Monday, October 31, 2011

Indoor Halloween Decor! (Plus an "I love the dollar store" Halloween DIY!)

I wanted to do a lot more with my indoor Halloween decor this year, but got caught up in school work and other life problems. I did manage to get around to a few DIY projects, and a few simple changes to the house to "Halloween-ify" a bit, and here they are:

Above, is a pretty little potpourri pumpkin that I like to put out every year. Believe it or not, we got this a few years ago (at Home Sense for around $20) and it still smells phenomenal.

I found these vases on clearance at Home Sense for $3 and $4 a few months ago, and it took me 10 minutes to make them Halloween ready. The round vase has a Dollarama candle in the middle and is filled with candy corn that I purchased on sale at the Bulk Barn (yum!). I added a ribbon garnish because it looked a bit boring. For the taller vase, I purchased a set of skulls and some fake spider webbing at Dollarama and put them inside. Easy as pie.

It's the simple things that count ;). 

In our upstairs living room, I made the focus a set of boring old shelves. They are the first things that are visible when you walk in our front door, so a few dollar store pumpkin decorations, some streamers (that Chris hates because he says it looks like we're throwing a high school Halloween dance) and ribbon tied around some candy corn filled Cosmo glasses = a Halloween living room.


and finally...

A wall banner for $3? Sign me up.

What you'll need:
1. Thread ($1)
2. Sewing Needle (most of us already have at least one!)
3. Two packages of Halloween foam decorations ($1 each)

Have A Happy Halloween Everyone!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Cupcake Themed Toddler Bedroom- 1 year ago

When Chris and I moved into our second home together, we decided to go all out on decorating our girl's bedrooms. As i've mentioned before, Brooke has an "enchanted forest" themed room with a giant paper mache tree in it. Holly on the other hand, has a ridiculously pink "cupcake" themed room that I created and started dreaming of the day she was born.

Since before she was born, the theme for her nursery was simply the colour combination of pink & brown. When she hit around 1, I decided to add to the colour scheme with cupcakes- and a lot of them. Every where I saw cupcake decor, I bought it. There was a bedroom before this one that started the cupcake theme, but it was nowhere near as fantastic as this. This room was my baby, and I shall take you on a 360 degree adventure of it!

Before I go on, I will first let you know that these pictures were taken almost exactly 1 year ago. Since then, Chris and I have moved to a new home, and have re-started our decorating journey, pretty much getting no where in the girl's bedrooms. I simply wanted to post about this bedroom because we put a lot of time into it, and I loved the end result.

The first picture, above, gives a great view of the colour of the room. It's a little brighter in person, and we wanted it that way simply to keep it away from a more babyish look.

Her dresser and change-table combo was purchased from sears (see it here), with the pink change pad purchased at babies r us (see it here). The top of her dresser has a basket on it, which I kept filled with diapers and creams, and the cute cupcake pillow beside it was purchased at Target, but you can see it online here. The canvas paintings above the dresser are from Home Sense (one has a cupcake and one has an ice cream cone) and I believe that they were $24.99 for the set. On the back of the door (you can just barely see the hooks coming over) is a pink hook organized for bathrobes and towels. Keep the pink going!

A close up of the shelf on the wall in the first picture. This is what we call "the keepsake shelf"- an old shelf my mother gave me that I repainted to match. On top is an engraved silver cup from Holly's great, great grandmother. On the next shelf is an engraved silver elephant piggy bank that Holly received from my best friend, Becky, when she was born. On the bottom shelf, are Holly's precious moments girls. There is an "H" for Holly (from her Aunt), a February girl to signify her birth date, and her first Birthday number girl. She now has 2 Birthday girls (soon to be 3) so the shelf will need to be expanded. On the very bottom, hangs a "princess" ceramic card with spots for her name, birth weight, length and date.

Next is the closet. This is kind of a dark picture, but you get the idea. Plastic drawers on one side for small clothes (socks, hats, etc) and on the floor beside, a soft stuffed animal pit. The girls used to sit in here and read books.

On the other side of the room, we have Holly's crib (can be seen here). Yes, it is called the "Hollie" crib, and no, that is not just a coincidence, I picked it that way. The painting hung over her crib is from Home Sense as well, and it is my favourite thing is her room. I based every other object in the room off of that painting.

On this side of the room, we have the two shelves and the window. I wish I could have had the time to add something under these shelves (a project I am currently working on for her new room). The bookcase is from WalMart, and the two Giant Cupcakes hanging on either side of the window (which I adore) are from Home Sense. They were $10.00 a piece and totally worth it.

Underneath those curtains were these fantastic cling ons. We left no area untouched by cupcakes. These window cling ons were a gift, and i'm not sure where they came from!

I wish I could go back and take new pictures, but I can't. Anyways, Shelf #1- A fake cake platter that I had been meaning to fix for some time, a big ol' jar of mints and jelly beans (jar from Home Sense, candy from Bulk Barn) and a small container of Jawbreakers (found at Chapters).

Shelf #2- 2 cupcake paper weights/photo holders that I never put photos in because I thought they looked better that way (found at Home Sense for around $6 each), another big container of jellybeans, marshmallows, and lollipops (jar from Home Sense, candy from Bulk Barn, lollipops from Chapters), and another small container of gumballs (found at Chapters).

The floating shelves themselves were purchased at Rona.

Coming back full circle, There is a toy box (of a terrible green colour) in the corner for all of the toys! 


As I mentioned, the picture that is hung over her crib inspired me to do some other projects way back when. This blanket has since been thrown out, but the pillows are still still kicking around. I drew out the patterns to be exactly the same as the picture above her bed and went for it with my sewing machine. The Cake pillow is my favourite!


Here is the little cupcake herself, wearing a cupcake shirt, when she slept in her fabulous cupcake room!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Blue Ombre Cake

Once upon a time a girl was pinning away...
She came across this lovely photo of a cake.
When she realized that she had a bunch of left over icing in her freezer (about to go bad),
she decided to create her own version of the beautiful cake.
Here's how it went:

A blank slate.

A light shade of turquoise to begin.

Wilton: 2D.

Icing mix 1 and 2. You can barely see the colour change here, but there is one. 

Icing mix 3, adding a bit more blue colouring to darken it up.

Icing mix 4, resulting in a finished product.

Light to dark.

Because my boyfriend is an icing hater, I took pictures of my swirly ombre masterpiece and went around with a spatula to scrape off as much icing as I could.

Sprinkles salvaged some of the cake's cuteness.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Outdoor Halloween Decor

For the past few weeks, we've been meaning to get around to putting up our outdoor Halloween decorations. It's either been raining, too windy, or i've been too lazy.

So, with only just over a week left until Halloween, I decided to brave the cold wind today while Chris was at school. It took me an hour and a half by myself, but I did it! 

The sign on our front door (from Michaels), the cutest welcome post (ignore the extension cord behind it, but from Michaels also), a very spooky mailbox, and the front lawn.

A close of up the "graveyard". All courtesy of the dollar store.

For some reason, I thought these would look cheap. They turned out looking fantastic blowing in the wind from our big tree. Not bad for $1.25 each!

We purchased this blow up tree last year for around $90. Some people think blow up decorations are a waste of money, but I think they're fun. Last year, a little boy let us know that he had been looking forward to trick-or-treating at our house due to this tree- making it my favourite.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

This Week 9

Love, love, love.

My birthday gift (that arrived last week) from Chris. It keeps me happy on rainy days :).

For some reason, subs are about the only thing I want to eat lately. Most definitely a finer thing in life.

My box of ribbon, odds, and ends. I've been creatively working with it for some Halloween projects that i'll be posting about soon, but it seems like every time I use some, I add more. I need to expand the box.

Breaking out the scarves! Those mornings when I have to make the trip to school at 7:40am, these are my security blankets. My favourite 4 stay on this hanger and rotate out during the week, but I have a ton more that come out when the outfit is right.

The pile of recent project beginnings that lays on my bedroom floor. Two for the bathroom and one for the living room. You'll be seeing these soon, too!

The rainiest days and droplets on my window. This is when item #1 is the very best.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Autumn Themed Bridal Shower Cake

This past weekend, I did an Autumn themed cake for a friend of a friend's bridal shower. The end result turned out amazing, and I am concluding that that is one of the best cakes I've done yet!

I was allowed to run with the design of this cake, and this is what I came up with!

I made these leaves out of a half and half mix of gum-paste and fondant. I coloured the base mix orange, and then used alcohol and gel food colouring in brown, red, orange and yellow to paint them. To texturize and vein the leaves, I pressed them into fake maple leaves and to shape, I used upside down flower molds as shown.

For the acorns, I used pure fondant in 2 shades of brown. I used a fondant tool to give the top part a criss-cross design.

For the pumpkins, I used orange, green and brown fondant. I rolled the orange fondant into balls, and used dental floss to create the lines (a technique I found here). I then used a small leaf cookie cutter to make leaves and wrapped small pieces of green fondant around pencils to get the curly vine pieces.

The big brown bow was again, half gum-paste and half fondant. I used a fondant tool to give the edges a small design.

After icing a 12" french vanilla round (filled with french vanilla icing) in 2 coats of buttercream, I wrote a celebratory message to the bride, Erin, and placed all of the pieces on to the cake.

I followed up with a dark brown (it looks black in these pictures) border around the base and top edge of the cake.

All of the details on the cake (the brown leaf on the left was my favourite).

Up close pumpkin and acorns.

All packed up and ready to go!

Voila! Autumn Cake!

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