How to Make a Mom Cry for LESS Than $8

...so there's been some shuffling around within our ward's YW presidency lately.  Due to the switcheroos + circumstances, last Wednesday night's activity for the Beehives fell into some bewildered hands, on somewhat short notice (those hands being mine & those of our new presidency member, Karla - who is new to YW's altogether, as her only girl is just 6 years old... and the two of them are outnumbered by 4 or 5 guys)

Originally the plan was for a crochet craft to go down, so the girls would have something awesome to make & gift to their moms for Mother's Day on the 13th.  Problem is, I don't crochet.  Well, at least not more than a single-hook crochet snake/rope/string/clothesline thingy, that HAS been known to go on for almost miles.  

Besides tying up younger brothers with, what is THAT craft good for... amma-right?!

So we wiped the slate clean of our previous activity plans, and the girls got to plan out some really exciting ideas they've been hankering to run with.  That part of the evening went off without a hitch, but that's because Karla's amazing like that.

The craft part of the evening was in my hands.  
So.... I did what I know, which is photography.

Tinkered around with a lighting set-up the night before to achieve something like this:  
Then at Mutual, I got real fancy with my lights + some of the Reilef Society's white tablecloths + a chalkboard.  The girls learned some photo & posing basics, as shown below:
(It's hard to tell if they had a good time or not.....)

We then proceeded to crank out the photo portion of this super affordable Mother's Day craft.  Was extremely fun!  So why don't we get on to all THOSE details, right?  K, here we go: 
STEP 1:  Take a photo with A LOT of "white space"... your subject can be to the side or corner or in the lower 1/3 to 1/4 of the photo.  With PhotoShop or Elements or PicMonkey or GIMP or whatever editing program you prefer (I adore working in layers...cause both onions & ogres have layers.  Since I'm an ogre, makes sense.) to add a grocery list title or "To Do" or another lovely sentiment across the top, with dotted lines down the rest of the image.  "Worth Remembering" seemed perfect for the girls' sentiment since they want to help their moms remember, but also BE remembered.  Smart, very smart.

STEP 2:  Snag a plastic frame from Target and load it with your photo you've had printed.
(The 8x10 frame runs $2.99 - it's plastic, but I swear actual glass will protect the 8x10 print.  The print I got for around $2.00 through the pro lab I already use for my photog biz.  Looking for a good one to try?  mpix.com is awesome.  Looking for a cheaper one?  artscow.com will save ya money.  But with either online option, you may not be able to give the gift on time.  Looking for a faster option?  Use Costco.)
STEP 3:  With craft glue or hot glue, anchor each corner of the back of the frame with a strong disc magnet.  So, that means each frame will need four magnets.  Easy-peasy math skills here, people.  (The glue pack I already had in my office supply/craft surplus.  The magnets we picked up for $1.99 per box of 8 at our local craft store.)

STEP 4:  Snag a medium point dry erase marker and slap a piece of Velcro "fuzzy" around the center of the it's barrel.  Attach a trimmed piece of Velcro "hooks" to the center of the top of the picture frame, and VOILA!  That dry erase marker won't come flying off of its frame anytime soon, that I assure you.  (The dry erase markers are normally a 2 pack that runs $1.24 at Target.  Currently there's a bonus marker in the packs, so even better!  The pack of 12 Scotch brand Velcro attachments ran $2.64, also at Target.  Have I mentioned I enjoy projects that don't involve me running all over town, or bribing merchants in back alleys for the supplies?  Trust me, this makes loving the project even easier!)

STEP 5:  Mount on fridge or, if you're too impatient for that like me, hold at arm's length & admire your handiwork!  Beautiful, personal, AND practical.  Someone's a genius!   
(And that'd be YOU for listening to me!)  Wrap this gem in some sweet mom-colored tissue paper with a lovely paper magnolia or dahlia or other blossom tied-on and the waterworks are bound to start.  
(Image source and instructions found here.)
8x10 Frame (Target):                     $2.99
Pro-lab, bare bones print (my cost): $2.20
One Dry Erase marker (Target):      $ .42
Velcro Attachment Pairing (Target): $ .22
 4 Anchor Magnets:                      $1.00
WA State Sales Tax:                    $ .55
Glue (already on-hand):                     FREE
Wanna hear something crazy?  At cost, for a photo studio to have a flimsy cardboard dry erase board created from a portrait, some labs charge AT LEAST DOUBLE what this breeze of a project rang up to.  That's before a pro photog adds their measly commission to the price tag.  Plus, going our DIY route scores a higher quality dry erase pen as well as actual glass to make the dry-erasing a snap.

....aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand, you're welcome! 



Rad Rachel said...

This is totally totally cute and SMART! What a smart crafty cookie you are.

Valerie said...

You clever girl, you! What a fantastic idea!!!

ericksonzone said...

I love it, Dah-ling. What a great little gift and I'm sure they had tons of fun taking the photos for it. What a blast.

2browndawgs said...


Chels said...

What a darling idea! I'm the same way with crocheting. I tried to teach myself, but I just ended up with a really long rope.

mCat said...

Well look at you go! Great job for last minute ideas! And I def think the girls had a good time

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