Friendship Brownies in a jar

friendship brownies

Share the love with this fun and tasty treat in a jar!  Make  friendship brownies in a jar mix.  Recycle a spaghetti sauce jar or a pickle jar and use pattern paper from your stash.  You don’t have to be elaborate on the packaging because we all know that it is what is on the inside that matters most.

Materials for Friendship Brownies in a jar:

  • Ball Quart Jar (Jarden Home Brands)
  • Americana Acrylic Paint (DecoArt): Soft Blue.
  • Patterned papers: brown/white Swiss dot; red/white polka dot
  • Off-white cardstock
  • Red wool felt scrap
  • Wool roving: brick red; white
  • Blue Tiny Alphas Alphabet Stickers (Making Memories)
  • Acrylic gems: blue, 32; clear
  • Silver clip
  • Jute twine
  • Brownie mix ingredients (see recipe)

Basic Supplies for Friendship Brownies in a jar:



  • Duraclear Varnish (DecoArt)
  • Scallop-edge scissors
  • Adhesives (Beacon Adhesives): Fabri-Tac; Zip Dry Paper Glue
  • Needle felting tool and pad

Directions for Friendship Brownies in a jar:

  • 1. Paint jar lid. Let dry. Apply varnish.
  • 2. Cut 4″x12″ rectangle from paper to fit around jar. Adhere to jar. (Note: Wrap rubber bands around paper to secure while glue dries.) Use scallop-edge scissors to cut two 1″x12″ strips from cardstock. Glue to top and bottom edge of rectangle.
  • 3. Print and cut out pattern.
  • 4. Needle felt heart red. Draw flower center and needle felt white. Glue flower to jar as shown.
  • 5. For label, cut a 1″x2-1/2″ from paper. Adhere stickers. Cut 8” length from jute, thread through clip and clip to label. Tie label around jar.
  • 6. Adhere blue gems to scallop edges and crystal to center of heart.
  • 7. Write or print jar mix instructions on remaining cardstock; cut out and glue to back of jar. (see photos)



  • 1 2/3 cups  granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup  NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Baking Cocoa
  • 1 1/3 cups  all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon  baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon  salt
  • 3/4 cup  NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • chopped nuts
    PREHEAT oven to 350° F. Grease 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Pour brownie mix into large mixer bowl; stir. Add 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) melted butter or margarine, 2 large eggs, 2 tablespoons water and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract; stir well. Spread into prepared baking pan. Bake for 18 to 25 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out slightly sticky. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Dust with powdered sugar. Makes 2 dozen brownies.

by Melony Bradley

Easy handmade cards

Create easy handmade cards with the  Home + Made paper decor line called Cottage Living.  The stunningly simple card trio looks great and is very easy to make.  Use the extra little strips on the back side of the pattern paper to make a woven card.  It is nice to have a stash of cards for the unexpected.

country cottage card trio horizontal

Supplies for Easy handmade cards:

  • Home + Made – Chalkboard stickers, Gold Stickers and Country Living Paper collection, Clear Acrylic Stamps #732792
  • Cardstock
  • Paper trimmer or scissors
  • White ink
  • Acrylic Block
  • Tape Runner
  • Jute Cording
  • Button

Instructions for Easy handmade cards:

Card one – Do what you love

Do what you love card

  1. Cut card stock to 8×8 and fold in half to form a card base of 4×8.
  2. Cut pattern paper to 3.5×7.5 and adhere to front
  3. Use a contrasting pattern and cut a piece to 2×4 and adhere to the front.
  4. Stamp sentiment on card stock label.
  5. Tie jute around label and add a button to the knot.
  6. Adhere to the card front

Card Two – HI card

hi card vertical

  1. Cut card stock to 6×12 and fold in half to form a card base of 6×6.
  2. Cut pattern paper to 5.5 x 5.5 and adhere to front
  3. Cut the letters H and I from the pattern paper.  Adhere to a piece of card stock.  Trim off excess and adhere to front.
  4. Tie jute around front Panel

Card Three- I adore you

I adore you card horizontal

  1. Cut card stock to 8×6 and fold in half to form a card base of 4×6.
  2. Cut strips off back side of pattern paper sheets.
  3. Weave the strips and adhere to front
  4. Stamp sentiment onto card stock on bottom right.




See it is easy to make your own cards with a few supplies that don’t break the bank. If you like this style be sure to follow on:

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Welcome to my craft room.  Some days I call it my studio, and other days I refer to it as my crap hole of creativity.  The first picture is of what it looked like before I got my mits on it.  It was absolutely beautiful.  It was a dream walk in closet for most people.  (I am not most people) The dressing room had ample storage and two full length mirrors, it was by most peoples standards a dream feature to have off a master bedroom.  However I would never in a million years have enough clothes to fill the space.  Now if we are talking crafting and sewing supplies we are having a whole different conversation on the need for storage and space.  I really wanted to have a space where I could shut the door when it became a disaster. (which is most of the time) My house is always clean but my creative space rarely is.  Thus, my desire for a door.
craft room before

I did the unthinkable to most people and I knocked out the center set of closets.  GASP!!! the horror.

Craft room pano

Hardwood floors were added so that it would be easy to keep clean and it would match my master bedroom. I left the vintage wallpaper up because it is neutral and really cool.  (you can see it better in the picture below) Plus the thought of removing wallpaper gives me a headache.  I hope to add a cool light fixture in the ceiling but for now cheap strip lights do the trick. Decorations and a rug are desperately needed because the space is soooo white!  There is an echo when the doors are closed and no stuffs on the floor.

paint storage ideas studio craft room
My paint storage is in need of a few more tiers.  I need to get my neutrals on there.  It is made with a $3 towel bar and wood trim that is painted white. If you cannot tell, I love DecoArt Americana paint and it is my go to acrylic.

button and embellishment storage ideas

I also have a slight addiction to buttons and embellishments. The little jars are from Ikea and I am not sure what I would do if they discontinued them.  My eventual goal is to get my beading supplies into them too.  Yes, I am a beader.  There are only a few mediums that I have not tried and liked.  I do not knit or crochet. Yarn is not my thing unless I am weaving.

pen and marker storage
Pens, colored pencils and markers are something I use on a regular basis and like to have them handy.  Spending money on cool storage is not my idea of fun.  These are giant tin cans from my daughters preschool.  I like them because they were free and I can move them around.

So now that you have seen my photo ready pictures I thought I should let you in on my reality.  Keeping it real is very important to me.  This is the reality of what my room looks like after a deadline.  I am pretty much always on a deadline or have 5 projects going at once.   I would love some suggestion on where to add color to the room.  Right now it is very very white.

reality craft room

I hope you have enjoyed seeing the inside where I create and have some suggestions for where I should add color.

Craft room before and afterIf you would like to see other craft room that are pretty and have fantastic ideas for storage check out this round up of ideas hosted by Angie of the Country Chic Cottage.

CRAFT ROOM_zpsep030zhc.jpg~original

Happy creating!

Country Chic Valentine decor

Country Chic Valentine decor – My littlest child thinks we need to have decorations for every holiday and I tend to agree.  I love to create and decorate and make our house a home.  She is old enough to help and definitely has a great sense of what she likes.  She posses a huge amount of creativity for a preschooler and it makes my heart swell with joy.  The option to color the hearts red or pink was given to her.  She declined because hearts come in all sorts of colors and sizes and she wanted to make the hearts pretty with all the “stuffs”.   This artistic mom could not have been happier with that statement.  We made these with a the box of Christmas craft supplies that were never quite incorporated back into my craft stash and were sitting in the corner of my room patiently waiting to be sorted and put away.  The bits of twine, ribbons, buttons and fabric were all left over from a craft night before Christmas.  Even the straws were left over from another festive occasion.  I keep a large box of Poly-Fil on hand so we did not have to purchase anything to make this decorative trio.   Making the decorations from leftovers made me happy and we created something that can be displayed for many more Valentine’s Days to come.
muslin heart trio - country chic valentine

Supplies for Country Chic Valentine decor:

  • Duck Cloth or Canvas
  • Pencil
  • Fabric scissors and utility scissors
  • Sewing machine and coordinating thread
  • Embroidery floss and embroidery needle
  • Iron on letters and Iron
  • Paper Straws
  • Bamboo Skewers
  • Fairfield Processing – Polyfil fiberfill
  • Adtech Pro100 Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Paint brush
  • Americana Acrylic Paint – White,
  • DecoArt Metallic Luster –  Gold Rush, Iced Espresso
  • DecoArt Dazzling Metallics – Gold
  • Washi Tape
  • Misc. buttons and trim in neutral colors
  • shredded brown paper
  • rocks 

Country Chic Valentine decor Instructions:

  1. Gingerly paint the terra cotta pots with a coat of white paint.  If you go too heavy on the paint you can remove excess paint while it is damp using a cloth or use sandpaper after the paint is dry.  Allow the paint to dry then wrap the washi tape around the lip of the pot.  Use your finger or a cloth wrapped around your finger to apply the metallic paint around the edges and along the rim of the terra cotta pot.  Start with the Gold Rush then layer on the Iced Espresso.
  2. Trim jute and ribbons to size and hot glue on bits of old doilies, rickrack or other natural colored embellishments.
  3. Draw one large and two small hearts on canvas and then cut out the shapes with scissors.  Water down Gold paint and drizzle over fabric randomly.  Let the paint dry.  Add hand embroidery details around the hearts.  Place right sides together and sew the pieces together leaving a small opening at the bottom for the Poly-Fil and to place over the straws.  Iron on the sentiments of your choice to cotton ribbon remnants.  Hand sew or hot glue on the decorative embellishments.
  4. In the bottom of the terra cotta pots, place a few small rocks and generously add hot glue into the bottom to adhere the rocks..  While the glue is still warm insert a bamboo skewer into the glue.  Then place the straw over the skewer and hold in place until the glue cools.  The skewers provide stability.  Add the Poly-Fil to the hearts.  Add a small dot of glue onto the top of the straws and place the hearts on the straws through the opening at the bottom.  Let the glue cool and close off the opening with embroidery floss applied in a decorative fashion.   Add in brown shredded paper.  I run leftover cardstock through the home office paper shredder.

Tip: Hot glue a few rocks in the bottom of terra cotta pots to weight them down and to keep objects centered.  Use an old credit cards to smooth the washi tape ripples.

Valentine heart flag with Olyfun

Valentine heart flag

Create a Valentine heart banner with Olyfun.  The flag is super easy to make because the material does not fray and cuts like butter.  I used a heart die cut from Sizzix.  You can layer up to 4 layers of the material over the die but I like to do two at a time.  To adhere the fabric together I used  Fabri-Tac glue. If you have a low temp glue gun you can use that as well.  If you have a sewing machine that is also an option.  The 12×12 OlyFun sheets can be found in most craft stores or big box stores with a craft department. If they don’t have the sheets they might have it by the bolt.  Either way it is pretty inexpensive .  I used my sewing machine to make a quick straight line across the top.  You could hand sew or use glue.  I might go back and ass some glitter and more hand detailing.  But considering this is supposed to be a quick craft I did not.  This piece was actually made in 10 minutes including drying time.  The fabric glue dries super fast.   Last minute I added buttons in coordinating colors.  The flag needed a little pop.  if you do not have a die cut machine you can hand cut the hearts.

I’m excited to be participating in the Valentine edition of Craft Lightening sponsored by The Country Chic Cottage30 Minute Crafts, and 100 Directions.

heart buttons

Material for Valentine heart flag with Olyfun:


Valentine heart flag with Olyfun Instructions:

  1. Place die on machine and add two layers Oly*Fun.  Run through the machine.  Remove hearts and repeat as many times ass needed for your flag.
  2. Glue the two layers together for each heart and then glue onto the black 12×12 sheet.  Let a few hearts go off the edge.  Trim off the excess.
  3. Cut the slate grey sheet of Oly*fun in half.  Fold over and sew on the top edge of the Black 12×12 sheet.
  4. Glue on the yarn and buttons.
  5. ENJOY and

    cl valentines day_

    olyfun valentine banner

dyed muslin favor bags

muslin favor bags favor bags

Dye muslin favor bags  to customize wedding favor bags perfect for giving small gifts at a wedding reception, bridal luncheon, rehearsal dinner, shower or even Valentine’s Day gifts.

Materials for muslin favor bags:


  • Sewing machine and black thread
  • Sizzix Big Shot Die-Cutting System and Dies: Primitive Hearts, Small Flower
  • Rit Liquid Dyes: Purple, Denim Blue, Kelly Green, Lemon Yellow
  • Alphabet stamps and black pigment ink
  • Adhesives: Stick; Beacon Adhesives Gem-Tac and Fabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive

Basic Supplies muslin favor bags:

washing machine, small mixing container, mixing spoon, hot water, rubber gloves, old towel, iron and pressing surface, straight pins, plastic tablecloth or trash bag, rotary cutter and mat.

Directions muslin favor bags:

1.  Machine wash cotton muslin. Cover work surface with plastic tablecloth or trash bag. Wearing rubber gloves, mix 1/2 tsp. Kelly Green, 1 Tbsp. Lemon Yellow, and 1 cup hot water in small mixing container. (Note: Water should be 140º or hotter.) Stir with mixing spoon. Submerge fabric and 12” string length into dye bath. Let set for four minutes. Remove from dye bath; squeeze out excess dye and rinse under cool tap water. Squeeze out excess water; wrap in old towel to remove water and dye. Let dry. Iron on pressing surface to remove wrinkles. Repeat process for lavender fabric, mixing 1/8 tsp. Purple, 1/8 tsp. Denim Blue and 1 cup hot water.

2. Use rotary cutter and mat to cut two 6”x7-1/2” or two 4”x5-1/2” pieces from dyed fabric. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse small scrap (approximately 1-1/2”x2”) of white muslin to fusible webbing using iron. Use alphabet stamps and solvent ink for sentiment of choice to stamp muslin. Heat set with iron on medium setting.

3. Die cut heart from burlap. Die cut flower from black wool felt. Pin burlap heart to front of bag and machine-sew around edges, leaving small opening for stuffing. Lightly stuff with fiberfill and sew opening closed. Machine-sew stamped sentiment 1/4” from edge using straight or zig-zag stitch.

4. Steam 1/2” seam at top of bag pieces; machine sew using zig-zag or straight stitch. Place right sides of bag together and sew sides using 1/2” seam allowance on left, bottom, and right sides of bag. Steam seams open. Turn bag right side out and press.

5. Use fabric glue to adhere black felt flower on bag. Adhere rhinestone on flower center using Gem-Tac. Adhere dyed string onto top of bag (for handle) using Fabri-Tac. Let dry.

easy sew tote tutorial – make a boys water bottle sling using Oly-Fun

easy sew tote tutorial – make a boys water bottle sling using Oly-Fun

Easy sew sling tutorial

Easy sew totes are perfect for a kid on the go.  My kids are a pretty active  and as a family we are always on the on the go.  Being on the go with kids means that someone is always hungry or thirsty.  One way I have tried to teach the kids independence and individual responsibility is to have them prepare their own snacks and drinks.  I made each kid a sling that will hold a refillable water bottle and a small snack and maybe a piece of gum or two.  The kids like them and it is one less task I have to manage.  They know that at the 5 minute warning their bags need to be pack or they go without.  It might sound strict but I hear so much less complaining than before.

The material I use is  Oly*Fun from Fairfield.

Directions to make the easy sew tote:

Cut a piece of the Oly-Fun material to 9×5.

easy sew ply fun projects for kids

Sew three of the four edges together with a 1/4 seem allowance.

kids diy water bottle sling tutorial using oly fun

Turn bag inside out.

How to sew a water bottle tote with olyfun beginner sewing project

Sew a diagonal seam on each side. This will allow the bag to sit level and give room for the snacks.

easy sew trim on tote bias tape tutorial

Cut a 1 x 12 inch strip. No need to cut on the bias to create the trim. The material does not fray.


To create the straps cut a strip that is 1 inch wide – I measured my son for the length.


Fold the material into thirds and sew closed.

My son also requested hoops to hook on his keys and his whistle.  I used the left over strap piece to make this.

hook, purse interior

Sew the straps  inside of the pouch. I make a square because I think it is extra durable.

Olyfun trim bias

Since it was such and easy sew tote. I made my daughter one in less than a half hour after making my first one.


floral resin necklace

floral resin necklace
A floral resin necklace inspired by the jewel tones of vibrant flowers, create this resin pendant following the step-out photos listed in the instructions. Create and embellish one for every special woman on your list – personalize with beads and inspirational sayings, too!

Materials for floral resin necklace:

Bronze wide hobnail bezel with hammered edge
Worldwin DoubleMates Creamy Cocoa Cardstock
Darice Bronze findings: Eye Pin, Clasp; Jump Rings, two
Darice Bronze Chain, 8” lengths, two
Swarovski AB Garnet Crystals, 4mm
Assorted beads: pink freshwater pearls, two; orange glass round; yellow glass teardrop
Phrase or verse (from recycled book)


  • Needle-nose pliers
  • The Crafter’s Workshop Flower Frenzy Mini Shape and Doodling Template (TWC157S)
  • Susan Lenart KazmerJeweler’s Grade Crystal Clear ICE Resin
  • Jacquard Lumiere 3D Dimensional Metallic Paint & Adhesive: Burgundy, Poppy, Bright Gold, Bright Copper

Basic Supplies

scissors, paper trimmer, palette knife, disposable cups, wooden craft stick, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions for floral resin necklace:

For floral insert, position mini template on Creamy Cocoa cardstock. Apply random dollops of Burgundy, Poppy, Bright Gold, and Bright Copper on paper as desired. Use palette knife to spread paint evenly across stencil. Lift stencil straight up and set aside. Let dry completely; trim to fit inside bezel.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions to mix Ice Resin in plastic cup. (Note: There is a 45 minute working window once resin is mixed before it will harden.)resin in cup

Add small drops of Ice Resin inside bezel. Position stenciled paper inside bezel; press firmly to remove air bubbles.
bezel before resin

Randomly adhere crystals on flower centers. Adhere verse or phrase from recycled book. Pour remaining resin into bezel. Cover bezel with plastic or glass container to prevent dust from settling on surface.

pouring resin into besel

resin in bezel drying
Once bezel has cured, string beads on eye pin; form loop at end using needle-nose pliers and attach to bezel. Position teardrop bead on end by opening loop on bezel, adding bead and then closing.umber-bg congrats-prompt”
Measure two 8” chain lengths. Open jump ring at top of bezel and attach chain lengths; close jump ring. Add jump ring to left side and attach clasp. Attach jump ring to other side of chain.


quilted santa

scrappy santa

Make an adorable Quilted Santa is easily created using fabric scraps, embellishments, and simple sewing.

Materials for Quilted Santa

  • Fabrics: red/white polka dot cotton, 1/4 yd.; beige muslin, scrap; white muslin, scrap
  • Wooden shapes: ovals, 1”, two; tag, 2”
  • Fairfield Poly-fil Fiberfill Stuffing
  • Black beads, two
  • Clear acrylic rhinestone, 9mm
  • Decorative flowers with jewel centers, two
  • Jute: natural, 6”; black, 8”
  • White yarn, small amount
  • Thread: white, black, beige

Tools for Quilted Santa

  • Sewing machine
  • Dritz Button Cover Kit, 5/8”
  • “Believe” stamp of choice
  • DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paints: Lamp Black, Snow White, Baby Pink, Neutral Gray
  • Black pigment ink
  • Beacon Adhesives: Fabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive, Gem-Tac Permanent Glue

Basic supplies

  • paintbrush, iron and pressing surface, sewing needle, scissors, rotary cutter with self-healing mat,
    sanding block, wax candle, straight pins, newspaper (to cover work surface), ruler, twist tie, rubber band
  • Directions for Quilted Santa

    1. Using rotary cutter and mat, cut two 5” red squares (hat), one 3” beige muslin square (face), one 4” white muslin square (beard), and one 2”x4” and 2”x3” white muslin strips (borders).
    2. On covered work surface, paint wooden ovals (eyebrows) Snow White. Paint two 1” circles (cheeks) on face Baby Pink. Paint small eyebrow lines on eyebrows Neutral Gray. Let dry.
    3. Paint tag Lamp Black; let dry. Randomly rub candle on tag; paint Snow White. Let dry. Lightly sand tag, revealing distressed areas.
    4. Pin face to center of beard; machine-sew face to beard along two adjacent sides close to edge. Using black thread, hand-sew beads to face on side opposite of face stitching as shown. Machine-sew beard onto center of red hat square.
    5. Fold border strips in half lengthwise; press with iron. Machine-sew borders along top edges of face, overlapping ends as shown.
    6. Wrap white yarn around hand several times creating small bundle. Slip bundle off hand; tie together using loose strand through center of loops.
    7. Pin red hat squares together with wrong sides facing. Cut 8” length of natural jute and pin ends inside top edge of squares to form loop. Machine-sew along three sides, securing jute hanger in between squares.
    8. Stuff square with fiberfill through bottom opening; machine-sew opening closed.
    9. Adhere yarn mustache between cheeks using fabric glue. Adhere wooden eyebrows above eyes using gem glue. Let dry.
    10. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to cover one button with red/white polka dot fabric for nose. Hand-sew nose to face.
    11. Stamp “Believe” on tag using black ink. Adhere flowers and gems to tag. Let dry. Use black jute to tie tag to ornament hanger. Knot ends.

    noel button wall art

    Noel button wall art
    The noel button wall art is a festive addition to a wall in your home. Buttons spell out a holiday sentiment that creates unique cork board wall décor. Tack Christmas cards, holiday snapshots, and other memorabilia along the edges.  Display the Christmas cards you have received in style and keep the clutter contained.

    Materials for button wall art:

    • Elmer’s Foam Cork Board, 10”x10”, four
    • Fabric squares, 12”x12”, four
    • Buttons: Buttons Galore and More, assorted; Laura Kelly Designs Hand Dyed Buttons, Black Beauty, Bold Brown, Radically Red, Castle Grey
    • Paper clips, four


    • Rotary cutter and self-healing cutting mat
    • Elmer’s X-ACTO Knife
    • Beacon Adhesives: Fabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive, Gem-Tac Permanent Glue
    • scissors, iron and pressing surface, ruler, pencil, sanding block, transfer paper

    Directions for button wall art:

    1.  Using ruler and pencil, trace four 10”x10” squares on foam side of cork board. Cut out squares using X-ACTO knife. Use several passes to cut, making light score along traced lines on first cut, and gradually cutting deeper into traced lines until cuts are complete. Use light sanding block to sand down edges as needed.
    2. Using self-healing mat and rotary cutter, cut four coordinating 12”x12” squares from fabric. Iron the fabric flat on pressing surface.
    3. Center the fabric on foam cork board squares. Fold edges over the back of cork squares and adhere using fabric glue. Let glue dry.
    4. Access patterns by selecting the info button near the main image, then select the pattern icon. Download and print patterns onto paper. Transfer letter to center of each fabric square using transfer paper.
    5. Adhere buttons, alternating colors and sizes, inside letters using tacky glue. Let dry.
    6. For hanger, measure and mark 4” down and 4” across back of each square. Cut 2” horizontal slit on mark using X-ACTO knife. Open paper clip and insert into slit; spot glue with tacky glue if needed.