Most Beautiful

Beautiful. I think this is one of the prettiest things I have ever made….MY SHELBY of course! (one of my two beautiful daughters!)  Ok, ok so now you know what I’m getting at— here is the Coffee Shop Lace Dress by Bella Sunshine Designs. Today this popped up in my Facebook feed as the one year anniversary of taking this photo. Don’t you just love when Facebook shares your memories with you? Sometimes they are just “Plain Jane”..and sometimes I just want to cry because I melt over my babies! This photo I just OOOGLE OVER! It is by far my favorite BSD pattern! I remember when I took this photo, and every time I just stare at this pic of my daughter — I sigh — ahhhhhhhmazing.  I’m so proud of this AHHHH moment! The dress, the photo, the sunset….MY GIRL! Sorry…I’m just in AWE…E-V-E-R-Y time……Just a mom I guess. 🙂

coffee shop dress

This was an amazing evening. Shelby had so much fun with this photo shoot.  She was like a little super model!

If you don’t own this pattern yet….You need to! I will be making more of these for back to school as she will be starting kindergarten in just a few weeks.

I would get into details of the pattern, but the photo just speaks for itself…the eyelet trim, the little panel in the front…I’m just melting and itching to go sew some more….ok, happy tears…LOVE!

MWAH!

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Finally feels like Spring!

Finally a day where I can take the kids outside to play! It’s been so cold I feel like spring is NEVER coming….and then NICE day. We were soooooo busy between hubby’s shop and my sewing that it seems like I never have time to take the kiddo’s outside. I am thankful these past few months for the little ones’ preschool where they get to go outside and play so often.

After spending the morning at Dad’s shop yesterday I figured the kid’s needed a little bit of fresh air. Time to break out the Power Wheels for the first time since Santa brought them on Christmas…..:)

Our day in PHOTOS — mostly anyway…:)

Good idea Mom-- You're the best ;)
Good idea Mom– You’re the best 😉

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Sebastian was pretty good about helping himself when he got stuck….
ON NO!
ON NO!

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Even after a few car accidents…. I was still able to stop and snap a few good pics…….:)

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What a great day making memories. 🙂

Did you go outside today and enjoy the fresh air?

 

**In light of SPRING actually feeling like it’s arriving— I am continuing my sale in my ETSY shop for one more week! Use the code NEED4SPRING for 20% off sales! Check out my shop banner for more details!

Don’t forget to follow my on Facebook!

 

 

 

 

Hands on the Arts 2013

This year we went to the “Hands on the Arts” festival and craft fair in Eastham, Ma, for the second year in a row. Last year the kid’s had so much fun and I couldn’t wait to take them back!

If you didn’t catch my post last year about this fair you can find it HERE.

The brief run down of this event is that it is all FREE! Well, the kids activities are anyways! They had a puppet show for the Littles, and a big tent set up with many tables so the kids could do all kinds of free crafts. Then of course there are awesome craft vendors to peek through! (****remember to support your local crafters!! They work sooooo hard!!!), and a few food vendors—did I mention the mouthwatering BBQ?? YUMMERS!

Anyhoo, enough with the words, this is what our day looked like:

Peter and the wolf puppet show. Thie kids LOVED this!
Peter and the wolf puppet show. Thie kids LOVED this!
Sorting seashells for the mosaic project...
Sorting seashells for the mosaic project…

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I have to say here that my youngest, Shelby, was too small last year to really participate in the activities, besides putting her handprint in some clay. So this year she was very excited to not have to sit in the stroller. She had so much fun beading her own necklaces and choosing the beads. As you can see she is very proud of her work here!

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Painting seashells, rocks, and starfish. You can never go wrong with toddlers and a bucket of paint. They love it!

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My oldest daughter, Hannah was very interested in the pottery wheel. Here the woman is teaching the kids how to use it. This was not a take-home project because many kids would assist with one item, but it was still a great hands-on activity for the kids to learn from.

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You can’t see Hannah’s project too well, but she made a  girl out of clay. Very inventive.

I was finally able to snap a pic of what Spencer was up to! He loves to mess with tape, glue, cardboard, paper towel rolls, and anything random!

Each of the kids had an absolute blast. It was a day to be creative without restrictions. They had many choices of mediums to use, and nice works of art to take home.

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And then we discovered that I locked my keys in my car. ://////// OOPS! Here are the Littles sitting in a shady spot while we waited for the AAA person to come pop open my door—–

*sigh, it never ends does it? 🙂

At least we had a good day anyway!

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!! Remember to support your local crafters!

Ketchup ;)

Or, catch-up, whatever you’d like to call it. I think Ketchup sounds cute.

So it’s been awhile since my last confession…..lol, ok, ok lets’ get serious; I’m pretty sure that I’ve told you before that I am NOT Catholic but hopefully my fans get my humor.

Anyhoo, as my followers know, I am not as consistent with my blogging as I’d like to be. I just had my ONE YEAR BLOG ANNIVERSARY!! I have only made 31 posts??? Seriously???….well this makes 32—–but that’s still not a lot for 365 days of blogging! I just don’t know how other mommies do it. I know it can be done, I just don’t do it unless I feel inspired. Maybe one day I will feel ready to blog everyday, but until then this is me, and this is what you get. After all my blog is whatever I want it to be right? Ok, glad that’s settled. 🙂 Maybe I’ll pick up the pace and maybe I won’t, at least I ‘m enjoying this.

However—-I wanted to let everyone know what I’ve been up to lately, so here I am playing Ketchup. First of all, I’m still alive and my kiddos are all great! Oh and summer is almost here, can you believe it??

In the beginning, the idea for the creation of this blog was first that I wanted to start my own business. I know I’ve said this before but my creative style confuses people most of the time. Sometimes I’m sewing, sometimes I’m knitting, sometimes I’m making dream catchers and other times I’m melting plastic beads in my oven. So my reasoning for starting a blog was to show and explain to people what I can do. I am easily bored and I cannot stay on one project for too long (hence the reason for stacks of unfinished projects—-only my own of course, I never miss a deadline for my customers).

So far, my little blog is helping people understand me and I have started to build a small clientele. I am always that person who jumps in and says “I can do that!!!” Even though, maybe I haven’t done that before. My clients and friends are spreading the word and people are starting to understand me, and I love it! I have a few random projects I have done in the last few months that I have really enjoyed. Clients are being referred to me because if anyone can do it, Heidi can do it—-or she will know someone who can right? Yes I just spoke of myself in the third person, shhhh, don’t tell just let it go…..I will tell people if I can’t do something or if I am unsure. It’s up to my customers to trust me or not. Currently, I’m feeling a lot of trust here!

For example, I have made two baby quilts, a sweater and booties for a stuffed monkey, renewed the straps on a lovely Vera Bradley bag (TUTORIAL coming soon!!!), a crown/ tiara for a special birthday lady, and also plenty of little upcycles here and there. Recently I have been asked to replace Velcro strips on cloth diapers with snaps. This person was a new client and I admitted to her that I’ve never done this before, but I did a little research, and I feel confident about it so I  accepted the job. I am loving that I am building a trust with my new clients. For all of this I am thankful that I am finally being understood!

Want to see pictures of my latest adventures in randomness?

Ok you twisted my arm, I will share! So here is some of my last few projects in pictures…. (for some reason this blog is not cooperating with me today and I couldn’t seem to  arrange some of the photos 3 on a line, but whatever it is what it is right? 😉

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This baby quilt was SO SOFT! Made with flannel squares and a fleece backing.
This picture does not do this quilt justice! It is gorgeous in person!
This picture does not do this quilt justice! It is gorgeous in person!
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These are the elephant appliques for the quilt before I put them in place. I couldn’t find that perfect elephant fabric, so I made my own!
Lettering applique----not too shabby if I don't say so myself even though I hadn't done applique in years!
Lettering applique—-not too shabby if I don’t say so myself even though I hadn’t done applique in years!

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This tiara/ crown was made for a special birthday lady for a surprise 70th birthday party. I made  mainly from recycled cardboard, newspaper, and Mod Podged fabric, YES FABRIC! The roses are handmade from fabric as well and the inside is lined with duct tape for ultimate flexibility.

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Don’t throw that cute Vera Bradley purse with the worn out handles away! RENEW the handles! TUTORIAL COMING SOON!!!!

Mr. Monkey....:) That's all I can say!
Mr. Monkey….:) That’s all I can say!

So that’s just a few of my recent projects. I also have been busy with some upcycles. Back in March I participated in a Designer’s Day on a closed Facebook group called Upcycles Galore. Maybe I can show you all some of the items I created for that day?? Some of them were customs, and some I have not sold—-I keep forgetting to list them on Etsy or they probably would have been gone by now.  There is another Designer’s Day coming up on June 1st that I am excited to be  participating in again! If you would like to see the sales or purchase items you MUST be a member of the group. So click the link above and request to join the group.

My blogging goals for this week:

1) Tutorial for the Vera Bradley bag Renew

2) Post another Ketchup so you can all see what I created for the last Upcycles Galore Designer Day

I’m glad we could Ketchup! Looking forward to my next post. 🙂

 

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!!

Fingerless Gloves Giveaway!!!

I haven’t been on my blog in AGES!!! But I miss you allllllll!

I can’t tell you how much has happened in the last few months, but it’s been a blast. I’ve done so much sewing, knitting, crocheting, painting, just so many crafts and awesome stuff! I have finally opened my own business. I have a shop on Etsy named These Old Blues, and I also network through my Facebook page also titled These Old Blues.

I don’t really have a ton of time to explain EVERYTHING that has happened but I wanted to promote my business, and share my very first giveaway!!! So this is priority for tonight.

Have you seen these gloves???

Fingerless gloves
Fingerless gloves

Are they not awesome???? I love mine! I’ve been making these for years and there is finally a market for them and I cannot make them fast enough. These gloves are warm and cozy, great for typing on the computer, reading a book, or just keeping your arms and hands cozy on a rainy day.

These gloves are knitted by me, yes by hand! No machines, no funky plastic things that help you knit. These are painstakingly time consuming! What knitting project isn’t??  But they are sooooo worth the effort. The picture is shown in a Heather Grey with black accents, and a horseshoe cable. [The gloves in this picture are SOLD] I make them in three lengths: wrist length which is about 6-7″ from end to end, mid-length are about 12″ they come up the forearm, and the full-length gloves are about 21.” I use a very soft, 100% acrylic yarn. I use this yarn as much as possible in everything I do. I admit that sometimes I do purchase the rougher more traditional acrylic yarns, but only if a specific color request requires me to do so. I can tell you that these gloves are best in this brand of yarn, and I loveeeeee them.

So anyhoo, because everyone is RAVING about these I am going to treat my readers and Facebook fans to a giveaway.  When my Facebook fan page reaches 100 “LIKES” I will give away a custom pair of wrist-length fingerless gloves in a color (or two) of the winner’s choice.

Here is how to enter:

*First go to my Facebook fan page  found HERE and “Like” the page if you already haven’t.

*Then “Share” the post I have pinned at the top with the same picture of the gloves you see on this blog post.

*Once you have liked and shared my post, PLEASE come back here and comment on THIS blog post (not my Facebook page) and I will enter you here. Facebook frowns upon giveaways directly on Facebook, all these things I am learning as a new business owner.

***For my fans on Facebook who have already shared and commented on my photo, no harm done, YOU ARE STILL ENTERED in my contest.  I just went about the giveaway the wrong way…So sorry!*****

Anyhoo, I can’t wait to give a pair of these away! So please LIKE and SHARE!!!!

This contest will end at 9pm EST on the same day my fan page reaches 100 LIKES!

Thank you so much!

 

*****Winner announced!

Hello Kitty, Hello BABY!

Last weekend my friend Amanda K. and I  threw a baby shower for a close mutual friend of ours. We knew the minute she found out she was preggo we were going to have quite the little party. When we found out she was having a girl we went a little nutty! The mom-to-be is such a girly-girl and completely obsessed with Hello Kitty. So our theme was “Hello Baby.”

We started with the invitations.

Hello Baby!

We started each making an invitation and then we couldn’t decide whose we liked better so we decided to make each invitation completely different. Michael’s craft store had a great little corner with all kinds of Hello Kitty embellishments. We had paper, stamps, memo pads, and a ton of stickers! Sticking with our extremely girly-girl theme, we kept everything very pink, glittery, blingin’ and sometimes a little gaudy, but just the way Miss Jess likes it. Some people wouldn’t understand this, they might think we went over the top, and in all honesty we did but that was what made this so perfect for our mom-to-be.

insides….

We filled the insides with glitter and tons of confetti. This touch makes opening the invitation a memorable moment, just enough to make people laugh and say “Darn it now I have to get the broom.” 🙂

We sealed the invitations with footprints and it would soon be time to let the festivities begin!

***Quick TIP***  I knew I had these little foot and hand-print stamps that were so stinking cute!! I was very disappointed to find my ink pad all dried up. I hadn’t used it in a while. So I took a hot pink marker, colored the stamp and VOILA, I have the perfect ink color! This is an awesome little touch because you can use virtually ANY marker. Instead of searching high and low for the perfect ink color, just use a marker! It takes a few more seconds to do, but I think it’s worth it.

Time to work on decorations! I made tissue paper flowers and chandeliers. I took strips of cardboard to form the rings at the top, fishing line hold it up with a few pony beads at the center,  strips of tissue paper, and some curling ribbon. Very simple! The only issue I had was when I first put on the tissue paper strips they still had the folds in them from the packaging. A friend suggested using my hair straightener to iron out the wrinkles…WHAT A GREAT TIP! This worked perfectly! Thanks Kayla R.!

Tissue paper chandeliers
Tissue paper flowers

Next I cut up a pool noodle! Who knew I could have so much fun indoors with a pool noodle??

Pool noodle!!!!

This was a flower shaped pool noodle. I couldn’t find a flower shaped one in pink, so I just had to make orange work. (BTW, Dollar store….one dollar! :)) I did not use my paper cutter you see above, just a serrated edge steak knife and a cutting board.

Pool noodle sunglasses!

Sebastian kept putting the flowers over his eyes and saying, hi mommy! So I took a few seconds out of decorating mode to turn a pair of flowers into sunglasses using a few straws. He thought this was hysterical!

I don’t know why I didn’t get a better picture of these….but this is the pool noodle flowers strung onto fishing line with pony bead accents tied in-between to create this cute decoration. My 11 year old daughter loved this idea so I think we might be decorating her room with these. Beaded curtain with pool noodles anyone??

I also took the pool noodle flowers and put them on straws. Another cute little accent, but something I forgot to take a picture of!!!! I think I may have some leftover somewhere so I will have to update you with a picture of that later.

I took some of the scrapbook paper leftover from the invitations and cut out the Hello Kitty faces. I glued these to card stock and toothpicks for cupcake toppers.

Hello Kitty Cupcakes

Oh look, there’s the pool noodle flowers in the corner!!! Aren’t they cute??

Then the mom-to-be had to have a tiara. I added some felt kitty ears and a pink bow, just to keep with the theme.

I made the watermelon baby that has been spreading like wildfire on Pinterest! Except that I had to make the baby look like a kitty too.

Hello Kitty watermelon

Is she not just the cutest thing ever??? The watermelon rind whiskers were another friends idea. Thanks again Kayla R.! I was stumped on what to use for whiskers…:)

So to finish off this post I have to share with you some special crafts from the heart. I know I have shared with you how much I LOVE to knit and crochet for babies, so it wouldn’t have been truly a gift from me unless I made something for this precious little bundle.

I crocheted a flower blankie,  a hat, with a matching hat for MOM, and matching pants. Here they are:

Flower Blankie
Closer view…
And closer with edge detail

The pattern for the flower blankie I just love, but stops the blanket so small, probably about half the size. I really wanted a blankie that baby can grow into, play on the floor on, and snugggle with if she loves it. So I continued the pattern stiches and changed a few things to make it the size I wanted.

Hello Kitty Pants!!

The pants I saw on Pinterest as well but did not include a link to the pattern. So I wrote my own pattern. (Am I going to be a pattern wirter? Maybe a book is in my future?) I wanted to make them in one piece without sewing them together. I knit the legs much like you would make the thumb piece for mittens, then attached them together and knit all the way around the waist on a circular needle. I had a little trouble with the center (crotch area – I just hate that word, sorry, but what else do you call it? LOL) so I’m going to have to mess with the pattern on that for the next pair. But I also devised a neat way to knit in the allowance for the elastic band without even sewing down the top! I’m very pleased with my discovery. I’ve already had requests for a boyish pair that is green and blue that maybe has a monkey-butt (haha monkey butt!!!). So I’m going to flex some with this cute pattern.

Hello Kitty Hats!! Matching for mom and baby!

As for the hats, they included crocheted steps that were basic for any hat, and didn’t include the ear flaps. So again I pretty much wrote my own pattern for the hats, plus I didn’t like the pattern instructions for the bow—it came out funky looking, so I messed around with the yarn and made my own bow!  Again I already have requests for more hats! My daughter wants one that is black with a red bow, and my sister-in-law wants one black with a pink bow and no kitty face. She likes the kitty thing, but not necessarily Hello Kitty. I’m also thinking about making a red-eyed-tree frog hat for my older son who is completely obsessed with frogs. I love that I can make patterns so flexible! So I’m thinking about whipping out a bunch of these little hats and putting them on Etsy. A great lap project for the summer! Any more requests???

This post is dedicated to my friend and mom-to-be for the second time around, Jess B., congrats MOMMA!!! I cannot wait to meet the new addition!! Just a few more weeks!!! 🙂

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!!

Giving Picasso Kool-Aid

This morning while enjoying my morning cup of coffee and catching up with some Facebook posts I came across this great idea:

Thank you to Tina S. from Deltona, FL, miss you neighbor!!!! This just made my day! Here in Massachusetts its a rainy yucky day again. We have had a few nice days that I am thankful for, but this rain? Really? I’m quite fed up with this weather. It’s not even hot enough to put in the air conditioners.

Then I realized today is June 13th, and my 14th wedding anniversary. (((((Happy Anniversary Hunny!!!! XOXOXOXO)))) It rained on our wedding day too, no it didn’t rain, IT FLIPPING POURED, and I swear it rains every year on this day!

Anyhoo, back to this clever find! I couldn’t be more thrilled to find a rainy day project for my 3 year old. It dawned on me that I’ve never given Sebastian paint…nope, what’s wrong with me? So this project was a MUST TACKLE IMMEDIATELY. Normally I would have all the ingredients for this but I just used all of my cornstarch this past weekend for making moon mud. [Another simple project I hope. to share with you this week.] So I wanted to stay home in my jammies today and enjoy a crummy rainy day, but then we had a minor setback to those plans and had to head out to the pediatrician for a minor issue. It looks like I had to venture out anyway, so off to the DR and the store we went.

I had a brilliant idea after first reading this post. How about Kool-Aid to color the paint instead of food coloring? Woo-hoo, smelly paint and awesome colors!

Gathering supplies

Now I don’t normally keep Kool-Aid on hand so I had to purchase this (5/$1 cheapo!) but I was remembering experimenting with Kool-Aid hair dye in high school. This is a great dye and they have fun colors. It’s a quick way to get a really vibrant red without having to use a ton of food coloring, or buying the expensive concentrated stuff for cakes.

So I mixed all the ingredients up just as the picture describes except that I doubled the recipe and I poured my “paint” into the baby food jars. I am always making extra of everything so that I have more for later. My theory is that I would rather have too much than not enough!

I remembered visiting a preschool, and also having a million friends who were preschool teachers, that if you add a little bit of soap to finger paint it becomes more washable. Please note that I said more washable, NOT completely washable. So you just have to add a little bit or the paint will become too soapy. I think I used about a tablespoon, but you don’t have to measure it, I just drizzled some in.

see the soap?

I began mixing the red. It was cherry! Oh yum!

I started with just a little bit of the Kool-Aid packet and then added a little more because it was too pinky-looking. After adding little by little I said to heck with it, for .20 I can handle using it all and I dumped it all in. I love the look of this! Then I noticed that I had some red dust on my fingertip, and washed it off. Oops, I forgot about the staining power of Kool-Aid. You would think that I would have thought about this when I was remembering dying my hair with the stuff. Nope I didn’t. I added some more soap after this thought. So make that about 2 tablespoons….ish….

This was my green. They didn’t have a green Kool-Aid so I had to mix yellow and blue. I remembered not to add all the blue because it can be way to dark. I couldn’t seem to get the green really deep, so I shifted gears and added some green gel food coloring.

Then mixed.

Ta-Da!

Don’t these colors look so yummy? You should smell them! Clockwise from the top is cherry, lemonade, blue raspberry, orange, green scented like blue raspberry lemonade, pink lemonade, and grape.

Now I haven’t experimented with Sebastian yet, I’m still waiting for him to get up from his nap. We will see how that goes, I’m kinda scared to be honest. LOL! I think my house is going to look like someone gave Picasso Kool-Aid, but at least the paints smell yummy…

*****NOTE**** this is probably not going to be neat in any way, shape or form. Kool-Aid stains like crazy! Of course I had to be different, me and my brilliant ideas. We’re only kids once right?

I am also thinking about putting glitter in the paints to make it fun too! OOOOO glitter paints!

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!!

Melty Crayon Catastrophe- Part 2

So if you didn’t catch the PART 1 post yesterday, you can find it [HERE] to play catch-up.

Sorry for the suspense, but the post was soooo long. I had to leave you hanging. It was fun imagining my catastrophe though right?

So this was one of those frustrating moments where I just needed to walk away. During nap time I was able to become Heidi again, and not the scary, screamy, crazy mommy that the psycho children turned me into. I had a thought.

You ever hear the saying, “If all else fails READ THE DIRECTIONS?”

It dawned on me that I was approaching this project like a guy, LOL, and sorry hubby. <<<Who needs directions, I know where I’m going…….hours later staring at the same street sign you know you just saw 20 minutes ago>>> I needed to do some research. What was I doing wrong? I went BACK to the drawing board, or my Pinterest board and followed the links to see how other people were doing this. My first mistake was probably peeling the papers. It looks like the papers are what actually seem to hold the crayons to the board. But no one discusses this as far as I have seen on Pinterest, it is purely my assumption, but DUH me, I just HAD to be different. Second, the glue stick. The other people used hot glue. Holy crap. Seriously? Why didn’t I think of this??? Someone please smack me I’m beginning to feel really dumb.

Third…My hair dryer sucks. I’ve come to this conclusion. It works fine for my hair, but melting crayons? Not so much. This is where my phone call comes in.

Me: Hi, do you still have a heat gun?

Hubby: Yes.

Me: Is it here (meaning home) or there at work?

Hubby: I have it here (at work).

Me: Could I borrow it? PLEASE???

Hubby: Yesss.

Yay! That was my biggest problem. So my hubby comes home for lunch and brings me this awesome little tool. It reminded me of the scene in Meet the Fockers where Greg brings the missing cat back to the family. The cat that wasn’t really their cat, but still it was the heroic-like scene played in slow-mo, the hero walks up the driveway with the beloved item in his hand. My hubby, my hero. Heehee, sorry for the cheese guys!

Anyhoo—-Looks like a hair dryer but comes with big warnings. He says, be very careful this is meant for melting plastic. Oh jeez!

I just thought this was funny, but obviously necessary….You know someone out there was bound to do it.

Glad I wasn’t using a plastic frame or this really would have been catastrophic!

So now that I read the directions I still had to make this my own. I am not happy with the idea of leaving the papers on, I just don’t like the look of it. Sure maybe it will hold onto the page better, but I’m determined to make this work….MY WAY. I took all the crayons on the small canvas and hot glued them to the page this time. Then I got even smarter and brought my art easel up from the basement [DUH] instead of sitting on the floor with this thing laid out on a cereal box. This was just brilliant. I covered the floor with newspaper because this wax splatters A TON. ****quick tip*** My kitchen floor is tile. Any wax that splatters on the tile (outside of the paper zone) comes off easily with a straight edged razor blade. 2 minute clean up, scrape and sweep. Done.

Moving on.

I began to heat up the wax.

I melted in my little broken piece. I was LOVING this little heat gun! In seconds I could see the crayons start to sweat and drip. SWEET! I played with the different directions, letting the crayon splatter versus letting it drip. This heat gun even had a cold feature (well cool) and so I could heat up the wax and then cool them down as they dripped exactly where I wanted them. Oh THIS IS WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT!!

Do you see now how I like to do things different? This is probably NOTHING like what you pictured, but it is exactly what I pictured. It doesn’t resemble crayons anymore and I love that! I realized that as I was doing this that I may have made some mistakes in the beginning, but ultimately it lead me in the direction I wanted to go anyway. There really is no WRONG way to be artistic. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

TA-DA!!!!!! My masterpiece!!!
closer
I love the colors all mushy and blurry
Up close and personal….I waved the heat gun around in circles to get the swirly marbled thing going. LOVE IT

Oh and this is my catastrophe masterpiece on my wall:

Yes I had to hang it sideways, just to be different. But I liked it this way!

But wait. I’M NOT DONE!!! It gets better. I still had one more canvas ready to go and the kids were still napping. SWEET! Let’s go for it.

Melty Crayon Catastrophe, TAKE TWO:

A new beginning

Can you see where I’m going with this one? I was so excited!

So I started melting away. Again some of the crayons were still breaking apart and falling off my page, but whatever. This is my art and I wanted to run with it. If there is one thing I learned about art: YOU CANNOT BOX ART. I like to let art tell me what to do. Whenever I try to force something the way I did the first time, it NEVER works.

So this is what I had going on. I’m in love in love (again).

Another melty mess! YAY!

And the total picture upon completion…

Another masterpiece!

It reminds me of the spin art we used to do as kids at the fair. I had another brilliant idea when I saw this….My daughter has a little pottery wheel. I wonder if it would work for spinning melty crayon art??? Oh this I may have to try!

Back to finishing up my second piece before I start a third…..

I liked it when it was done. But I wasn’t sold on it. I don’t know why, something in my gut said I wasn’t happy. Why I can’t really tell you. I loved it, kinda, and then not so much. Something was missing. So I went to bed that night thinking it needs something else.

So I slept on this thought. Much like taking a break in writing when you have writer’s block, I do the same with art. I woke up with the same gut feeling that something was missing and I knew just what to do.

and the madness continues….

I think there was too much white space. I needed more color. I needed more melty yumminess. I started gluing more crayons on in the spaces in-between the melted crayons, and where broken ones had fallen off. I glued more above the already melted ones in the little semi-circles. I broke off pieces that were coming off and re-glued them where I wanted them.

Then I melted some more……. and more…… and more….

When pieces fell off, I got smart this time. I took wax paper and stuck them back on.

Wax on, wax off! Or should I say wax OFF, wax ON…haha

Stay crayon  stay! This is also where I had a lot of fun with the cool button. I took a melty messy chunk of crayon and mashed it back to my page, then cooled it right where I wanted it. Then I went and melted it again. Haha! So much fun! I have the power!

YES finally I’m getting somewhere!

And here is the final.

Yay me!!!
close up….
and another close up view.

See art doesn’t have to be perfect, but this is my perfect. I took a complete catastrophe and turned into awesomeness. Yes, some may still call it a mess, as it is quite abstract. All I have to say to that is, well, it took people many years to enjoy Picasso too.

<<<Quick tid-bit here—- A little off subject but I have to share. It’s kind of the moral to the story here. I was given an abstract art assignment in my sophomore year of high school. It was a fabulous mess. It took me a long time, well planned and thought out. But my teacher didn’t get it so he marked me down on it. He said it was too abstract and didn’t resemble the original. Is that even possible??? To be too abstract??? I never thought in a million years that art could be marked WRONG… I was extremely discouraged and heartbroken. There is nothing a person can do wrong when it comes to art. It is like being graded poorly for your opinion, (I had a teacher that used to do this too, irritated the crap outta me).You can’t do that!!!! It’s an opinion, a point of view, and there is nothing wrong in that. Period. I was so upset with my teacher. Sorry Noonan, but you missed my vision. >>>>

I just wanted to throw that in because it took me a long time to get over this. I have learned to never let anyone get you discouraged over art. It’s yours and you do with it what you make of it. If many of the famous artists let people discourage them into discontinuing their work we wouldn’t have many of the famous pieces of art in history we have today. I love the impressionists era. Renoir is my absolute favorite artist. Monet is probably my second. Society didn’t like the begining of this blurry view of life. These artists didn’t give up. They persevered, just like I do with my work.

A few lessons learned here. First, don’t let anybody get you down over your artwork. Stand tall and be proud if you like it.

Second, just because a project uses crayons does NOT necessarily mean it was meant for children. My older kids maybe, my 3 year old, no way. I got splattered with hot wax a few times, and I would never let him use the heat gun. It’s too hot and dangerous for him.

Third, I could say read the directions. That was actually my first thought, but no, I dance to the beat of my own drum. In all honesty I would not have discovered this melty mess if I followed directions. My art would look like everyone else’s. This is how I have come by many Clever Catastrophes. I tend to use the term catastrophe interchangeably with masterpiece if you haven’t already picked up on that.

Picture-perfect locked in a box—-is not for me!  I discovered something new. I took the road less traveled by…

Thanks Robert Frost.

—– and thanks Mr. Pearson for drilling that poem into me.

What about your art?  Have you come by anything artistic accidentally? Have you made a complete mess only to turn around and realize that you liked your mistakes?  Have you turned a catastrophe into beautiful works of art?

 

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!!

Melty Crayon Catastrophe- PART 1

This is the day you may begin to understand my artsy ways, and my title Clever Catastrophe. I have clever ideas that turn to complete catastrophes. But then I turn my catastrophe back into pure cleverness. Hence my namesake Clever Catastrophe was born. I hope I don’t lose you on this, stay with me, I promise you’ll understand by the time this post is finished.

Yesterday was NOT a good day. It started out yucky, drizzly, misty, all together it was just a nasty day, and I thought I could turn it into something fun for the kids. I’ve been dying to try out the cool crayon melted canvases I have seen all over Pinterest. Have you seen them? I thought they were quite clever. This is what I found:

melty crayons on Pinterest
melty crayons on Pinterest

This was love at first site! I thought how hard could this be? You take crayons and stick them to the paper/board-whatever, and then you melt with a hairdryer. Got it. I DON’T need directions. ****My first mistake…

I pulled up some of my cheapo yard sale frames. I had a vision. I love things that think “outside the box” quite literally and by that I mean pictures and art that extends beyond the frame. I envisioned this not-so-perfect, neato, melty mess, dripping along the edge of the frame, oh yum. I envisioned it all. I don’t like perfect order….to me that’s just way too perfect. I love abstract art. I like the imperfections and mismatched style that looks like it was just meant to be that way. Yes the rainbow and perfect order is pretty and great, but that doesn’t say HEIDI.

So with the rain and all I thought it would be a good project for Sebastian and I.

Apparently I thought wrong.

For all those of you who think, oh gee how does she have time for all this? How does she do this with little ones? She always manages to come up with great ideas and life is perfect hunky-dory. NOT NOT NOT! I promise you this is NOT the case. Yesterday was an epic failure as an artsy crafty mom.

Anyhoo, first I measured out my cardboard backings and paper for the frames. Cutting, snipping, gluing, then stapling in the backs nice and secure, all while the kiddos were eating breakfast. Laying out ginormous pieces of cardboard on the kitchen floor was quite entertaining I suppose.

Second we started peeling papers of the crayons. Let me just tell you that EVERY single board I found on Pinterest and Etsy with melty crayon thingys all had the papers. I thought, why? I don’t like that! It looks like crayons…..I want a piece of art that looks like it USED to be crayons. So of course I have to be different. Remember when I told you in my first post that I look for inspiration in other’s craftiness, yet I put my own spin on things; this is exactly what I mean. Again, you’ll understand when this is all over.

I purchased 2 boxes of dollar store crayons last week knowing I had this creation up my sleeve. $2 for 2 packs of 48 crayons was perfect for a melty mess, who needs Crayola brand when you’re just trashing them for art? Save those for real coloring projects. ****quick tip**** the dollar store crayon papers peel easier, sometimes the papers just fell off on their own— it was so easy! Also they have more of the same or similar colors (yes repeats, lol).

So we peeled papers, and then glued naked crayons to our canvas. They only needed a little stick because once they started melting they would just stick on their own to the paper, so a glue stick would be just fine right? My second mistake, WRONG AGAIN.

measuring
Gluing
choosing and gluing

This small one was supposed to be Sebastian’s artwork. After gluing the crayons down, we started up the hairdryer.

hairdryer by Sebastian

I decided to start this flat, give the crayons time for a little melting action. I wanted to make sure these crayons stuck to the paper. It was a good idea, but that doesn’t mean it was going to work. Sebastian was bored after about 8 seconds. So I took over. Shelby was being clingy so I let her sit in my lap….she climbed all over me tried to knock the frame over, smacking crayons, poking me in the eye, banging her head on mine, etc. TWENTY minutes rolled by and these crayons were barely getting shiny, least of all drippy….UGH, this was just not working, the kids were just being insane and all I wanted to do was finish this stupid project. Yes at this point it was stupid. Screaming children, messy living room, dishes in the sink, laudry needing to be done. yes I should have attended to these, but I thought this was going to be a simple project to entertain the kiddos for an hour. There would be time for housework later.

This simple project for the kids became MY project.

I kept on truckin’ with this hair dryer. I figured a few more minutes and these crayons were going to melt. Baby climbing on me again, Sebastian taking her toys, coloring on the TV, pulling things out of cabinets, sippy cups being thrown out the window, pulling the dogs tail. Oh jeez this was NOT working.

But I was obsessed. Just 5 more minutes guys, please. Baby back on my lap….and the crayons FINALLY started to melt! YAY!

Yay! Melting! Not how I planned but I didn’t care at this point.

After starting and stopping a thousand times the kids gave me 5 full minutes and I thought I was getting somewhere.

Then catastrophe.

Melty crayon falling off oh no!!!!

One of the melty crayons broke and started to fall. (Yes that is a cereal box holding up my artwork.) You know, this was very frustrating. It was not working. Stopping again to try to fix the issue, the crayons were cooling and needed to remelt yet again. The kids were being OK, so I prayed please give me another 5 minutes, please please, I’m almost there I can feel it. I moved on. I decided that I liked the broken crayon there. It gives it character, and it says me, non-perfection makes it perfectly ME. Good. Moving on.

Heating yet again.

Another catastrophe.

More crayons falling off.

FUDGE! OKAY, NOW I’M TICKED. Kids climbing on me again, fighting, throwing fits. This is just NOT happening. OK I give up. This was my sign from God, jeez, pay attention to your kids get over this crayon melty mess. I put everything away and said I’m done with this crap.

Had some quality time with the kids, made some lunch. Then ahhhhh. Nap time. Peace.

Sometimes a break is all I need to clear my head.

And I did it. I gathered my thoughts, pulled my supplies out again, MADE A PHONE CALL <<<<<<that’s important if you can’t tell>>>>>>>>>…..and I came up with the perfect melty mess that I imagined.

But I can’t show you just yet…..It would ruin the surprise. There is more to the story and I don’t want to bore you, so I can give you a sneek peak.

sneek peak!

Oh, isn’t it just perfect? Oh I love it. I’m very pleased and I can’t wait to share. Stay tuned…..

You’ll find Part 2 [HERE].

As Always — Don’t forget to visit me on ETSY, and LIKE my page on Facebook to keep up with all the goodies!!!!