Office Decor: A Cubicle Fiesta

A handful of my co-workers take birthdays very serious. One co-worker in particular went above and beyond (aka asked HR) to find out the date of everyone’s birthday in the office. (She keeps our master calendar.) So when it happens be the birthday of one of these individuals, we like to go all out – well, as far out as you can go with streamers and poster boards.

Most recently, we selected a theme, and you know me, I love a good theme.

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Naturally, I started with Pinterest and stumbled across this adorable phrase. (You can make fun of me, but I just think it’s hilarious!) And then, to create the texture of a pinata, I cut a  row of small slits in steamer (or crepe) paper. I layered the different color pieces on top of each other and taped them down on the back.

If I had more time, I wanted to make a matching pinata (but alas, there are only so many hours in a day). But if I had the time, I would have used the same technique to cover the cardboard.

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My other addition to the decorations was this mini garland of this fiesta bunting. Though I think it’s original purpose is for cake decorating, I knew my friend would appreciate the miniature decor. For the free printable (click here).

Hand-Stitch a Star Chart

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A needle and thread are the only tools you need to recreate the night sky. My love for the stars and their constellation stories are not new. (You might remember my first constellation-themed project with a pair of Toms.) So when I began to brainstorm new projects to help decorate my new desk at work, I ended reverting back to a favorite, creating this hand-stitched star chart banner.

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Like my pair of Toms, I started by splatter-painting the material with silver paint, but this time, I used a piece of navy muslin fabric. (Sorry, I did not make note of dimensions) This process helps create the look of infinite stars, adding a beautiful layer of dimension. Once done with the silver paint, I did splatter on a little white paint too.

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Once the paint dries, I start with my needle and thread. I printed off a a star chart to help with a few constellations, but for the most part, I stitched everything from memory. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, use an erasable fabric marker to draw the constellations before stitching. Along with the constellations, I stitched several additional starts to help fill in the spaces between constellations.

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To finish, I took a matching piece of navy muslin, and placed the two pieces right sides together. Using my sewing machine, I sewed them together using a 3/4 inch seam. At the top, I skipped over an inch on each side to leave room for the wood rod. After turning the fabric right-sides-out, I ironed it, placed the wood rod, and used hemp string to hang the banner.

Embroidery Hoop for a Wedding

I love, love, love this idea for a wedding shower gift. (So much that this my second time to use the idea.) An embroidery hoop with the couple’s names or initials along with the date of the big day creates a personal (and colorful) gift. And I like to think that if I give it to the bride at a shower, she might use it to decorate her reception.

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I kind-of lucked out with the initials of the bride and groom. I debated for a few hours if I should use their names (Wes & Meg), but I finally settled on use their initials. I’m obsessed with the symmetry.

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A image on Pinterest inspired me to try the branches, and I think it turned out great. I had very little of the brown thread,  so I decided to have two different branches: one with brown thread and medium green leaves and the other with golden yellow thread and dark green leaves.

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Finally – the all important wedding date! I used French knots to separate the numbers.

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To hide the backside of the stitches, I hot glued a circle of felt – with a felt heart – to the back.

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I figure why hide this beautiful creature with wrapping paper, so instead of wrapping the hoop, I decided to use it as a gift tag. By threading the string through clasp, the hoop will stay in place.

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A Simple Arrangement of Sunflowers

This past weekend, my friends and I threw a bridal shower for my friend Caroline. And though the entire shower could be described with words like adorable, sweet and beautiful, this idea for displaying sunflowers, I think, took the cake.

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I am obsessed with how simple the arrangement is. The trick is owning 11 bud vases that can support the weight of a sunflower. If you’re like me and do not, I’m thinking about investing in a dozen of these from Ikea. (only $1.99 each)

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A Ring of Another Sort

Wedding registries overwhelm me. I know they are meant to make gift buying easier for wedding guests, but I just see a list with way too many options. Plus, if I’m going to buy a gift, I want it to be something more special than a muffin pan.  So my crafty natural kicks in, and I embrace a homemade gift. For my most recent shower: a wedding embroidery hoop.

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My dear friend Caroline is getting married in May, giving me a great excuse to create this project I’ve seen all over Pinterest. I decided to keep the colors simple. Caroline is a very colorful person, and by using a neutral colors, I figured it would match whatever colors she decides to accompany it.

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I could probably learn a more “official” style of stitching. My embroidery skills are self-taught, but I think in this case, it turned out quite adorable!

Vintage-Inspired Felt Heart Pillow

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I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again. Felt hearts are wonderful! And this pillow might be the cutest thing I have made in awhile. The vintage-patterned fabric (made up of tiny pink and red heart-shaped flowers) serves as the perfect compliment to a big, red heart!

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And to add an even sweeter touch, I used pink yarn to stitch a border of smaller hearts, attaching the felt to the fabric.

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I know I made these pillows in preparation for Valentine’s Day. But I’m already convinced I need these all year long. It’s currently on my Etsy shop, but if you want it, I would buy it fast. I might decided to keep it for myself.

Take Heart, I made you a pillow

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With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I decided to make a few heart-inspired gifts for you love bugs. But let’s face it, I don’t need a holiday to embrace my adoration for hearts. I’m probably going to use the pillow all-year-round.

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Felt is the best fabric for this type of project because it does not fray. I cut the hearts out using the method my elementary school teacher used to teach me about symmetry, and I simply used the first heart as a template for the rest.

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Once pinned in place, I used my sewing machine to stitch the hearts in place. If you have a embroidery foot for your machine, it would be great for this project. I just used the standard foot. Even though my lines are a little “zig zag,” I like the look. (It’s the imperfectness that makes you know it’s homemade.)

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I love a pillow with piping, but for this pillow, I felt like it needed a little ruffle. So after sewing the pillow together (right side together), I flipped the pillow (rights sides out) and ironed it. I then stitched a half-inch border, leaving the same size hole for stuffing the pillow. Next, I stuffed the pillow using a polyfill pillow stuffing, and used my sewing machine to close the hole of the inside border stitch. I used a blind stitch the close up the outside.

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It took me a little over an hour to put this pillow together. And now it’s on sale over at the Etsy shop.

An Apartment Christmas

I debated for a week whether I wanted to get a real Christmas tree. Pro – A Christmas tree is magical. Con – It’s a big set up for someone who’s going out of town for the holidays. Plus I would have to clean it up afterwards. In my mind, the cons outweighed the pros, so I did not get a Christmas tree this year. But that didn’t stop me from decorating elsewhere.

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My parents brought me my great grandmother’s chest of drawers to use as my TV stand (and craft supply storage), but for Christmas, I decided to let it display my felt ornaments I made last year.

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Who needs a tree! I think these ornaments look better here because they are easily displayed (and not stuck behind any branches). Maybe one Christmas I’ll invest in a real Christmas tree, but for now, I’ll be festive in other ways.

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Holiday Yarn Pom Pom Garland

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As you know, I love a good pom pom made (See: Pom Pom Flowers), so when it came time to decorate for Christmas, I thought I would whip up an easy pom pom garland. And though I have already posted a tutorial, I figured it would a refresher wouldn’t hurt. And this time, instead of telling you, I thought I would show you!

Need it now? You can buy the garland on Etsy today for $15.50.

Flowers through a Window

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Several months back, I purchased this old window at a savage sale, and finally, I decided to do something with it. I found an image online of similar-styled flowers, and I was inspired!

I find it rather annoying to paint on windows. I just use acrylic paint, but if you know of short cut or trick, I would love to know! Though I do like that if you make a mistake, you can easily wipe it off and start again.

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