Living in Singapore has been fabulous, but it has put a little damper on my creative side. Not having all my wonderful craft tools readily available at my finger tips has been giving me anxiety, but finally I found a project that is simple enough for me to do while overseas without having to spend $$$ on tons of new $upplies. I am serious when I say this project is LOW BUDGET, but it does take a little time collecting the necessary supplies. [Read more...]
Ok, so I like to think of myself as kind of creative. In other words, I have a couple of crafty bones in my body, however, I am the first to tell you that I am not an artist. I can’t draw and I can’t paint for the life of me. I definitely don’t think I could do something as artistically driven as decorate a cake and have it look professional. Well, that is until I saw this awesome DIY cake by Wild Orchid Baking Company on The Wedding Chicks. It is very reminiscent of my Poof Balls, which of course makes me love it even more! I wish I could get married again so bad. I could do that shit on the cheap this time fo sho! Check out how to become and cake artist…
- Fruit leather (We used store bought for this project. If you wanted to match a specific color, then making your own might work better for you.)
- Round cookie cutters
- Small bowl of water
- Small paint brush
- Floral wire (tooth picks or skewers would work as well)
- Piece of foam
Step 1. Using a round cookie cutter, cut circles out of the fruit leather. The size of the cutter you use will determine how large of a puff you have at the end. For these puffs we used round cutters that were 1/2” to 2” in diameter.
Step 2. Pick up a fruit leather round, and using your thumbs and forefingers, press the sides of the round together towards the center of the circle. You’ll end up with a shape resembling a ruffled “x”. Just be sure to press towards the center of the circle, so that you don’t close the “x” entirely. The open loops are what give the puff it’s shape.
(Repeat with other circles. For a nice full puff we used 6 fruit leather rounds per puff. You can use more or less depending on how full you’d like the puff to be. To begin to form a puff, press 2 of the ruffled fruit leather rounds together at their points.)
Step 3. If the fruit leather has begun to dry out, brush on a small amount of water so that they stick together. Add more ruffles until you achieve the desired puff shape. Set formed puff onto a piece of styrofoam. Use floral wires or tooth picks to prop up the fruit leather puff into it’s desired shape. Allow to dry out over night. Using the wires or toothpicks helps keep the puff from drooping or loosing it’s shape as it dries. You may need to allow puffs to dry out longer depending on the humidity.
The Small Circles:
Step One. Add dots to your cake or cupcake design by cutting out small circles from the leftover fruit leather. Apply using royal icing or water, just like the puffs.
Step 2. Apply to a finished cake using small dots of royal icing, or if applying to fondant just brush on a small amount of water where you’d like the puff to stick.
For cupcakes: Set onto freshly piped frosting.
Notes: How easy is that? I wish I could get married again or at least one of my girlfriends so I can make this. Can’t find fun fruit leather colors? No problem. Make your flowers out of tissue paper, like Martha Stewart’s Pom Poms. Who says the flowers have to edible?
I found this Wit & Whistle project via Pinterest and I’m so happy I did, because it has inspired a whole chain of pillows I am interested in making. It is one of the last accessories my living room, and bedroom for that matter, is craving. Plus I am dying to take a sewing class and pillow pattern would probably be the best thing to learn on. I could start off basic and then add zippers and such as I progress. Another blog I follow, Rustic Living, made these awesome “Where He and She Became We” pillows that I just love. I feel very inspired to start fabric paint penning, but first I have to start sewing. I’ll get there. Eventually.
- Blank pillow cover (I purchased a nice linen cover here.)
- Some cardboard
- Letter stencil (I have this one.)
- Fabric marker (My black Sharpie fabric marker worked great!)
After choosing your quote, stuff your pillow cover with some cardboard to keep the marker from bleeding through and to keep the fabric stretched out smooth.
Use a pencil to stencil your quote onto the pillow cover. If you mess up the spacing you can erase the pencil lines and redo them. You can’t fix mistakes when you’re using the fabric marker, so don’t skip the pencil step.
Once you’ve penciled everything in, go at it with your fabric marker! I found it easiest to use the stencil for the outline of each letter, and then remove the stencil to fill the letters in.
The packaging from the Sharpie fabric marker didn’t say anything about heat setting the ink, but I will probably press my pillow cover before I wash it, just to be safe.
Not only is the day of love quickly approaching, but I am also in dyer need of some beautiful personal art for our new place. Why not knock out two birds with one stone right? I came across this awesome DIY custom art project on Man Made, which is a “male” DIY blog. I don’t know how I feel about it being classified by sex… Sure there are posts about how to make DIY Boomerangs and an 18-Shot, Ratcheting Triple Barrel Nerf Gun, but I think I am still qualified to do this project for the love in my life. I do have to give the author of this project, Chris, some credit… He documented the process in very good detail, it is very sweet, and very inexpensive. He only spent 6 bucks on this project!!! Male or female, that is my kind of DIY! Check out how to do this project below and be sure to check out Chris and all the other “boys only” projects on their manly blog Man Made.
- Inkpad and paper
- Computer and graphics software
- Printing method (see below)
Step 1. Begin by inking your fingers and making several prints on paper. Don’t go for the roll-y effect they do at the police station (it was for a job, I swear), but the oval versions like you made in kindergarten. Don’t worry about getting it too dark; it’s more important that the friction ridges and negative space are separated rather than high contrast. Take several prints, re-inking your figures multiple times and making lots of prints. Be sure to label which prints belong to whom.
Step 2. Select a print you think will work the best. Scan it at the highest resolution you can get, at least 600 dpi, but preferably 1200 or 2400. If your scanner can’t do hi-res, go to the local copy shop and have them do it for a few dollars. Be sure you only select one or two prints, as resolutions this high can make for very large files.
Step 3. Once you have your print in bitmap mode, play with it in your graphics software to clearly define the lines. I’m using Photoshop, but you could try the freeware alternatives available. [See this link for options] Play around with contrast, levels and curves, or even the filters (like stamp or posterize) to get as much contrast as possible, minimizing the gray between the friction ridges. You might need to go in and manually erase any bleed.
Step 4. When your satisfied, you’ll want to convert your image to a vector file, so that you can scale it to any size you want. If you’re not going for a huge final printed piece, you might be able to get by with just the hi-res scan, but it’s worth playing around with the vector conversion, as it will continue to clean up your fingerprint. I imported mine into Illustrator and used the Live Trace functions, but there are free online raster-to-vector options like VectorMagic or Raster to Vector Converter that will work. One of your friends probably has Adobe suites, or your local print shop will as well, so you might be able to ask nicely and have them convert it for you.
Step 5. At this point, you can style your artwork in whatever way you please. I decided to put both of ours on one sheet, added some color and some paper-cut style text, but you could go for the cropped look as in this example and have two framed pieces hung side-by-side. (That’s called a diptych – impress your friends!)
Notes: Printing options are up to you. You could do something as easy as printing it at home, or get all fancy and make a screen print. I opted to go to my neighborhood print shop, and had them make a giclee print for $6, which is an archival ink-jet option that’s much less costly than four-color offset printing. It’s not guaranteed forever – around 60-75 years, but that’s good enough for me. Be sure to save your file at 300dpi!
One of the worst things about getting married is you can’t plan your own showers. I would have loved to have a Mad Hatter Tea Party! I guess one of my lucky engaged girlfriends will get one instead… I pretty much have it all planned. I am just waiting on the boyfriends to pop the question. I got the idea when Taylor, of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, threw a Mad Hatter Unbirthday Party for her daughter last season. It was divine and over the top. I loved every minute of it. My party will obviously have to be downsized a bit, simply because my budget is a tad tighter than hers, but I am sure I can get creative and make it amazing. It is a perfect opportunity to stretch my DIY muscles.
Now that the holiday dust has settled, it is time for all those newly engaged brides to start planning their weddings. First thing on the agenda… Pick a date and tell people to save it! I think one of the most important details that sometimes gets overlooked is Save the Dates. You need to give your guests ample time to plan and prepare for your big event, especially if you are inviting a lot of out of towners. You would hate for someone not to be able to come, because they had a prior commitment. There are tons of fun, creative and inexpensive Save the Date options out there. Check them out!
1. Photobooth Strip: This is a super cute and fun option. It is a way of incorporating a picture of the newly engaged couple without delving out big bucks for a professional photographer. It is also a great way to give your guests a sneak peek into your wedding if you plan on having a photobooth at the reception.
2. Concert Poster: This is great Save the Date for music lovers. It is also a fantastic DIY project if you’ve got some time on your hands to design it yourself. Maybe you can make concert tickets to send as the actual invitation. Not feeling super creative today? No worries. Go to Linzmarie Designs and have Lindsay Zogas create one for you.
3. Pencil Us In: Don’t want to us a picture of you and your fiance? No problemo. This is great option that will still catch your guest’s eye without having to look cute in front of a camera. Get this option now on Etsy.
4.Caricature Magnets: I love these. I think they are so much fun and they stick to the fridge for fun and easy display. Check out Pose Prints and create your own personalize caricature Save the Date. They also make other stationery, like cards, note pads, business cards and even wedding programs.
5. Themed Cards: These are soooo much fun for anyone infatuated with the 50′s inspired tv show. But wait… You have not heard the best part yet… They are FREE! Yep… That’s right… FREE! Just go to The Wedding Chicks and download your own personalized Save the Date template.
6. Personalized Hot Sauce: These are great for lovers who want to share a little spice with their guests, or maybe for the bride and groom who are planning a rustic western inspired wedding, or maybe you just like the idea. You can get personalized hot sauce, bbq sauce, marinades dipping oils, anything really. Check them out on Etsy.
I saw this picture and I thought, “I must have that.” Then the Hubby saw the picture and said, “I must have that too!” I found the recipe on Make and Takes. It was posted by Jane Maynard of This Week For Dinner. Her recipe will definitely be added to my This Week For Dessert list. Thanks Jane!
- Lime Sherbet
- Vanilla ice cream or Pineapple sherbet
- Red/Pink-colored sherbet. (If you can’t find this, buy the closest to red you can and mix it up with red food coloring.)
- Mini chocolate chips
- For each flavor, you’ll let the sherbet/ice cream soften for a few minutes before using. The red sherbet should be mixed with the mini chocolate chips.
- Use a round springform pan. You may want to line the bottom of the pan with wax paper or parchment paper if you plan to transfer the entire “pie” to another dish before serving. I served the slices on plates straight out of the freezer, so I didn’t line the pan. It’s actually cuter sliced!
- Starting with lime, spread a ring of sherbet around the edge of the springform pan – about 2 inches high (or taller if you want!), and about 1-2 inches wide from the outside edge of the pan.
- Put pan in freezer to harden lime layer.
- Repeat step 3 with the vanilla, but make the layer much thinner – maybe 1/2 inch. Use a butter knife to flatten the top, even-ing out the lime with the vanilla. Put pan in freezer to harden again.
- Repeat step 3 with the red/chocolate chip sherbet. Fill the rest of the pan, then use a butter knife to flatten the top. Freeze!
- When it’s time to eat, run a knife around the edge of the pan before popping off the outside of the springform pan. Use a nice thin-blade knife to slice.