InspireMe Crafts

Creative inspiration for the home, entertaining, and unforgettable gifts

Gotta Have It: Glitter Letters November 30, 2007

“It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air”

joy-letters.jpg

We declared after our holiday traveling fiasco last year that we were not traveling this year.  And guess what?  A lot of family is coming to us!  This is my first time hosting a Christmas and to be honest…I’m losing sleep over it.  I keep thinking of all the “To-Do’s” and have to constantly remind myself to relax…its not that big of a deal.  But to me it is.  I want it to have a nice Christmas feel, for our guests to be comfortable, for our home to be everyone’s home away from home, and to cook a kick-ass Christmas dinner! (this is where my mother would tell me that no boy would want to marry me with a mouth like mine….see – moms aren’t always right). 

We really haven’t accumulated a lot of decorations since we are a young married couple so I am looking for decorations while making sure we have enough sheets, towels, and figuring out how to make a turkey…ahhhh!!!! And keep in mind we are budget conscious.  So not only am I here to share some Christmas ideas, but when I find some good deals I HAVE to share them with you too because I just get so excited.  So in the picture you see my little “JOY” creation.  Two stops – JoAnn Fabrics and Dollar Tree.  The glitter letters are from JoAnn Fabrics and were a dollar each.  They come in gold or silver.  For some reason they were all spread out in our store so I did have to do some hunting to find the letters I wanted, but for that price it was worth it.  The round cranberry wreaths were found at The Dollar Tree.  Now I originally didn’t buy these Christmas decorations for this project.  The cranberry wreaths were hanging as just some decoration.  I tried hanging the “JOY” letters with ribbon around one of our windows but it just wasn’t working for me.  So that is when I had my ah-ha moment.  You know you get those…you just have to think outside the box.  I took the ribbon and tied it to the cranberry wreaths and voila!  A quick, easy, and inexpensive Christmas decoration. 

I’ll tell you now.  Go to the Dollar Tree.  Go with out the kids so you can take your time going through there.  There are some great basics that help you make adorable inexpensive gifts (you’ll see in the days to come) and decorations that won’t break the bank.  Who wants to spend loads of money on decorations that you may change next year?

Until later….

Be inspired, get creative, and have fun! 

Advertisements
 

Gotta Make It: Christmas Cards….made by the kids November 29, 2007

“We make a living by not what we get but we make a life by what we give.”Winston Churchill

caleb-making-cards.jpginside-card.jpg

Brace yourselves because today’s post takes some major talent.  Done right, you may have a true Picasso on your hands…..and he/she may be as little as 18 months.  As you know, I love projects and have been anxiously awaiting the time when my son was old enough to participate in some with me.  I decided to give it a try.  As of now the most art he does is coloring….and we haven’t even mastered that.  We aren’t even worried about lines…we’re just battling staying on the actual page and not using the walls, table, chairs, floor, etc as his blank canvas.  

 So I decided my 18 month old could handle some foam stickers.  The Dollar Tree actually has some great stuff right now including a bag of 300 pieces of foam Christmas stickers, pipe cleaners, and some cotton balls for snow.  All I did was lay out the blank cards, remove the sticker backs and place them on my fingers.  That way he chose the one he wanted and bam!….he put it where his little artistic fingers led him.  Then we decided to attempt the coloring part again.  And what was I thinking?  I let him use glitter markers….it just seemed more Christmas-y.  To my pleasant surprise he stayed on the paper – for the most part.  To finish it off, I wrote “Merry Christmas” and “2007” on the front. 

So you really aren’t learning anything new and exciting today, but my point is that sometimes simple is just right.  These handmade Christmas cards will be just the right touch in a stocking stuffer for Grandparents, aunts, uncles, and whoever else is important in your child’s life.  Let them have fun and be creative…and worry about the mess later. 

Be inspired, get creative, and have fun!   

 

Gotta Make It: Paper Christmas Tree November 27, 2007

Filed under: Christmas,Entertaining,Gotta Make It,Gotta Make It...with the kids,Home — inspiremecrafts @ 10:54 pm

“He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.”  ~Roy L. Smith

paper-star.jpg

I’m here, I’m here!  I have been wanting to share some Christmas craft ideas for awhile, but the combination of being out of town for most of November and trying to make our house all “Christmasy” has left me a sparse amount of time to spare.  But now the lil bugger is down for the night (hopefully) and the husband is working late.  Ahhh…peach and quiet!  What more can you ask for?  Maybe a glass of wine to go with that….

So here it goes.  I have been working on this Paper Christmas Tree.  I say “working” because it did take me a few days.   I did it in bits and pieces when the lil bugger was down for naps.  However, if you have some older kids who can help you out you’ll finish it in no time! 

Here’s what you need:

Favorite patterned paper (I chose 5 different ones)
Tree shaped craft Styrofoam (find in floral section of craft store)
Scissors, glue (I used glue gun), ruler, pencil
Stick (smooth and rounded)  Can find at craft store.  Size depends on Styrofoam
Ribbon and other embellishments (optional)
Spray Glitter (optional)
Terra cotta pot (optional)
Small piece of craft styrophoam to put in terra cotta pot (optional)

Glass marbles (optional)

Now the To Do’s:

1. I used 8×8 scrapbook paper since my Styrofoam base was relatively small (around 5 inches tall).  I measured and cut it into 2cm wide strips.  I then cut the 2cm wide strips into thirds.  You can adjust the width and length depending on what size styrophoam you choose.  The bigger you go the bigger strips you’ll want otherwise this will truly turn out to be a loooonnng  project.  The is the part that takes awhile so if you have kids who are old enough to cut and measure….for goodness sakes get them to work!
2.  Take a cut strip and attach the ends together with glue.  Don’t fold it though…you want to keep the other end rounded. 
3.Attach the glued ends to the Styrofoam with glue.  Start at the bottom.  Continue this all the way around.  When you finish one layer move up and start on the next level. Indent where you start on each new level.  A few tips:  If you have more than one child helping you on this it would go extremely quickly if you have one gluing the ends together and then the other gluing the finished piece to the Styrofoam. Next tip:  I layed out my 5 different cut papers in piles and lined them up in the order I wanted to attach them. For the most part I used that same pattern.  However, sometimes I came across areas that had too much red or too much green so I did change it up a bit when needed.  So go with what your eye tells you. If it doesn’t look right…change it up. 

4.  Attach any embellishments.  For example, I added a star to the top along with ribbon hanging down.  I also used a star punch and red scrapbook paper to make “star ornaments” that I glued to the tree.  At the end…spray the tree with some spray glitter to give it that extra ummphh. 

5.  You could call it quits here and your paper tree would still ‘wow’ everyone as a unique Christmas decoration.  But if you want to do it like the picture I show then keep going…..

6.  Take a stick and stab it into the bottom of the tree.  I put a little glue around it with the glue gun to make sure it wasn’t going anywhere.  Confession:  The stick I had was too short.  Being lazy and not wanting to go to the craft store again I started looking around the house.  I had a red colored pencil.  So I took it and used it.  It worked out great and I didn’t have to paint it or anything!

7.  Put the small piece of Styrofoam into the terra cotta pot.  Take the other end of the colored pencil and stab it into the terra cotta Styrofoam. I once again used the glue gun to make sure it wasn’t going anywhere. 

8.  Take some glass beads/marbles and put them around the “trunk” of the tree and to cover up the Styrofoam.  You could also use fake snow if you wanted to. 

9.  I added a large red ribbon to the terra cotta pot.  If you choose to paint or decorate the pot any other way it would probably be easier to do before step 6.

Well….there you have it.  It really is a fun Christmas craft project and rewarding when you finish.  And who says you have to use red and green?  Use the colors that go with your Christmas home decor and get creative.  Instead of paper star cutouts for ornaments why not use some buttons?  You always get those extra buttons with your clothes…so put them to use!

Anyway, I enjoyed sharing this with you and will be bringing some more.   In fact, go check out the Paper Wreath I just finished!  Until then….

Be inspired, get creative, and have fun!
 

 

Gotta Make It: Footprint Resin Wall Art November 25, 2007

Filed under: Chrsitmas Gifts,Gifts,Gotta Make It,Home,Kid Gifts — inspiremecrafts @ 7:30 am

“Grandchildren are God’s reward for not killing your kids”

 footprint-resin-bw.jpg

It’s now that time to start planning the Christmas gifts you need to make!  I made these resin pictures last year for grandparents, aunts & uncles, Godparents, etc. 

The items needed:  wood from craft store, paper, glue, resin (found in your craft store usually with all the different glues), ribbon, scissors, paint

First layout some newspaper on the floor and have pre-cut pieces of scrapbook paper ready to put the footprint on.  Grab your child, paint their foot, and start stampin away on the paper.  Make extras because some won’t turn out as good as others and its always nice to have choices!  Don’t forget to have cleanup rags damp and ready to go!

Then I took a piece of wood that I found at the craft store for about $2.  I chose my favorite paper and pictures.  I chose a paint color that coordinates with the paper and painted the wood.  Let it dry.  Then use a spray adhesive to apply  your paper and pictures to the wood.

Next lay out some newspaper and find a cardboard box top.  Place the empty resin box in the middle of the cardboard box top (edges facing up).  Place the wood picture on top of the empty resin box (this raises it up from the box and prevents it from sticking to it when the resin pours off).  Then mix the resin according to the directions that come with it.  Pour the resin over the picture and spread evenly.  The directions say to blow on it to get rid of the bubbles, but  I found that a hairdryer on low works better.  That way you don’t have to inhale all the fumes…they are nasty!  The resin is going to drip off the sides and thats why the cardboard box is good to have.  Once in a while I will take scrap piece of wood or paper and scrape around the edges so it doesn’t leave drip bumps.  Let it dry as directions instruct.

When its all dry attach ribbon to the back and voila!  You have a great personal piece of art that is great for grandparents or even for your own house! The project takes a little work, but if you do them all together it goes pretty quickly.  Plus the result is well worth it! 

Be inspired, get creative, and have fun! 

 

Thanksgiving is Here! November 22, 2007

Filed under: Thanksgiving — inspiremecrafts @ 7:30 am

“Family – Forever, for always, and no matter what!”

I hope you are able to gather with your family and friends and enjoy some good food and company!  Here are some Thankgiving did-you-knows that you can ‘wow’ them with, break the ice with, or create a fun game with! Enjoy….and I hope you are ready for Christmas!  Now that Thanksgiving is here, that is my go-ahead to start preparing and celebrating the Christmas season.   

DID YOU KNOW?!?!

1.  A scared turkey can run at speeds of up to 20 miles per hour.  They can also break into flight approaching speeds of 50-55 miles per hour in seconds

2.  The first Thanksgiving traces back to the fall of 1621.

3.  Turkeys can drown if they look up when its raining.

4.  The first Thanksgiving feast was held to thank the Lord for sparing the lives of the survivors of the Mayflower, who landed at Plymouth Rock on Dec 11, 1620. 

5.  The celebration in 1621 lasted for three days.

6.  Puritans of Mayflower used to drink beer.

7.  A magazine editor, Sarah Josepha Hale, campaigned to make Thanksgiving a National Holiday in 1827. 

8.  In 1939, 1940, and 1941 Franklin D Roosevelt, seeking to lengthen the Christmas shopping season, proclaimed Thanksgiving the third Thursday in Nov.  Controversy started, adn Congress passed a joint resolution in 1941 decreeing that Thanksgiving should fall on the fourth Thursday of Nov, where it remains.

Happy Thanksgiving and…

Be inspired, get creative, and have fun!

 

Gotta Make It: Tile Coasters November 21, 2007

Filed under: Chrsitmas Gifts,Gifts,Gotta Make It,Gotta Make It...with the kids,Home — inspiremecrafts @ 7:30 am

“Never let yesterday fill up today”

photo-coasters.jpg

This is an example of a project that didn’t go the way I expected (don’t you hate that!), but  I decided to make the best of it.  I was trying to get my 18 month old to make his handprint and footprint for me on tiles.  Well, if you have an 18 month old, or have already gone through that stage, you know that they have a mind of their own and you can never predict them!  My son did not want to cooperate with handprint/footprint idea  (obvious by the picture). Instead it was more fun to make a mess and smush in his hands. So be it.  As a result, we have my son’s artwork captured on a few tiles.  Now you have a few options from here.  I’m going to make some coasters out of them.  I will trim the edges with some ribbon and add some felt to the bottom…and Voila!  Your child’s own personal artwork turned into coasters and it basically cost you about $2.  I found the tiles on sale for about 25 cents, the felt is about 25 cents, and the paint is about $1. I did add a sealent (found at craft store) to the top. The sealant was in a spray can and can be used on almost any surface.  Make sure to do it outside otherwise the fumes will have you living outside….and we don’t want that!  How on earth would you get all your projects done? 🙂

Don’t need anymore coasters?  Add some ribbon to the top and you have some artwork you can display on the wall.  Or use them as a personlized paper weight at work or in your home office.  The ideas are endless and everytime you see them they’ll definitely put a smile on your face!

Be inspired, get creative and have fun!

 

Gotta Make It: Thanksgiving Tablerunner November 20, 2007

Filed under: Entertaining,Gotta Make It,Gotta Make It...with the kids,Home,Thanksgiving — inspiremecrafts @ 3:21 pm

“Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want but the realization of how much you already have”

It’s wonderful to be back home.  There’s nothing like coming home to where everything is familiar and yours.  We had a blast visiting family, but its nice to be back together again.  I had a wonderful Thanksgiving idea that would be great for making with the kids.  Unfortunately, with all the traveling I haven’t had time to make one to share a picture so I will describe it the best I can.  Its pretty simple and could be a great Thanksgiving family tradition every year.  

 A Thanksgiving table runner made by your family would add that special touch to your table this year….and every year to come.  Find an inexpensive plain table runner (I’m sure the $1 Store would have one).  Then cut out leaves from felt or your favorite fabric.  Have each child write something they are thankful for on each leaf with a fabric pen.  Then attach it to the table runner.  Depending on how crafty you are you could use the good ole glue gun or the sewing machine to attach them.  It would be fun to use the same table runner every year and have your children and yourselves add something every year.  Imagine when they are older and look back at what they wrote when they were 4.  It could provide dinner amusement and great conversation starters!

I hope you have fun trying this one and I would love to see pictures to share with everyone if you decide to do it.  If so, please send them to inspiremecrafts@yahoo.com!

Be inspired, get creative and have fun!!!!