Cyanotype Blueprints

How to sun print on fabric (cyanotype) via

When Boo and I were making our pinhole camera I wanted to teach her how 35mm film worked.  I gave her this pack of cyanotype fabric and let her decide what to use from around the house to make her prints. Cyanotype is what they used to reproduce blueprints and diagrams a hundred years ago or more……those pretty architectural type drawings you wish you’d find in a thrift store one day (or at least I’m always looking for them!)? Cyanotype is basically a photographic printing process that results in a blue or “cyan” print.

Blueprints on Fabric via


I gave Boo a clipboard to lay the fabric on as she took each piece one at a time out of the “light proof” bag (it took a few reminders that she had to make sure to close it back up carefully):

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Play Food: Tea Box and Tea Bags

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

Boo loves to have her own toy version of things we do in the kitchen for her playroom……and recently making tea came up.  So today we made some tea bags and a cute little box to store them in. Super simple project!

First, I cut out 2 pieces of white felt, 2 pieces of purple felt and 1 pieces of ribbon for each tea bag:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

Next, I sew three sides of the tea bag leaving the top open:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

I filled the tea bags with wild rice so that it actually resembled tea in color:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

As I sewed the the top of each bag shut, I slipped one end of the piece of ribbon inside:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

I sewed the top part of the bag together and inserted the other end of the ribbon inside:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

Finished tea bags!

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

I found this cute little wood box at Micheal’s for $1.00:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

I made a vinyl shelf paper stencil using my Silhouette Machine to say “TEA” and masked out the areas I didn’t want to paint. A little fan of the spray paint over the stencil is all I needed:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

The finished set. I love toys that have their own storage container:

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from

Time for tea!

How to make a play tea set. Felt food tutorials from


Check out the entire Project Playroom series by clicking the image below!
Project Playroom and Play Food Series via

Sienna’s Art Journal

Sometimes is it pretty darn difficult to get projects done with a little one running around. Usually I give Sienna her own “miniature” version of whatever I am working on….. and make it slightly less messy (I make big enough messes on my own). A few months ago I gave Sienna her own “art journal.” I change up the supplies each time to keep it interesting and I give her lots of choices on what to use.
Last night Sienna worked on her book with a huge pile of sticker pages (I was catching up on Project Runway):
Sienna's Art Journal via
Inspecting a “googly” eye:
Sienna's Art Journal 2 via
Her finished page, and I’m still sane!
Sienna's Art Journal 3 via
P.S. I wanted Ari to stay on Project Runway! I agree with Micheal Kors….. maybe I’m just not smart enough to “get” her work?

Curb Appeal

This morning Sienna and I worked on the cardboard house. We focused on minimizing the exterior features we didn’t like (the lack of window trim and texture) and enhancing the parts we liked (lots of window cutouts, the angle of the roof, front and rear entry doors). Our goal: increase value, add personality and make this house “the envy of the neighborhood.”

Our color palette was “sherbet/beachy/princess/romper room.”

Curb Appeal via
New shingles aren’t in our budget so we spent mucho time on the roof……
Curb Appeal 2 via
….and decided that “trompe l’oeil” was the most economical choice.
Curb Appeal 3 via
Sienna had to spend considerable time “un-doing” my marker drawings from the night before…… especially the spider webs. It is very important to her that the house look well-maintained.
Curb Appeal 4 via
Sienna’s favorite part? Mixing up the paint and cleaning the brushes.
Curb Appeal 5 via
Next time we’ll tackle the landscaping, window coverings and door hardware……
Curb Appeal 6 via
Update: Purchased at Costco for those who wanted to know. I might buy a few more and just make a big neighborhood!
A few tips for painting with children:
:: Lots of floor coverings (make sure to get the kind with a plastic liner so paint doesn’t pass through). You’ll enjoy yourself more if you don’t have to worry.
:: Add enough water to the paint cups so the paint is easily “spread” with a brush. Make sure to use “fluffy” brushes that hold lots of paint….much more gratifying when you can cover large areas.
:: Designate “painting” clothes so you don’t have to worry. Aprons are great, but they don’t cover everything! Even I have my own designated painting jeans!

Diesel the Homemaker

If you look closely through the bottom gap you can see little paws…… poor Diesel held captive in Sienna’s cardboard playhouse.
Sienna: Diesel, ANSWER the door when I ring the bell, OKAY?
Diesel: Seriously? It’s been 2.5 years…….when are you sending this kid back where she came from already?!

Diesel the Homemaker via

This $19 cardboard house occupied Sienna and her friends for hours today. Best Costco purchase yet.

Ten Dollar DIY Hand-print Plaque

You have probably seen all the DIY hand-print plaque kits in the craft stores…. they don’t always look that great…. or turn out that great.   I wanted to get a professional one done for Sienna but I couldn’t find a place that creates them closer than 100 miles from Palm Desert (plus they can get pretty pricey).

Ten Dollar DIY Hand-print Plaque via
I bought a Lil’ Hands kit from JoAnn’s.  It comes with non-toxic paper clay  to cast your child’s hand which doesn’t dry fast so if you mess up you can retry before you pour the plaster into the mold. The set also comes with paint and ribbon to decorate but I didn’t think these did the plaque justice.  I used green and pink Folk Art acrylic paint to add polka dots, paint the handprint, and paint the lettering “Sienna” and “1 1/2 Years.”
To make the handprint plaque look more like ceramic than plaster I used Krylon Triple-Thick Crystal Clear Glaze as a finish.  It is a glaze that you don’t need a kiln for!  It also protects the plaster from denting or cracking.
Once the plaque was dry, I cut a large piece of 2 inch pink polka dot ribbon to hang it from.  Hand-print preserved! Memories on a budget: kit was $9.99 but I used a 40% off coupon, paint runs less than a dollar for 2 oz, already had the glaze and ribbon!