Saturday, July 21, 2012

charms of my charmed ones

I was really suppose to be catching up on blogging our vacation during these quiet days at home.
If you noticed .... I haven't been.
Instead I've been nursing a post vacation sinus/chest congestion and sitting at the computer working on something for Christmas.
Someday I'll share it with you and you'll understand why I've been working on it all year long.

Yesterday I got a text message that read:
Meeting for breakfast paradise bakery & cafe. Phx airport..
Coffe's on! U coming?
You bet! I was about to do something really exciting like vacuum and mop the floors.
Instead I lit out of here. Anna was dropping off Jenny at the airport so she was able to join us as well.
It doesn't always work out to hop up and do something like this. So glad it did.

As I was doing the airport thing yesterday I noticed yard sale signs all over the place.
Thought about going this morning, but being as I'm still feeling punky, I ran to the local Urgent Care instead. I have to be feeling better next week. Z Pack in tow, after a stop at WalMart and Target, and we're on the way to feeling better. (At least by Monday morning for work!) Two weeks of using everything under the sun and it not doing any good was enough. I really have to be able to function next week. As I'm typing this there is a nasty dust storm blowing outside my walls. The sky is brown. Also got an inhaler today .... maybe I'm thankful!

While at WalMart today, I picked up a few things like color crayons (they're on sale Anna!) and Elmer's glue (also on sale). It's only 110F outside today. I'm home alone. I have craft supplies and an idea. So .... I ran with it. Please excuse the photos ... I'm not impressed. Tutorial may leave a bit to be desired but you'll get the idea!

Start with Jumbo Craft Sticks.
(You can probably pick them up at the dollar store. If you need a few and live near me,
I'll gladly share! The package came with 75 and I used 2.)

Cut squares out of the sticks. My sticks measured about 3/4 inches wide, so my squares are that size.
I ended up using a handsaw to cut them with because I couldn't make that dull yellow object work.
(I only cut about halfway through the stick and then snapped the pieces to break.)
Next I took a foot sanding thing and a nail file to even out the cut edges of the stick.

Now comes the fun! You need to drill holes in the pieces. Half of the pieces I set the hole
diagonally in the corner. The other half of them I placed it in the middle toward what will be the upper edge. A nail to poke a hole through won't work. The stick breaks immediately.
Even the drill bit was challenging. I broke about half the pieces using the drill.
I'm assuming that means that my drill bit is dull?
I was pretty pleased to be able to find even one small drill bit in our conglomeration of stuff.
I wasn't about to run out and buy another one.
Remember ... it's 110 outside.

Next came the spray paint. You could craft paint the backs of the wood pieces or leave them plain.
I happen to have some Hammered Silver spray paint hanging around so I used it.
(Only the back side of each piece.)

While my pieces were drying, I used that On Sale Elmer's glue and made some modge podge.
I have to tell you that the cost of a jug of Modge Podge at Walmart is over $6.
This one cost me 50 cents.
1 part glue + 1 part water.
I almost used a precious canning jar and then found an empty yeast container.

Next up was finding pictures of my loved ones.
I hunted my computer files and found pictures of my dear hubby and my precocious precious children. I copied and pasted photos to a Word Document. I just guesstimated the size of them.
Knowing that my squares were 3/4" each and I only wanted faces on the squares ... I guessed.
Once they were printed, I cut each of them to fit a square.

Remember ... the back is sprayed silver.
The front is still popsicle stick tan.
I was about to start swabbing paint on it and realized that a Sharpie would work.
A black Sharpie blackened the sides of each square and around the front of each.
(In case there is some stick showing around the picture, I didn't want to see tan.)

On to try my new Modge Podge. Give it a nice shaking to make sure it's mixed nicely.
Apply the MP to the stick (wood side), attach your photo and then MP over the photo.
I did several coats on top of the photo, allowing them to dry in between ... just because I wanted to.

Remember that we drilled holes through the wood that are now covered with photos.
Starting at the back, where you can see what you're doing, poke a small hole through the photo.
If you start with a small hole from the back and then a larger hole from the front, the paper of the photo ends up inside the hole ... not outside on the front.

After finishing the holes (or was it before?), I sprayed both back and front with polyurethane.
I couldn't find the Alene's Paper Glaze I wanted today.
It may add some extra dimension that straight poly doesn't.

After everything is dry (and probably still causing a stink), have at playing with adding jeweled goodies. I wanted to attach these to a certain type of chain, but I couldn't find the one I wanted today.
In fact, if you're looking for any crafting supplies ... I'd highly recommend avoiding the WalMart at 19th Avenue and Bell. They have one aisle. That's it.
I did have one of these black ribbon things left over from doing salt dough jewels a while back.
I may move them to a chain later ...

but for now ....
I like it!

Credit for this idea goes to this lovely site.
You might like her tutorial as well. She used the Alene's stuff I couldn't find.

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