Must Have Craft Supplies

For those of you who are unaware, I'm in the process of cleaning & organizing my craft room. Let's just say, it's been an adventure. Although I have a whoooole lotta stuff, some people may want to know, what do you need to get started? After all, not everyone ends up with a whole room full of craft supplies overnight, right? To help all you aspiring crafters, I've created this list of my must-have craft supplies, along with a FREE printable you can download and take with you to the craft store! This way, you can start your post-apocolyptic craft bunker too ;)

Creating your Crafting Arsenal

Ok, way back in March of 2017, I told you how to be efficient to get all our crafts projects done in time. Now, let's talk about the supplies we need to do them! Here are some of my favorite, must-have items in your craft stash.

Starting a craft stash? Click to find out my must-have items for crafters of any skill level, plus some tips to save money and to rock a DIY party!

1. Glue Gun 2. Jewelry Tools 3. Cricut Explore Air 4. Paper Cutter 5. Circle, Heart, Star Paper Punches 6. E6000 Glue and Photosafe Glue Stick 7. Glue Gun Caddy 8. Mini Iron 9. Small Scissors and Large Scissors 10. Washi Tape 11. Paper Roll 12. Self-Healing Cutting Mat 13. Fringe Scissors 14. Craft Caddy 15. Paintbrushes and Paint Tray

1. Glue Gun- this one needs no explanation, but I'll give you one. Glue guns are handy for almost everything! They're good for craft projects, sure, but you can also use them for temporary fixes, party decor, etc. I've used it on nearly every project I've done, including my Pineapple Garland, Snowcone Party Hats, and Cotton Candy Garland. I guarantee if you buy one, you'll find a reason to use it. So, go get one!

2. Jewelry Tools- I purchased these for making jewelry once upon a time, but they're just handy to have around. I've used them for several crafts projects already on the blog, like my KS Inspired Bracelets and Wood Bead Tassel Necklace, but they're also good for cutting fake flowers and even for fixing your own jewelry when it breaks! Unlike regular tools, these are smaller, so they're better for tiny objects and precise fixes.

3. Cricut Explore Air- I resisted buying a Cricut for a while, but it's so handy to have! I used it for the Rapunzel lanterns at my Disney Themed Engagement Party, for my sister's Halloween costume, and for my Mean Girls Conversation Hearts. I'll probably be using it for my wedding too! It cuts a whole bunch of materials as well, not just paper and vinyl! It's an investment for sure, but I think it's really fun to have.

4. Paper Cutter- This little gadget is perfect for cutting a straight line. It's great for making banners and cutting out Printables from the internet. I've used it for my TGIF 90's Themed Slumber Party and my Nautical Notecard Birthday Banner. It's easy to use and small to store. Remember those giant paper cutters we had in school that looked like a guillotine? This is a much smaller, safer version of that. 

5. Paper Punches (Circle, Heart, Star)-  These punches are great to have on hand if you need to spruce up a project. So far I've used them on my Nautical Notecard Birthday Banner and Rock Candy Christmas Trees. They're easy to use and small, so they're easy to store!

6. E6000 Glue and Photosafe Glue Stick - E6000 is my second favorite glue, after glue guns. It adheres to nearly everything! It's a little smelly, so you need to use it with a window open, but it's great. I've used it for my DIY Dollar Store Candy Jars, my Zebra Party Tray and my Circus Animal Drink Stirrers. The photo safe glue stick is great for scrapbooking projects, making cards, and making collages! I used them for my DIY 90' Pun Valentines.

7. Glue Gun Caddy- I actually found this product while creating this blog post, and HAD to buy it. It holds your (hot!) glue gun, glue sticks, and protects your table. It's amazing! Never again will you be holding your half glued project mid-air while trying to remember where you left your glue sticks!

8. Mini Iron- A mini iron is great for small craft or sewing projects. I used it for my Mean Girls Conversation Hearts, the eye masks in my TGIF 90's Themed Slumber Party, and for touching up a wrinkly tablecloth on my Glam Friendsgiving Dinner. It's perfect for iron-ons!

9. Small Scissors and Large Scissors- I love that these scissors are so dang cute. Can we start with that?! I don't need to tell you why scissors are handy, so I'll just say that these small ones are great for when you need to do something precise, like making tassels, since they have pointed blades. These larger ones are great for cutting pieces of paper, cardboard, or other large things that require a straight line. I've used them in nearly every blog post, but they were especially useful for my Cotton Candy Garland and Rock Candy Christmas Trees.

10. Washi Tape- Washi tape has so many fun uses! It's great for temporarily sticking things together, for spicing up a project, or even organizing your planner! I used it to paint my beads for my Wood Bead Tassel Necklace, and it was super handy.

11. Paper Roll- This paper roll is great to avoid making a mess. You just need to pull a sheet long enough to cover your workspace to keep it clean. Ever dripped paint on your desk, or written with a marker that bleeds? This will help prevent them from staining! Sure, you can use newspapers but that means that 1. if you take photos of your project it won't look clean and neat, and 2. you'll have to find the newspapers. I highly recommend having this on hand!

12. Self-Healing Cutting Mat- This is one of my newest purchases. I haven't really used it yet (except as a really pretty backdrop for some craft projects) but it's got a ruler, which is great for measuring projects while working on them. It's also really thick and reversible, so you get twice the use and durability! Plus, the pink is SO much fun.

13. Fringe Scissors- Back when I made my Mini Faux Pintatas, I didn't have a pair of these scissors and I regretted it. They're so handy for making pinatas, fringe, and shredding up paper. It has 5 blades, so it makes more cuts and gets your project done faster! Again, VERY good for when you're making multiple projects at once!

14. Craft Caddy- A craft caddy is great for holding all your supplies and keeping them organized. I highly recommend having a spot that you use to store everything so that you can find it when you need it. There have been so many times that I lost my glue sticks, my paintbrushes, or my paper punches when I needed them. These crafting supplies are only useful when you can actually find and use them (duh). So, be sure to find a place where they can all stay together, like one big happy crafting family.

15. Paintbrushes and Paint Tray- These paintbrushes have a variety of uses! It's great to have multiple sizes so that you can do broad strokes quickly, but also have a nice thin one when you need to be more detailed. I really should invest in a new paint palette because mine is old and full of dried paint ("invest" = probably $3!) but paint palettes are really useful for pouring out just a little bit of paint or mixing colors. I've used paintbrushes on so many projects, including my DIY Donut Party Platter, my Colorful Leaf Garland, and my Circus Animal Drink Stirrers.

How to avoid going broke on craft supplies

I know what you're thinking- craft supplies can be expensive! I recommend adding a few items at a time, or using coupons! Michael's has plenty of sales and coupons you can use. There's also stores like A.C. Moore, Jo-Ann Fabric & Crafts, and Hobby Lobby. If you want to save even more, your local dollar store and even Walmart has a huge craft selection for cheap! Target also has some craft supplies, but not as many as Walmart. However, Target has some really CUTE stuff! Start small and keep adding more over time. Your crafting empire wasn't built in a day, right?

Do you already have a craft stash? What's in it? What can you NOT live without? I think for me, it's my glue gun. I even have one at work! Let me know your faves in the comments below.

DIY Animal Sweater Necklace

Last month, I made some awesome Animal Sweater Ornaments for my pink mini-tree and I just couldn't bear to put them away! So, what's a girl to do? Re-purpose them into something that can be worn year-round! (or, at least, all winter long.) These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them. I only wore these twice and I had several questions about where I got them! They would also make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Overall, I think they're the freakin' cutest and they're so much fun to make!

These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts

You will need:

Plastic animals (here and here)
Acrylic paint (here)
Felt (similar here)
Screw eyes (similar here)
Glitter (here)
Nylon cord (here)
Jump rings & clasps (similar here)
Beads (From Joann, like these but in pink & orange) 
Toothpicks
Gluegun
Jewelry tools (here)
Scissors (here)

Directions:

These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts

1. Paint a sweater onto your animals using your acrylic paint. I did it freehand, but you can always use some artist's tape if you don't have a steady hand. I did 2 coats.

2. While they dry, cut a few thin strips of felt for the scarf. Try to be mindful of how large the animals' necks are in comparison to the length and width of the scarf.

3. Paint your scarves with either a thin paint brush or a toothpick. I used the pointy side for the polka dots, and the edge for stripes. I used a paintbrush for the thicker stripes, but overall I mostly used toothpicks.

4. Once the animals are dry, add glitter to the edge of the sweater to jazz it up and provide a clean edge. I used glitter paint, but you can achieve a similar look by using a small amount of equal parts glue and glitter to create your own paste/paint. I found that a toothpick was the perfect tool to get the glitter paint on in a thin line.

5. Glue your scarf in place. I used a small dab of hot glue on the scarf to shut it. If it moved around too much, I added a small dab of glue on the animal to secure it in place.

6. Using your pliers, screw the screw eye into place. I first took the pointy screw side and twisted in to make a small hole, then I used my pliers to twist the screw eye into place. When it gets to a point that it's mostly in, I recommend using your hand to twist it all the way in, so that your pliers don't scratch the paint.

These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts

7. Cut your string the length you want it to be plus a little extra. Create a Larks Head Knot to secure the thread to your animal pendant. I also added a regular knot after, so that it stayed in place, nice and snug and secure :) 

8. Add your beads. I only wanted a few, so I did 3 neon pink and orange on each side. Be sure your bead hole is big enough for your string, and trim as you go along so that you have a nice, compact edge to thread the beads with. I found that mine got "fat" after a bead or two and needed to be trimmed off.

9. Attach your clasp to one crimp, and your jump ring to another crimp, and attach them to your cord. 

These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY.
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY.
These animals in sweaters are so cute that everyone wants them! They would make a great gift for a winter or animal/dinosaur-themed party, or even as party favors! Click for the DIY. #diyjewelry #handmadejewelry #diygifts

How cute are these necklaces?! I'm so glad I get to re-use those ornaments and be able to see them daily! I really love re-purposing little animal toys, as exhibited by my Circus Animal Drink StirrersZebra Party Tray, and Animal Sweater Ornaments.  

So, what else would you like to see these animal toys made into? Let me know in the comments below!

DIY Monogram Stockings

So, it's happened. Christmas is over! If you're like me, you're sadly putting away your decorations until next year, while simultaneously scouring the stores for new discount Christmas decor and supplies. Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Aside from being stinking adorable, these stockings make great place settings at the dinner table. Just tuck a few utensils in them, or use them for a crafting party. The options are endless!

Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.
Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.

You will need:

Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.

White Stockings
Acrylic paint (here)
Foam Brush (here)
Stencils (here)
Tassels (here)
Pom poms (here)
Needle & thread
Painter's tape or washi tape
Scissors

Directions:

Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.

1. Decide which style of letter you want to use, and collect the letters you need for your stockings.

2. Place your stencil on the stocking and tape it in place.

3. Using a foam brush, paint on the letter. My stencil didn't lay 100% flat, so I had to press it down while I painted so paint didn't seep through. Once you've made sure there are no missing spots, carefully peel off the stencil.

4. While your letters dry, start making your pom pom tassel charms. Take a needle and thread, and string it through your pom poms. Then, add a tassel charm, and sew back up through the pom poms.

Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.
Plain stockings are abundant, but what can you really do with those? Well, how about adding a monogram for every member of your family!? Click for the full tutorial.

Voila! That's all you need for these adorable monogrammed stockings. Mine are mini sized, but you can definitely get a set of larger ones to hang by the fireplace!

DIY Animal Sweater Ornaments (Perfect for Mini-Trees!)

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! While I usually decorated in traditional red and green growing up, my dad got us a little 3-foot PINK tree one year. It was the cutest thing! We decorated it with a few small ornaments, and basked in its pretty pink glow. 

Although I don't think I could EVER get my husband to agree to a pink tree in our living room (unless I have 7 daughters, and we all take a vote!) I did get myself a tiny pink mini-tree for the attic. And this mini-tree needed some fun ornaments to go with it. I had stumbled upon this puppy ornament from Neiman Marcus while browsing Pinterest, and knew I needed to make my own version! A few days, 2 coats of paint, and some glitter later, I was ready with an army of festive little animals! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting!

You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade

You will need:

Plastic animals (here and here)
Acrylic paint (here)
Felt (similar here)
Screw eyes (similar here)
Glitter (here)
Toothpicks
Gluegun
Scissors
Pliers
Embroidery floss (similar here)

Directions:

You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade

1. Paint a sweater onto your animals using your acrylic paint. I did it freehand, but you can always use some artist's tape if you don't have a steady hand. I did 2 coats.

2. While they dry, cut a few thin strips of felt for the scarf. Try to be mindful of how large the animals' necks are in comparison to the length and width of the scarf.

3. Paint your scarves with either a thin paint brush or a toothpick. I used the pointy side for the polka dots, and the edge for stripes. I used a paintbrush for the thicker stripes, but overall I mostly used toothpicks.

4. Once the animals are dry, add glitter to the edge of the sweater to jazz it up and provide a clean edge. I used glitter paint, but you can achieve a similar look by using a small amount of equal parts glue and glitter to create your own paste/paint. I found that a toothpick was the perfect tool to get the glitter paint on in a thin line.

5. Glue your scarf in place. I used a small dab of hot glue on the scarf to shut it. If it moved around too much, I added a small dab of glue on the animal to secure it in place.

6. Using your pliers, screw the screw eye into place. I first took the pointy screw side and twisted in to make a small hole, then I used my pliers to twist the screw eye into place. When it gets to a point that it's mostly in, I recommend using your hand to twist it all the way in, so that your pliers don't scratch the paint.

7. Add a small piece of embroidery floss to hang.

You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade

Dinosaur ornaments!! I mean, how stinking cute are these?! I know that dinosaurs could never exist among the other animals, but maybe a sweater and a cute scarf could have saved them from extinction.

You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade
You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade

How cute are these ornaments?! This has become one of my favorite and most fun projects to make on the blog! I really love re-purposing little animal toys, as exhibited by my Circus Animal Drink Stirrers and Zebra Party Tray. You can also use larger toys for a regular-sized tree, but these were perfect for my tiny pink mini-tree! Oh, and did I mention that they make a great necklace? Because they do!

You need these festive friends on your tree! The best part (aside from how adorably colorful they are) is that they're not breakable! Plus, you can make them in any color scheme you'd like. So, pop on a Christmas movie, grab your supplies, and get crafting! #diychristmasornament #diychristmassweater #christmadornamentshomemade

Will these ornaments be joining your tree this year? Or, perhaps your kids' tree?! Let me know what you plan to make in the comments below!

DIY Pineapple Summer Shoes

Happy Summer, everyone! I'm not sure what the weather has been like where you live, but here in NYC we've had muggy, spring-like weather for most of May and June. It's finally starting to get warm and sunny and summer-like! While warm weather and beach days are clearly the best part about summer (especially after a long NYC winter!) my other FAVORITE part is getting to switch up my wardrobe! I love adding in some of my summer staples, and kicking off my winter boots/rain boots and popping on some summer shoes, like flats and sandals. When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes I made! They're the cutest and possibly most fun shoes I own (and I currently own a pair of sneakers covered in Barbie shoes!) I seriously cannot wait to wear them out and about. They're actually really easy to DIY yourself with a few craft supplies!

When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY. #pineapple #pineapplediy #summercrafts
When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY. #pineapple #pineapplediy #summercrafts

You will need:

Yellow Fabric Shoes (here or similar here)
Green Vinyl Fabric (I got mine from Joann Fabric)
Tailor's Chalk (here)
Gold 3D Fabric Paint (here)
Stiff Adhesive Felt (here)
Glue Gun
Scissors
Ruler

How to:

When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY.

1. Using your tailor's chalk and ruler, create a grid pattern on your shoes. I used the top center of my shoe as the main point. 

When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY.

2. Using your 3-d fabric paint, go over your chalk lines. I went section by section, since the paint would create gaps if the line was too long. Also, be careful of it spitting out a big glob of paint. If that happens, gently guide the paint away with the clean tip of the nozzle. Wipe the nozzle clean, and keep going.

3. Once your paint has dried for at least 24 hours, it's time to add the top! Draw a few pineapple tops on white paper and pick your favorite one. If you're not a good artist, find one online and print it out. 

4. Cut your pineapple top out and trace it onto your green vinyl (the back side). I wanted mine to mirror each other since they weren't exactly the same, so I flipped the paper stencil and traced it the other way. 

5. Cut out the pineapples from your vinyl, being as careful as you can. 

6. Cut out a small piece of felt.  Peel the adhesive lining off, put your pineapple top on it, and cut out. 

7. Using a glue gun, glue your pineapple topper to the shoe. Wear and enjoy! 

When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY. #pineapple #pineapplediy #summercrafts
When it comes to summer shoes, I think the quirkier, the better. That's why I am head over heels in love with these pineapple shoes! Click for the DIY. #pineapple #pineapplediy #summercrafts

Oh, and if you're wearing a brand-spankin new pair of summer shoes, be sure to bring a backup pair in this handy Barbie Shoes Tote Bag

Ahh! Are you LOVING these shoes as much as I am?! What fruit would you want to wear on your feet? I'm thinking strawberry shoes could be another fun one!