I've mentioned before that coloring is not as relaxing to me as doodling so I've been busy doodling this December. Practicing my video skills to improve upon in the New Year!
Sunday, December 24, 2017
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
This is a sponsored post. Materials were provided to me. Project idea and comments are mine.
The team at Oriental Trading Company provided me an opportunity to play with some of their great products to come up with a Christmas project and needless to say I had too much fun.
I created this layered piece using a plain slat board , a wood tree shape , a plain frame and Christmas themed scrapbook paper but the most fun part of this piece was the gold leafing! Foil and shiny is so popular right now ( wouldn't matter if it wasn't, I love shiny things). I also love marrying the most basic and rustic supplies and the glam (for example, my Christmas tree includes Swarovski crystal ornaments and a tree topper made using a toilet paper roll).
Here's what I started with:
Plain Slat Sign
Unfinished Christmas Tree
Traditional Christmas Scrapbook Paper Pack
Gold Foil Leaf
Acrylic Craft Paints
Gold Leaf Sizing ( I used Mona Lisa brand I had on hand)
The unfinished tree is actually meant to stand up but since I never use things as intended, I glued the stand to the back of the tree to give it some dimension.
I painted the sign using black craft paint and then dry brushed it with cream paint. I did the same for the unfinished frame.
I traced the tree onto a piece of the scrapbook paper , cut out, and used Mod Podge to apply it to the tree. Once dry, I lightly sanded the edges.
I cut the "Love Peace Joy" sentiment with my Silhouette from gold glitter vinyl and applied it to a slat board piece I had in my stash ( also painted black and dry brushed cream.
Now for the fun part! If you've never worked with gold leaf before don't be intimidated. Do be prepared that it's messy. It's like glitter and once you start to brush it off it gets everywhere so plan accordingly or plan to walk around picking tiny flakes of leafing off of yourself. But, there's nothing like it so it's worth it.
You need a good glue and I've had success using Mod Podge or PVA glue but really you should use a glue made for gold leaf which is what I used. I didn't want complete coverage so I just randomly dabbed my glue here and there. It sets up in about 30 min.
You can see here the random way I did the gold leafing. When your glue is set you lay a sheet of the leafing on top and then use a stiff brush ( stencil brushes work well) to pounce it onto the glue. It will adhere to wherever the glue was and then pieces of it will break away. I save my excess to use for other projects.
I did the same to the frameand then used more of the scrapbook paper under the glass as shown and cut a gold glitter vinyl reindeer to go on top of the glass. Once all my pieces were ready I glued them to the sign and done.
Monday, November 28, 2016
I decided I wanted a new Christmas Tree Topper this year for no reason other than I did, and makers make right?
I was originally looking for the kind that have the coil thingy and went to Dollar Tree looking for one to use as a base but they didn't have any. But, makers make right? We also have to adapt and improvise so that's what I did.
- 2 Gold Glittered Dollar Tree Star Ornaments (Large)
- Toilet Paper roll...yep...toilet paper roll
- Gold duct tape
- Gold and Black glitter vinyl (scraps in stash)
- Large bottle cap ( I had in my stash )
- Gold wire
- Hot glue and glue gun
Cost: $2 since I had everything on hand except the Star Ornaments
I covered the toilet paper roll with duct tape. Using my Silhouette I cut the gold glitter vinyl to fit inside bottlecap and cut the number "25" from black glitter vinyl. The number works especially well this year since we celebrated our 25th Anniversary earlier in the year but obviously also works for the date of Christmas!
Now in the spirit of radical honesty, this part didn't go totally as planned. If you look really closely at the bottlecap, you can see the grid lines from the transfer tape because I layered the numbers after I put the circle of vinyl inside the bottlecap. I should have done this before I put the circle in the bottlecap which would have made it easier to get the transfer tape off. At least that's what I'm telling myself. So since I couldn't get the transfer tape off without screwing up my numbers and a lot of swearing, I left the transfer tape on and it looks like ledger paper or something. At least that's what I'm telling myself!
I marked the toilet paper roll where I was going to glue the stars ( front and back) but to make this contraption sturdier, I used some jewelry wire to secure the two stars together at the top and right and left sides. Then I glued my oopsy bottlecap to the front and done.
Since I'm just taking down Thanksgiving and we won't get our tree until Friday, I can't show it to you atop a tree but here it is atop the mantle.
This was my Thanksgiving mantle which I never posted so "Happy After Thanksgiving"! I update my chalkboard for each holiday but I'm kinda thinking I'll leave this sentiment through Christmas since PhD boy ( man...he's a man...but that doesn't sound the same) comes home on Friday for a month!!! Not that I'm excited or anything.
I've been practicing my lettering too!
Thursday, December 24, 2015
Merry Christmas Eve all! Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas. Ready or not, here we are. Opening up the party early. Here are some things you may still have time to squeeze in ( or definitely pin for next year) .
I love all things paper...fom detailed patterns to the simplicity of brown paper. The guys at Crafty Lumberjacks used kraft paper and paint to make this wonderful wrapping paper. I keep a roll of brown kraft paper in my craft room and use it for everything. The simple elegance of this idea is so lovely!
In keeping with a simple, rustic, yet elegant theme, Mich in LA has a fantastic ornament stand that can be made from garden wire! Love the snowflake she has hanging on this one!
Whether for a last minute gift or to have extras on hand for guests, Heather at Woods of Bell Trees has a great way to dress up cork coasters. These could be done in so many ways...not just for Christmas.
I think these would still count as cookies for Santa if you left out Oreo cookie cake pops don't you? Check out Logan Can for the how to .
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Being addicted to paper as I am, I hate to see any beautiful papers go to waste. So I've had a lot of fun making gift tags to give as gifts figuring who can't use more gift tags this time of year? I know I've wrapped many a present and then realized I had no way to personalize it / indicate the recipient.
This is one of those things that the more you make, the more you want to make!
- Gift tags (you can buy packages of ready made tags or cut your own. I cut mine using my Silhouette)
- Paper scraps
- Random embellishments : rhinestones, washi tape, punched shapes buttons, etc. ( this is a great way to use up onsie twosie leftovers)
These are some I made for a Hanukkah gift. I cut the dreidels using my Silhouette, randomly covered them w/ embossing ink and then embossed with gold embossing powder.
One friend of mine decorates her tree in bright greens, pinks, purples so I coordinated these tags around those colors. To embellish I used punched glitter stars, snowflakes, sequins, and glitter ribbon and had some Japanese Mizuhiki cord in my stash that coordinated.
Tip: I apply the papers slightly wider than the tag and then trim the edges all at once so they're uniform.
I used the same idea for these in black, white and green, using white Mizuhiki cord on some.
After seeing these, Mr. Chocolate asked "where are our tags" so guess what I'm working on ?
Sunday, December 13, 2015
I made over my mantle decorations this year, going with a black , white and gold theme w/ accents of red.
Waste not want not so I try to repurpose pieces I already have which is what I did with these black and white felt trees. They used to be these from a few years ago:
which were fun and I still liked them but was tired of them.
I'd pinned the tinsel to the tree ( see thinking ahead to when I might want to rip them apart!) so removing it was easy. I created a pattern for my felt freehand on a piece of scrap paper and then cut out a bunch of shapes in black and white felt. I started off counting them. That ended quickly.
These trees are a little more permanent since I hot glued the felt pieces to the styrofoam cone. Working from the bottom up, glue one color around the cone then offset your pieces and glue the next color around the cone. Continue until your cone is covered.
Slightly more work than the tinsel trees but only slightly.
They fit right in on my mantle with a black and white Father Christmas I painted years ago, and my mantle focal of a chalkboard sign I also made this year.
The chalkboard sign was made from a pre-cut piece of plywood from Home Depot, painted with chalkboard paint and bordered with gold glitter paint ( Martha Stewart).
The right side of the mantle contains a large vase filled with pinecones I've picked up on walks, birch and glittered branches left over from my Thanksgiving mantle and filled in with silver and gold balls.
Vintage bottle brush and live mini cedar trees in antique cordial glasses finish out the mantle along with collectible ornaments.
Monday, December 22, 2014
The coming year will be one of change for the Chocolate house. College Boy will be graduating which seems unreal. The past four years have flown by like that. It seems like just yesterday I sent off the first care package of treats to him, and hard to believe this was the last batch of college Christmas treats.
I saw a fun cookie idea on Pinterest that I decided to try. Mine don’t look nearly as spectacular as the originals but they turned out OK. You can see the inspiration for them along with the full recipe here: Salt Tree Family Food and Crafting Swirled Sugar Cookies.
Make the dough, divide in half and color half with gel food coloring. Then layer the doughs, and roll together jelly roll style.
The original cookies used the dot sprinkles but I only had jimmies so improvise!
I also made dipped pretzel rods which resulted in my asking “why haven’t I done this before?” These were super easy! I used a sparkly Wilton candy melt and added little sugar "snowballs".
Dip your pretzel rods in melted chocolate ( I got my pretzels at Safeway), let set, then dip in melted candy melts. Decorate as desired.
I included some candy canes and continued the elf theme by cutting some elf stockings using my Silhouette. Embellished with washi tape and pom poms.
Monday, December 8, 2014
For this you will need:
- Dimensional Mod Podge ( I used silver glitter)
- Mod Podge Matte
- Jewelry bezels (Michaels)
- Scap of scrapbook paper
- Punch (my 1” punch fit the bezels perfectly)
- Punch circles from paper
- Adhere circle to bezel w/ Mod Podge Matte
- Flood bezel with Dimensional Mod Podge, let dry