Monday, February 28, 2011

Boy Inspired Onesies

When you go shopping for onesies do you ever feel like your seeing the same puppy dog and sports-themed gear in every. single. store?  It's not too hard to customize your own onesies for your little guy.  Or, of course, to show up to the next baby shower with a gift that NO ONE else will have.

Here's a few boy onesies I've been working on lately for my newest grandson, Rex, and my newest great nephew, Tyson.

Items needed:
Pattern (I used McCalls 3171)
Knit fabric (in colors of your liking)
Wonder under
Thread (to coordinate with your fabric)

Trace your patterns. Cut your pieces out and peel off the paper from the backside.  Be sure when peeling that the sticky part of the wonder under stays attached to the fabric.

I ironed the back fin on first and stitched it down.

Next I ironed on the body and stitched it down.

Then ironed on the legs and stitched them to the onesies.

Added a wiggly eye and some pants. 

Items Needed for Bull & Cement Truck Onesies:
Knit (in desired colors)
Wonder Under
Pattern (pieced mine together from an online clip art)
Thread (to coordinate with your fabric)

Trace pattern.

Cut out pieces.  Iron the face, eyes, mouth and nostrils together.  Stitch around the nostrils with pink and around the eyes and with brown.

Iron horns on onsies and stitch around them.

Iron face to onesie and stitch around the face and nose with brown.

Add some wiggly eyes and some matching pants.

And here's my little Rex sporting his new Bull Onesie at the zoo.  Doesn't he looked thrilled???

As mentioned above for the cement truck onesie you need the same materials and follow the pictures for the steps.

*All the onesies were purchased at Wal-mart.

**UPDATED:  Looks like we'll be GIVING ONE AWAY.**

Happy Appliqueing, 

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Today's Creative Blog

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The $2.99 Canvas

In case you've missed the memo about my love affair with brown craft paper, here's another post about its absolute usefulness and versatility.  I get mine at Hobby Lobby.

As I've said before, I use the brown craft paper to wrap all of my gifts.  It makes for a neutral background that I can then pretty up with some graphic ribbons or theme stickers.

Another use for it is as a "canvas".  I tend to get overwhelmed with the constant making of crafts that A.) serve no real purpose; and B.) need to find a home in my house because I feel too guilty about throwing a "project" away.  

So I decided to find something creative my kids could do that I didn't feel guilty about trashing, BUT it took up time AND allowed them to be creative.

I took my said roll of craft paper, rolled it out, covered my dining room table, and taped it down.  **We have a hand-me-down table with some kind of survive-all surface, so if you have a nice table you might want to do a double layer of paper.**

The first day, we got out markers and I just let the kids color all over the table.  I sat with them and drew pictures upon request.  I also drew shapes for Heidi Sage to name, and wrote Clinton's name in block letters for him to fill in as he is learning to write his name.  To my surprise, Clinton made his very first attempt at drawing our family!  I, of course, could not throw this I cut this part off and intend to find a way to display it in our house.

We let the marker drawings sit for a couple of days.  When the kids began to act interested again, we got out paints.  I just let them paint all over the top of what they had colored.  Clearly, I am not a Type A person.

And after a few days of admiring their paint job, the kids got interested again.  So yesterday we ventured in glue.  I dumped some Mod Podge in a container and gave them each a paint brush for application along with fun stuff for gluing...buttons, pom poms, sequins, glitter, etc.

And then today, I pulled what pieces of their creative activities I wanted to keep.  I put away all the supplies.  And I took our big piece of paper, wadded it up, and threw it in the trash.  And it felt good.

All in all, I give the project two thumbs up.  There was no TV involved.  My kids were being creative.  And I didn't feel bad about throwing out most of the project.

**UPDATE**  As you may notice in the comments, Samantha had a great idea!  Instead of wadding up the paper and throwing it out, use it as wrapping paper!  Brilliant!

Colored, painted, and glued,

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Story Time with a Twist

I have a confession to make.  I don't read to my kids as often as I should.  Yes, we read.  But it probably doesn't meet whatever the current guidelines are for daily readings.

Part of this is because we're so busy I sometimes just forget.  Part of this is because Clinton gets burned out quickly.  And part of this is because the kids and I can't always agree on what we're going to read.

Heidi Sage likes anything with ducks, ladybugs, butterflies, or monkeys.  Clinton likes only things to do with heavy machinery or fire trucks.  And I like the books that have a rhythm and rhyme.

One thing Clinton and I both enjoy is making up stories.  But this can often get stagnant as the same story gets told over and over, and Heidi Sage doesn't like it because there are no pictures.  So, I started thinking...

What's an easy way to still make up stories but also provide a visual?  Umm...Shadow puppets!  

To make these all I did was think of a few initial characters as you can see below.  I went to Google and typed in, for example, "Elephant Silhouette".  Then I selected one under images, dragged it to a Word file, and printed it on card stock.

I then cut them out and taped lollipop sticks to the back.  You could also use crayons, pencils, popsicle sticks, or whatever else you might have on hand.  (But I will say, the lollipop sticks worked perfectly.)

Then we got out a flashlight.  We started out by practicing projecting the images on the wall.  I showed Clinton how to make them bigger and smaller by moving them closer and further from the light.  We talked about how it has to be in the path of the light.  And we discussed why things even have a shadow in the first place.

Once we had our projecting down, we started using them to tell stories.  Heidi Sage loved naming all the characters/images as they hit the wall.  Clinton enjoyed making up sentences to go along with whatever images we put up.  The best part is I can add or rotate through new images to keep the stories new and fresh.  I look forward to seeing what adventures we will have...

Now for a little catch up.   THANK YOU to all of you who voted for Chelsea's wedding dress.  She won the Knock-it-Off contest at by 3 votes!  

We realize we've been a bit absent this week, but we've all been busy.  Chelsea was in Vegas for some type of fashion convention.  I was...well...uh...I have three small children for Pete's sake...I'm always busy!  :-)  And Deborah was working on some super cute new duds for the littlest of our fans...

Coming Soon... lots of new onesies tutorials!

Welcome back to Monday!

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Saturday, February 12, 2011

Chelsea's A Finalist!!!!

Last April Chelsea got married and of course made her UH-mazing dress.  There's more detail and pictures on her site HERE, but better yet...head over to 733 Blog and vote for her!  She entered in a knock it off contest and has made the top 10.

Let's show her some love!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Operation Pirate Party (OPP)

This week my little man turned 4....FOUR!  I still can't believe it.  Last year I was a bit lazy when it came to his birthday, so I decided to make sure to give it 100% this year.  And a pirate party was just the thing.

My house has the open floor plan concept.  So when we throw a party, I like to rearrange all the furniture.  I move the living room furniture into the dining room.  I move the kitchen and dining tables into the living room.  And I move the dining "buffet" into the breakfast area of the kitchen.  It seems to be conducive to large groups...and is just a fun way to change things up.

For our decor, we started with a birthday banner.  Clinton has been learning all his letters and sounds, so he had fun watching me put this together.  He made sure to tell me each letter and it's sound....for several days, as we let the banner hang around for a while.  (Click HERE to see a tutorial for this banner.)

In the living room we had some Pirate Ships for the guests to sit at.  All the kids thought these were so cool.  (Click HERE to see a tutorial for these Pirate Ship tables.)

I Googled "famous pirates", came up with a few names, and Googled those in Google Images.  I printed several of them out and framed them to put around the house.

Our guests got their party favors when they arrived.  In each pirate bag (JoAnn's) we had a bandana to wear as a pirate would, a mardi gras necklace (JoAnn's), a pirate eye patch (JoAnn's), a pirate earring (JoAnn's), a pirate tattoo, and some pirate coins for their pocket.  It took a little while for the kids to warm up, but it wasn't long before the kids started putting on their "costumes".

At the front door we had a "treasure chest" to greet our guests.  This was a wicker basket that was shaped much like a treasure chest.  My Aunt Cathy had it and spray painted it black and added some gold embellishments.  She found a cardboard box that fit inside and sat it into the chest.  She then glued some gold fabric on the top and started filling it with treasures to give it the appearance of overflowing with treasures.  We filled it with mardi gras beads, pirate coins, sea shells, an old net, a wooden parrot, a foam sword, a plastic pirate hook, some eye patches, a picture of a real pirate, and "treasure map" (a sheet of scrapbook paper with the Old World Map print).  She also took about $3 worth of pennies and spray painted them gold.

I did some research about what real pirates ate.  Seeing as they were at sea for prolonged periods, their diets were less than desirable.  They tried to keep as many things on board as they could that had a long shelf those days that included cured meats, crackers (or hard biscuits), and sauerkraut.  I laid these out for the kids to try....they didn't.  It smelled so bad, I had to light candles and cover up the salami with plastic wrap.  I did notice a few of the adults snacking on it.  I tried it...not terrible, not something I would actually serve.

I sat out a pirate puzzle for the kids to play.

And I laid out a pirate memory game for the kids to play.

And what pirate party would be complete without a pirate cake?  This was time consuming to make, but the kids and guests loved it...and appreciated the effort.  (Click HERE to see the cake tutorial.)

For a simpler pirate sweet treat, you could also make the cupcakes we sent to school for his birthday.  (Click HERE to see the tutorial for those.)

And here's my happy pirate wearing his pirate shirt.  Deborah had made him a full pirate costume, but he was too shy to wear it.  We had bought this shirt for his school party, so we got it out and let him wear it for his real party.

Arrrghed out,

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