Thursday, March 27, 2008

Forged Foil

Aleene's Forged Foil

I recently ran across a 40 year old book entitled Tricks with Tacky - A Craft "How To" Create Book.
I was so inspired by the Forged Foil technique that I just had to 'update' it and in thinking about it, I decided to take a twist on it. The original projects were created by gluing twine to cardboard, gluing crumpled foil over the image, 'forging' it so the twine had a 3D effect and then antiquing it with a paint wash.

I thought gluing the twine in place would be a bit cumbersome, so I used Tulip® 3D Fashion Paint™ instead. I was able to get more intricate details - I really like the results.

Here's what it takes to do Forged Foil Joan's Way...

Find a cardboard box that the letters will fit on.

Enlarge the desired letters on your computer and print them off.

Cut the letters from the cardboard box.

Draw designs on the letters with a pencil.

Trace designs with Tulip® 3D Fashion Paint™. Let dry.

Crumple foil. Uncrumple and flatten with hands.

Spray one letter with Aleene's® Crystal Clear Tacky Spray™. Place foil on letter. Smooth with your hands to adhere. Use a smooth object (I used the handle end of a paintbrush that had a rounded end) and 'forge' the foil by lightly go around the 3D areas. Repeat for all letters.

Thin paint with water until a milk consistency. Brush on a letter and immediately wipe with paper towel. Repeat for all letters.

That's all there is to it!


Saturday, March 22, 2008

Eggshell Mosaic

Easter Eggshell Mosaic

Don't discard the shells from your colorful Easter eggs!!!!

Peel the eggs. Let dry completely.

Brush Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue® on the piece.
Place eggshells on glue and press with fingers to crack and lay flat.
Continue applying glue and pressing on eggs until the item is covered.
Isn't this cool looking?
Let the glue dry.
Brush a wash of black paint over the entire surface. Let dry.
I wanted sparkles, so I brushed on a coat of Tulip® Sparkles 3D Fashion Paint™ - Gold. The Fashion Paint protects the surface.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Spring Wreath

Last Minute Easter and Spring Ideas
Happy Spring Wreath

I love this time of year and I just have to meet the changing of the season with a wreath on my door.

This is one of those quick projects that you can do in a matter of minutes and the secret is Aleene's® Crystal Clear Tacky Spray. Just spray it on the back of your silk flowers and ivy and place them into the openings of a grapevine wreath. It holds instantly, yet there's a longer open tack time so it gives you time to reposition flowers.

If your silk flowers are looking a little dated or dusty, use floral spray paints to spruce them up.

A soft bow adds a finishing touch and you're ready within moments to greet your guests with a little touch of the outdoors.

Usher in Spring with a little something special today.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Cupcake Craze
I never know what I'll be researching about for work. Tonight, I'm writing an intro about cupcakes for what we call smART Club. I ran across a fantastic cupcake blog. The name of these cupcakes is Walnut Cupcakes Topped with Rose White Chocolate Mousse and Baklava - they sound heavenly. Check out other yummy cupcakes at
Back to my research.

Creativity at Home

Creativity can be found EVERYWHERE and in EVERYTHING...
I have been very creative the last couple of weeks, but in a work way. I have been busily and creatively working on The Craft Chica line and many new fashion art products. It's exciting, it's fun, but now I'm ready for some downtime. Somewhere in between writing instructions, packaging copy and ads, I got this crazy idea to go out and buy some apothecary jars I'd been admiring at my local discount store. I almost didn't buy them, but decided to just do it.

Then, where to put them (the tallest is over 2 feet!). I finally decided it was time to clean off the dividing wall between my kitchen and dining room which was a major undertaking in itself. It was a catchall place for photos, a pretty leaf I'd found on a walk - just a place to put stuff that didn't have a place.

Once I took everything off of the area, I didn't know what to do with all the stuff. I put some in a bowl thinking it would make a nice display, but it just looked like a bunch of stuff in a bowl. So, you will see in the picture what came of some of the items - I stuck large-headed thumbtacks under the ledge and hung my things from there. A couple of the items are heirloom/antique spoons that my dad gave me recently from his aunt's silverware - they have such beautiful intricate designs.

I went back and forth about what to put in the jars - gumballs? No. Potpourri. No. Once I had them in place, I decided that they needed to remain empty - there was something about being able to see through them.

A friend is redoing her yard and she wanted my advice on what plants would work best in her yard, so I went there last night carrying a Columbine to get her started and, of course, I had to get some flowers for myself. I planted them tonight and it's so fabulous to see Spring finally here. I have been absolutely enamored with falling flower petals from trees lately. I went out for a massage last week after dark and when I stopped at a stop light they came trickling in through my sunroof. They are falling so heavily that in many places they look like little drifts of snow.

Speaking of flowers, our offices are looking quite lovely and smelling divine with the arrival yesterday of Daffodil Days for the American Cancer Society. They are beautiful!

I am looking forward to a few days of slowing down and a chance to recuperate a bit. I've been invited to a nearby lake for Easter and I hear there was a fresh blanket of snow last weekend - relaxation, friends, snow - that sounds wonderful!

I have my eye on my new project from way, way back! It's called Forged Foil. I ran across an old Aleene's book from 1968 - yes, 40 years ago. I have an idea to make it modern and use a little different technique so be on the lookout for that.

Upward and onward. I can't wait to see the new products in the stores that we've been working on - they are fabulous and different and exciting!!! More details as I can let the cat out of the bag.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Gotta Love Them Peeps!


The sugar coated marshmallow yummies come in all shapes, sizes and now flavors. I found some cocoa ones recently to take for a taste test at a getaway weekend not long ago. They were 'all right'.

Our local paper had a Peep diorama contest and this is one of the examples. Too cute! There was even one called "Caucus of the Peepsle" with Clinton and Obama signs, one entitled "Race for the Cure" with a hint of "Don't use a glue gun, it may seem nice at first, but it just makes your Peeps end up in a marshmallowy mess."

Love them!

Have a Peepalicious day!


Saturday, March 15, 2008

Shoe Art

It's a Shoe-In

Maybe my obsession with shoes isn't over. I was looking for something and ran across a lovely shoe stamp and found myself setting aside my chores for the day and indulging in my 1/2 hour of creativity for the day and it was marvelous!!!

Here's what I did ~
I stamped the shoe image on some tissue paper and cut it out.

I brushed some Aleene's® Instant Decoupage™ on the back of an acrylic rectangle, put my shoe in place, then brushed Instant Decoupage over the entire piece. While it was still wet, I sprinkled in some Tulip® Fashion Glitter™ for a touch of color. After it was dry, I turned it over and added some detailing with permanent pens.

I adhered some old looking paper to the back of the cardboard from the frame using Aleene's® Spray Adhesive™ (I just love the look of old stuff - can you tell?)

I glued the rectangle to a piece of old rust screen (love it!) with Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue,® then glued it to the frame backing. Four beads accented the corners.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend. I keep hearing a thunderstorm is coming.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Creative Kids

Brandon's Creative Challenge

My nephew, Brandon, wanted to share his creativity with you. He just turned six and is in kindergarten.

The picture is of his mom and him. Thanks for sharing, Brandon!

Monday, March 10, 2008


Miniature Houses...

This weekend, a friend called and 'candidly' asked me if I had the choice of china, fabric, gardening items, books and a couple more things what would I pick. Something about an 'online survey'. My first choice was gardening (bet, ya didn't know that about me!), second was the bookstore (because I buy a ton of books - did I say I read them ALL?) and third, the china I think because I had just bought my apothecary jars - and ya know if I'd been given the option of shoes...I would have been all over that one (a short-term need that is now out of my system).

I knew something was up, but little did I know it would be these miniatures, hand-detailed by a local miniature artist who just passed away.

Thank you, my friend, for the gifts.

Tonight, I brainstormed (and cried a little too) with a friend. She's a joy to be around, always upbeat and positive and VERY supportive. It is so helpful to have a person you can tell things to and they help you mold them and nurture them to the next step. It was awesome to have terrific weather and sit out by the pool and chat. It seemed like the evening frittered away in a matter of minutes, but we made plans for next time, so it's something to look forward to.

For my 1/2 hour of creative time tonight, I practiced my singing. With my allergies so bad last week, I didn't practice and I could sure tell yesterday at my lesson. A couple more weeks and I'll record the song I've been practicing and put on my blog.

Make time to craft today, even if it's a 'miniature' amount of time.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Orchids in Paris?

Paris? Not exactly...

A local orchid club had a show at the local mall. There was mistake #1 - the mall. I hadn't been shopping in ages and I knew I needed to buy some sandals since the weather has been in the 70's lately. I had success in finding sandals - too much success. Four pairs of shoes later I was back home and oh, the orchids were beautiful!

Paris - I don't know, but they had a little cafe scene set up in the display window outside of the show.

This orchid almost went from floor to ceiling - I've NEVER seen such a tall orchid - it's blooming on top!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Bread Dough

Aleene's Bread Dough Carnations

We had a discussion at work this week about what our favorite flower is because someone was trying to send a friend a bouquet. My favorite flower is the carnation - I love the ruffly edges and the spicy smell. So, in tribute to my favorite flower - here are step by step instructions on how to make that spicy cutie.

Look below for the Aleene's Bread Dough Recipe that made with just white bread and Aleene's Original Tacky Glue.

For each petal, make a round ball of dough the size of a pea. Flatten out. Make 2 petals the size of a nickel and 1 the size of a quarter.

Ruffle the edges of each petal, as if you were fluting the edge of a pie.

For center, cut a piece of wire about 3" long. Bend a small hook at one end of wire. Place a small dab of dough to cover hook

Place a small amount of Aleene's Original Tacky Glue on stem. Place one small petal around stem. Place on second small petal. Add large petal.

Make 4 leaves and place around base of carnation.

Place two leaves together on stem.

Let dry.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Wii isn't just for weee ones

I'm Addicted!!! to Wii that is!
Have you played this game? I was at my brother's house to celebrate my mom's birthday tonight and we bowled on the Wii game. My mom's 25 years older than me and she beat the heck out of me at bowling - you go Mom!!! Here's the avatar my 12 year old nephew made of me. It's amazing how realistic you can get!

The sunset put on a spectacular show for my mom's birthday tonight.

I'm so looking forward to the weekend - my plans just got changed, so I have loads of free time to try and get caught up and I'm bound and determined to get my greenware bowl ready to be fired next week...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Gift Card Gift Wrap

Gift Card Gift Wrap or my half hour of creativity for today...

My nephew's birthday is coming up and he LOVES books, so I got him a gift card from a bookstore and a book about archaeology (he wants to be a paleontologist).

I wanted to make the gift card special so, for my creative time today, I got the idea to copy an interesting page from the book I'm giving him to wrap the card. One of my color ink cartridges is out, so now my printer won't let me print except with black ink - well, it made the copy interesting.

Tomorrow night is my mom's monumental birthday, so we're having a bbq and hopefully a special gift I ordered her will come in the mail and that I remember to take a picture of it before I wrap it up. My fingers are crossed that it comes in.

I know your mind is whirling with creativity ideas - take some time (say 1/2 an hour) and explore.


Aleene's Bread Dough

Aleene's Bread Dough for Kids
Easter Bunny

Jackie got into the Craft Challenge with her kids, Sam (age 4) and Jessica (age 2). She used the Aleene's Tacky Glue Bread Dough Recipe (see a few posts below this for the recipe) to create fun dough art.

They just rolled a couple of balls of dough, squished them (Sam's words) made some ears and added a small ball of dough for the tail. They put their creation out in the sun to dry.

Jackie said they glued the ears and tail on after all the pieces dried with Aleene's Tacky Glue and then painted the bunny white and added his features with acrylic paint.

Jackie said they made a big batch of dough, so she'll be submitting more projects - she keeps the dough in a ziptop plastic bag in the fridge so it's ready when the kids are to play.

Thanks Jackie, Sam and Jessica!!!

Keep your projects come for the Craft Challenge for National Craft Month


Sunday, March 02, 2008

Tea Projects

It was a 'Tea'riffic Weekend!!!

We crafted, we relaxed, we had tea, we saw deer...

We (my sister, my sister-in-law and I) celebrated my mom's monumental birthday this weekend and it was 'tea'riffic!!!

How is your crafting challenge coming? Be sure to send me images, videos, sketches, anything that shows the world what you have been working on so that I can post them on my blog.

More photos of the weekend are coming in from my sister, so I'll post them soon!
Go ahead, challenge yourself!