Circus Party!

To celebrate Miss S’ first birthday last April we threw a legendary circus party and had a blast! These pics have floated about the Internet and I’ve had many emails requesting more info & how-to’s so I’ll post a bunch in the coming weeks, but for now check out some pictures and links to where to buy…
a simple homemade pennant…
favor bags in neon bandanas also made bright decorations…
Jacinda made and shipped these amazing cookies all the way from Texas!
my first homemade cake…
these party hats were insanely fun to make, get the DIY Party Hat Template here
popcorn boxes and raffle prizes make everyone smile..
especially the birthday girl herself…

more after the jump including the invite…

you can’t go wrong with a giant octopus in a party hat and color coordinated tissue balls…
a cotton candy machine is inexpensive to rent and adds a lot…
Grandpa manned the popcorn machine…
the adults sipped champagne…
the kids had their faces painted…
the kids loved the circus themed tin toys…
the circus-themed sandwich shop Zanzabelle in Silver Lake was the perfect setting…
and my little circus honeybee had a wonderful day!
more to come on the invite and how to April Fool’s your friends in a way they’ll never forget!


Giraffe Softy

My super crafty sister-in-law made this gorgeous giraffe softy for Clare using Vogue Pattern 8349. It now resides in Quinn’s room, given the color scheme, and I’ve been feeling a bit guilty about the theft so I just ordered a copy of the pattern to make one for Clare. I would ask my sister-in-law to make another but she is working on her PhD (smarty-pants) so I’m guessing she has a 1-fabulous-giraffe-softy-per-year limit.

I also ordered this pattern which I think would look really cute in felt or a sweet cotton print. There are alot of new babies around. These would make a-dor-able holiday gifts.

Funny how the fabric choice truly makes-or-breaks these, no?


DIY Cake Stand

Amesh from Indonesia shared an adorable project with us today and it reminded me of a tip from one of my cake decorating classes. Using canned goods to create DIY cake stands! Instructions after the break…

What you need:

– Corrugated cake boards
– Canned goods (unopened)
– Several sheets of scrapbooking-weight paper
– plus: x-acto knife, ruler, cutting mat, pencil, rubber bands, non-toxic glue (I prefer Aleene’s Tacky Glue.)

1. Trace closely around the edge of each cake board with the pencil and cut out your circles with your x-acto knife on the cutting mat

2. Apply glue fairly close to the edge of the wrong side of your paper circle and attach to your cake board. Repeat for each.

3. Measure the height of your canned goods and cut strips of paper to height.

4. Wrap paper around can, marking a 1″ overlap and trim length of paper.

5. Apply glue to the length of the 2 short ends and wrap paper around canned good, overlapping and gluing down the end. Wrap with rubber bands to dry. Repeat for each.

6. Cut 1″ strips of paper to create the “thickness” of the “plates.”

7. Place cake board bottom-side up and apply glue along very top of the entire length of your 1″ strip and begin wrapping strip around edge of cake board. If there is a “front” of your cake-board, be sure to place paper seam towards the back. Repeat until the entire circumference of all of your circles is covered. Glue the strips of paper together as you go.

8. Place your largest can at the bottom and center your largest cake board on top. You can stop there for a pretty cake stand. You should glue your stand to the can (I would probably use a glue gun but haven’t tested this yet)

9. You can add additional tiers by centering another can on top of your first cake board and gluing another cake board on top.

These are great because they are sooo inexpensive to make, totally customizable and you never have to worry about leaving a pretty plate behind at a party!


Crochet Donut

Now that it’s getting all Fall-ish, I’m thinking of getting back to yarn crafts. If you need a sweet handmade something for a little person, I highly recommend this. A simple and satisfying beginner project. Wrap it up in parchment paper and tie with baker’s twine for additional themey cuteness. These would also be super cute in multiples if you’re feeling ambitious. The pattern is free, courtesy of KTBDesigns.

PS. I sewed a few jingle Bells inside before closing mine up.


One Frame Three Ways

Buttery yellow with wallpaper in my daughter’s room

Vintage turquoise as a chalkboard via Little Green Notebook

White as a display sign for Cuppielove via Yes, Please

Before & After pics and where to get it after the jump…

Before & After

Prudent Price:

Frame $24.99 at Ikea

Julia Rothman Daydream wallpaper remnant $0 (or $20/yard at Hygge & West

One can Rust Oleum Painter’s Touch in Satin Summer Squash $7.33 on Amazon or at Home Depot

Total $32.32


DIY: Easy Drawstring Bag

Perfect as a re-usable gift wrap, themed to tote party favors, or as storage for wayward blocks, this super-simple drawstring bag DIY from favorite site Purl Bee is a satisfying project to whip out after the kids go to bed:  

Etsuka Furuya Echino home-decor weight fabric in yellow $16.95 per yard at superbuzzy

…and in pink and a variety of other patterns and colors for $19.50 a yard right at Purl Soho

I made mine with leftover scraps of decor-weight fabric and ribbon I had on hand, but how cute would it be with thick rick-rack or this Matryoshka Ribbon from Reprodepot?


DIY: Boy Tee into Girl Dress



The husband, baby and I headed back to Nashville last week to visit our amazing new niece.  We had to stop by Jack White’s Third Man Records shop where we picked up this toddler tee that was far too large for our girl.  I thought I’d try to make it into a dress. I’m a beginning sewer and have never worked with jersey before, so this is a super simple project that took about an hour; I think it turned out pretty cute in a rocker kind of way.  Check out the DIY after the jump…

1.  Start by turning the tee inside out and cutting the sleeves and neckline off, then iron it flat:

2.  Draw a straight line from the top corner to the bottom corner (just inside the seam on the hem of the tee) with a washable marker:

3.  Sew a straight stitch along that line on either side with thread that matches your tee:

4.  Cut the excess fabric off.  You can finish your new seam if you know how to do it without a serger, but i don’t.

5.  Fold the top edge down, iron and pin in place, then hem with a straight stitch:

Now you’ve got a stretchy little tube dress.

6. I needed to make straps but i didn’t have enough excess fabric, so I deliberated and came upon this solution.  Take the discarded sleeves of the old tee:

Cut the hems off:

Cut each hem so that it is open on both sides like a tube so you can loop turn it.  I have a loop turner but I haven’t mastered it, so I use a safety pin.  To do this, attach the pin to one end of the hem:

Turn it around and push it back through the fabric and out the other side.  The fabric will bunch up; just gently help it along until it gives and your tube turns right-side out.  Repeat on the other hem, then iron them flat with the seam in the middle so you can only see it on one side. Here is one mid-turn and one already turned:

7.  Pin your straps to the dress after trying it on your model child (there are no pictures of me trying it on her because i didn’t – lesson learned, see below). Sew the four strap ends in place along the first seam you made and again right above that at the top of the dress for extra strength.

Now you’ve got a tank dress:

I thought I was done until I tested it out on my model:

Too big, the straps wouldn’t stay up:

8.  So I repeated the loop turning process used to make the straps, but this time I used a bit of the neckline from the old tee.  I wrapped the new piece of strap around the two straps, turned it inside out and sewed it together, then flipped it back over to create this little doodad:

Done!  And when she gets a little bigger, I can snip the doodad off and it will magically be a tank dress again.  If there is a name for this doodad please let me know.  It seems like everything in sewing has some crazy name I’ve never heard before.  Anyway, look how cute:

Might need some leggings, boots and a leather jacket for winter, right?