Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tutorial - Print and Assembling Printables

I love when people that would describe themselves as anything BUT crafty, want to give my printables a try.  Most often, I get asked how to assemble the banner and the cupcake toppers.  I thought it might be helpful to write up a post to take you through the printable process from printing the files to assembling them.  This will be a two part post with the other post showing you some inexpensive tips and tricks to create your own budget friendly dessert table.
I decided to use my recently added Fire Truck printables as the example for this tutorial.

I really wanted to try this out from the customers perspective. Instead of printing the files on my own, I decided to have them printed at Kinkos.  A lot of customers tell me they don't have a printer or a 'good' printer.  All the photos you see in my shop are from my inkjet printer that I got at Staples about three years ago.  I think it cost less than $150.  So you don't need a professional printer to make really nice paper goods.  However, for the ones that don't have a printer at all, I suggest they get the files printed at a place like Kinkos or Staples.  I thought I would get the files for this tutorial printed at Kinkos so I could see what the process is like.  It's really EASY!  You can upload all the files online and select what type of paper you want each file printed on.  Once I submitted all the files and submitted payment, I received an email less than 12 hours later that my files were ready for pick up.  EASY!  I picked most to be printed on their 110 lb. index stock.  For the foldover treat tags, I had those printed on the 'Ultra Bright White' stock.  The higher the weight of a paper, the thicker it is.  I usually suggest printing on anything between 80 lb. and 100 lb.  I did not notice much difference between the 110 lb stock and the 'Ultra Bright White' in terms of thickness.  For the water bottle labels, I had those printed on their glossy stock just to try it out.  They printed out really well on those and it's nice and thick stock.  Those would look great for the candy bar wrappers as well.  For water bottle labels, I usually suggest full sheet label paper so that it sticks to the bottle.  The glossy paper from Kinkos is not waterproof and I did not see an option for full sheet label stock or labels that were waterproof.  So this is some of the compromise with printing at a print shop as opposed to printing at home where you can buy your own paper.  The cost per page was around $1.20.  Now, I have 80# white cardstock on hand that I order from and that is 100 sheets for $15 plus shipping.  It is more cost effective to purchase your own paper and print at home if you are able. 
When printing your files from home, you may need to play with some of your printer settings.  For the items like the cupcake toppers, you may want to choose 'scale to fit media' or an option that does not enlarge them so they fit within the two inch punch for which they were designed.  Your printer naturally wants to add in a margin around the image being printed.  Which can cause the size of the actual image to shrink from it's actual size.
Now that we have them printed...let's assemble!  People will ask how long does it take to setup the printables?  It really depends on which items you choose and how much of each item.  A party for less than ten kids does not have as many printed items as a party for fifty people.  The toppers and the banner are by far the more involved items to assemble.

First up, is assembling the cupcake toppers.  Below is a step-by-step guide for doing the toppers.  You will need a pair of scissors, a two inch punch, lollipop sticks, and glue. 
 1.  Cut off the bottom of the page to be able to get the punch up around the first topper. 
 2.  You will need a 2" circle punch.  A scallop punch works well too.  I like using a plain circle punch for boy parties. 
3.  Flip the punch over so you see the backside of it and then you can line it up easier with the center of the topper.
4.  There is your topper!
5.  Put a line of glue on the top part of a white lollipop stick.  Then place your punched out topper on top of the glue, centering the image with the stick.
6.  All done!  Well...done with the first one.  Repeat for all toppers.

Next up!  The banner....

You will need a regular hole punch and ribbon.  You can do the banner a few different ways, but I think this is an easy and a secure way of putting it together. 
1. Cut out each piece
2. Finished pieces
3. You may want to use a ruler and put a pen mark as to where to punch each hole so you have them punched in the same spot for each letter.  Then punch out a hole on the upper left and upper right corner of each piece.
4. Slip ribbon through the top left corner of the first piece.
5. Run the ribbon behind the back of the piece.
6. And run the ribbon up through the hole on the right side.  Continue for each piece.

Most of the other printables you would simply cut, fold and display.  If you ever have questions about how to assemble the other files, please contact me! I hope you find this tutorial helpful and stay tuned for the next post with another tutorial on creating a budget friendly dessert table. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

We are tickled pink!.....and yellow and grey

I am been neglecting my facebook and blog over this summer but I assure you...I have reason!  Let's first say that pregnancy and summer are never the ideal combination.  I will say, I did have a great summer with my son.  Doing some pool play dates and park outings.  I tried my best to keep up with him while melting in the sun.  I can't say I am sad to see the cool breezes coming our way.  It is a welcomed change and just means we are much closer to meeting our baby GIRL

I've been busy this summer preparing her nursery with lots of homemade touches.  Then my computer decided to quit on me and I had to shut down my Etsy shop for three weeks waiting for it to be fixed.  I was definitely not pleased with having to wait that long for my computer to be fixed.  It's a brand new computer so it was frustrating to see it need such a big fix.  I can't say I didn't appreciate the forced vacation.  Great, quality time with my son and a chance to just slow down and enjoy the sunshine (well...enjoying it under the shade). 

I wanted to share with you all what I did with the nursery.  Pink is not my color of choice.  So, I knew I wanted to try something different but still feminine.  I saw a great bedding set at Target that is yellow and grey and knew that was it.  Love Target!  From there, I decided to throw in splashes of pink since the all yellow and grey palette was looking a little too dull. 

My grandpa had made me for me when I was younger, a white display case to look like a house. I can't remember what I had displayed so I painted tiny wooden dolls to sit in there for now until ELLA begins to collect her own little things she wants displayed.

I also made a little hoop art with fabric appliqued mary jane shoes.  Oh, did I mention I also got back into sewing this summer?  Talk about nesting!!!  I hadn't sewn in over 15 years and bought the machine, hoping I would open the box and just remember all what I had been taught....and I did!  Well...mostly.  I'm not going to show you the bibs I made!  They will work but aren't the most beautiful things out there.

The yellow mama and baby birds on the shelf match the bedding perfectly.  I was so happy to have discovered those.  I spray painted the frame pink.  Spray paint is the best!  If you find something you like in the wrong color, just spray paint it.  I also spray painted the ornate oval frame that I found at IKEA.  Add in some yellow fabric and you have a custom piece!

So....with the arrival of baby number two coming in October, I will be closing down my Etsy shop from October 1st until January 2nd.  I want to thank all of you that have supported my business over the past three years.  There is nothing like doing what you love everyday. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mini Desserts - Blueberry

Summer brings along its warmth and enjoyment of outdoor activities.  It also brings us so many great fresh fruits and vegetables to enjoy.  I want to do all I can to enjoy them to their fullest while they are at their peak freshness.  Blueberries and strawberries top the list for me.  Maybe its making smoothies or adding some strawberries to a biscuit with a dollop of whip cream....oh, now that is a perfect and sweet ending to a warm summer day.  Today I am bringing you some inspiriation on using fresh blueberries for those summertime desserts.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Italian Bakery Birthday Party

When it comes to throwing parties, themes for little girls and boys and even us ladies, are easy to come up with.  Really it's hard to narrow it down to just one and then we eagerly await until the next one comes up.  But when it comes to our men, our husbands, boyfriends, brothers and dear friends....thinking of a manly party theme...ugh...I would rather do my taxes. 
My mom wanted to throw my step-dad a 60th birthday party and of course enlisted me to create a dessert table.  I had the hardest time thinking of a theme.  My step-dad has a Harley, but I wanted something a bit different and kid friendly as well.  When my mom mentioned she was ordering all the hot food from Mama Mia's in Plymouth....italian food...italian desserts...oh!  It came to me!  I started thinking about bakeries and their great storefronts with their striped awnings and windows filled with sugary delights.  And with my step-dad being Italian, I knew he would get a kick out of it.

I told my husband how I thought it would tie the whole table together to have an awning on the table...but how to do it?  Thankfully, he is one clever (and helpful) husband!  We went to Lowes and spent about $7 in PVC piping to erect the frame.  I was not able to find any red and white striped fabric so I purchased two yards of a red gingham fabric and hot glued it to the plastic frame.  My husband attached the piping to a scrap piece of wood we had in the basement and then we clamped it to the table.  Very easy and such a great idea if you are planning a party with an ice cream theme.  I actually gave it to a guest at the party who will be using it for her son's circus themed party. 
I ordered most of the sweets from a local italian bakery.  We kept the birthday man in mind with ordering a carrot cake (a personal favorite) and I included some black licorice jelly beans.  Also a personal favorite of his.  His mom saves all the black jelly beans when Easter comes around and give them to him.  They are too cute!
Chocolate covered oreos, personalized with '60' were a big hit with adults and kids.  Since not everyone is a carrot cake fan...including myself, adding in the oreos and some chocolate whoppie pies, it was a table sure to please everyones sweet tooth.

Chocolate Oreos Pops from Sweeties by Kim

In keeping with the Italian theme, I added in some 'Happy Birthday' flags in Italian.

I could have eaten all of these...

No Italian bakery is complete without cannolis!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


To all my dear may have noticed some radio silence in the past 6 weeks or so.  I have neglected my blog and my facebook page so I can keep with up with my Etsy shop and the day to day of life.  It's been a little bit more to handle the past six weeks mostly due to the fact that I am expecting baby number two this fall!!

Keeping up with my day to day orders, my two year son and trying to get dinner on the table has just been about all I have been able to find energy for lately.  But I feel like things are was the first day I didn't feel the need to crash on the couch for two hours!  The grass is growing, the sun is out and the windows are open!  All good signs that I am ready to get back up to speed and start showing myself around here more.

I hope you all are having a lovely Spring and gearing up for some fun Summer times ahead.  I have lots of parties designed in my que that I look forward to photographing and showing off in the next couple of months.

Baby number two is coming the end of October and I am not sure of the impact it will have on my business.  I absolutely love what I do and I love that there are those of you out there that love it too!  I'm not sure if I will be hiring anyone to fill in while I take a maternity leave for the last three months of this year.  But until then, I hope you enjoy what I am able to bring to you for the next five or so months.

Thank you all for your support!