Monday, October 27, 2008

Craftiness: Sock Monkey (and more!)

I really want to make as many Christmas gifts as possible this year... partially to save money, but mainly just to force me to get crafting more! I love it so much, yet it is one of the first things to go when life gets hectic.

And for some reason, I have decided that my little cousins need Sock Monkeys. I have always wanted to make one, so now is my chance! After doing some searching, there is so much more than just Monkeys to make, so I may try three different animals...

High-level Instructions from Super Sock Monkey
Detailed Sock Monkey Instructions from Web Goddess
Instructions for a Sock Elephant (scroll down in message board for full instructions) from Craftster
Sock Dog Instructions via
Use Gloves to make this adorable Dog and Bunny from Martha Stewart

I was at Target this weekend & they have some cute patterned socks, as does Gap Kids. Or, get the Original Rockford Red Heel Monkey Sock!

(picture via Craft Magazine)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Loving It: Lists!

I am addicted to list making... I'm one of those people who will write down chores already completed, just so I can have the satisfaction of crossing it off. Crazy? Yes. Satisfying? Absolutely!

So of course love this letterpress "i heart lists" paper from simplesongdesigns on etsy. (guard your wallet when you check out her store- sooooo many adorable things!)

Everyone knows that pretty paper, a great pen, & nice handwriting can take your simple list to a lust-worthy status! Ok, maybe not everyone, just list-crazy people like me!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A stay-in-bed & snuggle day

Sorry for the lack of posting... I seem to have caught that flu bug that is going around. Good times. I've basically been spending the last few days in the middle of this:

Snuggle Pugs

Snuggliness definitely is a surefire way to feeling better!

Friday, October 17, 2008

All You Need Is Love

All You Need is Love (I can't even think it without singing it!) is now up on my wall, thanks to a fun new wall decal courtesy of VinylVineyard on etsy.

All You Need is Love

How cute is it?! I wanted an easy way to add a pop of color without painting... the place I put it is kind of a strange wall in a hallway & I couldn't think of a logical way to paint without looking out of place. Plus there are super high ceilings which I didn't want to deal with. I am so happy with this solution!
All You Need is Love

Thursday, October 16, 2008

True (Lion) Love

This video is the best thing I have seen in a long time.

So amazing & heartwarming... look how proud his 'owners' are of him at the end, so happy that he is doing well. I admit it- I even teared up a little...

Craftiness: Halloween Pails

Inspired by the candy wrapper decoupaged buckets by Martha Stewart (instructions here), I made my own last year. At the Pumpkin Carving party these are placed on the table & hold the carving tools. I am no decoupage expert (I think this may have been my first time!), but it was an easy - though messy - project.

Halloween Pails
I really wanted to find Sugar Daddies to use, but of course the 10 stores my mom & drove to last year didn't have them. And then the week after completing these pails the Sugar Daddy was everywhere! Typical. Still, the Dubble Bubble turned out cute... even if the angled nature of the pail made for difficulty with the stripes!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Quotation Inspiration

Rumi Quotation

Monday, October 13, 2008

Homemade Caramel Apples

Since kids are welcome at the Pumpkin Carving party this weekend, I feel like it is a good excuse to have a fun Halloween craft. Last year I had a bunch of stickers & they decorated gift bags (potential trick-or-treat bags)... was actually amusing because the kids were bored by the pumpkins early on & the parents were all left finishing up the carving. So the activity helped to keep everyone happy & out of trouble.

I was thinking that a fun activity this year (for kids & adults!) could be a make-your-own-Caramel Apple station. Everyone loves Caramel Apples, plus I am always looking for an excuse to use my electric fondue pot! Of course I have no idea how to make Caramel Apples, so last night I set about experimenting on my own.

After searching for a Caramel Apple recipe, it seemed like you can just melt wrapped caramels: I basically followed this recipe. (Of course, Martha had a crazy recipe for people who want to make their own caramel. Right. Needless to say, I did the simple 'melt caramels' version!)

Making Caramel Apples

So here you can see me all set up... I have my trusty fondue pot, a bowl full of crushed M&M's, waxed paper, and my bag of caramels. I then removed the stems from my apples & inserted wooden skewers. The recipes seem to suggest craft sticks, but I already had the skewers. Plus the pointy end made it super easy to put it into the apples.

I then added half the bag of caramels to the pot & turned on the heat... and... ew. A nasty mess.

I put the other half of the caramels in a plastic bowl & melted in the microwave, which worked must better. I then poured the melted caramel in the fondue pot.

Making Caramel Apples

Much better. I rolled my apple around, though the caramel wasn't very deep, so only really covered the apple halfway. I then rolled the caramel-covered apple in my bowl of crushed candy. (I also tried with some apple slices.)

And ta-da - the end result!
Making Caramel Apples

For anyone else wanting to try this I think that the bag of caramels (about 40 caramels) would cover up to 8 apples. Still not sure if this activity will make it to the party. I think that melting much more caramel (I'm thinking 3 bags) would certainly help. Also would suggest thinning out the caramel with some milk or water (the recipes I saw suggested 2 tablespoons of one of the other for every bag of candy).

Friday, October 10, 2008

Halloween Lollipops

I'm still a disorganized mess for our pumpkin carving party in a week, but definitely have the holiday on my mind.

How cute are these lollipops from Hammond's Candies? I feel like a Halloween party needs some candy, but this is a million times cuter than a bowl full of snack-size candy (that I then need out of the house before I eat all the leftovers!).

Magazine Clippings

I have an (out-of-control, according to J) obsession with magazines. Mainly home, decorating, and entertaining ones... I especially can't get enough of Domino & Martha Stewart Weddings. The obsession is relatively harmless, except that I cannot throw magazines away until I've had a chance to dig through them & cut out things I like. I've been into patterns lately... here is a sampling of patterns I spied while cutting up a recent-ish (May 08?) InStyle...

Random Patterns I like...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Celebrate with a Sparkle

I came across this idea at The Fancied & am loving it... who needs boring old candles for your cake when you can have sparklers (from Sea and Jae)?! I think I may need to order some '0' and '9' ones for this year's New Year's Celebration!

When searching for more sparklers, it appears that Europe is all over this trend. Just about every site I found had pricing in Euros... as cute as these are, I'm not ready to pay international shipping. Come to think of it, would it even be legal to order 'fireworks' from another country? I can imagine getting arrested... 'but Officer, I just wanted a super cute cake!'

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

"Faux"paper (aka Fun with Stencils)

I'm getting excited for our (2nd) Annual Pumpkin Carving party in a couple of weeks (more on that to come!), but of course planning a party isn't quite enough work for me. I also decided that I need to make the house look better, make all those updates I have been thinking about but not made any progress on.

More to come about what I have planned, but for now a project I have been meaning to share for forever. This is the stenciling/ fake wallpaper (aka 'faux'paper!) I did in our entry just in time for the party last year! I just love how it turned out, and so many people say that they love the wallpaper. And then I tell them that I painted it. Luckily, my friends & family already knew I was crazy! :)

Entry Stencil - before & after
Entry Stencil
Entry Stencil

Friday, October 3, 2008

Weekend Eye Candy

It's been a long week! Boozer & his little booty* want you to have a great weekend!

Pug Butt
* He really looks like he is modeling here, doesn't he!? Like 'oh, gee - didn't see you there with the camera!'

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Room inspiration: Purples & Grays

Just some rooms that have caught my eye lately:

Cynthia Rowley Living Room
Cynthia Rowley's gorgeous living room... picture via
Elle Decor

Squeak in the Bedroom
Sharon Montrose's adorable dog Squeak in her bedroom

Purple Accents
Found via
Another Shade of Grey, picture originally from Nuevo Estilo