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21  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Re: Leaf dish on: November 01, 2015 08:51:56 PM
Thanks for the info, steiconi.  I'll have to remember next time I have that problem.  I did use a real leaf in making it.  Pressed it into the clay & cut around it.  I've given the dish to a friend who admired it.  I feel quite fortunate in my clay classes.  They're not a lot for a two hour session & materials are furnished.  the instructors are great.  It probably helps that I live in a small town in the midwest where most things are cheaper than in the big city.
22  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Thanksgiving / Re: Fall Pumpkin Tutorial on: October 02, 2015 10:08:36 AM
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, SuzN.  I've never had a lot of skill with typing so it takes me FOREVER to type what would take my kids only a few minutes.  I'm expecting family to visit tomorrow & was going to ask for help from one of them.  I appreciate your taking the time to help.  There are so many lovely people on this site.

Deregering,  if anything isn't clear, let me know & I'll try to explain further.
23  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Thanksgiving / Re: Fall Pumpkin Tutorial on: October 01, 2015 06:59:36 PM
Thanks everyone for the nice comments.

Deregering, I'd be happy to help you with the instructions but am not really great with the computer.  I saved the page to desktop & found that it blurred badly when I enlarged it so that won't work.  What would help you?  The only thing I can think of is to retype it in a larger font & re-post it.  I can try that but, unfortunately, don't have time to do it tonite.  I'll get back here asap. Meanwhile, does anyone else have a suggestion?
24  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Flowered tile on: September 17, 2015 12:39:59 PM
I absolutely love my weekly clay classes.  My latest creation is a tile, approximately 6x8 inches.  I pressed a crochet doily into a slab of clay, then modeled flowers & leaves that I affixed to one end.  I used 2 greys for the tile color, orchid for the flowers & pale green for the leaves.  I achieved the pale colors I wanted.  Getting the colors right seldom happens so I'm very pleased with it & will display it on an easel.

25  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Thanksgiving / Fall Pumpkin Tutorial on: September 15, 2015 08:00:26 PM
I've made the polyfil stuffed fabric pumpkins but find these a bit different.  They're no-sew & use a styrofoam ball as the base.  I've taught them several times at craft seminars & they all turned out quite nicely.
I don't remember who first taught me this craft but recall that it didn't work well.  I soon made my own instructions & pattern.  I'm offering it in case someone would like to try it.

hope this comes out ok I retyped instructions so they are a little clearer for those who might like it.
Fabric Covered Pumpkins

You will need:
6 (inch) diameter styrofoam Ball.
1/3 yard fall print fabric
Artificial Leaves & berries.
Raffia or ribbon for stem
Green wire.

Scissors to cut fabric
Dull bladed knife- eg butter knife or table knife.
4 Rubber Bands
Hot glue gun and sticks.
T Pins or straight pins.
Round pencil or down rod.

Mak a flat bottom on the styrofoam ball by shaving a small sliver off one side with a serrated knife or bang it on a hard surface several times.

Divide the ball vertically by stretching one of the rubber bands around it.
With the second band divide it into 1/4 (quarters.) vertically.
With the remaining bands divide it into 1/8ths ( one eighths)

Cut a shallow groove to the side of the rubber bands then remove them. Widen and round the edges of the grooves by pressing the knife blad against them.

Cut elliptical pieces of fabric from the pattern. Center one piece over one section of the ball and secure it to the top and bottom using pins.

Using the knife blade press the fabric into the grooves you have created in the ball.
If the ends are too long trim them with scissors
Repeat with the remaining fabric pieces.
Note: Leave the pins in the adjacent sections so the fabric wont be pulled out while you are working on the neighbouring sections.

Poke a hole in the top of the pumpkin for the stem. Place a dab of glue in the hole and insert the stem. Arrange the leaves and berries around the stem and glue into place.

Wrap a length of wire (about 12 inches) around a pencil or down rod to make springy vines to push or glue in place around the leaves and berries.

Fashion a bow from raffia and glue among the leaves.
26  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Yard Bird on: September 14, 2015 11:06:05 PM
I've been alternating between garden stakes & painted flamingos lately.  For my latest yard bird, I decided to leave the basic Flamingo pink, as is, & just add painted designs over it.  I found the paint didn't adhere well to the surface.  In the past, I've always spray painted the under surface white when painting plastic.   Once I was able to get the designs on, I finished it with 3 coats of polyurethane.  The result is a hard coated finish that shouldn't wear off any time soon.

27  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Solar lit garden stake on: September 14, 2015 10:43:54 PM
Recently, I've had a lot of fun making solar lit garden stakes.  I even encouraged my grandson to join me for a "Play Day".  You can easily guess which is his---typically male.

Cameron's is made from a 36" wooden spindle I found on sale at the local home improvement.  Hubby drilled a hole in the top to accommodate a solar light (also on sale).  Then he had some nails (spikes) on hand that were about 12" long.  He sawed off the head & drove it part way into the bottom, making a stake that has an overall length of about 4 ft.  I think the bright colors & tribal symbols make it a very unusual piece.

Mine was made from a 2 ft piece of closet rod I found in the basement.  I don't know why it was hanging about but I put it to good use.  It was drilled top & bottom like the other one before I painted it Caymon Blue.  I then added one stroke flowers  & finished it with 3 coats of protective polyurethane.  It measures about 3 ft.

28  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Long Wall Pocket on: August 22, 2015 06:50:59 PM
This isn't one of my favorite pieces but I'm OK with it.  I mostly don't care for the colors.  In fact, the outside was originally green but, after it was fired, I went over it with a dark brown (fudge) color & had it re-fired.  Some of the green still shows thru but I actually like that.  Over all, it's about 15 " tall.

29  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Butterfly on: August 10, 2015 10:50:39 PM
I'm very pleased with the newest project from my pottery class.  I printed a clip art drawing of a butterfly onto an 8"x11" paper, cut it out & transferred the markings to a slab of clay.  I draped it over a shallow mold & carved the detail when it was leather hard.  The finish is food safe & the curved shape makes it ideal for use as a serving/candy dish.   I feel it's a much better effort than an earlier version I tried.

30  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Painted Garden Stake on: July 04, 2015 12:52:00 PM

I found a bag of 5 spindles at a garage sale---each 12" long.  It included the threaded dowels to connect them---all for a couple of dollars.  I think they were originally intended to have boards put between them to make book shelves.  I've re-purposed them & made a garden stake---or 2, or 3, or 4, or 5.  I haven't decided yet.

It's one of those projects that took forever but I'm quite pleased with the end result.  I painted a rainbow of colors on the sections & added small flowers or garden critters to the flat areas (all 80 of them!).  Then I brushed on 3 coats of polyurethane for weather protection.   

Fortunately, I have a great Hubby who's willing to enter in to any project I attempt & help solve my problems.  He drilled out the top of one section so I could push a solar light into it  Then he donated the 12" extension handle from one of his paint rollers so I can make a stake to hold it in the ground.  Screws perfectly into the end of the spindle.

Now I'll have to decide if I want to make one 76" stake or several smaller ones.  I can buy more solar lights & paint roller extensions (these come in different lengths so there are numerous possibilities).   I can see there will be more fun ahead before I completely finish my project.

Work in progress.  Less than half finished.

Painting finished & 3 coats  polyurethane added.


Two sections with roller extension & solar light.

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