How to Create a Get Well Gift Box for Sick Friends

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc., Campbell’s® , Lipton, Premium Crackers, Theraflu and TYLENOL®. All opinions are mine alone. #SickDaySolutions #CollectiveBias

Think back to the last time you were sick. Oh, that’s not a good memory, is it! Hopefully you had someone that was able to take care of you. You know, that comforting person who can bring you warm soup and tea. Someone to dose out your medicine and fluff your pillow. When I was sick my dad would always bring home a special treat from the store for me, like a new box of crayons and a coloring book. Or a book of paper dolls, remember those? It’s great having someone there to take care of you. It just makes you feel better when you know someone cares.

Now think about the last time your entire family was sick. That’s that worst!! When I think of those horrible cold and flu times when the entire household is sick, nobody wants to have to leave for the store to pick up essentials. And so you all lay around in your pajamas, feeling awful together. Everyone is cranky. And bored. And the sick parents still have to take care of sick kids, even though all they want to do is crawl under the covers and sleep!

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

The Get Well Gift Box

A friend of mine recently posted on Facebook that her entire family was stuck at home with a flu bug. Nobody in her house felt well enough to drive and they’d run out of medicine. So many friends jumped in that they’d drop by with essentials. The family was so grateful and felt so loved and cared for. I’m sure that just knowing they have generous friends helped them feel better that much sooner.

What if you could create a special “Get Well Gift Box” to take to your friends when they’re all sick at home? The box would include all the needs for a few days at home, while recuperating. The Get Well Box would include soup and crackers, tea and medicines. There would also be a family movie, some reading material and a little activity for the kids. This pay-it-forward gift is heartfelt and sure to put a sick family on the road to recovery that much faster!

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

Creating a Get Well Gift Box

Any cardboard box or large shoe box will do. If you’re using a plain box, wrap the bottom of the box in pretty paper and leave the top off so your goodies can be on display. A basket would work well too. I had a fabric covered box that I used for my get well gift. Don’t forget to include a card. You can choose to sign it or make it anonymous (that could be fun, right?)

I made this Heard You Were Sick free printable card to include with your box if you want!

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

Filling Your Get Well Gift Box

I headed to Ralphs to fill my get well box with sick day essentials. Ralphs had everything I wanted to add into the box, including boredom busters like a magazine and crossword puzzle book.

I filled my box with Campbell’s® soup and Premium Saltine crackers, to warm and satisfy hunger. There’s Lipton Soothe Your Tummy herbal supplement for a comforting, warm beverage. And TheraFlu ExpressMax syrup and TYLENOL® Cold + Flu for the grown ups. Because when mom and dad are feeling better, they’re better equipped to care for the kids.

Click through to find coupon savings on these products!


Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

What’s Inside the Box?

  • Family size Campbell’s® Chicken Noodle Soup – nourishing and warm, this family sized can will satisfy them all. I have the kids sit at the table with their warm soup for lunch, which gives me a chance to change their bed sheets and pillowcases. I always feel a little bit better with fresh linens!

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

  • Original Premium Saltine Crackers – Everyone knows that these are the best crackers! Soup just isn’t the same without them. And sometimes sick tummies only want crackers so Premium Saltines are perfect for upset stomachs.

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

  • Lipton Soothe Your Tummy Herbal Supplement – These new blends offer a unique combo of botanicals, blended with essential oils known for their wellness benefits.* This Soothe Your Tummy version contains ginger, peppermint, and fennel in a caffeine free beverage. It’s really delicious too! It’s mild tasting enough that even kids would enjoy a warm cup.
  • Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad TheraFlu ExpressMax Severe Cold & Flu Syrup – When the ick hits you hard, TheraFlu is powerful relief without a prescription to treat symptoms of cold and flu.
  • TYLENOL® Cold + Flu Severe Day/Night – And if coughing keeps you up at night, these caplets help to relieve painful cold and flu symptoms like coughing, congestion, and sore throat.

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

  • Something for the kids – Lend a few family movies from your home collection, choosing titles the kids might not have seen before. Crayons and coloring books are great for small kids. For older kids a simple craft or some modeling clay would help break up the boredom.
  • Something for the grown ups – After a while, scrolling the web on your smart phone starts to lose its charm. Include a favorite classic book, a deck of cards, crossword puzzle book and a magazine for mom.
  • Other Essentials – Sick-season items like lip balm, tissues and juice would also be welcome additions to the get well gift box.

Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

The Surprise Drop-Off

Once you’ve heard of a friend in need, gather up the supplies and get ready for the drop-off. Send them a quick message and let them know you’re headed over with a special box. Then just ring the bell and leave it at the door. Your friends don’t have to get out of their pajamas and you don’t risk catching whatever they’ve got!

And they’ll be so grateful you were thinking of them. I know my kids would be delighted to find a surprise box at the door for them, especially when they’ve been feeling sick. What a sweet way to help someone feel better!


Want to make a sick friend feel better immediately? Make them a get well gift box with all these sick day essentials! #SickDaySolutions #ad

Campbell’s® – © 2018 CSC LP Lipton – © 2018 Unilever Theraflu – Read and follow label directions. Theraflu is for use in adults 12 years and older. Use products only as directed. TYLENOL® – ®Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. 2017. Use products only as directed. The makers of TYLENOL® remind you to use only one medicine with acetaminophen at a time.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, cure or prevent disease.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques for Gifts (and Budgets!) of All Sizes

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WrapGiveRepeat #CollectiveBias

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly! #ad @walmart

Everyone loves to receive a beautifully wrapped gift. When you take the time to wrap a gift creatively, it shows that you really care! If I spend time carefully shopping for just the right thing, I also want to take the time to wrap the gift perfectly as well. It makes my recipient feel so special when they say, “This is for ME?!”

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Gift wrapping something in a truly special way doesn’t require expensive gift bags or elaborate decor.  Are you ready to Wrap.Give.Repeat? Let me show you my simple gift wrapping techniques for gifts of all sizes.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques

I have three special gift wrapping techniques I’d love to share. One is a pleated technique that’s really sophisticated. I also like to make gift bags with wrapping paper and tape for odd-shaped gifts. Third, I always use my leftover scraps of wrapping paper to make curled bows that coordinate.

I popped in to the Walmart at my local mall to pick up a Scotch® Gift Wrap Tape 3 Pack Caddie and Scotch™ Multi-Purpose Scissor 8″. These items were located with the greeting cards and office supplies.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

I like to stock up on Scotch® Brand wrapping products so when I’m in a wrapping frenzy on Christmas Eve, there’s no chance of running out! With the 50% bonus and Rollback pricing at Walmart, there’s no reason not to stock up and save. Plus my preschooler has been in a bit of “go crazy with the tape on everything” phase and has pretty much depleted every roll I had in the house!

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Best Results Tips

Before you pull out the gifts, be sure to have these things ready to go!

Lots of room – Time to clear off your craft table or invade the dining room! Give yourself plenty of space to spread out. Resist the urge to wrap on the floor (your back and knees will thank me later).

Thick, high-quality wrapping paper – You will not get the best results if you’re using thin paper that tears easily. But it doesn’t mean you have to indulge in expense; I pick up my wrapping papers the year before on clearance (I bought these last year at 75% off, for about a dollar per roll!) Choose paper that has the square inches lined on the back so you can cut the pieces straight.

A pair of sharp scissors – Leave the utility shears in the kitchen and purchase a pair of dedicated gift wrap scissors to keep in the craft caddy. Scotch™ Multi-Purpose Scissor 8″ glide right through the wrapping paper, so you’ll have perfectly straight lines and crisp edges.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

A gift wrapping caddy -Inexpensive and handy, a caddy will keep all your wrapping supplies like Scotch® Gift Wrap Tape, scissors, ribbon and gift tags all in one place so you can grab & go when you’re ready to wrap!

Special gift toppers – While at Walmart I wanted to find some cute package toppers and there were SO many to choose from! I actually found these in the section designated for decorating mini Christmas trees. I just thought they were adorable and the price was certainly right. I’ll be able to decorate every single gift under the tree with a mini ornament that can be saved or reused on another gift.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Technique #1 – The Pleated Box

My sister-in-law introduced me to a very chic wrapping technique that incorporates pleated folds in the wrapping paper to create an elegant look to each box. This works best on a flat box. You might want to use a bone folder and ruler for perfectly straight and crisp edges, though I was able to just eyeball it myself.

  • Wrap the box as usual.
  • Cut a coordinating strip of paper that will be pleated and wrapped around the box.
  • Fold the paper in half lengthwise (wrong sides together). Then turn the crease to one side to create a pleat.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

  • Repeat the pleating several times, alternating sides. I created just three pleats but you can make as many or as few as you wish.
  • Wrap the pleated paper around the box and match up the edges (trim them a bit if needed to help them line up neatly).
  • Secure the seam with a long strip of Scotch® Gift Wrap tape.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

The pleated wrap is an elegant and unique look that only requires a simple bow topper. I can’t wait to gift this one to my Mom!

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Technique #2 – The Odd Shaped Gift

Making gift bags with sturdy wrapping paper for oddly shaped items is actually quicker and easier than people think (and your handcrafted bag will look so much prettier than gift bags that have been used and reused a dozen or more times!)

  • Take the odd shaped gift and lay it on the paper to get an idea how long to cut the paper. Add at least an inch for an overlap.
  • Determine the center of the piece of paper (lengthwise). Bring the two ends of paper into the middle, overlapping.
  • Crease the outside edges of the paper to make it flat.
  • Now determine the width of the bottom of the bag. Fold up the bottom edge of the paper and place the bottom of the gift on top to determine how much to fold the edge (add about an inch or so on each side).

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

  • Open up the folded bottom and use Scotch® Gift Wrap tape to close the lengthwise seam of the bag.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

  • Bend up the bottom of the bag at the crease. Press gently on each side and the paper will flatten itself into two triangle shapes, one on each side.
  • Use your fingers to flatten the creases.
  • Take the pointed edge at the top and bottom of each triangle and fold it down a few inches.
  • Use Scotch® Gift Wrap tape along all seams to secure the bottom of the bag.
  • Open the bag from the top flatten out the bottom.
  • Insert the gift to determine the height of the finished bag. Trim off any excess paper from the top of the bag, then fold the top of the bag down and secure with Scotch® Gift Wrap tape.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Keep reading on how to make the scrappy bow to decorate your bag!

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Technique #3 – The Scrappy Bow

What to do with those strange long strips of wrapping paper that are leftover? I like to use every bit of extra wrapping paper so I use these leftover strips to make whimsical scrappy bows. I curl the sturdy wrapping paper with the blade of my Scotch™ Multi-Purpose Scissor 8″ and then use Scotch® Gift Wrap tape to piece the bow together! It’s fun to coordinate the wrapping paper on the box to the wrapping paper bows. They really make a bold statement!

  • Collect coordinating strips of wrapping paper.
  • On either end cut into the strip, cut narrow strips that are about 1″ wide. Leave a center section (about 1″) that is uncut.
  • Hold the base of each narrow strip firmly. Open your scissors to expose the blade and run the edge along the underside of the strip of paper (just like you would with curling ribbon). Move slowly and adjust your pressure so as not to tear the paper.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

  • Coax the curl into place with your fingers. You may need to repeat the process on the same strip if the paper doesn’t curl the first time.
  • Fold the bow in half and then in half again.
  • Gently shake out the bow to loosen the curls and you can arrange them or trim them as needed.
  • Add smaller pieces in coordinating papers by cutting, curling and taping them inside the first bow.

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

Tape the bow to the package. For more depth, add a length of curling ribbon and a mini ornament to complete the bow!

3 Simple Gift Wrapping Techniques That Are Creative, Unique and Budget-Friendly!

#WrapGiveRepeat

This holiday season Scotch® Brand will be donating $200,000 to Fisher House, a charity that provides a network of comfort homes where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving treatment. When making your seasonal donations, consider a donation to Fisher House via this link.

Are you a “Most Gifted Wrapper” with awesome gift wrapping techniques? How will you #WrapGiveRepeat this year?

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Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Yellow Loop. Today we are sharing Disney inspired Halloween costumes. Disney princess costumes don’t have to be elaborate or expensive. You can still dress your little princess in an easy and budget-friendly Disney princess costume that she’ll be able to wear for Halloween, dress-up or to the Parks! Even if you don’t think you can sew a costume, you can make one of these easy Disney princess costumes. Using a store bought t-shirt as a base, you’ll be able to add purchased trim to create a fun Disney-bound type costume.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Keep reading for the tutorial on how to make a princess costume from a t-shirt.

This post contains Amazon affiliate links

The Idea Spark

A quick Google search will give you an idea of princess styles and colors. There are certain characteristics in the costumes that each character wears, like Rapunzel’s crisscrossed bodice and the draping on Belle’s dress. And each princess has a certain color scheme, like Jasmine’s turquoise and gold and Elsa’s icy blue and white. The characteristics of the style isn’t as important as the princess color scheme. If you keep with a recognizable color scheme you can design your shirt however you like.

For Rapunzel: Schiff Grosgrain Ribbon in Orchid
For Jasmine: Metallic Gold Lace Trim
For Cinderella: Satin Ribbon Rose Flowers

       
I decided to make my little gal a Snow White DisneyBound outfit. Snow White’s color scheme is dark blue, red, yellow and white. But Snow White’s look is pretty simple and I wanted it a little fancier. Using the color scheme, I designed a top with various ribbons, lace and ribbon roses. It’s not exactly like Snow White, but as long as you keep within the color schemes that make each princess recognizable, you can be creative in the style of each princess top.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Start with a T-Shirt

A t-shirt is a quick and easy way to make a costume base. This shirt cost me less than $5 and I already had these trims on hand. You can layer trims, sew appliques or add ribbons and buttons to create the look you want.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – If you sew on non-stretchy trim, this will make the shirt less stretchy as well. Just keep this in mind before sewing trim on that you’ll still need to get this shirt on and off your child. For example, if you sew trim all the way around the neckline, it will no longer be able to stretch over her head. Use non-stretchy trim minimally, especially around areas like the hem, neckline and arm holes.

Lay out your trims onto the outfit until you come up with a design that you are happy with. Don’t cut the trim until you have it pinned down and at the length that you want.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – When pinning on the trims, tuck something firm inside the shirt to separate the front and back so you don’t pin through the entire shirt. A piece of cardboard or flattened cereal box works well.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – Ribbons are slippery so pin them a LOT when you’re prepping. Once you get the shirt on the sewing machine, you’ll find that the ribbons tend to shift so take your time and move slowly, removing pins as you reach them.

Adding little details like these pre-made ribbon roses adds just the right touch to complete your look!

 Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Buy Inexpensive Bottoms

Tights and leggings are cheap and quick ways to complete your costume. I looked for yellow leggings at the store for my princess but they didn’t sell them in itty-bitty sizes. I found a pretty floral print at Old Navy that worked nicely with the colors on the top and still gives this modern Snow White a woodsy feel.

For Sleeping Beauty (aka: Princess Aurora): Little Girl’s Ruffle leggings

Want the sparkle without the messy glitter? Opt for a sequined circle skirt that will give your girl all the twirl and none of the glittery mess!

For Ariel – Sequin Dance Tutu Skirt for Girls

Tutu Tutorial

Tulle fabric is very inexpensive and easy to work with. I love the sparkly tulle that has the sequins and sparkle attached. It also has some stretch to it, so you can sew it directly onto the hem of your t-shirt if you wish. Or make a tutu using one of the many tutorials on Pinterest and your princess will be tutu-cute in no time!

An icy blue for Elsa: Sparkle Tulle Teal Fabric By The Yard and a pretty gold for Belle: Sparkle Tulle Gold Fabric By The Yard

  

For more Disney inspired Halloween costumes,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Yellow | Disney Inspired Halloween Costumes Loop:

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Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

When you’re organized, things just seem to run more smoothly!  Nobody needs to panic when they can’t find something because it’s been established ahead of time that every item has a place. Organizing solutions for small spaces do not have to be expensive. There is no reason to hire “experts” or purchase pricey dividers or shelving units. It does take time though, arranging items to the best benefit and use of your family. But it will be all worth it when someone asks you, “Where’s my red hat with the white polka dots?” and you’ll know exactly what to tell them so they can find it!

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. Clicking through and making a purchase helps me in a small financial way, thank you!

Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

There are 6 of us in our 1000 square foot home. Yep, that’s a tight fit and every inch counts. Since adding our newest little one, we’ve been organizing and streamlining the house to make room. We’ve always done pretty good with keeping stuff to a minimum but some of our stuff is necessary. It’s all about finding the most practical way to store it in a budget-friendly way!

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

These are my top 12 organizing solutions!

When we moved into our small home four years ago I had things pretty well organized. But over time our needs changed and I hadn’t rethought certain areas. I knew that we could do better and get them even more organized and streamlined. I took a good look at each space I needed to reorganize and made notes. In rethinking some of these spaces, I knew that I could move things there into other locations or even get rid of them completely.

1. Weed it out

Before you even start to organize, you have to decide what you’re going to keep and what needs to go.

  • Remove the contents of a drawer, bin or closet and go through each and every item.
  • Toss out, recycle, donate or place in a garage sale pile…whatever you need to do to minimize. Go through medications, lotions, nail polish, and other household items frequently to toss what is expired or give away what isn’t being used. Add this task to your calendar once each season and it won’t be such a laborious project.
  • I keep a small basket or fabric box (less than $5 each on Amazon) inside my kid’s closet for donation items. As they outgrow their clothes, I place the items in the basket. When the basket is full the contents are given away.
Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

We make use out of our closet by keeping overstock items and medical needs clearly labeled in bins and drawers.

2. Get Rid of the “Junk Drawer”

We don’t have a junk drawer. We don’t need one because in our small home, there is no room for a “junk drawer”…everything has a place!

  • Dump out your junk drawer and find a home for each and every item there.
  • Batteries? Get a bin for them and store them in a desk.
  • Pens and pencils? Keep them in a cup within easy reach.
  • Mail? Deal with mail as it comes in the door, recycling or filing as necessary.
  • A mesh desk organizer (Amazon for less than $10) is a great place to keep some of these “junk drawer” items you need close at hand.

3. Clearly Label It

I just splurged and bought a new Brother P-Touch Label Maker (less than $23 on Amazon) and have been going (slightly) overboard with labeling everything in the house. However I will note that nobody has been asking me, “Where’s the XYZ” because everything is so neatly labeled for them now! I do recommend investing in a label maker but you could also purchase stickers and label boxes with a Sharpie as well.

  • Organize drawer contents and sort into “like items”. Add a label on the outside to remind family to put things back where they belong!
  • Labels on book shelves help young readers organize their picture books, chapter book and coloring books.
  • Sort important paperwork into 3-Ring binders and then add a label to the side for easy access.

4. Get it Off the Floor

We’d all love to get those fancy professionally sized closet organizers, right? But boy, are they pricey!! We found a more reasonable solution in metal shelving units. They are intended for the garage I think, but we like to think outside of the box.

  • Since some of these tall Steel Wire Shelving Unit (under $40 on Amazon) can be customized for shelf height, they are perfect for placing in your closet. We simply keep the units as two shorter racks instead of assembling into one tall rack.
  • Things sitting on the floor can pile up and add to the clutter. Look at what you have on the floor and figure out where you can put it so it’s off the ground.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

5. Hang it Up

  • I have a hook in the hall closet with a pair of scissors so everyone knows exactly where the scissors are (instead of tossed in a random drawer).
  • Backpacks go on hooks in the garage.
  • Tired of seeing the bath towel laying on the floor because your little one can’t hang it properly on a towel rod? Install a hook!
  • We were limited on wall space so my husband hung bath towel hooks for the boys on the end of the bunk bed and that works perfectly because they are completely out of the way.
  • An Over The Door Hook is invaluable (and under $15 on Amazon) and can make use of space, especially in a bathroom for towels.
  • No need to put holes in the wall. Command Wire Hooks are quick to remove but stay up well, even with heavier items. I buy the variety pack and find clever uses for them all over the house!

6. Beautiful Baskets

  • I don’t have room in the kitchen for my cookbooks so I keep them organized in a pretty basket under the foyer cabinet. They are still easily accessed and don’t take up precious counter or cupboard space in the kitchen.
  • Before you buy baskets new, check out your local thrift store. This is a fantastic place to find inexpensive baskets and you can always spray paint them for an updated look.
  • With drawer space at a minimum I keep my clean kitchen towels at the ready by folding them and keeping them within arms reach of the sink in this neat wire basket. I also have Wire Basket Organizers (less than $15 for two on Amazon) like this on the back of the toilet for hand towels.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

7. Shelving is King

Use individual shelving in the closet to take advantage of tall ceilings. If you can, always go UP and take advantage of the space you have. We have small closets but they have tall ceilings so I bought expandable shelving units. This allows me to safely stack items higher and use up all the space available.

Use all the space you can on shelves by maximizing with wire shelving units. We use these in the kitchen to make use of extra space for plates and bowls. In the pantry for canned foods and boxes this Small Kitchen Helper Shelf really helps maximize space (for about $7 on Amazon).

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Using wire shelving to make extra space for plates and bowls.

8. Box it Up

  • LEGOS. Oh yes, my friend. Let’s get all those tiny bits and pieces boxed up so that you only pull them out of the box intentionally when you’re ready to play. We also have Leapster games and the Leapster unit all in one box together.
  • Seasonal clothes and blankets don’t need to take up space in the closet. We load up plastic bins or use Ziploc Space Saver bags to store these items in the attic or under the bed.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

  • With a new baby, I had been given some wonderful hand-me-downs. I wanted to keep track of what I have so I went through the clothes and placed the sizes together into Clear Storage Boxes.
  • A quick label on the outside of each will let me have the next size up within easy reach. Once she’s used up all the clothes in the bin, I can remove the label and re-purpose the box.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

  • The expandable metal shelving unit makes it easy to take out just the one thing you need. Clothing has been organized into boxes for the future.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

9. Like Items Together

  • We have a lot of books (I used to work at a bookstore!) but I hated how the small paperbacks were mingling with the tall picture books because they never sat nicely on the shelf together. I found these inexpensive plastic Book & Magazine Organizers and they are perfect for holding paperbacks. I use them on the shelf next to the taller books as a sort-of “book end”.
  • Consider buying bins or boxes to hold other like things, like summer items. All the bathing suits, sunglasses, and beach hats would then be in one, easy-to-find location. Here, we have one soft bin for hats, one for blocks and one for coloring books.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

10. Contain It

  • Our bathroom counters are quite small and there’s no room for clutter. We keep only the soap dispenser and toothbrush holder on the counter (which makes it easier to clean as well). Under the sink, we have a colored container for each child that holds their personal toiletries. Each child’s toothpaste, drinking cup, deodorant, face wash, etc is in their own container. My daughter has a separate bin for her hair brush and accessories.
  • I have two-tiered Mesh Cabinet Baskets under my bathroom sink that holds things like lotion, make-up and razors. One basket holds hair styling products and another large bin holds tools like the blow dryer and flat iron.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

11. Throw it in a Bin

  • Target frequently has plastic bins for $3 in their Dollar Spot section. They are nice for items that can be tossed in, like winter hats or gloves, sunglasses or random toys like cars and action figures. Set them on a shelf or even inside a drawer to section off and keep small items (like socks & underwear) from getting lost.
  • In the kitchen, we store breads in a decorative Wooden Crate on the counter. If you don’t want to purchase bins or crates, keep your old shoe boxes and decorate them with wrapping paper for neat and tidy closet or drawer storage.
Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

An open bin within a box keeps things organized and contained.

BEFORE (left) – Clutter of random stuff on the top shelf.

AFTER (right) – Stackable bins hold seasonal items like sun hats and winter wear. In anticipation of sharing this room with the new baby, I had made bins for art supplies and electronic cords to get my daughter in the habit of putting these items up and out of reach.

Organizing9-before  Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

BEFORE (left) – The fabric hanging unit with daily outfits was a good start. I moved the two-drawer unit in to hold pajamas and socks but items like tights, sunglasses, hair accessories and underpants were mixed in and it was hard to find items.

AFTER (right) – Rearranged top shelf with addition of bins for seasonal items. Added a small bin to the daily outfit unit so she can choose which accessory matches without having to dig in another larger bin.

Deep drawers with pajamas now hold smaller bins for tights, sunglasses and other hair accessories so everything is separated. A separate bin on top of the drawers holds underpants.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces  Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

12. Bulky Items Out of the House

  • Whenever possible try to use a space outside of the house, like your garage, storage shed or attic. We simply don’t have the kitchen cabinet space to hold our large slow cooker or stand mixer, so we store them in a cabinet in the garage.
  • Yes, you could keep some items on the kitchen counter but this can create a lot of clutter and makes it harder to properly clean the counter tops. Since we also shop at Costco quite a bit we tend to have a lot of bulk items. Bring in only what you need into the house and store the bulk of it elsewhere.

Organizing small spaces can be tricky. Check out these clever budget-friendly, practical organizing solutions specifically for small spaces. #Organizing

 


Sweet, Quick and Easy Applique Valentine’s Day Heart Tee

Need something sweet for the kids to wear on Valentine’s Day? This easy applique Valentine’s Day heart tee goes together quickly with fabric scraps and is easy enough for the beginning seamstress. I’ll even show you how to make this tee with a “Disney-twist”! Oh so special to wear on your next Disney vacation to show your Mickey-Love! I’ve included a free printable applique for the hearts and silhouette.

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Yellow Loop. Today we are sharing some fun Valentine’s Day crafts.

Please note that I use affiliate links in my posts. Clicking through and making a purchase helps me in a small financial way, thank you!

Applique Valentine’s Day Heart Tee

I love having a quick and easy method of design that takes minimal time and can be put together in the matter of an hour or so. You’ll love this layered method of applique because it goes together fast, requires no special stitches and no hemming…and it’s totally unique. You decide the look based on the colors and the fabric mix you choose.

This is also a fairly easy project for kids to help with. Younger children can choose the fabric combinations and cut out the shapes. Older kids can assist with ironing and sewing as well.

Looking for an easy Valentine's craft? This quick applique technique is easy for kids & adults, resulting in an adorable Valentine's Day heart tee to wear year 'round! There's even a Hidden Mickey Disney detail in the center for added love!

What You’ll Need for This Project:

  • T-shirt. This is a chance for you to use a tee that might have a stain on it as you’ll be able to “save” the shirt by placing an applique over the stain.
  • Applique pattern. I used hearts in various sizes as well as a small Mickey silhouette. You can use the PDF applique here: Heart Tee Applique
  • Scrap fabrics in various sizes and colors (choose cotton or cotton knit)
  • Sharpie Fine Point Marker
  • Fusible bond, like Heat’n Bond Lite Iron-on Adhesive
  • Thread in matching colors. Gutermann thread is my favorite brand as it’s strong (doesn’t break mid-project!), wide range of colors and holds up to wash and wear.
  • Bobbin thread in color to match the shirt
  • Sewing machine needle (jersey or Ballpoint Machine Needles give the best results for applique)
  • Disappearing ink pen, like this one from Dritz
  • Iron


Instructions for Sewing Your Valentine’s Day Heart Tee:

HeartTeeCollage-11. Trace The Design – Place a piece of fusible bond (bumpy side down) onto your design and trace out each individual shape using a Sharpie marker (ball point pens or pencils will smudge or smear off onto your iron, so a Sharpie is best).

2. Cut out and set aside the Mickey silhouette.

HeartTee-5

HeartTeeCollage-2

3. Pick Fabrics – Choose your fabrics and iron out the wrinkles on each piece.

4. Ironing – Pull out the fabric that you want to use for the largest heart. Keep in mind that only the outer edge of this heart will show.

Iron the fusible bond heart (bumpy side down) onto the WRONG side of the fabric.

HeartTee-6

5. Cut out the large heart – Cut out only the largest heart on the Sharpie line.

Peel off the fusible bond backing. Save the backside of the fusible bond to use for the next heart.

HeartTee-7

HeartTeeCollage-3

6. Iron Shirt – Lay your shirt down and iron out any wrinkles in the design area. Lay the large heart down on the tee, make sure the design is centered and straight. Iron on securely.

7.  Sewing Heart to Shirt – Using a straight stitch, sew with a small hem (1/4″) around the edge of the fabric, securing the first heart to the tee.

HeartTee-9

8. Cut Next Heart from Template – Using the heart template (leftover from the backside of the fusible bond), carefully cut away to the next size heart.

HeartTee10

9. Trace Using Template – Lay template down onto the wrong side of the next piece of fabric and use your disappearing ink pen to trace this outline onto the wrong side of the fabric.

HeartTeeCollage-4

10. Cutting & Sewing Next Heart – Cut out heart shape from fabric and lay down, centering on top of the first heart that was ironed onto the shirt. Carefully pin to the shirt, smoothing out fabric so there aren’t any bumps.

Carefully sew with a small hem (1/4″) around the edge of the fabric, securing the second heart to the tee.

HeartTee-12b

11. Repeat for Next Heart – Repeat steps 7 and 8 with the third heart.

HeartTee-12a

HeartTee-13

12. Disney Detail – Iron the Mickey fusible bond silhouette onto the WRONG side of the fabric.

Cut out the shape on the line, peel off backside of fusible bond and center the design in the middle of the third heart. Iron on securely.

13. Sew on Mickey – Using a straight stitch, sew with a small hem (1/4″) around the edge of the fabric, securing the silhouette to the tee.

HeartTee-15

Straight Stitch Applique Advice

Because the edges of the applique pieces are not covered, the edges of your cotton fabric may fray or curl slightly after a wash and dry. As long as you’ve properly stitched the pieces securely, slight fraying or curling should be fine and create a fun look to your design.

Taking Applique To the Next Level

Once your practiced straight stitch applique, try using a satin stitch (aka: a very close together zig-zag) around the edges of your applique pieces to secure them. This will create a more smooth and polished look. You’ll be able to add more detail and the look will last a long time. Cover the stitches inside (because they will be thicker and potentially more itchy to the wearer) with a soft fusible Poly-mesh backing.

Looking for an easy Valentine's craft? This quick applique technique is easy for kids & adults, resulting in an adorable Valentine's Day heart tee to wear year 'round! There's even a Hidden Mickey Disney detail in the center for added love!

More Quick Applique Projects to Try!

Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-Shirt Disney DIY

DIY Handpainted Finding Dory T-Shirt

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt  Paint Your Own Finding Dory T-Shirt  

For more great Valentine’s Day crafts,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Yellow | Valentine’s Day Crafts Loop:

Looking for an easy Valentine's craft? This quick applique technique is easy for kids & adults, resulting in an adorable Valentine's Day heart tee to wear year 'round! There's even a Hidden Mickey Disney detail in the center for added love!


Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Do you love having custom boutique clothing for you and your kids when you visit the Disney Parks? Me too! I’ve been creating and selling appliqued tees for years in my Etsy shop, The Painted Butterfly Studio. However, I know not everyone has the time or inclination to perfect satin stitching or proper technique for seamless applique. I came up with a technique for applique that anyone with a sewing machine can accomplish! And if you are an accomplished seamstress, I have the tips for more complex applique as well. I hope you love this Mickey Pumpkin t-shirt DIY!

Please note that this post includes affiliate links. Clicking and purchasing helps in a small financial way, thank you!

Instructions for Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Supplies Needed:

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Instructions for a Mickey Pumpkin Tee

1. Take your coloring page or design and flip the page over. Outline the bold details with a Sharpie marker. This is the side that you will trace on.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

2. Place a piece of fusible bond (bumpy side down) onto your design and trace out each individual shape using a Sharpie marker (ball point pens or pencils will smudge or smear off onto your iron, so a Sharpie is best).

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

You’ll have a piece for the pumpkin, the stem, the leaf and the individual pieces of the jack-o’ lantern face.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

3. Cut around each piece of fusible bond but NOT on the Sharpie line (see image above on left). Iron them (bumpy side down) onto the appropriate color of fabric.

  • One orange pumpkin shape
  • One lime green leaf
  • One brown stem
  • One black jack-o’ lantern smile, one nose and two eyes.

4. Cut out each piece on the Sharpie line.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Adding Pieces to the Tee

5. Lay your shirt down and iron out any wrinkles in the design area. Starting with the orange pumpkin and brown pumpkin stem,  peel off the fusible bond backings and place down onto the tee. Tuck the brown stem slightly underneath the orange pumpkin. Make sure the design is centered and straight. Do not iron yet!!

Lay your coloring page down (the original side, not the one that you traced) on top of your design to make sure the pieces line up before pressing with the iron. I flip the page back and forth quickly so I can compare the design and make sure I have pieces in the correct position. Use a smooth pressure to apply the pieces to your tee shirt with the iron on a “cotton” setting.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

6. Moving on to the leaf, use the same technique, comparing the coloring page to the fabric design before ironing in place.

7. Repeat with jack-o’ lantern pieces, matching the correct position by comparing to the coloring page before ironing in place.

8. Once you have all your pieces securely ironed on, cut a piece of stabilizer slightly larger than the size of your design.

Carefully turn your shirt inside out and follow the package instructions to secure to the inside of the shirt (some stabilizers must be pinned on; I use one that can be ironed on and easily removed).

Turn the shirt right side out. Do not skip this step of using stabilizer! Stabilizer holds the design straight while you sew to avoid warping, puckering or rippling.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Sewing Your Mickey Pumpkin

9. Thread your sewing machine bobbin with the same color of thread as your t-shirt. You will start by sewing the pieces on top, the black jack-o’lantern face. When appliqueing, always sew the smaller pieces on top first to avoid puckering. Thread the machine with black thread and set the machine for a tight straight stitch.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

10. Carefully sew each jack-o’ lantern piece close to the outside edge. Change thread colors and complete by sewing the green leaf and brown stem.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Adding Magical Details

11. Taking your disappearing ink pen and comparing to your original coloring page, draw any detail lines for the pumpkin directly onto your fabric design.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

12. Using orange thread, sew around the outside of the pumpkin first, then sew up and down the design to add the details. Make sure to back stitch before and at the end of each strand to secure stitches.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

13. When all sewing is complete, spritz the design lightly with water to remove the disappearing ink lines. You may have to repeat this process several times. Do not iron until the ink lines are gone to avoid setting them permanently.

14. Turn shirt inside out and remove all pieces of stabilizer. Turn shirt right side out.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

14. When disappearing ink lines are gone, press the design with iron to sink and tighten the stitches. Your shirt is ready to wear!


Straight Stitch Applique Advice

It is important to stick with cotton or knit fabrics only when straight stitch appliqueing. Because the edges of the applique pieces are not covered, there is a chance that the edges of your cotton fabric may fray or curl slightly after a wash and dry. As long as you’ve properly stitched the pieces securely, slight fraying or curling should be fine and create a fun look to your design.

Instructions for Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Pumpkin shirt with satin stitch applique

Taking Applique to the Next Level

Once your practiced straight stitch applique, try using a satin stitch (aka: a very close together zig-zag) around the edges of your applique pieces to secure them. This will create a more smooth and polished look. You’ll be able to add more detail and the look will last a long time. Cover the stitches inside (because they will be thicker and potentially more itchy to the wearer) with a soft fusible Poly-mesh backing.


Anyone with a sewing machine can create this Halloween DIY Disney Mickey pumpkin appliqued tee! Click through for the easy instructions #Halloween #Disney #Mickey #MickeyMouse #Pumpkin #JackOLantern #Applique #Tshirt #MNSSHP #DisneyBound

Looking for More Disney Craft Projects?


For more Halloween craft ideas,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Yellow  | Halloween Crafts Loop:

 

 

DIY Cheap and Easy Pillow Covers to Brighten Your Home!

DIY Pillow Covers {Saving Up for Disney}

One of the cheapest and easiest ways to brighten your home is with fabric. Less of a commitment than painting the walls, a simple yard of cotton fabric can make at least one pillow cover (depending on the size of your pillow form) and will only cost you a few dollars.

I found a DIY link on Pinterest for sewing up Envelope Pillows. Super easy and super fast! I had three pillow covers done in baby-nap time (approximately 2 hours). You only need to know how to measure, cut and sew straight lines so it’s perfect for beginners.

For this project I didn’t have to buy a thing. I used pillow forms I already had (from Ikea) and fabric I’d purchased about three years ago and never got around to using. You can also buy cheap pillows at a home decor shop and cover them to match your own decor with fabric of your choosing. Nice quilters cotton will cost about $7-10 per yard.

DIY Pillow Covers {Saving Up for Disney}

Look closely at the dark blue and cocoa brocade print on the right…those are goldfish in the center of the design!

DIY Pillow Covers {Saving Up for Disney}

And the backsides are cute too.

The tutorial recommended using plain fabric on the back but I know that my pillows will never just be sitting pretty on the sofa. They will be tossed all over (in fact they are laying on the floor right now, as my husband was taking a nap with them!) so I wanted them cute from all angles.

Warning…these tend to be addictive and you might find yourself making a set of pillow covers for each season! At Christmas time, I used some winter-themed fabrics with reindeer and snowflakes. My sofa was so bright and whimsical!

Sheri Berry Christmas Sheri Berry Holiday Michael Miller Yule

You could also make a toss pillow for the kid’s bedrooms in a favorite fabric to coordinate with their room (or use an outgrown tee for the front).

Of course, you could also make Disney-themed pillows in anticipation of an impending vacation…I plan on it! I am going to choose one main Disney fabric for one pillow and use coordinating prints to go with it. You want your look to be livable so make sure these are colors and designs that blend with the rest of your decor.

  

I recommend purchasing quilter’s cotton for any home projects that are going to be getting used and washed frequently. Unfortunately many of the inexpensive cottons sold at the craft stores are going to wear poorly or fade, so invest a few dollars more a yard for nice quilter’s cotton that will be smooth to the touch, wash up nicely, keep color and last for a long time. If you don’t have a quilt shop in your area, you can find plenty online (just pay attention to the scale because you might receive it and realize that the print is larger or smaller than expected!).


Some of my favorite fabric links:

Heather Bailey – I cannot wait to buy Up Parasol, I love every piece in this collection!

Michael Miller fabric – The Sarah Jane line is so sweet and whimsical. Lots of fun chevron prints too.

Kaufman fabric – The Dwell Studio collection is perfectly sophisticated for home decor.

Emmy Grace – Love the subdued colors and intricately detailed art in these designs.

Amy Butler – Bright and bold and perfect for adding pops of color, I use her prints frequently.

Kona Cotton – The best solids around, in tons of gorgeous colors!

DIY Feature – Appliqued Elsa T-Shirt

Can’t find Elsa anywhere in the stores? Do as I did and make your own Elsa tee.

Elsa Frozen tee by Painted Butterfly Studio

Elsa Frozen tee by Painted Butterfly Studio

I found the design online with a quick image search for “Elsa Frozen”. I created the design using both applique and fabric paint. If you have a regular sewing machine, you can learn to applique using a simple satin (zig-zag) stitch.

There are some great tutorials for learning machine applique online:

Elsa might be an ambitious applique project for beginners but a simple snowflake design would be great!

This special shirt was gifted at a birthday party this weekend, but I am offering it as a custom in my Etsy shop. Perfect for a day in the Parks or for a Frozen birthday party.

Elsa Frozen Tee from Painted Butterfly Studio

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