Thursday, March 4, 2021

"Vintage" Lucky Charm Piñatas

So, I pulled these Lucky Charm piñatas out of storage the other day, and they look a little rough from being shoved in a tub with a bunch of other projects for several years.  Since that aged them a bit, we'll just call them "vintage"!  In fact, the shooting star used to be orange and white, instead of orange and yellow, so "vintage" seems legit - right?!  Which color scheme do you prefer?  Lucky Charms cereal has always been my favorite inspiration for St. Patrick's Day, and you can find the original post for the piñatas here.  The tutorial for the treats can be found at Handmade Charlotte - and that is not milk in the bowl!  Be sure to check them out.  

Don't forget to make a Leprechaun trap!  Lucky Charm Kabobs make the perfect bait, since Leprechauns looooooove Lucky Charms.  I think I'm part-Leprechaun.  

You could make some Lucky Charms Sushi with pink milk "soy sauce"!  Find the tutorial here.  I also wanted to share the cutest shop with the most adorable fetti.  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Monday, December 14, 2020

Winter Hat Candy Covers

Hello friends!  It isn’t often that I post to my own blog these days, but my sweet friend Gina invited me to join her 6th Annual Creative Collective Project – and how could I say no?!  I adore Gina.  She is amazingly creative and talented, but also genuine and so kind.  I am honored to be a part of her creative advent calendar, so let me introduce these mini candy covers for DAY 14!  I dreamed up these little winter hats when I saw a pack of small plastic bowls at the dollar store.  They were just asking for a pom pom, a little paint, and a sweet “knitted” rim.  I wanted to keep the project simple, and use accessible supplies since this is an international collaboration.  I don’t believe the dollar store is international, but I am hoping that everyone (who wants to make the project anyway) can track down some small plastic bowls.  If you are not in the U.S. and find a good source, please share in the comments below.  I know we all have party streamers and paint!

When my mother-in-law hosts holidays, she often places some candy in tiny individual baskets, bowls, or cute containers, and the kids love it!  I thought these hats would be adorable at each place setting this Christmas, with a little candy surprise hiding underneath.  I considered calling them “Covid Covers”, because they would protect the candy from coughs, sneezes, and little hands!  While these are cute for the holidays, the color schemes can be customized to suit any winter gathering – a small one, of course!  They could be placed on a tray for an afternoon of sledding or ice skating, or could cover little piles of marshmallows for hot cocoa!  You could put names on them and use them for place cards.  I already know my son will want to place one on his head, so it could be fun to attach some elastic, and turn them into party hats!  How do you imagine using them?

Before I get on with the tutorial, I would like to invite you to join us, and spread seasonal merriment in a year where these everyday joys really seem to make a difference (perfectly worded by Gina)!  Please follow her Instagram account (@willowdaygram) to see 25 creatives around the world share 25 daily holiday projects.  She is our host, and links to each daily participant so you won’t miss a single one.  She will also share some extras in her stories throughout the month.  It’s never too late to join the fun!

Now, for the tutorial…


Mini round bowls

• Acrylic paint

• Sponge brush

• Toothpicks

• Streamers

• String

• Scissors

• Fringe scissors (optional, but helpful!)

• Index card

• School glue

• Tacky glue


Step 1

Use a sponge brush, and acrylic paint color of your choice to paint the inside of your plastic bowl.  Allow to dry, and you may want to do a second, and even third coat of paint for full coverage.  The inside of the bowl may not look smooth, but when you flip it over to create the hat, it looks perfect on the outside!

Step 2

Cut about a 31" piece of streamer.  Fold the bottom 1/3 of the streamer up across the entire length.  Fold the top 1/3 down across the entire length.  Next, fold small segments of the streamer on top of each previous segment.  The best way to describe it would be a “staggered accordion fold”.  Add a dot of school glue under each fold and press down to hold it together.  Allow to dry.

Step 3

Flip the bowl over, and glue the streamer piece around the entire bottom edge using tacky glue.  Cut off any excess, leaving enough to overlap the two ends a tiny bit, and glue down. 

Step 4

Cut an index card to 1 1/2" x 5" and place the ends of several streamer colors together.  Wrap them around the skinny side of the index card about six times – each side of the card counts as one wrap, so only three if you go around both sides! 

Step 5

Use scissors to cut the ends of the streamers once you have wrapped them around the index card.  Hold the streamers in the middle of the card, and cut the “looped” sides on each end, so there are several layers of stacked streamer pieces.  Slide the index card out from the middle. 

Step 6

Loosely tie a string around the middle of the stacked streamer pieces.  They should curl up a bit, but not too much, as seen in the photo.

Step 7

Separate small stacks of the streamer pieces on one side of the string, and use fringe scissors to cut all the way across.  Cut toward the middle, but do not cut all the way to the string.  Fringe every single layer, and then repeat this step on the opposite side of the string. 

Step 8

Fan out the fringe with your fingers, and then shape the piece into a ball.  You may even squish it down a bit.  Use tacky glue to attach it to the top of your bowl hat.  Allow to dry.

Step 9

Use toothpicks to paint small “x” shapes in little rows at the bottom of the hat with acrylic paint, to look like stitches.  Allow to dry.

Your hats are ready to place on the table over small candies, toys, or treats.  Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

A Friendly Discussion About Crediting...

You guys!  I hate to dust off the blog for a heavy topic, but something has been troubling me for some time now, and a personal blog seems like the best place to call it out.  So, I'm not sure where to start, but let me explain the work that I do as a content creator.  Basically, I come up with original content, do a practice run (or several) to make sure the idea will work, and then I make the item - usually multiple times.  Then, I spend a lot of time photographing each individual step to show others how to make the item, and taking finished, styled pictures of the project for posting on social media.  I also spend time editing each individual photo.  I create a written tutorial with step by step instructions, and a blurb with ideas for using the project.  One project from start to finish generally takes several days to completeBloggers purchase my work, and they become the owner of the content, and are free to claim it as their project.  However, the bloggers I have chosen to work for are very kind and generous with crediting, and always put my name or even photo on each post that I contribute, and tag me on social media.  

With that said, it is really sad how many people on the internet are willing to steal photos, copy projects, and claim them as their own work.  Sometimes it is not blatantly labeled as their own, but it is implied - which is just as bad.  It is said that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.  I agree!  I LOVE when someone follows a tutorial and posts their own version of a project.  What I do not appreciate is if that same person pretends that it was their original idea, when they were clearly inspired by (or even copied) another artist's original work.  You wouldn't believe how often people post other creators' projects, and get lovely feedback about the idea being genius, creative, or original, and the people have the audacity to say "thank you!"  as if the credit truly belonged to them, and not the original creator.  This is misleading, and is the same as stealing work, in my opinion.  I count on my creativity to make money, and if people are led to believe they can get the same creative idea or work from someone else, then I am losing business.  Can I get an "Amen!" from my fellow makers?!  

Also, you may have a bigger following on social media than the original maker, and think that people won't notice if you pretend that a project or idea belongs to you - but let me tell you that PEOPLE NOTICE!  I actually had a sweet Instagram follower and friend bring a post to my attention just yesterday.  When you steal makers' ideas, you are losing their business, their recommendations or promotions, their admiration, and their respect.  I loved the work of some ladies on Instagram, but my heart sank when I saw my project that they claimed as their own concept.  I gave them the original link in a comment, however, hundreds of people had already seen the post they believed belonged to these ladies, and their responses to the comments, by the time they added a tag.  

Let me just add that crediting "Pinterest" is not sufficient.  Each and every idea on Pinterest came from an original source.  Please be mindful when you post work, and make sure that you are properly crediting the original artists.  Imagine how you would feel if you saw your own hours of work posted by someone else claiming or pretending that it was their own.  It breaks my heart every time I see it, and it happens more often than you could imagine.  I generally don't draw attention to it, but this most recent incident really struck a nerve.  I always try to search my ideas on the internet to make sure they are original, and if they are not 100% unique, then I like to credit someone for the inspiration.  If I have ever used an idea that you feel belonged to you first, let me apologize - and assure you that it was unintentional.  There are so many ideas out there, and sometimes it is hard to remember if you saw something before, and it is in your subconscious - or if it is truly original.  I understand when that happens, but I would want to make it right...and hope you feel the same!

I will wrap up by saying that proper crediting will take a person back to the original post, or at least to the maker or artist who created the post.  I always greatly appreciate a tag or link when someone knows that I did the project, however, if it is something I did for another blog, then linking to that blogger is sufficient.  Stolen work upsets me for the blogs that own my content as well, because they paid for that project!  They deserve the link-back and credit.         

Okay, I will step off my soapbox.  If you made it this far, thank you for reading.  I would love to hear from you!  Have you ever had your work or idea stolen on the web?  If you have, I'm sorry.  Did you address it, or let it go?

Bubblegum Skull Cupcake Toppers:  Handmade Charlotte    

Saturday, January 26, 2019

DIY Snowman Cupcake Toppers

It looks like it's going to be a nice weekend for some hot cocoa and cupcakes!  We have snow flurries outside, and it's a great day to make some snowman cupcake toppers!  You can find the tutorial on Handmade Charlotte.  Happy crafting!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

4th of July Flag Cake

Call me crazy, but I made a pastel flag cake for the 4th of July.  It's America's BIRTHDAY cake!  I realize it's a non-traditional color palette (to my husband's dismay), but it will be so fun to serve to the kids' table on the fourth, for a little 4th-ish bday party!  Head to Handmade Charlotte for the tutorial.  Happy Birthday America!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

DIY Food Cart Favors

Present your party favors in some adorable food carts!  Check out the tutorial at Handmade Charlotte, where you will also find a hot dog, lemonade, and fresh fruit cart, and some fun filler ideas.  Yay for summer!

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Sushi Surprise Party Favors

Turn sweet treats and streamers into some adorable "sushi surprise" for a fun dessert or favor.  Find the full tutorial at Handmade Charlotte.  Happy weekend!

Monday, May 28, 2018

DIY Dandelion Cake Topper

Dandelions are in full bloom!!  Make this fun dandelion cake topper by following the tutorial at Handmade Charlotte.  Don't forget to make a wish!

Thursday, May 3, 2018

DIY Cactus Cupcake Toppers

It's almost Cinco de Mayo!  If you're interested in the tutorial for these cactus cupcake toppers, be sure to sign up for the newsletter at Mint Event Design.  I am working with Carolina to share some fun party DIYs.  I am so excited to share that these cupcake toppers have been featured on 100 Layer Cake-let as a part of Carolina's Cinco de Mayo party!  Be sure to check it out, and get inspired to celebrate this weekend!  

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Prize Ribbon Derby Dessert

Since we are currently living in Kentucky, I just had to share an idea for your Derby-viewing parties!  It's so easy to "derbify" a grocery store cake, y'all!  Find the full tutorial at Handmade Charlotte.  

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Baking Party Invitation

If your little gal loves to bake, then a "Baking Birthday" just might be the perfect way to celebrate!  Invite some friends over to make some cookies and cupcakes, using these adorable whisk invitations!  Find the full tutorial over at Handmade Charlotte.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Mini Wooden Rainbow Stackers

Happy St. Patrick's Day friends!  If you're looking for a little craft to do while you're drinking your shamrock shake, check out the tutorial for these mini wooden rainbow stackers on Handmade Charlotte.  You just need to gather some balsa wood, and paint, and you'll have the cutest desktop rainbows!  You could even glue the pieces together and make a magnet or garland.  Happy crafting!

Saturday, March 3, 2018

"You Make My Heart Sing" Valentines

It's a little late for Valentines, but I'm playing catch-up today!  This space has become more of a portfolio, than a blog at the moment!  Please stay tuned though...I have been working with an event designer on some party DIYs that we will be sharing in the near future.  So excited!!  I hope you're having a wonderful weekend!  xo  

Tutorial for heart Valentines @ Handmade Charlotte

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Mini Plaid Thermos Favors

If you're expecting snow, be sure to grab some TP rolls and leftover wrapping paper to make these fun mini thermos invitations (or favors) to pass out to friends!  Slip a hot cocoa packet inside with some marshmallows and a rolled up invitation, and plan to meet up at the best local sledding hill.  Head to Handmade Charlotte for the tutorial.  Happy Weekend!

Friday, December 22, 2017

Candy Poinsettias

These candy poinsettias are on Handmade Charlotte this week, along with a bunch of adorable Christmas DIYs!  Have a very Merry Christmas, friends!  I am planning some really fun DIYs for 2018, and I hope you'll stay tuned!      

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Gumdrop Swans-a-Swimming

If you're looking for a quick cake or cupcake topper this Christmas season, these gumdrop swans would be perfect!  They would also be sweet for a first birthday, baby shower, or any other swan soiree.  Follow the tutorial on Handmade Charlotte, and have a very Merry Christmas friends!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Caramel Reindeer Candies

Happy December!  Sometimes we're so busy getting ready for Christmas, that we forget to take it all in, and enjoy sweet moments with our kiddos.  This year I am really trying to be efficient, and stay ahead of schedule, so that I can really soak in the season without feeling stressed and frazzled!  I want my kids to have good memories of baking, watching Christmas movies together, and attending Christmas events.  We took the time to make these little caramel reindeer candies, and it was so much fun!  They're easy to make, and they look darling on cupcakes.  For the tutorial, head to Handmade Charlotte.  Stay tuned for more Christmas DIYs in the next few weeks!

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Mini Turkey Roast Piñatas

Kids will love these mini turkey roast piñatas!  Fill them with candy or little activities to keep them busy while they wait for Thanksgiving dinner.  Make your own using the tutorial at Handmade Charlotte.  Happy Thanksgiving!  

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Bowling Ball Cupcake Toppers

At this house, most of us have fall birthdays, and the weather is pretty unpredictable!  Bowling is the perfect fall or winter party idea, and these marbled bowling ball cupcake toppers would be adorable in any color scheme.  If you want to make your own, check out the tutorial on Handmade Charlotte! 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Bubblegum Skull Cupcake Toppers

Skulls chewing bubble gum is my kind of creepy!  Be sure to file these cupcake toppers away for next October 31st.  For the full tutorial, head to Handmade Charlotte.  Happy Halloween!  

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Licorice Allsorts Gelatin Squares

This Halloween, serve some licorice-flavored gelatin squares inspired by the cutest licorice allsorts!  Find the full tutorial at Handmade Charlotte.  

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

DIY Moon Cake Topper

Whew!  I'm a little behind on posting around here, but fall is a great time for an outer space, stargazing, or astronaut party.  Be sure to check out the tutorial for this DIY moon cake topper on Handmade Charlotte.  You have plenty of time to make it for the solar eclipse of 2024!