Saturday, November 12, 2011

Headbands for the Girls . . .

I see all of the cute headband pieces being made by many other crafters . . . . what can I say other than adorable!  

These little flowers are perfect for using all the scrappy fabric that we who sew accumulate so quickly.

  So I have gathered my scraps and made some of these twisted flowered bands for my 5 grand-girls.  They were very easy and each turn out alittle different, 
giving them the whimsy that I love.  

This tutorial is for all of you who like me have seen and wondered how do they do that??? 
I hope this encourages you to try these simple flowers 
for your little girl.

1.  Cutting a strip of fabric 12" long and 2" wide I folded the raw edges to the center then folded the whole strip in half.  I even found myself adding a tad of glue to hold them in place so the edges do not show.

2.  Twisting this same strip of fabric, I just kept twisting until the whole strip was twisted. Then holding one end, I continually wrapped the remaining twist around creating a flat lollipop disc.  As I held it  down flat on the table I continued to glue the rope of fabric to each other until I got down to the last inch of fabric.  Adding a tad of glue I flip the end back to the flip side.

To hold the twisted flower in place  I found it
easiest to take a sandwich bag and place a fifty cent piece size puddle of glue and just place the bottom of the flowered twist in this until it dries.

You could probably use hot glue but I thought this was the best solution when I did this with the girls. And they loved helping :-)

This is our final result of our cute little bands,  
I used some green fabric to cut the leaves
 and inserted them between the band and flower. 
 I found these bands at the Dollar Tree.  
To reinforce the flowers I took matching
 thread and sewed them on with a blind stitch.

Happy Twisting! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Our Be-Withching Party!

My mom is 85 and she has always played bridge with these gals for years they take turns hosting the luncheon and last week was her turn.  We chose a witch theme, sending out this invite :

and accessorizing it for the party with the following witchy feet for our napkin silverware holders. Plus pinning them to ribbon we made a bunting to decorate the fireplace. and table scape.

So to start our tutorial I drew a boot pattern based on the invite boot.
I used a card stock and simply cut that out then placed it on the black felt, pinned it on and cut 12 pairs of boots out.  Originally I was going to zig zag around them even buying a new sewing machine! But alas, typical for me I was last minute Annie and could not get the automatic threader on the machine to work. 

We were headed down to LA to see our children for a trip to the pumpkin patch so grabbed the embroidery floss and hand stitched around all 12 of them.  It actually went quite quickly and I loved the look of it.  I used a variegated green on six of them and a variegated orange on the other six. 
 I drew a W on all the Boots on one side with glue and added either orange or green ribbon and two dots of glue for the buttons.  I ended up using Skittles for the buttons 
bc buttons were just more money and I had the skittles sitting there on my counter.
Next year I will probably have to replace them but they will just pop off!
The bright color of the Skittles I loved I was very happy with the effect.
 Adding Dollar Tree Napkins for the socks was the perfect touch, I added my place setting of fork and soup spoon and knife to the boot atop each plate.  Loved the over-all effect!  And so did my mom, I could tell she was so pleased.


Monday, October 10, 2011

A Babies Nursery . . . .

I love to paint and create a theme for a nursery.  My daughters friend Danielle wanted her new babies room to have a Sea Turtle theme . . . . hmm i thought so loving the reflection of water and colors I wanted these sea turtles to be realistic and not animated.  So started to research the turtles of the sea . . . . .
above is what I came up with for the first of three paintings I will complete for this nursery project.  I will add the others as I finish them.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Pumpkin Time!

It was the first day of Fall the other day and I was in the mood to make something. Soo headed off to Michaels with my sales paper in hand.   I noticed the rubberized pumpkins, I was drawn to the black and white ones. So tossed 5 in my cart to begin with and  black and white paint pens.

I googled some Damask patterns to sketch out some ideas . . .the others I just came up with my own designs . . I was loving this simple project for fall so much!   I took some over to my mom's were we are having an October luncheon for her bridge group so will use them as our theme.  I am going to paint some small sugar pumpkins for the place cards for the table. Here are the ones I put on my front porch.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Making Pinwheels . . .


The first step is to start with a simple square. 
       Any size you decide . . . .
Fold your square corner to corner, then unfold . . . 

 Make a pencil mark about 1/3 of the way from center.

Cut along fold lines. Stop at your pencil mark.

Bring every other point into the center and stick a pin through all four points.

       The head of the pin forms the hub of the pinwheel.

Now here is the secret . . . . 

Turn your pinwheel over - make sure the pin pokes through in the exact center of the pinwheel.  You must use a long straight pin for this not a push pin!  

Roll the pin around in little circles to enlarge the hole a little. This guarantees your pinwheel will spin freely

Stick the pin into a thin dowel.

Hint: Separate your pinwheel from the dowel with two or three beads. Stick the pin through the beads first, then - into the dowel.    So for your next party or event try making these using any of the amazing craft papers out there!  Take this project for a spin!

to download a print out go to:

Friday, April 15, 2011

Polymer Eggs . . . .

As Seen on Martha Stewart and this blog Crafts-for-all-Seasons, this is my season's fave for decorating eggs . . . My first attempt was today and it is harder than it looks on the MARTHA VIDEO! Slices should be pretty thin because mine were maybe a quarter inch and when I tried to roll them together they smeared and this was not the look I was going for! But I will try again now that I have found these tips and see if I can do better. Go ahead, have fun
this is where Art Begins!

1. Begin by the polymer clay Easter eggs by preparing your eggs. Take a raw egg, and push a needle through the smaller end of the egg. Push slowly, with steady even pressure, so you won’t crack the egg. Then remove the needle. You should have a tiny pin-sized hole.

2. On the other side of the egg you want to punch a hole about 5 mm wide (very small, but larger than the pin hole). To do this, prick several pin holes very close together. If you make them close enough together, they will punch out a larger hole. Make sure you push the needle in far so you are poking through the egg yolk inside, to break it.

3. Now, put your lips up to the pin-sized hole and blow gently. The inside of the egg will begin to pour out of the bigger hole you made in the bottom. Keep blowing until all the egg insides are out.

4. Rinse the egg out well with water. Do this by filling the egg with water using the larger hole. Then flip the egg over and blow out the water. Do this several times. Then, allow the eggs to dry completely, preferably overnight.

5. You are ready to start working on your polymer clay Easter eggs by making the polymer clay canes. Canes are logs of polymer clay. When segments are sliced off canes reveal a design. The little wafer slices of clay can be used to decorate things. We are going to use these cane slices to decorate your egg. Below you will find instructions on how to make three simple canes. The three cane designs were used on the eggs in the photo.

How to make a SPIRAL CANE:

This is a very impressive cane, and probably one of the most easiest to make!

A. Begin by flattening three different colors of polymer clay. Using a pasta machine for flattening is the easiest (I used the largest setting), but if you do not have a pasta machine you can use a brayer or rolling pin to flatten.

B. Stack the three pieces of clay on top of one another, then cut them all the same size, into a rectangle shape. Push them together slightly to get rid of any air bubbles.

C. Begin to roll the rectangle up tightly, like a jelly roll.

D. The cane is almost done, but you need to compress it by rolling it. This is the trickiest part about making canes. You want to use even pressure all the way through the entire roll, making sure there isn't one area that is thicker than another. Keep rolling until it back and forth using your hand, against your work surface, until it is the diameter you want. The more you roll, the smaller the design gets, but the more slices you can cut. For this project I rolled my canes about 4 inches long.

How to make a FLOWER CANE:

This is polymer clay cane will look like a flower when it is sliced. It begins with a spiral cane in the middle of the flower.

A. Make a spiral cane out of yellow and white clay (see above directions for spiral cane). Condense it by rolling until it is about 0.5 cm in diameter, and about 3 inches long.

B. Make a long rope of a different color clay (I used pink). Make the rope about 0.5 cm in diameter. Cut in into six different lengths, the same length as your spiral cane (mine were about 3 inches long).

C. Place the six rope segments around the spiral cane. These are going to be the flower petals.

D. Take another contrasting color of clay now (I used a light green) and roll another long rope, about 0.5 cm in diameter. Cut this into six lengths about 3 inches long, just as you did for the flower petals. This contrasting clay should be placed in between the clay used for the petals. The clay shouldn’t be wedged way down in, and the same level as the petal clay, but instead, it should sit about halfway between each petal and a little above.

E. Roll out a flat rectangle of the contrasting clay, and roll this around the entire cane. This is the outer shell covering of the cane. Now reduce and compress your cane by carefully rolling. The photo to the bottom right shows the cane before compression.

10. When the egg is completely covered, roll it around in your hands gently. This helps even out the clay, smooth it, and blend together the cane slices better.

11. Bake the eggs according to the clay’s manufacturer’s instructions, and allow to cool completely. Now the egg will be very durable and hard to break.

12. The last step is to sand the polymer clay Easter eggs. You will want to experiment with different grits of sandpaper. The grit you use depends on how "bumpy" your egg is before starting. This mainly depends on the thickness of your cane slices. I like to use the sanding blocks that you can use under running water. For my polymer clay Easter eggs, I began with a medium grit paper and moved on to a very fine grit to smooth and buff. Sanding the polymer clay Easter eggs is optional, but it will make the cane wafers blend together very well and give a very smooth appearance and touch to the egg.

13. Give your polymer clay Easter eggs a coat of acrylic sealing coat or polymer clay glaze for protection (optional). When you put your Easter things away, the polymer clay Easter eggs can be stored in a regular egg carton to protect them, and they should last for many years!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Creating with Gourds

I love discovering new techniques and ways to take natural plants that grow, dry them- paint them- and
wow a new piece of art. This happened to me last fall when I discovered Gourds. I was looking for something to paint on that was not flat or framed. So my friend Barbra took me to her friend Deedee's and "her Field of Gourds," they were dried in her barn and ready to paint.

After returning home I thought how do I do this ???? So being a great Googler, I started my research . . . .
the first site I discovered was
they had lessons and supplies and a Festival June 25 2011. They are located in Fallbrook CA which is seven hours
away from me. So I continued to explore my options, I found a local artist in Galt just up the road from me that paints them in oils and is amazing, I then met another artist in Montana when we were there and she woodburns them and paints them in watercolor. I was excited because I had the supplies to get started and give it a try. It was not until February that I finally stopped procrastinating and got the sandpaper out. . . I began the arduous task of cleaning one of them up . . . notice I said one . . . I don't want to get carried away you know, I was going to take this one step at a time. So here is my beginning stage
Ok its a start but here are some shots of my goal . . . By Marilyn Sunderland,

Aren't these stunning?

So if you are an artist and want to try something new, go get some gourds and wearing a mask, sand away to clean. I found sketching them with a fine point sketching pen worked great. Then fire up the wood burner and doodle away, it's fun and portable and you will be amazed at how beautiful it will look sitting in your home. So for me, my next step is carving it with my Dremel Tool. I am so excited to remove some of the negative space . . . . but I can hear seeds rattling away in there. . . so as I cut I will be thinking about how I can get them out and not make it look like I
just cut a hole. So stay tuned I will post my final results!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Celebrating Valentine's: Our Granddaughter Learns to Bake!

Yep this jam is a little tricky . . . 

                                         There we go  . . . perfect!
                                       I think these turned out great.
                                      Siena Reese three years old 2/13/2011

These cookies were so yummy looking and they were made with such care.  Had to share some of these . . . . of Siena who's mom found this recipe in the Mommy and Me Cookbook; by Annabel Karmel

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Love to Travel with your children? Make it fun in the airport!

Trunki Rolling Luggage for children, makes those long travel days fun!  They can ride through the airport in style and get the excersize they need from sitting so long!  Another advantage is they have all their entertainment just inside the case!

This rolling luggage comes with saddle packs to hold more of the pieces that they might need!   Ideas are endless . . . all on sale @  come check it out
they are our best sellers.  All colors in stock.