Oct 28, 2010

TicTac Treat

I've been somewhat burned out on all of the Halloween ideas.  Because of this I haven't wanted to make anything new.  That was until this morning.  I was standing in the line at Walmart and I got the urge.  You know the urge, the one that prompts you to ditch all the other things on your to-do list and do something completely different?  Well, that urge hit and so this is what I made.

If you want to make your own, here's how to do it:

1- Buy a pack of Tictacs

2- Get some paper and wrap it around the package.  Then cut the paper down to size.  You want it barely larger on the ends than the box of TicTacs.  (The paper in the photo hasn't been cut down yet)

3-  Using a circle punch, punch a hole in the front  flap.

4 - Add a piece of ribbon that will run all the way across the black paper.  Keep in mind you need it long enough so it will tie the package closed.

5- Next you need to add the Tictacs and other inside decorations.  I just used some adhesive tabs to hold the treat in place.  Then I added a little note.  On the opposite side, which you can't see very good in the photo, I just placed another piece of black paper to hide the adhesive and ribbon.

6 - Now you just need to decorate the front, tie the bow and you are done.  You'll end up with something that looks like this when you are done.

The really cool thing about this little idea is you can adapt it to other things too.  Here's one I made a few years back for a crop I helped host at a friends Scrapbook store.


Oct 26, 2010

Projects from Halloween past - #2

I really should have titled this one "Kissing" it probably would have peaked more interest.  Do y'all know what kissing is?  No, not the lip-locking kind, silly!  I'm talking about the stamping term kissing.

Kissing is a really interesting technique that you can use to add a little more interest to your stamping designs.  Now, before I go any further I need to let you know I'm not a big stamper.  I have stamps and ink but I really don't do much with them.  However, I have found a few tricks that I really like and one of them is kissing.  On the layout below you can see a little bit of what I'm talking about in the "U.R." and in the pumpkins.  See the circle designs?  Those were "kissed" onto another stamp.

Here's what you do:

1- Select two stamps that you like.  It is best if one is a details stamp and the other has larger, solid surfaces.

2- Take the stamp that has the larger solid surface and apply ink to it.

3- Before you stamp the larger stamp to paper, take the detailed stamp and stamp it - or kiss it - to the inked stamp.  What this does is it removes the ink in the form of a pattern from the other stamps which in turn leaves a new design.

4- Now take the large, solid surface stamp and stamp it to paper. 

The end result will produce a cool design without having to buy more stamps.

Groovy, right?! 

Oct 25, 2010

Sew what?

I know I'm not the only one out there in blogland that is concentrating on Halloween preparations.  I've been sewing up a storm.  An 80's punk tutu - ok, wait, let's stop right there for a minute.  I was a product of the 80's and I didn't wear a single tutu but for some reason my lovely daughter is convinced that girls in the 80's wore neon tutus.  Neon? Yes!  Tutu?  Not me.  What about you?  Ok, so back to the sewing post, besides the tutu I'm also making a Native American costume and a Cleopatra costume. 

After planning, shopping, cutting fabric, sewing, messing up, unpicking, and resewing, I'm starting to think those cheap-o costumes from Walmart look pretty darn good.  Oh well, it's for my kids and they will be happy.  Soooo, while I don't have costumes to show yet, here's a quick sew-n-tell from a quick past project.

These messenger bags were requested by my twins because they thought their backpacks were too big.

I just made up the pattern but it turned out.  And, instead of hemming the edges of the flap, I just used ribbon folded over to enclose the edges - it was E.A.S.Y.  I love easy projects.

Ok, that's it for now.  Stayed tuned for more projects, they'll be coming soon!

Oct 22, 2010

For you... A quick tutorial

I have a long going project that I started last spring.  Truth be told it's been in my head for years but I actually started it last spring and I continue to work on it here and there.  You see, I have three lovely daughters and I'm making a little book for each of them about things I think are important for them to know.  It's not a traditional scrapbook where you document things that happened, it's more of an advice/what's in my brain book.  Does that make sense at all?

My own mom died when I was pretty young and I kind of wonder what she would say to me or teach me had she lived. I don't want my own girls to wonder about that.  I want them to know.  So, what does all of this have to do with today's post?  Well first, I thought I'd introduce you to my project.  Most of my creations on this blog are things that I can do and get done quick.  But this one is a work in progress and I'm sure I'll show updates along the way.  And second, I thought I'd share with you  a quick tutorial on the resist technique I used to create the title page.  So, here it is....

 1- Place a sticker or vinyl letter in the place you'd like to start.

2- Using a sponge (or something else like a q-tip or paper towel) dab into your ink and then apply on top of the sticker and slowly push the ink out onto the paper.

3- After you've added the ink, carefully remove the sticker and you're done.

Easy right?!  Now, just a couple of tips.  If you are using stickers, remove some of the "stick" before you put it on the paper other wise you may tear your paper when you pull it off.  I do this by sticking it to my jeans a few times.  I'm sure there is a more technical way to do this, but this is cheap and easy and works for me.  And, make sure you push the ink out from on top of the sticker.  Other wise you'll leave a mark on your paper that you won't be able to blend.

So there you have it.  You can use this technique for a lot of different things; cards, scrapbooks, home decor, etc...

Aside from the pictures that will be in the books, the designs will all be the same.  Here's another I started for one of my twins:

Oct 20, 2010

Projects from Halloween past - #1

So, I was clearing out some files and organizing past projects and stumbled onto several things I've done in the past.  Truth be told, I'm kind of done with Halloween/Fall crafts for this year.  Bring on Christmas right?  Ya, I know, come December 18th I'll be wishing for Valentine's Day, it's just how I am.  However, since Halloween is still to come I thought I'd share some past projects with you.  Plus this one can double as Christmas too - why not kill two birds with one stone, right?  Can you just imagine a holiday decoration that you can put out in September and not have to pack up until January?  Sweet, right?  (Boy am I lazy!)

So I started with this lovely piece of craft wood.  It's made by Kaiser Craft and they make all kinds of fun scrapbooking and home decor related items that you can add your personal touch too.  I'm a big fan and have used several of their albums too (remember this post?) - And for the record, I don't work for them, I just like them.  This shape is actually a Christmas tree but when I first saw it I immediately thought "Candy Corn" and so I made this....

Then I realized the whole back side was still a blank canvas.  So I flipped it over and then I made this...

Cool, right? It's a double purpose craft.  You hang it up for Halloween and then just flip it over for Christmas.  Too bad it's not three sided, I could have done something for Thanksgiving too.

You don't have to have the Kaiser Craft product to make this.  It could very easily be recreated by just using chipboard that you cut to size and then cover.

Hmmm, what else do I have hiding in my files?

Easy Peasy Lemon...Cookies?

Ok, I don't know if I should admit this but these are hands down my family's favorite cookie!  My hesitation in admitting it is because they are so easy it really feels like I'm cheating when I make them.  You need only 4 ingredients.

You'll need:
1 Lemon Cake mix
2/3 Cup Veggie Oil
2 eggs
White chocolate chips

And here's what you do:

Mix first 3 ingredient together in bowl.  I don't even use a mixer, I just stir it with a spoon until it is well combined.  It will be slightly stiff and thick and will look something like this:

Then take small spoonfuls and drop on to a cookie sheet.  I drop it then go back and shape them into balls but you could just drop them and leave them that way.  Then I take my white chocolate chips and add a little pile to each cookie.  

So, I know you are probably wondering why I don't add the chips to the dough in the bowl.  You can.  I've done it that way before however the dough is stiff and the chips don't stick well so I prefer to add them individually.  Plus, I like to think of them as little birds nest, I mean seriously, isn't that what they look like?

Next you simply bake them in a 350 degree preheated oven for about 8 minutes.  The trick here is to NOT over bake.  For some reason they are not as good when they are crispy.  Maybe it's just a preference thing but my family likes them soft.  So, as a good rule of thumb I will take them out of the oven just when the chips start to slightly brown.  (Recipe will yield about 2 dozen cookies.  Of course that depends on the size you make your dough drops)


Oct 18, 2010

The She Made another blog.

So, you all know my thing right? I like making things. We'll my crafty creations were temporarily on hold the last couple of days while I was working on updating my photography site. So, my apologies that I've been away. I've still been making things though, but it's just another blog.  You can check out my updates and creations here:


And, if you are in Colorado and you're in need of photos be sure and check us out!

Now, back to making crafty things - it's totally a sewing week for me.  I have a list of things I want to tackle so stay tuned.  I'll have lots to show you. 

Oct 13, 2010

I want my mummy!

The kiddos are out of school for a good portion of this week so it's time to do some quick and easy crafting.

Here's what the Bug and I did today... we made mummies!

Want to make your own?  They are soooooo easy and super cheap!

Here's what you need:
- some empty boxes...go dig into your recycling, you'll probably find lots
- white fabric or a cheap white sheet (I used an old sheet that I already had)
- glue gun
- scissors
-googly eyes

and here's what you do:
- Start by putting your boxes back into box form - mine were collapsed for recycling.  Then set aside.

- Tear sheet or fabric into strips.  You can cut them but the torn edges look more mummy-ish (yes, I made that word up!)  You won't need the full sheet but tear a pretty good sized pile just for good measure.

- Now it's time to start wrapping the box.  Simply add a dot of glue to the place you want to start, then adhere the fabric in place and wrap.  Once you are at the end of that fabric strip add another glue dot to hold it in place and then start the process over until the box is completely wrapped.

- Once the box is wrapped, add your googly eyes.

- and now the next step is to display them.  

See, told you it was easy!

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special

Oct 9, 2010

Halloween ribbon frame

Several years ago I used to work for Simple Scrapbooks (so sad that they are no longer).  I traveled the convention circuit and taught classes for them and the idea for today's project came from one of those classes.  The actual class was developed by Wendy Smedley and I loved the finished class project so much that I've re-used the idea several times.

It's such a simple project and it can be adapted or redone for different holidays, seasons or events.  Plus, it's a good way to use up all those little loose ends of ribbon and fibers. 

Here's what you do:

1- Gather your supplies.  You will need various ribbons, a frame, a mat or chipboard (think cereal box) to make your own, tape, and scissors.

 2- If you have a mat you can skip this step and move on to step three.  If you don't have a mat, you'll need to make one.  I simply cut the outer dimension first, for me this was 8.5x11 as I was using a document frame from the $1 store.  Then I cut the center part out.  Remember when you are making a mat that you want to leave the bottom area with slightly more than the top.  It looks better that way.

3- Start wrapping your ribbon around the mat.  It doesn't really matter where you start but I usually start on the sides. To secure it in place you will need to tape it to the back of the mat.  You can use any tape or even hot glue, I just prefer painters tape because if I want to redo my frame for a different holiday, painters tape has a low tack and comes off easy - that's just a personal choice, though.  Use what you like.

4- Once you are done wrapping your ribbon you should have something that looks like this:

5- Now you just need to add a photo and place it in a frame and you're done!  Easy, right?!  I love easy.  Plus, this is another project that is really easy for kiddos to help with or even make on their own - gotta love that.

Also, here's one I did for Christmas from a few years back  - Enjoy!

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special

Oct 8, 2010

My own little show and tell

A few weeks ago I stumbled onto the deal of the century.  Our local college recently revamped their dorm space and were selling student desks for $3 - seriously, t.h.r.e.e. bucks!  We were in need of something to put our computer on as we were using a buffet table and it just wasn't the best set up.  So, I got in my MAV (Mormon assault vehicle) and headed to campus.  At first I bought just one, then after seeing their potential I went back and bought another. Then another.  I've bought 5 total.  Three we kept, two we gave away.  So, here's my show and tell, we are still working on the third but two are done and being used and we love them.  They are bit old school, I mean they were probably built in the 70's, but I love the clean lines and the attached shelf and they are REAL wood - no particle board or press board. Can't even buy particle board stuff for $3.

So, here are the before photos, they had a great shape, good bones I guess is what I should say but they needed some love.

And here are the end results.  For this first one we used a Polystain, which is a combination product that is a water based stain mixed with polyacrylic so it has some color but also seals the wood too - nice!  Loved the one step. The top was a weird vinyl so we coated it with Krylon Fushion which is a spray paint that sticks to plastics and various other things.  In the picture below you can't really see the new top color because our green wall is reflecting on it, however, it's a lovely chocolate brown, you can see it better in the other photos.

Looks better, right?  (sorry for the ugly cords)

The next one was Miss M's desk.  She wanted one for her room and she wanted it black.  So we used a rub on stain.  Here are the results. 

We found some awesome knobs at Hobby Lobby for 50% off and loved how they match her room.  Below are some photos of her desk set up with the cork board I made for her - check out her art work that is hanging on the board, nice right?  She's a great artist.

We still have one more desk to finish but since it is going to be my craft/project desk I think I will do something a little more funky.  I'll be sure to share the results.


Oct 6, 2010

wax + paint = awesomeness!

Over the weekend I tackled these cute wooden boxes.  I've had these boxes for 10+ years and all that time they stayed in their unfinished form.  Natural wood.  I always intended to do something with them but I couldn't decide what to do.  Finally though, inspired by our recent move, an empty home that needed decor, and my new found bravery to break away from beige, I produced this:

I wish I would have taken a "before" picture but in my creative rage I complete forgot.   Just imagine them as plain, unfinished wood.  So, what do I love about them?  Ummm, everything!  However, the fun part of the project was the painting technique I used.  I used wax to create a resist and I love the result.  Here's how:

1-Prepare your painted surface.  Sand, clean, etc...
2- Paint your first color.  I painted yellow but I didn't paint the whole box, just in the spots I wanted the yellow to show.
3- Paint your second color.  For me that color was orange and again I only painted it where I wanted it to show, I did not paint the whole box.
4- Once your paint has dried take a candle, preferably a white or off white one - no color - and rub it over the area you painted.  So, for me, I just rubbed it lightly on over the area with the yellow and orange paint.
5- Then using your main color, for me that was blue, paint the rest of your project.

Because of the wax, the paint will not coat over the other colors.  Cool, right?!

6- After the blue paint had dried, I scrapped and sanded some of the wax off and then I applied one coat of Polystain, it's stain mixed with polyacrylic, and I was done! 

So easy!  I love how the yellow and orange look like old paint layers and how the stain gives it a distressed, antiqued look.  It may have taken me 10 years to get this project done but I tell you what, it was so worth the wait! 

I'm here, really.

Man, what a busy week.  I am here though, despite the lack of activity on this lovely little craft blog.  So the weekend and past few days have found me doing the following:

furniture refinishing
sewing messenger bags
decorating for fall
planning crafts
and writing tutorials.

I have SOOOO much to share, bummer that I have to do my real job first.  However, please stay tuned, I'm hoping to post later today.

Oh, ya, and thanks for stopping by.

Oct 3, 2010

Cookie Sheet Calendars - part 1

I'm getting a lot of questions about my cookie sheet calendars and while I don't have the tutorial fully ready to go, I thought I could answer some questions and maybe get you started.  Sound good?

So, question one:  Supplies, what is needed? This is totally going to depend on how much you want to put into your calendar, but the basics are:  A cookie sheet, magnets, decorative paper, numbers, ink, embellishments, ribbons and binder clips.  Below I've listed some info about each.

Cookie sheet.  
- Make sure it has a rolled rim so that you can attach the clips to hang the finished product.  
- If you are making a horizontal cookie sheet, stick with a smaller/normal size - I want to say 10x15 is a standard size but don't quote me though.  You can go bigger, but the after making several of these, the smaller size looks better at least in my opinion.
-  If you are making a vertical hanging calendar, you can go with a bigger cookie sheet.
-  Make sure your cookie sheet is metal and will work with magnets
-  I usually buy cookie sheets that already black.  I have spray painted them before which can be done, but I won't lie, it was a pain and I had difficulties with the paint.

Magnets.-  You can buy them by the sheet or by the roll.  I found the roll to be the best value.  Plus, it's less cutting as you will need to cut a bunch of them into small 1/2 inch squares for the individual pieces and some 1 inch strips for the back pockets.

-  I prefer to work with a heavier weight paper.  You can use any paper but if it's thin, you may want to attach it to chip board to give it more support.  The benefit to the heavier weight paper is that usually it comes double sided so you'll have some already coordinated prints for your individual pieces.
- I usually pick about 5 sheets of coordinated 12x12 thick patterned paper and a few sheets of plain cardstock that coordinates. 

Here's the fun part where you can get really creative.  If you already have scrapbooking/stamping supplies, chances are you have what you need.  If you don't there are some ways around the expense.  Here are some of my suggestions.
Stamp sets:  You can buy numbered stamp sets.  I've found some in the dollar section of Target for, yup a $1.  I've also ordered some from stamp consultants for $15.  The price range here will vary and you can spend a lot, a little, or none at all.  See if your friends have stamps you can borrow or don't use stamps.
Rub-ons:  If you have a lot of alphabet rub-ons, you've probably got some numbers too.  Most alphabet sets have numbers at the end.  Look, because you probably don't even know you have them.  You can also buy rub-ons in various places, craft stores, the dollar tree, walmart, etc... - the prices will vary.
Stickers:  Just like the rubons, if you have alphabet stickers you probably have numbers.  Pull them out and look.  Plus you can buy them in various places too.
Your home computer:  If you want to make a calendar but don't have any of the supplies listed just use your computer and printer.  You can print different fonts and sizes to give the calendar an eclectic look or you can print them all the same and then just decorate/embellish each square. The trick here is print them on the paper before you cut the paper into small squares.
think out side the box:  You can make numbers out of various things.  Got a dime?  Then you've got your #10.  Got a quarter?  Yep, you've got #25.  Use 5 small brads to make #5.  Or spell out a number with stickers, rubons or stamps, like T.W.O.

If you don't have a lot of the listed items and you don't want to invest in them, go simple.  Just buy one stamp set and do all your numbers the same.  I prefer the eclectic look of mixing it up but I have made one using just one style of stamps and it looked really good.  The trick to giving it some spunk will be in your embellishments.

Collect a bunch of things that will coordinate with your color theme/paper choices.  Things like floss, ribbon, buttons, twine, beads, stickers, etc...  there are so many options, just think creatively.

In the photo above you can see that I used flower stickers over-lapping two pieces (#3 & #4) as an embellishment.  I also cut up the stickers that look like stitches to make the #11.  Seriously, once you start creating, ideas will pop into your heads.

Ok, that should give you something to think about while I finish up the tutorial.  Email or leave your questions in the comments and I will try to address them.