Sunday, August 31, 2014

Designer Crafts Connection: Preserving your Memories

Hi Crafty Friends!

This month on the Designer Crafts Connection round-up, we're designing crafts that preserve memories.  Whether it's your last vacation, special family photos or scenes from your childhood, we have ideas for you!  Be sure to click on the big blue DCC button to the left of this post and see what all the designers have created!

This month I created an etched frame and an etched vase.  My youngest daughter got married a little over a year ago.  Yes, I'm finally getting a photo in a frame.  I'm notoriously bad at getting photos into frames or albums.  Most of mine reside on the hard disk or in shoe boxes! 

The vase is from the wedding centerpieces.  I first etched a border, then added the initial of her married name inside the border.  This will be a great reminder of a wonderful occasion. 

The vase and stencils
The border stencil

The second stencil
Finished Vase and Frame

Here is the finished vase with a frame I also etched.  The frame is etched with the word "Family" and features a photo from the wedding of four generations.  These were etched with etchall® etching creme found on  For a more detailed tutorial on etching with this fabulous product, see my post here.

Come back next week for some great design ideas using Kunin felt, Beacon glue and Buttons Galore and more buttons.  That blog hop starts on September 7.

Happy Crafting!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Etching with etchall®

Hi Crafty Friends!

Recently I was invited to try glass etching with etchall®.  It was a technique and a product that I had never tried and I was a bit skeptical.  I like to try new things, but my preference is quick and easy with great results.  I imagined glass etching as messy, smelly and requiring hazmat gear and lots of ventilation!  But, I was pleasantly surprised - actually more than pleasantly surprised - I am a fan now and looking through all my supplies and household items for pieces to etch! 

Here was my process:

First of all they included a hummingbird stencil and mirror tile in the sample kit with the etchall® etching creme.  I did that first and it turned out great!
The double edges you see on this image are the result of reflection.  The actual edges of the stenciled image are very sharp.

Next, I found a vase and a stencil from supplies I had. 


I stuck that onto the vase and masked the rest of the vase so it wouldn't come in contact with the etching creme.
Then, I added a layer of the etchall® etching creme.
I let that work for 15 minutes, scraped the reusable creme back into the container, rinsed it off and dried it.  Then I removed the tape and the stencil.  Yes, you should wear gloves and protective clothing, but there was no smell involved.  It was so easy to use and I love the fact that it is reusable!

Here's the end result:
Not bad, huh?!  I feel so accomplished adding another technique to my crafty skills!  I can't wait to try it on the glass in a picture frame, wine glasses, jars, glass table tops, mirrors and dishes.  And, it works on glass beads, so I can use it to create that lovely finish that sea glass has. I know what I'm doing with the long weekend!

I hope you'll try this technique and product.  You can find the etchall® etching creme as well as their other products at

Happy Crafting!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Scarf Jewelry for Fall

Hi Crafty Friends!

There's a touch of fall in the air here, and trees are showing hints of oranges and yellow.  It's time to break out the scarves and sweaters!

Here's a jewelry set that combines a hand-dyed silk scarf with a necklace in a new way.  It's in the fall print issue of Craft Ideas

Instead of using chain to hang the necklace, I designed it with loops through which you can thread the scarf.
Scarf Jewelry
You can wear this jewelry and the scarf in many ways.  Here's one way - thread the scarf through the loops and let the scarf drape down your back.  Here's a link to the Craft Ideas instructions.
Check out the Craft Ideas fall issue for more ways to wear this.

The special digital edition on Jewelry from Craft Ideas has another of my scarf jewelry designs and shows another way to loop the scarf through the necklace.
The muted palette on this scarf would also be great for fall. You can find the instructions on Craft Ideas.

These beautiful hand-dyed scarfs are available through Class Act Designs, who also sell wonderful silk ribbons for use in jewelry.  I love to add them to my necklace or bracelet designs.  They are so pretty that all you need is a pendant!

Enjoy the fall! 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Terra Cotta Wall Basket

Hi Crafty Friends!

What do you think this wall basket is made from?  It's a Smoothfoam half ball!  I covered the half ball with a terra cotta finish from DecoArt and added some rope, filigree, twine and beads.  I love the way it turned out and it really looks like clay.  But, it's very lightweight.  Hang it outside on your fence (as long as it doesn't rain) or put it inside.  Add some lightweight silk ferns or dried flowers or even some faux cactus!

You can find the complete instructions on making your own on the Smoothfoam Blog.  With one Smoothfoam half ball, you can actually make a pair of these.

We have a lot of fun over on the Smoothfoam blog.  I'm proud to be associated with a very creative group of designers.  It's so much fun to see the original and innovative designs they create.  I hope you'll stop by!  You can find Smoothfoam on Pinterest, too.  And, to see my designs for Smoothfoam, follow me on Pinterest!

Happy Crafting!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Designer Crafts Connection: Crafting with School Supplies

Hi Crafty Friends!

This month on the Designer Crafts Connection we're crafting in a Back to School mode.  You'll find crafts either using that theme or creating a craft with the actual supplies.  

I'm crafting with school supplies. I had some old felt pens that didn't work anymore.  I just couldn't throw them away!  Not only do I hate to create more garbage, these pens were bright and colorful  There must be something I can do with them!  After some thought, I found I could remove the felt wick leaving a colorful tube.  And when you have a tube, you have possibilities!

I decided to string the tubes on twine and make a wind chime.  I recycled a couple of plastic lids, too.  This craft is great for kids, especially if you have an adult remove the wick from the pen.  With the use of recyclable materials, it's inexpensive to make.

Felt Pen Wind Chime

You'll need: 

8 dried-up felt pens
2 plastic lids
Assorted acrylic beads
Scissors, tweezers, bead reamer or other tool to punch small holes in the lid

1.  Remove the felt wick in the center of the felt pen with tweezers or a pair of pliers.

2.  Punch eight evenly-spaced holes around the edge of a plastic lid and one in the center.  Cut a triangular piece from the other lid and punch a hole in one corner.

3.  Cut five pieces of twine about a yard long. 

4.  Tie a knot in a piece of twine, string a bead, a felt pen tube and one or two beads.  Tie a knot and go through a hole from the bottom of the lid and down from the top in an adjacent hole.  Knot the twine and repeat for the second set of beads and felt pen tube.  Repeat three more times.

5.  For the center, tie on the triangle and knot, add a bead and knot again.  Knot the twine and add a few larger beads; knot above the beads.  Four inches or so up, make a knot, add a bead and go through the center hole of the plastic lid.  Add a couple of beads on the other side to hold the lid in place, knot again and tie a loop for hanging.

Hang your wind chime outside in the garden or in a window for a colorful decoration!  

Don't forget to click on the big blue Designer Craft Connection button and see what the other designers have created this month!

Happy Crafting!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Fall Jewelry

Hi Crafty Friends!

I'm back from vacation recharged and ready to work! Good thing because I've got a pile of projects to design in everything from needlepoint to beads to new products. I love the creative life! 

There are new fall magazines out that are full of crafty goodness! Here's one! 

Jewelry Stringing magazine just released their fall issue.  My Moroccan Windows necklace and earrings made the cut!  It's under their Wanderlust section, where you'll find other travel-inspired jewelry.  I love their design calls because it always inspires me to step out of my design ruts and challenge myself.  On this necklace, I combined bright red and yellow with gold metal beads and turquoise.  It always amazes me how versatile turquoise is! It goes with everything!
Moroccan Windows Necklace
I hope you are making time for some creative pursuits whether it's crafting or cooking or gardening! It's so important for your peace of mind to have that outlet.

Happy Creating!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Burlap Fabric Blog Hop:

Hi Crafty Friends!

Burlap continues to be a hot trend!  I've always loved the rustic, country look of it. So, I was excited to participate in this blog hop!

Burlap Fabric has provided us with a generous box of samples in order to create a project or projects for this blog hop.  I received lots of red burlap yardage and ribbon and debated whether to use it to create something for a holiday like Christmas or Valentine's Day or a project for a wedding or birthday.  I finally decided to go with Christmas.  I love decorating for Christmas and I'm a country girl at heart, so it fits right in with my own style.

Burlap Country Christmas Set


Burlap:  red burlap fabric, natural burlap fabric, 1 1/2" natural burlap ribbon, burlap treat bag

Print cotton Christmas print fabric in tan, red and green 

Smoothfoam™:  3" cube

DecoArt® acrylic paint:  Berry Red, Napa Red, Khaki

Bamboo skewer

4" terra cotta saucer 


Artificial greenery 

Handful of fiberfill

Embroidery floss:  dark red, off-white

Scissors, large sewing needle and heavy thread, glue gun, wire cutters, scrap paper, paintbrush

1.  Push bamboo skewer into the center of one side of the Smoothfoam™ cube.  Paint the skewer and the cube with Berry Red.  Let dry and paint over with one coat of Napa Red leaving it streaky.  Paint the saucer Khaki.

2.  Cut a 6" circle from red burlap fabric.  With needle and thread, sew a running stitch 1/4" in from the edge of circle.  Pull up the gathers and tie the threads to create a yo-yo.  Cut a 4" circle from print fabric and make a yo-yo.  Layer the two with the gathers up and sew or glue a button to the center.  If gluing the button to the yo-yo, thread and tie floss through it first. For these projects, make three layered and one fabric yo-yo.
3.  Tree:  Cut a standard sheet of copy paper in half cross-wise and fold in half lengthwise.  Draw a triangle and round the corners.  Unfold and pin to two layers of natural burlap and cut out your tree.  With dark red embroidery floss, make a running stitch around the tree 1/2" from the edge.  Leave it open at the bottom and stuff with fiberfill.  Finish running stitch and tie ends in a bow.  Slide the tree on the skewer and decorate with a fabric yo-yo and buttons. Wrap the cube with burlap ribbon and glue a layered yo-yo and greenery on the overlap.

4.  Treat bag:  Put a crumpled piece of waxed paper or plastic wrap inside the treat bag.  This will keep the front and back from being glued together.  Glue a layered yo-yo to the front of the bag.  Glue pieces of greenery under the yo-yo.  Add a tag with brown paper and twine.

5.  Candle wrap:  Wrap a piece of burlap ribbon around the candle, overlap and glue.  Glue a layered yo-yo to the overlap and add greenery.  Place on or in the saucer.  

I'm looking forward to creating more designs for this set.  A swag with red ribbons and more yo-yo's is next on my list.  Then, maybe more ornaments!  

There's a great give-away from Burlap Fabric where you can enter to win $100 worth of product!  Just click on the link below to enter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Crafting with Burlap!  Here are the rest of the designers participating in the burlap hop.  

Angela Holt
Anita Scroggins
Beth Watson
Carmen Flores Tanis
Cherish Flieder
Cindi Bisson
Jennifer Priest
Julie McGuffee
Kristi Parker
Lisa Fulmer
Madeline Arendt
Marilyn Gossett
Michelle FraeCummings
Sue Eldred
Susan Brown