DIY: Stenciled Glass Tabletop

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Good morning Thursday readers!

I found something that’s super cool that I thought I should share with you, for anyone who has a table with a glass top inset who wants to spruce it up.  I am using this tutorial from Nomadic Decorator as a how to, and you can go to her website to check out the full tutorial for this and other really neat ideas.

Now that you’ve seen it, don’t you want to make it? You will need some tools and supplies for this project. Obviously, your clear glass surface (that has been cleaned with glass cleaner), a ruler, a stencil of your choice, stencil brushes and stencil cream paint. You can see the specifics of brand and paint colours in the original tutorial. There are paints that are designed for glass, though you can be a little less concerned about that if you are painting the underside of a table that won’t get bumped, scratched or cleaned. Which you use is up to you though.

With stenciling on glass, you need to paint your colours in reverse – so your background should be the last thing you paint. You will also want to make sure that your glass is clean so that dust, fingerprints or anything else won’t be forever painted onto the glass. So the first step is to do any foreground detail you would like first, and this blogger did copper specks all over, so she did that first by flicking a brush with paint on it to get a very fine spray.

The next step is to use the ruler to find the centre of the table, and put the centre of your stencil there. After your stencil is where it should be you can use one paint colour or a combination of hues to paint your design. Just remember to use your stencil brush properly, so rather than brushing in strokes, you will be tapping the brush up and down onto the stencil, so that the paint doesn’t run, or move the stencil or have a harsh blending of colours. This will almost be like painting with a sponge. Remember that you can have the paint be as thick or thin as you choose, and this technique will allow for a smooth transition between multiple colours. This tutorial mixes 3 different metallic shades, but use whichever colours speak to your soul. Just make sure your design paint is thick enough that you won’t see your background colour through it. You might need a couple of layers for this.

Your last step is to remove the stencil and use your background colour to paint over the entire stencil, making sure to get to all the edges. Again, you might want to do this in a couple coats to make sure that you get good coverage. You can also use a bigger stencil brush to speed the process along.

Though I can’t take credit for it, I thought that this was just a beautiful way to give new life to old pieces of furniture, and gives an option to those who are shopping through second hand and vintage stores a new idea for how to turn a regular coffee table (or something larger…) into something with a definite wow factor.

Happy crafting!

~Megan

 


DIY Awesome Framed shelves.

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Good morning Thursday Crafthackers!

I have a lovely tutorial today brought to you by Shanty 2 Chic  that transforms frames into fabulous little shelves where you can display anything from books to collectables. You can find the whole tutorial here, but I’ll give you the basic rundown with some photos from both this website and others to give you some inspiration.

Beautiful white painted frame shelves.

Your first task is to assemble what you need to make this business happen! First you will need your frames. You can decorate old ones you have lying around, buy cheap ones at a garage sale or second hand store to dress up, or buy new ones that you can dress up or leave bare, whatever you prefer! And of course the number you make is up to you. With your frames, you’ll need to remove the glass, the backing and any hardware that is attached to the frame itself.

Your next step is to measure your frames – measure the inside of the frame and cut the wood (1 inch by 4 inch cut to your measurements). You can use scrap boards, as long as you have the means to cut it, and it doesn’t really matter the type of wood. If you don’t have the means to cut it, many hardware stores that sell unfinished wood will help you with this. Make two cuts for each side (as pictured above). Keep in mind that you do not need to have the boards set inside the lip where the glass used to sit. Just keep it a little bit bigger than that edge so that you have a little room for error and a little breathing room so we don’t give ourselves anxiety attacks over worrying about millimeters.

Next you will need to build your square. This tutorial recommends first gluing all the sides together with Gorilla Glue or wood glue, and then nailing them together either with a nailgun or just a good old fashioned hammer.

You should end up with a frame like this (pictured above), that is smaller than your actual frame.

This poster uses the same process of first gluing the picture frame to the crafted frame and then using 1 1/4 inch brad nails, they nailed through the front of the frame to hold onto the back securely.

You have a couple small last steps before you can display your marvelous DIY for all the world to see. First you’ll need to get a little tube of hole filler (found at your local hardware store) to fill the little holes left by the nails. And after that is dry, it’s time to paint your frame! You can use a spray paint to do it all one colour, whether it’s metallic or neon pink or just a plain, sophisticated white, or you can crack out your artist’s palate and paint them all individually by hand in whatever artistic way you can imagine.

Your last step is to hang them on the wall. Just be sure to buy some picture hanging supplies so that you don’t do any undue damage to your walls, especially if you’re going to be putting anything heavy on your shelves. If you’re not going to be putting anything too heavy inside, you can use these types of picture hanging supplies (one on each side) to hold your frame up and these types of no hole hanging supplies can be found at hardware stores. If you’re going to be putting something heavier on your shelves, I fully recommend heavier hardware.

Taken from Porch – using larger, more ornate frames to create these. Check out second hand and vintage stores for these babies!

I hope that this was an inspiring little DIY. I think it’s a fantastic alternative to bookshelves or whole shelving units that looks a whole bunch more unique and amazing.

Happy crafting!

~ Megan


D.I.Y Fabric Chandelier.

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Hello Thursday Crafthackers.

You know, when I first looked at this DIY, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. The more I looked at it though, the more I started to like it and started to brainstorm how I might do it a little differently. This tutorial is from A Beautiful Mess and you can find the full tutorial here. Probably my favourite thing about this DIY is that it is apartment friendly! To those of you who don’t have the space to do anything big, the permission to tear down walls or make too many holes in them, or who just plain want to have some nice looking things without the time/space/money investment of buying and installing a super statement piece, this may be for you! I just love how simple the supplies are:

The cooling rack you might be able to find at a garage sale, but you can find them at any kitchen store. Your fabric, any fabric store, but rather than browsing the shelves, I would recommend searching through their bargain bins, and if you’re lucky enough to live near an “end of roll” fabric store or one that has this type of section, then you can get a lot of fabric for super cheap. Your twinkle lights you can find at any hardware store (and if you go after Christmas you might be able to find them on sale). Your lace, you should also check for in bargain bins, or even see if a relative has any lace curtains that they’re getting rid of. You’ll also need 2 hooks that can screw into a wall and a drill.

Your first step of work is to cut your strips of fabric in varying widths, ranging from half an inch to two inches. This will help give depth and make your chandelier more interesting. Next, you can create texture by loosely stitching through them with the embroidery thread and bunching them before tying a knot in the thread. Here’s a video to show you how ruching works with fabric so you can get an idea of how easy this actually is. It can be done by hand for loose gathers or machine for tight. For your ruched strands, spread them out evenly and make sure to leave enough thread so you can tie them to the rack.

Starting about 5 rows from the outer edge, fold the ends of each strip of fabric over the rod, and hand stitch each foldd flap to the strip (see the photo above to see what words have trouble saying). You should vary shades, textures and thicknesses, but on the inside rows you should use more thicker ones. They will need to cover your lights and add density to your chandelier. Tie a knot at the end of the row (you can just sew continually without having to tie off on every strip) and trim  your thread. Repeat this until the outer 5 rows on each side have been covered. You will want to use thinner strips and lacy fabrics on the outer row.  Add 3 or 4 strips of fabric along the middle rows, just at each end (again, please check out the photo. You will be making a box of fabric). You will end up with a big hole in the middle for the lights to hang and for some thin strips to be added.

. Use a thin strip and wrap it around the edge of your sheet to cover the exposed metal. Stitch together at each end to secure, and do the same on the other side. It’s just like wrapping coat hangers to give them a little more pop.

Carefully attach your twinkle lights. Start with the plug near the back left (or right) corner and tie it near the top with a thin strand of fabric or with white twist ties. Continue to tie up your lights in three or four places, but be sure to let them hang down so that you will get light through the whole chandelier. Just don’t let them hang down below the fabric.. Cut 3 strips of fabric measuring about 2.5″ in width and stitch them together at the end, and do this 3 more tiems. You will need 4 sets of 3 pieces stitched together. I would start by making them double the length that you will need for hanging, as you will be braiding them and it is easier to trim fabric than it is to add. If you want to skip these steps entirely, you can just use sections of chain that you can buy at any hardware and even fabric store.

Pull one strand through the corner, and then braid the three strands together. This will support one corner. You’ll need to repeat this step for all 4 corners. If you have the patience to do the fabric  braiding, it will help hide the cords for the lights. You can attach your extension cord to the plug on the lights (which should be attached at one corner already), and braid it with the strand on that corner. Draw all 4 strands up so that they are equal in length and then tie them in a large knot.

Drill a pilot hole in your ceiling and hang a strong hook where you’d like to hang your chandelier – or you can use a hook you might already have. You may want to drill a second hook to hold your extension cord away from the light, and then you are ready to plug and have a statement chandelier! You can trim your fabric to be any height you like and you can do varying lengths if you prefer.

It looks pretty neat photographed in the daylight, but I think it would look so amazing at night. So to keep in mind, you don’t need to use cream fabric, if cream isn’t your thing.  You can always mix and match different colours, just be aware of how thick or transparent the fabric is. Black and red would look amazing, but you would need to make sure that your blacks are a little more transparent so that it doesn’t just block out all the light.  If you don’t mind seeing the twinkle lights, you could use lace, chiffon and other semi-transparent fabrics. If you’re feeling super arts and crafty, you can add rhinestones, or crystals, and if you’re a fan of things being rainbow, consider using multicoloured lights with cream. I hope that you enjoyed this simple and yet impressive tutorial.

Happy crafting!

~Megan

 


Fruit Tart Tutorial, Part 2

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Good Morning and Happy Wednesday! This is Kim, of Fantastical Menagerie. Today I’m bringing you the second half of my Fruit Tart Tutorial. The first part can be found here.

1. Roll out five small balls of Premo brand polymer clay in Pomagranate. Approx 4 mm in diameter.

2. Shape each one into a teardrop shape.

3. Flatten it slightly on your finger.

4. Using your needle ended tool, make small dots on the teardrop shape. They should be in alternating rows, all the way to the back end.

5. Place into the shell, with flat ends in the center.

6. Take the fifth berry, and add the green leaves to the top. Place it on top of the other four.

7. Optional- use green Pearl X on the leaves, and a dusting of the macro pearl on the berries for shine.

8. Put the finished piece into the oven. I would recommend 240 F, for approx 30 minutes. Once it cools, you can add findings to turn it into a pendant, earrings or a pin.

Continue reading »


DIY Doorknobs.

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Good morning Thursday Crafthackers!
I found something that’s a super cool, super cheap way to do an update to your kitchen cabinets, closets and wherever else might use a knob. I bring you, from The Painted Hive, a fabulously easy and cheap doorknob tutorial (you can find the full one here, with a plethora of photos) that can look super cool when it’s done.

These are super easy and you don’t need many tools or supplies. You will need some plain timber knobs that you can find at any hardware store (in whatever size would work for you), spray/craft paint, clear matte spray sealer, scissors, a paint brush, an adhesive (mod podge a similar craft glue will work just fine), and images, paper (as well as a printer and a connection to the internet will make this much easier), and paint to match the images you’ve chosen.

Notice how the colours of the knobs match the background colours of the images – this will help keep the illusion of seamlessness.

 

Your first step is to use your computer to create or find an image that you’d like to see on your knob and scale down to fit on the size that you’ve chosen. Print your images out onto regular copy paper, and colour match the background of your image with the paint you are using for your knob. Then, you can go ahead and paint the knob your colour, and be sure to let it dry.

Lightly spray your images with a clear matte sealer. This will give your images a protective coating and stiffen them slightly to keep the ink from running and the paper from bubbling and buckling when you’re gluing them.

 

Once they’re dry, cut the images out, cutting as closely as you can to the symbol using very sharp scissors or a craft knife.
Using your paint brush, apply a thin coat of adhesive to your knob, and while the glue is still wet, position your image in place. Press down firmly and smooth out any air bubbles, making sure that you keep your eye on the edges and that they are all nicely attached.

When you’re done, give your knobs a few sprays of the matte spray sealer. For extra protection finish off your project with a few coats of brushed-on clear acrylic poly too.  And you’re done!

You can do this with almost any image you can find, so be creative and find ones that speak to you.

Hope you guys enjoyed this, have fun, and as always…

Happy Crafting!

 

~Megan


Fruit Tart Tutorial Part One

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Happy Wednesday! This is Kim, with Fantastical Menagerie. Last week we talked about keeping clay soft in winter, today I’m going to start you on how to make fruit tarts in clay.

For this project, you need the following:

  • pastry shell mold, preferably silicone. You can find them on Etsy here
  • a small dollhouse plate
  • Sculpey Bake n Bond. This can be found in the polymer clay aisle.
  • Premo clay in ecru, pomegranate, and either green pearl or jungle green. You can get it from any craft or hobby store.
  • tweezers, needle tool, and flat blade or razor.
  • Optional: pearl x powders in Macropearl, green and antique bronze.

1. Condition your clay. Leave the red until last because the color transfers.

2. Take a small piece of the ecru clay, roll it into a ball, and press it into your mold.

3. Carefully remove your clay from the mold. If there is any excess, use your razor to trim it to shape.

4. Add a small amount of Sculpey Bake & Bond to the plate. Put your tart shell in the center over the adhesive.

5. Optional- use a brush and add a little Pearl X Antique bronze on the tart shell to simulate color from baking. Add a bit of Bake & Bond to the center of the tart.

6. Make your leaves for the strawberries. Roll two small balls of green clay into a teardrop shape. Flatten them, and use your needle to run a line down the center of each. Then use the needle to draw veins into the leaves.

7. Roll out five small balls of Premo Pomegranate clay. Approx 4 mm in diameter. These will become your strawberries.

This tutorial will pick up next Wednesday, where I will show you how to form the strawberries, and then put everything together to form the piece.


Cosplay Crafting: Breath of the Wild Bow

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Yes, yes, I’m a sucker for any and all things Breath of the Wild right now. My excitement for this game is probably the highest it’s been for any game in at least the last decade. So, I wanna share with you other fans and cosplayers a fantastic tutorial that had been created for making your own Breath of the Wild style bow!

Made and designed by , this is one excellent tutorial on making Link’s bow as well as custom fantasy bows in general. The base bow they got was from Amazon and is not practical for hunting/shooting, but great for cosplay. Obviously metalic paint was used, but you’ll need to get your hands on craft foam (a cosplayer’s best friend) to make the added on guards at the very least. You’ll find the whole detail process here, and I highly recommend it if you were thinking about adding a new costume to your closet this year. 😉


A Hand Warming Experience

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Happy Sunday, all!

While we are enjoying some unseasonably warm weather this week, it’s still winter and the Midwest US is famous for it’s sub-zero temperatures. So how to keep warm? With a little help from some grains (or seeds)! I’m talking hand/feet/neck warmers here. If you spend any time at all on Pinterest, I am quite sure these have popped up in your feed at one point.

If they have unicorns on them, even better!

They are pretty fantastic and a tutorial for the rice type ones has been posted before on Craft Hackers (here) but I want to go a little more in depth because these things are super effective, easy to make, and great for gifts. I’ve seen tutorials for rice, corn and flax seed types but hadn’t quite settled on which one would suit me. Lo and behold, someone has actually done some informal research on the subject! Sew4home compared the three for the time it take for each type to cool down (read the entire article here).

Which will it be? Will longer grains prevail? The seeds? The round kernels?

It turns out that flax seed keeps the heat steady for the longest period of time but there are other parameters to consider such as smell, feel, and cost. Each has a bit of a smell when heated but this can be reduced by adding in some aromatherapy (a great tutorial with different smells can be found here).

A little lavender can go a long way!

As far as feel goes, corn with all of it’s round bead-like size can be the most soothing against the skin. Corn also heats up faster and has great heat staying power as well. My favorite tutorial for making corn bags comes from the PlaysWithNeedles blog where she has a handy dandy tip sheet for making a “Cozy”:

The final parameter they mention is cost but I would also put in an honorable mention for availability. Rice is generally cheapest and most widely available but if you have a feed/grain store nearby, corn and flax can still be very economic. Flax does recommend itself as a reasonable option, especially as it is a seed and won’t need replacing as often (a purely flax tutorial can be found here).

Although I can just imagine the mess that comes with flax vs rice vs corn cleanup.

Whichever you may choose, there are some items they all share in common when making a warmer/cooler (yes, these can be stored in the freezer for soothing ouchies and headaches as well):

  1. Only use 100% cotton fabric, flannel is preferable for feel but not a necessity.
  2. Only partially fill the bag so that it still has movement and is not as hard as a rock – this also helps when sewing the end closed.
  3. Ensure that before the first use, you zap it a couple of times in the microwave to kill off any possible bugs and eliminate moisture.
  4. A funnel is your best friend when filling.
  5. Put a double seam around the edges to prevent these from breaking open (the temptation to toss them like bean bags is great).
  6. A cover is a great way to prevent these from getting too dirty but again, not a necessity.
  7. Heat in a clean microwave as I’m fairly certain you don’t want them to pick up the smells of leftovers.

That’s everything I’ve saved along my way in the quest for fantastic hand warmers! I think I’m going to use some of this good weather to open the windows while I get some sewing done, in prep for colder temps I know are just lying in wait.

Stay crafty!

~Laura


Dr Who Rug DIY

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Hi there Thursday readers!

I found a super cool, super easy DIY that I had to share with you. It’s also done on the cheap, as most of what you need can be purchased readily and cheaply at any craft store. I love Our Nerd Home, and this tutorial comes from there. You can find the full one here.

That’s right. It’s a Dr. Who runner rug. All made from a beige rug (beige is key since that’s a huge colour in the Tom Baker Dr. Who scarf) from a hardware store. For this project you will need: Light coloured runner carpet, paint – you can look at the photo above for suggested colour types: yellow, blue, green, red, purple, and brown but you can use any you like that speak to you of Tom Baker’s Dr. Who (this tutorial used a mixture of types – acrylic craft paint and latex paint samples). You will need textile or fabric medium (this is a substance that you add to paint to use it to paint fabric), sponge brushes, painter’s tape, a tiny crochet hook, a few shades of yarn, a ruler, and superglue.

Your first step is to use painter’s tape and mark off stripes on the carpet. Use your ruler to make sure they’re even – measure at both sides and at the middle.

Next, before you start painting, you’ll want to mix your fabric paint with the textile medium so that it won’t chip and can even be washed.When you paint the actual carpet, you want to stipple the paint rather than brush the paint on (like tapping the sponge onto the fibers to really get the paint in there)

The stripes will have to be done in a couple different stages, since many painted stripes are right next to each other. The first round of painting, it will be easiest to paint every other stripe. Pull off the tape, let it all dry for an hour or two, and then tape along the edge of the previously painted stripe so that you can paint the one next to it without it looking icky.

You can let it dry and stop there. Or if you feel the need for fringe, then you’ll need wool in colours that match your stripes. You can cut them as long as you want your tassels to be (but double it in length as you’ll be folding it in the middle). Then, just stick a small crochet hook right through the rubber backing on the runner to do a basic fringe (which is basically a slipknot). A little dab of superglue on each little fringe will keep it in place.

And that, my friends, is one of the coolest rugs ever.

Enjoy!

~ Megan


DIY Pallet Swing Chair

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I saw this, Saturday readers, and I thought I needed to share it with you.

This is super cool and the materials are super cheap. The full tutorial can be found here, on Instructables. You just need a few tools and a ploace to hang it and you’re all set to relax. You’ll need some tools: A drill, mask and gloves, a saw and a lighter. You will need some materials: Paracord (you should be able to find this at any hardware store), a pallet (you may be able to do it with one, but it depends on the usable wood) and possibly some sandpaper and wood sealant.

Pallet wood is hardwood and can be found if not for free, for very cheap. Pallets are what shipments are brought into stores on. This is treated wood, so you will need to wear a mask and gloves at all times, and when you are finished cutting and drilling, it’s very important that you seal your wood. You can use other ropes, but this tutorial recommends paracord because it’s small, strong and doesn’t tend to stretch. You can also keep it from unravelling or fraying by using fire to melt the ends of the cords.

Your first step is to take apart your pallet. The trick is to get the wood apart without breaking it (prying it can cause a lot of breakage but can be done). A sawzall (pictured above) can be used to cut the pieces apart through the nails. You can pop the rest of the nail out of the wood after you’re done.

Before you cut your wood, you’ll need to decide how wide to cut your wood for your chair. This tutorial was done with 20 inch long boards, but you can opt for bigger or smaller. Bigger would allow for more sizes of bottoms to fit in it. But it’s up to you. 16 boards at 20 inches long were used for this particular project. Make sure if you’re swing yourself that you keep your eyes open for any nails you didn’t get out of the wood. If you don’t have a table saw, and don’t want to do it manually ( and I wouldn’t blame you) go talk to a local hardware store and you can see if they have a service of having someone use their tools for your needs.

Next you will need to mark the holes for your cord to go through. This tutorial put laces 1/2″ from the edge of the board and then 2″ apart. You can choose whatever dimensions suit your project and your tastes so long as the holes are far enough in from the edge of the board  so that it does not break once it has weight on it. Also, be aware that boards with laces that are spaced further apart will tend to pull away from each other more, which can create a gap that can pinch fingers, legs, and cheeks.


With everything marked, it’s time to drill. You can use a regular or table drill and just be sure to drill holes just slightly bigger than your cord. And as always… safety first! So be sure to be taking proper precautions for whichever method you choose.

Please check out the instructable for more photos.

Now it is time to lace, like you would shoes, with your paracord. You can melt the ends with the lighter to make it easier.

When you reach the end, cut the paracord, making sure you leave enough slack to tie a strong knot at the end. You should be using one piece to tie two slats together, and you can measure your first piece to use as a template for the rest. I would make them a little longer so you have a little room for error, in case you need it. Make sure you are aware of which side of the board is up and which is down so that you can end up with all of the nice looking wood facing up, and it looks better to have all the knots sticking out the bottom. When you finish a lace, go back and pull the cords tight at each “X” so that there’s no slack.

Now all you have to do is hang the chair from whatever structure you have available.
I used some 2×4’s between the trees in the back yard (not the prettiest but it works). Just drill a couple of holes in each of the four corners you would like to hang the chair from and thread the paracord through them, though I would drill a hole in the second last slat where your legs would hang so that it will be more comfortable. You can even adjust the lounge factor – hanging these further apart will let you lay back, and closer together will be more upright. Two strands of paracords were used for this one, but for extra strength, you can braid together more.

Once you get the idea you can stain it, use different cord colours, build a structure... really whatever you like

Once you get the idea you can stain it, use different cord colours, build a structure… really whatever you like

Hope you enjoyed this little DIY. I thought it was so simple, and so cool. You need a little know how with tools, but I find that even if I don’t have it, someone I know does. Which works for me.

Happy crafting!