Thursday, October 14, 2010

Etceteras: swirling leaves

I was leaving the market the other day and the autumn leaves were swirling all around the parking lot. So I did what any normal person would do… I ran around grabbing leaves.

If you follow my blog, you’re thinking… more leaves. But these were practically handed to me.

I think autumn leaves look so pretty when displayed simply. A small vase, perfume bottle or jar - add a few leaves and you have a perfect centerpiece or even better, a display for your mantle.
I may have to go back to the market and get more leaves.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Inspiration Board: after the rain

It drizzled here the other day. And then it rained for two days. Between the drizzle and the rain I took a few pictures. I’m not a photographer but I love taking pictures.

With a digital camera, your computer and the amazing free photo editing programs now available, anyone can turn pictures into works of art. For these photos, I used FotoFlex. A free online photo editing tool.

The possibilities are endless.
You can play with color.

You can take an ordinary picture...

and antique it or...

turn it into pop art…

The drizzly rain was refreshing but hopefully the sun will be shining again soon.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Etceteras: paper flower wreath

Ever since I made these little paper flowers, I wanted to make some more. That became an understatement when I decided to make a wreath using the paper flowers. I learned that it takes quite a few flowers to make a wreath.

To make this paper flower wreath, I used a variety of rice paper in earth tones and a small embroidery hoop as a base.

Once you roll a large quantity of flowers…roll some more and then some more. I actually thought I had enough flowers at this point. You can find the flower tutorial here.

I glued the flowers onto the hoop with a hot glue gun.

I love the way this turned out.
The brown, beige and soft pink colors are a nice break from the vibrant autumn tones that are all around us right now.

handmade projects

Monday, October 11, 2010

Inkling: leaf cards

My obsession with leaves marches on. Leaf mobiles, leaf centerpieces, pressed leaves and now, I can add leaf note cards to the list.

I created these leaves in a drawing program and then applied different colors to them creating three different note cards.

Fall Leaves

Green Leaves

Last Leaf

I printed these cards on watercolor paper. I love using watercolor paper for projects. The texture gives the card a rich and interesting look.

A sampling of my leaf obsessed projects and a quote that sums up why I love leaves.

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.
Albert Camus

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Inspiration Board: my fall d├ęcor

I love decorating for fall. I won’t say it’s my favorite because I would have to amend that statement at the start of every season or holiday. Each change becomes my favorite. I think it’s because it’s so visually refreshing to change out your knick knacks, tableware and centerpieces.

Here are some of my fall decorations. Adding touches here and there doesn’t have to be expensive. A few stalks of wheat tied with string. Fabric scrap pumpkins. Jars filled with whatever you have in your cupboard; beans, popcorn kernels, peppercorns or nuts. 

And, of course pumpkins. Here’s a tip. When you’re done with your real pumpkins this year, save the stems to make craft pumpkins next year.

Happy Friday! I hope your house if filled with the feeling of fall.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Etceteras: halloween party part 3: mummified altoid tin

To finish off my Halloween party projects from yesterday and the day before, I covered an altoid tin with the same mummy gauze used on the invitation and goodie box.

To cover an altoid tin, you can follow the paper covered jar tutorial here. Once you’ve glued the paper to the top of the tin, add the strips of gauze and a label. Wait for the paper and gauze to completely dry and then trim the excess around the top of the tine carefully with an x-acto knife.

You can either use the altoids as another party giveaway or leave two or three tins out at the party so your guests and help themselves to “curiously strong anti zombie pills”.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Etceteras: halloween party part 2: mummy goodie box

If you liked the mummy party invitations from my Halloween party post yesterday, then you can keep the theme going with a mummy goodie box. Once all your ghoulish guests have partied the night away, let them leave with a little treat.

Fill small size kraft boxes with treats - candy corn, black licorice or my personal favorite - fun size chocolate bars. Print out a label and use the same mummy (first aid) gauze to tie a bow.

Check back tomorrow for one more mummy party project.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Inkling: halloween party part 1- mummy invitation

Let the Halloween fun begin! Candy corn, witches on broomsticks, trick or treaters and parties.

If you’re planning a Halloween party this year, you might like this mummy-inspired Halloween invitation I created.

I printed out the invitations leaving plenty of room between the lines of type. I used gauze from our first aid kit, tore off pieces and glued the edges to the card.
Once the glue dried, I trimmed the gauze edges.

The Halloween fun will continue tomorrow. Check back for matching mummy party projects.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Show and Tell: die cut moving cards

I love die cut cards - especially since I don’t personally have a die cut machine. So when I saw these cards, I couldn’t wait to share them.

My friend Maria created these cards when her daughter moved out of state to start her first job as a teacher. Each die cut house is mounted onto card stock and tied with light blue cotton floss. The color scheme is carried out on the envelopes with micro dots and a light blue scroll around the address area.

These cards are so perfect for the occasion and you can tell they
were made with love and a mother’s pride! 
Thanks for sharing Maria.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Sew and Tell: a plate of pumpkins

Pumpkin tutorials are all over the blogs these days. There are so many cute ones. Fabric. Paper. Wood. And the colors are so seasonal. I decided to go against the grain and created a plate of white pumpkins.

I don’t have photos of the pumpkin making process but you can find a similar tutorial here.

Materials needed:
  • Fabric
  • Beans, rice or kernels
  • Fiber fill
  • Needle and thread
  • Twigs
  • Twine

The fabric I used for my white pumpkins were things I had on hand. White chenille leftover from a baby pillow I made, muslin from various projects, white canvas from I don’t know what -  and honestly…an old towel from the rag bin.

Here are my basic instructions.
  1. Cut a circle out of your fabric. My pumpkins range from 6” – 9” circles.
  2. With a needle and strong thread or embroidery thread run a gathering stitch around the edge of the circle. Don’t remove your threaded needle or tie off. Gently pull the thread and slightly gather your circle.
  3. Add beans, rice or popcorn kernels to the bottom of your pumpkin. You only need a little to add some weight to the bottom.
  4. Fill the remaining pumpkin with fiberfill. There are different schools of thought on this. Some like floppy pumpkins and some like tightly filled pumpkins. It’s a personal choice. Mine are filled somewhere in between floppy and stuffed.
  5. Now pull your needle and thread to close off the top of the pumpkin. Don’t tie the thread yet.
  6. Insert a twig into the center of the gathered top. This should push down your raw edge. Take a couple more stitches to secure and tie off your thread.
  7. Wrap sisal twine around your pumpkin and tie off around the twig. Fray the sisal twine or tie it in a bow.

Keep making pumpkins til you have a plate-o-pumpkins.