Posts in the ‘Decor’ Category

GIVEAWAY: Win a Cricut Expression 2 Worth $299.99

The day is finally here! We're giving away a Cricut Expression 2 worth $299.99!

I've been having so much fun with mine! To see what I've been up to, take a look at my recent Valentine's Day post and favor box post.

What's amazing about the Cricut is the variety of projects you can create. Here are some projects I hope to conquer in the coming months (I found all these images on the Circut blog).

It's super easy to enter the giveaway. Just “like” Cricut on Facebook, then come back here and leave a comment saying you did just that.

We’ll pick a winner at random on Thursday, March 1st at 10:00PM (PST) and notify the winner by email.  Any entries after that won’t be considered, sorry. We will use random.org to generate our winner and will notify you by email. Open to US residents only. 

 

DIY: How to Make a Yarn Wrapped Bottle Vase

I found this tutorial on Inside My Hideaway and I just love the way the stripes look on the bottle. Isn't it cool how something so simple can be so pretty? And wouldn't this look great as part of a centerpiece or on a mantle?

Here it is filled with beaded flowers. Just lovely!

Check out the whole tutorial here.

DIY: How to Make a Tulle Heart Wreath

How cute for Valentine's Day!

Eileen Behar of Behar Party Designs created this tulle heart wreath tutorial for us to share. Thank you, Eileen!

This wreath is a lot easier to make than it looks.  All you need are the following items from your local craft store and a little patience (sometimes hard for me).

SUPPLIES

  • 1 styrofoam heart wreath base
  • 1 large roll of red wedding tulle (or pink, whatever choice of colors that you choose, or you can make more than one color)
  • Scissors

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Cut your tulle into about 8 inch strips (I tend to cut about 10 at a time and then start to tie on the wreath base so I don’t cut too much of my tulle and have spare left over for another project)
  • Take the tulle and tie it around the base – I started at the top peak of the heart (NOTE:  top peak and bottom point are the trickiest to cover).  I tie a double knot and then take another piece of tulle and criss cross tie it over the previous knot, so there is a double overlay for each. Here are some photos demonstrating the knot.

  • Continue the above step until you have covered the entire heart base.
  • When all is covered, take your scissors and trim the tulle to your liking so it has the dimensions and shape you are looking for . (I actually cut and trim as I go along, but everyone has their own way of doing things.)
  • Use your favorite tulle or ribbon and loop through the tulle in the back of the top part of the wreath to create a hanger and VOILA.. A beautiful, inexpensive Valentine’s Day wreath for a gift or to decorate your home or office.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at beharpartydesigns(at)yahoo(dot)com.

Happy tulle-ing!

Thank you, Eileen, for sharing your easy tutorial with us!

Inexpensive, Cute Super Bowl Party Decor (Plus, Our Free Printables in Action)

Melissa N throws tons of great parties, and always does them on the tiniest of budgets.

She's throwing a Super Bowl party and used our free Super Bowl printables to make these table decorations. How adorable are these!

To learn how Melissa made her crepe paper pom poms, and to see more of her other cute and inexpensive Super Bowl ideas, check out her blog, The Joys of Home Educating.

Thank you, Melissa, for sharing. I love seeing what great ideas you come up with!

PARTY ON A BUDGET: A Vintage Ballerina Birthday for $150

I saw this Vintage Ballerina Birthday on our site that Jenifer H created for her daughter, and I thought it was beyond beautiful.

Then I read that she pulled the whole thing off for $150 and I almost died. How did she do it? I, of course, had to find out Jenifer's secrets, and she so generously agreed to share them here. We won't tell, Jenifer, we promise!

My daughter, Ellah, has a love for ballerinas and dancing. When I was shopping at the Round Top/Warrenton Antiques Show in Round Top, Texas, I found a stash of vintage little ballerina prints. I purchased them for her room, and when she saw them, the gasp she took helped me to decide the theme of her 3rd birthday - a vintage ballerina.


Vintage ballerina print in spray-painted frame

When planning my two children's birthdays, under one month apart, I know we cannot break the bank two months in a row on birthday parties.  Although I'd really love to do it, I guess God really didn't have birthday parties in mind when He planned our children.  I also work with plenty of moms through my store with similar circumstances or moms who just want to save money.  Perfectly understood.

1st Tip - K.I.S.S

My first money saving tip is always the theory KISS: Keep it Simple Sweetie.  I am with the idea 'less is more.'  My daughter's party was very, very simple.  I kept the party small which helped cut the cost.  We invited family plus a few of my daughter's closest preschool friends, about 25 guests including the children. 

I served less expensive foods by having a simple brunch.  Breakfast foods can be inexpensive to make!  My husband and I cooked french toast, pigs-n-the-blanket, oven baked ham and swiss sliders (via Pinterest - so easy with very few inexpensive ingredients), chicken salad croissant sandwiches, homemade raspberry muffins and we had a simple green salad and fresh fruit in season. My mom brought the chicken salad, so my most expensive menu item was lovingly donated. 


Chicken salad croissant sandwiches


Pigs in the blanket

I kept the ballerinas' activities so simple.  Since coloring is a 2-5 year old favorite, I printed off a ballerina coloring page free from the internet for the girls to color and decorate.  I also purchased foam princess crowns and foam stickers on clearance for $5.00 total. 


Crowns to decorate

The girls had a blast creating their own princess ballerina crowns to wear during the party.  The last activity was, simply, dancing.  All party guests either wore their own tutu or we let them wear a tutu from our play clothes.  The little ballerinas cut a rug with what you might call very modern, interpretive dance moves - so entertaining and it was free!

2nd Tip - Use & Reuse

This is a fun and important tip: Use and reuse what you have!  I love "shopping" the house (and my mother's house) to find what will work with my party's theme.  I think it's perfectly acceptable to ask family and friends to borrow items that could work for your party.  Get creative with the stuff you already have.  The vintage ballerina prints that I purchased for my daughter's bedroom were some of the main party decorations I planned to use, but they didn't have frames.  Lo and behold, in my search, I found three identical, unused frames in my garage that happened to fit the pictures!  That was a score.  The frames were black, so I purchased spray paint to coordinate with the party color scheme and simply spray painted them and hung the art.  Easy and inexpensive. 

Absolutely everything that I used to serve the food and candy I either owned myself or I borrowed from my mom's vintage dish collection. 


Borrowed vintage dishes

The pops of turquoise you see in the platter and round place mat I already had.  Another party item I reused was the large mirror seen in the outdoor table photos. The mirror was kept from our bathroom remodel and worked as a great ballet mirror.


Ballet mirror from bathroom remodel

3rd Tip - Use your connections

Here I saved most of my money on the most expensive parts of the party - the photography, the cake, the bunting, the invitations and party accessories - all because of people I know.  Do you have a friend or family member you know who takes better photos than you?  I do!  A good friend of mine is the photographer of Jennifer Schattle Photography.  Jennifer and I partner together on projects every year including my children's birthday parties, so I am blessed to know and work with such a talented friend.  Of course, you don't have to know a photographer.  Ask people you know who can help! 

I also know someone who bakes - conveniently, my husband.  He is not a professional, but he grew up baking with his grandmother and does a wonderful, tasty job.  We insist on baking our children's cakes/cupcakes every birthday, so we save money in that department yearly. 


Caked baked by Jenifer's husband -- incredible!

In addition, I have an aunt who owns a custom sewing business, Kustom Kids of Kingwood.  When I had decided on the ballerina theme, I knew I wanted a bunting.  I shopped around and found that they were a little pricey for me.  I contacted my aunt and she quickly put together my requests (and my favorite piece of the party) for a fraction of what I would have paid anywhere else. 


Bunting sewn by Jenifer's aunt

Finally, I own my Etsy store Hello Love Designs where I sell printable party invitations and party accessories.  I also work with one of the top US press printing companies allowing me to have my invitations professionally printed for cost.  I printed out the cupcake toppers, tent labels, and favor tags on my own home printer, cut, and we were ready to party!  I have the Little Vintage Ballerina birthday invitation and full printable party collection for sale in the store.


Custom invitation designed by Jenifer


Cupcake toppers and tent labels designed by Jenifer

4th Tip - Use printables

I LOVE printables!!  Printable party accessories add such detail to a party and save money at the same time.  You can purchase anything from full party packages to just the pieces you need for a low cost.  Then all you have to do is print, cut them out, and you're ready to add beautiful detail to your party.  If you're really on a tight budget, there are many blogs, designers, and sites who offer free party printables.  You will spend a little time assembling, but the money you save is so worth it!

5th Tip - Use Etsy

For me, Etsy is an indispensable source.  Great deals are to be found everywhere!  Etsy offers such a variety of products, styles, and prices that everyone is happy.  I found (another favorite piece) a vintage floral sheet that I used as the table cloth outside at a great Etsy store called Eager Hands.  It was so reasonably priced, and the seller was kind enough to throw in sweet little "extras."  In fact, the eyelet trim I used to trim the party hats came as an "extra" from her shop. 


Eyelet trim on party hats

I also purchased the cupcake liners from The Cupcake Social used to serve candy, Ellah's tutu from Cheeky Chic Baby, and Ellah's headband from Prim Couture Shop - all on Etsy.  Note:  Ellah's birthday outfit was not a part of our party budget.


Ellah's birthday outfit

My one "splurge" item was the floral arrangement and, truthfully, it wasn't all that expensive.  I took the florist my pitcher, an inspiration photo, and a budget and they worked up something gorgeous that I could afford.  I always plan and shop ahead comparing prices.  I try to avoid last minute purchasing which can end up costing me more money.

Thank you, Jenifer, for sharing all your tips and your beautiful party with us. You did an incredible job!

To see more of Jenifer's designs, check out her other pretty parties on our site and her Etsy shop, Hello Love Designs .

 

FREE Valentine's Day Party Printables from Paper & Pigtails

free-valentines-day-printable-decorations

I've been a fan of Kori Clark's from Paper & Pigtails for a long long time, so I was excited to finally get to work with her. Kori is not only a delight, but she also designed these "Sweethearts" Valentine's Day party printables for us that are so happy and bright, they put a smile on my face. Take a look...

The collection includes: editable invitations, party circles, favor tags, editable tented cards, an editable banner, straw flags, and little cute Valentines to give to your friends. (Please note: the editable files must be used with Adobe Reader, a free download.)

DOWNLOAD THE HIGH RESOLUTION FILES FOR PRINTING

free-valentines-day-printable-decorations

Thank you, Kori, for such fun a collection! To learn more about Kori, and see all her fantastic designs, visit Paper & Pigtails!

Also, for more Valentine's Day inspiration, check out these great parties from our site.

DIY: Paper Rose Wreath Tutorial

How great would this paper rose wreath look greeting your guests at your next birthday, shower, or Valentine's Day party?

This tutorial from Sandi at I'm a Yarner is so easy but definitely takes some time. So if you've got some Glee to catch up on, it might be worth doing.

And yes, it's just made of rolled paper flowers sprinkled with glitter.

See the whole tutorial here at I'm a Yarner. Thank you Sandi, for making something so beautiful!

DIY: My Paper Ornaments

Whenever I get crafty, I feel like a kid! So yesterday, I had a great day making homemade ornaments for our tree using my handy HP Printer (go here for our current HP printer giveaway) and some free downloads from the HP Creative Studio.

Take a look at what I made... (For the downloads, click on the photos.)

hp-paper-craft-ornaments

This paper snowball is my favorite. If you're going to make one, this is definitely the one to try.

hp-paper-ball-ornament

hp-paper-dove-ornament

hp-paper-triangle-pyramid-ornament

Since we celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah at our house, I had to make this cute dreidel for my daughter (It actually works).

hanukkah--paper-driedel-hp-craft-studio

These were really easy to do. I just needed some glossy brochure paper, a pair of good scissors, a glue stick, a hole punch, and some ribbon. If you're looking for some fun ornaments, holiday cards, and decoration, check out the HP Creative Studio. There's a lot to explore.

Please Link up Your Holiday Crafts, Recipes, and Free Printables!

This week it really hit me that the holidays are right around the corner. I'm hoping to get crafty with my daughter this season so I need some ideas.

holiday-wreaths

I'd love to see all the inspiring holiday crafts, recipes, and free printables you've been creating. Please link them up and I will be showing off my favorites over the next few weeks (as well as making a few). Can't wait to see! Please click the link below to add your project:

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Our Snowflake Design Challenge and My Top 12 Favorite Items

I am thrilled with how our Snowflake Design Challenge turned out! If you haven't seen all 181 items, please take a look.

I feel honored that I get to show off the work of such creative people. I really do love my job and that is one of the main reasons.

Thank you to everyone who participated. I hope you get a lot of exposure for the beautiful items you've made.

And now, without further adieu, here are my top 12 favorite snowflake items, in no particular order (there were so many I loved, my husband had to play tie breaker on a few and I still had to pick 12 instead of 10)...

Glittered Snowflake Birthday Party Hat by Prop Shop Boutique

glittered-snowflake-birthday-party-hat

 Baby It's Cold Outside Holiday Party Invitation by loralangdesigns

DIY-printable-holiday-invitation

Twinkling Snowflakes Holiday Card by Blush Printables

snowflake-holiday-card

Snowflake Chocolate Lollipops by Frosted Petticoat

snowflake-chocolate-lollipops

 Pet Photo Booth Holiday Card by Paper Heart Company

custom-pet-holiday-card

 Snowflake Cookies by Lori's Place

snowflake-cookies-etsy

 Joy to the World Vintage Gift Tags by SongbirdGreetings

vintage-christmas-gift-tags

Holiday Eat, Drink, Be Merry Printable Collection  by TypeWink ;)

snowflake-printables-setFrosted Fairy Mini Top Hat Headband by Cutie Patootie Designz

frosted-fairy-mini-top-hat-headband

Girls Applique Winter Wonderland Snowflake Tee by Modern Frills

winter-wonderland-tee-shirt

Winter Fun Cupcake Toppers by Party NV

etsy-fondant-christmas-snowflake-topper

Vintage Winter Wonderland Printables from Squared Party Printables

winter-wonderland-printables

Thanks again to all of you talented people who added your items. I'm planning to do another design challenge for Valentine's Day. I hope you'll join then too.

And tomorrow, I will be doing a random drawing where one of you will win an HP Officejet 7500A Printer! Good luck!

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