Thursday, March 15, 2018

Rotating Necklace Holder

Rarely, if ever, do I start, finish, AND blog about a project all in the same day. Today is that rare day.

Since repainting the master bedroom I've needed a new necklace holder. The old one was nailed to the wall but after spackling and painting I was reluctant to re-add holes since we're preparing our home to sell. So for a handful of months, the necklaces have slowly tangled into a knot worthy of a brain teaser challenge.

Take One: 
First: peruse Pinterest for inspiration.
Second: pick several ideas that I like but (a) don't have the items on hand, or (b) pick ideas that are not feasible for the space intended.
Third: shrug off Pinterest and start sifting through my craft supplies trusting that inspiration will spark.

And it did.

Take Two: 

Thank goodness I'm a glass hoarder! Gave me a delicious range of color choices to pick from.

1. Cleaned gunk off of lampshade piece with sandpaper then sprayed gray matte, added a coat of clear sealer.                                         2. Painted random stick and sealed with a clear spray. 

And I'm thankful that I walk with my eyes down, sweeping the sidewalk, parking lot, or wherever my feet find me. My scavenging eyes snatch up funky metal pieces, rusty screws, wire... anything metal. Not sure what this scavenged gear piece is but it certainly is a fun topper! 

Unfortunately, I didn't take enough pics as I tried out bottles. I really really wanted the funky stick to show through which eliminated most of the long-necked bottles. This little bright blue one wasn't sturdy enough.

Fulton's Harvest Pumpkin LiqueurThis clear bottle came from one of my favorite holiday drinks.

To balance the stick I added these fun rusty coils but the finished product just wasn't grabbing me. Maybe the rust clashes with the polished metal of the necklace chains. 

Without the coils, the stick does tilt around when spun but rests comfortably when left alone. Perhaps I'll add some decorative pebble rocks or the like but for now, I am pleased with the result. 


I like that the longest part of this project was waiting for the paint to dry. On a hot sunny day like today, it wasn't a long wait. One screw and a short game of musical chairs with the bottles and DONE.

Pin for a long-afternoon project. 

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Suitcase Makeover for a Booth Display

I found this sturdy suitcase in my favorite shopping spot: next to a trashcan.

The lock was broken and I had to pry the clasps off to open it. A lovely rust orange greeted me.

My first makeover involved ripping out the orange fabric and Mod Podging maps into the inside. For durability, a couple more coats of Mod Podge were painted over the maps. The outside was given a couple coats of DIY chalk paint in grey. I thought it was done but I just couldn't gel with the look. For almost two years this sat in my basement looking just like this. 

The grey wasn't bad...but it wasn't great. I went through a season where I used what I had on hand and the finished product was the finished product. Lately, though, I've become more selective and decided that I need to LOVE what I make. Time to take my skills and apply them to creating pieces that spark passion. In this case, passionate pieces are more often than not turquoise, teal, or covered in relcaimed wood. 

the final color

Recently I fell in love with the color produced by staining over paint. The color produced is so lovely that I've used it on a mini dresser makeover, frames, a buffet (yet to be posted), a garden planter makeover (yet to be posted), and now this suitcase. 

 The lighting doesn't do it justice.

The Kingfisher blue paint was lightly applied over the grey paint. Then the Espresso stain was added. The two paint colors under the stain add a nice dimension to the color.

Curious about the photo's background? Check out this post on my re-upholstered chair. 

storage & display
As a booth display... 

  I like it too much to sell it. 

This suitcase is fantastic for use as a craft fair display piece. Maybe I'll add a length of twine to stretch across the top lid to hang the ornaments on.

   In the offseason, this will double nicely as storage. 

Like the ornaments? Available in the Etsy shop.

Now to finish off the hardware. 

Originally, when I was painting this grey, I'd painstakingly covered the clasps and locks in painters tape. The second time around, I didn't. 

Most of the brass is lightly painted/stained over. My sister thinks I should let the brass shine through. I'm not a fan of brass. (Anyone else floored that brass is making a comeback? Noooooo! I worked hard to remove all the brass from my 1985 home.) I am thinking of purchasing a patina paint or using a copper paint to spiff up the hardware. 

Of course...that will be another year or two! hahaha I know copper is big now but I do love me some patina. Guess I'll let the idea marinate for a while before deciding. I only do craft fairs in the fall/winter so there is time to decide. 

What do you think is a good color for the hardware? 

Brass? Copper? An aged patina look? 

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Sunday, February 25, 2018

New Stuffed Bunnies

One of my favorite Spring projects were these stuffed bunnies. They can be used as a door decoration or placed on a wreath. I quickly sold out of my stash and needed more.

These bunnies are small enough that I'm able to use remnants or fabric pieces leftover from other projects.

Denim from torn jeans forms the back of each bunny. I hate throwing out jeans that are beyond wearing but still have perfectly good sections of denim left. I was happy to find a reuse for some of the fabric.

My previous bunnies were adorned with carrots made from scrap cloth which created a neat rustic effect but then I saw this little bunny in the clearance section. It sold me on the cord style carrots. The texture was visually appealing to me.

To make this look, I dyed white twine/heavy string (I don't really know what it is) with Harvest Orange acrylic paint mixed with a textile medium. After the twine was wrapped around, each carrot was given a final coat of paint to cover any gaps and dots of hot glue that were peaking out.

*** Before getting further into this post I should give another shoutout to Posed Perfection for inspiring this idea with her burlap wrapped carrots.  Click Here to see her excellent tutorial. ***

The Harvest Orange carrots complemented the chevron bunnies perfectly.

But the striped bunnies needed a more toned down color and luckily I had some rusty orange twine in my stash. I'm thankful that I regularly peruse the discount fabric and ribbon bin for goodies. Its true, never know when you'll need it! (A hoarder's rule-of-thumb.)

close up of a craft fair display
I strive to improve my crafting skills and have
adopted Lowe's slogan: Never Stop Improving. I asked myself, "How can I improve this project? What would make this better?" Twine wrapping the wire hanger helped create a more finished look. I also added button eyes.

 And the final products: 

Like What You See? Available for Purchase Here In My Etsy Store

December Craft Fair Display

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Sunday, February 18, 2018

Faux Feathers

 A friend was giving away an artificial tree which I promptly claimed. It was a nice addition to the unfinished basement since we used it to create ambiance and hide the raw concrete walls. Now, we're getting ready to finish the basement, so things are being donated, put in storage, or sold off. The tree, however, has been added to my crafting supply pile. 

Initially, I only wanted the trunks which turned out to be made of real wood. I fully expected some cleverly painted PVC pipes but was happily surprised by actual wood. The branches and leaves were tossed into a bag and added to the donate pile. We have a craft resell store nearby called "Who Gives A Scrap." I donate, then go inside and buy nearly enough to refill the space I just cleaned out. I'm sure there are some kindred spirits out there who understand this! ha!
Anyways, I came up with an idea for the leaves before I thought of what to do with the trunks: make feathers. I pulled the bag of leaves out of the donate pile and went to town. 

A How-To Picture Tour:  

Remove leaves from branches.

Wash with dish soap and a soft rag.
Air dry. 
Cut leaves into desired feather shape. 

I forgot to leave stems on my feathers so
I ended up removing more leaf to create one.

Slice along the sides to create a feathery look.

And this is where I got ridiculous and took the long route to completion. I hand painted, yes, handpainted both sides with white DIY chalk paint TWICE! Then I coated each side with white acrylic paint, again, by hand, multiple times until I got the coverage I desired. UGH! Talk about a long process. Do yourself a favor and buy a can of spray paint. Wish I had. And I will when it comes time to finish the rest of the leaves/feathers. 

It was easier to paint the leaves prior to slicing.
I did myself a favor and used gold spray paint for the tips. I wasn't particular about the measurements. Most of these feathers are intended for the same project and I don't want them to look too uniform.

Finished Product: Faux Leaves

A cardboard piece (from a box of Fruit Loops, I believe) covered the bottom portion while the top was spray painted. 
I love the paint splatter on these! I think I'll do more like this.

If time is money than I have the most expensive supply of crafting feathers! I'm thinking of making some Bohemian dream catchers or some sort of boho wall decor. I look forward to using these faux feathers! 

What would you make?

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