Holiday Card Display with Caravan Printables

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Holiday cards make the season bright for me! It’s always nice to find cards from loved ones among all of the bills, catalogs, and junk mail in the mailbox. I love that photo cards are so commonplace now and that I get to see the smiling faces of our friends and family on their cards. Because I enjoy receiving holiday cards so much, I make sure to send them out to a pretty extensive list every year. With all the craziness that takes place in December, sometimes they end up being New Years cards, but I’m ok with that too.

I’ve never found a way to display the cards that we receive that is perfect for us and our home. This year I decided to try something new and I am so excited with how it turned out. I’ve always admired the oversized printable posters that Caravan Shoppe has available for the holidays. I downloaded their Bright Season Printable Poster for free and sent it to Staples to be printed as a 36 x 48″ engineering print. The large scale black and white print cost me less than $8! I secured the poster to my wall in my entryway using blue painter’s tape and then hung a snowflake garland to frame it. There was lots of space around the words on the poster to hang holiday cards. I attached glittery clothespins directly to the poster, but you could also use more painter’s tape to stick the cards on.

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Since it’s not quite December, we haven’t received any cards yet this year. I pulled out some of my favorites from past years so that I could share this holiday card display idea with you ASAP. I always keep the photo cards that we receive each year and it’s so fun looking through them when I pull out the Christmas boxes to decorate the house. I especially love to see the cards that I’ve created with our family photos to send out in recent years. It’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that we were a family of 3 just two years ago. Crazy!

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Just like in past years, I ordered Tiny Prints holiday cards from Shutterfly this year. In my opinion, navy blue can be incorporated into almost any color palette… it’s my favorite! I was so excited to find this navy blue Christmas design from Hello Little One that also tied in more traditional red and green foliage along with a beautiful deep turquoise color. The color palette on the tri-fold Fantastic Festive Foliage holiday card coordinated perfectly with our gorgeous family portraits that we took with Angela Garzon Photography earlier this year. And, because I’m crazy like that, I was also able to coordinate the envelope liner and the custom envelope addressing perfectly with our card. All that made this stylist very happy!

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Time for me to grab a cup of coffee and start stuffing those envelopes so that I can make the season a little brighter for our family’s loved ones.  If you’re looking for a fun way to make stuffing, addressing, sealing, and stamping a little less of a chore, check out my Holiday Preparation Party for ideas about getting all of that done with friends.

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Printable Poster Holiday Card Display

– Printable Holiday Poster from Caravan Printables ( I used this one)
Blue Painter’s Tape
Glitter Clothespins
– Hot Glue or Craft Glue
– Garland or Lights (optional)

Directions:

  • Print the poster as a 36 x 48″ engineering print. I like to use my local Staples print center for this. 
  • Secure the poster to your wall using plenty of blue painter’s tape rolled and hidden behind the poster along the edges. 
  • Frame the poster by hanging a garland around it if you wish. 
  • Use hot glue or craft glue to secure the clothespins onto to the poster in the negative space around the words.
  • Clip up your holiday cards as you receive them in the mail.

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Bright Classroom Valentine’s Day Printables

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I’m sure classroom Valentine’s Day celebrations take many forms these days. My daughter’s kindergarten class has decided that the holiday is really about spreading love and friendship, and I agree! I’ve never been big on the romantic side of the holiday myself. As a kid, I loved getting little gifts from family members and exchanging cards with my classmates. I want to pass those fun traditions on to my kids.

We really do try to keep the sugar-consumption under control as much as possible, so I love non-candy ideas for classroom gifts and treats. This year we decided we wanted to share a small Valentine’s Day gift with the friends that make school days a little brighter.

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I’ve included links to products I’ve used in this project for your convenience. If you purchase a product using my link I earn a small commission that helps me keep the blog afloat so I can keep sharing my ideas and offering free printables. Thanks for your support!

Maybe I’m easily impressed, but I went to a Taylor Swift concert a while back and I thought the flashing light-up bracelets that they handed out to the audience were so cool.  Granted, I don’t get to too many big-name, stadium-sized concerts these days, but the effect that the lights made when synchronized to the show really made an impression on me. My 5 year old also loved the bracelet that I brought home to her even though the lights only lasted a few days. With that as our inspiration, we chose these colorful light-up flash bracelets to gift to school friends for Valentine’s Day. I like that the bracelets have an on/off switch and the battery life is over 8 hours. The battery can also be replaced if you really wanted to. The bracelets come individually wrapped in a clear package that’s perfect for adding a bag topper to… no need to purchase any extra bags or packaging!

I designed 2 versions of the bag topper for you to use with the bracelets.  “You make my days so BRIGHT” and “You make my heart LIGHT UP” both work great for the light-up bracelets, but they could also work for heart sunglasses, glow sticks, or glow in the dark stickers.

Have fun spreading love this Valentine’s Day!

Just click on the version you want below to get the PDF printable file free for personal use. Print, cut, fold, and attach to your bags with double stick tape or staples.

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Dream Board Inspirational Printables

 

View More: http://sarahtolson.pass.us/tinyprintscollab

Now that we’re a couple of weeks into the year, how are your new year’s resolutions holding up? Maybe you’re better than I am, but I know that when I’ve set resolutions they never last very long. However, if I set intentions based on what’s important to me, I find that they guide me through the new year in a positive way. I’ve shared before that I like to chose one little word for the year that I can keep going back to. This practice along with creating a dream or vision board helps me stay on track with making progress towards my best self.

When I shared the details from my New Year’s Dream Board Party, I also put it out into the world that my word for 2017 is CREATE. I fell in love with this word for its versatility. Creating is something that I’m passionate about, but the word is also a reminder that I have the power to create a life I love. Besides the obvious party projects that I want to create, I also want to create different kinds of art, precious memories with my family, healthy habits, and new work opportunities.

View More: http://sarahtolson.pass.us/tinyprintscollab

Viewing a visual representation of your intentions on a daily basis really helps to set them in your mind. Dream Boards are such a great tool for this! Be sure to include words, quotes, and images that will remind you of your intentions for the future. And the good news is that creating a dream board does not need to be done on January first. It can be done any time of the year, so don’t feel like you missed the boat or that you need to wait for another fresh year. If you think you’d like to make a dream board for yourself, I want you to have the printable inspirational cards that I designed for my party guests.

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I found that printing these on 4×6″ photo paper at home worked really well. You can also just print the one you want on cardstock or regular printer paper. If you want to get fancy (or you just don’t have a color printer at home that you love) you can send the file off to be printed wherever you usually like to print your photos. Even if you don’t want to make an entire dream board, these inspirational prints would look fabulous in a frame.  Pick the one that speaks to your intentions, pop it into a 4×6″ frame, and place it somewhere you’ll see it each day.

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Enjoy these free printable inspirational quotes centering around the words create, dream, happy, family, love, and shine. Just click on the image you like to bring up the pdf file.

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Elopement Styled Shoot

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As I’ve been looking back on 2016, I realized that I hadn’t yet shared the details of this beautiful elopement styled shoot by Angela Garzon Photography. Angela and I connected through a mutual photographer friend and she asked me to participate in her shoot. As a stylist, I’m usually the one asking other people to contribute or participate in my projects. It was a nice change of events to be able to design the wedding stationery for Angela’s intimate elopement concept. 

The look for the shoot was earthy with a lot of texture and some pattern. Color played an important role with a natural palette plus pops of deep color including indigo and magenta.  I love the touches of sparkle that the crystals added. Angela did a beautiful job styling and photographing everything and the final result is seriously stunning!

I’m so happy that my stationery designs could be a small part of this project. Enjoy some of the photos of my work here and then jump over to Angela’s blog for a more in-depth look at the rest of the pretty details. 

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There’s more! Check out everything else here.

Photography: Angela Garzon Photography | Styling: Angela Garzon and Holly Sutor | Flowers: Avoiding and Making Florals | Stationery: Party a la Mo | Cake: Diana’s Desserts

Mermaids and Whales: a Shared Kid’s Room

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As I prepare to pack up my home of the past 10 years, I have something I want to share with you. I want to show you the shared room that I put together for my baby boy and 5 year old girl. Our current home has just 2 bedrooms, so when we found out we were having a boy I knew I wouldn’t be putting together a nursery just for him. A shared boy and girl room seemed like a challenge, but I put a lot of thought into making it a space that my girly girl would love while still keeping some boy-friendly areas. My daughter chose the theme, but then I took over from there. She wanted mermaids, so I generalized the theme to make it a little more gender neutral. We went with Under the Sea… mermaids for her and whales for him!

We painted the room a beautiful light aqua color (BEHR Clear Aqua). Most of the furniture was left from my daughter’s original nursery and we added a mini crib for the new baby. The bedding and accessories are a mix of handmade, Target, Pottery Barn, Tiny Prints, and a couple DIY projects. Some of my favorite details can be found below.

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  • Mermaid Scale coffee filter wall art
  • Big girl bedding of mermaid sheets and a wave quilt
  • DIY bubble chandelier
  • Coral, the handmade mermaid doll
  • “A Mermaid Sleeps Here” pillow (see below to make your own!)

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  • Navy and aqua quilt that was handmade by my aunt
  • Personalized name pillow including all of his birth stats
  • Wood California rattle
  • Customized whale canvas with the quote “Dream Big, Little One”
  • Handmade wood rocking horse that was lovingly crafted by my uncle
  • “You Are Loved by Me” watercolor painting from my baby sprinkle decor

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Not long after I completed the kid’s room, we decided to put our house on the market. It sold quickly and we’re all excited to move into a new, bigger house where the kids will have their own rooms. I guess you could say that the mermaids and whales will be going their separate ways soon. They did look awfully cute together while it lasted though. I hope you enjoy the details as much as I do.

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If you have a little mermaid of your own, I’m happy to share the file so that you can make your own “A Mermaid Sleeps Here” pillow. Just download the file here and upload it to Tiny Prints to make a Favorite Memory pillow.

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Sources

Wave Quilt Set and Whale Wall Shelf: Target Pillowfort | Portraits of the kids: Stills by Hill Photography | Canvas Art and Custom Pillows: Tiny Prints | Full of Heart Mermaid Print: Ann Shen | CA State Rattle: Bannor Toys | Mermaid Doll: Green Stitches | Bailey Sheet Set: Pottery Barn Kids | Baby Memory Book: Lucy Darling | “You Are Loved by Me” Watercolor Painting: The Prints and the Pea

Introducing Declan Paul!

Birth Announcement6If you follow me here on the blog or on other social media channels, you probably noticed that my posting and interaction dropped off quite a bit during certain points of the past year. It wasn’t personal… I was just pregnant! Pregnancy translated into the usual exhaustion for me, but also left me uninspired and feeling less than creative. Those are unfortunate side effects when you run a creative business, but the end result was completely worth the struggle.

Today, I’d like to officially announce the arrival of my new baby boy! Declan joined us on March 24th and the past 2 months have been filled with baby snuggles, nursing sessions, and diaper changes. For all the trouble he gave me during the pregnancy, he’s been an easy-going baby since he was born. It feels a little like he has always been with us and it’s amazing to know that he has completed our family.

After his birth I couldn’t wait to get word out to our friends and family about our new addition. A round of calls and texts went out to our nearest and dearest first. Then came the Facebook and Instagram posts, but I couldn’t stop there. Paper stationery is just so important to me that I had to mail out a formal birth announcement as well. I love receiving them from others, so I figured I’d spread a little squishy newborn love via the postal service.

Being the proud Mama that I am, I’d send each and every one of you a paper announcement if I could. But since that just isn’t possible, you get a blog post with photos of the gorgeous birth announcements that Tiny Prints was generous enough to send me. I chose this modern Arrowed Intro design in lightest turquoise by Elm + Gray for Tiny Prints.  I loved how the colors tied in with his Baby Sprinkle decor. The card design itself is gorgeous, but I couldn’t resist using some available options to add rounded corners and pearl white shimmer paper.

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Now, I am the first person to advocate for professional family photos, but I also know that hiring a pro is not always practical. We had a posed newborn session with our favorite family photographer, but I just couldn’t wait to get this first round of announcements out. The solution was to use a photo that I shot and edited with my iPhone. It didn’t hurt that Declan was loosely swaddled in an arrow blanket that tied in with the card design nicely. I just did a quick black and white edit to the photo to make the announcement look more cohesive. Don’t let a lack of perfect professional photos stop you from creating a beautiful birth announcement

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If you appreciate little stationery details like me then you’ll agree that the matching envelope liners and personalized postage made the final package extra dreamy. I mean, when’s the next time the kid will have a postage stamp with his name on it??

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Thanks for sticking with me as I struggled through my creative slump. I’m feeling more myself and getting into the swing of being Mama to my two beautiful kids. More party inspiration, recipes, and DIY will be coming your way very soon!

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Favorite Things Exchange Party Printables

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When Jenny of Craft That Party asked me to put together a printable package for her Favorite Things Exchange, I jumped at the chance. Her styling is beautiful and she made my stationery and decor look so great! I’ve been getting a lot of requests for this Favorite Things printable package in the past few weeks, so I wanted to share what can be done with it. The black+white element really pops and also pairs nicely with the sweet florals. Use this printable invitation to set the stage for your very own Favorite Things Exchange. Carry the theme throughout your party with the coordinating banner, straw flags, signage, and more.

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Favorite Things Exchange parties have gained popularity over the past few years and for good reason… they are so much fun! My girlfriends and I participated in an exchange over the holidays and I left with some amazing gifts. To learn more about how to host an exchange of your own and to see more of Jenny’s gorgeous party, hop on over to ediTORIal for the details. You’ll love this unique idea for hosting your next girl’s/ladies/mom’s night out.

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Party Vendors:

Photography: Allison Duda of A JOY Photography

Party Styling: Craft That Party

Invitation, Favorites Banner, Straws, and Cupcake Toppers: Party A La Mo

Tribal Garland, Favor Boxes and Tags: Piggy Bank Parties

Honeycomb Balls: Shop Sweet Lulu

Plates, Napkins: Birthday Express

Pumpkin Spice and Caramel Apple Cupcakes and Cakepops: Samantha’s Sweet’s

Floral Sugar Cookies: Bambella Cookie’s

Chocolate Covered Oreos: Bella’s Bakery and Bowtique

2 Holiday Hostess Gifts for $50

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Are hostess gifts required? Probably not. Are they nice to receive? Most definitely! With all of the social events going on during the holiday season it doesn’t hurt to be prepared with a few thoughtful gifts that would make any hostess smile. I shopped around IKEA and found the makings of two pretty fabulous gifts for $50 total. For a nice touch, scroll down to the bottom of this post to download the free printable 4×6″ prints that coordinate with the gifts.

I’m so proud of my friend and fellow party stylist Kylie of Made by a Princess. She co-hosted the very first Meet, Greet, and Tweet event at IKEA San Diego earlier this week and it was a huge success. Some of my favorite local bloggers and business owners came out to this first-of-its-kind event. Kylie asked me to be one of the stops on the scavenger hunt in the paper department. My theme was gift giving/wrapping, and IKEA provided me with a $50 gift card to show how that amount could be used for products around the store.

It was surprising that $50 actually stretched into 2 complete hostess gifts. As I shopped, I was inspired by the reds and silvers of the Vinters collection for 2015. The first package I created is a holiday drink gift that includes a silver wine bucket, 2 red champagne glasses, a bottle of a yummy mulled apple drink, cocktail napkins, and a matching bar towel. The second gift is baking themed and it’s perfect for holiday cookie making. Along with an oven mitt, timer, measuring spoons, and holiday cookie cutters, I also include a print of my favorite recipe for No-Fail Cutout Sugar Cookies in a double-sided frame stand.

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This 3 pack of ribbon was perfect to decorate both gifts. In the wine bucket I also added a string of 12 battery operated twinkle lights among the red paper shreds to up the sparkle factor. The effect was really pretty against the bottle and red glasses.

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Enjoy these free printable 4×6″ prints that fit nicely into the double-sided IKEA Tolsby frame. The recipe is especially nice in the frame because you can stand it on the kitchen counter while you’re baking. Recipe ingredients are on one side and the instructions are on the flip side.

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Have fun showering your host or hostess with a little extra love this holiday season!

 

 

Trick or Treat Halloween Printables

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I just realized that despite the 100 degree temps in Southern California we really just have a little over 2 weeks before Halloween. This realization lead to some quick decorating around the house yesterday and a last-minute photo session so that I could get these free halloween printables into your hands. Just in time for you to whip up some treat bags and toppers for Halloween parties and classroom celebrations.

This mini printable package includes treat bag toppers, 2″ party circles, and straw flags. The bag toppers are pictured on yellow striped goodie bags (5″ x 7.5″) from Bakers Party Shop, but they would also look great on clear cello bags. The party circles can be used as stickers to seal treat bags or attach them to a length of a decorative straw to use them as cupcake toppers. Of course the straw flags are cute on patterned Halloween straws, but they can also be attached to wooden party picks and stuck into sandwiches, cupcakes, etc.

Check out the images below for some inspiration and download the printables at the bottom of this post.

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Download your free Trick or Treat printable package here. If you create something fun with them, I’d love to see your photos… tag me @partyalamo on Instagram, FB, or Twitter. Happy Halloween!

Love Watercolor Printables

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Love is in the air! At least it is in my house where I couldn’t wait until February to decorate for Valentine’s Day. The heart-filled holiday has always been a favorite of mine. This year I chose a color palette of deep red, fuchsia, and magenta. For my mantle I crafted a yarn pom-pom garland, painted some $1 wood heart frames from Michaels, and designed these love themed watercolor prints.

As my Valentine gift to you I want to share these 8×10″ love prints as a free download for personal use.  I printed mine at home on heavy linen paper, but cardstock would work great too.

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Just Add Sunshine Inc. made these rustic clipboard frames for me and I love them for displaying photos and prints. So easy to switch things around and keep my decor fresh. The curvy gold frame is an unfinished wood frame that I purchased from Cut It Out LLC and painted with metallic gold acrylic craft paint.

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Right click on the images below to download the linked 8×10″ prints. Print, frame, and hang them for quick and easy Valentine’s Day decor.

XOXO

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