Sunday, September 30, 2012

Artist Trading Cards

Over that last year or two I've toyed with making Artist Trading Cards. Last week I got inspired to make a new series from this purple and blue cardboard background - an empty tissue box! In addition to the cardboard, I gathered scrapbook papers, glitter, colored pencils, lace, brads, my sewing machine, a heart punch, a mini hole punch, scallop-edged scissors, some lilac parchment card stock, and three different adhesives.

I was inspired to make an ATC with a dragonfly theme because during this last summer, we saw more dragonflies in our yard than ever before. They really are amazing animals. I started my ATC by stacking two scrapbook papers and sewing them onto the cardboard.

I scanned one of the dragonflies from the scrapbook paper and enlarged it to use for the main dragonfly feature, then carefully cut them out. Using a colored pencil, I filled in the white background around the antennae and tail. I chose to add some dimension by gluing one dragonfly to the cardboard, then I glued glitter to the wings of an identical dragonfly and tacked it on top, curling the wings a little.

I cut individual flowers from a piece of lace and attached it to the card with spray adhesive. The little hearts were made with a punch and attached to the card with a colorful mini brad. Then I trimmed the edge of the card with scallop-edged scissors. The last step was to attached the decorated card to the violet card stock with double-sided tape.

Dragonfly Summer

I made a series of six of this ATC design. The back of the card is signed, dated, numbered, and named: "Dragonfly Summer."

The first four of these Artist Trading Cards have been spoken for, but I'd love to trade the last two cards. If you'd like to create an ATC and trade with me, please leave a comment and we'll work out a trade!


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Blue Buddies

I've known what I've wanted to do for this puppet challenge for a while. I'd found a pair of gloves in my closet that were a little too small for me, and immediately thought, "puppets!"

I've actually had all the materials I wanted for a few weeks now. I've just been hesitant to start because I had to get out my hot glue gun, and I wasn't quite sure what I wanted them to look like, and that intimidated me for some reason.

However! I finally just grabbed everything and went for it!

On the left hand, you have the girls.

(If you notice, I made one small deviation from my all-blue theme. The little girl on the pinky has a purple flower. I just had to use the flower, and there were no blue ones! We'll call it fair, though, since kids sometimes have trouble figuring out which color is which ;) )

And on the right, the boys.


I didn't do anything for the thumbs because I didn't want there to be two little people hanging out on the sides, lonely. :(

I got a couple hot glue burns along the way (nothing serious) , but they were fun to make!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Paper Heart Wreath

I saw this wreath made of paper hearts over on Pinterest and was inspired to make my own.

Though I looked, I could not find any paper printed back to back with two designs I liked. So I started by buying some 12" x 12" scrapbook paper. I picked 4 different designs in a single colorway. Then I glued them together with spray adhesive. Next, I cut the papers into 2" strips.

I folded the strips in half to make the point of the hearts, bent the strips into a heart shape, and then just stapled the ends together (rather than gluing like the original). I then stapled the hearts together on the sides (again, instead of gluing), added a hanger, and voila! A quick, simple heart-shaped wreath.

 After hanging by my front door overnight ... :: sigh :: ... it stretched out into an oval shape with misshapen hearts.

So I grabbed my hot glue gun, the wreath form I used for the cupcake paper wreath, some floral ribbon, some floral pins and floral wire and went to work.

First I wrapped the wreath with the ribbon, pinning it in place with floral pins.
Then I hot glued the hearts onto the covered floral foam.

Finally, I fashioned a hanger from floral wire and pinned it in place with floral pins.

Ta Da! For now, my heart wreath hangs on the front porch near our cafe' table. I think it makes for a cute vignette. Soon, I'll replace it with my fall wreath and move the heart wreath into our guest room.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Pony Bead Love

Jeanne used to make a lot of animals and such from pony beads. The last time she visited, we got all the beads out and dreamed a bit. She took a few home to make a project. That inspired me.

I've never done much with plastic pony beads, so I thought I'd try to learn to make a little heart. I found this tutorial on YouTube and followed it to make my beads.

The first heart I made (the red one) I used a flat plastic/nylon string to string the beads. The video shows how you cut the string and tie it in a knot. Then start a second string. Well, this flat string was thick and left an unsightly knot there on the right ... and another  on the bottom. (Click the image to see a larger version. The knots are very apparent.)

I tried the second heart (the pink one) about three times using three different string. None worked well. So then I tried a thin gold beading wire. Though it shows through the beads more than I'd like, it worked well.

Pony Bead Hearts

For the third heart (the blue one), I wanted to time how long it took to make. About 20 minutes. I was considering making these hearts and leaving them in geocache treasure boxes as my personal signature. That 20 minutes is a bit too much effort for my intended purpose, so I'll leave this project alone for the time being. 

It was fun to learn to do this peyote stitch pony bead project, though. It gets my hands twitching to do some seed bead projects again.


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Dotty Dispenser

It's been quite a while since I've done an AuralArtists Extra! But here we go!

I transformed my old boring soap dispensers...

...into much cooler texturey and polka dotty dispensers!


This red polka dot dispenser now graces my kitchen, a much less expensive and much more personalized alternative to just going out and buying a new one.

You can see the full DIY at my personal blog.

This was a fun & easy project - it took probably half an hour for both dispensers, and I'm so proud of how they look now!