December 27, 2008

Train Tickets!

Sometimes I'm surprised. I didn't expect to like the end result quite so much, and I didn't expect to enjoy the process, but I sure did! Sometimes the process is just the means to the end. I ALWAYS love the end, I don't always enjoy the process.

I ended up with a frame that would take 112 tickets, and I had 106. So I left some gaps :)
Here's what I did.
I pulled out a frame I got at a yard sale in the summer time. I got 3 large frames from this sale, for .25 cents each. This one had a gap in two corners, so I hammered it back best I could. Still a small gap remained, but I called it character.
There is this inner frame made from some sort of velvet like material. The previous owners must have had dogs or cats, cause there was hair stuck to the velvet. (like I said, it's just been in a closet. --one where I don't keep clothes, scraps of carpet, a fishing pole, and DH's golf clubs.)
So I got out the packing tape. I have 2 cats and am constantly using tape to remove cat hair. (yellow rubber gloves too. That's a magic trick I love.)
It cleaned up real good!

Then I found a piece of ply wood I had that was almost the perfect size. I just had to saw off 1.5" from one side. Then I stained it walnut (this is the before photo). I also gave the old frame a little coat of walnut stain to liven it up.

Then I figured out how many tickets wide and high I could go, and how many I had. Realizing I was 6 tickets short of a solid frame, I strategically placed the gaps.
I also put the tickets in number order. Not that that will mean anything, but I thought it would be kinda fun. Sometimes there are 3 or 4 sequential tickets when I went on the train with friends. So I put them in order.

Then I attached the back to the frame, and used two dots of hot glue on the back of each ticket to fix it into place. It went together so easy and tidy. A very satisfying project :D

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December 22, 2008

Look what I found....

...a bag of train tickets from when I lived in Romania.

These are just begging me to do something with them. I'm thinking about laying them all out in a simple collage, framing them, and hanging it on a wall. They have holes punched in them, so what color should I put under them?

Any other ideas? (I have over a hundred tickets.)
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December 8, 2008

Snowman Earrings

I can't take credit for this cute idea. I got it from Erin Prais-Hintz. She is the January cover contest winner for the January 09 issue of Bead Trends. These cute snowman earrings she had in the December 08 issue.
I made these ones.

They are made with button pearls and stick coral. Such a cute idea!

I've also made quite a few to sell, so if you are interested in a pair, they are $10 + $1.50 shipping.




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December 1, 2008

Us Girls and Brainstorming

K, WendyP and TheStampinMom have given me an idea. I'm full of ideas, and I love to share. Brainstorming is super fun when you have more than yourself doing it.

Many times we have a project in mind or even underway, and we need that extra push or idea to get it finished. It's when the idea gets exciting that you want to do it!

If you have a project, and you have a blog... post your project on your blog asking for suggestions, ideas, brainstorming, and then include a comment here in this post of mine.

I will go look, and others too, and we will help you come up with possible suggestions/ideas.
Be sure when you post this project on your blog to be clear about your stumbling block, or the direction you are headed. Also say if you are open to a total change of direction.

If you want to get excited about a project again, or just need a little help on something, post photos on your blog, and then come back here and comment!! (include the url to go directly to your post)

We'll get ya excited!!!
Lets Brainstorm!
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November 16, 2008

The Cute Linden Tree

I too have fallen prey to the linden tree design craze and have liked it for quite some time. It’s one of those patterns that has done the rounds and keeps coming back.

A couple years ago I came across some vintage fabric at a yard sale. I bought 5 different fabrics from these 2 girls selling their grandmothers things. One of them was a sheer white with a brown polka-dot pattern. I used some of that for a shower curtain face, and there was this one….

I was crazy about it, and incorporated it into my bedroom right away. Later I found some frames at Ikea, pulled them apart to remove the unattractive prints of rocks, and I put my fabric inside the frames! The distance from the 3 frosted frames on the glass to the fabric at the back is about an inch and 3/4, so they have a slight shadow box quality.

Then there’s this curtain panel that they had at Ikea. It’s meant to be used as those modern room dividers where you buy 6 of them and then install ‘em on a track where they overlap one another when open, and look like a large panel when shut…. Anyway, I bought one and wanted to incorporate it into my room too, so I put the large panel horizontally above my headboard in my room. The design had a slight brown quality to it, and my accent wall is brown, so it has the effect of looking cut-out and showing my wall color through the design.

This is where my project begins…

I drew some lines on the wall with a white Zig pen. Sharpie is terrible for drawing on a wall. It doesn’t like paint, and it struggles to even write. I did not have to learn that on this project, I tried it another time and learned it’s no good. Zig however is a lovely pen, and aside from the stupid texture on the wall, it wrote nicely for me.

Next, I got out some vellum paper, I traced 4 of the patterns from the white Ikea panel with a pencil.

Then I got out my cuttlebug circle set and used two of them to die cut the rough circles I traced.

Then I used them as a stencil. Using a stencil brush and wall paint, (if you are a regular to my blog you have seen this paint color many times. I have it on the walls many places in my house, and I used it for my L shaped desk.)
Now don’t get me wrong, a clear plastic would have been much better, and if it weren’t too thick, the circle dies would have gone through it, but I didn’t have anything clear and plastic. So…. If you do something like this and use vellum, there is something worth knowing….
The vellum will curl!

But it’s not a big deal!! All you have to do is turn on your iron, set it to a warm setting w/o steam. Place a plain piece of vellum onto the ironing board and lay the curling stencil flat onto it with the paint side down. Ironing onto the back of the stencil will flatten it, and the paint won’t get on the iron, it will only get on the scrap of vellum.

Depending on how long you use your stencil will determine how many times you will have to iron it.
I had to iron mine 3 times to do this….. to my bedroom wall on either side of the bed.
Ah… one more thing… Did any of you watch the last season of Design Star???
The winner Jennifer was my inspiration to paint on my bedroom wall because she did such an awesome job with those leaves on the walls of her sisters house!
And not just those walls, she did a few challenges where she painted BEAUTIFUL stuff on the walls, like her yellow and blue French pottery inspiration room…. MAGIC!!!
Mine doesn’t compare, but I wanted to mention her inspirational talents! Looking VERY forward to her show on HGTV!
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November 6, 2008

Just convert it!

DH is always saying I can't leave things alone... and he's right. I'm forever changing the purpose of things and the way they look.

Take these cute birds. They are metal, and are meant to sit happily in your flower bed or garden. Well I'm no gardener so these guys get to live IN the house!

They cost $4.99 each at a store I love called Down to Earth.

I got the hack saw out and I chopped off the bottoms that connected to the sticks, and then I put them above my closet in my "doing room". The vinyl "Welcome" has been there for ages. The one on the left is just sitting on the edge, and the one on the right is upright with a small nail in the wall in the area of his eye so it doesn't look out of place.
As a side note... I'll share another little tip.
People comment on the borders I have in some of my rooms with colored walls. I used painters tape to bring in the edges, and then when the paint was dry, I used a black prisma pencil to draw a thin line onto the edge of the paint to create definition. It ends up making the colored wall look far more intentional than just painting corner to corner. In fact, where two walls meet and there are two lines (one on each wall) it looks great! Especially with the defined black line.

I have a lot of black and tan going on in here. My little black birds fit in great! I also put up a big ol' metal frame mirror by Die Cuts With a View Home, and It looks great in here too!

BTW, Today and tomorrow are their warehouse sale in Provo! That's one not to miss!
Here's the address:
751 S. 170 E.
(Turn E on 900 S. from University Ave. You will see 170 E. on your left.)
Since today's is over, tomorrow's is from 10am to 4pm

Gosh, talk about tangents! From one thing to another is so easy sometimes!

My friend Stacy Armstrong bought a couple of these birds too! Have you done anything with yours Miss Stacy?
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October 30, 2008

A last minute Witches Hat!

(My post from Outta This Funk)
Since it's the the night before Halloween, maybe just a few people will be able to use this idea, sorry I'm so last minute. I decided to follow a TV thing I saw and make myself a witches hat to answer the door with.

I have sitting here in this photo, a plant pot, fabric stiffener, a pack of black cheese-cloth, a skein of fuzzy black yarn, funny shaped wood beads, and a black tinsel thing I found in the christmas section of the craft store.
Since the plant pot isn't tapered, and I coulnd't find a styro cone big enough to fit it, I used this floral foam to create a point for my hat.
I cut it into slices to best fit the diameter of the bottom of the pot, and glued the slices together before I used a bread knife to slice it into a kind of a cone shape.
Then the fabric stiffener says to cover your mold with plastic wrap. I did, and it din't want to stick so well, so I used masking tape too.
I placed my cheese-cloth in a bowl, and this is a close up of the fabric stiffener.
Then I got the cheese cloth wet in just enough water to saturate it.
Then I decided I would do as the directions on the fabric stiffener suggested and add some paint.I wondered if I mixed gold in it, if I would have an irredecent black? It didn't really make a difference, but I used it, so I'm including photos.
I also added black paint. And here is the two colors of DD "sugar coating" glitter that I will use at the end.
Onto my wet fabric I poured the fabric stiffener, gold & black paint.
Then with rubber gloves, I mixed it all up and sloshed it around. Being wet from water made this easy.
Then I took the cloth, got it out of the bowl, squeezed the excess out, and found the center of the cloth.
I placed the center of the cloth over the top of the cone and then draped it over my mold. I let the base edges of the cloth ripple around the base.I pinned around the top of the had so that I could keep my point in the fabric.
With the hat in it's shape, I sprinkled glitter over it. This mess takes almost 8 hours to dry.
Within the first 3 hours, remove the hat from the form and give it a slight pinch on two sides so it's not round but oval like a head. Letting it dry on the form will make removing it later very difficult. Also set it on a surface it will not stick to and one that will clean up easily if you added paint to the mix.
I made this yesterday, it's dry and stiff, but I still need to decorate it for tomorrow. Here's what I've done and will do...
If it's too big, I plan on sinching it up by stitching embroidery floss around the base a couple times and tying the ends to the required circumfrence.
I've spray painted some of those funny shaped wooden beads black. I am going to use the skein of fuzzy thread to stitch them to the hat in a type of band around the base. It looks fluffy, but it's actually very thin. I will stitch through the hat to the outside, string a funny shaped black bead, a small black seed bead, and then go back through the funny shaped bead to the inside of the hat. I'll exit again and repeat for another bead.
Then I have that tinsel thingie. It's on wire, so I am going to decide if I want to keep it on the wire and connect it to the hat so that it's a bit of a bobble exiting the point. I haven't yet played with it, so I don't know how I'll make that work. Maybe it should be more of a focal at the front of the hat near the band.
Then to finish it off, I need to trim the base of the hat so it's not square. I figure I will try to keep it rough, and not circular, but definately not square.
I'm also going to give it a coating of hairspray to try and keep the glitter from getting itself all over the house as I walk around :)
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October 27, 2008

Outta This Funk followers...

Outta This Funk now has its' own online community! Go HERE, sign up to become a member, and you could become one of 5 guest designers to have your work featured on the Outta This Funk blog!

If you aren't familiar with Outta This Funk, Go HERE to have a look around.

It's a great place for inspiration. The ladies on the "inspirational team" are the best gals around!

Check out their blogs too!!! You'll be glad you did :)
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October 12, 2008

This one is SO easy!!

K, so I took this ordinary white shadow box.

It's white to begin with, but I thougth it could do with it being even whiter, so I gave it a coat of white spray paint.

It has a small lip on the frame front on the inside edge of the box.
I cut a piece of plexi-glass to fit just perfectly inside the boxes width, but only cut it half of the height.

I pushed it into the box from the back to butt up against the frame edge of the front, and then I stuck flowers in it!!

Now it's a Vase!!

And I need more silk flowers, cause I have two of these boxes!

I bought a bunch of these shadow boxes, but I never did anything with them, so I sold all but these two in a yard sale I had last summer.

Now that I've thought of this... I'm thinking I gave some people a bargain find at MY yard-sale.

The coin flipped for this one. Looks like I lost out. Bummer!

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Thanks Kandis Smith!

I was about to open the November issue of Cards, when Kandis' left card in her set caught my eye. I wanted to make some cards for some guests arriving, and I’m so much quicker making cards when I have an example to build from. I didn't have to look any further :)

I didn’t make cards that open, cause I only needed to say “Welcome” and I feel an un-opening card is just a little more like scrapbooking, which makes me a little more excited than cards. I don’t know what my hang-up is, but I have the same hang-up with stamping, which is another reason why I’m so pleased with myself.

I did Kandis proud (I hope), I stamped (yea), and I managed to not only enjoy making 3 of these, but I’m satisfied with my end result!!!


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September 30, 2008

I have a thing for Circles

I used the Cricut Expression, and contact paper to cut out concentric circles that I used as a stencil. No messing around with expensive vinyl, contact paper is cheap and comes in a big roll!

Let me start at the beginning, for which I don’t have a photo.
I had some scraps of door from making my desk, and one scrap was 30 x 50”. Perfect for a nice big wall canvas.

I painted it with a thick white layer of wall paint, lay a piece of ironed white sheet over it, and painted on top of the sheet.(using a roller) This gave me a large fabric canvas that was sturdy as all get out. I did the same to the sides with paint, and on the back I used spray adhesive to connect the fabric to the door because the wall I’m going to hang it on is newly painted, and two painted surfaces don’t like to touch, even if they are both dry.

With the canvas ready, I moved onto my stencils.

To make the circles, I set the blade housing at 3, the pressure at med, speed to low, and the result was the blade cut through the sticky side of the contact paper, but not the backing. Now I know that PC makes vinyl, but because I didn’t use it, I can’t say this would be the right settings for their vinyl.

I first pressed shift, and the circle 4th up from the bottom on the left side of the overlay. (accent #11) This gave me a single circle. Then I changed my dial size by ½ inch, moved it back to the starting point, and moved the blade housing into the circle three nudges. (this would be from the right edge of the matt, not the inserted edge. Then I cut out the funky circles button third from left on the bottom row of the overlay. (Accent #43)

I cut it out in multiple sizes.

When it came to laying it on my canvas, it wasn’t the stickiest stuff, but because I was using a stencil brush, and was going to be pressing downward as opposed to painting across, I figured it was good enough. Also, a thin circle, once removed from the backing, and pliable as vinyl is, laying the circles perfect took some getting used to. I was an expert after the first color ;-) I also used some masking tape on occasion when a circles edge was a bit on the thin side.

I used every other circle from each set of cuts, so I got twice as many circles to stencil, and more variety in size. I did use the outer square edge cut too. (I cut my contact paper into squares before I put it on the cutting matt.

I started painting in the middle of the canvas with one color. I worked my way left, mixing my original color into darker and darker shades of brown. When I began working my way right, I started mixing green into my original color.

I wanted to wait till the whole thing was finished before I removed any of the stencils. This is what it looked like with all the stencils still attached. A bit of a mess.

I touched up just a few places with a sharp edge 1/4" brush when I was done.
Next I'm going to spray the whole thing with Glimmer Mist. My cool friend Shellie Hubbartt is sending me a bunch of her colors to use on this, who knows what it will look like after those arrive.
I am also, hanging an eclectic assortment of picture frames to the left and right of the painting that line up with it's top and bottom edges. The effect will be a decorative "stripe" that spans a white wall. I'm also thinking of shoving some color into the grooves on that white wall to make it look a bit oldy-worldy. (This is in the room that I just retextured)
So I guess I've posted a work in progress again :D
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The Sticker Gripper

I just wanted to comment somewhere, and why not on my own blog?

My post STICKER GRIPPER on Outta This Funk has so many comments, with lots of people saying how they took this idea and ran with it. Some modified it, others went right out to the hardware store to get the supplies, and others said they made it in no time whatsoever. Nearly every comment said Thank You for Sharing.

Well you are SO WELCOME!

I just wanted to say how much it pleases me that you all found usefullness in my idea. Hearing the happiness in the comments people posted brings me joy. (and if that sounds corny, too bad.)

The majority that commented will probably never see this, but I've been telling these people in my head how pleased I am they used the idea, and I finally decided to just put it in print somewhere.

:) TFL always!

Anyone reading this that wants to see it, I have a link near the top on the right, under "Worth seeing".
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September 17, 2008

Changing icky walls

I don't know about your neck of the woods, but where I live, lots of houses were built with this texture on the walls they call "orange peel". Isn't that what you call cellulite? Ick.

This is the before photo of my cellulite walls.

With these tools... mud, a tray, a trowel, and a putty knife, I changed the whole room.
I did forget one thing in the photo... fine sand paper.

What I did was clomp it onto the wall, spread it flat with the trowel for the most part, and when it was dry I sanded it down so it was a slightly smooth surface. With dents and divets part of the goal, I used my putty knife to come back and fix any holes I didn't like the look of, and then sanded it again when it was dry.

The first time I did this to a room in my house, I was too cautious and I spent FAR too long on it.
This time, I decided it was going to be much rougher, and easy to do.
After this point, I primed it, and painted it!
One word of warning, well maybe two, for this project... Dust gets everywhere when you sand, so put up sheets in doorways to slow it down. AND do it when you feel good. All that shoulder action makes you sore!
That's why this room took me a year to complete. I couldn't do anything on it when my shoulder/back was giving me grief. So take on something like this when you feel ok.
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