Monday, September 28, 2015

DIY Bubble Gum Balloon Dogs

Are you sick of standing in a long line at the fair with your kids, to wait for a balloon dog from a creepy clown, only to have it pop seconds later...forcing you to stand in line again?!  Well, I found the perfect solution for your next party. BUBBLE GUM balloon dogs!!!!!  NO lines, NO creepy clowns, and NO popping!
Before we get to the tutorial, I would like to give credit to the creative genius behind the "grape balloon dog".  The only problem is that I have seen several versions on Pinterest, so I'm not sure who had the original idea. Will the real "grape balloon dog" designer please stand up?!  I just wanted to say that this post was completely inspired, and I just changed the materials to add some fun color options. 

You can see my attempt at the balloon dog on Instagram, but since I used red grapes, it looks like he's made of sausage.  NOT the look I was going for!  I was determined to come up with an alternative, to make him look even more like the real deal...and that's when I found some old boxes of Dubble Bubble Egg Shaped Gum in the pantry from last Easter!  Yeah...pretty embarrassing.  If you're here for the tutorial...don't worry.  Oriental Trading Company carries egg gum, so you don't have to rely on last year's stale Easter stash! 

Supplies to make ONE balloon dog:

6 toothpicks
1 pin

Now for the tutorial:

Let me start by saying that I cut five of the toothpicks in half, and I used a pin to pre-poke all of the holes in the gum.  For the holes holding the pointy end of the toothpick, I simply poked a hole to get it started.  I enlarged the holes that will hold the cut (blunt) end of the toothpick, by rotating the pin in a circular motion, until the hole was big enough to hold the width of the toothpick.  Remember that it is easier to stick the blunt end in single pieces of gum, rather than pieces that you have already assembled.
1.  Put two pieces of egg gum on your one whole toothpick.  After you have slid the pieces together, so they're touching in the middle, cut off any excess toothpick using scissors.

2.  Next, assemble four legs using 4 toothpick halves, and attach them to the body.  You may have to adjust the legs a little to make them stand better when you're done.  TIP:  Place the legs on the same end as close together as possible, but angle them outward.

3.  Now, referencing the photos above, assemble the neck and head, and attach two ears using your toothpick halves.  The ears do not need to start quite as close together as the legs, but they do need to angle outward.  Carefully attach the neck to the body, being sure to hold the body in place so that no pressure is applied to the legs when you insert the toothpick.  

4.  Now attach a tail at the opposite end from the head, and your balloon dog is ready to party!  

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Spider Cupcake Toppers

Happy Fall y'all!  A sweet friend showed up at preschool drop-off with some beautiful Gigi's cupcakes.  I feel kind of guilty for posting pics, because I know so many of you are doing the "whole30" diet right now...and obviously I'm NOT!  I just can't seem to give up my sweets, my vino, and my chippies (my husband's recipe with Tapatio Doritos, and melted cheddar should really try it!).  Anyway, I actually just wanted to share the cute little spider cupcake toppers I made to match my spider straws!  I'm afraid I won't be posting a tutorial, because I am hoping to open an etsy shop in the near future!  You can feel free to snoop around the blog a little, and I'm sure you will be able to figure out how to make them...or you can come back (soon?!) and help support my chippie addiction, as well as more important sending my kids to college!  ;)  

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

DIY "Origami" Wafer Cookies

Hello friends!  I have to say that I have really, really missed blogging, but we have had a pretty crazy year.  My husband lost his job almost exactly a year ago, and it has been quite the roller coaster ride ever since!  He took a job in Lexington, KY, and we lived apart for several months while we sold the house and had my daughter finish the semester in Indiana.  Now we are living out of boxes while we're looking for a house in this crazy Lexington market!  Although I wouldn't wish a job loss on anyone, it was exactly the kick-in-the-pants I needed for motivation to dig into the "party things" I have been dreaming about for the past couple of years.  I am not sure exactly what that will look like...maybe working towards blogging with sponsors...maybe party styling for the Lexington area...maybe selling my creations...maybe all of the above?  I am excited about this next chapter in our lives, and the next chapter for this BLOG!  Anyway, enough about that...

So, I can't seem to kick my swan / flamingo obsession!  Unicorns may be next, but apparently I don't have swans out of my system yet.  I did buy the cutest white unicorn salt and pepper shakers the other day, with gold horns...and my husband told me I am getting weirder in my "old age".  He says they'll end up in the next garage sale, but I LOVE!  So now, for one last (maybe?) swan tutorial...

These cookies are so easy to make, it's ridiculous!  You can get really creative, and make any shape you would like...just Google "tangram patterns" to find a template!


sharp knife
wafer cookies (mine were on sale at Target for $1.12 per package!)
1 can frosting (I used Betty Crocker's strawberry mist)

Wafer Cookies

Using the above photo for reference, let's call the beak #1, and move clockwise.

1.  Starting in one corner of the wafer, cut at a 35 degree angle, parallel to the "grid lines", so you have a little triangle piece.  Then cut one row of grid lines off one side of the triangle to make it a wee bit smaller, so it will match up to the head piece.

2.  To make the neck, cut the same above triangle off both ends of your wafer, making sure your cuts are parallel to each other.  Next, cut two rows of grid lines off the long side of your parallelogram.

3.  For the first piece of the body, make a cut the same length as the end of your wafer to make a square.

4.  For the triangular piece of the body, make the same triangle piece you made in step 1, only don't cut off the extra row of grid lines. 

5.  To make the first wing, you will need two larger triangles.  Begin by cutting off the same end triangles you cut to make the neck.  This time, cut the middle piece in half, making two large triangle pieces. (see photo) 

6.   For the second wing, you only need to cut a small triangle off one end, then starting at the  bottom of the angled piece, cut to create a triangle with a 90 degree angle.  (see photo above)

7.  Finally, to create the head, cut a square off one end of your wafer.

8.  Starting with the head and beak, use the frosting of your choice to "glue" each piece together.  The frosting will harden as it dries, and will hold your swan in place.  The cookies are pretty delicate, but they actually do stay together!  You may want to use a toothpick to clean up any clumps of frosting.

To turn your pink swans into flamingos, cut pink sour strip candy in half, and add to the bottom for
legs.  I spread a bit of frosting on the bottom of the pink swans, and added sprinkles to fancy them up a bit.  Put them in little bags, and tie the top with washi tape, and you have an adorable treat display or favor!