Thursday, October 30, 2014

BFF Open House Link Party #182

The Answer Is Chocolate

Happy Halloween Eve everyone! Hope you're all set with costumes, candies, treats, and no tricks. Can you believe it's Halloween already? I really can't. Since before we know it Thanksgiving will be upon us, that's the focus of this week's features. 

Let's start with this gorgeous Fall card that would be great to send or frame as part of your Thanksgiving decor. Visit Karen at Stamping on the Back Porch for the how to .

Love the simplicity of the materials used in this rustic wreath. Burlap and grape vine. Visit Artistic Endeavors for the details. 

How cute is this wood and paper turkey from the CSI Project? It was made from a kit from Pick Your Plum so not sure if they still have them because things go fast but worth a look! 

This week's chocolate feature is from Her Organized Chaos and the name speaks for itself. Looks delish! 

OK now on to this week's party. Please link to your specific post and not your main blog page, and no shops etc. Don't forget to go visit some of the other partiers! 


Monday, October 27, 2014

Craft Fail: The Book...Next Up The Musical?

If you haven't seen it yet, you really need to be on the lookout for a hilarious new book from Heather Mann, the creative genius behind Dollar Store Crafts and

"Craft Fail: When Homemade Goes Horribly Wrong" is a fantastic compilation of many brave bloggers projects that didn't quite go as planned.

You know exactly how it goes right? You pull up Pinterest on your computer and before you know it hours have passed, people in your house are fainting from hunger, the dog is looking at your paper stash as a meal...but you've pinned all these amazing projects. Then you actually attempt them. And they don't look anything like the pin. The pin LIED!

OK so maybe you swapped out a supply or two or all of them. Or maybe you didn't wait the recommended amount of time (or any) for the paint/glue to dry or other materials to set up. But maybe, just maybe you did use all of the recommended supplies, measured twice and cut once, and went step by step through the instructions and you still end up with something completely unrecognizable from what you attempted.

You can do what I usually do which is to utter a long string of choice words, go into Hulk smash mode, and immediately hide any and all evidence like a suspect on CSI or Criminal Minds. Or you can submit it to and maybe end up in a book and know that even the most talented among us sometimes need a do over!

The book is broken into several categories including Home Decor Fails, Fashion Fails, Holiday Fails,  Food Fails and "Martha Made It".

I knew there was a reason I hadn't yet tried on of those marble manicures I've seen on Pinterest. Sure they suck you in with all that swirly goodness and then this happens:

Let's have closer look at how I'm sure mine would turn out:

Ever made something that didn't look at all like it was supposed to but tasted good anyway? Several of those in the book by my favorite is the Alien Autopsy Garlic Bread.

I guarantee you will not get through this book without seeing something you can relate to and laughing in solidarity with other craft failers. And this book has made me promise myself to come out of craft fail witness protection and submit my next fail to Heather because I'm convinced the next iteration will be "Craft Fail: The Musical" and we'll all be whipping up some epic DIY fashion fails for the Broadway premiere.

I was provided with a free copy of Craft Fail to review but opinions are 100% my own. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

BFF Open House Link Party #181

The Answer Is Chocolate

Happy Friday Eve and welcome to another party at The Answer Is Chocolate. One week! One week to Trick or Treat time. Question: do you buy candy you like in case you have leftovers or do you buy candy you don't like so you won't be tempted? 

More great Halloween ideas shared at last week's party. Here are some you still have time to do!

If you're looking for an alternative to traditional pumpkin colors, Laura from Pet Scribbles has you covered using metallic paints. 

If you're not planning a full costume for Halloween, you can always add a piece or two of festive Halloween jewelry. Rona at Jewelry Making Journal has a fantastic roundup of pieces that can be made by people of any skill level. 

Don't forget the pets for Halloween! There are so many cute pet costumes out there but I love this idea from Carrie Elle including these adorable tags you can download from her site! 

Lou Lou Girls shared a mouth watering calzone recipe. Perfect Halloween night dinner which would be great paired with this fantastic Halloween dessert that "caught my eye"  from Life With the Crust Cut Off

OK now on to this week's party!


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Halloween: Mummified and Mustached Monster Cookies...College Boy's Last (Undergrad) Halloween Goodie Box

Monster Mummy Bundles

I can’t believe this is the last year I’ll be sending off a Halloween Treat Box of goodies to College Boy. At least as an undergrad :) Just because your child goes to school out of state, doesn’t mean you don’t still celebrate fun holidays with them. OK I'll speak for myself lol.  I started this his freshman year and it’s just become tradition. 

This year I decided to try my hand at Mummy Cookies I’ve seen around the way.
You can find lots of tutorials on Pinterest .


These are SO easy. I used Nutter Butter cookies, white Wilton candy melts, and my new favoritest ( that’s a word!) thing ….candy eyes! Because who doesn’t need eyes made of sugar?!

Mummy Cookies

I shmoosheared ( that’s another word….between smoosh and smear) the melted candy melt on the cookie using the back of a spoon just to give it a base coat. Knowing I was going to pipe more candy over the top, I  wasn’t exactly neat about it.  While still wet, attached the candy eyes. Using a disposable cake decorating bag with a round tip ( I wish I had a smaller tip but you make mummies with the tips you have) pipe more  melted candy coat stuff on the mummies. Just freehand back and forth.

College Boy loves all things mustached so when I saw candy mustaches next to the candy eyes ( cake decorating supplies Michaels, JoAnn’s, Target) I had to get those too. Behold Mustached Oreo Purple People Eaters. Originally I was going to do bats to go with the mummies but the power of the ‘stache won out.

Good thing too because the black candy melts I bought weren’t really black when melted, but rather dark purple. So I dipped the Oreos, applied the eyes and the mustaches and then covered with purple decorating sugar.

Purple People Eaters

Monster Bark

Since I had leftover everything, I decided to make this monster bark. Melted semi sweet chocolate, plopped broken Oreos and Nutter Butters, candy eyes and some sugar bones from last year randomly, let set, cut or break into pieces. Oh and more purple sugar because clearly this was not yet a nutritionist’s worse nightmare.

Mummy Monster Treats

Did I mention I have to mail all of this stuff ( that no one told you you had to make for your son and his friends but lalalalala I can’t hear you and thank goodness for flat rate shipping)? Yay tissue paper bought after Christmas last year for $.25! Wrap and cushion all in one.

I spread the contents as shown on a layer of tissue then gathered up the edges to make  little bundles. Tied with ribbon and then “ let there be tags”. Because each bundle must have a tag. It's a rule or something.

Treat Tags

I love making tags. It’s a great way to use up the scraps from other projects.

Monster Mummy Bundles

And voila! Monster Mummy Treat Bundles because this Mummy loves her College Boy.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Halloween: BEWARE Banner and Ghosts of Projects Past

Beware Banner

We have a 2nd  fireplace without a mantle that was sitting there all naked and bare and I decided it needed a Halloween banner.

For this project you will need:
  • Chipboard
  • Scrapbook paper ( I used a black and white pack from Oriental Trading Co)
  • Textured Cardstock ( Core’dinations)
  • Paper Straws ( Oriental Trading Co)
  • Glitter Tape
  • Self adhesive rhinestones
  • Jute twine
  • Adhesive
Bewarer Banner 1

For the banner, I cut the letters from a textured cardstock using my Cricut.  Cut the pennant shapes from chipboard (4.5 x 6.5) . I did these the old fashioned way using math and everything! Determine the center point of your rectangle ; draw lines to the bottom corners to make a triangle and cut. Same for the scrapbook paper layer reduced by 1/4”. Layer scrapbook paper pennant on chipboard , cut photo corners from glitter tape and apply, adhere letters and finish with rhinestones.

Beware Banner 2

I got the idea to use the paper straws both to embellish each piece of the pennant because that's how I roll.

Cut straws to width of pennant pieces and attach with hot glue.

Beware Banner 3

Using another piece from the scrapbook paper pack, I made rolled paper roses for each of the letters. To hang, thread jute through each straw and attach with washi tape.

Also sharing some of this year’s Halloween d├ęcor using past projects (active links go to tutorials):

Haunted Mantle

Haunted Mantle 2

Halloween Decor
  1. Paper and Vinyl Owl
  2. Pressboard and Paper Pumpkin (I didn't do a post on this but it's a leftover pressboard "page" from a shaped album, covered in scrapbook paper using Mod Podge)
  3. Gothic Coffin Boxes
  4. Halloween Snow Globe (Halloween take on Christmas snow globes; old jar, Halloween figure, glitter )
  5. Glitter Decoupage Pumpkin
  6. Tissue Paper Pumpkin

Sharing At: 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

BFF Open House Link Party #180

The Answer Is Chocolate

Welcome back to another party here at The Answer Is Chocolate! TWO WEEKS! Halloween is two weeks from tomorrow people! Whether you're already set or just getting started, there's still time to whip up some things. Here are a few ideas.

Rachel from Holy Craft has devoted an entire week to Halloween projects and I love each and every one of them, a couple of which easily carry forward through Thanksgiving. 

Dana over at This Silly Girls Life shared some fantastic Halloween makeup ideas. 

I love the simplicity but high impact of these scrap wood ghosts from The Pin Junkie.

This week's chocolate feature is another that would be great for a Halloween dessert table. Mini Oreo Cheesecake from TitiCrafty:

Now on to this week's party! 


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Halloween: Beaded Spider Web

Beaded Spider Web

Oh what a tangled web we weave as the saying goes. Only with this project, the deceiving part is how easy this project is to make. Now I know not everyone loves spiderwebs or spiders (including College Boy who is very happy he’s safely away at school nowhere near my “pretty but evil” creation…his words).

For this project you will need:
  • Wire Snowflake Form
  • Seed Beads and Bugle Beads
  • Misc beads for center
  • 26 Gauge Wire
  • Needlenose pliers
I had the snowflake forms in my stash but you will find them with the Christmas supplies at your local craft store:

Beaded Spider Supplies

Starting with one of your “misc beads” ( I scrounged around in my leftover beads and found enough that matched)  string onto one spoke of the wire form. String seed beads until almost full, leaving enough exposed wire to make a loop for the end. Use the pliers to bend a loop. Repeat until your wire form is covered.

I started with about a two feet of the 26 gauge wire and wrapped the starting end around one of the beaded wire spokes enough to secure it. Work from the middle out and string enough bugle beads to get to the next spoke. Wrap that spoke with wire, string more bugle beads. Rinse. Later. Repeat until you’ve gone around the whole thing.  Eyeball where you want the next row of your web to be and repeat the process two more times as shown.

Beaded Spider Web 1

I finished my web with a bow of scrap grosgrain ribbon I saved from a package of curtains. Left it all wrinkly because of the creepy factor.

But what’s a web without a spider? The basic construction is two beads and some wire. There are tutorials on Pinterest and You Tube you can follow to get the basic construction. I decided not to bead my legs because I liked the wire legs plain.

Bead Spider 
I also used the same size beads (10mm) vs two different sizes that a lot of the tutorials show. And I added some beadcaps. Attach your spider to its web using a jump ring.

I hung mine from our dining room light fixture ( "Hi welcome to dinner don’t mind the spider hanging above you”) using some jute twine.

Beaded Spider Web 2

They’re creepy and they’re kooky
Mysterious and spooky
They're altogether ooky
My beaded spider webs

You're welcome for the Addams Family theme song ear worm.

Sharing At: 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Silver, Leather, and Pearls: Bold Necklace and Coordinating Bracelet

Double Chain and Leather Bracelet

I can post this now that I’ve given it to the recipient. I made these recently for a friend. Supplies except for leather : Blue Moon Beads.

The thick chain and bold silver beads remind me of some very high end designed silver lines but for much much less! 

Double Chain Necklace

For the necklace, I used two sizes of silver snake chain ( 9MM and 3MM) measured to 20 inches. Finished the ends with end caps adhered with jewelry glue, and finished with a lobster claw clasp attached with jump rings.

I had some oversized jump rings in my stash and strung both strands of the chain through them, then used one more looped through them to hold them together. 

The pendant was made using a connector link, focal bead and leftover chain from other projects.

Leather and Pearl Bracelet

For the bracelet, I used a 7 inch length of 8MM leather cord to which I attached the same type of glued on jewelry caps and clasp as the necklace. Tied a knot about 1/3  into the bracelet then strung three focal beads and tied another knot. For the dangle, I wire wrapped three pearls strung on head pins and finished with bead caps. The beads in the bracelet and the beads in the pendant match so these can be worn together or separately.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

BFF Open House Link Party #179

The Answer Is Chocolate

Happy Friday Eve all! Welcome to another party here at The Answer Is Chocolate. Some wonderful ideas linked up at last week's party. I hope when you link up you're visiting each other. Here are some highlights: 

From Crafty Journal, make a mini Halloween themed Pocket Book using just one sheet of scrapbook paper. 

Heather from Woods of Bell Trees has a wonderful series going called  "Party In A Box" . So many ways to adapt this from parties, showers, housewarming, just because. It is a great idea for prime gift giving season!

Over at ArtsyVaVa, you'll see that the creative apple didn't fall far from the tree. Check out this table that her son made! How cool is this?

This week's chocolate feature is perfect for your Halloween dessert table. Best of all there's absolutely no way to mess it up!

Halloween Cookies and Scream bark from Life With The Crust Off

Now, on to this week's party!