Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Make Your Own 3-D Stars

I'm pretty sure the trend of using 3 dimensional stars in home decor is on its way out. How do I know? I've figured out how to make them on my own which means - now that I can make an endless supply we'll find out that they are officially over.

But first, my apologies for being gone 10 days. In the past 10 days we've:
  • Been visited by 3 sets of grandparents, yes - for 1 day that they were all here at the same time. 
  • Had Bug's dance recital. 
  • Had one set of grandparents stay with us for those 10 days (don't worry, they were a huge help while here and I'll be showing off some of what we did while they were here soon.) 
  • Hosted Bug's birthday party, complete with grandparents, 20 kids and 10 adults. At. Our. House. 
  • Completed several projects
  • All while I continue to not only work full time, but put an additional 15-20 hours in on a freelance project.
At this point, I could sleep for a week!!!

But instead... I figured out how to turn a chubby little star like the one pictured on the left, into a dimensional star like the one picture on the right:

Really - this is so easy, it takes less than 5 minutes per star, and that is with a 3 year old trying to "help."

  • Chubby Star (I'll explain)
  • Straight Edge
  • Something to score with, a actual scoring tool, or plastic knife will do fine

So first - a "chubby star" - what I mean by that is a star where the inside angle is not as tight into the center of the star as with a traditional star like you'd see on a flag.

See the difference:

With the star on the right, if you draw a straight line from tip to tip of the left and right points it goes through the inside angles of the star. With the star on the left, if you draw the same line, the line is below the inside angles of the star.

See - the star on the left is chubbier.

Ok - moving on with our chubby little stars.

Find the center of your star and lightly mark it in pencil - I marked mine a bit darker so you could see it:

Then on the right side of the paper, take your straight edge from each of the inside angles and score to the center of the star.

Again - I was worried this wouldn't show up well so I drew the lines in pencil here.

Then flip the star over and score from the tip of the star to the center of the star.

Next, fold all the long scores so they are up, and all the short score so they are down. As you are playing with the star you'll get what I'm talking about. Mine basically folded for me as I was holding it.

And there you go - Your own 3-D star...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Guest Post: Swish Bag by the Busy Bug

Today, I'm honored to feature my first guest post. Our guest is going to show us how to make swish bags, a project she found and directed the production on.

First a bit about Bug, she is my 6 year old daughter. She finishes kindergarten this week, just had her 3rd dance recital, loves playing outside and working on projects whenever she gets the chance.

Take it away Bug.

This morning I found this book of princess projects.

I decided to make one of these swish bags. I liked the one gold one on the bottom the best.

  • Brown paper bag
  • scrap book paper
  • Scissors
  • Cricut or paper circle paper punch
  • glue stick
  • velcro
 Paper bag and we cut a bunch of circles on her cricut.

Cut the top of the bag off.

Cut a triangle with a flap on the bottom out of craft paper:

Put glue on the flap:

Put the flap on the back of the bag:

Start gluing the circles on the bag:

Cut the top off of any circles that overlap the top of the bag so that the flap can close.

Turn the bag around and glue the circles on the back of the bag:

Decorate the flap if you want:

Last, glue a piece of velcro to the inside of the flap and the front of the bag.
(Note from Mom: I clipped some of the velcro loops off to make the velcro much less strong for bug, otherwise when opening the bag I'm sure it would have ripped.)

Here is the finished bag:

And - don't forget to clean up!!!

Thanks for reading!

I can't tell you how much fun I had helping Bug with this project and this post. She had such a good time, I guess after the year and half of watching me blog my way through projects the blogging finally wore off.

I think these little bags would make great gift bags, treat bags and even bags for teacher appreciate gifts.

Keep your eye out for more guest posts from the Busy Bug!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Kitchen Renovation - Section 4 COMPLETE!!!

Yesterday was a long day - a very long day - thankfully the kids cooperated and we ended up with 12 hours, which is exactly what we need to finish section 4 of our kitchen, the floor!!!

To give this all some perspective, lets look back to 2 months ago at some of the before pictures:

If you missed sections one, two and three - feel free to go back and check them out.

I don't quite have a step by step on this, but one of the things I did document was the removal of this stupid rail... seriously, what is this for? To keep people from "falling" from the kitchen to the family room where, oh by the way, there is no drop?

With this gone - I'm hoping to put a desk for the kids to do their homework at - once the kids are old enough to have homework anyway...

Just a few (12) hours later here is what our kitchen looks like now:

We are THRILLED - I cannot believe that a day and less than $300 in laminate flooring from Ikea has made this kind of transformation.

Next up, repairing the back splash, painting the back splash and other areas blue, putting back in the molding and touching up a few things!


I love my kitchen.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Ribbon Ribbon & More

Thought I'd some of the other things we did to celebrate my mom's 15 year anniversary over the weekend.

My cousin Shannon ran with this "Ribbon Ribbon" that I ran out of time to make...

I have a very a talented friend who makes the most beautiful and tasty cookies, she made these and believe me - they are GONE!

We also made her this sash to wear during the race that we put on the mantel along with the ribbon and flags from the race.

And here are the 3 generations that came to celebrate my mom:

(Back row: Me, My Mom, her Sister Nancy
Middle row: Nancy's daughters Erin and Shannon
Front and Center: Bug
Not pictured: My Aunt Kaye who had already left to get back to Chicago.)

It was such an amazing weekend... though from the picture I think you can tell, I was exhausted from it all!!! But, I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Customized Raced T-Shirts

Last weekend was the Race for the Cure here in DC, my mom's older sister, her twin sister and 2 of my cousins came to celebrate the 15 year anniversary of my mom's recovery from breast cancer. The Komen Race for the Cure provides race t-shirts to runners and walkers who are registered for the event but I wanted to do something to set our team out.

So I took the logo that I designed and printed them on iron on transfer paper:
(Yes, these are printed flipped, that is how you do it with Iron ons...)

Then we cut the logos out and placed them on the sleeve of the prewashed shirts:

And followed the instructions to iron them onto the shirts, instructions by product vary, so be sure to follow the ones that come with your transfer paper.

Here is the finished sleeve -
We then took an old bed sheet left over from my bathroom curtain project and made these flags by transferring the logo onto a square, then hot gluing them on wooden dowels:

All we had to do was spend $10 on the transfer paper to create 10 shirts and 10 flags to give our team a custom look for this amazingly special day.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Kitchen Renovation - Section 3 COMPLETE!!!

Here we go again - section 3 of our kitchen renovation - COMPLETE!!!

This section was really difficult, definitely the most difficult thing we've tackled in a long time.

Here is what we did - the before:

Here is the after:

And here is some of what we did along the way, not a step by step or tutorial as I usually like to do, but I think this give a pretty good idea of what we were doing.

Painted the drawers, doors and frames of the cabinets, plus a few accessories. Since this was going to be the last time I pulled out the paint sprayer for a while I wanted to get the full use of it. (Yes, I had to paint the lazy susan from section 2 again, there were some pretty awful drips that had to be sanded and fixed)

We also had to remove the counter tops as well as the breakfast bar. Unfortunately, the breakfast bar revealed some pretty ugly workmanship that we had to go in and take out as well. Lucky for us, Bug got into the action. (I LOVE that our kids get into this too.)

Another challenge, cutting the perfect angle on the counter tops, it wasn't any sort of angle you could really measure and go from... so here is what we did. Made a template out of cardboard and cut the first part.

Then we put down another piece of cardboard, put the cut section on top of that, and then made the 2nd sections template from that:

Turned out to be a perfect solution:
(Please ignore the dust...)

Back to the breakfast bar. I knew there was going to be no way to cut the laminate counter top so that it would look good as a breakfast bar... if you go back to my post on our selection, you'll see we went with the butcher block and I'm so happy we did. It was a dream to cut an it looks amazing.

Here is how we cut it, we measured the depth we wanted, then measured the distance from the guide on our circular side to where the cut should be. Then we took a large 1x4" length of wood and clamped it to the butcher block:

Sorry, this picture is actually post cut - I forgot to take it before, but you get the idea don't you???

So why did we have the 1"x4"? - funny you should ask!

Because we were coupling them with these corbels:

To create our breakfast bar:

I'm in love!

We still have a lot of finish work to do, caulking, touch up painting, adding trim, painting above the counter tops and figuring out our back splash - but what we set out to do with this section, we completed... all in the span of memorial day weekend.

A few more pictures to enjoy:

Yes, we have a new sink and faucet - I'm not going to talk about those because we did EVERYTHING wrong installing them. The last think you should do is look to us for advice on that part of the kitchen. 

Yikes... and yes, those are my crutches in the background. Long story. Long painful story.
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