Hey, it's what I do! Welcome to my creative arts blog!

Welcome to my Maker's blog, where I feature my own unique creative projects. I'm six years out from breast cancer and counting my blessings.

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

Book Page Decorating Obsession

When it comes to my favorite decor material, book pages are my number one go to  solution.

I hate to get rid of my old books so using them on projects to decorate and organize my home is a great solution for me!


In my craft room I've used book pages on bankers boxes and other containers to coordinate my storage. Whenever I run across black and white gift wrap or contact paper I use them on other boxes since I really like the way the book pages and the prints complement each other.


Insanely Creative Christy restyled this $1 bathroom cabinet using dictionary pages while I was laid low by chemo. This is still one of  my favorite book page projects ever!


Of course I had to try book pages for Christmas decor and I REALLY LOVE the way the recycled pages look on the balls, snowflake garlands and "post it note" origami flowers.



And, of course, I restyled/disguised the brass and glass dining room light that The Welding Man loves so much. I'm really liking the shapes and different layers of lights in this recycled chandelier.



The Welding Man made me a wrought iron bakers rack some years ago and I decorate it all year long for the seasons. This year I made this book page wreath with a little nest in the middle for the wall above the bakers rack. I added leaves from various books, the book page covered vase and also the long legged birds. Along the edge you can see the book page leaf garland I made for this display. I love how it all comes together!



My family knows I will restyle just about anything with old book pages. I am always on the look out for vintage dictionaries that are damaged beyond use that have some wonderfully aged paper.


Here's another close look at the book page leaf garland. I really like it! Now I'm thinking that if I dyed the pages in shades of green they would make a gorgeous leaf garland. I'll have to try it!


And here's a new project......art on a book page background. I used colored pencils, paint and ink to make this tattoo design which includes most of my creative tools plus a wonderful quote from my sister.


Friday, February 24, 2017

Book Page Chandelier Lamp Shade

Here is the next chapter of the brass and glass dining room light. The Welding Man luvs it 
and  I keep decorating it and disguising it's wonderfulness.


Yes. The glass panels need cleaned.
I've used these two ideas for Christmas and Autumn.



Then I made this drum shade from a much larger lamp shade. 
It was okay but looked a bit too amber. 
And when lighted the uneven trims really stood out. 
Aargh.


 Several years back I made this book page chandelier for my craft room. 
It totally goes with the book page vibe I've used
in there for many of my storage containers.

Hmmmm.


I punched out about 400 circles from an old dictionary. 
It had water damage and was 25 cents at the thrift store. Score!




I sewed many many strings of 7 circles and hot glued them to 
a metal ring which fit the top of the hanging lamp. 

 


Oooh aaaah, I like it!



I like it alot!

This project is definitely a keeper. It cost me nothing but time and energy. I may add a few more circle strings, perhaps in a different size, and see how it looks.

But for now, I'm calling this a win win!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

DIY Wax Paper Twinkle Lantern

My idea for this lantern involved some twinkle lights a
and a pretty inside display on my bakers' rack.


I removed the candle and scrubbed it thoroughly...
 then put a string of white Christmas lights inside.


This is NOT the look I was going for. 
Even with glass marbles and beautiful sea glass filling up the bottom, 
the string of lights just looks awkward and a bit dumb.

I can't change the look of the lights but I can change
 how they look through the lantern glass.


I figured out how to frost the glass sides using crumpled up 
wax paper from the Dollar Store.

I used Mod Podge to adhere each wax paper sheet on the glass.



The wax paper makes the glass look frosted and crackled. 
I LOVE how soft the light is coming through the semi opaque glass.


Ooh aah!
Now the lights looks soft and glowing and this lantern is exactly
 what I pictured for decor on my baker's rack.
It is just right to use as a night light and as a focal point
 for each season's decor.



And here's the baker's rack all glammed up for last Christmas. 
LOVE how that lantern accents the silver and blue perfectly!

Monday, February 20, 2017

I Made a Barrel Shade


Here is the 90's dining room light which The Welding Man luvs.


I keep decorating it and embellishing it through the seasons to play up my decor and add a bit of color and whimsy. Last year I used Dollar Store snowflakes and fake Autumn garlands.


So I thought I'd go with a different look and hang a drum, or barrel, lamp shade.
Then I went shopping.

Um, when did lamp shades get so freakin' expensive?


After Googling DIY lamp shades I figured I could restyle 
a tall vintage shade into a shorter drum shade. 

I started with this 28" tall shade on sale at the thrift store for $2.99.




I cut it 10" tall using a razor knife and sharp scissors.



 The Welding Man helped me remove the metal rim and braces. 
I re purposed the ring for my new shade after cutting off the brackets.



 I hot glued the metal ring to the top inside edge of the new shade, then hot glued mixed trims around the outside edge. I used muslin bias binding, strips of burlap and then dressmaker's trim. 
I also added the dressmaker's trim to the bottom of the shade.

At this point I'm okay with the result and hoping it looks good once I install it.


 Well, okay, it looks fine. It's a  little too yellow and the light really shows up
 every little imperfection in the trims on both rims.


It is a little too amber for me and the uneven trims are
 just making me really itchy. Mentally, that is.



It looks alright. 

But now I have another idea involving garlands! So stay tuned.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Painted Area Rug Part 2

I used acrylic craft paint, textile medium and stencils to paint this half moon area rug on my carpet.
I really like how the colors and the stencils worked so well together!

Here's a link....





I'm kind of a color junkie so this is right up my alley. Exhibit One, here's 
the coffee table I repainted with chalk paint a couple summers ago...


I knew I'd like it as soon as I started using this stencil to put the 
turquoise curlicues on the brown and red background.


My original plan was a 2" wide turquoise border around the whole arch. Then, as I was painting it I had an "oops" moment when the bright blue paint escaped the painters tape.

Well, drat. 

So, this is how I dealt with it...by using the same curlicue 
stencil to add a sort of doily edge to the turquoise border.


No, it isn't perfectly even but I keep telling myself it has a certain bohemian charm, yes?

And yet I feel like maybe it is a giant floor doily now.

Or not. Hmmmm.



I'm kind of starting to like it.
Sort of.

And yes, I'm staring at it way too much.

.
So I added more stenciled curls in red.

Okay, I'm going to call it good and leave it be.

Also, I'm going to quit staring at it.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

I Painted An Area Rug on My Carpet

Small area rugs in front of our pellet stove are a hazard. The edges curl 
and even with a gripper back and carpet tape, they trip us up.
I decided to paint a half moon hearth rug instead, and I like how it looks so far!


Yesterday I vacuumed and shampooed the carpet thoroughly.
I started by drawing the half circle directly on the carpet with a Sharpie. 
There is no turning back now!

I used dark brown as a base color than added irregular patches of red on top. 
I used clear packing tape to mask the edge of the hearth.


I used regular acrylic craft paint from my stash. You can see the different manufacturers here but they are all compatible. I used a bit of the texture medium to keep the paint soft to the touch when it's dry.
I mixed the burnt umber and burnt sienna together for the cocoa brown color I wanted. 


I also had these curlicue stencils in my stash and used them for the turquoise accents. I like the reverse pattern effect they give me.


I will add a 2" wide border around the whole design, probably in turquoise.
 Then I'll add a few more curlicues in soft harvest gold and maybe dark coffee brown.



You see, THIS is my inspiration rug for the colors and designs. It is on sale right now at the whopping sale price of $479, plus shipping. 

I think my project rug is a much better price, since so far it is FREE!

I'll write another post with photos when I am completely done. 
I plan to spray it with Scotchguard once all the paint is dry.


 So far, I love it!

Here's the next phase of this project. Please check it out and tell me what you think!

http://makethebestofthings.blogspot.com/2017/02/painted-area-rug-part-2.html

Making Fairy Doors

I wanted some fairy doors to use as photo props while we were on vacation.
 As usual, I made them so I got exactly what I wanted.


This oval wooden sign is recycled from an old project. 
The Welding Man cut it in two just off center.



Then I had him trim the edges of one piece. 
Now I have two uniquely shaped doors!

Using the ol' tried and true Elmer's glue and craft paint technique,
 I gave both sides of each door a fine cracked paint finish.

Here's a link to my post about easy crackle paint with Elmer's glue....


Here's how the white crackled side turned out. I glued on the wood shapes for door knobs.

And here's how all four sides turned out. I sealed them with plenty of clear acrylic spray but I don't plan to leave them outside in the weather. These are for photo props!