Monday, September 13, 2010

Etceteras: easy summer coasters

Although summer is coming to a close, there’s still plenty of good weather for outdoor gatherings, barbeques or just sitting outside with a cool drink.

I have to confess, these pretty coasters were probably the easiest thing I’ve ever made. These started as dollar store plastic placemats.

I honestly didn’t know if this project would work or not. I wasn’t sure if my circle cutter would cut through the plastic or if once they were cut, the plastic would separate. Amazingly, the plastic cut nicely and easily.

In my photos, I’m using the textured or wrong side of the coaster as the top. The texture seemed more coaster-ish and I liked the muted colors better.


Friday, September 10, 2010

Upcycling: paper covered glass jars

Every time I open one of my craft drawers, this little box of washers (that I used to make these paper clips) spills.

I was thinking about being lazy and throwing them in a baggie but I seized the opportunity to find a cute container project. I found the perfect tutorial on Design Sponge. You can check out the complete Design Sponge tutorial here.

For my jars, I didn’t have Modge Podge so I used spray mount to adhere my paper to the lids.
The paper for the orange jar is origami paper. The blue paper is from lovely design. You can find Sharilyn of lovely design's paper template here.

What a relief. I was tired of picking up all those little washers.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Etceteras: craft block shadow box

I found these craft blocks at the dollar store and loved the colors.

The blocks have been sitting around because I couldn’t think of what I wanted to make with them. I had a mental block…ha ha.

Here’s what I finally came up with.

I glued the blocks onto a frame and added a black matte. I photo copied my son’s Children’s Book Animal - First Day of Issue Stamps and cut them out with a craft scissor that’s actually called “postage stamp”.

Then I mounted them into the shadow box.
George, Wilbur and the Hungry Caterpillar are looking quite content in their new shadow box.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Show and Tell: patio art

Aren’t these paintings amazing? My friend Julie created these outdoor patio paintings to jazz up a side wall. I love them!

These were painted on wood with exterior paint to withstand the elements. The colors are fantastic and the dogs and kitty are so well done.

You can use this idea to cover an unsightly area or to just decorate your yard.
The entire patio looks so inviting and beautiful. What a great idea to decorate a yard with unique art.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Sew and Tell: fall leaf mobile

Updated 9/15/10: I've received a lot of questions about how I mounted the mobile. Just to let you know, for this photo, the mobile was balancing off the edge of a tall bookcase. I've since moved it to my inspiration board using a small ribbon in the center of the main twig. Ideally, I want to hang it from the ceiling but that will require a ladder, tools and my husband so that hasn't happened yet.
Thanks for asking about my fall leaf mobile. So glad you like it.

Fall is definitely in the air. And if not in the air where you are, it’s definitely around the creative blogs, shops and catalogs.

To me, nothing says “Fall” like autumn leaves and so I created a falling leaf mobile with coffee stained muslin fabric and a white birch twig.

To make a mobile like this, you’ll need:

Coffee or tea
Thread or strings

Cut out pieces of muslin and soak in coffee or tea. For my leaves I used coffee (leftover from breakfast). I decided not to soak them but drizzle the coffee over the fabric for a variegated effect.

Hang your fabric to dry.
Create a leaf template and trace onto your dried fabric. Cut out your leaves.
Glue your leaves onto a piece of thread or string and let dry.

Secure your threads of falling leaves onto the twig. I wrapped the thread around the twig and added a tiny spot of glue. Hang your mobile and enjoy the falling leaves.
The best part – you don’t have to rake these leaves up.



This project has been entered in the CSI Project of the Year Challenge

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Inspiration Board: in the pink

Happy Labor Day. Wishing everyone a wonderful day off – if you’re lucky enough to have the day off.
I’m stepping away from the computer today – well, at least for a little while (ok – I’ll only check it periodically).  In the meantime, here’s a new pink inspiration board.

And, my new happy geranium cutting that I “borrowed” on a recent walk.
Enjoy your day.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Homework: show and tell

I’m excited to launch a new feature called homework: show and tell.

Posts under this category will feature projects, crafts, tutorials or stories submitted by fellow bloggers, crafters or anyone. I can’t wait to share all the great ideas with you – so send in your story. More information can be found under the “show and tell” tab.

Inkling: coin envelope gift enclosures

I found a box of coin envelopes in my stash and forgot how cute they were. They're so tiny - they measure 2-1/4” x 3-1/2”. I know...very few people think tiny envelopes are cute but I definitely fall into that category.

I printed out some paper templates and created miniature; yellow notepad, primary writing paper and sheet music gift enclosures.

A strip of each type paper on the envelope can be used for writing the “to” and “from” information.

I now only have about 480 coin envelopes left. If you have a crafty coin envelope idea – please let me know.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Inkling: post it note calendar

I first saw a post it note calendar on Design Mom, and although it looked cool, I didn’t think that system would work for our household. 

Lately, as I’ve tried to work in advance and schedule posts for this blog, I realized I needed a quick, easily changeable, visual system to schedule posts. I had an ahhha moment and remembered the post-it calendar.

This system works well if you’re moving things around a lot. I’m thinking this would work well for meal planning too. I’m sticking with our regular calendar for our household and family events but the post it note calendar is working perfectly for scheduling upcoming posts.

And the name is so fitting - post it note calendar for posts. Ahhha!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Upcycling: moss gift can

I was searching for another “upcycling can” project and came across the cutest moss covered cans on Once Wed. The minute I saw them, I knew I had to make some. Once Wed, used them as centerpieces with live plants. What a great idea!

My spin on these is to use them as a gift holder.

To make these moss covered cans you’ll need:

- Used cans
- Moss and/or moss sheets
- Glue
- String
- Optional: supplies to make seed packets and plant sticks

Start by savings cans. Make sure any sharp edges are crimped down. You can use moss sheets or use regular loose moss to cover your cans.

I knew the moss sheets would be easier to work with but I wanted a more natural looking top edge so I glued loose moss around the edge of the can.

Then I cut a piece of the moss sheet the height of the can and rolled it around the can.

Wrap string (I used heavy duty thread) around the can several times and tie off. Add loose moss to cover any bare spots.  

Next I made the seed packets and plant sticks. For the plant sticks, I used bamboo corn holders and paper cut outs covered in clear contact paper to waterproof them. The seed packets are made out of coin envelopes.

Love these. Thank you Once Wed!