Thursday, October 30, 2014

Dyed Coffee Filter Flowers for Fall Wreath

Boy, its nearly Oct 31rst and another Halloween is dead set to arrive! Where does the year go!!

This year I suffered through some illness and so my Halloween is weak this year, but we did decorate the patio - I may be down at times, but I'm not out, lol!!!

However, before Fall came along I had done an interesting project with COFFEE FILTERS.  And the results were SPECTACULAR -- I dyed plain ol' generic coffee filters and turned them into flowers and I swear to you that when they are adorning a wreath, or gathered into a 'floral' arrangement, they look so real!


{note the dyed coffee filter "flower" beside the rust sunflower - pretty good, eh?}
Click on pictures for enlarged view. 

I am not showing the process of the flower creation - for that you can Google or Youtube " DIY Coffee Filter Flowers" and you will see plenty of tutorials on this subject, pick and choose your favs.
Here is one type flower 'version' tutorial: Tutorial Haleighanna's Hands DIY Coffee Filter Tutorial
Here is two type flower 'version' tutorial: Elegant Coffee Filter Rose

But I will give a few musings about how I DYED the coffee filters after cutting them into 'petals'.
I used food colouring to dye them. I found that food colouring gave beautiful vibrant shades of colour. Neon brights and Regular packs worked great.

I had tried using INK refills from my own collection, but only a few colours transferred well whereas some colours namely the green inks seem to turn out dull. The purple ink "Elegant Eggplant"  and the yellow " Daffodil Delight" from Stampin' Up! worked beautifully. So part of the charm of this project IS the dyeing process and discovering through experimenting which colours you create. Just like being a kid :)

While I used several colours: I did not use much liquid to dye the flowers. If you water down the food colouring {or ink} too much, the intensity will not develop, plus you can always rinse some of the colour 'out' if you want. I put a good many drops of one colour each into separate shallow vessels like clean margarine containers or short narrow juice glasses and added a wee bit of water. Next I dipped my crumpled or folded coffee filter in and afterwards squeezed out the excess liquid back into the container. {and this is probably where I should of wore gloves, duh!}

Some filters I 'dipped' one end into one colour, flipped and dipped the other end into a different colour....or I dyed the filter a light shade, then dipped the one half into a deeper shade.....either way you do it, you can combine colours for some really super results.

Drying was easy - as you can see :)

Here are my pictures......hope you give this project a try!




Sun Flowers and Burlap Ribbon new from Michaels*


coffee filters (8 per flower)
(liquid, paste or hot glue gun)
food colours - variety of shades
(or ink refills)
(lite gauge, or bamboo skewers for 'stems')
(for dyeing)
drying spot
(use portable clothes dryer rack, or string up a line - you can dry the flowers faster
if you use a hair dryer on them but they dry pretty fast on their own)
and water!
** Wreath form or other decorative piece
plastic gloves
protective surface to work on.

TECHNIQUE TO CREATE FLOWERS: GOOGLE or YOUTUBE " DIY Coffee Filter Flowers and you will find loads of 'how-to' examples - pick your favourite and have fun!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Window and Shaker Cards featuring Spellbinders and Ornaments4christmas

The following project was inspired by Jennifer McGuire's card Love Joy Peace.

It's a window card and I haven't done one of these in ages!!!  So I promptly started rummaging through the house looking for clear acetate....and couldn't find any, awww.  But for one card I created a cellophane wrap "baggie" and for the other, I used a square cut from some clear packaging I had in the recycle bin. Voila!

I decided to make a fall and a christmas card as experiments.

Both cards have a white heavy cardstock bases ( folded 8 1/2 x 5 1/2) and a panel of decorative paper cut to 2 1/8 x 5 1/2 and attached to the left half of the card front. * To extend the paper around to the back of the card, cut it at 3 1/8 x 5 1/2.  [see end photo of Fall card]. 

This causes a straight division down the front and where I " centered " my dies to cut the window.

 I decided to cut the windows after I attached the decorative panel to one half of the card front - this meant it would be twice the work for the die to cut through properly. Cutting heavy cardstock with wafer thin dies (or framelits, thinlits) meant I had to shim the dies tightly so they'd cut right through the double thickness.  You'll need to experiment with your die-cutter, dies and cardstock to find the right sandwich to prep.

I plan to make a TUTORIAL VIDEO showing how to do these cards, so stay tuned :) 

My ' fall ' card is a shaker card and I used an older Spellbinder's die set, ORCHARD HARVEST TAGS and ACCENTS SHAPEABILITIES. There are gorgeous dies in this set!  I chose the oak leaf for my design.

After cutting the die, I made my own DIY clear baggie slightly larger than the window dimensions using plain old kitchen cellophane wrap and 2-sided tape! I filled the baggie with an assortment of bugle beads, sequins and a dose of gold glitter flakes and closed it shut. Continuing I taped around the edges of the baggie and around the window as well so the "shaker bag" would lay flat against the cardstock/window.

A final piece of white cardstock was attached behind the window on the card's inside left.

I added a corner piece with my sentiment - and had my SHAKER CARD!!! :)  It's so pretty and fun!

*last detail - I extended my panel of decorative paper to fold around to the back - 
I like this extra touch at times!


I belonged to the Stamps of Life Die Hard Club where I receive a stamp and co-ordinating die set each month. September's Club set was the stamp ORNAMENTS4CHRISTMAS and ORNAMENT CLUB DIE SET. As with all of Stephanie Barnard's club releases, there is a second stamp set to co-ordinate offered later each month. This also has more dies related to this - check out their web site, The Stamps of Life.

My decorated card base was constructed the same way as my Fall card and I cut out the ornament dead-center. I cut out the ornament top doohickey in a couple of colours but decided the red popped out as a good accent shade!

This time, I used a scrap of clear acetate I scrounged from my recycling bin and some old packaging - but it was clear, clean and good to go!  I would encourage you to purchase clear acetate sheets though as it is one of those 'must have' supplies.

Once I cut the ornament, I added a strip of double-sided tape top and bottom of the window and shook white glitter all over it and made a cool accent! LOVE the cool techniques we can do!!!

I also made my own striped twine!   I cut 3 lengths of crochet yarn and unwound each length in half to thin them down. Then hold one end of the 3 lengths down {i used a paperweight} and beginning with the other ends, twist and twist till the entire length is wound up tight!  Then find the center and pinch it and the entire piece should wind up on its own like magic!  Now you have a thick triple colour twine!  Glue the ends and attach to the ornament like a bow.

I ADDED some snowflake accents {same die set} using a glitter red for the front and attaching 2 more to the inside of the card.  I stamped a greeting inside - above where the window would show.
I also tidied up the inside's left side by cutting another ornament and using the negative part to make an ornament 'frame'  - this is unnecessary but I get going if you know what I mean :)

SO - 2 cards and I believe the experiment worked!  I WILL make more window cards for my christmas this year, they are fun to make and fun to receive! 

I'm Back!

Hello Blogworld!

I am back!  I intended to take a long break from crafting and blogging for several reasons: 1) to deal with important home projects and 2) to have a " creative break " which I hoped would restore life into my general view of things.  Nothing worse than growing stagnant right?

But - my beautiful dog Pepper got seriously ill in spring and died before his 11th birthday which would of been in July.  We were grateful we had time to prepare and we did a little 'bucket list' and held his birthday early.

However, it killed my enthusiasm for caring about my crafts - and - I wanted to come back to blog when I put a terrific tribute together about Pepper. That hasn't happened yet, probably because I just want more time.

Boy, its hard to lose your beloved pets. To say I miss him - well, can't actually measure that.

But in dealing with our loss, we were surprised to find that we couldn't stand the silence after about 1 month - even felt a little quilty about even thinking of another dog. But in our initial looking on the web, we found a little precious dog, Maggie. She was in a rescue foster home, and needed a forever home. So long story short - we now have Maggie!

Therefore - I just wanted to re-introduce myself back into blogging - and I WILL post a proper tribute to Pepper and introduce Maggie in time.

So on to new projects and new life!