Archives for November 2014

Link Party Cookie Exchange

Hey friends, are you ready for a link party!

Hope you have been enjoying all the new recipes from the Cookie Exchange earlier this week!

I shared a mouth watering recipe for white velvet cut out cookies.

If you did not get a chance to browse the recipes-

here is a collage of the delicious treats a few of my blogging friends baked up.


Please visit the following blogs to see what they brought to the

2014 Christmas Cookie Exchange


What Meegan Makes Sweet Pea


Prodigal Pieces Simply Fresh Vintage


Lemons and Laughs Shabby Art Boutique


Lilacs and Longhorns Cupcakes and Crinoline


Captivating Corner Postcards From The Ridge


Our Southern Home Dandelion Patina


Great Contradictions Mrs Hines Class

And now it is your turn! Link up your favorite recipes on our cookie exchange link party below.


White Velvet Cut Out Cookies

cookie exchange

 I have a secret to share with you!

I don’t bake.

I mean, not often.

But, I wanted to share this white velvet cookie recipe with you

this season because what is Christmas without baking?

This recipe is one that my family has been using for the last few years.

On Christmas Eve,we have a reindeer dinner.

We go all out with the reindeer plates, napkins, glasses, and even antlers.

My daughters love the themed party!

They strategically chose which reindeer they are going to be for the evening.

Each reindeer has a personality attached to its name

and special way of dancing or prancing.

white velvet christmas cookies

 The recipe has all the healthy ingredients that you would expect from white velvet cookies.


Cream Cheese.



christmas sugar cookies with frosting

Each year after leaving the Lepak house

Santa has to adjust that belt buckle.

And frankly, so do I.

As they say,

A moment on the lips.

Forever on the hips.

But, hey it’s Christmas!

We can worry about the hips in our New Year’s resolutions, right?


White Velvet Cut Out Cookies

from: Dandelion Patina (print recipe)



2 C butter, softened

1-8 oz cream cheese, softened

2 C sugar

2 egg yolks

1 tsp vanilla

4 ½ C flour



3 ½ C powdered sugar

1 Tbs shortening

3 Tbs butter, softened

½ tsp vanilla or desired extract flavor

3-4 Tbs milk or cream


Cookies: Cream butter, sugar, cream cheese until fluffy. Add egg yolks, vanilla. Gradually add flour until combined. Roll out and cut into desired shapes. Put on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.


Frosting: Combine 1 ½ C powdered sugar, butter, shortening, vanilla, and 3 Tbs milk. Beat until fluffy (3 min). Add rest of powdered sugar and beat until fluffy and spreadable.



sugar cookies with frosting

As part of our Christmas Eve traditional festivities,

we bake, all evening.

A special cookie cutter is used just for this occasion.

Can you guess what the shape our cookies are?


The cutter makes the perfect sized cookie for the best frosting with sprinkle creations!

Christmas cookie recipe

{Frosting and sprinkle creations brought to you by my daughters!}


Now, I have a special treat for you!

Hop over to all these great blogs below to find a recipe that temps those taste buds!

Then, stop back on Friday-

we will be having a party where you can add your favorite holiday cookie recipes.

I can’t wait to find some new goodies to try, even if I don’t bake that often!


Oh, and just one more thing before you go-

which is your favorite reindeer?

My daughters want to know!

I’m sharing this recipe over at:


Thistlewood Farms


Please visit the following blogs to see what they brought to the

2014 Christmas Cookie Exchange


What Meegan Makes Sweet Pea


Prodigal Pieces Simply Fresh Vintage


Lemons and Laughs Shabby Art Boutique


Lilacs and Longhorns Cupcakes and Crinoline


Captivating Corner Postcards From The Ridge


Our Southern Home Dandelion Patina


Great Contradictions Mrs Hines Class

Leather Star Ornament

leather star christmas ornament

Ever wish upon a star?

One evening this summer I tip toed into my daughters’ room to check on her.

I found her leaning on her window looking up at the stars.

Reciting (with much intensity)….

Star light, star bright

First star I see tonight

I wish I may

I wish I might

Have this wish

I wish tonight

It was the sweetest moment.


aqua star ornament


pieces of leather

thread and a glove needle

template (wooden star)


beads for hanging

christmas star ornament

Using the wooden star template, trace the pattern on the wrong side of the leather pieces.

leather christmas ornament

Cut the star out with a scissors. This type of leather was relatively thin and did not require special leather cutting instruments.

leather christmas ornament


Whip stitch around the perimeter of the star until you have a small pocket remaining.


star christmas ornament


Use a small amount of poly-fill to create a puffy star. I used a toothpick to push the poly-fill into the “arms” of the star. Then finish sewing the star closed. Finally, add your beaded thread to leather star ornament for hanging.

leather star christmas ornament

Everyone is a star and deserves

the right to twinkle.


Join your favorite DIY bloggers for handmade holiday gifts.  Each blogger has created a handmade gift for giving this season. Each day this week we will feature 20 bloggers and their handmade inspiration.   Check back each day as we add 20 new links for you to check out for 99+ handmade gifts.  The gifts are perfect for friends, family, teachers and almost everyone on your list. There are handmade food items, paper crafts, ornament ideas, sewn items, home decor and so much more.  Be sure to visit each blogger and see what they created.

Handmade Holiday gifts

If you see a project you like, follow them on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram to keep up with their creations.  There is also a giveaway for  a $100 Amazon Gift Card.  You can enter the giveaway by using the Rafflecopter below.

Enter link: a Rafflecopter giveaway

Gold Basketweave Ornament

It is all about trimming the tree!

Have you started yet?

There has been a ton of snow here and it just seems like we have skipped over Thanksgiving.

Everyone is in full swing for the holidays.

Bell ringers are at the grocery stores.

Wreaths are ready to purchase.

Christmas trees are discounted at Michael’s.


 Today, I will give you a simple and very inexpensive way to make gold basketweave ornaments.

I will also be sharing a roundup of some of my favorite gold ornaments!

gold DIY ornaments


1. Gold Basketweave Ornament-Dandelion Patina

2. DIY Mercury Glass Ornaments-The Frugal Homemaker

3. Gold + Gilded Woodland Ornaments-City Farmhouse

4. Prisma Wall Decor-Delineate Your Dwelling

5. Gold Brushed Pine Cone Ornaments-The Thinking Closet


basket weave ornaments in gold

Start with a bag of party favors from The Dollar Tree.

gold basket weave ornaments

Paint each favor in metallic gold. I used DecoArt.

gold basket weave Christmas ornament

When dry, apply a pattern with Elmer’s Glue.

Christmas ornament in gold with basket weave pattern

Sprinkle vintage gold glass glitter to cover the glue and shake off excess.  Once dry, add gold thread for hanging.

basket weave ornament in gold

Oh, but wait there is MORE…..


….If gold isn’t your thing,

I have teamed up with a great group of bloggers who know how to ROCK AROUND THE CHRISTMAS TREE

with great ornaments and trimmings.

I am sure you will find something you love! Just take a look below.

Trim the Tree this Christmas with more than 35 ideas to inspire from your favorite bloggers! #trimthetree

Please let me know in the comments which is your favorite!

Trim The Tree 1

1. Advent Calendar Pocket 

2. Polymer Clay Poinsettia

3. Yarn Wrapped Ornament 

4.  Vintage Green Paper Ornament

5. Trim the Tree Garland

6. Ribbon Stuffed Ornaments

7.  Wooden Star Ornament

8. Melted Snowman Ornament

9. Felt Christmas Tree

10.  Santa Star Ornament


Trim the Tree 2

1. Vintage Map Ornament

2. Yarn Joy Ornament

3.  Embossed Wood Bird Ornament

4. Snow Man Wood Slice Ornament

5. Christmas Garland


7.  Star Painted Ornament

8. Neon Christmas Tree Topper

9. Wooden Spool Christmas Tree


Trim The Tree 3

1. Gingerbread Cookie Ornament


3. Bow Christmas Tree Garland

4. Travel Map Ornaments

5. Homemade Glitter Ornaments

6. Felt Candy Ornaments

7. Make Love Ornament

8. How to Decorate your Tree like a Pro

9.  Joy Ornament

10. Glitter Pinecone Ornament


Trim The Tree 4

1. Scented Gingerbread Ornament

2. Diy Tree Skirt

3. Pinecone Decorative Tree

4.  Wood Slice Ornament

5. Wood Slice Child Silhouette Ornament

6. Tips for Decorating the Christmas Tree

7. Mason Jar Lid Ornament

8. Gold Basket Weave Ornament

9. Rustic Christmas Tree Garland


Rustic Compass Star Snowflake Ornament

handmade Christmas Ornament Blog Hop
Well, do I dare say Happy Holidays? Christmas is just around the corner and I am participating in a fabulous Blog Hop today! 30+ handmade ornaments to inspire you! I can’t wait for you to hop around and see all the wonderful creations! But, first a little bit about my rustic compass star snowflake ornament.

rustic compass star Christmas ornament


We all remember learning about the compass star in school, right? Well, my oldest daughter had been studying pretty hard for her test on the compass star a few weeks back. She was pretty proud of herself for receiving 100% on her test. She earned it! So, I thought I would create a special memory this Christmas in honor of her excellent study habits. A momento of her accomplishment.


Let’s get started on the tutorial:

compass star snowflake ornament



glue gun


bakers twine

coin medallions

tooth picks

fishing line or clear thread

compass star snowflake ornament


To start, add a small dab of glue at the top. Simply wrap the bakers twine around the tooth pick. Once you have wrapped 3/4 of the way down the toothpick, stop and add another dab of glue to the bottom to secure the end. Make enough wrapped sticks to fill the coin of the compass star.

compass star ornament

Next, align your sticks accordingly on the compass coin. You will need to attach these with E6000. Hot glue will not stick to the coins. Let dry for a few hours. Attach fishing line or clear thread to hang.

Compass Star Snowflake Ornament

Pretty simple hey? I love simple. This ornament took me less than 10 minutes to make (drying time aside). It was pretty fun to wrap the bakers twine around the toothpicks and see the fun pattern it created-making ordinary toothpicks pretty extraordinary with a rustic feel!

I would love to hear what special items you create for the holidays! Please let me know in the comments below and then head off to the next blog hop stop!

[inlinkz_linkup id=467441 mode=1]

Rustic Log Bird Nest Ornament


I love rustic style this season! And, of course, miniature anything. Sweet little bird nests have been on my brain lately. I thought how cute would it be to create a few for our Christmas tree. So, I am so excited to share this DIY challenge with you! A super cute rustic log bird nest ornament.

rustic log bird nest ornament


The birds in our backyard have been pretty busy the last few months harvesting seeds from the flowers, bird feeders, and shrubs. It is very similar to how I am feeling about the holidays-gathering ideas, creating projects, and making lists. It is a very busy time. With colder temperatures I am feeling the need to nest with comfy blankets, flannel sheets, and winter PJ’s.


So after jotting down a few ideas for this project, I came up with these sweet little ornaments. And since I love upcycling, I came across the perfect pieces for this challenge.

Can you guess what they were?

DIY wood slice challenge for November


Found wood slice napkin holders

petite birds in nest found at Michael’s craft store

bakers twine

gold metallic paint

caribbean blue acrylic paint

feather charms


This has got to be one of the simplest ornaments you can make.

First, drill two holes at the top of the wood slice napkin holder.

Then thread the bakers twine through adding a few feather charms and tie at the top.

rustic log bird nest ornament


I wanted to change the color of the birds. So, with a very small paint brush I used the gold metallic paint to cover the orange.

Once dry, I lightly applied the blue paint over the top. The nest then very easily slid into the wood slice opening.


rustic log bird nest ornament

So what do you think of my DIY rustic log bird nest ornament?

Should we start singing the 12 days of Christmas?

Partridge in a pear tree or better yet..two turtle doves.

Happy crafting!

Shell signature 3 revised

Thankful Tree-Turkey Style

Hey friends!

I have been meaning to start a Thankful Tree in our home.

I  made a sad attempt at one last year using a mason jar and a branch.

Unfortunately, the branch was way too big.

I couldn’t display it on the mantel.

As a centerpiece on our setting for four table, it was just awkward.

So, this year I was going to do it right!

Come up with a plan for a unique and fun Thanksgiving centerpiece.

A piece my kiddos could feel comfortable writing on without being scolded.

I can’t wait to see what they are thankful for…

….and their cute little spelling of words.

thankful tree turkey style dandelion patina

Here are the materials you will need to create your own:

(Affiliate links for products are marked with asterisk below see my full disclosure)


thankful tree turkey style

Trace a pattern on a piece of paper. I just free handed the design on one side of the paper and then folded the paper in half for a mirror image on the other side.

thankful tree turkey style

Paint all the pieces with chalkboard paint. Again, I used Martha Stewart multi-surface chalkboard paint in gray. I then glued the pieces together as shown in photo.

thankful tree turkey style

Lay out the first layer of tail feathers and glue to the fan shaped plywood.

thankful tree turkey style

I distressed my turkey body. It was a personal preference. The forks were glued on with E6000. You will need to let this dry for a good 4 hours for proper adhesion. Once that is dry you can add the last layer of tail feathers to the back.

turkey head thankful tree


I embelllished the turkey with Indian corn for eyes, plywood cutouts, and bakers twine.

turkey feet

Twigs were cut for the feet.

thankful tree turkey style


thankful turkey

The forks function as a photo holder while the tail feathers can be written on, as the entire body could be. That’s the beauty of using chalkboard paint!

thankful turkey diy project

Gobble. Gobble. A unique thankful tree turkey style!

What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Until next time,

Shell signature 3 revised





Sharing this project with:

Where I party

Modern Rustic Fall Tour

Fall 2014 Home Tour blog hop

Hey there!

Are you up for a Fall Tour?

Fall is my favorite time of the year. The rustling of leaves beneath your feet.

The smell of the woods. The crisp air waking up your face in the morning.

Campfires and giggles.

A time to start nesting, preparing for winter’s arrival.

I am so thrilled to be participating in this home tour blog hop hosted by my friend, Michele from Shelstring Blog.

Be sure to visit her beautiful home.

modern rustic fall tour by dandelion patina

Welcome to the Lepak pad….

comforts of home fall front porch by dandelion patina

The front porch is decorated with all the comforts of home-rocking chairs, cozy throws, and pops of sunshine.

rustic hay bale lounger by dandelion patina

A comfortable and cozy hay bale lounger to enjoy the crisp Fall air and listen to the birds sing.

natural elements in TV room

A cozy sitting room off the foyer was decorated with elements from nature. The old trunk lends a warm, rustic feel.

natural elements for Fall

Gourds, pumpkins, and spools fill this interesting glass pumpkin.

rustic fall living room mantel by dandelion patina

When entering our living room our large faux fireplace decorated with rustic Fall elements greets us with hues of the season.

rustic fall mantel by dandelion patina

Distressed and repurposed pieces are displayed against the modern white mantel.

simply fall console table

A chunky console table displays architectural salvage pieces and pumpkins on spools.

coconutty sweater acorns by dandelion patina

Sweet sweater acorns are placed on a silver platter accent table.

Fall tablescape by dandelion patina

And our Fall table is ready for guests.

fall tablescape by dandelion patina

yellow mums and pumpkins

Thank you so much for taking time to visit. I loved having you here.

Be sure to follow DP on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Still looking for more Fall Tour inspiration?

Hop over to….

The Blue Eyed Dove.

A Delightsome Life.

The Painted Chandelier.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Bewitched Front Porch

witch hat from a hanging planter


Bewitched, bewitched you’ve got me in your spell……

……….bewitched, bewitched you know your craft so well.


bewitched front porch


That brand of woo that you’ve been brew-in’ took me by surprise.


witch hat brim template

(Mustn’t twitch.)

As I thought about how to simply decorate our front porch this Halloween, I stared at the hanging planters for quite awhile. Maybe I could fill them with spooky objects. Maybe I could wrap the cones in webs. Maybe I should take them down all together.

witch hat brim template

A bit of geometric calculations and we have a template for the witch hat brim.

How about that!

black witch hat brims

Oh my stars!

black witch hat brims

Without magic, I did do the painting and sanding. Witches honor!

black witch hat tutorial

Isn’t that sweet?

hanging black witch hat


Promise me, no more magic!

hanging black witch hats



black witch hat diy project


halloween front porch


hanging black spider

Meet my friend, Endora….

creepy black spider

….and Tabitha.

black spider on blue pumpkin


Promise me, no more magic! (mustn’t twitch, mustn’t twitch, mustn’t twitch)

Twitch or Treat.


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