Thursday, August 29, 2013

New Patterns on Craftsy

Our two newest patterns are now available for
instant download at Craftsy!
 
 If you haven't been to Craftsy yet, make some time and go exploring! It is full of patterns, free and for purchase, as well as classes in LOTS of different craft mediums. You can register for classes and get tutorials and guidance with projects. Learn something new today!


 
Click HERE for the Lindsay Reverse Knot Dress pattern on Craftsy
 
 
 

 
Click HERE for the Zoey Bow Dress on Craftsy
 
It's time for fall sewing! All of Grits & Giggles patterns are now available for instant download at Etsy and Craftsy. Choose your favorite site and start downloading NOW!!
 
*Happy Sewing*

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Zoey Bow Dress...It's HERE

Finally Finally Finally!! The
 Zoey Bow Dress
pattern is ready for YOU to sew.
 
 
 
You can find the pattern for Instant Download at
(Coming soon to Craftsy)
 
Available in sizes 6 month-5T
 
Testing for this little dress happened months ago (think, March...) and had a few little kinks to work out. After months of procrastination, it's done.
 
You may remember pattern testing was done as "The Candice Bow Dress". I always name patterns after friends, and it was Candice's turn! However, a renaming of this pattern was in order.
 
My Granny, Elzora, or "Zoe" to some, passed away last month. She went home to be with Papa after a long fight with leukemia. Granny taught me how to sew, crochet, cross stitch, cook, and do many other things that should be learned from our grandmothers.
 
We spent hours making Gray's first dress, my first sewing project. It was a pillowcase dress. She laughed at me as I tried to thread the machine, sew around curves, and sew in a straight line. It was pretty comical, and the end result was a sweet little dress for my baby girl.
 
So as was putting the final touches on the pattern for YOU, I decided it was only fitting that Granny be a part of the pattern itself. So, the "Zoey Bow Dress" pattern was born.
 
I hope you love sewing it as much as I do. It's such a sweet little dress with endless possibilities for cuteness!
 
 
Of course, this is Gray's new Game Day dress. She's in love and so am I!
 
 

(Don't mind the wrinkles...she insisted on wearing it ALL day before we took pictures!)

 
A sweet seersucker version made for a fun Easter Egg hunt this year.
The possibilities are endless.


 
*Happy Sewing*

Friday, August 23, 2013

Football is Coming!!

Are you ready for football??
 If you're new to Grits & Giggles, you will soon learn that between August and January, there are no "free" Saturdays. Saturdays are for college football...specifically, Clemson football! If the Tigers are in Death Valley, so are we! If they are away, we are glued to a TV somewhere.
 
Over the years there has been lots of Clemson, and football themed crafting going on around here. Each year is different, but there are a few things that we must have to prepare for a great season!

Here are a few past posts to get you on your way to a fun and happy football season!
 
 
 
If you're like us and have a couple of little ones on board, you might need some entertainment, or tips for taking those little tots to the games.



Baby Football Tutorial



Football with Babies


For the grown-ups, we need some accessories to show everyone exactly who we are pulling for!



No Sew Stadium Blanket Tutorial

078 edit

Mesh Wreath Tutorial



Clemson Cornhole


If you're a crafty person yourself, check out Grits & Giggles on Etsy for cute bag and clothing patterns.

Make them in your favorite game-day colors for one of a kind clothing and accessories for you and your babies!



Sewing Patterns

Have fun this fall cheering on your favorite teams.
I'm hoping to find time this fall for some new game-day ready items...but with two babies keeping me busy, you never know what might get done!

Go Tigers!
 
 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Head Swap {Tutorial}

If any of you have ever tried to photograph your children, especially more than one at the same time...you know that by the end of the session you usually are ready to scream or pull your hair out. (or BOTH).
 
Taking pictures of one kid isn't so bad, as long as they're in a good mood. Two or more, however, is almost impossible when they're young.
 
If one is smiling, the other isn't looking. If both are looking, one is picking their nose. Sometimes both are crying...you know, the usual.
 
The magic tool to help combat this photography woe, other than using fake, always smiling children, is to use Photoshop. Specifically, doing a head swap. After doing lots of research and reading, I had a really hard time finding an easy-to-use tutorial for doing a head swap. Most of them either used more modern and fancy versions of the program, or used tools I didn't have.
 
I have a super-old version, Photoshop Elements 6. It suits all of my needs and is a great program, but most helpful websites have forgotten about the old programs. So I sat down, powered my way through trying to do a head swap, and decided to document my steps to hopefully help others in my shoes get at least ONE good picture of their kids! Since I do have such an old version, hopefully the tools I use are very standard on all of the newer versions.

Here we go:

After taking 100 pictures of my kids, I found that NONE of them were completely usable. I decided to work with these 2:




 
Both decent pictures, with one kid not looking in each. Time for the head swap.
 
Note: Do your head swap before doing ANY editing with the pictures. Adjust lighting, color, sharpening, etc. after doing the head swap.
 
Add both of your photos to your bin. Select the one you want to remove the head from first. I will be taking the head off of my boy in this picture.
 
You will use your "Lasso" tool to select the head you are using.
 
 
Draw around the head using the lasso tool. I like to leave a pretty large border to leave me room for correcting later. Once you draw your circle, it will look like little marching ants around the head.

 
Copy the selection you've made.
 
 
Now open the picture you want to ADD the head to. Create a new layer for this image.

 
Then paste the head onto your new layer.
It will look a little creepy. Or cool, depending on how you look at it.


 
Lower the opacity on your new layer to help you see through the head a little bit. Move it to align it with the appropriate position on your background picture. Lining up the chin is easiest for me, but play with it to see what works.

 
Use your eraser at a low opacity and begin to "erase" the harsh lines around the head where you moved to the new background. Keep erasing until you have a nice blend between your backgrounds and can no longer see where you moved the head!

 
Flatten your image once you are happy with the head swap.

 
Now you can edit your image as you please, adjusting lighting, sharpness, or playing with the color.
 
Your finished image will make you very happy, now that you have a picture worthy of framing!
 
 
I hope this helps you get pictures you love of your babies. Hopefully as they get bigger it will get a little bit easier!
 
 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Exploring Our World





Now that our family is on a "normal" schedule (read: no more weekend, second, or third shifts) we are starting to get to do more things as a family.
 
A couple of weeks ago, we decided to go exploring a few miles north of us in the mountains. It was prompted by a little blonde telling her daddy that she wanted a pink fishing pole, and wanted to catch a fish.

Who could say NO to that?

So we grabbed the fishing rods, loaded up the car and headed to the trout stream.

 
For the first time EVER Hubby took a turn at babywearing so that I could do some fishing myself. He sent me wandering up the river. No luck there.
 

 
Goldilocks did a great job learning how to cast and reel. She was disappointed that we didn't catch anything, but excited to know that now we HAD to come back to try again!
 
 
I had not planned on fishing myself, but I couldn't help myself.
 I rolled up the pants and jumped on in.
 
 
While we were near the stream, we headed to the local fish hatchery to let Gray see the fish.
She got a handful of food and threw it in. She loved watching them jump for it!


 
She got to see trout of all different sizes at the hatchery.
It was a good learning experience for her!

 
Baby boy and I strolled along with them. He was perfectly content in his Ring Sling (click for the tutorial).

 
I loved spending time outside with both of my babies. With all of the mosquitos at our house, we spend more time swatting and spraying than enjoying the outdoors!

 
We took a little side trip to the Stumphouse Tunnel. Gray was super excited that we had to use a flashlight to see! It was dark, cold, and drippy, which was fun for her to see.

 
Brayden wasn't too sure about all of the darkness, but he had Mommy, so he was okay.

 
Love this picture of Hubby and Baby girl leaving the tunnel.

 
I think this little boy is happy to be worn. Snuggling up to Mama.

 
There were some fun things to "explore" outside. I had forgotten that to a three year old, everything is bigger and more awesome. That's the beauty of children!

 
We hiked down to the waterfall.

 
Then both babies wanted to be carried back up. Gray told Hubby that he was strong enough to carry them both...and of course he couldn't say no to that!

 
I look forward to  more adventures with our little family. Living where we do, there are lots of places to explore close by. Adventure day trips are going to make for a fun fall and winter (when we're not cheering on our TIGERS of course!!)

Thursday, August 15, 2013

6 Months Old-Baby Boy

My tiniest human is growing entirely too fast for me. He is 6 months old now.
When the heck did THAT happen??
 
Not only is he getting older too fast, he's also growing, growing, growing fast too! He is the same size now at 6 months that his sister was at almost 18 months...and he was a pound smaller at birth!
 
He'll be bigger than her in no time. He's crawling and sitting up, loves to eat, and LOVES to play with his sister. Fortunately, she loves to play with him too.


I've been working on my "mom-tography" and just love taking pictures of my babies. I've still got to get some shots of them together, but that's for another day.

 
He's got his Papa's eyes, (and his scowl!) , and his Daddy's cuddly personality. This little boys wants to be held by anyone who is willing. Much different than his independent-spirited sister.


Little boys start to look like little men so quickly.

 
But for now he's my baby. My tiny, cuddly, beautiful baby boy. Seriously, how can you not melt looking into those blue-green eyes.


Stay tiny baby boy...for at least a little while longer.
 


Monday, August 12, 2013

Sprinkle Party


Somehow....someway....this beautiful little girl turned 3 years old. It seems like she should still be the tiny little redhead, obsessed with her Daddy and shoes. While she is still obsessed with those things, her world has expanded and she learns so much every day!
 
She is one of the funniest people I've ever met, and the things she knows at the tiny age of 3 is amazing. She is incredibly smart, well spoken, kind to her baby brother, and such a beautiful person all around.




To celebrate her birthday, we wanted a theme that she would LOVE! One of her favorite things in the world is SPRINKLES!! What 3 year old doesn't love sprinkles. So a sprinkle themed party is was.
 
A few hours at the computer and I was able to get her invitations just how I wanted them. A rainbow of cascading sprinkle goodness.

 
The d├ęcor was multicolored and fun.
My Parent's beautiful gardens provided an extra pop of color too.


 
Baby girl didn't choose her birthday. She was born on one of the hottest days of the year. Our friends and family melted through the party with us...as did the cupcakes! They were dripping with sprinkles, and melting in the heat.

 
Sugar sprinkled strawberries were cool and sweet.

 
And we couldn't forget her favorite...Sprinkle Cookies!!

 
She made a wish (a good one I hope) and blew out her candles.

 
I made her dress using THIS pattern and some sweet "sprinkly" fabric from Simply Color for Moda.

 
Gray wasn't the only entertainment. We had some baby friends there too! Brayden and his cousin Abigail spent some sweet time together.

 
The birthday girl enjoyed opening presents from her friends.

 
Gray taught Abigail and thing or two about opening presents.
How cute are cousins together???

 
Baby brother watched from the sidelines. Maybe we should get him his own chair...the pink doesn't suit him.

 
She loved her party and playing with all of her friends and family!

 
This little girl lights up our world with her joyful personality. She is my little firecracker.

 
While I'm sad that she's getting so big so fast, I love watching her grow and learn.
Happy Birthday Baby Girl!!
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