This is the first year we’ve had a yard to decorate for Halloween so I was really excited to decorate the inside and outside of the house.
I didn’t want to spend a lot of time or money so I was looking for ways to make a big impact, without spending a lot of time and effort.
My favorite outdoor decoration are the “boarded up” windows. I used cardboard boxes, cut them up into long, narrow pieces (sometimes taping two pieces together on the backside to make the right size). Then, using scissors, I cut the edges to look like scrap pieces of wood. And finally I took brown spray paint and loosely painted the cardboard here and there and outlined knots and grooves to accentuate the paint with a brown permanent marker.
To hang them I used double-sided outdoor tape, which has held up remarkably well. We have had several storms and the boards have stayed in place without a problem.
I also used wooden dowels and added some styrofoam tombstones to the yard with plastic hands coming up out of the ground.
To top it all off I tied cornstalks to the columns of our front porch, lanterns I got from Pier 1 (they look like the ones from Pottery Barn, but are much less expensive), and some gourds and funkins. The funkins, I carved and shaved with our initial and haunted house designs.
I think the end result looks great and is sure to draw a lot of trick-or-treaters on Halloween.
I love ribbon, and always have a lot leftover from other projects. This year for Halloween, I decide to use some old and some new ribbon to make a festive garland for my mantle.
I paired it with a store-bought “Trick-or-Treat” banner from Pottery Barn Kids and some black and white funkins I painted and voila, a modern, decorative mantel perfect for Halloween or all fall long.
I love the Internet! There are so many great ideas and photos you can use for inspiration. I knew for H’s second birthday I wanted to do a monster theme (if you haven’t been around him lately, you probably haven’t heard him roar, but he’s obsessed with Monster’s Inc. and Monster’s University).
I looked for adorable invites that I could just order online and be done with it, but I unfortunately didn’t see any I liked. So I decided to make my own, and they were so easy.
Lime green paper
Circle cutter (see below for specifics)
How to Make the Monster Birthday Invitations
1. All you need is blue, lime green, black, and white paper (I used scrapbook weight paper to give it some heft) and a circle cutter. I used two, the large circle cutter and the simple circle cutter, both from Martha, but you could get away with using just the simple circle cutter if you wanted. I also used a circle punch from Martha for the smallest circle, but again, you could use the simple circle cutter if you just wanted to purchase one tool. Tip: If you’re using the simple circle cutter, make sure you hold down the paper with whatever hand you’re not cutting with, the thing I don’t like about this cutter is the paper can tend to slip messing up your perfect circle.
2. On your self-healing mat, using your circle cutter, cut a circle from the lime green paper measuring 6 inches (you can get away with cutting two from one piece of 8 1/2 x 11 paper you just have to plan ahead when cutting). Cut a circle out of the white paper measuring 4 inches. Then cut a circle out of the blue paper measuring 1 15/16 inches. And finally cut a black circle 1 inch.
3. With a glue stick, glue the white circle on the lime green circle, slightly off-center. It should be towards one side more than the other so you’re leaving room for the mouth.
4. Next, glue the blue circle in the middle of the white circle and glue the black circle in the middle of the blue circle.
5. Finish the monster face by drawing a smiley face (or whatever you like) with a black marker.
6. For the party details, I typed them out in Word (ensuring the type didn’t measure more than 6 inches – the size of my lime green circle) and printed it out on the same white paper I used for the front. I used my circle cutter again to make a 5 1/2-6 inch circle and glued that to the back.
I mailed them using white envelopes I found at Paper Source.
I always say the invitation sets the tone of the party. It’s the first impression your guests will get and I think this is definitely a start to a great party!
I’m so excited to announce I just launched another party kit theme in my Etsy.com store. It is the Mickey and Minnie Mouse party kit and it is my favorite party theme yet.
Mickey and Minnie party ears for each of your guests instead of party hats.
These favor bags are made more fun with a Mickey Mouse handle.
You’ll get 18′ of this handmade mouse garland.
Customize these handmade invitations with your own party details.
And as with any party I throw, you’ve gotta have custom straws.
Are you hosting a party for a boy? No worries, I can customize everything to be Mickey Mouse. Having a party for a little girl? I can do all Minnie Mouse too. Or mix them together to create a little bit of both.
In this kit you get the following (it’s the biggest one yet):
- 10 favor bags with Mickey handles
- 18’ of mouse garland
- 10 handmade invitations, which you can customize with details
- 20 red polka dot straws
- 10 sets of ears for the kids to wear (you can specify whether you want Mickey and Minnie or just Minnie or just Mickey)
- 4 black balloons with mouse ears
- Instructions for putting it all together
I can also make more or less of the items in this kit (like the favor bags and ears if you are having a larger or small party), just message me. You can also buy any of the items in my kits individually, just shoot me an email and let me know what you’d like to purchase and I will work with you to customize the detail of your party. Hot dog, hot dog, hot diggety dog!
Whenever I can I like to have H make gifts for friends and family. So for Mother’s Day I was inspired by the latest issue of Martha Stewart Living and decided to have H make these hand cards for each of his grandmothers and great grandmothers (plus one extra for his actual mother, me).
Instead of using white paper as suggested, I used blue paper and wrote a message that said “Happy Mother’s Day 2014″ plus his name, before he got started with his own decorating. If you have older kids, let them go wild with every aspect. Note, when tracing and cutting, I would just draw your outline right off the side of the paper to ensure you don’t cut too close around the folded pieces. You need it to be a chain of hands and if you cut through the folds, that won’t happen. I would also clean up the edges after you cut the chain out.
I gave him stickers and crayons and let him go to town. Not only will these mothers have a handmade card, they will also have a cast of H’s actual hand.
My friend, and H’s godfather, Tim, recently became a godfather once again for his nephew. Being the thoughtful guy he is, he asked me to make decorations for the table at the baptism lunch after the ceremony.
He told me it would be one long table. I didn’t want it to be too religious looking, but I also wanted it to suit the occasion. I ended up making four little buckets with moss balls, that I stuck small skewers into and hung miniature banners from that I made.
The banners said “God Bless This Child” in blue and white. They can run them down the center of the table for everyone to see. I think they’re adorable and the perfect amount of religious and fun. If you’re looking for something like this for your baptism or would like another saying for a baby shower or another occasion, you can purchase this in my Etsy shop here.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Easter and Halloween are really hard for parents of toddlers. They can’t have all the candy that is out there (nor would you want them to), and small trinkets are still out of the question, so what do you fill their Easter basket with that’s fun, not too expensive, and that they can actually have?
This year I struggled with this concept, but it came to me the other day. I love a good theme, and this year I decided to do a themed-basket for H.
I started with the basket. I use the same basket every year, that has his name embroidered on it. I got it from Pottery Barn Kids. (I also do the same thing for my nieces and nephew – I buy a really nice basket and reuse it every year).
H has been really into pretending lately so I decided to get him some stories about his favorite “characters” like firemen, train conductors, etc. and then get him dress up clothes to go along with these ideas so he can play along.
I have hooks that I’m going to hang in his playroom where we can store the outfits and grow his collection over time. That way he can imagine he is whoever he wants to be from day-to-day.
I also got him a Thomas book for his Leap Frog Jr. Reader, Thomas stickers, and a Thomas Take n’ Play set that he can fold up and travel with.
What ideas and gifts are you filling your little ones’ baskets with?
This kit has definitely been a labor of love, and a lot of cutting, and thinking, and packaging. This is definitely the biggest kit I’ve put together thus far, and I have a feeling it may be the most popular.
My fashion-themed kit is for all of the little girls out there who are into dressing up, fashion, and maybe even want to be a designer when they grow up.
It includes an adorable mix of pink and white straws, dress garland, dress pom-poms that you can hang or set on a table for decorations, purse favor boxes, and an invitation recommendation.
They’re adorable enough that I want to have my next party with this theme! What about you?
We’re going to be traveling for Easter this year (we’ll be coming back from a family vacation) so my planning is starting earlier than normal as I think about when we’re going to celebrate and how.
Here are some ideas that I’ve been saving for inspiration from last year.
Doodle Easter eggs, you use permanent markers to make designs on the eggs.
Bunny ears for the kids (or adults) that everyone can help make.
Dip the eggs in the dye and progressively add more water to make an ombre effect.
Love this classic, spring centerpiece with place cards.
Icing, cookies, marshmallows, and a few adornments for adorable bunny cupcakes.
This adorable headband can be found on Etsy.com.
These scream spring and are super cute.
Matthew Mead does it again, he came up with a whole table using these white bunnies and carnations. I love it!
I am not a fan of glitter, but I do love the look of these eggs from Martha Stewart.
Chocolate-covered Peeps with cotton tails made out of marshmallows = adorable and yummy.
Run these colored eggs and nests down a table for a modern centerpiece.
I love the idea of using buckets instead of baskets.
Delicious and adorable nest cookies.
Check out some more of non-dye egg ideas at BHG.com.
Pom poms + cuteness = these pom pom bunnies!
Doodle Easter eggs
Pom Pom bunny
Polka dot Easter eggs
Eggs in nests
Paper bunny ears
Paper bag masks
Easter menu card
Easter centerpiece with daffodils
Easter buckets instead of baskets
Bunny ears headband
More to come on what I do for H…
So if you know me, you know I love the holidays, but I’m not so into a lot of decorations everywhere, especially if they’re not the right decorations.
The right decorations for me match, are not cheesy, and are definitely not over-the-top. I also really like handmade items that don’t look too “crafty.” That’s why I was so excited when my new Land of Nod catalog came yesterday afternoon.
I adore their Easter garland, party details, bunny cups, and chick baskets.
For my mantel I ordered this adorable garland (which comes in a kit that you put together). And these chick baskets for my dining room table. I’m planning on filling them with sweet flowers for spring.