Friday, December 2, 2016

Sugar Skull and Loteria Ornaments

This year I wanted to make something special for my family for Christmas instead of the usual book, rare vodka or beer subscription.  I went with handmade, Mexican ornaments for their trees.   It's rare I get into production mode with a project because I create 8 different projects per month for my job....but this one got me to sit down for an afternoon and REALLY enjoy the process.  You could use copied, vintage photos of family members or even images of Frida Kahlo for this project.  Just remember to have fun, make your gifts and always Make Your Mark!

 Ok, I had to make a few for my tree!
 This is one of my favorites

Watch the process here! 
Americana Acrylics
Americana Decoupage
Allure Dimensional Design Adhesive Paint
DecoArt's Glamour Dust
Christmas ornaments
1.  Cut slits around the image so that it adheres flat to the curved ornament
2. & 3.  Add decoupage to the back of the slit image and after that mist the front with water to relax the paper
4.  Position on the ornament and then add more decoupage on top
5.  Paint leaves and flowers around the image with Americana Acrylic in Snow White
6. & 7. When the white is dry paint over the leaves and flowers with vibrant colors (got nuts)
8.  Embellish with Allure Dimensional Design Adhesive Paints
9.  You could also use white glue and sprinkle the ornaments with glitter
Hang and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Vintage Sewing Christmas Ornaments!

A while back I saw a beautiful Christmas wreath made out of vintage sewing notions and it got me to thinking......If you can make an awesome wreath with vintage buttons and pattern paper, why not a chic sewing ornament?  I've been sewing my entire life and I definitely had the stuff for it!  Also, a while back my friend Margot sent me some vintage patterns that she picked up at a thrift store so I had everything I needed.  You can grab patterns for 10 cents at some places!  Just look around.  I'm also sharing some vintage pattern images for you to download and print if you can't find any right away!  Remember to celebrate the holidays, recycle thrift store items and always 
Make Your Mark!
So fun to make!

Watch how to make them here!
Clear ornaments
Vintage patterns (thrift store)
Vintage Pattern Illustrations
Tape measure copied on card stock
DecoArt Glamour Dust
Americana Decoupage in Gloss
Dollar store sewing kits
1. & 2.  Cut the pattern paper in strips and fill a clear ornament
3.  Copy, reduce and cut out a vintage pattern illustration
4. & 5. Mist with water and decoupage to the ornament
6.  Add shimmer with DecoArt's Glamour Dust
7. & 8.   Copy a white tape measure on cardstock and glue around the ornament
9.  Glue on sewing notions from a dollar store sewing kit and matching buttons
10.  Decoupage pattern paper on the ornament
11.  Add a layer of Glamour Dust in Gold Glitz
12.  Cover in cardstock tape measures and sewing notions

Friday, November 25, 2016

Easy Paper Christmas Ornaments!

It took me a while, but I finally designed a new paper ornament to share with you!  You can cut it from one sheet of 8 1/2 x 11 cardstock or scrapbook paper and embellish it any way you like.  I added bells and beads but you could use a tassel or another tiny ornament.   Enlarge the pattern and you have different sizes.  Even the kiddos will love making these.  Remember to have fun, DIY with the family and always Make Your Mark!
Hanging in my neighbor's tree
I think we're going to hang these in a window!

Watch how to make them here!
Cardstock (I printed these patterns from
Needle nose pliers and large safety pin
Beads, Bells, Pailettes
Straws and wire
1. & 2.  Trace the pattern on the card stock and cut
3. 4. & 5.  With a large safety pin, poke holes in the center, at the end of each petal and in the center of two paillettes
6.  Cut a piece of wire about 6" long and bend a loop on one end
7.  Cut drinking straws about 2 1/4" long
8.  Thread a bead, then paillette and then the center of the cut paper pattern side facing the bead and paillette
9. Add your straw
10. Going around one by one, thread the tip of each petal on the wire
11. Add another paillette and bead and then cut and bend another loop to secure it
12.  Finish with bell on one end and a ribbon on the other so that you can hang it
Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Ultimate Porch Makeover (with No Sew Cushions and Pillows)

My porch was looking seriously shabby and not in the fantastic "shabby chic" sort of way......Just plain shabby!  I'm actually embarrassed to show it to you, but there is a photo below of the BEFORE as long as you don't judge.  A while ago DecoArt came out with Outdoor Living paint and I ran out of excuses not to give my wicker furniture a makeover.  While I was at it, I decided to upholster the cushions and grab a new rug.  This makeover makes my heart sing and it didn't cost much at all.  A trip to Home Goods and World Market and I was ready to rumble.  Remember to go color crazy, paint everything and always Make Your Mark!
Join me for lunch?
 I actually found that tree stump next to the door.  SCORE!
I'm embarrassed to share this photo!

Watch how easy it was to paint the furniture here.
See how I no-sew upholstered the furniture in the video below
1/4" plywood cut to the size of the seat cushions
Staple gun
Outdoor fabric
Americana Decor Outdoor Living Paint
*I used Adirondack & Harvest
Optional:  HomeRight Paint Sprayer
Pillow stuffing or forms
Separating zippers in the right size for your pillows
1. Read the directions and fill your HomeRight sprayer with Outdoor Living in a color you like.  I used Adirondack
*You can add about 10% water to the paint if you feel it might be too thick. Up to you.
2. & 3.  Spray the furniture with PLENTY of drop cloths to protect your space
4. & 5.   Spray any small pieces of outdoor furniture in complimentary colors of Outdoor Living
6.  I painted some inexpensive pots as well
7. & 8. Add some shimmer and pop the details by rubbing Metallic Lustre on your 
pots and side table!
8.  Time for install
 1.  Measure across the top and sides of your cushion and add 8"
*My measurement was 36" x 36"
2.  Cut fabric to that measurement
3. & 4.  Fold all 4 edges over 1" and secure them in place with E-6000 Stitchless glue
5. & 6.  Center the cushion on the fabric, the plywood on the cushion and then staple the fabric onto the plywood all the way around the cushion
You will need to cut two pieces of fabric the size of your pillows plus 1" on length and width
*This means if you want finished pillows that are 18" X 20" you will cut two pieces of fabric that are 19" X 21"
7. & 8.  Fold and secure one edge of each fabric square 1/2" using E-6000 Stitchless and an iron
9.  Run a line of E-6000 Fabri-Fuse along the folded edge and place each piece of the separated zipper face down on the glue with the teeth extending over the fold
*You want to make sure that you don't glue the zipper teeth to the fabric
10.  When the glue is dry, zip the separating zipper together and add a line of E-6000 Stitchless around the pillow at the 1/2" line
*Use a ruler to help you keep the line straight
11.  Fold the pieces together and iron them closed
12. Unzip the zipper and stuff your pillow with either a form or stuffing

Friday, November 18, 2016

Otomi Fabric Pillows and Lampshade

I'm a huge fan traditional Otomi fabric (but it's expensive and not always easy to find) so, I decided to make my own.  Traditional Otomi fabric is hand embroidered, but I seriously don't have the patience (or skill) to embroider my own.  Instead, I invented my own version using some of my favorite tools.  Yup, I pulled out my E-6000 Stitchless glue and went to town.  I also decided to decoupage a lampshade which was even easier than the fabric.  You might remember that I used this technique when I made my Artist Pillows and my Fully Lined Foxy Makeup Bag.  Check them out if you get a chance.  Remember to find alternatives,  use tons of color and always
Make Your Mark!

 A little backyard set up!

Watch how easy it is to make here! 
Colorful cotton fabric
Otomi patterns
E-6000 Stitchless and Fabri-Fuse
Americana Decoupage 
Pom Pom trim
Heavy cotton fabric
Sewing machine
1.  Cut out several of each pattern in cotton fabric
2.  Pin them in place on a piece of heavy cotton fabric
*I made pillows and cut 2 pieces of heavy cotton fabric 20" x 20" in size
3. & 4.  Add a fine line of E-6000 Stitchless around the edge of each shape and iron in place
5. 6. & 7.  Cut pom pom trim to the size of each side of your pillow and stitch it to the pillow with the pom poms facing toward the inside of the pillow
8.  Place the other piece of heavy cotton fabric on top of the first and stitch around the edges using 1/2" seam allowance
9.  Leave a 5" hole on one side
10.  Flip the pillow inside out, stuff and stitch the hole closed
11. & 12  Apply the shapes to the shade with Americana Decoupage and using E-6000 Fabri-Fuse add the pom pom trim to the edges and keep in place with clothespins until it dries

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Rag Rug Pendant Lamp

I've always loved the shabby chic lampshades covered in strips of fabric so I thought I'd take that technique and create something over-the-top for my backyard.  After a little bit of weaving (you'll never guess where I got all of the fabric strips!) I had a pendant lamp worthy of my colorful patio!  Pick colors that match your decor if this is too much for you.  Use ribbon or strands of beads for this to make it a little different.  Heck, use all three together!  Fact is, the base is what this project is all about.  Remember, have fun, make light and always Make Your Mark!

 Why not make two?

 Watch how I did it here
Rag rug (you could use fabric strips)
Wire planter baskets
Light cord and eco-friendly bulb
1.  Trim off the fringe and remove the strips of fabric from the rug
2.  Tie a knot at the base of the basket and start weaving around and around tying the strips of fabric to each other as you go
3.  Continue until you get to the bottom and secure with another knot
*You could use just one, but I used two for my lamp
5.  Thread the cord through the base of one basket and screw in the eco-friendly bulb
*Eco-friendly bulbs do not give off heat
6.  Wire the mouths of each woven basket together and hang

Alien pods! 

Friday, November 11, 2016

Easy Boho Wall Decor

Grab some plywood and a jigsaw and make an impact with these easy boho wall decor projects!  Moon phase wall hangings are all the rage so I'm showing you two different ways to make one for your home.  If you're a feather fan, this simple metallic cut out will add some zing to any room.   Remember......paint things metallic, learn how to use a jigsaw and always Make Your Mark!
Feather, feather on the wall.....
I decorated my closet door with this moon phase wall hanging!

See how to make them here!
1/2" thick plywood
Jigsaw and sander
Hook screws
Americana Decor Metallics and Satin Enamels
1.  Draw your feather on the plywood in any size you want
*Mine is 36" long
2.  Use a large bowl to create your different moon phases
4. 5. & 6.  Cut out everything with jigsaw and then sand the rough edges
7.  Paint the feather and all of the moon phases with the Americana Decor Metallics in Vintage Brass
*Once you've painted the feather, you're done with it
8.  Paint the full moon in Americana Decor Satin Enamels in Dark Denim
9.  Paint tiny star and moon details with the Vintage Brass on one side of the full moon
Optional:  Splatter the edges of the full moon with the Vintage Brass to create more stars
10. & 11.  Print out the blue moon (1 for each moon phase) in the same size as your moon cut outs and decoupage them to the shapes
12.  Attach the shapes with 4" lengths of chain and hang

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Recycled Mini Blind Bracelets

Every morning at 7:30 a.m. I head out for a run around Silverlake Reservoir while listening to a mix of Enrique Iglesias and Megan Trainer.  Before I get to the reservoir I hike through some serious residential hills.  On pick-up days, I see everything from furniture and scrap wood to clothing and closet doors.  At least once a week I see a set of broken mini blinds sticking out of a bin.....Tangled, dusty, a few bent slats and just plain sad for finally having been replaced by new blinds or even some fancy-schmancy curtains.  I decided it was time to take those sad little slats home and recycle them into some fun jewelry.  Remember......invent new uses for things, always try to add some color and do your best to Make Your Mark!
Wrapped with my scrap fabric twine which was originally shared
 in my 2011 book, The Big Ass Book of Crafts 2
Wrapped with scrap fabric bias binding
As usual, I went a little crazy!
Watch how I made them here!
Broken mini blind slats
E-6000 Glue
Scrap fabric
Bias maker
Decorative buttons
1.  Roll the slats into bangle shapes and tape them to the size you need.
2. & 3.  Measure and cut 2" wide strips of fabric cut on the exact diagonal of the fabric
4. & 5.  Iron the cut 2" fabric (bias strips) as you pull it through the bias maker
6. & 7.  Glue the end to the inside of a mini blind bangle and start wrapping at a diagonal
8.  Using a dot of glue at the end of the strip, use clothes pins to hold in place until dry.
9.  Use clothespins to hold your glued decorative buttons in place while they dry
10.  Knot two 1/2" wide strips of fabric together and twist one clockwise and the other counter-clockwise as you twist them together
*Sounds confusing but you'll get the hang of it!
11.  Make different color combinations
12.  Using E-6000, glue the end to the inside of the mini blind base and wrap the bangle gluing the end of the fabric twine to the inside and securing it with a clothespin while it dries.
Some with buttons, some without