Monday, November 7, 2011
So I know I don't post as much as I should... especially considering I have done quite a few blog-worthy projects in the past year, but better late than never.
So for those of you that have kids, you know about the magic that is color-wonder (at least I hope you do). Link has recently discovered his love for coloring. He absolutely loves the Cars color-wonder color pages. I love it too except for the fact that if you price the coloring books they can run you anywhere from 6-12 bucks a pop for about 12-18 pages that include around 4 markers. We already have a ton of the special markers. We don't need more red, blue and yellow markers! If you buy the blank paper pads with 30 pages they run you about $4 a pad. Do you see where I am going with this?
It probably seems obvious but for those who haven't thought of it already: Buy the blank papers, bust out a sharpie, embrace your inner tracing artist and make your own color pages. The reason this is so genius is because
1. It saves you money
2. You don't end up with a bazillion of the same color markers
3. You can personalize the pictures for your own kid
Link loves Super Mario and everything having to do with the games. Easy to make and your kid (or you) will love it!
Sunday, September 4, 2011
What you will need:
- Some sort of table
- Assuming table is old and needs some work- a sander and some wood stain
- Some large cardboard
- Colored glass
- A paintbrush (sponge brushes work well)
- Spray adhesive
- Some sort of paint scraper for tool for smoothing out resin
- A large, ventilated work space fairly free of dust, debris and children
Depending on the type of table you have you may need to do some sanding. We scored an all wood table at was pretty gnarly looking for $5 at a garage sale over the summer. Not gonna lie, it definitely needed some work. We sanded it down til it was super smooth and stripped of all the funky paint/stain that was on it. We then restained with several coats of a dark walnut color and topped that off with some polyurethane to protect it.
Our particular table had an indented top. One mistake that we did make was not taking a glue gun and sealing the edges. We ended up with resin leaking through later in the process. So make sure that you seal the edges (especially on an older used table) with a glue gun or something similar.
This step can be completed at any point really and was primarily what my task was on this project. Take your stained glass, throw it in a bag (make sure to layer bags as it will cut through plastic) and smash the hell out of it! This will be for your glass design.
Trace or draw your design onto a piece of cardboard that you have measured out to fit on top of the table. We laid out our black tiles (which we got from the flooring section at Lowes for a decent price) to frame the outside of the top of the table first and then measured the dimensions
for the glass design. I then drew an outline onto the cardboard. I free-handed the question block design onto the board. Here's the kicker. I was not about to try and make the design perfect directly on the table to I drew the design backwards on the cardboard to we could spray adhesive on the back of the glass to make transfer to the table a bit easier.
Get to placing that broken glass! It's a tedious task but oh so worth it when finished! Keep going, you can do it. For me, it helped to work on a different area and switch colors every now and then so I could start to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
We used a piece of white poster board to glue the glass onto and lay on top of the table. This is the easiest way I can think of aside from making the design directly on the table with adhesive as you do it (a VERY risky move). You can always buy different color board or just paint or spray paint the board as well. Anyway, spray the hell out of the finished glass design and carefully place your (already measured out) poster board on top as quickly as possible. Press it down and leave it for a while to the pieces have a chance to set.
At some point we painted the white edges of the black tiles with black acrylic paint. I highly recommend doing this. We also ended up painting the top of the table with the same paint so that there was nothing weird showing through the spaces between the tiles.
Place the posted board down and place the tiles around it. Make sure everything is where you want it. You may have to do some glass adjustments (so make sure you keep extra broken glass for touch ups).
Resin. Resin. Resin. More resin. This is most likely the priciest part of the project (especially assuming you scored a five dollar table!) But it will make your table shine and protect it from anything a 2 year old can do to it! All I can say about this step is make sure you have enough of the stuff, a clean and ventilated work space and some patience! Ours wasn't perfect but it still looks damn good!
The finished product take a little while to dry after the resin but we did this project for less the $100 and quite honestly if you were to even be able to find something like this, I guarantee it would be a whole lot more than that! Worth the time and effort? Yes... especially since we had just moved and had none of our stuff and nothing else to do! So, TADA!
Saturday, October 16, 2010
What you will need:
- Various colors of acrylic paints. I used the following (The folk art brand which you can purchase from Wal-mart for about $1 something or for a wider variety of colors, at Michaels or other craft store):
- -Yellow Light
- -White Wash (this was Americana brand but it doesn’t matter too much)
- -Light Blue
- -Baby Pink
- -Brilliant Ultramarine (the blue for the lines)
- -Pure Orange
- -Christmas Red
- -Licorice (the black color for the ghosts eyeballs!)
- Textile medium for acrylic paint (I used Americana “Fabric Painting medium found at Michaels with the acrylic paints… a little hard to find but look for it and it should be there. It comes in the same type of bottle as the paints)
- Paint brushes (a variety)
- Black fabric shower curtain (I got mine from Wal-mart… Me likey when things are inexpensive and basic! I believe it was actually a micro fiber “liner“)
- Scrapbooking hole punch OR something to trace a small circle onto paper with and scissors to cut out a crap-ton of circles
- Masking tape (I happened to have blue painters tape)
- A pencil (I found it easier with a wooden pencil as opposed to a mechanical)
- Scotch tape
- A reference picture of your intended layout
- A large space to work that won’t be interrupted by prying children, running dogs, etc to allow for paint to dry
- A medium size piece of cardboard to put under the curtain so you won’t ruin the surface underneath (I cut off and used the side part of a large box of diapers that was empty)
- A whole lot of patience!
Iron the curtain (like I said, my curtain was fabric) so that you don’t get crazy lines hindering your painting process.
Use the hole punch to punch out a bunch of circles. I used a 1.5 inch diameter but you can make them smaller if you prefer. I ended up punching out as many as I needed on printer paper since it was going to be easier to lay out all the circles on the curtain instead of tracing them on a circle at a time and risking doing it wrong.
Using your reference picture, begin laying the circles out. (You can obviously modify the picture you chose. I didn't really want Pacman eaten on my curtain!) It’s pretty simple to count the circles out and lay them in the pattern from your picture. If you want to be really precise you can use a measuring tape and ruler and all that. I was too lazy for that and I’m also not a crazy perfectionist!
I used scotch tape to tape the circles down onto the curtain. This is not a necessary step but after you spend that much time laying them all out, you want to make sure they aren’t going anywhere! Take a pencil and begin tracing the circles onto the curtain. I had no problems getting the pencil to show up. I used a wooden pencil on a micro fiber curtain and it was just fine.
Use masking tape to lay out the blue lines of the screen around the circles you have laid down. Mine were no exact. I had a lot of corners that didn’t necessarily match up because I figured I would use them as a rough outline when I trace and round out the corners (so they weren’t pointy since that’s not how they are in the game). You can see from the picture that I also overlapped some of the tape as well. Some of the lines go through the black part where they shouldn't be painted. If you do this, make sure you ONLY trace the parts you want to paint so you don't end up with lines through the blocks.
Once the tape is all laid out, trace that too! I just traced right around the pieces and rounded out the corners. I found that the masking tape was the perfect size for the lines anyway! Once you are done tracing each part I recommend pulling off the tape so you make sure that you have traced every single piece. I ended up forgetting a few lines because there was so much tape and I couldn’t be sure I had traced it when I looked at it.
Add Pacman and the ghosts. I did the same thing here with the tracing. I drew them out on paper first to make sure their size was perfect and they didn’t look all crazy! You could probably print them from the internet as well if you are not confident in your basic drawing skills. Place them in position, trace them out, take them off!
Time to begin painting! You will have to experiment with brush sizes for the painting portion. You can buy a pretty cheap value pack of them at Wal-mart for about 5 bucks or so and they have the basic brushes that will do this project justice.
I use paper plates as my palette for paints! Squeeze a bit of the paint onto the plate and mix with the textile medium according to the bottle’s instructions. I began with painting the circles. (Make sure you have cardboard under the curtain to protect your painting surface… it can leak through) I started on one side and worked my way to the other (depending on what hand you use should depend on where you begin.. You don’t want to smear the paint. Be careful not to brush your body against the wet paint either). By the time you get to the other side of the curtain, the paint on the beginning side SHOULD be dry (run your finger over it to make sure) and you can begin painting the blue lines. This was the most tedious part for me and it took some patience… and a lot of blue paint!
Once you are done with those things, the fun part… painting Pacman and the ghosts. You are almost done! Make sure that all the other paint is at least semi-dry. You don’t want to risk smearing that paint after all the hard work you have just done and the characters will be in different places so be careful!!
Once the painting portion is complete, make sure you don’t get too excited too soon. You want to make sure the entire thing is dry before you try moving it or hanging it up… or doing ANYTHING to it! This entire project was completed over the course of 3 days for me (though I also have a 1 year old who likes to “help”). I made sure it was all dry before I did anything. When you are sure it is dry, you will want to “heat-set” the paint which is why you added the textile medium to your paint. My bottle recommended ironing it. Quite frankly, this was ridiculous! I ended up throwing the thing in the dryer on high heat for about 50 minutes. It worked just fine.
You painted a freakin’ curtain! How badass are you!??! Hang it, enjoy it, and don’t forget to show it off to everyone who enters your house!
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
I do not consider myself incredibly talented by any means. I will admit I have a decent drawing talent but many of my ideas are borrowed and taken from more complicated and expensive things!
Some of my current projects include a pacman themed bathroom for my son, Link. I am also working toward changing his room over to a complete video game theme, mainly Super Mario. For his bathroom I have made a handpainted shower curtain. This is one of the projects I am most proud of as it was entirely my own idea! (woohoo!) I used an internet pacman videogame screenshot as reference for the artwork. I also did a bit of research on how best to paint the design onto the fabric. Also included in this pacman set are a handpainted trashcan, handpainted soap pump, handpainted toothbrush holder, two large canvas paintings (so far) and a latch-hook rug (that is still in the works). I hope to eventually get these projects up on this blog and walk you through the process I took to create them. I would love to include pictures to help you along as well (even though I am already done with these projects).
Bottom line, my goal is to give you the steps to create what I can! If you can wield an iron you'll be able to make crafts with perler beads. If you can hold a small handle, you can make a latchhook rug for your bathroom, bedroom, any room! If you can print things onto paper with your printer and computer, trace things, cut, glue and get messy, the possiblilites are endless. I maintain that you don't need to have too much artistic ability to make amazing things that you and your family will enjoy for years and I aim to help you understand how!
With that said, enjoy this blog and feel free to leave comments on something you might want to see, learn how to do or add to my instruction! I am more than happy to include other's patterns that they want to share! Enjoy, and happy crafting.