Saturday, June 23, 2012


I am hosting a challenge on the CMB called craft wars.  The main theme is to use recyled materials in some way.  For the second challenge it is to alter a tin, box, container, etc.  I normally have been going towards the altoids tins, but I decided to try something different and alter two tin cans.

I inked some Simple Stories paper and wrapped and adhered to the inside and out of the can with matte medium.

I actually really liked this and almost stopped there and just added a little bit of embellies - but decided to go all the way.

This step freaked me out a bit.  I took a little bit of water on my finger and rubbed some of the paper off.  I was second guessing myself here.

I inked some pages from a book, tore them,  and adhered to the can with the matte medium.

I used inka gold on the top and bottom rims and the bottom of the can.  Then I used alcohol inks and the dabber in rust, caramel, latte, and copper and pounced in spots all over the can.

I added some burlap and inked.

I cut two Cheery Lynn doilies.  I sprayed with glimmer mists.  Then I added some inked and torn book pages.

I inked some I am roses with vinage photo, added a little inka gold to the stick pins and swirls, then glued on a few buttons.  I sprayed the inside of the can with a little glimmer mist so it kind of matched the distressed look of the outside.  I also added some pearl trim on the top and bottom.


Here is the back of the can.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Week 2 - Making What You Have Work - Gears

I use tons of gears.  I love Tim Holtz metal gears and I use tons of them.  What I don't love is that I go through them so quickly.  I have two solutions in my stash.  One is I found metal gearish looking items at the hardware store.  You can get 100 for a couple of buck then just ink them up at home and you are good to go.  The other solution that I have is using die cuts.  I know, I love the look of the metal.  On a project such as the butterfly this week I used tons of gears.  The ones on the bottom I used my die cut ones and on the top I used the TH Metal ones. 

I have to admit I did like how the die cut ones turned out.  I cut out the gears with TH Mini Gear die on scrap black chip board.  Then I coated them with black utee and embossed.   It gave them really nice dimension.  Then I used inka gold copper and inked them up.  I still let some of the black show.  I loved these.  On a few of them I just put the inka gold straight on the black chipboard.  loved it.

Week 2 - A project from stash - Butterfly is another butterfly.  Not the paper mache' ones from Michael's though. I found this butterfly at the Goodwill a little while back and new it had to come home.  I love funky weird things.  I am always on the look out at Goodwill and the Salvation army for wood and metal items.

Here is the before and after shots:

This was originally a candle holder.  I think it would make a cool caddy though for tools.  It would look cool on a desk.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Week 1 - A project from stash - Butterfly

Yes we all have stash.  Well mine is exploding out of the craft room in to the knook in the hallway and into my room.  So time to start using it and getting it under control.

I have a bad habit.  If one is good, 20 must be better.  The dollar ($1.50) bins at Michaels are so bad for me.  I end up with 20 of what ever in my cart or close to it.  Well when they had the paper mache hearts, birds, and butterflies I of course had to pick up a ton of them.  Well now it is time to start using them.  Thrifty Tip:  Save all packaging and try to use at least once before throwing away.

 I sprayed with deep purple glimmer mist.  Thrifty Hint #2:  Spray item on top of ranger mat.  The overspray of the glimmer mist will just rest on top of the mat.  I wet approximately a yard of snug hug (seam binding) and then used it to clean up all the ink off the mat. This way you get matching ribbon for your project without having to use more spray.  I stuck it in the plastic packaging overnight to get it all crinkly without it getting crunchy.  The next morning I just hung it on my rack to dry. 
 I gave the butterfly a quick hit with black webbing spray.  I love webbing spraypaint.  It does not take a lot, but I love the look of it. Here I started to add two different types of tule and a bit of lace for the base before adding the rest of the embellishments.  I love tule because that stuff is cheap and it lasts forever. 
 I added black flourish bling, gears, flowers, black beaded trim, th metal clip, and buttons to the front along with two stick pins.  I added some hanging clips to the back and used the matching ribbon to make a hanger. 
Thrifty Tip 3: Take the left over ribbon and make a little bundle. Add a few roses with the wire stems to wrap around the middle. this makes an inexpensive addition to a swap.  This was for the Mother's Day Swap that I was in.  (100 yards of snug hug is 9.99.  So it comes out to .10 a yard.  The flowers from I am roses are $7 for 100, which comes out .07 a flower.  Five flowers are only .35 cents.  Since I use the snug hug to clean up the ink I don't count it in the cost.  So really these little bundles are only .45 a piece.  Gotta love that.

Week 1 - Organization

Another goal for this year is to finally get organized.  I know it isn't going to happen overnight, but I am going to gradually take on a new organization project each week and maybe obtain that goal of being truly organized by the end of the year.  (One can only hope :) ) 

I started with an Alex (I have four of them - love them) that I bought from Ikea.  They have large drawers that seem to go for ever and they hold tons. So this one holds all my inks, paints, stains, stickles, glitters, brushes, etc.  I have baskets on the top that I need to get hung on the wall, but they are working out great where they are for now.

 The inks are 4 pads deep which is great considering these are the smaller drawers.

 I used metal tins I found in the clearance section to contain smaller items like alcohol inks so that it would be easier to take them in and out.  Four of the viva decor pins fit perfectly in the lid so they are not rolling about the drawer and they stack nicely.  ther are four tins high in each stack.

Now I should be able to find my glitter, inks, stains, etc. easily when I want them rather than searching in piles.  I still have hope in this organization attempt that I am going to find the metallic paint and finger knife I bought, but haven't found since.

Week 1 - Making What You Have Work - Metal Letters

This is week 1, year 2 of my blog.  I am going to post weekly of what I accomplished during the week.  It seems like I had difficulty getting in a daily post last year.  I may do multiple posts on the same day so I can categorize them.

Making What You Have Work

I knew I wanted to spell out a quote for a project.  It needed to fit in my grunge theme and it needed to fit on a limited space.  I started digging through my supplies to try and see what worked.  I will tell you that it makes it easier when you get all like items in the same place so that you can see what you have.  I have a tendency to forget about things until after a project is already done.

I tried chipboard letters but they were too big and I didn't really want to go paper for this project. I settled on the fact that I wanted to use metal letters so I started digging.  Yes I found two sets of metal letters that were ok, but not exactly what I wanted so I decided to alter them.  The awesome thing is they have been neglected in my stash for ever.  A friend gave me the block ones about 4 or 5 years ago for free because she didn't want them.  The tag ones I got in a value pack of metals from Joanns in 2007 for $10 when I went to Massachusettes to visit my grandma.

This is the before shot of what they looked like (no laughing - this is just a happy coincidence that I pulled these two out):

My problem is that are the silver color.  Not very grungy and the tags were too big to spell out the quote in the defined area.  So I started with the bigger letters and began to grunge them out. I started with a coat of gesso before I applied rust alcohol ink. 

The next step is I grunged up some small pieces of white core cards stock by sanding it.  Then I layered it behind the letters.  Great way to use scraps as it doesn't take much paper.  After that. I coated random edges with a versa mark pad and used black embossing powder.  It made a difference of really making the letters stand out. (This was a technique I learned from CoyoteKim).

For the tags, I cut them down to size just using regular scissors.  I wanted them to vary a little so I made sure that I wasn't precise in cutting them down.  The were so tiny after I cut them out, I knew it would be a nightmare to work with them.  So I decided to put down strips of the double sided tacky tape on a piece of scrap paper.  Then I arranged my title.  Inked the letters.  I did not gesso these as I didn't want them as dark so I just applied rust alcohol ink. I then cut out the words separately.  It made it so much easier to adhere to the project.

Finished quote: Every act of creation is first an act of destruction. - Pablo Picasso.  (Yep that is magic mesh underneath the quote.  I have tons of that stuff)