Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Valentine's Hearts - Stamp 'em up!

Hi Y'all! I thought I wouldn't make any V-day crafts with hearts and all..but then I thought "What's a Valentine's craft without hearts anyway!" and proceeded to make a stamping craft that need not be packed inside crates after the V-day can simply keep it for display, as its not very V-day specific.

Ain't it so very warming and heart melting?
Well, its very easy to make and in fact a good project for kids..I've been married for a only a year now and have no kids, so I proceeded to have all the stamping fun by myself.
I first covered a canvas with a white cotton fabric. You can choose one of your choice. Stretch it over the canvas and glue on the back. For the best results in stamping, do not iron the fabric before stretching it.
Here is what you will need for making the stamps (Confused?? Well, of course I'm going to make my own stamps here; they're way cuter!!)

I chose four acrylic colors to go with, so I drew four slightly different heart shapes on the foam strip. Cut the shapes. Cut four styrofoam blocks about an inch thick, and glue your heart shapes onto these blocks. Let them dry. They will look like this

Draw free form branches onto your canvas with brown paint. You can see I was a li'l lousy at it and made the paint blot and spot too, but no problem, as the problem areas can be covered later on.

Now for the stampin' fun! Dab some color uniformly over a heart with a paint brush like this
 Stamp on at the branch ends, and have fun! Use different colors and shapes, and let some hearts overlap, as that is what gives it a perfect look. Mine looked like this after a while
Too bare for my tastes! So I went on doing it further. Its hard to pull to a stop, but I finally stopped when it looked like this
Its fun and you can let it hang on even after V-day, adorning a lone wall!
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Sunday, January 24, 2010

A unique Valentine Vase!

This is my first V-day related post, as I spent lot of time thinking of a unique idea for expressing my love to the hubby for this V-day, for it marked our third year together. I wanted something unusual and not very mushy, so came up with the idea of making a Valentine special vase from a glass bottle, and an old novel or book.  
Here is what I made
I wanted to use less of red and classic heart shape to make it a little different from other V-day Crafts..but couldn't quite keep off the red color. If you want to make something like this, all you need is a glass bottle, few pages off an old book(mine was a stupid novel), some red paint, and silver colored branches to glam it up! You can use any plain branches too, though..I colored them because my hands cannot be still when I see paints!!

It starts this way: Paint a glass bottle (or any vase, for that matter!) red. Keep it aside for drying.
Now for the flowers! I love books and though it was painful for me to tear pages from it, it was a good way to use an old stupid novel which I'd have thrown otherwise! Take an old book with yellowed pages, and rip a few pages from it. Draw flowers of desired shape and size (I made a 4-hearts shaped one and another shape at random) on the page on the top. Hold the pages together and cut according to the shape on the top page. This way, you can cut more flowers at once.
See, they are pretty! And bring in the classic look so well!
Now stick these flowers onto the painted vase with glue. These flowers would be very delicate so be careful while handling! I stuck them when the paint was still wet, so I saved glue, but the flowers absorbed some of the red paint too.
Here's the vase

Now for the decoration. I painted some branches metallic silver, and glued small paper flowers to them at random.
Easy Peasy! There, its a unique V-day craft that is out of the blue, and quite different. On the Valentine's I'll inscribe messages like 'love' and 'Be Mine' on the flowers and hang them again. 

Its almost screaming out 'Be Mine',  hope hubby likes it!
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Beautified Flower Pot -Its all in the details!!

I love to find new things and modifying them to suit my home decor. I made this lovely thing yesterday which adorns our wooden shoe closet
My husband says I keep looking for things I could find useful even if I had to rummage through waste. So yesterday I found this desolate looking flower pot in our old and neglected storeroom. I found another ancient and beautiful large vase too, but that I'll talk about in some other post.
This was the flower pot I found
Looks like its best left alone, I know..but it had a basket-weave kind of pattern I liked,and my mind started whirring regarding what could be done with this. And then I remembered, our shoe closet was feeling rather lonely too, with its vacant surface.
So I stuffed the bottom of the flowerpot with old newspaper to make it stable and to reduce its depth.

Then I took some wood twigs i had collected and painted metallic copper earlier and placed them in the pot. I stuffed in more paper to support the twigs, and covered it with some dried grass to disguise the newspaper and bring in some natural look. It looked like this
Better than before, but it still looked kind of incomplete. Something was I added some orangish flowers, maple leaves, and a cute li'l birdie; all of them streaked with copper tones.
Now it looked complete and beautiful!
Is it not so lovely now!
Here it is, from a long shot

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

My efficient jewelery holder

Yup, you bet you have seen too many of jewelery holders and are wondering what is the need for one more? There is! I'm a self-confessed jewelery addict - I have collected them from wherever I can- India, US, name it; and I'm proud as hell of them. I got loads of what they call 'junk' jewelery (I love them so, how can they be junk?) and it was getting difficult by day to manage and organize them. So I started searching for ideas on the blogosphere, but all those shown were merely sufficient to hold merely 8-15 pieces...What of the rest of my nearly 100 earrings??
So months ago, I made this by gluing cardboard onto my closet walls. Though it looks okayish, it was a painful act to pierce in holes into the cardboard and hang the earrings.

See, how difficult it was? I obviously wasn't very happy with this and began to search for more ideas. Then one fine day, I saw this PVC screen/ mesh in a neglected corner of a friend's garage. 

It had a lovely creamy hue and a nice texture and I was in love with it. My friend was too glad to get rid of what she considered garbage, and this PVC screen mesh was mine!! (Okay, ignore my hand!)
It was made of PVC or plastic, so I could easily cut it with my normal scissors. You can use iron or steel mesh as well, but you need to have all the complicated tools to cut and fold it, and there's always the danger of cutting your fingers from the raw edges. As for PVC, forget about any inconveniences...its so very easy to work with.
Moving on, I measured the dimensions of my closet wall and cut the screen (with scissors!). I mounted the screen on two cardboard pieces along the length to give it some height and stiffness too, and glued them together. (Do not use hot glue gun here, the PVC screen might melt out. Use tacky glue, its sufficient.)
It looked like this

You can fix the screen on to a large wooden frame as well..I simply didn't have one handy right then.
I then glued a wall paper on the closet wall (optional!) and glued the mounted screen onto it.

Next step was my favorite..I hanged my earrings onto the screen. Warning: there are too many, so be prepared for the dazzle! Here it is

Here's a closer shot

See, how easy it is for me to take out a pair while in hurry, and also to hang it back? Easy Peasy! All at almost zero expense!
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