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Friday, February 15, 2013

Gotta love Elmer's glue

I made these cute little snowmen from the Elmer's glue recipe below.  They are quick and easy to make, and very cute.  I baked the first 2 in the oven and really like the puffyness of them.  Makes them a little more realistic.  I then rolled some out, and cut them with a cookie cutter but have not had a chance to paint them yet.  They worked fine too but they do take about a week to air dry.  They get very hard and are very durable.  You can sand them, paint them, and even drill holes in them.  I love the fact that no two are alike when you bake them in the oven.  I baked them for about two maybe 2 1/2 hours at 200 degrees, to dry them.  It depends on how thick your dough is. 

Glue dough recipe

1/2 cup Elmer's glue
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
Acrylic paints
Any embellishments you intend to use

Mix all ingredients and knead well. If it is too dry just add a bit more  Elmer's glue. If it is too wet add a bit more flour and cornstarch. You can shape the dough into just about anything you choose. You can also roll it out onto a floured surface and use cookie cutters to cut out shapes. You can bake these in a 200 degree oven to speed up the drying time. Once dry you can paint with acrylic paints. Seal with medium sealer recipe below. Store any leftover dough in an airtight container or sealed ziplock bag.
Yield: approximately a small softball size ball

Elmer's glue (light sealer)
one part Elmer's glue
one part water
Mix well and store in a sealed container.

Elmer's glue(medium sealer)
Two parts Elmer's glue
One part water
Mix well and store in a sealed container.

Elmer's glue(heavy sealer)
Three parts Elmer's glue
One part water
Mix well and store in a sealed container.

Elmer's glue has been around for many years and has many uses.  I use it as a sealer on alot of my paint projects.  Once I have basecoated the piece I mix a 50/50 mix of Elmer's glue and water for a light sealer.  It serves as a light sealer for when I accidentally get paint where I don't want it.  It is easier to wipe the unwanted paint off your project without taking off the basecoat.  You must however rub off gently with a damp cloth.
You can also use it as a sealer for your completed project.  It's inexpensive, durable, and will dry clear leaving a nice satin finish.  I use an appropriate size brush and apply it to my finished project.

Crackle finish
Paint your piece using acrylic paints. Allow to dry.  Cover the painted surface with a coat of Elmer's glue and apply another coat of acrylic paint in a different color.  As it begins to dry you will see the cracks begin to form.  Seal with above sealer recipe.

Paper mache
Use equal parts Elmer's glue and water and mix well.  Dip cut up strips of newspaper into the mixture and  run your fingers across the strips to remove the excess.  Apply to the paper mache surface. Balloons work well for paper mache projects.  This however is a messy project, but you can achieve some really awesome results with paper mache.  I cover my table I am going to be working on with freezer paper(shiny side up so the glue won't stick to it) and tape it down. When your done you can roll up the paper and toss it in the garbage, leaving little or no mess on your table.

I hope you have enjoyed this project.


Monday, December 3, 2012

Holiday tree

Sorry I haven't had much time lately to post to my blog.  My newly opened store has kept me pretty busy but, I wanted to take a minute to post some of the holiday trees I created this year.  They are very simple to make and are very cute.  They would make really cute inexpensive gifts.  This was a tree I had purchased some time ago.  I painted an empty can(this one was a can of peaches) in a rusty primer, then printed one of my own designs onto brown paper and mod podged it to the can. You can google free vintage Christmas images to find alot of really cute designs.  You could use a brown paper grocery bag if you do not have the brown paper. I then cut a piece of burlap large enough to tuck some of it into the can, then cut a slit in the center and stuck the tree through the hole.  I then cut a piece of floral foam big enough to fit snug in the bottom of the can.   I then filled the can about 1/2 way with plaster a paris and pushed the tree into the floral foam.  I allowed that to harden overnight.  I then stuffed some of the burlap inside the can and hot glued it in random spots. I picked up a string of 20 lights at the Dollar Tree and strung them on the tree.  I made the cinnamon ornaments by hand. You can find the recipe on my blog.

This one was done in the same manner as above but I used a new paint can that I had purchased from the hardware store.  The snowman were made from the same recipe that Jack was made from (the standing jack-o-lantern posted on my blog. I rolled the mixture into balls and flattened them in the palm of my hand, than layed them on a wax paper covered cookie sheet and let dry for about 3 days. I then sanded them, and painted them.  Their noses are made from 1/2 of a tooth pick.  The hats are made from felt.  I cut a rectangle shape big enough to fit their heads  and hot glued it together.  I then traced a large canning ring lid and folded it in half and cut a slit so that it would fit over their heads.  I then hot glued it to the top.  I drilled a small hole for their nose and hot glued them in place.  I hot glued a bow made of raffia to their necks. I added some homespun country material along with pine cones in random spots to the tree. I added a set of 20 lights purchased from the Dollar Tree.  I added some homemade snow to the snowman hats.  This recipe can also be found on my blog. I would love to see pics of your trees.
Happy crafting!

simple to make

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Halloween tree

This is a Halloween tree made from a coffee can. I used a large coffee can(the cardboard type) painted the entire can in 2 coats of Burnt Orange, and allowed to dry. I then painted the scene and sprayed with 2 coats of matte finish sealer. For the tree I used a real tree branch and spray painted it black. Once everything was dry I mixed up some plaster a paris and poured it in the can. I filled it about 1/2 way with the plaster a paris. I then stuck the branch in the can and carefully leaned it up against something sturdy and allowed it to dry overnight. Once dry I added some spanish moss to the inside of the can and there you have a cute Halloween tree to hang your ornaments. I have made these up to about 4-5 feet tall.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Jack-paper mache, Folk Art pumpkin

Meet Jack.........Jack is a paper mache pumpkin. His head, hat, and candy corns are all made from paper mache. Jack is a ooak Folk Art pumpkin design by Phyllis Spaw Designs. For anyone wanting to try paper mache I listed the basic instructions below. Feel free to email me with any questions, or comments.

For his hat I started with a medium weight cardboard and shaped it into a cone. I've had this roll of cardboard laying around that works perfect for this kind of stuff. I really have no idea where it came from or what it is used for. It is about the thickness of a cearl box. I then tore several strips of newspaper in a variety of widths and set them aside. I then used about a 50/50 mix of Elmer's white glue and water and dipped the newspaper strips into them, and wiped most of the mixture off, leaving it wet enought to apply to the hat until the hat was completely covered in the newspaper. I allowed to dry and did a second coat. I cut the brim from the same cardboard and covered it in the same manner. I glued it to the cone with hot glue. Once it was dry I used a homemade paper mache paste that I found on pinterest. You can find the receipe here I then used a pasty knife, or you can use a regular table knife also. I like the rounded edge of the pastry knives. They just seem to spread better. I covered the entire hat in a light to med coat of the paste and allowed to dry. This takes about 2-3 days to dry completly. Once dry I added a second coat. Once the second coat was dry I sanded it to kind of a rough finish, leaving some of the bumps and small air pocket holes to show. I then painted it in 2 coats of black. I did the pumpkin head in the same manner, but I used a plastic grocery bag from the grocery store stuffed with newspaper. I kinda shaped it by stuffing more in certain areas. I then followed the Elmer's glue/newspaper instructions for paper mache as above. Once dry I painted his head in 2 coats of Burnt Orange. I then sprayed him with 2 coats of a matte finish sealer and allowd to dry. I then mixed a bit of black with Burnt Umber and thinned it down with water, to the consistncey of ink and brushed it on a section at a time and quickly wiped some of it off with an old rag. I always keep a wet rag handy also, in case it starts to dry. I then dry brushed a few light highlights of Cadmium Yellow adding a bit more in the cheek areas. I then added his eyes, mouth, and nose. His legs are made from cut off railings, used to make the railings on a stairway. They were painted in Black and Burnt Orange and then sealed. Once everything was dry I drilled holes for his legs with a spade bit. I patched up the hole a bit with some of the paper mache paste and allowed to dry. I had already drilled a hole in the top of his head so I pulled out some of the newspaper with a pliers and then poured plaster a paris into the hole, to help keep his legs in place and nice and sturdy. Once dry I added some burnt Umber to his shoes, using a dry brush to make them look a little dirty. I then put a zebra pattern ribbon in his shoe strings then set him in his shoes. I also poured some plaster a paris in his shoes. Allow to dry overnight. I did the candy corns in the same paper mache method as above. I used some floral foam to cut the shape from, using a craft knife. I painted them in white, Burnt Orange, and Cadmium Yellow. I added a piece of twisted wire to the tops of the candy corns. I tied an orange ribbon around his hat and then glued the candy corns to the hat and then glued the hat to the pumpkin. I then hot glued natural spanish moss around the hairline and stuffed some in his shoes. I then lightly sanded areas on his legs, and there ya have it, a cute decoration for a porch, mantel, or where ever you choose. Jack stands appx 44” tall from the tip of his hat to the bottom of his shoes.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Denim pockets

Gotta love those denim pockets.  You can do so many things with them.  Below is a free tutorial on how to paint a couple of Halloween designs onto them.  A quick, easy, cute project.

Denim pockets of your choice
Scissors-to cut out denim pockets.
Acrylic paints- Black, Burnt Orange, Burnt Sienna, Cadmium Yellow, and White
Candy corn stencil-I cut my own from a piece of mylar using a craft knife, or you can just sketch them on with a pencil and paint them in. I purchased the mylar at Wal-Mart.
Witch boot stencil-purchased from Laurie Speltz(The Creative Coach).
3 Medium stencil brushes
#4 filbert, and a #10/0 liner brush.
Small checkerboard stencil-purchased mine at Michael's Craft Stores.
Candy of your choice
2 pieces of raffia
Fall bittersweet picks with rusty stars.
Wire cutters
2 pieces of black annulled wire-to make the hanger. Cut one to 24" and one to 18". I purchased mine at Ace Hardware.
2 small pieces of wax paper-to place in-between the pocket so that the paint does not soak thru the other side, and one for your paint palette.
Paper towel-to remove the excess paint of the stencil brush.
Small craft knife
Masking tape or black electrical tape-to tape your stencil in place.
Small wooden dowel-to make curly wire(optional).

To learn more about stenciling see TIPS AND TECHNIQUES, on this blog and scroll down to stencilling.
Begin by cutting out your denim pockets. Once they have been cut out, place a small piece of wax paper in-between the pocket so that the paint does not soak thru to the other side, and set aside until needed.  Prepare your stencil by sketching a candy corn onto the mylar and cut out with a small craft knife. Be sure to cut it onto a surface that you will not cut thru. I use an old piece of hardboard to place the mylar on.  If your not feeling creative enough to sketch your own stencil, search the web for free candy corn templates.  There are several available.


Candy corn pocket
Begin by taping your stencil down onto the denim pocket, and stencil in the candy corns in a coat of white, then stencil in the  appropriate colors using your stencil brushes.  This will take 2-3 applications to get a good cover.  When dry tap in a bit of Burnt Sienna, just under the Cadmium Yellow.  Apply 2-3 coats of Black around the edge of the pocket using the #4 filbert, and allow to dry.  Once dry stencil in the checkerboard in Burnt Orange. Now cut your piece of wire to 24"  Starting on the back side of the pocket, gently push and twist until the wire pokes thru to the front side.  Leave about 2" sticking out.  Now take one of your paint brushes or a small wooden dowel and begin wrapping the wire around it, again leave about 2" to push thru to the other side.  Now pull the wooden dowel out and stretch out the wire a bit to form a nice hanger. Now twist the 2" piece in the same manner and push flat against the pocket. Allow to dry and cut your Fall pics to your desired size and stick them down into the pocket.  Add the raffia bow to the side and you have a cute Fall decoration.

Witch boot stencil
Follow the same instructions as above for stenciling in the witch boots.  I then lightly sketched in the socks with a pencil and painted them in with the #4 filbert, using the Burnt Orange.  This will take about 2 coats to cover.  Once dry add the black stripes with the #10 liner. Allow to dry and follow the instructions above to add hanger and raffia.  Fill with candy of your choice for a cute treat pocket.
You could also stencil in words such as trick or treat, Halloween, treats, or whatever else you see fit.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Paparazzi Jewlry

Have you heard about Paparazzi Jewelry......It is some pretty awesome jewelry and very inexpensive.  I purchased 2 bracelets for $11.00 total...can't go wrong at that price.  They have become some of my most favorite bracelets.  I liked them so much I purchased 2 necklaces for the same price and 2 bracelets for my 2 grand daughters that attended, and they were even less.  I think 2/$5.00  To view some of the jewelry or if you have questions, visit!/pages/Paparazzi-by-Jessica/452832284732191  Don't forget to like her page.