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Wednesday, October 24, 2012


Adding some personal touches to create a one-of-a-kind gift can be really fun.  Start by being frugal and stop in to your local Dollar Tree to pick up some basic glass candle holders.   Then, let your imagination and creativity be your guide as you decorate the holder and add just the right complimentary touches with the "filler", candle and trim to complete the package.   If you've been following my blog you'll know that I have many of these glass candle holders from my daughter's wedding.  So, I plan to capitalize on the supply I have and make some gifts.  I also plan to use a couple as a "thank you" to the florist and baker who did such an awesome job at the wedding!

I'm always watching for sales or using coupons to Hobby LobbyMichael's or JoAnn Fabrics  to keep the cost reasonable for the candles and other trim work.  At one point I was making my own candles, but I got tired of the clean up.  But.....I may have to pull my supplies back out. 
 I have fun deciding which fillers to use; here are some that I've played around with so far:
  • Rice and Beans                
  • Sand
  • Miniature shells
  • Silk Flowers
  • Stones
  • Split Peas
  •  Marbles

In addition to making gifts that compliment someone's home decor, you can have a blast with different themes.  I started playing around with Fall and Christmas candle holders.  I just couldn't muster the energy to dig through my holiday decoration bins for the fake snow to use as a filler, but as soon as I pull it out, I'm going swap out the sand.  Have Fun....I sure did!

Saturday, October 13, 2012


This one I kept as a surprise from my daughter.    I wanted a little something special at their "sweetheart table" at the reception.   So I made these signs for them. 
I found these whimsical wooden letters at Hobby Lobby and stained them an oak color.   You'll also need scrapbook paper you like, whatever trim you want to use and two 5x7 acrylic frames with the built in easel stands.
I used  two different papers; gluing the larger one to the acrylic frame using spray adhesive; then I cut a second piece (which had some flocking and sequins on it) slightly smaller.  I trimmed the smaller piece with a satin ribbon trim to form it's own matted frame look.  Then, I glued the letters on with the hot glue gun.  I added adhesive rhinestones to the top of the letters, and a velvet ribbon and some silk flower to the upper left corner.  

I toned down the embellishment on the "Mr" sign slightly.  I propped them at the front of their table, facing the guests. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012


To minimize the suspense any further, here's what became of the chocolate bars.....
As a small gesture of our appreciation, I put together welcome baskets for the "out-of-town" guests and delivered them to their hotels the day before the wedding.  Many of our family came from quite a distance to be here, so I wanted there to be something waiting for them after a day on the road or a long flight.   Along with the chocolate bar, I included a variety of crackers, cookies, nuts, fruit and drinks. 
I bought the plastic tubs at the dollar store since I expected many of the guests wouldn't be able to take the container home with them because they were flying.  This way it served its purpose, but it wasn't costly for me and they wouldn't feel bad leaving it behind.

A plastic bag, tulle bow and a thank you card attached at the top gave it the final touch it needed. 

Monday, October 1, 2012


One of my passions is designing and sewing bridal gowns, and I have been looking forward to making my daughter's wedding gown since the day she was born!     The adventure began many months ago when she became engaged.  A trip to David's Bridal to try on several styles was the first step.  Then, she chose some of the design elements from those styles she liked and allowed me plenty of creative license along the way, and away I went. 
People have asked how long it took and frankly, I really don't know.  I would work on the dress an hour here and an hour there, but never took the time to add it all up.  I will tell you it was the most ambitious of all the gowns that I have made.  There was no pattern, the dress was draped using my dress form (although she has had many names, I seem to have landed on Beulah).   She did the trick for the majority of the project, although my daughter is very petite and smaller than Beulah in the torso.  The dress was completed months before the wedding and I tucked it away so that it would be fresh and exciting as we got closer to the actual date.  We bought the fabric, trim and appliques at this fabulous fabric store that I love in Houston.  My sister-in-law and niece told me about the store when I was making my niece's wedding gown six years ago and I just had to go back.  I have never seen so many beautiful fabrics in one place in my entire life.  I can spend hours there ..... and have!
These beautiful bridal photos were taken in Georgetown, Colorado by my talented niece Kelly over the Labor Day weekend.  She and my daughter, Katie shot a wedding together in Beaver Creek.  These are just a few of the stunning photographs I have to choose from...and can you imagine, these are just the bridals, I still have the wedding photos to look forward to!   My house may look like an art museum between these and the wedding photos.  
 For more of my designs, you can go to my website at