DIY GIFT GUIDE, Gift Idea

Bridal Shower Gift: Kitchen Towel Cake

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While pinning the heck out of some awesome fall bridal shower ideas I stumbled across a cute idea to do a version of a Diaper Cake with kitchen towels and other utensil. If you want to see the original, here was my inspiration.

I went to Home Goods, Target and Amazon for my supplies:

  • Normal dish towels
  • Microfiber dish towels
  • Scrubby dish towels
  • An apron
  • Cloth napkins
  • A pie plate
  • An oven mitt
  • Wooden spoons
  • Measuring spoons

I bought what I thought I needed, returned the extra sets I didn’t use, and gifted Dana a bag for the odds and ends that didn’t work. Depending on the size you’d like your cake to be or the size of your pie plate (which the cake sits in), you’ll need varying amounts of each.

I started on the bottom layer and wrapped up the largest, “normal” towels. Then, I tied them together with some twine. When that was secure, I folded the apron, which had beautiful fall colors throughout, and wrapped that around the towels to beef up the bottom layer. I knew I wanted the oven mitts on the bottom layer, so I took twine and tied it around the apron and the oven mitts to keep the entire bottom layer together. Then, I broke a plastic hanger and stuck it in the middle so the remaining two layers would have support when I needed to move the cake around.

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I probably should have added more towels to the bottom layer since there was such a gap between the edge of the pie plate and the bottom, but the cake was already so full of towels. I ran back out to Home Goods and picked up a set of burnt orange cloth napkins, rolled them up and stuck then around the base of the cake.

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For the second and third layers, I went through the same process. Choose towels, roll towels, secure with twine. I stuck each layer onto the hanger to make sure the sizing was appropriate. Then, I took the top layer off and added the wooden spoons into the second tier of the cake. I simply stuck them into the folds of towels, then angled and shoved until they were secure and looked right. I did the same thing for the measuring spoons, too.

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Once I was satisfied with layer 2, I added the top layer. I did redo the layers three or four times until I thought they looked right, so don’t get discouraged if your towels don’t look amazing on the first go around.

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Pretty cute, huh? All I needed was ribbon to cover the twine and the cake toppers 🙂

For cake toppers, I ordered this adorable set of pumpkin salt and pepper shakers from Amazon. They barely fit on the top of the cake, so I was glad I went with this set instead of other sets that had two of the stumpier pumpkins. To make sure they didn’t fall off, I removed the stoppers (put them in a baggie or you’ll lose them!) and stuck each shaker on a skewer I’d shoved into a fold of the top tier.

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I love love love this as a gift for a shower — especially for a bride who is a baker-chocolatier-chef extraordinaire like Dana is. It was a lot of fun to make.

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It certainly is charming, isn’t it?

What clever gifts have you made for a bride-to-be? There are so many cute ideas out there!

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Birthday Jeopardy (and the best gift ever)

I love birthdays. I can thank my mother for that. She always made our birthdays wonderful. They are one day a year you get to feel special, or make someone you love feel special. Yesterday was Brian’s birthday, so I came up with a fun way to give him the gifts I’d gotten him.

BIRTHDAY JEOPARDY!

Birthday Jeopardy

I made a full Jeopardy board (Brian loves that show & trivia games) and came up with 31 questions to go with it! I  did one round, plus final jeopardy. Each category had a gift associated with it. My favorite category was: Tina, you “fat” lard. All of the answers had the word “fat” in them. And yes, the next category was Come get some dinner.

Here’s an example:

Tina, you “fat” lard

Watching, thinking of, hearing about or listening to Game of Thrones makes Jess this 8-letter word for tired.

What is ‘fat’igued?

Ding ding ding! For that question, B got the newest Game of Thrones book.

The best category and corresponding gift was in final Jeopardy.

Golden Retrievers

Jess’ three golden retrievers were all named after movie characters. Name the three films.

What are The Land Before Time, Indiana Jones and Ratatouille. 

Buzzzz. B got this wrong (he didn’t know my first dog Sarah was named after Sarah the Triceratops in the Land Before Time. Rookie…. Also, Remmy isn’t really named after the rat in Ratatouille. But it worked so well for the clue!).

Since it was his birthday, he still got his gift.

Birthday Portrait

A custom portrait of Remmy!

So this is basically the best, most amazing, adorable gift ever. As a blogger a super small small smallllll business owner (really, I can’t even claim that.. but whatevs), I always love to share other fantastic small businesses. I bought this print from Kathryn Selbert Illustrations, who has a shop on Etsy. I sent her three pictures of our pup with a few details, and she made this graphic drawing, basically combining all three into one adorable cartoonified Rem. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE. I ordered this for B on Nov. 4, originally planning to give this to him for Christmas. But she sent me the file on Sunday (you can opt to print your own or she’ll send you a print) and I had it printed just in time for his birthday! Talk about amazing timing.

Here are the photos I sent her:

PupPortraitPic1 PupPortraitPic2 PupPortraitPic3

Here’s the illustration she made:

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Is she talented or what?!? I love that she pulled in Rem’s bandana (which I think has since been destroyed) and that his big ol’ tongue is hanging out. I also love that it looks like a watercolor painting.

Let’s be honest, this was a gift for me just as much as it was a gift for Brian. We both love it. It’s definitely one of my favorite gifts I’ve ever given.

Kathryn has all sorts of other adorable illustrations available in her shop, so you should definitely check them out. She does two-week turnarounds, so there’s still plenty of time left to order your pet portraits before the holidays!

OK, I’m done raving now. Happy day-after-your-birthday to my main squeeze. Glad you liked your birthday game & gifts.

If you want to check out Brian’s other fun birthday “game,” check out my post on his beer scavenger hunt!

 

Christmas, Craft Projects, Holiday, Quick and Easy Crafts, Wine Crafts

Wine cork grape ornaments

I think this craft is one of my all-time favorites. My neighbor and I did a craft night before my Trash to treasure fair and we made so many cool things out of corks!

Unfortunately, I only have photos of the finished project. It’s hard to remember to take photos when you are crafting with one of your best friends. It’s basically non-stop talking mixed with singing along to Christmas music.

Anyway, check these out!IMG_0020

To make a wine cork grape ornament, you will need 8 wine-stained corks, a thin piece of cork, wire, hot glue, ribbon and a leaf!

First, you will need to cut the tops of your corks off. We used sharp knives from my kitchen to cut through the cork. Err, correction, Allie used the sharp knives… I couldn’t stand the noise it made. Either way, cut about half an inch from the wine stained end. We didn’t care if ours we all the same length because the different sizes gave the ornament a nice depth to it. (Can an ornament have depth?)

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Once the cork tops were sliced off, I arranged them on a flat piece of cork that Allie got from TJ Maxx. It’s super thin and was meant to be a placemat. It worked great for this project, but you could use really anything to glue the corks onto. Cardboard, maybe.

Once the corks were arranged in a grape shape, we traced around them and cut out the cork. Then, we glued the leaf at the top (from a fake flower) and proceeded to glue each grape onto the cork.

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When the glue dried, I poked wire through the cork and made a hidden loop behind the leaf. Then I strung my ribbon through the top and hung it on our holiday garland!

I absolutely love these ornaments and will definitely be gifting a few this holiday season.