Monday, October 28, 2013

Party Poster Idea~ Mod Podge

I LOVE this idea for any type of party! What child wouldn't want a HUGE picture of themselves up to celebrate THEM!?! I have actually posted about this idea before, HERE.
Staples makes it CHEAP & EASY to make enlarged prints!

Since I was throwing a princess party for my daughter, I decided to build her a large castle out of cardboard! If you want to see how I made it, CLICK HERE!
I thought it would be cool to enlarge a picture of her standing in front of her castle!
Here is the picture I used!
After adding the lettering onto the photo in Illustrator,
I simply uploaded this photo to staples website under the Engineering prints! CLICK HERE to go to their page! They have three sizes to choose from, 18"X24", 24"X36", 36"X48"!
This time I choose to go as LARGE as possible! 
It was only SEVEN dollars for this print 36"X48"!
 We took it home and colored in parts of the picture with crayons and markers!
 This next step added so much extra drama to the photo. My husband said it almost looks a little 3D! 
I simply painted a little sparkle Mod Podge to parts of her dress, tiara, and the number fives in the picture! Can you see the sparkle and shine!?!
A simple decoration to add to any party!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Princess Cardboard Castle

This past week has been so much fun celebrating our little girl turning FIVE!!!
 She really wanted a PRINCESS party! 
The other thing is we just moved into our home four months ago so this would be our first PARTY at our new home! 
So, while my husband used ALL of his free time on getting our deck ready, I started working on making this party special for Kiki and her friends!
I have so many different projects I worked on for this party that I have to break it up into a few posts to show you everything! 
This post is all about the pink princess castle I created!

I love showing the step by step so you can see the transformation! 
It all started out with a few big boxes!
I called all around and many places wont give away their boxes....
Finally, I called Marshalls & Home Goods store and they were MORE than helpful! I got 4 chair/dresser size boxes from them. They even helped me break them down and load them into my car!
If you are looking to find boxes I would say call a local, not large chain, furniture store.
I had the PERFECT spot for the castle! We have a playroom which is partially finished. I already knew I wanted to use a corner of the room as two of the walls so I could make the castle pretty large! Sorry for the messy picture below, I started moving things around before I took the picture!
Now that you have your boxes, you should start by making the entrance of your castle. Cut our your door with a utility knife. The picture below is one box. I would suggest that you leave one set of box flaps taped in on the floor for support. To make the castle tall enough, I taped the top flaps straight up with duct tape. I also added a fun cut out above the door using hot glue and duct tape.  I wanted to have a working drawbridge so I just punched two holes on the door and two above the door. I used one long piece of velvet ribbon that I had on hand. The ribbon can be pulled from the inside bringing the door up... It's pretty fun!
Once I had my entryway somewhat together, I started putting things in place!
The great thing about setting this up in my playroom was the concrete floor! It was so easy to stablize the boxes by duct taping them to the floor. Then, for even more support, we laid rugs over the cardboard on the floor.
I knew I wanted to make the castle large enough to put a little kitchen area in it.
Here is a picture with the basic shape of the castle done, using three medium/large boxes.
Because our whole basement is beige, I knew I wanted to make a scene on the wall next to the castle to add color. I bought a few plastic tablecloths from the dollar store and tacked them to the wall.
I cut a white tablecloth in half and hot glued it to the bottom of the pink. Then I simply spray painted some swirly trees and added a cute little carriage. Also, you will see a cute little dragon that my kids colored hanging from the ceiling. We had this crayola set from a while back and it worked out perfectly   to color and hang for the party!
I wanted to add some extra support to the front walls of the castle and also add some details to dress up the castle. I decided to add some support pillars on either side of the door. I had a few Home Depot boxes left over from our move so I cut one side, with a utility knife, to flatten it out. Then I scored a line down the middle of the box.
I then folded and taped the box together with duct tape!
I also had to add another box below the pillar so it will reach the ceiling. I also used hot glue and added different size rectangles to the top of the castle, which really changed the look and gave it more castle-like features!
Next, I started trying to paint the castle. I thought that spray paint would be the easiest. The cardboard ended up soaking up most of the color and it was really hard to do inside because of the fumes. 
 I got out the left over light pink paint I used to paint Kiki's room. This totally made the castle look so much better! I also stapled two pieces of plastic purple table cloths(from the dollar store) to the door as curtains so you wouldn't see in when the drawbridge is down.
Next, I used acrylic white paint to paint the look of brick on the front of the castle.
Above the door Kiki and I colored a sign, "Kiki's Castle", and used sparkle Mod Podge to seal it to the cardboard. It gave a nice sparkly look!
As I worked on the outside of the castle, the kids worked on the inside. They colored and cut out cupcakes and glued them to the inside close to the kitchen area.
Brenden got VERY creative and drew a TV and even made a wii remote! He is playing a Kerby Wii game, pictured below.
Next, I worked on the ceiling. I hung a hula hoop, from the dollar store, right around the can light. 
Then I cut strips of plastic table cloth, folded them over the hula hoop and taped it in place. Then attached the other ends of the strips of table cloth all around the ceiling.
One of Kiki's favorite things to do is write letters to people so I decided to make a mailbox. I spray painted one side of a fruit snack box silver.
Cut a whole in it and used pink duct tape to attach it to the front of the castle. We also used sparkle Mod Podge to seal the word "Mail" to the box(not pictured).
At the party I provided blank cards and markers in the castle and the girls had fun making cards and putting them into the box!
As you can also see in the next two pictures that the castle is large enough that we fit two throw rugs in it! Also, we added a little "hideout" or box in the corner with a window and a door. My kids LOVE to crawl in there! We covered it with a blanket and added some of Kiki's dolls on top to soften the look of all of the cardboard!
Here is a shot of the inside of the castle, all set up with Kiki's new tea set!
The princess and her castle!
Don't forget to add white twinkly lights to the ceiling around the castle!
Here is a picture of 11 of the kids at Kiki's party! I have to say, I was very concerned, after all of my hard work, that the castle wouldn't hold up. 
I was VERY pleased that the castle is STILL standing for many more playdates AND....... All of these kids could fit in the castle at once! SO COOL!
Happy 5th Birthday my sweet little Kiki!
Below are some more ideas for a princess party! 
Just click on the picture below to take you to that post!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Trick or Treat Sack & Keepsake Ideas

This post is a follow up from my post last year on the trick or treat sack and keepsake.
You can click on the picture below to see original post!
Here are my Babies this year! Brenden (7 1/2) is dressed as Batman, Keaten (5) is a Princess, and Garren (16mo) is dressed as Elmo. Since there are only so many halloween handprint/ footprint ideas out there, I thought it would be fun to add who they are dressed as on their sack each year.
Brenden found these special Batman wings at a garage sale for only FOUR dollars!!! SCORE!
They open up when he pulls a cord and he can also bring them in by pulling another cord! Seriously cool! 
Because of his special find, I thought making his hands the wings would be fun.  So here is what I came up with for his sack this year! I let Brenden color in batman with fabric markers after I drew it on the sack!
If your child is Batman and you can't draw out the character like I did, you can also just paint the batman sign in the center of your childs black handprint!

We also did a fun monster footprint!
 This is what I did with Garren's cute little handprint. I just added an Elmo face to his palm!
Lastly for my Princess Kiki we made a cute pink tutu dress!
We hope you have a fun and safe Halloween this year! Remember the sky's the limit for these fun trick or treat sacks! If you are stumped on what to do for your child's costume comment below. I would love to try and help you come up with a fun idea for a hand or footprint!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Sharpie Mug: Designed By A Child!

This idea for designing your own mug with a sharpie is all over pinterest!
It's such a great idea!
I have always wanted to try it out!
One day, at my P31 Moms group, they brought all of the stuff for us to do it together. I LOVE mugs but I'm very picky about what I put on them and also their shape.... If I don't like it, I wont use it!
I chose the PERFECT mug out of all that were there! It just feels good to hold. However, I didn't want  to quickly come up with a design right there so I took it home!
I was planning on looking through my kids drawings and transferring a picture they drew on the mug.

That day, my daughter shows me a picture she drew of our family!
It was so cute! I love the little details like how she put a "bun" on my head, how she gave daddy a beard, how yellow she made her hair, and how LITTLE she drew Garren! 
Then I thought, why would I transfer a picture that my kids drew when I have the artist right HERE!?!?
So, I gave Kiki the white mug and a sharpie!
I gave her the direction to draw our family on the mug and she got to work!
 While she was drawing, I researched the project for best results.
I found a few facts that I think are VERY helpful for anyone doing a sharpie mug!
Bree from DIYopolis had some great points from her experience! I will highlight the ones I thought were most important!
  • Choose cheep mugs because their glaze isn't as good which helps the marker bond to the mug better.
  • This tip I WISH I read before I had my daughter draw on the mug! You want to get all of the oils off the mug! Wash it with rubbing alcohol. Once it's clean you need to be carful touching the mug. Next time I will have my child wear gloves!
  • Let the marker fully dry for 24 hours before baking.
  • Place your mug on a cookie sheet in the oven FIRST, then turn the oven on to 425 degrees, not 350 degrees! Most people say 350 but the glaze doesn't get hot enough to bond with the marker. Also, the mug needs to be in the oven to slowly heat up, this prevents cracking.
  • Set a timer for 30 minutes, once it goes off just simply turn your oven off.... Let the mug cool with the oven to prevent cracking!

I think the mug turned out AWESOME!!! It is one of my FAVORITE mugs now! Here is a picture I pieced together so you can see all that my daughter drew. I helped her spell out "Our Family" at the top.
Don't forget to date and have your child sign the mug.
I would say this is the perfect gift for Mother's day, Father's day, and for family members at Christmas!
Who wouldn't love a personalized mug by a special child in their life!?!

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