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1  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Pretty pasta on: October 05, 2004 03:05:30 PM
I'm working on my degree in Elementary Education, and today in my math methods course we made this really cool stuff that you can use to help you teach kids math, but I thought all the smart people here on Craftster could find tons of other uses for it!  

Isn't it pretty?  Grin  It's just different kinds of macaroni dyed with rubbing alcohol and food coloring.  It's cheap, quick, and easy to do!

Here's what you need:
Different types of macaroni/pasta
Rubbing alcohol
Food coloring
Gallon-size ziplock bags
Old newspaper

Here's what you do:
1.  Pour some rubbing alcohol into your ziplock bag.  About 1/3 of a pint will color two big handfuls of macaroni.

2.  Add in your food coloring.  For most colors, about 1/3 to 1/2 of those little bottles that come in four-packs will do the job.  For some colors, like blue or purple, you may need to use a lot more - even the whole bottle.  If you use paste or gel food coloring, add enough so that the colors will be deep.

3.  Fill up your zip lock bag with a couple big handfuls of macaroni.  It should be about half full.

4.  Knead your bag carefully until the pasta is deeply colored.  (Be careful about poking a hole in your bag with sharp pieces of pasta!)

5.  When you are satisfied with your color, drain the ziplock bag by cutting a small piece off of the corner.  Careful, it comes out quick!  My professor said it was okay to put it down the sink, just run some water to make sure you don't dye your sink!

6.  Place the macaroni on layers of newspapers to dry.  If you do this outside, be sure the macaroni is drained well, because if the alcohol seeps through the newspaper, it will kill the grass!  

And that's it!  For our class, everyone brought two different kinds of pasta and we mixed it all up together.  Everyone did one color, and then we mixed it all back up again.  That way, we got lots of different colors and different shapes.  Here's a close up of some of the different shapes and colors we got:

Kids can learn sorting, colors, shapes, graphing skills, and anything else you can use counters for with these.  I thought they'd also be great for a myriad of craft projects.  Hope you have fun!   Cheesy
2  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Stenciling: Completed Projects / Godzilla shirt on: September 17, 2004 09:36:26 PM
I just finished making a Godzilla shirt using the bleach stencil techinque and a stencil that I got here.

ANYWAY... I made a Godzilla shirt! And I think it may have been the greatest achievement of my lifetime.  I printed out my stencil on card stock.  Here's my tip if you use a stencil that isn't laminated or plastic like I did: fill in your stencil or at least do the basic outline as quickly as you can, then remove the stencil.  The bleach started to soak into the paper in some places where I had put it on too thick, which then made the edges bleed a little bit. If you remove the stencil before this happens, the bleach gel is more likely to stay where it is and less likely to bleed.

Here it is will all the bleach on it still: (Does anybody have any tips for making the bleach pen not get all bubbly?)

And here is the finished product:

Here's a close up of the design:
It is not perfect, but I like it very much.  Now, does anybody know where to get a good Mothra stencil?  Grin
Edited to add credit for stencil & fix a typo.[/color][/font]
3  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Other Image Reproduction Techniques: Discussion and Questions / Harrison vintage iron-on transfer on: August 06, 2004 09:22:45 AM
This isn't an ink-jet transfer, but I thought this was the closest category.

I have this neat vintage iron-on transfer I bought a few years ago.  It's of George Harrison - his picture, a border around it, and HARRISON written in cool lettering underneath.  It's actually pretty old, from back when you could find those iron on t-shirt stores in all the malls.  (I still have my little pink t-shirt with kittens on it from one of those places!)  I want to put it on something - maybe a t-shirt or the back of a denim jacket - but I'm afraid I'll ruin it.  Undecided Has anybody ever worked with vintage transfers before?

4  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Discussion and Questions / Painting window panes @ school on: August 04, 2004 06:32:44 AM
I need some advice & ideas!  I'm moving back to school in a few weeks, and I want to do something really cool with my room.  I'll be in a dorm, but have a room to myself.  (With only a few semesters left and no $$$ for an apartment, it's the logical choice!)  My room will have a big window in it, but... it faces another building - so it's not the greatest view.  Tongue  Anyway, I decided I want to paint the glass from the inside.  I've seen similar things done before and I think it looks pretty cool.  The window is divided into 3 parts - 2 skinny parts on the side that swing out and have screen over them (so I can't paint those) - and 1 huge square middle section that's just one big pane of glass.  Perfect for a big ol' painting! 

Does anyone have any advice on what type of paint to use?  I need something that I can easily wash off with soap & water at the end of the year.  I'm thinking just regular acrylic... does that sound right?  Any advice for brushes or techinique?  I've never painted on glass before.

Also, any ideas for designs?  I saw a painted window once that was an abstract of this girl's head... it was super awesome.  Maybe something abstract like that would be cool... Or something else!

I'm new to Crafster, and I'm so excited I found it!  Thanks for the advice & ideas! Grin
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