Tuesday, September 24, 2013

How to Make a Candy Bouquet

The hubby recently became a partner at work and they just made the big announcement to all the staff. We had known about it for quite a while, but they were announcing it to others for the first time last week, so I thought I would try and whip up something special for him to celebrate. I knew I didn't want to go with something traditional like a nameplate for his desk, and he's not really a flowers kind of guy - he would have said I bought them for myself.  ;)   I had seen those fruit and candy bouquets before and thought I'd give it a whirl. 

I stopped by our local Dollar General and grabbed a ton of candy in varying sizes and shapes. I didn't really know how I was going to set it up, so I bought a lot of candy (and didn't end up even using half of it).

I also grabbed an insulated cup from the summer clearance section (always a win) to use as the base. 

At first, I thought I could use some straws I had lying around (in photo above) and hot glue the straws to the candy. Wrong! The straws weren't strong enough to hold the candy up. I started looking around my craft area (aka craft mess) and saw some popsicle sticks that Hannah and I had left over from one of our many crafting adventures. Those worked much better and held the candy upright nicely.

He loves the little butterscotch candies, so I wanted to use those as the filler to keep the candy standing upright. 

I just tried to arrange the candy in a way that was pleasing to the eye. No real strategy. 

I had the shredded green paper left from a basket we received at Christmas last year. Not sure what it is called - but it looked good and added some nice color and texture.

I added the little suckers to the front to give it some more 'depth'.

And that's it!  Very easy and the hubby loved it! And it only cost a few dollars! 
I will definitely do this again! 

Anyone out there ever made a candy bouquet?  If so, please share! 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

DIY KC Royals Tshirt

Here in Kansas, we not only bleed K-State Purple, but also Royals Blue. We are big KC Royals fans...which is often tough because they haven't won the World Series since 1985...the year after I was born. Tough as sometimes is to be a Royals fan, we try to make it to the 'K' to watch at least one or two games a year. 

With the possibility of the Royals making it to the playoffs for the first time since 1985, the family and I bought tickets to today's game - the last home game of the season. 

Joe, Luke and I all had Royals shirts we could wear to the game, but Hannah did not, so I thought I would see if I could whip something up for her to wear to the game with my trusty Silhouette. 

I found a blank t-shirt at Wal-Mart on clearance for $2 (Score!!) that was the PERFECT Royals Blue. 

I googled and found a Royals logo, and then converted the JPEG into a PNG in Adobe Photoshop in order to input it into the Silhouette software.  I then opened it up and traced it in the Silhouette software.

It took a little while to erase some of the extra 'lines' that showed up and fill in a few spots with the pencil, but it was relatively easy overall.

When using Heat Transfer Vinyl, it is important that you 'mirror' your image (Right Click + Flip Horizontally).  Otherwise, when you place it against your shirt it will be the wrong direction. It will look backwards when it cuts put will read correctly when finished.

Learning from the first time I used HTV, I was sure to put the HTV shiny side down on my cutting mat. I used the existing HTV settings in the Silhouette software and let 'er rip.

Note:  When cutting small pieces of Vinyl (Adhesive or HTV), I normally use some painter's tape to keep it in place. it works like a charm and doesn't damage the vinyl.  

The HTV cut just perfectly and was really easy to weed with the little Silhouette tool that came with my vinyl starter kit. It's just my opinion, but HTV seems a lot easier to weed than regular adhesive vinyl.  

Here's how it looked all weeded and ready to place on the shirt. 

I just eye-balled it to center it on the t-shirt, laying it with the shiny side up. 

I used a regular iron to adhere the HTV to the shirt. That's one thing I love about the Silhouette - I don't need some fancy heat press to make personal t-shirts; I just use my regular iron and it works great! 

I use the iron on medium-high heat and place one of those 'flour sack towels' in between the vinyl and the t-shirt. I think I pressed it for about 60 seconds or maybe a little longer. Be sure to get all of the corners and intricate details of the design with the iron or it will start to peel on the edges (I know this from experience). 

And here is the happy little girl with her shirt!  She was so excited!

Friday, September 13, 2013

First Birthday Uno Shirt

I've talked a little about my love for my Silhouette Cameo in previous posts. Seriously, I love this thing more every time that I use it.  And just when I think I have found the latest and greatest thing I can do with it, I find a new project on a blog...or bring my own idea to life...and I come to love it even more. :)

My little man turned one this past month.  And I had so much fun (ie Pinterest) planning and creating for his big day! 

Isn't he cute?!

I hope to detail his party in a future post, but for now I wanted to share the fun shirt I made for his first birthday photos! 

I had seen a post on Pinterest (of course) of a little boy eating his first birthday smash cake in a shirt that said 'Uno' on it. I thought it was adorable and immediately pinned it, knowing that I wanted to make one for Luke.  Though instead of using it during a smash cake session, I thought it would be neat to give him a deck of Uno cards to play with. 

I found a black shirt at Walmart (Garanimals brand I think - only $3 bucks) and ordered some heat transfer vinyl in red. It was my first time using the stripflock HTV (and actually only the second time using HTV. The first was for another First Birthday shirt - see photo above). Super easy to use - I am just not sure I love the texture of it. I'll probably stick with regular HTV next time. 

I found a good tutorial here. One thing to note, remember to load your HTV SHINY SIDE DOWN.  She mentions it several times...but did I remember? NO. Had to cut it a second time.  Man, I hate wasting vinyl! 

Anywho, it cut perfectly and ironed on perfectly and I ended up with this:

(My photography is awful and this looks kinda wonky. The photo doesn't do it really is super cute!)

And here are some shots from his session with our amazing photographer Kayla at Capture

I just love my silly little guy! 

Linking up to:  Sugar Bee Craft's Take-A-Look Tuesday and A Bowl Full of Lemons One Project At A Time.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

IKEA Recycling Bins (& Silhouette Vinyl Labels)

Earlier this spring, the hubs and I drove to Denver for a little mini-vacation to celebrate our five-year wedding anniversary.  Plans included a Rockies Game, Zac Brown Band at Red Rocks (bucket list item), sampling local brews, visiting some family and friends...and a trip to IKEA! 

(Us at a Red Rocks. It was rainy and freezing outside!)

I'd dreamed of amazing trips to IKEA ever since I started following the blog I Heart Organizing three years ago. We made a quick stop back in January 2012 while watching our K-State Wildcats play in the Cotton Bowl down in Dallas, TX. I bought a few things but we couldn't fit much in my little Chevy Malibu car. 

Flash forward to 2013 and our trip to Denver in my SUV that could hold plenty of purchases...

(I could have fit a lot more in the car!)

I didn't go CRAZY, but I did purchase a few things to help us get organized at the new house. One of the things I was most excited about getting was the Sortera Recycling Boxes. I'm having trouble finding them on their website - I think they may have been discontinued. :(

Here in rural Kansas we just have monthly recycling drop-off, so we have to keep a month's worth built up in our garage. I put them to use right away, and they worked great to keep everything organized and sorted, but they needed a little something to make sure they stayed organized and served their purpose.

Insert my silhouette.  :)   

I used some pretty green vinyl that came with my Silhouette Cameo Vinyl Starter Kit.  I used a recycling symbol I had used on a previous design project and quickly whipped up this:

Labels always make things better!  See! Even the garage can be beautiful! :)

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Grandparents' Day Handprint Art

Grandparents' Day is this Sunday, and in today's Pinterest-y world, gone is the simple card sent in the mail for the Grandparents to enjoy.  Now it is all about personalized, hand-crafted gifts and cards...and to be honest, I love it! :)

I love crafting with my kiddos and creating memories right along with the gifts for their grandparents. Hannah and I break out the paints on most weekends while Luke is napping, so it wasn't hard to convince her that we should create something special for her Nana and Poppa. 

I didn't take photos of the whole process (something about trying to wrangle a 1-year-old's painted feet and taking a photo don't go together), but all we did was put some paint on a paper paint, dip each kid's foot in the paint, and then stick the canvas up to their painted feet. Then Hannah drew in the 'stems' for the flowers all by herself.  

And of course, since I can't seem to work on a project without breaking out the Silhouette, I cut out some black vinyl to add in the occasion and year.  ;)  

Vinyl is addicting. Lol. 

Easy Peasy.

Hope the grandparents' love them!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Personalized Wedding Tile

I've had my Silhouette Cameo since before Christmastime...Black Friday to be exact. I have to admit I didn't even use it for about three months. THREE MONTHS.  Some of my Silhouette Group friends on Facebook would cringe upon hearing that.  

The machine was supposed to be able to do all these cool things, but I was just too nervous - it was kind of intimidating. When I finally got up the courage to use it, I cut a few things and then let it sit there collecting dust for a little while again. However, since May, I have used it for quite a few things (both personal and gifts) and finally feel like I am getting the hang of it. 

Last month I made this tile for my in-laws for their wedding anniversary.

I thought it was nice and classy, and the perfect way to branch out from really only using the Cameo to cut cardstock.  

Well, the in-laws LOVED it.  And they couldn't believe that I had made it myself. And on top of that, they wanted me to make one for a gift for a wedding they are attending in September. I happily agreed, as I would love to someday have a small side business and make personalized gifts like this. Gotta start somewhere, right?

So, here's what I came up with for the future bride and groom.

I learned something new after attempting to cut the image on the above left.  I either cannot figure out how to cut such intricate details with the Cameo or my machine cannot cut them at all.  That is still up in the air. My guess is user error.  ;)

Let's just say the vinyl was pulled off the tile as quickly as it was put on there.  Weeding the vinyl was awful and there were a ton of air bubbles. It was a hot mess. So I scrapped it.  I hate wasting vinyl, so I better learn all the tricks to this machine quickly.

After a little research online, I applied an offset and re-cut.  This time it came out much better.

Sorry - I didn't get a photo of the cut vinyl pre-transfer tape. 

A little more intricate and detailed than the one for my in-laws. I love the Regal font because it comes with all of those flourishes around the letter.

These tiles can be found at any local hardware/building supply store, and make a nice, personalized gift for any couple. 

So, there ya go. My first 'job' making something on the Cameo!  What do ya think?