Category Archives: Arts and Crafts

Gift Wrapping Idea # 3 : Twigs and String

Just wanted to share with you another gift wrapping idea that I did for the little one’s teachers last March, for her Moving Up Day.


I have a whole bunch of twigs at home from a flower arrangement that my sister used for her son’s baptism.  Being the crafter that I am, I knew that these twigs would come to good use someday so I convinced the hubby to let me keep them and not throw them out :).  I’m glad he agreed :).

For these particular gifts, I decided to use the twigs as accessories, dressing them up with three different colors of string–red, pink and white–to contrast the black floral print of the wrapping paper.  The string is crochet string, and I bought it in National Book Store.  The wrapping paper is from the stationery department of SM Hypermart :).

When it came to attaching the twigs to the gift, at first I tried using glue, but unfortunately, it didn’t adhere properly.  So instead I tried using my ever reliable and decorative washi tape, which I think gave it an interesting effect :).

For the final touch, I decided to stick  the gift cards in some non-typical places, just to provide some visual interest again.  In hindsight, I should have probably cut the card in the shape of a leaf and position it next to the twig so that it looked like it was attached.  Oh well.  Maybe next time :)…


Candy DIY Book Launch

What do you get when you have Alessa Lanot, Mansy Abesamis, Mikko Sumulong and Macy Alcaraz all together in one room?  A really awesome craft party, ofcourse!!!


Fully Booked at The Fort served as the venue for Candy Magazine’s DIY Book book launch last Thursday evening.  I received an e-vite from Alessa, and new the craft party would be a perfect mid-week, stress buster activity.

The first order of business when I arrived at Fully Booked was to buy my copy of the DIY Book and have it signed by Alessa, Mansy, Mikko and Macy–aka the Craft Superstars :).



As I was doing so, the little one spotted this table full of mouth-watering cupcakes and cookies.  She kept pulling my hand, dragging me towards the desserts.  I don’t blame her.  If I hadn’t just given up sweets for Lent, then you’d probably find me making a beeline for this table as well :).


After getting her dose of sugar, it was time to start crafting!

There were 3 stations in all.

First was the rubber stamping station.  I finally got to play with Alessa’s alphabet stamps!!!



The little one stamped her name on her postcard too :).

Then we tried Hey Kessy’s Washi Station.  It was a full house (er…table :))!


The little girl embellished her postcard with some washi tape, buttons, and paper straws!  Boy, did she have fun doing it!



Lastly, there was also a pompom station, but we unfortunately didn’t have time to sit and try it out.  Instead I asked Mansy if I could take a pompom home as a souvenir :).


Like I said, even if we were in the event for all of half an hour, it was a quick but energizing and feel-good activity :).  I had a wonderful time doing something creative, and even better, doing it with my little girl :)!  Creative fix?  Check!

I couldn’t end the evening, however, without having a photo with two of my favorite crafters–Alessa and Mansy!  They have truly inspired me to pursue my creative goals, and to try to inject more art and DIY activities into my week!  They are truly rockstars in my world!


Hooray for DIY!!!

Manila FAME in InstaGrams

If you are my friend on InstaGram, you probably noticed how I was flooding your feed with images last week of the Manila FAME expo. My apologies for that. I guess I couldn’t contain my excitement on how fabulous this year’s show was!!!  Hahaha!

But the posts I made were but a fraction of the wonderful things I saw. Here’s more!

These were but some of the baskets that we saw at the OTOP (One Town, One Project) section of the show.

More baskets! This was a collaboration with Heima. Love the colors! Pretty, and functional too!

Aren’t these baby brogues by Maco Custodio too cute!!!

One of my favorite accessories designers, Ken Samudio, fresh from his exhibit in London, showed off his new editorial pieces–hats inspired by corals in the ocean. So pretty, right? I wonder what he’ll come up with next!

Baubles from Joyce Makitalo. I sooo want her dipstick necklace and am saving up for it for this year!

Would you believe that this is both a bag and a sculpture?!? Only from the mind of super creative jewelry designer Micheline Syjuco. It’s definitely an art piece in itself!

Another fresh concept from Kenneth Cobonpue.


I must have ordered 3 new dresses from Filip+Inna!  Len Cabili is another one of my favorite designers!


Through these shows, and the various pop-up events I’ve attended, I’ve met a number of young and extremely talented designers.  Here is the Bungalow 300 display.  The creative tandem behind it is Vernice Songco and Marga Espiritu.  I just love the way they put things together!  Bravo, ladies!!!


Another artist to watch out for is Lilliana Manahan.  I just loooooove her quirky and colorful planters!!!  If I’m not mistaken, I think they took their inspiration from a buko shell!


Mats, mats, glorious mats!  These beauties hail from Basey, Samar, one of the towns hardest hit by Yolanda last year.  While they are still recuperating from the tremendous loss, the mat weaving industry is starting to get back on its feet.  I hope events like these will help their businesses to start picking up again!


Another beautiful exhibit on other Filipino weaves curated by Bungalow 300.  Everything here was so pretty, and just looking at it was so inspiring!


T’nalak Weaving.  I heard a story that one of the famous weavers sees these designs in her dreams so each of the patterns produced is really unique!


Last year, Schema was one of the hubby’s and my favorite booths.  We adored their pendant lamps and wanted to get some for our dining area.  This year they came out with these copper balls.  Oh no!  I want them too!!!  Hahaha!


Vito Selma’s Lotus table is giving his Geo table a run for its money!  Hahaha!  Did you know you can turn the base over for a different look and effect?  Genius!


While mommy was ogling the Lotus table, A set her sights on the Cara-Boo.  Don’t you just love it? 🙂


I think this Raina chair was one of the most photographed pieces in the expo.  Definitely queen-worthy!


Catalina’s booth is always visually striking!


Loved these functional yet decorative storage baskets from Hacienda Crafts!


Ok, so I totally want a distressed wooden dining table now.


Wow!  Love the effect of all these lightings clustered together 🙂


Beautiful throw pillows from Tadeco.  Loved their display too!


Such chic lighting from AZCOR! 🙂  It would definitely go well with my distressed wood dining table!  Hahaha!


A peacock chair from Obra.  I have no words… 🙂


For my future beach-slash-rest house 🙂


I wouldn’t mind lounging on these floor pillows as well.  So cool that they’re just made from jersey cloth!

So there you have it–my curated images of Manila FAME (trust me, there were too many nice ones to choose from!).  I hope they will encourage you to drop by and see the next show, which is scheduled for around October.

Not only is it a way to show your support to our local designers, and to the local traditions, but I’m sure it will be a feast for your (design) senses as well!

Gift Wrapping Idea # 2 : Pompoms and Polkadots


Over the weekend, I had to wrap a birthday present for one of A’s classmates.  As I was feeling extra crafty, I decided to start with a blank slate–kraft paper–and build from there.

Using left-over hole punches, I first stuck neon orange circles onto the kraft paper.  I love the look of bright orange against neutral brown.  It really stands out!

Then instead of ribbon, I used two shades of blue yarn which I wrapped several times around the gift.  I topped this off with several sizes and colors of pompoms. I thought it made the present look really festive and fun! 🙂

For the gift tag, I used a manila tag, and used my stamps to create the greeting. To personalize it a bit, I let the little one sign the card :).

So there you have it, an easy, festive, and crafty gift wrapping idea!  It took just a couple of minutes to actually put this together, and I had so much fun doing it too! 🙂

Gift Wrapping Idea # 1

Among all my recent creative pursuits, gift wrapping is the one that I’ve been enjoying the most :).  I’ve loved exploring with different kinds of paper, ribbon, embellishments and styles.  It is such an inspired process that allows me to experiment, to innovate, to personalize, and ofcourse, to prettify :).  And the results are almost always gratifying :).

My friends keep on telling me that I should start doing gift wrapping for a living, but I fear that doing so would put me under tremendous pressure, so much so that I may lose my love for it altogether.  Hahaha! 🙂

So instead, I’ve decided to share some of my ideas here on my blog :).  Hopefully you will find some inspiration from them, and may even be encouraged to do some gift wrapping of your own! 🙂


For my first Gift Wrapping Idea, I’ve decided to share what I did for my dad’s present.

It’s really very simple.

I started out by choosing a navy blue wrapping paper with white design.  To add a bit of visual interest, I paired it with a thick, plaid grosgrain ribbon in yellow and black, to contrast the “daintiness” of the wrapper. I finished it off with a diy gift tag, that the little one and I collaborated on.  I did the calligraphy, while she stuck the pompoms and the sequins.  And boy did she have fun doing it! 🙂

The result is a cheerful and festive looking package!  I love that it has so much personality, and was so easy to put together!  🙂

So I hope you liked my first gift wrapping idea entry.  Expect more to come!

Happy Sunday, folks! 🙂

Recycled Envelopes + Happy Weekend

Whenever I get to spend even just a couple of minutes creating something with my hands, it is a happy weekend indeed!  I am grateful that lately, the hubby has been indulging me with this, giving me my much needed relaxation from a hectic, busy week.  He takes over parental duties, while I lose myself in the wonderful world of crafting :).

A couple of weekends ago, I decided to make some recycled envelopes.  I got the idea from my salon, actually :).  They started making their tip envelopes out of magazine pages and I thought that was such a brilliant idea!

I’ve always been a staunch advocate of reusing, recycling or upcycling.  Especially that we can see how the effects on Mother Nature have been particularly harsh lately, it’s never too late to do our share for the environment :).  In this case, instead of throwing away the piles of magazines that I’ve accumulated at home, why not turn them into something useful such as envelopes? 🙂

Here is a simple how-to:

1. Gather all the materials you will be needing


2. Get one of your used envelopes and open it up using a cutter.  You’ll be using this to trace a template onto your piece of cardboard.  You can totally eliminate this step and use the envelope itself as a template, but sometimes, because the paper is “soft”, you’ll notice the edges will start getting worn out the more you trace over it.  I prefer to use a stiff board as a template :).



3. After you’ve cut the envelope template out, you may also want to make a template for the envelope liner.  Simply trace the rectangular body and top flap part of the envelope.  Measure 1/4 cm from the top edge and left edge and mark where they meet with a dot.  Then draw a diagonal line from the bottom left corner of the top flap to that dot, and repeat on the right side.  Draw a straight line connecting the dots from left to right, and cut out this portion from the cardboard.



4. After you’ve cut out all your templates, start choosing the magazine pages you’d like to cut, and pair it with the pattern you’d like to use for the liner.  In this case, I chose a picture with bright and beautiful flowers on it, and paired it with a green and pink floral pattern origami paper.


5. Starting with the envelope template, I traced it over the part of the page where the flowers were concentrated.  After cutting it out, I did the same with the envelope liner template.



7. Before sticking the liner onto the envelope, I had to score it first.  By doing so, I created lines that I could align with the edges of the liner.  I used my metal ruler to help me make straight lines.


8.  Stick the liner onto the envelope with the rubber cement.  For those of you who are not familiar with rubber cement, it is a wonderful adhesive that does not cause any wrinkling, and is less messy than regular glue.  Also, if you make a mistake with rubber cement, it is easy to peel the paper off again and redo. Unlike glue where the paper tends to rip, rubber cement is much friendlier especially for those of us who get pretty OC with our crafting :).


After gluing the liner, you can also start assembling and gluing the envelope itself.

9. Finish off by putting a round sticker at the flap :).  Again, this step is optional, but I thought it gave the envelope a little bit of polish :).


So there you have it, a tutorial on making envelopes out of magazine pages :). Easy peasy, right? 🙂  And super fun to make!  Trust me, once you get into the groove of it, you will notice the hours just pass you by! 🙂

Hope you have an amazing weekend!!! 🙂

Calligraphy and Lettering Crafternoon

Now that the Christmas frenzy has subsided, I’m really looking forward to resuming a more normal, relaxed routine again :).  As I’m sure it is for everyone, the holidays are an extremely hectic time of year where everything else seems to be on hold, to make way for the shopping and the gift-wrapping, the gajillion parties and reunions, and the requisite out of town trips, especially when there are balik bayans :).

Now that I’m back at home (we were temporarily stationed at my parents’ place over the holidays so we could spend more time with my sister who flew in from NYC) and have a bit of time to myself (hubby is asleep and the little one is exploring her new Duplo set :)), I’m taking the opportunity to catch up on my blogging, especially since I’ve been so remiss lately.

There are so many things to write about, to share, and document :)!  And despite the fact that some of them are already passe, or have happened weeks ago, I still would like to share with you some of my wonderful experiences last November and December.  Sorry, 2013.  I’m not quite done with you yet.  Hahaha!

Let me start off with my experience at Alessa’s Calligraphy and Lettering Crafternoon :).  Alessa is Alessa Lanot, the creative force behind the blog, Life After Breakfast.  If you haven’t read her blog ever, please do!  I’m sure she will inspire you, just as she has me :).  In fact, I live vicariously through her creative projects and pursuits!  Hahaha!  I’ve been so inspired by her work, I’ve actually already joined several of her crafternoons, and have taken on to doing several crafty projects during the year :).


Held last November, right after Typhoon Yolanda struck, the Calligraphy and Lettering Crafternoon was a relaxing, fun, and meaningful experience for me.  I was excited to learn from Alessa, and to see her take on this skill.  As you will recall, I also attended the Ink Scribbler class of Alexis, which was also fun and exciting :).  Comparing the two, Alessa shared a bit more information on the history of calligraphy; she spent a bit more time sharing some interesting trivia; as well as the different types of fonts, inks, materials, and nib parts; and her warm-up exercises were definitely more challenging (read: major hand cramps! Hahaha!).


Image from

At Alessa’s class we were also given a very nice hand-stamped katcha goody bag that contained a set of Sharpie’s, washi tape, some paper, 2 calligraphy nib holders, ink, a nib, and a brush pen :).  Goody bags are always nice to receive, especially when the contents are so useful! 🙂  I felt like a kid in a candy store when I saw all my loot! 🙂

After the lecture portion of the class, we proceeded to do some writing exercises, then went into the calligraphy session itself.  To make the session more meaningful, we were asked to write out either a Christmas letter or a saying that would be made into a card.  The recipients of these letters/cards would be the typhoon victims.  Here is a photo of our collective efforts :


Image from

And, because we had a short session on typography, one of the exercises was to also create a postcard, experimenting with different types of lettering :


Image from

None of those are my work, by the way.  Heehee 🙂  But aren’t they beautiful?

Again, as with my previous calligraphy workshop, this was indeed an afternoon that was well spent.  It was nice to meet fellow writing enthusiasts, and to lose myself in such a creative endeavor.  I also like how our output became something that we could share, in the hopes of giving others some inspiration, especially during trying times.  Like I said, it was both a fun and meaningful afternoon :).

If any of you are interested in attending this calligraphy session, please hop on over to Alessa’s blog.  I don’t think she’s posted her schedules for 2014 yet, but I’m sure she will soon :).

Instagram Inspiration Round-Up

I noticed I’ve been spending less time on FaceBook, and more time on Instagram lately.  I love how it keeps me updated on what people I follow have been doing, and at the same time, it gives me a daily dose of inspiration!

This week, these were the images that caught my attention, and made me smile 🙂


Don’t you just love that console?  *Sigh*  I would love one of those for my home!


Wise words.


Sticker art on an elevator door.  Love love love the colors and the design!  Genius!


These gift tags are too cute!  If I’m not mistaken, they’re made with washi tape!  And we all know how obsessed I’ve been with washi lately.  Hahaha!


I’d love to decorate a dessert table like this one day.  So simple, yet so claaaazzzzz!

So there you have it, my top 5 Inspiring Instagram Images for the week.  Hope they inspire you too! 🙂

Sunday Happy : Bonding Over Bookplates



There are 3 things I loved about this activity :

1. The design of the bookplates are just too pretty!  I got mine from here.

2. Stamping the little girl’s name was so much fun!  She almost did it independently!  Proud mommy moment 🙂

3. I got to spend precious crafting and bonding time with my little one 🙂

Enough said :).

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, Folks!!! 🙂

2 Years After…

I’m quite ashamed to admit it but, yes, it’s been 2 years after I’ve received this really cool letterpress kit, that I finally found the time to bust it out of the box and give it a try.


I’ve been on a creativity kick this year, and I guess it was really just a matter of time…Hahaha!  But that it took 2 years–shame, shame, right?

But anyway, here is how my first pass turned out.  Not too shabby, right?


This is so exciting!!!  Can you imagine the possibilities and the stuff I can actually make? DIY paper products to death!!!!  Wahahaha!  I was so thrilled about my new toy, I actually stayed up late last night, buying more letterpress plates and inks!  Hahaha!

Cheers to new hobbies, even though they’re two years delayed!  Hahaha!  As they say, better late than never :).  And in this case, I’m glad I finally did.  This hobby has FUN written all over it!!!