Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Rose Necklace

Several months ago, some friends and I were sitting around talking and joking and somehow we got talking about how cool it would be if we had a "Prom." Well, we actually carried out our idea and had a Couples Night Formal.  It was AWESOME.  I haven't had that much fun in a long time.  It was like taking all the good things from high school and college formals and stake dances and leaving out all of the bad things.  I had a blast. 

Most of us wore old high school and college formals.  Mine was an old bridesmaid dress.  I couldn't find a necklace I liked to go with my dress, though, (and I didn't want to look like a 29 year old trying to look like a 16 year old, so I eschewed my old rhinestones and "formal" necklaces).  So, I made one. 

I wanted to make a necklace using those lucite flowers I've been seeing a lot on Etsy these days, but didn't have the forethought to order any online ahead of time (and they're not available in local stores).  So, I made my own flower bead with Sculpy and made my own necklace. 

I thought it turned out beautifully, and have made another one to go with another dress, and will be posting a tutorial for the flower beads soon.  :)

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Anthropolgie Sun Shades Dress

I want this dress SO much.  I tried it on in Anthropologie on a whim yesterday and fell in love.  Sadly, I did not fall in love with its price tag:  $158.  Why does Anthropologie have to be so darn expensive?  Sigh...

So, instead, I am embarking on a plan that will certainly drive me crazy.  I am going to make this dress.  See those yellow stripes?  They aren't printed; they aren't even (mostly) sewn on ribbon.  They're strips of bias-cut fabric.  It's going to be a beast to sew.  But I think I'm going to try. 

I went out and bought a pattern yesterday at Walmart with similar lines, and all of their yellow-gold ribbon, and priced some golden colored and white broadcloth, which I will be picking up today.  Here goes nothing...

(Oh, and here are some more Anthropolgie dresses I'd give my eye-teeth for. I especially like the one in the middle with the blues, yellows, and slate colors. So pretty. And the one on the right will be worn by Emma Pillsbury on Glee this Tuesday. I love pretty much everything that character wears.)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Kitchen Mini-makeover

I used to have plaid curtains in my kitchen and family room. I never really liked them, but they were the right colors, so I decided they'd work until I found something I liked better. Well, I finally did.  Jo-Ann had a sale on home decorator fabric a while back, and I found a fabric I really liked --and got 70% off--so I decided to redo my curtains.  I used the old curtains as a pattern to make the new ones:

I also recovered the valances over the patio door and in the family room (and recovered the pillows that had formerly been made with the leftover plaid fabric).

I also had been looking for something cute for over the doorway for the last 5 and a half years.  I got these cute plates from Target for Christmas and thought they'd look great there. 
When I first decorated, my house looked a little more country than I wanted, so I've been trying to give it more of a modern-vintage sort of vibe.  I exchanged a "mom's diner" distressed red-painted wooden clock with this retro-style one.  I also got a cute yellow timer of a similar style for Christmas that's now on the fridge. 
The bird plates are new, too.  Aren't they adorable?  I went looking for some new plates for over my sink, since the new bolder red in the curtains made the red in the plates (that had matched the red in the plaid) now look more pink.  I found these cute bird plates at Pier 1, but was sad that they didn't fit in the plate rack over the sink (too small).  I couldn't get rid of them, though, (they were just too cute!) so I hung them over the pantry door instead. 
I feel a little sheepish that my kitchen and family room have so many plates displayed.  I didn't set out to decorate with plates, but I was given the plate rack above the sink and I found a lot of cute plates while setting out to fill it up.  Plates are cheap, and if they look cute, why not decorate with them, right?
So, it's not a drastic change to my kitchen, just a bunch of little ones.  But, I feel like it helps de-countrify my decor.  It's got a little more of my personality in it now.  :)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

1940s Dress and WWII Staff Seargant Uniform

Check out my Sense and Sensibility Swing Dress!
  I made the Staff Seargant Uniform, too.  Well, I made the hat, the tie, and the insignia.  The shirt and pants are Dickies work clothes from Walmart.  :)


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Bathroom Mini-makeover

My bathroom is a bit boring.  It has beige walls, white and brass fixtures, and beige carpet (yes...carpet).  When we moved in, we didn't want to bother with painting, so the walls have stayed beige.  (And we didn't have the resources to redo the flooring--though I'd like to one day.  Carpet in a bathroom is not my favorite.)

I tried to bring in some color with towels and things, and for the last 4 1/2 years, it's worked fine.  But, it was starting to get to me, all that beige.  I still didn't want to paint, but I needed some more color.  So, I made a valance for the window.

I used a very pretty purple sheet I found at Walmart and some coordinating ribbon to make my simple valance.  I'd planned a different style (where ribbons tie it up--I don't know what it's called), but simple looked better.  I also bought an inexpensive storage cupboard.  We'd had a trash can in the spot between the tub and the sink for awhile, just to put something there.  The nicer storage cupboards were too wide to fit in that spot, but the Target ReStyle ones do. 

So, now the open towel storage brings in a bit more color, and I have more room in my linen closet now that I'm storing some towels in the bathroom instead of the linen closet!  I'm liking my mini-makeover.  It makes my bathroom a bit less boring.  :)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Plaid Skirt

I got some vintage fabric from my mom when she came to visit awhile back, including this cute green and cream plaid. I thought it make a cute skirt, so I gave it a whirl. There was just barely enough fabric to get this skirt out of it, plus enough to cover a headband out of the scraps.

I felt a little like I was dressed like a little kid, with the maryjanes, headband, and school-girl skirt.  But, it's also a very vintage look, sort of a late-30s, early 40s co-ed look.  Anyway, it was fun to make and fun to wear.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Yellow Skirt and Flower Pin Blouse

Quite awhile ago, I saw this dress in Anthropologie.  On the mannequin, it had a matching flower pin pinned to the neckline.  It was gorgeous.
Anthropologie is WAY out of my price range.  But, I tried on the dress anyway.  Sadly for me/fortunately for my budget, the dress was too short. 

I got the idea that I would try to copy it.  It shouldn't be that hard, I thought, it's basically just a white blouse and a yellow skirt.  I got it into my head that it was a pencil skirt, though I later realized that it wasn't quite.  I went looking for some yellow light-weight corduroy.  I couldn't find any.  I found a lemony-colored corduroy, but it wasn't what I wanted.  I wanted as close to the original dress' color as I could find, since it's primarily the color that I fell in love with. 

I evenutally gave up on corduroy.  I found a similar color of cotton twill in the bargain section of Denver Fabrics (only 2.95/yard).  And, I bought a basic pencil-skirt pattern from Walmart (Simplicity 2475) 

Here is the result:

It's not quite the same effect as the Anthropologie dress, but I like it anyway.  And, I like the kick-pleats in the back.  So, I made the skirt and the flower pins.  I already owned the blouse.  I think the ribbon flowers I made tie the whole outfit together well.  I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out.  What do you think? 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Super Grover

My three-year-old thinks he's Super Grover. He runs around the house, making whooshing noises (like he's flying) and yelling "Super Grover to the rescue!!" So, for his birthday, I just had to make him his own Super Grover after seeing this tutorial at Make and Takes. He has a Cookie Monster puppet that his grandma gave him a while back, so I thought I'd add to his Sesame Street puppet collection by making him a Super Grover puppet (and I made an Elmo puppet while I was at it).

I loved the look of excitement on his face when he opened the present and the fact that he immediately knew who the puppets were. I'd been worried that it was too hard to tell.  It makes me happy that he likes his present so much!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Hairbow Picture Frame

I've got a houseful of boys at my house, but no girls.  I get my girl fix by crafting for my neices.  I made this cute hair bow holder for my sister's oldest girl. 
It started out as this:
I picked it up at Goodwill for around $1.  I actually kind of love the painting.  I kept it around in case I find a use for it (and I scanned it, too).  The frame was perfect because it was an ornate style, like I was looking for, but not heavy at all (it's molded plastic). 
I primed it with a paint designed to stick well to plastic, and then painted it this pretty blue to go with her bedroom.  Her room is painted a light green with coral accents, and a few light blue accents.  I had a hard time finding coral ribbon.  I found this skinny coral ribbon, though, so I put two strips of the skinny ribbon next to each other to make it look like wider ribbon.  The ribbon is hot-glued to the back of the frame. 
It was an easy project, and very fun to make.  I love the result. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011


For a church service project, I put together 4 quilts (in 3 days!) for everyone to tie.  Here they are:

My favorite is the Chuck Wagon/Cowboy print with the horseshoe backing.  My second favorite (almost first) is the storybook print with the green backing.  It's a Mary Engelbert print, whom I usually don't like, but I found this one at Walmart and thought it was adorable.  It has Goldilocks and the 3 bears, the Little Red Hen, Jack and the Beanstalk, etc.  It's very cute.  3rd place is the airplane print.  I'd wanted to do a yellow backing with yellow border, but couldn't find any quilt binding that matched so I did it in blue.  I would have just changed the backing to blue as well, but I'd already bought the fabric.  So, I like it a lot, but it didn't turn out quite as I'd hoped.  The last one is a train print with a red backing. 

The binding is atrocious, so don't look too closely.  :)  I guess that's what happens when a non-quilter makes all the quilts.  So be it.  I think they're cute anyway.  :)
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