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The Violet Hours
Brooklyn, NY
Crafter, writer, and magazine editor. Looking for lovely things to share.
Recent Activity
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I love a pretty cookie. I really do. But I come up against a very confusing battle of the senses...a stand-off between my eyes and my stomach. I want to eat this, says my tummy. I want to admire this, say my eyes. Tummy wins. Sorry, sense of sight. You'd win at the museum. Check out these amazing cookies over on my other blog, Everyday Fun on Parents.com. Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2014 at The Violet Hours
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One of the best parts about living in New York City during the holiday season are the sidewalk Christmas tree vendors. Every few blocks, you walk through a tunnel of yummy pine air, over a temporary, trampled carpet of green needles. And you see people walking home with a tree slung over their shoulder, just ripe for the decorating. To give the tree it's best chance at a lasting through the month, the vendors will slice off the bottom of the trunk (kind of like cutting your roses before putting them in water). So the sidewalks are often littered with... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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'Twas almost the night before Christmas and...you have to stuff some stockings, mass produce crafty gifts for your book club, or keep your kids busy and away from the television. Here are 3 fun crafted gifts that satisfy all of the above. I call these gifts "Half Craft" because they are just dolled-up basics. A little paint, a little bling, and they feel special and unique! Here's how they started... And here's what I did... Necklace: I painted 1 whole bead (beads from Oriental Trading) in pink nail polish, and 2 half beads to match. I let them dry, then... Continue reading
Posted Dec 23, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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At this point, you're either... Wrapping gifts Scrambling for that last minute gift Needing something to keep the kids entertained during the start of winter break. Here's a craft that satisfies all three of those needs. You can use it as gift wrap, as an actual gift, or as a distraction from the fact that it's only 3 days until Christmas and your kids are bouncing off the walls! Here's how you do it... What you'll need: Small tote Fine tip Sharpie Tape Paint pens Print out a cross stitch pattern to the size that you want it (leave a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I bought these cork coasters from Muji the other day, and I felt immediately inspired! Ornaments, gift tags, pictures frames...but, with Christmas crafts being my main focus here, I stuck with the ornament theme. The options are literally endless, but I wanted to use the cork as the material calls for...to be poked. So first I did this really easy one with colored brads from Oriental Trading. (I'm obsessed with colored brads, but I rarely actually use them to fasten two things together.) So simple! And the stitched snowflake one took a bit more time, but I printed out a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Mention the word garland and I'm all ears. Bunting has the same effect. I even have a whole pin board dedicated to my love of the swag. Honestly, I think I could start a blog solely on the topic of DIY garlands. Hmmm...there's an idea in there somewhere. Anyway, back to Christmas crafts. I really wanted to make some dipped wooden beads (I got these from Oriental Trading...just $6.25 for 24 beads!) and so I decided to combine them with my garland obsession. First I started by dipping them horizontally, and then thought it would be fun to turn the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I don't know what it is, but everytime I see a glass cloche in a magazine or blog, I'm instantly attracted. I've yet to own one in my life, so I decided to make this festive little one out of a seltzer bottle. (Reminds me of this lovely bottle, no?) Instructions to come later today...I promise! Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Have you finished all of your holiday wrapping? I'm going to venture to say the answer is NO. I am all about simple wrapping paper (yes, butcher paper is my fave) with fun tags and decorations. But with the volume of gifts that we wrap this time of year, they can't require too much labor. When I started making this tag, I had the ornaments hanging from a glued-on stick. That felt too fragile. Then I created a tree branch out of yarn. That felt too laborious. So I tried it with this very simple design, using the circle stickers... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Maybe this trend is so 2012 (don't say 2011, please) but I can't get past my love of feathers. I love them in decor, I love them in kids' craft, and, really...who can resist a boa? There's no reason in the world that feathers and Christmas can't hang out together. Which is why I crafted these 3 different DIY feather ornaments. Here's how you make 'em... SUPER-EASY PAINTED FEATHER ORNAMENT What you'll need: White feathers Craft paint Paintbrush Glitter glue Make it: Paint stripes, dots, or zig-zags on your feather in various colors of craft paint. Let dry. Embellish design... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I'm a big fan of wine corks as a crafting supply. (This in no way reflects how much wine I drink. It doesn't. Really. Ok maybe a little.) But I've never actually made anything with a champagne cork. (Bubbly gives me the hiccups.) After making this little elf, my mind is racing the the characters that a champagne cork can become. Bring on the Veuve! What you'll need: Champagne cork 2 skewers 2 toothpicks 4 beads Felt Scissors Scallop shears Black straight pins Tacky glue Washi tape Make it: Hat: Roll a small piece of felt into a tall cone... Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Don't get me wrong, I love a good time-consuming craft undertaking every once in while, but sometimes it's fun to whip up a quickie with nearly immediate satisfaction. Like this Paper-Strip Christmas Tree Ornament, for example. You can make this with kids as young as 3 years old (my toddler son Oliver made one that looks more like one of these fake-tree-cell-phone towers), and you likely already have the supplies around the house! Here's how you do it... What you'll need: Tongue depressor Green craft paper Scissors Glue Stick Glitter paper Enamel dot stickers (Doodlebug Designs: Sprinkles) String Make It:... Continue reading
Posted Dec 15, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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You may not realize it, but your kids do—tomorrow marks the final 10-day countdown to December 25th. Need some distractions to make the time fly by? Starting tomorrow, come and visit daily for some new and spontaneous ideas! Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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It's been almost 2 years in the making, but my book, Project Kid, is ALMOST here! After months of crafting, then months of copy editing, my first kids' craft book is at the printer, on its way to being a real, 3-dimensional object. While it looks like it actually exists by the look of the photo, this is actually a digital rendition that Artisan made for the publicity materials. To my patient blog readers who have dealt with my comings (having a baby) and goings (having another one just 18 months later) and my very erratic posts, I promise there... Continue reading
Posted Dec 12, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Ok, so I often read about new toys or products being developed, and I think, wow, that's a smart person. I want to be that person, or at the very least, know her. I read about this great new product Toy Mail this weekend on The New York Times and not only did I read the article from beginning to end, but I actually gave money to their Kickstarter campaign. Here's how it works. You download an app to your iPhone and record a message. You hit send and it delivers that message to one of these cute little critters... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I'm always on the hunt for turkey Thanksgiving crafts that feel fresh and new. And strangely, it's kinda hard to find really good ones. First off, they are always brown, yellow, orange, and red and they are usually made from construction paper glued to a pinecone or a hand cut-out. Now I have no issue with those colors, or those materials for that matter, but I feel that the turkey craft deserves a little more attention, don't you? Being that Thanksgiving is in the crisp season of fall, I always feel that a turkey craft should feel warm and cozy,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 19, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I have been known to love a wreath in my day, and more than ever, I feel that Halloween is a very wreath-worthy holiday. Now that my kids are of the Halloween-appreciation age, I'm so into making Halloween crafts (Full disclosure: I used to not be the biggest fan of crafting for this day!). Like many other pinners on Pinterest, I am obsessed with string art! And I must say, it is so beyond fun to do. It looks hard and tedious but I swear to you it's not! Scroll down to read how to make this wreath and the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 29, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I know, I know...it's been an eternity. I keep promising to blog regularly, but I keep getting distracted by other craft projects, magazine stories, and blogs! Speaking of blogs, I've started blogging on Parents.com at a blog called Everyday Fun. Check it out! It's very, well, FUN! Now, back to the good stuff...Halloween! I love pumpkins and I've done my fare share of complicated carvings and etchings. But with 2 toddlers and too much work, I have no time or patience for a big production. So here are 3 super-fun, 5-minute pumpkin decorating ideas! 1. I'm obsessed with these neon... Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Wait! Stop! You're in the right place, I swear! Let me explain... As most of my dear readers know, I've been working on a kids craft book for the last year or so, and finally, it's done! Yay! Well, my portion is done, least of which was the selection of the title. (drum roll.......) Welcome to PROJECT KID! It's the name of my book, and now my blog, and hopefully the name of many crafty endeavors in the future. For the time being, not much is going to change here except the name. The content, aesthetic, ideas, and point of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 2, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Ok dear readers, I need some advice! What do you call these? Pipe Cleaners or chenille stems? The copy editors at Artisan Books is not familiar with the latter, but at Parents mag, that was the p.c. way to go. Yes, I was raised with pipe cleaners and I'm not worried that my kids will start smoking if they craft with them, but I want to use the term in my book that most people use nowadays. I beg you...leave a comment, email me, tweet me your response! Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Ok, before diving straight into a new post about something lovely, creative, and amazing, I want to just recap the last 2 (or so) months of silence. What may seem like a "vacation" or "break" was nothing of the sort. Here's a quick synopsis... 7-day (straight) photoshoot for my book 2 days later, I flew to Hilton Head with my husband, kids, and husband's family While in HH, I wrote the text for my book Wrote and shot this story for Mom.me while in HH 7 days later, drove to Atlanta from HH to extend the family visit Continued to... Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I am so so sorry for my long absence of late, but I'm in the final days crafting for my book and even a spare hour to blog is impossible to carve out. So...I promise I will be back in a few weeks with more great posts, and even some sneak peaks into the world of producing a 100+ project craft book! Don't give up on me...great things are on the horizon! (Here is a photograph of my son Oliver "helping Mommy work." His understanding of work is going to be very hard to clarify.) Continue reading
Posted May 10, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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{via I Spy with my Salad Eyes} If you don't love confetti, you don't have a soul. Ok, maybe it's a mess to clean up, but even the cheesiest of metallic confetti has a glittery, sparkly, ephemeral impact. Check out these surprising ways to use it.... Put a packet of confetti in your wedding invitation. I'm beyond in love with this one that I found on Pinterest! How awesome are these tube confetti throwers from Oh Happy Day? Love love love... I still love the confetti gift wrap that I blogged about two years ago! Love the look but hate... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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Yes, you heard me. And yes, you are reading The Violet Hours blog. I know, decorating with fruit may sound super grandma to you, but after you look at this post, your mind will be forever changed! Oh Happy Day always gets it right, and this fruit balloon garland proves it. I'm obsessed! I specifically sought out a pineapple wallpaper because I won't deny that I love it. And how perfectly crafty is this color-by-numbers one by Jenny Wilkinson found on Design*Sponge? Call me crazy (Michael-husband, I hear you the loudest), but I could really get behind a glass fruit... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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This quote has a way different meaning now than ever. I'm too glued to the New York Times to report on cute stuff today. I think we are all seeing some amazing human nature as the general public is banding together to help the city of Boston. Found on Steph Lawson Design Etsy page. Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2013 at The Violet Hours
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I am so not alone in my love for Instagram. It has definitely pulled ahead as my favorite form of social media. At this point in my life, I have time to look at pictures and not much else! Some of my Instagram pics are among my favorite I've ever taken (like this one of my daugther Sommer at her first music class), and I'm desperate to free them from my digital devices and let them live in my world so I can actually touch them. Here are some great ways to do that... LMNOP blogged about Origrami, a service... Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2013 at The Violet Hours