Storage Solutions: Gift Wrapping Supplies

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably still trying to recover from the holidays. By this point, most of my decor has been put away and as I mentioned last week, I am working on improving my storage spaces.

Do you have a designated way you store wrapping supplies? I’ve used a method for the past 5 years and I have to say, it works wonders. I seem to collect very little actual wrapping paper, only 1-2 rolls at a time, but bows and boxes and tissue paper?? I’ve got them coming out. my. ears. It gets a little out of control. So are you ready for my big secret?!? Here it is!Wrapping Paper Storage

Yep, that’s right, it’s a large gift bag! But wait, there’s more. . .

Gift wrap break downWhat may initially appear as a large bag full of wrapping stuff is actually a well thought out, time-tested storage system.

Four layers to gift wrapHere’s the break down:

1. In the back of the bag, store gift boxes. They fold flat and are a great go-to for odd shaped gifts.

1. Gift Boxes

2. In the middle, gift bags. They come in all shapes and sizes and are great for every occasion.

2. Gift Bags

3. In the front, tissue paper. All shades are welcome here, but for me there’s no replacement for classic white.

3. Tissue Paper4. Last but not least, the cherry on top. The finishing touch, the bows, the ribbons, the tags, the little things that make gifts look extra special.

4. Cherry on top

Ribbion, tape, bows, tags, etc.At the end of the day the whole bag hangs on a hanger in my craft closet.

Store bag in craft closetNow, I know what you’re asking. . . what about the wrapping paper? It leans against the wall just beneath the bag.

Wrapping Paper StorageHow do you store wrapping paper?

 

 

Let it Snow

Happy Friday everyone! We had a great Christmas celebrating with both Phillip’s family and my family. How was your Christmas?

With just days to spare, I finally managed to get one new Christmas project done. Similar to last year, I created another faux mantel of sorts by hanging sticks above my entryway bar, this time spelling out Let it Snow!Let it SnowFor all the details on creating and hanging my last faux mantle, visit the post here.

I started with sticks from my yard again and then cut them to size and scoped out my letters.

Use sticks to make wordsUsing my hot glue gun, I glued each letter (and snowflake) together.

Glue sticks together

 

These twigs also got a good coating of glue but this time I used equal parts of glue and water to make it easier to apply. Once the glue was brushed on, each letter got a generous sprinkling of Epsom salt and was then left to dry.

Cover sticks in Epsom salt

 

The letters were hung with fishing line and attached to the ceiling with clear thumb tacks.Hang with clear thumb tacksI also glued a few of the letters together to keep them facing forward.

Make snow lettersA few birds were added and the faux mantle was done for this year!

Snow art

 

Bu-bu bu-bu Bubblin!

Are you guys ready for Christmas?? I think it’s safe to say that I am not. . . I still have presents to make, in addition to wrapping. . . forget about decor because I still haven’t started on the cleaning that needs to be done before guests arrive!

I did manage to get 1 quick project in last weekend though. I’ve been working on our guest bathroom for some time and have been dreaming of ways to hang ‘bubbles’ above the shower.

Under the SeaI’ve been eyeing clear, plastic Christmas ornaments for about a year now but I never ran across any that were reasonably priced. A few weeks ago I just happened to be in Walmart and they had some for just $.88! They even come in 2 sizes!

Start with clear Christmas ornamentsTo make your own ‘bubbles’ here’s what you’ll need:

  • clear, plastic Christmas ornaments
  • fishing line
  • clear thumb tacks
  • scissors

Bubble Supplies

Start by taking off the ‘top’ of each ornament. . .
Remove the top of the ornament. . .and remove the ‘cap’ so that you just have the hanger left..

Ornamets to Bubbles

Now you’re ornament, looks more like a bubble!
Remove the capUsing a long piece of fishing line, loop the line through each of the hangers.

Bubble ClusterOooooohhhh pretty.

Using your clear thumb tacks, hang each bubble above your shower at varying heights.Hang the bubbles*Hint* Putting your step ladder actually in your shower makes this task a lot easier!

Step stool in the shower

Hang a few ornaments and it’ll start to take shape!
Bubbles in progressIn order to vary the heights, you might have some extra fishing line. No problem, just trim it off when you’re done.

Trim extra fishing line

I hung 7 ornaments total but I think I’ll look for a few more small ones to balance it out.
Hanging BubblesI know this is risky to say, but my Under the Sea bathroom might actually be finished!

Under the Sea

 

Party Stash: Santa Beard Tutorial

As I mentioned earlier this week, I made a few Santa beards for mom’s annual Christmas card and today I’m back with the quick and easy tutorial!Santa Beards!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • beards shapes cut from cardstock (more on that in a minute)
  • popsicle sticks
  • cotton balls – about 200 for 8 beards
  • school glue
  • hot glue

DIY Santa Beards

I started by purchasing a beard shape from the Silhouette store and cutting 8 beards with my Cameo. They we’re approximately 6″x6″.Make beards in Silhouette studio

To assemble the beards, put a generous amount of glue on one side of each cut-out. . .
Use lots of glue. . .and start stacking cotton balls. I found the best finished beard was produced when I started with 5 cotton balls across the mustache. Then outlined the edge of the beard and then the mouth.Glue cotton ballsFinish by filling in the center for a full, fluffy beard!

Full fluffy beardOnce the glue is dry, use your hot glue gun to attach a popsicle stick to the back.

Attach a popsicle stickMy sticks were a little weak so I decided to use 2 per beard.

Glue beards on a stick

I loved the finished product and they looked great in our Christmas card photos!Phillip & Leah Poarch
Make your own santa beards - thefrontpoarch.com

Party Stash: Custom Display Cards

With the holidays just around the corner,  I am amping up my party stash. What’s a party stash you ask?? It’s the collection of all things awesome that lives hidden deep within my craft room which I use for decor, parties or other celebrations. (Or, as my brother would say: crap.)

A few years ago I made these DIY Place Card Holders which I use all. the. time. Decorating, holidays, parties, baby showers, wedding showers, etc. I typically just use a small piece of cardstock but I thought some new cards were in order for the recent shower that I threw for my brother and sister-in-law.DIY Display CardsI purchased a few arrows from the Silhouette Studio store and chose a few other embellishments then printed them on some thick gold wrapping paper I had in my stash.

Silhouette Aarow DesignI chose purple and green cardstock squares (also from my stash) and glued a white paper square on each one for labeling.

Display Cards

I mixed and matched the embellishments onto the squares and glued them in place. Easy and simple!
Make your own display cardsCustom Display Cards

A year in the making – 1 Year Blogiversary

365 days ago, a dream of mine became a reality.TFP Sign

It started probably a year before that when I stumbled across a blog called House of Hepworths. Who even knew DIY blogs existed? It was the first one I’d ever heard of and I was instantly infatuated with Alison and her amazing DIY skills. I was hooked. I read every post she’d ever written and waited anxiously for new posts to be published (yeah. . . I was kind of a creeper). I began to dream and really think, I could do that!

TFP 945 Front Poarch

At the time we lived in a tiny 2-bedroom duplex whose owner barely let us install a ceiling fan (it had NO ceiling fans. . . in the middle of west Texas. . . . yeah, not smart) so I knew a DIY blog was out of the question as long as we lived there. Time went on and I began to follow other blogs like I Heart Organizing and Primitive and Proper and as the DIY bug grew within me and I worked on small projects around our home.

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In January of 2012 this all changed when, through a series of God sized events, we bought our first home. I was ECSTATIC. Long before we moved my head began to spin with renovation ideas, paint colors and flooring options. (Side Note: I didn’t join Pinterest for a long time because my friend Katie told me it was like my brain on steroids. She was right.) I immediately knew the time had come to launch my very own blog, and that my friends is how it all began.

I was so excited I had probably 2-3 posts written before we moved. That’s right, in two weeks time I packed our entire house, we cleaned our new house, did all the techy stuff that goes along with starting a blog and I wrote several posts. Oh yeah, and we both worked a full time job. Needless to say, we were pumped about this dream coming true.

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Over the past year we’ve learned a lot. A LOT. We’ve learned about working together and communication. We’ve learned that if you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to want something to drink. We’ve learned that I am a mouse. . . .and I want a cookie. We’ve learned that I have big dreams and can always see the final product where as Phillip never sees the final product and often says things to me like,

“You aren’t finished with that project. . . are you?”

“You want to paint what?”

“Those things don’t match.”

Yet he always loves the result. It’s been an entertaining year of growth and discovery.

TFP House Numbers 5

I’ve learned 3 things about myself over the past 12 months;

  • I love to dream up big projects and see them through to completion.
  • I love writing about what I’ve done. I do the staging, shooting and editing. . . .so that I can write.
  • I love that there are people out there whom I’ve never met who actually read the things I write. It never ceases to amaze me.

So to you, faithful reader, thank you. Thank you for reading, dreaming and learning with me. You are the reason that I continue to write so thanks for the encouragement and love.

Speaking of love . . . . wouldn’t you just LOVE to win a new purse?? I thought so.

Daily Tote Giveaway - thefrontpoarch.com

Without further adieu, the winner is. . . .Heather Jernigan!

Heather be sure to check your email for prize details.

 

Here’s to many, many more DIYing years to come!

Entryway Bar

Man oh man, as we approach our one-year blogiversary I am constantly surprised by how much our home has changed in just a few short months! Take for example the entryway. . . here it is during our house tour in July.

TFP HT 8

Here it is today.

TFP Kitchen Bar 10

What a beauty!

Let’s see, we took down the wall paper, textured and painted the kitchen, added some built-in benches, thrifted some new-to-us chairs, and just earlier this week I showed you how I redid my kitchen desk. Whew! We have been busy bees! (I also got a new camera which helps a LOT!)

Did you notice something else that’s ‘new’? Here’s a hint. . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 9

That’s right, we’ve updated our kitchen bar! When my in-laws were here last fall, you know, updating my kitchen, they were also on the hunt for a Christmas present project and they found it in that ugly blue laminate bar.

My father-in-law, Greg, is a fanominal wood worker had the idea to build a cover for the existing counter-top so we sent him the desired dimensions, he built the cover in Florida and we brought it back at Thanksgiving. Side note, the bar had a large over hang on the the eat-in kitchen side which made it really uncomfortable to sit on the bench. When my brothers were here at Christmas they helped Phillip cut the existing bar down to size.

They started by removing the counter-top. . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 1

. . .which caused a few stones to loosen and fall . . . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 2. . . which got put back in place with heavy-duty adhesive. . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 3. . . .ahhhhhh, much better.

TFP Kitchen Bar 4

The counter-top was cut to fit the cover and screws were attached to the bottom (this part will make sense in a minute). . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 5

. . . concrete was mixed and put in the center opening. . . .

TFP Kitchen Bar 6

TFP Kitchen Bar 7

. . . the counter-top was placed on top (screws went into the concrete) and checked to make sure it was level.TFP Kitchen Bar 8

We let the concrete sit for a few days and then began the process of staining and sealing the cover.

My dad is a farmer which means he has lots of awesome (as Phillip says, “old”) stuff. A few years ago he gave some old barn wood to Greg and he’s been using in on projects for us ever since. This particular piece has a walnut inlay from the barn wood.

TFP Kitchen Bar 13

The outer pieces got a few coats of stain and then the whole thing got LOTS of poly which brings us to the almost-finished final product.

TFP Kitchen Bar 12

I say almost because you see that little white square at the end of the bar? That’s how far the original counter extended and it needs to be sanded, textured and painted before we permanently attached the cover.

TFP Kitchen Bar 9

I’ll just add it to the list of 100 other small things that need to be done around here. . . . but there you have it, a brand new bar! What room in your home to you feel has made the most progress?

 

 

DIY Weekend Bag & and BIG Announcement!

This holiday season I set a goal of giving handmade gifts to most of our family members and now that all of those gifts have been given, I’m finally able to share this project with you. Let me tell you what, it’s SO hard to work on projects and not be able to tell anyone but your husband! It. Was. TORTURE.

So without further adieu, I give you the Weekender Tote!

Weekender Tote - thefrontpoarch.com

I have a beach bag that I really love, it’s a great size and shape and I find myself using it on weekend trips all the time. It’s perfect for the car because it holds my books, phone charger and even my beloved micro-bead pillow, I rarely leave town without it! Thus I decided to use my bag as a pattern.

TFP Bag 1

I cut the body pieces and the bottom piece out of craft paper so I’d have a reusable pattern. . . .

TFP Bag 2

. . . . and then used the pattern to cut out each bag.

TFP Bag 3

From there I taped stripes on each bag using painters tape and gave each side 2 coats of dark blue fabric paint.

TFP Bag 4

TFP Bag 5

Once everything had been pressed and stitched together I ended up with this beauty!

Weekender Tote 1

Weekender Tote 2

Weekender Tote 3

And the interior? A bright yellow pop of color!

Weekender Tote 6

I made a Weekender Tote for both of my sister-in-laws and my hopefully-soon-to-be sister-in-law but after looking at these photos, I really want one for myself!

Now, for the BIG Announcement. . . . if you would like a Weekender Tote of you own, you can purchase one at my newly re-opened Etsy shop!

Front Poarch Banner

That’s right! I’ve taken the plunge and reopened my shop which will feature the Weekender Tote, a version of this DIY Lace Purse and great vintage finds. Be sure to stop by and see what treasures you’ll discover!TFP Purse 13

Shopping Cart buttons

Christmas Time is Here – Christmas Tour

Welcome to our 2012 Christmas home tour!

Our front porch is filled with paper hanging ornaments and a simple tree on a cabinet door.

TFP Holdiay Tour 3

TFP Holdiay Tour 4

Our entry way is filled with my DIY Faux Mantle.TFP Mantle 10

Our Christmas tree has gone through a few small changes with the addition of a tree skirt ($2 blanket from Goodwill) and a backdrop ($3 blanket from Goodwill).

TFP Holdiay Tour 5

TFP Holdiay Tour 6

Our dining room contains a simple holiday sign and my treasured Willow Tree Nativity scene.TFP Holdiay Tour 1

TFP Holdiay Tour 2

As well as my star and lights centerpiece and. . .

TFP Star 9

. . . this DIY Christmas Centerpiece.

TFP Xmas 11