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Welcome to Biddle Bits! My name is Sarah & I believe that *anyone* can create amazing things, if you just work on them one step at a time.
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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

"Glitter on the inside" ornaments

These are definitely the most beautiful Christmas ornaments I've ever seen! (and that's saying a lot from this gal, who *LOVES* Christmas)
The lights on our Christmas tree reflect the glitter and glass gorgeously, and our tree sparkles from every angle.
These are easy as PIE - from start to finish, it probably took me 30 minutes
(excluding dry-time) ...and 10 of those minutes I fussed over the bows.
Here's what you need:
  • Liquid floor cleaner - I bought the cheapest I could find: $2.50 at Walmart
  • Assorted glitter - any colors you choose
  • glass ball ornaments - purchased at Michaels for just over $2 for 6 ornaments 
  • ribbon (optional - I bought mine at Walmart for 60% off after Xmas last year)
Step #1: Take the silver tops off of each glass ornament, and pour a small amount of floor cleaner into the ornament. Swirl it around, so the liquid cleaner covers every inch of the ornament's insides. Pour the remaining cleaner down the drain (or back into the original bottle).
Step #2: Pour glitter into the ornament and swirl around until evenly coated. It actually took quite a bit of glitter to cover inside! Then pour remaining glitter back out onto a paper towel to use for your next ornament.
Step #3: Set aside and let dry for a few hours.
Step #4: Replace silver caps and top with an optional ribbon bow. (I hot glued the ribbons to the silver ornament tops). With *or* without a bow, these are stunning ornaments! AND, the bonus is that there isn't a glittery mess when you're packing/unpacking your ornaments each year!

In my 2 favorite ornaments, I mixed gold and silver glitter ahead of time, then poured into the ornament and swirled around. It made this amazing platinum color! You can see them in the picture below...the 2 ornaments with the green bows. (The one in the back looks more gold, but you can see the truer platinum color in the front row, below):


What ornaments have you made this year? Care to share how you made them?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Homemade Vanilla Extract

Some of my favorite memories from growing up include baking...whether it was pumpkin-shaped sugar cookies at Halloween, birthday cupcakes, Christmas cookies,... you name it. One of the most important ingredients in baking (and one of the most comforting scents to me) is Vanilla.

I found this recipe from pennies on a platter, for homemade vanilla extract last year and saved it as a "favorite" (before the days of Pinterest!), knowing that I wanted to make a batch of it for this year's Christmas. I've used imitation extract before, but it's just *not* the same as the *real deal*! (real deal = vanilla made with real vanilla beans, rather than the imitation chemical stuff).

I ordered Premium Bourbon-Madagascar Vanilla beans from her suggested amazon website - they're very reasonably priced, and have free shipping! Then, I did a search for the 4oz Amber Boston Round Glass Bottles to find the best price possible and ordered 12 of those as well.

Here are the ingredients you'll need:
  • 750mL bottle of vodka
  • 9 vanilla bean pods
  • printer sticker paper (optional, for labels)
  • Amber Boston Round Glass Bottles - 4 oz size
  • funnel (optional - to help pour vodka into 4 oz bottles)
Check out the easy-peasy instructions on penniseonaplatter.com. I followed her directions to a "T"!

She even has cute, printable labels you can use for your bottles!
(Though, I chose a different free printable label, that's more my style, here.)

vanilla beans
vanilla beans, but in half vertically and horizontally
Put 6 cut pieces of vanilla bean in each 4 oz bottle
Fill each 4oz bottle with vodka
Print labels on sticker paper, cut out them out, and stick to bottle!
The whole batch...awaiting further instruction :)
"Packaging" supplies: jute rope, a hole punch and printed instructions
I wrapped some thin jute rope around the bottle, then knotted it
and added a "ready to use" date and ingredients

Friends: If you happen to be reading this, guess what you're getting for Christmas??!!
Happy Holiday Baking friends!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

DIY snow candles

I love snow days, and unfortunately, we don't get very many of them here in the middle of NC! While my job  *does* allow for snow days, the hubs HAS to go into work when the weather goes south. Even still, I dream of a big winter storm, where we're snowed in (with heat and power, of course!), can snuggle on the couch, sip hot chocolate, then head outside to build a snowman and skate on our ice-covered cul-de-sac.

A girl can dream, right?

In the meantime, a more likely place to find snow is on our kitchen table...tonight!
I've seen these "snow candles" in stores around town, and figured I could make my own.
Here's how I did it:

What you need for this project:

  • wax candles, any size
  • mod podge or elmer's glue
  • epsom salts
  • foam paint brush
  • paper towels


Step #1: Pour a layer of epsom salts onto a paper towel.

Step #2: Using your foam brush, brush a light layer of mod podge all around the outside of your candle.

Step #3: While the modge podge is still wet, roll your candle in the epsom salts, completely covering the sides of the candle.

Step #4:  Then, sit on a paper towel to air dry.

 We received this iron candle holder as a housewarming gift, which is a great centerpiece for holiday decorating...fill it with Easter eggs at Easter, mini pumpkins for Halloween/Thanksgiving, and Christmas ornaments for Christmas! 

Time to snow-ify these candles!!


after! (After-thought: I plan to tie some ribbon on the stems below each candle...)

This was a super-simple project!
Try it and let me know what you think!