My canvas photo wall!

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One of my first posts was on my Subway art that I completed in a Jessica Sprague Class. I love my subway art and finally figured out how to use it in our house. When you walk into our house, there is a GIANT wall in front of you. It is huge, it was blank, it needed something!

I hated the wall before, I LOVE it now! I can’t even describe how much I love it now. I find myself staring at it as I walk by.

So I know, you are asking how did I do this. Well I tried to use foam board from Lowe’s, but it had a jagged edge when you cut it and that’s not what I wanted on my wall. So I took the more expensive route and bought canvases from Joann’s. Thank goodness for coupons! I painted the edges and about 2″ on the face of the canvas in black.  However, I do have some light colored backgrounds that you can see the black outline on. It is probably just me that can see it, but still. So next time I would paint the whole canvas black. I then printed out the pictures I wanted to use on photo paper. Using Modpodge I glued the pictures to the canvas and then used modpoge over the top of the pictures to give it a grainy/canvas look to it. Overall I love the look of the Modpodge over the pictures, but word of caution, don’t leave any clumps or streaks as it will show up on your picture.You can see what I mean on the upper right corner of the picture below.

I still have a few more to do, but I am waiting for more coupons! The nice thing is that since I used thick photo paper I can peel it off the canvas and change the pictures without damaging the canvas! I love how it filled my wall but is completely customizable as I get more pictures.

The Art of Poster Design

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Yes, I got sucked into another Jessica Sprague Class. I originally wasn’t going to take this class because we have so much going on over the next 4 weeks, but a friend asked me to design a poster for her and I thought this class would help! Plus, I love my classes from Jessica Sprague! I am now taking the Art of Poster Design. We will be doing 10 different posters throughout the 4 week instructor led class. As with any of Jessica Sprague’s classes there is a forum and gallery to get help and inspiration from. I’m behind in the class, but that’s okay I have access to the material for the rest of my life!

The first poster we designed was an alphabet poster. It is supposed to highlight the letter of the name of the person you are gifting it to, but I decided to highlight the A and Z and hang it in Alyssa’s room. The highlighted A at the beginning looked weird, so hence the highlighted Z was added! My first draft I forgot the “J”. It is a good thing I tend to sit on things for a few days before doing anything with them.

Our second poster was originally designed to show the way to a party. It was in pinks and that just wasn’t striking my fancy at the moment. Who knows what the girls will want for their party in July, so I’ll just wait on doing that poster until then. I decided my guest room needs a little sprucing up since we will soon be shuffling furniture around to make room for a new bed in our room! I’m undecided on the colors at the moment, but I thought I would share with you anyway! I’m going to print it in a 5×7 size and put it on the nightstand next to the bed. Would love any thoughts!

So far I’m having tons of fun in the class! Can’t wait to catch up and see what the next posters look like! I’ll be sure to share here of course!

Valentine’s Day T-Shirts

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I’m finally getting some time to post my second Valentine’s Day project. We’ve had guests in the house, so computer time is much more limited!

I like for the girls to have shirts for the holidays, but I don’t like spending top dollar on them, so when I saw this project in Family Fun Magazine I knew I had to do it! If you have never picked up a copy of Disney’s Family Fun magazine I highly encourage it. Flip past all the movie ads and whatnot, its the crafts that are wonderful! So here is a link to the original tutorial in Family Fun, February 2012.

The hardest part of this project was finding the heart shaped doily to use! Finally found them at Party City. For those that want to do this next year, I suggest going now while everything is on clearance – though 20 doilies only cost me $2.50! I didn’t bother to glue the second doily onto the shirt, but if you are a rebel and go this route I suggest that you push the brush down onto the shirt with a fair amount of pressure so that you can do each spot only once. I used Tulip Fabric Paint in red. I honestly haven’t washed them yet so I don’t know how it will hold up. Sadly I didn’t get a picture of the girls in their outfits because of a few temper tantrums, late napping, and going to the airport to pick up GiGi!

Valentine’s Day Projects

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I have two little girls, so anything pink with hearts on it is a BIG deal around our house, Valentine’s Day is no exception. I pinned a lot of cute projects for Valentine’s Day, but finally decided on these two.

I wish Pinterest would add a field to let you know when you pinned something. Sometimes it would be fun to see how long I’ve been kicking around an idea before I finally get the chance to do it. This one for example, was one of the very first pins I did. I knew from the moment I saw it that I would be doing it for Valentine’s Day. I’m not big on having a whole lot of sweets around the house, only because I eat them all! Plus, one of my girls is in a nut-free room, so I didn’t want the risk of giving a treat that someone couldn’t have. We lived for over a year with an egg allergy in our house and while my youngest daughter had no idea she couldn’t have certain things, I don’t ever want to knowingly put a parent in that position of having to take away a treat!

So for my first project, our valentines. It came from this Pin.

As you can see, take broken crayons melt them and stick them to paper! Pretty easy huh? It really was. The girls helped with peeling of the crayons and of course breaking a few along the way. I chopped the rest with my knife and filled the silicone tray. My first hint  – don’t use a silicone tray OR put something under it in the oven. I had a terrible time trying to slide a solid cookie sheet under the tray when it was hot. I did spill a bit of the wax all over my oven, but I carefully wiped it up while it was still hot so it cleaned up very easily. I guess if you let it cool, you can always scrape it up later.

So here are how mine turned out. Click on the picture for a larger image.

Pretty good if I say so myself. One thing to note, my kids tried them out and we discovered you have to kind of scratch through a waxy layer for a second before the color appears. Not really a big deal because it by the middle of their first scribble it is coloring just like a normal crayon – only it will change colors mid-scribble!

I attached the crayons onto a color your own valentine that I got from here.

They come in jpegs, and pngs with a transparent background or a white background. I put them 6 to a sheet and printed on heavy cardstock. All in all if I had to have done it all at one time, it would maybe take an hour to do 18 valentines. Not to bad.

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!!

 

My favorite Christmas decoration

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I found this Christmas silhouette on Pinterest and knew I had to have it. When you read through the post on how to make it here you will see that it costs about $60 with shipping if bought through Ballard Designs. Well, I don’t know about you, but I don’t have an extra $60 lying around to spend on a picture that is only out for one month!

I went to Michaels and got the red poster board (found in the art/framing department), pulled up Silhouette Studio and searched for Christmas Silhouettes. I arranged it all in Silhouette Studio and then cut it out of white vinyl. I already had a frame that I had bought for another project that was long forgotten. Here is my version:

I think it turned out pretty darn well and it sure as heck didn’t cost me $60! This is one of my favorite pieces of Christmas decoration we now own.

Logical mind, creative soul

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For anyone who knows me, you know I am a very logical thinker yet I also have a very creative soul. As I was sitting working on my first knitting project, I realized I am very thankful for the combination. I decided over New Years that I wanted to learn how to knit, so I bought some needles and a skein of yarn and got on the internet. I practiced, ripped out stitches, and threw away several false starts. But now I am happy to say I am about halfway done with my first project. My first project is a headband. So, as I pause and reflect on my new skill I have to be thankful to my parents who cultivated this logical and creative person.  The same people who dealt with me through my teenage drama and taught me that I can do anything I want to.  My parents used to make wooden toys that were nearly indestructible.  I can remember spending many afternoons in the garage sweeping up sawdust and sanding toys. I can also remember my Mom sewing Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls, Cabbage Patch Dolls and of course the clothes to go with them.  I am sure seeing her do these crafts is the reason why I like experimenting with so many different medias. As I share projects involving paper, fabric, photoshop, digital cutters, and now knitting feel free to blame them or thank them. My wallet and my husband probably blame them, because I like gadgets, but I will thank them because it gives me a chance to save my sanity and to continually have projects on my plate!

I also have to thank my crafty friends. You know who you are! From showing me different projects, to inspiring me to really learn how to sew you are responsible for draining my wallet, but filling my creative jar! I am so glad to be surrounded both in daily life and via the web by such creative people! Now all I need to do is figure out how to balance all these hobbies with all my other responsibilities. Or figure out how to get more hours in one day.

So to share with you on of my past projects, I decided the girls needed a little bathroom redo. I found the cutest shower curtain and monkey accessories at Target. I then added a little bit of vinyl on the wall which was cut using my Silhouette SD.

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*Edited to add*

I entered this post into a blog contest with Grammarly, so now I need to add the following!

In honor of Thank You Month, LisaSharp.com and Grammarly, the world’s best grammar checker, are throwing a virtual flash mob of gratitude (we hope!).  Grammarly will give one lucky winner who participates an Amazon.com gift card valued at at least $100 (the value increases by $10 for every blogger who enters).  Sound fun?

To participate, write up 500-700 words of thanks to someone who deserves it.  Please note in your post that you’re a part of a contest sponsored by Grammarly, the World’s Most Accurate Grammar Checker.  Just for fun, check your work using the tool at Grammarly.com and share your score. Mine was a 74%

Last, but not least, visit LisaSharp.com to leave your link via the Mr. Linky Widget in this post:   http://wp.me/p1XnV3-3s

The Twitter Hashtag is #GratefulGiveaway!

This contest runs from January 2, 2012 and ends on January 31.  A winner will be selected by Randomizer on 2/1/2012.  Remember that every blogger who enters increases the size of the gift card by $10 so feel free to share with other bloggers who would be interested!