Friday, April 29, 2011

Weekly Inspiration ~ 4.29.2011

Although I've yet to watch the royal wedding (sending evil vibes Verizon's way), with all the hoopla and pomp & cimcumstance that only the British royals can carry off, who wouldn't be inspired by all things British?  Besides, I'm always a sucker for the Union Jack.  Here's what inspired me this week:

source: associated press
ahhh, the kiss...
plenty more royal wedding eye candy here

a functional work-of-art
union jack dresser via miss mustard seed

union jack print via a hue of duck egg blue
btw, take a look at their stamps too... darling!

source: David Jones/WPA Pool/Getty Images
trees in westminster abbey via bizbash

so i haven't seen the wedding yet, but when i turned on the tv at 12 AM to set the DVR, I saw the beautiful trees inside the abbey.  What a wonderful way to warm up a formal & cavernous space!

 i think subtlety is best... a little union jack goes a long way!

Have a wonderful weekend!!  If all goes well with the FIOS transition, I'll be up and running by Monday.  If not, you'll know I've gone postal and took an ax to the Verizon box outside our house (kidding! i don't even own an ax.)  The glass is half-full... the glass is half-full...:)

Chalk it Up!

What do you get when you combine muslin, chalkboard paint and embroidery hoops?

Why little round chalkboards of course!

These fun little creations have found a home in the boys' bathroom. 

I originally was going to do a "family rules" chart with lovely tidbits of advice like-- brush your teeth, wash your hands, hug your mom... but since they're pre-readers (early readers, at best), I thought it'd be better to keep it simple and use pictures.  I was going to a make a big chalkboard canvas, but I like the versatility and the shape of the embroidery hoops better.

Close-up of the "chalkboards" and my lovely artwork :)
{Here's a mini tutorial}

i'll be adding the photos soon. we're upgrading to FIOS on Saturday (at least i HOPE it's an upgrade) but since Verizon is inept and turned off our phone yesterday & our satellite service was just turned off this afternoon... i didn't even have a chance to watch the royal wedding-- boo verizon!!  anyhow, i want to get out this post before our internet connectivity is turned off too!

I simply cut out inexpensive muslin to fit the embroidery ring, leaving a 1 inch border. 

I taped down the muslin to the inside ring with a little masking tape... then painted on chalkboard paint.

I let the chalkboard paint dry completely, then drew on the design with a soapstone marking pencil.  I stumbled upon the soapstone pencil when I couldn't find a white piece of chalk.  It cleans up easily (just wet and wipe-off) and it's so much easier to draw with a pencil rather than a short stubby piece of chalk.

I painted the outside ring white then put the embroidery ring back together.  That's it!

So I'll be back later after we're upgraded to FIOS... hopefully by Sunday.  Verizon has been a miserable disappointment, so my expectations are lower than low.  We may need to go back to dial-up, "rabbit-ears" and smoke signals.  ;)  Wish us luck!

linked to:


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Simple Projects

Sometimes I feel like the schizophrenic craft lady.  In-between feeding hungry boys, playing referee and shuttling around town, I've been jumping from project to project-- a little painting here, a little stamping there, more painting here, some drawing there, duking it out with photoshop here... and lots of glue everywhere!   With some luck, I'll hopefully finish something.  :)

Here's a peek at a couple of projects that are almost complete:

for the kid's bathroom

for smarty pant's party

I'll share the full details when they're done! 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Police Party ~ The Invitation

Smarty Pants is turning the big 5 next month and has requested a Police Party to celebrate the big day.   I like the challenge of coming up with something wholesome yet still "cool" for my little, big boy.

I hear all the time that planning a party for boys is "boring" or "not cute".  I totally disagree!  With a little creativity, there's no need to "settle".  And honestly, I think that planning a boy's party is a lot more fun than all the flowers, pom poms, princesses & sparkles combined (but I may be a little biased). ;)

For Smarty Pant's Police Party, I decided to keep it simple with primary colors-- red, blue & yellow;  a star shape and chevron pattern for a little fun;  simple fonts & design for a retro feel; and some cute clipart to pull the theme together.

Here's how the invitations turned out:

the invitations were created in photoshop  and inspired by this design
the typewrite font can be downloaded for free at dafont
the car is from a clipart set by stockberry studio

the plain envelopes are decorated with "air mail" washi tape
purchased from pretty tape

the return labels were created in msword.
the policeman clipart is also from stockberry studio

Next up:  a little peek at the Favor Bags

Oh Martha Monday - Paper Party Decor

Paper decor is pretty, economical, and if you store it properly, it can be reused again and again.  I still have some paper bunting and lanterns that are just waiting to be reused.

Here are some paper party decor ideas from the folks at Martha Stewart--
if you have to use paper plates, why not pretty them up with a border punch?  love this idea!

in the right colors, this could easily be decor for a boy's party.  sometimes girls get all the fun stuff!

i think this could be made even easier if you machine sew the circles together

it seems like every girl party and every girl room in blogland has these pom poms hanging somewhere.  of course it originated with martha!

easy and economical

I'll be back later to show some of the projects that I'm working on for Smarty Pant's Police Party.

Have a good one!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Have a wonderful day!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Weekly Inspiration ~ 4.22.2011

Happy Earth Day!   I did have an upcycle post for today, but it'll have to wait until our systems are up and running.  Until then, here are a few things that caught my eye this week--

amethyst & agate geode via honey and stone
fun gift wrap via thompson family life
this was from a holiday post, but with the fun colors, I think it's appropriate year round.

cute & simple ruffled cake topper via dandee
love this crocheted rug.  seen via to-be-charmed

pretty mobile via haru

We're off to the museums today for some exploring fun.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Good Reads - The Paris Wife: A Novel

Sorry for the lack of posts this week. The Good-- We're spring breaking and enjoying some good ol' family togetherness. We made a trip to Disneyland and have been visiting various parks around town every day this week. The Bad-- Technology is not our friend (again). An Internet Explorer malfunction has me blogging from our IPad (which is a slow process for my un-savvy IPad/IPhone self). With all the PC problems we've been experiencing as of late, we may need to become Apple converts. The Mister's working on it, so hopefully we'll be up and running soon!

The Paris Wife: A Novel

Without the Internet to distract, I had a chance to catch up on my reading. I'm pretty much mesmerized with this book-- The Paris Wife: A Novel. It's the fictional account of Hadley Richardson, Ernest Hemingway's first wife, and her experiences as part of the "Lost Generation" in Paris of the 1920's. A vivid and emotional read with an interesting, celebrated and self-centered cast of characters. Highly recommend!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Party Police!

It's that time of year again... next month Smarty Pants is turning 5!  I still can't get my head around "5".  It's such a big milestone!

So this year Smarty Pants has requested a Police Party.  Since it's not a commercial theme, anything goes... as long as the 5-year-old-to-be agrees.  So the challenge is on!  How to make a not so "cute" police theme into something that he'll love and something that I'll enjoy putting together.

At first I thought it'd be fun to go the old-fashioned British "bobby" route, but he got hung up on the hats-- "Those are NOT Police man hats, mommy!".  He hasn't been to the UK yet and the police here look nothing like the keystone kops, so I decided to let it go.  My brief dreams of the Union Jack, Keystone kops and bobby hats were dashed...  (cue the violins)

Then, I decided to come back to the States for some Americana inspiration-- Stars, a red & navy color scheme... and maybe a little yellow chevron if I can sneak it in.  And flashing lights... Smarty Pants would LOVE that!

Oh, and we're definitely doing donuts!  So the fun begins.  :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Oh Martha Monday - Bunnies and Chicks and Carrots...

Oh My!

How cute are all these little creations?

menswear bunny... my boys would like this.

i don't really care for jelly beans, but I've made these with goldfish crackers, cheddar annie's bunny snacks & cheetos


Phew!  I don't know about you, but I'm ready for Easter to get here already! 
Have a great week!