The life and times of me. Also known as: My quest to become more awesome.

Category Archives: Crafts

And now for another installment of stuff I like featuring cats in costumes. I’ll let the pictures do the talking for me.

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20130726-210502.jpg Grumpy Cat in a hipster costume. I love.

And this last one is my favorite by far. Mostly because it looks to be homemade. Behold the kitty dressed like a mushroom!

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Seriously guys, I have scoured google looking for a pattern for something like this. If anyone knows how to crochet this, please share. It is glorious.

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I sketched out my wedding center pieces today. Here’s a rough drawing:

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I’m going to paint cheap flower pots in my colors, put some branches in there, stick a couple of birds on each one (I found an amigurumi bird crochet pattern that doesn’t look too hard; I’m going to try one out this weekend), and some tissue paper flowers on there. I’m planning on making some larger bunting for decorations as well so I’ll use the scrap fabric to make tiny bunting to hang between them. I’ll do a tutorial when I actually start putting them together but I wanted to share it today because I was excited about it. What do you think?


My mom and I went dress shopping today and I think found the one for me. I’m not putting a picture on here because JW looks at this from time to time and he really wants to see it. I wasn’t planning on purchasing a dress today and I didn’t. I want to wait until after my marathon. Also, this dress is double what I budgeted for my dress AND shoes. So that was sweet.

Actually, I’m not too upset about it. The dress itself wasn’t terribly complicated and my mom and her best friend are both talented seamstresses. So they’re going to recreate it. We also went to Michael’s today and looks at their silk flowers (I’m making my own bouquet) and we went to Joann Fabrics and look at dress patterns and at feathers and stuff (I’m also making my own hair piece).

I’m having a lot of fun seeing what I can make myself. And it turns out I can make a lot of it. If it were feasible, I’d want to make the food and cake myself too. But I don’t want to work that hard in the days before the wedding. So it’s not feasible. But really, I’m excited to see how pretty and fun and me I can make this wedding while saving money. It’s going to be awesome!

Also: if anyone has any good suggestions for a pattern for an a-line, empire waist wedding gown with a lace overlay, please let me know!


I promise that I won’t turn this blog into a wedding planning blog. However, since I tend to write a lot about what’s going on in my life, I will be writing about that stuff sometimes. I’m planning on making all of my own decorations, invitations, party favors, and other stuff. There will probably be a lot of tutorials. Good thing I’m crafty and enjoy doing that stuff.

So far, I’ve really only picked out a color palette. I’ve sort of decided on a venue but it is not officially booked yet. I’m trying to do this wedding on a relatively small budget. It’s not that I’m cheap. I just think that the insane amount of money that folks spend on weddings these days is grotesque. Neither JW or I come from terribly wealthy backgrounds and although my parents have offered to help, I still want to keep costs down as much as possible. I think it would be pretty foolish of us to start the next chapter of our lives with a whole lot of new debt. Anyway, I think it’s completely possible to have a beautiful, classy wedding without spending the same amount as a small house would cost.

So, the colors. I went to Home Depot today and got some paint samples of the colors I have in mind:

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Then I cut them into strips and glued them to note cards so that my mother and I can easily carry them around and have something to go off of when shopping for stuff.

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I’m pretty much in love with these colors and I think they’re perfect for a summer wedding (we’re thinking July 2014). Let the planning begin!


So you remember a while back when we got our new bed, right? We just have it on a metal frame. No headboard. So I’ve been doing some research on DIY headboards and I’ve narrowed it down to two.

A.

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This is just 18×18 square pieces of plywood covered in batting and fabric and then hung on the wall. I’d probably add buttons to the center of each square.

B.

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This one is a cushion hung from hooks attached to a large piece of crown molding. There is also a shelf built into the crown. JW can handle the top piece and I’d probably enlist my mom for help with the cushion. I think this one looks comfy though.

So what do you think? I’d love to have some others weigh in on it!

Okay, so I’m writing this on my iPhone and I’m either not tech savvy enough to figure it out or I simply cannot post a poll from the mobile app. So comment your votes!


Before I go into my DIY project, I wanted to say that even though yesterday was a total running fail, today was a total running WIN! I ran five miles and EVERY mile was sub-10 minutes! My last mile was actually 9:05. I used to be able to run faster than that but it’s been a long time. I usually run at around a 10:30-ish pace (give or take). Today I felt unstoppable!

Anyway, back to the real reason for this post: DIY song lyric wall art. I found out a couple of days ago that a dear friend’s mother passed away in January. I decided I wanted I do something nice for her so I did some googling and found a tutorial on song lyric wall art here.

I knew I wanted to do a piece of wall art involving song lyrics but I didn’t want to do a paint-by-number like the tutorial said. I decided to do a fabric collage under the paint instead.

So here’s what I used:
4 fabric quarters
Modge Podge
A rotary cutter and mat
A 12 x 12 canvas
Scrapbooking letter stickers
A ruler
Spray paint

First I cut the fabric in long skinny triangles with the rotary cutter (this does not have to be exact – you will just be piecing them together on the canvas). Then I laid them out on the canvas until it was completely covered, making sure there was enough to wrap around the edge. Then I started gluing them on with modge podge (isn’t that stuff made of magic or something?!). After all the fabric strips were glued down, I brushed another layer of modge podge on top to seal it. Then I let it dry. Here’s what it looked like at this point:

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After that, I laid out my letter stickers. I’d recommend cutting them out before you unstick them so that you can set them up the way you’d like. My friend really loves singer/songwriter Angie Aparo so I chose a lyric from his song Shine On.

Then, using a ruler as my guide for relatively straight lines, I stuck the letters on my collage. Once I got them in there to my liking (check your spelling!!!), I turned the canvas over and pressed down on it to make sure the letter were sticking well. JW spray painted it and then we took the letter stickers off. As it turns out, I had used one lighter colored fabric in the collage and we used silver spray paint so when we took the stickers off, the letter that had been on the light fabric didn’t show up well. Lesson learned. So JW took a fine-tipped black Sharpie and carefully outlined each letter. And here’s the finished product:

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I really like how it turned out although there are a couple of things I’d probably do differently next time:

1. Use either all light-colored fabric with a dark colored paint or vise versa. That way all of the letters will be very visible.
2. Choose a shorter lyric. That way larger letters could be used and more of the fabric collage underneath would show.

But like I said, I’m really happy with how it turned out and I really hope my friend likes it. I’ll mail it to her tomorrow.


The winner of the poll from the other day’s post for which dress I should make was…the red one! I almost ignored the poll and decided to do the gray one because it looked way easier to sew. I’m sure it is easier. But the pattern for the red one was about $4.00 while the pattern for the gray one was closer to $18.00. WTF! I don’t really get why some patterns are so expensive. Most people only use them once. I’ll splurge on it one of these days but today was not that day.

Anyway, JW and I went to the store to pick up the supplies and luckily, most of the stuff was on sale. I got the pattern, the fabric, the interfacing, two spools of thread, and the zipper all for around $32.00. Not bad! I didn’t buy any hooks/eyelets because I already had some and I think I’m going to go back for some cheap fabric for the lining. I misread the pattern and don’t have enough fabric for that. That’s okay though, I can buy something cheap because it goes on the inside and no one will see it anyway.

I decided on fabric slightly different than what the picture showed. I love the red but I wanted something a little different. I ended up choosing this:

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I love.

I came home with high hopes of getting the pattern all pinned on and cut out. Here’s the thing though: I haven’t sewed anything from a pattern in YEARS. I need to brush up on my sewing vocabulary. And I got a little overwhelmed. And we all know what happens when Courtney gets overwhelmed. Yep, you guessed it; my old friend procrastination.

So I promptly fell asleep on the couch. Whoops. I’m getting back I work on it now. I’m armed with my iPhone and trusty google app for any terms I don’t understand (I refer to my iPhone as my “proving JW wrong machine.” But it has other uses as well.). I don’t know of I’m going to be able to finish the dress entirely this weekend (almost definitely not) but I’m going to try to get as much done as possible. Wish me luck!