Tutorial: Origami Vintage Style Indent Ornament

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It has been so long since I blogged!  I got married and then had a baby and life got crazy!  I wasn’t really creating much other than the occasional baby thing.  Out of sheer necessity this year I came up with these ornaments.  My daughter will be one on December 28th, so this is her FIRST Christmas.  We are beyond excited but my heart fell a little when I realized I can’t/won’t put my vintage mercury glass ornaments on the tree.  My Daughter is walking and into everything so for both safety and to save them (many are family ornaments), I have decided not to use them.  I am also not the type to just go out and purchase ugly shatterproof bulbs.  I am not a fan of plastic.

So through pinterest research I found this: diamond

I decided to make it recycled by using book pages.  However – it looks ok as a “bulb” style piece but while playing with I flipped it around to make it have an indented middle and fell in love.

So here is how to do it!  If you are using a thinner paper or book page you will want to back it with cardstock.

  1. Cut (2) 3 in squares from paper and cardstock. If you plan on decorating it above you will need (1) 3 in square of foil paper too.

 

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2. Fold each paper/foil square as show below.  SKIP the last step!: (click to enlarge)

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3. Glue book page paper to cardstock, making sure it lines up appropriately.  Re-crease sections.

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4.  Give that a few minutes to dry.  Meanwhile cut the sections of the foil apart.

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5.  Once the 2 pieces are drier, push the middle of one section through to make it the reverse.

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6.  Line up the points of each section and glue it together, holding down each section as you go.

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7.  Let that dry for a little bit….

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8. Line up and glue the foil sections alternating around the ornament.

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9.   From here you can really decorate it any way you would like. Sequins glitter paint etc.  For the other foil decorations, I used a Fiskar’s narrow heart punch.  For this to punch properly, I had to layer it with copy paper.  Cut 4.

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10.  Fold the small hearts in half and glue alternating around the ornament.  Top it off with a sequin glued in the middle.  For the hanger, I took a thumbtack and made a small hole in the top and curled some floral wire.

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I can’t wait to put them on my tree and not have to worry about my daughter breaking anything glass!

Enjoy!

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Tutorial: How to make recycled book page flower charms/beads

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This is actually very easy – it just takes lots of PATIENCE!

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Step One:
Using a small flower shaped punch (I like fiskars) cut out both the book page and soda can for the sturdy backing.

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Step Two:
Using Aleene’s Tacky Glue or Mod Podge glue the book page flower over the colored side of the soda can cut out.  Repeat for second flower!

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Be sure to let this dry COMPLETELY!

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Step Three:
Glue two flowers together to create a layered flower, make sure you don’t line them up perfectly, the petals should alternate.  Let it dry COMPLETELY!

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Step Five:
Once it is dry, punch a whole through the center with a tack!

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Step Six:
You will need a small bead of your choice (mine is 4mm) and a small bead wire.

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String the bead on the wire to the end and then place the flower on. Bend the extra wire on the backside of the flower all the way over so it is flush and holds the bead/flower in place.

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Step Seven:
Now create the loop.  I wrap the wire around my bead reamer and then twist the extra around the base to secure.  A scewer will also work fine too.

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Fluff up the petals and you are done!  Attach a jump ring to add it to a necklace or attach it to earring wires!

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Life on a Silver Platter – My Upcycled Chalkboard Platter

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After seeing something similar in a Pottery Barn catalog well over a year ago, I have been biding my time and keeping my eyes open while at thrift stores, flea markets and garage sales for the perfect platter.  I found this lovely large silver plated platter at North Country Neighbors in downtown Potsdam   for only $10!

The platter was tarnished when I got it, but all it took was a little elbow grease with a polishing cloth and now it shines!  All I did was paint a layer of white paint as a base in the center of the platter and then 3 layers of chalkboard paint.  Then I glued a long piece of beautiful red rose scrap fabric, with super strong permanent glue and as of this morning it was still hanging on the wall!

It is hanging right next to my dining room table and will be a wonderful place to highlight holiday/birthday messages!  
I love it so much I may have to head back and pick up one of the smaller platters to make another!

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DIY Giant Whimsical Paper Flowers

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I am not sure if I mentioned this in my previous blogs, but I am maid of honor in 2 weddings this spring and I have truly enjoyed being able to put my crafty side to work creating again.  Not that I don’t enjoy bed springs and recycling, but sometimes you just need to do something different.

I originally found this tutorial on Pinterest, the pin was from the Design Sponge website but the flowers were created by Ruche.  Which if you are in love with all things vintage and have never been to Ruche, check it out they have beautiful clothes and decorative items. It is one of my favs!

Anyways so I followed the tutorial, but have a few notes on how I altered it for my creations.

1.  When you are filling your cups with the cement make sure you have at least 3/4 of a cup, this will make them strong enough to hold up taller flowers.  My current ones are about 1/2 a cup and definitely won’t hold flowers any taller than the ones I’m showing (about 4′ tall).   I had to have a quick lesson from the BF in how to use quickcrete and strongly suggest before putting any cement powder in your cups add a tiny bit of water to the bottom, it definitely helps in the mixing process.

2.  Instead of using stucco corner, I used chicken wire, which we had out in the barn (so I guess this is an element of recycling)  It worked great and I didn’t have to wire it closed I just bent it to the stem shape and taped it with masking tape.

3.  Lastly, my flower tops are different b/c I attempt to make one like theirs and failed!  Well not completely, but I didn’t like the end result.   It is very difficult to tape the flowers together b/c tape and tissue paper do not work well together.  If it sticks, it rips!  So I decided to use five sheets of tissue paper and create blossoms like I used in my phone book flowers.  So much easier and created giant blooms!  I also made the wire “stem” of my flower long enough that I just stick it in the large chicken wire stem and cover it, no zip ties needed.

4.  For my centers, I took a darker purple tissue paper and cut it up with my fringe scissors, sprayed the centers with spray glue and dropped it on!  Spray glue may also be a good option for glueing the green tissue paper to the masking tape, as using plain white glue is very time consuming.

The finished result:

They remind me of the giant singing flowers from Alice in Wonderland, while the BF says the remind him of the flowers that come up through the pipes on Super Mario.  Either way excellent bridal shower, wedding or even to decorate your little girl’s room!

Enjoy!

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The UGG Boot Dying Project – Trial 1

Everyone who lives through the salty North Country winters knows it reeks havoc on Ugg boots.  My brown pair, which are going on 3 years old and still in great shape other than the lighter spots on the toes from the salt.  I would consider this first trial semi-successfully my Uggs are a little darker, but still not what I want them to be, so I will have a Trial 2 to post later.  
My Uggs before:

Step 1:  Soak your Uggs with Hot Water
Step 2:  Fill a large bucket with hot water (I did this in the tub and then brought it outside to prevent a mess)
Step 3:  Add bottle of dye and stir with a stick to mix in and then add your uggs (you may have to like wedge them down with something to make sure they stay all in the dye)
Step 4: Let soak for 30 – 40 minutes
Step 5: Rinse (This is where I think I went wrong, I rinsed mine immediately with cold water from the hose and I think I should have down it in the sink with hot water then going gradually to cool, I am going to try this  in Trial 2)
Step 6.  I stuffed my Uggs with newspaper to keep them standing up and to help them dry, they will take several days to dry.  
The finished product: (ignore the grass)

They dont’ look too much darker in the picture but to the eye they are a shade darker.  I will be trying this again though so watch for my results from Trial 2!

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Creepy Bloody Recycled Jar Lanterns

 I love Halloween and all things scary.  I have been working on decorations for the BF and my upcoming Halloween party and here is a great one I came up with.  This is super easy and I think really really scary.

Basically, I took a bottle of white elmer’s glue and add a few knife tips of the red gel food coloring (found in the cake decorating stuff).  I did an entire bottle b/c I’m making a bunch of these, you could also mix it in smaller batches.  Stirred it around with a wooden skewer and took my clean recycled jar, placed it on wax paper.  Took the glue bottle, with my now red glue and filled just the threaded rim of the jar with glue and let it drip down the jar.  Let it dry and it will have a nice bloody look!

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Wedding Wednesdays: Colorful Ruffled Crepe Paper Tutorial

I found a tutorial a long time ago on how to make this, but I couldn’t find it again to link to so I made my own.  Ruffled crepe paper is a cheap and super easy decoration alternative.  I made a bunch of it last fall for the BF’s Grandmas 80th birthday party and it was a hit.  It looks 10x nicer than plain crepe paper.  I wish I had taken photos of it from her party, but unfortunately as normal I forgot.

Step 1:  Choose your colors!  These could be your wedding colors or accent colors.  For this tutorial I chose lime green and fuschia.  You can also use three colors and just cut it into long strips and inter mix the three, a little more challenging but that is how I did the red, yellow and orange combo above.

Step 2: Get out your sewing machine! Using a basic straight stitch, layer your crepe paper one over top of the other.

Step 3: As you are sewing along, gently give the crepe paper a little push so that it folds a bit and sew over the fold.  This will leave a nice ruffle, kind of messy ruffle!

Step 4:  Keep sewing until you get your desired amount, it really isn’t a labor intensive process just tedious!  If you know how long you need your streamers to be for decorating I would pre-measure and cut strips of the crepe paper to sew, just make sure you add a little extra to cover the ruffling.

There are so many uses for this beyond just streamers, it could be tied to chairs or laid on a table as a fun runner.  I have even used it to decorate gift packages!

Enjoy!

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Wedding Wednesdays: Musical Love Banner

So last week I posted about how to make your own wood mounted stamps.  I finally got all my letters finished which I would say total in only took me about an hour to cut them all out.  I had all the blocks pre-cut and then i just had to stick them on.  They are working out great, check out what I made with them this week:

Stamped on triangles cut out of old sheet music.  It would be perfect at a rustic wedding!

Here are the stamps I used!  Only problem I’ve found is I need to make sure I am stamping on a flat level surface to get an even amount of ink on the stamp and then an even imprint on the paper.

For this banner, to make it a little heavier I cut out the same size triangles from a cereal box and glued them to the letters.  Using a whole punch, I punched holes evenly across the top through both the paper and cereal box layers and then threaded through a red gingham ribbon.  I got the entire roll of red gingham ribbon for 50 cents at the flea market

If you were planning on hanging this banner somewhere the back would show as well, you could easily cut sheet music out and put it on the back.  You could even re-stamp something on the back of it as well, so it would be 2 sided :).

Happy Stamping!

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Recycled Jar Homemade Air Freshener

Another great Pinterest find, created using any jar with a lid.  I made two of these this past weekend.  One for the kitchen with refreshing eucalyptus oil and another for the bathroom with lavendar oil.

Photo Credit: The Complete Guide to Imperfect Homemaking
Supplies: 
Any jar with a lid (doesn’t have to be glass, can be plastic)
Baking Soda
Your Favorite Essential Oil
Hammer and a Nail 
Instructions: 
Fill the jar 1/4 full of baking soda and then add 6-8 drops of your favorite essential oil.  Put on the lid, give the jar a little shake to mix together the oil and baking soda.  Punch holes in the lid with the hammer and nail.  
To refresh the scent I just give my jars a little shake when I am near them.  They work great!  Feel free to also jazz up your jar a little bit with some ribbon or scrapbook paper to make it more decorative.  
I am going to make one for my desk at work with peppermint oil!
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DIY Wood Mounted Stamp Tutorial

I have been trying to figure out how to make my own stamps for a long time.  There have been several trial and error versions.  I have done several of the carving type, similar to block printing which work well but are way to time consuming for me to make.  I created this “Wicked” Banner with stamps I created and mounted myself. Check it out:

Here are my stamps!  They look so professional 🙂

Large rubber stamps are hard to find and also expensive, so to be able to make your own is incredible. 
And here is the tutorial: 

Supplies: 
1. A print off on regular paper of the letters (or shapes) you would like to make into stamps.
2. Stencil (Sign) Tape (it is about an 1/8 inch thick rubbery material, mine was given to me for free, but I think I found it on dickblick.com)
3.  Wood blocks bigger than the stencil.  The BF cut mine up for me out of a planed pine board and they are a perfect weight.
4.  Glue Stick
5.  Scissors
6.  Exacto Knife (Optional)
7.  Cutting Matt (Optional)
9.  Ink Pads & A dog that won’t leave you alone when you are playng with permanent ink!  I swear he almost ended up with orange paws (optional). P.S. I like StazOn ink pads they are pricey but work the best.

Instructions: 
Step 1 –
Here is my print out.  My letters are about 2.5 inches tall, printed on regular paper.

A close up of the stencil tape.  It has like a thin white paper backing that has adhesive to stick to the  actual stencil material.  You are going to want to have the paper side up, the stencil material down.

Cut out each of your letters.  I just squared them up as close to the edges as I could and using a little glue from the glue stick attach them to the stencil tape backing (the white paper side). 

 Step 2 –
Cut out each letter with scissors or if necessary the exacto knife and cutting pad.  For my letters I only needed the scissors but for more intricate stuff you may need the knife.  It should look something like this!

Step 3 –
Carefully peel off the paper backing leaving the adhesive backed stencil tape letter.  Stick it to the center of your wooden block. Adjust it wear necessary b/c the material is a little stretchy.  (All of mine have held fine, but down the road may need some glue).  Don’t throw out the paper backing with the letter print out b/c you can use this to label your stamp 🙂

Sorry I was so excited to stamp I didn’t take a photo before I did!

Step 4 –
Stamp Away!

I cut out pennants from an old book and stamped my letters on it.  I didn’t press down too hard so that my letters have a distressed look.  Punch some holes and string it on ribbon or string and you have a easy banner!

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