Jasper’s Viking Cardboard Box Costume

Over on Instagram I’ve been doing a Jasper Costume Countdown from the previous couple of years. Do you remember them? First year, we had fun with a Picasso and Painting mommy and me costume. That little pudge! I can’t even handle it!

Picasso and Painting

But for actual Halloween night I turned him into a colorful French clown. Don’t ask where the make-up ended up.

The next year, he played Jared Leto at the Met Ball

And then Mommy and Me as Lady Liberty and her little tourist.

And then a squirrel for actual Halloween night.

DIY Cardboard Box Viking Costume

This year, I was inspired by his Nordic DNA and went a little more savage. Now, if you recall from this post, I have a number of requirements that accompany each costume choice. If you’re child has no opinions a la Jasper, then you can do whatever you darn well please and that’s when these decisions matter most. I really should have gone with a rotund animal selection because Jasper still has all the right curves (thankfully!), but a little mini viking was too cute, especially before he truly does become more savage with age.

Additionally, Paul’s number one choice for Jasper was Odin. It was a bit *much* for me so we got some use out of it in this more temporary context.

Cardboard Box Costume Viking Costume

I was inspired by my friend, Merrilee Liddiard of Mer Mag who creates the loveliest cardboard costumes. She has a series of cardboard box costumes that I love  so what started out as a plain ‘ole Viking turned into me thinking I turn his wagon into a ship and then before too long it became a cardboard box.

Here’s how I did it:

Materials for Ship:

  • cardboard box big enough for your child to fit into
  • Craft knife
  • Glue gun
  • Sharpie or pencil
  • acrylic paint in brown, blue, red, yellow, gold
  • string or rope
  • dowel
  • poster board
  • paint brushes

Instructions:

  1. Cut an oval hole into the top of the box and cut the other side out completely
  2. Draw and cut out your dragon design. I inserted it into a hole in the box and then secured with glue gun. Repeat to the tail.
  3. You can see in the pictures that I painted the sea first, but in hindsight I should have painted the brown of the ship first and then done the sea afterwards. I ended up doing both.
  4. I wanted a painterly/weathered look so I didn’t add too much paint onto the box, but enough to cover all the markings.
  5. I added in some metallic gold paint for accents. And then the sea with large strokes.
  6. Viking ships have those round shields on the side so we added those on too.
  7. We created a red and white sail with paint and added holes into it for the dowel.
  8. I added straps into the box from the end of the ship to the front so that they can be used as shoulder straps.

DIY Viking Helmet made from Cardboard

Jasper has been taking his viking hat EVERYWHERE we go–to the grocery store, returns…It’s hilarious. I’ve been wanting to make this Viking hat from Zygote Brown because it’s too darn cute! The one she has uses a different technique for the horns, which is AMAZING. I was spending SO much time on it that at midnight I had to say “serenity now” and figure out a faster technique so I did just a 2D version with the shape itself.

DIY Cardboard Viking Hat Materials:

Instructions: 

  1. Use the Zygote Brown viking hat base (the price is worth it because it involves exact math!)
  2. Cut out the 2D horns and insert them into the side of the hat and glue in place.

I did have to give his hair a little boost because it’s so long that the curls are getting weighed down. Curling iron to the rescue!

DIY Viking Costume

For the actual costume, our sewing intern made a few fun things:

  1. Sweet furry vest (the furrier the better!). It just so happens to be the same as the squirrel costume from last year!
  2. Spats She also made some spats in the same material to go over his shoes. I tied them up with twine so that they would hold in place and provide more texture.
  3. Turtleneck and pants I used this cream turtleneck from Maisonette and some pants he already had.

And that’s it! Love my little viking and yes, of course he’s taken on the persona and all the comes with it perfectly 😉

Can’t wait to see what you come up with! Show is your costumes with the tag #LarsInCostume

If you liked this post you’ll love these ones too!

Girl With a Pearl Earring Costume
Vincent Van Gogh Costume
Birth of Venus Costume

 

DIY St. Patrick’s Day marbled shamrock party hats

DIY marbled shamrock party hats for St. Patrick's Day

How are you celebrating St. Patricks’ Day this year? With a party? Do you need some hats? We got ’em! These DIY St. Patrick’s Day marbled shamrock party hats are surprisingly easy to make and you’ll never guess how we made them. Hint: someone in your house probably has it in their medicine cabinet.

DIY marbled shamrock party hats for St. Patrick's DayDIY marbled shamrock party hats for St. Patrick's Day

DIY marbled shamrock party hats

Materials:

    • green card stock
    • foam shaving cream
    • green food coloring
    • craft sticks
    • wax paper
    • scissors
    • green tissue paper
    • green crepe paper
    • green covered floral wire
    • wire cutters
    • glue
    • glue gun
    • hole punch
    • ribbon or elastic
    • template or SVG file and craft cutting machine
    • iron
Steps:
Step 1. Marble your green card stock. To do this, lay out a sheet of wax paper and cover the surface with foaming shaving cream (the cheap stuff works great). Drop green food coloring onto the shaving cream and drag a craft stick around in the shaving cream to create a marbled pattern with the food coloring. Press the craft paper into the shaving cream. Peel craft paper back and wipe excess shaving cream off of the paper with the edge of another craft stick. You can use the same shaving cream and add more food coloring for several sheets of card stock. Allow card stock to dry completely. If card stock ripples you may want to iron it on a low setting to flatten it.
diy-marbling-with-shaving-creamdiy-marbling-with-shaving-cream-and-food-coloringdiy-marbling-with-shaving-cream-1diy-marbling-with-shaving-cream-4diy-marbling-with-shaving-cream2
Step 2. Use template or craft machine to cut party hats out of marbled card stock. Assemble hats using hot glue to keep tab in place.

green-marblegreen-marblind-2

3. Cut and fringe 1.5 inch strips of tissue paper and/or crepe paper. Glue fringed strips around the bases of your hats (2-3 times around looks best). Ruffle the fringe with your fingers to give it some dimension.

green-party-crepeparty-hatgreen-marbling

4. Cut shamrock shapes out of folded squares of crepe paper. Cut 2 inch segments of covered floral wire. Hot glue one end of a segment of wire to the back of each shamrock. Hot glue a shamrock to the top of each party hat.

paper-shamrock-2shamrock-paper-cutpaper-shamrock

5. Punch a small hole into either side of each hat. Thread elastic or ribbon through the holes to keep the hats in place on your head.DIY marbled shamrock party hats for St. Patrick's Day

Photos and crafting by Ashley Isenhour

New Face Masks For The New Year

With how the past year played out, it seems difficult to imagine what our futures will look like. Will life ever go back to how it was before the pandemic, or will face masks stick around for good? Maybe we’ll adjust to (another) new normal within the next year. Now that face masks are widely distributed, it seems like a waste to eventually box them up and never use them again. Especially when they come in such cute patterns, who wouldn’t want to show them off?

New Face Masks Roundup

Whether face masks are here to stay or will eventually become unnecessary for everyday use, it seems like we’re going to be wearing face masks for a while. So why not make the most of it? Back in April, we shared our favorite face masks with you. It’s been a few months since then, and many more masks have been created in that time! We’ve got a new face masks roundup for you with masks from around the web. A new mask is the perfect way to head into the new year. Practical and stylish? Count me in!

Check out new face masks available below!

Face Masks We Love

Pattern Goals

Cottagecore Meets Color

A Face Mas(k)terpiece

Bold and Beautiful

Neutrals But Make Them Fun

A Subtle Statement

Accessories

Kid’s Face Masks

Making your own masks

If you prefer to make your own face masks, you can use the face masks roundup we curated as inspiration!  You could even make masks for the holidays like we did this past Halloween (maybe a Valentine’s Day mask for February?). Even after this pandemic is over, masks will come in handy for the colder weather! Pick out your favorite pattern, or make face masks for friends and family! Face masks would be great in a care package, plus they’re easy to ship!

Although this past year wasn’t what we had expected, you can brighten up the start of the new year with a new face mask!

Going Green: Using green in decor

Green Style

Find your shade! Are you a chartreuse kind of gal, or a deep emerald? Minty fresh or bright as a lime? This post is filled with every shade of green you can imagine, and we know you can find the shade that matches your personality best!

 

Maybe you don’t normally go all out on St. Patrick’s Day the way we like to here at Lars (we’ll take any and all reasons to celebrate!) Even so, we are handing you the perfect excuse to splurge a little and treat yourself! Is your closet already 50 shades of green? If it isn’t, you’ll be surprised how much adding in this fun color puts a spring in your step! Freshen your closet with these mint woven sandals. Grow your confidence with this forest green blouse. Embrace Grace Kelly vibes with this kelly green sweater. Step into the lime-light with this beaded clutch. This puff-sleeve sweater will have you sea-foaming at the mouth?? Too far? Oops!

 

Green in Decor

Let us give you some sage advice, this dining set is the perfect soft pop of color without taking over your kitchen. We promise, your old room decor will be green with envy. (Ok ok! We are done with the puns this time!)

 

Room Inspo

How to recreate some of our favorite rooms, using green as your inspiration color.

Room #1

 

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Room #2

 

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Room #3

 

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Room #4

 

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Room #5

 

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You can find all the mood board photos on our Pinterest, here!

Valentine Hair Clips Round-Up

A handful of our favorite hair clips!

We got a new batch of clips in and listed them in the shop. You can find them here!

Valentine hair clips

Total e-clips of the heart printable card

Or grab our new clip Valentine cards here.

Snag these up quick so you can send these cards out to everyone you love! Be sure to show us how you styled the card with #larsloveslove!!

DIY Detachable Rickrack Collar

Collars are super in right now as a part of the whole cottagecore trend and I am DIGGING them. I mean, you have to be super careful about them so as not to appear too 19th century. You can modernize it a bit more by wearing a blouse tucked into pants. I’m not much of a pants owner so I had to go with my dress here, but I’m going to assume that you own pants–am I correct? Ha! A lot of the ones out there are collars connected with the blouse but I wanted one that you could detach and pair with lots of different ones.

I LOVE a collar on kids too, though admittedly, I think I’d probably put it on a girl if I had one more than my boys. But, who cares?! They’re so fun! Almost like a necklace.

Rickrack is the braided trimming in a zigzag pattern often used as decoration on clothes. In the past, we used them to embellish blouses, and most recently, we used them in our baby bonnet pattern. We love the trimming so much, we wanted to use it in creating other matching accessories for the whole family. Starting with mom and child, make a rickrack collar that you can attach and detach to any outfit. Because rickrack has such a nostalgic appeal, they will maintain its classic look and feel for years to come. Read on to find out how to make one for yourself using our rickrack collar pattern.  

Materials:

Kid and Adult matching collar pattern, 1 yard cotton fabric (we used this gingham by Robert Kaufman), medium rick rack, matching thread, hooks and eyes, scissors, hand sewing needle, sewing pins, iron, sewing machine. A sewing machine isn’t strictly necessary, but it sure speeds things up! 

Instructions:

  1. Download, print, and cut out the matching collar pattern. If you’re making a collar for a kid, hold up the patterns to one of their shirts to decide which size will fit best.
  2. Cut out your fabric. Make sure that you cut the collar back pieces on the fold!
  3. Pin the collar front pieces to the collar back along the shoulder seam. If your fabric is printed, the right sides should be together.
  4. Sew along the shoulder seams. 
  5. Press the seams open. 
  6. Repeat steps 3-6 with the other collar back and front pieces so that you have two identical pieces. 
  7. With the right sides together, pin the two pieces together. 
  8. Sew around the perimeter of the collar, but leave a gap about three inches long where you don’t stitch at the bottom of the collar back.
  9. Through the unsewn gap, turn the whole thing right side out. Press all the seams so that they’re nice and tidy. Make sure that you press the corners where the collar meets in the front so that you see the point. It can help to push the corner out with a pencil or a skewer.
  10. Starting at the top corners (where the collar will meet just below the neck), pin your rick rack to the edge of the collar. 
  11. Topstitch all along the edge of the collar, securing the rick rack down. This will also close up the gap you used to flip the collar right side out.
  12. You’re almost done! To finish your collar, hand sew the hook and eye on at the top corners. 

If you make this collar we would love to see it! Use #LittleLars to show us. Bonus points if you make two and match with your little one!

A few of our favorite creatives in honor of Black History Month!

Alvin Ailey Plush Doll

Alvin Ailey was a dancer, director, choreographer, and activist who founded the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, one of the most successful dance companies in the world. His work fused theatre, modern dance, ballet, and jazz with black vernacular, creating hope-fueled choreography that continues to spread global awareness of black life in America. We are inspired by Ailey’s movement, creativity, and motivation to create such meaningful and beautiful movement that leaves one feeling so inspired.

One of Paul’s favorite experiences was seeing the Alvin Ailey Dance Company when he worked at Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen. He still talks about it to this day!

Alma Woodsey Thomas as a Plush Doll

Alma Woodsey Thomas was an Expressionist painter and art educator best known for her colorful abstract paintings. We find ourselves in awe of her exuberant works, which are nothing short of noteworthy in their pattern, rhythm and color. There is nothing not to love about Alma’s work. Her ability to mix patterns and her eye for color are something we strive for in our own work here at Lars.

Beyonce as an Embroidered Plush Doll

Clearly, we had to create Beyonce in plush form. It was a given. Mostly, we wanted to bedazzle her in embroidery even more than she already is. Her raw talent and unstinted work ethic demonstrate to women of all walks of life that we can too. We look up to her ability to inspire others with her music, and that her creativity instills self-love, wonder, strength and an undeniable excitement and joy at being a woman. Beyonce is nothing short of pure magic!

Jean-Michel Basquiat as an Embroidered Plush Doll

Jean-Michel Basquiat was an artist most famous for his Neo-Expressionist paintings. Before Basquiat found his fame, he was using graffiti as an outlet of his artistic expression the name “SAMO.” His work was groundbreaking and addressed by the social and artistic elite. He took the consumerist pop model of the time and transformed it into a social commentary that spoke against systems of racism and power structures. We admire Basquiat’s persistence in creating work that held such powerful messages. Plus, we love his work!

We have even more plans for these dolls coming up, so feel free to comment below of people who want to celebrate. Who knows, they may just make it in a post! Stay tuned and be sure to make your own while you’re at it! You can find our tutorial here. Tag us with #larsmakes so we can see your creations!

Clay Necklace for Mother’s Day

Clay Projects with Kids

A clay necklace is a great Mother’s Day project to do with kids, and it’s so easy with polymer clay! Polymer clay is a plastic-based clay that cures at low temperatures so you can bake it in your home oven. It’s great for jewelry and figurines, but the sky’s the limit with this. Keychains, mobiles, or buttons would all be great polymer clay projects to make with kids.

Brittany is wearing a white blouse and a rainbow colored clay necklace. She's standing against a green wall.

Make Your Own Mother’s Day Clay Necklace

Supplies:

Polymer clay in a few colors, a baking sheet, a piece of scrap paper, black embroidery floss, a drill and 3/16 drillbit (for very neat holes) or a toothpick (which is a bit more kid-friendly and also works just fine, but will end up being a bit less neat), a needle, and your home oven

Roll the clay into little balls.

Drill holes in your baked clay beads.

String your beads together with black embroidery floss.

Instructions:

  1. Mix your clay to get the colors you want. I mixed mine thoroughly to get solid colors, but you can also leave it marbled depending on the look you’re going for. 
  2. Separate your clay into smallish sections of various sizes.
  3. Roll each section into a ball, trying to get it as smooth as you can.
  4. If you don’t have a drill, now’s when you’ll make the holes for your clay beads. Pierce a hole through each bead with a toothpick. I have found that it helps keep the bead as round as possible if you mimic the twisting motion of a drill rather than just punching through. If you do have a drill, skip this step.
  5. Preheat your oven according to the clay manufacturer’s instructions. Some brands bake differently, so make sure you read the package.
  6. Fold your piece of paper into an accordion shape so that it has ridges. Unfold it and place it on the baking sheet. 
  7. Put your beads on the paper. This setup keeps the beads from rolling all over the place.
  8. Bake your beads according to the clay manufacturer’s instructions. This will smell a bit plasticky, but don’t worry–that’s normal.
  9. When your beads are done baking, take them out of the oven and let them cool entirely.
  10. If you didn’t make holes with a toothpick, drill holes through the center of your beads with a 5/16” drill bit or similar size. If you already made holes, move on to step 11.
  11. Thread your needle with the embroidery floss and string all the beads on the necklace.
  12. Center the beads on your string and tie a knot on either side of them so they stay centered. 
  13. Tie a knot in the string and your necklace is ready to give to a mom in your life (or to wear yourself)!

Brittany smiles against a forest green background. She's wearing a white dress and a colorful beaded necklace.

If you make this project we would love to see it! Tag us with #MadeWithLars

DIY Paper Flower Embroidery Boutonniere and Cards

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With this paper flower boutonniere, the idea is to have fun and play with your embroidery stitches. You can consult our embroidery guide here. I used this guide and then went to town! Have fun with it! And remember that your mom will probably love it either way 😉

How to make a 2D paper flower boutonniere

As you know, we LOVE 3d crepe paper flowers but we wanted to try something different this time so embroidery on paper it was! You can make it as big or as small as you’d like it to be!

Materials: See list above

Instructions:

  1. Download the flower templates here. The templates come as a PDF or SVG files so you can either handcut them yourself or use a craft cutting machine.
  2. Start by poking holes where you intend to embroider. This will prevent unnecessary poking through the paper. You can see some different types of stitches in our embroidery guide and some tips below.
  3. Create a backing to your arrangement of flowers by cutting our a solid shape from cardstock.
  4. Glue the flowers onto your backing.
  5. Secure a pin backing to the back of the card.

Voila!

Some shows to watch while you embroider: Poldark, The Office (again), The Beautiful Fantastic.Mother's Day paper embroidery boutonniere

Backstitching the leaves

Here’s the backstitch I used on the leaves for the corsage:

How to embroider a paper leaf

As I mentioned, I got SUPER into the process that I started embroidering onto our new Mother’s Cards and love how they turned out.

Embroider onto your Mother’s Day cards

You just need a little bit of embellishment to add a little something onto the card for impact. You don’t have to plaster it! Just highlight a few of the areas. It’s honestly so fun!

I hadn’t done a French knot since I was a kit so I was so rusty. The strawberries were my first victims and then they got better the more I did.

Look at those sheep! So cute!

Here’s how I did the French knot on the cards

How to do a French knot embroidery

I went French knot CRAZY on this one:

You can find many of the materials on Amazon:

And head over to The House That Lars Built shop for our templates, and kits!

Let us see what you’re making! Tag us with #LarsMakes!

DIY rainbow ricrac placemat clutch

DIY ric rac clutch made from a placematHas anyone else been daydreaming over resort collections? Maybe anxiously anticipating the release of spring collections? Guilty. Loeffler Randal, in particular, has caught my fancy with their overload of ricrac and rainbows! They are speaking our language! So we’re taking a page from their book with this DIY Rainbow Ricrac Clutch! But that’s not all: this clutch is made from a placemat. Yep, a placemat. In other words, not only will this clutch brighten up your wardrobe, it will cost you less than $10! We’re sold. Every day is worthy of a rainbow so go ahead and make this Rainbow Ricrac Placemat Clutch and daydream of warmer days ahead!DIY ric rac clutch made from a placemat

Get the full tutorial!

Our favorite face masks and a challenge

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Making your own face mask

Now, check out the masks that we made. Medical-grade masks certainly couldn’t ever be considered very stylish, but we made these homemade masks as cute as could be! Of course, you could whip these up with whatever fabric you might have lying around, OR you could make some to match your quarantine look! Quarantine fashion is a thing, right?

DIY fabric face masks

We opted for fabric with patterns that made us smile, even if you can’t tell under the mask. Plus, it was so easy to make these, and we think that it would be wonderful to make a load to donate to places giving essential care. The pattern we used came with extra-long ties for the mask, which makes them adjustable for any face! The long straps can be tied around your head as well, to prevent any irritation around your ears if you’re going to be wearing the mask for long periods of time.

The most beautiful face masks from around the web

Here are some of our favorites that we’ve been spotting from some of our favorite small businesses and makers.

Face masks from Clare V

Clare V just came out with some cute gingham ones with an embroidered kiss. So cute! They come in a set of 4.

cool face masks

You can find the Clare V ones here.

Face masks from Baggu

Love these color block masks from Baggu.

You can find the Baggu masks here.

embroidered face masks

Yumiko’s embroidery is beyond beautiful. Makes me want to spend my time creating one myself!

Yumiko Higuchi

Loving the mix of colors and florals on these ones.

Khanh.co

quilted face masks

These antique quilts turned masks are so pretty!

Farewell Frances

color block face masks

Love the color blocking on these ones from Quiettown Home.

Quiettown Home

All these beautiful stripes and ginghams!

Heather Taylor Home

floral face masks

Liberty of London at its finest! And for every one sold, they donate one!

Briar Baby

Owner of Loeffler Randall, Jessie Loeffler Randall whipped out her fabric stash and got to making. Very inspiring!

Jessie Loeffler Randall

Donate face masks!

Hospital staff and medical workers are always grateful for mask donations, and we suggest asking any of your friends and family who don’t have a sewing machine if they’d like you to make one for them too! Every help you can give during this time has a bigger footprint than you can imagine. Little things like a donation of (cute!) homemade masks are what keep us going during quarantine.

 

New Year’s Eve star crown

 

I have to admit that my New Year’s celebrations tend to turn into duds. Maybe it’s exhaustion from Christmas? Who knows. We made this New Year’s star crown to combat any potential duddy celebrations. I’m pretty sure if you wear it, good things will happen to 2016. No promises, just almost positive 🙂New Year's eve star crown

 

DIY New Year’s Eve star crown

Materials:

  • chipboard (or cardboard would work too)
  • silver spray paint
  • silver glass glitter (we used this stuff)
  •  glue
  • silver wire
  • glue gun
  • headband
  • silver rick rack
  • paintbrush you don’t mind ruining with glue

Instructions:

  1. Cut out stars out of chipboard. We used a craft cutter to do ours. We did 6 (3 front and back) larger stars (2.5″) and 14 smaller ones (7 stars total front and back) (1.5″).
  2. With your paintbrush, glue the tops of the stars and sprinkle the glitter on top.
  3. Cut out two pieces of silver wire, one at 10″ and the other at 12″.
  4. Wrap rick rack around the headband and at the bottom of the wrapping insert and glue in the two pieces of wire.
  5. Keep on wrapping the rick rack around the headband and repeat to the other side of the headband so the two pieces of wire are staggered in height.
  6. Affix the stars to the wire starting with the middle stars and working out. Attach a star to the back as well.
  7. Voila!

Now! Where are you going to be for New Year’s?!

New Year's eve star crownnew-year's-eve-star-crown-8

Photography and crafting by Ashley Isenhour

New Year’s Eve party ideas

Now that you’ve got the crown, it’s time to think about the rest of your New Year’s! If you’re throwing a celebration with friends or family, send out some invites! These printable New Year’s Eve invitations are the cutest way to let your guests know the details! You can also find a matching printable crown (perfect for younger kids or adults!). If you want to go for colorful decor (who doesn’t?!), you can take a look at this art deco New Year’s tablescape we made. For the ultimate showstopper, take a look at how to make your own disco ball ceiling installation. Add some metallic fringe to match your New Year’s Eve star crown!