Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Mystery Thing Revealed: Purple Passion Pendant

Time for the reveal!  If you're just popping in, we have been playing a round of Guess the Mystery Thing featuring this upcycled necklace:

My readers have been trying to identify the purple and black focal piece.  What the heck is this thing?

 I also made a crazy ring and an extra-long giant version of the pendant - let's see if showing them will help at all...

Think you know the answer?  Did anybody get this right?  All shall be told in a minute.

First, here's Mich's Honor Roll of Most Creative (Totally Wrong) Guesses:

Betsy: Where did you find purple lady bugs? 
arisraver: Part of a hair brush handle.
Angeline:  I truly admire your bravery! How did you manage to grasp the technology to enlarge the body of an ant, behead it, and dye it purple?!
Jill:  Looks like part of a pen my daughter owns.  Wondered where it had disappeared to!
Rebecca:  The bottle from those little favour sized bubbles.  If so, I hope to see a cool unique pair of earrings made with the bubble wands.
Dena:  Grapes. Wear it now, eat it later.
squarefeet:  Easter bunny pellets.
Jessica:  Beads from an abacus.
Amy: Barbie's jawbreakers.

Hahaha!  Great work, team!  Angeline's guess is too cool!  Hey, squarefeet, are 'Easter bunny pellets' what I think they are?  If so, hilarious.

Here comes the answer.



Alright already.


From the dollar store, of course.  (Query: do 'Easter straws' appear in the King James Version, or the New American Standard Bible?  I'm sure there's a scholar somewhere who can point me to the verse.)

Anyhow, they are weirdly cute and I doctored them up with a black Sharpie.

Winners, winners!  This week we have two lucky  prize winners chosen by Rebecca Anne and Arisraver.  Congrats, you two!  Look for my email, coming soon.

Note: player Bonnie B guessed "part of a bumpy straw," and would have been the winner, but didn't include an email.  Sorry, Google-plus people, I can't email you directly from your profile.  Bonnie, if you send me your address I'll send you a consolation prize.

Thanks for playing, everybody.  See ya!


Monday, March 31, 2014

Guess The Mystery Thing: Purple Passion Pendant

Oh, I say!  Let's play a round of Guess The Mystery Thing.  (It's my crafty guessing game giveaway, and anyone, yes, anyone can play.)  Take a look at my latest upcycled necklace.

It's purple!  It's podlike!  It's passionate!  What do you guys think?  Those round beads are a semiprecious lepidolite called lilac stone - such a beautiful material.   Your challenge: identify that black and violet focal piece.

What the heck is that thing?  First person to guess correctly will receive a fabulous prize.  (Namely, this purty necklace OR a goodie bag of random crafty supplies.) 

How it works: leave your guess in the comments.  There'll be two winners: first correct guess and a random winner.  So even if you don't know (or think someone else already got it), you could still win.  If your guess is funny, it might make my Most Creative Honor Roll.  This giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere.  C'mon, join in!



Ready?  Set?  Don't forget your contact info...go!   Guess the Mystery Thing!


Thursday, March 27, 2014

DIY Ring Holder, Upcycled From A Drawer Knob

Look at my chic new ring holders!

A happy marriage of rubber chair tips from the hardware store:

And some mismatched drawer knobs from my collection of Stuff I Couldn't Bring Myself To Throw Away.

I bet you have a random drawer knob someplace.  (It's probably in a random drawer.)  Wanna make a ring holder?  Here's the DIY.

Make a loop on the end of some craft wire, 22 gauge or thicker. (Anything thinner is too floppy.)

Bend the loop at a 90 degree angle to create a faux headpin.

Poke a hole in a rubber chair tip and thread your faux headpin through the hole.  Add some beads.  Trim the extra wire to about 3/4 inch.

Finish with a swirly (a plain loop works, too). 

Now just pop the bead-embellished chair tip onto a flat-bottomed drawer knob.  Like so:

VOILA!  Ring holder!

Here's a cool variation to the basic look. Use the screw that came with the knob, plus a stack of rubber washers (or even a big bead) to add some height.

Now watch what happens when you add the top part:

It's got a pedestal!  Isn't that cute?  I like these pedestal ones a lot.

But really, the low profile ones are just as purty.

The metal or glass knobs add lots of weight to the base, making them sturdy enough to hold a whole stack of pretties!  Or your biggest crazy cocktail rings...

These would make a great gift for someone who wears lots of rings.  I've already given myself four: one for the bedside table, and one to put beside each sink in the house.

Thanks for checking out today's upcycle!  Hope some of you get inspired to try it.  See ya next time!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

My Winter Games, Round Eight. It's YOUR TURN!

Okay, I'm excited.  It's officially the last day of winter.  Spring is right around the bend!  So there's just one more project in My Winter Games 2014.

What's My Winter Games, you ask?  A series of crafty posts on repurposing a bunch of these unwanted, non-recyclable doohickies that would otherwise end up in a landfill.

The whole point of the exercise was to think deeply and look hard at this one useless object.  To give it a second life instead of throwing it away.  I had fun and even surprised myself with the diversity of the projects.   Kinda makes me want to do it again with some other 'useless' things.

To date, I have made scrolled-leg planter bases, tray handles, purse handles, scarf and necklace hangers, bulletin board hooks, utility hooks, beaded snake totems, snake-head bracelets, decorative box handles and photo holders.  (Links to the projects below.)

Today I show off one final doohickie transformation.  Then I want to throw it open to everybody for some brainstorming.  Get your thinky caps ready, because at the end of this post I will ask for your ideas.

My cute final project:

Ring holders!  Aren't they clevah?

I love the silhouette, it reminds me of a minaret.  I also love that these are stable enough for even my biggest crazy cocktail rings.

As you might have guessed, that white body is a rubber furniture tip, like the ones I used in my photo holder project.

To make the minaret spire, I poked a hole in the chair tip and inserted a long headpin piled with beads.  (I'll do a tutorial for these soon, using something less obscure than my doohickies for the feet!)

I made four of these ring holders, using up four more doohickies.

Doohickies used so far: 124 (out of 247).

So now, on this last day of winter, 2014, I hereby declare that these Winter Games are over.  But there are still more than a hundred doohickies left.  So what's next?

People, I want more ideas!  After a bit, I'll revisit this project for a wrap-up and final doohickie count.  I'll show off a few more of my own projects (I have way too many ideas left, and not enough winter to fit them all in).  There might be some cool creations from fellow bloggers who have asked for doohickies to experiment on.  Plus some that I made using the best suggestions from YOU GUYS!

C'mon, my dearies, let's use them all up!  Leave your brilliant ideas in the comments.  What would you make, what can you imagine, what cool thing would you invent???


In case you missed any:
Round One

Round Two

Round Three

Round Four

Round Five
Round Six

Round Seven

p.s. If you are a blogger and want to make something to post, email me with your address and I'll send you a handful of doohickies.  Also, I have seven packages of doohickies to mail out to the first seven crafters who email me their address - just promise to use them up and not throw them out!  (Sorry, U.S. domestic addresses only.  These critters weigh a ton and overseas postage would break the bank.)    


Sunday, March 16, 2014

My Winter Games, Round Seven

Hi, everybody!  Here comes Round Seven in My Winter Games, a series about repurposing a bunch of non-recyclable plastic doohickies that would otherwise end up in a landfill.  The latest transformation:

 Picture holders!

So how did I turn these useless doohickies...

...into these chic and useful little objects?

Well....with these rubber chair tips from the hardware store!

I sawed the doohickies in half, then tucked the halves into the chair tips.  Like this:

How cool is that?  They work in both directions, for two different styles of picture holder.

You can see what I mean in the next photo: rubber tips down for the owl, rubber tips up for the butterfly.

To make the easel style more stable, I tucked a washer between the feet:

So practical, and darn good-looking!  I can use tons of these all around my house.  I made a dozen, using up 12 more doohickies in this project.

Doohickie count so far: 120 (out of 247)

Another round coming soon!  Winter's almost over, so these games will be winding to a close.  See you next time for the final project...

Hmm.  Final project?  Maybe not quite.

See you then!

In case you missed any:
Round One 
Round Two
Round Three
Round Four
Round Five
Round Six 
Round Seven
Round Eight

Friday, March 14, 2014

Upcycled Formica Gift Tags with Mod Podge Stencils

Welcome!  I'm taking a teeny break from My Winter Games series, it will resume again soon.  Today, some glitzy faux bois gift tags...

...upcycled from those freebie Formica samples from the home improvement store.  You know the kind I mean:

I used one of the new Mod Podge Rocks glitter stencils to create this look.  Rather chic, no?

Care to try?  Here's the DIY!  First I peeled the self-adhesive stencil most carefully from the page, then positioned it on the Formica sample.

I gooped on the Mod Podge.  Don't be stingy.  Goop it, baby!

I lifted away the stencil, and covered the wet Mod Podge with a thick glitter layer.

At this point, I made sure to wash off the stencil with soap and water.  (Wash it before the Mod Podge gets all tacky, or it'll be a real bear to remove.  Rawrrr.)

I allowed my glitter-covered Formica to dry overnight.   Yes, overnight.  Wasn't I good?  And patient?  And good?  Cuz I was dying to see how it turned out.  But I listened to my left brain and waited.  Next morning, I cleaned away the excess glitter, finishing with a soft makeup brush.  What a pretty result!

To keep the glitters from shedding, I sprayed several light coats of poly sealer.  (Alternative: seal it with another layer of Mod Podge, or any clear-drying liquid sealer.)

Add ribbon or cord to the ready made hole.  Write your message on the back with a white paint pen (or anything that will show up against the Formica color).  And that's your gift tag, done!

If you are a jewelry-making type, consider adding some extra layers of sealer (for durability) and converting your Formica sample into a mod little pendant.

I was really interested to try the glitter, stencil and Mod Podge technique - it was great fun!  I love the big wood grain pattern (designed by Amy from the groovy blog Mod Podge Rocks!) and will definitely use this gorgeous stencil again.

That's my little re-purposed idea for today, hope you liked it.  Next time you get a chance, grab some Formica samples and see how much fun they are to craft with.

Thanks for coming by!

Disclosure: Plaid sent me the stencil to try, no strings attached.  (Thanks, Plaid!)  This tutorial and all opinions herein are 100% my own.