The Dollar Diva

Dollar Tree gumball machines


Fairly small, and not many choices of colors; this blue and bright red and yellow.  I was hoping to find white, but this blue color will do.

I just filled them with seashells that I’ve gathered over the years.  (and YES, some of those shells were gathered from Dollar Tree stores!)

  I had some MINI red ones that I found a few years ago that I turned into ‘snow globes’!

I had forgotten about the red ones that I filled with little conversation hearts for Valentine’s Day?!?!  Cute, no?


These would be super cute as party favors or table centerpieces.  I just checked the DT website and the gumball machines come in 4 colors, as shown in the above picture from their site.  IF you order from the website, be aware that if you order a ‘case’, you will get a case of MIXED COLORS.  Most DT inventory comes with assorted colors per case.

For baby shower decor, Dollar Tree has lots of the little mini favors and decorations, that would be adorable in the gumball machines!

What else could you fill these cute little gumball machines with?  Buttons?  Little wood spools?  Marbles?  Old photographs???   I’d love to hear your ideas!

Time to start thinking about Valentine crafts?!?!?

I know.  I KNOW!!  It’s not even Christmas yet and I’m thinking about Valentine stuff!

’tis the life of a crater though.  When you start working on Christmas stuff in the summer, you are ready for the next holiday this soon.  It’s a necessity really.  I do sometimes still crank out a few Christmas items this late in the year, but usually set them aside for a jump-start on NEXT years projects.

The other vendors at the antique mall tend to look at me kind of funny when I am there the day after New Years with my Valentine goods.  But HONESTLY, I sell more of the Valentine stuff in January than I do in February.

I was just perusing Pinterest to get my Valentine creative juices going and found pin that I just HAD to share:


Pretty FABULOUS, eh?!?!?

And if you aren’t already a fan of mrspollyrogers blog, you MUST add her to your list of favorite dollar store sites.  

I actually HAVE all the supplies needed for this project in ‘my stash’.  Well the heart boxes ans stickers at least.  bought them some time ago and just never came up with an idea for using them.  I’ve never worked with gold or silver leaf, so I may have to improvise on that part.

MORE upgraded Dollar Tree gift boxes

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 009Prettied up a few more of the white fabric covered dollar Tree gift boxes.  This batch I used ‘as is’, and didn’t tea stain them first.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 011They come with a bow glued to the top, which I pulled off.  (you have to pull very hard!)

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 012They have always come off ‘cleanly’ for me.  But even if removing them did do some damage, the whole reason I am removing them is that I want to re-decorate the top!

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 010These ceramic cherubs are from DT a few years ago.  They usually have ‘some kind’ of white ceramic cherubs every year, and I almost always buy a few.  Just don’t always get around to using them right away!

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 013I glued some tea stained crepe paper rosettes to little tea stained paper doilies; then to the top of each box.  Then the cherubs.  I really don’t like to use hot glue unless I absolutely HAVE to.  For these I used my good ole tacky glue, and wrapped a couple of rubber bands around the tops of the boxes and the angel wings to hold them firmly down while my glue set.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 015I also use the tacky glue for gluing on the crowns.  You can see the doily and rosette better in this picture.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 014 The rosettes needed to be trimmed back a bit for the doily to show.  I used a pair of ‘deckle’ edged scissors to create a bit of interest along the edge.

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On display and for sale in by booth at Stars Antique Mall in Portland, Oregon

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 016I did one little nest topped box also.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 017Glued a glitter rimmed crepe paper rosette under the nest and painted the eggs with ‘glimmer varnish’.  The bow is the one I previously removed from the top of the box.

So now that I have a few of each in my booth, I can ‘test’ and see which sells better; the white boxes or the tea stained boxes.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 127I had a cute little vintage Avon perfume bottle that I placed next to the nest topped box.


Vintage bottles – love potion Valentine decor

Pop over to my Trash 2 Treasure blog  to see what I did with these old heart shaped bottles.  I collected the bottles from thrift stores and rummage sales throughout the year.  Never pay more than a dollar for one!

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Here’s one little sneak peek!

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Are YOU working on any Valentine crafts of decorations yet?

CUTE Red glitter hearts at DT

Not buying much these days (focusing on using up what I have!) but still try to breeze through at least once a week and see what’s new. Gotta ‘watch like a hawk’ for this years new shipment of birds for spring!   I have already sold though almost ALL 125+ of the birds I bought last year!  Gotta keep a few sets set aside for custom etsy orders.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 006Anyhooooooooooooooo . . check out these adorable red glitter hearts I found at DT last week.

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 008Love, LOVE, LOVE that they are asymmetrical.  I frequently re-cut the normal shaped hearts to a more uneven shape like this.  Now I don’t have to!

1.9.13 stars projects ribbon 007These came 5 to a pack; 1 large, 2 medium and 2 small.  I bought 2 packages so I will have 4 each of medium and smalls so that I can use them for “LOVE” banners.

Prettied up little trinket box

These little satin trinket boxes were in the $1.00 at Michael’s craft store some time ago.  I’m still working away at using up all the craft supplies I have stashed away.  Figured I could get away with adding some PINK to my product mix since Valentine’s day is coming. 1.1.13 etsy signs boxes 010I started with the box, a small tea stained doily, a crepe paper rosette, ribbon and glue.

1.1.13 etsy signs boxes 015I trimmed the crepe paper rosette to just a tad smaller than the doily and glued them to the bottom.  Then another rosette to the lid.  Ribbon around the rim of the box.  A tiny nest (purchased wholesale last year; these are MUCH smaller than the more recent ones from DT)  And one of the pink glitter bird picks (with pick part removed!) that I got on clearance last week at Michael s.

1.1.13 etsy signs boxes 017Added a flocked paper heart inside the lid.

1.1.13 etsy signs boxes 016Pretty quick and easy craft.  I had some blue boxes like this that I glued a sand dollar on top of.

Red glitter “LOVE” crown

12.12.12 projects Stars 029Red glittery ‘Derby’ style New Year’s party hat from Dollar Tree.

12.12.12 projects Stars 030With VERY sharp scissors, cut off the brim, far enough up the hat that you have flat sides.

12.12.12 projects Stars 031Cut off the TOP, leaving a little bit of curve but not much.  (save that top part and cut HEARTS out of it!)

12.12.12 projects Stars 032Turn it upside down (WIDER part at the top now) and cut points all the way around.  You can ‘be done’ here, or add some embellishing.

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12.26.12 Valentine crafts 116Of course, I HAD to embellish mine a bit.  I think this was an old set of scrapbook stickers from DT, back in the day when they carried scrapbook stuff.  They had the ‘foam stickies’ on the back.  That stuff does NOT stick to glitter!  Pull them off and apply tacky glue to the back of the items you want to add.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 117That’s all I did with this one.  If you are lucky enough to find some of the TALLER flat top glitter hats (like DT used to carry!) they make even BETTER crowns!

12.12.12 projects Stars 094These are some that I made from those ‘old style’ hats.  They have more height and the sides are straighter.

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The gold embellishment on the front of this one is part of a DT ornament.

12.12.12 projects Stars 096The silver embellishment on this one is the other half of the gold one above.  And actually the tiny silver flower on the first crown came from that same single ornament too!  I just broke it apart to get flat pieces to use on my crowns!

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Valentine gift boxes

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 084DT gift box with hearts from last year.  I only got as far as adding the heart last year.  Cherub ornament from DT last year too.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 085Use wire cutters to clip off the loop for the hanging string.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 087Red satin Christmas gift box from DT also; pulled the bow off. (save bow for a different project.)

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 086Another white glitter cherub orn; clip off the hanging loop.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 088Glue the cherubs to the box tops using tacky glue.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 135Rummage through whatever scrapbook embellishments you have and find a suitable one for each box.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 137Don’t forget to add some paper shred inside the box.  (I forgot to take a pic of that!)

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 138Very simple and sweet.  I have to sometimes STOP MYSELF from adding layer after layer after layer of papers and embellishments.  While “I” love the look of ‘lots of stuff’; it’s not for everyone.  And it IS oftentimes MEN who are looking for Valentine gifts, so less is more!

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Quickie little journal do-over

12.29.12 stars Val buys 016Sorting through some more bins of old product and came across this little 5″x5″ DT journal that I had bought to alter and just never got around to.

12.29.12 stars Val buys 017Completely covering would be a LOT of work, so I kept the original color as my background and used that for my color inspiration for the make over.  First I added a hand torn piece of vintage sheet music.

12.29.12 stars Val buys 018Then a hand folded crepe paper rosette topped with a sticker that says “Happy Hearts”.

12.29.12 stars Val buys 019I try to make most of my Valentine stuff, NOT just for Valentine’s Day.  More love, hearts, cherubs etc themes.  That way I can still sell them AFTER Valentine’s day.

Started my Valentine crafting

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 107I hunt for empty used heart shaped candy boxes throughout the year at thrift stores.   Then I do a bit of  collage work on the lids and sell them on etsy and in my booth at the antique mall.  These two are the smaller size heart shaped boxes.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 109First I covered the lid with vintage sheet music, then a red metallic paper doily, then a tea stained white paper doily, then this ready made heart tag.  There’s no real method or system to what I layer on top, or when.  I just ‘play around’ with the assorted papers that I have and select what I think works best.

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 115Oftentimes the boxes even still have the divided plastic trays in them.  Which was the case with these.

12.12.12 projects Stars 044Remember these SMALLER 3 to a pack chocolate candy candles I showed you a while back????

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 113They fit into the divided plastic trays in the box!

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 111Is this too cute or what?!?!?  No calorie chocolates for Valentine’s day!

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 112The heart shaped paper insert was still with the box too!  I’ll probably add some embellishments to that too.  Maybe a sweet Valentine sentiment of some kind?

12.26.12 Valentine crafts 110The ‘chocolate fragrance’ on these littler ones is not as strong as on the bigger ‘cupcake size’ ones, also from DT.  But that I can fit them directly into the heart shaped candy boxes is a big plus!

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Trying to decided whether or not I need to ‘pretty up’ the side of the box too.  What do you think?  Is just decorating the top enough?  Or should the sides be done too?  Maybe just the vintage sheet music on the sides?

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