Friday, April 10, 2015

Quick and Easy Miniature Works of Art

 

 The cool thing about making these miniature works of art is that they don't take up much time, space or money. These fit nicely inside a Deflecto 5x7 flexible pouch- available soon here. The pouches are great for mini books, photos, recipes and so much more!

 To make these miniature works of art, you will need the following:
  1. Sturdy watercolor paper, cut to be smaller than 5x7. Make sure they can slide in and out of the pouches with ease.
  2. Pencil to draw.
  3. Fine paint brush, cup of water, and palette. I used a few paper plates.
  4. Acrylic paint. I used bright yellow, fluorescent pink, sea green, ice blue.
  5. 2-3 standard black permanent markers.
  6. Music to paint with. I listened to Techno while working on these. The tribal beat made me paint  in a hurry but it all came out fabulous!
 Sketch your basic design with the pencil. Do the same design on all 4 papers. Use cups and glasses to create the perfect circles.

 Begin painting with your lightest color. Alternate (as shown) as to where to paint on each card.

Next, add the pink. Be sloppy. Its OK.

 Some sea green. Don't be neat, it takes away the spontaneity of the Art.

 Then the blue. Don't be afraid to color outside the lines.

 Now go back and add more color. Messy painting is good.

 Now this is the FUN part!
When your pieces are dry, use the black pens to add detail. Sometimes you might hit a damp paint  spot. Simply wipe the pen nip off onto a napkin, cap it and use another pen.
 
 See? Everything turned our great! No need to worry. Now we have miniature works of art to enjoy and share!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

How to make Flowers using Soda Cans

 
Here's a tutorial I posted in April of 2013.
 It's probably my favorite of all my spring crafts.
I hope you enjoy it!



For this project, you will need:

* Favorite flower dies that will cut through tin. I have a bunch of retired Sizzix big dies that work great!
* Embossing folders
* Die cutting machine
* Soda Cans
* Wet and dry towels
* Gloves and Scissors
* Alcohol pens or inks
* Assorted nail polishes
* Floral wire
* Buttons
* Jewelry pliers.
* Craft sheet or protected surface

 
 Begin by cutting up your empty soda cans and clean them with a wet cloth.
The can will automatically curl up, so gently curl the opposite way being careful of any sharp edges.

Cut the tin into sections that will fit the flower shapes you want cut out. Run them through your die cutting machine. Then place them into the embossing folders and run them through again.

 Working on a paper towel and a craft sheet, use the fine and wide tips of your alcohol pens to color in the flowers. If using alcohol inks, use a q-tip to add the color.
Try using multiple colors for a mosaic effect. 

 Select your nail polishes. 
As you can see, I have quite a few!
I love to "paint" my nails as much as I love to make art! 

Add more fun detail to your flowers with the nail polishes.
Play with some of the solids and glitters.
Make sure to work with a window or two open as some nail polishes stink more than others, and it's usually the one you like painting with the best!
Once dry, the nail polish will act as a sealer.

  Leave your pieces to dry while you clear your work space for the next step.

 You will now need the floral wire, pliers and assorted buttons.
Play with your flowers to see which two will pair well.
Then find a button that mostly matches the bottom flower.

The other two buttons don't matter. You just want to make sure the buttons are larger than the flowers hole.
 Fold a bit of the wire as shown. Then thread the first button onto the bent wire to rest at the end. Add the small flower, a button, the large flower and the final button.

 Wrap the small bit of wire around (as shown) at the back of the large flower.
 Be sure to leave room for the flowers to spin.


 Fold the remaining wire so you can secure the end piece at the back of the flowers.

  Now you have made a beautiful flower!

 Place these inside to brighten up lonely indoor plants, or outside with natures best and watch your colorful creations spin in the warm breeze!
The combination of the alcohol pens and nail polishes really pick up the outdoor light. Maybe give a couple to a friend to brighten up a office.

Monday, April 6, 2015

How to make Rug Hooking Hair Clips!

 No matter if spring has started for you or you are still waiting for the snow to melt, these "Rug Hooking Hair Clips" are sure to brighten any day! 
 You will need:
1. A embroidery hoop.
2. Burlap
3. A small cup to trace and a permanent marker.
 4. A crochet hook- size00/3.50MM.  Wrap lots of rubber bands around the hook to make for a no-slip-grip!
5. Brightly colored Kunin Felt cut into 1/4" strips. The longer the better.
6. Hair clips.
 7. Sharp fabric shears. These are by Fiskars.
8. Crayons.
9. Aleene's tacky glue. 
10. Additional felt sheet.
 Place your burlap in the hoop. Trace your circle. Mine measured about 2".
Push your hook through the center of the traced circle. Catch the felt with the hook and pull loop through. Continue pushing and pulling through until you are happy with your flowers center. 
 Trim off excess felt strip and start with a new color.
Repeating the same technique, over and over.
If you make a mistake, such as spacing your loops to far apart or pulling up too much of a loop- simply pull felt strip from under the hoop to remove mistakes. 

 Change colors as desired.
Stop working when you have reached desired flower size. 


  Trim burlap to be larger than your traced circle.
Flip over and trim off any long felt ends.
 With your scissors, cut sections (as shown) into the burlap, right up to the very edge of the flower.
Add a ample amount of glue to the back side of the flower.
Fold the burlap sections over into the glue, pressing firmly.
 For the last to sections, add a bit more glue.
Now place more tacky glue over the pressed down burlap.
 Cut two same size felt circles. Place one onto the glue, pressing firmly.
Add glue to the second felt.
 Place the open hair clip in between the two glued down felt circles.
Place a crayon inside the hair clip to keep the clip from accidentally being glued shut if any glue seeps through the felt.
Leave to dry before wearing your floral creation!
See more "Flower" crafts by looking for this button on my right sidebar.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Cream Cheese Cupcake Recipe



Happy Easter!
 I hope you are all having a wonderful time with friends and family!
Today I wanted to share a favorite cupcake recipe of mine. I originally posted it April of 2011, but I knew some of you have been asking for it, so here you go!

 Approx. 50-60 mini  or 24-30 standard cupcakes.

 Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C sweet cream butter - room temp.
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 1/2 C cake flour ( found in any generic grocery store)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 C buttermilk
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 1/2 t vanilla extract
  • 1/2 C *hot* water
C = Cup, t = teaspoon, T = Tablespoon

Directions:
If your butter will not warm to room temp. maybe its a cold rainy day and you are not yet ready to turn on the heat...you can gently nuke the butter in the microwave, just till softened.

Preheat oven 350* and set out mini cupcake lined pans.
  • Cream butter and sugar.
  • Individually- add the egg, buttermilk, vanilla extract, salt, baking soda.
  • Add the flour- 1/2 C at a time until blended.
  • Add *hot* water last, then blend until smooth.

 Use a ladle to spoon the batter into a measuring cup
 
Pour into each liner at least 3/4 way full. Wipe up any drips so they don't fill the house with a burnt smell while baking.
 
This photo shows my old oven. My new oven has a convection feature so I can utilize both racks if needed. :)
You should be able to fit at least two full sheets on one rack in your oven.
 
 Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Now for the Frosting.
You say you don't like cream cheese, but I guarantee you'll love these!
Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese (room temp.)
  • 2 1/2 C powdered sugar
  • 2 T heavy cream (room temp.)
  • 1 T vanilla extract
Directions:
Using your hand held or stand alone mixer-
Mix cream cheese and powdered sugar on low until blended.
 It may be chunky- this is OK.
Add remaining ingredients one at a time.
Mix at high speed until fluffy.
Chill in fridge for a bit (1 hour) before using on cooled cupcakes.
* The secret to delicious cupcakes is a heavy hand when applying the frosting and a even heavier hand when adding the sprinkles! :)


Decorate  and ENJOY!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Garden Seed Caddy

I have been busy getting the garden ready for Spring and Summer that my blog has fallen short of new postings.
 I'm so sorry.
So I am re-sharing this seed caddy I made March 2014.
It holds all of my favorite seeds and is still so pretty to look at!
See tutorial here.
Enjoy!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Spring Bling

Here's a favorite post of mine from February of 2014. Easy to do with a few materials. I bet you have everything you need to make some Spring Bling. See the tutorial here. 
Enjoy!

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