Archive for ‘Crafts’

November 4, 2012

The Yellow House

Back in 1997 when I took my first college art class, my professor told me my drawing marks reminded her of Vincent Van Gogh.  I didn’t know the artist that well except for his painting of Starry Night.  I got a book of the letters he wrote to his brother Theo and read the whole thing for an art history class.  In 2001 I was able to see the painting at the MoMA on a trip to NYC with Di.  Many years have passed and my painting and drawing style have changed but Van Gogh’s yellow house in Arles was always on my mind.

After many years of saving, I was finally able to build my own little yellow house.  It’s out in the back yard, next the the prayer garden.  When I sit in my rocking chair, I can see the sun setting behind the gandures bushes in the evenings.  It’s such a relaxing place.

Of course if you like to create, don’t wait until you can have a studio.  Many times I have had to improvise and use a corner of a bedroom or the garage.  But do create a space of your own.  Decorate it with things that make you smile.  Make sure you take time to sit and relax in it everyday.  Make time to daydream…

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January 25, 2012

Time Travel

Last Sunday I had the opportunity to travel back in time thanks to the Alafia River Rendezvous in Homeland, Florida.  The event is a pre 1840 representation of how fur trappers would gather once a year to trade.  This event is hosted annually by the Florida Frontiersmen.
Break time

For those of us who like period costumes, handmade crafts and the simplicity of days past, this is an event not to miss.  Be prepared to dress for the weather.  Closed shoes are a must.  The ground doesn’t have a lot of grass this time of the year and it can get pretty dirty.  I suggest sneakers as the camp is large and you will do a lot of walking.  I spent 2 hours at the site and didn’t even see half of the exhibit.  This year the weather was perfect and the skies provided a beautiful backdrop for pictures.
Trade area

When you first arrive, you are greated with folk music and then you realize you have just stepped into the 19th century.
Music

Horse patrol

There is a market where you can eat buffalo burgers, elk chili and brunswick stew.  Artisans show their work and some even give demonstrations.

Potter

Here is the camp’s seamstress.  She’s known as the go to person for “time period” fashion advice.  Her shop has something for everyone.

Seamstress

Seamstress Shop

This is Laura Sylvester, a retired teacher from Kentucky who turned her love of history and textiles into lovely hand printed fabric.

Textile Artist

The fiber shop offered many yarns, threads and free weaving demonstrations.
Yarn

Thread

I can’t wait for next year’s rendezvous. Now I know better to get there early so I have enough time to see all the sites. Who knows, maybe I’ll have my own period costume and can fit in with the crowd :)

Camp

December 14, 2011

Painted Glass Ornaments

OrnamentsAfter having a wonderful birthday filled with warm wishes from friends and family; it’s now time to put up Christmas decorations.  This year I’ve seen lots of pictures of friends homes and their lovely trees.  Not to mention the trees in the stores and especially our town bank.  So perfectly designed from the garland to the bows on the gifts under the tree.

My tree is not the most modern or coordinated in the world.  It’s a mix up of ornaments that DH and I feel brings back memories of our childhood.  There are also some homemade ornaments made in the past by me or Di.  So when we pull them out of their box and play music in the background, for a couple of hours we are transported to good times in the past and at the same time we create more good memories in the present time for the future.  It’s good to have a Charlie Brown Christmas tree.

For this project you will need:

* Clear glass ornaments with removable tops

* Paper cups

* Rubbing alcohol

* Pearl or glitter acrylic paint (I used Plaid Folk Art paints)

* Enamel acrylic paint (I used Plaid Folk Art enamel paints)

* Paint brushes

Instructions:

1. Remove cap and pour about a tablespoon of pearl or glitter paint inside of the ornament.  Slowly swirl the ornament until all of the inside surface is covered with paint.  Turn the ornament upside down into the paper cup and let the excess drip (I usually leave it for a week just to be sure).

2. Rub the outside of the glass with rubbing alcohol to remove oils and residue from handling.  Paint your chosen design with the enamel paint on the outside of the ornament. I’m sure stencils would work well also.  Let the ornament air dry for a couple of days.  It takes 21 days for it to dry to a permanent finish but if you’re sure no one will touch the ornaments while hanging on the tree, you should be able to display them 1 week after painting the outside.

So here is my question for you: With all the sights and sounds of the holiday season at home and in the community; which ones bring back memories of your childhood?

Linking to Transformation ThursdayEverybody’s Creative Endeavor and Inspiration Friday.

October 6, 2011

Birdhouses

Don’t you just love a sale.  I found these cute little birdhouses for $1 each unfinished.  They’re very easy to adapt to your style.  The patterns on the roofs are handpainted, except for the middle one which is a Martha Stewart stencil.  If you don’t feel comfortable painting, you could Mod Podge the roofs with scrapbook paper.  Don’t forget to seal and prime them before painting.  These are too small to hang in our front tree.  If you’re planning to place your houses outside you will need to seal them as a final coat to protect the paint.  I have to figure out which room I’ll put them in…

.Birdhouses

Now I’d like to hear from you.  What color combinations would you use for your home?  Would you free hand paint the roofs and if so what would you paint?  What kind of scapbook paper would you use to Mod Podge them?

Linking to… Transformation Thursday

September 19, 2011

The Sea

OK so I’m still on my beach kick.  Every time I go, I end up shelling with the kids.  This inspired me to create something beachy for the living room.
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Materials List:

* 3 blank canvases 12″ x 12″

*Martha Stewart Crafts Multi Surface Satin Acrylic Paint in Pool & Beach Glass

*Crushed Seashells

*Hot glue gun & glue

*Stylus

*Ruler

*Transfer paper

*Tray

Instructions:

Paint 2 canvases with Beach Glass and one with Pool.  While they dry, go the computer.  Use your word processing software and write your phrase.  English/SEA, Spanish/MAR and French/MER work well for 3 canvases.  Use a font that is appealing to you.  Choose one with simple lines because the crushed shells are chunky and details don’t show up well.  Print each letter as big as the biggest letter can fit on 1 page.  Make sure all 3 letters are of the same size.

Plug in the hot glue gun.  Grab all 3 pages and using tranfer paper and a stylus, trace the letters on to the canvas.  Use the ruler to help you center the letters.  Fill in the traced letters with hot glue in 1/2 inch sections and sprinkle the crushed shells on to the glue.  Tap lightly careful not to touch the burning hot glue.  Cool a little, hold the canvas over the tray and tap the leftover crushed shells into the tray.  Continue to fill up sections with glue and crushed shells until the entire traced letter is covered.  Let it dry overnight, then hang.

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Linking to… Transformation Thursday