Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Pleated Crepe Paper Flowers

I am working on some decorations for an upcoming Father/daughter dance that our school is hosting. I had several request to post a "how to" on the these little crepe paper flowers that I am making as part of the decorations. These are so easy to make, and there are lots of fun ways you can decorate with them.
Supplies needed are:
Crepe paper(color of your choice)
tinsel or something for the center
First you start to fold the paper like this...
Continue folding around to get a pleated circle.
You will end up with a completed circle like this. I used tape to secure the pleats in the front and the back.
I then added a little piece of left over Christmas tinsel that I had. I am making these for a Snowball themed dance, so I wanted them to have a little sparkle, and be an icy blue. You could put cute embellishments or scrapbook paper in the center if you wanted.
I am planning on stringing them together to make a garland for a backdrop. I also wanted to show you another idea that would be cute to make as an embellishment.
I just cut out some scrapbook paper and made ribbons hanging off of it. These would be great for a card, or a cute birthday banner, name tags, etc.
So there you have it! A really easy DIY that you can customize and make your own. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you feel inspired. :)
Be sure to follow me on IG, I'll be posting photos of the SnowBall dance decorations on there. :) My user name is GretchenBlack

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

DIY Artwork

So I have been really inspired by words and quotes lately, and have been wanting to make some special art for our master bedroom, that would be personalized to us. I also knew that I wanted the artwork to be fairly large scale, and have a quote painted on wood slats. I asked my hubby to take care of making the wooden boards, and I would paint it. :) To my surprise, he came home one day, soon after my request, with the large boards all put together ready for me. This is part of the reason I love him so much. He gets me, supports me, and all my crazy ideas. Now I had the wood, so I had to then figure out the design and the quote. I knew immediately that I would white wash the wood. I love the rustic farmhouse feel, of white washed wood. I was torn over what the quote would be. Here is the list I came up with, in case you would like to use them in your project.
"You will forever be my always"
"I have found the one my soul loves"
"You have my whole heart for my whole life"
"Every love story is beautiful, but ours is my favorite"
I seriously could not decide, so I left it up to my hubby. He chose the first one.:) I think it is perfect, because at the end of the day, he will forever be my always. And I knew this about him from our very first date. God sent me a good one, and I am so blessed to have him as my hubby. I don't want this to turn into a mushy post, so on with the DIY part ;)
So here is what my hubby brought home assembled. He is a builder/contractor so he has access to wood and tools on his work sites. The slats are held together by 2x4's on the back.
So he used a total of 7 boards, then attached the 2x4's in the back to stabilize them. You can make your artwork as large or small as you like. We will be putting large brackets on the back, so that I am able to hang it if I want, or you can lean it on a piece of furniture or mantel.
I first white washed the wood. I did this by using a wet paint brush and some store bought white paint. Make sure you keep getting your paint brush wet, so that the paint goes on thin, and gives you the white wash affect. I like being able to see the knots in the wood and the grain. Next I had to put my math skills to use. This design seemed great in my head in theory, but it is never as easy as it looks. My arrow points are about 7 inches wide, don't ask me what calculation I used to get this, I just thought this looked best. I did measure to get the center of my boards, and made sure that the points matched up there. And I used painters tape to get the job done. It's not perfect, but it is pretty close.
Next I started painting in between the lines. I have lots of paint samples left over from when we built our house. Most of them various shades of aqua and gray. So I just went to my stash, and chose this aqua color.
Ok, so the points are off about 1/4 of an inch, but it's ok. I figured once I started the lettering it would be fine. That's the beauty of handmade, nothing is perfect. ;)
Here is the part I struggled with the most. Do I use a stencil, or just try hand lettering it. I decided to hand letter it, because it is a piece of sentimental artwork and it will be like having a personal written love letter hanging on our walls. I just used a good old #2 pencil to draw the lettering. Not allowing myself to get caught up on perfection, I "eye balled" the lettering. Once I wrote out the quote, I went back over it with a dark gray paint. I used a fine tip paint brush. 

Voila', here is the finished product. I am happy with the way it turned out. I can't wait until my hubby gets home so he can help me put it in our room. I have the perfect spot picked out. This is such a great project for you to try. You can personalize it in so many ways. Thanks for stopping by my blog, and I hope that you found some inspiration.