31 January 2014

A Birthday and a Giveaway

Hello and Happy Friday! And to everyone who celebrate it -- Happy Chinese New Year. I'm feeling extra festive because this week, I'm marking my blog's birthday.

Dear friends, blah to TADA! is now five years old! I know that's just toddler years, but boy do I feel TADA! As many of you know, maintaining a blog is quite the commitment, so I'm pretty giddy that I made it this far. 

Even before I published my first post, I had a list of goals for the blog. Among them was to make writing a regular habit {"practice makes perfect"}, and to share unique crafty recycling ideas. In doing this, I hope the blah to TADA! way thinking {being responsible, resourceful, and thinking outside the box} has influenced other parts of my readers' lives. 

There are still more goals yet to be achieved and there will be a few changes to the blog. But more of that next time.       

For now, a little gratitude:

To all of you who have been with me since my very first post, thank you
To those who posted comments or wrote private e-mails sharing how one of my crafts inspired you, thank you.
For you guys who found me through other blogs, through Pinterest or Instagram, then decided to take a peek, thank you.
For your regular visits, for cheering me on, and for showing me some love, thank you.

And with that, I think a giveaway is in order:

This party crafting template is up for grabs! Use this tool to turn plain or scrap paper from blah to TADA!

It's perfect for making party or room decorations.

Here's how you can win it:

Just a post a comment below, anytime between now and Sunday (February 2, 2014, 12 midnight EST) telling me what you'd like to see more of on blah to TADA!

One lucky winner will be drawn randomly and announced in a future blog post.

Good luck and have a happy, Superbowl weekend!

30 January 2014

Old Tag, New Life

He looked forlorn, helpless. He was at the end of his life and he knew it. Until I came along. 

Do those words sound like they came from a novel? Well, they're not. They're really a description for this:

A tag from one of my husband's new shirts. It was on its way to the trash bin until I took some pity. I had to give it a make-over.

So with some Washi tape magic and inspiration from here, that little shirt tag transformed from blah to...

TADA! It's now a gift tag!

Add a sweet message using a white pen...

And this will turn a plain old package into a rather cute gift.

29 January 2014

A Few Hearts

I think wrapping gifts is a lot of fun. There are so many ways to get creative and throw in a little recycling.

Today, I'm turning this empty paper towel roll from blah to TADA!

I cut up the paper towel roll into circles, then carefully bent the top and bottom to form a heart shape.

I'm using yarn {scored at a garage sale} and hot glue to spruce up my cardboard hearts.

Here is a heart all wrapped up.

I pinched the bottom and kept the ends together with hot glue. I think this helps keep its shape.

I attached the hearts to a strip of yarn.

And used this to add life to a blah gift bag.

TADA! Another adorable embellishment for the next gift to be given away.

28 January 2014

Cardboard Crafts

One of the ways I like to recycle cardboard is by making gift embellishments. I made some yesterday and also shared a tutorial a while back. Here are a few more that I made, just to show you the versatility of this craft:

This one's made with plain periwinkle yarn, sequins, and stickers, all with the help of hot glue.

These are assembled using multi-color yarn, brown paper bags, craft stamps and ribbon remnants. Cardboard has now been transformed from blah to TADA!

If you were to make your version, what would you use?

27 January 2014

Embellishments for Gifts

I hope you had a restful weekend! It's still very cold in these parts and being stuck indoors is the likely option. But that ain't a blah proposition if there's crafting involved. Here's what I made this weekend:

I cut out a few hearts from cardboard boxes I found in my recycling bin. Cookie boxes, packaging for vitamins, old gift boxes...that kind of assortment.

I used cookie cutters to help make perfect hearts.

I wrapped each heart with yarn and added a few odds and ends like buttons...

Paper hearts...

Glitter stickers...

Brown paper bags and craft stamps.

I'll be attaching these to gifts, turning them from blah to TADA!

24 January 2014

Etsy Special Delivery Project

Confession: my husband and I aren't really into Valentine's Day. But I do like to make Valentine cards. Cards that I give to other people. 

My "other" guys and girls are some elderly folks from New York City. You see, I'm helping out Etsy for their "Special Delivery Project".

Would you like to help out? Just buy a card from your favorite Etsy seller or make a few. Write a short message and then send these to the Etsy office. All the cards will be given to City-Meals-on-Wheels who will then distribute the cards together with a nutritious meal to the elderly. Food and cheer...isn't that TADA!

Here are some of the cards I crafted:

I played around with blah junk mail and a craft punch.

The deadline for these cards is on February 3. For more information, you can read the guidelines here.

Happy crafting and happy weekend!

23 January 2014


How are you lovelies? Over here, the heavens have been generous with the snowfall. 

It's pretty and poetic but boy is it freezing! It's easy to just stay under the covers and watch a movie. Or to add some TADA! to a blah day, some crafting.

Dress up some card stock with watercolor and TADA!, greeting cards for all this year's birthdays:

I can't wait to write in these and send them on their merry way. I have a feeling my friends will like the surprise in their mailbox.

22 January 2014

Sweet Snail Mail

I'm one of those gals who still sends birthday cards -- the ones that have a handwritten note and are sent by mail. Oh yes, did I mention, I make the cards, too?

Since the handmade route is what I chose to traverse, why not go all out?

 I always keep a good amount of colored card stock.

They make a great backdrop for the imagination to run wild.

I like using pastel watercolors. For this card, I'm working on a fiesta theme.

 And a fiesta isn't complete without pennant flags or buntings.

TADA! Just one of the many birthday cards I'll be making this year.

21 January 2014

Kicking It Up a Notch

Do you ever look at a craft you made and think, "I can make this better"? It happens to me. A lot. Here's one of those times:

This is one of the gift tags I made last week. The clear beads at the center of the flowers is glitter glue. It didn't seem to shine as I expected.

So I added some sequins instead. I think these add some dimension and sparkle.

Here are what the other gift tags look like with some sequins {attached with white glue}. I think they're a little more TADA!

I tucked the cards into their envelopes...

And tied them together with a ribbon, some pompoms and TADA! -- instant gift for a dear friend.

20 January 2014

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

Hello dear friends, I hope your weekend was spectacular! I was invited to a party on Saturday and thought it be proper to bring along a dessert for sharing and a hostess present. Here's the gift that I made:

Remember on Friday, I turned blah card stock into TADA! gift tags? Well, I made a few more! I used watercolors, with books and magazines as visual references.

Designed for ladies or little girls.

Cards that are kid-friendly.

Inspired by chalkboards.

Made with the help of a craft punch.

I added double-sided/mounting tape on the back of each gift tag to make it easy to stick onto any package.

Then I found this plastic canister. Any jar or box would be a good alternative.

I added some sparkly confetti...just for a little TADA!

Then I filled the canister with the gift tags I made.

As a thoughtful touch, I included some white ink pens that will work perfectly for the black paper. 

And of course a note of gratitude and an invitation for more celebration. TADA!