Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Recycled clock part

Awhile ago I was having fun changing faces on some very cheap Ikea clocks.  Unfortunately my over-enthusiastic efforts led to the first one not working anymore so I pulled it apart and this clear acrylic piece was one of the leftover pieces and I thought it looked like a handy little tray.  I have been using it since then for different odds and ends, usually in Princess E's room (otherwise known as the Aladdin's cave of odds and ends - what is it about little girls and all their STUFF - oh, wait, actually I am still like that.....).

Here is how it looked before after coming out of the clock.

I used my trusty Mod Podge to apply green tissue paper around the lip (I have it raised on a roll of duct tape).

Then I cut out a circle of my Dotty Garland paper and stuck that to the bottom with the Mod Podge.

Here is where it got a little tricky as the home printed paper will smudge if you use Mod Podge straight on it.  So, thinking myself very clever, I used a spray on varnish instead.  Only, instead of giving me my nice shiny finish, the paper just absorbed it.  So, back to the Mod Podge.  I figured the varnish may have set the ink enough to stop it smudging and I was right!  Failing that I was heading to my scrapbook paper stash for another circle.  Aaaanyway, it all worked out and I think it turned out cute for Princess E.  Here is a before and after of her bedside table with it on.


and After - much better!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Family Tree

After a week of silence, three posts in one day...  I am getting them in while I can!

This is something I have been working on as a present for awhile and finally gave it to our dear friends (and pseudo family) here in Uruguay.  I drew the patterns freehand and then used an xacto knife to cut them all out.  I scanned the bird image into my computer and then printed it onto the blue paper.  I did graduate the sizes to show relative age differences in the children and I also wrote each person's name in black pen above the legs on the body of the bird.  The blue leaf on the bottom right hand side has their family name on it.  Below is a closeup of the bird detail.  This is in a frame but I took it out for the picture (darn reflective glass!).  I am pretty happy with how it turned out and will make one for my own family now!  What do you think?

I just rubbed out their names in Paint - if that looks weird...

My first guest post!

How exciting!  I was invited by the lovely Shivani over at My Owl Barn to write an introduction for my owl bookplates and bookmarks which she used for her Friday Freebie.  Thanks so much Shivani!  Be sure to go and check out her site for a thoroughly gorgeous collection of everything owl related.

Covered bulldog clip tutorial

Well, I kept going (see previous post) and now I have this.  I have been rounding up every clip in my house.  I need to buy more.

(sometimes blogger flips my pictures sideways - so annoying!!)

Here is a quick tutorial on how to do it.

1. Measure your bulldog clip (I used a ruler for the width and then just wrapped a small piece of paper around it to give me the length - I did this to make a template for each size) and cut out your decorative paper.

2. Apply Mod Podge to the reverse side and place your paper on to the clip.  You have a little bit of time to adjust it to get it even before the Mod Podge dries but you need to be reasonably quick.

3. Check to make sure you have the paper firmly in the little dent on the bottom and following the curves nicely.

4. Apply a coat of Mod Podge on the outside to seal it.

5. Let dry for about 15 mins (I balance them on a ruler that I lean on something so they don't touch anything else to stick to) Do a second coat.

6. Let dry thoroughly and enjoy your handiwork!

Here are a few tips if you decide to make some:

1. Make a template for each size so you can cut them all out at once to save time.
2. I found that each clip had a slightly different size so I cut out all the templates and then just snipped off a little bit here and there for each one once I checked their paper 'on for size'.  This really didn't take long and made for a snug fit for each one.
3. Use a thin'ish paper - they work better than the thicker scrapbooking paper.  If you do want to use the thicker one (and I did) you just need to hold the paper on while the mod podge really grabs so that it sticks snugly around the curves.  Luckily that doesn't take very long.
4. Don't scrimp on your second coat of mod podge on the outside - the extra coat will provide some durability during use.
5. I wanted to use some of the papers I had designed (see my free printables section) also but the mod podge smudged the print because my paper comes out of an inkjet printer.  Same for some of the kids spare artwork.  I am going to try a spray on varnish instead and will see how that works.  I will let you know.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Covered bulldog clips

Take these....

and, thanks to the wonders of Mod Podge (I love this stuff so much), 5 mins later you can have these....

These are the start of a collection of handmade present ideas for Christmas.  I will show you when I have done more - talk about a quick and satisfying project!

Monday, October 12, 2009

More free printable Dotty Stems/Flowers!

Ok, there are 3 designs in one document here.  I have done yellow, red and orange colourways (on the screen the yellow and orange don't look that different but they do once printed).  Enjoy!  You can download them here.  Hmmm, will be putting my thinking cap on for Christmas designs now....

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

Ok, tomorrow (as in, in 30 mins...) is my birthday and I have come to the stark (and pleasing) realisation that there really isn't anything that I desperately need and very few things I actually want right now.  Wow, I am so glad I can say that.  I feel very, very blessed with the best family I could have hoped for and the best friends I could have wished for.  I am a lucky, lucky girl.

p.s. is it tacky to give myself a cake???  :-))

p.p.s.  Cake clipart is from Daily Clip Art.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Free printable paper - dotty stems/flowers

Well, they kind of look like dotty flowers and stems to me anyway...  I had fun doing these in a few different colourways as well so I will post them once I finish them off.  You can download this here.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Quick and easy gift bag tutorial

Here are the promised instructions for the quick and easy gift bag I made for Emma's present last weekend.  These instructions look clear to me but I have made heaps of these so please tell me if there is anything I need to add.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Cheap, easy party bunting

We had A's birthday party on Sunday so I whipped up* some pretty bunting to decorate our back patio area.  You can never have too much bunting I always say.  Ideally I would like to have metres and metres of proper pennant flag bunting but I don't have any cute fabric to do that with at the moment so this is my solution for the meantime.  I simply cut strips of a small bundle of fabric I had (it may have been a fat quarter pack - not sure) and then tied them around some rough string.  I used a rougher string so the strips would pretty much stay where I tied them and not slide.  That seemed to work.  I think these turned out pretty good so this is the official family party bunting until I get around to making the fancy ones.

* when I say 'whipped up' I really mean that I thought it would be very quick and easy to do when in reality cutting strips of fabric and then tying them on to metres and metres of string actually takes about 2 hrs all up...just warning you.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Emma's present

I made this present for our dear friend's daughter's birthday this last week (she was, and is, 9).  I had so much fun putting it together too.  I was going to just give her a plain notebook (well, a prettied up plain one!) but then I saw the idea for a 'Things I Like' journal over at The Mama Dramalogues and thought that would be perfect.  I am going to make one for Princess E now I like it so much.  Here are the elements for the total package:

1. a 'Things I Like' Journal (I covered this in my 'dotty garland' free printable paper and printed the label onto sticker sheets)

2. a pretty 'mushroom' pencil (you can find out how to do that here - I love these!!  If only I could get those lovely natural coloured pencils - I will be buying up big on those when I go home for Christmas!)

3. a felt flower elastic band for keeping the journal closed (just a smaller version of my flower gift box band)

4. a coordinating bookmark (I printed my 'dotty garland' paper onto cardstock and then cut two rectangles which I sandwiched around a larger piece of pink card.  I cut out the pink card using scalloped edge scissors.  I glued them all together, punched a hole in the top and added a yarn 'tassel')

5. a bundle of personalised bookplates (I designed these in MS Powerpoint and printed them on cardstock) and;

6. a denim and button flower hair tie (this flower made in the same way as the felt flower above with the addition of two stacked buttons and sewn onto a hair tie).

I also made a little gift bag to hold it all and I will show you how to make these custom gift bags yourself (hopefully tomorrow).  My 'E' was a bit wonky, oops!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Melissa the great

This is the card that turned up yesterday for Lord A's birthday.  My talented niece made it.  I LOVE IT!  So did my kids of course.  It is so cute, don't you agree?  (disclaimer: I might be a biased Aunt but really, that is cute)


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