Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Plastic Picture Frame Upgrade

We all know how expensive picture frames can be, so when I found these $11.99 a piece black plastic ones with white mattes included I thought I'd hit the jackpot: 
Unfortunately when I got them home and was about to hang them, I realized that no matter what I put inside them, they still looked like cheap, plastic frames.  Off to the hardware store and craft store I went and purchased what I would need to make them into something pretty!  Here's what I used: 

First, remove the glass, mattes and anything else inside the frame(s) and cover your work surface with newspaper.  

Now cover the plastic frame with at least one coat of your paint.  I highly recommend you take this part of the project outside! One looked sufficient but I did two, just to be sure!  

I found that the paint dried really fast so after waiting about 20 minutes, I mixed up the glaze.  The directions said to use 1:1 glaze to water and no more than 35% acrylic paint so that's what I did.  So, mix up your glaze, grab a brush (I used a foam brush) and a rag.  First you brush on an even coat of glaze (and please don't mind the apples holding down the paper in the picture, you work with what you've got!): 

Next, you take your rag and wipe off most of the glaze leaving the amount you desire to achieve the look you want.  This is what my first try looked like:

I was really happy with it, although the picture doesn't really do it justice.  But I did want a different look so I applied one more coat of glaze.  This is totally personal preference so add as many or as few coats as you like!  Mind you, I'm not sure how to "go back" so if you're not sure you want it darker, best to leave well enough alone!

One little reminder is to make sure you are changing up your rag ever few times you use it so that you are wiping the glaze with a clean surface.  If you let the glaze build up on the rag, it doesn't do such a great job of pulling the glaze off.

Here's what the final product looks like, hanging on my daughter's wall with scrapbook paper inside:

I'm really happy with them and also really excited to use the glazing technique again.  I love how it looks kind of like wood, kind of antiqued, kind of like metal.  Sort of "je ne sais quoi" I suppose!  I'm especially looking forward to glazing something with texture (to accentuate the piece, not cover it up like I did) as in the inspiration for my project found here.

Here's some more pictures...

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Zucchini Chips

Well, I officially can't keep up with the amount of zucchini growing in my garden.  Even though I keep giving them away to anyone who will take them it seems three grow in place of every one that has been picked!  So, we have literally been eating zucchini constantly.  My husband would eat them grilled on the bbq every day if he could but I need a little more variety so I have been trying all sorts of new recipes.  This recipe for Oven Fried Zucchini with Basil Dipping Sauce is definitely a new favourite me!  I followed it exactly and they turned out perfectly.  My husband didn't care for the dipping sauce but I loved it.  Try it today!!

Easy-Peasy DIY Jewellery Storage

I had been frustrated with my jewellery "situation" for awhile.  I couldn't find a single jewellery box that suited my needs, but didn't even have a place to keep one anyway.  When I came across this picture I knew I had found the solution to the ball of necklaces I kept in a box my dishes came in!  This is so easy you don't even need instructions!

I happened to have the eye hooks and wooden hangers on hand so I just measured out the intervals I wanted the hooks and screwed them in.  I did learn that the small dowel on the bottom of my hanger was too small to hold the hooks without the wood splitting.  Also, I had to make sure I used larger eye hooks for my second hanger to accommodate larger clasps.

I organized my earrings and chain bracelets into this vintage tart pan.  I think it looks cute!

Now I need to figure out what to do with my larger bracelets and bangles, especially the ones without clasps.  Right now I have them around the hook on the top of the hanger.  Any other suggestions?

Monday, 1 August 2011

Baby Bonnet

I found an awesome tutorial here on The Cottage Home blog to make this adorable baby bonnet that I am going to give to a friend who is expecting in September.

I followed the steps exactly and it really was as simple as promised and it turned out really well!  I did find the step with the bias tape a little confusing and the first time I did it I realized it was wrong.  Out came the seam ripper and I started again (using my head a little more this time) and it came out just like it was supposed to.  The photographer didn't get that part in the pictures, but it looks adorable with a pink ribbon tied in a bow!  The only thing is that as you can kind of see in the pictures, it's a little small for Hadley (she's ten months old).  I'm not sure if it's because her head is really big or if I did something wrong...

Just a note for those of you who aren't as familiar with all the ins and outs of purchasing fabric: the interfacing is stored in the cutting tables (at Fabricland anyway) so you just ask for it when you are getting the rest of your fabric cut.  Make sure to grab the single fold bias tape in the notions section before you head over, because you'll need it cut there too!

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Fabric Flowers

I made these fabric flowers as decorations for a baby shower I hosted.  They now decorate my daughter's room.  I generally followed this awesome tutorial at Going So Crazy.  I only did two things differently:

  1. As soon as I shaped the strip into a flower, I put a few stitches through to hold the flower just the way I wanted it, and then put the button on. 
  2. I skipped the floral tape step and simply used fabric glue to attach the flowers to kabob skewers from the grocery store.  

I think they look pretty cute, especially in the vintage milk glass vases.