Book Paper Wreath DIY

Last week on Instragram my blogger pal Erin over at Erin Leigh Design and I ran a literary giveaway and the prizes included one of Erin’s darling pillows and one of my book paper wreaths.

I thought I’d outline the instructions for this wreath since it’s a fairly easy little DIY and it only cost about $16!!!

Wreath 1

  • Book pages (I used 50-60)
  • Hot glue gun & glue
  • Decorative add-on (optional)
  • Foam wreath (12″ or 16″)
  • Staple gun & staples
  • Ice pack for your hand after staple gunning (jk, but not really).

This foam wreath is 16″ but you can also use 12″

Start by taking the book pages and wrapping around the wreath and stapling. Don’t worry about wrinkles or imperfections here because most of this will be hidden. You’re just creating a cover, essentially, so you don’t see the foam from the side when the wreath is hanging.

When you’re done, the back should look like this.

Next, take a pile of book pages and fold them in half. Note that I folded them in different directions. Also, when I tore them I made sure to have some imperfect edges because I love how those pages look on the wreath. Basically what I’m telling you is that you can’t mess this up! ๐Ÿ™‚

FRONT: I always choose a really unique page with a different look to it (like a “Chapter” or “Epilogue” page) and use that as my “top center” piece. Take your folded pieces and wrap them from the front around the back and put one staple on front and one on back. This part of the process will determine your overall diameter of the wreath when it’s complete.

BACK: Here’s what the back looks like now as the folded pages start to wrap around.

Here’s row 1 finished. Now, all you do is start this process all over again, but off-set where you staple and wrap more of the page around the back to layer the pages. I use three layers. You also need to use the hot glue gun for layers 2 and 3 if you don’t want the staples to show on the front (which I don’t). Just put a blob of glue behind the pages to attach.

Wreath 3
I always like to add a little somethin’ to the bottom to add some texture. In this case, since it was a giveaway item, I added removable fabric flowers (attached with alligator clips). I always suggest removable accessories because then you can swap them out to go with a any season or holiday. Not to mention, you can make changes as your style or trends change.
Wreath 2


Post Script:
Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative place where no one else has ever been. ~Alan Alda


Minnie Lane Makeover

It’s a snow day, so why not take some pictures of my favorite place in the house?













 { Sources }

Dresser – thrifted!

Candelabras + yellow pattern pillows – Ross

White pillows + coffee table decor – Burlington

Doxie figurine – was a gift, but here is one and your purchase will help a doxie rescue!!

Accent chair + side table – TJ Maxx

Heart topiary – Michael’s

Ottoman – Target

Black shelves – Christmas Tree Shops

Chicken wire projectDIY that I use as decor versus a Christmas card holder 

Wreath – DIY using these instructions

Snowed in,

Post Script:
A snow day literally and figuratively falls from the sky, unbidden, and seems like a thing of wonder. ~Susdan Orlean


Twelfth Night

Huzzah! Happy Twelfth Night!

I love celebrating Twelfth Night for so many reasons. To start, I’m an English nerd and anything Shakespearean tickles my fancy. It also gives me something to look forward to after Christmas and bringing in the New Year. Lastly, if you haven’t checked out my About page (Behind the Quill), I explain how my blog’s namesake connects to Shakespeare’s play of the same name. So, it goes without saying that this is an obligatory holiday for Twelfth Light to celebrate, right?!?!

There is so much history involved with this holiday, but I’ll focus my post on the Twelfth Night Cake, also known as the King’s Cake.

Here’s a little background knowledge for my history-seekers out there:

Twelfth Night Cake

“The Twelfth Night Cake is an often-ornate confection into which a bean, a coin or a tiny carved or cast metal version of the Baby Jesus was placed. During early evening ceremonies, the cake was cut and its pieces distributed to guests who were advised to chew carefully. The person who found the icon then became the king or queen of Twelfth Night. By the late 18th century in England and America, the selection of Twelfth Night’s “royalty” was also alternately accomplished by the distribution of paper slips with each piece of cake. The slips were opened and the person holding the one with a special mark inside was declared king.

Some believe this paper ballot tradition was instituted as a matter of safety to prevent often-inebriated and distracted guests from inadvertently choking to death on hard beans, coins or a cast metal Jesus hidden in wads of cake” (Levins).

Twelfth Night CUPcakes!

I wanted to bring Twelfth Night into this century, so I created a Twelfth Night CUPcake contest at my school for my colleagues. I just didn’t have time to make my own cupcakes like I wanted to originally, but the bakery ones were oh-so-yummy and my friends didn’t seem to mind. ๐Ÿ™‚

I added quotes to the cupcakes from Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night like this:


To make the little quote banners you’ll need:
1. Cardstock quotes
2. Toothpicks
3. Scotch tape
Leave about an inch on the left of the quote and two inches on the right. Cut a V into the right side. Don’t fear it being uneven. The more random, the better. Next, fold a crease on the left-hand side.
Flip it over toward you and tape a toothpick at the crease. Make sure that when you’d flip it over the quote would be face-up.
Fold the flap over at the crease and add another piece of tape to secure. This process as worked for me several times without fail and prevents the paper from sliding down the toothpick into the pretty icing.
When you’re done, you’ll have a collection of adorable little cupcake flags.
Tada!!! โค

ย Presentation






The reason for the odd, double-cupcake liner was to find the winner of Twelfth Night! I didn’t want my friends to choke on something in the cupcakes, so I did this, instead:


I hope everyone at school had fun playing along today! Congratulations to one of our secretaries, Deb, for being crowned the Queen of Twelfth Night. Along with bragging rights, she won a $15.00 Starbucks gift card. Hopefully Deb can find something at Starbucks that’s as sweet as she is.

To wash down all that cake, I’d suggest a traditional Wassail beverage (the name comes from the old English term “Waes hael” meaning “be well”). Here’s a lovely recipe from Cookie + Kate!

Image credit: Cookie + Kate

Happy Twelfth Night!

Waes hael,

Post Script:
The winning cupcake quote?? ๐Ÿ˜‰
“Fate, show thy force. Ourselves we do not owe /
What is decreed must be; and be this so.โ€
~W. Shakespeare

Wish Upon a Wedding

Today’s post is dedicated to the lovely and brilliant Sarah, a colleague and friend of mine. Her wedding day to (husband!!) Chris was October 11, 2014. Sarah was radiant and rivaled the Duchess of Cambridge in beauty (sorry, K-Mid).

Sarah and I are both teachers and anytime one of our colleagues gets married or has a child, our staff typically throws a little shower for the new bride/groom or parent-to-be. Well, since I was head of the planning committee for this one, I decided to get creative and make her a Wedding Wishing Well. And, if Sarah is anything like me, I thought this idea would be perfect if she’s experiencing post-wedding depression (’s a thing). 

This project is perfect as a group gift, a workplace gift, a bridesmaids group gift to the bride, or even a family gift.

Here’s a quick history on the concept, if you like that sort of thing:

“The concept of a wishing well has been around for centuries. It is a tradition that a wish would be granted, especially if a coin was thrown into the water at the same time. The belief appears to have been born out of the many different folklore stories about how gods or saints gave water to the people in order for them to flourish and this was simply a way of paying them back. Other stories state that your wish would only come true if you would drop a coin into the well after you placed a wish, and the coin landed face up at the bottom of the well.
The Wedding Wishing Well has established itself as a traditional way to collect envelopes, checks, and other monetary gifts at weddings, and bridal showers. Similar to a traditional wishing well, the gift giver is wishing for good luck, prosperity, and a successful marriage for the new couple. The Wedding Wishing Well works well in today’s day and age where more and more brides and grooms may already have enough home furnishing and would be better able to utilizes a gift card or other monetary gifts in place of a traditional appliance.
Simply place our Wedding Wishing Well on a table at the reception hall or family home to provide a convenient place for guests and family to place their well wishes.”
Source: Amie’s Wishing Wells

 Sarah’s basket and directions are below. I love how it turned out! ๐Ÿ™‚


Step 1: Use this Heart Template and print onto colored card stock (I used ivory).

Step 2: Give each person that is contributing to the wishing well a heart (or several) and give clear directions of what to write on the heart, when it is due back to you (I gave my co-workers a little over a week), and that they may include a monetary gift to help the couple begin their lives together.  (If you’d like to to this gift on your own, you could just fill out all the hearts yourself).

Step 3: Once you receive the completed hearts (and if monetary contributions were part of your project) count up the funds and decide (approx.) how many dates you can create.

Step 4: Download the Best Dates Ever Template and just delete Sarah and Chris’s dates out of the document. I left them in there if you needed some ideas! The dates should have a clear itinerary, outfit ideas and a bonus photo challenge/date hash tag (perfect for those Instagramers!).

Date Image

Step 5: Glue or tape all of the advice hearts onto the date envelopes. The next step is optional, but, I used the hearts on each envelope to create questions that the couple can answer throughout the dates.

Step 6: Display all of the envelopes in a basket or wishing well. I added two adorably named bottles of wine (Once Upon a Vine and Fancy Pants) and tape the extra hearts on the lid. I finish off the project with leopard print flowers because Sarah loooooves animal print. Here’s the final product!

IMG_4530IMG_4530So, that’s all there is to it! ๐Ÿ™‚
I’ll leave you with proof of how glowing and happy Sarah was on her big day.

Small-world tangent: Sarah’s wedding photographer was an old acquaintance who I met fourteen years ago at one of my first jobs! John is so genuine and kind, so if you happen to be in need of any photography services, check out his amazing work here or here.

(c) John Wirick Photography
(c) John Wirick Photography

But no, seriously, how adorable is Sarah's nephew Emery?!?! I cannot handle this.  (c) John Wirick Photography
But no, seriously, how adorable is Sarah’s nephew Emery?!?! I cannot handle this.
(c) John Wirick Photography

Sarah's friend Amy captured this sweet candid.
Sarah’s friend Amy captured this sweet candid.

Congratulations, Tags!!!! โค


Post Script:
Sarah–before I got married, a friend of mine (and also fellow blogger!) wrote this beautiful toast on a piece of slate for my garden. I love these words and so now I’m going to pass them onto you:

“Love, be true to her; Life, be dear to her;
Health, stay close to her; Joy, draw near to her;
Fortune, find what you can do for her,
Search your treasure house through and through for her,
Follow her footsteps the wide world over —
And keep her husband always her lover.”
-Old English Toast to a Bride