DIY Paper Bow

It’s not the gift, but the thought that counts. Right?

It’s cliche, but I tend to think that the answer is yes. Some of the things that mean the most to me are gifts given from the heart.

It’s probably because I enjoy RECEIVING those thoughtful gifts so much, that I also like to GIVE and PACKAGE them too.

One way to really personalize a package is with special handmade wrap. Today I am going to share a super-easy tutorial for creating a DIY paper bow. You can use any paper to make these bows, so really the possibilities for customization are completely endless…

DIY Paper Bow Tutorial 1

Here’s what you’ll need to complete this project:

  • 12×12 patterned scrapbook paper any weight (I used heavy weight, double-sided paper from Studio Calico)
  • paper trimmer
  • brads
  • mini hole punch
  • adhesive or double sided tape (optional)

DIY Paper Bow Supplies

Start this project by trimming the 12×12 scrapbook paper into 3/4 inch strips.

DIY Paper Bow

You should end up with 15-16 different strips (depending on how carefully you trim).

DIY Paper Bow 2

Next, trim about four of strips of paper to 11 inches, four strips of paper to 10 inches and one strip of paper to five inches.

DIY Paper Bow 3

Crease all but the five inch strip in the middle to mark your center point.

DIY Paper Bow 4

With your mini punch, or a substitute (I have even used a tack), punch a hole through all but the five inch paper strip in the middle at the crease at toward each end. Each papers trip should have three holes.

DIY Paper Bow 5

Slip a brad through the center of one of the longest strips of paper. An alternate would be to use tape, but I don’t find that it works as well for me.

DIY Paper Bow 6

Twist the end of the paper to the brad and secure. You should see the same side of the paper facing up in both the middle and on the end.

DIY Paper Bow 7

Repeat on the other end.

DIY Paper Bow 8

Allow your loops to be fairly loose, if they are to tight the bow just wont work.

Repeat, layering the paper loops on the brad.

I find that every time I create a bow, I use a different number of paper strips. I just sort of play with it until it looks right. In the case of this bow, I only ended up using three of the 12 inch paper strips before moving on.

DIY Paper Bow 9

Don’t worry about perfection. As you can see in the photo above I even had a tiny tear in this bow, but it will not show in the end…

Layer until you feel the bow has just the right amount of fluffy.

DIY Paper Bow 11

Once you have filled the bow with loops, take your five inch paper strip and loop it into a circle. Push it through the brad and then secure the brad flat.

DIY Paper Bow 10That’s it. It’s ready to go!

DIY paper Bow tutorial 3


Cupcake To Go Container

Cupcake to go Containers

I didn’t “grow up” with my boys. I sort of figure I just lucked into the “ready made” variety…

(Just in case your wondering, in my world they pop in at about two years +)

Here’s the thing. Since I came into kids in a bit of a different way, early on people were always trying to give me advice. I got A LOT of advice and yet, there are some very important things that no one told me…

I was not warned to look out for those nasty stray Legos left on the floor. There is nothing in this world and I mean NOTHING that hurts more than stepping on a Lego with bare feet.

I definitely wasn’t advised of the importance in checking for fruit snacks stuck to the back of your seat in the car before suggesting to friends that you drive.

No one told me how much more I would love their Dad after watching him play with them for hours, or even minutes.

Kids break things. ‘Nough said.

You will throw away many, many things that will make you feel guilty. If you don’t? Well, you will have an avalanche of paper somewhere.

Stuff will be sticky and by stuff, I mean everything.

And I NEVER, NEVER, NEVER thought I would find crumbs in so many places…Crumbs on the counter, crumbs in the couch cushions, crumbs in pants pockets…It never ends.

And so, for a while, I quit making cupcakes. I know?!

However, I have found the perfect solution to messy cupcakes. Cupcake to go containers.

Cupcake To Go Containers

cupcake to go containers - perfect for keeping crumbs in checkHere’s what you will need to create your to go containers:

  • clear plastic cups
  • cute cupcake wrappers or baking cups
  • paper straws
  • cellophane bags
  • baker’s twine or curly ribbon

The beauty of these little containers is that they are so simple to assemble and look so pretty.

The addition of the straw stabilizes the entire assembly, so that even if your to-go container tips a bit the cupcake frosting will not get mashed all over.

They’re great for party thank you’s, classroom treats, or let the kids use a fork to eat out of the container.

Cupcake to go container

Cupcake to go Containers

What are your kid containing secrets???

Memo and Organization Station {Tutorial}

I know I mentioned it yesterday, but I was so excited to see all of the AMAZING projects that were shared in last week’s audition round. I can’t wait to get to know our 10 finalists a little bit better during the coming season.

Today you’ll get to know a little more about Justynn, from Creative Life Antics, who is sharing her HUGE memo and organization station tutorial. This project took second place in our Season 17 auditions. It’s pretty killer (yes, I did grow up in the 80’s).

Justynn Creative Life Antics

Memo & Organization Station

Wow guys, I was really thrilled to find out that not only had I made it past auditions, but that my tutorial for my project would be featured here on SYTYC!! What an honor! Before I get too far into it, hello– my name is Justynn and I blog at Creative Life Antics!

To be completely honest, I had started working on a completely different project for my audition piece before I found out that there was a theme. Like I mentioned during the auditions when I was told the theme was “back to school,” I might have had a slight panic moment (or two). I don’t have kids (in my 20s) or really know anyone that has kids that are school age. Luckily, after a few days of freaking out, I figured that I could make something for a college student (that’s still back to school in my book!) I planned in my head to make this sweet, huge organizer– which was my first mistake, don’t plan in your head, write stuff down.

Memo and organizational board


  •  (4) 1X4 8ft boards
  • (3) 1×3 8ft boards
  • (1) 2’x4′ pegboard piece
  • (1) box of really long screws I think mine were over 2.5in
  • I used my new Kreg Jig
  • Chalkboard paint (already had)
  • White Spray Paint (already had)
  • Magnetic Calendar that I never used
  • (1) Pack of 10″x10″ cork board squares
  • glue
  • short wide headed screws
  • green craft paint
  • Wood stain

And, lots of patience….

stuff to make magnets/ chalk/ pins… misc knick-knacks…

Memo and Organization Board via Creative Life AnticsAfter getting all the supplies home the first step was to make the frame. I cut the 1x4s down to size and angled the ends at 45 degrees. After the cuts were made I laid all the pieces out to make sure they fit well (they didn’t, I’m apparently not a math major). Once they finally fit well I used a small drill bit to drill pilot holes for my screws. Using long skinny 2.5″ screws I screwed the frame together.

Memo and Organization Board via Creative Life Antics

Once the frame was put together I needed to inset the braces. I remeasured and cut the 1x3s does to to the right sizes for each section. Since I had a set width for the calendar and knew that was the only section that HAD to be a certain size, it gave me a lot of play and leeway for the remainder of the sections. I used a kreg jig to drill pilot holes so the screws would be sunken in and not noticeable from the front. I now love the new tool and try to find every single use for it in all my future projects.

Memo and Organization Board via Creative Life Antics

Memo and Organization Board via Creative Life Antics

After the whole frame was complete I decided to stain it. I laid it out int he driveway to dry for a few hours and started to work on the panels & pegboard. The pegboard was cut to size, spray painted white and attached to the left side of the board. The first panel I made was the backing for the cork board. I used some pieces of masonite from a past project to make the panels. One of the other panels received four thin coats of chalkboard paint.

Memo and Organizational Board via Creative Life Antics

To add the cork I used 10″ square cork tiles (much more cost effective than buying a roll!). After adding the cork, I realized that it need something more to be school themed. I taped off the Michigan State “S” and a thin box outline.

Memo Board Image 6

Memo and Organizational Board via Creative Life Antics

Next I installed the magnetic calendar. It was one I had bought off Amazon a few years ago, never used and I just took it out of the frame it came it and repurposed for this project. Finally after the chalk paint was dry I installed the lower chalkboard panel. After a few days I “primed” the chalkboard by rubbing a piece all over and erasing off.

Memo and Organizational Board via Creative Life Antics

I used some letters found at my local craft store and magnets to make MSU magnets. I added pegs to the pegboard and wrapped some wire around small mason jars to make holders for pins, pens and chalk.

Memo Board Image 9 SYTYC CLA-01

Memo Board Image 10 SYTYC CLA-01

Memo and Organizational Board via Creative Life Antics

I’m really happy with how this board turned out. There was definitely a moment where I was ready to scrap the whole thing and come up with something new. Luckily though I had my boyfriend helping me (so I could get action shots) and was able to push through the whole project in two days. I actually just talked about it this past weekend with my sister who informed me that her roommates had all seen it during the auditions and were really excited to have it this year.

Memo Board Image 12 SYTYC CLA-01

Thank you all so much for voting and I hope to be back here more with tutorials during Season 17!

Join me in congratulating Justynn for her first “win” of the season. I am looking forward to seeing more from her and hope you are too. In the meantime, I hope you will hop over to her site and check out a few of these fun projects…

Creative Life Antics


Magazine Clip Art Skull | Map Art | Typography Art

Kids’ Back-to-School Station {Tutorial}

Oh my goodness. What a busy week. Not only are we in the midst of our Season 16 finals, but we’re sharing two fabulous tutorials this week from our Season 17 competitors. I am so excited!!!

Today I am excited to introduce you to Lynda, from Oh So Shabby. She landed a spot in our Season 17 competition by winning first place in last week’s audition round.

Oh So Shabby Blog

Lynda is sharing her first place Kids’ Back-to-School station with us this week!

Kids’ Back-to-School Station Tutorial

So excited to have made it through the Audition Round.   There were so many awesome projects!!

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

The inspiration behind my project was my mudroom…………. I call it my mudroom mayhem—  the room that is always cluttered with backpacks, papers , Ipods, jackets, shoes, and the dreaded cat box!

My inspiration was this awesome chippy paint door.

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

It weighed about 100 lbs and the glass was missing so it was a perfect find. And a garage sale bargain at $20! Because I have a huge passion for up-cycling I wanted something unique so this door was the perfect choice. Even more perfect was  the original old aqua chippy paint (which is my current color obsession).

First I bought a 24 x 48 chalkboard board from Menards for $8.50. Then I cut it to size and screwed it to the back of the door.

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

Then I added some scrap book paper with mod podge to some paper mail boxes from Hobby Lobby and painted the flags aqua.  The mail boxes will be used as iPod docking stations.

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

There is a mail slot in the door so it was a perfect place to fish the IPOD cords through.

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

Then I took a scrap piece of wood, stained it, then dry brushed on a 50/50 combo of Annie Sloan Old White and Duck Egg Chalk Paint.  Then screwed it on the door with some shelf brackets from Meijer.

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

After that I screwed on the backpack hooks from Hobby Lobby, the single flower vases that I bought while on vacation on Orcas Island, the clip boards for the chore charts, and added a chalk shelf.

Kids Back to School Station 7

Total cost of the project was $20 for the door, $7 for the mailboxes, $9 for the hardware, $6 for the sunflowers,  $8.50 for the chalk board and $3 for the clipboards.   Total cost = $53.50.  Not bad for the whole job.  The kids LOVE their new kid station and I am so excited to not hear “WHERE’S MY IPOD”!!!   I do believe this project was simple enough that most people could tackle it!

Kids Back to School Station via Oh So Shabby

So excited to have made it into the contest now on to so kitchen brainstorming!!

Thanks so very much for sharing your amazing project Lynda!

I know you’ll all see MUCH more of Lynda in the coming weeks, but I hope you will take the time RIGHT NOW to hop over to her site and check out of her already accomplished pin worthy ideas. Here are a few that I love…

Oh So Shabby

Easy Ruffle Valance | Ombre Girl’s Reading Nook | Princess Bedroom

DIY PVC Children’s Grocery Store {Tutorial}

Today’s winning PVC project – a DIY PVC children’s grocery store – is being shared by Season 16 competitor Hayley

Welcome to the Mouse House

This is Hayley’s third win this season.

She took week one with her amazing removable fabric wallpaper

Removable Fabric Wallpaper Tutorial

She also picked up a win in our week five challenge with her fun hot air balloon necklace

Hot Air Balloon Necklace Tutorial

Learn more about her amazing PVC project – The Market – and pop over to her site today for more of the details.

DIY PVC Children’s Grocery Store Tutorial

Hey guys!  My name is Hayley from Welcome to the Mouse House and I am here today to share how I created The Market from last week!


Now, obviously, everyone’s measurements are going to be different, so I am not going to provide those.  My space may be larger or smaller than what you have to work with so measure your space and determine the lengths you need before heading to the hardware store.


PVC Supplies:


  • 4 equal lengths to create a square for the top
  • 2 lengths for the legs
  • 2 3 inch pieces of PVC
  • 2 90 degree connectors
  • 2 45 degree connectors
  • 2 “T” connectors
  • 4 “U” hooks

(Excuse my chaotic photo… this was done very late at night and I was pretty much delirious!)

 Create the awning by joining your 4 equal lengths together.  Use the 90 degree connectors at the top corners and the “T” connectors at the bottom corners.

Now, you are going to create the legs. Attach your 3 inch piece of PVC to the “T” connector. Then, attach your 45 degree connector. Finally, attach your leg piece.

Clear as mud?

 Attach the other leg and it should now look like this!

Using the 4 “U” hooks, attach to the wall, using anchors if you don’t find a stud… and no, I am not talking about my husband. 


To attach the awning to the bookshelf, you can either glue it or you can find connectors with holes for drilling.  Totally up to you!

At last, it is time to attach your fabric.  

Before attaching it to the frame, I sewed bias tape and the chalkboard banner to my fabric to finish the raw edges. Then, I just hot glued the fabric to the PVC pipe.  Super easy!

The shelves for the groceries is simply a cubby unit from Target flipped on its side!

The shelf that holds the cash register was just a piece of scrap wood we had in the garage and I covered it with chevron shelf paper.  The one end is attached to the wall with a 2×4 and the other end is just leaning on top of the shelf.

Easy as pie!


I hope that helps!  If you guys have any questions or want to know more, please feel free to message me on Facebook or find my contact info on my blog.  As always, I would love to see your creations over on my Flickr page, too!

Nautical Beach Bag Tutorial


Today’s incredible nautical beach bag tutorial is brought to you by Jessica, from Cutesy Crafts.

Jessica Cutesy Crafts

Jessica has been hanging strong in the competition regularly taking the second or third place spot. I am super-excited that she nabbed a win in our summer challenge!

Nautical Beach Bag Tutorial

Hi everyone!  I am so glad to have made it through so far in the competition!  I’ll do my best to show you how I made my Nautical Beach Bag.

Nautical Beach Bag You will need:

  • 1 yard of outer fabric
  • 1 yard of lining fabric
  • 2.5 yards of soft rope/cording
  • 4 grommets
  • paper backed fusible webbing (Wonder Under)
  • contrasting fabric for applique
  • whale applique pattern

First thing you want to do is cut out all of the fabric for the outside and inside of your bag.  I used a nice, sturdy home decor fabric.  If I could do it over again, I would have lined it with some interfacing to stiffen it.  So, if you want your bag to have a little more structure, I recommend doing so.


Once you have everything cut out, it’s time to start assembling your bag.  I used 1/2″ seams unless otherwise indicated.  Sew the sides to the back of your bag right sides together as shown.

DIY Nautical Bag

Sew the front of the bag to the sides, so you are basically forming a big loop.  Yes, it probably would have been easier in the long run to sew everything to the bottom first, but I wanted to see where everything was going to be before I added the applique.

Trace the whale image onto the smooth side of some paper backed fusible webbing (Wonder Under).  You want your image to be reverse of how you want it to end up.  Iron the webbing side onto the wrong side of your fabric where you want the applique to be and cut it out.  Peel off the paper backing.  Place your the fabric that you want to “peek” through over the cutout and webbing.  Iron it down.


Machine or hand stitch around the edge of the reverse applique to secure it.  I just did a running stitch using all six strands of embroidery floss.


It took a little finagling, but you need to line up all of the sides with the bottom and pin and sew it on.  This is where it probably would have been easier if I had sewn on the bottom before sewing the sides together.


Assemble the lining of your bag the same way.  To make the pockets, iron the bottom and sides in 1/2″.  Iron the top down 1/4″ and then another 1/2″ and stitch to hem it.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

Sew the pocket to the right side of the lining about 4″ from the top.  I made two pockets.  I sewed one down the middle like in the photo below and left one unsewn.  That way I would have room for different sized objects.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

You should now have the outer part and the lining of your bag completed.  Push the lining of the bag into the outside of the bag with right sides facing each other.  All of your seams should be showing.  Line up all of the side seams and pin around the entire top of the bag.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

Sew 1/2″ seam all around the top of the bag, leaving an opening that is a few inches wide on the back panel.  Reach into the opening and turn the whole back right side out.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

Top stitch around the whole top of the bag again near the edge.  This keeps everything in place and eliminates the need to hand stitch the opening closed.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

Add a couple of grommets.  I got mine in the purse-making section at the fabric store.  You can also use curtain grommets.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

Find a good YouTube video or diagram to show you how to tie bowline knots.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

To secure the ends of the knots and keep them from fraying, I sewed through the soft rope/cording with a zigzag.

DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

photo16 DIY Nautical Bag Tutorial

That’s it!  Hope you are all having a great Summer!

Pallet Chair Tutorial

*Pallet Chair Tutorial made by Amber at Craft Me Perfect for the season 15 Wild Card challenge*

This chair is the perfect cozy spot when you just want to relax. So your question is, “How in the world did she make that?” Well, I’m gonna tell you.
You start off with 2 pallets and some extra old boards you might have laying around or you could go buy them. I obviously took this picture after I was finished, so the other pallets are used [Read more…]

Concrete Leaf Yard Art Tutorial

*Concrete Leaf  Yard Art Tutorial by Heidi @ greendoodle for her win of the Outdoor challenge of season 15*

You will be surprised how quick and fun this project is.  It has a definate wow factor!  Hopefully this tutorial has the information you need, however, feel free to contact me over at greendoodle if you have any questions.

step 1 supplies: plastic sheeting, sand, mortar (we used TradeCraft Premixed Sanded High Strength Mortar TypeS) which is construction grade mortar cement and NOT what you put under your floors).
step 2:  don’t forget gloves!
step 3: lay plastic on ground and mound sand on plastic, cover with plastic
step 4: choose a leaf with deep veins (rhubard is excellent)
step 5: lay leaf on plastic covered sand mound and mold to desired shape
step 6:  keep mounding and patting
step 7:  mix mortar and water to “thick icing consistency”
step 8: mix, mix, mix, mix – and then mix a little more
step 9: begin building a mortar cake at stem, patting air bubbles out
step 10: continue adding mortar to mound letting it flow outward.  Do NOT cover edge of leaf
step 11:  pat, pat, pat, pat air bubbles
step 12: leave it alone for 3 days to cure
step 11 1/2:  (oops)  leave a trademark stamp on the back.  Doodle, write your name…be creative.


step 13: after mortar is sufficiently cured, gently remove leaf


You did it!  Now go place your leaf in your garden and enjoy!