The Joy of Trying Something New

When I was at the Art and Soul Workshop in Portland I took a No Fail Frescoes Workshop with Sandra Duran Wilson Abstract Artist. ( she is having a huge sale of her art work check her out on Face Book or at http://www.Sandraduranwilson.com) She uses Venetian plaster to add really wonderful texture to the canvas.

I had some scrap wood that I wanted to use for substrates so I covered them with a thin coat of Venetian plaster and texturized with stamps etc.

Joy

Joy


I then covered with acrylics and added some little Christmas trees I created out of sheet music and then crimped, added some sparkles etc. and now I have some nice little Christmas plaques.
Gratitude

Gratitude

Love

Love

Peace

Peace


They were fun to make and will be good hostess gifts, etc. Now I have sparkles everywhere including my face....it is the season for sparkling.

Happy creating
Michelle

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Handmade vintage-look roses from coffee filters

`Self-worth is a stepping-stone to Self-love
Relax your fears and spread your goodness for all to see`

I first discovered coffee filter roses back in the spring when I was searching for alternatives to live flowers for my daughter`s wedding – Martha Stewart has this great tutorial on her Website by crafter Cassie Chappell  http://www.marthastewart.com/266346/paper-roses  I tried making a few roses, using watercolours to tint the roses and I loved what I created, but they were time-consuming to make and I had lots of flowers to make for the wedding, so I ended up making Mexican tissue flowers instead. You can see my Mexican tissue flower creations in an earlier post.  I discovered  The-White-Bench Blog http://the-white-bench.blogspot.com/2011/09/tutorial-coffee-filter-roses.html  by Monica who lives in Italy, I find it amazing that we can be in touch with artists sharing their talents on the other side of the world.  She generously provided a tutorial of her version of the coffee filter roses in a vintage style which I absolutely loved.  I decided to try Monica`s take on the filter roses and have created 16 roses to use as Christmas gifts for my special girlfriends. 

I used the pattern available for download from the Martha Stewart site and instead of using florist tape to wrap the rose petals I used thread instead; once the rose petals were all attached I positioned the petals and then dipped and soaked the rose into a coffee and cinnamon mixture, and then sprinkled a bit more cinnamon on the petals, rubbing the cinnamon into the leaves.  I placed the tinted roses onto a tin foil covered cookie sheet and into  the oven at 350 for 15 minutes, be very careful, put the timer on, because if your oven is too hot the leaves will burn quickly.  I put my flowers in before the oven was totally heated and then left them for 15 minutes then turned the oven off and left the flowers in the warm oven for another 5-10 minutes to ensure they were totally dry.  I brushed off the excess cinnamon on the petals and wrapped the stems with masking tape and then attached a chop stick with masking tape wrapping down the stick until it feels secure, (who knew one day all those chops sticks I have saved would come in handy).  Next I took ribbon and wrapped it around the chopstick; using the pointed end of a chopstick I curled the petals to give a

Coffee Filter Vintage Roses

more realistic look to the flower.  I have saved vintage lace ( I think my grandmother actually crocheted the lace long ago) over the years and used that to embellish the rose stem.  I had a roll of  pearls that I wove into the vintage lace and then grouped 2 or 3 together and tied some burlap around the stems and added a vintage looking button on the knot to finish it off.  I love the finished look, the

Coffee Filter Rose Bouquet

flowers are beautiful, they will last for a long time and they smell good….cinamon.  I think they make a great hostess gift or a lovely gift for a friend, plus they are inexpensive to make just takes your time.  The final touch was adding a little hand painted shipping tag that I stamped with Thank You, Merci, Gracia  for a very special person.  

Once you get into a rhythm of making these roses it doesn`t take too long may be about 30 minutes per rose and the results are well worth the time.  I am pretty sure I will be making more and even some for my own home. 

Until next time – happy creating!

Michelle

Handmade Flowerless Wedding Bouquets and Corsages

Now that my daughter’s wedding is over I can write about the beautiful wedding bouquet she made.  She decided that she did not want to have any live flowers at her wedding so she designed the bridal and bridesmaid bouquets herself by using tulle and pretty coloured Christmas bulbs.  Her colours for the wedding were fuchsia, kiwi and robin egg blue and amazingly every time we went looking for decorations right down to the plates and cutlery we were able to find the exact colours.  So when all of the Christmas decorations were out we were in Michael’s and there were the perfect bulbs in all her colours for the bouquets.  She created such beautiful bouquets for herself and her attendants and the  nice thing is that they will be able to keep them for a long time.  She made a mini one for the bouquet toss. 

Handmade Flowerless Wedding Bouquets

So trying to follow tradition and having some sort of corsage for the mother-of-the-bride and mother-of-the-groom I designed lovely wrist corsage, a pink one for myself that had an elastic beaded bracelet in pink tulle and ribbon and a blue tie-on corsage for the groom’s mother.  unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the blue one before it was presented, but I did take one of mine. 

Top view of wrist corsage

It was really fun designing them and they were very  comfortable to wear and will be a long-lasting memory of my daughter’s wedding. 

Handmade wrist corsage

I made all  of the reception decorations using tissue paper to create Mexican tissue flowers in all of the colours.  For the head table I created a garland made from the flowers.  The table centres I collected branches and we spray painted them white and added some iridescent sparkles to them when they were still wet so they would glisten.  Then I made tiny tissue flowers which I glued onto the branches.  We found some great tall freezer glasses

Handmade table centre piece

 that were the right colours to use as vases, added a battery tea light to the bottom of the glass and then some tulle for filler and then the sprayed branches.  They looked really good and were so inexpensive to make. 

So it goes to show you if you really get creative you can decorate on a very small budget and still have it look magical.

Til next time, happy creating

Michelle

DIY Decorations for a Bridal Shower -Blooming Tissue Heart

I am a do-it-yourself kinda gal so I have been very busy working on decorations for my daughter’s bridal shower that took place this past weekend, it was great having this project to concentrate on rather than our drizzly wet weather here in the lower mainland of Vancouver, more like January then May.  Way too much rain – think my toes are beginning to web!  So to pass the time I

Blooming paper flower heart

went on a tissue paper flower making blitz and then got the great idea to create a big heart.  I found a small sheet of foam that was used for packing and drew out a large heart and then cut out a smaller heart inside so that the heart would be blank in the middle.  Then I attached the paper flowers – I think this heart took about 36 blooms to make it full which is three packages of  tissue.  I then added some little pale pink hearts to the top and I had some pearl string beads I was using for a wrist corsage so thought that might add little  glamour to the heart. 

I also put together a small garland with the flowers on some white tulle and created a couple of bouquets for the table.  For one of the bouquets I used a cookie box for the vase – but first I painted it with some Gesso and then modge podged on green tissue paper and then a photo of the lovely young couple and added a final coat of modge podge with a sprinkle of iridescent sparkles.  I added some of the blue tulle I had as filler for the hand-made vases and to incorporate the wedding colours.  I was pleased how everything turned out and also that some of the items can be used for the wedding reception.  Still have some more flowers to make but they come together pretty quickly.  I am really love creating party decor – it has always been something I enjoy doing and it is fun being creative.

Til next time

Michelle

Paper Blooms – Mexican Style

Mexican paper flowers make me happy, they are so beautiful and bright and add a touch of festivity.  A number of months ago I was searching for an alternative to fresh flower table centres and decorations and came across some videos’ on-line that gave great directions on how to make Mexican tissue flowers, so I tried making some(there are lots of directions available).   My daughter loved them and wanted to incorporate them into her June wedding reception decorations.   So today I got busy and made about 30 of them. 

They are really quite easy to make and oh so colourful! You just have to be careful when you are separating the layers so not to tear the tissue.

Here are some directions – I evenly folded the package of tissue and cut approximately 8″ widths and then cut in half to create pieces of approximately 8″ x 10″. Each

Colourful Mexican Tissue Flowers

flower has 6 layers of approximately 8″ x 10″ pieces.  Fold  the stack of 6 layers accordian style – 1″ folds – finished length is about 8″.  Cut the corners off at each end making a rounded end.  Fold in half and secure a pipe cleaner or floral wire around the middle as tight as possible.  Next take one side and fan out and then carefully separate each layer this creates the fullness of the flower – too much pulling or pressure will tear the tissue paper,  repeat on the other side. 

It took me about 30 minutes to create 10 medium-sized blooms – this was from one package of tissue paper.

If you are looking to add an inexpensive touch of colour to your environment then give these flowers a try they will brighten any room and great for party decorating or you could add them to a gift for an extra splash of fun.

Til next time happy creating

Michelle