How-To: Make a Personalized Reading Pillow

Giving gifts at Christmas-time has always been a favorite of mine and a few years ago I had a goal to make all of the gifts I was giving. I made custom shirts and family name plaques with wedding dates. But my favorite gift I gave was a reading pillow for my niece. I personalized it with her name using heat transfer vinyl. My sister tells me it’s her favorite pillow!

Now that my daughter has a new outer space room, I decided to make one for her as well! It’s an easy sewing project, even if you don’t want to use an iron-on decal. However, I totally recommend adding it because it’s simple, and who doesn’t love a personalized project?

What You’ll Need

  • 2 – 17in x 17in of the main fabric (I used the planet fabric)
  • 17in x 17in fabric (8.5in x 17in folded in half and ironed so there is a crisp fold) for the pocket (black with white polka-dots)
  • Custom Iron-On Decal
  • Iron or heat press
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Poly-fil (stuffing for the pillow)

Because I picked black fabric with white polka-dots, I knew the name would be difficult to see. I added an outline of the name in white. Once I layered the decals, it would make the name very easy to read!

I folded the fabric in half and ironed it so it had a crisp line. If you want you could sew about 1/4 inch from the fold to make sure it stays folded. It’s not something that I did and it worked just fine for me!

I wanted to put the decals on the fabric before I started sewing. By doing this, I wouldn’t have to worry about ironing it on while it full of stuffing.

I placed the outline of the name decal on the pocket leaving enough room on the side and bottom of the fabric to be sewn. Then I used my heat press to iron on the decal. You can use an iron if you don’t have a heat press. My heat press machine was set to 305°F and I do each layer for 12 seconds.

Iron Instructions:
Set the iron to ‘Cotton’ and use medium pressure to push the decal on the fabric for about 25-30 seconds. If the decal doesn’t adhere completely to the fabric, place the decal back down and iron again. Peel back the clear lining to reveal the design on the fabric.
TIP: Use a piece of fabric like a tea towel to lay on top of the decal and clear lining to make sure the lining doesn’t stick to the iron.

Check out another project post where I go into more detail on how to use an iron.

After the first layer was on, I placed the name I cut out in metallic purple in the middle of the white outline. I wanted to make sure there was about the same amount of white on all sides of the writing. Once I had it in the correct location, I put the nonstick sheet on top and press down the machine.

Once it was done I peeled up the clear lining. It was now ready to be sewn.

First I laid one of the main pillow fabric down with the printed side up. Then I placed the fabric for the pocket with the decals on top, with the folded part in the middle.

Then I put the other piece of fabric with the printed side facing down (so the right sides together). After everything was lined up, I pinned all around the edge to keep the layers in place.

About 2/3 of the way to the right of the top of the pillow, I started sewing. I wanted to start at the top because there is less fabric compared to the bottom (the pocket adds extra layers). I sewed all the way around the pillow back to the top, stopping about 1/3 of the way. This will leave a gap about 1/3 of the length.

I used that gap to flip the pillow inside out so the printed side is facing out.
Tip: Use a pin to help pull the corners all the way out or you may have rounded edges.

Now it was time to fill the pillow with the poly-fil! I didn’t fill it completely so it still is soft enough for my daughter to lay on as she reads her books.

Using pins I carefully pinned the gap closed and sewed along the pins to finish off the pillow.

All done!!! Pillows are really easy and perfect for someone who isn’t completely comfortable using a sewing machine. I hope your little cutie loves it as much as mine does!

If you would like a custom decal for this project or many others, feel free to contact me! I’d love to work with you to make your project Pinterest perfect!

Tag @LaciesDesigns or use #LaciesDesigns on Facebook or Instagram of your finished projects!

How-To: Make a Moon Pillow

Moon Pillow on bed

My daughter is obsessed with the moon. Once we moved I knew her new big girl room would have a space theme. But before I was able to make all the decals for the room, I told her I would make her a moon pillow. It turned out to be her absolute favorite part of her room. I learned a few lessons while I made the pillow that I will share with you! So let’s get started!

Things you will need:

  • Gray cotton fabric
  • Iron-On Decal
  • Heat Press or Iron
  • Sewing machine
  • Gray Sewing Thread
  • Poly-fil (stuffing for the pillow)

I had some gray cotton fabric left over from a quilting project so I used that for this one! With the fabric folded in half, so I would be cutting two pieces, I used a cake stand to cut a perfect circle.

I thought I would just do one side of the pillow with a decal. But I knew my daughter would be a little disappointed if she could only see the designs on one side. So I changed my mind and did the designs on both pieces of fabric.

Before I did any sewing I put the decals on the fabric, using my heat press (or iron, instructions here).

Placing the decal sides of the fabric together, I pinned around the outside leaving an opening to allow me to flip it inside out later. Then I sewed around the edge.

TIP: Put a piece of masking tape on your sewing machine at about a quarter inch from the needle then you can have the fabric touch that line and help keep your sewing line straight.

Once it was sewn all the way around, I opened the gap and flip the fabric inside out so the decals will now be on the outside.

I pulled and fluffed the poly-fill to make it smooth and puffy. Then I used the opening to fill the pillow.

I pinned the opening and carefully sewed it shut. Then shook the pillow a little to even distribute the stuffing.

Moon Pillow on bed

This project was pretty fast and easy to make and it makes my daughter so happy! So I say it’s a win-win!

What I learned…

I didn’t realize how much my daughter was going to love the pillow, since it is just a quick thing I made I wish I made it a pillow case so I could wash it. She uses it every night to sleep on so I think I’ll make another one soon.

If you want to use this strictly for decoration then making it this way would be perfect! Share pictures of your project with #LaciesDesigns I’d love to see how yours turned out!

How-to: Apply Multiple Colors of Heat Transfer Vinyl

How-to: Apply Multiple Colors of Heat Transfer

In honor of Father’s Day this past Sunday, I wanted to share this cute project I made for my daughter for Valentine’s Day. I think it’s still fitting for Father’s Day.

What you need:
    • cotton dress/shirt
    • heat transfer vinyl decals
      • this project has two different colors black and red but you can add as many colors as you want!
    • iron & ironing board
    • ruler (optional)

Daddys Valentine 2

First, I lined up where I wanted the heat transfer vinyl (HTV) decal on the dress. I like to fold the HTV decal in half to help find where the middle is and then fold the dress in half to match it up. Then I double-checked it using a ruler so that it’s in the middle.

I set the iron to “Cotton” and used medium pressure to push the decal on the dress for about 25-30 seconds. I checked to see if the decal was adheared to the dress. If any part of the decal was not on the dress, I put it back down and ironed over it again. Then I peeled back the clear lining revealing the design on the shirt. TIP: You can use a piece of fabric like a tea towel to lay on top of the decal and clear lining to make sure the lining doesn’t stick to the iron.

Daddys Valentine 3

After the black decal was on the shirt, I took the red HTV decal and lined it up where I wanted it. Then I ironed over top of it, just like I did with the black.  TIP: It is helpful to iron over the entire design and not to move the iron around too much to make sure the decal won’t wrinkle. Once I had the design on the shirt, I pressed the iron on top for about 5 seconds to set the design.

Daddys Valentine 4

The top is done!

I decided to add a small decal on the bottom of the dress:  a red heart HTV decal.

Daddys Valentine 5

Using the same process as above, I applied the little heart to the bottom of the dress.

Daddys Valentine 6

I think the small heart on the bottom gives something extra to the dress. For any project like this you can use as many colors of HTV as you want!

Daddys Valentine Final

It’s done! I think it came out so cute and it’s a great outfit for every day. It is really easy to apply more than one color of HTV on a dress or shirt.

If you’re interested in a custom heat transfer vinyl or have any idea for htv, check out my Etsy shop, facebook page or e-mail me directly, I’d love to help you!

How-To: Monogram Luggage with Vinyl

I am super excited to share this project! My daughter absolutely loves her new suitcase that she got as a Christmas gift from her grandparents.  She loved every minute of pulling her suitcase behind her at the airport as we traveled back home. I thought it would be fun to personalize it, but I didn’t want to put her full name. Doing a cute monogram would be the best option!

Luggage and Decals

What you’ll need:

Peeling Decal

First you want to decide where you want to put the decal. Once you know that, you’ll want to peel back the transfer tape (white with red lines) making sure the decal is sticking to it.

Luggage and peeled back decal

TIP: You can fold the decal in half to find the center.  Remember to keep the sticky part on the outside, or you’ll be stuck!

Applying decal to luggage

Finding the center of the decal will make it easier to place on the luggage, you can eyeball where the center is of the luggage or use a ruler to measure to be exact. Place the transfer tape and decal on the luggage and use a hard piece of plastic like a credit card to push the decal on the luggage. You can peel off the transfer tape making sure the decal is still sticking to the luggage.

Luggage applying second vinyl

I did the same thing for the second decal. If you have bubbles under the decal, you can use the piece of plastic to push all the bubbles out. TIP: Start with the bubbles in the center and work your way out.

Luggage Final

And it is all done! I’m so excited for my daughter to use her new monogrammed suitcase on our next trip!

Close Up Bow

Close Up Monogram

If you are interested in monogramming luggage or really anything, check out my Etsy shop, facebook page or e-mail me directly, I’d love to help you!


How-To: Customize a Soap Dispenser

Soap Dispenser Title

In our kitchen, we’ve always had those boring and inexpensive soap dispensers. So when our last one broke and we had to get a new one, I decided to make it a little more appealing.

This project is super simple and only took me five minutes at the most!

Soap 1

What you’ll need:

  • Hand soap dispenser (I got mine from Target for $0.79)
  • Custom vinyl decal
  • Goo Gone Spray (Optional)

First I took the front label off of the soap dispenser. It left a sticky residue, so I pulled out my Goo Gone Spray and a paper towel and it took it off easily. Then I washed it with some soap to make sure it was clean and dried it thoroughly.

Soap 2 & 3

I peeled back the transfer tape (sticky paper with red lines) making sure the decal is sticking to the transfer tape.

Soap 4

Once it was completely off of the paper, I put the decal on the soap dispenser where I wanted it to be. I pushed down firmly and peeled the transfer tape up, leaving the decal on the hand soap dispenser. TIP: If the decal is still sticking to the transfer tape, put the transfer tape and decal back down and rub it and try to lift again. 

Soap 5

And there it is! Super easy and it adds a little something extra to my kitchen. If you are interested in making your own custom vinyl decal check out my Etsy shop. You can pick from a lot of different colors to match your kitchen. I picked the first letter of my last name for my design but you could design your own cute or funny decal! These decals would work on more fancy soap dispensers as well!

How-To: Customize a Picture Frame

My daughter’s first trip to the beach was very interesting. At first she wasn’t a fan but by the end of the trip, we couldn’t tear her away! We were lucky enough to go with my husband who was taking the trip for business. While he was in meetings, we got to take walks on the beach, and even had a quick, morning photo shoot. I took the picture in the frame above, one of my absolute favorites of her! On this trip to the beach we collected quite a few beautiful seashells! As we collected the seashells, I was trying to figure out what I could do with them once we got back home. I had this idea to glue some shells on a frame. I didn’t want to stop there, I decided to make some vinyl decals to add a little more to the frame!

Here is what I used:

  • Picture frame (I got mine from a craft store in a two pack for $10)
  • Seashells
  • Custom vinyl decal
  • Hot glue gun
  • Glue sticks

First I laid the frame down and decided where I wanted everything to go. It took me a while to figure out how many and which seashells I wanted to use. I settled on using my favorite purple ones and one of the white seashells.

Once I knew where I wanted the seashells placed on the frame, I used my hot glue gun and put glue on the seashell in the areas that would touch the frame.

Seashell glued on the frame

I finished gluing all of the seashells on the picture frame.

Peeling the vinyl decal

I took the first decal and peeled up the transfer tape (sticky paper with the red lines), making sure the vinyl decal (light blue text) was sticking to the transfer tape.

Applying Decal to the Frame

I put the vinyl decal and transer tape on the frame and used a piece of hard plastic (like a credit card) to push it down on the frame. Then I peeled up the transfer tape slowing, making sure the vinyl was still sticking to the frame.

Applying My First Beach Trip Vinyl Decal to Frame

I did the same thing with the second vinyl decal. TIP: Make sure when you peel the transfer tape off of the frame to do it slowly. If the vinyl still sticks to the transfer tape, press it back down and rub it into place and peel off again.

Final Product and Closeup

I’m so happy with how it turned out! My daughter is getting a new ‘big girl’ room in a few months and I can’t wait to find a place for this in her room! I especially love that we used the seashells from her first trip to the beach. This is a great way to display them without having to worry about them breaking or just being dust collectors on a shelf in your home.

If you are interested in customizing a picture frame like this, check out my Etsy shop, facebook page or e-mail me directly, I’d love to help you!


How-To: Make a Personalized Ornament

This project has been two years in the making for me! I wanted to make a hand print ornament for my daughter for her first Christmas in 2015. I did the hand print part but never ended up making the vinyl to finish it. It has been sitting on my hutch for 2 years waiting to be completed. Now that I’m showing project ideas with vinyl I thought this was the perfect time to finish it!

To start, I took a clear glass ornament and multi-surface acrylic craft paint that worked on glass. I put the paint on a paper plate and took my daughter’s hand and dipped it in the paint. Then I placed her hand carefully on the ornament. (I don’t have pictures of this since it was 2 years ago haha) TIP: Use a cup to hold the ornament while it dries to help it stay still and upright.

Side Note: If I were to do it again (I probably will with my newborn), I would do a footprint instead of handprint. Trying to get a 3-month-old’s hand and fingers apart with paint on it was torture for all involved haha! However, if you have an older child who will listen to directions, I’m sure a handprint would work great!

In addition to the ornament, I used pre-cut vinyl, clear and shiny confetti (to look like snow), and a dry erase marker.

Ornament with a line of dry erase marker

Using the dry erase marker, I drew a line of where I wanted the name to go. I used a ruler to mark the center of the line with a tick mark.

Then I marked where the center of the name was on the vinyl paper so I knew where to start. With this project, I did not use transfer tape. I thought it would be easier to use the vinyl like a sticker and just pick up each letter and place it on the ornament seperately.

I started with the center letter and put it right above the line. Then I added each letter after, trying to keep the spacing the same.

Once those letters were on, I worked backwards from the center to the beginning of the name.

A helpful tip if you have problems using your fingers to put the decal in the right spot is to use a tool to help. Here I have a hook tool but you could use a pencil tip the same way to help put the decal exactly where you want it.

After I finished the name I did the year the same way.

Then I took off the top of the ornament and used a funnel to add the confetti inside of the ornament. You could also use a piece of paper if you don’t have a funnel. After I added the confetti, I put the top back on the ornament.

I loved the way it turned out and I’m super excited to have this special ornament on my tree! I plan to give it to my daughter when she is older and has a Christmas tree of her own!

If you would like to purchase an extra small custom vinyl decal like I used in this project, head over to my Etsy shop!

How-To: Make a Family Name Key Holder Board

Something you may see in a lot of my posts are projects I’ve made for my family. I love when people can give me ideas and I can make it happen! My sister and I joke that she is the ‘idea girl’ and I’m the ‘make it happen girl’. This project is for my sister, she has been asking me to make her a wood key holder board for a while. I told her I would make the board for her. All she would have to do is pick the type of hooks she wants and put them on.

I went to the craft store (my favorite place!) and bought a piece of unfinished wood.  There were many shapes and sizes, so I picked a basic rectangle for this project. This allowed enough space for a large decal and a spot for hooks (from a hardware store) along the bottom.

I painted the unfinished wood with beige and brown acrylic paint. To give the board more depth, I painted the edges of the board brown.

I took the vinyl decal and the painted wood board and laid the decal on top of the board.

I wanted to place the decal higher on the board to make sure there was room for the hooks that would be added later.

TIP:  I also made four very light pencil marks for where the corners of the transfer tape should be. You can erase these after you have the decal where you want it to be, if it won’t erase you can always cover the markings with a little more paint.

I peeled back the transfer tape (sticky white paper with red lines) and placed it on the wood board, making sure to line it up with the light pencil marks I made before.

I used a hard piece of plastic (like a credit card) to push all the bubbles out of the decal and secure it to the board. Then I removed the transfer tape, making sure the decal was sticking to the board.

The following is an optional step, but you could stop here and it would be perfect! I wanted to do a clear coat to seal the board to make sure nothing would pop up in the future, since I’m sure the will use it for a long time.

I used a container of Mod Podge and a clean sponge brush.

The Mod Podge is one I’ve had for another projects, there are many versions of it that would work for this project. I liked using a matte so it didn’t leave a shiny finish.  It really depends on what you prefer!

I did two thin coats of the Mod Podge, making sure it was completely dried in between coats.

The board is all done and ready for the hooks to be applied. The hooks can be found at any hardware store.

If you would like to make a family name vinyl to put on a board or even a wall, take a look at my etsy shop or contact me! I’d love to make your idea a reality!
















How-To: Personalize a Wedding Shadow Box

I’m was excited to work on this new project for a family member’s wedding. Unfortunately, we were unable to make it because we are getting very close to the arrival of our newest family member! That just meant I wanted to make a gift that was extra special with a personalized touch.

I love giving personalized gifts for showers because it is next to impossible for another guest to have the same gift. I remember the first bridal shower I went to:  I was just out of college and I didn’t know much about going to a bridal shower. I purchased a gift off the registry and I didn’t know I had to have the clerk scan the bar code to mark it as purchased. So when I went to the shower my friend opened a present from another guest that happened to be the same present I had purchased. I was so embarrassed that it happened, I ended up not putting my present up by the rest of the gifts so my friend didn’t have to open the same gift. I put it off to the side and told my friend after she opened everything. Now that I’ve become more experienced with going to bridal showers, I love making a personalized gift for the couple. It also is fun to see everyones reaction when they open a special gift that they didn’t see on a registry.

I bought an 11 in x 14 in shadow box from the craft store. They have many options for size, and they carry them in black and white. I chose the white shadow box this time because I didn’t know the colors of their house. This was the best option because white goes with just about anything.

I wanted to make the decals for the project in white as well. It allows for a classic look and will likely be complimented with darker items once it is filled. This will make the name and date easier to read.


I started out by laying the two decals on top of the shadow box to see where I wanted to put them. I thought one on top and one on the bottom would be best. That way when they filled the shadow box they could focus more on what they put inside.

I peeled the backing off, leaving the name decal on the transfer tape (white paper with red lines). Then I put it down on the glass part of the shadow box and smoothed out the decal with a hard piece of plastic (like a credit card). I peeled off the transfer tape, leaving the decal on the glass.

Tip:  If the decal still sticks to the transfer tape, place the decal back down and rub the area to secure it to the glass.

I did the same for the date decal. Ta-da! The shadow box is ready to be wrapped and gifted to your family or friend!

I loved the way it turned out; it is a simple, cute and personalized gift for the couple to fill with pictures and other mementos from their special day!

If you would like to create a gift similar to this, take a look at our custom vinyl decals or contact me to help find the best options for you!

Now that we are waiting the arrival of our new baby, I am going to be taking a short break from my etsy shop starting October 15, 2017. I will be monitoring my messages and email while I’m on maternity leave so please feel free to contact me!























How-To: Use Vinyl on a Candle Jar

Turn an Old Candy Jar into a Fun Candy Jar
Turn an Old Candy Jar into a Fun Candy Jar

When I was invited to my college roommates surprise birthday party, I knew I wanted to make a fun present for her. She has four boys so I could assume she needed something just for her, something that she didn’t want to (or have to) share. Then it came to me:  a Mommy Emergency Candy Stash! Who wouldn’t want one of those? I happened to have an old candle jar that would be perfect for this project!

When I started working on it, I was thinking of just doing words on the jar. Since the jar was clear, I thought that when there was candy inside it may be hard to read. I decided to do a shape that would serve as a base giving a little extra room like an outline so you could clearly read the text on the jar.

First, I started with the two vinyl decals I cut, an empty and clean candle jar, and a ruler. I didn’t really use the ruler because the decal was a good size for me to eye it.

I took the white outline shape vinyl decal and put it up to the jar to get an idea of where I wanted to put it.

Then I peeled back the decal…

…and put it on the jar where I wanted it to go. Then I rubbed the decal making sure it was secure to the jar.

You can see there are a few small bubbles in the decal.

I used a hard piece of plastic (like a credit card) to push the bubbles to the edge.

I took the text vinyl decal for the top and placed it on top of the outline to get an idea of where it needed to go.

I peeled the backing off the decal and slowly placed it on top of the outline, trying to keep it completely centered. This way they are layered on top of one another.

I used the piece of plastic again to press the vinyl ontop of the white outline vinyl.

I slowly peeled the transfer tape up making sure all of the vinyl was sticking to the glass jar.

I loved the way it turned out. Once I added candy, it really became a cute and simple gift for my friend!

If you would like to order vinyl decal like this, take a look at our custom vinyl decal. As always, we can create any kind of decal you’d like for a candle jar or any other kind of surface!

Sed it on ave