Seamingly Crafty

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Having A Fun Frugal Halloween

So my intention was to get on here and share all of my money saving tips for Halloween!  Of course around here, I sometimes get so busy, I barely have time to breathe 😉

Well I decided that even tho I didn’t share my Halloween throughout October, I’d share what I did to save money this season, still have a great party, great decor, and amazing costumes on a dime!

The Decor

We are a Halloween loving family! We literally could transform our home into a haunted house inside and out every year.  Although we don’t go quite that far we do decorate a lot.  This year we made a trip to the dollar store and grabbed some cool murals to decorate the walls with.  These added so much more depth to our house and just some clear tape and a couple bucks and we had a spooky backdrop on several walls.  These did double duty when we had our party cause they gave our guests several options for photo ops. 🙂

This one we taped onto the brick right outside our front door. *TIP* Dollar store boxing tape stuck and stayed on the brick! Be sure to tape all around to keep the wind from getting under it and ripping it off the wall.

We hung up several different jointed life sized cutouts as well.

these make fun decorations, and fun for party pictures when they are posed 🙂


As with most years our decorations get roughed up outside from the wind.  This year one of our decorations was in desperate need of some TLC.  Most people would just toss them out when they get as battered as this guy was!  Since I don’t have a picture of him I can explain what we did.  He started as a 2′ hanging skeleton reaper.  He has plastic hands and foam head and originally was draped with a greenish soft papery type fabric and a cheese cloth over that.  The green papery fabric (I don’t know what else to call it) was torn up really bad and since it wasn’t really a fabric more like a glorified paper towel there was no way to doctor it up with matching material.  So what we did was used some scrap black fabric, and black creepy cloth from the dollar store to replace his existing fabric.  We kept the cheese cloth as that was real and the older it is the spookier it looks 🙂  We used hot glue to attach the fabric and creepy cloth and I used a wire hanger cut and bent into a new hanger for him which I attached securely.  We now had a new from old decoration.  If you don’t want to re-do your similar decoration that is too battered to use simply cut off the re-useable parts.  In this case I would have saved the head and hands along with the cheese cloth for a different project.  Any decoration for outdoor can be upcycled or recycled into something new or updated.  Don’t toss it out save $$ 😉

We used the cheese cloth we took off of the decoration to wrap around 2 large dollar store skeletons we painted green to make mummies. 🙂

Creepy cloth can be purchased at the dollar store.

A must! It comes in black and gray.


We had to touch up some of our outdoor headstones too.  This just required paint which I had on hand and some outdoor clear coat spray which I also had on hand.  We made a couple of new headstones this year.  We are scary movie buffs 😉 so of course our cemetery reflects that.  On our headstones we have:

Fred E. Krueger  his headstone is dressed up with a hand painted Elm St. Street sign and of course his razor knives glove laying on the grass in front of the headstone I made it with an old winter glove spray painted brown and cut out of foam board the knives.

Micheal Myers  his headstone is dressed up with his iconic butchers knife purchased from the dollar store it came white glow in the dark I painted it with silver and blood red.

Jason Voorhees his headstone has his iconic hockey mask screwed to the top corner and his iconic machete screwed to the other side.

Jedidiah Sawyer I haven’t come up with a way to incorporate his iconic chainsaw but I did lay some severed body parts from the dollar store by his headstone.  I’d love to hear chainsaw ideas!!

I made a small coffin a couple years ago to cover our fog machine. I also had purchased after Halloween a couple years ago 3 small headstones with tubes that attach to the fog machine.  even tho they were made for the machine I have, the machine melted the attachments.  I have yet to come up with a way to fix it but still put the headstones out.

Here’s a link to my Instructable on making the coffin.

NOTE* Please follow your instructions that came with your fog machine.  My dimensions were cut to fit a small fog machine and I was sure to keep the end protruding out to keep the fog end cool.


My daughter and I love these little headstones at the dollar store.

We grab one or two every year.  They make a nice mini cemetery for the mantel or coffee table etc.  We added some mini plastic skulls and mini skeletons from the dollar store.

While browsing Pinterest I came across this amazing life size spooky tree at 102 wicked things to do blog. I knew I didn’t have time to make it for this Halloween but as my daughter and I were cleaning up after making a Halloween wreath I thought Hmmm…. how about a mini spooky tree for our mini cemetery! YES!  So I kept the cardboard rolls from the dollar store ribbon we used on the wreath and followed most of the her instructions and created my mini spooky tree!  I LOVE IT!!  I added some purple spider LED lights also from the dollar store.


Also on 102 wicked things to do blog I found a tutorial on how to make candles that look real but use cardboard tube and LED tealight candles from the dollar store.  We made 5 of them 3 for our candelabra and one for the bathroom candle holder.  She hit it on the head when saying you don’t want anyone catching on fire at your Halloween Party.  I actually had someone almost catch their hair on fire on my toilet… yes… toilet…. I had a tealight burning on the back of it thinking it would be safe. yes I thought it would be cause I don’t sit back and relax on the pot lol so these candles were an awesome SAFE way to spook up the commode. Find the tutorial HERE.

For the Halloween Party Costume contest I used her idea for the trophies!  They turned out great!

We also made 2 extras that weren’t featured in her tutorial.  Our categories were:

Best Costume

Most creative



best couple

most original


penny pincher

party pooper

We purchased several skeletons from the dollar store. Some wood bases from the craft store some creative props a small piggy bank from dollar store a candle holder and we used a small skeleton we had already.  On I chose small mailing label size labels I printed on 6 labels

The Austin’s Halloween Party

I made one for each.  On the Penny Pincher tag I added “start saving for next years costume” and put a penny in the bank. On the party pooper (the little skeleton) I added “next year wear a costume”

I made the background a goldish color on the labels. Printed them out on plain paper, cut them out and used mod podge to attache them to the bases of the trophies.  My daughter and I had so much fun making these!  And even more fun awarding them to the winners!

For voting I used 3×5 cards cut slits down one side to make 9 tabs, I decorated paper lunch bags and taped them to the wall around the voting table.  Taped up simple rules for voting (ie. only vote once for each category) and left the cards and several pens on the table.

——>Click Here to go to 102 wicked things to do<——


This year I spent a lot of time on my daughters costume leaving very little time for my own.  So I decided to go simple and be a Witch.  All I did was make a simple tutu skirt out of tulle and ribbon.  I purchased a hat from the dollar store.  Used some scrap black fabric and the extra tulle and modified the hat to fit my liking. I wanted it to be crooked and longer.  I used floral wire glue and grocery bags to form the end.  Here is what I made for a buck and some free colorful leaves from my yard 🙂


To keep the food cost down, we chose to do a taco bar.  We purchased taco meat from our local GFS store along with taco shells and a big bag of shredded lettuce, cheese sauce and tortilla chips.  I diced 5 medium tomatoes 2 large onions and served shredded cheese, sour cream, black olives etc.  I kept the meat and cheese sauce hot in crock pots laid out the spread and done.  I also made some witches hats zombie fingers and even put out some powdered donut holes covered with a couple black spiders (spider eggs) 🙂

I bought a few different flavors of 3 liter pop and made fruit punch and iced tea.

All our supplies were purchased at the dollar store.

That was some of our 2014 Halloween!

To wrap up this post I’ll leave you with a few pointers and must haves list for the dollar store.


skeletons large and small

wall murals

party supplies

mini skulls

mini headstones



creepy cloth


LED candles and mini string lights


The dollar store stock sells out FAST!  I missed out on a couple of things I really wanted cause I waited to buy them.  Start shopping for Halloween at the dollar store at the end of August.  The items that don’t sell out too fast are skeletons crows and spiders these they seem to re stock or over stock.

SHOP FOR HALLOWEEN CANDY AT 5 BELOW if you have one near you.  I try to avoid the dollar store for this because although you think you are getting a deal in some cases you aren’t. By the time you purchase enough bags of for example charms suckers to equal the amount you get in a grocery store bought bag you are paying the same price if not more.  Certain candies are ok to purchase at the dollar store like dum dums and pixi stix.  You can always price and weight compare before you buy.

SHOP NOW! Halloween clearance is up to 75% off right now!  You can get ribbon, decorations, etc. at a fraction of the cost! Even the dollar store clearances their Halloween stock.

Think simple for party food!  Stick to one theme. example tacos.  This will keep your cost low.  You can also make it a pot luck ask your guests to bring a spooky dish.  And always do BYOB (bring your own booze)  We do offer what we have to all our guests but I always throw BYOB on the invites so the guests know they are welcome to what we have but any special drinks they should bring.

Think simple for your decor if you host your party out in the garage or a tent.  We put up black poly plastic on the walls and over our not so sightly garage junk hung up some caution tape all around. DONE!  Our guests were welcome inside or out.

If you have your party outside or plan on having any outdoor activities ALWAYS have a back up plan.  We had intended to have spooky stories and pass the story game by the fire pit.  Hot apple cider by the fire pit, and Halloween movies on the back of our house using a friends projector for fire and a movie after games and stories for the kids.  However, the wind was horrible so we couldn’t put up the party tent and couldn’t safely have a fire and since it was so cold and windy we couldn’t do the movies either.  So instead we hung apples on strings for no hands apple grabbing game.  I printed out free coloring pages from  and my daughter offered several board games for indoor activities.  I would have done more but I didn’t have a back up plan. 😛 the weather changes like crazy here!

That about wraps it up for this Halloween Post!

Until next time… Keep it Frugal!

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Updating a Canvas Bag Quickie!

I had to come up with something quick for last minute Birthday gift.  I am usually on top of this stuff but with everything being so hectic in my life recently I’ve been falling behind on everything!  I love to personalize gifts.  To me they seem to have more love and thought behind them and, well, are more personal.  This particular person loves purple, butterflies, minions, and I happen to know is in college. .I had this canvas bag at my shop I purchased and wouldn’t you know it, it is purple!

I have this gorgeous pattern programed in my sewing/embroidery machine of a butterfly.

I added her name at the bottom and voila!

You can make virtually anything more sentimental and personal by adding quick little touches like this.

Any Canvas bag can be embroidered, even by hand!

You can find many embroidery websites that offer hand embroidery patterns.  My favorite is Urban Threads!  I am an Urban Threadster for sure!  I absolutely love their site and blog!

Thanks for stopping in and checking out the new post!

Till next time!

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Repurpose an Old Furry Coat Vol. 1 Furry Leg Warmers

Furry Leg Warmers

Whew Halloween is over…. Wait that means its only 55 days till Christmas!

Before we start really thinking about that…

My daughter has this furry black hat with red devil horns on it.  This year she decided she wanted to be a devil girl for Halloween.  We love making our own costumes… they are much nicer than most store bought.  I remember a few of my old costumes from when I was a kid… There was the witch… it was by far my favorite!  The only thing I had store bought for that was the hat and the broom.  We had found a long black skirt turtle neck and this awesome black cape! it was satin with  silver stars on the trim all the way around the cape.  My mom had these really cool vintage owl necklaces which added that last touch I needed to make it perfect!  When I got older I had put together a punk rock costume out of 80’s clothes I found at a thrift shop.  Now I love making costumes. My fave is a couple years ago my husband and I were alice and the hatter from Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland.

Alice in the Um Dress and the Mad Hatter. I created my costume from scratch. I had to order the white material and I painstakingly added the black stripes and hearts to it. My husbands costume was a mix between homemade repurposed and altered thrift store finds. The top hat was made from scratch along with the hat pins. I even made the arsenal of thread from scratch.

Last year I was an Umbrella Corp. Chief Scientist in the Bio Organic Weapons Dept.

I found the skirt and shoes at a thrift store. My husband was working in a hospital and salvaged the coat and I made the name badge and used iron on transfer paper and printed out the umbrella symbol.

So anyway, My daughter needed some leg warmers to complete her costume.  I had this old vintage furry coat in the closet not being used and I thought I could use this for those leg warmers :).  Now you may be wondering what the Vol. 1 is all about.  Well I will be making more stuff with the remains of the coat. For now here’s how to make the warmers.

What you will need:

Furry Coat

Seam Ripper


Thick thread in the same color as the fur


Measuring Tape

Jump rings



Step 1  turn the coat inside out and remove the lining from around the sleeve.  Next detach the sleeves using the seam ripper.

Next you want to remove the rest of the lining from the sleeve by cutting it off around the bottom of the sleeve leaving enough to tuck under and slip stitch in place.

Lay the sleeve flat with the bottom seam up and cut even across, as seen in photo below.

cut across where the scissors in the photo are.

Measure your leg or the leg you are making this for from the bottom of the knee down to the ankle. In my case it was 15 inches.  fold down the top of the sleeve to so it measures all the way around the measurement you came up with.

Next take the elastic and put it under the fold leaving the ends hang out.

Over stitch around the fold taking care not to go through too much of the sleeve.

when you get almost all the way around tie the elastic making it so it tightens a little. you dont want it to cut off circulation. Then finish stitching.

Next take your jump rings out and decide how many to use.  I chose to use 5, placing them 2″ apart.

Find the seam and lay the sleeve flat with the seam up.

Line the jump rings on either side of the seam. This will help you decide how many to use.

Sew the jump rings in place.  I looped around them twice and tied them really tight.

Last step..

Thread the ribbon through the rings.

and enjoy!

the kitty loves them too! 🙂

Until next time Keep it Crafty! 🙂

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Tulle Skirt Inspired By Anthropologie

While browsing the lovely Pinterest a while back I came across this gorgeous skirt.  I absolutely fell in love with it.  I found out it was an Anthropologie skirt found here.  It was a little to pricey for my budget, but you know me… I will challenge myself to create something similar. 🙂

What I used:

2 inch elastic

6 yards of tulle

2 yards of lining

To get started I used this Pattern I found on found here.  I must say this is a great bookmark!!  I have referred to this site on more than a couple occasions.  The first time on A knock off rock a billy dress. Post.  It is great to learn and have around for sure! Before you know it you will be making circle skirts for all the girls in your family!

I cut out the lining and then 2 layers of tulle.  You can add as many tulle layers as you like.

measure your waist and cut your elastic be sure to add an inch or so.

finish the edge of your lining and them using a zig zag stitch attach the layers to your elastic.  You may need to gather.  If you want a fuller skirt add an extra inch to the waist measurement for the circle skirt making sure to compensate the inch for the length.

not my favorite picture but I wanted to show the length.

Thank you to my daughter for having fun taking these pictures 🙂 I made the lovely owl necklace in the picture as well… Perhaps another post?

I hope you enjoyed this quick tutorial… till next time 😉

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How to Make a Simple Petticoat


Does it look complicated?  If you said yes… I have some good news.. it isn’t!  It is also surprisingly cheap to make!

In my previous post A knock off Rockabilly dress I shared how I made a similar looking Hell Bunny dress.  To finish the look I needed a petticoat.  Petticoats can be quite pricey depending on the length and fullness you are looking for.  I have come up with an inexpensive simple way to create this petticoat.

So here is what you will need:

  1. A roll of tulle 15 yards 4″ wide
  2. elastic
  3. 2 yards of lining material
  4. 5/8 inch  ribbon in matching color approx. 3 spools 18′ come on the Offray spools

Yep that’s it! 4 things!

The roll of tulle was $2.99 Ribbon was 1.97 a roll and the elastic was 28¢ a yard. The lining was $1.99 a yard.

pretty cheap 🙂

 The lining can be anything from nylon to a cotton blend.  Whatever is cheapest for you and won’t irritate the skin.  My lining is a cotton blend with some nylon in it.  I just grabbed the black bolt in the lining section at my fabric store.  There are usually 3 color choices.. white, black, and cream.  If you go with Nylon you can find more colors  but this is not necessary because only the bottom of the petticoat will be visible.

I found the roll of tulle at Joanns in the bridal section. there are several color choices.  If you want to make a really bold statement Hobby Lobby carries a variety of tulle rolls ranging from solids to polka dotted to zebra print in many colors.  Be frugal and go to their websites to print out or save to your smart phone their coupon! It will save you $$!

The satin ribbon can also be found at any fabric or craft stores in a wide variety of colors and prints!  For my petticoat we wanted something simple but gorgeous because we didn’t want to take the attention away from the dress.  The dress as seen in my previous post has many eye catching statements so we didn’t want to take from those.  however I think a dress with less eye candy would look amazing with a black petticoat and hot pink ribbon! 😉  Or even a purple polka dotted petticoat with a bright bold yellow ribbon!  (say that 5x’s fast) lol

Don’t be afraid to bring your dress in to the store with you to match up the perfect tulle and ribbon!  Trust me the ladies & gentlemen in the fabric department LOVE to see what you are creating and share their ideas and get input on yours!  Most of them share your love for sewing and crafting!  In the time I worked as a supervisor in a fabric store I have seen everything from pillows, shoes, to motorcycle gas tanks come in! YES a man brought in a gas tank from his custom motorcycle to get some great vinyl to match!!

Let’s get started!

You will need to cut from the tulle one 8 yard piece and one 4 yard piece.

From your lining you will need to cut a 6 inch by 2 yard piece. You will have plenty left for your next petticoat 😉

Starting with the 8 yard piece fold it in half, set your machine to 1.5 mm stitch and sew the ends together to make a giant tulle circle.  fold down the seam to one side and sew over it close to the edge.  You don’t have to do this it just makes it look prettier when the seam isn’t sticking out.

Follow that step for your 4 and 2 yard pieces.

Grab your 8 yard piece and a spool of ribbon, fold the ribbon over the edge of the tulle and sew into place with your length set  around 3.5 mm.  This gives your petticoat a really polished and finished look!  This is a tedious step and the hardest step.  But don’t stress over it. once you are done go back and check the ribbon and mark each spot that the thread missed and go back and sew it.  No big deal! 🙂 even when pinned I miss a spot or two!  When you reach the end of the ribbon grab another spool and to start it fold the end under a bit and do the same when you come to the where you started.

With your machine set to 5.0 mm stitch around the 8 yard piece on the side without the ribbon.  gather and attach it with pins to the 4 yard piece and baste.  You will have to work the gather to get a good fit.  Open it up and using the ribbon lay it flat over the seam between the 2 pieces stitch the bottom of the ribbon down then the top taking care to fold the ends to make for a polished finish also because ribbon frays! and we don’t want our pretty petticoat to look drab with frayed ribbon sticking out. 🙂

Gather the top of the 4 yard layer just like you did for the 8 yard piece. Attach it to the lining piece by sewing it with a 2.5mm stitch.  Fold the seam up towards the lining and top stitch around sewing the seam down.

Over lock the edge of the lining piece or serge it.  fold down ½ inch or so just enough to fit your elastic sew down leaving an opening at the seam to insert the elastic.

measure your waist and cut the elastic to fit.  Feed the elastic through the top of the petticoat.  Sew the ends together with 1/2 inch seam allowance or more depending on how snug you want it.  Try it on, if the fit is good sew the opening shut. If not adjust as needed.

Cut any hanging threads, and if your cat is like mine and MUST lay on everything you are working on use a lint roller to get the fuzz and hair off of  it.  The lint roller also works great for little pieces of thread..I find that thread is highly attracted to tulle.  🙂

You are done!  Put it on and admire the beauty! 🙂

It just looks so amazing with the ribbon! and when it sticks out of the bottom of the dress slightly it is so adorable!


Some additional options..

If you would like your petticoat to be even fuller you can simply repeat the steps for the 8 and 4 yard pieces omitting the ribbon between the pieces but making sure you still fold over ribbon on the bottom of the 8 yard piece and you will want to fold the seam up and sew it down between the pieces where you leave off the ribbon.  This piece you make will be gathered and attached to the lining piece with the first piece you made but underneath it.  So you will have 2 layers of the 8 and 4 yard piece but the top layer will be the one with the ribbon between the 8 and 4 yard piece.

If you would like your petticoat to be longer you can do this by making the lining piece wider than 6″ or adding another layer to the bottom making this layer 9-10 yards long.  You can also achieve more length by making 2 4 yard pieces and sewing them together before attaching one end to the 8 yard piece.

You can also leave out the ribbon all together 🙂

Until next time!  Happy Sewing!!


A knock off rockabilly dress

This has been a dreadful month with all the upcoming events and holidays not to mention the glitch which has caused a great delay on our tax refund. I have been under tremendous stress which leads to panic attacks. I don’t like taking my meds for it because I’m not a medicine person. I’d much rather find relief a different way. For me, being behind my sewing machine helps! So that is where I have spent a majority of my time this month working on random things.

Recently my daughter came to me with a photo of a rockabilly dress she found on google that she must have. I looked into it and the cost was too high for our budget so I decided to try and make the dress myself.  So I hit the internet, pinterest and fabric store pattern books to try and put together a dress for her.  After much debate and consideration I finally found the perfect match ups for the dress.

The original dress she found is a Hell Bunny Motley 50’s dress.

The dress is gorgeous!  I must say I’m so glad my daughter and I share the same taste in clothing 😉

I am going to share with you the way I made my version of the dress. My version of the dress is quite different from the Hell Bunny dress.  For starters the bodice is longer.  The band goes all the way around to the back instead of stopping at the sides.  The back of the bodice is not smocked, instead the dress is fitted to fit her I also made sure it can be taken out in the waist.  The pockets and the collar are not rounded I found it much easier to make them square.  And finally because I could not find the embroidered anchor for purchase I hand painted them on the pockets instead.

First I came across this awesome tutorial on how to make a simple circle skirt on .  The pattern can be found here.  I used this method to make the bottom of the dress.  I did not cut the seams in the skirt. I only cut one seam to allow for the zipper.

For the top of the dress I used New Look pattern #0168 Dress A

I chose this pattern because it had the band (collar)  I also used the thick straps.  To make this work for the way my daughter wanted the dress I did not use the midriff, instead I carefully cut each piece of the bodice 5″ longer.  This pattern comes with many mix and match options 🙂


There is a flaw in the directions of this pattern!!

When you are making dress A the directions will tell you to baste the straps onto the bodice front, then your next step is the band. DO NOT DO THIS! Although I knew better I had a total brain fart and followed the directions only to have to remove the entire band and straps! The  band must be basted before the straps or the straps will end up under the band flipping it up.

I used satin ribbon for the stripes for the collar I used heat n bond to attach the ribbon before sewing it down.

I also did not sew the straps to the back of the bodice and I made them longer so they can tie in the back like a halter.

Once the bodice was complete I attached it to the skirt.  the top of the bodice has a hook and eye and a 14″ zipper that goes down about 4 inches into the skirt.

I had my daughter put the dress on for about the 10th time so I could cut the skirt to the length she wanted.  I find that it is much easier to use bias tape on the hem of circle skirts.  Trying to hem it would have taken me an entire day and it would still be wrinkled, so instead I made bias tape out of the same material I used for the dress and attached it to the bottom hem of the skirt.

For the top of the pockets I used some scrap white satin and cut it asymmetrically then just cut a basic square pocket.

I hand painted the cute anchor design on the pockets.  And finally attached the white satin ribbon to the bottom.

My final step was the bow for the top left of the bodice.

We wanted the dress to have some poof at the bottom so I whipped together my simple petticoat. ( view the tutorial here)

photo ©Stacey Austin

And here is the final result!

photo ©Stacey Austin

photo ©Stacey Austin

photo ©Stacey Austin

This was my first time piecing together patterns to create something.  I am pretty pleased with how it came out and Caitlin couldn’t be happier!!

If you love vintage looks and for a wide variety of amazing dresses and clothes I urge you to check out  more awesome designs by Hell Bunny Check out their facebook page by clicking the picture below!


Heart Shaped Box Re-purpose ♻

Valentine’s Day is over and you are left with a few reminders like the cards and flowers.  You also have that heart shaped box that your yummy chocolates came in.  Last year I received this very pretty box from my husband. It was a velvety material with a white and gold rope around the edges.  The sides of the box where also velvet.  It was so pretty I didn’t want to just toss it in the garbage but I also didn’t want to have it sit around in my closet with other clutter I really need to start weeding through.  So I thought… What a cute pillow this would make!!

I started to carefully pull the material away from the cardboard. Once I had it all pulled apart I noticed the material and rope was all just glued together. So my second step was to carefully sew around the entire seam making sure I caught the rope too.

Although the heart was pretty as it was, I still wanted to add a little something to it so I looped it up and put it on my machine and embroidered an “A” in the middle with white thread.

Next I used the foam that was placed between the fabric and cardboard as a guide to cut out a heart from some scrap satin I had.

I sewed it together stuffed it and this was the ending result…


This year my box of chocolates did not have fabric on them.  I did see some really cute ones in the store tho!

I will be posting other Reusable ideas for heart shaped boxes!

Until next time.. Stay crafty and be green!!


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