Category: Holiday Crafts

Feb 08

How to Make DIY Valentines Gifts

How To Make DIY Valentine Gifts (courtesy of GlamTrotter.com)

Hey you guys, it’s Amber, and this is going to be a little Valentine’s do-it-yourself video, and this is something that I like to do for my husband, as well as my friends and family. We love chocolate covered strawberries – I think a lot of people probably do – and, they can be quite expensive when you’re picking them up from a bakery, or like, Godiva in the mall for example. They’re so expensive! Like $6.00 for 2 strawberries! So, I’m gonna show you kind of a cute, little way to do it yourself – to make your own chocolate covered strawberries, and sort of turn them into a Valentine’s Day gift. So, if you are interested in how I make them, please stay tuned, and I will show you how I kind of present them and package them as well, at the end of this video.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Measuring Cup

Your Choice of Chocolate Morsels

1 Quart of Washed Strawberries

Ribbon with a Wired Edge

Package of Empty Treat Boxes

Wax Paper

Tray/Plate Lined with Wax Paper

Add 1 cup of morsels.

Microwave on high for 1 minute.

Churn the mixture from bottom to top.

Heat mixture for 30 seconds.

Again, churn the mixture from bottom to top.

Heat mixture for another 30 seconds.

Finally the chocolate is ready for dipping!

Since these are gifts, select the most attractive berries. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.

Line your box with wax paper.

Place the berries in the gift box.

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Jan 30

How to Make a Bow

Learn how to make a bow in this great video from askthedecorator.com

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Jan 19

How To Make A Silver Retro Christmas Tree

How To Make A Silver Retro Christmas Tree (courtesy of Threadbanger.com)

Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Happy Kwanzaa, and welcome to Décor it Yourself! Every year, Will and I bring home a cut tree, but, this year we wanted to be a little greener and save some green, by bringing home a live one and showing you how to make your own retro tinsel tree!

First, gather a bunch of wire hangers and straighten them all out.

Fold 4 of them in half, then fold in half again, and reinforce the joint with galvanized wire.

Now, take out 4 pieces of thick wire, measuring 64 inches. Wrap the entire length of the 4 metal pieces in galvanized wire to create a strong structure.

Take your “L” shaped feet and attach to one end of your thick wire, to create the stand. Wrap until all 4 feet are secure.

Wrap the entire pole in tinsel, starting at the bottom. Once covered, wrap with galvanized wire.

Now, you’re gonna make your branches. You’re gonna cut different lengths of wire from your hangers, for the tiers of your tree.

Once you have your wire cut to the length it needs to be, wrap the entire piece with tinsel. Bend some tinsel over the end so it covers the sharp end of the hanger. Then, wrap that end with galvanized wire a couple of times, to secure the tinsel.

Now, wrap the entire branch with the wire until you reach the end. Then, secure that end the same way you did the first.

Bend one end 3 inches up at a 90° angle. You will need:

10 – 21” branches

8 – 16” branches

6 – 12” branches

5 – 10” branches

5 – 9” branches

4 – 8” branches

3 – 6” branches.

You’re going to attach your branches by placing them on the trunk, like so. It helps to mark where you’re going to attach them by marking them with a piece of wire.

Use a friend’s help to hold all of the branches of that tier in place. Wrap around all of them at one time with wire. Be sure to wrap all the way to the end of where the small parf of the L reaches the trunk.

We started with the bottom tier of the branches. Next, do the top tier, then measure the space in between to evenly distribute the rest of the tiers.

Once all tiers are securely attached, you’re going to finish your base. Take a square piece of wood, big enough for all 4 legs to fit on. Screw mending plates to each leg, about 2 inches from the trunk.

Paint your feet white to complete your stand.

Fold the branches in different directions to make it lush. Decorate, and voila! You have a retro tinsel tree for under $30 that you can use year after year!

A whole bunch of you asked for Christmas tree alternatives, so when we come back, I’ll show you plenty!

Welcome back! Another great tree alternative is a rosemary bush in the shape of a Christmas tree, that you can also use when cooking your holiday meals.

For small spaces, use a wall decal for your tree, as featured in Apartment Therapy.

Ingrid from Wood and Wool Stools has a cool tree alternative, as seen here. Read last year’s Threadbanger blog for these DIY trees by Venest. Our own viewer, Isabel, made this tree alternative out of a vintage body form. Awesome work, Isabel!

What are you doing for your tree this year? Going eco and green with a live one, or making your own? Send in photos so we can see them. Thanks so much for watching! I’ll see you next wek, and remember, Your Nest Needs You!

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Jan 19

How To Make Christmas Photo Ornaments

How To Make Christmas Photo Ornaments (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Decorate your Christmas tree with this keepsake ornament featuring a photo of a loved one. You will need:

Photo
Scissors
Transparent ornament with a removable top
Pencil
Cotton swab
Glue
Decorations
Acrylic paint
Paintbrush
Ribbon

Step 1: Cut out the photo you want to use into a circle that measures about 3 inches across.

Step 2: Remove the hanger and cap from the bulb. Then wrap the photo around a pencil, making sure the photo is facing outward.

Step 3: Holding the photo around the pencil, slip it inside the bulb. Release the photo from the pencil.

Step 4: Position and straighten the photo with a cotton swab.

Step 5: Get creative and glue small shells, colored tinsel, colored sand, and even popcorn to the inside and outside of the ornament. Gluing decorations inside will also help keep the photo in place.

Step 6: Write the date on the back of the ornament with acrylic paint, and a message if you like. Finish by tying a bow around the top of the ornament and give it as a gift to the person in the picture or hang it on your own tree.

Did you know? Ornaments on the 2008 National Christmas tree were made with holographic film to make the tree look lit all day!

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Jan 19

How To Prevent Common Christmas Disasters

How To Prevent Common Christmas Disasters (courtesy of Howcast.com)

With a little forethought, you can avoid many embarrassing, annoying, and downright dangerous holiday mishaps! You will need:

Emergency gifts
A drink limit
Kiss-avoidance strategies
Graciousness
Fishing wire
A computer with internet access
Orange and lemon rinds (optional)

Step 1: Have wrapped, unisex gifts on hand in case you forget someone. This is also useful if someone gives you something that cost twice as much as what you gave them: Just say, “And here’s your other gift!” Pick things you can use if you don’t give them as gifts, or stuff that can hold until next year.

Step 2: Figure out how much alcohol you can drink at the office Christmas party before you’re at risk of doing something you’ll regret. Then stick to your limit.

Step 3: Avoid an unwelcome mistletoe kiss by saying you have a cold – or feigning a cough or sneeze as the person closes in on you.

Step 4: If someone gives you a lousy gift, simply say, “Thank you.” If you pretend to like it, you may get more of the same next year.

Step 5: Prevent an emergency trip to the veterinarian by keeping sweet treats away from dogs and cats. Chocolate toxicity is the most common holiday-related illness for pets. Poinsettias are also poisonous to your four-legged friends.

Step 6: Keep kids and pets from knocking over the Christmas tree by securing it with clear fishing line attached to the treetop and a ceiling hook. If you have a cat, scatter orange and lemon rinds on the tree skirt; most cats hate citrus scents.

Step 7: Don’t panic if you still need gifts and even the drugstores are closed: Just go online, order a gift, and print out a photo of it. On your way out when you realize you’ve forgotten someone? Pick up some movie passes or a gas gift card.

Did you know? The average person gives up on trying to make their new electronic gift work at 11:48 a.m. on Christmas morning, according to a survey!

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Jan 19

How To Get In The Christmas Spirit

How To Get In The Christmas Spirit (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Dreading dragging out the decorations and pretending to love gifts you don’t really want? This year, find every way to make this a memorable, meaningful season for you and your loved ones. You will need:

Kindness
Holiday music
Decorations
Christmas tree
Volunteer work
Christmas movies
Personalized letters

Step 1: Greet people with a holiday wish and smile wherever you are.

Step 2: Clean the house while blasting cheerful holiday music and belt out a tune to get your spirits up.

Step 3: Decorate the house in festive colors. Hang mistletoe and set out red and green candles, tape up friends’ greeting cards, hang stockings on the mantle, and put the tree up early. Include the kids by letting them make their own decorations and crafts for the tree.

Step 4: Hang outdoor lights along the eaves, over the trees, and on the bushes. Paint a special Christmas letter box for the porch. Buy animated and lit reindeer, and other decorations for the lawn.

Step 5: Volunteer to bring toys, clothing, or a little cheer to those not as well off. Give to others around you, shoveling the walk for an elderly neighbor, making cookies, or helping out at church. Take some time to reflect on your blessings. Make this a family ritual.

Step 6: Watch Christmas movies with the family to get everyone in the spirit. Before bed, tell the kids Christmas stories to make it a season they will never forget.

Step 7: Send out personalized, old-fashioned, well-wishing notes and letters to friends, family, and associates. Everyone likes to get a nice letter this time of year.

Did you know? A box office flop when it was released in 1946, It’s a Wonderful Life became the film classic it is today around 1974 when it became public domain and could be run on television for free!

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Jan 05

How To Make Lavender and Chamomile Sugar Scrub

How To Make Lavendar and Chamomile Sugar Scrub (courtesy of NoreensKitchen.com)

Hi everyone! It’s Noreen, and welcome to my kitchen! And welcome to another episode of The holidays are coming! Now, last week, we did bath salts, and I did want to make a statement about that. In some states, what they call “bath salts” have been made “illegal” because it’s a certain type of drug, that, I think you smoke – I don’t even know. But, they’re not the bath salts that I make. So, when you talk about bath salts and you hear that in the news, that’s not what we’re talking about. That’s something totally different – it’s just called the same thing.

But anyway, we’re gonna kinda go a step further today, and we’re gonna make a sugar scrub. This is really nice – you take it in the shower and then you scrub it all over your skin, and you rinse it off when you wash off, and it exfoliates all of those dead skin cells and it makes your skin glow, and it helps your body absorb moisturizer a lot more quickly, and it helps you to – the things that are in it are gonna help the toxins escape from your body, and it’s gonna be wonderful!

So, let’s see what goes in this! This is another thing that you could make assembly line style. You can make a whole bunch of it and just jar it up. You could even sell this at bazaars – it would be fantastic. So, what we’re gonna start with is a cup of Demerara sugar, and I’ll show you what that looks like. I should have left it out – you know what? I have a full one over here, let me grab it. I buy this in my grocery store – this is also what I use in my favorite bread recipe! This is pure cane sugar – sugar before it’s refined – so it still has a lot of molasses in it. Still has a lot of nutrients and minerals in it that refined sugar does not have. In the bowl it goes – a cup.

And, this is a ¼ cup of epsom salt. Not sea salt – a ¼ cup of epsom salt, because epsom salt is gonna help extract toxins from your body.

The next thing we’re gonna do…this is Vitamin E oil. You can get this at the health food store, you can get it online, I bought it in the vitamin section at Walmart, and it was about $3.00. And this will go a very long way – except you have to get it open! I’m gonna use a tablespoon of Vitamin E oil.

We’re gonna use a ¼ cup of some sort of oil, but, this is organic olive oil – cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil, ok? I will warn you – you cannot use vegetable oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, with this. You can use these 3 types of oil. You can use olive oil, you can use liquid coconut oil or you can use almond oil for this scrub. The olive oil contains lots of antioxidants that are fabulous for your skin, so you’re nourishing your body as well as having healthier skin.

Now, I’m also going to add a tablespoon each of lavender flowers and dried camomile flowers. Put those both in. You can do anything with this. If you want to make a lemon scrub, you can zest a lemon and you can put the lemon zest in here and it will smell fabulous. You can throw some black tea in here – just pop open a couple of black tea bags – or you can use green tea, or you can open up your favorite herbal tea and just toss a couple of those loose tea bags in here. Not the bag part, just the herb part.

Now, let me show you these herbs here before we move forward. This bag of lavender flowers was less than $5.00, and I get this from San Francisco Herb and Natural Food Company, and their website is HerbSpiceTea.com, and I love them! They have fantastic prices and an amazing, amazing selection to choose from, and they have medicinal herbs, they have culinary herbs and spices. And then, this is whole chamomile flowers, and both of these bags are a pound. You know, that’s a lot. When you think, I’m gonna buy a pound, that’s a huge bag. A huge bag! But, the chamomile flowers are fabulous. Chamomile helps you to relax. It takes the edge off, it has a natural calming quality about it, so this is perfect for taking a shower in the evening. It’s gonna help you exfoliate your skin as well, along with everything else that we’ve put in this scrub. This one I got from MountainRoseHerbs, which is another one of my favorite purveyors, or vendors, for herbal supplies. And, I will put their web addresses in the underbar, and their website is MountainRoseHerbs.com. And again, they have fabulous prices, and they also have – they have some things that San Francisco Herb and Tea doesn’t have, and vice versa. They also have a fantastic website where they actually have videos – they have a YouTube channel, and they have recipes and demonstrations, and you can learn a lot on their website about the origins and the uses for all of the herbs and everything that you’re looking at on there.

So, back to this! The only thing left to do know is to jar this up. I just put my trusty canning funnel up here, and I may have to tap this down. You’re gonna get more than a jar’s worth. This is just for demonstration purposes. You can pretty up that jar, put it in a cellophane bag, tie it with a bow, and you’re ready for gift giving! You can put a tag on it, and leave instructions below on how to use it. In fact, I’ll show you right here. I’ll just take some warm water – I’ll just do it on my arm, here. Just take a handful of it and rub it on your skin, and you’ll be able to feel – it’s gonna exfoliate all of the dry skin of of your body wherever you use it. It smells wonderful, and the, you know, the oil is not gonna be greasy on your skin, and you’re gonna wash it off with soap after you’re done. And I’ll just reach over here and get some of my hand soap. And it’s just like, if you’ve ever gone to Bath and Body Works or Crabtree and Evelyn or some really – like The Body shop, they’re really expensive places where you can go and get body care items. And you just dry off. But, this makes your skin really soft – feel it. Really soft!

So, give this a try. It’s a great gift! We’ve added the extra vitamin e in there. You don’t have to use a tablespoon if you choose not to. You can use a teaspoon. If you’re looking out for your budge, you don’t have to use it at all. So, there you have it – Sugar and Olive Oil Body Scrub that you make from home to give to your friends and family for Christmas. It’s not expensive, and you can make – if you buy a container of the Demarar sugar, a bottle of olive oil, a bag of epsom salts and a little bit of chamomile or lavender or spearmint or whatever herb you choose to put in there, or you don’t have to put herbs in it at all. You can make a whole bunch really cheap, and you can give it to everybody that you know and care about for Christmas. So, there’s another idea for holiday gift giving…I hope you try it, and I hope you enjoy it! Until next time – I’ll see ya!

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Dec 09

Learn How To Make Christmas Cookie Bouquets

Learn How To make Christmas Cookie Bouquets (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Follow this recipe to make a festive, edible decoration that everyone will enjoy! You will need:

Roll of cookie dough
1/3 c. pasteurized egg whites
4 1/2 c. confectioner’s sugar
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
Cookie and cake decorations
Peppermint candies
Equipment:
Christmas cookie cutters
Wooden skewers
Electric mixer with paddle attachment
Colorful ribbon
Holiday-themed bowl
Florist foam
Red and green food coloring (optional)

Step 1: Roll out the cookie dough to double the thickness of your skewers. Then use your cookie cutters to cut out cookies. Poke the skewers into the sides of the cookies to make cookie lollipops.

Step 2: Bake the cookie lollipops according to package directions, adding one to two minutes to account for the added thickness. Allow the cookies to cool completely.

Step 3: Make the icing by beating the egg whites in the mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form.

Step 4: Change the mixer speed to medium-low and slowly add the confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, scraping the bowl between additions. Use more sugar for stiff icing to decorate designs and less sugar for loose icing to fill in the designs.

Step 5: Add the lemon juice, increasing the speed to medium-high until stiff peaks form and the icing is no longer shiny — six to eight minutes. Then ice the cookies. Divide the icing and add red and green food coloring.
Step 6: Use festive cookie and cake decorations to embellish the cookie lollipops. Tie a piece of colorful ribbon around each stick.

Step 7: Stick the lollipops into the florists’ foam in the bowl and hide the foam with peppermint candies. Use your bouquet as a festive centerpiece — if you can stand not eating it first!

Did you know? In 1979, in honor of the American hostages in Iran, only the top ornament of the National Christmas Tree was lit.

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Nov 29

Learn How To Hang Christmas Lights Outdoors

How To Hang Outdoor Christmas Lights (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Get in the Christmas spirit and illuminate your house with a dazzling display of lights! You will need:

Power source
Extension cord
Tape measure
Ladder
Christmas light hooks
Vertical Christmas light clips
Pole with a hook
Switch or timer (optional)
Coat hanger (optional)
Broomstick (optional)
Duct tape (optional)

Step 1: Find an outdoor electrical outlet that you will be able to plug a heavy duty extension cord into. Use an outlet that is controlled by a switch or run your lights through a timer.

Step 2: Use the tape measure to determine the length of the area where you want to hang the lights as well as the height of any walls, bushes, or trim where you will be hanging lights. Then figure the number of 50-foot light strings you will need.

Step 3: Look for broken or missing bulbs, and worn or bare wires before you plug in the lights. Then plug in the lights to make sure they work before you hang them.

Step 4: Use a stepladder if your house’s eaves are low. If not, use an extension ladder. Plant the ladder on level ground and extend it well above the eaves at a safe angle.

Step 5: Hang lights along the gutters first, using plastic clips made for light strings. Then attach lights to vertical trim using the vertical clips.

Step 6: Hang lights in small trees using the pole with the hook on it. Drape the string over the hook, extend it to the tree, and then twist the pole, allowing the string to fall from the hook to the branches. You can make a device by bending a coat hanger into a hook and attaching it to a broomstick with duct tape.

Did you know? Thomas Edison created the first strand of electric lights and decorated the outside of his Menlo Park Laboratory with them around Christmas, 1880!

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Nov 16

Learn How To Get Really Creative For The Holidays

How To Get Really Creative For The Holidays (courtesy of Threadbanger.com)

It’s that time of year again, when Jack Frost nips at your nose, and the Grinch’s heart grows 3 times its size. It’s winter in the city, and holiday season everywhere!

Well, hello there, my Threadbanger friends, and welcome to the Décor It Yourself holiday special! If thinking about the upcoming holiday season stresses you out, relax! The holidays aren’t about spending money that none of us have. They’re about spending time with those that we love. So today, we’re gonna create the invitations, décor and gifts to give our loved ones a warm, wintry evening.

Gifts can be one of the most stressful parts of the holiday season – especially during these hard times. I’m gonna give you 3 easy gift ideas, that cost no more than $10!

For our first gift, we’ll take inspiration from our Earth Day episode, and create a gift by putting a cut plant in a vintage vessel. Who doesn’t need a little extra green, especially during these hard times.

These lovely coasters were made from remnants of fabric from leftover DIY projects. I still get in trouble when I go home to my folk’s house and don’t use a coaster. Sorry, mom!

For our last gift, you’ll need cinnamon sticks, cloves and clementine peels. Place your ingredients into an old mason jar and take a cool dishtowel and wrap it around it. Tie it with a bow, and you have a nice, warm gift of aromatic mulling spices. For more on mulling spices, check out the first episode of Décor It Yourself.

And now, on to my favorite element of any time of year – the décor!

For a quick and classy element of décor, spray a candle with adhesive, roll it in some glitter and place into an old shot glass or decorated vessel.

For our next décor piece, we’ll use our old wire hangars to create cool, seasonal sayings.

And, for the easiest of our décor ideas, take an old mirror and place on it your favorite woodland friends. Add a touch of glitter for a little snow flurry.

For our final low-budget décor piece, we’re gonna put our own spin on an old, kitschy idea. You’ll need some airtight glass containers, a glue gun, some figurines, glycerin, glitter and distilled water.

First, sand the inside of the container’s lid. Glue the feet of your figurine to the inside of the container’s lid and allow to dry.

Add 2 tablespoons of glitter to the vessel and fill with distilled water. To distill water, just boil and allow to cool.

Now, just add one drop of glycerin to the container, close the lid, and use your snowglobe as winter décor, or add a bow, and you have another gift to give!

Now that we have our seasonal décor and our gifts to give, we’re ready to invite our guests. After all, opening your home is a gift in itself! For unique invite ideas, check the DIY weddings episode of Décor It Yourself. But, for the holiday invite, we’re using a polaroid from last years’ Christmas. Look at us – living together in sin!

Well, we’re almost ready for our guests! But, to keep your party stress-free and low budget, choose one signature cocktail and one tasty treat. We’re doing sparkling peach and pomegranate schnapps, along with cookies, cupcakes and pumpkin bread.

I guess it’s time to celebrate!

Well, that was a hit! I’m off to clean up, but be sure to check back the first Wednesday of every month for more nesting. And remember, Your Nest Needs You!

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Nov 15

How To Make A Wreath Out Of Old CDs

How To Make A Wreath From Old CDs (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Short on holiday decorations, but long on old CDs? Tis the season to be crafty! You will need:

A plastic, wooden or foam craft ring
30 old CDs
A hot-glue gun
A picture hanger
A strand of battery-powered holiday lights
Batteries
A holiday bow or ribbon
A hammer
A nail
A plastic scraper (optional)

Optional: An over-the-door wreath hanger

Step 1: Arrange the CDs in evenly spaced intervals completely around the craft ring, shiny side facing out, and glue them into place.

Step 2: Glue a second layer of CDs so that they’re evenly spaced between the CDs on the first layer.

Step 3: Glue the picture hanger to the back of the ring so the wreath will hang properly.

Step 4: Glue the battery pack for the Christmas lights to the back of the wreath, opposite the hanger. When the glue dries, wrap the strand of lights around the outer edge of the wreath, with the lights hanging over onto the CDs. After positioning the lights, glue the strand to the backs of the CDs to hold it in place.

Step 5: Glue the bow or tie the ribbon to the bottom of the wreath to give your creation some holiday flair. Before displaying your wreath, remove any stray bits of glue with your hands or a plastic scraper.

Step 6: Tap a nail into your door and hang your wreath. If you can’t use nails, use an over-the-door hanger. Turn the lights on and bask in the colorful glow!
Did you know? In 2000, global sales of CDs peaked at 2.5 billion. In 2006, that figure was down to 1.8 billion.

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Nov 07

How To Use Sustainable Holiday Decorations

Sustainable Holiday Tips (courtesy of TheSalvageStudio.com)

Welcome to the Salvage Studio. I’m Beth Evans Romos, this is Amy Duncan and Lisa Hildebrand. We began our creative endeavor 3 years ago with our mutual lust for rust! We rescue good junk and re-purpose it into fun and functional home and garden décor!

Today, we’re gonna talk about how to set an entertaining table, Salvage Studio style. This works great for entertaining during the holidays. This same idea would also work if you were doing a sit down dinner. We’re gonna start from the bottom up, and we’ll talk about all the different ideas you can use to give you that lust for rust look.

First of all, starting with the tablecloths. I like to use white linen. White linen tablecloths are abundant at the thrift stores, they don’t need to be ironed because we like that sort of shabby chic ruffled, crumpled look. I like to layer several over one another. This works out great, because if the ones underneath have a hole and stains in them, the one on top will cover it over.

Once you have that down, then I like to put mirrors on top. Flat mirrors are easy to find, often times without the frame, and it just really helps to add an element to the tabletop and give it some sparkle. It works really great if you have some candlelight – it helps to bring that to focus.

Then, the next thing are trivets. You’re probably serving a combination of hot and cold food, and so we like to put down some interesting trivets. This one is an old spinning wheel, this one is a grapevine wreath, and this one is an old industrial gear.

Here’s some items that you can put your dishes in to. We love silver plate at the studio. And it doesn’t need to be shiny and bright. We love it to be tarnished, because it really shows the patina and adds one more layer of texture to your table. This is a beautiful dish, and if you collect a lot of different ones, you never know when they’re gonna come in useful.

We found this piece, which is an old farm pulley, at a friend’s house where she was throwing some things away. I thought, my God, what could we ever do with that? And we turned it upside down and thought wow – that makes a beautiful stand. And then the silver dish sits on top, and there you have the perfect display piece for your buffet table.

Another use of silver plate is taking the old silver plated trays. This has been attached to a lazy susan that has been painted black. The 2 are married together with adhesive, and again, makes a sunny presentation on your table.

Continuing on with silver plates, we also have these pedestals that can be made. These glasses are from wedding receptions that I don’t think were ever used after that fact, and then, just have the trays glued on top. If you stack them together, one on top of another, then you maximize the space on your buffet table, and you also have a wonderful looking display for crackers, cheese, fruit or desert items.

Another great buffet piece is made from putting together the glass ceiling fixtures with an old candlestick. This is an old wooden candlestick that has been painted a white color, and this piece has been attached to it with a rubber gasket and a screw. This is great, then, in not only holding things such as bread, but it could also hold a salad or possibly some mixed vegetables.

Continuing on with other pieces that have been repurposed. These candlesticks have been made from an old wooden lamp that has a great texture and patina to it. And, glued on the top has been a silver plate coaster. Always nice to add candlelight to your buffet table. It just really makes everything look that much more festive.

Another great piece that has been put together from repurpose items is this fireplace tool caddy. It has been reborn as the perfect buffet piece. These are, again, the glass globes from a smaller fixture that has been wired on and crystals added. You could put in silverware, you could put in napkins, you could put in bread sticks.

Then, finishing up with the final touches. I have napkins here, in an old soup tureen that has lost its top. And again, we like to use the real napkins along with the real silverware and real plates on the buffet table, instead of plastic and styrofoam. It just really gives that extra touch that means so much that you care.

And finally, for a little personal touch, I have these glass jars with photographs. They could very easily be place holders, if you were doing a sit down dinner, or they could just have a little fun momento for people if you’re having a family reunion. What this is is an old photograph that has been inserted into a glass jar. This one has some buttons in the back to help hold the photo in place, and then, the cover has been spray painted black and put on to hold it all together.

So, as you can see, lots of lovely ideas that makes use of what you have at hand to give our buffet table that special look!

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Oct 19

Learn How To Decorate For Halloween For Under $20

Halloween Decorating Tips for under $20 (courtesy of Mommaair)

Hi! I’m so glad you made it! I just got back from the dollar store and decided to show you some really cute things to make under $20 for your house for Halloween. Come on in!

OK, I’m ready to show you the supplies that I bought, and remember, this is all from the dollar store, or it’s things that I just had laying around my house that I know you have laying around your house as well! So, what you’re gonna need:

Some Black Crepe Paper

Skeleton Garland

Some Foil Skeletons and Pumpkins

Burlap Fabric

Foam Wreath

Yes, a video tape – I’m gonna show you what we’re gonna do with this –

Empty Root Beer Bottles

Creepy Cloth – like a mesh, black

Spiderweb Cloth

Some Little Spiders With Skeletons

Corrugated Cardboard

I also went out to my own yard and just clipped some dried flowers that obviously, have kind of withered, but I’m gonna use these

And then, I got some pots at the dollar store, and I have already gone ahead and painted those with black craft paint – I just did a really, quick wash of craft paint. So, I’m excited to get started! Let me show you the areas we’re gonna work on.

Here’s a quick glance of our 2 areas before we do the decorating – the table and the chest. What you’re gonna do first is you’re gonna take this tape and you’re gonna wrap it around the wreath. I’ve wrapped it around all the way. And then, you’re gonna take your crepe paper and you’re gonna make a flower. And, it’s really, really easy. All you’re gonna do is gather – bunch it around, making it as big or small as you like, and then you’re just gonna straight pin it on. There’s the finished product!

Next, the burlap. I’m gonna use this for several things. I’m gonna use this to cover the pictures in my family room. Artwork that you don’t like. I’m also using it to cover my candles. So, I’ve cut some strips and it’s very easy to fray. Once you cut it, just go ahead and pull out strings. Save these strings, ’cause we’re gonna use these later to tie on things. So, all you do is wrap it around, and then I used one of the burlap strings, and then I took one of my little creatures and hot glued it on. I also used the burlap as a runner, and then I made almost ribbon out of the burlap, and I’m gonna use this to tie on the pots.

So, for your pots, I took the corrugated cardboard. You’re just gonna wrap the burlap ribbon around, tie a messy knot. Then, I disassembled the garlands, and you’re just gonna tie that on – use another piece of the burlap string.

The last thing you’re gonna do is you’re gonna make your ribbons for the root beer bottles. It’s really easy – takes – you’re just gonna loop it around, like this. Take a piece of craft wire, and I’ve combined…I’ve done it 3 different times and overlapped them. Then, I’ve gone ahead and put them on the beer bottle. There’s the skeleton garland, and I’m gonna use these all around. I cut these. Instead of keeping it as a garland, I cut these individual, put them on the root beer bottles, and then, if you saw a crazy lady at the side of the road picking sunflowers, that was me! Fill these with sunflowers. And the thing that makes all this work, even though it’s little and it’s all from the dollar store, you’re using a lot of it. And so, when you have a lot of little things, it makes a big impact.

Last thing is this creepy cloth. I’m gonna use this as part of the table runner and also on my light fixtures. We’ll show you how to do that.

OK, we’re out of time, but I am so excited to show you the final product. So, if you take these ideas and then add them to your existing Halloween décor, I think you are gonna have a really cute décor, but really affordable.

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Nov 12

Learn How To Make A Snowman

Learn How To Make A Snowman (courtesy of Howcast.com)

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Nov 04

Learn How To Decorate Your Thanksgiving Dinner Table

How To Decorate Your Thanksgiving Table (courtesy of Better.com)

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Oct 25

Learn How To Carve A Pumpkin

How To Carve A Pumpkin (courtesy of FrankyFong36)

What’s up, everyone? It’s Franky Fong, and this is my jack-o-lantern. My son was here, but he got scared and ran off! This is the after…the after photo of my, uh, jack-o-lantern. You know, it’s pretty damn close to Halloween, and I haven’t seen one jack-o-lantern video on YouTube, and it seems that bloggers don’t care about Halloween, so this is gonna be my video on How I cut My Pumpkin! Alright, I hope you enjoy – oooohahaha…

Step 1 – Remove the guts. Cut at a 45 degree angle.

Step 2 – Draw out your design.

Step 3 – Poke holes along the lines of your design. I like to do large areas, like the mouth, in small sections. It’s a lot easier that way.

Step 4 – Connect the dots with your cutter.

Step 5 – Get some red wine.

At ease, soldier – carry on.

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Dec 14

How to Make a Holiday Ball Wreath

How To Make A Holiday Ball Wreath (courtesy of TheCrochetCrowd.com)

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Nov 25

How to Make a Gift Bow

How To Make A Gift Bow (courtesy of LearnHowToMakeHolidayBows.com)

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Feb 06

Valentines Day How-to – Eco-Friendly DIY Card

Learn how to make an eco-friendly Valentine’s Day card for that special someone in this video tutorial from ShihoMasuda.com

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Mar 19

Easter Hat Ideas

Watch this video from sjorsca for ingenious Easter hat ideas.

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Mar 17

How to Decorate Easter Eggs Naturally

Learn how-to decorate Easter eggs with onion skins in this video from monkeysee.com

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Mar 14

How-to Crafts – St. Patrick’s Day Hat

Learn how to make a St. Patrick’s day leprechaun hat with this video from VickiBodwell.

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Feb 15

How to Make a Pinata

Learn how to make a traditional pinata for party activities and games with this video from About.com

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Feb 11

Origami Instructions – Valentine Heart with Pocket

These easy to follow Origami instructions from danbergam will show you how-to fold your Valentine a heart with a pocket. Use the pocket to hide a sweet little message or a gift!

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Jan 18

How to Make Soap – Cupid’s Heart Soap

Treat your Valentine to special handmade gift that not only smells good but keeps them squeaky clean! Watch this instructional video from GoPlanetEarth on how-to make soap.

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Dec 03

How to Wrap a Gift

Give your friends and family perfectly wrapped gifts this Christmas. Learn how to neatly wrap a gift with this video from VideoJug.com


VideoJug: How To Wrap A Box With A Rectangular End

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Oct 19

How to Halloween Crafts – Floating Head Illusion

Learn how to create the illusion of a ghostly floating head for Halloween with this video from BigScreamTV.info

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Oct 18

How to Halloween Crafts – Making Tombstone Decorations

How To Make Tombstone Decorations (courtesy of BigScreamTV.info)

Exactly What You’ll Need:

3/4” and 3” to 6” Styrofoam Insulation

Flat Black Spray Paint

Wire Coat Hanger

Spray Adhesive or Glue Gun

Pliers

String

Marker

Utility Knife

No haunted house would be complete without a cemetery full of headstones! And, you can get these headstones at just about every party store or Halloween department, as my trusty assistant, Teresa, will tell you. But, they’re really expensive! For a piece of Styrofoam, it’s like maybe $7.00, probably $15 or $20 for a tombstone, and, they’re kind of not-so-great looking. I mean, they’re flat and they’re not personalized, that’s for sure. So, you can make your own tombstones, and I can pretty much guarantee that they’re gonna look better than the ones that you can buy.

Now, earlier today, we went to our local home center…go to your lumber yard, home center, anything like that. And, you wanna ask before you go – make sure they have Styrofoam insulation. The great thing about this is it’s extremely inexpensive. For a 4′ x 8′ piece of Styrofoam, you could pay maybe as much as $15, $16 at the most. So, you can make a lot of headstones from a 4′ x 8′ sheet of Styrofoam. You can also get it in smaller pieces. This is about 2′ x 4′, so this is like $3.60, and you can fit this into the car quite easily. However, don’t be afraid if you’re gonna get a really huge sheet, because this stuff breaks apart and cuts apart really easily. Just bring a little cutting appliance with you to the home center.

Probably, one of the more important things to think about before you get started, is where to get started! You probably want to do this on the driveway, on the patio, in the basement…somewhere where you can clean up pretty easily, because as soon as you start cutting this stuff, it starts fragmenting and you get little Styrofoam balls everywhere. If you want to do it in the yard, you might want to put down a drop cloth, some plastic sheeting.

OK, great! You don’t need all that much to work with this stuff. The very most important thing you need is some utility knives. Especially, the retractable utility knives are the best thing to use, because it cuts really well when they’re really sharp, and as soon as they get dull, you can either break them off or just chuck them and put a new blade in there. And these knives are really, really inexpensive and easy to find just about anywhere. And then what you’re gonna need is a marker so that you can draw out your shapes. And if you want to do any kind of circular, like a rounded top, you can use string and your marker, and we’ll show you how to mark out a really nice circular shape on the top, just using those 2 items. And then, of course, my favorite – the wire hanger. And, of course, a pair of pliers and/or some wire cutters. And, like I’ve said before, you don’t need to have wire cutters because most pliers will actually cut your wires. And, I also have my trusty hot glue gun and the bowl of ice water, in case you get a little hot glue on you! You dip your hand in there and you don’t get burn marks!

Before we get started, you’ll note that all of the Styrofoam actually has plastic coating on either side. Usually the manufacturer is printed on one side and there’s a solid color of plastic on the other. Leave this on while you do all of your drawing and cutting, because it will help the Styrofoam stay together and it will be a lot easier to mark on. And then, when you’re all finished, you can peel it right off.

OK, I’m gonna show you real quickly how to do a nice, rounded top for your tombstone. We’re gonna make a decent sized tombstone; in fact, we’re gonna use pretty much the size of this. We’re gonna take off the top and make it nice and round. And, the easiest way to do that is to tie a knot in a piece of string. You’re gonna tie that and loop it right around your marker, and you can do about half the width – easy to find. Go right in about the middle, and you’re just gonna simply…

OK, I’ve got my retractable knife here, and I’m gonna pull it out so it’s a little bit thicker, a little bit wider than the foam is thick. Be sure you’re cutting on something that you don’t care whether you get marks on it. A piece of cardboard underneath works really well. Cement will do just fine, but it will dull your blade a little bit. Especially for a curve like this, you want to try and use the smaller blades, because they go around a curve easier. You just carefully…it cuts really good when the blade’s sharp! So, there you go – your basic, basic tombstone shape!

When you’re done cutting your tombstone, you can go ahead and feel free to peel off that plastic coating. Now, you notice there’s plastic coating on both sides; whereas, the tombstone is really only gonna be seen from one side, so you only have to peel off one side.

Now, we could just stop right here and paint this one, but, I guess we’re gonna go ahead and show you how to maybe make it a little bit extra fancy! OK, one of the things that you can do real simply, is to put some lettering on it, like Rest In Peace is sort of the typical thing to do. And, if you give yourself a general idea of where you want the letters to be, with your semi-retractable knife, it’s really simple to go in there and like – don’t do it so it’s the thickness of the foam itself. You go in there with it slightly shorter and you go in at an angle, you cut down this way and you cut down the other angle this way. Just about no matter what you do to it, it kind of looks like stone. And whenever you make little jagged lines and edges in it, it looks like weathered stone! You’re scooping out a little triangle of the foam. And this stuff can also be sanded and everything if you want to sort of smooth out the edges – but, we like it rough! See where it’s dragging a lot? Now, my blade’s getting a little duller, which I don’t mind because I like it nice and rough. But, you can always snap that part of your blade off. You want to be careful and do it with the pliers, and snap the blade right off. Put it somewhere safe, and then you keep going!

Alright, so you want to dress this one up a little bit with a couple of extra bricks? Yea! So, you take some of this stuff – it’s about a ½ inch, but you can find some different dimensions – you can use a yardstick, you can use just about anything. So, I’m just gonna make these bricks all about this size. The great thing about this is it’s all really forgiving – you don’t really have to do any extensive planning ahead of time. It’s just pretty much play as you go – really easy to do! This cuts real easy. So go ahead and peel off one side of the plastic, and leave the other side on there because that way it will keep everything all nice and glued together.

Right now, what I’m gonna do is, just for fun, is I’m gonna put sort of a skull right in the middle of there. I’m just gonna free-hand it. And, it can be sort of fun and lumpy and lopsided – anything will work! Get some big eyes, and I’ll do like a separate jaw piece. You can always cut some of the teeth into it, but I’m not gonna do too many, ’cause that’s an awful lot to cut out. OK, cut out your shape. And there we have a bunch of cool details! We can make him laugh, put his face in any position.

Now, actually, how we’re gonna attach these pieces onto this one piece of Styrofoam is we’re gonna use some spray adhesive. Now, you can use hot glue, but you HAVE to use a really low temperature hot glue gun and you gotta hold it up away from the foam. Otherwise it will melt it, and sort of dig in to it and it won’t adhere. So it’s a lot easier, I think to use – it’s either called spray mount or spray glue – and you don’t want to use really heavy duty stuff, ’cause that will eat into your Styrofoam as well. So, what you’re gonna want to do is probably put down a piece of plastic; otherwise, you’re gonna get sticky stuff everywhere. Let’s just use this other piece of – we’re gonna sacrifice this and do it over the top of that. Let’s get the big piece. OK! You don’t want to get spray glue everywhere else. And then, what you wanna do is spray it lightly on both sides of where you’re gonna be putting down. You don’t have to get the whole surface. Try not to get this on your fingers, because it really doesn’t like to come off very easily!

OK, give him a nice, jaunty angle, there, like he’s laughing. OK, now, we’ve got a little empty spot up there. I’m thinking a crack! Nice, big crack. Let the crack go all the way down there. And then, all we have to do is paint it, and it’s done! Stick our hanger in and put it in the ground!

Before we go ahead and paint this, ’cause otherwise we’d have to wait til it dries, we’ll go ahead and put some wire into the bottom of this. Now, wire will work if you don’t have any wind or anything. But, if you’ve got a really heavy tombstone, or you’ve got some wind and stuff, you can always do what we did last year, and screw on a piece of wood or something like that that you can poke into the ground, ’cause that will hold the Styrofoam up a little more. But, for this, this will be great with a couple of pieces of wire. We take our hanger and cut of the top part, and I’m just gonna go ahead and cut it in half. Get it straightened out as much as possible, and you want to go ahead and stick it into the bottom, there. And you can play around for whatever works for you. If you need a long piece of wire, if you want to use 3 or 4 of them, and then you can always angle them a little bit so your tombstone is like leaning back or leaning forward. And now, we’re ready to paint it!

We’re gonna put the finishing touches on our headstone, and that means we’re gonna paint this baby! But first, or course, you’re gonna make sure that you’re outside, in a well ventilated area, and we’ve laid down some plastic. And, what’s great about this drop cloth, which you can get at most any home center or paint store, is that it’s multi-purpose! We are gonna use it in all of our dummies to stuff our dummies with, and we’re gonna use it for some other effects later on, so it has a lot of purposes. All you need is a can of flat, black spray paint. Remember to get flat black – it’s gonna look the best. You don’t want any shiny tombstones out in your cemetery – you want some really dingy, old, weathered tombstones! Remember to shake the can, hold it about a foot above the Styrofoam and start spraying in sweeping motions. Now, the thing about spray paint, as you’ll notice, is it actually eats into the Styrofoam a little bit, Which is fine, because it’s gonna make it look a little bit more like weathered stone. You can see how it’s eating away and making it look even more rotten. You don’t want to make it solid black. You want to move the spray can over in sweeping motions and just kind of dirty it up. Make it look gray and weathered in certain areas. If you hold the spray can from a certain direction, you will actually get some shadowing and highlighting. Notice how I’m holding the spray can at an angle, off to the side. Not straight overhead. You don’t want to make splotchy black marks. You just want to cast some really nice, weathered patterns.

You may want to go a little bit heavier around the edges, because, of course, that’s where the wind and rain would be hitting the tombstone if it had been out here for hundreds of years. Remember only to spray paint it lightly. You don’t want to cover it in flat black – you just want it to look like it’s been weathered. And look how nicely the paint is actually eating into the Styrofoam! It’s actually a chemical reaction between the contents of the paint and the Styrofoam. So, that’s another reason why you definitely want to do this outside. The results are awesome – it actually makes it look like it’s stone!

Alright! There we have it – there is our tombstone! Our masterpiece, where it took the sculptors years to create these, it took us probably less than 20 minutes. And what’s really awesome is it cost maybe around $7.00. That’s an awesome addition to anybody’s haunted cemetery!

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Oct 11

How – To Halloween: Making a Mummy Costume

How To Make A Mummy Costume (courtesy of Threadbanger.com)

You voted for it! This week on Halloween Wednesdays, we’re making a mummy costume. Alright, so here’s the supplies you’re gonna need to make your kick ass mummy costume!

First, grab some white sheets. I got this twin set at Goodwill for only 4 bucks!

You’re also gonna need a pair of white pants or jeans.

And, a white, long-sleeved t-shirt, preferably a turtleneck. I got both of these at Goodwill for only 6 bucks.

So, the first step is getting that dirty white, century-old kinda look that mummies use. So, we’re gonna do this by dying all of the material in black tea. I got this box of 100 teabags for only a buck.

Now, grab some 3 to 5 gallon buckets, add some tea, hot water, throw your material in, and let it steep for about 2 to 6 hours.

Now, take them out, dry them, and you got yourself some mummy material!

Now, lay out your sheet, grab your scissors, and start cutting some 2 to 3 inch slits down the side of your sheet.

Now, this is the easiest part. You’re gonna tear the strips the length of the sheet. They all rip pretty evenly, and all have a really cool, straight edge.

You now have your mummy bandages. Start wrapping them around your turtleneck, and to sewing the strips around your shirt. This is the most time consuming part. However, the sloppier and less conformed you sew these, on – overlap your strips, leave some pieces longer than others – it’s a mummy costume. You seriously can’t mess it up!

Now, once you get up to the chest area, I grab a pair of scissors and cut up the inseam of each of the sleeves. Lay them down flat. Cut some pieces of material out for the appropriate length of the sleeves, and get to sewing them on. Layer by layer by layer.

Once you’re done adding your material, sew on the rest of your strips to finish your shirt. Turn it inside out and sew your sleeves back up.

Now, grab your seam remover and do the pants. Rip up the inseam, all the way to the crotch. Lay flat, and now, cut out your strips to cover your pants. Start from the bottom, and begin sewing your strips onto both legs.

You can stop when you get to the crotch, because your shirt’s gonna cover the rest.

Now, turn your pants inside out, and sew back up your legs.

With your mummy outfit almost complete, you just need to cover your face with your excess material, add some baby powder for that ancient mummy affect, and you’re ready to get your grunt on!

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Oct 07

How to Make Papier Mache – Halloween Skull Part 2

How To Make A Papier Mache Skull Part II (courtesy of HayCrossHollow)

Hello, this is Jeremy Edsall, and this is the 2nd part of my making a papier mache skull. In this segment, we’ll be working on building the skull. We’ve already worked on the jawbone, as you see here. And, what we’re doing is working on the top of the jaw – the top of the teeth and the top portion of the skull. We do that by taking a piece of cardboard, wrapping it up in aluminum foil and folding it over several times, and you’ll see how that gets folded and molded, and then that becomes part of the face of the skull.

And you test-fit it into the jawbone. And then, what you want to do is depress this center to make a little bit of a cavity for where the nose is, and that will become apparent here in a minute. You will see that there is a little bit of a sculpture there. And with that indentation, you can start filling in with the papier mache, and start building that nose portion of the skull. There it is, covered with mache. It takes on a rounded appearance. And then, you can add some teeth as well, by doing the tips of the popsicle sticks. And, again, you want to test fit it to make sure it fits that jawbone.

Then, you want to get a couple of tops from plastic soda bottles. And, what you do with these, is you cover them with aluminum foil as well, as you see here. And then, press these into the sides of that front of the skull, and fill these in with papier mache. Start building around them, as you see here. Continue to build and cover. There will be a hole there in the middle, and we’ll deal with that here in a minute. What you want to do is make a ball of newspaper – kind of like a brain size – and, that kind of looks like a brain stem, cause we’re gonna leave a little piece coming down.

Insert that in that hole, put that down, turn it over, and attach it to the back of that top tooth portion and cover it up with papier mache. And start filling around that whole part of that, what I call the brain portion.

Then continue to cover, and then what you want to do is take another piece of aluminum foil. Take a long piece and wrap that around and kind of contour that in around those eye sockets, and then you can start covering that with papier mache as well. Then you just want to work around the entire skull portion, covering all those places and covering up all that aluminum foil. And just build in the top of that skull.

Most of these in these first 2 videos are all done in one time period, so you should be almost able to complete the whole project within one time period. Then, our next segment will be after I take a break and come back and finish with some details.

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Oct 07

How to Make Papier Mache – Halloween Skull Part I

How To Make A Papier Mache Skull (courtesy of HayCrossHollow)

Hello, and welcome to my video, How To Make A Papier Mache Skull. My name is Jeremy Edsall, and I am a papier mache artist. What you’re gonna need for this project is to get your hands on some Celluclay or Celluclay 2. It’s made by Activa products and you can find it at most hobby stores. It comes in various shapes and sizes, but it looks something like this in the package. What it is, is a block of ground up newspaper and some sizing, which you’ll be adding water to.

So, get the package, unwrap it, ad start to break down some of the papier mache in the bag, there. Open it up slowly, and then pour it into 2 double plastic bags. And, newspaper bags, the ones they use when it’s raining, work great. So, get a couple of those, double bag it, and then add to that 2 cups of warm water. Warm water seems to work best, and it is suggested for mixing. So, pour your warm water directly into the papier mache, until it looks like this. Then, close up one end and start the kneading process.

Now, if you did this in a bowl, it would get all between your fingers and under your rings and it would really be a mess, because, once it sticks to your skin it starts to dry, get crusty and is very hard to get off. So, you want to do this in a bag and minimize some of the mess and dust, because it can kick up a lot of dust. So, this is really the best way to do it! Works for me. Mix it thoroughly – knead it until all the dry is gone and you just have a mass of gray! Put this in the refrigerator, because it is perishable, and try to use it as soon as possible.

Now, for the skull, get some cardboard, cut it out in this shape, some wire, some masking tape and a hole punch. Take your hole punch and punch a hole in each side of the jawbone. Then, take your wire, bend it like so, place it on the cardboard, and securely fasten it in with masking tape so it looks like this. Then, take the whole thing, put it on some aluminum foil, and start to fold, from bottom to top, like so. Fold it over, fold the top over, til it looks like this from the back, and it looks like this from the front.

Now, you’re gonna have to cut a few, little slits in there with your scissors so you can continue folding the rest over, and then you can fold it over real neat until it looks like this. And then, go ahead and re-punch the holes in there. You should be able to see them through the aluminum foil. And bend the whole thing so it looks like a jawbone. And that’s what it looks like from the top and from the bottom. Now, the aluminum fol will help your papier mache stick.

Then you can start coating it. Coat the inside, all the surfaces. Make sure you don’t plug up those holes. Then, get yourself some popsicle sticks. Cut the ends off with some snips. You can saw them, but this is the fastest way to do it. And you can take those, once you’ve gotten most of it covered, especially in that front area,and place them in there for the teeth. And then, continue to cover that jawbone. All the different sides. Remember again, don’t plug up those holes! Cover all the sides, and what you’ll have is your skull jawbone! And then you can start working on the top of the skull. (Go to Part II Video)

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Oct 05

How to Carve a Pumpkin – Creating a Layered Effect

Learn how to carve a pumpkin to create a sculpted layered effect with this video from Fireburg.

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Oct 05

How to Carve a Pumpkin – Cutting Out Holes

Learn how to carve a pumpkin using a pumpkin cutter with this video from Fireburg.

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Oct 03

How to Carve a Pumpkin – Using a Stencil

Learn how to use a stencil when carving a pumpkin with this video from Fireburg.

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Oct 03

How to Make A Lady Gaga VMA Costume for Halloween

How To Make A Lady Gaga VMA Costume for Halloween (courtesy of Threadbanger.com)

Level of Difficulty – Intermediate

Time of Project – 3.5 hours

We’re gonna start by making the crown. First, spray paint 2 sides of a poster board red. Let it dry, and spray one side with quick spray adhesive. Then, place a square of red lace fabric on top of it, pressing down to secure it.

Let it dry, then mark out the spiky points of the crown. Cut out the spikes, and use a hot glue gun to reinforce each one.

Glue the 2 ends of the crown together to form a cylinder that’s big enough to fit your head, while wearing a wig. Spray some more red paint to the tips of the spikes and let it dry.

Now, you need to make something to wear under the lace for warmth and modesty! Use a piece of stretch-knit, flesh colored fabric and stretch it around the intended costume wearer. Pinch and pin it down the back, and mark down both sides of the pin line with tailor’s chalk.

Unpin it from the wearer, and pin it back together again on your table. Sew down the pin line, using a zigzag stitch. Fold in hem along the top, also using a zigzag stitch.

Let the wearer try it on again, and mark chalk lines on the back and front to make mock undies.

Transfer the lines to the lace, and pin the pieces of fabric together. Sew along the chalk lines with a zigzag and cut off the excess fabric. Repeat for the back, and you have the illusion of wearing sexy lace undies!

Next, we have a long piece of lace, lay it over your model, and cut a hole big enough for their head to fit through. Pinch and pin, starting under the armpit, going down both sides of the wearer.

Use tailor’s chalk to mark out where the shoulders start, extending to the armpit, going all the way down the pin line. Remove the piece, pin it back together, and cut off the fabric outside of your chalk line.

Sew the sides of the garment together, using a zigzag stitch, starting at the armpit. Now, make sleeves by finding the middle of another piece of fabric and pinning it to the armhole, right sides together, until you reach the armpit. Sew together with a zigzag stitch.

Have your model try on the garment, and pinch and pin the sleeve part around the arm. Mark along the pin line with chalk, take it off, re-pin and sew it closed with a zigzag stitch.

Cut off all excess fabric, and make the other sleeve, using the first as a guide. When we return, we’ll show you how to complete your look.

Welcome Back! So, you’ve got the fundamentals to your Lady Gaga costume complete. Now, there’s only a couple more steps left, and you’re done!

Alright, so the next thing you want to do is cut yourself a piece of lace roughly 1 ½ ft x 1 ½ ft. Fold the fabric in half, and then, at the top of your lace, trace a small hood shape. Then, sew along your line, cut off the excess, turn it inside out, and you got yourself a hood!

Alright, next step, you need a train of lace fabric for the back. This piece needs to be about as tall as you are, and almost like a triangle, trailing off at the end.

Now, pin and attach the train to the back of the collar by gathering and sewing together from one end to the other.

Next, take your hood, and pin it to the front of your collar. Then, like the train, sew it on with a zigzag stitch from one side to the other.

Lastly, make yourself a couple of holes for your fingers to make some fingerless gloves, throw on a blonde wig, some sexy red shoes, and you’re ready for the paparazzi!

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Sep 29

How to Make Stationary – Stitched Cards

Learn how to make your own stitched stationary just in time for the holidays with this video from ReadyMade Magazine.

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Feb 02

How to Make a Wreath Part 2

How To Make A Fall Wreath Part II (courtesy of AskTheDecorator.com)

Hanging a fall wreath on your door is a great way to welcome guests. Hi! I’m Meghan Carter with Ask The Decorator, and today I’m going to teach you how to make a fall wreath.

To start, I always place my bow first. I’m going to put my bow on this wreath a little off center
to the left. Once I have my bow in place, I’ll know where I want to put everything else.

On this wreath, I’m going to put greenery on first because the greenery will serve as the base on top of this grapevine wreath. Once you have your greenery picked out, it’s time to attach it. I take a hot glue gun and stick it down, and just hold it down in place for a few seconds. Sometimes, hot glue isn’t enough to hold down your greenery. So, if that’s the case, take a little bit of wire – in this case I’m using a green wire – and wrap around it. Don’t worry! No one will see the wire once the wreath is done.

Once you have your greenery attached to the wreath, it’s time to place the pumpkins. I’m going to place 3 pumpkins down at the bottom. Attaching the pumpkins might be a little tricky. When I put these pumpkins on, I’m going to glue the back of them and then I’m going to hold them down. To make the pumpkins extra secure, put glue in between them and then push them together.

Once you have the bottom 3 pumpkins put on, it’s time to put on the one pumpkin at the top. Before you put this on, I always put the bow next to the greenery. Because, that way you know exactly where you want the pumpkin to go.

Once you have the pumpkins on, it’s time to put on some extra ivy. I just take little cuttings of the extra ivy and glue it on. I just place the ivy in strategic places next to where I’ve already put ivy in, just to fill any gaps and make the ivy look thicker. Once you’ve finished putting the extra ivy on the wreath, it’s time to put on the pieces of fern that look like they’re on fire.

When you put these on, only use a few, and put them very close to the actual pumpkin. After adding the pieces of fern, you might want to add some of these oak leaves to add extra color. When you add these, because they’re big, you want to put them underneath the other greenery. I know at this point, you’re probably thinking the wreath looks like a jumbled mess! But don’t worry – this is where the wreath all starts coming together.

Start adding all of your natural stuff and the berries, and you’ll see magic. What happens is, start layering all of the natural stuff and the berries slowly out, with more concentrated by the pumpkins and less fading out. Just as we did with the greenery. Don’t worry if you have to add extra greenery – that’s ok! You may find that you need to fill in a few spaces. Ow! Gosh – you really have to be careful when you’re working with hot glue. You can really burn yourself.

After you have everything on your wreath just where you want it, you get to put on the bow and you’re almost done. The way I made my bow, I have a big, wire cord going through that I can use to attach to the wreath. I just put it on there, exactly where I want it. Take the wire, and then I just twist it as tight as I can to make sure it’s not going to fall off. And any excess wire I have left, I can just cut off before I hang it up.

Look at the beautiful fall door wreath you have – isn’t it gorgeous?

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