DIY Baby Headbands

This week I had the pleasure of hosting my new niece Ms. Evelyn.  She made her big Minnesota debut at 10 weeks old from Columbia, SC.  My sister told me to stop buying her stuff, but as a PANK (professional aunt no kids) that is impossible (yes, I fall into a category identified by retailers as people who over-buy for their nieces/nephews – it’s real, here is an article).

I love all of the cute accessories for babies and found these SUPER simple, SUPER cheap, SUPER cute headbands on Pinterest and had to give them a try.


  • T-shirts (the cheaper the better, clearance, goodwill, etc) – but stretchy works best
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors


  • Cut the bottom seam off of your shirt, then cut about a 2″ strip
  • Gently stretch the strips, then fold one of them into a “fish”
  • Lay the second piece over the “fish”


  • Put the right side of the “u” under the left side of the “fish”, then put the left side of the “u” in the center of the “fish” loop
  • This is probably the hardest part, but I have confidence in you 😉 – pull the right side of the “u” UNDER the left side, but over the “fish”


  • Now you have your nautical knot!  Gently pull each side so you have a tighter knot and about even ends on each side


  • Use a hot glue gun to connect the ends, and you can even wrap with a scrap piece of material to cover to make it look a little better

Vioala!  An adult small shirt made the right size for my two-month old Evelyn, and I shortened them a bit for my friend’s newborn daughter.  You can mix colors depending on what you are going for!


The headbands are cute, but I have to say the model may be stealing the show (I’m biased 😉 )

This would be a great activity for a baby shower activity as well!

Enjoy 😉

My attempt at Macarons

For those who know me, when I get an idea in my head I become obsessed and need to accomplish it, like, yesterday.  Typically this happens with decorating, home projects, or cleaning but the other day I decided I was going to not only just make, but successfully make, enough macarons to give them as gifts to my extended family.

This all started back when I went to France for work and ate Macarons while sipping champagne with some local customers.  In general I like “cute” food (bite-sized, colorful) and I also like things that are a bit unique.  I got to thinking, hmm, what is a macaron made of which sparked an aggressive Google search.  In case you don’t know, they are basically just eggs, powdered sugar, patience, almond flour, and more patience.

My interest in trying to make them only grew when every blog post I read explained that they are VERY finicky.  “They can’t be that hard” I said.  “It will be fun” I said.

OK so once I got the hang of them, they weren’t terrible.  But “fun” isn’t the word I would use.  There truly is a science to these little buggers and some prep-time needed.

I decided to go with French Macarons (apparently there are multiple kinds?) and pulled the recipe from this site as I found it easiest to read.  I also had this AWESOME troubleshooting guide pulled-up to reference what I did wrong each batch and how to fix it (Shinee knows what’s up, and is a true macaron expert).

My first couple of batches I was cocky – you just have to mix it together and bake it, right?  I was also multi-tasking (remember that sauce?).  A bad move, they require your full focus and some serious attention to detail.  I basically spent all day making them, and only 2 of the 5 batches turned out.  I had to fill 8 round tins and literally only had 24 “good” cookies before I was 100% over it.

Being a stubborn individual I couldn’t leave my project incomplete, so I went back and tackled the macarons again (like a week later, I needed a break).  Round two went MUCH better, and here were some key findings for me:

  1. Set your eggs out in advance: I didn’t age my egg whites like some sites recommend, but they do HAVE to be room temperature which can take some time.  I determined how many batches I was going to make in advance and set ALL of the eggs out that I needed.  That way when I was ready to make another batch, I could just go.
  2. You have to actually wait for stiff peaks: I was very worried about over-mixing and a big part of my problem was that I wasn’t setting the meringue correctly.  It takes awhile for the soft peaks to form and you HAVE to wait to add the color/flavoring until you have soft peaks, and also HAVE to wait to combine with the almond mixture until hard peaks form.
  3. Oven temperature varies: Different sites show different temperatures, but for my oven 275 degrees worked the best (they were too crispy at 300).
  4. Sift and prep ingredients while the macarons set: Sifting the almond flour / sugar and letting the unbaked batter set to form a “skin” (super gross word, but fitting once you see it) are also two key steps.  I found it worked best when making multiple batches to sift and set-out pre-measured ingredients while the macarons set.  This way I gave the macarons adequate time to set, but also was ready to mix while they baked and avoided a bunch of down time.
  5. Get a back-log of your favorite podcast and drink some wine: It is a process, so some vino and My Favorite Murder (yes, I’m a murderino) helped to keep me entertained.

I ended-up making a few different kinds (from this site) and had enough to fill the 8 containers.  The fam loved them but more important for my pride I proved I could actually successfully make them (even if I never make them again)!


DIY Alcohol Ink Ornaments

I love a good DIY Christmas gift, but I want it to actually be cute, not cost a ton of money, and something I can accomplish in a Sunday afternoon.  This probably seems intuitive, but can be hard to find!

Last year my mom (who is super crafty by the way) came across these really unique, elegant ornaments as a craft to do with her sorority group.  She handed them out to our family at Christmas and they were a huge hit, so I decided to make them for my new team at work (with her help)!

The shopping list is pretty simple for these:

  • Alcohol Ink (found at craft stores – I got mine at Michaels, here is link as an example)
  • Air duster (Can be found at Wal-Mart, Lowes, Home Depot, etc)
  • Clear glass ornaments (also got mine at Michaels, here is a link as an example)
  • Old clothes / tablecloth – when you spray the ornament the ink can spray out!

Here are the Instructions:

1.) Remove the top from the glass ornament and put about 3 drops of the ink into the inside, rotating the ornament as you put the drops in

Tip: It is easiest to start with a lighter color first, as it has more coverage and the darker colors work best as an accent later / can take-over the ornament if added first

2.) Position the air duster “straw” inside the ornament and spray in short bursts, rotating the ornament until you get your desired pattern


3.) Add another complimentary color – usually a darker color works best – then spray again in short bursts

Tip: start with one drop at a time, because the color sometimes can take over

4.) Repeat until you get the coloring you like.  It works best to finish with a metallic color – the metallic colors add some shine and also help cover-up areas where the air makes weird markings, etc.


5.) Flip upside down and let dry for a couple hours, then viola you have your ornament!


Shout out to my mom, helper and hand model!

I found a couple unique shaped ornaments that required some tweaking but also turned-out really cool!


As you go you get the hang of what technique you like best – and sometimes the ones that you hate at first turn out the best!

Happy Crafting!