Friday, May 19, 2017

Sugar Skull Plates DIY

Every year since I wrote The Big Ass Book of Crafts in 2007 (published in 2008) I have made a sugar skull plate.  Some were decoupaged, some were painted and several were both.  Oddly, it's never really around Day of the Dead.  I make them when it strikes my fancy.  This year is no exception since Mother's Day was just last week.  These look much more difficult to make than they actually are.  If you can trace and hold a paintbrush, you're good as gold!  The best part is that you can actually eat off of them because the design is on the underside.  Remember to make art, decorate dishes and always Make Your Mark!
All plates look better on a charger!
 Nothing says eat this like a skull on a plate!

Watch how to make them here!
99c Store Glass Plates
Rubbing Alcohol
1.  Cut out the image and tape it face down on the front of the plate so that you can see it through the glass on the bottom of the plate
2.  Clean the back of the plate with rubbing alcohol
3.  Trace over the sugar skull with a white DecoArt Glass Paint Marker
4.  Cut out the floral wreath pattern and tape it to the front of the plate so that you can see it on the back of the plate
5.  Trace the pattern around the skull with the white Glass Paint Marker
6.  Follow the instructions for curing and baking
*You must back the white Glass Paint Marker Design on the plate before the next steps or it will rub off of the plate when you apply the last coat of paint
7.  OPTIONAL:  Paint the rim of the plate with a metallic gold paint marker
8.  Paint the back of the plate with 2 coats of Americana Gloss Enamels and let dry
9.  Follow the instructions for curing and baking
 Now set that skull chic table!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Faux Malachite Coffee Table

As you all know, I'm obsessed with many things but nothing turns me on more than malachite.  Green is my favorite color and this stone, with it's 100 shades of green, has a special place in my heart.  A couple of years ago I started painting faux malachite objects and decided it was time to tackle something on a larger scale for my home.  Something that Tony Duquette would have loved.  I literally ran into this huge round coffee table at a thrift store and decided it was just the THING!  For $25 dollars, how could I go wrong?  If I messed up, a little decoupage and no one would be the wiser.  I'm so proud of this piece and I hope you love it as much as I do.   Remember to take risks, paint thrift store finds and always Make Your Mark!
Smack dab in the middle of my living room!
Before I piled on my stuff!
I think it needs more!
Watch how I made it here!
Thrift Store Coffee Table
Small torch or long arm lighter
1. & 2.  After you remove the table top from the base, use Sweet Mint, Sea Breeze & Sea Aqua to paint large cloud shapes in the 3 different colors on the table top
*There is no right or wrong way to do this, you just want color variation for the base
3.  Cut notches on 4" x 4" pieces of cardboard
4.& 5.  Mix equal parts Americana Glazing Medium and Americana Forest Green Acrylic 
on a paper plate
6. & 7.   Paint over part of the cloud shape with the mixture and then drag the notched cardboard over the wet mixture to create the lines
8.  Continue with this process until the entire table is covered with the faux malachite technique
*Cut smaller pieces of notched cardboard to get into the smaller spaces
9.  Use the Antique Teal and Evergreen to fill in some lines to create more variation in color
10. & 11.  Paint the rim and base of the table in Americana Decor Metallics in Vintage Brass
12.  Mix the E-6000 Glaze Coat according to directions and pour on top of the table
*Make sure the table is elevated, level and that there is plenty of newspaper underneath to catch the dripping glaze coat
13.  Spread evenly with a sponge brush making sure to take care of all the drips
14.  Pop the bubbles in the Glaze Coat with a small torch or long arm lighter, cover and cure overnight
15.  Replace the base on the table and you're ready to entertain!
So in love!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Mermaid Candle Holders

So I'll bet you're wondering why I call these mermaid candle holders.  It was an accident really.  I was painting them and realized at the last minute that if I rubbed a very different color of Metallic Lustre over the paint base paint, it started to look iridescent just like a mermaid's tail.  When that happens you simply have no choice but to use mermaid in the name.  Truth be told I've been making plaster candle holders for a while and the name Plaster Candle Holder just seemed boring!  So here we are.  Remember to mix and match colors, give things whimsical names and always Make Your Mark!
 I love how the Metallic Lustre shimmers in the candle light

The green and purple looks amazing together!
Watch how I made them here!
Plastic Planter (99c store)
Cooking spray
Plastic cups
Americana Acrylic Paint in Wild Orchid & Irish Moss
1. Tape the holes closed at the bottom of the planter
2.  Spray the inside of the planter with cooking spray
3.  Mix enough plaster of Paris to fill the planter about 3"
4.  Fill the planter with the plaster and then tap to remove the bubbles
 and even out the plaster
5.  Press 4 plastic cups evenly into the plaster and let the plaster dry
6.  Carefully remove the cups and dry plaster and sand rough edges
7. - 9.  Paint one plaster candle holder in Americana Acrylic Wild Orchid and the other in Moss Green and let dry
10. & 11.  Rub the Wild Orchid candle holder with the Lavish Green Metallic Lustre and rub the Moss Green candle holder with the Fab Fuschia Metallic Lustre
*Allow a bit of the color to show through in areas to give it a true iridescent feel
12.  Decorate the edges with the Allure in Gold Leaf
*Fill with tea lights and sing your mermaid song

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Artist Trading Blocks

I've been seeing beautiful Artist Trading Blocks everywhere and I really wanted to make some of my own to trade with a few friends.  If you've followed me for a while, you know that I have a particular style when it comes to mixed media.....I call it LESS IS BORING, MORE IS BETTER!  Like many of my creative friends out there, I have tons of doodads in bags and boxes just waiting for a project like this. These blocks were a perfect way to use them up!  Just jump in and go nuts.  My favorite part was creating the "toppers" with game pieces, buttons and old jewelry bits.  Remember, use your doodads, share your art and always Make Your Mark!
 Grabbed a few bags of letter beads at a 99c store and have been using them like crazy!
I used my Dremel to drill holes in the centers of buttons, dice & game pieces
My favorite ATB, by far!
Watch how I made mine here!
2" x 2" pine wood blocks
Printed images
Stamp pad
Beads, Game Pieces, Rhinestone Trim & Buttons
1.  Paint your wood blocks with different colors of Americana Acrylics
2. & 3. Paint and decoupage images & book pages on each side of the wood blocks
4.  Distress the edges by dabbing them in a stamp pad
5.  Glue 3" pieces of wire on buttons & jewelry pieces and let dry
6. & 7.  Drill holes through game pieces, buttons and on the top center of each wood block
*I used a Dremel, but you could use a regular drill if you're careful
8. & 9.  Glue more doodads on each block  
*Things like letters, plastic flowers, rhinestone trim and strips of text
10.  Glue 4 matching wood beads on the base of each block for feet
11. & 12.  Thread beads, dice, buttons and games pieces on the wire and glue inside the hole on the top center of each block
Trade with your friends!
Can't wait to trade these fun little pieces!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Spring Shoe Makeover

Toss them or make them brand new with the ONLY paint on the market that is specially formulated for leather and vinyl?  DecoArt Patent Leather Paint is super easy to use and it doesn't crack or peel!  (I love the stuff)  Add some floral embellishments and you have a pair of shoes worthy of the runway.  Donating is wonderful, but getting a 2nd wind out of your tired pieces is always good too.  Remember to reuse, recycle and always Make Your Mark!
Once you start, you'll have a hard time stopping!

 Watch how to make them here!
Vintage Shoes
Floral Fabrics
1. & 2. Paint your shoes with 2 coats of Patent Leather and let dry
3.  Cut our various flowers from cotton floral fabrics
4. & 5.  Coat the back of the flowers with Americana Fabric Decoupage
6. Adhere to the shoes and coat the flowers again with more Fabric Decoupage and let dry
Runway ready!

Friday, April 28, 2017

Harlequin Pattern Nailhead Trim Headboard

I have been on a redecorating kick for months now and it was finally time to tackle the bedroom.  After looking for a headboard for ages,  I just couldn't settle on one that I loved so I decided to try my hand at making over the Ikea headboard I had.  It was the right size but I feel like it was time to graduate from an Ikea headboard to something more ME.  I love harlequin patterns,  nailhead trim and soft padded headboards, so I married all of my favorite things and THIS is what happened.  I grabbed the 1/2" thick foam and batting from and got the nailhead trim on Amazon.  After deciding on my pattern I was off.  Remember to repurpose what you have first, just in case it turns out better than what you might have replaced it with.....Oh, and always 
Make Your Mark!
In love!
 Pillows anyone?
Ready for set up!
Watch how I put it together here!
Ikea Malma Headboard (or wood cut to size)
Staple Gun, Ruler and Pencil
Fabric of your choice
1.  Draw out your design
2.  Transfer it to an actual size pattern on butcher paper
3.  Glue the 1/2" thick cushion foam to the headboard (or wood cutout) with Fabri-Fuse
*Cut and piece foam if you have to 
4.  Cut batting 6" larger than the headboard all the way around
5. & 6. Staple the batting evenly to the back of the headboard and trim the excess
7.  Cut the fabric 6" larger than the headboard all the way around and pin in place 
on the batting and foam
8.  Flip the headboard and staple the fabric all the way around
9.  My pattern had a boarder so I penciled it in with a ruler first
10.  Apply the nailhead trim around the boarder first
11.  Transfer the pattern to the rest of the headboard with a pencil
*I chose a harlequin pattern so I dotted at the intersections
12.  Apply the nailhead trim to the pattern until you're done
Ready for bed!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Faux Agate Side Tables

Nature has a wonderful way of repeating itself.  For example, the rings of a tree are remarkably similar to the rings in a beautiful slice of agate.  While perusing through the Walnut Hollow catalog a few weeks back, I noticed they carried some beautiful wood slices big enough for side tables. As I looked at them I wondered how I could paint them to look like agate slices, or close enough to get the feel of a slice.  After much research and a few failed attempts I remembered an old video I made years ago showing people how to make malachite obelisks.  Whew!  A little tweaking and I was off to the races painting huge agate slices on wood and turning them into these "rockin" side tables.  Get it?  Of course you do!  Pull out some old techniques and make them new again and don't forget to Make Your Mark!
I adore this table sooooooo much!
 Love how reflective the Glaze Coat is!

Watch how I made them here!
Agate Inspiration
1.  Paint the basswood round with Americana in white
2.  Paint rings on the white in Baby Pink and Dioxazine Purple
3.  Notch the edge of a strip of cardboard
4.  Mix equal parts of Vivid Violet and Americana Glazing Medium and paint it over the stripes leaving a white "hole" in the center
5. & 6.  Drag your notched cardboard over the wet paint, following the shape or your painted rings, to create your agate rings
7.  Using white and mixtures of other pinks and purples, create different colors and fill in some of the rings to create color variation
8.  Paint the very edge of the wood round with black (or dark brown)
9. - 12.  Repeat the process with different colors of green and turquoise

13.  Experiment with different color combinations on paper and then paint them on the wood rounds
14. & 15.  Mix the Glaze Coat resin following the instructions to a "T"
16. & 17.  Pour the resin on the painted wood round and spread evenly with a sponge brush
18.  Cover and let cure overnight
19.  Screw 3 hairpin legs into the base of the large round
20. & 21.  Cut out a base and use 3 painted agates together to create a bigger side table
Faux and Fabulous!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Watercolor Postcards DIY

I've written letters and postcards my entire life and will never stop no matter how much I communicate with computers.  It's a habit I'm happy to have.  Everyone loves getting something fun in the mail, right?  So much better than all of those grocery store fliers and AAA offers.  These watercolor postcards also double as little works of art that everyone you know will enjoy receiving.  I guarantee you'll see them on your mom's fridge next time you visit!  Remember to make art, send real mail and always Make Your Mark!
Too pretty to send?
Keeping in touch!
 I printed the back of the postcard first and then the images to paint

Home Printer
1. & 2.  Remove the back plug on the water brush and fill with water
3. & 4.  Pour the water in a small container and mix in a few drops of Unicorn SPiT
5. & 6.  Stir and fill the water brush
7.  Carefully plug the end of the waterbrush
8.  Make an entire set with each color of Unicorn SPiT!
9. & 10.  Copy your favorite coloring book pages onto watercolor paper and cut into postcards
11. & 12.  Start watercoloring!
OPTIONAL:  You can print one side of the watercolor paper with my postcard template and the other side with your coloring book pattern