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My Favorite French Country

Valentines

2019

My Favorite French Country

Valentines

One of my favorite holidays of the year! It's not about romance - because you can have that every day! For me it's about the pinks - whites - creams and brilliant reds! It's the first burst of color for the New Year - so why not welcome it in a French Country way!

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How beautiful are these banners? There so french country in style which is why they caught my eye.

Today, I would love to share how to make these with you.

JoAnn $8.00

Banner with Letters

The one on the left is comprised of wood pendants - white flat paint - black acrylic paint - red acrylic paint - letter stencils that fit the size of your pendants - heart stencils that fits the size of your pendants.

Step 1. Purchase as many wood pendants as you'll need for what your spelling. Also purchase a small container of flat white paint at either Home Depot or Lowes. Buy a bottle of black acrylic paint and a bottle of red acrylic paint. Also buy stencils that will fit onto your pendants.

Step 2. Paint each pendant with flat white paint - both front and back and allowing to dry.

Step 3. You'll use small pieces of tape to hold your stencils in place. For the letters -dip your brush in the black acrylic paint - pounce off on a paper towel - then pounce over your stencils. Do the same thing with your red acrylic paint for the hearts and allow to dry.

Step 4. Now you can sand them a bit to distress and add age to them.

Banner with Ribbon

The one's on the right are done in a similar way. You'll need wood pendants - flat white paint - red acrylic paint, lots of ribbon.

Step 1. Purchase as many pendants as you'll need for the wording. Also purchase a small sample container of flat white paint at either Home Depot or Lowes. Buy a couple bottles of red acrylic paint. Also buy lots of the ribbon you'd like to use.

Step 2. Paint your pendants with the flat white paint - both front and back.

Step 3. Now use small pieces of tape to hold your stencils in place. Dip your brush in the red acrylic paint - pounce off on a paper towel and then do the same thing over your stencils and allow to dry.

Step 4. Now onto your gorgeous ribbon. First, make a large bow.

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Aren't these gorgeous pieces of decor for Valentines Day? I love them and there pretty simple to make.

Heart Pillow

Step 1. For the pillow - you can either sew a simple pillow cover, or you can buy a cover.

Step 2. Purchase small width ribbon in a shade of red or pink and also a large head needle.

Step 3. Draw the shape of a heart onto your pillow cover.

Step 4. Insert your pillow form into the cover.

Step 5. Simply thread your needle with the ribbon and begin sewing with simple stitches like shown beginning at the bottom of the heart and finishing in the same spot. Then tie off with a bow.

Heart Ornament

For the heart like ornament - purchase some neutral fabric, thread that matches your fabric, some batting and ribbon of your choice.

Step 1. Draw hearts onto your fabric - then cut out.

Step 2. Find a graphic you like. The Graphics Fairy is a wonderful place to look for vintage images.

Step 3. Once you find a graphic you like, download it onto your computer.

Step 4. Now take your print out and tape it to a piece of wax paper. Cut the wax paper to be either 8 1/2 x 11 or 5 x 7. These are two standard sizes of paper. Now adjust the print settings on your computer, as well as adjusting your printer tray if you need to.

Step 5. Now print your image onto the wax paper in reverse and allow to dry for a minute.

Step 6. Take your printed image and lay face side down over one of your hearts to begin. Rub over the image with either a credit card, or a spoon. The more you rub, the better the image will transfer onto your fabric.

Step 7. Now take and match two pieces of your heart fabric together and begin stitching them together - leaving an opening to stuff them with. Then fill your heart with batting. Now you can finish the sewing on one of your hearts.

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These simple home decor pieces are just gorgeous to me. The one's on the left are in fact vintage and the one's on the right are made.

I've been thinking about how I would make these decorations on my own.

For the cute little birds...

Step 1. I'd start with a medium styrofoam balls and a small styrofoam balls.

Step 2. Then to make one's just like this, I'd purchase iridescent white and red glitter, as well as a container of Mod Podge.

Step 3. Then using your craft brush, I'd paint the styrofoam balls with Mod Podge - then sprinkle them with the iridescent white and red glitter and allow to dry. Shake off the excess glitter.

Step 4. Now I'd take toothpicks and paint them with white acrylic paint and allow to dry. Then brush them with Mod Podge and sprinkle with the iridescent white glitter. Finally for the tails, place them together like seen in the photo and apply hot glue to the gathered side of them and allow to dry. Once dry and there holding there shape, hot glue them to the body of your bird.

You can do the same thing for the feet referring to the photo.

Making the tiny party hats is precious for these little guys and you can do this simply with some decorative coordinating scrapbook paper.

For the hearts on the bodies, I'd use tiny heart rubber stamps. I say rubber because these are bendable to contour with the round shape. Simply stamp into a red stamp pad and stamp onto the bodies. If it's not dark enough for you, paint them with some red acrylic paint.

I don't believe you can get glitter ribbon year round, so I'd use a small width ribbon that I like - maybe either cream or white. Then you'll fold your ribbon back and forth enough times to go around their necks. Cut off of the spool and hot glue around the necks.

For the French Cones

French Cones have been used for hundreds of years - there certainly not new to decorating. These are super simple to make with just some simple materials - gorgeous scrapbook paper, gorgeous medium and small width ribbon, hot glue and some vintage images.

Step 1. Simply curl your scrapbook paper to make a cone. You may need to trim it at the top.

Step 2. Take your medium width ribbon and simply either fold it back and forth to give you an accordian type pattern, or scrunch it up to add fullness to it. Now hot glue it around the top of your cones.

Step 3. Repeat Step 2 for the bottom of the cones.

Step 4. Take your small width ribbon and simply fold it the same way we did with the medium width ribbon, making a circle, then glue to each side of your cones.

Step 5. Find a vintage Valentine image - The Graphics Fairy is a wonderful place to look, print it onto cardstock, cut out and hot glue to the center of the adornment you made with the small width ribbon.

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I can't put into words how much I love these photo's Gorgeous roses sitting on antique books - talk about the perfect French Country decor. You could certainly do the same using fresh roses, but did you see my article on making plaster flowers (where I often use roses only?)

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MATERIALS:

  • 17" Wood round available at Home Depot or Lowe's
  • Perfect greyish pink - Camae Blue by Folk Art was used on this sign.
  • Matte Gold spray paint.
  • LOVE stencil 

STEP ONE: Paint wood round desired color with craft paint. Allow to dry.

STEP TWO: Apply stencil and burnish down to avoid bleeding. Apply several light coats of your gold spray paint for best coverage.

STEP THREE: Allow spray paint to dry and then remove stencil carefully.

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The most romantic place in the universe - Paris, France. Just take a look at how they celebrate Valentines Day. Gorgeous balconies (year round) - gorgeous French roses and a gorgeous ballet outfit (who would have known?) Think about if you bought a toddlers ballet outfit to decorate for Valentines Day?

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I love these hearts. One is in the beginning of a project and the other one with all it's frayed edges!

What can you do with these? Umm...I think I would take the one's cut for a project and use fusible web to attach them together - buy a decorative frame and spray it in a matte cream and then distress it - attach the hearts to a piece of foam core that I would spray paint as well and distress.

I would do the same thing with the frayed hearts.

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Setting a beautiful table setting is nothing more than stacking two white dishes, having gorgeous pink champagne glasses, gorgeous pink cloth napkins and a beautiful vase with roses.

Create a setting for your children as well. Give them half a clear bubbly water. Their only children once, so let them enjoy the occasion with you.

Antique doilies are a luxury to have. Their simply irreplaceable. Their gorgeous and have adorned homes for hundreds of years.

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How gorgeous is this living room. I love everything about it - including the crisp white walls. This is perfect for decorating for Valentine's Day with only a few things. A gorgeous floral painting and a few white metal pitchers for fresh pink or blush roses. Oh...don't forget the chandelier as well.

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Aren't these paper hearts gorgeous? These very easy to make.

Gathered Paper Hearts

Step 1. Buy a bunch of scrapbook paper with pink and red designs. Also buy some medium width ribbon.

Step 2. Draw a heart on each sheet of paper and cut out. Then fold each one in half.

Step 3. Run a bead of hot glue down the center of the largest one and place the second largest on top.

Step 4. Repeat the same for each of the other paper hearts.

Step 5. Take your ribbon and bunch it up to create fullness and hot glue around the largest heart.

If you'd like, use white, pink and red glitter over your papers. Do this after you've cut them.

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Simple Floral Arrangement

A gorgeous floral arrangement simply made with white hydrangeas fresh or silk in a pedestal vase similar to this.

Heart Pillow

Hobby Lobby

This is a super easy pillow to make. All you'd need is either a pillow cover, or neutral fabric for you to sew your own - red or pink felt - LOVE iron on.

Then you'd simply put together like this. Cutting out small hearts and hand stitching them to the pillow cover. Ironing on your LOVE.

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How gorgeous is this space? Perfect for Valentines Day. I love that most of the decor is winter with just a hint of Valentine's Day. Another idea for you.

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Scrapbook Paper Letters

Aren't these letters so cute. I love how they look and I also love how easy they are to make.

Step 1. Buy a large wooden X and O. Also buy gorgeous scrapbook paper in the colors you love for Valentines Day. As well as a small container of Mod Podge.

Step 2. You'll also want to buy several bottles of white acrylic paint to paint your letters of their not already white.

Step 3. First you'll want to paint your letters both front and back if their not already white.

Step 4. Then simply brush on the Mod Podge to your letters and lay your scrapbook paper over each and allow to dry.

Step 5. Flip your letters over and using an X-acto knife, trace around the edge of each letter to remove the excess paper. If your edges are a little rough, add some more Mod Podge to the edges to smooth your paper.

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Heart Artwork

Gosh do I love when projects are super simple and this heart artwork is one of them. Simply buy a slat wood panel - gorgeous silk flowers - rope - greyish pink acrylic paint - (3) bottles of white acrylic paint - grey acrylic paint - medium grit sandpaper.

Step 1. First we'll paint every other slat with our white paint - both front and back and allow to dry.

Step 2. Next we'll paint every other slat in our greyish pink - both front and back and allow to dry.

Step 3. Now you'll paint your white slats grey and dry brush the grey paint over the pink slats - allow to dry.

Step 4. Now we'll add a little age to our wood with some sanding to distress it. The more you sand the grey slats, the more white that will come through.

Step 5. Now we'll draw a heart onto the wood - then outline it with hot glue and finally take a piece of rope and place it over the hot glue.

Step 6. Remove the flowers from their stems and simply hot glue them onto the wood like seen above.

Valentine Tier Stand

Is this a good reason to pick up a gorgeous tiered tray? Me, being a little crazy sometimes - would definitely pick one up to do just this. Adding some of your tiny valentines finds, a few vintage bottles painted in pink and white - then distressed. Maybe an X and O small wooden letters that you can also paint. And just think - this is something you created!

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How gorgeous are all of these pieces? Some aren't necessarily for Valentines, but their still goreous. Allow this to be inspiration for you.

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Transfers on Mugs

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Step 1. Begin with washing your mugs.

Step 2. After printing, I cut the paper to a manageable size…

Step 3. Apply a thin layer of Mod Podge on your paper. Then place on your mug and smooth out any air bubbles in the paper.

Step 4. Then you'll walk away to do something else for an hour. As long as the Mod Podge between the surface and the paper has dried and the paper stuck properly on the surface, you will be good to proceed. Wait about 3-4 hours later and start the peeling process. Very gently start rubbing and removing the paper, layer by layer.

Step 5. In this step you'll want to go slow and gentle. Don’t use a damped sponge. Instead, use your fingers and damp them only little. Just as if I am counting money. The Mod Podge will wear off with water, so you don’t want to dampen the paper too much.

Step 6. Continue rubbing the paper gently in circular movements. This step usually takes about 30 minutes to an hour.

Step 7. Once your wording is revealed, leave the piece alone for a day.

THIS TAKES A LITTLE AMOUNT OF TIME - BUT IT'S SO WORTH IT IN THE END!

Please use these to make your gorgeous Valentine's Day mugs to be enjoyed year round. All of these are 3" wide by whatever size the wording is in height. Just print out on your computer.

I Love You

My Love or My Dear Love

My' is an English word meaning mon , chéri(e) is a French word which means beloved , dear , dearest , darling .

Be Beautiful In Your Own Way

My Heart Is Yours

Cream Layered Cake

Cake
1 stick unsalted butter, softened, plus more for cake pans
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
5 cups confectioner's sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup half-and-half {original recipe calls for whole milk, but I like to use this instead}
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Cake: Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter two 8 or 9-inch round cake pans and either line with buttered parchment, or butter and flour pans. Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Beat together butter and granulated sugar with a mixer on medium speed until combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Add eggs and beat well, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Reduce speed to low and gradually add flour mixture, beating until combined. Add milk and vanilla and beat until just combined.

Divide batter between pans; smooth tops with an off-set spatula. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean, 33 to 35 minutes {If using 9-inch pans, 28-30 minutes}. Let cakes cool in pans on wire racks 15 minutes. Turn out cakes onto racks to cool completely.
Frosting: Beat together butter and cream cheese with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and creamy, about 1 minute. Reduce speed to medium. Add confectioner's sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. Add salt, half-and-half {or milk}, and vanilla and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. If not using immediately, cover surface of frosting with plastic wrap. Frosting can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to 1 week. Before using, bring to room temperature, then beat on low speed until smooth.
Place 1 cake layer on a cake plate and spread 1 cup frosting on top. Place remaining cake layer on top. spread top and sides of cake with remaining frosting, swirling to coat in a decorative fashion. Cake can be covered with a cake dome and refrigerated overnight. Bring cake to room temperature before serving.

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Velvet Hearts

These instructions I'm giving are from making velvet pumpkins. Their using a circle of fabric to make these, but we'll be using a large heart cut out of fabric instead.

Step 1. Cut your chosen fabric in a large heart shape.    

Here's great Amazon site for just velvet that you can purchase - ton's of colors!

Step 2. Thread a large needle with upholstery or heavy duty thread and run a basting stitch around the entire edge of your cloth heart.

Step 3. Cinch your heart nearly closed, like a pouch. Leave the needle and thread attached, but don’t knot it!

Step 4. Fill your heart about 2/3 full with rice or beans. Then fill the remainder with batting.

Step 5. Criss cross the opening of your heart with some tight stitches to anchor the hole.

Step 6. Squeeze the center of your heart from top and bottom with your thumb and finger of your left hand and push your needle down through the center to find the bottom of the heart.

Step 7. Flip your heart upside down and pull the needle through. Cinch tight, and go up and down through the middle of the heart a few more times. This creates a depression in the stem area of the heart, allowing the ‘shoulders’ of the heart to be full and voluptuous.

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I just love these bars of soap. Can you believe they're made with wine? Genius idea!

Wine Soap

Coconut Oil – 10 oz.
Shea Butter – 4 oz.
Olive Oil – 12 oz.
Rice Bran Oil – 6 oz.
Lye – 4.5 oz.
Red Wine 9 oz. (boiled and flat)

Step 1. Pour double the amount of wine needed into a large pot. Notice how much room is left in the pot? This helps to ensure that if the wine does boil up quickly, there is room for it to expand. When that happens you can just pick the pot up and it will go back down. Turn the heat down.

Step 2. Boil for about 10 minutes.

WARNING: Do not leave the wine. Wine starts to boil all of a sudden and can rise out of the container. Stand over it while you boil. Turn the heat down as low as you can while boiling.

Step 3. Pour into a container and put in the frig overnight.

Step 4. Weigh out the lye into a container and set aside.

Step 5. Weigh out the wine into another large container.

Step 6. Sprinkle the lye into the wine while stirring gently. Set aside to cool.

Step 7. Weigh the coconut oil and shea butter into a container and melt.

Step 8. Add the liquid oils to the melted oils. This helps to drop the temp. Add your fragrance or essential oil to the oils.

Step 9. Wait for the oils and lye solution to drop to 90F. You can put the lye solution in the fridge or in an ice bath to drop the temp.

Step 10. Once temps have dropped to 90F or below, pour the lye into the oils.

Step 11. Use a wisk to stir until emulsion has been reached.

Step 12. Divide the soap into three containers. 1/2 into the big container and 1/4 into each smaller container.

Sponsored by https://www.ridgewaysoapworks.com/

So what do you think? Did I hit decorating for Valentine's Day on the nose here? I love all of these things and would certainly be enticed to have them in my home.

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