Monday, November 28, 2011

Crochet Head Wrap

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I am planning on doing a lot of crocheting for Christmas gifts to the ladies in my family this year, and felt like playing around with a head wrap the other day. I started with a chain of 10, then single stitched in two in and down the rest of the chain, so there were 8 single stiches total (am I explaining that right, crochet masters?). Then chained two, and single stitched in that row. I did that for a few, then increased by two stitches in a row, did single stitches in the next row, increased by two, repeat… until the rows were of 14 stitches. Then I did most of the wrap that way, then decreased the same way I increased. By doing this, it was thinner around the back of my head so it wasn’t too bulky, and widened right behind the ears from warmth.


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I liked it so much I decided to keep it for myself and just make more for other people. It came in really handy when we went on our tree hunt!


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Plus, it nicely matched my time out cowl!


Thanks for stopping by!


Parties I Like to Link Up With:

Hoo’s Got Talent, The Sunday Scoop, The Sunday Showcase Party, Made By You Monday, Market Yourself Monday, Making the World Cuter Monday, Weekend Wrap Up, Frugalicious Friday, Feature Yourself Friday, Just Something I Whipped Up, Mad Skills Party, Get Your Craft On, Make it Yours Day, The Shabby Nest, Kojo Designs, Tea Rose Home, Whatever Goes Wednesday, Real Momma, Real Style, Idea Sharing Wednesday, Creative-ly U, Tutorials and Tips Tuesday, Sew Cute Tuesday, Make it, Wear It, Show and Tell Saturday, Weekend Bloggy Reading, I’m Crafty Party, Transformation Thursday, Take a Look Tuesday

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Christmas Tree Hunting We Went

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We continued our annual tradition of getting our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. We start with breakfast out, and then visit our local tree farm where you get to ride out to the lot in a tractor-pulled wagon.

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Last year we invited Nolan’s parents to join us (and oh how I love having his dad there to help with the tree cutting/carrying!), and think it’s a tradition worth carrying on. Jace wanted to sit with Grandpa as we rode the “choo-choo”.

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It’s days like this where I am so thankful to be living in Oregon.

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I find it much easier to appreciate the green on a day when you aren’t getting rain-drenched. That’s Nolan in his rain gear. I think he looks really cute in it. He started wearing it a few years back when he got sick of getting covered in mud while cutting down the tree. Funny thing, though, we can’t even count how many times he’s been asked if he works at the tree farm.

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Jace loved walking through the trees and peeking around them.

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And how precious is a little bit of father-son fun time while waiting for the tractor to come pick us up?

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I had fun letting Jace play with the lights later. He kept touching the blue lights and saying, “Bue.” I’ll share my decorated tree with you once I get the house all decorated to my liking.

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

My Memories Winner!

I just realized I hadn’t posted the winner of the My Memories Suite giveaway!

my memories

Our winner is…

my memories winner

Which was…


Congratulations! Please send me an email at nolanandjill {at} gmail {dot} com in the next 48 hours and I’ll get you in touch with your download code!

If you were really hoping to win your own copy of the software, you can still get it with a $10 discount if you use code STMMMS37983 at check out. Go HERE to buy it. It’s only $39.97, so you’d only be paying $29.97 for a great product! The same code will also get you $10 off in the My Memories Store! If you haven’t made your Christmas cards yet, this is a great way to design one. Then just upload them to Costco and you’re set for a really great price!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Accessories+Make Some Money=Opportunity for You!

Michelle (my awesome “Star” from Crafting with the Stars who blogs at Someday Crafts) recently started selling Paparazzi and is LOVING this new venture. She sent me a few pieces and I have to say, I’m impressed.

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I LOVE my headband, which I showed you in my curly hair tutorial.

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I wore it again for Thanksgiving. While our attempt at a nice family picture was a bit of a bust, at least my hair looked cute, right?

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I also received this necklace (which came with earrings). The best part about it is that while it’s nice quality and looks great, such a full necklace is light weight. My neck is easily bothered by long, chunky necklaces, so this one is perfect. I also got a bracelet, but didn’t get any pictures of it (do you know how hard it is to photograph a bracelet???).

I really like the accessories and jewelry Michelle has to offer (everything is just $5!), but what I like even more is how much Michelle is loving what she’s doing. Back during Crafting with the Stars, we had a few email conversations about our desires to be stay-at-home moms, and I know it’s come up a few times on her blog. Her new business, Jewelry for Five, is becoming an incredible income opportunity for her, and she’d like to share it with you too! If I were wanting to get into a home party business right now, I think this is totally the one I’d like to go with. Michelle made more in one party the other day than she makes doing six months of blogging (and she has a really good sized, well advertised on, blog), and through doing this, she’s made way more than she makes at her day job (and often times doesn’t even have to leave the house or have an in-person party).

If you would like to know more about how to become a Paparazzi consultant, feel free to check out THIS SITE where Michelle gives great details and lists out the price of becoming involved.

Thanks so much for the headband and jewelry, Michelle, I love it!

And thank YOU for stopping by!

***While I was sent products as compensation for this post, the opinions expressed here are all honest and my own.***

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Week Sale

thanksgiving ad

I’m excitedly preparing for a weekend long sale in my shop, Ruffles ‘n Such, by sewing sewing sewing! I have been working on increasing my scarf options and I love everything I’m adding. I'm hoping for a great weekend in sales and am anticipating selling out of many of my favorite styles (I’ve already sold out of my blue and white stripe scarves).

Since you all mean so much to me, I thought I’d open the sale up to you early. That way if there’s something you like, you don’t have to worry about it selling out before you can get to it. Not only am I offering you 10% off your entire purchase, but I’ll also add a surprise gift when I mail your order! Just use code TURKEYREADER10 (as opposed to the code for everyone else, which is just TURKEY10).

You can find my shop HERE.

Thanks and happy shopping!

Monday, November 21, 2011

T&T: Curly Hair

t and t tuesday

My hair is naturally somewhat curly. Somewhat meaning very curly if it grows from around my eyebrows down and stick straight if it grows from above that.

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I had a hard time finding curly hair pictures of myself because up until recently, I didn’t wear it that way very often. In fact, curly tended to mean bad hair day. I had a good curly stretch for a while—about a year before I got married my hair dresser permed the top section of my hair so it would blend with the rest. It was great, but short lived.

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But then I recently discovered the perfect blend of products and styling techniques that allow me to love my curly hair.

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I even had my hairdresser cut my hair so I could wear it curly every day. And since then, I’ve had so many people ask me how and what I use in my hair, so I thought I would share it with you!

curly hair product

My power team of products are Kenra’s Curl Glaze Mousse, Pureology’s RootLift (a spray in foam) and Bed Head’s Masterpiece hairspray. I picked up all three of these at a TradeSecret store, but you could find them (or similar products) at any salon.

1. I start with fairly damp towel dried hair.

2. I run a leave in conditioner through my hair. I found with all the hairspray I was using, it seemed to dry out a lot, so the conditioner helps keep things nice.

3. Follow THIS TUTORIAL from The Small Things Blog for how to use the foaming root booster.

4. Work and comb the booster through the rest of the hair.

5. I use about this much of the curling glaze on the back of my hair, and about that much on each side of my head.

6. Run the glaze through your hair making sure it’s evenly distributed and then scrunch. You can see that my hair really doesn’t look all that curly at this point.

7. A view of the back.

8. Dry with a diffuser. A stylist once told me that the less movement you use, the better the curl hold. This is so the hair will dry as a curl rather than keep being released as it dries. So I cup a section of hair in the diffuser, and then hold it there for a while before moving on to another section.

9. It isn’t a very pretty sight when dry. Just a big mess of craziness.

10. Once again I follow the Small Things Blog’s tutorial for how to style my bangs. This tutorial has seriously transformed the way I do and love my hair.

11. Holding my bangs in place to let them cool with some shape.

12. The side section of bangs gets curled with the flat iron and then blended in with the rest of the hair.

13. Then it’s just a matter of touching up the funky spots. The longest sections of my hair tend to need the most help. I just use my flat iron to add some curl. If you aren’t familiar with how to curl your hair using a flat iron, check out this tutorial.

14. At this point, my hair is styled, but it still needs a little help. That’s when I just keep blasting it with hair spray, scrunching, wiggling sections and shifting pieces until I like the way it all sits. Then blast it some more.

The front

The back

I’m also loving how I can pull in headbands with the curls.

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This headband was sent to me by Michelle (of Someday Crafts). She sells Paparazzi Accessories. I’ll be sharing more about her business with you soon, but in the mean time, you can check this headband and other fun pieces out here.

I hope this helps! If you have any tips for styling curly hair, please feel free to share!

Parties I Like to Link Up With:

Saturday, November 19, 2011

An Asymmetrical Jacket

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Thanks to all your helpful comments, I finally found a look I like for my gray jacket. Let’s visit the inspiration pictures again…

inspriation jackets
Sources: Etsy & Happy Together

I thought following the look of the Etsy jacket would be a little easier, but mastering the correct collar proved to be a little difficult.

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In the end I didn’t remove anything from the collar, just did a little tuck and pin and then sewed a button for a decorative way of keeping things in place.

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I’ve found that when I really don’t know how I’m going to make something, trying to take pictures for a tutorial along the way is very difficult. So rather than showing you step by step how I made this coat, I’ll give you a rough outline and if you want one for yourself, enjoy taking some creative liberties along the way!

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I used New Look Pattern 6028 for the main construction of the jacket.

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To allow for a big collar/cowl, I simply cut straight up the center line and from the shoulder to make a tall collar (as you can see in the gray fabric in the picture. When cutting out the front pieces, I cut one side an extra two inches wide, and the other side two inches more narrow than the pattern would call for.

I followed the pattern for constructing the jacket and made the outer layer and the liner as entire jackets. I then sewed a zipper between the two layers and sewed around the collar. That’s when the adjusting started. I took it in at the middle side seams and at the side seams to help it be a little more fitted. Then finished off the hem and cuffs.

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I feel like the shape is still a little off around the bust, but I’m not sure how darts would work with the shape of the jacket.

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The collar was folded under and over and then sewn down on the larger side.

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And on the narrow side I just pulled the corner forward and sewed it down.

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While I expected to like it zipped best, I think the shape becomes more flattering when it’s open.

Thanks so much for your help along the way with this jacket! I bought and prewashed the fabric almost 2 months ago, so it’s nice to finally have it finished. Another item to check off my 12 by 2012 list!

Thanks for stopping by!

Parties I Like to Link Up With:

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Looking Forward to Christmas

Can you believe how quickly November is flying by? I can’t believe Thanksgiving is next week! I LOVE Christmas… the music, the d├ęcor, the family celebrations, the coziness of the season, and most of all the reason for it. But I like to give Thanksgiving its dues. So you won’t see Christmas make its appearance in my home until the day after Thanksgiving. We’ve made it a tradition in our little family to get our tree and start decorating our home the day after Thanksgiving. Last year Nolan’s parents joined us for the tree hunt and we look forward to having them again this year.

But as I start thinking through what I want to do in our home for the holidays, I thought it would be fun to look back at my projects from last year. And, since most of you weren’t followers then, I thought I’d share them with you!

Tree Bread

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A Nelson family tradition that Nolan’s mom taught me to carry on. I did a full post on the recipe and how to make it HERE. This post has been spreading like wildfire all over Pinterest. It’s been fun to watch it get pinned and repinned.


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I made our three stockings and can’t wait to hang them again this year! I shared more about them HERE.

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Jace needed a stocking hook, so I shared how I semi-made his HERE.


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I did my own modified version of an ornament wreath. Explained HERE.

Best Tree Ever

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I appliqued a cute shirt for Jace to wear. Check it out HERE.


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We made gifts for our sweet Mary who watches Jace, as well as for friends and family. They were touched on in THIS Christmas round up.

Are you getting excited for Christmas? We tend to do handmade gifts among the adult siblings, so I’m thinking through what to make. And I’m especially excited to be a stay at home mom this year as I prepare our house and family for Christmas.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I’ve mentioned just a few times about a gray jacket I wanted to make. I was inspired by this one:


I think I was having a hard time working out the ruffle/collar in my mind. So then I saw this one:


I figured this one would be much easier to replicate. I’ll tell you more about how I constructed my jacket later, but for now, I need some help.

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Obviously, it’s not finished yet. When complete, the hem will be tucked in enough to line up evenly with the bottom of the zipper (kind of demonstrated here).

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I feel like it makes me look very flat chested. But I’m afraid if I take it in much it’ll get too tight to wear comfortably.

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It took a lot of fabric to make this, and I would have needed just a little more to make the cowl/neck as large as the etsy one. I don’t mind the collar as it is in the top two pictures, when I have it zipped up higher. But when I unzip it a bit, it seems like a giant point.

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I could try making it a rounded corner, kind of like above.

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I don’t mind the shape of the jacket so much when it’s unzipped (although I like the jacket as a whole better zipped), but the corner of the collar seems like an even bigger triangle.

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And here is the most awkward self portrait ever. If I stuck my tummy out just enough and had the camera on timer, I could show you both sleeves at once! Should I cuff it so the lining shows, or keep the sleeve solid gray?

So this is where you come in, I need your suggestions. What would you think might help with the…
--Any other suggestions???

Thanks so much for your help!