Category Archives: DIY

Christmas Tea Tablescape Inspiration


01) comes from The Country Basket which I think may end up being our main centerpiece for the table. Except instead of one main branch, we’ll have a vase of spray painted branches with gold ornaments hanging from them.
02) is by and is both ridiculously simple and a beautifully shabby chic accent. Simple pinecones gathered outside coated with metallic spray paint.
03) can be found on I just want my entire house to look and feel like this.
04) is by Style Estate on their Top 100 Christmas Table Decorations, and could be easily replicated by painting or rolling candles in glitter glue, strands of metallic berries from places like Hobby Lobby or Michael’s, and a value pack of metallic ornaments from Wal-Mart.


05) is from a “Fairy Tale Wedding” compilation by Burnett’s Boards, but would work perfectly for our tablescape as well. Another shabby chic accent similar to the gold spray painted pinecones.
06) is by Bonjade‘s magazine post Christmas in the French Inspired Home. I have a smaller nativity that looks very similar to this one, which is why it caught my eye for our tablescape.
07) was taken from Radostina Bosseva’s flickr page, which is perfect for reusing/recycling those pumpkins we may have still lying around. Once again, gold spray paint and another shabby chic accent.

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{DIY} Upcycled Cozy Christmas Pillow


Remember this pile of receiving blankets from this earlier post?

After making tons of upcycled bibs for my baby, my niece Lyla, and as gifts for a few new babies over the past year, I still have a good-sized pile at my disposal. Now that the temps are cooling way down and the holidays are just around the corner, I thought I could make a Christmas-themed pillow using one of the green blankets. I used this Pinterest idea here to stencil my lettering using simple stencils and a Sharpie.


To make the pillowcase, I folded the blanket lengthwise, sewed one short edge and the long open edge together, leaving one short edge open to insert my pillow. After I put the pillow in the case, I folded the open edges inward, pinned, and sewed the folded edges together. This way made it super easy to not only make a pillowcase but to line up the stripes in the material on the long edge.

This also could be easily replicated with fleece or another blanket-type material if you don’t have a spare blanket lying around. I also plan on using this pillow for my upcoming Christmas mini sessions along with a few other PInterest-inspired things.

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{DIY} Refashioned Toddler Fox Costume

I had originally planned for Elisha to dress up as a monster truck for Halloween this year. But in traditional Elisha fashion, he changes favorite things every week and his current “thing” is the latest YouTube viral video What Does the Fox Say?

Seriously. My almost three-year-old is obsessed with this song and video. He’s even learned a few of the dance moves and lyrics, such as “wa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pow!” and “hatee-hatee-hatee-ho!” all while trying to levitate. So I couldn’t resist changing his costume to a fox. Luckily, I had recently bought him an orange long-sleeve t-shirt from Old Navy a few weeks ago that would work perfectly. For the rest of the costume I used an old t-shirt passed off to me from my brother-in-law and a cheap white hand towel from Wal-Mart.



I started by cutting off the sleeves and all the seams (I forgot about the bottom hem before taking this picture), as well as the print on the back of the shirt to get as much solid orange material as I could get.



Next, I laid out a pair of sweatpants of Elisha’s to use as my pants pattern, using this basic pants pattern (here). The brown pants are a little too long for him but fit him great in the waist, so the shortened length of the t-shirt ended up a perfect length for him once they were done.




For the white fur, I used the t-shirt as a guide for the length and the neckhole to gauge how big to cut out the neckhole of the fur.


Then I trimmed up the sides and rounded the edges of the fur. I ended up having to trim the sides down a few times. Once I got it right, I used safety pins to pin down the fur to the t-shirt and tried it on Elisha.


He liked it. :)


For the ears I cut off two triangles from cardboard (the corners off a diaper box) and glued triangle scraps from the pants material and triangle scraps from the towel onto the cardboard triangles.


Then I hot glued the ears onto a plastic headband I bought a pack of at the dollar store. I also trimmed up the edges of the ears a bit to even them out.

P.S. Don’t you like my smudgy glass table top? A little #RealMamaLife for you there.


Last, to make the tail, I used more of the pants material to cut out two longer length triangles and sewed the two longer edges together, leaving the shorter top edge of the tail open to stuff with material scraps from my scraps stash. Once it was stuffed, I sewed the top down onto the inside of the pants on the back.


Then cut two more triangles from the towel to hot glue on for the white fur on the tip of the tail.

Stay tuned for the next post to see Elisha wearing his new fox costume, as well as Shiloh in her ghost costume!

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{DIY} Shiloh & Lyla’s No-Sew Tutu

When I first saw this pin while I was still pregnant with Shiloh I knew it would be a future Halloween costume for her (along with this one AND this one, but Batman of course). I chose the first because after a full week of taking care of two sick babies, I needed something super simple. Also, Holly (my sister-in-law) and I had decided about a month or so back that we wanted to dress both Shiloh and Lyla (my niece) as little ghosts.

Here are my sweet babies at Halloween last year:

Happy, Happy Halloween 2012!

Crazy to think my baby girl was only a few weeks old then…

I had also made the girls similar tutus back in February for Valentine’s Day, so I knew it couldn’t fail. No brainer, right? Halloween and zombies. I hope in my slight delirium that you guys found that funny. I’m really in need of a solid night of sleep.

Okay, so back to the tutus…


I cut the headband to create one long strip and cut two strips of ribbon the length I wanted them to fall behind the tutu. I hot glued one end of each ribbon to each end of the cut ends of the headband to create the bow on the back when tied together. Then I cut mostly even strips of tulle (they don’t have to be perfectly even to make the tutu a bit “shabby”).


I tried tying the tulle strands as shown in the first image, but no matter how tightly I pulled the tulle it kept coming undone. Then I tried hot gluing the backs of the loops on the backside of the headband, but that didn’t work too well either and was way too time-consuming. I finally gave up, cut off the glued tulle, and started over again by simply tying the tulle in double-knots which ended up working perfectly, the same as the first tutus I made. The white tulle allows the yellow to show a little, so next time I’ll wrap the headband completely with the same white ribbon used for the bow ties to completely cover the color of the headband.


I continued to tie each tulle strand down the headband until I reached the end. Oh, and that glitter was maddening. I’m still sweeping up piles of it off the floor. DO NOT use cheap glitter tulle.


That’s it! Super easy as long as you’re patient and diligent. Find a good show to watch multiple episodes of to pass the time. May I suggest Grey’s Anatomy or Bones. The Killing is also quite awesome.


I’m loving all the homemade/DIY Halloween costumes floating around the blogosphere. To finish up the girls’ costumes, Holly is appliqueing little ghost faces similar to the inspiration pin on white long-sleeve onesies instead of putting the faces on the actual tutus. It’s a bit too cold to let our babies out in this already-freezing weather in the tutus alone. I’m excited to show you all Elisha’s costume next.


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{DIY} Baby Jar Vases

These are the baby jar vases I created for Shiloh’s first birthday party (that I didn’t get photos of at her actual party). They were just too cute and chic to stow away with all my other saved glass jars, so I decided to add them to my kitchen window décor.




These are stage-3 sized jars, which are a little taller than the standard size baby jars (stage-1 and stage-2). To clean them: I soaked the jars in hot soapy water for at least 30-minutes and scrubbed off the glue with a rough sponge (like the green side on the yellow and green sponges) with more dish soap. It took a bit of scrubbing, but once the glue started coming off it came off rather quickly. I’m sure glue removal gels like Goo-Gone would work well too; I just didn’t have any on hand and I’m cheap. I filled the jars with dried moss and added the flowers. These jars would also look pretty with burlap and/or lace added, if you wanted to further the shabby chic look of them. I love the simplicity of the plain glass and moss, but definitely will not rule out anything to change them up in the future.

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Shiloh Cate’s 1st Birthday Party


I don’t think Shiloh’s first birthday couldn’t have been sweeter or more intimate for us. Our closest family members and family friends came to celebrate the first year of her life, which made our little family of four feel incredibly loved.


She got her very first purse (which included a tiny mirror, credit card, keys, phone, and bracelet) and LeapFrog laptop, lots of pretty clothes, a princess stable with 3 princesses and a prince included, a baby doll with a smocked outfit, a monogrammed duffel bag, money, cards, and also her first pair of sunglasses.


These were by far my favorite. Having an aunt who works as an ophthalmic technician has its perks!

DSC_1016 (2)-2

After gifts, of course, came the grand finale: the cake smash. The cupcakes were simple to make: 1 box of cake mix and 1-1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce. Cook per cake box directions. I piped the icing in a swirl with a zip-loc bag with one bottom corner cut off.


She only cared for the icing… I think maybe because she had eaten her weight in cheese and baby pickles. I also caught Daddy sneaking her bites of his cupcake before.

Initially, I felt bad about not getting very many pictures (I stole all but the last two from my Mom). I was just too involved in the party and having too much fun, which I guess every parent should be at their child’s birthday party.

I made the ‘Happy Birthday Shiloh’ banner from scrapbook paper and letter stencils. The table centerpieces were fluted pink bowls with white polka dots with clear stage 3 baby jars filled with dried moss (from Hobby Lobby) and white flowers on each side. The tables also had simple white table cloths with pink ribbon trimmed around the edges. The gift table had a gold-framed 8×10 photo of Shiloh at the center with different shades of pink flowers in a clear vase (the same as the one on the food bar). I used pink with white polka dot plates and napkins, pink plastic utensils, and pink and gold striped paper straws. I also used the Cinderella pumpkin used in her one-year-old photos as decoration on the food bar.

For us, I don’t think her party could have been any more perfect. Sweet and intimate, which exactly suits her personality.

{DIY} Ruffle-Bottom Baby Pants

I’m not sure about the rest of the US, but ruffle-bottom pants for baby and toddler girls are super popular here in the South. My genius sister-in-law Holly drafted her very own pattern of a pair for my niece Lyla and graciously told me how to as well. To continue her graciousness, I’m going to pass this super easy pattern and sewing tutorial on to you all.

Grab a pair of pants that fit your girl well and trace an outline of them on your pattern paper/material (I used one of Matthew’s old undershirts that was too big for him), adding roughly an inch around to allot for the hem.


Make sure the fabric is facing right-sides together and cut out the legs. Pin and sew both of the crotch seams together (you will still have two separate pieces). Pin and sew the inseams together, which will connect the two separate legs. Start pinning at the bottom of the crotch hem and go down each of the legs to make sure your seams match up. Last, pin and sew the outer seams together. The pants should be inside-out.

Once the pants are connected, press the waist casing and hem for the bottom of the legs. Sew the casing down, making sure to leave an 1-2 inch gap to insert the elastic. Insert and sew the ends of the elastic together and sew up the casing gap.


Here is how the pants look thus far:


Now to add the ruffles. Cut out a folded 12″x8-1/2″ rectangle. Unfold and cut in half lengthwise.


Hem the raw top and bottom edges down, then sew the side edges together to create a circle. To create the ruffle, lower the tension of the upper thread to 2 and sew a straight stitch about 1/2″ below the top hem of the ruffle. Pull the strings and gather material.


I used the extension foot to measure how much I wanted the ruffles gathered around. Pin the ruffle onto the bottom of the legs. Raise the tension of your upper thread back to normal and sew a straight stitch over the gathered stitch to secure the ruffle onto the pants.


And that’s it!


I have a purpose for not posting Shiloh modeling her new pants. I made them to match her birthday shirt she’ll be wearing to her birthday party Saturday, which I plan to share photos of next week. Trust me, she is beyond adorable in them, especially with her shuffle-waddle walk.

Feel free to leave any comments or questions for me! They’re quite easy to make once you get the hang of it. I was new to the gathering technique, but I feel pretty confident in my gathering skills now after making a total of three pairs thus far. I may be addicted because I have plenty more planned for both Shiloh and Lyla.

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As if the cool shift that has moved into Alabama overnight isn’t enough to put me in the mood for Fall (and peaches-and-cream oatmeal), here’s a bit more I’ve found just this morning that has officially put me into Fall-overdrive.

12 FREE Fall printables

Seriously simple DIY trick-or-treat bag

Scarf addict

(it says for summer drinks, but this screams Fall for me…)

12 places to buy polka dot tights

What are some things that bring Fall home for you? This is my most favorite season (second is dress season) so feel free to share! I’m off to make another pair of “pretty pants” for Shiloh that I’ll be sharing with you all soon. And my plans for a refashioned vintage skirt into a pair of mock palazzo pants. Stay tuned!


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Pinned it/Tried it/Loved it | Applique with Sewing Machine

This attempt was actually a fusion of two pins I found for my Sewing Tips board on sewing an applique with a standard sewing machine (found here and here). The first is a basic how-to on stitching an applique onto a shirt and the second is a how-to on sewing curves on appliques.

For our upcoming trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, I made Jackson, Elisha, and Shiloh “smokey bear” applique t-shirts with their initials. Would it be considered a monogram if the lettering was First, Middle, Last instead of First, Last, Middle?


As you can tell, there were a few kinks when I lost control of my fabric, but overall I’m very pleased with the outcome seeing that it was my first attempt. Here are the finished products:


Oh, and the bears were made with scraps from refashions here and here. Scraps you have been busted.

The monogramming was made with simple stencils and fabric markers. I became a fan of both when I first used them to make Elisha’s “big brother” t-shirt for Shiloh’s gender reveal party.

We’re now on the 24-hour countdown and I’ve made major progress in the packing area now that my sinuses have decided to chill for a while. Here’s to no allergy attacks for the next four days!

OHP! Wednesday #8

 isaiah 46:4
pinned to Text & Paper

 diy fabric canvases
pinned to Shiloh Cate

tulle skirt
pinned to Very Tara

footprint vehicles
pinned to Elisha Lowell

southern grammar
pinned to Funnies

patterned hair clips
pinned to Shiloh Cate

upcycled drawer shelf/hanger
pinned to DIY: Musts


Hope you’re all having a great week thus far! I’ve been down with a summer cold and the combination of benadryl, lack of sleep, and persistent sneezing have left me with almost no energy, which is not a good thing at all seeing that my family is leaving for our family vacation to Gatlinburg on FRIDAY! (I still have enough energy to be excited about that.) So far I’ve managed to catch up on laundry and pack most of our clothes, shoes, and the like. If any of you have any tips about packing/traveling with a 9-month-old, please feel free to leave them. I know this isn’t my second rodeo traveling with a baby but for some reason I’m feeling more overwhelmed at the thought of traveling with one this go around. Maybe because I have a 2-year-old in tow as well. Or maybe because she doesn’t travel well. Or because I have to pack half the kitchen pantry and bathroom in order for the four of us to make it over the weekend.


Linking up with The Vintage Apple