Handmade Bow Tie

Handmade Bow TieMy son came home for holiday break and wanted to get crafty.  While we were walking through Hobby Lobby he turned and asked, “Can you make bow ties?”.  I said, “I’ve never made one before, but it can’t be that hard”.  So he raided the remnant bin and found two different fabrics that he liked.  I’ve listed out most of the steps that we took to get to the finished bow tie.  I broke a few sewing rules making the tie, but who cares…he loved the outcome and plans to make one on his own (with me looking over his shoulder, of course).  :). If you decide to try it check back in and let me know how it went!

Handmade bow tie steps 1-4

The simple things – Where does the trash go?

Hey all!

It’s been a few weeks since my last post – the holidays had me hopping!  Now that things have settled down a bit I hope I can post on a consistent schedule!  

Where does the trash go?

A couple of months ago my husband picked up a second trash can specifically for recycling so that we could stop stacking it on the counter.  That was an awesome idea and I was super excited because he was able to get the exact same one as the one we already had.  What I didn’t consider was the fact the family would get the cans mixed up.  

The answer?  Slap some vinyl on those babies and call that problem “fixed”.  :). I set up and cut out a quick design with my Cricut Explore, weeded the design (that means to take away the unwanted parts) and then used transfer tape to place the design on top of the each can lid.  

It was a quick design that fixed a small, but annoying problem.  Thanks for stopping by!


Last minute, Easy, Thanksgiving Decoration!

If you are a Cricut user I’ve got a super quick (and easy) project to personalize your Thanksgiving table.  I used Cricut Faux Leather, but you can use whatever you want – cardstock, real leather, acetate, etc.

  1. If you look in design space and search for “napkin ring” it will pull up lots of options.  I chose the plain circle because I wanted to add additional things to the ring (you can keep it even simpler by choosing a pre-designed one).  
  2. Search for “leaf” in design space and chose two that you like.
  3. Slice the letter of your choice by searching for the font you want, type the letter, ungroup the leaf, put the letter where you want, click and drag to select the leaf and the letter
  4. Click slice.  
  5. Move the leaf to show the slice and delete the sliced out letter.
  6. Cut as normal.

Then I used crafty power tape to assemble everything.  After I got everything together I realized that I didn’t like the way the “C” looked so I cut a smaller leaf and put it behind the larger leaf with the “C”.

I’d love to hear about what you are crafting for Thanksgiving so please drop me a note.  If you like this post please comment, like and share with your friends.


Arkansas Fall Painted Wood Sign

I love browsing the internet for new projects.  Lately I have seen lots of painted wood signs that signal the beginning of the Fall season.  I thought about what fall meant to me and my family and then created a sign that reflected why we love this time of year.  I did my best to take pictures of the various steps in the process so that you can see how I got from the plain sign to the finished design.  


  • Cricut Explore (plus regular blade and regular mat)
  • Wood sign (unfinished)
  • Paint in your choice of colors (I used acrylic, but many people like chalk paint too)
  • Contact Paper (white and clear)
  • Scraper (or old credit card)
  • Pick for weeding vinyl (weeding, just means picking out the parts of the design you don’t need)
  • Matte Modge Podge (only needed if you are going to allow the wood to show through)

1. Paint the wood in the base color of your choice and let dry according to the directions on your paint bottle (if you want the wood to show through leave it unpainted).

2.  Create your design in Cricut Design space, cut the design on the Washi tape setting on the white contact paper and weed out the vinyl you don’t need.

*Special note:  If you don’t have a Cricut Explore electronic cutter you can do this by hand by printing out the design on your computer, cutting it out with scissors, tracing your design onto the contact paper and cutting it out with an exacto knife.  It won’t be as fast, but is totally doable!  If you do use an exacto knife be careful to just cut through the contact paper, but not the paper backing.  You will need the backing when you transfer the design onto the wood.  After cutting out either by Cricut or by hand the rest of the instructions are exactly the same.

3.  Cut out a strip of clear contact paper, place it on top of the design and use your scraper to rub across the clear contact paper.  Lift up a small corner of the clear contact paper to see if the white contact paper lifts with it.  If it does, great job!  If it doesn’t, try turning it over and rubbing from the back side.  You will be using the clear contact paper to transfer the design to the wood.

4. Lift the clear contact paper (the white contact paper should be attached to it) and carefully, starting from left to right, place the design on the wood. Use the scraper to smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles and then lift the clear contact paper (the white contact paper should be left on the wood). If some of the white contact paper is still stuck to the clear contact paper lay the clear contact paper back down and rub again. Repeat this process until the clear contact paper is lifted completely off and the white contact paper design is left on the wood.

5. Paint over the wood and the white contact paper design with your base color.  If you didn’t use a base color, paint over the wood and contact paper design with the matte modge podge.  Allow to dry according to the directions on the paint/modge podge bottle.

6.  Apply two coats of your top paint colors, allowing the paint to dry after the first coat (according to the directions on your paint bottle).  Allow the second coat to dry until it is tacky to the touch, but not all the way dry.   Use your pick to carefully remove the white contact paper design (you will be able to see the outline underneath the paint).  Let the second coat dry completely.  Go back and touch up any areas.  Seal (or not) according to the directions on the paint bottle.  Since my paint was exterior paint I chose not to seal it.  *Side note:  If you are a messy painter like me you might want to slide strips of cardstock between the boards so that you don’t get paint on the other boards.

Here is the finished sign!

If you try this project drop me a note to let me know how yours turned out!


Heat Transfer Vinyl Tshirts (w/Cricut Explore)

ARE YOUphoto-20150711085016326 READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL!!?? I know we are more than a month away, but football camp and 7 on 7 season is here. What better way to support our son/brother than to sport his school colors/player’s number? These only took a couple of hours using the Rhinestone Wizard, my Cricut and my handy dandy heat press (I’m so glad I have this — it really speeds up the process). However, you could totally do this project with just a cutter and vinyl.

I used magic templates from The Rhinestone World and then imported the design into design space (for the football designs). I was really afraid that the font for the stadium seat wouldn’t cut or weed properly, but it actually turned out easier than I thought – plus since its a grunge type font no would know if a piece was missing. 🙂 Anyway, a super fun way to kick off the “early” football season! As for the wild-card shirt in the photo…I also pressed a track shirt for my hubby that was LOOOONG over due.





All Sewn Up and No Where To Go

16275003107_d0f91da7cc_cIt’s that time of year again, the annual NAACP Image Awards Viewing Party. I found the perfect color fabric – a nod to the 2015 Pantone color of the year – and a Vogue vintage pattern (originally printed circa 1957) that I liked. I made the dress over three and a half evenings. As you can tell by the title something went wrong…Well, I took two of my children to their well child check ups yesterday afternoon. I noticed my youngest daughter felt a little warm when I picked her up from daycare, but I didn’t think much about it because I’m usually cooler than she is. Imagine my surprise when the doctor said “we can’t give her any shots today because she two different strains of the flu”. Whaaaaat!? I didn’t even know that was possible!

So, neededless to say my plans for going out were over, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. There is just something about mommy being there when you don’t feel well. She’s all tucked into bed and is resting now – which is a beautiful thing.

Here are a few pictures of the pattern and the dress. I will say that the top of this dress was unusually wide so I added pleats to the front and took up the straps to make it fit better. I also omitted the bow. I don’t think I’ll sew this one again, but it was fun to make!




Dino-Mite T-shirts!

16151848087_5803582ec0My youngest daughter’s daycare does theme days each Wednesday. This week the theme was dinosaurs. I was super excited because Claire didn’t have anything dinosaur themed so I knew craft time was coming! Now, for those who know me you know I am a procrastinator, but this time I vowed to do better. I designed the layout in Cricut design space and cut the design out of heat transfer vinyl on my Cricut Explore. I used vinyl and a shirt that I had in my stash…Yay me!

Anyhoo, back to the story…so in my quest to fulfill one of my New Year resolutions (being timely) I finished the shirt in record time. Claire was super excited about her new shirt and was making dinosaur sounds all the way to school (’cause that’s what two year olds do). 😉

We walked into the building and got oohs and ahhs from the staff and she was grinning from ear to ear. However, what happened next was not as funny.

One of the staff members said, “Oh, I love your dinosaur shirt Claire, but dino day is tomorrow”! Wait, what!? Tomorrow!? The staff member looked at me with understanding (and some sympathy) and said, “You can just wash it and let her wear it again tomorrow”. I thought, yeah…I could, but where is the fun in that!? So…we made another top with a little more bling!16151847827_f21c57de69 16337728275_66122fff0c

P.S. Next time I do a “bling” shirt I’ll be sure to use either darker vinyl or a darker shirt so that everything “pops”!






Two tote bags using the Cricut Explore!

It has been a while so I figured I’d better catch you all up on what’s been going on in my world! I made quite a few handmade gifts for Christmas, but in my haste I forgot to take pictures of many of them! Arrggh! However, I did take pictures of these super cute bags that I made for my secret santa and for my child’s teacher. They were both super easy to make with my Cricut Explore (it took me less than 20 minutes to make both bags)! I used the inexpensive tote bags from Hobby Lobby and Cricut heat transfer vinyl. You just iron it on when you are finished cutting and weeding (weeding is taking away the extra vinyl you don’t want to iron onto the finished product).

The first bag was made by using an existing graphic from the Cricut subscription library and then using a rectangle and the slice feature in Cricut design space to get rid of the words and graphics I didn’t want and then typing in the new words and inserting a basketball. I L.O.V.E. the slice feature!


The second bag was made by selecting a graphic from the library, typing the teacher’s name, overlapping the two just a little and then welding the graphic andd the letters together. It sounds complicated, but it is literally just a few clicks to make this happen.


Thanks for checking out my post!




Homemade Candy Bars!!!


Sooo, I am doing this blogpost from my ipad and I can’t find the stupid registered trademark symbol so I won’t type the name of the candy bar. However, I can tell you that it s a copycat version of a candy bar whose name means the same as a “small laugh” :). I got the recipe from pintrest which was actually a link to a sugar manufacturer’s website (hint: if you haven’t guessed it yet the name is in the link).

It was super easy to make and will be great Christmas gifts for friends and neighbors!

I did make a few tweaks to the recipe. Instead of using peanuts I used toasted pecans and instead of peanut butter in the chocolate coating I used 1Tbs. coconut oil for the top layer and 1Tbs. coconut oil for the bottom chocolate layer. I also used a longer pan so mine aren’t as thick as the original recipe.

Here is the link to the site!



Spirit T-Shirts!!! Go BHS Tigers

So…my sweet husband got me the new Cricut Explore for my birthday. We made a deal that I would do some football shirts for him. When I originally priced custom t-shirts they started at $20. I knew that with my new gift I could make them for less than that. Using my PC, the Explore and black, gold and white heat transfer vinyl I was able to design, cut and iron the design onto a polo.

While I still have some learning to do I think my first try went really well. I wasn’t sure if my iron would get hot enough, but it actually got too hot so now I know that I can lower the heat next time. I also tried my hand at converting a jpeg file to a svg file so that I could use a custom design. It wasn’t very difficult, but I think I am going to try to find a cleaner graphic (I pulled it from a google image search so the quality wasn’t that great). I can’t wait to do shirts for me and the kids. When I do I’ll share those as well.