Crafting: August 2011 Archives
As I went to toss my garbage at the dumpster, I noticed a small table sitting beside the opening. I had promised myself that I wouldn't follow in my parents' footsteps of finding something at the trash sites and taking it home to redo and refinish (memories of buffet tables, bed frames and planters immediately came to mind). That promise to myself was broken. I picked up the table and carried it home, determined to use my craft imagination on this blank canvas.
First, I spray-painted the table green, but ran out of spray paint. The table looked worse. Then, it hit me - I'd use my newly found picture frame decorating skills to cover the table with fabric from my stash and buttons. I selected a plain piece of pale blue fabric for the top and used decoupage to adhere the fabric to the wood. I painted the entire table with two coats of "primary blue" acrylic paint. Some places on the table even took a third coat of paint.
I've been collecting buttons for years and this seemed like a great project to deplete my supply. I used my trusty hot-glue gun and Arlene's craft glue to adhere the buttons to the table. On both thin sides, I applied buttons in a ROYGBIV pattern, keeping colors together but not worrying about shapes or sizes.
On the end caps, I covered one side with an owl sitting on a tree branch. The brown tree branch mixes in with the black buttons that were the midnight sky. Don't be afraid to do some laying of buttons - I felt like it added more depth to this project. On the other end cap, I put together a mural of a blue sky with a sun beaming down on three red flowers growing in the grass. I like that when you look at the end caps, you see the outline of a mural, but have to stare to appreciate the individual buttons.
This project too several weeks to complete between the labor, waiting for paint and decoupage to dry and creative inspiration to strike. I'm extremely excited with the end results and have even brought it into the office for a few weeks to make sure that I enjoy it each day. Our photography staff took the final photos for me. It's been one of my favorite craft projects since joining the Fabric.com team last year.
I am a big fan of Cricut and love all their cartridges! It is just too fun to watch my Cricut make perfect cuts without lifting a finger. I have made some other projects in the past with my Cricut: cutting fabric, making magnets and a Halloween banner. Today I wanted to do something for our Dorm Days series and so focused on cutting vinyl with my Cricut.
Cutting Vinyl with your Cricut is similar to cutting fabric, a little tricky at first but once you get your settings right- no problem. Also you need a fresh blade. I watched this video which was very informative (The video hostess is from the Netherlands so she says ven-al instead of vinyl). She offers some REALLY great tips for applying your vinyl letters and removing them as well. What I used was not Cricut vinyl but contact paper which is cheaper and easier to find than Cricut sticky back vinyl plus in some stores you can purchase it in funky patterns like Faux Bois or in your fave college colors. Vinyl is perfect for decorating dorms or apartments because it is easy to apply and easy to remove without wall damage. You can customize it to your taste or style by choosing the Cricut cartridges you like best. I wanted to incorporate the new funky, vintage inspired letters that are all the rage in home design these days. Instead of hunting and purchasing letters of various sizes, fonts, and colors then hauling them home and hanging them, I cut some from contact paper using my Cricut and different font cartridges. Each letter stands for a family member's name and our last name. It was so easy and a lot of fun to make, plus I get compliments whenever someone pops over for a play date or coffee.
Below you can find some more Cricut+Vinyl (contact paper) wall décor ideas for your Dorm or home. Have fun!
Even though we're just almost through "Back To School" it's not too early to think about Halloween! These little ghosties are a cinch to make. All you need is cheese cloth and heavy starch, balloons and cups, felt, glue and string.
1. 1. Blow the balloons up about 3- 4'' in diameter; place each in a tall cup.
2. 2. Take an 8-9'' square of cheese cloth, spray heavy starch and drape it over the balloon-cup structure. Just keep spraying heavy starch till it is fully saturated and form your ghost, pull some threads to make it a little tattered and wait for it to dry. (about an hour or so)
3. 3. Before popping the balloon out from underneath your ghost, glue little felt eyes to give it some life (or lack thereof right? It's a ghost)
4. 4. Attach thread, fishing line, twine, whathaveyou, and hang them up over a hallway, chandelier, or goodie table!
Embroidery hoops are not just for embroidery anymore! They are a fast, inexpensive, easy and cool way to hang your favorite fabrics or festive appliqués on the wall. Instead of using Halloween-printed fabrics, I used fabrics from the Kona Elegance collection. The tonal jacquard flourish design is perfect for a touch of sophistication! We have a variety of silhouette templates to use with 12'' Embroidery Hoops or you could even draw your own!
Before cutting out my fabric shapes, I applied Pellon Wonder Under. This made it so much easier to cut out my shapes, and applying them to the background fabric was a breeze. Wonder Under is absolutely true to its name- this stuff is awesome for crafts and appliqué. Just iron, cut, peal, and iron again. Boom. No sewing involved (unless you really want to). More detailed instruction come with the packaging. For the owl frame- I made the branch by cutting a 3'' wide strip of brown cotton print fabric, twisted it, and hand-sewed it to the motif to create a little dimension and texture.
Halloween crafts can be so fun for kids and fun for decorating. They can be as easy as starched cheese cloth or even bundling/draping some festive fabric like this glitter tulle over a table or banister.