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Inspiration and DIY Ideas - January 2015

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5 Valentine Party Must Haves
January 30, 2015





Yes, February will be here in just a few days. Here are some last minute things to think about before your upcoming Valentine's Day parties!

1- Paper straws. Need I say more? Paper straws make every party a full celebration! And seriously how cute are these lips?!?



2- Fun friends who come with yummy treats. While it is your party, just think of how much more relaxed you will be if you're not the one in charge of the food. I don't always ask everyone to bring something, but it's polite to allow everyone who offers a chance to help. Something healthy, something salty, and something sweet is always a good idea.



3- Valentines to take home. A little treat with a little toy fit perfectly in these little snack bags. Seal it up with some washi tape and send it home with all your guests.



4- Hanging decorations from the ceiling. I have two busy body toddlers. They seriously get into EVERYTHING!! As much as I want to put up cute decor all over the house, I have to hang the fun decorations from the ceiling so that they don't get destroyed. With that in mind consider pink, red, and white paper lanterns and tissue poms. In order to avoid poking lots of holes in the over hang I hung up a branch using two pieces of fishing line on each endsand then used the branch to hang the fun decor.



5- Crafts! Having a fun craft for kids (or parents) is a great way to get people mixing together. We decided to do a craft that would be easy enough for the little ones, but not needing too much help from their moms and dads. Just Artifacts recently started carrying king and queen crowns and how fun to use those for a Valentine party. We had some stickers and foam hearts on hand to personalize each crown. Both boys and girl alike loved them!



Are you having a party in the next couple of weeks or going to a party? What's your favorite part about parties? Are kids usually invited to your Valentine's Day parties or do you like it when it's just adults?




You make my Heart POP! Valentine's Day Cake
January 22, 2015





There are so many fun ideas out there for cakes, drinks, and treats. Some of them can get a little overwhelming but we think that you will like today's idea and how simple it is. Kids always love balloons so You Make My Heart Pop! will make everyone happy.

In order to decorate your cake you will need the following (the links will take you to Just Artifacts supplies):

There are so many variations to this idea that you can do, but we did a small 6 inch cake with a bunch of mini cupcakes to go around it. we absolutely love mini cupcakes because they're the perfect treat without being too rich. So depending on how you want to do it will determine how many straw decorations you will want to make. Not every cupcake will need something and each one can be at different heights so have fun with it. Once you have decided how many you want you can cut the straws to the different heights that are needed.



We cut up hearts in all different sizes. Some big and some little. For the little cupcakes we taped the back of the hearts to the straws and stuck them in the cupcakes.



Since we had a little cake we used one little balloon, but with a bigger cake it would be really fun to do more balloons and blow them up bigger. Once the balloon was blown up to where you want it, use the twine to tie it to a straw. This part got a little tricky because I didn't want the balloon to flop around. We tied it on and used a small piece of scotch tape to tape the back of the balloon down onto the straw. Since we knew no one would see the back of the cake or touch the cake we knew it would work, and it did. So you will just need to play with it a little to get it where you want it. you can add a "pop" onto one of the hearts on the cake. And that's it!



Along with the cupcakes and cake there are so many fun ways you can incorporate this theme into your parties. Just picture lots of hearts and lots of balloons. You really can't go wrong. What other ideas would you add to this theme? Are you having a Valentine's party this year?




Valentine Straw Toppers
January 15, 2015





Love is in the air. Can you feel it? Whether you're planning a party for your kids or a romantic dinner for two then we have a fun little touch to add to your festivities. Paper straws are fun standing alone, but today we have added some little messages to get conversation going. Personally I've never enjoyed the flavor of conversation hearts, but I always get excited to see what they say and try to put together funny sentences. Well that is the inspiration behind today's project.

The most fun part of this project today is finding the perfect phrases to put up on your paper straw toppers. Depending on your crowd you can have a lot of fun with this. I found some fun ones and some cutesy ones. "Hot Stuff", "txt me", "xoxo" just to name a few. I typed them up on my computer using a fun font and then I printed off the sayings on white card stock paper.



I cut out the phrases and made sure to leave some extra space above the words to cut out a hole using a hole punch.



Next I cut off a small piece of baker's twine (maybe about 4 inches). There is a whole selection of fun colors over at Just Artifacts. I folded it in half and then pushed the folded part of the twine part way through the hole from the front (as shown below). I then pulled the ends of the strings up through the loop of left over twine. This step is important if you want the phrases to lay flat against the straws.



I wrapped the twine around the paper straw twice and secured it with a simple knot. I trimmed the ends of the twine to a desired length.



Pop the straws into a mason jar with a daisy lid (red or silver would be fun) and you're good to go! Just fill jars with your beverage of choice, again it depends on what the occasion is. This can also be a fun gift for a teacher, neighbor, or friend. You can just fill the jar with your favorite treats or gift card to their favorite shop or restaurant.



What phrase would you put on your straws? Did you notice that on one of the straws I just put a heart? That's another easy alternative to throw in the mix. There are so many options of fun things to do? What other fun Valentine's Day ideas do you have for straw toppers?




Easy DIY Crown
January 9, 2015



Today we have a super fun (and easy) tutorial for you. I have a little girl and she is really into dressing up these days. She finds random things around the house and then creates full stories around them. One day when I was decorating cupcakes using cupcake wrappers, she picked up one of the wrappers, put it on her head and then told me she was the queen and ran away holding it on her head. At that moment I knew I needed to find a way for her to keep the "crown" on her head so that she could have her hands free for fighting dragons.

Just Artifacts has a colorful array of cupcake wrappers that come in a variety of patterns. Think of all the possibilities!! First you have to pick the best color/pattern for your party or dress up closet (the striped lemon would be perfect for a Queen Bee party). For this project you will also need a hot glue gun, a headband, and some scotch tape (not pictured).



Put the cupcake wrapper together by wrapping the end around and inserting the tab into the slot on the other end. Use a piece of tape to reinforce the wrapper. This will help with gluing it onto the headband.



Pick the position where you want to place the wrapper onto the headband. I decided to do it at an angle, but I think that straight up and down would also look really cute. Place one dab of hot glue on one side and wait a few seconds for it to cool down a little. This will allow the glue to stiffen just enough to help hold the wrapper in place.



Once you position one side of the wrapper then you can glue the other side. You will want to hold it in place until the glue hardens. Once the glue hardens you're all done! See that wasn't too bad, was it?!?



When I finished the crown and let my little girl wear it, she happened to be wearing a super hero cape. She declared herself the superhero queen and went looking for a sword. I don't know where she comes up with this stuff.



*Warning: Keep crowns out of reach of pesky little brothers (also known as dragons to fight).

What do you guys think? Is this something that you would do for a little party or just for your kids? Does it look easy enough or does a glue gun make you nervous? What do you think of matching crowns with cupcakes at a party?



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