Wednesday, March 7, 2012

whooooooo knew?

I went to paint pottery a few weeks ago on Ladies' Night at Firefly Pottery Studio.  I thought it would be fun to cut vinyl with my Silhouette and apply it to some pottery to get better precision and detail.  However, I didn't have time to learn how to cut vinyl before having to leave the house.  So I just cut a few shapes out of printer paper, figuring that I'd trace one.  The owner of the pottery studio shared a new technique that I LOVE!

1) Moisten the cut paper shape with water and carefully lay it on the pottery (you have to paint the pottery first so it will stick, otherwise it absorbs the water and the paper falls off).
2) Then you just paint over it!  I did 3 layers with a sponge (a brush might tear it).
3) Carefully remove the paper
4) Wait patiently while the nice people fire your pottery.  Voila!

I should have taken pictures mid-process, but I didn't think of it.  I can't wait to go back and do it again!


here's another one:

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Family Deck

I don’t want this blog to be a place for showing off my crafty side.  I want to share what I create and hopefully inspire others to get out their glue gun as well.  For that reason, I am writing my very first tutorial.  How crazy is that?  

Plagiarizing is one of my talents.  I an not an “idea” person, but I love to seek out inspiration and carry it to fruition.  I’m sure I saw this idea somewhere in The Friend or Family Fun and should give credit where it’s due, but it was before Pinterest, so who knows where it originated!  

Before a recent (and rare) trip to visit relatives out west, I wanted my kids to feel more comfortable around my cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.  So I made a deck of cards with photos of them (Thanks, Facebook) and we played games and I told my kids interesting facts about them.  Apparently, it worked, because while in Utah, Emily Jr. met my cousin Eric and said “is he the one that break-dances?”  And we got a demonstration!  When she met my aunt Lori, she said “is she the one that stacks rocks?”  Why, yes, she is!  It helps that Emily has a great memory.

Well, my grandmother spied my cards and wished aloud for a deck of her own as her great-grandchildren now number around 55.  I “borrowed” a lot of pics from Facebook and even solicited some updated ones from my cousins.  Here are the steps involved if you want to make your own deck…

1] attain photos by whatever means necessary and save to your hard drive in a folder created just for this purpose (mine is called Grandma G)
2] using your favorite photo editing software (mine being Picasa), crop them and add text with their name (and relation)

 3] from Windows Explorer (or My Computer), open one of the photos by right-clicking on it and selecting “open with windows picture and fax viewer”
4] click on the print icon and the Photo Printing Wizard should pop up.  click on Next
5] click on “Select All” so all of your pics will print.  Click on Next twice
6] scroll down to the bottom and select “Wallet Prints”.  This will print 9 photos per page.
7] put some cardstock in your printer (or photo paper).  Total pics ÷ 9 = # sheets.  (No, I don’t think you’re stupid, but I just want to cover everything)

8] Click next and voila – here they come!

9] I created a table in Microsoft Publisher and put “My Great Grandkids”  in each cell to print on the back of the cards.  This is unnecessary, but a nice touch.  For my own deck, the back says “Who Am I?”  top & bottom margin: .5", side margins: .4"

10] I did spray them with an acrylic sealer to keep the ink from the backs of the cards from rubbing onto their cute faces.  It smells awful, but who wants their relatives to have black noses!?  If you use photo paper, you don't need this step.
11] cut apart with a paper cutter along the edges of the pictures.  I also used a corner rounder.

 12] whip up a cute little fabric pouch to put them in so grandma can carry them everywhere she goes and brag about her adorable posterity.

Now wouldn’t that make a great Christmas gift?  I think so. 

By the way, my Grandma called me today and gushed nonstop about how much she loved them.  It was the highlight of my day.

There!  My first tutorial.

Friday, November 11, 2011

teaching an old chair some new tricks

Inspired by Brooke at All Things Thrifty, I purchased a chair and a bookcase, hoping to breathe some new life into them.  They sat and waited for the weather to cool off or warm up and for me to get up the nerve to tackle them.  Here is the chair (I realized I already posted about it, but I have since glazed it and changed the fabric on the seat and love it even more)...

and the bookcase...

Can you see the maps in the back?  I'm obsessed with "mapping" stuff.  It's so nice to have sturdy furniture instead of particle board self-assembly pieces that sag under the weight of your favorite children's books.

The priming and painting process was a little monotonous (thanks for your help, Dad!), but I love the glazing part!  I'm very pleased with how they turned out and am ready to take on my front door.  I think a lovely taupey beige color would work nicely.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

bow knows

A dear friend recently had a birthday.  I wanted to wrap her gift in a unique way and not spend a bunch of money.  I had seen these instructions on making a bow from a magazine page.  But being obsessed with maps lately, I decided to use my old atlas to make a Washington bow (since she hails from there).  She loved it! (and so do I).  What state would you make?

Saturday, June 25, 2011

catching up

Should I blame my injured finger for not having blogged lately? or just say that it's been a busy month or two?

I made a quilt for my niece Eliza...
and nephew Max...

We went to Utah for a week and enjoyed time with family and cooler weather.

I made a pillow for an auction at church and had an incident with a rotary cutter that required nine stitches - ouch!
I'll spare you the photos of my mishap if you'll be patient with my blog posts being way past due! ;)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Attire

I don't usually sew clothes for the girls for a few reasons...
1) whatever I make, I have to make THREE of
2) they keep eating and growing, so eventually it won't fit (their dolls, on the other hand, never outgrow what I make for them - how considerate!)
3)... well, i can't think of any more reasons, but those two are big ones

But Easter was coming and I wanted to do something special for them. Plus, I needed to use the 2 yards of floral fabric I had to make me feel better about all the quilting fabric I've purchased lately.

So here they are... Emily & Vivian got Edith twirl skirts and Anna Claire's is the Oliver + S ice cream dress. Those skirts required a lot of gathering! 472 inches of it! phew! And of course, I didn't start sewing until Friday morning. It's an Easter miracle!

Hopefully they won't all have growth spurts next month.

Friday, April 15, 2011

a chair lift

okay, I give in.

Lisa - you can stop bugging me now. I have a blog. But don't expect great writing. Just some plagiarized crafts like this chair...

Inspired by All Things Thrifty, I have been wanting to spray paint some ugly furniture. Usually I can't see the potential in that stuff. I found this chair at Savers in December for $15. I loved the straight lines and could tell it had seen more than its' share of bottoms. I primed it and decided to paint it Krylon Bauhaus Gold, but it wasn't so lovely. so I switched to Krylon Ivy Leaf. But the paint dripped and cracked. I sanded some of it and ignored the rest. THREE cans total. Then I found fabric I loved, but it was $40/yd! So I got something for $3 at Wal-mart. hated it. Compromised with something geometric for $7/yd. My dad cut some plywood to replace the caning. Cue lame staple gun. One out of every eight staples actually went in flush with the plywood. But here it is...

and I love it!
(even though I can see some bauhaus gold peeking through here and there).

Here is my next project:
This will replace the bookshelves in the office,
which will replace the kid's plastic storage shelves,
which will hold food storage in the garage.

But I'm not using spray paint.