Saturday, December 31, 2011

Handmade Necklace

Remember these Personalized Magnets?

While using the epoxy (from the magnets) I put together a necklace.

I used a small bit of fabric and a metal frame (jewelry finding) that came with a plastic topper. I used some of the Magic Gloss to seal it together. The Magic Gloss uses UV light to cure/harden. I had to leave the necklace near a window for like a week (since we've had some really overcast days) to get it to cure. I'm sure you can use any other type of epoxy to get a similar effect.

A reader sent me this message when the original post Personalized Magnets posted. It has some great information:

Moonhopping said...
1 to 3 layers of glossy mod-podge or colodge podge on top of the pictures will prevent the epoxy from changing or distorting the image. I found it super easy to coat the whole page before I cut them out. The Epoxy will cover any lines or streak you might see so ignore them. Also remember to let it dry 100%, 15 to 20 minutes per layer, before pouring the epoxy.
I like envortex lite. it is easy to use no UV, hot breath or a long BBQ lighter will remove the bubbles. READ THE DIRECTIONS INCLUDED IN THE BOX and you are golden. The makers of mod podge have a product called dimensional magic, less toxic if you working with teens or tweens. Supper fun.

Thanks Moonhopping for your great insight!

I used a couple of crystal beads to jazz up the necklace a bit too. It would have been nice to have a few red and orange crystals to pull out the flowers' color, but I used what I had...I like it still.

Did you give any handmade gifts for Christmas?


Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas Cooking

*Amended to actually include Pie Filling recipe...sorry about the delay~

 While we were readying Christmas dinner, Widget wanted to help out. So Grandma gave her a bowl with less than a cup of plain ol' flour.
She did a little bit of stirring, and a lot of 'drinking' with the flour. 
Notice the extra flour on her her face?

And the bowl of apples in front is just waiting to fill our wonderful apple pies (I even made the sauce).

Here is the recipe that my Mom-in-law uses in her apple pie (filling):

3 1/2 - 6 Cups sliced Apples
3/4 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Clear Gel
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 Cup Apple Juice
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
Shake of Nutmeg

We like to add more nutmeg and cinnamon for extra flavor. And if your apples are really tart, more sugar might be needed.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas Unwrapped

A few fun gifts from our Christmas...

 Aunt Tash made Widget a pink crown
Brothers helping each other with a bow
Widget eating a banana-before church
Great Grandma, Grandpa and Aunt Tash ready to open presents (I don't know why it's showing up sideways...)

Uncle Garrett opening a present----Widget's face is hilarious!
"This is how you do it, Daddy!"
"Okay, my turn"
Spence & Tash
We gave Widge a paper doll from MiniMe

The doll is so very cute---and MiniMe Lilly has lots and lots of outfits....I want to play with them probably even more than she does!

Coolest present of the day...Spence carved some rocks into a nativity
A close up. Joseph had some dark spots in the rock, so his face is a little funny-but still cool. The manger is also a rock, different from the rest, and the grain looks like hay. Baby Jesus even has a little face and definition for a wrapped blanket.

A gift I gave my Mom-in-law. I love this quote; and when you have a dining room table that fits around 12 people, this quote is totally accurate for your house. I'll give me details of this plate at a later date.

Smallest present of the day...a memory card for the new camera Spence gave Tasha

I got a huge gift....that I've been waiting for for a while....more on that later as well!...I know, the suspense is probably killing you about now :) 

What did you get for Christmas?

Making GingerBread Houses

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Out Law Christmas Tree

This is the tree we've been privy to for the last week. It's nearly 12' tall and probably over 5' across at the bottom. I'm glad I don't have this large of a tree at home, but it sure is pretty :)

And checkout all those beautiful presents under that tree! We can always tell at first glance who most of the presents are from because of the wrapping paper or wrapping job----I like hounds-tooth, and I have the wrapping paper to prove it! I also use random pieces of lace, fabric, scrapbook ribbon, string, etc. to pretty up my packages...rarely using the popular curling ribbon. But oh what fun it is to see such a pretty tree with packages shoved under it's branches! And it is extra fun with lots of presents, since there is 11 people here getting a handful of gifts each.

Have you taken your tree down yet? Or do you wait until after New Years?

Wordless Wednesday- The Reason for This Season

Monday, December 26, 2011

How Do You Shop?

Oh the Boys and habit!

This is Hubby and Bro-in-law Spence. Hubby lives in MO. Spence lives in CA.

The boys are now both in KS for the holidays. They like to make things out of wood.

Sometimes it is a messy job. Sometimes they grunt and pull faces during their 'play time.'

Mostly they just love to use big tools-power or not- and spend brotherly time together in the wood shop, all while getting really dirty.

Special Thanks to my Father-in-law for having and passing his love for wood working and furniture making onto these handsome men. And an even BIGGER Thanks to my Mother-in-law for putting up with these boys for years and years. My in-laws previous house had one 2-car garage. The garage was the shop-so the cars had to be parked outside during Fall and Winter in Utah (when gifts were being made) which means both cars sat in many feet of snow for multiple months. Their current Kansas house has two 2-car garages, so one whole garage is dedicated to saw dust, screw drivers and scraps of wood. Again, my Mother-in-law is an amazing women to live with these boys and their toys :)

How was your Holiday spent? Making things with your hands? Dirtying a loved one's home? That's pretty much what we did (and are doing) until January. Hope you are having as much fun as we are!

Personalized Magnets

I wanted to make a personalized gift for my Sis-in-law and her family. I collected bottle caps, which was easy once I started collecting glass soda bottles for this project, and some Magic Gloss (pictured below). I found this particular Magic Gloss at HobLob, and I used a 40% coupon.

I hopped onto Jayn's blog, and printed a few family photos on photo paper. Then I traced a circle-about the size of the bottle cap-around each face, and cut them out. I used some left-over cardboard behind my pictures to give each one a small boarder. Before gluing the matted pictures into the bottle cap, I trimmed a piece of foam sticker to sit in the bottom so I didn't need to use so much Magic Gloss to fill the space above the pictures.
Don't mind the necklace chain in the picture, that's from a different project.
Follow the directions for the Magic Gloss to set the epoxy (this particular stuff requires UV so it takes longer to set during our overcast rainy weather). After it sets completely, glue a magnet to the back of the bottle cap using a glue specific for metal. I actually sent these to my Sis-in-law without magnets so she could make them into anything she'd like.
A few things I learned while making these:
  • The epoxy/Magic Gloss takes a lot of patience. I got a lot of air bubbles that had to be popped with a tooth pick. After re-doing these a couple of times, I figured out that it worked better to pour the epoxy at night, pop the bubbles that showed up before going to bed-and then pop more in the morning before introducing it to the UV light. 
  • Because we did not have any real sunny days during this craft, the Magic Gloss didn't set up very quickly-allowing more air bubbles to form and thus ruining the flat/clear surface. I imagine that a UV light lamp would cure the epoxy quicker-but either way, it's best to watch your work so as to take care of as many air bubbles as possible before the gloss cures.
  • Printing on photo paper means that your paper wont absorb as much liquid/epoxy as normal paper. Each epoxy is different, but some do eat through regular paper and the colors may fade before curing.
  • The smaller the bottle caps, the less amount of expensive Magic Gloss or other epoxy you will need to use. Less surface area or less depth to fill in will mean fewer chances for err-like air bubbles or lumps. But, if you add layers, like me, below the pictures, make sure to seal the edges really well. I had issues of extra air eventually rising to the surface because of air pockets under the picture/cardboard/foam sticker layers.

This was still a fun project, although I had a major learning curve. If you try this out, let me know how it went. This craft can be personalized in many ways: using personal photos, favorite sports team logos or players, pictures of favorite items, individual letters or favorite names/words, etc.

Have fun AND thanks for reading!

Todays Creative Blog