Saturday, 30 June 2012

CD Spindle Earring Stand - Tutorial



If you are anything like me, trying to find a pair of earring first thing in the morning when you are rushing to leave the house is a nightmare.


So when I found this very simple project to take the leftover stuff from a stack of blank CDs and make a stand to hold earrings, I was thrilled and thought I would have to share it with you



CD Spindle Earring Stand


Instructables provide some clear instructions about how to make your own earring stand from a CD and a CD stack spindle...easy peasy!

Step 1Find a suitable CD stack spindle


iFind a suitable CD stack spindle
I had a stack of blank CDs stored on this spindle. There was also a plastic cover, but it's unfortunately gone to the landfill, as I couldn't figure out another use for it. 

But the spindle that held the blank CDs was quite nice, and the little plastic top that held the whole thing together screwed on nicely.

Obviously this won't work with just any spindle without some ingenuity. Hopefully whatever you have lying around can be made to work.

Step 2Drill holes in the CD


iDrill holes in the CD
I had a stack of CDs with useless data on them. This one came from a tourist bureau, and I liked the color, so decided to have the colored/label part show.
You could also put the silver, shiny side up.

Start with the CD.
I used a Dremel cutting tool, but a power drill would also work.

1) clamp the CD firmly to a piece of wood. The wood will have a few dozen tiny drill marks in it when you are done, so do it on a piece of scrap.

2) wear eye protection, as the plastic bits from the CD fly around a lot

3) I just eyeballed the hole placement, but you could neatly mark it with a felt tip pen. The holes are about 3 mm from hole centre to edge of CD

4) I would suggest drilling from the side that will be down when you are finished. i.e. the 'wrong side'. You will not get any clamp marks that way.

5) Drill holes all around the CD

Step 3Glue drilled CD to spindle top


iGlue drilled CD to spindle top
First figure out where the CD and the top of the spindle are touching. There were relatively few contact points on mine. 

That influenced my decision about what glue to use, as I wanted to use a glue that would 'fill in' a little, and increase the area of the bond. 

Household GOOP was perfect. Epoxy would likely also work fine.

I usually squeeze the goop out onto a piece of wax paper or paper towel, then use something like a toothpick to scoop it up and spread it on.

Once you have the glue on the spindle, place the drilled CD over the centre, and press firmly enough to bond.

Let dry overnight.

Step 4Assemble


iAssemble
Here's what mine looked like when I screwed it back together.

Step 5Load with earrings and admire


iLoad with earrings and admire
Now you can end the jumble of earrings on your dresser, and have all your lovelies neatly displayed and ready for action.


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Friday, 29 June 2012

Upcycled Tv Unit

If you read my post on Lightening McQueen Bedroom on a Budget you will notice in the corner of Luke's room there is a rather good looking TV stand :)

This was not always the case.

When my eldest lad moved out, I inherited this hideous looking TV stand, 








There was some unsightly marks from the "fat screen" tv that was there previously


I lightly sanded the unit down then

I used my fantastic bargain buy, my Blue Melamine Paint which i stocked up on a few years ago
(from Poundland)


Not bad eh?  eventually we will put the TV up on Lukes Wall, I just wanted to make sure all the furniture worked in the space that I had put it into.




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Thursday, 28 June 2012

DIY Driftwood Tutorial


Did you know that you can imitate nature?

Kirsten from Craftiments was creating a summer mantle and needed some driftwood, but after searching she figured that the price of purchasing and the shipping cost was just too expensive.

Luckily she has a background in chemistry, and was therefore able to use her knowledge to create this fantastic tutorial.

DIY Driftwood Tutorial by Craftiments.com

Materials 
- eye protection and rubber gloves
- sticks and small logs that are at least partially dry
- hammer, other tools that could be used for distressing the wood
- Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (MSDS)
- hot water
- container large enough to hold the wood
- wire brush
- (optional) oven for drying the wood 
-  sandpaper or sander power tool

Now lets head over to  Kirsten at Craftiments for her amazing photographic step by step to turning regular looking wood in to amazingly beautiful drift wood.




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Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Lightening McQueen Bunting/Banner


My son Luke is crazy about Lightening McQueen, no word of a lie we watch Cars and Cars 2 at least once a day.  I am almost word perfect with the films.

The banner was really simple to make. I started by cutting out 6 triangular pieces of brightly coloured card.



I drew out a speech bubble for each of the characters using Microsoft Publisher. Cut these out, glued on to contrasting card scraps left over from the triangles and cut around the speech bubbles leaving about 5mm of card showing, to make a border and popped them to one side.



I chose six of Luke’s favourite characters which were Lightening McQueen, Doc Hudson, Mater, Chick Hicks, Fred and Filmore.  These were printed onto white paper and cut out, glued on to the card scraps and put to one side.

Once again, using Publisher to make their quotes I used different fonts and colours that complemented the characters.  I have to agree with Allison, it was fun trying to find fonts that fit the character's personality.  I cut these out glued them onto the card.




Then it was a case of laying the triangles out and adding the speech bubbles, quotes and characters, arranging, rearranging and then glued them all together.

Once the glue had dried, I used a hole punch to punch two holes at the top so I could thread the blue ribbon through.

Sorry i do not have step by step pictures, but sometimes creativity just strikes me and away i go :)

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Sunday, 24 June 2012

How to Make A Folding Chair

How To Make a Folding Camp Chair




I super excited to get to share another project tutorial with you. My last few projects have been so much fun to put together, it's nice to know that others think they're pretty okay too. My husband was even impressed with these chairs! Not because they turned out super cute or anything, but because they are "actually useful"-- silly boy! He has so much to learn about crafting...

Let's get going, summer is here and there are camp outs to attend. First, hit the hardware store and gather your supplies.

Here's what you'll need:


**this is enough to make 2 chairs**


WOOD:

(2) 1" x 2" x 8' furring strips
(4) 3/4" diameter x 48" poplar dowels

 PAINT:

4' x 5' canvas drop cloth
White primer/paint for legs
Colors of your choice for designs on seats(when it came time to paint I ended up using spray paint on my seats, just a thought...) 

HARDWARE: 
(4) 1/4" x 2" carriage bolts
(4) 1/4" hex lock nuts
(8) 1/4" flat washers
(16) 8 x 3/4" flathead wood screws


You'll also need a drill with a 1/4 inch and 1/8 inch drill bits, a 3/4 inch spade bit, a Phillips head screw driver, and a little bit of sandpaper.

If you have a milter saw or mitre box and hand saw you can cut the wood pieces yourself, otherwise take the measurements and have the boys in the wood dept. cut them down for you.




Cut the furring strips into 8 pieces that are each 22.5 inches long. Use the milter saw/box to cut a 45 degree angle on one end of each piece.

Cut the dowels into 4 pieces that measure 14 inches long each, and 4 pieces that measure 12 3/8 inches long each.
Sand the edges to remove any rough spots and then grab the drill...

Find the center of your piece (width wise) and draw a light pencil line all the way down the piece marking the center--this will help to ensure your holes are stay centered.

Using the square end as your starting edge and measuring down toward the angled end make a mark at 3/4 of an inch, 11 3/8 inches, and 18 3/4 inches.



Use the 3/4 inch spade bit to drill out holes at the 3/4 and 18 3/4 inch marks--place the point of the bit onto pencil line/mark to keep things straight.

Drill a 1/4 hole at the 11 3/8 inch mark.

Sand the edges of the drilled out holes. Repeat for the remaining 7 leg pieces.

Paint the legs and dowel pieces and set aside to dry.

Open the drop cloth and cut two pieces that measure 19 3/4 inches x 12 1/2 inches.

Hem the long sides first by folding under 1/2 inch, pressing flat, and then folding again another 1/2 inch, press and sew a 1/4 inch seam. Repeat on the other long sides.

Hem the short sides by folding in a 1/2 inch and pressing flat, fold in another 1 3/8 inches, press and sew a 1/4 seam along the first fold creating a pocket for the dowel to slip through.


From there you get to paint!

I used freezer paper to create my design, ironed it onto the canvas and then painted away.  Super fast and easy--especially if you have a cricut or silhouette.

(Mine is packed so it was a roll of tape and some free-handed fonts!)



How fun would it be to add a monogram or name, or even a personalized symbol of the sitter? Me, I went for bad humor...sit, stay, good camper!

Once the paint is dry, all the pieces are ready to go so let's assemble some chairs.

Each chair needs 4 leg pieces, 2 of the longer dowels, and 2 of the shorter dowels.
Connect two leg pieces with the two long dowels and the other two legs with the two shorter dowel pieces.
You'll end up with two of these:


**Be sure the angles on the bottom are going the same way**

Slip the leg assembly that has the shorter dowels into the assembly with the longer dowels this time being sure that the angled ends are opposite of each other.


Place a washer between the two leg assemblies and then insert the carriage bolt through the outside leg, the washer, the inside leg, add another washer, and then secure with the nut.



Repeat for the other side.

Stand the chair upright and pull out the upper dowels, slip the canvas seat onto the dowels and then replace the dowels into the leg assembly.


So close to done! Secure the dowels into the leg pieces. Drill a shallow pilot hole with the 1/8" bit where the dowels intersect the leg pieces--8 per chair. Use the screwdriver to insert the flat head screws into the leg/dowels.

Touch up any paint that might have gotten scratched in the assembly process and the sit your self down and enjoy your new little treasure!


Pictures By Wendy at W M Craft Goodies


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Saturday, 23 June 2012

Personalised Canvas Wall Print for £1.00

As i have mentioned so many times before, I am a hoarder.

I decided to count my unused photo frames, and i have 47....  I decided that it was time that I did something with them.

This frame I was lucky enough to buy 2 for 50p at a local car boot sale.  They were nice enough, but did not match any decor in my house.




I love the French theme, but it just did not suit my house.


The Frame was a little scratched.



The back was made of brown paper (like the kind you send parcels in )


I got some beige paint and painted the frame (first I sanded it to smooth it, and enable the paint to stick).


I love this picture of Luke on my Nieces Go-Kart, I love the colours. I printed it off on A4 Canvas that I bought in poundland for....you guessed it £1.00




I Parcel taped the back the canvas to the original front of the picture to ensure that it was held tightly, and fitted snugly into the frame, I am sure that there are neater way to do it, but this worked.


Then the canvas was inserted into the frame, it was a snug fit, so I did not need to glue it.


and the you have it, a fabulous canvas framed print for £1.00

If you found this tutorial interest please feel free to follow me, as I have 46 more frames to go :)

Friday, 22 June 2012

Tuna Can Traffic Lights


If you have visited my blog before you will be familiar with my love of recycling.


 So when I decorated my sons Lightening McQueen Bedroom this was a perfect opportunity to recycle some tuna cans and a photo frame that I had.



I found a frame that would comfortably fit 3 tuna cans inside.  Removed the glass, I will use this for another project no doubt.



 I Painted the cans, frame and the back plate of the frame with black gloss.






Whilst waiting for these to dry, cut circles out of red, yellow and green paper with my Big Shot (thank you hubby xx) I used a medium sided circle from the  X-cuts nesting dies, which fitted perfectly into the base of the can…..Honestly you would have thought they were designed especially for tuna can crafts hehehe….



Once the gloss had dried, I glued the card circles into the tuna cans so they did not fall out.



I hot glued the back plate to the frame, then I glued the cans onto the back plate of the frame.



Let the glue dry and, there you have it……..Tuna Can Traffic Lights




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Thursday, 21 June 2012

Basic Resin Casting


There are many resins to use for crafting purposes.  For making jewellery such as the ones I featured in  Bottle cap pendant and Bottle cap bracelet, here are the basics......

Hope this is helpful to you, 

Resins:


Polyester Resin: is a liquid plastic that hardens when a few drops of the catalyst are added to create a chemical reaction. Polyester Resin is durable and is the resin of choice for industrial applications and serious crafters who are experienced in resin casting. This resin is highly toxic and should be used in a well ventilated area using protective masks to avoid inhalation. One main advantage of Polyester Resin is the depths in which it can be poured for larger embed projects. Polyester Resin is cheaper to buy than Epoxy resin as it is generally purchased in larger quantities such as 1lt + tins.

Epoxy Resin: These resins are more frequently used in the crafting and hobby world, they are easy to use with a low toxicity, making them suitable for ventilated craft rooms and work areas. Epoxy resin is perfect for jewellery casting as it has a shallow setting depth, so it will cure quickly when used correctly. 

Epoxy resins come in two parts: resin and hardener. The two parts must be mixed in the precise ratio given in the manufacturer's instructions. Imprecise measuring and mixing prevents the epoxy resin from solidifying or curing. Epoxy resin is also self-levelling, giving your project a glass like finish without too much technique. More expensive than the polyester resin but a great way to get started for a small batch of projects.

Always handle resins with care, and follow the proper use that is recommended by the manufacturer.


Pigments and Dyes: These come in liquids, powders and pastes. You will need to purchase colour dyes that are suitable for your brand of resin. Dyes are added during the mixing process.

Molds:

Dimensional Molds: These are molds that create a 3D object, such as a heart shaped pendant, bangle or coaster etc. Latex and Plastic Molds can be purchased for resin casting or you can make your own molds, or use items you have around the home.

Latex molds: These are great to use as the flexibility of them means you can literally POP out your resin cast. You may need to experiment with your resin as some resins require a little extra hardener to cure in a latex mold due to the fact that the temperature of the resin is affected because of the latex.

Plastic molds: You can use store bought chocolate molds, specific pendant molds or other similar molds again these are great to use due to the flexibility.

Home molds: Ice cube trays work well for pendants, chocolate box inlays are a great source of small rounded molds. You can use any durable (heat proof) plastic item you find in your home. You can also use inflexible molds that can be cut or broken away from the casting, such as a glass jar or plastic lunch container.

Mold Release: If you are using a flexible mold there really is not need to add a mold release agent. However a perfect inexpensive release agent is spray cooking oil. Simply give your mold a quick spray and wipe over and it's ready to use.

Flat Objects: You can also pour your resin over flat objects such as scrabble pieces, decorated coasters, trays and flat jewellery pieces.

How to mix: Your resin will come with its very own set of instructions which you should follow strictly. Basically you will measure the two parts (as per the instructions provided on your product) together and then pour into your mold. 

For mixing and measuring use baking spoons and measuring jugs as these will give you an accurate measurement. Wipe out your measuring tools after each use, making sure you have separate tools for the resin and hardener parts.

Plastic disposable bowls, spoons or cups work well as you can discard them after each use. Do not over mix or your resin will be filled with air bubbles. Let your resin rest for a few moments before pouring to avoid extra air.

Air Bubbles: Can be gently tapped out or use a straw and your warm breath to blow over the bubble, this disperses the soft resin and releases the air trapped underneath the surface. Larger projects use a warm setting on your hair dryer or embossing gun.

Embedding items: You can embed all sorts of items to make your resin exciting, from plastic toys to coins, dried foliage and even cake sprinkles.

Photos and Images: Photos and images can easily be embedded into your resin; it is advised to coat your image and photo with a sealer first to prevent the ink dyes from running in your resin. Using white clear drying craft glue is one way to seal your image; you can also use a spray varnish or other archival sealer. Make sure it is completely dried before pouring.

Cleanup: If you have spilled your image, use a acetone cleaner, such as nail varnish remover or a methylated spirits before it cures. Cured resin can be chipped away with knifes or chisels. The easiest way to clean up resin is not to spill it in the first place.



Why not check out the  Bottle cap pendant and Bottle cap bracelet tutorials? 


The Sunshine Award





I would like to say a HUGE BIG thank you to Evelyn from My Turn for awarding me with the Sunshine Award.

The Sunshine Award is an award given by bloggers to other bloggers. The recipients of the Sunshine Award are: "Bloggers who positively and creatively inspire others in the blogoshere." The way the award works is this: Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them. Answer 10 questions about yourself. Select 10 of your favorite bloggers, link their blogs to your post and let them know they have been awarded the Sunshine Award! Don't forget to copy and paste the award on your blog!

Here we go! Ten questions:

1. Favorite color: Tricky, Black and Hot Pink....

2. Favorite animal: My cat Mogwai (Mog), I love her to bits, she is such a princess.  I have had her since she was 6 weeks old, and she is nearly 7 now....

3. Favorite number:11 (thats the date my fantastic husband and I met (11th July 2005)

4. Favorite drink: coffee, (sweet, milky)

5. Facebook or Twitter: Facebook, although I have both, I am Always on Facebook - If you want to check me out my Facebook is Facebook

6. Good Book or a Good Movie: I have to say a movie, I love reading but do not have the chance with the gruesome twosome being so small and demanding, ( love them to bits though xx)

7. My Passion:  I love creating, I love DIY, I love anything that gets me messy and paintified :) 

8. Giving or getting presents: Giving, I love giving presents, I love the whole wrapping, giving and watching people when they receive them. 

9. Favorite day of the year: Another tough question.  I am torn between either Halloween or Christmas.. I will have to say Christmas - just seeing the children's faces when they come downstairs and see the piles of presents. I love Halloween so much that we even married on it :)

10. Favorite flowers: Lilies, I love stargazers, asian and calla lilies, all types of lilies 

The 10 blogs I am sending the Sunshine Award to, in no particular order:



1.   Not just a housewife Her home is amazingly beautiful (I am jealous, in a good way though)
9.   Jembellish 
  
It was very hard to just pick ten, I almost threw the rules out the window and just picked as many as I wished.  But I was good and restrained myself.  Besides I didn't wish to be selfish and pick all the good ones and not leave anybody for everyone else:)   

If you liked this tutorial why not keep up to date by following me HERE

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Refurbished Garden Furniture




Andrea from Andrea's Attic found these chairs on Craigslist for $50. Wow! She must have seen their hidden potential, because I would have run the other way. Sure enough, they look awesome with a fresh coat of paint and new cushions. I also love the personalized Mr & Mrs pillows! Check out her blog: Andrea'sAttic,especially if you are considering painting wicker, as she offers some great tips. Tips that would have come in handy.


Here is what they looked like at the previous owners house. They were beachy and bright and fun. They were cute, but not really my style.




I googled "how to paint wicker" and found out that it was best to primer a couple coats and then use an oil based paint, not latex like I normally use. E was sweet enough to take care of the painting portion (he bought a new spray gun and likes to play with it) for me. I will tell you this much...I will never again hand paint anything that can be sprayed! That little gun is awesome (we got the kind that hooks up to an air compressor).

I bought some fabric to recover the existing cushions because there was nothing wrong with them and I'm cheap and super picky about fabric and generally all things. My Mama was kind enough to come over and sew these new cushion slip covers for me and even had the bright idea to velcro one end so I could change them out and wash them as necessary. She is a genius!

(The after picture is coming, just hold your horses!) I decided it needed a bit of flair and personalization. I bought pre formed pillows at a local craft shop for $2 each and covered them with burlap and tied the edges with ribbon. The finished product looked like this:





I then decided to add a cute "Mr. & Mrs." to the pillows. I cut out a stencil, taped it to the pillow and **dabbed** on black paint. I stay dabbed because you really don't want to paint burlap or it will seep.

This is sideways, but you get the idea ( I hope)








This is also sideways, but you get the idea again. Close up of the fabric




Okay....are you ready for the finished product????? I just know you are!









And there you have it....