Cloth Party Favor Bags (With Free Printable!)

I don’t know about you, but anytime I go to an event where there are gift bags for the guests when you leave, well, I always feel like a celebrity picking up their “swag bag” on the way out of an Oscar’s party or something. Giving out little gifts to your guests is a great way to say “thank you for coming” and let them know you appreciate their effort and presence at your event. While it’s totally up to you what items you want to fill your favor bags with, we partnered with Canon USA to share a cute printable so you can customize some cloth favor bags to be as cute as the rest of the decor at your celebration (and you can do it all yourself at home)!

Supplies:
-cloth favor bags (I used these 5″x7″ bags)
-Canon Light Fabric Iron-On Transfers Paper 
Canon PIXMA TS9521C printer
-fabric scissors and iron
favor bag printable (right click to download)

Download the favor bag printables and print them out onto iron-on transfer paper. The Canon PIXMA TS8521C is perfect for craft projects, and Canon just came out with their new new light fabric iron-on transfers paper that we’re loving! You can use it for lighter colored fabrics and the color quality really comes through! If you want to make these at home we have one design option with four of the same designs on one page for making lots of smaller bags like I did and then another option with just one design per page that you can scale up as needed for larger bags. The files are already mirrored for you so they will look right once you iron them on the bag.Cut out your designs with scissors to leave a 1/8″ border all the way around the design. Place the designs face down onto the center of your bag and iron your designs on per your iron-on sheet instructions (I pressed mine with a dry iron on the cotton setting for 60-90 seconds).
Once your designs have cooled, slowly peel off the backing and reveal your design!

How sweet are those?! We made a few different types of designs so there would be one that could work for birthdays, kid parties, baby showers, weddings … basically any party you want!

Depending on what your party is, you can fill your bags with whatever you like! Things like candy, little toys or stickers are great for kid’s parties and small beauty items and candles are fun for showers … the possibilities are endless! I like that these cloth bags can be reused as gift bags again by the guests or they can also store lots of things around the house (I save and use small cloth bags like these when I pack for trips—super helpful for organizing my daughter’s suitcase to hold socks or hair accessories, etc.). I feel like I always appreciate extra little touches like these at events and I love that you can easily batch make these at home with a printer and an iron. These cutie bags are a great end to a fantastic event and I hope that they make it onto your party list soon! xo. Laura

Credits // Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop. Graphic Design: Mara Dawn.

Elsie’s thredUP Haul

Hi, friends! I am so excited to partner with thredUP today to show you the cute stuff I found on their site as well as share a code for YOU! ThredUP is an online thrift shop—you may have seen us talking about their quiz on Instagram a few weeks back! I love that shopping their site is environmentally-friendly and sustainable. Their quiz is a great resource—it helps you score your closet and learn ways to shop more sustainably. I love shopping pre-owned as much as possible, and I found some really great stuff on thredUP. They also have an awesome return policy in case something doesn’t work out, which is rare in the thrifting world! Let’s jump in.

This top is from Tory Burch and the pants are Michael Kors. I found them both at STEAL prices on thredUP … the pants were only $15! The estimated retail on the top was $95 and the pants $70. I love searching the premium and designer brands to see what they have!

I love this lace top I found and this skirt is Prada! I found it for $38 (the estimated retail price was $800—what?!). Pretty cool, right?

I’m always looking for unique outerwear and I found this black cape for $47 (down from estimated retail of $320!).

And last but not least, I found this orange dress for $9 that had an estimated retail value of $60.  It’s definitely putting me in the mood for spring!

If you’re new to thredUP, use the code ABM30 to take 30% off your first order! Use this link to shop! (Expires 2/29/20. Applies to new U.S. and Canadian customers only, see site for full terms.) What a DEAL. Have fun shopping and be sure to tag us on Instagram so we can see the thrifted treasures you find! xx- Elsie

P.S. One last thing! You can also use thredUP to clean out your closet and earn shopping credits as you do it. Learn more here. I just filled up two giant bags with items I won’t have time to sell since we’re moving soon!

Emma’s Home Office Refresh

I am super excited to share my home office refresh with you all today! I think an alternative title to this post could be something like, “The Power of Paint,” as the majority of what I did to refresh this space is paint it. But wow, what a difference!

For this project, I worked with The Home Depot. I checked out the Behr 2020 Popular paint colors and actually considered three different ones before I landed on the paint color for my space—Battleship Gray. I used Behr Marquee paint in a satin finish for my walls. And I highly recommend talking to the folks at the paint counter when you are working on a paint project. I’ve always found everyone at my local Home Depot to be super friendly and helpful. I actually asked them a few questions around painting my office desk and shelves, so I’ll share more of what they recommended to me (which I followed) below. I’ll also show you the other paint colors I was deciding between.

Before we dive into painting tips and tricks, let me share a few of my goals for this refresh. First, I wanted to go ahead and take down my faux living wall. I had it up for about a year and a half, and this past autumn I actually added fall color leaves to the mix too (which was really fun!). But I was ready for a change to something that was way more visually minimal and streamlined. We are also (casually) looking for a new home and although I don’t necessarily think we’ll move anytime soon, we are looking and for us it’s just a matter of finding THE house we both fall in love with. Anyway, with that in mind, I knew my faux living wall was something I would probably want to take down before we try to sell this current home (as even though I loved it, I could see other potential buyers finding it strange or off-putting).

Other goals:
-more storage, preferably open storage
-minimal and clean feeling
-space for a large calendar and small bulletin board
-space for my painting easel
-I wanted this space (which has no door or fourth wall) to feel like its own space/separate
-something that shows off my black and white floral file cabinets

Here are the three colors I was considering: Battleship Gray, Graphic Charcoal, and Back to Nature. Most of our home is decorated with black, white, grays, and greens. Of course we have other various pops of color like photos and throw pillows, but these colors make up the majority of our home and I wanted to stick to that general color palette. In the end, I decided on the gray because I thought it would show off accents, go with my cabinets and some other things I owned (like my office chair).

When you’re considering multiple colors for a paint project, it’s great to tape the paint chips up in the space so you can see them alongside any furniture and also with the light in the space. Another option is to buy small sample amounts of the paint you’re considering and paint small swatches on the wall. I think it’s definitely worth the extra effort either way to make sure you are happy with a paint selection before you buy your paint.

Painting projects are usually 50% painting and 50% prep and clean up work. Or at least that’s how it seems to go for me. Ha. If you are planning to paint interior walls in your home, here are some things to consider:

-Remove any outlet or switch covers.
-Tape off any seams or trim you don’t want to get paint on.
-Cover floors and any nearby furniture you can’t move away.
-Remove any wall anchors or screws and fill the holes.
-Prime! You may not need to depending on the color before and the type of paint, but ask the folks at the paint counter if you aren’t sure (show them pictures of your room from cell phone pics if needed).

I also decided to paint a few furniture items in my home office. We painted my desk as well as two floating shelves. Since one of my goals was for my space to feel very minimal and streamlined, I wanted the desk and shelves to feel almost built in or like they disappear in the space.

We talked to the folks at the paint counter about painting this desk and shelves. They suggested giving the surfaces a light sanding and then either painting two to three coats or sealing the paint once dry to give it some extra durability. I just completed this space about a week ago, so I’ll have to update you all how the desk holds up over time.

I am LOVE with how my home office feels. It feels a lot less cluttered and I think a big part of this is the open shelving unit I added. I still plan to regularly clean and donate anything I’m not using, but I do often have a random influx of supplies. So it’s nice to have storage that I can quickly access but doesn’t feel super cluttered.

Thanks for letting me share! And thank you to The Home Depot for sponsoring this post. Do YOU have any painting projects in your future? xo. Emma

Room Details: Paint/Behr “Battleship Gray,” floating shelves, metal shelf unit, grey storage baskets, black storage baskets, rug, file cabinets from Poppin that I covered with removable wallpaper. In case you’re curious, my sweatshirt is from Ban.do.

Credits // Author: Emma Chapman. Photography: Janae Hardy, Emma Chapman, and Ethan Randolph. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop. Project assistance: Ethan Randolph.

DIY Trim Accent Wall

It’s been a few years since I shared anything from my master bedroom, but I recently completed a super fun and (shockingly) simple accent wall I wanted to share with you. This could totally work in a number of spaces in any home but I love how it almost feels like the entire wall behind our bed is one giant headboard now. Ha.

This post is sponsored by Agility Bed. Maybe you already heard me talk about them in our podcast here … well, we’re partnering up on a fun giveaway! You can enter at the end of this post, so make sure to check it out!

We upgraded our bed to a king size this past year and we’ve had our Agility Bed mattress long enough now that I feel I can confidently share my review—which is that we both LOVE it. If you aren’t familiar, Agility Bed mattresses are a hybrid mattress so they are made of both foam and micro coils. The result is a super comfortable bed that sleeps cool. We also got a sheet set and pillows. I was initially a little skeptical about the sheets as I wash our sheets often (since we let our dogs sleep in our bed and, well, there’s a lot of dog hair) and I didn’t know how well they would hold up, but I was shocked that they actually get softer with washings. (!!!!!!!!) And their pillows come in traditional or side sleeper. We both got side sleeper and it’s the best pillow I’ve ever had. For real.

I wanted to try to show you the pillow in this post just so you could really see how it looks and maybe get an idea of how good it is. It’s a cool foam material. But it’s hard to make that translate in photos. I tried!

But that reminds me of one of my very favorite things about Agility Bed. They offer a 100-day risk-free trial. No joke! So you don’t have to take my word, you can try out their mattresses without feeling stuck if you don’t love it. I also love to see an offer like this because it tells me that the company is very confident you will love their product. And if you do decide to get an Agility Bed mattress, be sure to use our code: “ABM” to get $200 off your purchase. This accent wall is the visual upgrade, but the mattress and pillows are the functional upgrade in this room. And now you know. But let’s get back to this accent wall. In a nutshell, you simply use any trim (base boards, moulding, etc.) to add a design to a wall, then paint everything one color. It gives the wall a visual texture, but it’s not like a mural or wallpaper as it’s much more subtle.

It’s a very similar technique to this post about adding trim to closet doors (or any door).

Here is our bedroom wall before I started. I was aiming to make the space feel more finished and tied together visually, but I didn’t want to change where the art hung or the lamps (as I was happy with all of that).

We used a very small, thin trim to create my design. I was going for kind of an X but not a perfect X as that seemed, just not quite what I wanted for our bedroom. I wanted a clean, modern design but nothing too literal (if that makes sense?). There are SO many different kinds of trim and different kinds of designs you could create. This will change the supplies and the final look a lot, so I’m really just describing the project knowing that anyone doing this is going to have to customize it to their space.

You will need some kind of saw (we used a chop saw) for this project. You may also want a nail gun, but you could also add the trim to the wall by taping in place and nailing in by hand. Either way, use very small nails and take care as you work.

Cover/fill in all the nail holes with wood filler, as well as any cracks or seams like where two trim pieces had to be put together. Once that fully dries (check the package), sand down and prime.

Tape off any areas you need, then paint. Since my wall and especially my ceilings are textured, taping helped but I needed to go back and do touch ups at the end as well. The more textured your surface, the harder it is for tape to work and keep your edges perfect. Just go back in with a small brush—you’ll get there!

Also make sure to remove any outlet covers or other items (like the wall lamps I had) before painting.

I LOVE how this turned out! And I knew I did a good job when Trey saw the new accent wall once it was completely done and said, “Oh. It looks like a hotel room in here.” Husband approved. 🙂 Thanks for letting me share!

Now about the giveaway!We’re partnering with Agility Bed to give one lucky winner a 4-piece Sateen Sheet Set in the size of their choice and a set of cool memory foam pillows in your choice of traditional or side-sleeper style. I know I mentioned it earlier in the post, but I am obsessed with these sheets and pillows and am so excited one of you will get a set of each! To enter, just use our gleam widget below. The giveaway will close on 1/31/2020 at midnight CST and is open to U.S. residents only. Good luck!

xo. Emma

Credits // Author: Emma Chapman. Photography: Janae Hardy and Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop. Project Assistant: Ethan Randolph. In case you are curious, my sweater is from Ban.do.


AGILITY BED – Win a Set of Sheets and Pillows!

Crayon Wallet DIY For Kids (Great For Travel!)

Traveling with kids can be fun, buuuuut it’s not always easy. Leaving the house with toddlers in tow (even for short trips and errands) can be tricky, so it’s always a good idea to have snacks and activities nearby to occupy them as needed. I’ve had some sort of crayon wallet for Lola in her bag since before she could even hold crayons, and they have totally saved us time and time again as we’ve needed a distraction for her while we wait for food at restaurants or travel in the car. I’ve always wanted to make my own and it’s super helpful to have these spread out throughout your belongings (one in diaper bag, one in car, etc.). We are partnering with JOANN to create this cute project and I love that I could get everything for my project all in one trip to their store—saves this busy mom a lot of time! They also have a large kid’s section in JOANN and I’ve found so many family-friendly projects in their stores (it’s a great place to go if you need a present for a kiddo as well!). OK, let’s get to making our wallet!Supplies:
felt in 3 colors
fabric scissors and straight pins
double fold bias tape
wiggle eyes and glue
5/8″ glitter elastic
1/4″ gold elastic
shank button
crayons (the triangle ones are my favorite for little kids!)
-small blank notebook
-sewing machine

OK! You can either leave the front of your wallet blank or you can add a little felt detail or sew a patch onto it to make a little decoration for the front. I just cut out a little 4″ wide sun shape from yellow felt, sewed a circle on top, cut and glued smaller pink circles for cheeks, glued on some wiggle eyes and then added a smile with some embroidery thread. Easy and cute!

Next, you’ll want to cut two layers of felt that are 11″ x 6.5″ (the red one is my outside layer and the pink is my inside layer). You’ll also want a pocket that is 4.5″ x 6.5″ and a strip for the crayon area that is 2″ x 6.5″. Fold, pin, and sew a strip of your double fold bias tape down the length of one of your pocket sides. Then pin your pocket in place, lining up the edges without the bias tape along the right side edge of your inside layer. Sew with 1/4″ seam allowance around the 3 outer edges to attach pocket to inside layer. Then, pin your crayon strip to the left side of your inside layer about 2″ in from the outside edge (you can mark where the middle of the layer is with a few pins for reference).Next, use a pin to pin your 5/8″ elastic to the middle center of your crayon strip. Place a crayon next to the pin, under the elastic, and pin the other side next to the crayon so it creates a little loop for the crayon to be placed into. You want to pull a little bit so the elastic isn’t loose, but it doesn’t need to be very tight on the crayon to hold it. Keep placing crayons and pinning until you have spots for as many crayons as you can fit (mine fits 8 triangle crayons). Use your machine to sew across the elastic where each pin is and trim the excess off the edges.
If you have a decoration to add to the front, sew it on so it will appear where you want it on the front panel (make sure to leave room for your button at the end!) and then you should have two panels that look like this!
Place your outside layer and inside layers wrong sides together and pin and sew around the edge with 1/4″ seam allowance to keep all your layers in place while you add your bias tape. I would also sew down the middle line of the wallet as that helps the little book close more easily. Next, fold under the beginning 1/4″ of your bias tape (so it doesn’t unravel) and pin your bias tape to straddle one edge of your wallet and sew until you get all the way to the end of that side. Then, continue folding down and pinning your bias tape down the next side and you’ll see that the corner has a neat 45° angle look to it. Repeat for each side until you get back to the beginning. You’ll also want to add your elastic loop on the back side of your wallet, so make sure to look at that step below before completing the bias tape step. Once you reach your starting point, cut the end of your tape so it goes past the starting point about 1″ and fold under the last 1/2″ so you have a folded edge to end with. Pin and sew in place.To add the elastic loop, cut a 5″ long piece of 1/4″ wide elastic and cross the ends to make a loop. When sewing the left side of the outside panel, stick the ends of the elastic loop into the bias tape as you pin it so it will be sewn together in place after sewing.Once you’re done sewing the bias tape, you can fold the elastic back the other way and sew that section down so it will face the direction of the button more easily when closed (this is an optional step but makes it easier for kids to close on their own).Sew your button to the front of your wallet about 1″ from the edge and your wallet is ready to fill with crayons!

I love how this came out! Lola was eyeing all the crayons and paper I had out for a few days, so she was thrilled when this was done and she was finally able to get in there and draw. Putting stickers in the paper pocket is also a must for toddlers, so fill that bad boy up with some cute ones! These would make great birthday or holiday gifts for kiddos as well and if you want to up the age range a little, you could make it a little bigger with a bigger notepad and smaller slots for colored pencils as well. Happy sewing! xo. Laura

Credits//Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.