Be My Valenslime – A Slimy Valentine’s Day

Orange You Crafty - Valenslime

While searching the internet for non-candy valentine ideas, I came across this blog post. I had recently read how slime is apparently all the rage amongst middle-schoolers these days, so unsurprisingly my son thought this was a very cool valentine idea. If you search the internet, you will find no shortage of recipes and recipe variations for slime between youtube videos and blog posts. While there are a ton of people out there making slime and sharing it, I found most “recipes” didn’t really have measurements, so I’m writing this mostly to share what formula worked for me and a few tips I learned through this process.

Good luck fellow crafters! With all those young slime sellers out there, you may have a hard time finding clear school glue or even glitter in colors you want depending on where you shop.

The SlimeOrange You Crafty - slime ingredients

At the very least, you will need Borax, school glue, and water. If you want to make your slime more exciting, also get food coloring, extra fine glitter, regular glitter, and shaped glitter.

  • Start by dissolving 1 teaspoon of borax into 1 cup of hot water. Stir until all the borax dissolves. Hot water is important, otherwise the borax doesn’t fully dissolve. Set aside for later.
  • Next, drain a whole 4 oz bottle of glue into a mixing bowl. You can use white or clear school glue – it’s all personal preference for what your final product will be. Make sure to let the bottle sit propped upside-down for a minute, if possible, so you can really get all the glue out.
  • Once all the glue is in your bowl, add 1 cup of hot water (NOT the borax/hot water solution). I found this ratio of 1 part glue to 2 parts water made slime with a nice elasticity. Mix the glue and hot water well.
  • After the glue and water is mixed, this is where you add in your “fixin’s” – food coloring, glitter, scent. When adding food coloring, it’s best to dip a toothpick in the coloring and add by very tiny amounts. If the coloring is too strong, it will stain your hands even once the slime is done and ready to be played with.
  • Once your base is ready, stir the glue water with one hand while pouring a small amount of borax solution in, little by little, until the slime forms. I usually got to a good slime result after 3 ‘splashes’ of borax solution. If you try handling it and it’s still too sticky/boogery, add about 1/2 teaspoon of borax solution and mix it in. You can repeat this until you get the slime where you want it.
  • Bonus tip – My red glass glitter slime ended up being extra sticky after it had been sitting and was already separated for the valentines. To fix them in small batches, I mixed up a cup of the borax water solution, dipped my fingertips in and then rubbed the slime and folded it on itself several times to mix it in. It worked perfectly – the slime retained its nice elasticity but lost its stickiness.

In general, this is a really quick and easy craft to put together. And you can play with it right away.

If you decide to slime your friends this year for Valentine’s Day, you can get the 4 oz cups I used here and the labels I made for them will be at the end of this post. Labels are for personal use only. Credit to Maelle.K | Thomas Boucherie and Roland Hüse for the fonts used in my labels.

Orange You Crafty – Valenslime Labels PDF

Orange You Crafty - valenslime towers

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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A Pusheen Box Review

Back in February I shared the Pusheen valentine mailbox I made for my son. As I mentioned in that post, searching for mailbox ideas led to the discovery of the Pusheen Box subscription service. It was a little too cute to resist, so we ultimately ordered one. Now that it has finally arrived, I thought I’d share all the fun stuff that came in it.

Orange You Crafty - Pusheen Box spread

First off, I think we got incredibly lucky with the theme of the box, which seemed to be food. I think most of my little cat fanatic’s favorite Pusheen pictures involve her eating. 😸

On to the items.

  • 3 sheets of foodie Pusheen stickers – perfect for my son and his sticker collection.
  • Set of 3 foodie Pusheen pins – since being introduced to the pin collecting at Disney World, we collect pins for anything we like, so these are perfect for us.
  • Pusheen key cover – cool and currently hanging out with my son’s giant key chain collection. He has no keys, but at least 20 key chains.
  • Pusheen cookie cutter – so great! I have a sort of compulsion where I must buy anything that makes food into cute shapes – so this fits in perfectly with my many, many other cookie cutters and food shaping goodies.
  • Exclusive Baker Pusheen vinyl figure – super cute and loved by my son.
  • Ceramic Pusheen mini pot – I can’t wait to put a little plant in this.
  • Pack of 3 foodie Pusheen socks – so fun! My son loves these, and they’re really nice quality too.
  • Baker Pusheen apron – awesome because my son is really getting into cooking lately and it’s nice quality. Plus it matches the figure, which is fun.
  • Pusheen umbrella – this is super cute and also so perfect because my son’s umbrella had broken just days before this arrived. 🙂

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So there you have it. My son and I were super geeked about pretty much everything we got. I was also impressed with the quality of everything – it’s all good stuff. And super cute – even the tags and boxes were cute! We’ve tried a few nerdy subscription boxes before and would like maybe 1 or 2 items out of the box, so for our whole box to be winners was awesome. I must say, if you consider yourself to be in the Pusheen fan club, you might want to try the Pusheen Box.;)


Oh! I almost forgot to mention the box itself. I knew from the pictures it looks like a box Pusheen, with the face and the stripes. What I didn’t know was the tail is on the back, which is cute. But the best part … the toe beans are on the bottom! That definitely multiplied the cuteness by about 10. ❤

I Think You’re Tea-rrific! Gift Idea

We recently learned the principal at our son’s school will be leaving at the end of this school year. My son’s principal is a wonderfully kind and thoughtful person and very good at her job, so it will be sad to see her go. My son always speaks very highly of her and our interactions with her have been great, so I knew we had to get her a goodbye gift.

I wanted to find something nice my son could make her or something useful we could personalize for her. I gave him these 3 options: Button Tree Arta Monogrammed Tote, or an Apple Print Tote. As is always the way, the project that I liked the most and knew would be the easiest to complete (the button tree) was not my son’s #1 pick. He wanted to go the personalized gift route and make the monogrammed tote bag. That plan was all well and good until, after multiple stores and a couple hours later, we still had found no tote bags. We couldn’t even find basic ones to make the apple tote. So the monogrammed tote bag morphed into a mug we would monogram. In a perfect world, we would’ve just bought one and called it a day, but all the shopping misadventures up to that point made it clear that monogram mugs would not exist either – it would have to be made.

This was still a complicated craft idea because, A – I have never seen such heated, mixed reviews on a simple craft as I have with the Sharpie Mugs you find all over the internet, and B – my young craft visionary didn’t like the void style monogram mug. He wanted a letter stencil neatly painted in gold. All things considered, after reading this post (and many of that post’s comments) along with reading the walk-through here, I felt like I had a solid plan to successfully pull this mug gift off.

Boy, was I wrong. I’ve never had a project spiral into chaos as badly as I did when trying to paint this mug. It was made all the more infuriating by the fact I knew if we had just made the dang button tree – we wouldn’t have wasted a day hunting for bags that didn’t exist and I wouldn’t be cursing at a marker/mug when I’d rather be sleeping.

Obviously, it doesn’t end there because this post is filled with pictures of my fancy little monogrammed mug. 🙂 So allow me to tell you my original plan and why it failed, along with how I made it better so I could successfully make this mug – and, hopefully, so you can be successful if you try to make a sharpie mug yourself.

The Sticker Stencil

I have a Cameo with the PixScan mat, so I knew I could easily cut a letter ‘F’ with that. What I didn’t have is a good material to cut the stencil out of so it would securely stick to the mug with no leaks while painting. I also didn’t have any jumbo letter stickers, so I devised a way to make my own sticker. I basically made a rectangle by overlapping painter’s tape on top of a piece of wax paper. This way I could put it through the Cameo to cut my stencil and still easily peel the tape off and stick it on the mug. This DIY sticker worked perfectly UNTIL I painted with the marker. The paint marker leaked between the overlapping strips.

The fix: Seal the painter’s tape with a few coats of Mod Podge before cutting the stencil. This made a HUGE difference. Any leaks were minor around the edges of the letter and easily scraped off with an exacto knife.

The Oil Paint Marker

A majority of the errors here were simply due to the fact I was working with a new medium and didn’t have much information about it going in. The Sharpie brand oil paint pen has very little information on the pen itself and reading through the different posts about making paint mugs, I didn’t see much information about how the pen paints or drying time. Even when trying to figure out which size pen to buy, I had a hard time finding pictures of the size differences online for comparison. I hope this was mostly because I wasn’t searching thoroughly enough.

What I learned – You need to shake super well and continue to shake occasionally while painting. If you’re painting for too long without shaking, the formula seemed to separate some and wreak havoc in the painted area. The paint pen flows well, but avoid going over an area that isn’t literally just painted. This was what caused my first attempt to end in disaster. When I tried to fix a spot that had started to set, the marker removed more paint than it put on. And going over a larger area to fix the small problem just made the problem bigger and look worse. My guess is if you wait the couple hours for the paint to dry before painting on top of mistakes, it would work just fine, but the end finish might not be smooth. Luckily, if things really take a nosedive – get out some nail polish remover and remove everything, regroup, and restart.

Lastly, a personal tip on marker painting. My project was more successful when I was very careful to make neat lines, in the same direction, one after another, across the whole area to be painted. On my first try, I painted more willy-nilly and that looked like a hot mess. The careful line painting looks almost like a solid finish when dry. You can only see some texture around the edges from where I outlined the stencil before flooding with paint inside.

Drying time ended up being around 2 hours and then I removed my stencil. As I said before, I just scraped off any little spots of leaked paint. If you have a steady hand (and are very brave) you could probably also use nail polish remover and a q-tip. The last step was baking the mug to set the paint.

To finish up this gift, I filled the mug halfway with paper crinkle filler, added some tea bags, and attached a little tea pun gift tag.

I made a few different tags to make this gift versatile for any school staff members. Feel free to print/download them: Orange You Crafty – Tea-rrific Tea Tags PDF

Happy Crafting.

Cool for the Summer – End of Year Teacher Gift

The 2016 school year is rapidly coming to a close, which means it is time for end-of-the-year gifts. For this year’s gift I came up with a fun sunglasses emoji idea to wish teachers, or any school staff, a happy summer vacation.

Orange You Crafty - Sunglasses Stay Cool Emoji gift

While searching for a summer gift for my son’s teacher and bus driver, I was mostly finding the usual suspects (summer goodie bundles of some kind or drink cup gifts). We do those kinds of gifts every year, so I wanted to try something different. I eventually started trying to think of something more specific for summer, and came up with sunglasses. I personally, can never have enough sunglasses; plus they’re inexpensive. Once I knew what we were going to get, I tried to see if the many corners of the internet had any fun printables for a sunglasses gift. I was surprised to only find one. Even more surprising was there was nothing involving the sunglasses emoji. Naturally, I had to make one – and, thankfully, it came together just as I was seeing it in my mind.

If you’re interested in gifting a few of these yourself, feel free to download/print the PDF with the emoji card and gift tag below. You can also download just the emoji image if you want to make your own tag. If you use the emoji image alone, I recommend sizing the image to 5.8 in x 5.8 in for adult sunglasses. Wayfarer style sunglasses match up the best on the emoji card, but you can use any style. Also, you may find some styles fit better on the emoji card if you cut it out as a complete circle (cutting off the sunglasses ‘tabs’), others – like the aviator style in my pictures – fit better if you leave the sunglasses tabs.

Orange You Crafty – Stay Cool Summer print PDF

Orange You Crafty - sunglasses emoji

Bring on summer vacation! 😎

 

Pusheen the Cat Valentine Mailbox

Orange You Crafty - Pusheen Valentine Mailbox main

My son loves cats. He is desperate to have a cat. But in the meantime, he fills the cat-shaped hole in his heart with silly internet cat videos and plenty of cat stuffed animals. One of the newer cat stuffed animals in his collection is Pusheen. We even got the Pusheen book from the school book fair this week, moving Pusheen to the position of #1 most-loved-cat.Pusheen Box GIF
Pusheen BoxThis week during my search for valentine mailbox inspiration, I eventually thought to look for a Pusheen box. This was both a good idea and bad idea. Good, because I found an actual Pusheen cardboard box – which is the ultimate in guides for making a Pusheen valentine mailbox. Bad, because that box came from Pusheen Box, a new subscription service where you get a box of Pusheen goodies mailed to your door. A subscription service that now we know it exists are having a hard time not signing up. 😉

Making the mailbox was pretty simple. Orange You Crafty - Pusheen mailbox suppliesI used a box, tape, and cardstock in gray, dark gray, and dark brown. Using the pictures from the Pusheen Box website I was able to make a cutting template for my Cameo for the face details. Of course you could also cut the parts by hand or just draw them. Then it was just a matter of covering the box in gray and adding the face and stripe pieces. I also made a quick tail from leftover gray cardstock and dark gray washi tape for the stripes.

Orange You Crafty - Pusheen book

After the mailbox was all assembled we added a couple details to make Pusheen more ‘holiday fancy’. There’s a pink bow between the ears (inspired by a picture in the book) and a pink heart on the butt for some valentine fun.

Happy Valentine’s Day internet!

 

I mustache you a question – A Valentine Freebie

‘I mustache you a question’ is my favorite pun. I don’t know why, but I love it. It’s even sillier when people add ‘but I’ll shave it for later’.

While out grocery shopping recently, we got lost in the Valentine’s Day section for a little while and found stick-on mustaches in black and pink. I knew there were at least a handful of “I mustache you” printable valentines already on the internet, so my son and I decided to buy the stick-on ‘staches for this year’s valentines.

Unfortunately for me (and my idea of an easy project), none of the mustache valentines that already exist worked with the way I wanted to affix the favors we bought at the store. So, naturally, I got to creating mustache valentines that fit the ones we bought.

Orange You Crafty - I mustache you Valentines

But it didn’t end there. All the work on the regular mustache valentines, got me thinking about someone with a very famous mustache – Super Mario. So I thought it’d be fun to make a Mario version of the popular valentine mustache pun too. I even did a mix of Mario and Luigi mustaches.

Orange You Crafty - SMB I mustache you Valentines

I’m sharing both versions of the mustache valentines as free downloads, so you can get in on the mustache love this year too. Just click the links at the bottom or click the picture of the valentines you want to download.

Orange You Crafty – I mustache you Valentines PDF

Orange You Crafty – SMB I mustache you Valentines PDF

 

 

A Gift to Send You Off – Music Teacher Gift Idea

Today I’d like to share one last end-of-school-year gift. This gift is for the music teacher. My son’s music teacher is very nice lady who is retiring this year, so we definitely wanted to get her a little something.

Orange You Crafty - Music Perler Key Chain gift

After much disappointment with searching for gifts online and brainstorming something we could make, I remembered, “My son LOVES to make things with perler beads. He could make her a music-themed perler bead key chain or some magnets! And it’ll be even better because he’s the one making the gift.” Done.

The little dude was totally on board with my idea, so we hopped on the Internet to find what music designs he wanted to make. He chose a little keyboard and an eighth note. We ended up choosing blue for the keyboard color because it’s one of the school’s colors. The designs are pretty easy to find online, but I’m sharing pattern versions of both designs in case you’re interested in making a cool music key chain for yourself, or as a gift. You’ll also need some key chains and some medium jump rings to put it all together.

Assembly is quite simple. After you iron the perler bead designs and let them cool, insert a jump ring through one of the small bead holes and attach the jump ring onto the key chain. Be careful to not iron your designs too much where the holes melt closed completely. This will make attaching the jump ring near impossible. I attached the keyboard at the bottom and the music note at the top to create some layers.

Orange You Crafty - perler bead music keychain

To complete the gift, I designed a simple piano keyboard card. It is free for you to download and print if you would like to use it. Just click on the picture below to download.

Orange You Crafty - Piano card printable

Stop and Say Thanks – Bus Driver Gift Idea

Orange You Crafty - Bus Driver gift close up

Next on our list of end-of-school-year gifts is the bus driver. You don’t want to forget to say “Thank you,” to the person who gets your kid(s) to and from school safely all year.

One of my favorite end-of-year gifts for the bus driver is the baggie of chocolate nugget buses, but I wanted to switch things up this year. Instead of candy, we went with a travel cup and drink mixes. I figured A: It might actually be a useful gift for one who drives for their job, and B: It gave us the opportunity to use this cute little bus-themed thank you card.

Orange You Crafty - Bus Driver gift

This gift is affordable and easy to put together. Buy cup and drink mixes, put mixes inside the cup, then print, cut out, and attach the thank you card. The most difficult thing (yet again) was finding a cup. Not only was the selection at our local stores not great, but I found most travel cups are girly. Our kid’s bus driver is a man, so I hope the orange one I bought is acceptable.

*After buying everything for this gift and the orange gift basket, I finally found the travel cup gold mine at the most unlikely store–Jo-Ann Fabrics. They had a whole section of the cup style I’d been hunting for AND had them in basic, anyone-friendly options. So if you have a hard time finding travel cups, you might want to try Jo-Ann’s.

Orange you glad, Teacher? – Teacher Gift Idea

Things around here have been on pause. Or maybe you could say I’ve been on an extended Spring Break. Either way, the school year is nearing its end and I’m gaining back some time for creativity and blogging. With that in mind, I’d like to share this year’s end-of-year teacher gift. The “Orange You Glad It’s Almost Summer?” gift basket. How appropriate for me, right? 😉 Orange You Crafty - Orange You Glad gift basket I’ve come across a few of these ‘Orange You Glad…’ gift basket ideas over the past couple of years, but this is the first time we’re actually gifting one. (You can find my inspiration here and here.) I love this gift idea TONS. First, it’s a concentrated basket of orange things – so that makes me super happy. Second, it’s very easy to throw together a bunch of fun items for a relatively low cost. If you luck out at the dollar store or the dollar section at Target, you can make it even more affordable. Orange You Crafty - Orange basket close up For our basket we got:

  • orange gum – plenty of varieties
  • orange tic tacs
  • orange lip balm – I’d recommend mango Burt’s Bees or the Banana Boat lip balm.
  • orange nail polish – again, plenty of varieties
  • sunscreen – Banana Boat comes in an orange bottle
  • orange drinking cup – We had a hard time finding an orange drinking vessel (we finally lucked out at Walmart), but I know orange water bottles, travel mugs, and drinking cups usually exist in stores.
  • orange tea single serving sticks (inside cup) – We bought Crystal Light Peach Tea sticks because it was both an orange fruit flavor and came in an orange package.
  • orange candy – You have a few options here. We happened to come across special Mike n Ike’s in single color packages at Target, so we just bought a bag of orange Mike n Ike’s.
  • orange beach towel – lucky find at Walmart for about $4

We bundled it all together in a cute little basket and tied an orange ribbon around it. Then I made a little card to go along with it and the gift was complete. I just hope lil dude’s teacher enjoys it as much as I enjoyed putting it together. *Here’s some other fun things you could throw in your orange gift basket: goldfish or some other kind of orange crackers, orange sunglasses, orange flip flops, an orange iTunes gift card. You could also use an orange pail instead of a basket to add the “summer fun” element. And… if you’d like to use the card I made up to go along with the gift basket you can download it here: Orange You Glad cards or click on the picture below. Orange You Crafty - Orange you glad cards view