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Make Your Own Ice Candle Centerpiece

We do this pretty centerpiece every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The fun part is choosing different kinds of filling for the ice. Whatever you choose, a home made ice candle adds a beautiful ambiance to your holiday dinner table. It costs close to nothing to make, is easy to do, and the even the kids will love making these.You'll need:1. Plastic tubs: 1 large/1 small, the tall kinds. For example: an ice cream bucket or margarine container paired with a yogurt or cottage cheese conatainer.*I used to do these with a coffee can for the large. If you need to use a coffee can, make sure the walls are paper, and cut away the aluminum rim before ... » Read More

Upcycled Flower Lights (a.k.a. Faerie Lights)

I saw this decoration tutorial over a year ago, and finally got around to trying it. Make flower cups out of egg crates! For this project, use LED lights . They're a cooler temperature.I cut 50 "cups" from a paper egg crate. On the original blog, holes were punched in the petals, but theirs were deeper. The particular crate I used was not made from a very dense paper, and it tore too easily with scissors. I opted for a sharp exacto knife.I spread newspaper on the floor of the garage and sprayed the flowers with metallic gold spray paint. Although the coat was uneven, the gray color of the paper blended well with the gold anyway.When the flowers we... » Read More

Root Beer Cake Recipe

Ahh...September. The end of summer, and so much closer to the crisp fall months. It couldn't come too soon for me.And with that comes sweet smells, sweet treats, and sweet ideas. This could get dangerous.Todays' topic is root beer. Root beer cake to be exact. There's more to this sarsaparilla beverage than most people realize, I must point out. Like wintergreen? Yep.For this recipe you will use a box of spice cake mix, but replace the mixing instructions with the ones that follow. Dream Whip is a product found near the Jello. I choose Henry Weinhard's for mine.1 box spice cake mix3/4 cup root beer4 eggs1 tbs root beer flavoringsmall pkg instant va... » Read More

Lila And Lub Totes and Bags

I received an adorable and well made bag from Lila and Lub on Artfire!  I got all excited when the package came today:It's so cute, with a pattern of gnomes against a happy yellow.The stitching is of a professional quality, and the inside is thick and plush. Handy pockets are trimmed with matching yellow fabric. Keep the strap to attach to your wrist, or remove and carry. The Lila and Lub shop has a variety of different styles to choose from, so check it out! They also have a facebook fan page where you can keep up with their new designs.... » Read More

Polymer Clay Skinner Blend and Leaf Cane Tutorial

Hello, and welcome to my very first polymer clay tutorial! Today I will be showing you a step-by-step guide to creating a skinner blend (gradient color sheet) with polymer clay. We will then take the skinner blend and turn it into a leaf cane. Special thanks to my friend Andrea Dudley for taking the pictures, as I could not handle my camera with clay hands. Some shots are a bit blurry, but you'll get the gist of it. We did the best we could with the lighting I use in my clay area.I have benefited very much from tutorials, how-to's, and tips/tricks for polymer clay across the web. Now I can start giving some of that knowledge back as I learn!Okay, ... » Read More

Necklace Sizing Chart

I stumbled on this necklace sizing chart and I think it's a useful tool to help someone who is unsure about what length they need, especially if they are looking for a gift. You can get a pretty good idea from this model, who I think represents about average. I have a "thicker" neck and shoulder structure, so a 20" hangs closer to the charts 18" mark on me, or in between. For pendant necklaces, consider the size of the pendant itself as well. I measure the strand(s) of my pieces and the pendant separately. It is always possible to lengthen a necklace with extension chain (unless the clasp is magnetic-then it has to be restrung), so I started ma... » Read More

Creamy Baked Potato Soup

I think it's likely that most creative types enjoy art in the kitchen as well as in the studio. Why not? Both involve creativity and fun with experimentation. "Formulas" apply in both areas too.It's a cool, crisp November, so I got on a soup and stew kick. Hunting for soup recipes that I had never tried before, I stumbled on several tasty looking numbers. One was this savory iron packed minestrone. Ah, the discovery of fennel! Black licorice lovers, you should know about that one.So there was this rich and hearty potato soup, easy and full of caloric comfort. When I shared the recipe with my cousin, she said, "So it's a watery mashed potato." Well... » Read More

Holiday Table Decor

I had stumbled on this pretty idea shortly before my moms housewarming/potluck shindig. I decided to do a variation of that with baby pumpkins. It fit right in with the crisp November ambience, and this would make a lovely and simple Thanksgiving table centerpiece. I picked up some autumn clearance synthetic leaf embellishments from Michaels and took my electric carver to the pumpkins. The carver is just a grocery store Halloween thing that was not very good at making cool designs. For this purpose though, just cutting circles at the top, it made the job quick and easy.I made the mistake of using tea lights from the dollar store, and they burn out... » Read More

Winfield Watson Custom Hot Rod Car Show

This weekend I had the honor of participating as a vendor in the annual Winfield and Watson Rod & Custom Car Show. This was my first time ever attending such an event, and I now have a new respect for the love and work that goes into these beautiful classics. Hot rods gleaming in the desert sun, guys and gals in rockabilly style and pompadours, music from a live was too cool for school. One vendor next to me had been invited to the show personally by Gene Winfield, and drove seven hours to get there. His name was Mike Bazzani, and he runs an upholstery shop for car interiors. Mike uses the scrap materials to create beautiful custom... » Read More

Summer Chicken Salad

On a whim, I decided to make a fruity chicken salad. It stemmed from my mom introducing me to a method of making chicken pasta salad with grapes and yogurt/or sour cream. This time, I wanted to use grapes and pineapple-forgoing pasta for a salad with a more tuna-like consistency to be eaten on crackers. The result? Finely chopped chicken breast, yellow bellpepper, cucumber, olives, tomato, green onion, sour cream and olive oil-based mayonase. And of course, chopped white grapes and strained crushed pineapple. The pineapple juice can be saved to use for a myriad of different things-I plan on adding some to home brewed, unsweetene... » Read More

Let's Make A Deal, With A Gang of Mimes

My family and I went on the show 'Let's Make A Deal.' I dressed as a drunken mime, and here you see me with fresh makeup, sporting my Southern Comfort shaker-and-strain bottle. I made my sister and her friends mimes as well. Dominique was a mean Punk Rock mime, Sheree an 80's mime, and Ryan was an evil Zombie mime. We were to stand and sit in line for hours that day, and we under-estimated just how long that would be. So next time, we will do things a bit differently-like not wear face paint! But it was fun, and we danced ourselves out. My mom wore a pretty unique costume, she was a trash lady. Wearing a black plastic bag all day-no... » Read More

DIY Repurposed Wall Decor Part 2

Save your toilet paper and paper towel tubes! Here is a follow up to my previous post on the subject of re-purposing cardboard rolls. The black spray paint gave my sculpture a neat 'iron' look. I made a large 'feathered wing' for a friend, prior to this abstract design. In case you are new to the craze, you basically flatten and cut your rolls into 1-inch pieces. Brush white glue onto the parts you want to connect, and fasten with clothespins or paperclips. The advantage of using clothespins is that the pieces will shift less-and let them dry. You can make 1-inch deep pieces or whatever depth you prefer. Each toilet paper roll I cut yields m... » Read More

My Fun Crafty Mess

My entire dining area is basically a craft room. I take my meals in odd areas of the house that don't have some project or other spread about.   Here's where I get beady-eyed.   This arrangement protects my hat from my cat.   And this is all apart of a healthy addiction to the world of polymer clay:     A very nice lady gave me a pasta machine for my clay, but it turned out that its thickest setting was much too thin. Since it could now no longer be used on food, I did what any reasonable crafter would-I took it apart to use the different parts in creative ways. ... » Read More

Fun With Polymer Clay

So, I finally got some alcohol inks, and also some conditioner, for my polymer clay. Throw in an extruder and some shaving cream, and the long and fun game of trial and error begins! You ever have a blank sheet of paper in front of you that you're supposed to write or draw on and feel overwhelmed by infinite possibilities? This is kind of like that. I've been experimenting with the shaving cream and inks, and already made several pendants, most of which came out pretty cool. I'm going through clay pretty quickly, so I'm gonna have to be frivolous and buy .... » Read More

DIY Repurposed Wall Decor

Make your own interesting wall decorations with paper towel and bathroom tissue rolls. I am hardly the first person to discover this neat and inexpensive craft project, but I'd thought I'd share a how-to and what became of my first try. You'll need: several paper roll inserts (depending on how large you want it) scissors white glue paper clips newspaper or something to "mess-proof" underneath your project ruler and pencil Acrylic paint, or whatever you want to decorate your sculpture with      *metallic spray paint will produce a gorgeous and elegant result* Flatten your rolls. Measure and cut strips to your desired wid... » Read More

Salty The Snowman

Salt dough ornaments are a lot of fun to make, and a good way to make use of old or rancid flour that is no longer fit for consumption.  You will need a cup of salt for every four cups of flour, some extra flour, a rolling pin, parchment paper, some cute cookie cutters with a nice impression-design, baking trays, paints, a small pair of scissors, a nail file, and some high gloss clear coat to spray on them after painting. Dissolve the measured salt partway in some water. You will not be able to dissolve all of it at this point, and adding too much water will mean you have to add more flour, which ruins your flour/salt proportion. Add the... » Read More
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