DIY Canvas Art

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I want to share with you one of my favorite presents to give this year.  From making my Christmas wreaths and other holiday decorations, I was in the crafting mood, so I decided to paint canvases for a few family members.

Here is the finished product of the first one I completed:

DIY canvas art

For the projects, I used:

• Various sizes of canvases • Craft paint • Paint brushes • Stickers • Painter’s tape

First, I painted the canvas the ‘base color’ – the color I wanted to show through as the letters.  For this canvas the base color was ‘purple yam’ - satin finish - from the Martha Stewart line of acrylic craft paint.

(After I took the picture, I decided to paint the sides of the canvas the same color as well.)

Once the base color was dry, I placed the stickers on the canvas.  I also used painter’s tape to cover the sides.

Once I was happy with the placement of the stickers, I applied the top coat.  For the top coat, I used Martha Stewart brand, ‘mother of pearl’ - pearl finish.  (It is showing up a little silvery in the pictures, but it is really more of a true pearl color.)  Here is the canvas with one coat of ‘mother of pearl’.

I painted three coats of the ‘mother of pearl’ in order to have the complete coverage that I wanted.

Once the last coat was dry, I was ready to remove the stickers.  This was the exciting part!  I realized however, that some of the ‘mother of pearl’ had bled underneath the stickers onto the ‘purple yam’ :(.

I was able to easily touch it up with a small paint brush and a steady hand.  (For the next canvas though, I decided to add a step:  Once the stickers were in place, I applied one more coat of the base layer over the stickers.  This ensured that any bleed through was that of the base color and not the top color.)

Here is the first canvas all touched up:

DIY canvas art

The ‘passion’ canvas was for my sister.  She is starting to re-do their downstairs bathroom and this will coordinate perfectly with the new color scheme.

Here is another canvas that I used the same ‘sticker method’ to create.  This one was for my sister-in-law.  Her favorite color is pink and her nickname is ‘Sparkle’ (well deserved), so I knew she would love it!

DIY canvas art

I also painted two other canvases using a more free-hand method.  I found images and clip art online to help guide me.  I also used a pencil to sketch it out first, as I was not quite confident enough to dive in with the paint brush right away!

The first one was for my mom.  It says: “Faith, Hope, Love”.  She is very interested in both the Chinese and Irish cultures, so I used the Chinese symbol for ‘Hope’ and the Gaelic word for ‘Love’.

DIY canvas art, faith hope love

The last canvas I painted was a pictogram.  Can you guess who I gave it to?  (I’ve blacked out the part at the bottom that would give it away.)  I had to be a little creative to come up with this one, but I really like how it turned out!

DIY canvas art, pictogram

I love to give personalized gifts, and these canvases were fun to make and fairly easy to create.  The hardest part was just waiting for each coat to dry in between layers!

º Who do you think I gave the pictogram to? º Did you give or receive any DIY gifts this year?

We Three Wreaths ~ #1

Back in the fall, I visited a friend and saw her adorable fall colored yarn wrapped wreath. Her wreath inspired me to craft my own wreaths for the Christmas season, and that sparked my vision for our holiday mantel.  After seeing her wreath and falling in love with it, I knew that I wanted to include a yarn wreath in the trio that would anchor our mantel.

3 wreaths

I started doing Pinterest research, and found out that the yarn wreaths are quite popular. There are many tutorials and examples out there, but here is my version

red & silver yarn wreath

I started with:      •  An 8” foam floral ring      •  Yarn (red & silver)      •  Felt (red, white, & silver)      •  Stapler & staples      •  Hot glue gun & glue sticks

My first step was to wrap the floral ring with the yarn.  To get started, I simply stapled the red and silver ends of the yarn to the ring.

I then wrapped and wrapped and wrapped the yarn around the ring to cover up all of the green.  I let the yarn take on a pattern of its own while I was wrapping.  I also overlapped some of the yarn strands to add some interest and depth to the wreath.

My next step was to add the rosette embellishments.  Here is a picture of the supplies I used: 3 colors of felt and 3 round objects to use as sizing guides (2 ribbon spools and 1 glass).  You can also see my first attempt at making a rosette.

The rosettes are actually quite easy to make:

Step 1: Cut a circle out of felt and create wavy edges around your circle.

Step 2: Start on an outside edge of your wavy circle and cut to the middle to form a continuous spiral through the circle.  Leave a little bit at the end because you will use that piece to glue the rosette together.

Step 3:  Take the outside point where you starting cutting and wrap the felt around itself to create the rosette.

You can wrap the felt tightly or loosely to give different effects to your rosette.

Step 4:  Hot glue the rosette together on the underneath side using the little piece you left while cutting the spiral.

I made 5 rosettes and played around with the arrangement until I liked how they looked together.

I used a piece of the red yarn to hang it from our window pane, but it would also look cute with ribbon, twine, or just propped up against something.

red & silver yarn wreath

Before Christmas, I’ll reveal how I made the other two wreaths.  Believe it or not, they were easier than this one!

º Have you made any wreaths for the holidays? º What trios of decorations are around your house?

Pom Pom Christmas Tree

I love all of the sparkle and glitz of the Christmas season!  This season I decided to make some of our own Christmas decorations. Here is a picture of supplies I started with for my first project:

I ended up adding a few things as the project progressed, but my idea was to make a pom pom Christmas tree.  I bought a 20" Styrofoam tree, 100 silver pom poms, 400 white pom poms, and red and silver ribbon. (I already had the needle and thread.   All supplies from Michael’s, except the silver pom poms.)

My idea was to string the pom poms on the thread like garland and then glue each strand to the tree.  I figured that gluing a whole strand at a time would be much easier than gluing each individual pom pom onto the tree one….at….a….time.

I started stringing the pom poms and used a random order of silver and white poms to make the strands.

As I was stringing and testing my first few rows, I decided two things:

  1. I wanted a base to set the tree on and to support the bottom layer of pom poms.
  2. If any part of the white tree showed through the pom poms, I wanted it to be silver, not white.

So, I bought a white melamine plate from Target and spray painted it silver to make the base.

Since spray paint will melt Styrofoam, I had to come up with another idea for the tree.  Thanks to Andrew, who suggested covering it in silver wrapping paper!  I simply measured out the paper and hot glued it to the tree.  I knew most of it would be covered with the poms, so the pattern on the paper (also from Target) was not a concern.  I also didn’t worry about it being perfectly straight and smooth.  I then hot glued the base of the tree to the plate.

I was now ready to start gluing the poms to the tree.  I found the best method was to make about 4 or 5 rows at a time and then glue those rows.  It helped me with measuring how many poms I would need per strand.  (It’s not that easy to snap a quick picture of hot glue by yourself!)

While gluing, in order to best hide the ends of the string, I glued each strand and left space for one last pom.  I then put a dab of glue on a pom and pressed it right over the string to hide the knot.

Here it is about half-way done:

I wanted to keep the tree topper simple, so I used the red and silver ribbon to tie a bow and pin it in place with a straight pin.   Here is the finished Pom Pom Christmas Tree on the mantel:

Pom Pom Christmas Tree Pin It I’m working on the rest of the mantel, so there are more crafts, decorations, and pictures to come!  Next week, I’ll be sharing an easy wreath idea!

° What are you crafting for the Holidays?  What will be adorning your mantel? ° How many times did I use the word pom pom in this post!?

I've linked up to Centsational Girl's Holiday Craft Link Party.  Check out all of the inspiring craft ideas!

Easy as Pie Runner

(Yummm, pie! ~ Can you tell my mind is on Thanksgiving ;)? ) I've been looking for a runner to go on a buffet we have in our dining room.  The walls in our dining room are green, and we have blue in both adjoining rooms (kitchen and living room).  I wanted something that would tie all three rooms together but that would also have a ‘fallish’ feel to it.  When I saw this fabric at artéé fabrics & home, I knew I had to have it!

Here it is (“Bloom” designed by Thomas Paul for Duralee), washed, tumbled dry, and ready to be ironed.  While knowing how to sew with a sewing machine is on my ‘to learn’ list for the New Year, I wanted to go ahead and make the runner now in order to enjoy it through the fall.  So, I used Heat ‘n Bond hem tape.  (I bought mine at Michael’s, but you can find it at most craft stores.)

The blooms on the fabric were the perfect width for our space (13”), so I carefully folded the fabric along the top and bottom of one row of blooms.  Once it was all lined up, I ironed the folds to help hold them in place.

Next I laid out the hem tape and followed the instructions on the box for the best results.

Once it was all ironed and bonded, it was almost complete.  The only thing left to do was address the side edges of the runner.

I found this fabulous trim at U-fab that would give the runner a finished edge.

I trimmed the edges down, leaving almost no white fabric and lined up the trim to cover the edge.   I then used a needle and thread, and a simple straight stitch, to sew on the trim by hand.

Here is a finished picture of the trim:

And here is the runner on the buffet!

The colors are perfect, and I love seeing it every time I walk into the kitchen.  It is ready just in time for Thanksgiving.  Since we’re doing Thanksgiving at my parents’ house this year, I’m actually thinking of taking it with us over there in order to be able to enjoy it ;)!

° Have you made any ‘no-sew’ items recently?  ° What’s on your ‘to learn’ list for 2012?