Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bunny Ears

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I'm pretty new to the blogging scene, so I'm just now figuring something out,
and that is this:
If you want to have a tutorial up for a holiday/season,
you have to allot enough time beforehand to plan it, make it, photograph it, and write up the how to
not only before that holiday/season, but with enough time for your readers to make it themselves before that holiday/season. duh.
This, however, is much easier said than done.

But I'm trying...

It's Lent.
It's the beginning of Lent.
And I've started making things for Easter.

For my fellow Catholics out there, you perhaps already understand my dilemma.
My heart is torn between being liturgically appropriate and being prepared craft-wise.
I am most likely being a bit dramatic.
I did make my Jesse Tree Advent Calendar before Advent (barely finished in time), and didn't feel weird about it.
I guess I'm feeling differently about Lent and Easter.

Not-so-great-segue to...
the new Bunny Hats that I'm selling in my Etsy shop.
Maybe you notice that I'm tip-toeing around my dilemma by making a bunny item.
Bunnies have little to nothing to do with the liturgical celebration of Easter, the Feast of the Risen Christ.

But I know a lot of you are into the bunny thing,
and who doesn't love a baby item, any baby item, with ears on it???
I, personally, am a fan... of the ears.

So I thought I would share how I made the bunny ears.
They are really simple and you can pretty much stick them on any hat
or anything you want.

For my hats, I used Bernat Cottontots in Very Berry and Bright White

Bunny Ears:
Color A- middle of ear (like pink for many bunny enthusiasts)
Color B- outside of ear and the rest of the hat

With Color A yarn chain 16 stitches.

Turn, skip one link,

and single crochet in each stitch.

Continue all the way around the back of work.

Chain 2

and single crochet along the other side.

Keep going all the way to the end.

Knot and set aside.

You'll obviously be needing two, one for each ear.

With Color B yarn, chain 18 stitches. Turn and single crochet around the back of work. Chain 2 and single crochet along the other side.
Chain 3.
It should be just like your Color A piece, but a tad longer.

Sandwich your Color A and Color B pieces together so the stitches line up.

You are now going to crochet the two pieces together along the side using a double crochet in each stitch.

Keep going around the top, making sure to catch both A and B pieces, and then back down the other side.

Knot and set aside.

Repeat with the second pieces, again, because bunnies have two ears.

Using a yarn needle, sew your ears onto your hat.

Tip: If you curve the bottom of the ear (the end that meets the hat), it will stand up better for a perky-eared bunny.

Like I said, you can stick these ears on anything for an increased cuteness factor.
I just made one of my standard baby hats.
Clean and simple.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Benjamin's Birthday Giveaway Winner!

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Ben in his party outfit.
Yes. Yes he is wearing suspenders.
Yes. Yes he is wearing a tie.
Can you even handle this? I can not.

Thanks to everyone who entered to win the giveaway for
my knit cowl over the weekend!

We sure were busy around here!
Some of my family was in.
We celebrated my mom's birthday.
We had Ben's first birthday party.
We ate.
We ate some more.

We're exhausted, but it was worth it.

Anywho, now down to the nitty gritty...

Our winner is....
the famous blogger of Camp Patton.
If y'all haven't checked out her blogage, you should. Hi-larious.

Nice work, Grace! Looks like your second entry did the trick.
I'll be emailing you with the deets.
Congratulations, and I hope that this doesn't thwart your efforts to make one of your own. :)

*Winner was selected at random by a random number generator at


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Happy Birthday, Benjamin! and a GIVEAWAY (Closed)!

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Happiest of birthdays to who I can objectively say is the best son,

He really is the best.

We're having a party.
My family is coming (today! yay!).

So we're going to celebrate one year of Ben's life as well as me making it through my first year of motherhood, which for those of you that know me, wasn't always the easiest.
The hormonal beginning was really a struggle for me if I'm being completely honest.
But I'm much better now. Thanks be to God.

To say that we love this guy is a severe understatement.
And this past year has been the best, most difficult, most hormonal and character-extending year of my life.
I am so grateful.

The Giveaway:

The Prize-
Remember my knitted cowl? I posted pictures awhile ago with the instructions for making one, but many of you have no interest in knitting, and wanted to know if I would be selling them.
I'm not going to sell them as of right now, but I will give one away for free!

The prize cowl is exactly the same as mine from the post, but it has a slightly different button.
Perfect for that balmy Spring weather! :)

How to Enter-
You can enter this giveaway three times!
One entry for each of the following:
1) Either follow me via Google Connect (On the right side of the screen),
follow the blog via email (also on the right side)
2) "like" my page on Facebook.
3) Tell me one thing to which I can look forward in the coming year having a 1-2 year old. ;)

If you already follow me or "like" me on facebook, just leave a comment that says such.
Please leave a comment for each entry and be sure to leave an email, so I may contact you if you've won!

Not so Fine Print-
Only three entries per person, duplicates will be deleted. One entry will be chosen at random to pick the winner. Only US residents (sorry international peeps!). The prize will be shipped to the winner in the week following the giveaway via USPS.
This giveaway closes on Sunday, February 26th at midnight.

Good luck! :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Imitation Is the Highest Form of Flattery

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Am I right, or am I right?
So anyway, I love Anthropologie. Love.
But my pocketbook does not.

And this could be tragic if it weren't for the fact that I have been able to mimic a few of things that I have found there that I love so much for a fraction of the cost at the store.
I've been known to walk through the store with the sole purpose of being inspired.
Lame? Maybe.
I found these chalkboard spice jars on their website the other day.
They are so cute...
They are also $10 a piece.
Let me be clear; I am a stay-at-home mom/part time youth minister, and...
actually, do I need to say more?

So I've made these over the last couple of days.
They were easy peasy, and I think they turned out pretty well, and somewhat like the real thing.

While Anthropologie's cost $10 for one,
mine ended up costing about $12 for twenty-one.

So there you have it. They're looking cuter already, arent they?

But enough about me.
Here's the tutorial:

What you'll need:
Baby Food Jars (I used 8 oz.)
80 or 100 grit sand paper
masking tape
spray paint (I used Krylon Indoor/Outdoor in Ivory, Avocado, Catalina Mist, and Pimento)
chalkboard paint (I had some Rustoleum paint left over from another project, but there are many routes you could take)
chalk for labeling

Step One: Feed Your Baby

You'll then have a lot of jars. :)
I couldn't bare to just recycle them, so we ended up here.

Step Two: Clean 'Em Up
Sanitize your jars. I threw mine in the dishwasher.
Remove the labels.
Use rubbing alcohol or a product like Goo Gone to remove the adhesive.

Step Three: Sand 'Em Down

This was my least favorite part (if you were wondering).
Using 80 or 100 grit sand paper, sand the jars up to the lip as well as the lids.
Don't chinz on the sanding. It's not worth it.
While being the less desireable portion of this project, these won't stand the test of time (especially if your kitchen is as frequently used as mine) if both the jars and the lids aren't sanded well.

Step Four: Mask

Using your masking tape, tape off the lip of the jars.
This will do a number of things:
One, you don't want this painted because you want a nice fit for your lids.
Two, the metal of the lids would most likely rub the paint off anyway.
Three, it will give you a nice "foot" to place your jar on when painting (you'll see that in a bit).

Tip: run your finger nail over the edge of the masking tape to make sure it adheres to the jar really well. This will help give you a nice clean paint line.
Another Tip: I used Gerber jars which have a deliniation in the glass right where I wanted the masking tape below the lip. This was the perfect guide to make an even line with my tape. How nice.

Step Five: Paint

Place your jars upside down on a drop cloth (or a large trash bag for me).
See that "foot" I was talking about? Super! No pooling paint for us.
Spray lightly from all directions.
Take your time with this, and do many layers.
I don't know how many coats it took for me, but it was more than a couple.
Luckily, this paint dries in about 30 minutes.

Step Six: Lids

You'll paint your lids in the same fashion.
Multiple coats.

But here's a tip: Cut yourself some strips of cardstock or cardboard or the like.
Then fold it so you have a little table on which your lid can sit.
That way when you paint it, the paint won't pool and make your lid stick to the work surface.

Step Seven: Labels

Once everything is dry (let it sit at least over night), paint your chalkboard labels.
Again, there are multiple ways that you can do this.

You could try to stencil it on (but beware, stencils can be tricky/frustrating on curved surfaces).
You could make labels with chalkboard paper using a cricut or your computer (keep in mind, though, that the paper is not washable. You would have to replace the labels each time you washed them).
I handpainted mine.

You could do any shape you like.
I rather like the cartoche that Anthro used on my inspiration jars.

Here's what I did:
Paint a rectangle that it roughly the size you want your label.
Curve the corners a bit.
Overlap a circle in the very middle so you have curves at the top and bottom.

Add a little point to the left size, and then the right.

I needed two coats to get the right coverage.
The second coat goes much quicker than the first.

Remove your masking tape and place your lids on the tops!

From this...

To this...

Mine are just sitting on my window sill right now, but don't worry...
I have all the supplies to make a spice rack for them.
They are way too cute to hide in the cupboard.
But that project will have to wait since preparations are now underway for Ben's first birthday party.

So that'll probably be it for this week.
I'll be out living my real life with my real family. ;)
I'll be posting all the pictures and details of the party in the next week or so.
Get excited!

The Southern Institute