giant christmas tree paintings are my fave

December 4, 2013

Today’s artful post was created by Bar Rucci

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave

When doing art at home with my kids, I am always thinking of ways to mix things up. We’ve been doing lots of small format work and collaging lately, so it was time for a change. Seeing their faces when I brought out the giant paper was priceless! They were able to use their whole body to draw and paint which resulted in a vibrant, more energetic work of art.

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave


- Large watercolor paper 30” x 22” (found at local art stores or online)

- Pencil + eraser

- Liquid Watercolor

- Brushes + water + damp sponge or paper towel


- Use the pencil lightly to draw the tree and any other decoration. My middle daughter did hers first and decided to add presents to the bottom, which I loved. (I hadn’t even thought of that!) We talked

about what type of tree to draw, and she decided she wanted a triangle instead of a bushy tree. After seeing hers, my son and other daughter followed suit, with triangle trees and presents. They all look different, though, which is the best part!

- Next, color in with the liquid watercolor. I encouraged them to mix different greens. We also let the paint dry before coloring in the ornaments. Although having watercolors run into each other is preferred most of the time, my kids wanted these paintings to be “more neat”.

- Two of them added a border, which is a nice way to frame and finish off the artwork. And that’s it!

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave

I love how my son’s presents cover the whole page and look like flags. He is seven and usually the messiest artist, but this time he worked really hard to stay in the lines. I was so proud!

christmas tree paintings | you are my fave

My oldest daughter likes all of her art to be perfect and symmetrical (which can be a bit of a frustration for her). She used a ruler to draw her tree and all of her decoration. I love the triangle snowflakes and her super tall present on the right. She loved it, too (phew)!

This art project was one of our faves. They all painted with such concentration, and there were very few supplies needed so it was easy to set up and put away. We will hang these up every Christmas from now until forever.

I hope you try these with your kids (or maybe make one yourself)!

You can find more of Bar’s art projects at Art Bar Blog or shop her card shop (hello holiday postcards) at Late Night Cake.

a colorful tape christmas tree is my fave

December 3, 2013

colorful tape christmas tree  | you are my fave

If you like to festive up each room in your house (or don’t want to worry about stepping on pine needles), this easy unconventional tree is ready to pile the presents under. Hopefully a car shaped one. Get the full tutorial right here on Julep.

Psst, 24 Merry Days has started!

Day one: An accent chair you’ll never believe is from Lowes
Day two: $250 to Anthropologie
Day three: A bike from Public Bikes!

boxes of holiday treats are my fave

December 2, 2013

One of my favorite holiday traditions growing up was making loads of treats and piling them high on plates to deliver to friends. This year I’ve decided to put the paper plate aside and upgrade to a clear box with compartments, just the right size for a tasty portion of each goody. Oh, and they’re themed.

holiday treat boxes | you are my fave

holiday treat boxes | you are my fave

The chocolate box includes:
- dark chocolate orange peel
- milk chocolate grahams
- homemade oreos
- pistachio cranberry bark
- thin mints
- puppy chow

The white box includes:
- meringues
- browned butter rice krispie treats
- vanilla macarons
- white chocolate dipped pretzels
- homemade marshmallows
- coconut macaroons

The sweet and salty box includes:
- kettle corn
- Lindt a Touch of Sea Salt
- chocolate covered pretzels
- saltine cracker toffee
- sea salt caramels
- pistachio cranberry bark

holiday treat boxes | you are my fave

If you want to make the exact same treat boxes, I have these cute labels (designed by yamf’s resident designer, Kirsten Bingham) available for you to download, print, and attach on the top of the box with ribbon.

- Chocolate Box Label Download
- White Christmas Box Label Download
- Sweet & Salty Box Label Download

holiday treat boxes | you are my fave

Eat up!

design: Kirsten Bingham
photography: Nicole Coleman
styling: Jenn Elliott Blake

twenty-four merry days is my fave

November 27, 2013

Screen shot 2013-11-27 at 8.12.35 PM

Speaking of advents (will I ever stop?) this one might be the best yet. Announcing 24 Merry Days: 24 days, 24 bloggers, 24 giveaways.

Let me explain to get your a little more pumped. Audrey of This Little Street rounded up 24 bloggers (one of which is me) to host a giveaway every day leading up to Christmas. And the prizes are good folks. Like double digit gift cards to Anthropologie and Mud Australia good. Like fine leather goods good. Like a C1 bike from Public Bikes good. I hope I’m eligible.

Starting December 1st, you can follow along with the giveaways on 24 Merry Days and I’ll be sure to link to them daily. So make your wish lists this weekend, because they might be coming true with a spot of good luck and 24 Merry Days.

woven paper christmas cards are my fave

November 26, 2013

woven paper christmas cards

woven paper christmas cards

You know I love advents and iVillage has a nifty one going on right now that I’m happy to be apart of. It’s called 30 Days of HoliDIY – a new holiday project from a talented blogger every day for an entire month. You can get the instructions for these woven paper cards I made right here on iVillage. These would surely earn you prime fridge real estate.

peanut butter mousse pie is my fave

Today’s tasty post is from Rebecca Hansen of First Mate Photo. This pie will be present at my Thanksgiving table and I’m pretty sure it will convince even pie haters to serve up a big slice.

peanut butter mousse pie

Peanut Butter Mousse Pie

For the Crust:

  • 30 chocolate wafer cookies
  • 6 tablespoons butter melted

For the Mousse:

  • 1¼ cup peanut butter
  • 4 ounces cream cheese (room temperature)
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 1¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Bar for embellishing

Preheat over to 350.

In a food processor blend all the cookies until they’re a fine crumb. Add in the butter and process until it holds together. Pour the mixture into your tart pan and press into the bottom and sides. To get a nice smooth crust use the bottom of a glass or a measuring cup. Put the pan on a baking sheet and into the oven. Bake for 20 minutes. The crust should be very dry and firm when it’s done.

peanut butter mousse pie

In a mixer combine the peanut butter and cream cheese. Add in the powdered sugar and mix. Add in 1/4 cup of the cream and whip until smooth. Then add in the remaining cream and beat until peaks form and your mixture resembles whipped cream. Finally, gently mix in the vanilla.

Gently spread the mousse into the tart and top with shaved chocolate. Three cheers for pie!

peanut butter mousse pie

See more from Rebecca in her Etsy shop and on her new blog, Present (her daughter’s first birthday party was super cute).

martha stewart holiday crafting is my fave

November 25, 2013

christmas craft party | you are my fave

The holidays are definitely my favorite time to make so I decided to force my friends into enjoying it too by having a little crafting get together. Sure it was unseasonably warm for trying to get into the spirit, and there were lots of babies at our feet, and I failed to remember it was a morning party before I had made an entire table of desserts – but I like to believe my guests had a good time. Here’s the rundown of our craft date making festive branch trees:

christmas craft party | you are my fave

We started by painting inexpensive clay pots with Martha Stewart Living Metallic Glaze in medallion. Everything’s better metali-cized.

christmas craft party | you are my fave

After placing a foam flower frog in the bottom of the pot, the branches were arranged. I bought the branches at a floral store but they could easily be foraged. To make sure things stay put, a layer of sand was poured on top. The pinecones covered it up nicely.

christmas craft party | you are my fave

The best part was decorating the branches once they were set. I had a whole slew of ornaments from the Martha Stewart Merry Metallics line that added just the right amount of sparkle.

christmas craft party | you are my fave

Look at that beaut. Project holiday complete.

christmas craft party | you are my fave

Of course I can’t forget about the black and white spread. The treats that I included were:
- whoopie pies
- mini chocolate chip cookies
- dark and white chocolate peanut butter cups
- brown buttered rice krispie treats
- puppy chow
- black and white cookies
- vanilla macarons
- coconut macaroons

christmas craft party | you are my fave

For quick decorations, I hung up rolls of crepe paper (which I originally saw in Martha Stewart Weddings) and had striped mylar balloons blown up.

There you have it, now go throw a holiday craft party of your own.

photography: Nicole Coleman

All of the product featured in this post was provided by the Martha Stewart Living team to celebrate the ‘Tis the Season of Doing holiday campaign going on now at The Home Depot.

a scratch off activity advent is my fave

November 22, 2013

scratch off activity advent calendar | you are my fave

scratch off activity advent calendar | you are my fave

There’s something so satisfying about a scratch off card. Even when you don’t have a penny and the crud ends up under your fingernails. For the week’s final advent, you can make your own scratch off cards that reveal a festive activity for each day. Get the free download and instructions right here on Julep.

More posts you’re sure to like:
- If you can’t get enough advents, here are 15 more
- The prettiest home in all the land (and they have kids!)
- Wrap your gifts up all nice
- I thought I was slightly tired of the woodland themed until I saw this first birthday party
- 15 modern alphabet prints (Beck is obsessed)
- Best of the week! (including a pop-up party invitation)

a cardboard reindeer advent is my fave

November 21, 2013

Today’s creative advent is from Ally, the cool cat behind Now That’s Pretty.

cardboard reindeer advent calendar | you are my fave

We’ve just moved into a new house with big empty walls so making it Christmassy seemed quite daunting when it didn’t even seem that homey yet. Our solution? A giant reindeer advent calender of course. Once December first rocks round we’re going to take it in turns to fill the little bags with vouchers, sweets and lame jokes but for now he’s just sitting there all majestic. We’ve been trying to think of a name for him for a while but we’re kind of stumped; if anyone has any suggestions I’d love to hear them.

To make your own, you will need:
- A cardboard reindeer pattern to adapt. I used this one by Mike Pinder.
- Lots of cardboard
- White and red paint
- A glue gun
- 25 Gift bags
- Scissors/ xacto knife
- A Pen

1) Print off and cut out your template.
2) Draw around your template onto cardboard and cut out using scissors or an xacto knife. This is the longest part of the project.
3) You will need to alter the antlers of your reindeer to have 12 little knobbles on one antler and 13 on the other.
4) As your antlers will have things hanging off them you may need to reinforce them. Draw around your antlers onto some more cardboard and then cut out just the central beam.
5) Using a glue gun attach this to the back of your antlers.
6) Paint your pattern pieces on both sides and allow to dry.

cardboard reindeer advent calendar | you are my fave

7) Assemble your reindeer!
8) To make your mount cut out two pieces of card board of the desired shape and add slots for your reindeer to fit into on one of the pieces.
9) To make your mount 3D add a stripe of cardboard around the edges of the piece without slots.

cardboard reindeer advent calendar | you are my fave

10) Using a glue gun, glue the slotted piece on top.
11) Paint your mount red and allow to dry.
12) Now simply slot your reindeer in and you’re read to hang treats!

To attach our reindeer to the wall we simply made two holes in the back of the mount and then used picture hooks to attach him. Voila!

cardboard reindeer advent calendar | you are my fave

See more from Ally on Now That’s Pretty

a confetti popper advent is my fave

November 20, 2013

Of all the advent calendars I’ve seen, this one might disperse the daily prize in the most fun way. With just a little tug, confetti and candy for all! Or at least for one, these aren’t piñata sized.

confetti popper advent calendar | you are my fave

confetti popper advent calendar | you are my fave

confetti popper advent calendar | you are my fave

To make your own, you’ll need:
- 24 empty toilet paper rolls
- patterned paper (I used some from the Rifle Paper Co line at Anthropolgie)
- tape
- twine or cord
- small, circle labels
- filler

Wrap paper around each toilet paper roll and adhere with tape. Make sure you leave extra paper at the bottom and fold it up like you would the end of a present. Then stuff it inside the roll so the bottom is fully covered. Thread the twine or cord through the paper and knot on the inside so it stays put and grips the paper for a good pull. Number each one with a circle label and stick to the middle of the pull string. Stuff the goodies in the top and pull for a fun reveal.

confetti popper advent calendar | you are my fave

You could easily punch holes in the top to string and display. But then you might not be able to prevent tugging all the strings in one go and that might lead to countdown disappointment.

photography: Nicole Coleman
styling: Jenn Elliott Blake

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