Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Happy Birthday!

As you can see I've been on a little mini vacation from my crafts.  We've been busy with family, holidays and a birthday.  My sweet little boy turned one last week and my whole family was in town to celebrate.  He was very spoiled and now has a bunch of new toys between his birthday and Christmas presents.  We had an Elmo themed party and I made his Elmo onesie and Elmo cake. I'll show you a better picture of the onesie and cake later. Here are a few pictures from his birthday.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Penguin Ornament

Here is another handmade ornament that I made a few years back.  Very simple and it doesn't take nearly as long as the Santa ornament took me.

foam egg
felt (hat and mittens)
google eyes
small wood stars (feet)

Mix up the celluclay mix.  Cover the egg in the celluclay and let dry.  Once the egg is dry you can sand it where it needs smoothing and paint the penguin's body.  For the feet I used little wood stars that I cut up and painted orange.  Glue the feet to the body.  The hat and mittens are made from felt and I used a blanket stitch to give it a little more decoration. Glue the mittens and hat on to the body.  Next, I glued on the eyes and nose.  The nose is a small triangle of felt.  For the ornament hanger I used a piece of jewelry wire and a big bead that stays put once I crimped it and tied it off into the hat.  I think he's a cute little ornament.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wrapping Presents

So, the stomach bug came to reside at our house the past few days, thus the reason there hasn't been a post in a few days.  It took everything I had to stay awake and watch after my kiddos. My husband I took shifts laying on the playroom floor watching our youngest one, while our daughter was very content watching as much TV as she possibly could.  I even busted out with the new Shrek movie which was supposed to be a Christmas present.  Anyway, we are feeling much better, on to my post. :)

I absolutely love to wrap presents and make beautiful bows to go on each of the packages.  My key to wrapping presents is double stick tape.  I hardly ever buy the regular scotch tape anymore.  I just fold over the raw edges and put a piece of double stick tape on the paper.  It gives it such a clean look and doesn't take much longer to use double stick tape.
To make the present more appealing I like to add bows, trinkets, hand-made gift tags.  There are many ways to create a special package and you can make each package unique and creative.  Here are some of the presents I wrapped for Christmas.

 A close-up of the "A" that I made with wire and beads. 

 Pom Pom out of yarn for a bow.

Simple piece of twine with some white jingle bells.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Tooth Chair

This is completely appropriate for today as I went to the dentist to get a new crown.  The tooth chair was designed by Philippe Starck back in 2002.  He designed it for the Saint Martins Lane Hotel in London.  If you have never seen any of his work then definitely go check it out.  He's an amazing designer and designs absolutely everything from sinks to clothes. Click here to see more.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

My Crafty Child

My daughter is turning into mini version of myself.  The other day she had some ribbon and was telling me that she wanted to make a picture frame for her preschool teacher.  I wasn't going to hear the end of it until I got her everything she needed for her project. She's very persuasive.  I got all my beads, paint and glitter glue out for the project.  My daughter adores all things that sparkle and shine.  For the frame itself we just used cardboard since it was something I had on-hand.  It actually turned out really cute and she wanted to keep it after we finished it, but I convinced her that she could make herself another one tomorrow. 
Here is the final product.  I think she did a great job for a 4 year old.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cranberry Shortbread Bars

All I have to say is delicious.  I made them after Thanksgiving because I had a bag of cranberries leftover.  After I made them, I went back to the store and bought a few more bags to freeze to make more another time.  I found the recipe on Joy of Baking.  She has a wonderful selection of cranberry recipes on her site.  Here's a link to the recipe.  They also freeze really well. 

Monday, December 13, 2010

Outdoor Christmas Tree

 Here's a very simple project on making your own outdoor Christmas tree decoration.  This project came about because our store bought ones were stolen last year.  The nerve of some people!  They took off with our little trees and our blow up Frosty the snowman.  My daughter was so upset that we replaced Frosty and made our own trees.

dowel rod (.5 dia X 42")
1/2" or 3/4" plywood circle (Approx 24" Dia)
eye bolts (13)
white paint
2 strings of lights (100 count Ea.)
zip ties

First step is to draw a circle on the plywood.  The easiest way to do this is to drill a screw in the center and tie a string half of the diameter from the screw to the pencil.  Then draw a circle.

Now cut the circle out with a jigsaw.  I then painted it white and added the eye bolts.  You will evenly space the eye bolts around the circle. 

Go ahead and cut the dowel rod to size and paint it white as well.  Next you will put an eye bolt in the top of the dowel rod.

Now use a small paddle bit and drill out a hole in the center of the circle.  Don't go all the way through the circle, just enough to put the dowel rod in.

Now it is time to string the lights.  Use a zip tie to secure the end of the string of lights to an eye bolt.

Take the string of lights and go to the top of the dowel rod and zip tie it to the eye bolt on the dowel rod.

Take the string back down to the circle on the opposite side that you started on.  Keep in mind while string the lights that you need to balance the tension on each side every time you go up to the dowel rod.

Zip tie the end of the string of light to the last eye bolt.  Trim the ends of the zip ties.

Now it is ready to be plugged in and put on display in your yard.

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handmade projects

Friday, December 10, 2010

Wine Rack

This week I found a really cool wine rack made by the Iron Design Company.  I just love how it ripples down the wall.  You can find more work produced by the Iron Design Company here.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas Decoration Revamp

About 8 years ago my Grandma sent me a crocheted tree Christmas decoration.  I'm pretty sure it was something that she made years ago and was passing it along to me.  This Christmas when I was pulling my decorations out I decided it was time to replace the ornaments on this cute little crochet tree.  Some were missing and others damaged as you can see from the picture.

I wasn't sure if I would just knit up some little Christmas ornaments to replace them or if I could find some small ornaments to replace them.  I did find some ornaments, but they were pretty fragile, so I opted to go with red jingle bells.  I think they look perfect and are just the right size.  Unfortunately, the picture doesn't show the red well, but you get the idea.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Something funny

This post has nothing to do with crafts or any projects I have made, but I thought it was so funny that I wanted to share.  This is my son blowing raspberries on my belly.  I'm guessing he got the idea from my excessive raspberries on his tummy.  He cracks me up!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Art Easel Tutorial

Here is the tutorial that I promised you all for the art easel.  I'm sorry that I didn't take pictures while I was making it, but I'm going to piece this together for you.  If you have any questions, let me know and I'll be happy to answer them for you.  The art easel was made for my daughter who is 4 years old so it might be a little tall if you are wanting to make this for a younger child.  If that is the case, then, I would cut the legs of the easel shorter to accommodate.

1"x2"x72" pieces of lumber (4 pieces)
white panel board or a whiteboard (24" x 24")
chalkboard paint
1/4" plywood sheet (24" x 24")
2 mud pans
pair of hinges
2" drywall screws
2 eye bolts
#18 x 3/4" wire nails

wood filler

To get started we need to have 4 pieces of 1x2x72 to make the frame. I used birch for the project.  First, cut a 21" and 50" piece out of each 1x2x72. This gives you four pieces that are 21" long and four pieces that are 50" long. You will use these pieces to make the two halves for the frame.  Use 2" screws to assemble frame per drawing below.  You will end up with 2 frames after this step is complete.

To assemble the frames together we need to lay the frames out with the tops butted together.  Place hinges at intersection of the two frames at edge of each side.  Screw in place. You should now see it taking shape and becoming an "A" frame.  The picture below shows the hinge placement.

Eye bolts will be attached to the lower cross piece on each frame from the inside. Attach a string to the eye bolts, this keeps the easel from opening up too wide. The picture below shows the eye bolts and string placement.


Now you will need to paint your 24" x 24" plywood piece with chalkboard paint.  The plywood will probably need 2 coats of chalkboard paint and you might want to go ahead and start with this step to allow for it dry while you are assembling the frame.  After the paint is dry we will attach it to the frame of the easel with wire nails.  Next, you will take your 24" x 24" whiteboard and attach it to the other side of the easel with wire nails.

To give the easel a more finished appearance I chose to put a molding around the chalkboard and whiteboard.  You will attach the molding by using the wire nails. I used wood filler to cover the holes from the nails in the frame. Lastly, I attached the mud pans to the lower cross section of the easel with screws.  This was a perfect choice to store the markers and chalk for the art easel. 

The project is now complete.  My kids love their new art easel and I'm sure whomever you are making this easel for will love it just as much!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Rocking Squares

I thought this was a pretty interesting rocking horse, definitely something I haven't seen before.  Rocking Squares was designed by Frederik Roije and is part of the Square series.  The design concept behind the Square series is to develop traditional furniture out of square shapes.  To see more designs from Frederik Roije click here.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Car Seat Cover

I found a great pattern on etsy to make a car seat cover for my son's car seat. It was my daughter's car seat and even though I doubt he cares that he's sitting in a car seat covered in flowers and pink, I figured it was time to make him a new one.
I found the pattern at the etsy shop Make It All Yours.  It is a great pattern and very easy to follow.  I looked into buying a new car seat cover for our Britax Marathon and it was going to be much cheaper for me to make my own versus shelling out 70 dollars for a new one.  I'm very happy with the way it turned out.