These golden animal ornaments are so beautiful, it’s crazy how easy they are to make. This project is also a great way to preserve old memories by turning your kids toys into family ornaments that will last a lifetime. And while spray painting is not the best project to elicit help from the little ones, giving the toys a nice sudsy bubble bath before you begin, is.
You will need clean plastic toy animals, small eyelets, primer, gold spray paint, a small hammer. Once you have collected all the essentials, it is time to set up your work area. Find a large, open, well-ventilated space and spread out some cardboard.
Start by choosing an animal and finding a nice balance spot for inserting the eyelet. Hold the eyelet against the spot and tap a few times with the hammer to make a prick in the plastic. This will make it easier to twist in the screw. Repeat with your animals until the entire pack is ready to go.
Spread the animals out across the cardboard and apply the first coat of primer. I always start with my animals lying down on their side so I can get the undercarriage. Once that coat dries completely I stand them up and apply a layer covering the rest of the piece. The same principle applies when doing the topcoat. Start with the bottom, spray and dry and then do the top. The most important part of spraying paint, aside from good ventilation, is to keep a few feet away so the paint goes on evenly and to allow each layer to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.
Once the ornaments are dry, thread a piece of twine or gold string through the eyelet and your new handmade dazzling gold trophy pieces are ready to go. I am wrapping mine up as gifts, individually on a bed of shredded paper in little white bags tied with ribbon and tiny gold painted pinecones.
Here on the east coast the days seem shorter and the air is brisk, leaves have been falling and the trees are almost bare. The time has come for enjoying cool weather hikes and cleaning up our yards in preparation for winter chill. And as we do, we come across a bountiful and natural selection of potential holiday decorations.
Last weekend a friend came bearing bags of pinecones from small to large. He taught me how to make wreaths and centerpieces out of dying vines and tall grass. We added pinecones as accents and decorated the house for fall. After we were done, I found myself with over half a bag to pinecones to spare. So this weekend, I bought a can of neon paint and brightened them up a bit. Here are the results.
These neon pinecone ornaments are so easy and yield such popping results that you’ll want to make them for everyone you know. The two most important things you need are primer, so you really get those neon brights, and an open space in which to work.
For a little extra pizazz, I added a layer of silver glitter spray paint to the cones once the neon color was dry. It’s so easy to get carried away!
Wrap fishing wire around the end of each pinecone, double knot and hang.
I can’t wait to hang some on a real tree, and give the other half away as gifts!
This last weekend was a craftacular activities weekend. And while there are some pretty awesome projects coming up on the blog, these simple Astro Rocks were like an added crafting bonus. I mean, when your outside with an awesome can of 24K Gold spray, paint it’s easy to get carried away.
These astrological symbol stones also make great gifts for both the upcoming holidays and, of course, birthdays.
All you need is an outdoor workspace (for spray painting), a few rocks, gold spray paint, black acrylic paint, a brush and a chart of simple astrological symbols. Have fun and make tons…. literally.
After a nice long summer of travel and beaches, there’s nothing like settling back into the snuggly fall weather with a little home updating. After hanging the awesome Chris Marley owl butterfly we bought over the summer, we moved on to the air plants we brought back from Cape Cod and the beautiful hexagonal terrarium. I have to say, there is nothing easier to make and maintain than an air plant terrarium. They are simple to assemble and the plants only need an occasional spritzing or a weekly dunk in water to thrive. I love our new terrarium and our warm and natural corner redo.
All you need for this is a container, gardening moss and a few air plants. Simple is better, but you can also add a favorite rock or mineral, shells collected on a favorite vacation, driftwood twigs, etc.
It’s time to get stitching for spring with this super cute glove bunny. This is Coco, bunny #1 in my bunny making journey (I have since stitched up and shared over 20 of these little guys) Hippity-hoppity.
You can either use a pair of holey gloves that aren’t going to make it to next year, or a pair of cheapo worker man gloves from the 99 cent store like I did here. The details of the project are outlined in the pictures below… you are going to have to CLICK on the pictures to see them in more detail.
For the arms: I stuffed them about 3/4 full with the other pieces of glove that were cut off and then tucked the rest of the finger (the cut off part) back in to the finger with the stuffing, creating a smooth edge. Stitch the arm on to the bottom of the body, below the rim of the glove, with either matching or contrasting thread if you want a patchwork look.
Stuffing the bunny: Stuff the head and body, use a chop stick to get the filler up into the ears and legs. You can use whatever type off fill you want, but if you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I like to use recycled fill like stray sock stuffing or an old clean t-shirt all chopped up.
Attaching the head to the body: If you notice, with this particular glove, there is a lip (or a rim) around the bottom of the glove. If you notice on the top picture, it looks like the bunny is wearing a turtleneck… I simply shoved the head all the way down into the body portion of the bunny. Sewed along the edge where they were joined (I went around twice with the stitching because some of my bunnies were going to kids and I wanted them to last through some heavy hugging) and then flipped the rim of the glove over the stitching to create the turtleneck effect.
And if you only have one stray glove lying around the house, be sure to check out the baby glove bunny project. Happy Spring!!
This may come as a surprise since I don’t post a lot about either.. but two of my favorite mediums to dabble in are linocut printing and india ink. Here’s a quickie run-through of my latest project:
(click on the pics for more detail)
Please keep in mind that this is only an overview of linocut printing, and that any time you plan on using a sharp tool, it is important to observe proper safety precautions. The instructables website has a nice piece on linocut printing and safety here.
And for further reading and inspiration be sure to check out this impressive online exhibit of Picasso’s prints by MOMA. As usual, they have outdone themselves with another amazing interactive web presentation!! Love. Love.
Get in the Valentine’s mood and start spreading the love a little earlier this year with a project that ends in a gift. While this is a photo project, moreover, it’s a way to leave a little heart in some unexpected places.
Shown, are just a sampling of outtakes from my Hearts Project. To get started all you need is brightly colored paper, scissors, tape, a digital camera, and the guts to look ridiculous in front other people for a few moments.
The adventure began by cutting out a purse-full of hot pink hearts, grabbing my camera, some silver duct tape (for lastablitiy) and going about my week as usual. The only difference being that, like cupid, I left a little love everywhere I went… and photographed it!! Sometimes it was not possible or appropriate, but whenever I could I left the heart where it was shot, like tiny pink remanence of joy for whomever might cross its path.
There are oodles of things to do with the pics when you’re done, but if you’re want to really go for it, I suggest transforming your digital collection into a beautifully bound book to present to your Valentine. Both Kodak Gallery and iPhoto are great reasonably priced places to get you going.
I hope to see your hearts around town!!
I’ve been busy, busy, busy, sewing surprises for those I care about (will post details AFTER the gifts have been received). In the meantime, I thought I would post some pictures of last year’s holiday project. I’m happy to see that many of the little critters I gave away last year have made a holiday comeback.
Happy Holidays. xoxox
I was about to make an impulse buy and purchase a charming roll of recycled holiday paper (placed cleverly near the register so you drool over it while waiting in line)… then I remembered all the magazines in the recycling bin, and put it back.
There’s beauty in resourcefulness… plain and simple.