Be My Valentine

This weekend, Jasmine and I decided to stay in the Valentine’s Day spirit by making some crafts. One of our crafts was inspired by something that I had seen in this month’s issue of Family Fun magazine. It was a hand-made card that we both knew would be awesome for her poppy and we were excited to do our own.

We collected our supplies and got to work. We needed construction paper (we used 3 different colors), glue, a pencil, scissors, and any other various craft supplies to decorate. (We opted to use red foam stickers in a Valentine’s Day theme. )

Supplies needed

Supplies needed

The first thing we did was to take our 1st sheet of paper and fold it in half. We chose to use plain white as this was the base of the card and we would be writing on the inside. Then, we used a 2nd sheet of paper (red) and traced Jasmine’s hand. I helped her with this part to make sure we got all fingers and to make sure her fingers weren’t too spaced apart. Then, she cut out the hand, as well as a large heart from the 3rd piece of paper (pink).

Cutting out shapes

The next thing she did was fold over the middle and ring finger on the hand she cut out. Only fold them over half way, as if you are folding at the knuckles, to make the “I love you” hand sign.

Folding fingers

Next, she glued on all of the stuff on the front. She glued the hand inside the heart and then the heart onto the front of the card. Then, she began decorating it by adding text to the front and the foam stickers. (She put a foam heart in the center of the hand because it reminded her of one of her favorite books called, The Kissing Hand. )

finishing front of card

Lastly, she filled in a heart filled message on the inside of the card for her intended recipient. She loved how it came out and is excited to mail it out.

finished product

 

Christmas from the Heart Part 3

I know you have been anxiously waiting to see the rest of the house, so lets get right to it!!! (If you missed the 1st 2 parts, feel free to check them out here and here)

The Master Bedroom

The Master Bedroom

The Master Bedroom is complete with a California king sized bed that can fit the whole family!! It also has a dresser and vanity table. The Master bed was made from a thick cardboard shipping box with the headboard cut out from the presentation board. I put them together and spray painted them black. I made a mattress out of an old blanket and a piece of fabric. I glued them right to the top of the bed. I then used my sewing skills and made a comforter and a slew of pillows! The dresser was one of the harder pieces I made. It is all made from the board material and the drawers do actually open.

Lipstick, nail polish and perfumes, OH MY!

Lipstick, nail polish and perfumes, OH MY!

The vanity table is made from the presentation board and the top was a plastic food lid that I covered with tin foil. I made some accessories to go atop the vanity using beads and toothpicks. I made nail polish bottles, perfume bottles, and tubes of lipstick. (every girl needs a good tube of lipstick!) I made a clock using the lid of a juice container that I spray painted and a clock face that I drew on white paper and glued inside. I finished it with a clear plastic front. I also put up some pictures and added in a body form mannequin that I had gotten a few years ago.

Family photos on the wall

Family photos on the wall

The pictures were made from small wooden craft sticks that I covered in duct tape and used clear plastic as the glass. I used all pictures of Jasmine’s Barbies that we had taken together one day while we were playing.

The kids room. (sorry about the quality of the picture!)

The kids room.
(sorry about the quality of the picture!)

The kids bedroom was fun to make. Jasmine had gotten bunk beds for her birthday this year so I wanted to include her prized possessions inside her mini house. I used the presentation board to build the frame and the ladder. I made mattresses, blankets and pillows from 2 different color materials and the stuffing from an old blanket. There is a toy box that was a Truvia (sugar substitute) box that I simply spray painted black and then decorated with scrapbooking stickers that I had in my bin. An end table was made using my old reliable presentation board materials and I topped it off with a lamp that I crafted by using a hairspray cap, white plastic bathroom cup, and a toothpick covered in beads.

Kids Bookshlef

Kids Bookshlef

My pride and joy of this room is the bookcase. Again, it’s just rectangles cut from the board and then I spray painted only half of it, leaving the back white. I crafted movies, games, and books to sit on top of the shelves. For the DVDs, I used a Target ad and cut out the pictures of a bunch of her favorite movies and then glued them onto little pieces of the board that I had cut out. I colored around the edges and the back to make them more interesting. For the books, I cut out pictures from a magazine and then glued them to other pieces of board that I had cut, making them look like book jackets. The games are all pictures that had been cut out of Toys R Us’s ad and glued to pieces of the board. Many of them are games that she owns, so it really makes it personalized for her. Wall hangings are all stickers from my scrapbooking bin and the rug was a piece of felt from Walmart.

Relaxing bathroom

Relaxing bathroom

Lastly, the bathroom. I love this room, with the exception of the tear in the wallpaper on the side where I goofed up. It is complete with a sink, toilet, and a tub. The sink is made from the presentation board and a plastic fruit cup. I covered the top in silver duct tape to look like chrome and made the faucet out of a piece of plastic hanger and beads. The door does open and inside is a shelf with bathroom essentials. I cut pictures of shampoo, soap, and other goods and glued them to the inside back. I hot glued a bead on as a door handle. I crafted up the mirror from mirror pieces that were in my scrapbooking bin and hot glued them to a piece of board that I had covered in silver duct tape. The toilet is also made from the presentation board and an empty plastic fruit cup.

The sink and toilet, complete with paper!!

The sink and toilet, complete with paper!!

I used craft foam for the toilet seat and a toothpick and beads to make the hings so it can open and close, 2 more beads, a piece of metal and a piece of white material make up the toilet paper roll on the side, and one last piece of metal make the flusher. The tub was my true work of art. I started with a plastic container that mushrooms from the supermarket came in. I spray painted it black. Then, I used a large tissue box and cut the hole on top to fit my carton in. I used gray paint chip samples that I cut into squares to imitate tile and covered the sides and top of the box. I used 2 silver pushpins and a hook piece from a hanger to make the faucet. I put in some fake snow (or leftover cobwebs from Halloween) to look like bubbles.2012-12-17 10.05.18 The decor in this bathroom was a table stand that has a bucket of seashells, a garbage can, and various wall art and bottles of soap. I made the soap by gluing together beads and adding different colors to the tops. The table is actually a laundry soap cap that was painted. The bucket of shells was made from the cap to a sports drink that I covered in tinfoil and then I hot glued in tiny shells that I had from a trip to Mystic, Ct in 1999. The garbage can is a blue cap from a hair product bottle and the wall art were all in my scrapbooking bin.

So there you have it… my complete work of art!

My fantastically awesome Barbie House!

My fantastically awesome Barbie House!

Altogether, I paid $40 for the shelves, $10 for the floors and spray paint, $7 on fabric, $6 for presentation board, and $2 glue sticks for a grand total of $65!! For her very own CUSTOM dollhouse!! (That can also be turned back into regular bookshelves at a later date!)

I am very anxious for her to open this tomorrow and see all of the hard work and love put into it! I also hope that years later she will remember it as I still remember the presents of love my mom made for me!!

Christmas from the Heart Part 1

Growing up, money was tight. The funny thing is, I didn’t know that money was tight for my family until I was old enough to truly grasp the concept of money and the cost of caring for a family. One reason it took me so long to realize this, Christmas was always an amazing holiday for us and never once did I feel that it lacked the magic.

When I look back, I wonder how my parents did it. Kids toys are outrageously expensive! It’s tough enough doing it for one, but how did they make 4 kids have a magical Christmas?

The answer is… Christmas gifts from the heart. These gifts were ones that my mom worked all hours of the night crafting. Things like: baby beds and clothes, Barbie furniture, hair bows, and countless other things. All things that my sisters and I were overjoyed to receive and didn’t even know that they hadn’t been bought.

One of my favorite gifts I ever received was homemade Barbie furniture. (I loved Barbie!) There was a bed, baby cradle, couch, stove, and so much more. They were made from plastic craft canvas and yarn. They beat the crap out of anything you could buy back then and even today! The furniture was so much more fun because we would turn our whole room into Barbie town. (If we lacked enough beds for all of the sisters, cousins, or friends that Barbie was entertaining, a couple Nancy Drew books and wash-cloths did the trick perfectly!)We used them for years and they may even be floating around in Allison’s attic with the stuff we had passed on to my niece oh-so-many-years ago. I love those gifts even more now today because I know how much time and love was put into making them.

This year, I wanted to do something special for Jasmine. She has been all about Barbie lately and she has been hinting about wanting Barbie’s dream house. I couldn’t be happier about her new-found hobby (because secretly, I still love to dress up Barbie and play with her hair) and even thought about that being her big present for this year. I cringed at the $150 price tag for just the house. Then, I thought back of Christmas’s long ago. When I was 5, Allison got Barbie’s Malibu dream house. (Back then, it was mostly cardboard but it came with an elevator and at the time, it was awesome.) We loved it! I then fast forwarded a few more Christmases to the furniture one. Bingo! I decided that I would try my hand at making Barbie furniture and a doll house.

Off to Walmart I went to gather supplies. I bought 4 large cardboard/foam presentation board pieces (about $1.50 each), a pack of hot glue sticks ($1) and 2 cans of black spray paint ($0.99 each). I then hit up the sewing department and bought a couple squares of fabric. (The fabric was $0.97 each and I picked up 6.) From home, I gathered my sewing essentials as well as an old toddler blanket that i was going to donate that I could use for filling.

I began with the Master Bed, since it was mostly just sewing blankets and a mattress. I spray painted a thick cardboard box

(that I had on hand from my recent HouseParty pack) and then hot glued the mattress on, I used the board to make a headboard that I attached using hot glue and flathead sewing pins (sort of like nails) and I sewed blankets and pillows using material and the old blanket. I loved how it came out. That gave me the motivation and courage to do more!

I was on a roll.

I knocked out all of the furniture for an awesome house that included a master bedroom, kids room, bathroom, living room, kitchen, and dining room. (stay tuned to the next few posts where I will show off, err, I mean show you how i did it)

Plain Bookshelf Before

Plain Bookshelf Before

I was then faced with the difficult task. What would I make the house out of? I wanted something sturdy that would last but easy enough for me to do myself. After much thought, and consulting with the hubby, we decided on bookshelves. We went to Target where we picked up 2 sets of 3-shelved bookshelves. They were $19.99 each.

Then, hubby really indulged me and we went next door to Lowe’s where we picked up some adhesive vinyl flooring for the house. These ranged from $0.38 a sheet to $0.88 a sheet. It totaled about $8 for 12 sheets.

Floors installed on one side

Floors installed on one side

We went home and I got right to work. I installed the floors after having to cut them down slightly. (I can now add box-cutter pro to my resume!) I was in love at how it was looking.

I raided my scrapbooking box and picked out papers of all colors for wallpaper, paint and trim. I matched the colors to the furniture and the floors, as if it was my real house. I used modge podge to glue them on the interior sides of the house. In some rooms, I did a top border, others a middle border and I used thin wood craft sticks to make chair rail in the living room.

Floors and walls done!

Floors and walls done!

When I was finished putting together all of the rooms, I added the furniture. It was amazing! It was also missing something. Decorations! I quick crafted pictures for the walls, flowers for the table, a fireplace for the living room, clocks and wall hangings. Now, it was perfect and ready for Barbie and her family to move in!

I can NOT wait to give this gift to my daughter. I am beyond excited to see her eyes as she opens up the 1 thing she has been consistently asking for and it being custom built for her!

I will post more over the next few days with the different rooms and furniture as well as tell you how I crafted some of my favorite pieces. I am just as excited to share it with you because this is definitely one of my finest craft projects!