DIY

DIY HALLOWEEN COSTUMES FOR LITTLES

Update! I luckily had a third son so baby Harry Potter, here we are again!
Monthly pic… platform 9 3/4 never looked so cute!
Lightening bolt tattoo (and other super awesome HP tats) HERE.
His cardi and pants are from June & January in onyx.
Lightening bolt rattle HERE
Same scarf and glasses as below.
Here are some of my kids’ past Halloween costumes that are easy to DIY!
DIY HALLOWEEN COSTUMES
1. HARRY POTTER
This one is my absolute favorite! You know what a Harry Potter nerd I am. We tell Ari Harry Potter stories (the non-scary ones) now, so he loves looking at this picture of himself!
Last year, he decided to be Harry Potter again! Needless to say, we were thrilled!
OUTFIT: khaki or black pants, white button down shirt, black or gray vest or v-neck sweater. Cloak purchased here.
SCARF: I knit this using this pattern
GLASSES: here. I popped the plastic lenses out
SCAR: Purchase our lightening bolt tattoos HERE for the whole family!
2. MARTY MCFLY
I still giggle at this one. Ari obviously didn’t get who he was but people loved it! The Back to the Future Trilogy is one of Jeffrey and my favorite movies (next to HP obvs).
OUTFIT: jean jacket, white button down with blue/red plaid, maroon t-shirt, red suspenders, red puffy vest, tight light wash jeans, white Nike high tops
“Look at them moccasins!”
3. SADNESS
New fav!!! Link to the DIY HERE
4. AC SLATER
He has the curly hair, so why not? Links HERE
5. THE ORKIN MAN
Ari is obsessed with our Orkin man, George. I think he thinks of George as a grandpa?? George retired that year, so it was only fitting to pay homage to him.
Outfit: white button down, pleated khakisred hat
Details: I made the epaulets out of red felt with a white button sewed on. I just winged it whip stitched them on the shoulders BUT I did it backwards. The button side is supposed to point towards the neck of the shirt.
You can download the Orkin logo I made here.
Stick on eyebrows/mustache found at a costume shop.
I covered Max in little plastic spiders to make it more Halloween-y!
Tutorial for the spray can is below. There was probably a way easier way like using a silver coffee can, but I used what I had!
Punch a hole through the oatmeal can top for the rubber tube (bought at a hardware store)
Tape the tube inside and on the top of the can
Punch holes for the string before you tape the top on
Wrap can and hose with duct tape
6. CARDINAL
I made this for Ari’s preschool costume, but count it anyway as a great Halloween DIY.
Tack/sew red boa around the turtleneck. I used yellow felt for the feet and attached it to Ari’s crocs. For the hat, I glued felt on top of a foam visor from the craft store. You could always just stick feathers on a red hat and call it a day!
7. BABY NERD
This was my laziest costume but effective. Max already had the white onesie, cardi, and bowtie. I just put masking tape on Ari’s Harry Potter glasses (above)!
8. HASHTAG THE PANDA
Our love for Jimmy Fallon is STRONG.
Similar panda costume HERE.
You can download the name tag I made HERE, but you could easily buy the name tag stickers and write “Hashtag”. If you don’t get it, you don’t get it. If you do, it’s pretty hilarious.
9. TINKER BELL
Ari adores Tinker Bell! His preschool had costume day, so we went with his hero!
Tutorial for the costume and educational art HERE.
This year is most likely directed by Ari who is now 5! Sad! So far, he wants to be Sadness from Inside Out. I’ll update you with the progress! Good luck, mamas!
-L

PARTY IN AN ENVELOPE

It was my boys’ last day of preschool today! It’s actually a year-round school, but it was their last day with their current teachers who have loved and cared for them like they were family. I think it’s always the most meaningful to write a handwritten note, but to step it up a notch, I added a little handmade banner and confetti to let them know they were THE BEST! My sister and I have this thing with “the best”. It’s the best donut, it’s the best movie, it’s the best book… we tend to think a lot of things are “the best”, and these teachers really were the best!!
You could totally use this idea for any occasion by switching up the saying on the banner. How cute would it be to get a “congrats” or “happy birthday” party in an envelope?! I’d for sure go [delightfully] inappropriate when sending it to some of my friends… but we’ll keep the blog PG.
Here’s what you need:
Pencil
Paper scraps
Scissors
String
Hole punch
2 pieces of washi tape
Time: 20 minutes
You can freehand cutting the letters or trace them out with pencil. I actually have a cutting machine but wanted it to look more homemade. I made the letters about 2 inches tall.
Using the scraps from cutting out the letters simply cut little squares to make confetti.
Punch holes through the top of the letters and string.
 Tape one end of the string to a piece of cardstock and wrap the letters around it, securing the other end with tape when finished.
Fill envelope with confetti (and add a handwritten note)!
Voila! You’ve made the tiniest party in an envelope! 
We’d love to see what you come up with! Tag us on instagram @loveandlion so we can see!
-L

MODERN MINT & NEUTRAL BABY SHOWER

We LOVE planning parties, especially baby showers! It’s so special and important to shower that mama-to-be with lots of love and thoughtful details. I was honored to co-host with 2 fabulous ladies, Dara and Emily, friends of the guest of honor, Leeron. It will be the second boy for Leeron, but we didn’t want to go all blue blue blue. We went with white, neutrals, and pops of mint and sage green. 
Lauren of Rock Paper Scissors designed the invitation, and I really went off of that for decor. It always starts with the invitation for me! The big letter “R” is just a paper mache letter from the craft store… use painters tape to mask off a straight line, paint, and remove tape. 
Diagonals, squares, and triangles mixed with all white flowers and live moss made for a simple and pretty party! 
The drink tags were my fav! Guests remembered which drink was theirs by the baby picture of the mama and pop-to-be and the color tag. Leeron’s amazing husband, Matt, secretly emailed me their baby pics, I changed them to black and white in photoshop and cropped to a square. Just punch a hole in the corner of the picture and the colored square and tie with string. The color tag was nice so that you didn’t have to have a different baby pic for each guests. Just use different colors for each pic. Leeron was so surprised (and immediately removed that one embarrassing photo from her tween years)!
Use painters tape to mask off a diagonal line. Paint and remove tape when dry! Super simple!
Every baby shower needs a diaper cake, right? See our TUTORIAL HERE. I used double stick tape to add on the triangles of leftover scraps from the garlands to keep that geo-mod vibe.
Cake topper by Rock Paper Scissors to match the invite.
Every party needs Campfire Crispies, especially a baby shower when you can be punny and say “She’s about to POP!” These were SO. GOOD. Fluffernutter flavor: toasted marshmallow and peanut butter with a white chocolate peanut butter coating. Droooool. Order HERE.
And of course us being us, we needed a tattoo station with the party’s hashtag (from our little shop HERE)! 
Here’s the actual party! It was at night, so I took the photos above so you could see the details!
 The simplest projects make the biggest impact. Jenni and I have done these live moss letters several times. Simply cut the tops of paper mache letters you can find in any craft store, and stuff with live moss from your florist!
Even though Leeron couldn’t enjoy it, we all loved the signature cocktail “The Leeroni”.
Hostesses with the mostesses: Dara, me, Leeron, Emily
The gorgeous and glowing mama-to-be, Leeron!
Loved throwing this baby shower for a very deserving mama!!!
-L

NURSERY REVEAL: WILDLIFE UNDER THE STARS

Is that really a theme? Wildlife under the stars?? Haha! I am not a super fan of nursery “themes”. I prefer to just create a room that is full of pieces I can’t live without… hoping that in the end, it all comes together and looks cohesive. To be honest, life was chaotic during my entire pregnancy. We were doing so much to our house because we thought we would be putting it on the market (and moving) before Remy got here. YEAH. FREAKING. RIGHT!! So glad that didn’t happen! Although it nearly killed me, I am glad we made so much headway ( painting the inside of our entire house) because there were things that should have been done to our home a long time ago just for US to live in and enjoy.
After working on our home so much and gratefully enduring the busiest season yet for Love & Lion’s Etsy shop, I looked up and realized about 4 weeks out that we had a tiny bit of paint on the wall and that was it! I immediately just started online shopping madness, and just hoped that everything would come together and look like what I was envisioning. I truly work best under “pressure”. We kept the walls neutral with Behr’s Chocolate Froth, which is also the color we have chosen for our entire house. I. LOVE. IT! I wanted a bold navy color somewhere in the room! We chose Behr’s Rush Hour
for the ceiling to create a “night sky” for the room. I truly love how it all came together! I think I even had more fun doing Remy’s nursery over Amara’s ( our first) simply because I didn’t think about it too much. My husband picked up a Petit Collage print on one of his work trips, and brought it home. I loved that he was already thinking of this baby before we even knew the gender! It meant so much to me that I immediately decided to build the nursery around the colors in that print!
So here are all the deets…

I really focused on keeping the room simple and clean! It isn’t a super large room, so filling it with clutter is senseless to me. I didn’t want things hanging on the wall or sitting on shelves just because! It is so much easier for baby no. 2, in my opinion, because you know what you actually put to use and what you don’t. 
I thoroughly enjoy walking down my hallway and peeking into this little gem in the corner of our home. Making a space for this little guy in a room that literally served as a storage room just solidifies his presence in our home and our family. It makes me happy to see my home lived in! When we bought our home 6 years ago, we thought 5 bedrooms sounded ridiculous for just the two of us. However, we envisioned filling these rooms with babies and having room to host friends and family. I could have never imagined that two of these rooms would be filled with two of the most perfect little humans on the planet! 😉
Sources:
Rocker / local baby store (purchased and used for Amara’s nursery)
Throw pillow / Dwell Studio
Accent table / Target (clearance)
Lamp / Land of Nod
Rug / Land of Nod
Ottoman / Land of Nod
Curtain Rod & Finials / Land of Nod)
Curtains / DIY ( don’t look too closely at my sewing skills) Fabric was a Nate Berkus print!
White Honeycomb shelf / Land of Nod
Crib Skirt / Land of Nod
White Dresser / Babyletto at Target
Changing Pad cover / Aden + Anais (also got this print)
Crib Sheet / Aiden + Anais (also got this print)
Triangle garland / DIY
Giraffe head / White Faux Taxidermy
Wonder Print / Petit Collage
Mobile / Petit Collage 
Gold Bear Print / Sycamore Street Press
Star decals (ceiling) / Fairy Dust Decals
Pendant / DIY 
Elephant blanket / Orla Kiely (Target)
Crib / Babies R Us
Book shelf / Ikea – can’t find online.
Collage wall / DIY – I used old frames and some new ones from Target. All prints (except ones sourced above) were free printable prints offline. Gold mirror was a thrift find. 
Hanging Letters / Michael’s find
Have a great week!!
XO!!

FEATURED: SWEET BIRDIE BIRTHDAY PARTY

We adore DIY parties- that’s our fav for our own kids, so we’re always on the lookout for new creative yet achievable ideas. That’s why we’re so thrilled to feature this Sweet Birdie Dessert Birthday Party by Shauna Younge! You’ll love her pastel and wood grain color palette, pretty dessert table, and simple touches that made this party memorable!
 
SHAUNA:
After I designed the hexagon and faux bois invites and found a great cake recipe, I planned a bash that was full of bright, spring-y colors offset by lots of white and gold accents. I created DIY faux bois color block placemats to bring color and warmth to my white desk for the girls to dine in style. 
Along with sliders, powdered donuts, and popcorn, the girls devoured vanilla ice cream and my strawberry cake. I customized labels with each girl’s name to decorate the paper ice cream cups from Sweet Party Shop. I also designed faux bois labels for the milk bottles to add a natural element to the all-white room. Land of Nod’s birdie garland and cupcake kit added a bit of whimsy to the dessert table that really kicked up the color a notch. 
CREDITS
Party concept, styling, and dessert table: Shauna Younge
Images: Sydnee Bickett
Birdie garland and cupcake kit: Land of Nod
Ice cream cups: Sweet Party Shop
DIY projects: DIY starburst birthday crown and DIY faux bois color block placemats


Check out more of Shauna’s ideas on her blog, Sweet Tooth, and contributor to Momtastic. Also do NOT miss her dessert table portfolio HERE!

DIY COSTUME FOR LITTLES: MEXICAN SERAPE

You know when you think of a project and you’re all like this is going to be soooo easy and cute, and then you start it and you’re like, OMG this is way too much effort why am I doing this, and then there’s no turning back because there’s no time to order a pre-made costume for your kid to wear it for his preschool performance? Yeah. That’s this project. Sorry for the run-on sentence (Mom). 
Max and Ari’s preschool has a annual spring festival where the kids dress up and perform for the parents. This year each class studied a different country, and Max’s was Mexico. I thought it would be fun to have Max wear traditional Mexican garb- serape and sombrero.
You know what though? Max just looks so freaking cute, maybe it was worth the effort?? Either way, thought I would share the tutorial. It’s not hard, just a bit time consuming!
You’ll need 1 yard of lightweight canvas or muslin (make sure it’s pliable), lots of different acrylic paint, and paint brushes. I found Martha Stewart’s acrylic paint to be the best- soooo easy to spread along the fabric and the colors were nice and bright!
Leave about 3 inches on top and bottom for the fringe, then simply paint lines in different colors across the fabric. Leave black and white paint for the end. I probably should have used a ruler, and I even got it out to use… but I didn’t. It doesn’t need to be perfect! I blended some of the colors when they were wet with a clean, dry brush. After all of the colors are dry, go back through with black and white to add the finishing touches.
For the fringe at the bottom, cut little slits and rip the fabric up a few inches. Be careful not to rip up into the painted parts (like I did!).
Fold the serape in half and cut a v-neck shape out. Mine was about 6″ across.
Adios!
-L

DIAPER CAKE TUTORIAL

At every baby shower we throw, there’s always a diaper cake centerpiece (scroll down for more of our cakes)! Not only is it visually super fun, but it’s also the perfect gift for a new mama. We try to embellish the tiers and topper to match the theme of the party, and this one pictured above was from Jenni’s hip hop/concert themed baby shower we threw last weekend… working on that post… promise! Jenni’s always talked about getting baby Nike Dunks for her baby boy way before she even had Amara, so I knew the topper had to be these little kicks.
I’ve made all the mistakes for you and come up with my fail-safe way to make a 4-tiered spectacular diaper cake!
I’ve found TARGET BRAND diapers to be the best!! First of all, they’re great diapers. When I had Ari I insisted on Pampers swaddlers (they are super soft after all) but when Max was born, I just went to Target brand and they’re just as good and way cheaper. Aesthetically for a diaper cake, they’re the best, because they are plain white and nice and flat. Pampers are a little puffier and look messy on a cake. Still works though- scroll down to see previous diaper cakes.
I bought one small pack each of newborn, size one, and size two. It’s nice to give the mom a variety and it also looks really nice on the cake to have the tiers be different heights.
 My secret to the perfect shaped diaper cake is…. an oatmeal can inside! Yep, that’s how I get that nice round shape, it fills in the middle nicely, and it keeps all the tiers sturdy.
WHAT YOU NEED:
1 Oatmeal Can
LARGE Rubberbands
String (anything will do!)
About 75 diapers 
(see anatomy picture above for size variety)
Embellishment for tiers and topper
Cake Platter (mine is about 13″)
INSTRUCTIONS:
*Tip- make sure each diaper for each tier is facing in the same direction
4th TIER
Start with the largest size diaper for the bottom tier.
Place a large rubberband around the can and start sticking diapers in, layering about 2-3 inches. You want to overlap them evenly all around. Soon your rubberband will get super tight and break in your face and your diapers will fly everywhere and you’ll say a non-baby-shower-appropriate-word and you’ll need to reinforce this layer with a piece of string. (See, told you I’ve made all the mistakes for you!) Just tie loosely around this layer in a bow so that you can adjust the length as you add more diapers.
As you layer the diapers all the way around, tuck the last diaper underneath the first so that it looks continuous and clean. Tie TWO pieces of string around this layer, one on the top and one on the bottom of the tier. This keeps the shape.
This bottom tier (4th tier) will have TWO rounds of layers. So just start layering again on top of the first round of diapers, this time with a string to hold this layer unless you have a huge rubberband! Can’t tell you how many times I thought a rubberband was big enough and -snap-! Tie two pieces of string around the layer, one near the top and one near the bottom. You’ll cover these up with embellishment at the end.
3rd TIER
This is one layer of diapers all around, about 17 diapers in size 1. Tie two pieces of string around the layer, one near the top and one near the bottom.
2nd TIER
If you’re using the same size diapers and oatmeal can that I did, you’ll notice that there’s only about 2-3 inches of space left on the oatmeal can for the next tier. That’s not going to be sturdy enough to keep the clean, round shape of the tier. You’ll need to take 3 diapers and simply fold them each in half, stack them, and wrap 2 rubberbands around them. Place on the top of the oatmeal can, and now you’ll keep that 2nd tier more sturdy and not falling in on itself.
Wrap only 8 or so diapers around and spread the layers a little wider than before. This keeps the tier thinner than the previous tier. Tie two pieces of string around the layer, one near the top and one near the bottom.
1st TIER
Roll 4 newborn size diapers up and individually wrap with a rubber band. Bring these 4 together and wrap all 4 up with a rubberband. This is the center of the top tier which will keep the shape since you’ve run out of room on the oatmeal can. Put another large rubberband around these 4 and start tucking in your diaper layers. Wrap about 8 diapers around, tucking the last one behind the first for that continuous look. Tie two pieces of string around the layer, one near the top and one near the bottom.
 You can see each tier has the string tied around the top and bottom which keeps that nice straight shape.
Voila! You’re ready to decorate!
Lauren of Rock Paper Scissors printed these patterned strips of paper to match the invitations she designed. You could use thick ribbon or any type of paper (taped together into strips) to cover the strings and rubberbands.
 Don’t forget your cake topper!
Here are some of our earlier cakes to give you decoration ideas: 
Modern mint an neutral baby shower HERE.
 This was from Jenni’s baby shower for Amara almost 4 years ago! (HERE) This was one of my first diaper cakes, so I used colorful diapers, but I think it still turned out okay not being all white.
Lori’s stork-themed baby shower (HERE) These were Pampers diapers- see a little too puffy and not uniform enough for OCD me. For embellishment, I taped strips of kraft paper together, wrapped around each tier, and glued feathers on top.
Lauren’s Winter White Baby Shower (HERE). I loved this one! I used white silk ribbon so that everything was white…. can’t tell you how many people thought this was a real cake. They were super disappointed.
Please let me know if you have any questions on construction! It can be a little confusing! If you’re in Nashville, we can totally make this for you! Convo us on our Etsy shop or email us 🙂
XO
-L

DIY FAIRY COSTUME + EDUCATIONAL ART PROJECT

It’s always nice to sneak in some educational concepts when you’re playing with your littles! My 4.5-year-old, Ari, needed a costume for a school carnival this weekend and beeeeeeegged me to buy a Tinker Bell costume. I did NOT want to go out in traffic to buy one and spend the money. I thought it would be much more fun to make it! But wait… we’re out of green paper. That’s okay, we’ll use paint! Oh **** we’re out of green paint. Ummm…. 
Ari’s really into experiments and potions and magic, so we refreshed our color theory lessons and made all different shades and tints of green.
 Just blue, yellow, and white! 
I put blobs of blue, yellow, and white all over a piece of butcher paper and let the kids go to town. They came up with the most beautiful colors! And Max had a nice snack of paint (OMG that kid!!).
When the paper was dry, I drew leaf shapes with a thick sharpie and cut them out. Just freehand it, really anything will look good outlined in black!
I used safety pins to attach to a green sweater and baseball hat. We borrowed fairy wings from our friend, and voila! Tink!

 Yep… those are jammie pants.
Max went as Danny Zuko at the end of Grease 🙂
Love your children every minute of every day!
-L

VALENTINES DAY BREAKFAST AND CRAFTING FOR LITTLES: YOU’VE GOT MAIL!

Here is a simple Valentine’s Day breakfast and card making morning for your littles! We picked up most of these goodies from Target and Michaels Craft stores- just goes to show you what you can create with store bought items and just a touch of DIY.
Scroll down to the bottom for a DIY on this simple heart ornament.
We used fiber fill for the clouds and used THIS tutorial for the paper airplanes.
Straws, cups, plates, and napkins from Target.
Wooden scoops by US! Convo us on ETSY to purchase!
Michaels Craft store had the banner blank- we just added letters! We rummaged through our craft drawers and found lots of card-making supplies for the kiddos.
Fill mini shipping tubes from Michaels with crafting supplies! 
Download “Special Delivery” labels HERE.
Have your littles decorate mailbags – tutorial HERE.
HEART ORNAMENT TUTORIAL:
First make a heart template: fold a piece of paper in half, cut out half of a heart shape. When you unfold it, it should be a symmetrical heart. Fold colorful paper strips in half, fold your template in half and trace on the folded paper strips. (All of the hearts need to be the same size for this to work). 
 Use double stick tape to put the hearts together back to back. We used 6 or 7 hearts per ornament.
Stop half way through to tape the string in the middle.
Voila!
We hope you and your littles have a SWEET and fun Valentine’s Day breakie!

ICE CREAM SOCIAL – SIP AND SEE

My oldest friend, Rebecca, just had Ada, the sweetest little bean you ever did see! Remember her baseball themed bridal shower HERE? We had an ice cream bar then (her fav), so my mom and I went with a whole ice cream theme for her sip and see! I basically have no imagination and wanted ice cream. BTW a sip and see is a baby shower AFTER the baby is born- you sip drinks and see the baby. Get it? Might be a southern thing, I don’t know!
Colors and design began with this adorable invitation by Rock Paper Scissors.
Frozen water balloons = the cuter cousin of ice cubes.
Loooove how Rock Paper Scissors designed the ice cream cup labels and cone wrappers!
DIY GIANT ICE CREAM CONES:
-honeycomb balls (here and here)
-kraft wrapping paper
-double stick tape
For the cone, follow THIS template… just eyeball it and make it giant! It’s a little tricky, not gonna lie. Cut out and tape the ends of the cone together. Stick the honeycomb ball in and gently tape with double stick tape. I was laying mine flat on the table, so I didn’t need to secure it well. If you’re hanging them, I’d make them with the tiny honeycomb balls so they’ll be lighter.
Pinwheels, plates, and napkins by Meri Meri.
It’s not a party without Aunt Ellie’s Campfire Crispies! This time we went with gluten free Oreo flavor. Yuuuuum.
We got these adorable scoops HERE and painted them. We’re thinking about selling these little scoopity scoops painted custom in our ETSY shop- what do you think? They were perfect for ice cream toppings.
Table runner by Kitchen Papers.
I used THIS tassel tutorial and used my Silhouette for the letters.
Here’s the new mama Rebecca and sweet Ada! Imagine knowing someone for your entire life, then they’re in labor, and you’re crying alone in your car just sitting in your driveway so your kids don’t get freaked out that you’re crying. Yep, that was me.
Ice cream parties are the easiest because there’s no cooking or baking! Everything is store bought but looks special depending on how you display it. Sweet and simple!
-L 

DIY HOLIDAY CARDS DISPLAY

This is so easy… I don’t even know why I’m posting it. BUT I think it turned out pretty cute. So. I’m also procrastinating cleaning my house. Typically when I’m at my most creative.
I just received my first two holiday cards! One from my bestie since college, and one from my sweet little nieces and nephews! Last year I was so lazy (read: just had my second baby) that I put all of my cards in a pretty bowl on the coffee table. This year I’m stepping it up a tiny notch. 
All you need for this easy DIY is:
– 1 wire wreath form
– 1-2 packs of plain clothes pins
– 1 roll of fun washi tape
– 1 clear command hook (sticks on the wall and removes without damaging the paint!) See below:
I found this pretty Meri Meri washi tape at our fav shop Rock Paper Scissors.
 Measure by sticking a clothes pin on the tape
 Cut tape
Bend around the sides of the clothes pin. Use the back of your finger nail to really stick it on there well. And… that’s it. Told you it was easy! You could totally spray paint the wreath form gold or silver first, but it’s going to get covered up with cards anyway, right? She says to convince herself.
I still have to finish decorating my mantel. Cannot find the rest of my decor!! It’s probably in storage somewhere. Ugh. Ooh and I’m waiting on a sparkly banner from The Bannerie! I’m a tad obsessed.
Happy decorating!
-L