Sunday, July 22, 2012

Bottle Cap Collage

like many of my wonderful craft projects I got the idea for this collage from pinterest. the minute i committed to this project i had everyone i know start saving caps for me. i got TONS of caps, they made for a fantastic (and colorful) collage. i didn't limit myself to just soda caps,if you look closely at the pic you can see that i have just about every kind of top/cap: detergent caps, medicine bottle lids, deodorant, marker caps, chapstick caps, nail polish tops, shaving cream lids...... you name it, i glued it.

  • bottle caps/tops
  • canvas
  • spray paint
  • hot glue gun

arranging the caps
  1. i began by spray painting my canvas a lovely Tiffany-esque blue color. obviously you don't have to do this, i just thought the collage would look cooler w/ a colorful background.
  2. i suggest arranging the tops on the canvas before you glue them down
  3. glue down your caps as you see fit.
  4. i didn't want the canvas to be too one-dimension, so i gave it some depth by gluing one cap inside another.

Saturday, June 16, 2012


Up close view of the finished product

I was perusing some blogs yesterday and came across some inspiration for my latest project on the Sketch 42 blog. The author of that blog made some kickass splatter paint shoes-- she used plain white TOMs and paint (duh!). Well, I don't have a pair of white TOMs (or other plain white shoes for that matter) lying around, SO I decided to do some splatter paint on a plain 'ole white canvas.

  • paint
  • canvas
  • masking tape
  • brushes
  • dropcloth/large area in which to make a big mess
    • I spread a dropcloth on my deck and did this outside. Most of the paint stayed on the dropcloth, however there were some paint casualities: a few plants and perhaps some outdoor furniture are now a tad bit more colorful...


Before I started painting, I decided that I would put masking tape in random lines across the canvas to make for an interesting looking piece when I was done. I could have used painter's tape but that tape was too wide for my liking...

To create the splatter effect I mixed my paints w/ a little bit of water and then flung the paint at the canvas. Although I had a variety of brushes in my arsenal,  I found that the best brush to use was a thick kid's paintbrush. For the majority of this piece I did just fling the paint at the canvas, but I did take some bottles of neon paint and just dribble/swirl them across the canvas.

Pre-Tape Removal
Wait for the paint to dry, take off your tape and VOILA! you have a beautiful splatter paint creation!

NOTE: GREAT PROJECT FOR KIDS! While I was working on this project my nephew (5 1/2 years old) was working right alongside me doing pretty much the same thing I did. Using the same tape technique (I did it for him) he used 8x10 canvases and made 2 gifts for Father's Day, one for his dad and one for his grandpa. They turned out really cute and of course they loved the paintings! We got really messy but had tons of fun doing this. we will most definitely be doing this again!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Crayons: I'll stop the world and melt with you.

I never cease to be amazed by the awesome projects I find on pinterest. the latest thing I've been fascinated with is art w/ melted crayons. I originally got the idea when I pinned an item titled '35 Uses For Crayons'. once I hopped on to that site I found a project that really appealed to me, it involved melted crayons. apparently this is based on the concept of pointillism which is when dots of color/paint/wax (whatever) are used to create a larger image.

  • canvas-- I used 16x20
  • crayons--I used crayola crayons because I'm a bit of a crayon snob.
    • I peeled the wrappers back.
  • tea light candle
  • bottle caps- I used Snapple lids.
  • beads
I stared at the canvas for awhile before I decided I would use a kind of argyle pattern. i chose where i wanted to begin my pattern (in the corner i think) and starting getting crazy w/ the wax!

wax dots/ step 2
  1. choose your design/pattern; i marked the beginning of my diamond shapes in my argyle pattern by doing a light sketch of the shape with my crayon (crayon is not melted at this point). once you get going the crayons will cover your outline.
  2. To start the process w/ the crayons, dip the end of the crayon into the flame of the tea light. you don't need to hold the crayon over the flame too long because it will drip. With the melted crayon you can either do dots (see picture) or color w/ the crayon.
  3. Once I completed my pattern over the entire canvas it took me awhile to decide what/if i was going to do something else to it. I liked my argyle pattern but i felt like it need something extra, something round to even out all the angles from the diamonds.
  4. I had been collecting bottle cap/tops for awhile for some unknown future project I'm sure i will do, while looking in my bottle cap stash i found some really cool Snapple lids. i don't drink Snapple drinks but i love that the bottle caps have 'real facts' on the lids. not only are you enjoying a cool beverage, you are learning something in the process.
  5. i used hot glue to glue the caps, i ended up using orange beads (i was loving orange in this project) along the outside of the canvas.
DID YOU KNOW that every ton of recycled paper saves about 17 trees? thanks Snapple!!

Here is the finished product. Yes, I realize it looks a little weird but that's okay because I like weird and I made it. :)

Future projects: I had fun making and playing around w/ the crayons and patterns. I think it would be cool to create a mural of sorts w/ the crayons. google 'pointillism' for ideas. this would be cool to do with kids but you'd have to figure out how you would melt the crayons in a safe way with/without a candle. obviously supervision would be required but you're smart so I'm sure you figured that part out.....

Friday, June 1, 2012

Proud as a Peacock

So here I am once again w/ yet another recycled book project, this time around I've made a beautiful peacock. I created this piece to be sort of a sister to the L project I've already completed. They harmoniously reside on the same wall. :)

Just like my other book projects the main materials needed are book pages. Pages with words are what I used as my background. Using illustrations from the books I cut strips about centimeter wide to use as the border on the canvas. I also used the illustrations to create the feathers on the peacock. I'll break it down step by step in a bit.

  • Book pages (with writing and illustrations)
  • Scissors
  • Modge-podge decoupage glue (matte or glossy, your preference)
  • Brush for decoupage glue
  • Sharpie (I used a Sharpie to outline the edges of my feathers to give them more definition)
  • Solid color cardstock (for the peacock body)
  • Small rhinestones (optional)
  • Hot glue gun + glue sticks

1. Use modge podge to glue the book pages for the background.
2. cut centimeter strips of book illustrations for the border, used modge podge to adhere them to the canvas.
3. I cut out illustrations from books for the feathers. I used cardstock to make a pattern for the shape I wanted. Once I had all my shapes cut I used a sharpie to outline them to give them some definition against my background.
4. I created the peacock base (the blue part in the picture) using a dark blue piece of cardstock. instead of using modge podge at this step I used a little hot glue to put this on the canvas.
5. back to the modge podge--- carefully place the feathers on the body of the peacock and glue as you go.
6. Once I had all my paper pieces glued on-- the peacock body, feathers and head feathers--I did a final coating of modge podge on the whole canvas.
7. I'm a gal who loves sparkles so to add some sparkle to my piece i glued a few (maybe 5) rhinestones to the feathers.

VOILA! a lovely peacock I am proud of!


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Library Letters

My latest project involves using pages from children's books to create 4 panels that spell out READ for my school librarian. She's the one I got all the books from so I thought I'd make her something to show my appreciation. I'm really proud of the final product, I think they turned out beautiful!

  • modge podge decoupage glue (glossy or matte, doesn't matter)
  • brush (for decoupage glue)
  • cut up book pages
  • cardstock
  • hot glue gun
  • scissors/exacto-knife type blade
  • 8 x 10 canvas panels

  1. Using the modge-podge glue randomly place the book pages on your canvas. While I try to be random about the placement, I still like to make sure that my colors are evenly spread out across the canvas. **For this project I used the book illustrations as my background instead of the words like I have used in my previous projects.
  2. Once the glue has completely dried I cut off any overhanging/excess paper from the canvas using my scissors and my exacto knife.
  3. To create the letters for the panels I drew the letters on regular cardstock paper. Once I had the size I wanted I glued the written book pages onto my cardstock base.
  4. After the glue dried, I trimmed off the excess paper from my cardstock letter. *to add an extra pop of color to your finished produced you can reglue your letter to a colorful piece of cardstock like I did w/ orange paper.
  5. I used hot glue to adhere the letters to the canvas .
  6. As a final touch for my project I put a final coat of the modge podge on top of each panel.
A close-up of one of the letters.

Harry Potter and the creature from the Black Lagoon are keeping my letters company.

VARIATIONS: I think this would be an awesome project for a kids room, spelling out their name would look so cool!!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Musical Chair(s)

Last summer my brother salvaged an old-school desk from a garage sale (could have been from the curb, I don't remember). He wanted to use it in his classroom but didn't exactly know how he could improve the appearance of the old, beat-up desk. Being my crafty schmafty self, Chris sought my advice. My answer: DECOUPAGE!!! Chris is an elementary school music teacher so he wanted to somehow incorporate music into the project, we decided to use sheet music and cd covers/jackets to accomplish the task. We found some really classic cd covers too! LFO, Backstreet Boys, Boyz II Men, Michael Jackson and Eric Clapton helped beautify the old desk. Oh, don't let me forget that we used stuff from his band The Rebounds. Prior to the decoupaging Chris cleaned the desk and took off the parts we decoupaged: the seat, seat-back and the top of the desk. He ended up spray-painting the metal part of the desk a bright, cheery red.

What you need:
  • desk
  • decoupage glue
  • paintbrush for glue
  • sheet music
  • cd covers
I think this would make an adorable project for a kid's room. You could use that child's artwork, photos or cute scrapbook paper to decorate the desk.
Back of the seat

The seat

 The top of the desk (duh!). I added Scrabble letters to give the desk a little extra pizazz!

The finished product!!

Happy Crafting!


Thursday, March 22, 2012

Miscellaneous Material Bookmark

I just can't seem to stop creating things from my collection of almost-thrown-out children's books! I've done an L and I've done earrings, now I'm venturing into bookmark territory because you can never have enough bookmarks! I was looking at my 'lil craft corner in the basement and decided I needed to use up some of my scrapbook paper (which somehow seems to multiply). I found a poem I liked from one of my salvaged library books (the book was called Read Me A Poem) and cut it out. Then I realized that I had one of my bottlecaps leftover and decided to throw that in the mix as well, it's like a smorgasbord of crafting...

Materials Needed:
  • scrapbook paper
  • poem/book page
    • I also think a picture would work really well here and it'd be super cute! a child's artwork or writing of their own would work as well
  • clear contact paper
  • scissors & glue (duh!)
**optional for bottlecap topper:
  • bottlecap
  • book page/picture to go on inside
  • modge podge dimensional magic glue
  • hot glue gun
The Process:
  1. Cut your scrapbook paper to the size you want
  2. Glue picture/poem to your bookmark
  3. Using the same scrapbook paper that I used for my bookmark I created a tab for the bottlecap. I cut a small rectangle, folded it in half and glued it to the bookmark.
  4. Apply the contact paper to create a protective seal for your bookmark.
  5. ** Glue the bottlecap onto the bookmark using the tab you just created. Click HERE for a link to my previous post about how to make the bottlecap portion. If you choose not to add the bottlecap, you can simply skip this step and be done!

Like I said before, I think this project would also work well with a small picture or perhaps some hand-drawn artwork. I think it'd be adorable for a Mother's/Father's Day gift if a child were to create some sort of artwork to turn into a bookmark for one (or both!) of their parents. At my school the 3rd graders wrote winter-ish poems, typed them up and created bookmarks for their parents for Christmas/Hanukkah presents. They turned out so cute!

The finished product!
The book page I used inside the bottlecap doesn't necessarily match the scrapbook paper, but I still like it.

Looks adorbs sticking out of a book.

Seriously, how cute is this?

Have fun!


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Gift for a Sentimental Mom

Thist post is about the gift my siblings, sister in law (the lovely Claire), niece (4 months at the time), nephew (5 yrs old) and I (I did all the hard work) made for my mom for Valentine's Day. My mom had been pretty stressed out so I knew that a cheesy yet sentimental gift like this would be perfect for her and would really make her feel special and loved. I originally found the idea on pinterest, i'm pretty sure the pin I found had made it as a Father's Day gift but I figured it could really work for just about any gift-giving holiday.

  • canvas
    • the canvas I used was 16x20
  • paint
    • for mine i used acrylics mixed with water
  • thin point Sharpie (used to write quote)
  1. ** paint a straight line across the bottom of the canvas, don't go across the whole canvas. I used this as a basis for my tree. **optional. you probably don't need to do this part but I think it serves as a nice base for the painting
  2. paint your tree onto the canvas
  3. now its time to do your handprints. if you are doing several like I did, do a few handprints , let them dry and then do more.
  4. ** To make my gift more sentimental I added a quote I found on a quotations website. Any quotes related to family, love, grandmas/grandpas, mothers/fathers would do. The quote I used was:
"Love is like a tree, it grows of its own accord, it puts down deep roots into our whole being."
           Victor Hugo, Notre-Dame de Paris

My mom absolutely loves this gift! My nephew loves to point out who's handprint is in what color and how much fun we had making it together. It makes her happy and that's all that matters.



Monday, March 12, 2012

Bottlecap Book Page Earrings

Here we go again, yet another project made from recycled library books! This time around I used my book pages to create earrings. I'll admit this is not an original idea, I saw it at a craft show this weekend and wanted to give it a go myself.

What you need:
- bottlecap
- book pages
- decoupage glue
- hot glue gun
- earring bases
- dimensional magic glue

The Steps:

1. Trace around the bottlecap to measure the size of the book page you will need.

2. Glue the circle piece inside the bottlecap.

3. **optional: I used book pages w/ writing on them for the back of my earrings so you couldn't see the smirnoff logo

back of the earring

4. use a small amount of decoupage for a smooth finish on the back of the cap

5. once the decoupage glue dries flip the cap over and use the modge-podge dimensional magic inside. make sure there are no air bubbles. let the glue dry for atleast 24 hrs (it takes awhile and I always want to make sure it is plenty dry).

6. using hot glue, attach the earring piece to the back of the earring.

dangly but not heavy

the finished project!!


Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Dominos or Dice?

I am so glad that I have a job that allows me to paint my nails in crazy colors and patterns. I've done all kinds of wild designs: zebra, multicolor water marble, and all kinds of sparkles! today I decided to go for a domino motif, or I guess it could be dice, I can't decide which.

what you need:
- white nail polish
- black nail polish
- Q-tips
- plate (or something to put the polish on)

obviously i did the white coat first then came back and did the dots next. to create the dots I dipped my Q-tips into the small amount of nail polish I had poured onto a plastic plate.  you could also just dip your Q-tip into the nail polish bottle if you don't have a plate or something to put the polish on.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Primadonna Pooch Barrette

I love dogs, they truly are man's best friend. Cute, fluffy and always happy to see you. I'm sure there are dogs out there that are well-behaved and obedient, but our dog (okay, okay, she's Lindsey's dog) is neither of those. Meet Ruby, a spoiled-rotten, badass, do-what-she-wants kind of dog. Rescued from a puppymill, Ruby has been in our lives for 3 ('best years of your life' says Ruby) years. We're not sure what breed she is exactly but we're pretty sure she's atleast half Shih-Tzu. The other half? I don't know... dragon? yeti? woolly mammoth?
Anyway, Ruby is waaaaaaay overdue to go to the groomer and her hair is driving me nuts because you can't see her cute little face. I decided to fix this by making her a sparkly, red barrette to match her namesake. To make it I used materials I already had: a silver barrette, red rhinestone thingys and hot glue. It's simple, I glued the rhinestones to the clip and voila! a cutesy barrette for your cutesy dog! I realize it's not the fanciest or best looking barrette out there but it does the job for Ruby.

**note: before I glued the rhinestones on I clipped the barrette onto a piece of cardboard so I wouldn't glue the barrette shut.

Back of barrette

the finished product.

yes, her collar says 'Princess'.

"woof, woof, woof! thanks for reading!"
- Ruby (and Leslie)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Headband Bonanza

Hello readers near and far across the globe! It's Lindsey, guest blogger and kin to Claire and Leslie. I am posting to show you my fabulous and inexpensive headbands. I notoriously hate the hair I was genetically blessed with so I try to jazz things up with styling my hair when I can. You can go crazy with decoration on the headbands or play it subtle (but fabulous) like I do.  
Braided headbands with added glitz
Flat satin headbands with added glitz
Materials Needed:
  • Satin ribbon (get at least 2 yards per headband, less if you are not braiding)
  • Black elastic
  • Tacky or craft glue
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Embellishments: rhinestones, seed beads, etc. Whatever you want to put on your headband.
  1. Measure and cut ribbon according to be able to fit from at least ear-to-ear (the elastic will provide your stretch to fit over your head).
  2. Braid ribbon after securing the beginning knot to your elastic and secure at the end AFTER checking for an appropriate length and fit for your head. **For extra flair, braid different colors together (as seen in my photo above on the left)**
  3. Once your braid is complete or your ribbon (if not braiding) is cut, then ensure a good fit with the elastic for your head and make sure you test out the length before you cut to eliminate frustration. Make sure both knots of the ribbon and elastic together are tight and secure.
  4. Very carefully, run a strip of hot glue on the back of your headband. Try to make it a smooth line and not let it settle in clumps. Let dry flat before continuing. This step really helps to keep the headband staying in place on your head.
  5. Use the tacky/craft glue to put on the ends of your ribbon and elastic to prevent fraying. Make sure it dries clear and let it sit overnight or at least several hours.
  6. I like to add the embellishments last. Use small increments of hot glue to glue rhinestones on if desired- use tweezers to place on if you want to decrease the amount of glue burns you get. **for the seed bead and pear clusters I put on my headbands, I used the tacky/craft glue and sprinkled them on for a clustered effect. Allow for at least 24 hrs to dry.**
Seed beads on black braided headband
Happy Headbands, love Lindsey
Rhinestone design on flat headband

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Button Bracelets

Hi everyone!  It's Claire.  Today, I thought I would share a couple of pictures of some button bracelets I have made.  I used some elastic and some buttons that I've gotten at craft stores.  I love using a  variety of sizes and textures to make the bracelets.  Here are a couple of pictures...

 These are two bracelets with brown and tan tones with gold button accents.

This one is just a fun colorful button bracelet with a variety of bright colors.  Can be worn as a single bracelet or part of a set.

What are some of your favorite button projects?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Salvaged Book Project

Books... not just for reading!

I've become good buddies with the librarian at the school I work at, and I recently found out that they had to get rid of books that had been printed before a certain date (I think these were 70's or before). The librarian told me that she tries to give away the books but often no one wants them because they're old or maybe a little bit moldy/dusty. If she can't find a taker for the books they end up getting thrown into the recycle bin, perfectly good books getting thrown out--what a shame! I asked if I could look through the stacks and repurpose some of the books, and repurpose i did! I've used the books to make such projects as valentine cards and paper flowers, but I think my latest is by far my best!

Using a 16x20 canvas I created a piece of monogram magic! okay, well i don't know if its really a monogram because it's just ONE letter, but I'm gonna call it that anyway...

To begin I tore out pages from one of my books, I wanted to use only book pages without illustrations. I cut them up in pieces of various sizes and decoupaged them onto my canvas.

I used cardstock to create the letter I wanted to use in my artwork.
(note: at this point i didn't glue it to the canvas, it's just sitting on the canvas for this picture.)

I went through several of the books I salvaged and cut out colorful pictures that I like. Once I had them all ready, I decoupaged them onto the L that I made out of cardstock.

Once the L was finished I decoupaged that onto the my canvas and created a border (about 1 cm) out of my leftover book scraps.

I am really pleased w/ my finished product, I hope you like it too!


Monday, February 20, 2012


I don't know how many other people than Claire and myself will read this, but WELCOME to our blog! We created this because we want to share our crafting ideas with everyone. Between the two of us we've made some pretty cool things, atleast we think they're cool. Stay tuned for crafts/projects that will most definitely be considered "Cutes Magoots." In case you've never heard that phrase before, our family has adopted it and we use it to describe something that is so cute you can't find quite the right words to describe it.

Raise your figurative glass in a toast to all things Cutes Magoots!