Friday, 24 March 2017

Faux marble wall hanging

I love making things over - taking something quite ordinary and making it look amazing with a few craft tools and techniques. 

This week it is about using things that have been left over from other projects. 

I made an MDF Christmas banner a bit ago and I had one pennant left over. I didn't want to waste it so it got put in the box that I keep for things that I don't want to throw away but don't really want to deal with either. Several years later, it is still here. Well never mind, it hasn't been eating anything so it might as well wait.

I love sticks too. Must have had an interesting previous life! In the same box was a stick that I had painted with DecoArt Americana Chalky Finish Paint in Everlasting. Again, not long enough to do much with.

So I have two awkward things that don't necessarily fit together...

The answer? Make em fit! That is the point of what I do for a living after all! I moved them around a bit and then it hit me - A wall hanging of some sort and I LOVE my faux finishes so I thought that I would show you how to make faux marble. In PINK! Well, It's that sort of Friday.

So, what will we need?
- First of all, something to paint on. I have used a triangle pennant made from MDF with two holes drilled on the top.
-a stick painted white. Go for a walk for this one. The stick needs to be just slightly longer than your pennant top.
-Paint - I am using DecoArt Americana products* for this project:
   -Acrylic paints: warm white, dusty rose, mauve, hi-lite flesh
   -extender medium
   -DuraClear gloss varnish
   -1" flat brush
   -large softening brush
You will also need a sea sponge, strong feather, old towel for the painting bit.
To finish, jute twine, die cut letters in black contact vinyl. I have cut mine on my die cutter but you can use black stickers, a sharpie pen or whatever you like depending on skills and availability.
-small amount of gold leaf

Right. All set them, here we go!

Begin by concentrating on the pennant. We want to make it marble. Give it a couple of coats of warm white, allowing adequate drying time between coats. You can speed this up with a hair dryer if you really cannot wait.

Next make a layer of extender medium onto the white. This should be even. It will give you time to mess around with the next steps. wet your sponge and then squeeze it in the towel so that it is only just damp. You don't want dripping water.

Dab the sponge into some dusty rose and then 'bounce' it a bit on the side to distribute the paint through the sponge. Now over to the pennant. I have decided to align mine pointing down. The marble runs in a diagonal pattern so I have started at the top corner on the left and moved to the other side...

Now with a VERY dry softening brush, come back and blur all of that in the direction that you painted it....

Wash the sponge, squeeeeze in the towel and reload with hi-lite flesh. go over the marble here and there to highlight it and then soften that too....

Wash the sponge and put it aside. Load the feather with mauve and paint veins, also in a diagonal direction. 

Allow the feather to flop from side to side and meander naturally. Soften with the big brush.....

TIP: Always but ALWAYS use the softening brush dry! If you need to, buy more than one. The tiniest bit of water will ruin the effect.

Come back with more mauve and strengthen the veins here and there...

Allow all of this to dry really well. Paint the tip with some gloss varnish and apply gold leaf straight along the bottom....

It depends on the size of the pennant and your personal taste as to how much gold you put on. 

Allow the varnish to dry and then varnish the whole thing allowing drying time between coats.

Decorate with your chosen letters....

Hang on the stick with jute twine or similar.

You can get DecoArt products in the UK from and in the US from 

Well thank you so much for stopping by. I hope that this has sparked your upcycling interest. Have a look around your house for things that need beautifying and go on a thrift store treasure hunt. Pink marble and gold....a bit blissful I think!

Love and hugs

*DecoArt do generously sponsor me with these fab products however, I would not use them if they were not the best and the ideas that you see here are all my own.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Washi Tape Stickers - Bliss Alert!

Who doesn't love washi tape! Glittery, pretty, serious (well, quite), it comes in all styles and there are some really nice things to make with it.

I am a bit obsessed with making washi tape stickers at the moment. I love the geometric designs around and decorating a wall sounds like bliss but I want more! I want to make stickers in all sorts of styles and I want them to be as big as I want NOT as wide as the tape dictates.

Now there are some excellent blogs about making stickers using baking paper. The real limitation with these is the size of the tape and the fact that you have to match the rows up perfectly when you take the sticker off the tape. Doable but fiddly.
But this still wasn't enough. I have outgrown my sandbox! So, thinking cap firmly on, I was looking for a new way and guess what? Here it is.....clear contact. The sort that you cover books with in school. Seriously. And there are a couple of ways to do this.

First of all, gather these supplies....
   ➼ clear contact (a self adhesive plastic film on a roll)
   ➼ washi tape
   ➼ a VERY sharp craft knife or scalpel and a pair of sharp, small scissors
   ➼ (optional) a die cutter and dies - very useful if you just cannot persuade your drawing skills to behave.
   ➼ your chosen image and a pencil

To begin with, decide on the size that you want. Roughly mark this on the back of the contact (the paper side).
Now draw the image that you want on the paper side. I am opting for a cactus this time. It is worth noting here that you need to draw your design in mirror image so that it will be the right way around on the front. Just sayin'.

Now turn over onto the film side and lay your tape onto it covering the image on the back and butting up with no gaps....

Now turn over and cut the image out...

I use the scissors for the big stuff and then go in with my scalpel for the smaller bits. Always use a sharp new blade so that the knife doesn't drag and separate the tape.

Now you have this.....

Peel the paper off and find a home for your sticker! Because of the larger surface area of the contact, the tape will stay together and there is no fiddly matching the strips up that you get with larger designs using baking paper.

Use some different greens and even a gold to make a cactus plant gang (very scary!) 
I put mine on a cork coaster with some sassy words to make a magnet....                                                          

Make the stickers different colours like this snazzy pineapple....

Keep the off-cuts for smaller designs too and the paper templates once you have peeled them off. They are handy to repeat a design perfectly the next time and using the scraps means that nothing goes to waste.

You can also use a die cutter to cut the designs out. This is especially useful for lettering and words...

Go forth and have fun! This could be one of the best ideas that I have had today and I am so excited about the possibilities.

Thank you for dropping by and I do hope that you have as much fun as I have.
Hugs and kisses

Friday, 10 March 2017

#useful Cute Geometric Purse DIY

I do love geometry and I do love a useful purse so the idea of combining the two seems like bliss. So without further ado, that is actually what I did. This little lovely starts life as a trapezoid and then becomes a triangle. 

It is super useful to store things like jewellery, coins, your iPod and much more.

And it is very fabric friendly needing less than a fat 8th! What's not to love there?

So what will we need?
- 2 fat 8ths of pretty fabric
- 1 fat 8th G740 woven fusible interfacing (Vlieseline)
- 1 Kam snap to close

As I said, not much needed! You will however, need a template and here it is....

It is on A4 paper and the scale is 1:1.

Begin by using the template to cut two pieces of fabric, 1 of outer and one of lining. Also cut one of interfacing and fuse it to the wrong side of your chosen outer fabric. Place the interfaced outer and the lining right sides together and pin. Sew all around leaving a turning gap.

Clip the corners to reduce bulk.

Turn the right way out and press so that the edges are perfect.

Now use a removable marker to mark the centre seams on. 

Sew them in a coordinating thread. This will help to make nice crisp edges when you fold the purse.

Fold one of the triangle pieces over to meet the other and sew the side down.
I have opted to do it my hand because I am a neat freak who loves details but you can also do it by machine. Add a Kam snap to close the purse.

That is actually all there is to it.

It's done!


Ready to use!

No more to be done!
I think that you get the idea. These make nice little purses for craft fairs and they are always appreciated as a gift. You can enlarge the pattern too and use them for all sorts of other things.

Thank you so much for dropping by and I hope that you have a lovely weekend of uninterrupted sewing!

Actually, before I do go, here is some stockist information for the main bits of the purse. I have used scraps of Art Gallery Fabrics so these may not be available anymore but do check the Hantex website because there are lots of others to fall in love with. The G740 interfacing is a Vlieseline product and it is just perfect for when you need a little extra oomph!

Hantex: For further details & stockists information please visit
Vlieseline from Ph 01453883581

Love and hugs

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Daisy's First Birthday Dog Cake

Someone has just turned one! I cannot believe that it is almost a year since she has been mine. A year of fun, cuteness, some of the worst naughtiness ever and other things that I would not swap for the world!

I am talking about my fur baby Daisy of course and I had to mark her first year with a healthy dog cake and a little party for her and Sally.

Pup cakes (see what I did there) seemed to be the answer and of course it had to be healthy for dogs. Dogs cannot eat everything that we do and it is also worth noting here that these cakes are a sometime treat and NOT intended for a main meal. They freeze beautifully and I cut one in half and give half to each of my girls with their normal dinner.

Also, I must mention that you know your fur baby best and if they have any allergies or intolerances, do not give them these cakes. Better yet, check with your vet first.

Okay, that out of the way, let's do this! It is an easy recipe and it only uses a few things.

Daisy's Pup Cake Recipe
Makes 14 Muffin sized cakes
Oven: moderate

250g chicken liver 
1 large zucchini
3 eggs
pinch salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup grated cheese
2 cups Self Raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Use a food processor or similar to process the liver and zucchini to a fine puree. Add all of the other ingredients and mix again.
Pour into prepared paper cases.

Bake in a moderate over until firm. I am not going to be overly directive about the cooking times and so on. Simply press your finger lightly into one and if it feels firm it is ready.

You can freeze these unfrosted - and by the way, when I say frosted I do NOT mean sugar! No one should eat that least of all your dog! I used a small amount of cream cheese to decorate and a daisy shaped piece of cheese on the top.

A flag on the top which naturally goes with the other decorations that you have planned is really important!

After singing happy birthday, it is time to enjoy one! That is if your fur babies can wait! Please excuse the awful pic but I was juggling doggy discipline and a camera! Those two are quick!

Whatever you do, your little one will love you for it. Remember, freeze the extras and then they can enjoy the party vibe for weeks!

Have fun!