We’ve been moving Sam away from nap time the past few weeks because his nighttime sleep was getting pretty crazy. He gets quiet time in his room instead of naps, which he is growing to like more and more. No naps in the afternoon can make for long days though. I recently whipped up this little activity for him to try out just to break up one particularly long afternoon.
Ok. So I have to admit that I actually did this project with Sam well over six months ago, back when he was a toddler. Somehow I didn’t get around to posting about it until now. Go figure.
This is a simple project for you to make when your creative time with the kiddos needs a little refreshing. Sam was getting bored with the typical paint options, so I put together his own little paint roller to add some fun.
- empty toilet paper roll
- bubble wrap
- paint tray (we have cardboard trays that I saved from something, but use whatever you prefer, as long as it is wide enough for the the toilet paper roll)
- canvas (or paper depending on what you want to paint on)
- washable kids’ paint
The toilet paper rolls are a nice size for the little ones to use, but you could also try empty paper towel rolls. And of course, I hope the the bubble wrap is inspiration for you to try other materials too. It’s fun for them to see what textures different things create. Here are some other DIY Paint Roller techniques to consider:
- glue yarn around an empty toilet paper
- stick those foam sticker shapes onto an empty toilet paper roll
- cut your own shapes/designs out of craft foam sheet & glue to roll
- glue leaves (or other natural objects) onto an empty toilet paper roll
- glue buttons onto an empty toilet paper roll (just thought of this one & really want to give it a try)
Also, just a note to mention, that at the same time I was writing this post, my friend Kerri was experimenting with bubble wrap painting on FABRIC!! You can see the results of her project on her newly started blog Soham Design.
Although we don’t typically do a lot to celebrate Valentine’s Day at our house, we do decorate a wee bit. It’s nice to have a few pretty things around the house in the dead of winter. I especially enjoy a pretty wreath on the door (I get so sad when I take down my Christmas wreath). A wreath on the door always makes me smile when I arrive home. This year, I decided to spruce up our twig wreath with a shabby chic inspired garland. Annnd… I even remembered to document the process thoroughly so I could share it as a tutorial with all my lovely readers! That’s my bit of Happy Valentine’s to YOU!
Now, the number of hearts to make for your garland is up to you (that’s why no material amounts have been given in the supply list below). I just made three (two large & one small) to symbolize my small family of three. Also, as you will see, I attached this short garland to a wreath. If you want a longer garland to hang, say from your fireplace mantel, then you will need to cut & stitch more hearts (you could alternate small & large hearts, some lace covered, some not).
- Bubblegum Sass Heart Template
- Red craft felt
- Pink craft felt
- White or light-coloured lace
- Lace trim or ribbon (to hang hearts from)
- Sharpie or fabric marker
- Hot glue gun
I realized early on in my making of the Love Catchers, that I was going to need a steady supply of lace trim to decorate them. Now, I try to use as much upcycled materials & materials that I have on hand as possible, but it’s hard to resist some new embellishments. It is possible to buy ready-made colourful lace trims (which I have done), but I felt a bit limited by colour choices and widths. So often I would find a package of lace trims online that were the perfect colour (there’s hardly any trim readily available locally), but the package would contain short lengths of various widths, many too wide for the Love Catchers.
I finally decided that to flush out my selection of trims, I would purchase plain cotton, dyeable lace trim in large quantities and then dye them myself. Mostly I want to focus on making the Love Catchers themselves, and with limited time for all the crafting, I chose to purchase ready-made dyes to simplify the process. The supplies for this adventure were purchased online at the Dharma Trading Co. or were items I already had on hand. Dharma Trading Co. does offer natural plant dye options, if you would prefer to dive into that. I ordered a small selection of Tumble Dye. The fact that you could spray or dip dye with them appealed to me. Also, lovely selection of colours!
- Dyeable lace trim
- Bottles of Tumble Dye
- Rubber gloves
- Glass pan or large glass measuring cup
- Flat plastic trays or baking sheets
(For air drying the lace. I used the plastic lids from some storage containers)
I wet the lace before applying any dye. Then I laid the lace out in the glass pan and sprayed it with the dye. Then I flipped the lace over and sprayed it a bit more. I didn’t pre-mix any dyes, but did combine some of the dyes simply by alternating which one I sprayed, to achieve desired colours.
Once enough dye has been sprayed on, wring the lace trim, allowing the excess water and dye to fall into the glass pan. Then place the lace trim back into the excess dye, rub it in a bit, flip the lace over and rub in the remaining dye. I did this step, to ensure there wasn’t any large white spots on the trim. *see note below*
Once you’ve got the lace trim the colour & hue you want, lay it out on a plastic try or baking sheet and let it air dry completely. Once it’s dry, pop it into the dryer for about 20min (I just used our medium heat setting). So far I have just been using the lace trim for my Love Catchers, which do not go into the wash. According to the instructions, putting the dyed items into the dryer should set the colour, but I haven’t personally tried washing any of them yet.
Viola! Pretty, pretty lace trims in a rainbow of colours, ready to be made into even prettier things!
*If you wish to a achieve a much more even dye colour, just pour some of the dye into the glass pan, and do a dip-dye method instead of using the spray applicator. I prefer the spray applicator to achieve the vintage shabby chic look, but it’s up to you.*
Keep experimenting (I know I still am) and have fun with your dyeing projects!
Aren’t these lace button earrings wonderful?! I love that they make a nice shabby chic style accessory. And of course, super simple to make too! Find the original tutorial on the Evie S. blog. All you need to make these are: two plain buttons, lace, earrings studs, and a hot glue gun. Cut a circle of lace larger than your button. Then simply wrap the lace around the button, gluing the edges on the backside. Let glue cool. Then glue the earring studs on the backside of the button. And you’re done!
Here’s a fun collection of DIY headband tutorials. All cute, all colourful, and all sorts of button embellishments. I recently discovered that my short hair finally looks good with a headband (it’s the little things that make my day). Now it’s time to get accessorizing!
Ok. Here is to hoping that we won’t need so much spring button flower inspiration going forward (fingers crossed for later this week). Maybe we can just pop our head outside and enjoy actual spring?
Just in case you’re one of those poor souls that is still dealing with snow Sadly, we are some of those poor souls still dealing with snow (I wrote this post ahead of time, and seemed to have jinxed us, again… there’s a steady falling of snowflakes out there this morning). This then, is still a much needed project to keep your hopes up.
This pretty button project comes from Ashley of Little Miss Momma. She was inspired by hair pins from Anthropologie and was determined to figure out a simple (and inexpensive) knock-off. I must say, I think she was successful! I like her version even better than the ones from Anthropologie. You can find the full tutorial on her blog.
Ashley used fabric yo-yos from a vintage family quilt (of course, you can make your own yo-yos with the help of Heather Bailey’s great step-by-step instructions). Admittedly, part of the charm of these, is the vintage nature of the yo-yos Ashley used, but you can always score some lovely reproduction fabrics from the quilt shop to tap into that vintage charm. Then all you need are some bobby pins, buttons and a hot glue gun (alternatively, you could hand stitch these all together). Place a bit of hot glue on the end of your bobby pin, press onto the back of your yo-yo. Let cool. Flip the yo-yo over. Place a dab of glue in the center of the yo-yo and squish your button into place. Let cool. Put on a pretty spring blouse, along with your newly made hair pin. Go grab an iced tea & enjoy the day!
Here is the third installment of our spring button flower inspiration. Thankfully, spring seems to have finally arrived in Calgary over the past few days.
The snow is gone We woke to snow this morning, but the ground is turning into mud, and we’ve had much needed sunshine! Hopefully you’re starting to experience some of this too, where ever you may be. Or maybe you’re already delighting in the cherry blossoms & daffodils. Just a touch jealous. We have some crocuses starting to pop up.
To keep our spring hope alive, let us turn to this easy-peasy, but adorable project from indieBerries.All you need for supplies are a pile of buttons, different sizes & colours (how much variation or uniformity you want is up to you) and florist wire. She has cute step-by-step illustrations/cartoons on her blog to demonstrate the project. I so very wished I had time to make some of these right now. I feel like our kitchen could use a little bright colour. Alas, the little bits of free time I have are being dedicated to prepping for the Boutique Wedding Market. Perhaps you’ll have a spare moment in the coming days to give these a try? I do hope so. Enjoy!
Here is another adorable spring button flower project to keep you busy until we can enjoy actual flowers in the yard. The full tutorial can be found on the V Spot blog, by special guest blogger Flamingo Toes.
These little potted fabric flowers are actually quite small, only about 4″ tall. You can pick up all sorts of sizes of clay pots at the craft store these days (and they’re usually very inexpensive). You can either paint the pots, or leave them as is, depending on the look you’re going for. You’ll need some stuffing and faux green moss to fill the pots. Next choose some fabric and burlap to make your flowers. Really, you can use any fabric flower tutorial to create the blossoms, it doesn’t necessarily have to be the style she used here. I would likely use some of my scrappy flowers that I use to make the floral hair combs & brooches. However you decide to make your fabric flowers, just pop a button into the centre of each to finish them off.
Pretty darn adorable project to decorate a fireplace mantel, small shelf or Easter dinner centerpiece. In fact, they’re so simple to make, you could put together one for each Easter dinner guest to take home with them. Attach a little name tag to the pot and you’ve got adorable seating place markers. Lots of ways to use these guys! Have fun creating!
The official arrival date of spring has come and gone. In Calgary, that typically means we get more snow (no joke). This year is not much different, except that it is unusually cold out still. By now, the temperature is a little more mild, but the last few days have felt like full-on winter again. Le sigh. I am feeling VERY done with the snow & cold this year. I’m longing for those days when we can spend hours outside playing & discovering with Sam. Soon, soon, I keep repeating to myself. Well, not soon enough!
As we wait for the snow to fully melt, the ground to thaw, and a tiny hint of green to poke through, I thought we could embrace some simple spring flower button projects. This one is the first in a series of ideas, all collected on my Button-spiration Pinterest board. This cute egg carton button art project is brought to you by Mod Podge Rocks. She cut up a paper egg carton to form the flower blossoms, then had her kids paint and decorate them. When the blossoms were dry, they glued a button into the center of each. A bundle of pipe cleaners were tied with a ribbon to create the flower stems. Everything was then glued into place on a canvas (which she had painted beforehand, although you can now purchase coloured canvases from the craft store, if you’re short on time).
Sammy and I are using this flower egg carton idea to decorate a spring wreath. Hubby made a large twisted twig wreath several years ago, which we hang on the front door at this time of year. It needs a bit of colour to offset the current dreariness these days, but I don’t want to permanently attach anything to the wreath. I like the idea of having a wreath we can decorate a few different ways. I’ll get Sammy to paint & decorate the egg carton blossoms, then poke two holes through the bottom of each blossom & attach some yarn, so we can just tie them onto the wreath. Once the yarn is through the holes, we can cover it up with a button in the center of each blossom. I’ll try to remember to a) take pictures as we finish working on this and b) find the time to post them.
Until then, have fun playing around with your egg carton flower art!