Wednesday, October 16, 2013

DIY String Art Tutorial

No doubt by now it is a well known fact that I love to make my own, one-of-a-kind decor.  So for the nursery, I wanted to customize baby girl's name in a way that wouldn't take up the entire wall since her name is so long.  Her room's colors are mint walls, white furniture, with grey, yellow and pink accents (particularly light pink and antique rose).  I purchased crochet yarn in all her colors from either Walmart or another craft store with mega coupon deals.  The white board backdrop was leftover from a shelf we put up, but you can find one at Lowe's and have them cut it to your specific size.  Make sure you get heavy duty picture hanging hardware too.
 This was super easy, and only cost me about $20 and 2 hours of my Saturday.

What You'll Need:

  • Nails- get them at least 3/4 of an  inch long, and definitely look for the kind with the large flat top, like box nails or wire nails.  Get more than you think you'll need.  Estimate at least 15-20 nails per letter.
  • Hammer
  • Wood Backing- Check your hardware store for the right size lumber, or make your own.  For the "Home" sign I used scrap pieces of wood from a shelf that fell apart and glued together each panel with construction adhesive. 
  • Picture Hanging Hardware- these come in kits or you can buy D-rings and 50-lb capacity wire separately. Just get the heavy duty kind.
  • Crochet Yarn- I like it better than the regular knitting yarn because you can use more of it for interlacing inside the letters.  I think the weight I used was size 5 or 10.
  • Printer- For your letter templates
  • Scissors

  1. Once your materials are purchased, pick a font for your letters and print off each letter on a separate sheet. You may want to cut them out.  Make sure it fits nicely on your wood and arrange them to the desired layout.

    You can use a bit of Scotch tape to hold letters in place
  2. Before you hammer anything in, attach the picture hardware to the back of your wood about 1/3 the distance from top to bottom.  (Closer to the top, but make sure the wire doesn't have enough slack to hang above the backing- hopefully that makes sense!) 
    This is upside-down.  The top is sitting on the counter.
  3. Hammer a nail into every corner and joint of the letters.  Use your discretion for how many you place, especially on the curved letters.  The more nails, the more places to weave your yarn.  You may want to put a dish cloth or other absorbent cloth underneath the sign to help dispel some of the force...and keep the hardware from digging into your counter.  
  4. Choose your string color for each letter. One at a time, remove a paper letter and tie the string onto one of the nails. Begin wrapping the yarn around, through, and diagonal across the letter. Make the outside lines of each letter and the cutouts heavier than the inside webbing. Finish by tightly knotting the yarn around another nail. Continue for each letter.

Keep the paper letters taped behind the nails so you don't get mixed up! 
That's it!  Just hang it up, being sure to use drywall anchors if no stud is available.  

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial!

Can't get enough? Need some inspiration? 
Scroll down for photos of the "Home" version I made for my sister.
A 3-tier shelf we had was falling apart, piece by piece.  The black paint was chipping and the wood was warped.

So I removed each shelf and glued the individual panels together using construction adhesive to create one piece 

Once the glue dried, I sanded the entire piece, attempting to maintain some of the chippy paint

The entire piece was then stained with Dark Walnut stain and Poly and allowed to dry completely

I printed the letters, replacing the 'O' with a heart

White string for the letters, grey for the heart
All finished!  Mr. Frog loved it so much he wanted to keep it for himself!

Thanks for reading and hope you have a great day!

-Mrs. Frog Prince

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A Starry Gender Reveal Party

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
How We Wonder What You Are...

Here is some of the decor from our gender reveal party.  The theme was Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. Colors were mint, yellow, and white.  The dessert table was laid out with sugar cookies, jelly beans, chocolate mints, pretzels, popcorn, and a beverage dispenser full of lemonade.  The snacks all surrounded the cake, which we cut in front of family and friends to reveal either pink or blue inside!  (The layer cake recipe is below).  My sister helped me with the decorations.  A jar of assorted pink and blue jelly beans in a mason jar were the prize for whoever guessed closest to the correct number of each.
I used an online word search generator to create the puzzle on the front of the game card in the shape of a star.  You can enter your own words!  We used possible baby names and gender-related words.

The back of the game card had trivia questions and old wives' tales- whoever had the most correct answers won a prize!

We cut stars from construction paper and strung them on some string to hang from the chandelier and across the bay windows.

It's a Girl!

We decided since we knew we were having a girl, it would be fun to do the gender reveal for our family  by cutting into a pink cake!  So I spent the afternoon baking this delicious recipe.  It was my first attempt at baking a layer cake, and much easier than I expected it to be.  Hope you enjoy!

Strawberry Layer Cake Recipe
With Oreo Pudding Filling and Cream Cheese Icing

 2 boxes Strawberry Cake Mix 
1 box Oreo Pudding mix
2 tubs Cream Cheese Icing
1 shaker Star sprinkles

  • Make cake mix according to box directions.  
  • PREP YOUR CAKE TINS!  This is a key to making nice, flat layers.  You will need 2 tins for 2 layers, or more if you want more layers.  Start by greasing the entire cake tin with non-stick cooking spray or vegetable oil.  Trace around the bottom of the tin on some waxed paper and cut out the circles- one for each tin. Place the waxed paper in the bottom of each tin and re-grease.  Then sprinkle a thin layer of flour around the entire tin, sides and bottom.
  • Fill each with an equal amount of cake batter and bake as directed.  To minimize the bubbling up in the center, bake at a lower temperature for a bit longer.  I baked at 300 degrees for 60 minutes.
  • Run a knife along the sides of the still-warm cake in the tin to loosen, then, using a mitt, flip onto a fresh baking sheet of waxed paper.  Stick each layer in the freezer for about an hour, turning them over about halfway through.  
  • Meanwhile, create your Oreo pudding using 1/2 the milk called for on the box and stick it in the refrigerator until needed
  • Once cooled completely, remove the cakes from the freezer.  With the flat side (bottom) up, spread a thin layer of Oreo pudding, and place the flat side (bottom) of the second layer on top.  Ice the top and sides.  This may sound easy, but I found it a bit challenging to get quite right!  I found the easiest way was by doling out big globs of icing all over the cake first, then going back through and spreading it until no pink showed through.  Top with star sprinkles and enjoy!

Hope you enjoyed the post!  Bye Bloggies!

-Mrs. Frog Prince

Our Gender Reveal for Baby Girl

We really wanted to do something special to announce the sex of our baby to friends and family.  Since we were going to be in Destin, FL the week following our gender ultrasound, we decided to get some cute shots  on the beach to make the big announcement.  Hope you enjoy these!

-Mrs. Frog Prince

Monday, July 29, 2013

Mint Nursery Style Boards

Boy's Room
Color Palette is mint, grey, orange

Wall Color: Valspar Icy Mint
Round Captains Mirror: Target
Woodland Rug: Land of Nod
Crib: Restoration Hardware
Pom-Pom Trimmed Curtains: Anthropologie
Rocking Chair:
Chandelier: DIY
Cloud Mobile: Etsy
Orange Porthole Contact Paper (For back of bookshelves):
Orange Pillow: Society6

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Hi Bloggies!  It's a DIY BONANZA!!!  Here is a compilation of a few fun DIY projects I've done in the past.

Get creative with detail!

Window Planter DIY

Take an old window and break out the glass. Paint and sand after to make it look aged. Use a staple gun to attach chicken wire to the back and screw in a heavy duty picture hanging hardware (hold at least 20lbs). Cut ceiling trim to make box planter and glue & screw to the bottom of window. Or screw in a pre-made metal planter from you local outdoor store.  You can add designs and details to make it one-of-a-kind.  Plant climbing roses, succulents between the chicken wire (make sure you place a backdrop cloth if you do this), morning glories, or just leave it as cute cottage decor!

Darling Dresser DIY
It seems just this easy...but I had a lot going against me the week (s) I spent refinishing this 1980's style dresser.

For the full tutorial click here: 

EASY Homemade plant markers DIY. I took a couple plastic playing cards (the extras you dont need) & cut out shapes for the markers. I painted them an eggshell color (outdoor paint) & glued two back to back for strength. I used a sharpie to write the names and dressed up the sharp corners using a corner stamper from a craft store. Super easy and really cute!

Homemade Plant Markers

I took a couple plastic playing cards (the extras you don't need) & cut out shapes for the markers. I painted them an eggshell color (outdoor paint) & glued two back to back for strength. I used a sharpie to write the names and dressed up the sharp corners using a corner stamper from a craft store. Super easy and really cute!  I would recommend removing them when you water, however.

Picture Frame Fixer-Upper DIY

We all have those ugly old, yellowing frames sitting in the closet with hunter green and gold matte, maybe even with a picture of a bass or flying mallards.  I know I had plenty of these handed down to us, just waiting to be brought back to life.  Well it is time to bring them into the light, and this decade for that matter.  First take out the glass, matte, etc so you just have the frame left.  If they are wood, give them a good sanding- get down to bare wood, right through the splintering old finish.  If they are metal it is a bit easier- just get a good metal-adhering spray paint and go to town.  Clean your wooden frames with some water and, once dried, paint a more neutral color using acrylic paint.  I used a dry brushing technique with both white and black, then sanded to let some of the natural wood come through for a more rustic look.  Seal with a coat of spray poly. Paint the colorful matte white or light grey.  Then find some neat pictures you have taken and convert them to black and white, and if you can, print them at home to save time and moolah.  Reassemble and hang over a mantle or on a bare wall! Easy-peasy and it only takes a few minutes and drying time!

Halloween Paper Bunting 

Super easy and on-the-cheap.  Here is a great way to add some spooky Halloween fun to your mantle.  The full tutorial for this paper bunting can be found here:  DIY Halloween Paper Bunting

 $25 DIY Halloween Wreath

This is so easy to make!  Purchase a natural grapevine wreath from a craft store- mine was about $4.  Black and silver ribbon ($4), Chinese lantern spray faux floral (about $7- seasonal), beaded glass floral vine (also about $7- seasonal) and some green floral wire ($3).  Use a coupon to get these items even cheaper.  Cut the lantern spray into several branches and spread them out around the wreath.  Attach stems with floral wire.  Uncoil beaded vine, arrange, and attach with floral wire.  Finally, tie ribbon into a bow and leave a little slack in case you want to use it to hang.  That's it!  Simple, beautiful and much cheaper than buying a pre-made wreath for the fall and Halloween season!

Hope you enjoyed this DIY Bonanza.  Until next time!  Thanks for stopping by~
-Mrs. Frog Prince

1st Trimester- That's a Wrap!

Weeks 4-12
This week marks the end of the first trimester!  Hooray for making it through 13 weeks without morning sickness, nausea, or complications.  I've been keeping up with our chalkboard door to track the week-by-week bump progress, but it has ended up being every couple weeks.   Between holidays, summer vacations, and pool time, this first trimester has gone by so fast.

I am blessed to have had very few of those ugly first trimester symptoms, and the worst was fatigue.  Adjusting to a life without drinking, medium-rare filet's, sushi, and wicked awesome roller coasters has been the other hard one.  About 9 months before I had found out I was pregnant, I quit smoking cold turkey.  I always hate to talk about smoking, much less admit that I was addicted since college.  But anyone who has or currently smokes knows how hard it is to give it up- the cravings don't go away entirely.  Until I got pregnant, I was actually doing really well in the cravings department, but I got pregnant and Boom!  I wanted a cigarette. So I eat a fruit Popsicle instead and focus on how good I feel, and how happy and healthy my baby feels.

Mr. Frog Prince and I just celebrated our 2-year wedding anniversary (6 years together) and it is amazing to see him turn into a Dad right before my eyes.  It's so hard to describe how a man changes when he creates a child, and nothing is quite so precious.

Now that trimester #2 is here and I have a burst of energy, I have never wanted to paint and decorate so bad in my life.  Nesting instincts are really kicking in.  The nursery plan and layout has been planned out and on the brain for a while now, if only we could reclaim the baby room from the two furry monsters...  We have been caring for my brother-in-law's two large dogs since we bought the new house.  Long story short- he lives 30 hours away in an apartment that doesn't allow pets, so his dad and mom took care of them until my father-in-law contracted lymphoma, when we took them in.  Since we already have 2 (well-trained) dogs of our own and acreage for them to run around, we figured it would be a simple job.  WRONG.  They are shedding, destructive, wild beasts. But otherwise pretty sweet dogs if you aren't hormonal and attached to your landscaping, gardens, furniture and wood floors...  Anyway, the dogs will be gone, things will be back to normal, and we will get our baby room back in only two weeks!  We are definitely counting down the days until I can paint those walls, hang curtains, place baby furniture, and stock the baby closet.

Here are 10 of my goals for the second trimester:

  1. Decorate the nursery
  2. Go on 20 minute walks every evening (take our dogs)
  3. Prenatal yoga every couple days and free weights in between
  4. Swim and exercise in the pool 2+ times each week
  5. Spend a few minutes each day praying and meditating- bonding with baby
  6. Talk to midwives and enroll in the natural birthing center
  7. Save, Save, Save money!
  8. Cook more dinners for Mr. Frog
  9. Start stocking up on baby diapers, wipes, lotions, etc.
  10. Take a special trip with Mr. Frog 
One-third of the way done and so much still to do...I absolutely can't wait to see this little guy/girl again!

-Mrs. Frog Prince

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Samus Aran DIY Project: Leg Armor

The Samus Aran DIY Project: Leg Armor

Before I give the tutorial on the leg armor, I want to say THANK YOU to everyone who has helped at each step of this project.  I especially thank my dear Mr. Frog Prince, for putting up with my seemingly endless hours of seclusion, obsession, and microwave dinners.  You are my rock and best friend!  To Nick, our awesome photographer, who helped this project take new life through your vision and incredible talent.  And to the readers, thank you, because you are why I made this a tutorial and continue this blog!  You have made this project a permanent fixture in the digital world and hopefully become inspired to create your own costume masterpieces.

So without further ado…the tutorial:

·        4 Green Plastic cups (dollar store pack of 12= $1)
·        About 9 large sheets of EVA craft foam (12” x 18” or larger if you have long legs- I’m 5’4”)
·        Masking tape
·        2 old flashlights (same size)
·        Bronze and Black paint
·        Liquid Nails
·        Paintbrush
·        Water
·        Elmer’s Glue
·        Stove/Oven
·        Pencil
·        4 Small colored lights (like the ones here)
·        Xacto knife


1.  Measure your legs- Take a measurement of the length from the inside of your thigh to the top of your knee.  Then from the bottom of your knee to your ankle. Then around your thigh (top and bottom).  And around your calves. 
2.  Cut your foam- Look at the shape of the cut out below.  The top should be a couple inches below your hip. Once you make one cut out that fits with the measurements you took in Step 1, trace it to another piece of foam and cut it out for your other leg.
3.  Using the first cutout as a template, draw the same shape a couple inches larger.  Don’t glue them together yet.  Use the flashlight ring to trace a circle onto the top layer.  Use a straight edge to draw the lines (see below) and cut them out with the Xacto.  Cut the circle through both layers, and the line through only the top layer.      

4.  Cut the bottom off of 2 green cups and spread the cup flat.  Tape it to the back of the top layer of foam.  Tape the rim of the flashlight into the hole (see below). Make sure you tape the top of the flashlight rim to the top layer of foam.  It is a bit difficult to see, but the majority of the plastic rim should stick out the back (this pushes the armor off your leg, making it appear more bulky). If you want a darker green behind the plastic, paint the area showing on the bottom layer.  You can then glue the two layers together and let dry completely.


This is how the thigh pieces should look once they are glued together
 4.       Lower legs- For the shin armor, just wrap a sheet of craft foam around your lower leg and tape it together.  Cut off the excess foam.  You will find a little circular metal piece in the flashlight around the bulb (the reflective piece) about the size of a silver dollar.   Use this to trace a circle on each side of the leg piece.  Use the same technique with the straight edge to cut out a similar zigzag down the leg on each side.  Use 4 more green cups (2 per leg), cut off the bottoms, spread out over the cut-outs, and tape to the inside of the foam (as shown below).  Glue the metal flashlight piece onto the outer circle area of each leg using the liquid nails.
**Hint- You should have made the foam wide enough at the ankle to slide over your foot. 

5.  Knees- Cut out two diamond shapes large enough to cover your knees.  These will be attached to the lower leg pieces at the center of the diamond.  Don’t glue them on until the lower leg piece has been painted and assembled.
6.     Inner thigh piece- You can turn on the stove or oven and, using the technique from previous tutorials, bend the foam piece around your inner leg.  Then attach the inner thigh piece to the outer thigh piece with glue and masking tape.

7.      Paint- Now that all four leg pieces, except the kneecap armor, are assembled, paint everything bronze.  Obviously don’t paint the green stuff J. Remember to paint the plastic flashlight ring as well! Give the edges some damage using black paint!

       Finally, attach the knees using glue and masking tape.  You are finished!  Here is the completed lower leg:

      I hope you enjoyed this tutorial.  When I get around to writing my post on the lighting effects I will show you how to light up those green cutouts to make your armor look even more awesome….if that’s even possible.

      Thanks again for reading!

      -Mrs. Frog Prince

      Monday, June 17, 2013


      To all you wonderful bloggies, I have some exciting news to share with you...
      Due Date: January 11, 2014

      Mr. Frog Prince and I ARE HAVING A BABY!!

      We could not be more excited!  I suppose this would explain my nearly 2-month hiatus from blogging.  We found out the end of April that we were expecting and life has just gotten crazy ever since.

      Words cannot express the excitement, nerves, emotions, and food aversions that have come with this little one over the past 2 months.  I am now 10 weeks pregnant, and we get to see our baby for the first time in just two short days.  My goal is to write a bit about pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood in addition to whatever else I usually blog about- costumes, DIY, food, and randomosities.

      Be on the lookout for some neato chalkboard updates, as this pocket door is the gateway to tracking my little bump.

      We are so excited to start this journey and I can't wait to experience the next phase in this adventure- telling the world about it.

      Thursday, April 25, 2013

      Natural-Eclectic Contemporary Bedroom Style Board

      Natural-Eclectic Contemporary Master Bedroom Style Board
      Arbre Rug in Rust: Joss & Main
      Flokati Sheepskin Rug: Overstock
      Pharmacy Wall Lamps: Wayfair
      Jacquard Euro Pillow: West Elm
      Cubist Bird Pillow: West Elm
      Natural Linen Duvet and Shams:
      Moon Prints: DIY- Print and Frame
      Mid-Century Nightstand: West Elm

      Adjacent Master Bedroom Wall
      Photos: DIY Print & Frame (find the photos here and here)
      Wire Vanity Stool: Wayfair
      Mint Desk Lamp: Style at Home
      Butterfly tray: World Market
      Antler Mount: Scout and Nimble
      Wallpaper: Anthropologie
      Black Door Color: Valspar Chalkboard Paint