Easy DIY matching M&M costumes

For Halloween this year my daughter and her friend want to be “matching cute M&M girls”. They had it all worked out in their minds, all I had to do was take them to the costume store to buy some accessories and then make M&M shirts using my Silhouette Cameo.

I think they turned out pretty darn cute if you ask me!

If you’d like to recreate this costume, here are the accessories:

Hair bow, fish net gloves, tulle tutu, t-shirt. They paired the entire outfit with some black leggings.

To make the shirts I dusted off my Silhouette Cameo, found the M&M logo on google, imported it to my Silhouette software, cut it out on some flocked heat transfer material, and ironed it right onto the pre-washed t-shirts.

I think these two are going to be the cutest Trick-or-Treaters on the block this year!

Buddy the Elf loves singing loud (vinyl sign tutorial)

I know it’s terrible to even mention Christmas before Thanksgiving, but I want to share this craft with you guys asap in case you want to bust one out before Santa makes his appearance.

My all time most favorite Christmas movie in the history of ever is Elf. Will Ferrell, Bob Newhart, and Zooey Deschanel seriously MAKE this movie. Not only do I watch it at least 20 times in the month of December, I also quote this movie year-round, pretty much daily.

How could I not create a sign with the most epic phrase from the best Christmas movie of all time? (Sorry Miracle on 34th Street and A Christmas Story.)

Just reading this quote sends me in to a fit of giggles. This movie kills me. It was this quote or “I love smiling. Smiling’s my favorite… ‘Make work your favorite'”. I may have to do one that says “We elves try to stick to the 4 main food groups: candy, candycanes, candycorn, and syrup.” Oh-mah-gosh, I can’t even type because I’m giggling just thinking about this movie.

All those who can’t get enough of Buddy the Elf, please raise your hand.

I showed Buddy my new art, and he loved it so much he sent me a picture of him posing with the sign! Can you believe it? I cannot believe he actually posed with MY ART and sent me a picture. Check out this awesomeness. I am totally famous now.

Thanks Buddy! You rock. I’m glad you love it.

What fun is a brag post about having your art in a picture with Buddy himself if I don’t even share how I made it? Hold on tight and enjoy this amazing tutorial. This tutorial was created using the brand new Silhouette Portrait, but you can easily use this same tutorial by creating an image in a Word type program, printing it up on your printer, then tracing it onto vinyl and cutting it out with a pair of scissors.

Also, if you decide you want a Silhouette wait until this Friday for some awesome Black Friday deals.

I scrounged through my garage and found a piece of MDF leftover from installing these shelves. It was 11″ wide and about 3′ tall. I measured to 16″ long and cut the board down to a more manageable size. The final sign is 11″ x 16″. There’s no rhyme or reason to this size. It just looked like a good size. Oh, and I gave it a quick coat of white spray paint after I cut it.

Once you have your board, now you can log into your Silhouette software and create your image. I always set the height and width the size of my project, then create my sign. THEN, I set the actual size of the vinyl and move my words around to fit within the vinyl paramaters. This way your project is the perfect size.

Here are the screenshots of the project along with the exact fonts I used for each word. I download lots of free fonts, so you may have to google to find these exact fonts.

Once your project is designed it’s time to cut! For this project I am using some red and gold premium vinyl. (Again, don’t buy any until Friday when I post the Black Friday Silhouette promotion.)

Load your vinyl and cut out your words. I wanted to show you this cool cutter I always use when doing vinyl projects. It is a Fiskars Paper Trimmer 12 Grey and I’ve had it for probably 12 years. (PS, I threw in an amazon affiliate link there.)

It cuts a perfect right angle, so it’s great if your vinyl isn’t square on the end. It’s hard to load vinyl into the Silhouette if it isn’t exactly square, so I use this 12″ cutter.

I used the paper cutter to cut all the words apart so I could lay them evenly out on the board. I always lay out all the words for a project before I start peeling and sticking just to make sure it all fits and looks good.

Because I’m neurotic I hate the idea of wasting transfer paper, so I will use a small piece and do one section at a time. I can reuse the small piece of transfer paper several times before it isn’t sticky anymore. For this project I used 2 small pieces total.

Another tip when creating a sign is to alternate sticking words at the top, then at the very bottom. I stuck the words “the best” first, then stuck the words “to hear” second. Then I went back to the top and stuck the words “way to” followed by “for all”. By alternating back and forth you can more easily determine if you are getting your words evenly spaced.

Once the words were placed it still seemed unfinished because of the raw edge around the board. That was remedied by painting two coats of metallic gold paint around the edge.

This was just the punch the sign needed to give it a finished look.

It seemed appropriate to put it on the piano since it’s about singing. Now we can sit around and sing Baby It’s Cold Outside while pretending we are Jovy and Buddy in the shower (it’s not what you think. This movie is PG).

And here’s a close up in case you want to see what the vinyl looks like up-close-and-personal. The Silhouette cuts a really sharp edge.

If you like this art don’t forget to pin it! Your friends and followers will thank you.

*In an attempt at full disclosure, Silhouette sent me the Silhouette Portrait (which I will review for you Friday), red premium vinyl, and gold premium vinyl to try out. All opinions are my own. I am not paid to blog about any Silhouette projects but I do receive free product from them.

*Don’t forget to come back any time Friday after 12:01am for a ton of really amazing Silhouette Black Friday deals. To receive any discount you will need to use a special code which is “hoh4ever”.

And as always, love ya!

Meet Longhorn Vader

Did you know my family are all Texans? In fact, I’m a native Austinite, which is hard to come by these days. My kids were born in the same hospital that I was!

(Us showing our Texas pride in Washington DC)

Our family are big University of Texas Longhorn fans. Ben is a UT alumni, and graduated in 2001 from the Business School at the University of Texas at Austin. My grandpa was even a Professor at UT in the Computer Science Department.

Ben and I have been going to games together since we were married in 1998!

The kids have been longhorn fans since birth. Here they are at 2 and 4 at a football game.

We mostly go to the football games with our little family, but we love going with friends and family too.

Every year we take at least one weekend road trip to go to an away game. I really love away games! In 2009 we went to Oklahoma State. The game just happened to be on Halloween night so we created a Longhorn themed costume to wear.

Longhorn Vader was born that night.

The fans went NUTS. Totally coo-coo cray-cray over him. We were even invited to go sit with the band!

When we got home we watched the game on our TiVo. Longhorn Vader was on ESPN!

We knew at that point that we had created something pretty darn awesome. Instead of it being a one-time Halloween costume, Longhorn Vader starting making weekly appearances at all the games.

We get stopped weekly by people wanting to take pictures with our little Longhorn Vader.

Cheerleaders are our favorite!

Each week we pull a bigger crowd than the week before. It’s so fun and just plain weird that people want to take pictures with our little guy. :)

Our 10 year old son Travis usually wears Longhorn Vader. He loves the attention. We mainly wear the helmet before and after the game, but we’ll put it on in the stands after a touchdown.

Our daughter will wear it occasionally but she doesn’t like the way it fits (too big) so usually she’s happy sporting some face paint.

Well, after 3 years of Longhorn Vader, he was looking rough. And the sign was looking worse. They were chipped, torn, and tattered. It was embarrassing taking it to the game so I sat down with my Silhouette and busted out a brand-spankin’-new sign.

Notice the old sign below the Silhouette?

And I gave Darth a nice brand new fresh coat of Rustoleum’s “Cinnamon”.

Check out how much better our sign is! I even added our facebook fan page at the bottom of the sign so we didn’t have to keep telling everyone about it.

*The fonts on the sign I downloaded free from random font websites. The fonts are called “Collegiate-Normal” and “Star Jedi”. I used black vinyl only. The orange is colored in with a sharpie. To laminate it, I covered the entire foam board (front and back) with clear box tape.

Last Saturday was our first game with the brand new sign and helmet. And the line for pictures was longer than ever. Longhorns love them some Longhorn Vader!

The first sign I hand-drew with sharpies while in the car on the way to the game. This new sign looks so much more crisp and clean. I am really excited about how it turned out.

The kids were so excited to get more pictures with the cheerleaders. Kinsey loves them and watches them more than she watches the game.

Here’s some more pictures of us over the years at UT games.

If you think Longhorn Vader is pretty cool, we’d love for you to become a Longhorn Vader fan on facebook. It’s purely for fun. We don’t make money off him and we aren’t selling anything. We just love UT and having a good time.

If you want to see even more pictures of Longhorn Vader, head over to the fan page to see all the photos other fans have uploaded.

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