Posts Tagged ‘crafty’

Zero Budget Project: Penelope’s Studio


For Penelope’s birthday, Chris and I wanted to give her something that would make her squeal. She is obsessed with her art supplies and crafting. Most days it’s all over the kitchen table, pantry, floor, counter tops and couch. She just spreads her artistic love all through the house.


It’s great, but I want to channel it somewhere that I can close the doors and ignore it. I also wanted the space (and flooring) to be utterly indestructible to her glues and glitters. She thinks my studio is so cool, I wanted to give her one of her own.


The downstairs toy room was out (too much soft carpet down there). My studio was definitely out!

We have this utility closet that we don’t really use that efficiently upstairs just next to my studio. It has washer and dryer hookups, but we have a laundry room downstairs instead. We had a few random boxes and things (above) that could be easily organized elsewhere, so I made this space Penelope’s.


It’s the perfect size for her and the tile floors allow for easy clean up. As far as the cost and logistics of making this space hers, here was the breakdown:

  • tables: $50, Ikea
  • chairs: already on hand
  • shelving and brackets: $16, Ikea
  • containers: already on hand (Pink: $5, Michael’s | black: $3.99, Ikea)
  • frame for her sign: $5, Ikea
  • flat art storage: already on hand
  • filing cabinet: already on hand
  • magnets: gift from LivyLove


Of course, while I was at Ikea, I wandered through their art supplies and picked up about $40 worth of supplies for her as well. Who knew Ikea had such awesome art supplies for kids?


The top shelf is still a dedicated space for the drill, light bulbs batteries and misc cleaning supplies. I’m thinking the above space needs an overhaul as well.


With the open containers, Penelope can move them and clean up easily. And she’s pretty good about keeping things clean. So far.


I finally found a use for those tins I bought on impulse by way back. This one holds chalk, the other holds her glitter pens.


My mother-in-law sent Penelope a bunch of sweet supplies for her birthday like floral fabric tape, pebble crayons, twig pencils and loads of paper. What a nice grandma. Now she can use these in her own way and not worry about me nagging to clean up.


The metal cabinet is perfect for displaying her favorite pieces before storing or framing them.


It’s really a great space for her. She can do whatever she wants in that space and I can close the doors at the end of the day and ignore it all!

Did you have a creative space just for you growing up? Will you or have you done this for your own kids?

Crafty: Handmade Valentines


My friend hosts a yearly Valentine’s exchange that’s amazing. I did leather bobby pins last year, so I had to do something at least as cool this year. And in true Melissa fashion, I wait until the night before to construct all 12 of them.


Since I did everything at the last minute, I didn’t have enough supplies to do the same thing 12 times, so I had to get creative. I had originally planned on painting 12 paintings, but that obviously didn’t happen, so I opted for earrings. Then I realized I didn’t have enough earring posts to make 12 pairs of earrings. Thankfully I had enough rings and pins to make up for my lack of planning.


Here’s what I did, I busted out my letterpress machine (for the second time), used two plates I had on hand and the paper I had on hand. It worked out perfectly. I had tiny envelopes and fold over cards that I ended up cutting in half. I printed the little details in no time (clean up was another story, but lessons learned). I hand-lettered Be Mine on the envelopes; again for lack of any other clever phrase.


I had a lot of this grey stretchy elastic, so I made 12 elastic hair ties. These things are cute and effortless to make (tutorials: 1, 2, 3 or purchase: 1, 2, 3, 4)

I also have a TON of pretty grey patent leather (like 1/3 of a cow’s worth), so I made a few accessories with it. Above, I made a little bow tie or pin.


I made a set of “jewel” earrings.


And I made a couple of rings.

They were really easy. I just cut out jagged shapes , then connected the corners with black sharpie marker. Ghetto, maybe. Adorable, definitely. I made sure I had extras so I could keep them for myself. Felix will look dapper with his bow tie on Sunday.

In other news, a couple of days ago, my sister texted me asking what my Valentine’s plans were. Then she offered to come to my house and watch my kids so Chris and I could go out and have a special night. Of course I promptly texted Chris: “Emily is watching the kids for Valentine’s day. You better plan a hot date, expectations will be high.” So they’re really not that high, but I sure hope he gets me a flower or two and makes me a Valentine. I love his Valentines: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12.

Do I Think I’m 20 again?


When I was telling my dad about all of the fun things I did this weekend (and how late I was out), I could tell he was shaking his head when he asked me, “Do you think you’re 20 and in college again?” I had more than my fair share of fun this last weekend. In fact, I feel a little guilty that I was gone so much, but that still didn’t stop me from having a blast.

Thursday night I went out with some of the ladies in the neighborhood (you can see what I wore here). We had a fabulous dinner & such a great time getting to know each other better.


Jenn, Amy, Me, Ashlee, Sarah (LeAnn took the pic)

Friday night I had the pleasure of hanging out with a few old friends & meeting some new ones while we crafted up a storm. Elmer’s provided us with all of the tools, we just had to bring our own paper & have a project in mind. My friend, Annie, had made a hand-cut P for Penelope’s second birthday (see it here) and now that Felix is going to be joining Penelope in her room in the next little bit, I thought I’d make him a matching one.

I drafted the F backwards before I cut it. This F is 100% analog!

Here are better pics of my projects:


I could’ve easily just designed something on the computer & cut it out with my Silhouette, but it was nice to get out the ruler & pencil to hand draft Felix’s F. It’s been a while since I’ve done something analog like that. It took about an hour to draft & cut the F, so while we were chatting, I thought I’d play around with more of my paper & did a little free form hand cut design. I’m not quite sure where I’m going to put it, but I like how it turned out. It reminds me of my high school graphics days when I’d hand cut ruby-lith for silkscreening tshirts. It’s been 8 years since I took that class (and how many moves? at least 8) and I still have some of my original hand-cuts.

undefinedI may have eaten like 10 of these. Oreo + cream cheese + chocolate = heaven

We had a great time over at Ashlee’s house chatting, projecting and eating that we didn’t start wrapping things up until around 11:30. Even then, I couldn’t stop visiting. It wasn’t until nearly 1:30 that I made my way home. I wonder why Chris let me out of the house on Saturday for another meet up! Oh Chris, you always let me do what I want. You need a major award.

Did you do anything fun this weekend? I sure hope you did. I’ll be posting about Saturday’s swap meet as soon as I have some pics to share. I’m excited to show you a few cool pieces I snagged while there!

Petal Box 2.0


I was emailing back and forth with ISLY reader, Cathy, who gave me such a great idea. She had been looking for a box template that she could use for packaging 1 cupcake. I thought I could really use one of those, too, especially since I had also been thinking up a crazy cupcake recipe that used molded chocolate as the cupcake cup. MMM. Chocolate. Seriously, no better time to make a cupcake box than when I’m dying to make cupcakes.


The template is great, the box is fabulous (not just for cupcakes, mind you), the only problem with this template is that you have to print it on either two sheets of 8.5×11 paper and tape the two parts together, OR you have to go somewhere to get it printed on 11×17 paper. While that might be a little inconvenient, it still only takes a few minutes to make the boxes anyway. If I had any parties coming up anytime soon, I would definitely use this idea for favor boxes.


Seriously I’m on a party/wedding kick. I never really satiated my hearty party cravings with Penelope’s birthday. Now that my sister is getting married and I’m helping her out with invitations and inspiration, I’m GOING CRAZY. I want to party! Maybe I should just have a random party anyway. This could also serve some purpose for Father’s day. Oh gosh, it’s coming so quickly.


To download the regular template & instructions, click the button below:

To download the template for 11×17 printers, click the button below:

I’m really happy with this little box. It fits cupcakes perfectly with plenty of room for greedy fingers to take a cupcake out and for the cupcake to be piled high with sugary, sweet frosting. Give it a try! Also, stay tuned as I will be sharing an amazing, almost-better-than-sex, mind-exploding cupcake recipe soon!!

Thanks to Rachel over at One Pretty Thing for featuring this freebie!

This printable is free for personal use and should not be distributed without my consent. If you would like to this for commercial purposes, please email me. Thanks!

I Heart Handmade Guest Post



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