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Sunday, March 2, 2014

Baby Shower cake pops

It's been a little too long since my last post. I am a slacker to say the least! I am snowed in today and had a revelation that I would blog. I can not believe how long it has been since my last entry. So, If anyone is still following me, Hi......Here is a cute little tutorial on sprucing up some cupcakes for a baby shower.
Make cake balls (the right way, see my tutorial here, If your a comedian and want to see how NOT to make them then read this)
I like to dip my stick in melted chocolate to act as "glue"
If you don't have a candy melter, use a double boiler (I usually put a glass bowl over a saucepan with enough water to boil, but doesn't touch the glass bowl bottom). This is my niece's candy melter, I didn't think it was any easier to use than a double boiler.
get some miniature cupcake liners and cut a slit down one side
Dip all of the cake pops in melted chocolate. I tinted these with a very small dot of orange to make a flesh color. Place in refrigerator for about 15-30 minutes to harden
After the chocolate has hardened, place each one into the liner and tape the bottom around the stick. This makes the top flare out like a little bonnet.
Hot glue a bow, and with brown colored chocolate, or melted chocolate chips, pipe a face onto each one. I put them back into the refrigerator for 15-30 min and your done!
I carried them in Tupperware with wax paper between each layer and placed them in the cupcakes at the event. I also make some chocolate letters of the babies name and used them as cupcake toppers.
I need one of those great cameras so my pics actually look as cute as the finished product!
Here is Diana, the Mommy. She had a boy by the way.......

Monday, July 9, 2012

Beach Inspired Table

I saw this table in an art flyer a few years ago and I fell madly in love with it. I have searched high and low for a similar table but just couldn't find it. Of course it had to be super cheep because I really had no idea how I was going to execute the process.

When I purchased the coffee and end tables (see that tutorial here) it came with this little sofa table. I decided to go for it! I only paid $100.00 for all 4 pieces so $25 bucks + materials felt like a good price for the experiment.
Mr. belt sander did the hard work on the top. I lightly hand sanded the legs.
2 coats of primer
I purchased all of the shells for around $12 bucks
Next step glue on the shells. Big snafu! None of these worked, except the super glue. It nicely glued my forefinger to my thumb (yes, I had on gloves! Darn small hole somewhere....)
I had a brilliant brain moment and came up with this idea! Tile mastic stuff. You know the stuff you lay down before you stick the tile to the floor.
It spread beautifully! Like frosting. Very easy to clean up with a damp rag.
I arranged the shells, and this stuff stays wet for a few hours so it's easy to rearrange shells. I let them dry for about 3 days.
I painted the bottom part blue (I mixed two sample jars I  had to get this shade). When dry, I glazed it with 3:1 ratio of faux glaze and water soluble Black Walnut.
I painted the top with 2 coats of primer, 2 coats of white, and strategically painted on some accent color. This is a sample color called wicker from Lowe's.
After it dried, I used a sample color called Dove from Lowe's and a wood graining tool.
After it all dried, steal wool, then 3 coats of polyurethane. Don't use polyurethane if you want it crystal clear. Use polyacrylic. I didn't want to spend the money to buy polyacrylic and I really regret it! I had 2 cans of the polyurethane and used that to save $. It turned yellowish. I knew it would.....
Now comes the messy part. Mix up sanded grout with water to make a semi-runny paste
Put it into a plastic baggie, snipped off one corner (once a cake decorator, always a cake decorator)
squeeze it into all the nooks and crannies between the shells and fill in all the holes. I used a combination of my fingers, and this small cheep art brush.
Why did I do this? Because the mastic looks like dried glue and that's not the look I was inspired by. I wanted a washed up, beachy, look. Here is what the shells look like on dried mastic.
And this is what they look like once the grout is shoved into all the groves and wiped clean with a wet cloth. It has a nice cohesive, sandy beach look.
Cover the legs up because the next step was to spray all the dried grouted shells with polyacrylic. Yes. polyacrylic. I actually found one partially used can in the basement and was excited to use it.
This picture was straight when I down loaded it. So bear with me.... I mixed a 4:1 ratio of Faux Glaze and a taupe acrylic paint.
The shells were just too white. I wanted an aged look. See the difference between the left and right sides.
Next, time to dirty up the shells. Straight up water based Black Walnut (my all time favorite color and product). By the way I do not monetize, so no biased information here. Just the stuff I use, and like.
I used a clean lint free cloth and an old art brush to dab it on and then rub it in. If the color was too dark I simply diluted it with water.
Here it is before the stain
And after. Me loves it!!!!
Here it is all done. I love it! I slightly distressed the table before the staining and sealing stages. My hope for the top was to make it looked like drift wood. I'm not sure I accomplished that, but I like it. I don't love the top, but I don't hate it enough to strip it.
My beachy end table. It lives at the lake in one of my bathrooms. I do not believe it will live there forever. I'm thinking maybe my bedroom, or the hallway. So, What do you think (besides I need a good camera).

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Zebra Baby Shower Finishing Touches

I promise this is the last of the zebra baby shower posts. I must admit it makes me sad. I had a lot of fun with this baby shower. I titled this finishing touches because it's that attention to all the small details that in the end gets you the "WOW" factor.
Water tub. I had this one from a friends baby shower, but as you see its not zebra.
But what's this? Zebra tape!
Like magic! it's a zebra tub now!
What would look cuter than this tub you ask? This tub full of zebra and pink personalized water bottles!
These are so adorable! I order my water bottle labels on-line, but you can make your own with computer programs and labels. I personally don't think it's worth the time or ink to make them myself.
If you're going to play games or need pens then this tutorial on fancy pens is a must! So easy and very inexpensive. Everyone loved them and asked if they could keep the pens!
Candy tables are all the rage, and I for one love them! We used a combination of home made and store bought goodies with adorable hand written labels. If your interested in the recipe for the chocolate pretzels or cream cheese mints here's the links.
we covered the table in hot pink plastic and pink tulle
We actually served a food buffet of fried chicken, pasta, etc, but somehow I didn't get any pictures! I was too busy talking working. I know (I suck!). However, I did manage to take a picture of the utensils. I have a short tutorial on how to wrap them.
This really cute banner was easily made by a real amateur (me). If you would like to make one see the tutorial.
One of the games we played was pass the tray. I love this game because its so fun to see how many items guest can remember when they only have 2 minutes to look at the tray. I made this from a previously used food tray. I hot glued the lid upside down onto the bottom tray and them used the zebra tape on the rim coordinate with our zebra theme.
I never know which sweeteners to serve. Sugar is a given, but the sugar substitutes can be tricky. Equal, Truvia, Splenda, etc. So, for a few extra dollars I just threw caution to the wind and served all of them. These unit of use packages are great because there is no waste. I found this hot pink & zebra heart container at the craft store and it worked perfectly!
I loved how it turned out.
I made 2 balloon poles. Here is the tutorial on this balloon pole. My only regret is the top balloon (the header)  was much smaller than the size I thought it was. I was disappointed, but it is what it is.
The entry table was adorable. The signature book, pens, baby wish cards, etc. We played a game where the Mommy-to-be drew names from the self-addressed Thank You cards. We gave every guest an envelope and asked them to self-address it. Now that makes the tasks of thank you cards much easier.
Hot drink station had coffee, decaf coffee, hot water, tea bags, & hot chocolate packets. I placed the cups and creamers on top of zebra scrap booking paper as a mat, stir sticks in a plastic zebra cup.
hand made labels added a nice touch.
I want a cup of coffee...
In the background you can see a zebra tray with zebra gifts. These were the guest gifts for the games we played. The tray is a simple tray wrapped in ribbon.
The tables were covered in hot pink with balloon bouquets. On the back wall you can see the gift table and next to it the cold drink station. One of my nieces friends made her a diaper cake. Such a cute idea for the gift table.
The knife and server were adorned with zebra ribbons
 The chocolate fountain table had marshmallows, wafer cookies, honey pretzel twists, strawberries, & Rice Krispie treats. We pre-speared them before hand to reduce wait time as guest dipped away. All the plates and napkins were of course hot pink & zebra print.
The Mommy-to-be by the cake table. You can check out the belly cake tutorial.
Zebra striped fondant toppers were adorable and super easy to make. See the above cake tutorial.
The cold drink station had this really cute pink lemonade fountain. Pop was placed in a big plastic tub covered in a black trash bag and taped with zebra tape and pink bow.
All in all it was a very fun shower and I think the guest had a great time. It is these little details that add up to one really great shower. I hope you can use some of these ideas for your next party!