinds of finger sandwiches were served at tea time. Peanut butter and jelly crown sandwiches. (Helpful tip here: cut the bread, meat and cheese with the appropriate cutter BEFORE assembling them...the shape was much neater that way for us at least.)

We also had turkey and Swiss cheese heart sandwiches topped with a cherry tomato for color. Ham and cheese butterfly sandwiches were our third choice. Each sandwich had it's own shape and we also used three different kinds of bread. 

There were plenty of cute conversations while nibbling on their food....

And, of course there was LOTS of tea drinking! Our tea was actually pink lemonade :)

We only played one party game because my niece insisted. She really wanted pin the tail on the donkey. Well, donkey's  don't come to tea parties :) so she said she wanted to play pin the diamond on the tiara instead. I  took a picture of the birthday girl and added a clip art tiara to it and uploaded it as a 16x20 print at Sam's club and cut diamonds out of colored paper. The print cost $6 and the girls thought it was so neat that it was a picture of my niece.

It was a successful party, albeit a noisy one! 12 Six year old girls can really make a room loud!! But, me, my sister and my mom survived and my niece is still talking about it two days later!