Friday, January 14, 2011

Cheering Up A Friend - Heather's Sign

I know I said my first projects might be snow related since we had an unusual 5 inch Southern snowfall( which is still on the ground - Day 4 of no school and icy roads! Not our norm!) but I ended up making a gift for my good friend Heather. She needs a little cheering up and I think this sign will have her laughing in no time! We share all of our crazy family stories so she will appreciate this ( and not be offended!!) Since I am snowed in I had to use things I had on hand! I love to paint on reclaimed wood* that would have been tossed. I don't care how banged up it is - sometimes the more banged up the better. Since I was painting and making a mess anyway I made one for our house too!!
A couple of quick tips about painting this type of sign. To make the background a little spunky I painted the board with Krylon spray paint in a nice tan (Pebble) and then used blue painters' tape to mark off stripes. I painted those stripes with  a Krylon Brushed  Metallic Spraypaint in Caramel Latte ( yum!) and then spattered the whole board with brown spray paint ( I spatter a lot of things that I paint! It adds a little visual texture and color. ) The stripes are cute and make lettering a lot easier and since it's tone on tone it isn't distracting. The best tip - I write out my sayings lightly in chalk - plain old white chalk- before I paint. It took me a while to figure this out but it has sure saved a lot of projects!!
I cannot tell you how many projects I tried to "fix" or just painted over before I started  laying out lettering in chalk.
Then I used a new, never erased anything, pencil eraser to dot the letters.
I painted a cute little house at the top with polka dots on the roof! Heather's has a tree with Mickey Mouse ears on it because she and her family moved to Orlando last year so they could work and play with Mickey.  ( Her husband actually gets to work at The Magic Kingdom everyday!!) I'm missing her so I needed a sign to cheer me up too. Then I put screw eyes in the top and attached wire. I strung the wire with beads and tied on scraps of ribbon that I had ( remember I am having to use stuff I have on hand). Check out the first picture in the blog - I tied on some old keys too! Just for fun and in a jar on the baker's rack in my kitchen - why not?? :) 

Now I just need to send it off in the mail ( we are getting above freezing tomorrow and can go out into the world again!!) and wait for Heather to call me laughing!!

*I painted this sign on "scrap" wood. It's easier to come by than you think. Ask your handy friends to save scraps for you and if you ask nicely they will sometimes share the scraps in the trash can under the saw at Home Depot or Lowe's ( you  know, the saw where they cut wood for customers) - especially if you need wood scraps for your class at school or church.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A New Year. A New Blog.

The idea behind this blog is to share creative ideas for art and craft projects  using inexpensive, free, recycled and repurposed items. I have a backlog of ideas that I've used through the years and a lot of new ideas I am ready to get going on!! I collect all kinds of crazy found items that can be turned into fun and funky projects. I'll try to keep a running list of things to collect for future projects so you'll always be prepared when the creative urge strikes ( or your child has to produce an amazing project before morning and forgot to tell you when it was assigned) or you need a gift and forgot to pick something up (handmade gifts are best anyway) or you just need something cute to hang around the house and freshen things up.  These projects will be perfect for school projects, teachers, homeschooling moms, gifts, church activities and more. I can't wait to figure this blogging thing out and post the first projects.... they might be snow related because we are in a deep freeze in the deep South this week :)  Five inches of snow in my backyard and no thaw in sight. (Two weeks ago I was in Hawaii-seriously- and I'm having a little trouble staying warm.) Not what we are used to here in the South but it is beautiful and quiet and a great chance to clean up my crafting space after the creative chaos of the holidays... where are my scissors....any scissors?? and tape?? - forget about it... bring back my Sharpies right now...
So let me clean up my space, thaw out and get this blog thing going.... check back and we'll make great stuff together.... thanks for your patience... I'm not a computer guru but I can sure cut and glue!!