Family Name Photo Art {tutorial}

I'm back home visiting my family for Christmas, and it's been great to see my parents and sisters! My middle sister suggested we make a Christmas gift for my dad. She is so creative, so I was totally game. K showed me some pictures she had taken of ordinary objects which represented each letter of our family's last name. Look at these awesome photos she took!

Love 'em! To turn these photos into a great gift, K, J (my youngest sister) and I headed over to Hobby Lobby to pick up a nice black frame. We got ours for around $20, I think. We also got four pieces of scrapbook paper for 29 cents each. The girls and I went with a burlap printed paper, and we ended up loving it! It's a nice neutral background for the black and white photos. We also bought some foam board ($1.59) to create our own mat.

The first step was to cut out the foam board to the dimensions of the mat that was in the frame. Then we used Mod Podge to adhere the burlap paper to the board.

Next, we mod podged the photos to the paper. And voila!

We showed it to the parentals tonight, and they absolutely LOVE it! My dad is going to hang it in his office.  :)


Warm and Comfy Sweater Pillow!

I had quite a bit of leftover cable knit sweater from my sweater candle cozie project, so why not make a pillow cover? Sweater pillows have been popping up in home decor stores as well as all over the blog world lately. And I can see why because they give you a warm comfy feeling whether you are resting your head on one or just staring at your handmade sweater pillow in admiration. 

Here is how mine turned out:

It was soo easy to make, even without a sewing machine! I simply placed my pillow form inside the body of the sweater--luckily, it was a perfect fit--and then cut one side and hand sewed two of the sides. 
I didn't turn the sweater inside out while I sewed, so it has kind of a rough edge. I'd like to say I did that for some creative unique reason, but honestly, I just wasn't really thinking. It's not bad, though! 
P.S. The husband really liked this one! That's saying something because his enthusiasm for my projects has waned recently, probably because I tend to strew unfinished projects throughout the house, not wanting to put them away until they are completely finished. Haha...oops! At least he's a good sport about it. I can make this one of my many New Year's resolutions.  

P.S.S. My little Heidz approves! She is an expert on all things comfort-related, so I value her opinion highly. (I am not crazy, I promise...okay, maybe a little dog crazy.) 
She was wearing her Christmas sweater because we just got back from taking our family Christmas portrait. Some dogs may feel humiliated when their owners make them wear clothes, but Heidi LOVES a snug little tee or sweater.
I also need to throw in a pic of my other cutie patootie, Jini. Otherwise, I would feel like I was leaving her out .
Yes, that is a leopard print Snuggie and my fleece jacket that she is laying on. She is my other comfort expert, if you can't tell. ;)
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Sweater Candle Cozies {tutorial}

We got some lovely snow yesterday here in North Carolina. The snow came down in big soft flakes - it was beautiful! It was the perfect opportunity to stay indoors and do a winter project. I've been dying to try this sweater candle cozie project created by the ingenious Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming.

All it involves is recycling some old sweaters (or in my case, buying one from the thrift store) by covering the candle vase in a comfy sweater. Here is what mine turned out like:
Do you like it? I am in love with it! Small changes like this can really warm up a space, as well as turn generic candles into unique, stylish ones. I think it's the perfect project for these snow-filled days.

One thing I did differently than Stephanie Lynn is that I sewed my sweater into place rather than hot gluing it on. The reason being that I know I will want to change out the look of these candle vases later, so as usual, I only made a temporary change. I will be able to slip off the sweater covers and store them away as spring approaches, but I will be able to reuse them next winter. Perfect!

Sewing them was actually really easy. I only had to make around 3 rows of stitches.

Here is the original sweater. I picked it up at the thrift store. I was able to use it for two different projects and even had some left over. Not too shabby for $7.
First step was to slip a sleeve over the candle vase. Then I cut the piece to size, trimming the edges of the candle vase base as I went.
The only thing left to do was to sew this gap in the sleeve. That took about 30 seconds.
One down, two to go!
I did the same thing as before, but this time I made the sweater cozie for the candle rather than the vase. (Tip: If you do this, make sure the sweater won't catch on fire when you light the candle!)

For the round vase, I simply stretched the other sleeve over it. That way all I had to do was make the same few stitches to the top of the sleeve. I also had to make a few stitches to the bottom of the vase in order to wrap the sweater underneath the vase. If I had not done this, the bottom would have looked too frayed.
It turned out to be my favorite! :)
Here are the sweater candle cozies in my table centerpiece:
What do you think? Have you made any cool things with cable knit sweaters? Have you tried this project before? Please do share. :)

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