DIY – Spooky Material

August 7, 2014 in Halloween, Halloween, Halloween Creations

DIY Spooky Material

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Check out my spooky material.  Spooky, right?  Spooooooooky…… Well, I didn’t buy it, I made it!  Why?  Because it’s fun!  The only thing I had to buy for this project was a packet of cheese cloth from Home Depot (in the paint supplies).  It was about $4.00 for the pack but it came with a ton.  What I loved about this project was how easy, fun, cheap and quick it was.  Plus, I could customize my cloth to be any color I wanted!  Shall we begin?

What you Need:

Ink Pads (I used red, black, green, and purple)

CLICK HERE for Joann.com or Shop Scrapbooking and Papercrafting Supplies at Michaels

Cheese cloth (Home Depot is my favorite spot for this but this is my recommendation from Amazon)

 

The Method:

Ok, this is super complicated, so just bare with me.  What you need to do is open you cheese cloth, cut the desired amount (or keep it whole) unfold it, and blob it onto the ink pad.  Seriously, here’s a picture of my 3-year-old doing it.

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Man, that kids needs a hair cut.  I did one cloth that was just red, kinda gross looking but also cool if you’re into the gory Halloween look.

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Then I did one that was a mixture of purple and black and one that was black, green, and purple.  Go crazy with that ink pad.  The more ink you use the better it will look.

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And just to mix things up you can always leave the cheese cloth white and drape it like spider webs.  I have used this piece year after year.  I draped it and then just made long cuts into it to shred it a little.  I like it much better than the spider webbing you get that is just one use.  Just slap some creepy crawlys on there and you have a more than convincing spider web.

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Ok, who’s convinced?  It’s all the things I love about crafting, plus its for Halloween, sooooooo, yeah.  AWESOME!

<3, Sharla 

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Spring Bird Nest Decoration DIY Tutorial

March 7, 2014 in Creating, Easter, Easter Creations

Bird Nest Tutorial

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I’m not gonna lie, this is not a fast project, but it’s worth it!  Really, look at how cute this turned out.  It’s the quintessential Spring decoration.  And it costs less than $10 to make.  A little chicken wire, a little raffia a few cute eggs and a whole lot of twigs, all from Crafts at Joann.com (ok, not the twigs).  So pop in your favorite chick flick, get comfy and ring in Spring!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A boat load of small twigs.  I sent my kids out on a hunt and they just gathered what they found on the ground.  Keep in mind, the more flexible, the better.
  • Chicken wire – 18″x18″ square…approximately.
  • Hot glue and gun…lots of it.
  • 1 package raffia (my husband not-so-affectionately calls raffia hay…he’s not really a fan, but you can’t argue with the results!)

Whatcha Gotta Do:

  • First you need a form to glue your twigs to.  I like chicken wire because it’s cheap, easy to work with, and frankly I had some on hand.  Cut a strip off about 18″ wide using wire cutters.  Fold your strip in half so it’s a square.  Place it on the ground and use one hand to hold down the center and the other to start bending the sides up.  Fold the pointy corners down inside the bowl and just work it until you have a reasonably round or oval bowl shape.  If you’ve spent any time on this blog you know the instruction I’m going to give next; don’t feel like it has to be perfect!  You’re going to cover it with glue and twigs, you just need a base to start with.

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  • Now start glueing.  There is no rhyme or reason to this part.  Just glue…

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and glue…

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and glue until…

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the chicken wire is covered on the outside and top.

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I didn’t bother glueing twigs to the bottom because you want a flat base for it to sit and you are going to use raffia to cover it…and, frankly, I was sick of glueing.

  • Here’s a picture of what my raffia looked like when I pulled it out of the package.  I almost never buy it so I’m not sure if it comes any other way, but you want a package that is tied together, not a big tangled mess (unless you want the inside of your bird nest to look that way, which if you do, no judgment).

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Pull off a few strands and simply wind them around you fingers and then lay them in the nest.  Then help it unravel so it fills to the walls.  Do this several times until you get enough coverage in the nest to cover the wire.

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  • To finish the inside of the nest, tie a knot in a few strands of the raffia and make a very small circle using only two fingers the same way you made the bigger ones.  Leave about 5″ of the end out and wrap it through the hole in the center and around the outside 3 or 4 times to keep the circle bundled.  Secure the ends on the back with, you guessed it, hot glue.

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Place your mini circle in the middle and, TA DA…

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The word you’re looking for is “ADORABLE!”

  • The final step is for those of us who didn’t quite go low enough with the twigs (did I mention I was sick of glueing?).  I needed to cover a bit of wire right at the base on the outside so I just wound some raffia around the bottom a few times and (shutter) glued.

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It’s barely noticeable down there.  Add some cute eggs and there you have it!

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Happy Spring!

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<3, Sharla

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Using Your Own Art to Decorate Your Home

February 6, 2014 in Christmas Creations, Creating, Easter Creations, Halloween Creations, Thanksgiving Creations, Valentine Creations

Using Your Own Art to Decorate Your Home

Let’s talk wall art.  It kills me every time I go to Target and look at the generic wall art they sell, for a lot of money!  Why not make your own?  No really, I’m being serious.  You don’t have to be a great artist to make something that is interesting and quality.  Plus, when it’s yours it has so much meaning!  It adds character and warmth to your home.  Think about what you remember about your childhood house.  It’s easy to remember those wall decorations that were staples, whether it was a picture or a quote or a decoration.  It is linked to your emotions, and that is what you add to your home when you use your own talents to decorate.

I took a photography class in college and had to develop and print my own black and whites (you know, when people still used film).  My pictures aren’t the best ever, but I took them, I’m proud of them and they are pretty.  I mounted them myself with some spray adhesive on mat board and then framed them with inexpensive frames I used a coupon on at Joann.com .  They have been hanging in my house since I got married (just for the record, my husband never took a single photography class and he is still a better photographer than I, it’s his artistic eye….I curse and delight in it).  They are every bit as good as anything you’ll find in the store but I was there when the moment was created.  And it’s fun to brag to my kids that I took the pictures.

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How about this creepy little picture.  My husband, Matt, has always been creative and artistic (as I mentioned before), and this is a painting assignment he completed in high school.  Creepy Raggedy Ann and Andy….perfect for Halloween.  I just bought a frame on sale and had the framing department at my local craft store frame it for me.  Because of it’s abnormal dimensions I couldn’t just stick it in a ready-to-hang frame.  This is a piece of art that cost a total for $40 to put together, but to me, it’s priceless.  Now that Halloween is over we hung in my basement.  It reminds me that my husband brings talent and fun to our family’s life.

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Speaking of priceless, doesn’t it break your heart to throw away all of the creations your kids come home from school with?  I’m sorry, but there just isn’t enough room in the universe to keep everything they draw, paint, or glue.  However, my good friend Cassie found a great solution.  She took a few of her kid’s choice pieces of art and framed them and created an art gallery in her hallway.  She can rotate the pictures out as she feels, and the kids feel like rock stars seeing their art up on the walls.  

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I just started a new tradition this Halloween, but it could also apply to Christmas, Easter, Valentines Day, even the first day of school.  I created a collection of pictures of varying sizes of the holiday that we are celebrating from past holidays.  This is an example of past Halloween pictures.  I just picked one or two from each year, had them printed and used dollar store frames for them.  Each year I add one or two more.  It’s a fun and unique way to display pictures of your family.  My family and I love to look back on past costumes and it adds a warm touch to a creepy holiday.

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Check out this painting.  This is a treasured piece of art in our home.  The year my second son was born my husband wanted to do something special for Mother’s Day.  He contacted his friend Dave Adams and sent Dave a snap shot of our kids.  Dave used a photo shop program and scanned the picture in then did a color reversal program, printed it, and projected it on the the canvas.  He traced each color and then painted (just like painting by number).  The result was moving.  The crazy thing is, the picture he used wasn’t even that great, but the finished product is breath taking.  This is a project anyone can do, but Dave is happy to help you out.  If you want him to do a portrait for you, email him at mrdavidadams@gmail.com.

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Now, if you have an artist in your house, by all means, USE THEIR ART!  Matt does amazing spray paint work… for a lot of other people.  You’d think our house would be covered in it, but the picture you see below is the only one we have of his work.  He painted it for me for our 13th anniversary and it hangs in our home’s entry way.  It is a great conversation piece, one of the most thoughtful gifts I have ever been given, because it came from his heart.  I love it!  

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So, be brave, take a chance, put yourself to the test.  I promise, you will end up with something meaningful and you’ll have a blast doing it!

<3, Sharla

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Daily Doable 11/15/13

November 15, 2013 in Daily Doable

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Blog Post: Using the Natural World to Decorate for Any Holiday!

Click here or the picture to watch the Daily Doable!

 

Using Nature to Decorate for Any Holiday

November 15, 2013 in Christmas Creations, Creating, Easter Creations, Halloween Creations, Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving Creations, Valentine Creations

Using Nature to Decorate for Any Holiday!

I love to decorate for the holidays.  I love the spooky, fun look of Halloween, the warm, inviting earth tones of Thanksgiving, and the joyful bright themes that surround Christmas.  But adding decorations to these holidays in your home doesn’t have to be expensive and you don’t need an interior designer to make them look good.  Here are a few of my favorite, simple ideas for adding a lot without spending a lot.

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it’s time to put out some beautiful earth inspired decor.  That doesn’t mean you go to Pottery Barn and drop $45 on a throw pillow.  Don’t get me wrong, I love that place but shopping there is a rare treat.  Instead, look around you at what makes this time of year beautiful.  A huge part of Fall are the leaves!

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Olivia and Sawyer had fun filling an over sized Mason jar I bought from Joann.com with the leaves in our yard.  Check out how beautiful the result is:

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What’s more beautiful than the natural world.  Artists have been trying to capture it since the dawn of time, so use it!  It’s simple, beautiful and free!  Take for instance this simple stacking of mini pumpkins.  A friend of mine, Cathy Croxton of Card Sharks, happened to grow these herself.  I however, kill everything I touch, so I would buy mine.  But they are inexpensive and stacked on a neutral platter really makes a pop in your home.

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She also has a simple platter of Buckeye nuts in the middle of her table.  Again, natural and free, and LOVELY!

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Let’s go back to the same jar I used for the leaves.  Yeah, that jar cost $20 at Target and look at the possibilities…their as endless as your imagination!  All I did was fill the jar with a large bag of fresh cranberries, then cut some branches from my own pine trees in my yard.  Add a ribbon and-PRESTO!  Fresh, inexpensive Christmas center piece.  

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Do you have flowers or rose bushes in you yard?  I’m lucky enough to have moved into a house with a boat load of rose bushes.  Cut the wilting or dying flowers from the bushes and pull the petals off.  The ones in the center are still beautiful and a lot goes a long way.  I mean, Right?!  Click 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 for more ideas on what to do with your dead or dying roses, that are cool and beautiful!

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I think you get the picture.  In the Summer it could be wild flowers.  Spring, use the large jar as a vase and fill it with twigs from a tree with buds on it.  Get creative and look around you, it’s a beautiful world!

<3, Sharla

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Daily Doable 10/25/13

October 25, 2013 in Daily Doable

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Series: Getting the Most Out of Your Dead or Dried Roses!  Day #3

Click here or the pictures to watch the Daily Doable.

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Daily Doable 10/23/13

October 23, 2013 in Daily Doable

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DIY: Using Roses that are Dried or Dying!

Click here or the picture to watch today’s Daily Doable.

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Daily Doable October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013 in Daily Doable

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It’s Finally Ready!!!  Blog Spot: The Tardis!

Click here or the picture to watch the Daily Doable!

Boneheads Coasters

October 6, 2013 in Creating, Halloween Creations

Bonehead Halloween Coasters

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Ok, this is a post a long time in the making.  No, really, I’ve been working on this post for weeks and I just got it ready to roll.  So, everyone one out there, be appreciative.  Just kidding, but the thing I love about this post and why it took so long is because I used the pictures on the coasters (they’re actually greeting cards) for three different Halloween crafts!  You heard me, these cards are good for three, count them, THREE crafts you can use in your home during Halloween.  This is craft #1, Bonehead Coasters.  Here are the others:

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I love how all of these turned out but I especially love the coasters.  I love the skulls, I love the size, and I love that I can use them as a gift as well!  Wanna know how to do it?

You Will Need:

  • 1 box Bonehead Halloween Cards by Card Sharks (Click here to visit their Etsy shop to purchase a box).  This is your biggest expense in this project, but the catch is, there are enough cards in that one box to make all three crafts I have created.  So…..worth it.
  • 4″x4″ white floor tiles.  I bought mine from Home Depot for 16 cents each (seriously).
  • 1 jar Mod Podge
  • Straight cutter or scissors
  • Paint Brush
  • Light Yellow Ink Pad
  • 1 Piece of sand paper
  • 1 Can polyurethan spray sealer, this is optional but strongly recommended.  Just helps keep your coaster looking nicer longer.

*Everything from the jar of Mod Podge down came from Shop at Joann.com

Whatcha Gonna Do:

Each card is about 4″ wide and you want to create a 4″x4″ square.  So, cut off the back (BUT DON’T THROUGH IT AWAY, YOU NEED WHAT’S INSIDE FOR THE OTHER PROJECT).  Basically, I was careful and cut one that was the perfect size to fit the tile and then used it as my template for the rest.

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Now that you have your squares you want to glue them to the tiles.  Use the paint brush and mod podge and put a nice thick coat of it on the tile and then your square on top.  I turned mine upside down to dry so the weight of the tile pressed the paper to it.  Don’t skimp on the Mod Podge, if you do, you’ll get bubbled paper later, and that would be super sad.  I let mine dry over night, but Mod Podge dries shockingly fast so you should be ready for the next step in about an hour.  

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Now here’s where you’re going to make the tile look rad.  Use the sandpaper and in a downward motion sand the edges of the paper against the edge of the tile.  Because the card has a white core it will start to show through (which is cool looking) and give the edges a spooky old kind of look.  Be rough with it.  You’re not going to hurt it.  Trust me, don’t skip this step, check out the difference it makes…

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Now you’ve got a nice white edge.  You can stop there, but I think its cool to match the off white color of the skulls on the card.  I went digging and found my lightest yellow stamp pad that I could.  Then (with my 3-year-old’s help) I inked the edges.  You can do this one of two ways, use a sponge and dip it on the pad and then rub in a downward motion on the sides of the tile OR the easier and faster way, just rub the edge of the tile directly onto the ink pad.

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Like I said, you don’t have to do this step, but look at the difference…

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Now we need that good old Mod Podge again.  It’s great as a glue, but it’s also great as a top coat.  The other reason I like it on these coasters is because when the Mod Podge dries you can see the strokes of clear glue.  It looks way cool.  But because of that, make sure you brush it on evenly and in long strokes that reach all the way from top to bottom.  Don’t freak out when you start painting it on and it’s all white, it dries clear.

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Now, when your Mod Podge dries on top if the glue was not applies evenly or fully to the bottom you may have some bubbling up of the card (I did).  Just use whatever you can to get some Mod Podge down under the bubble and let it dry again.  I was able to fix all of my bubbles for an even finish.

Let that dry for about an hour and the very last thing to do is give it a couple of coats of your polyurethane spray sealer.  This is just intened to give the coaster and extra layer for protection against liquid and keep it looking nicer longer. 

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I’m sorry, but I LOVE these!  So much so that if you don’t want to make your own you can purchase them from my Etsy store.  Click the Etsy icon on the side of the screen or click here.

Click here to visit the Etsy store that sells the Bonehead Halloween Cards for this and other projects on this blog.

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Happy Haunting!

<3, Sharla

 

Napkin Ring Chair Decor

August 7, 2013 in Creating, Easter Creations

Use a Napkin Ring as Chair Decor for Easter

I have a big, manly dining room table.  What do I mean by “manly”?  Well, it’s very square, very heavy, and has lots of rivets.  If you saw it, you’d know what I mean.  So, it is my goal in life to make it cute and girly (which just thrills my husband).  So, here’s a simple, inexpensive and cute idea to decorate your chairs for the Easter season:
 
Easy Decor
These are $2 napkin rings from Tai Pan Trading Company hung with pink and cream sheer ribbon (also from Tai Pan Trading Company, but any ribbon will do) tied with a bow at the top.
 
 
Could it be more simple or affordable?!
 
Hope to see you hopping around soon!
<3, Sharla