Custom Rubber Stamps

I love the internet!  Just a generation ago there would have been no way to easily do half of the crafty things I like to do.  Case in point: a custom rubber stamp.  This is my handwriting – sort of.  My handwriting isn’t actually this nice.  I stretched, refined and beautified it in Photoshop, then sent it off  and a few days later I had a couple of cute stamps.

Hello stamp

I know handwritten cards aren’t as common as they used to be but I still like to send one out every once in a while. You just can’t hold a cute email in your hands!

 

I needed you.

Last soccer season, as I sat wrapped up in a ridiculously ugly hand-me-down, stored-in-the-trunk-of-the-car, COW-themed blanket (yep, as in, moo) shivering against the biting cold, I thought to myself, “Why am I using this ugly cow blanket when I know how to quilt?”  Yay!  An excuse to buy some fabric!

A Heather Bailey Lottie Da Fat Quarter Pack won out and many months later I had a quilt to wrap up in during soccer games.  Yes, that’s a quilt over 2 jackets and multiple layers of clothing.  It gets cold out there!

Game

I don’t know about you, but after all those hours of working, I couldn’t just let the quilt sit in the car. So it comes in the house between games where we use it all the time.  Our piano teacher’s baby naps on it during piano lessons,

Baby A

we snuggle up under it on the couch during school (my boys don’t seem to mind that it’s girly),

school

it occasionally becomes the background of a selfie,

selfie

or a prop in a photo.

quilted sham 1

{sigh}  Cute quilt, I didn’t know how much I needed you.

Trying Something New: Tree Branch Decor

I’d like to start this off by telling you about a cute little 6-foot red bud tree that we had growing in our front yard.  The ground was too wet and it died.  It was a great size and nicely symmetrical – a perfect decor project that would fit so perfectly in our house.  When I chopped down the tree I forgot to tell my husband about my plans.  Oops.  Being the responsible person that he is, he saw a job that needed to be done, chopped that tree up into little pieces and put it in the yard waste bin.  I almost cried.  Lesson learned:  communication, people!  My husband has no clue about what crazy things I might want to craft with.  Fast forward a few weeks and I noticed that we had some dead bushes.  I’ll admit that given I had lost my tree, I felt a little bit of joy.  I communicated.  Husband looked puzzled.  I let a branch sit in the garage for a few days so the burrowing insects could move out.

Tree Decor

I wrapped the branches in 180 gm Italian crepe paper from Carte Fini.  This paper is so much fun.  It stretched and shaped well to the contours of the branch.  I like how I can see every little nub and bend.  Looking at it now I realize that it looks kind of funny.  But it’s been so handy.  In November my Children’s Church kids hung tags on it with notes of what they were thankful for.  It was our Thanksgiving Tree and without fail, for 5 weeks in a row one of the kids would ask, “Miss Linda, why is the tree blue?”  The following month, it decorated the food table at a baby shower.

This isn’t a tutorial, but here’s a basic step-by-step of what I did, mistakes and all.

1. Cut off itty bitty branches
2. Wrap the whole thing with 1/2″ strips of 180 gm crepe paper
3. Brush on a layer of Mod Podge matte finish to seal it
4. Anchor the base into a piece of floral foam and place in a pot
5. Fill the pot with Elmer’s glue.  Now I did this because I felt like the pot had to be heavy so it would be stable and not fall over easily.  Elmer’s was a BAD idea.  It dried clear, but it took THREE weeks!  Also, floral foam likes to float so whatever liquid you decide to use, you’ll need to hang weights on the branches to keep it immersed while drying.
6. Fill to top with decorative rocksTree Decor 2

Here’s a little close up of the branches.  My hobby of choice is sewing, but crafting with crepe paper and a dead bush was oddly satisfying.  Now go.  Go try something new!

Quilted Yumminess Pillow Shams

2 sisters, 2 matching pillow shams.
quilted sham 1

Got them done just in time for Christmas.  Um, I mean, New Years.  No, um, Valentine’s day!

quilted sham 2

Buntings + Banners + Garlands + Happiness

What better way to kick of the 2015 than with a post about such celebratory, happy things as buntings, banners, and garlands?  I went a little overboard with them when I hosted a baby shower at my home last month.  But who can fault a person for too much happiness?  No one, that’s who.
Union Jack bunting

A little scrappy Union Jack hung behind the new mom.  This was extreeeeemly fun to make!

postcardbanner

Some London postcards pinned to string hung over the entryway.

Imogen Bunting

 Little Imogen’s name hung between our two tea tables.  This went home with her to decorate her nursery.

 Rose garland

A pink rose garland was the backdrop for the photo wall.  This ribbon and silk cuteness is brought to us by  Hobby Lobby.

Aren’t they happy?

A happy and blessed 2015 to you!

English Tea Party Baby Shower

Baby Imogen’s mom, and my good friend, is from England.  So the natural choice for a baby shower theme was a English Tea Party.  First off I laid out flowers, tule, feathers,  ribbon and glue guns and imposed some forced crafting time.  Not everyone jumped in at first but after embracing their crafty sides, the ladies created some really beautiful fascinators!

T and Imogen 2

And of course, after you make a fascinator, you must have a photo wall to take your pictures in front of.

danielle mary

We played a rousing game of “Name the Royal Women” (made up by none other than yours truly).

Game

We had tea.
tea
With sugar.

cubes

Some moderately sweet things.

Aussie bites
And lots of other very sweet things.
Popcorn
cheesecakeCan you believe the British themed decorations I was able to snag?

telephone

Such fun stuff!  Everyone had a good time.  There was more crafting that went into this, but this post is on picture overload so more later!

Paper Doily Placemats

Placemat1
Just getting set up for a baby shower tomorrow.  My friend is British so the theme?  English Tea Party.  I broke out Grandma’s fine china and made my own place mats with my nifty circle edge punch by Martha Stewart.

Placemat2
This punch is brilliant. And fun!  And easy enough for my 10 year old son to make.  20 placemats for 20 guests.  I hope they like the goofy British-themed games I have planned!


Craft Apple

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? Well, crafting is my apple. It's what I do to maintain my sanity while taking care of my family. I homeschool my three boys, ages 10, 11, and 12), am a quilter, a bagaholic, and a pattern designer.
© 2006-2014 Craft Apple Creations

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Gift for my son's teacher

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