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Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Trio of Valentine's Treats Tutorial

This is a little Valentine's Day Tutorial Trio that I put together.  I have a conversation hearts white chocolate bark, a heart candy bar, and finally, a delicious strawberry cream liquor filled chocolate shot. 

Conversation Heart Bark

Candy bark is a very easy and affordable treat to make and give away or just eat yourself.

For this bark, I melted some white chocolate candy coating (but you can use any white chocolate you want - disks, chips, etc.).

Next, I poured the white chocolate into a small dish. 

I placed my conversation hearts around making sure they were print side up.

Then, I sprinkled on some colored sugar.

Next, you want to put it into the freezer for about 5 minutes until it hardens.

Once it hardens, you can break it apart into nice sized chunks. 

Two Hearts Candy Bar

For this little chocolate car you need both white chocolate or candy coating and pink candy melts. 
Grease a small ramekin or cookie sheet lightly with butter. 

Next, you want to melt your white chocolate and a small amount of the pink candy melts until they are nice and smooth.
Put the white chocolate into your little ramekin.  Put the pink chocolate into a small, sturdy sandwich bag or piping bag.

Snip off the end of the bag so that you can squeeze out the chocolate.

 Pipe dots of pinks into the white chocolate.
Next, you need to take a toothpick or skewer and marble the chocolate by dragging your toothpick around through the pink into the white.  Then I piped two large hearts in pink and ran the skewer through the middle of each to give it a marbled effect.
Place it in the freezer for about 10 minutes to harden it up.  Then, pop it out of the mold.  If it doesn't want to come out you can run the bottom of the ramekin under a bit of hot water.  Finally, I wrapped it in plastic wrap and tied a bow around it.


These little shot cups are soooo sweet but soooo good. 

First you melt your pink candy melts.  Then you need to fill a mini cup mold (you can usually find them online or at Michael's and JoAnn's.) 

The cups should be partly hollow inside, but they do not have to be perfect.  No one will see the inside.  I usually brush on a thin layer of chocolate, freeze the cups for a few minutes, and then brush on another layer.  This will give you a sturdy cup.

Then, I fill the inside about 1/2 way with strawberry cream liquor.  You could also use vodka, coffee liquor, or even that delicious chocolate red wine.  It really depends on your tastes. 

Next, I seal the top of the cups with a nice big twist of butter cream frosting.

Finally, I decorated the little cups with a conversation heart.  I think that these would be adorable at a bachelorette party too. 

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Treasured in the New Year

One of our newest shops, MadAboutScraps was just treasured by an Etsy fan.  Check out her beautiful treasury below. 

'My Daughter, My Soul' by AetherialEyes

When my daughtere was born, it felt like I was looking into my own soul. I don't even remember what life was like before she arrived. Now, she is turning 17 and is getting lovelier with each passing day. This collection celebrates the lasting bond between a mother and daughter. I love you Pussycat...


Mommy and Me . hand...


New Year Sale - Edw...

Mother and Baby Bir...

Mother and Daughter...

Mother Daughter Pur...

A Mother's Love

THREE Crochet Beani...

Mother Daughter Apr...

Mom A daughters fir...

Stillness & Motion ...

Soccer Mom Key Fob ...

Such a big miracle ...

Adore Daughter Litt...

They Called Her Hon...


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Calendar Tutorial Roundup

I thought that it would be a fun idea for New Year's Day to put together this roundup of cute calendars you can make yourself. 

Nancy Morgan over at Paper Smiles made this adorable desk calendar tutorial.  I just love this.  This idea would really make a nice addition to your Christmas Cards.  You could even use a photo instead of the stamping.  For all of my sewers out there, you could use charm squares instead of the card stock for the accent papers.  How cute would that be.  By the way, you should really check out the Paper Smiles blog if you love papercrafting.   It is loaded with great ideas.

Catherine Cote at CeeCee's Creations made this great mini calendar tutorial.  Everyone knows how much I love minis.  This would really make a fun little project to tuck into stockings for next year or a great teacher gift.  Plus, I am seeing a scrap box project here that might help me get rid of all of those tiny scraps of card stock I am currently hoarding ;).   

Kelly over at AllThingsMadebyKelly made this totally fun little desk calender tutorial.  I especially love that she used recycled materials to create it. This would really be a fun teen project.  Just add some cheap stickers and they could really glam it up.  I'm also thinking that you could put a scrapbooked photo mat into to front of the cover so that it could be a little photo frame after the year is over. 

Angela Fehr from Scraps From My Table made up a tutorial for one of my personal favorite calendar projects, the cookie sheet calendar.  I have probably made about 20 of these.  None of them have looked as nice as hers and I made them a little differently (I used my xeron magnetic cartridge to make magnets). 
Naptime Crafts made this really sweet countdown calendar for Halloween.  I think that the same idea could be applied to any holiday or birthday.  Click here to check out the countdown calendar tutorial.

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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Mini Paper Bag Album Tutorial

Now that Christmas is over with, it is time to start organizing all of those Christmas photos.  I thought that I would share one of these adorable little mini paper bag albums Lisa and I made up.  We used black bags - $2.99 at Michael's over buy the wrapping paper.  You fold 2 or 3 bags in 1/2 and then stitch down the middle with your sewing machine.  You can also punch holes and hand stitch it together or tie it together with ribbons. 

 We decorated each page with a little photo mat cut from card stock. 
 Then we clipped in various little embellishments.  I really like variety so there are stickers, titles, and die cuts in this mini album.
 For the pull out pocket pages, we stapled a die cut onto a square of card stock.  It makes the book look bigger and fuller. 
 For a final touch, I wanted a more vintage feel than ribbon.  I got 3 different colors of raffia and tied that around the spine instead of ribbon.  These make really nice stocking stuffers or little thank you gifts for after Christmas.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Some Fun Party Hats

New Year's always makes me think of party hats.  Plus, everyone who knows me knows I LOVE hats, esp mini hats.  So, here are some great party hats for many occassions.

This first set of hats is from Girl Inspired.  This is by far one of the cutest blogs I have come across.  Mostly owing to her great choices in fabrics. 

Kamille would die for these Olivia inspired party hats from SweetMintStudios.

This Cookie Monster hat from BabyBoydBlog is SOOO cute.

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Some Fun Little Winter Sewing Tutorials

Ruffles and Stuff posted this totally cute sewing tutorial for a scarf applique t-shirt dress.  I would probably make a couple of changes - like maybe using some cute charm pack for the scarf and possibly doing the dress in a darker color t-shirt because Kamille trashes white within minutes.  But, it is so cute.  I will be making one. 

Happy Together put together this little scrunchy scarf sewing tutorial - it's more of a how to than a step-by-step photo tutorial of how to scrunch up scarves.  Basically, you stitch with elastic thread in the bobbin of your machine.  She used a straight stitch down the scarf, but when I did this before, I did a zigzag across the scarf.  Try different patterns to see what you like.  Anyway, this is a great project to remake scarves you may already have.  Another nice thing about this concept is that it really shortens the scarf.  So, you could take an adult scarf and make it shorter for a child. 

Look Ma, No Patterns came up with the great little tutorial on a simple muff pattern.  I do like a nice old school muff.  It is especially nice for holiday portraits.  Plus, these are very simple to sew.  She uses fleece, but you could easily sub faux fur or upcycle an old real fur coat you make have in the closet. 

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Valentine's Day Coffee Sleeve Free Tutorials

Check out my newest tutorial over at Cut Out and Keep for this adorable coffee sleeve.

See Two Hearts Coffee Sleeve and 1000's of others - or share your own on Cut Out + Keep

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Valentine's Day Felt Fortune Cookie Tutorial

I thought that these felt fortune cookies would make a great little Valentine's gift for your little one or as a substitute for cards or candy favors. 

You need to 1st trace out your circle.  I used a CD and it may seem large, but it actually makes an ideal sized fortune cookie.  In the spirit of Valentine's Day I used pink felt, but brown is also cute.
 Cut out your circle.  A single layer works perfectly.  If you use a double layer of felt you will get a cookie with more body.

You have 2 options for the message.  If the cookies are just for fun as decorations or for a play kitchen, you may want to use cute ribbon as the tag.  White gros grain ribbon also works.  Cut about 2" of ribbon and fold it in 1/2.  Secure with hot glue or tack it with a stitch. 
 I hot glued this project together, just for the sake of time.  You can sew these by hand or with your machine as well.  I made these for my cat and filled them with catnip and those I machine sewed. 

Run a line of glue around 1/2 of the circle.  Make sure you have glue on top and on bottom of the ribbon tag.
 Fold the cookie in 1/2 and let it dry. 

The other option is to make a paper tag that the recipient can pull out.  In that case, you don't want to get glue where the hole for the tag needs to be.  See how I marked out the space around the tag.  You would glue where the dashed line is. 
 Then, you fold the cookie in 1/2 and let it dry. 
 Finally, you need to put a dot of glue in the center of the cookie and fold it.  You can either hold it until it dries or pin it closed with a clothespin. 

The tag will come in and out so you can write lots of notes to your little one for his/her lunchbox. 

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