Monday, January 30, 2012

Using Public Domain Images for Baby Room Art

Civilian Training School
Fisher's walls are begging for something with a little more history, so I've been scouring the Internet for public domain images. My general rule for baby room art, is that it shouldn't scream "baby." I want the things I put in Fisher's room to be generally grown up while hinting at baby cuteness. Sophisticated art can be expensive, so finding public domain images means the art is free and my main expense is framing. I buy frames from goodwill and print my images to fit. I look for good construction and shape in my goodwill frames, and trust the spray paint to get the color I want.

Public Domain Sherpa gave me a good start on finding the images I wanted while understanding the rules of printing images I find. U.S. Government Photos and Images gave me a lot of good places to look. My favorite site was American Memory.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Water Bottle Labels for Gray and Yellow "Little Man" Baby Shower

The baby shower is almost here! I created these 4 labels for the Little Man Baby Shower next weekend. I'll put the first 2 labels on one sheet and the second 2 labels on another sheet. This way I can get cheaper printing at Kinko's for the black and white images. Using gray as a main color for the baby shower has saved a lot of money when it comes to color printing. These labels are free to anyone for personal use. Click on the image to enlarge.

How to use the labels- Here are some good sites with DIY instructions:

From Tator Tots and Jello using double-sided tape... easy but not water-proof
From Life Sweet Life using packing tape to create water-proof labels

Preppy Argyle Personalized Water Bottle Labels - set of 12
From Destination Wedding Favors to order online

Friday, January 20, 2012

Homemade Felt Board

My Felt Board:

Bella's First Birthday!
Bella (from my morning nanny family) turned 1 this week, so I wanted to make her something special. Every week we go to a library story time. I highly recommend going to storytime at your local library. Free learning, socialization, and practice in a classroom-type setting. At our library class, the teacher tells short stories or poems on a felt board. Every time the felt board comes out, Bella is very vocal about her desire to play with it. Probably because its the one thing they don't let any of the kids play with.... sad day.
This project was surprisingly easy and inexpensive. I picked out an unfinished, open back frame from Michaels (every few weeks all of the frames are 50% off) and a thick foam posterboard. I cut the posterboard to fit into the frame and hot glued on some felt.) I also painted the frame. I should have sprayed the painted frame with some sealant but I forgot. I took the frame and felt-covered posterboard back to Michaels with my reciept and they permently attached the 2 for free. They will also attach a bracket to hang the frame free of charge. The rest of the project was cutting out felt pieces to play with on the board. I used black puffy paint to decorate some of the pieces.
When I was all finished I painted a hobby lobby cardboard box the same color as the frame, filled it with all of the felt shapes, and tied it with a ladybug ribbon. Voila!

Update: make more than one set of eyes. Random things will go missing, and the entire face is pretty worthless if you only have one eye. We ended up making a set of blue eyes, green eyes, brown eyes, and cat eyes for fun.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Mustache Signs for Little Man Baby Shower

Here are some printables I put together to have around the house for the upcoming baby shower. The theme will be "Little Man" and the colors will be grey, yellow, and navy. I hope to use mustaches and bow ties for the theme :) These are free to anyone for personal use.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Cheap Baby Room Art

Cheap Baby Room Art

I'm in the process of creating a white framed art collage for baby Fisher's room. So far every piece was found at goodwill. I like to go look every couple of weeks and pick up things that are 1/2 off that week. These 3 pieces were bought together.

The Inspiration:

 My Art:

All 3 frames were purchased at goodwill for 1.50 each. They were plain wood with old ugly art inside. I remover the art and painted them white with cheap acrylic paint. The background of each art is scrapbook paper.

On top of the scrap book paper I hot glued some remnant fabric that was used in other parts of the baby room.

I purposely fray the edges of the fabric to get a more vintage look.

The decorated bottle caps are made by cutting out little circles of scrapbook paper and hot gluing them onto a bottle cap. I save all bottle caps in a jar. It seems like such a waste to buy bottle caps at the craft store when beer bottle caps are everywhere.

Painted the yellow with two different acrylics paints. Dry. Stamped on the Little Wonder stamp ($1 acrylic stamp from Michael's) Paint over the stamped lines to make the image stand out more.

I used 2 different scrapbook papers for the background. The newspaper looking page is torn and glued onto the polka dot page. I painted the bird with acrylic paints following these step by step pics.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Handmade burp cloths

Handmade Burp Cloths

A great baby shower gift! Especially if you've made something else for baby with flannel fabric, as these can be made to coordinate with the scraps. Could go great with the iPood Emergency Kit

Important note: Use a flannel fabric! Use cloth diapers! The awesome thing about these burp cloths is the patterned side will stick to mommy's clothes if you use a flannel fabric. The white side will absorb massive amounts of baby spit. Non-flannel burp clothes slide off the shoulder. Non-cloth diaper burp clothes don't absorb as much.

I made 2 different styles of burp cloths. A few months from now, I'm sure to have an opinion about which of these is more useful with a spewing baby. The first type is completely covered with patterned flannel on one side. The second type is only covered down the middle.

Type 1: tutorial available at Sew She Sews

Type 2: tutorial available at Diary of a Quilter