Wednesday, March 31, 2010

DIY : Creative coasters

These pretty coasters are made in a jif. Some nice paper, scissors and craft punches are all you need. Here's a look see at the craft punches I used. Check under the Craft Resources heading to find out where to get them.   You can use handmade paper, transparencies or slightly thick craft paper.Ensure that the thickness is such that it can be punched  with the craft punch.

Now, cut the paper into squares - sized as per your requirement- and punch away.

I have used thickish brown paper, coloured translucent paper which is called "rigid film" or something like that and coloured craft paper. You can also stick contrasting paper below the punched one and it looks pretty dandy like in the pic below. I have stuck some of the punched out leaves on white card to make nifty gift tags. Let your imagination flow and you'll be surprised (pleasantly, I assure you) with the outcome...

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Dressing up a lampshade

A basket type lampshade gets an instant  makeover with some of my unused/extra earrings.  I sometimes take these hanging ones out and punch studs through the holes in the basketry. But danglers look prettier!

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Decorating with wire and buttons

One of the most common sights in all craft shops is the thin and pliable craft wire which comes in a variety of colours. This wire can be manipulated by hand and cut with the normal scissors. My little project for the day involves three objects - a small basket, wooden buttons and craft wire.
    As you can see in the picture, the craft wire I am referring to is really pliable. Buttons have convenient holes through which the wire can be threaded just as you would, thread.                                                                

This little roughly woven basket is perfectly set off by the polished buttons, which I have threaded using ther craft wire, and then wound round the basket. When you are tired of it, just remove the wire and use the buttons elsewhere!
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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Funky terracotta pot

This is something I just put together... looks cool huh!  My teen loves it.

I found a damaged water pot and a bell in a stall at an exhibition. Bought both at a discount. After placing them in various poses,  I inverted the bell over the pot, glued it and strung an old neckpiece I found at a village store and added some crafting wire (available at all craft stores) at various points. Voila! A definite talking point. It's amazing what upturned bells can turn into. I'll let you in on what else you can do with it sometime soon...ciao for now
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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Decoupage switchboard

I love the simplicity of tearing or cutting pieces of  paper and sticking them in a deliberately random fashion - that's decoupage in all its simplicity. Here is a switch panel which I did about 6 years ago in what was my daughter's room (now it's my son's room and I probably have to redo it!). It still attracts a lot of attention....


It's got the distressed look of things that have aged gracefully, but it's young! You can do this too! Just get some gift wrapping paper and a pair of sharp scissors and get cutting. Here are a few pointers to get you started...
  • Choose papers that have some common colours or belong to the same family of colours, some words, writing in different languages or even some plain paper. 
  • For starters, keep to the same type of paper. For instance, if you add newsprint to this collage, it will look different as it is much thinner than gift wrapping paper. Once you have done a few, you can experiment with different types of paper. 
  • Use fevicol to stick the paper and clean the panel well and wipe it dry before starting. It doesn't matter if paper overlaps a bit. You can also tear some of the paper. Once everything is stuck, paint or spray two coats of clear varnish. Let the surface dry between coats.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

DIY Instant cushion covers

Add instant glam to your cushions using this technique. These "cushion covers" are a snap to make, need no sewing, just cloth - blouse pieces, leftover upholstery, anything- and accessories.

 Here's a step by step guide on how to make these:

  •  Gather the materials - cushion pads (12"x 12") works well, some accessories (bracelets, bangles, pendants). Get them all together and let's have some fun! Don't bother about unstitched edges, it adds charm to the finished product.
  • Place the cushion pad as shown below, somewhere higher than the centre.

    • Fold the left edge over the cushion as shown in the pic below
    • Now, fold the right edge over.
    • Fold up the cloth and smooth it so it looks like the pic below.
    • Gather the top and clasp it together with a bracelet, bangle or multiples of them. There, all done and all glam....

    Now that the techniques is clear how about we go from edgy glam to traditional festive...

    I have used leftover gold and crushed material and accessorised them with suitable festive bangles. I will let you in on one more variation to this technique to give your cushion a more formal look.

    • After folding the left and right edges, fold over the top edge like so. 

    • Turn the cushion over , fold the edges just like you would when wrapping books in brown paper.

    • Fold over and clip in place with a brooch or pendant. There, all done and all formal and not a stitch in sight!
     Here's another rather rough hewn one, wearing an old brooch!

    One thing to remember while using this technique is to use dull rather than loud fabric and let the accessories have the pride of place. Since these are no-sew cushions they will have to be given TLC... else, use pins to hold everything in place and they will be as good as sewn ones.
    Hope you have fun dressing up your home!!

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      Sunday, March 21, 2010

      Indian pickle jar decor

      These typical Indian spice jars look lovely with a dash of colour. To make it look funky, I have used rub-on stickers - I hope to be inspired by the words!!- and tied a ribbon around the neck. You can use foam stickers, clear stickers or simply draw squiggles using permanent markers.

      I have used these jars to hold extra soaps and cotton tips.
      Here's another one that I call the "Django jar". It holds some of my beads and baubles. I have stuck a stick-on tattoo and some sparkly bindis. Instead of a ribbon I have wrapped an old bracelet around its neck.

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      DIY Decoupage pail

      Decoupage is an easy way of transforming dull accents into something vibrant. This enamel pail was white with a natural wooden handle and the decoupage was done four years ago; hence the "distressed" look!

      Here's a simple step-by-step direction to decoupage:

      1. Look around the house for leftover gift wrapping paper. Find a pair of sharp scissors. I have used a gift wrapping paper with square designs which is easy to cut.
      2. Cut out designs as desired using the sharp scissors. Cut out enough designs as required for the object on which you want to do the decoupage.
      3. Clean the object well and dry completely.
      4. Stick the designs randomly using PVA glue. I have painted the rim and handle red using enamel paint. Paint or spray clear varnish. Three coats of varnish will do nicely. Dry between coats.

      Please note that if you are planning to do decoupage on wooden objects, you will have to sand it using a fine grade sand paper, after cleaning and drying. This is to make the surface as even as possible before sticking paper onto it.
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      Saturday, March 20, 2010

      Easy Home Accents

      This funky accent takes only a minute to create. All you need is a cushion and an old T-shirt. Just cover the cushion with the T-shirt. I have used a tiny cushion and a mini T that you often get as free gifts on t-shirt purchases. You can cover a standard 12"x 12" cushion with an old child's T-shirt; even a hoodie and voila! you have an instant accent
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