Monday, February 1, 2016

#MICHAELSMAKERS: DIY Faux Marble Tray Using Shaving Cream!!


This month's challenge was "Make It Your Own".  So, what did I do?  I took a craft that my mom does with her preschool class and made it my own. But, even though I turned this fun craft into a classy piece of home decor, this is still a GREAT craft to do with your kids. It's the perfect DIY if you want to get a little messy, but it has an easy clean up and the results are SO cool!  I mean, who would have thought to use shaving cream as a medium to make a marble pattern?


Supplies:
  1. Wooden Tray (this one is actually considered a plaque, but serves my purpose!)
  2. Cardstock
  3. Shaving Cream
  4. Black Ink (or watercolors)
  5. A ruler or a square
  6. A paint brush
  7. Scissors
  8. Paint or stain for your tray
  9. Mod Podge (I chose the dishwasher safe gloss)
  10. Leather scraps
  11. Screws and a drill
  12. A dropper
  13. Tiny jar or vessel to hold ink / paint



1 - Lay down a piece of parchment paper and cover an area the size of your card stock with shaving cream
2 - Use your dropper to disperse your color on top of the shaving cream
3 - Press your sheet of card stock into the shaving cream, moving it about
4 - Peel up your paper and set it on a fresh sheet of parchment paper
5 - Now you are going to squeegie the shaving cream and color off of the paper with your ruler or square



6 - Now I wanted a little more variation with my layers and shades, so I did this a second time, but used a more diluted mixture of ink and water.  If you are using colors, you can do more than one color at a time and forego the repeat



7 - Once you have your pigment on your page the way you'd like, lay it flat and cover with something heavy to keep the edges from curling while it dries


8 - Next, paint or stain your tray while the page is drying
9 - Take your leather scrap and cut two strips to use as handles and screw into sides with a drill and small screws.
10 - Once your page is dry, cut to size and then Mod Podge the heck out of it!  










Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Game of Thrones Inspired Valentine's Day Cards :: Free Download!!

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download


I think we all know what a geek I am.  So let's just acknowledge it once more and now you can all admit that you're equally as enamored by Game of Thrones as the rest of the world.  What better love story is there than that of Khaleesi and Khal Drogo??  I mean, it's glorious.  There's no other way to put it.   I was feeling especially inspired by their words of love, so I made some Valentine's Day cards out of it... and I turned them into free downloads for you guys!!

These print perfectly onto the Recollections Cards and Envelopes from Michael's - size 4.25in x 5.5in. I used InDesign to print mine.  I created a print preset, setting it to Half Letter and landscape... this way I don't have to customize the settings every time I print a card.  

You have the option to either download the PNG file or the InDesign file.

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download

Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download


Game of Thrones Inspired Watercolor Valentine's Day Cards Free Download

Happy Valentine's Day my loves!  Enjoy!!


Friday, January 1, 2016

#MichaelsMakers - Make a Tiny Closet a Functional Closet


2016 is a year of new beginnings for me.  The #MichaelsMakers Challenge this month is to get organized, and I can't tell you how desperately I needed this.  I use to have my own craft room, a big space just for me and my art... and then life happened.

Divorce brought me to living temporarily with my parents (at the age 34, I know...), but it's been a blessing and is allowing me to get back on my feet and find myself.  As a result, though, I've lost a lot of space and have had to minimize my crafting supplies.  I went from a huge room to a tiny little closet.  And honestly, it's been SO GOOD.  I'm much more considerate when creating.  I don't hoard anymore.  It's less stressful when going through my things trying to find what I want.  However, this little closet had no shelves, so everything was just organized stacks of chaos.


When Michaels told us about their new line of organizational products, Cre8ted Spaces, and challenged us to get organized, I was so stoked!  ESPECIALLY when I saw this awesome little cart!  It fits PERFECTLY in my itty bitty closet.  It's also on wheels so I can just pull it out when I'm working on a project.

Check out the before photo and then the transformation!  I'm in love with my new tiny little creative space.  It definitely inspires me to create a little bit more!

I was able to make my yarn winder accessible, set up a little calligraphy station, store all my paints and painting supplies, sketchbooks, markers, scrapbooking supplies and leather.  All my favorite mediums so easily accessible!

Unfortunately, this line is not available on-line, so get your butt to a store.  Click here for a 40% off coupon!











For those of you that have been with ESM since the beginning, you know that sharing aspects of my personal life is not something that I do here.

The reality is, I want to share, but so many times I’ve started writing what I want to say and then I think, “nobody will care”.  So I delete it.  And then I post something completely impersonal that tells you nothing about who I am except what style of d├ęcor I like.

2016 is the year that sh!t gets real here.  I’ve been through some crap in my life.  And I know every single one of you has, too.  We already have something huge in common, something that unites us and has created a bond and that is our creativity.  So why not get real and raw about  all the things in life that inspire our creativity?   The joy, the trials, the down-hills and the up-hills. 

Maybe, once you see what’s behind the things I create, the ideas I foster, it will inspire you a little bit more.  Once you see that I’m a survivor of domestic violence, that I’ve been divorced, that I’ve lost a baby, that I have multiple health issues… you’ll realize that even though you see these organized and gloriously styled projects and photos on here, life is not, in face, perfect for me, but I am perfectly happy and incredibly grateful for every single thing in my imperfect life. 

This year, 2016, I want to be about connecting with all of you, because, quite honestly, if it wasn’t for all of you, for this community, some days I’m not sure how I’d go on.  So thank you. 

Happy New Year, friends!  Here's to a year filled with laughter, crying, growing and learning.





Thursday, December 10, 2015

Vintage Christmas Lights Wreath DIY


I've had this box of vintage christmas lights laying around for about 4 years.  I got them at an estate sale because... it was a box of beautifully colored vintage light bulbs.. why else??  And for four years, I've had the intention of making this with them and never did it until now.  This is such an easy project and such a great way to use lightbulbs that don't work anymore!

All you need is a high-heat glue gun and sticks, a foam wreath and a strand of twinkly lights.

Once you glue the bulbs to the foam, wrap it with the twinkly lights and hang!  It looks like a super expensive Christmas decoration and in reality, it cost me MAYBE $10.  






Love you all!! xoxox

Monday, December 7, 2015

A Christmas-Y Rosemary Tree Floral Arrangement DIY


Fresh flowers are my favorite thing. Ever. I also love fresh herbs and the absolutely heavenly aromas that come along with live fresh herbs.  So I decided to combine those two to make the perfect holiday arrangement.  


The Rosemary Tree was purchased at Trader Joes.  So cute, right??  The rest of the flowers, so beautiful, you can find here.  They have the perfect selection for the holidays!

I encourage you to step out of your floral comfort zone and play with different ways of displaying your favorite flowers for the holidays.  They may not last as long, but will be such a show-stopper for your Christmas gatherings!





#handcraftedxmas





Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Wrapping with Craft Paper & Yarn (for odd sized and shaped gifts)


I struggle all the time with wanting cute wrapping for things that are weird sizes and shapes, don't have boxes, or are just so plain on their own that a little something extra in the packaging would go a long way.

This tutorial shows you how to make a gift bag of any shape and size using only craft paper, yarn, a weaving needle and scissors.  No tape, no glue.


First you need to cut the size of paper you want that will fit whatever object you're wrapping.


Second, fold it in half and along the folded edge, cut the corners off.  This will box out the bottom for you.


Third, while folded in half, place your paper on the carpet and stab through both sides, up along both edges.  Then fold the shortest sides to create the roll at the top of the bag and stab completely through the roll.


Fourth, snip the folded edge (the bottom) once on either side by the corner you cut.  We will thread the yarn through here to support the weight of whatever is in the bag.


Now start threading!  Make sure to do the bottom first.  You want the yarn to be on the outside of the bottom to support the paper.  Thread both bottom holes first and make sure you have enough yarn on either side to thread all the way up and create a handle.



Now go on up the sides.  


This is what it will look like once all the holes are threaded!



Now to add some extra flare, I added some calligraphy to the front.  You can always use sharpies, or stamps, or paint.


This bag is perfect for this huge infinity scarf I crocheted.  What's more perfect for a handmade gift than handmade wrapping??



I also made one for a wine bottle and I'm obsessed!



Check out all the other awesome holiday tips and tricks from the other #MichaelsMakers!




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