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11  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Saves the Day Soy Candle Set on: December 23, 2008 08:50:15 PM
I made this little candle set for my sister for Xmas. I feel pretty frickin proud of how it came out. I know she's going to love the decorative papers.

Anyway, I just wanted to share these fun candles.

The small gift tag on the box says "Do you know what I love most?"


Morning in the Moonlight
(ocean breeze + nightblooming jasmine)

I also made Coconut (more complex than just coconut: orange, palm trees, a little melon, coconut, vanilla)
She (melon, lemon, palm trees, ocean breeze)
and Rocks Tonic Juice Magic (grapefruit, palm trees, lemon)

I am hoping for a big smile! Surprisingly easy and I maxed out my fragrance concentrations in each case. The two bigger candles are like 10 oz or so and the smaller is about 7-8 oz.
12  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / Solid Fragrance Tins for Xmas Presents! on: December 23, 2008 08:41:24 PM
I finished up this project tonight and thought I would share. I'm pretty happy with how they turned out.
I never like things to look too "done", I like a little DIY flair in my stuff.

How To:
I used this tutorial and got my tins for like $.40 each on Specialty Bottle which ended up being awesome because their shipping got to me in 1-2 business days. I got my paper and ribbon @ Michaels. They were having a 4/$1 sale on a LOT of their gorgeous paper. I'm not a scrapbooker or anything but I love great paper. I bought my ingredients at our local health store/fresh market place and my fragrances came from Super Supplements and CandleScience.com.

Anyway, onto the images.





The bottom has the brown paisley paper with the ingredients. I am gifting these to female friends and family for Xmas Smiley Cute little stocking stuffers and if you don't spend too much on your ingredients, it can be a really economical project.

One recommendation I would make if you are going to make these is to maybe use a microwaveable material for your containers. It was a pain to mix the shea mixture in a big batch and then mix up different fragrances in each tin before it started to set, so I ended up having to concoct a double-boiler (the pyrex bowl and a saucepan) whereas if I had used plastic, I could have just microwaved the individual mixtures for a few seconds to smooth out the shea + fragrance. Would've been a time saver! Or you could make all the same scents in one batch and change scents only in batches. I wasn't going for a mass-production thing. But I like how these little tins came out. Also, remember you are not supposed to apply citrus oils to skin because they can accelerate a sunburn (or something like that). I did anyway because it's not like you're slathering solid fragrance on you and it's the middle of winter here. . .most people are wearing sweaters and coats, etc.

Some fragrances I used:
honeysuckle
jasmine
bamboo
vanilla
tangerine
grapefruit
lavender

And that's it! I'm not really looking for criticism but if you have a nice way to say it, I'd be open to hearing it Smiley
13  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Jack's Mannequin, Something Corporate Swap? All Things Andrew MacMahon Swap! on: December 17, 2008 07:23:56 AM
Anyone interested? I love these bands and I think there's a lot of great imagery in the lyrics of their songs (Me and the Moon, Caves, Rescued, Into the Airwaves, Annie Use Your Telescope...)

I would love to see what people come up with in terms of stenciled totes, tshirts, jewelry, small prints, notecards, journals...I have even crafted fragranced-candles based on song lyrics ("Coconut", "Morning in the Moonlight", "Rocks Tonic Juice Magic", "She" by Saves the Day for a Christmas gift).

I'd be down to organize or participate. I frickin' love Jack's Mannequin and Something Corporate. Ahhh, piano.
14  Washington / Washington: Northeast / crafters black market on: December 03, 2008 09:52:23 PM
The lilac city rollergirls are having a craft fair fundraiser this weekend at the corbin senior center (827 w cleveland). It's 2 bucks to get in but that gives you 2 raffle tix. There's going to be live entertainment, vendors, etc etc. You can search myspace for the lilac city rollergirls for more info.
15  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Antique Key Themed Swap on: November 09, 2008 09:29:53 AM
So I kind of have a thing for keys. The antique metal keys that look like they have stories.

I can appreciate keys in scrapbooking paper (lock and key themed), interesting diary locks (those small ubiquitous silver keys that come in pairs), artist renditions (ATCs, small paintings)of what keys look like, what purpose they serve, jewelry or any project that incorporates the key/keys itself/themselves. I can also appreciate keychains, any nontraditional display methods for keys, really, anything about those old keys. Things like wall-art, shadowboxed keys, needlepoints....all of it will impress me.

Mind you, I'm not talking about that copy of your old housekey. I'm talking about keys with a little history (sorry). I also love the idea that someone can have the "key to your heart." What a simple, lovely concept. You can craft around that theme too.

I saw a simple charm bracelet, just silver links, with about 10 antique keys on it on a jewelry website for $700. It's kind of ridiculous. Obvi that's out of my price range so I'd like to try and create some of that simple romanticism with this swap.

You can look here and here to see some examples of what I mean by antique keys. You can also search craftster for antique key and get an idea of what sorts of projects you might be able to attempt.

I really don't have any ideas of when the swap would take place. But. My birthday and Valentine's Day are in February. If we get enough people willing to participate (more than 10), I am willing to organize (or co-org, whatev, I'm flexi).
16  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Stenciling: Completed Projects / Tootsie Pop Owl, Owl Clip Art, Ahoy Matey! on: October 26, 2008 04:13:38 PM


I have been very industrious this weekend! The work paid off though and now I'm waiting to wash these items (they're about 50% dry). I'm in an undies swap but I can't wait to share my package, so I'll show it off here.

First, I made a little Ahoy Matey shirt. This was my first time doing a layered stencil. I used the outline of the anchor for the background (pink), then used the "real" stencil (in turquoise) and the threw some Old English on top for fun! I like how it turned out. I got the anchor from Microsoft Word clip art (2003 edition, if that matters) and just traced it from the computer screen on to my freezer paper. The screen acts like a lightbox and it's really easy to trace. The words look glittery but they're not that way in life--they're simple matte black.




Then, I continued to search through the Microsoft Word clip art for an owl that looked feasible for a stencil-artist. I found this one. I didn't have a brown, so I mixed blue, orange and white to come up with this interesting peachy-brown/taupe color. The pic isn't really accurate for color. I added the little W-wings after the fact. This stencil was hard because I had to leave those little u-feather fluffings, his nose and the center of his eyeballs as islands. It was sort of hard to conceptualize until I really started cutting it out with the x-acto knife. On the back, it says "ORLY," a tribute to the interwebz fad of contemporary culture. ORLY? YARLY!



Then, as a nice little extra, I decided to try my hand at free-hand painting this Tootsie Pop owl as a homemade applique on a piece of hand-sewn plaid fabric. All it needs is so No-Sew heat n' bond to be affixed to a bag or whatever. I think he came out really cute and I love his little green mortarboard.



I just wanted to share. I hardly ever post pictures of what I've made. But I do keep a thorough blog of this stuff @ alternativecrafting .blogspot.com. I don't sell anything. I just like to show off some of my stuff.
17  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / "Homemade" Piano Keys Bamboo Tile Bracelet on: September 08, 2008 01:34:13 PM
Here's my tutorial for how to make this fun bracelet. I got the tiles for $5 on eBay.

Start with the tiles.

You will need (at least) 8 for using stretching string. Clean them up (file ragged edges, wipe down) to prepare them for crafting.

Paint the tops white and the bottoms with a clear glaze (nail polish). Keep your strokes smooth and use lots of paint to eliminate the brush marks.


Let them dry, then paint your black keys. You might want to use a piece of contact paper as a stencil so your black doesn't bleed into your white, but make sure both the black and the white have the rounded edges that the bamboo tiles are coming with. It will look weird with black keys that are angular and white keys that are rounded. Also, measure your black keys to be uniform for a polished look. I didn't do this very accurately--it was more of an eyeballing.


If you want to, make a personalized message on the inside. Mine bled pretty bad. I think this could have been fixed by filing more precisely and doing a clear coat before writing (I didn't).


At this point, you need a clear glaze. I used clear nail polish (modpodge is pretty sticky when dry). Then, on my black keys, I used a glitter polish to give it a little sparkle and oomph!


Before you string them, make sure you like the look of it. Put your keys in order (chromatically, of course, you'll have one octave's worth to work with)

Once you've let them dry, you just string them up together. I used this technique from MissVan722 and her fun bracelet tutorial here.










After you're done, knot it good so it doesn't unravel. That's be no fun! If you're using wire, you'll need some sort of finding to close the deal up. I used stretchy string, not wire. You could use wire, if you like, but I prefer stretchy bracelets. More give, especially if this is a swap item (mine was).

Then, presto! Kazaam! You're done!






Enjoy!

~C
18  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Discussion and Questions / Using Long Beads In Jewelry Projects on: July 18, 2008 09:36:15 PM
Does anyone know any projects to use these long beads on? http://sundaisygems.com/yahoo_site_admin/assets/images/100_3415.193152214_std.jpg

I had strung them together (just simply, back to back, not side to side) and it looks ok, but they don't look as good (finished, professional, whatever) as my imagination thinks they can. I'm thinking somehow I could make something more like a wooden bridge or like the bamboo bracelets I've been seeing lately.
http://content.vivre.com/images/catalog/products/large/B_38936.jpg

I bought the long beads (something like 40/$1) awhile ago and I think my intention was to make a multi-stranded bracelet with three or four strands of the same long beads. Like this, but with long beads.
http://ellacinders.com/store/images/store/MSRD01.jpg

For reference, I'm working with plastic (metal finished) beads that are probably ~1.5" long +/- 1/4".

I'm not that handy with beadwork (yet?) and I'd like to learn a new technique. However, keep in mind that these beads have a pretty narrow bore so I'm not sure how many times I could run the wire/string/leather back through.

But I am thinkin' you folks may have a good idea of how I can fix this problem! I searched but I didn't see any threads that talked specifically about these "long beads".
19  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Smallthingsdesigns.com on: July 17, 2008 08:36:05 PM
So I've been a Bust (bust.com) reader for a long time and in the back, with all the ads, smallthingsdesigns. com always purchases ad space. I love these designs, but I'm also a broke crafter.

Can you Craftsters point me to any sort of metal forging tutorials for small-scale projects like this? Where might I start? These are seriously inspiring pieces to me.

I was curious about how these are put together? What sort of materials do you crafters foresee needing to make these? Skill level? I'm guessing pretty advanced, but I thought I might be able to bring it down to my level once I had a basic mental blueprint. I couldn't decide if the backing is a flat stone or a colored resin? It says "jewel-toned glass"...
http://www.smallthingsdesigns.com

Thanks for any advice, recommendations, etc.
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