Best of 2013 – The Eco Chic Edition

Best of 2014

It's been a pretty crazy year for our family but it's been great!  I wouldn't have changed a thing.  I'm glad that you've joined us as we continue our parenting journey...on the green side when possible! I wanted to share with you some of my favorite posts from 2013 along with those that you've read the most!  If you haven't read them yet, I hope you enjoy them. Starting off 2013 I shared my lack of baking abilities as I attempted to make Hello Kitty cake pops.  My post "How to Make Hello Kitty Cake Pops" even made the Pinterest Fail blog this year.  This year I'm letting someone else make lil' B's birthday cake...that's in 4 days!! Next up is a little bit of sass with some not-so-popular baby registry items.  When I wrote this I was showing how some of the "popular" baby registry items can provide crutches to overly tired new moms.  It received some supportive and not-so-supportive comments due to my sass.  Perhaps I shouldn't have added the crib as an item you don't need ... [ Read More ]

Upcycled Denim Crafts #freefromtrash

Denim Toddler Skirt

I've been looking forward to this project since before it even began.  I found one idea in the Reinvention book that I reviewed a few days ago for a portfolio or laptop/iPad case.  The original project was with 2 layers of linen and a single layer of batting in the middle to absorb shock.  I immediately knew I wanted to make this with denim. I've never worked with denim before and the thought of it scared me because of how thick it is.  I cut out my pattern and fabric, piecing it together as described in the book.  It was great until I got to the final step which required me to sew 4 layers of denim and 1 layer of batting.  It's thicker than my sewing machine will allow to slide through.  Gah!!  Anyone have any tips or tutorials for sewing denim??  Single layers are easy but when you get more than 2 layers it's impossible.  I even broke a needle in the process. And the "final" piece (not sewed on the edges) looks like: I was left with the top part of the jeans and ... [ Read More ]

Compact Disc (CD) Upcycled Crafting #freefromtrash

CD Coaster #freefromtrash

I'm going to get really creative on you today! First, go to your desk and grab one of those old compact discs that you use to store your photos on. Now, turn it over and place it on your coffee table. Finally, gently set your drink glass down on top of it! Bravo - you have yourself a brand new, fashion-forward, coaster! This post is part of the Upcycled Crafting Challenge (#freefromtrash) that I’m hosting this month.  It’s part of a one month challenge to create from trash.  This challenge will hopefully open your eyes to the number of items that we still end up trashing every day that could be used by ourselves or our kids to create fun and useful items. Note: I've come down with an inner ear infection which left me pretty dizzy most of the week.  I'm sorry I couldn't come up with a craftier project for you today.  I'm saving my energy for a really fun project I've been waiting to finish for over a month.  Come back later and see what it is. ... [ Read More ]

Glass Jar Upcycled Crafting #freefromtrash

Glass Jar Craft #freefromtrash

What do you do with your glass jars (or bottles)?  Our local recycling program doesn't accept glass curbside.  To have glass recycled we would have to drive to one of the 'convenience' centers that are about 10-15 minutes away.  Not very convenient is it?  I feel guilty if we throw our glass with the garbage though because glass NEVER degrades.  It will sit in the landfill for hundreds (maybe thousands) of years. Today's project takes a simple glass jar and turns it into a picture frame.  The project took about 5 minutes from start to finish.  You can use any size glass jar and any size photo. Supplies: glass jars (clean and remove the labels) photo (sized to fit into the jar) beads, glass globs, or accessories to fill the jar with ribbon to decorate the lid/base of jar with Directions:  Gently roll your photo so that it will fit inside the jar.  Place photo in jar and let it unroll.  Fill the jar with desired accessories and close with the lid.  Tie a coordinating ... [ Read More ]

T-shirt Apron Tutorial #freefromtrash

Tshirt Apron Tutorial #freefromtrash

Today is the first day of July and the first day of my Upcycled Crafting Challenge.  The first day is to create something using t-shirts.  Many of you may wonder where I get my patterns from.  I usually make them up by looking at pictures or by looking at items I see in the stores. Today I started with a quick Pinterest search for 'Aprons' and decided I wanted a full apron and not just the one that goes around the waist. Here is a list of materials you'll need to complete this project: 3+ large t-shirts (I used 3 of my husbands old shirts) scissors (invest in some good sewing scissors, mine are lost at the moment) straight pins sewing machine thread (I used only 1 color but you may want to change it up to coordinate with your fabric) iron and ironing board Optional: an extra needle in case you break one like I did! I started by sketching a pattern on some old newspaper.  I used my own measurements to decide how wide and long I wanted it.   After I cut my ... [ Read More ]

July Upcycled Crafting Challenge #freefromtrash

July Upcycled Crafting Challenge #freefromtrash

Trash!  We all have it, no matter how hard we try to eliminate our waste.  While some of us are really good to live a waste-free life, the average American throws away 4 lbs of garbage each day and that's PER PERSON!  Yes, that is the average and I do know that some of my faithful readers don't create that much waste.  I haven't weighed ours lately but we are about a 1-2 bags per week family. For the entire month of July I'm going to be playing with my garbage and I want you to join me!  Every day in July I'll be posting a new upcycled crafting project featuring a different piece of 'trash' from the list above.  Looking over my trash this past week these are some of the items that I still find in our garbage (don't judge my K-cup addiction please).  I'll be cutting them up and finding new uses for each and every item on the list. About the July Upcycled Crafting Challenge: I want you to join me and show your own creations and ideas!  I know that you may not have all of the ... [ Read More ]

Upcycled Crafting – 5 Things You Should Never Throw Away

Upcycled Crafting

5 Things You Should Never Throw Away When it comes to crafting with kids you can find a lot of fun resources in the trash.  I wish I could say that I don't generate any trash at all but it's the real world and we do make trash.  Here are some of our favorite upcycled crafting items: Toilet paper and paper towel rolls.  These cardboard tubes can be so much fun to craft with.  There are hundreds of uses for them like wall art, puppets, rockets, and more. Milk jugs.  Plastic milk jugs can be used in the garden or you can cut it up to create a mini-wallet. Magazines.  Cut them up and roll them to make beads, bracelets, or picture frames. T-shirts.  The possibilities with t-shirts are endless especially if you are handy with a sewing machine.  Make scarves, headbands, bracelets, or produce bags with just a few simple steps. Newspaper.  Use the newspaper to protect your table from toddler painting, use it as gift wrap, or roll it to make fancy flowers you can use in frames and ... [ Read More ]

My Pinterest Boards

Yes, I am addicted to Pinterest!  You can read more about how my addiction developed with my Pinterest Addiction Explained post.  I think it's interesting to find out what my friends find exciting enough to pin.  Here are a look at some of the boards that I've created: Upcycling Crafts - I wish I could spend more time actually creating these craft projects myself instead of just pinning them.  I have started a few and you'll be able to follow some of my tutorials in the future. Upcycle Garden Ideas - While I don't exactly have a green thumb my parents are enjoying growing their own vegetables in a rather unique and small space.  I love sharing some of these pins with them to give them inspiration. DIY I Love - some may be upcycling while others are just creative art projects that I admire. For the Home - Ahhh...I love these spaces and wish we could incorporate some of these ideas into our own living space.  I think I'm dying for a unique swing these days.  I found one I ... [ Read More ]

Start Pinning – Pinterest Addiction Explained

Are you on Pinterest yet? I got an invitation to join Pinterest a few months back but never activated my account because I was too busy with other projects.  Over the past few weeks I've noticed more and more of my friends (mostly my bloggy friends) have been 'pinning' cool photos on their Facebook walls.  I downloaded the app on my iPad so I could play with it a little more.  Then I realized I needed another invitation to join in order to actually repin my favorites.  I finally broke down and begged Jill with Baby Rabies to send me an invite. You will never see me again!  I think I may just spend all night on Pinterest instead of blogging! Don't worry - I exaggerate a LOT!  In all honesty though I can see how Pinterest could suck all of my free time right up though.  Hopefully my husband won't get tired of me saying "Ohhh, honey look at this one!"  I have a boards for: DIY I Love Dream Room Ideas - Girls Dream Room Ideas - Boys And I think I need to add an Upcycled ... [ Read More ]