Paper Flower Gift Topper

 

Gift Wrapping with Flowers

You know me. I love gift wrap! Probably more so than the present itself. And even though my birthday is in June, it turns out plenty of people have fall birthdays, which means this paper flower gift topper will definitely come in handy. The best part is, since these flowers are paper, you can save them for plenty of birthdays and occasions for presents to come! I came up with this tissue paper flower gift topper as a fun way to add a dash of whimsy to a gift and it’s super easy. It’s based on paper poms, so if you know how to make those, you’re good to go!

tissue paper flower diyInstructions

  1. First, cut a piece of tissue paper 6″ wide and about 18″ long (depends on how large you’d like it)
  2. Next, cut another piece of tissue paper about 2″ wide and 18″ long. This will be the center of your flower.
  3. Now do an accordion fold up the tissue paper, about 3/4″ wide.
  4. After the accordion folds are done, fold the accordion-folded paper in half.
  5. Now staple the center of the fold.
  6. Once the paper is stapled, cut a point at each end of the paper.
  7. Next, glue the two ends of the paper together and fan out the blossom so that it spreads evenly around.
  8. Using the template, cut out leaves from the green paper and fold down the center. Use whatever size you prefer for your flowers!
  9. Glue the topper to the gift and glue the paper leaves underneath.

Voila! All done!

Tissue paper flower gift topperTissue paper flower gift topperPhotography by Trisha Zemp

More Inspiration

Loved this tutorial on our paper flower gift topper and need more ideas? We have plenty of gift toppers to choose from! See our popular bird gift topper here. Also check out these 3D paper flower gift toppers. Another classic is this prize ribbon gift topper. And call me premature, but prep early for the holidays with these classic paper holiday greenery gift toppers.

Mother’s Day Breakfast in Bed

Mother’s Day Breakfast in Bed

For our Mother’s Day breakfast in bed, we decided to go with something classic and gave it a little twist to make it extra cute for mom. This Mother’s Day breakfast in bed is so simple, but so adorable. Think edible arrangement in bed. Here’s how to recreate it:

Tray

To make your Mother’s Day breakfast in bed extra comfy for mom, you’ll want one of these handy trays. We went with a simple white Amazon edition. It was perfect with the colorful fruit and other components, like our retro floral fabric we turned into a bedspread!

Dishes

A vase and plate or bowl make a lovely addition to your breakfast in bed arrangement. We chose a simple white vase and pink plate we had on hand, but you can also see this post for many more options that would be beautiful as well!

Napkins

We chose our DIY napkins using natural ingredients for this breakfast in bed. We loved the bold colors in contrast with the fruit and that retro floral bedspread.

Flower fruit

The real stars (or flowers) of the show were the cookie cutters, which we used to cut out various types of fruit into flowers and arranged them. This part is fun–get creative and make your own edible arrangement for mom. Here’s how you can recreate these edible arrangements:

  1. First, cut out wide, flat slices of fruit (wide enough for various sizes of the flower cookie cutters to fit on).
  2. Cut out various sizes of the cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon, and pineapple. We found that the watermelon and pineapple worked best for the larger cookie cutters, while the honeydew and cantaloupe were ideal for the smaller ones.
  3. Next, cut a length of 18 gauge wire that’s slightly longer than a straw. Slide it through the straw and stick a large fruit flower onto the tip. The flower should sit nicely on top of the straw now.
  4. Cut a small piece of wire and use to attach a smaller flower onto the center of the big flower.
  5. Make as many as you’d like for the arrangement!

Other food ideas

We went with a very fruit-centric breakfast with edible arrangements, grapes and strawberries (these didn’t work with the cookie cutters but are nonetheless delicious). But we also included some delicious cherry turnovers so mom could indulge. Get creative and add anything to your breakfast you think your mother would like!

What are you going to do for your Mother’s Day breakfast in bed? Let us know in the comments!

Things To Do For Mom

Give her breakfast in bed

Breakfast in bed is the classic Mother’s Day gift! But this year you can make it even more unique by cutting out fruit in the shape of flowers. It’s a simple way even the little kids can feel like they’re contributing to help make mom feel special. To get you started, give her a hot cup of tea in this speckled loopy mug from our shop, or add a twisted candle in a flower candle holder.

Here are some more supplies to help prep for the perfect breakfast in bed:

Make dinner

Growing up, my dad would make dinner for my mom every Mother’s Day. Most of the time, he did a pretty spectacular job (though I still remember the time he forgot the cheese in the lasagna). Don’t worry, if you’re not feeling confident enough in your cooking to take on a whole meal yourself (I understand, I really do–I’m the queen of not knowing how to cook), enlist the help of siblings and friends and make a day of it! There’s also no shame in a few store-prepared elements to your meal (Harmon’s and Trader Joe’s are my favorites).

If your mom loves to cook, some great gifts we mentioned in our Mother’s Day gift guide this year are our recipe cards and this adorable new checkerboard apron!

Here are some other great kitchen supplies to make the dinner extra special and beautiful:

Give her a beautiful card

A Mother’s Day card can never go wrong. It’s simple, but something every mother loves. Luckily for you, we have a whole host of Mother’s Day cards and stationary like this Scandinavian one to get you started!

Something handmade

What mom doesn’t love a handmade gift from their child? Head straight to our blog for tons of great DIY projects that double as great Mother’s Day gifts! For example, try these photo transfer dolls, or this beautiful clay necklace. This lovely embroidered brooch is another great option your mom can wear. For the kids, check out this post with tons of great Mother’s Day ideas kids can help with!

Two embroidered plush dolls on a blue background surrounded by colorful toys

Closeup of the embroidered floral brooch on Brittany's chambray quilted coat.

Flowers

Of course we couldn’t forget flowers. You know we love flowers, here at The House that Lars Built. Why not make some paper flowers for your mom this year? Some of my favorites are peonies, foxgloves, and hollyhocks. It’s a bouquet that stays looking fresh long after Mother’s Day!

Paper peony bouquet held by a person in a striped dress

Magenta and purple hollyhocks made of crepe paper against a dark grey background

No time to make a bouquet? Here are some lovely flower-centric options to try:

Go on a mom date

Take her out to her favorite restaurant, go get manis/pedis, get massages or do a full spa day, get a yummy treat, go on a walk amidst the blossoms, the options are endless. The one thing we know is that she’ll love getting to spend some quality time with you.

Here are some spa items you could incorporate into an at-home spa day:

Clean for her

Every mom appreciates a little help with the cleaning. Growing up, I remember asking my mom what she wanted for birthdays and she’d always mention cleaning. We can all relate! No matter how on top of the chores you are, it’s nice to take a break and let someone else take care of it for a change. The best part about this is that all ages of children can do a little something to help. Your mother deserves it!

Oh, and to top off your cleaning, why not light a deliciously scented candle? Mmmm, I love a good candle, and I bet your mom does, too.

More Gift Ideas

Still stumped? Check out our 2022 Mother’s Day gift guide!

Mother’s Day Gift Guide 2022

Mother’s Day Gifts from Our Shop

To kick off our Mother’s Day gift guide, we had to include our Mother’s Day shop items. There are so many that your mother is sure to love. (Hint: who’s getting me some of these for Mother’s Day?) Here are some of our favorites:

Aprons

First, this Mother’s Day apron pattern! We released the tutorial for this beauty just yesterday where you can read all about the reasons why a handmade apron is the perfect Mother’s Day gift. And this one is just lovely. We also have some ready-made aprons in blue and pink for those of you who aren’t feeling in the mood for sewing.

Earrings

Earrings are a classic gift! What mother doesn’t like an excuse to dress up once in a while? And we have multitudes of earrings your mother is sure to adore! Some of my personal favorites are: these, these and these, but you can find the whole collection we have to offer here.

fun abstract and floral shaped earrings

Other Shop Items We Love

We also highly recommend this DIY Floral brooch–it’s SO lovely, classy and timeless, you can’t go wrong. Looking for something kids can do for their moms? Try this Mother’s Day activity pack! Does your mom love to cook? Give her some of these adorable recipe cards to keep her kitchen organized! If your mom would love something to wear, try these paper flower boutonnieres–I love the little feminine touch they add to any outfit. Going along with the floral theme, we also have a beautiful flowers coloring book which your mom is sure to love. We also have plenty of Mother’s Day cards to choose from, and even gift cards if you can’t decide on anything specific! We especially love this Scandinavian floral one.

Closeup of the embroidered floral brooch on Brittany's chambray quilted coat.

Mother’s Day Florals

Next up on our Mother’s Day gift guide are some Mother’s Day florals! I know my mom doesn’t treat herself to new things as often as she deserves, so what better time than Mother’s Day for a spring wardrobe refresh filled with florals? Here are some options:

And here are some other florals, as well as things to get a garden blooming with her own fresh flowers!

Spa Day

Another gift that your mom isn’t likely to give herself is a much-needed spa day. So give her a reason for one!

For Her Home

Think throws, pillows, rugs, etc. Help her redecorate and add some fresh items to her home decor! Oh, and don’t forget those home scents.

 

 

Mother’s Day Apron

Mother’s Day Apron

Growing up, I can remember multiple school sewing projects involving apron making. I can even remember one that was supposed to be a Mother’s Day gift. Maybe it’s been done more than a few times, but hear us out. A Mother’s Day apron is one of the most perfect gifts! It’s handmade (raise your hand if your mother doesn’t love handmade gifts). It’s functional–since we are human and we need to eat, isn’t an apron like the most basic kitchen necessity? Oh, and the most important reason to make this apron: it’s just so adorable.

Our Mother’s Day Apron

This Mother’s Day apron is unique in part because we had the pleasure of using our very own custom Spoonflower fabric! Get ready for a lot more sewing projects–we’ve just touched the tip of the iceberg with this. We love how the pink and red checkerboard turned out with the apron. It was the perfect choice!

We also have an apron pattern that we’re especially thrilled about–due to the easily adjustable neck strap, it can fit pretty much any body size and shape. Because you don’t want to be dealing with a saggy or too-tight apron when you’re in the kitchen. It should fit perfectly!

How to Make a Checkerboard Mother’s Day Apron

Here’s how to make a checkerboard apron for the mothers in your life:

Prepping the Fabric

  1. First, you’ll want to prewash your fabric and dry it.
  2. Next, iron or steam the fabric so it’s nice and smooth.
  3. Now, lay out your pattern pieces and cut them out (see our PDF for specific details on printing and assembling the pattern).

Making the Strap

  1. With your strap pieces cut out, place two of the short ends with right sides together and sew along the edge with 1/2″ seam allowance. Trim and iron out flat.
  2. Now repeat the first step to attach the third piece, then fold over both ends by about 1/2″ and iron.
  3. Next, with right sides together, sew all along the raw edge of the fabric to make an inside-out tube.
  4. Turn the tube right side out (use a safety pin to pull it through), iron flat, then top stitch around the entire thing.
  5. Done! Set it aside until you’re ready to add it to the apron.

Sewing the Apron

Now you can start on the apron itself!

  1. First, hem the two sides and bottom. To do this, fold and iron the raw edge to the wrong side by 1/4″, then fold it over by another 1/4″ to hide the raw edge and iron. Sew all the way around the three bottom sides.
  2. For mitered corners, see our tutorial here!
  3. Now you’re ready for the top hem. For this, fold and iron the raw edge over by 1/4″, then again by 1″. Sew along the edge to tack it down and that hem is done.
  4. Next are the casings. For these, iron the outside curve under by 1/4″. Then line one casing up with the curve of the apron, right sides together, using notches as a guide. Sew along the edge.
  5. Now clip around the curve a bit.
  6. Next, hem each edge of the casing so it’s lined up with the edge of the apron. Tack each end down with a line of stitching.
  7. Turn the casing over to the other side and press flat.
  8. Finally, sew along the edge of the casing to tack it down and you’re done!

Assembling the Apron

The last step is to fully assemble your Mother’s Day apron.

  1. To do this, simply pin a safety pin to one end of the strap and feed it through both casings to make the neck loop. Adjust as desired for the perfect fit and you’re all done!

Happy Mother’s Day! Will you make her an apron this year? Let us know in the comments!

More Inspiration

Loved this tutorial on how to make a Mother’s Day apron and want a little more? Try these sweet spring outfits for the whole family! You also might be interested in this quilted shower curtain or mask, this DIY headboard, or this DIY beeswax wrap.

Female Author Booklist

Female Author Booklist

We’re excited to share this female author booklist with you! There are some amazing classics in here. While I haven’t read all the books on this list, I have read a few. The ones I haven’t read are highly recommended from multiple sources, which tells me they deserve to be named. We tried to pick a variety of books, ranging from older classics to more contemporary reads, and from a variety of genres. Hopefully there’s something for everyone here!

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

This book is the ultimate classic that every woman (and man!) should read. We need more books with strong, female protagonists. This is definitely a frontrunner in that category. Jane Austen is such a legend, we couldn’t leave her off this booklist.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Speaking of strong, female protagonists, Jo March is a role model for every young girl (and woman!). I grew up reading this, so maybe I’m biased, but I had to add it to our female author booklist. This is a beautiful book if you want to read a civil war era book about the struggles women faced written by a women. Louisa May Alcott’s perspective just can’t be paralleled by the male authors of her time.

Becoming by Michelle Obama

This isn’t the first time this book has made it onto our blog. We LOVE Michelle Obama, and we LOVE her book. In fact, when we read her book for our book club, it inspired our entire becoming series. You can read the interviews in our becoming series here.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Another one of my all time favorite books, Jane Eyre is a moving story about a fiercely independent orphan and her journey to find freedom. I love the strength of women this book shows. And did I mention Charlotte Brontë? I mean, all three of the Brontë sisters are essentials to the category of strong, independent women. The fact that three female authors all came from one family at the time they did, historically, is a feat to be reckoned with.

My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsberg

We couldn’t make this female author booklist without including RBG. I mean what. an. icon. I think she speaks for herself. The legacy she left behind is remarkable and we would all do well to take a leaf out of her book. Or at least read it.

Circe by Madeline Miller

Looking for greek mythology with a strong, female heroine? This is the picture of female empowerment. A 2018 New York Times bestseller, this book has proven itself. And dipping your toes into greek mythology is always a pleasure.

The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

Joan Didion died in 2021, and what an iconic writer she was. This is a beautiful memoir that I haven’t read yet but is 100% on my list! It delves into the year following her husband’s death and how she had to deal with her daughter’s health issues in addition to her own. Just reading the summary feels powerful, so imagine getting to read every word from the source itself.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Another book I haven’t read yet but that definitely piqued my interest! This one delves into the sexual abuse facing fertile women in near-future New England.

The XX Brain by Lisa Mosconi

This is the perfect book to help you understand your brain and body as you age. It contains groundbreaking research on women’s health and how our hormones affect brain and body well-being as we age. More importantly, what we can do about it.

The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimimanda Ngozi Adichie

Nigerian writer Adiche explores women in relationships in a series of powerful short stories. It doesn’t take very many pages to write something impactful when you write like Adiche.

Housekeeping by Marilyn Robinson

This is a must read (really, any of hers can’t go wrong). They’re definitely on my list! Arguably America’s greatest living literary author, Robinson has won nearly every major literary prize, including the Pulitzer. Her novels explore the human condition, faith, and the origins of our modern discontents.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Schaffer

New York Times bestselling historical novel about a group of people on the Isle of Guernsey under German occupation and how books connected them and gave them hope during a time of darkness. And that movie?! I mean, come on.

The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin

This is a classic sci-fi novel set on a planet where every person is gender-neutral and the implications of how that plays out in society.

The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World by Melinda Gates

We had to include Melinda Gates on our booklist. This book is an eye-opening memoir that explores, among other things, the horrors and hardships experienced by women worldwide, and the ripple effects when efforts to eliminate poverty focus on lifting women.

A Midwife’s Tale by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

Ever seen Call the Midwife? I’m the first to admit I’ve watched every episode. Well A Midwife’s Tale is also a diary, this time of a female medical practitioner and ancestor of Clara Barton. Laurel Thatcher Ulrich is thoughtful and intentional in her research and explorations of the diary. The information she exposes throw open a window into the life of an 18th century woman and the society she lived and worked in. 

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

National Book Award Finalist, the story centers on a Korean woman in Japan. It’s also soon to be made a film!

More Inspiration

Looking for more books to read? Here’s a list of books and media by black creatives. Here’s a list of a few more book recommendations we made a few years ago, too! Interested in what we’ve read for book club? Here are the posts.

 

How to press flowers in 3 methods

I’m so excited to share this tutorial on how to press flowers with Beci Orpin, one of the most inspiring creatives I know. She’s an artist and illustrator who makes incredible crafts, and I feel lucky to get to share some of her expertise with you.

Press Flowers with Beci

I am an avid collector of many things, but old books are one of my favourites – I rarely walk out of an op shop without one. Quirky typesetting and old-school printing aside, one of the things I love about second-hand books is the chance of discovering a little surprise inside them. I’ve found many treasures tucked inside those yellowing, musty pages, including some flattened Easter-egg wrappers from the 1940s, a birthday note from an aunt to a favourite niece and, best of all, several books containing some beautiful pressed flowers.

When I was a child I used to press flowers with my grandma, and I remember never having enough patience to wait the weeks and weeks before the flowers were completely dried and pressed. Luckily for me, while I was researching this project, I discovered that there are several methods of pressing flowers, some of which allow you to cheat, so you don’t have to wait forever and ever before they are ready. This is good news for me, as I still have as much patience as a five-year-old.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci OrpinYOU WILL NEED:

  • flowers/foliage: ones with flat petals are best (see a list here. I like pansies, geraniums, flowering weeds – anything pretty and dainty
  • book/iron/microwave: what you use will depend on which method you choose.
  • paper or a card: try blotting paper, coffee filter paper, printer paper, several layers of tissue paper

NOTES:

  1. Flowers should preferably be freshly picked, to prevent browning.
  2. Don’t pick your flowers too early in the morning, as they will still have dew on them. The extra moisture from the dew may cause them to go mouldy during the pressing process.
  3. Flowers should have just bloomed or be about to bloom. If they are too mature, they will lose their petals.
  4. If the flowers have obvious stamens, remove them before pressing.

Method 1, Pressing in a book:

(This is the easiest but slowest method; I found it produced the best results.)

Open up your book and place a sheet of paper on one side of the book. Liquid from the flowers can leach into the surrounding pages, so use an old book or several sheets of paper to prevent this. TIP: Don’t use a phone book, as the paper is too flimsy.

Arrange your flowers on the piece of paper, making sure the flowers aren’t overlapping (unless you want them to). Cover with another piece of paper (or fold the first piece of paper in half) and close the book.

Weight down the book by placing some heavy books or bricks on top of it.

Change the papers after 1 week, then leave for a few more weeks until the flowers are completely dry. Try to resist the temptation to check them (unless changing the paper), as this can disturb the flowers.Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

Method 2, Ironing:

Flatten the flowers between pieces of paper in a book, following steps 1–3 (left). Leave the flowers to dry for however long you can manage (I recommend at least 1 day). Empty any water out of the iron (you don’t want any steam), and set the heat to the lowest setting.

Remove the flowers from the book, leaving them sandwiched between the two pieces of paper, and press them with the iron for 10–15 seconds. You don’t need to move the iron around, just press it on the paper.

Method 3, Microwave:

Arrange the flowers in the book between two pieces of paper, following steps 1–2 (left). Make sure that your book has no metal in the spine or type before putting it in the microwave. Place in the microwave and zap for 30 seconds. Take the book out and let it cool by opening the pages to let the steam out (don’t open the pages that have the flowers enclosed). TIP: Have a couple of books on the go at once, so you can have one heating in the microwave while the other one is cooling down.

Once the book is cool, zap it in the microwave again. Repeat until the flowers are almost dry (you may need to do this about four or five times: smaller flowers will dry out quicker), taking care you don’t overcook them, as the flowers will turn brown.

What To Do With Pressed Flowers

Learning to press flowers is just the beginning! Once you’ve pressed your flowers there are so many great crafts you can do with them.

Adding pressed flowers to a handmade card or invitation adds a whimsical touch. You can also place pressed flowers between two sheets of glass and then frame them for a garden-inspired wall decoration, as pictured here.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

This gorgeous pressed flower tray made by Jessica Pezalla of Bramble Workshop is an unexpected and delightful project to make the color from your garden last.

And don’t forget about pressing flowers when next Easter comes around! Then you can use our tutorial for dried flowers on Easter eggs. The possibilities are limitless.

Another floral project I love is this DIY flower pounding on fabric. It makes such beautiful design and the way the flowers transfer their color is delightful.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

If you use this tutorial to press flowers, I would love to see what you make! Share with us with the hashtag #LarsFlowerMonth.

You can purchase Sunshine Spaces here 

Keep reading! See more of our book recommendations here.

Photography by Chris Middleton  |  Book by Beci Orpin 

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

DIY Grocery Store Flower Bouquet

I love making grocery store flower bouquets. Before I learned a few simple flower-arranging tips, though, I used to buy pre-made bouquets from grocery stores, trim the ends, and dunk them into a vase as is. It looked decent and there’s nothing wrong with doing that, of course! But learning how to arrange flowers properly helped make a simple flower arrangement look like a professionally made bouquet.

A bouquet made of eucalyptus leaves, chamomile, roses, and hydrangeas against a pink wall with a mint green jewelry box in the background.

Buying a beautiful floral arrangement usually costs an arm and a leg. You can make a beautiful bouquet of your own with a fraction of that cost with flowers from a grocery store! Follow the step-by-step tutorial below to learn the tips and tricks.

Detail shot of eucalyptus leaves, chamomile, roses, and hydrangeas against a pink wall with a mint green jewelry box in the background.

Make Your Own Grocery Store Flower Bouquet

When you’re buying flowers for a bouquet, consider a color scheme that you want to design around and look for a variety of shapes and textures.

Detail shot of eucalyptus leaves, chamomile, roses, and hydrangeas against a pink wall with a mint green jewelry box in the background.

There are four basic categories to look for when making a bouquet. First choose larger blooms that will be focal points (like hydrangeas, roses, peonies, zinnias, tulips etc.). Second, line flowers (like goldenrod, calla lilies, or other flowers that form a strong visual line) or accent flowers (spray roses, carnations, eryngium, etc.). Third, get filler flowers (like chamomile, wax flower, or baby’s breath). Fourth and finally, choose greenery or foliage for your bouquet.

Choosing a vase for your arrangement is too-often overlooked. Whether you want something colorful or subdued, putting some thought into your vessel will elevate your bouquet. I put together a list of some of my current favorite vases here, or DIY a paper mâché or recycled egg carton vase with these tutorials!

Instructions

A person using a knife to trim the bottom of a stem next to some roses and a vase on a picnic table.A person removes rose leaves from a stem. In the background are rose petals, greenery, and a purple and white vase on a picnic table.A person arranges eucalyptus branches in a purple and white vase.A person arranges bright orange spray roses in a purple and white vase full of eucalyptus branches.A person places hydrangeas in a bouquet of eucalyptus and roses in a purple and white vase.A person places chamomile blossoms in a bouquet of eucalyptus, roses, and hydrangeas in a purple and white vase.

  1. Prepare all your flowers and foliage by trimming off the ends with a sharp, clean knife or some clean flower pruners. Take all the leaves off the bottom of the stems. You don’t want leaves to sit in the water, because then they’ll rot!
  2. Your flowers should have come with a little packet of flower food. Pour this, along with some water, into a vase.
  3. First place your foliage in the vase. Think about the ways that foliage can frame flowers or provide a more neutral backdrop for them. I’m arranging with willow eucalyptus, which has long, elegant leaves, so I’m also considering how they drape. Hold a few branches back to add in at the end.
  4. Next place your line flowers or accent flowers. I used spray roses here.
  5. Arrange the focal flowers in the vase. The stems from your foliage and accent flowers will form a sort of lattice that makes it easier to get your focal flowers right where you want them.
  6. When you arrange your focal flowers, think about how tall you want them and what direction you want them to face. If they’re too long, trim the stems a little bit at a time, because you can all ways take away more stem but you can’t make them grow taller!
  7. Arrange your fill flowers around the focal and line/accent flowers.
  8. Add in any foliage you held back.
  9. Place your bouquet somewhere in your home that you’ll see it often so that you really enjoy it! To keep it fresh for as long as possible, pick the flowers up and trim an inch off the stems every few days. When you do this, make sure there’s plenty of water and it’s clean.

Arranging flowers is a skill that comes in handy all the time, especially if you love having fresh flowers around as much as I do! I would love to see your bouquets at #LarsFlowerMonth

beautiful bouquet made from grocery store flowers

Spring Shop Launches!

So much has been going on in our shop that I have a whole list of Spring shop launches to announce! Working with incredible artists and brands is such a fun aspect of what I do, and I’m so excited to announce these Springtime collaborations and additions to the shop.

Betsy Croft

Betsy holds a special place in my heart because she used to be an intern at The House that Lars Built! On top of that, she is an amazing ceramic artist (check out our interview of her here). I adore her new line and I’m ecstatic that I get to partner with her and sell her work through my shop!

Betsy’s mugs are so beautiful and unique that you won’t want to close the cupboard doors on them. I love the vibrant, looped handles, which really make them showstoppers.

Can you believe how whimsical these floral candlesticks are? They would be so lovely grouped together as a tabletop garden or even individually. Each candlestick comes with a candle so you can get started right away.

While all of Betsy’s products would make ideal Mother’s Day gifts, these mini vase brooches are especially fitting. They attach to a blouse securely with two pins, which means they won’t twist upside down and accidentally spill your teeny bouquet. The brooches come with a mini paper flower kit that we made especially for the vase so you can make a bloom that will last a long time. I love giving gifts with a handmade component, and this ticks all the boxes.

Mother’s Day Shop

In addition to Betsy’s phenomenal work, there’s a whole collection of Mother’s Day gifts in my shop! There are darling earrings of so many shapes and sizes that no matter your mother’s (or aunt’s or grandma’s or friend’s) sensibilities, there’s something cheerful and beautiful for the people on your list.fun abstract and floral shaped earrings

Plus, our corsage inspired aprons are always a win!

Nothing says Mother’s Day like a handwritten note, and we also have you covered there. Choose between a wide variety of designs and messages and express your love in style.

Kids need to be able to get in on the Mother’s Day festivities too, so we made this detailed and delightful activity pack. Print out the files and let your kids go to town to make a gift that’s memorable and oh so personal.Mother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with

If you’re looking for more Mother’s Day inspiration, check out our post about Mother’s Day gifts that kids can help out with here.

Kids Shop

cheap art for kid's rooms
This collection of animal prints by Brazilian artist Jéssyka Gomes is a favorite

If you’re familiar with The House that Lars Built, it’s no surprise to you that my boys are a big presence here. We make a lot of projects for kids, so this spring we launched the Baby and Children’s section of the shop. Between patterns, products, and prints, there’s so much to make and do and decorate with for Little Lars (you know I love an alliteration!).

cheap art for kid's rooms
Paris based illustrator, Jessie Kanelos Weiner is a Lars favorite
cheap art for kid's rooms
Yelena Bryksenkova’s patchwork collection comes in prints AND bookplates!
cheap art for kid's rooms
Angie Stalker’s work is fun and bright!
cheap art for kid's rooms
Josefina Schargorodsky captures the essence of a lazy summer day

I teamed up with lots of brilliant illustrators and artists to make artwork you can use to decorate a kid’s room (or your own! I won’t tell)! Lots of the artwork is storybook themed so your little one can decorate with art from some of their favorite books.

Winter Water Factory

Finally, we collaborated with Winter Water Factory, one of my favorite clothing brands, to design a print. If you’re someone who looks at kids clothes and thinks “I want that in my size,” this is for you! Winter Water Factory makes clothing for kids and adults alike, as well as a few key accessories for babies. This collaboration also happened in partnership with Hazel Village to make clothes for stuffed animals. Name something cuter than your whole troupe decked out in matching Dutch Floral clothing–I’ll wait. Ha! We came up with an adorable coloring page to go with it.The House That Lars Built for Winter Water Factorydutch blue floral children's clothingboys can wear florals too!

I was inspired by the floral patterns on Dutch pottery for this line and I think that all the products came out so beautifully.

Keep In Touch

We’re always releasing new products and projects, and I would hate for you to miss them! Our Instagram pages are great places to keep up with what I’m working on. For more shop-exclusive content check out @houselarsbuiltshop and for a broader look at what’s going on in the world of Lars follow along with @houselarsbuilt. I look forward to seeing you there!

Mother’s Day Gifts the Kids Can Help With

Mother’s Day gifts the kids can help with

Mother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with

Maybe my favorite Mother’s Day gift is our Mother’s Day Activity Pack, which comes with everything the kids will need to make mom tear up with joy this year. Just print it off on your home printer and let your kids get busy!

Mother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help withMother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with mothers day coupons

Since mom might not be able to go out to the spa, or get brunch with friends this year, these colorful coupon cards will make sure May 9th is still MOM’S DAY all day. Sometimes an hour of quiet time, or a very long nap, are the best gifts in the world.

Mother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with Mother of the year awardMother's day activity pack coloring pages for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with

Many moms are in now entering year two as the homeschool teacher, 24/7 chef, and endless entertainment with all her kids at home. Even though vaccine rollout means there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, society’s expectations for moms over the last year have taken a TOLL. It’s no secret that no one was built to be able to handle all of this, and moms everywhere deserve the Mother of the Year Award.

Mother's day activity pack for Mother's day gifts the kids can help withMother's day activity pack for Mother's day gifts the kids can help with #1 mom ribbon

Click here to see the full set!

Mother's day activity pack for Mother's Day gifts the kids can help with

Beaded Clay Necklace

I recently released a Mother’s Day gift project that kids will love making and moms will love wearing. This clay necklace is simple enough that even little kids can make it with a bit of adult supervision. It’s also a big upgrade from the macaroni creations of yesteryear.

Rolling rainbow clay balls for a mother's day necklaceBrittany is wearing a white blouse and a rainbow colored clay necklace. She's standing against a green wall.

It would look great with the new earrings in our shop to round out a store-bought gift with some homemade charm.

Other Mother’s Day Projects

Whether you are slipping these projects to your children to surprise their mom with (along with breakfast in bed, of course!) Or you are still trying to find the perfect grown-up gift for your own mother. Here are our favorite projects from Mother’s Days past, pulled straight from our endless archives.

Mother's day gifts card with paper flowersmother's day flower cake toppers printable

Have you been eyeing our new paper flowers e-book but you’re nervous to try a whole bouquet? This Flower Bouquet Mother’s Day Card is the perfect first project! Slip in just a few paper flowers to the card vase to make it pop.

Or even easier, cut out these Paper Flower Cake Toppers and bake mom something sweet! Or top a tower of crepes with the flower toppers for an amazing breakfast in bed.

Mother's day gifts card with gift cardMother's day gifts card with gift card and paper flowers

These cards are both designed to attach a fun gift card so mom can treat herself! This blog post is a helpful reminder to check in on the emotional health of mothers you know. Especially brand new moms! The best way to really show your gratitude this year to let moms around you know you are there for them. Checking in on them sincerely and sending a gift card for a fun surprise is the perfect Mother’s Day combo! We now offer gift cards to our shop, so mom can pick out her favorite art print or start a new project!

May 9th is coming quickly! Check out our full Mother’s Day shop here!

Photo Transfer Dolls for Mother’s Day

Have you read the book Flat Stanley? He’s a boy who’s, well, flat, and he goes on a journey through the postal system. I made heirloom doll versions of my boys that their grandma can receive and then fill. Hopefully other moms and grandmas can have a cozy Mother’s Day this year with these photo transfer plush dolls while we wait for the (ever-approaching!) light at the end of the long COVID tunnel.

A woman hugs a toddler and a baby

The technique for these family photo heirloom ornaments is so versatile! With such a limitless method, I knew that it wouldn’t do to just put away my Christmas decorations at the beginning of the year and set aside these photo transfer projects. I have had so much fun making ornaments and plush dolls with the instructions in our ebook. 

A plush embroidered doll on a blue background surrounded with colorful toys.

Past Projects

Last year our team made plush dolls of our celebrity crushes for Valentine’s Day and then honored some of our Black creative heroes by immortalizing them in plush form. After a year of being at home with family, it just seemed right that I would make photo transfer plush dolls out of family members. Mother’s Day is a great time to make that happen. After all, what mom or grandma doesn’t want a completely customized heirloom doll in the shape of her kids or grandkids? 

Two embroidered plush dolls on a couch with a plush rabbit and colorful toys.

The embroidery adds such a beautiful, whimsical finishing touch to these dolls. I can totally see Jasper’s spunkiness and Felix’ squishy snuggliness shining through these photo transfer plush dolls. 

For the sake of our photos we stuffed our dolls and sewed them up. If you left off that step, though, you could put your embroidered forms in an envelope, mail them to your mom or grandma, and let her bring them to life with stuffing. 

A plush embroidered doll on a blue background surrounded with colorful toys.

Instructions:

Download the photo transfer plush e-book from our shop for all the details on how to make these dolls!

Waist-Only Garden Apron Pattern

The apron has large pockets which make it perfect for gardening, cooking, and crafting. Lately I’ve been wearing the same dress day after day because it has one great pocket in the front that is the perfect size for scissors and trowels, but this dress needs a break! 

garden apron pattern waist-only apron printable pattern

A waist-only apron is the kind of thing I imagine women in the sixties wore, and that vintagey feel is something I can’t get enough of. It’s also a great piece that doesn’t hide your cute outfit, but adds to it. Boring tee-shirt and sweats? Disguise the sweats with the apron tied around your waist, and allow the ties to cinch in the tee-shirt. Talk about a step up! With a cute apron in a pattern of your choosing, you don’t even have to put on real clothes to feel cute.

We’ve included a printable file for the apron pattern to make it that much simpler to sew. Scroll down for more info!

garden apron pattern waist-only apron printable pattern

How to make your own garden apron

Pick out some fabric you love! Here are some of our favorites you can get delivered right to your door!

Click here to download the pattern and instructions. The file comes will very detailed instructions and measurements to make your garden apron pattern simple.

garden apron pattern waist-only apron printable pattern

Everything you need to cultivate your green thumb

After sewing your garden apron, load up on everything else you need to become a gardening QUEEN this season!