What’s Cookin’ In The Studio

What’s Cookin’ In The Studio

Getting Crafty

As Makers and Crafters, we not only use creativity to create- we use our resourceful gifts to make life easier. Today I want to show you some of the everyday household items I use in my studio to help me contain the clutter- making it fashionable and functional!

Bowl Me Over

I use bowls all over the studio- they are great for holding buttons, baubles, bobbins, bacon…you get the idea. You can even stack them together to save space and create a treasure tower with items you need for a project.

Do You Know the Muffin Man?

I do, and he helps organize all the little bits and beads for my projects. Muffin tins are amazing organizers and shallow enough that its simple to find what you need. No need to dump jars out all over your workspace when looking for The Perfect One. And the muffin trays will nest securely inside each other so they are stackable and will save valuable workspace. “I have too much workspace,” said no one ever.

Reel It In

I used this vintage fishing reel to store my twine, you could use it for any sort of string or ribbon. I picked this up a one of my favorite local stores called Simply Bungalow. 

What’s Your Hang-Up?

If you’re addicted to washi tape like some people I know (not me, not ever!) you could use a wooden hanger that has a detachable dowel. Slide your collection of beauties on the rod for easy access and a fun display.

Shake it Up

To glitter or not to glitter? Why must the thing we love so much make such a mess? Well, it doesn’t have to! Salt and pepper shakers make the perfect storage container and applicator for all your Shiny Speckles of Love. Keep it from getting all over fingers, hands, floors, cats, etc. Glitter away my friends!

Roller Derby

Should you have a minor mishap while shaking your glitter groove thang, a lint roller can swiftly pick up any rogue sparkles, making cleanup a breeze. Not recommended for use on the cat.

No Mop Needed Here

This ceramic floor tile makes an excellent backdrop for photography. You can find one for less than $1 at your local home improvement store! More on creating perfect photographs to sell your handmade goods in a future post!

Encourage Loafing Around

Save your dough on unnecessary holsters and stands- loaf pans work great! Heat guns, glue guns, staple guns, taser guns (how else are you supposed to keep your husband out of your BabeCave?) all fit nicely into a pan. Watch this tutorial to see how you can double your trouble with two pans to make an organizer!

Rack em’ Up

I use dishwashing racks in a couple of different ways around the studio. They make files easily accessible- and add a splash of color if you find whimsical folders! They are also perfect for those piles of fabric and ribbon scraps that seem to accumulate. You can see what you have instead of forgetting that they’re in that bottom drawer of that one dresser in the back of that one closet in that one room you never go in!

Stick a Fork in Me, I’m Done

Utensil holders make great catch-alls for pens, pencils, markers, scissors, rulers, erasers, licorice and beef jerky. (Crafting sure works up an appetite, am I right?!?!) This countertop version works marvelously, but you can also use the drawer space savers if you are one of those people that are able to keep your drawers neat and tidy.
I’d love to know what every day items you use to create magic in your space- leave me note or a picture of your genius ideas in the comments!
Paper Flowers Take Center Stage In Nursery Decor

Paper Flowers Take Center Stage In Nursery Decor

Nursery decor is part and parcel to the whole beauty of celebrating and preparing for a new life. Babies are special and their first baby nursery decor is uniquely momentous. So when I get a request from a new mommy-to-be to make a paper flower set, I am thrilled and honored to be chosen for the task.

Baby Nursery Decor


The color palettes of nurseries are sometimes the traditional you might think for little girls with pinks being a dominate color.


Sometimes the color is found in the wall and the flowers remain neutral with creams and white tones.

Other times a complimentary paper flower color accompanies the pinks like lavender and teal.

Bold colors of navy and teal also make for beautiful complimentary paper flower shades to the pinks.

This nursery set of paper flowers had the extra accent of a matching paper flower mobile in beautiful hues of cream, gold, and gray.

The one consistent thing I notice in customer photographs is that the paper flowers for the nursery always seem to go above the crib. It is the focal point of the room and takes center stage!


I do always caution the mama that they need to think about when those little hands will reach up someday. Of course the mattress goes lower but those little legs and arms can still reach more than you think. ( I speak from experience here!)

paper flower nursery decor


I’ll never forget the planning and preparation that went into my first little one’s room. We painted it yellow (the traditional thing 34 years ago when you didn’t know if it would be a boy or girl). I hung curtains, made a quilt, hung pictures, and set up the crib…..only to move before the baby arrived! I don’t regret it one bit though. I have fond memories of the preparation and anticipation.

So getting to be a part of that with my flowers is pretty special.

Babies….mine are grown. My grand-babies are getting bigger too. I’m glad I still get to help decorate nurseries because babies are really so special! You can shop on Facebook, Etsy or my website if you’d like some flowers to welcome your little one. There is no color palette or size of flowers that can’t be designed just for you and your new bundle of joy. Perhaps your nursery can be in the next edition of a blog post showing off customer photos!

Paper Flowers Photo Shoot!

Paper Flowers Photo Shoot!

Making paper flowers for special events creates a thrill in me that never grows old. I’m especially excited when a professional photographer captures my flowers in stunning ways I can only hope to do myself one day.

Melissa and Beth Photography contacted me about making some paper flowers for a “first birthday” photo shoot. I couldn’t have been more thrilled!

Just look at these gorgeous photos!

The cake was made by Cami’s Cake Company.

It was like opening presents and eating cake for me to be a part of this collaboration to be sure!

Contact me if YOU are in need of some yummy cake decor or an extra special topper for some presents. I just might feature YOUR photos on a future blog post!

The Red, White and Blue of Summer Decor

The Red, White and Blue of Summer Decor

Summertime is defined by many things. Step outside and you can feel the heat. You can hear the splashing of the pool if you listen closely. Do you smell the flowers and taste the barbecue?


What do you see?

red white blue rolled rose WM

I see red, white, and blue everywhere! Patriotism, the flag, fireworks all go hand in hand with the summer months.

patriotic decor | Barb Ann Designs |

I love to decorate for all of the seasons. Summer is no exception.

pinwheels on patriotic tablescape

One of the primary places of seasonal decor is my dining room table. It was time for the pinks and pastels to give way to the bold red, white, and blues.

patriotic tablescape | Barb Ann Designs |


Here is a video of my process in fast speed. Oh if I could only do things this fast in real life!



There are so many things that you can use in your decor. A go to for me is always old books. These are even extra great because they are American history books! Pairing them with one of my paper pinwheels makes it extra fun! And this chair!! Oh my, I just love using it for decor!

books and pinwheels in red white and blue | Barb Ann Designs |

Another idea is to use an old book cover and make some fun patriotic art! A little paint and burlap make this easy-peasy.

flag book cover art | Barb Ann Designs |

Flags are a must for summer decorating. I like to make mine look a little more vintage. Check out this tutorial for how to “antique” the cute dollar store flags easily.

Flag Distressing Tutorial

Then put them everywhere!

table centerpiece with flag | Barb Ann Designs |

You can even use your produce to show off your patriotism!

cherries on scale | Barb Ann Designs |

How do you decorate for summer?

Vintage Bread Pan Organizer

Vintage Bread Pan Organizer

I’m all about vintage items and I’m also big into organization. It’s a total win if I can combine both of those loves! So when I saw this idea, I had to make one for myself. You can make one as well with my step by step photo tutorial.bread pan organizer with fruit | Barb Ann Designs |

Find yourself a pair of matching bread pans at a garage sale, thrift store, or even from your own cabinets. You also need an old fashioned potato masher.

bread pan and masher | Barb Ann Designs |

The other items you’ll need are a drill to make some holes, wire, and wire cutters.

drilling hole in bread pan | Barb Ann Designs |

If you don’t have a drill you can punch the holes with a hammer and a large nail.

hole in bread pan | Barb Ann Designs |

Place two holes in each bread pan on only one side, spaced as shown. Cut yourself two pieces of medium gage wire. Think about it being strong enough to hold the pans together when choosing.

cut wire | Barb Ann Designs |

Place the masher between the pans and wire them together.

put together bread pan and masher | Barb Ann Designs |

thread wire thru holes bread pan | Barb Ann Designs |

Twist the wire together and be sure to clamp the pointed parts downward.

crimp wire down bread pan | Barb Ann Designs |

Here’s how the bottom of your bread pan organizer should look.

bottom bread pan organizer | Barb Ann Designs |

Now comes the fun part! You can decide  multiple ways to use this new little organizing beauty! Use it for produce on the kitchen counter as I showed in the beginning of this post. This organizer would also be great for cosmetics.

bread pan organizer with cosmetics | Barb Ann Designs |

It’s a handy thing to carry out to the backyard grill.

bread pan organizer for bbq | Barb Ann Designs |

Mine is perfectly suited to my studio! It blends in with all the other vintage items I love and fills a purpose as well!

bread pan organizer with art supplies | Barb Ann Designs |

What would you use your bread pan organizer for?? I always love to see others ideas for repurposing and organizing. Share yours in the comments!