A cone filled with handmade, beautifully decorated sugar cookies!
Yes, it's a bit time consuming, but has a real "wow" factor!
Check out the full tutorial on Prudent Baby.
If you read this blog much, you know that I shop Goodwill quite a bit. For me, and I know how corny this sounds, it's a place to clear my head and flip the creative switch. I've told this to people before and many just don't understand. Or, I've had several people write in saying they just never "see" things at Goodwill or can't find anything good. With these comments as well as a few people asking what my thought process is while shopping Goodwill, I thought I'd start a series where I show things I find and the logic of how I'd use it. There are many times that a theme is seen and decor pieces are put together AT Goodwill.
Let's get started. These photos I'm showing today came from one store. During one trip.
First, I always find many many items that jump out as inspiration pieces. Here are a few:
Polka dot box. The famous disco dot pattern. Michael Miller revived the disco dot pattern and I'm so glad he did. It's everywhere! When I saw this, I thought it was perfect to design several occasions around. Baby shower, young girl's birthday, bachelorette party, summer girl's get together, to name a few. Uses for the box? It would be beautiful to sit a large carnation ball in as a centerpiece or line with tissue paper and use to hold favors, etc. Of course, just the box along is adorable and would make a great gift box. Throw in some Bath and Body Works products and a note for a friend who needs a pick me up?
Children's art. This was a poster size piece of children's art on canvas. Absolutely adorable! You know how I talk about backdrops a lot. This would be a great backdrop or focal point of a table for a baby shower. Especially if the theme of the shower or the baby's nursery is something included in this art. This is an amazing piece for party decor because it has so many common themes included: airplane, animals, firetrucks, robot, rocket, etc. A great piece to tie into!
Tea cup. Looking at it now, I should have put it against something to really get the scale of this thing. It was HUGE. First thing I thought when I saw it was spray paint it! Secondly, I thought 2 things: either using it for an Alice in Wonderland party or a fun tea party either for little girls or older. Uses for it may be holding a floral centerpiece or using as a punchbowl (seriously, it was THAT large). Of course, you'd have to line it with another bowl if you spray painted it to make it safe for food/beverage. Or, place a large round piece of wood on top and use it as a themed cupcake stand or serving piece. Lots of uses for this but it definitely needed to be painted first.
Firetruck boots. No transformation needed! Add them to a firetruck theme child's birthday. And do what with them? Create a floral arrangement or fill them with floral foam and stick in long all day suckers. Another idea is to stick something in the bottom of both of them to elevate a cup and fill the cup with fun striped straws like these from Garnish.
Chairs. Snow White and Cinderella. Very common children's themes. When I look at these, I see cupcake stands or a great place to hold a platter. In using them to serve food, you won't be covering up the characters and can use them to really add a larger decor piece to your party inexpensively. Plus, you can give them to the guest of honor afterwards! These needed just a bit of touch up paint on the edges and they would be perfect!
Dragons. I instantly think something like Harry Potter. This could easily be in the center of your table on a stand or an easel.
Now there are many times that the Goodwill stars align and you find several items that fit one theme.
Like during this trip, I saw this. A massive margarita glass. I'm thinking margarita party featuring various flavors, or a gathering of friends before a Jimmy Buffett concert to create a margaritaville concept. Luau, pool party... tons of themes.
How would you use it? Floral arrangement? Or place 3 regular size margarita glasses inside this one to create a graduated stand to display margarita cupcakes? Or, if you're serving margaritas on the rocks, it's a great serving piece.
So, in the next aisle over, there was this sign. Perfect to use in the margarita theme. You can't tell it from the photo, but the actual margarita is 3D in that it is raised and has depth. Really cute! Place it on an easel to add additional theme and color.
Then you're well on your way to a party!
So there you have it! A small glimpse of how my mind works while shopping Goodwill. For those of you that wrote in, I hope it's useful. :) Email or leave a comment below! I'm happy to make this a regular feature!
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Calligraphy is one of those things that I truly swoon over. It's so classic and ornate and awe inspiring to me that someone has that amazing talent! And more so, the patience to do it!
Calligraphy is also one of those things that I say I'm going to learn... someday. LOL
Well, I should have taken the time to learn it in my 20s. Because now, in my almost 40s, with all the stuff I have going on plus a child, I'm not sure learning is ever going to make it to the top of my list.
And why should it? Because I know Jennifer, of Calligraphy by Jennifer, and she has learned it amazingly well!
Jennifer, based in Louisville, KY (and I feel I should throw that out there because I'm a KY born girl myself), creates a breathtaking first impression to any invitation. Let me show you...
I love this invitation!
Of course, she also can do place cards and even doilies!
Her prices are amazing and she can do many many different styles of calligraphy.
Don't think she just does invitations. She also handles thank you notes, poems, table numbers, etc.
Will you be having a more formal occasion in the coming months that could use the elegance of calligraphy? Think: Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, New Year's Eve, a special bridal shower, your parent's 50th anniversary, etc. How about something for your children? Sweet 16, sorority event, etc?
Better get on the books now!
Paula of Frog Prince Paperie had 3 hours notice of her guests arrival! She threw together this perfect impromptu picnic with what she had on hand and it turned out beautifully!
See that beautiful pound cake? She shares the Paula Deen recipe on her site! AND, she sells those monogram circles in her etsy shop.
Paula's impromptu picnic is exactly the type of occasion we celebrate here at EC. Even with short notice, when you have a few basic extra touches on hand, you can make any gathering an occasion!
Patrice at Lemon Tree Creations shows you the full tutorial on how to create this beautiful set with porcelain markers.
You could have this setting in no time!
And what a great gift! Get started now to make sets as Christmas gifts for your friends who love to entertain! Don't forget to look for inexpensive white plates at Goodwill!
Great party favors! Or would be cute in a child's bathroom with supervision. I'm thinking of having a candy cane Christmas theme and thinking these would be cute in red/white in my bathroom.
I love the tagline she used to remind those they aren't candy: "Please enjoy, but do not lick- For eating soap can make you sick!"
Leaves can be cut from green paper or you could use real magnolia or other wide sturdy leaves.
Amy at Living Locurto made these easy and cute ice cream sandwiches on a stick.
Couldn't get much easier that this.
Take full size ice cream sandwiches straight out of the box.
Cut them in half, add a stick and dip them into sprinkles!
Use red, white and blue for July 4th or Labor Day.. or use whatever color combination matches your event! These would be especially cute at a tailgate. Cover them in sprinkles of your school's colors, keep them in a cooler until time to serve!