Tuesday, August 25, 2015

DIY Wedding Garter

Well it is officially wedding week for my baby sister! So much to do and so little time. This week is going to fly by and I am super excited for this weekend. It is going to be so fun and I can't wait!

Before I came to Minnesota, my sister asked me to make a garter for her. I ended up making two, one to throw for the garter toss and one for her to keep.
I started out by going to Joann Fabric to buy stretchy lace that is sold by the yard, chiffon fabric, silk fabric, felt and pearl buttons. Total for all of that was less than $10.
I started by making the chiffon flower with the bead in the center. I cut a circle out of the felt to make the base of the flower. I then cut a strip of the chiffon, folded it in half and ironed it so it would stay folded.
From there, I started by zig zagging the fabric and would secure it as I went. I sewed around the circle until I got back to the beginning and then tucked the edges so you could not tell where it started.
Once the edge of the flower was in place, I had to fill in the middle so you could not see the lines of what I had sewn. I used the same folded piece of chiffon and sewed the folded edge along the edge of the zig zag pattern. By doing this, I was able to hide everything that was not finished looking. I kept going in a circle until the entire middle was filled and then I secured the button in the center.
Next, I had to make the rosettes for the other garter. I made one large one and one small one. This was a typical rosette flower so I won't give a detailed description.
Next, I measured my sister's leg and I sewed together the stretchy lace that I could then attach the flowers. I used a second circle of felt and then hot glued the flower on top of the lace and the felt underneath the lace. That way I had a nice sandwich with lace in the middle. I repeated that same process for the rosette flowers except I needed enough felt for both flowers to attach.
Ta-Da! All done! I love the flowers and I think they look great together. And my sister will have an awesome homemade item to wear on her wedding day!
Now onto the wedding day festivities!

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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Photobook Changes

I did it. I finished another photobook. It only took me a year and a half. Pretty much immediately after I finished our 2013 photobook (March of 2014), I decided to go back to a year prior and work on a photobook for 2012. And then it took me forever to finish. But I am here today it is done and I am in love. 
To give a brief overview of what I do, I started using Blurb last year as a way to make photobooks instead of scrapbooking. You can read about my book from 2013 here. There are a lot of different companies that make photobooks, but I decided to go with blurb because their page limit is really high. Their limit is 220 pages instead of the 100 pages that most companies offer. I decided to stop scrapbooking because it was too time consuming and I am still years behind. I was sick of my pictures just sitting on a computer so I thought I would give it a try. I really do love putting these books together and reminiscing. while I create them. If you sign up for Blurb's emails you get coupons every once in a while so I waited until I had a good coupon before I purchased mine. It will be fun to see the books accumulate as the years go on.

I decided to make a few changes this time. The changes really add so much more to the book that they are even more colorful and awesome. The first change was to the cover. I decided to have a color more fun than just black. That way when all the books are together they will look nice and fun instead of all the same boring color. I selected a color from the picture on the front cover and wrapped it around the back side as well. Last year, I had an additional picture on the back cover and I really like the simplicity of just having a solid color.
I decided to keep the highlights pages because it best represents everything we did in one year. The list of highlights corresponds with a page later in the book.
The next thing I changed was that I added some fun scrapbook paper throughout the book. You can find a whole bunch of digital scrapbook paper on pinterest and then add it to the pages like another image. This was a really helpful way to bring in more color so the pages were less dull. It was also a nice way to fill dead space when I only had a few pictures or did not have anything to say about the pictures. (Also ignore the binder clips, I had to use those to keep the pages open for a picture.)

Something else I did differently was I added less text. Adding text takes the longest. While I like to be able to read about the different adventures we had, I also let the pictures speak for themselves. So unless there was a story or something specific I wanted to remember that the pictures did not say, I left the pictures with just a title.

Finally, when I ordered my book I decided to get the full upgrade and get the second nicest pages. It was not that large of a jump in price and I think the quality of the pages makes a huge difference. They are less shiny and I think it makes the pictures look less grainy. Holding the two photobooks side by side you can really see the difference in page quality. It is hard to show in a picture, but in person it is a big difference.

So now that I officially finished the 2012 book, I can start working on our 2014 book. Hopefully I can finish it before I need to start in the 2015 book. Where do the years go?

If you want to see a few more pages, you can look through them below.

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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Wisconsin Dells Bachelorette Weekend

This past weekend I headed to the waterpark capital of the world, also known as Wisconsin Dells. My little sister, as you know, is getting married in less than two weeks so we celebrated by spending a weekend in Wisconsin Dells. I went with my little sister, one of my good friends and 5 of my sisters closest friends. We had a blast and it was fun to hang out with them and get to know her friends a little better.

We stayed at the Kalahari Resort and they have both an indoor and outdoor water park included in your stay. We ended up in a large 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom suite that could sleep all 8 of us. It worked out perfectly so that we had space to sleep as well as room to hang out.

We left early Friday morning and it was about a four hour drive from Minneapolis. When we got to Wisconsin Dells, we stopped at Moosejaw Pizza for lunch. Of course we had to wear our moose ears the whole meal. We then checked in and headed to the waterpark for a few rides and hanging out by the pool.
Friday night we spent the night in our room playing games and opening presents. We played a few minute to win it games, a few dirty games(not pictured) and heads up. The first minute to win it game was trying to get a cookie from your forehead to your mouth without using your hands. The next one we played you had to put a tennis ball in a pair of tights and then put it on your head and use it to knock over full water bottles. The next one we played was with a deck of cards and they had to sit on top of a soda can and you had to blow all the cards off the stack of the deck until there was only one card left. Finally we played the game where you had to tie a banana around your waist and use it to roll an orange across the floor.
Saturday morning we found the best place at the water park to lay out in the sun. They had a zero depth pool that was kinda in a secluded area of the park. It was awesome because we could lay in the water while having our chairs only a few feet away from us. We spent some time going on the rides while it was not too busy, but most of the day we hung out in the sun.
Saturday night, we had planned to go out to a local bar where we were able to dance our hearts out and had a fun night together. My sister was a good sport where she had to take random picture according to a selfie spinner challenge that one of her friends brought. I will save her the embarrassment of posting those pictures. The next morning we woke up, packed and headed back to Minnesota.
The weekend went by quick, but we all had a good time and I am glad that I was able to join in on the bachelorette party fun! My sister's wedding will be here in just a few short day and I am so excited to party!

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