Cork snowmen ornaments (or wine charms or cute decor!)

Can you believe that Christmas is this week? I certainly can’t. The past four months — well, year, really — have flown by. We did manage to get Michael’s first Santa photo in, and we’ll hopefully visit two more Santas this week. Of course I’ll share the photos soon.

Last week I shared yarn ball ornaments. I have another super easy ornament to share with you: Snowmen wine cork ornaments!

As you know, I enjoy a good wine. As a result, I often have a cork or two on-hand for crafting purposes. (Sometimes I have hundreds of corks on-hand, when I want to make a cork wreath or something.) These little guys are so cute and so easy.

Wine cork snowmen!

Wine cork snowmen!

Gather your supplies:

  • Cork(s)
  • A block of orange Fimo or Sculpey modeling clay from your local craft store (The only difference that I’m aware of is that Fimo used to be hard before you warmed it up by sculpting with it. Sculpey has always been soft from the get go. Now they’re pretty much the same.)
  • Screw eye (also available at your local crafts store — in the jewelry-making section — or at your local Home Depot of Lowe’s.) These are one per ornament, so buy the appropriate amount.
  • Black Sharpie pen or black paint pen
  • Super glue (possibly already on-hand from your Thanksgiving appetizer platter making!?)
  • Toothpick
  • Ribbon (optional)

Instructions:

1. First, roll out the carrot noses. Mold the clay with your fingers to the appropriate size. Mine are approximately 1/2″ long and 1/8″ thick. I roll mine a little wider on the base, to look more like a carrot. I also use the toothpick or my fingernail to add some lines. I sculpt the base of the carrot against the pad of my finger, so it’s a little rounded, matching the curvature of the cork. (This will help with the gluing in step 3.)

Sculpt the noses

Sculpt the noses

 

"Carrot" lines

“Carrot” lines

2. Bake the noses per the instructions on the clay. I overcooked my first batch, so watch them carefully and err on the side of under cooking them. They will burn, turn color, and stink up your house for days if cooked too long.

3. Once the clay has cooled, add a dab of super glue to the base of the “carrot” and attach to the cork. You’ll need to hold it there for 10 seconds or so, to secure it.

4. Use the Sharpie to draw on the eyes and mouth of your snowman. You don’t need mad drawing skills for this as you’re drawing circles. (Like I said, so easy!)

Snowmen in process

Snowmen in process

5. Screw the screw eye into the top of the cork.

6. Add a decorative ribbon if you’d like. Your new cork snowman can double as an ornament or as an accessory to a bottle of wine you’re gifting friends or family. Or, you can just set them out since they’re so dang cute.

The possibilities are endless with these cuties. You can omit screw eyes and instead slice the top of the cork and turn these into place card holders! (Be sure to slice at an angle, which I didn’t do.)

Ornaments OR place card holders! All ready for Christmas!

Ornaments OR place card holders! All ready for Christmas!

Now, open a bottle of wine so you have a cork for this fun project!

I hope you have a great week! Now I’m off to brainstorm 2016 resolutions. Anyone have any ideas for me? Please share!

 

Michael’s 1st Halloween {2015}

Baby Michael was born just in time to celebrate his first Halloween in style!

I originally wanted him to be a Cookie Monster, but there weren’t costumes in the itty bitty size that I needed. (We did end up receiving a toddler-sized one as a gift, so be on the look out for our Cookie Monster next year!)

Late night breastfeeding is conducive to lots of Pinterest browsing and I found this adorable glow-in-the-dark skeleton outfit on sale. $8 for a costume? Done.

Skeleton baby & skeleton head wine!

Skeleton baby & skeleton head wine!

I also made this ghost onesie for Michael. (More on that in a future post; hopefully this week)

BOO! It's Michael!

BOO! It’s Michael!

You’ve also already seen Michael’s pumpkin bib. It was a gift and was perfect for Halloween and his six-week Facebook photos.

Michael's 6-week photo shoot

Michael’s six-week photo shoot

Finally, his Waldo outfit came together by happenstance. I was going through Michael’s outfits, saw the red and white striped onesie and his blue pants and voila! I added a red electrical tape stripe to his hat from the hospital, along with a yarn puff. The only item I needed to purchase were pipe cleaners for his glasses. $1 total. Cheapest– and cutest– costume yet!

Where's Waldo... er... Michael!? I found him!

Where’s Waldo… er… Michael!? I found him!

Look at those specs!

Look at those specs!

Which costume is your favorite? I like them all!

We tried putting Michael in an actual pumpkin too, something I’ve always wanted to do with a baby, and it was an extreme failure. We were all laughing as much as my sister was. Everyone except Michael. Maybe next year?

This looks so easy on Pinterest...

This looks so easy on Pinterest…

 

It’s football time!

‘Tis the season to get ready for football season! I’ve been gearing up on Pinterest and have compiled some of my football favorites here for you. We even went to a preseason faceoff between our hometown Seattle Seahawks and Brandon’s beloved Denver Broncos. (The Broncos won~ Go Broncos!) Baby-dependent, Brandon will be heading to the first home Husky game of the season on Saturday. I’ll be at home cooking something delicious. Maybe these ‘chos? {Better yet: pineapple and pork are supposed to induce labor!}

Since the season is long and we’ll have plenty of opportunities to share our tailgate and game day eats, I’m focusing on football crafts today. Specifically, AstroTurf crafts.

I had a lot of fun with AstroTurf last year, with my debut on Q13’s morning show.

Looked good on TV!

Looked good on TV!

I made koozies, coasters, platters, wine tags, “wreaths,” and more. {Full blog post and tutorial here} But those were so 2014.

Beer koozies

Beer koozies

AstroTurf platters: works with any size tile!

AstroTurf platters: works with any size tile!

AstroTurf wine tags

AstroTurf wine tags

One of my most favorite crafts to date: An AstroTurf W!

One of my most favorite crafts to date: An AstroTurf W!

For the 2015-16 season, I’ve purchased a new roll of AstroTurf rug and found some new ideas:

An upgrade on my coaster idea: circles!

An upgrade on my coaster idea: circles!

This AstroTurf table is pretty amazing

This AstroTurf table is pretty amazing

An AstroTurf bulletin board

An AstroTurf bulletin board

I have several ideas swirling in my mind right now, and potentially a couple more weeks of free time to act upon them, so check back for my new 2015 AstroTurf ideas! Happy football season to you! Go Huskies, Broncos and Seahawks!

50 days to go!

About 50 days ago I blogged my master to-do list for the baby’s room.

Well, time has flown by and over the weekend we hit the 50 days until D-day mark. We also spent a lot of time wrapping up some of the nursery projects.

Here’s a update of where we are, and what we still have left to do before the little guy comes in just about seven weeks. (Or sooner?!)

UPDATED master to do list: 

  • Remove the mattress and bed frame. Wrap for transport to the cabin. Transported to the cabin over the Fourth, where I won an award for my quinoa salad!
  • Apologize to Maddie for stealing her favorite napping spot. She still sleeps in there, and has made do with the bassinet. She’s in for a rude awakening when that bassinet is full with an infant!
  • Wash sheets, take comforter to dry cleaners.
  • Remove ball lights.
  • Clean out and remove the bookshelf side table.
  • Vacuum and dust thoroughly!
  • Buy paint and paint the room. We’re debating between Behr’s Sparrow and Anonymous. Which one is your favorite? We went with Sparrow. It’s very pretty and so serene!
  • Secure baseboards. Touch up with paint if necessary.
  • Hang curtain rods and curtains.
  • Place the art on the shelves and think about where wall art will be placed We still have some art to frame, but it’s we’re running out of space!
  • Empty Brandon’s clothes from the dresser. He’s all moved into the master bedroom! It only took 5 years…
  • Replant and move Brandon’s terrarium. It looks so good! I realized that I never posted about it. I’ll add that to the list of blogs to work on!
  • Assemble new rocking chair. Assembled! And we’ve used it several times. We have this pouf on order to complete the look!
  • Grab crib from home-home and set it up. It’s grabbed, but it turns out my sister busted one of the rungs when she was a kid. It’s in Dad’s shop now, getting repaired. We’ve got the mattress and lots of sheets for it!
  • Finish whale mobile. It’s almost ready. I just need to find the embroidery floss in my rather cluttered craft room. Maybe this weekend I’ll finish it!
  • Finish painting ceramic fish and lampshade. Painted. Now I just have to find a spot for the fish and put the lampshade on the lamp.
  • Measure dresser, cut whitewood (or other kind of cheap wood) to create a top. (We’re making something like this, but only the top.) We a went a different direction; one that I’m really pleased with the direction we went! See the photo of Michael’s new ombre dresser below!
  • Sand and paint dresser, replace drawer pulls. Painted. Pulls replaced! See photo and let me know what you think!
  • Sand and stain dresser top, elephant rocker, side table, trophy bases and book boxes. Rocker and side table sanding/staining are still on the to do list, but the trophy bases and book boxes are done and look great.
  • Spray paint the ceramic animal heads, adhere them to the wood trophy bases. They’re painted and now they need to be adhered. I’m debating between using super glue and hot glue. Anyone have any recommendations?
  • Make rope basket “zoo” for stuffed animals. It’s a great idea and project, but I could not find the rope anywhere. Then I went to Homegoods and found an adorable bin for far less than it would’ve been to make the rope basket.

Some new to do’s, in addition to the ones not crossed out above:

  • Get sun from home-home, hang in the corner of the room. Michael and I will grow up with the sun in our rooms, made by my Aunt Peggy!
  • Buy laundry hamper.
  • Clean out ‘candle drawer’ in the kitchen, so we have a place for all of his bottles and supplies. (Yes, we have a candle drawer.)
  • Clean out the bathroom a bit, making room for all of Michael’s new stuff.

And what you really came here for… updated photos!

Here's our super-sized rocker and the photo area. I imagine I'll be spending some quality time here soon!

Here’s our super-sized rocker and the photo area. I’ll be spending some quality time here soon!

Here's the ombre dresser and changing table area.

Here’s the ombre dresser and changing table area.

A close up of the "zoo" bin for Michael's stuffed animals.

A close up of the “zoo” bin for Michael’s stuffed animals.

Here is one of our rolling apple crates for books. Brandon did such a great job sanding and staining them! We both did a good job on the wheels.

Here is one of our rolling apple crates for books. Brandon did such a great job sanding and staining them! We both did a good job on the wheels.

Here's the latest on the whale mobile. It's looking great and will be finished soon!

Here’s the latest on the whale mobile. It’s looking great and will be finished soon!

I hope you enjoyed our nursery update. There will be more photos as we keep finishing projects in the next (less than!!) 50 days!

Chose your own craft: Bottle art

It’s Crafty McCrafterson here and I need your help. I cleaned out our liquor cabinet over the weekend and along with bags and bags of wine corks, I found a lot of old wine and bottles of booze.

After pouring out a barely-there bottle of Chambord, I took off the golden plastic rim and discovered there was a beautiful round bottle under all that gaudiness.

What to do with this Chambord bottle?!

What to do with this Chambord bottle?!

Lots to work with here

Lots to work with here

This is where I need your help. Please tell me in the comments what you think I should do with this bottle. Here are the options:

1. Leave as is — it’s beautiful and simple

2. Paint it gold! (I love gold spray paint…)

3. Other — Do you have a better idea? Share your thoughts!

It looks good as is, but would also look great in GOLD!

It looks good as is, but would also look great in GOLD!

 

My new AstroTurf “W” wreath

One of my most favorite crafts to date: An AstroTurf W!

One of my most favorite crafts to date: An AstroTurf W!

My dear old glue gun made it halfway through this very special project. I wanted to finish it so badly that after the literal glue gun explosion, we rushed to Lowe’s to pick up a new one.

I started with this “W” letter from JoAnn’s. It runs $2.99 and stands 9.5″ tall. Perfect. And, you can use this technique for just about any letter or number combination.

You’ll also need that giant roll of AstroTurf that I convinced you to buy a couple of months ago.

I flipped the AstroTurf over and traced my letter, leaving about an inch of overhang. From there, cut it out and get that glue gun ready.

Flip and glue. And glue and glue and glue

Flip and glue. And glue and glue and glue

What I didn’t do on my first go-around and will do in the future– and you SHOULD do your first time, add a wire or a tie of some sort toward the middle of your “wreath” before you glue on the facing layer of AstroTurf.

Start gluing. It’s important to go from one side to the other of the facing of the letter and to go with quick speed, since hot glue dries pretty quickly. Specifically, I glued in three main sections (left, right, middle), one section at a time. First, the fully covered “front” side, then I wrapped the overhang around the back, being very careful not to burn myself. On the backside, I pulled the turf tight and added cuts with the X-acto knife as needed.

Two sides done, just one to go

Two sides done, just one to go

I added some felt flowers to give the wreath that extra Husky feel, using leftover felt from a new coaster project I’ve got up my sleeve. (I tried a variety of designs for the flowers with this technique, for the most part.)

Felt flowers made out of extra AstroTurf coaster fabric

Felt flowers made out of extra AstroTurf coaster fabric

The project didn’t take too long and I think the finished product was well worth the time. I’m going to wager that this wreath and its presence at our game watching parties are the reason the Huskies are winning! (I hope I didn’t just jinx them!)

Anyway, happy Purple Friday and GO HUSKIES!

(YES! There is still time for you to grab the project pieces and make one of these to celebrate UW Homecoming on Oct. 25! You know I’m going to make a couple more!!)

 

RIP hot glue gun

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already heard the news: I lost a dear old friend a few weeks ago: my hot glue gun.

RIP my dear old friend!

RIP my dear old friend!

This wasn’t just any hot glue gun. This gun has been by my side, my crafting companion since I was in middle school, many, many, many years ago.

In fact, I used this very glue gun when I worked on several years of Milk Carton Derby boats, gluing the milk cartons and jugs shut, so they were airtight.  I still remember that each gallon jug displaced 8 lbs of weight in the water. I’ll check with my parents for some of the old photos. We had very elaborate themes and boat designs.

Thankfully the glue gun held on through it’s big break on Q13. When it’s time did come,  it went out with a bang — literally — with a loud pop and a plume of smoke.

At least it made it on TV!

At least it made it on TV!

Here’s the new glue gun. The jury is still out on whether it’s a comparable model. It does a fine job gluing but it doesn’t have the same finesse as my old one. Don’t worry, I’ll keep on crafting… and I have a great project to share with you soon! Need a clue? AstroTurf!

My new hot glue gun: names needed!

My new hot glue gun: names needed!

Tailgating crafts: Fun with AstroTurf

The craft portion of the spread

The craft portion of the spread

Are you a new visitor from Q13? Welcome! Please, look around and stay awhile! Enjoy!

I was honored to share my tailgating crafts this morning on our local morning show on Q13, along with some delicious desserts:

Today is the Seahawks pre-season home opener against the San Diego Chargers. In anticipation of this game and the so-close-we-can-taste-it football season, I’m here to offer some great ideas, courtesy of Pinterest and my imagination.

I started off by picking up a 6′ x 8′ roll of AstroTurf from Home Depot. (Yes, 48 SF of bright green plastic rug!) When you’re picking up your AstroTurf, make sure that it’s backed in rubber, not the one that’s in a huge roll in the carpet section that needs to be applied with glue. The rubber-backed version has a black backing and is a lot more flexible. The whole roll was on sale and cost ~ $18.00.

It’s best to do all of these projects outside or in a space that’s easily cleaned, as cutting AstroTurf is messy business.

Now, time for some crafts:

AstroTurf Platter

  • 12″ x 12″ tile from Home Depot ($0.68) — or whatever size tile you want!
  • Hot glue gun + extra glue sticks
  • Scissors
  • Exacto knife (optional)
AstroTurf platters: works with any size tile!

AstroTurf platters: works with any size tile!

Place the tile on an upside-down piece of turf. Cut around the tile, about 1/2″ from the border of the tile. When you’re cutting, be sure to cut along the lines (less messy this way). It’s not the end of the world if you cut outside of the lines.

Take the cutout piece and liberally glue the top of the tile to the bottom-side of the AstroTurf. Press it flat. Glue along the tile edge and fold the AstroTurf overhang along the tile edge, similar to wrapping a present. Cut off any extra with an Exacto knife. Flip over your tile platter and VOILA! AstroTurf magic. This platter would be perfect for a football tailgate or viewing party, and would also work for a golfing-themed party.

This simple design is really versatile and works for any size of tile. I also used a 5″ x 5″ tile, in which I flipped the tile and glued the AstroTurf to the backside of the tile. You’ll see here that I stacked my two platters on top of one another with wine corks.

What’s that on top of the platters? Skittles vodka!

Skittles vodka! Given some time, these will be vibrant

Skittles vodka! Given some time, these will be vibrant

Skittles are the (un)official candy of the Seahawks and appeared throughout my tailgating table this morning. Making Skittles vodka is super easy. I took the single ounce bottles of vodka and popped three of the matching color of Skittles into each of them. After three or so hours, a bright color will take over the bottle. There will be some sugar residue, so you can strain it off, or just drink it.

AstroTurf Coasters

  • 4″ x 4″ tile from Home Depot ($0.13 each) — or whatever size tile you want!
  • Sheets of felt ($0.33 each from Michael’s — they come in a variety of colors)
  • Hot glue gun + extra glue sticks
  • Scissors

Same idea as the platters above, with an extra step.

Measure and cut all of your pieces. Your felt should measure about 1/2″ beyond the tile in all directions. Cut your square of AstroTurf the same width as your tile.

Glue the tile liberally and place it in the middle of the felt. You can either glue the finished or unfinished side of the tile. Both will get covered up, so it doesn’t matter. Glue along the tile edge and fold the felt overhang along the tile edge, similar to wrapping a present. Once the glue has dried (less than a minute), add more glue to the top and press down your AstroTurf square.

My AstroTurf coasters: Customize your felt to match your team colors

My AstroTurf coasters: Customize your felt to match your team colors

Beer koozies

I have two koozie designs. Both are easy to make and both templates can be found on this PDF. (Astroturf templates)

Beer koozies

Beer koozies

Design A (without laces):

  • Cold, full can of beer (or soda)
  • AstroTurf cut to the specifications of Design A on this AstroTurf template
  • Hot glue gun, glue sticks

Roll the AstroTurf around the can. Glue a line along the XXX-marked edge of the grass-side of the AstroTurf. Overlap the excess and carefully press the sides together. The full cold can will work to your advantage here, as it won’t allow the hot glue to stick to it. Once the glue is cool to the touch, slide the koozie off of the can. It should fit snugly, but still be able to slide off.

Design B (with laces):

  • Can or bottle of beer (doesn’t need to be cold!)
  • AstroTurf cut to the specifications of Design B on this AstroTurf template
  • Hot glue gun, glue sticks
  • Small hole punch
  • White suede laces or white shoe laces (I bought 8 yards of suede laces for ~$6 at Michael’s)

Punch holes in the AstroTurf per the specifications on the template (Design B). Wrap your AstroTurf around the can or bottle to see how much room you need to leave. Cut a long enough (about 4 times the height of your can) strand of laces and thread it through the bottom punches. Pretend it’s a pair of shoes and lace it right up. Finish it on the top with a knot or bow.

Fancy!

Fancy!

Wine tags

But wait! There’s more! I made two variations on the wine tag as well.

You’ll need the following:

  • AstroTurf (cut as described below)
  • Small hole punch
  • White suede laces or white shoe laces (I bought 8 yards of suede laces for ~$6 at Michael’s)

The first comes without a template. Simply cut a shape out of your AstroTurf, punch a hole in it and thread some lace through it. Leave a long enough length that you can tie a bow around your glass. You can use a paint pen or stickers to put an identifier on the shape. I used a “K” for Kaci, the Q13 anchor I spoke to this morning.

AstroTurf wine tags

AstroTurf wine tags

The template for the second wine tag variation can be found on this AstroTurf template, with the koozie designs. Simply cut out the tag in the described shape. You can stop here, although I like punching holes on either side of the slit (and indicated on the template) and tying a white suede lace bow to keep the edges together.

And that’s it! Now, what else should I do with the 40 SF of AstroTurf that I have left?! This is my official warning to family and friends: you’re getting AstroTurf coasters and platters for Christmas!

I’ll leave you with my pretty finger, donned with a fancy SuperBowl ring and I’ll post the footage as soon as it’s online! Thanks again for stopping by!

Oh, hello, SuperBowl Ring!

Oh, hello, SuperBowl Ring!

Full disclosure: I rooted for the Broncos during the Superbowl. Brandon, my husband, was born in Denver and has been a Bronco fan his entire life. The Seahawks are a very close #2 for us and in any other circumstance, we would have rooted for them.