DIY How to Sew a Lumbar Pillow from a Placemat (or Anything Else!)

DIY Placemat Lumbar Pillow | RevamperatePillows are my favorite. Every time I go shopping somewhere, I find myself gravitating toward pillows and wishing that I had ten couches and three beds in my house to fill with pillows. BUT since I don’t, I end up being so critical and picky that I don’t buy the beautiful pillows that I lust after and only have a couple on my couch. Plus, it’s kind of crazy how expensive pillows are…or maybe I’m just that cheap? Luckily, it’s Christmastime now, so I can make pillows that are just for Christmas! It’s a perfect excuse to have MORE PILLOWS and then store them away for the rest of the year. 

So today I’m sharing how to make a lumbar pillow from a placemat (or pretty much anything else). The great thing about a pillow is you can recycle any fabric to make it, so grab a placemat, scarf, table runner, table cloth, old t-shirt, etc. and get to sewing! This is a super easy sewing project for anyone, and I like making pillows this way because you can stuff the pillows yourself and make them as full as you want. I find that pillow forms are just never as lusciously full as I would like them to be, and the cost of a giant bag of fiberfill is still cheaper than one pillow form. 

DIY Placemat Lumbar Pillow | RevamperateTime: 30 minutes 

Supplies:

  • One standard sized placemat (can also use a scarf, table runner, etc.)
  • 1/2 yard matching fabric (for backside)
  • Fiberfill pillow stuffing
  • Matching thread
  • Scissors
  • Cutting board (if you have one)
  • Needle 

I laid my eyes on this cute, simple placemat with “Merry & Bright” embroidered on it at Target and instantly knew that I could use it for something and it was only, like, $3 and I just had to have it. So that’s how I decided to turn a placemat into a Christmas pillow…because I don’t actually use placemats as placemats but I love pillows.

You can follow this tutorial to make a lumbar pillow out of pretty much anything (a scarf, table runner, recycled fabric, etc.). Your pillow can vary sizes, but I based mine on the length of the placemat, so I ended up with a pillow about 12 in x 4 in when I allowed room for seams. Plus, because I have an embroidered pattern, I wanted to make sure that portion showed up in the middle of the pillow. Whatever size you choose, just be sure to add at least 1/2 inch to your desired size to allow for seams, but know that I’m writing as if we’re all making a 12 in x 4 in pillow.

Because this placemat was double sided, I didn’t actually end up using a different fabric for the backside, but I added it in the supplies list because I had fully intended on using it at first, and it’s likely that you’ll need more fabric for the back of the pillow.

First, cut the placemat to be about 12.5 in x 4.5 in, taking into account the direction you want the pattern (or in this case, embroidery) to be in, making sure that pattern is centered. Because a placemat has a fairly thick seam around the edge, I cut that off first before cutting the rest of my measurements. 

Then cut the same size from your matching fabric for the backing. You can either use a color that stands out against your front side or that blends well with it – whatever you want! Place the two right sides (or patterned sides) together, line up the edges and pin all the way around. 

DIY Placemat Lumbar Pillow | Revamperate
Beginning at a corner along one of the long sides of the fabric, back stitch and then sew all the way around the pillow with at least a 1/4-inch seam, leaving a 3-inch hole before you reach the end of the pillow and back stitching again. Trim the threads and cut your corners. Then turn the pillowcase right side out and iron down the seams (not entirely necessary but recommended). 

Grab your pillow stuffing and push it into the corners from the opening left in the side of the pillowcase (I use a little chopstick-looking tool). Fill the pillow until you reach your desired fluffiness. 

Lastly, use a ladder stitch to close the opening with an invisible seam. Then you’re left with a cute lumbar pillow and even though you’ll know that it’s made from a placemat, no one else will ever guess it. It looks great on my chair for the season. Definitely a worthwhile Target purchase!

Spiked Eggnog Fudge

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | Revamperate Spiked Eggnog Fudge | RevamperateI’ve always enjoyed eggnog, but I didn’t REALLY know how amazing it was until I was old enough to spike it with rum or bourbon. Eggnog with a little bourbon then became my go-to Christmas dessert/nightcap. And I’ve come to love eggnog everything – cookies, cupcakes, Starbucks drinks and now…FUDGE. So I’m sharing how to make spiked eggnog fudge today! It’s a fun treat for holiday parties, and you can choose to forgo the alcohol if you want something more kid friendly. The small amount of won’t make you feel anything, of course, but you can sub imitation rum flavoring if you want to keep some of the flavor without the real thing, or you can leave it out if you prefer. Leaving it out of the recipe won’t change it’s effectiveness, don’t worry. 

This is the first time I’ve made fudge with marshmallow creme, but it lends a great taste to the fudge. At first, I was worried that the amount of white chocolate and marshmallow would overpower the eggnog, but luckily eggnog is a strong enough taste on its own that you can definitely tell it’s eggnog flavored, and the cinnamon/nutmeg topping makes it even better. Oh, and making this stuff on my stovetop made my entire apartment smell like Christmas. I mean, is there anything better smelling than Christmas? Not in my book! 

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | RevamperateIngredients (makes approx. 50 pieces):

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup eggnog (can sub non-dairy if needed)
  • 2 cup granulated sugar
  • 12 oz white chocolate chips
  • 7 oz jar marshmallow creme
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg + more for topping
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon + more for topping
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp rum (or 1/2 tsp imitation rum favoring) 

Line a baking pan with parchment and spray with cooking spray (or spread with butter). In a pan on the stove, heat the butter, eggnog and sugar on medium heat and bring to a boil. As soon as it begins to boil, check the temperature with a candy thermometer and remove from heat as soon as it reaches about 230 degrees (softball stage) to prevent scorching. At this point, the sugar should be completely dissolved and the mixture smooth.

Add the white chocolate chips or chopped chocolate and stir with a whisk until the chocolate has melted into the eggnog mixture. Stir in the marshmallow creme, nutmeg, cinnamon, rum and vanilla until the mixture is smooth. Pour into the greased pan and smooth out the top with a spatula. Sprinkle additional cinnamon and/or nutmeg on top of the fudge and leave it on your countertop to harden for several hours (no need to refrigerate, but you can if you prefer). Pull the fudge out by the parchment and cut into squares with a sharp knife.

I like to serve them inside cute mini cupcake wrappers. Lay them out on a platter and they’ll be gone in no time!

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | Revamperate



Christmas DIY | Photo Transfer Ornaments

DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | Revamperate DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | RevamperateImage transfers are really fun, and I’ve been looking for a good reason to break out my gel medium and try it again! I took a class on it a few months ago at Craftcation, so when I was brainstorming ideas for Christmas, I thought this would be a cute idea to try! 

I printed out a few of my favorite photos of my nieces and got to work. You can easily make a ton of these as personalized gifts for your friends and family. They’re not difficult to make, but they require some wait time for the medium to dry and gentle hands for removing the paper. If you’re never tried photo transferring before, I recommend buying extra supplies because you might not get it right the first time. For best results, take your time and leave the gel on the ornament for at least a full day before trying to remove the paper. Also, when removing the paper, do so very carefully. The biggest mistakes you can make are removing the backing too early or scraping to much. For that, I just recommend buying a couple extra wood pieces and printing multiple photos because you just never know! Luckily those supplies are fairly inexpensive.

DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | RevamperateTime: 25 minutes + dry time

Supplies:

  • Thin wood ornament (any shape)
  • Photo printed with laser printer (sized to match ornament)
  • Paint brush
  • Gel medium 
  • Ribbon 
  • Nail and hammer 
  • Paint (optional)
  • Sponge (optional)

First, let’s talk about “gel medium.” What is it? It’s essentially a goopy clear gel that resembles ModPodge or something. It’s used for making the transfer to the wood, but the same effect can also be achieved with white paint. I used Liquitex brand, which is very common at any Michaels location. 

Note, you need a laser printed photo on standard printer paper to do this. An inkjet photo will not achieve the transfer you need, so if you don’t have a laser printer at home, you can get photos printed at a FedEx or Office Depot or something. Most of their machines are laser, but you can check with an attendant to be sure. If you format your photos ahead of time, you can place multiple photos on one sheet of paper to save space and check your formatting to ensure the printed photo will fit your ornament. 

Also note that your image will be inverted. For this reason, do not print something with words and be prepared to see a mirrored image on the final ornament. 

DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | Revamperate DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | RevamperateCut out the photo. It’s OK if it’s not the exact size of your ornament, and any white space on your photo will just appear transparent against the wood. I chose round wood ornaments, so I cut my photos into circles a tiny bit larger than the ornament so that the photo would cover the entire piece. Then prep the surface of your ornament by applying a fairly thick layer of gel medium all over the surface where you want your photo. It should be just thick enough to see your own brushstrokes but not thick enough for the gel to drip or move at all. It needs thickness in order to bond, but the thicker the layer of gel, the longer it will take to dry and the less reliable the transfer may be. 

Press the photo color-side down on the gel medium, and smooth it out with your fingers or something like a popsicle stick so that the photo is smooth and tightly pressed against the wood, BUT do not press so hard so that no gel seeps from the sides. The gel should remain in place and completely covering the photo. Leave the ornament(s) in a dry place where they can stay untouched for at least one full day (the more time, the better). 

After a day, check the top of the ornament to see if the gel feels dry. If completely dry, use a clean, damp sponge or your hands to apply a small amount of water to the top to dampen the paper. Gently scrub in a circular pattern to remove the paper backing. If you scrub too hard, it will remove the photo along with the backing, which you certainly don’t want. 

Allow the wood to dry for a few minutes and then use a clean paintbrush to cover the image with a light layer of ModPodge, which will preserve the image. Let the ModPodge dry.

I found that the edges of my photos didn’t look as clean as I would have liked, so I also used a small amount of paint and a clean, dry sponge to add some paint around the edge of the photo, hiding any imperfections. Using a light blue, I thought this gave it a wintery look – almost like an icy window. Let the paint dry completely. 

Then you’ll need to poke a hole for the ribbon. To do this, I used a standard sized nail and a hammer to hammer a small hole about 1/4 inch from the edge of the top of the wood slice. You can certainly do this another way, BUT the wood is very thin and fragile, so be careful not to split it. Then thread the ribbon through the hole and tie the ends. Now it’s ready to hang on a tree! 

They make nice gifts for people, and I could totally see this being a sweet gift for grandparents or family members with family photos or pictures of the kids. Have fun with it!

DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | Revamperate DIY Photo Transfer Ornaments | Revamperate

Look at those cuties! 🙂 

Christmas DIY | Felt Donut Ornament

DIY Felt Donut Ornament | Revamperate DIY Felt Donut Ornament | RevamperateIt wouldn’t be Christmas without a few homemade ornaments, right?! Well, the one thing missing from my Christmas tree was a donut so I had to remedy that this year, and this DIY felt donut ornament did just the trick. It’s front and center on my tree this year, and I think it’s actually one of my favorite homemade ornaments. 

This is a pretty easy DIY, but it may take some time because you’re sewing the whole thing by hand. I went pretty quickly, but if you’re not very experienced with a needle and thread, it might take a little longer than 30 minutes. Don’t worry though; it’s worth it! I also individually sewed sprinkles onto the donut frosting, but you could probably also use a Sharpie to create sprinkles if you want to skip some of the sewing. 

DIY Felt Donut Ornament | RevamperateTime: 30 minutes

Supplies:

  • 1 piece light brown felt
  • 1 piece light pink felt
  • Round stencil (about 5 inches wide)
  • Glue gun
  • Brown embroidery floss
  • Bright multicolored embroidery floss (for sprinkles)
  • Matching ribbon
  • Needle
  • Scissors
  • Pen/marker
  • Fiberfil pillow stuffing

You can do this freehand or with a stencil in whatever size you choose – I actually used a donut cutter. Trace two circles onto the brown felt and one on the pink felt. Cut out the brown circles and carefully cut out the middle hole. On the pink one, squiggle lines around the inside of the circle to represent frosting, and cut it out. The pink should fit on top of the brown with a little space around the sides and middle. 

Thread your needle with a small piece of colored embroidery floss. Because embroidery floss has multiple strands, you can use only one for this if you want as it can be easier to thread. Poke through the bottom side (with pen markings) of the pink frosting and piece make a knot. Sew small 1/2 inch lines, poke through to the other side and tie another knot to secure (I went around a couple times so that they would appear thicker). Repeat with multiple colors in a random pattern to create sprinkles. 

Once satisfied with your sprinkles, heat up the glue gun and glue the pink frosting piece on top of one of the brown pieces (side with no markings). On the opposite side, loop the ribbon and glue down on the edge. 

DIY Felt Donut Ornament | RevamperateThen thread the needle with a neutral colored floss place the two brown pieces together, marks facing in. Use a whip stitch to stitch the outside edges of the brown felt together, stitching over the ribbon. A whip stitch is one that shows around the edge. You can certainly use another type of stitch, but I liked the way a whip stitch showed around the edge and thought it gave it a homemade look. 

After the outside is secure, push the fiberfill stuffing into the donut through the middle opening until full. Then use another whip stitch to stitch the donut hole closed, and snip any loose threads. Then you’ve got a donut ornament! Display it on your tree or give it as a gift to a donut-lover!

DIY Felt Donut Ornament | Revamperate

Christmas DIY Ombre Glitter Tree Decorations

DIY Ombre Glitter Trees | Revamperate DIY Ombre Glitter Trees | Revamperate
My first Christmas post of the season! You have no idea how excited I am for Christmas (and a couple days off), and making decorations is how I celebrate the start of the season. By Thanksgiving, my apartment was already Christmas-fied and my tree was up. I spent my Thanksgiving break making Christmas treats, ornaments and other little things I’m excited to share in the next few weeks.

Sorry to go completely cat lady on you, but I’m also incredibly excited because it’s Penny’s first Christmas! I’m sure her and Oliver will leave a path of destruction around the house, which is why I put the tree up a little early before even hanging any ornaments. I caught them climbing it several times…

DIY Ombre Glitter Trees | RevamperateTime: 25 minutes

Supplies:

  • Styrofoam trees (variety of sizes)
  • Fine glitter, 3 color variations 
  • ModPodge or similar glue
  • Paintbrush 
  • Chopsticks (optional, for drying)
  • Clear sealant spray (optional)

Choose your colors! I used three different shades of blue as well as shades of silver and white. 

Use a paintbrush to brush a layer of ModPodge on the bottom third of a tree and sprinkle with one of the glitters (I used the darkest on the bottom). Do this over paper to avoid a mess. Sprinkle on the glitter and gently tap the tree to release excess glitter. If making multiple, set aside to dry while you work on the bottom layer of another tree.

Then repeat the same process with the next layer of glitter. When you reach the top layer, you can either carefully hold the stryofoam bottom or poke something like a chopstick into the bottom to hold it. I used a chopstick in order to avoid touching the glued portion while it was still wet. Once done with the top, either set the bottom on paper to dry or place the chopstick-end in a cup to dry. Complete all of your trees and let them dry for at least an hour until the glue dries.

DIY Ombre Glitter Trees | Revamperate
If you want, you can spray the trees in a clear sealant after the glitter dries, which may prevent some of the glitter from shedding. 

Then display them and let them sparkle! Also, prepare to find glitter everywhere from now on (I’m only half kidding)…they’re a fun addition to my Christmas decor and even Andrew said he liked them, so that’s always a win in my book.

Happy holidays!

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies | Revamperate Chocolate Peppermint Cookies | Revamperate

I hope you had a very merry Christmas! I know I did. It’s been a while since I was able to spend so much time with my family, and I have to say, I’m so grateful to see them for the holidays. I spent the last five of my Christmas (every year since high school) working at Macy’s, which is probably the least pleasant place to be during Christmas, so I can’t even explain how wonderful it is to be home for the holidays with my parents, my sister, my nieces and my cat. Plus, I got a little spoiled this year, so I’m looking forward to playing with my new KitchenAid attachments and new sewing supplies now that I’m back home.

I know it’s after Christmas, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s not over until December is, so I just had to squeeze in a little more peppermint. As I’ve said before, peppermint and chocolate are my all-star combination. I’ll never get enough of it, so it’s goes without saying that I absolutely loved these chocolate peppermint cookies. Not to toot my own horn or anything, but everyone else loved them too, so I’m not even that bias. These chocolate peppermint cookies are made with a dash of peppermint extract and crushed peppermint candy for a very holiday tasting cookie.

Ingredients (for about 14 cookies):

  • 1/2 cup butter, soft
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup crushed peppermint candy

First, mix together the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt, baking cocoa) in one bowl. In a separate bowl, beat together the softened butter and sugar. Then beat in the egg, vanilla and peppermint extract. Slowly add in the dry ingredients, mixing as you go until it is well combined. Set aside while you crush the peppermint candy. Unwrap the individual peppermints and move them to a ziplock bag. You can also use a food processor for this, but mine isn’t strong enough to crush candy. Using a rolling pin or other hard object, crush the peppermint candy into fine pieces and mix it into the cookie dough. Then place the dough in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.Chocolate Peppermint Cookies | Revamperate Chocolate Peppermint Cookies | Revamperate

After the dough has chilled, place one-inch balls on a cookie sheet and bake on 350 degrees for about 8-11 minutes until the edges begin to firm. Because the cookies are chocolate, you won’t be able to see them browning, but the edges will harden slightly, showing that the cookies are ready. Take them out and let them cool on a cooling rack before removing from the sheet. Eat them while they’re warm with a cold glass of milk, and you’ll think you’ve gone to holiday heaven!

Sadly, this will be my last Christmas-related post this year, but it means there’s a whole new year coming later this week. I have no idea what we’re doing for New Years, but there’s a lot to look forward to in the coming year. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze

Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate
Only one more day until Christmas! I’m just not ready for the holidays to be over. That might not be something most people say, but I really do love Christmastime. As I head of to work on this sunny Tuesday morning, my mind wants to check out for Christmas, and I have to keep reminding myself that there’s still about nine more hours of work to go before that’s possible. I’m looking forward to several days at my parents’ house in San Diego, where my mom has FOUR full size Christmas trees throughout the house. It’s absolutely amazing. Maybe I didn’t think that a few years ago when I was still living at home and working in retail during the holidays, but now I love it. Funny how things change I suppose – I’m a real grown up now, aren’t I?

Now, let’s get to the tastes of the holidays. Eggnog, peppermint and every other holiday flavor only come once a year, so I’ve tried to make the most of it with eggnog and peppermint everything! Here’s another eggnog recipe for you to end with this year: super soft and dreamy cinnamon eggnog cookies with eggnog glaze. After this, I’ll be checking out for a couple days to focus on family (and sadly also work), and I’ll be back with more recipes over the weekend.

To make the cookies, you need:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup eggnog
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups flour

Start by creaming together the butter and sugar, and then add the egg yolk and vanilla until well-mixed. Mix in the eggnog. The batter should be light and creamy. Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, mix and then slowly add into the batter. It will look very thin and sticky compared to your average cookie dough. Let is sit in the fridge for at least 20 minutes to thicken slightly. Then use a cookie scoop or a large spoon to place dough on the cookie sheet. It will be really sticky and gooey, but that’s ok! That’s what leaves you with super soft, melt-in-your-mouth-like cookies.

Bake on 350 degrees for 16-20 minutes until they are barely beginning to brown on the edges. They might not look totally done, but they will be if the edges are forming. Let the cookies cool on a cooling rack while you make the icing.

Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate
For the icing, you need:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons eggnog
  • cinnamon (optional, for garnish)

Whisk the icing ingredients together, adding more or less of each until you reach the desired consistency. I was going for more of a glaze, so I added more eggnog to keep it thin. Then drizzle the icing on the cookies and garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon.Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate Cinnamon Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Glaze | Revamperate
Seriously, you’re going to love these cookies. Trust me on this one. They are melt-in-your-mouth delicious with eggnog on top! Anyway, enjoy making these for your holiday gatherings or, you know, for Santa. I hear Santa loves eggnog cookies. Merry Christmas!

Kids Paper Plate Christmas Crafts: Tree and Wreath

Kids Christmas Craft: Paper Plate Tree and Wreath | Revamperate Kids Christmas Craft: Paper Plate Tree and Wreath | Revamperate

As you probably know if you read this blog, I don’t have kids (whew). That’s the reasoning behind my lack of children’s crafts on Revamperate because, really, it’s hard to make kids crafts without the kids. Nonetheless, my coworker begged and begged me to share some holiday crafts for his son and family to make for Christmas, so this is for you Terell.

With only a few supplies, your kids can have fun crafting trees, wreaths and so much more with just paper plates. Here you’ll see two options: a tree and a wreath, but I also came across this really cute idea for a paper plate Santa. The same blogger has a lot of other fun kids craft ideas, including several you can make with paper plates.

The fun thing about letting your kids make crafts is they don’t follow instructions – that’s a good thing. They’re supposed to have fun with it and decorate their tree or wreath with whatever they want, so these are just guidelines of an idea and what supplies to put in front of them. Then you can let them do their thing and go crazy with paint, glitter paper, puff balls and all that fun stuff that YOU get to clean up.

A few things you’ll want to make these:

  • Paper plates
  • Scissors
  • Green craft paint (plus any other colors you want)
  • Brown and yellow construction paper or card stock (plus any other colors you want)
  • Buttons and beads
  • Colored puff balls
  • Ribbon
  • Glue stick

To make the paper plate tree, cut a plate into fourths, paint each one (facing up) and then use a glue gun to layer three pieces on top of each other. Cut a rectangle of brown paper for the stump and a yellow star for the top – to make the star, it’s easiest to draw it on one side of the paper, cut it out, flip and glue it to the top of the tree. Then the kids can go crazy decorating it with whatever they want, like ribbon, puff balls, sequins, beads, buttons, etc.

To make the paper plate wreath, fold a plate in half and cut around the middle of it. When you open it up, it should have a full circle cut from the middle. Then paint the plate green and, like the tree, let the kids decorate it with whatever they want. Kids Christmas Craft: Paper Plate Tree and Wreath | Revamperate

These crafts are easy to make with the items you probably already have, and they’re small enough and light enough to keep, hang or store. Let the kids have fun with it, and Merry Christmas!

PS – Terell, you better send me pictures after you try this with the kids!

DIY Tinsel Wreath

DIY Tinsel Wreath | Revamperate
DIY Tinsel Wreath | Revamperate
I hope you’re not sick of Christmas crafts yet because I still have a few more up my sleeve, including this easy and incredibly cheap tinsel wreath! When I say cheap, I’m not even kidding. All of these items can be found at the dollar store unless you want to splurge on higher quality materials – not that you need to. The only piece that I chose to spend more money on was the lettering, and that’s because I already had them, so it was the easiest thing to do. I even got the door hanger at Dollar Tree!

Anyway, this dollar decor tinsel wreath is perfect for indoor and outdoor (assuming you don’t live in harsh weather conditions, such as myself in Southern California). You can finish this in about 10-20 minutes, depending on how you want to create your lettering. You can either buy chipboard letters or you can cut your own out of cardboard or balsa wood and decorate them with glitter or paint. For the purposes of this tutorial, I’m going to explain it with chipboard letters, which are the easiest material to use here.
DIY Tinsel Wreath | Revamperate
DIY Tinsel Wreath | Revamperate
Here’s what you need:

  • Foam wreath
  • Colored tinsel garland (about 6 feet)
  • Chipboard letters
  • Wire
  • Ribbon or string
  • Glue gun

First, glue the end of the garland to the foam wreath and wrap it around somewhat tightly so that you can’t see the foam skeleton. Every few wraps, glue the garland down to keep the shape. Continue until you’ve covered the entire wreath and it’s securely glued.

Cut a piece of wire at least twice the length of your planned word. In my case, the word ‘joy.’ Bend it at the half way mark and twist to secure it until you have at least  3 inches remaining. Pull the remaining wire away so that it is sticking out. This will be the part that attaches the word to the wreath, so you want to make sure it’s long enough to bend around it.

Lay your chipboard letters upside down – make sure they’re facing the correct way, given that it will appear backwards. Use the glue gun to glue down the wire onto the lettering, keeping the letters close together to hide the wire. Once dry, use the piece that is sticking out to attach the letters to the wreath, arranging the tinsel to cover the wires if necessary. Then cut a piece of ribbon (preferably a matching color) and tie around the top of the wreath, hiding the knot underneath. Now, hang it on a door for a cozy Christmas feel.
DIY Tinsel Wreath | Revamperate
Merry Christmas! I hope you enjoy making tons of holiday crafts while you still can. Christmas is coming so fast. Enjoy!

Reese’s Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateReese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateLast weekend, Andrew took the LSAT exam for law school. If you’re not familiar, the LSAT is a pretty intense exam best known for it’s very difficult “mind games.” Studying for the test really took a toll on him these last few months, and now he’s preparing his applications while he waits for his final score. In an effort to make him feel a little better afterward, I did what any reasonable person would do – I made cookies!

Peanut butter and chocolate are Andrew’s favorite combination, so that was a must. Reese’s are his favorite candy, so I incorporated them into these very soft and peanut butter chip loaded peanut butter thumbprint cookies. And ohmygod did they come out good?! Between the two of us, we ate most of them because they were just too delicious. Trust me on this.

The softness of the cookies, in my opinion, is the best part. I can’t stand overly crunchy cookies (except in cases like Oreos, etc. when they’re supposed to be crunchy). Follow these steps and you’ll make the best soft cookies EVER. Stay tuned – I plan on revamping this recipe for a few different cookies down the line.

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | Revamperate

You’ll need:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • ÂĽ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ÂĽ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ÂĽ cup flour
  • ½ cup peanut butter chips

First, cream together the butter and sugars. Then beat in the peanut butter, egg and vanilla, beating well between each one (and yes, that order works best). Mix in the flour, salt and baking soda. The dough should be creamy but thick. Stir in the peanut butter chips with a spoon or spatula and chill for 20-30 minutes.

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateReese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | Revamperate

Take the dough out of the fridge and let sit until it’s soft enough to work with. Roll it into 1-inch balls and place several inches apart on a cookie sheet (I use a cookie scoop to get the right amount of dough). Bake on 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes but no more than that. Even though they will look doughy and undone, they are exactly like you want them – soft but fully cooked. Immediately after you remove them from the oven, push unwrapped mini Reese’s peanut butter cups into the centers of the soft cookies and move them to the fridge to cool. This will prevent the Reese’s chocolate from melting too much. After about 10 minutes in the fridge, they’re ready to eat.

Offer these too anyone, and you’ll probably make a friend forever. Just sayin’. Plus these are perfect for a cookie swap. That was one of my favorite Christmas activities with my old coworkers. Now get baking and enjoy!