Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry, merry Christmas..

Merry, Merry Christmas, everyone. :)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Make a very special ornament..

These are so simple to make, but look awesome on the tree. You can completely customize them to your own style, personality, whatever. I personalize them by painting a child's name on the back, or adding other special text, and give them as gifts, or just plain choose what images *I* want on my tree. The beauty of them is you can design them how *you* want.

Materials needed:

Ornament blank, either premade, out of paper mache, which already have a loop added; or those wooden shapes that come as is.

Thread/thin string for hanging, if using the wooden blanks

Paint: neutral base and a rich gold (or whatever suits you to border)

Image of your choice (do not use inkjet images from a home printer..they are waterbase, and will smear and bleed, ruining everything. I took images I already owned, and ran them through the color copier at the local printer)

Contrast image, pretty paper, text from a Christmas/greeting card, whatever, for the back

Waterbase varnish and white glue (Technical note: for this tut, I used Mod Podge, which I am not very experienced with. After doing two of them, though, I was really disappointed in the homemade results from it, and went back to my preferred way of doing them, which is the white glue and waterbase varnish.)

Optional: Very small drill bit, and possibly a manual handle to go with it 

Paint the blank in your neutral color.

Center over the image, and trace a circle around it. I do this by holding the picture up to the light, and moving the ornament around behind the paper til it looks right, and then laying down and tracing from the back..I find this the easiest way for me. Cut out the circle. (You can do this before or after painting, doesn't matter.) Lay over your circle, and make sure the edges are completely flush, and won't be sticking out, or hanging over. 

For the back, cut out another circle, either of another image you want, or a nice, decorative coordinating paper; another idea I have done is use previous Christmas cards to cut out appropriate text, usually in the pretty fonts they use; or else, just hand paint something, like your kid's name, over the previously painted base. 

Spread a thin layer of the white glue, evenly over one side of the ornament. You don't want it *too* thick, or it will warp and bubble the paper. Make sure it goes right to the edges, though you want to avoid getting it on the sides, if possible.

Carefully apply the image onto the surface of the glue, and smooth down, wiping any air bubbles to the edge. Run your finger around the very edge, to press down the edge and keep it from sticking out. Dab a tiny bit of glue into cracks with a toothpick if necessary. 

Repeat with other side. Let both sides dry completely, so you are not sealing moisture into the ornament, and setting up a disaster waiting to happen.

Paint carefully all around the edge, with your gold or contrast paint. You can keep it strictly on the edge, or you can run it down into a small border around the image, like I have done.

At this point, if you are using the wooden blanks, you will verrrrryyy carrrrrefulllly twist the point of the drill bit into the edge..

..until you have a small hole in the side, about 1/8-1/4 inch down. It's really simple to do this, and pretty quick.

Make a knot in your thread/string, and push it into the hole you just drilled, and fill it with glue. Make sure you pop any air bubbles, and let it dry completely. This method is strong enough to handle average tree-hanging use. It's not, however, strong enough to handle tropical storm winds blowing in at it all night long. Ask me how I know. :p

Brush varnish on one side, let dry, repeat on other side, and the edges, and let dry. Sometimes, at this poinr, I like to tint the varnish with a teeny smidge of brown acrylic paint, and dab it on in a mottled way, giving it an aged patina. Repeat with a second coat of clear varnish. (Note: this pic is the modpodge I used while making the tut...waterbase varnish is generally clear. )

Done!! :D Hang on your tree, and love it for years to come. :p

 The DIY Show Off

Monday, December 13, 2010

The City...

Funny how I can have so little actual paying work, and life can still be so frantic. Huh.

Anyway..point of the post. My loving, incredible sister bought my kid and I tickets to Sacramento to visit them in January, which is going to include a dash down to San Francisco to land on the parents and visit the Auntie and Grandma. Anyone have any MUST see shops there I can't miss? I used to live there, years ago, and my mom still lives there, so I already have a million nostalgic places to visit, as well as the Exploratorium, and BRITEX FABRICS! etc, but new, cute shops, I know nada! Who's got tips?? :D


Sunday, October 03, 2010


Life has been insane...I need the softness right now..

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Ship ahoy..

Two guesses, me hearties..

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Red it...

I saw a pic...I needed a bench for next to the pool (no, that is not the pool area..but the pool area was a mess from visiting kids..the the nearby greenery stood in)...upshot, I made one. Yes, I am very proud. :p

It's bright red, cause 1. I love red. 2. It looks great against the aqua theme happening outside. 3. I had a whole gallon of high shine red paint spare, that someone gave me. I'll leave you to decide which was the deciding factor.  

The pitcher holding the lemonade, I got for free. I don't know how old it is, but it's aged, and stained, and crackled, and I LOVE it. I wish more free stuff came like that. :p  

I took pics the whole step of the way, so you guys are getting a tut for it, whether you like it or not. :p 

Thursday, July 29, 2010

I found it...

I found my next birthday present. Or maybe even Christmas.

I am not sure I have started even breathing after that first gasp.

Cori at Starview Sonnet is a crafting goddess, imo. :p

(If you aren't broke, like me, you can buy her HERE.  Just don't tell me about it and break my heart. )

Credit: Starview Sonnet 

Monday, July 26, 2010

I received a lovely, lovely blog award from Polly over on pollyfranceselizabeth! She has a very cute blog, that I find to be a very interesting peek into her world over in England..with a good dash of Japanese love thrown in. :p

Okay, rules are:

Name ten things I like:

The beach


A good cup of tea

Making things

The smell of garden flowers in the morning

Jeans that fit


Jewellery-lots of it-silver

My own space


And, tag ten other bloggers:

Everyday Tuesday


Magnolias and Sunshine 


Arty Lovely 

Slightly Obsessed 

Toasty Toes

The Weather in the Streets 

Alright..I've got eight...and I've run out of time. It'll have to do. :p

It's nice to be liked! :D Same as it's nice to look at my sidebar, and realize 40 whole people like me enough to actually FOLLOW me!! Who'da thunk??? :p

Saturday, July 24, 2010

A piece of string..

Saturday, July 17, 2010

How to make a jewellery hanger..

Okay, well, I told my friend I had made this jewellery hanger, and was planning a tut. Not only did she love it, but she ran out and bought the supplies, and is now sitting there tapping her fingers waiting. Uh. Okay. Better get onto it. (I actually think she is PERFECTLY capable of working it out herself, but what the hey..I already have the pictures taken, right? :p

Supplies needed:

Wood plaque or panel

Paper of your choice

9 cup hooks

picture hanger thingie


spray glue

med grit sandpaper


a nail and a hammer

First thing, make your wood and your paper match exactly in size. My paper and my plywood square are both exactly 12" x 12".

Sand the edges smooth. If you really want to be picky, you can go over them again with a fine grit paper, for a finer finish. I didn't bother, cause I knew if I didn't get on with it, I would flounder and fail and migrate to the couch before it was done. :p

Paint the edges. I used spray paint, cause that is what I had, but I would have preferred to use a brush on would have filled the gaps a bit better and looked nicer. It did go a lot faster, though! :p

While you are at it, paint the hooks, too. Let them dry while you finish the rest of the project. If you do use brush on paint with these, don't paint the screw will just get messy when you put them in.

Spray the back of your paper with spray adhesive. Don't overdo it so that it seeps through to the front. Just a good coat on all parts. Make sure you get the corners and the edges, so they don't peel back up with wear and age. Also spray the front side of the wood panel.

CAREFULLY match up the edges of the paper and the wood, and lay the paper down. It will be very hard if not impossible to reposition it, so take this step slow. Smooth it on, making sure to press on the edges and corners, too. My scrapbooking paper had this white edge with their info on it that I had to cut off.

Now you make the grid for where you want to put the hooks. I did nine hooks, so I divided my board into a grid of two inch squares. How I did it was mark an infinitesimal dot at the edges on two opposing sides at each two inch mark. Lay a straight edge of the ruler along the line between a mark on one side, and the opposing mark on the other side, and mark a tiny dot at each two inch mark. You should end up with a grid of nine dots in the middle, spaced every two inches. (Let me know if I got this step wrong. I SUCK at this kind if mental math, and can't remember if I needed to do anything else to make it work.)

At each dot, take your hammer and nail, and tap it in about 1/8-1/4" (.5 cm approx), to make a starter hole. Pull the nail back out carefully so it doesn't twist and mark up the hole. Don't go farther down, cause pulling it back out will make a mess and cause damage.

Screw the hooks into the starter holes til they are flush with the surface. Make them end all facing up.

Attach my professionally named picture hanger thingie (I'm totally brain fritzing and can NOT remember what these are called) to the one, btw, IS straight, no matter what is bizarrely going on in the picture.

Ta da!!! Turn back around to the front, hang on a wall, and drape your favorite jewellery across it. :D

As always, let me know if I have any errors, and show me if you make one!! :D

Playing along at:

  UndertheTableandDreaming The Girl Creative

Organize and Decorate Everything

Let the moss grow..

I am sooo tempted to find a patch of moss somewhere and make some moss graffiti. :p

1, 2, 3: Anna Garforth
4. Bumbumbum 
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