Friday, March 30, 2012

Super Easy Furry Easter Eggs tutorial

So you’ve made one of those popular scarves from the soft and fluffy yarn and have just a bit leftover, but don’t know what to do with it? Why not make a soft and furry Easter egg?  I like to call them Bunny Eggs since I fill them with a tiny chocolate bunny.  Any pastel color will do and you can use any size plastic egg container, whatever you have on hand.  I like to use it as the special egg that wins the prize in an Easter egg hunt. 

You will need:

Small amount of furry, fuzzy thin yarn (color choice optional)

Plastic Easter egg container

Tacky craft glue (I used Aleene’s turbo tacky glue)

Small chocolate bunny for filling the egg

1.     Take apart a plastic Easter egg and add yarn to one side of the egg at a time.  Starting with the larger half, squirt some glue on the top of the egg section and working around in a spiral fashion, attach the yarn adding glue as you go.  Continue adding glue and yarn circling the egg half until you reach the bottom edge.  Let dry.

2.     Begin adding glue and yarn in the same way to the other half (smaller side) of the egg. Make sure you do not add yarn on the lip that goes inside the larger half of the egg. (This area must not have yarn on it in order to close the egg) Let dry.

3.     When both sides of the egg are completely dry add the small chocolate bunny and close the egg.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Custom décor decoupage switch-plate cover

The craft of decoupage has been around for years. If you want to make a decorated switch plate cover you can purchase decoupage paper in just about any craft store, but why stop there?  Why not make your own custom paper to match your décor? I used photos of my curtains and comforter to create one of a kind switch-plate covers.  You can create these covers on new switch-plates or just recycle your old ones for a unique room face-lift.

You will need:

Computer and printer


Standard computer paper

Gloss decoupage glue and finish (Modpodge is a good one)

Small paintbrush

X-acto or craft knife

Scissors, ruler, pencil

Piece of corrugated cardboard (scrap from a box) covered with waxed paper

Switch-plate cover

1.     Take a photo of any color, fabric, or textural surface that matches your room.  (I took photos of my curtains and comforter)

2.     Load the photo of your choice on your computer and print the design full size on a sheet of standard all-purpose computer paper.

3.     Working on the wax paper covered cardboard place your design unprinted side up and lay your switch plate on top.  Trace around the switch plate.  Mark a ½” extra around entire traced piece.  Trace the center opening as well and mark an X in the center. Cut out the traced piece and use the ruler to cut each corner at an angle.  Using the X-acto or craft knife to cut the X in the switch opening.

4.     With a small paintbrush spread a thick layer of decoupage glue on front of switch plate.  Place the paper design on top of the switch plate centering so that the ½ inch edges overlap evenly and the X opening is in the proper place.   Smooth down with your fingers. (Mod Podge washes away easily with water)  Turn over and working on one side at a time, spread some of the decoupage glue on each back edge and fold to the back.  Smooth down the corners with your fingers.  Continue until all the edges are glued down.  Do the same thing with the center opening folding down each triangle of the X inward and down.

5.     Turn to the right side and apply a thick layer of decoupage glue to finish.  Make sure you smooth out any bubbles with your fingers.  Let dry.  If you would like your switch plate to be extra shiny add another coat of decoupage glue and let dry. 

6.     When the switch plate is dry and you are ready to screw it back on the wall turn to the back side and make a tiny hole with a pen point so you can see where to put the screws.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Easy to make Paper Hunger Games Mocking jay pin

If you want to make a mockingjay pin to wear to your Hunger Games movie going experience, you’ve come to the right place.  If you can color in a coloring book you can create one of these replica pins in a flash.  The easy tutorial follows:

You will need:

Mockingjay pattern

Graphite transfer paper

Heavyweight watercolor paper

Stylus or dried ink pen

Metallic acrylic paint in gold and pewter

Dimensional paper glaze

Small paintbrush

Small scissors

Pin Back

Tacky glue

1.     Print the mocking jay pattern full size or any size you like.  Place the graphite paper between the pattern and the watercolor paper. Transfer the pattern to the watercolor paper by going over the lines with a stylus or dried ink pen point.

Mockingjay pattern

2.     Using a small paintbrush, color in the pin with the gold metallic paint, staying within the lines.  Let dry.

3.     Use the pewter metallic paint to shade and outline the pin.  (See photos for step by step)  Let the paint dry completely.

Add pewter paint under front wing

Add pewter paint on back wing and upper back

Add pewter paint on head and neck and under body

Add pewter paint on tail and arrow

Add pewter paint around ring

Outline bird with pewter paint

4.     Use the small paintbrush to spread a thick layer of dimensional paper glaze on the areas where you painted.  Don’t worry if some gets outside the lines since you will be cutting around it when it has dried. Don’t put any paper glaze on the background area; this will slightly raise up the mockingjay and make it dimensional.  Let dry.  Drying time depends upon the humidity and how thick a layer of glaze you have added. Add another coat of paper glaze and let dry.  Allow to dry between coats.

5.     With the small scissors carefully cut around the pin.  Put a dab of tacky glue on the back and add a pin back.  Let dry.  Show your support for Katniss and friends and wear with pride!

Want more cool, creative ideas?  Why not

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Easy closet air freshener tutorial

Freshen up your stuffy winter closet.  You can make a cute air freshener that you can hang right in your closet. Better yet, you can have one of these for every closet in the house in no time flat. These fresheners are similar to old time sachets, with the modern addition of fabric softener sheets instead of herbs. This time you hang it from a hanger in your closet instead of sticking it in your drawers, although you can stick it in your drawers if you so desire!  So gather your supplies (there aren’t too many) and make it quick and easy!

You will need:

Scrapbook paper in desired print

Cardstock paper, print or solid as preferred

Scissors, pencil, tracing paper, pattern

Small or cuticle scissors

Paper punch (regular or any pattern will do)

Tacky craft glue

Scrap of 1/8” corresponding color ribbon

Fabric softener sheets

1.     Trace the front of the shirt pattern onto the scrapbook paper.  Cut out.  Trace the back of the shirt pattern onto the cardstock paper and cut out.  Use a small cuticle scissor to cut out the hole for the hanger on the back piece.

Print pattern full size on 8 1/2" x 11" paper

2.     Use the paper punch to add holes in the front and the back of the shirt cutouts.  Add as many holes as you can. Do not punch holes too close to the edges where you will be gluing the pieces together.

3.     Run a bead of Tacky glue all around from shoulder to shoulder.  Leave the top neckline open.  (This is where you will place your fabric softener sheet) Let dry completely.

4.     Tie the ribbon into a bow and attach on the front with a dab of tacky glue and let dry.

5.     Add a fabric softener sheet to the pocket.  Use the hole in the top to add to a hanger.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Recycled Dog Bark Stopper

Dog barking is normal.  Excessive dog barking is not. My dog, Maddy is a barker, yapper, you name it. How do I stop it? I simply turned an empty soda can into a dog bark stopper. When the barking gets out of control I shake it and the barking will stop. It cost a whole lot less than anything you buy at the pet shop and it really works...just ask Maddy. You could just leave the soda can as it is but why not spruce it up a bit?

You will need:

One empty soda can, washed and dried

Eight or nine pennies or more (the more pennies you use the louder the noise)

Duct tape

Beige felt

Scrap of darker brown felt

Pompoms (1, large beige, 2 medium beige, and one small black)

Wiggly eyes

9-inch scrap of ½” ribbon in desired color

Scissors, pencil, ruler

Hot glue gun and glue sticks (or you may substitute tacky glue)

1.        Put the pennies inside the empty can and tape the top with a couple of pieces of duct tape.

2.        Cut a piece of beige felt 9 inches by 5 inches.

3.        Glue the felt around the can to cover, lining up the bottom edge with the can. Slightly gather the top edge of the felt and glue to the can top. 

4.        On another piece of beige felt place the can top down and trace around. Draw ear shapes on each side of the circle you traced. Cut out. Fold in half and trim the ears so they are semi-symmetrical.  It is not necessary to be exact.

5.        Glue the top circle part only of the ear to the top of the can where you taped it closed.

6.        Glue the large pompom to the top of the can.

7.        To make the face glue two medium pompoms halfway down the side of the can.  Make sure the ears are hanging down on each side.  Glue the black pompom in between the two medium ones for the nose.

8.        Cut two small oval pieces of the dark brown felt and glue above the nose.  Attach two wiggly eyes in the center of the felt pieces. (see photo for placement)

9.        Draw a bead of glue around the can near the bottom and attach a scrap of ribbon for collar.

 Note:  This is a dog bark stopper and not for use with Children under 3 or babies.