How to Make Felt Ornaments

How to make felt ornaments

One of my favorite things to do over the holidays is make Christmas ornaments, especially felt ornaments. Crafting is one of my favorite pastimes, and one I want to start sharing a little more about on the blog. Ornaments seem like the perfect place to start, since homemade decorations look so pretty around the home and make special gifts.

How to make felt ornaments

Felt is such a fun crafting medium because you can make almost any shape you can imagine, and you can find it at any craft store for almost nothing. Over the years I have made snow cottages and mittens and polar bears and even the Epcot dome. Any level crafter can succeed with felt too, just be sure to start with a simpler pattern.

How to make felt ornaments

All you need is -a pattern; felt of various colors; embroidery floss of various colors; ribbon; sharp scissors; sewing needle; water soluble marker. Optional supplies include beads and sequins; stuffing (to make the shape more 3D) and glue.

Steps -

  1. Find a pattern. You can draw one yourself, or print out a picture online. Just make sure that whatever you use is not too detailed - for instance, you want to find the outline of a rabbit, not a detailed sketch of a rabbit. Once you have your image, print and cut it out.

  2. Lay the images on top of your felt and trace it with the water soluble marker.

  3. Cut the image out and rinse the felt in the sink to remove the marker; let the felt dry. Make sure you make two of everything, so that your ornament has a front and a back.

  4. Sew the different felt pieces together using a blanket stitch. You can glue the felt together before you sew it, it makes it a lot easier. Also, make sure you use embroidery floss that corresponds with the color of the felt.

  5. “Decorate” the felt images with different embroidery stitches, beads, or even sequins. For example, if you are making a rabbit embroider on its eyes and ears.

  6. Sew the two halves of the ornament together using a blanket stitch. Once you have sewn 3/4 of the ornament, add the stuffing and the ribbon, then sew it up.

  7. Hang it on the tree!

Here is a youtube video I found that’s helpful, and here is a tutorial for the blanket stitch.

What’s your favorite Christmas craft?


Christmas Decorations in Washington D.C.

Christmas decorations in Washington D.C.

Last weekend we started to explore all of the Christmas decorations around Washington D.C. There are so many different decorations, trees and displays that I am in holiday heaven!

On Saturday we went to Season’s Greenings at the National Conservatory and also saw the Capital Christmas tree. Season’s Greenings is a display of national landmarks and classic train stations entirely recreated out of plants. The displays are extraordinary!

Christmas decorations in Washington D.C.

Here’s the U.S. Capital. There was also the Washing, Jefferson and Lincoln memorials and a few of the Smithsonian buildings. I can’t imagine how many hours went into glueing all of the plant pieces together. It came out perfectly, which you know was a feat of love and immense patience.

Christmas decorations in Washington D.C.

This is Dino Depot station is actually shaped like a dinosaur. Just look at the detailing on the roof, it’s so intricate.

Christmas decorations in Washington D.C.

Here is the North Pole station. There were multiple trains going all around it.

Pink Poinsettias

I also found this wall of pink poinsettias that seemed fit for Barbie’s dream house.

Chanel Lipstick in Merry Rose

I wore some new makeup for the occasion, the Chanel lipstick in Merry Rose. I am obsessed with this stuff and will do a full review soon. But, if you have been considering picking it up, I say don’t wait! It will surpass your expectations.

Capital Christmas Tree

The Capital Christmas tree is right outside the capital and is a giant live tree. On it are ornaments handmade by people in Oregon, which is where the tree is from. The tree is massive; you can see it all the way down the National Mall.

Next weekend we are going to see the National Christmas tree and lights at the zoo. Do you have any other Christmas suggestions? Have you seen any great decorations in your area?


Gift Guide for The Guys

Today I’ve put together a gift guide for all the men in your life. These are all gifts that my dad, husband and cousins have loved over the years, and I’m sure the men in your life will too! I know it can be hard to find stocking stuffers for guys, so I’ve included some of those as well. I hope this makes your shopping a little easier!

Gifts for the guys

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9/ 10 / 11 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 15 / 16 / 17 / 18 / 19 / 20 / 21 / 22 / 23

  1. Bose Noise Canceling Headphones - My husband wears these on the subway to and from work, and on the plane, and loves them! They swear they are what keeps him sane in the morning, haha.

  2. Titleist golf balls - If any of the men on your list are golfers, golf balls make a great stocking stuff.

  3. Nespresso coffee machine (on sale) - My dad loves a good cup of coffee, and loves the cups from his Nespresso machine. The pods make great stocking stuffers too.

  4. Peppermint Bark - Candy makes a great stocking stuffer! Peppermint bark is one of my husband’s favorites.

  5. Board Games - Board games make great gifts for everyone on your list, and you can find the classics for under $20! Monopoly is my personal favorite.

  6. Ember Coffee Mug - This mug keeps your coffee at your ideal temperature till the last drop.

  7. Black Panther - Black Panther was such an amazing movie, and all the guys in my life loved it. It’s on major sale this holiday season making it a great stocking stuffer.

  8. Nike Golf Polo - This is my husband’s favorite golf polo. If anyone on your list golfs it’s a great present that you know will be used while they have fun.

  9. Eye Fuel - My husband (and dad) both like using personal care products, and hate buying them. If the guy you’re shopping for is anything like that they’ll appreciate some grooming products that they don’t have to pick out.

  10. Boat Shoes - Boat Shoes are another gift that the recipient is sure to use countless times and really appreciate.

  11. Yeti Mug - These travel mugs keep coffee warm for hours!

  12. Sports Hoodie - A sweatshirt with his favorite sports team is sure to be a winner.

  13. Shaving Kit (on sale) - My husband loves getting Art of Shaving products. They are a great gift that’s romantic yet practical.

  14. Cartier Cologne (on sale) - This is my husband’s favorite cologne, a great gift for your special guy. And it’s a gift for you too, because it smells so good.

  15. Mini Bose Speaker - These speakers are made to be used outside, so your giftee can use it while outside, camping, or shooting hoops.

  16. Titleist Hat - You can’t go wrong with a classic baseball cap.

  17. Spherical Ice Cube Tray - These ice cube trays make the giant ice cubes for use in whiskey and other drinks that you don’t want watered down. I gave this to my husband last year and he still smiles whenever he pulls out one of the cubes.

  18. Sports Tickets - Tickets to a sporting match is one of my go-to gifts for all the men on my list that love sports, like my brother-in-law.

  19. Classic Sunglasses - They are sure to be a hit every time he wears them!

  20. Madden - I got my husband an X-Box a few years ago for Christmas and I recently found out (through his old game wanting pay for an upgrade, lol) that the new one is out. If the person on your list likes video games, I’m sure he’ll want this one.

  21. Lego Man - I found out that Lego makes figurines that look like businessmen, judges, etc. etc. Aren’t they the perfect like tchotchke for his office?

  22. Classic Nintendo Video Game - My husband loves his Xbox, and I’m sure he’d love this classic Nintendo, which costs less than $60 and hits the gift sweet spot - something he’ll love that he’d never buy for himself.

  23. Patagonia Puffer - A cool winter jacket that’s sure to get lots of use over the years. Every time he puts it on he’ll think of you.

What are your go to presents for the men in your life? Happy Shopping!


How to Do Holiday Party Makeup

Holiday Party Makeup

Holiday beauty looks are some of my favorite. There is something so fun about pulling out sparkles and red lipstick for the holidays, even if you’re only plans are to sit at home and watch Home Alone 2. Plus, while there are certainly some gorgeous sets for sale right now, holiday looks are so easy to achieve with al, the products you already have! Here’s how I like to do my holiday makeup 

Holiday Party Makeup

Holiday eye makeup is all about being bold. Pile on the mascara, use lots of liner and bring on the sparkly eyeshadow. I love a tubing mascara for lots of drama and volume because it lasts all day and night and removes easily. I’m excited to try this one, recommended by Cameron Eubanks. Apply lots of coats to get your lashes nice and thick! I also love the Charlotte Tilbury eyeliner in Audrey to rim my eyes, since it doesn’t smudge, and a liquid liner to apply a tick cat eye wing. Kat Von D’s trooper Is the best one, in my opinion. Finish it all off with some sparkly eyeshadow swiped all over your lid. Don’t forget the primer!

Holiday Party Makeup

For the face I think a semi matte finish looks nice in winter, like this one. The secret to turning it into a holiday looks is lots of highlighter. I love layering a cream highlighter, the Flawless Filter product is my hands down favorite, with a powder on top to really lock it in place. Apply them to your cheekbones, brow bone, cupid’s bow and the bridge of your nose. Also don’t be afraid to add some color with a pink blush and some bronzer (and don’t be afraid of the shimmer ones!)

Holiday Party Makeup

The holidays are all about a red lip! There are so many options out there, you can find one at every price point. If you want lots of drama go with a true red and a matte finish. If you want something more subtle a tinted balm is really pretty, and the Glossier generation g in zip has a buildsble finish so you can go as red as you want. If a red lip just isn’t your thing, a nude lip pairs well with a bold eye too. Just make sure to line your lips so they have some definition. This lip liner goes with everything and lasts all day.

Holiday Party Makeup

Plus, don’t forget to add some extra glam with your accessories. I love these earrings I got from Tuckernuck and my velvet bow. And, of course, red nails.

Happy Holidays!  


Sunday Coffee Reading

Anthropologie initial mug

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Sunday! Here are some articles I’ve enjoyed around the web to pair with your coffee-

These packing cubes on Etsy is cute and such a great deal (6 pieces for $10.99) or if you are a Lilly lover these Lilly Pulitzer cubes are darling

As a holiday promotion Glossier is including this cute yet cool pocket mirror with a $50 minimum purchase, or you can order it for $10.

Kate Middleton look like a fairy princess at this Buckingham Palace event

How to store your clothes and accessories so they stay in great shape

A year of change for Chanel

What fashion can learn from Disney. Are the parks the first “in store experience”?

Charlotte Tilbury did the Victoria’s Secret fashion show makeup this year; here’s the step by step tutorial.

I don’t know why, but Charlotte Tilbury makeup is significantly cheaper at Net-A-Porter right now. For instance, the Kidman’s Kiss lipstick is $10 less without a coupon code.

Have a wonderful rest of your Sunday!


Happy Friday

Eiffel tower Ornament

Happy Friday Friends! Can you believe the first week of December is over? How are you guys doing on your holiday lists? I’ve done okay; I still have a few things I need to pick up for my husband, but I’m waiting for him to go on his business trip so I can leave everything out and wrap etc. That, and watch The Family Stone (I’m the only person I know who really likes this movie, haha).

Have you guys seen the previews for the new Disney live action classics? Here’s Lion King (the animation of this just blows me away!) and here is the full list of all the movies coming out.

I but this reishi cocoa mix to try and curb my sugar intake (which gets quite out of hand during the holidays…#cookiemonster) and it’s actually pretty good! It’s much butter than the low sugar stuff.

I finished Lethal White by Robert Galbraith (the newest book in J.K. Rowling’s detective series), and immediately had to re-read all of the Cormoran Strike novels. If you haven’t read any of them yet, I highly, highly recommend the first one Cuckoo’s Calling. When I settled it to read it again, I felt like I was meeting up with an old friend.

These penguin flannel pajamas are so adorable and finally under $30!

Does anyone else watch This Is Us? I love the show, but hate any tension between Randall and Beth! Ahhh! Anyone else?

Have a lovely weekend!


White Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

White Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

The other day I made my second batch of Christmas cookies, with my second new recipe. I decided on White Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies as something a little lighter, since the triple chocolate peppermint cookies I made are rather heavy (though delicious). These cookies were very simple to make, and don’t require any fancy ingredients. Also, the dough doesn’t spread so you can fit a lot on a baking sheet, which makes the baking process a lot faster!

White Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies
  • 1 cup flour

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp cinammon

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1 stick unsalted butter

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 egg

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

  • 3/4 cups dried cranberries

  • 3/4 cups white chocolate chips

Whisk together 1 cup flour, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp salt in a large bowl and set aside. Cream together 1 stick unsalted butter, 1/2 cup light brown sugar and 1/4 cup granulated sugar. Next, add in 1 egg and 1 tsp vanilla. Add in the flour mixture gradually until just combined. Next stir in 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats, 3/4 cup dried cranberries and 3/4 cup white chocolate chips (though feel free to add more). Let the dough sit in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes, then bake at 350 for 11 minutes. Enjoy!

White Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

Do you have any great cookie recipes? I’m hoping to make something with jam next!


The Best Holiday Pajamas Under $30

It’s no secret that I love pajamas. When I was a little kid I wanted to wear them all the time, and dressed up my Barbies almost exclusively in pajamas. That hasn’t changed much, and some of my favorite pajamas are the holiday kind. They feel so cozy and festive, what could be better?

I’ve seen so many great ones this year, but a lot of the most popular ones (especially on blogs) are a bit pricey, especially since you might not want to wear them outside of December. Therefore, I found all the best ones for less than $30 (most are even less), which I know I can’t wait to scoop up for myself and my family. I hope you like them too!

What’s your favorite clothing item? Have you found any great pajamas lately?


Bobbi Brown True Pink Luxe Matte Lipstick Swatches and Review

Bobbi Brown True Pink Luxe Matte Lipstick Review

I recently got the Bobbi Brown Luxe Matte Lipstick in True Pink and wanted to share a review and some swatches in case anyone else was interested in the shade. I first saw it on Carly the Prepster’s instagram, and was excited to try out the shade on myself. I am always looking for the perfect pink lipstick that is bright and light without being overpowering.

Bobbi Brown True Pink Luxe Matte Lipstick Review

True pink is a lovely pink (a bit darker on me than on Carly, tbh), and goes on surprisingly creamy for a matte lipstick. It lasts several hours, and the formula was not drying. I also liked that the color didn’t transfer on to my glass or mug too much.

Bobbi Brown True Pink Luxe Matte Lipstick Review

The packaging feels nice, and the lid snaps on to stay nice and shut in your purse. The formula of the Luxe Matte lipstick is thick, so you feel like you have a nice layer of lipstick on. Other formulas, like Colourpop, leave a lot of pigment but the lipstick coat feels thin, you know?

Bobbi Brown True Pink Luxe Matte Lipstick Swatch

Overall I really liked the formula and the pink shade of True Pink. Here it is on my hand.

Have you found any nice new lip products?


The Best Christmas Gifts for Mom

Today I’m excited to share some Christmas gift ideas for mom. I don’t know about your mom, but my own is generally the most difficult person to shop for on my list. She likes gifts that are fun but above all practical, and that can be a difficult balance! I put together all the best gifts I’ve gotten for her in past years, along with some cute stocking stuffers I’m sure she’d love, at a range of price points. I hope you find some of your own shopping inspiration!

Christmas Gifts for Mom
  1. Ring doorbell - This is a doorbell with a camera that connects to your phone, so you can see whenever anyone is in front of your door even when you aren’t home. It’s nice because it’s basically a home alarm system without a monthly fee.

  2. Luggage - My mom is always on the hunt for a nice suitcase, but rarely pulls the trigger despite needing one.

  3. Le Pliage tote - The perfect tote.

  4. AirPods - It’s so nice to be able to use the phone hands free, especially if your mom is like mine and walks or rides her bike a lot.

  5. Slippers - These slippers are so cozy and my mom asks for them year after year.

  6. Pajamas - I love giving pajamas. Everyone loves a new cozy pair, especially my mom. These ones are on sale too!

  7. Cozy fleece - She wears it to relax at home or ride her bike, so it’s cozy and functional.

  8. L.L.Bean Tote - You can’t go wrong. They are canvas, wear like iron, and under $40.

  9. Custom Yankee Candle - Yankee candle does custom candles! You can have your family pictures printed right on the label, isn’t that fun?!

  10. Yeti mug - Keeps your coffee warm for hours. My mom works in a school, so she loves having warm coffee every time she has a minute to take a sip (since she can’t go and get more).

  11. Travel sized hand cream - The perfect size to fit in your purse.

  12. Chanel lipstick - My aunt uses this stuff and swears by the color and how long it lasts. It’s a great gift since it’s functional but feels luxurious (who doesn’t want to open a Chanel box?)

  13. Instant pot - I’ve only heard great things about these, and they are on sale for the holidays.

Happy shopping!


Sunday reading


I hope you had a great Saturday! Here are some fun things I enjoyed around the web tj go with your Sunday morning coffee -

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is almost back!

J.Crew’s hair bows disappeared once Kate Middleton wore them, but this one and this one look very similar (and are under $20)

Love a monogram? This gift guide has you covered

This is the perfect shade of pink lipstick

The best Christmas movies!

I really enjoyed this podcast with Julia Engel and Thomas Berolzheimer, founders of Gal Meets Glam

An interesting article about the future of the beauty industry

If you are in the D.C. area here are all the great holiday events

Looking to make some ornaments? Martha has you covered.

I hope you have a wonderful Sunday!