Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Etched Glass Snowman

It was cold and frosty outside this morning..... brrr!  Made me think of the holidays, christmas trees, twinkling lights and snowmen!  Love snowmen... they're full of personality and they seem to go with all kinds of decorating trends.  Snowmen are eternal - unless of course they're real and the sun comes out.

I was browsing the other day, looking for nothing in particular, when I found this little, round glass jar with a screw top lid.  It reminded of a particular brand of jam my mum used to buy.  Didn't really have any plans for it, but picked it up anyway.  I happen to like glass and I particularly like etching glass, so I'd figure out what to do with it later.  Later, however, happened sooner than I thought.  I'd been working on some projects for the CHA trade show that's coming up in January and I had some half balls of Smoothfoam lying around on my workbench.  I'd also been etching something else, which you'll see on Monday, and suddenly the penny dropped.  I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my little roly poly jar!  Look!  Isn't he sweet!


And these are the supplies I used to make him happen, plus a few odds'n ends: 


First of all I removed the lid and filled the jar with etchall® dip'n etch™ being very careful not to let the etching liquid splash onto my granite counter top.  I didn't really want to etch the counter top again... LOL   While the dip'n etch was working its magic,  I cut a 2" Smoothfoam ball in half and glued one half to the top of the lid using a cool temp glue gun.  
    •  His nose is one half of a teeny tiny clothespin.  Remove the spring and you have the perfect shape for a nose.  The ones I had were colored, but if you have plain ones, paint or color it orange.  Use the tip of a pencil to make a pilot hole where you want the nose to be, then push the wide end of the half clothespin into the hole.  
    •  I used a cotton swab to rub pink powder blush on his head for cheeks.  
    •  His eyes and mouth are black, adhesive back acrylic jewels.  
    •  To make his ear muffs I cut about a 3" length of red chenille and pinned the ends at each side of his head by pushing a straight pin thru a small red pom pom into the end of the stem into the head.  You could glue it too I s'pose.  
    • His scarf is a 1/2" wide strip of felt which I glue around the rim of the lid.  
    • I also added adhesive jewels to the front of the glass for buttons.


The inside of the jar is now etched (it takes about 20 mins - please read the directions), then very carefully pour the dip'n etch back into the bottle!  This product is REUSABLE, yes, that's right you get to use it again, and again and again!  I said it was magical.  Thoroughly rinse the inside of the jar then dry it with a soft cloth.  Fill with your favorite candy, or bath salts, or anything you like for a one of a kind gift - an LED votive candle would look cool too!   

You could etch the outside of the glass of course, but I like the frosty look of the inside being etched and the glass still shines on the outside. 


Are you itching to etch?  Click on the "etchall" link in my sidebar for a whole range of etching products!  Enjoy........ y'all come back now!

Yours truly,
Julie :)


Friday, November 15, 2013

Christmas Ornaments Blog Hop

Christmas is almost here!  Decorations are all over the stores, holiday music is playing in the background and I've already seen a couple of houses decorated for the upcoming season.  It's still a bit early for me.  I like to enjoy fall to its fullest and can't wait for Thanksgiving!  The day after is when we haul our decorations down from the attic and start to string lights outside, depending, of course on the weather.  In Texas it can be 90˚ or 9˚!

When the children lived at home, we'd always make something new to decorate the house, or the tree, but now they concentrate on their own holiday decorations.  I'm always doing something crafty though and being part of an Ornament blog hop is a great incentive to get cracking.  You know I love Smoothfoam as a surface for all kinds of projects, so when the Designer Crafts Connection designers were asked to participate in a blog hop with The Robin's Nest and Smoothfoam, it took me about a nanno second to sign up.


Most of the DCC designers had Smoothfoam product to use, but we all received a package of supplies from The Robin's Nest: 6" x 6" pieces of double sided cardstock and a waterfall of dew drops!  How fun this is going to be.

Since it was an "ornament" hop, I started by painting a molded Smoothfoam Christmas tree shape with green craft paint, then added a layer of green glitter paint.  After it was dry I used mini glue dots to add some clear, green dew drops to the top part and shiny red metallic dew drops around the base.  Now all I needed to do was add a hanger........


But, wait!  I still have all this cool card stock to play with!  I had some Smoothfoam letters and could spell the word J O Y, so I decided to add my tree ornament to a little sign.  I cut three, 6"x 6" pieces of Smoothfoam from a large sheet then used an Elmer's Extra Strength glue stick to adhere one sheet of card stock to the front of each piece.  I added silver trim around the outside edge and secured it with a straight pin - EZPZ.  The letters were already a pretty white color, so all I had to do was to decorate the top of each with dark pink metallic dew drops using mini glue dots.  I was about to glue the letter, O in place when I had an ah ha, moment.  Staring it me from the top of my supply box was a small Smoothfoam snowflake.  I sprayed the surface lightly with Elmer's adhesive then sprinkled with clear glitter.  A small pink metallic dew drop in the center was the perfect finishing touch.  The blocks can be easily attached to each other by inserting toothpicks in the sides, or layered on top of each other like I did.


You can see more exciting ideas by hopping the DCC blog ring using the logo in each designer's sidebar then visiting http://chatteringrobins.blogspot.com/2013/11/ornament-blog-hop.html  to see what their design team created and to enter the giveaway!

Enjoy! Y'll come back now.......

Yours truly,
Julie :)


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Holiday Projects

The holidays are coming!  

It's the beginning of November, but Santa Season is already well on its way, taking over every empty nook and cranny in the stores vacated by Halloween and Fall decorations.  I've always found this to be a great time to buy additional Fall picks, flowers and swags, etc for Thanksgiving this year and next.   I love Fall.  The days are shorter, leaves dance in the wind and there's a nip in the air.  It's the time to think about crock pot meals, pressure cooker stews, a fire crackling in the fireplace, Thanksgiving turkey and - getting ready for Christmas!

I participated in the Handmade Holidays blog hop this year, so I got an early start.  I made Christmas decorations that were featured on the Smoothfoam blog.  The blog was 1-3 November, but you can still see all the projects.  These are the ones I came up with:

A Frosty Wreath

Peek-a-Boo Santa

and Zero Calorie Cupcakes!

You can find instructions for each of these projects on the Smoothfoam blog.  

I'm already working on some variations.  The Peek-a-Boo Santa can also be made using a 2" or 3" ball.  You'd make them in exactly the same manner, but use a red pony bead for the nose (or a red berry) and thick white chenille stems instead of the jumbo chenille rope.  Unfold a paper clip, cut it in half to create 2, "U" shaped loops then insert one of the loops into the top of the ball for a hanger.  The cupcakes can also be made from 1"- 2" balls, decorated with smaller trim then glued into petit four cupcake papers instead of the larger, standard size.  Make each one into an ornament, or string a few together for a fun garland.  Oh the possibilities!

Amidst the hustle and bustle of getting ready for December holidays, let's not forget that November is the month to give thanks and to say thanks to family and friends.  Here's a site found on Pinterest that you might enjoy.  http://www.pinterest.com/pin/284008320224967054   Y'all come back now.....

Yours truly,
Julie :)