Sound of Music Nursery Art

If you’re here for the CAMEO giveaway, it’s one post down.

If you want to see how I made the art in the DIY Blogger House nursery, you’re in the right place.

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Lara of Less Cake {more frosting} and I collaborated on this nursery.  When you get a couple of Sound of Music dorks together working on a room, you’re just asking for some sort of movie reference.  And, since clothes made out of curtains don’t make sense in a room that’s not for an actual baby (or ever), artwork it was.  Winking smile

Lara showed me Copeland’s Colorful Nursery from Project Nursery and we knew we HAD to use that phrase.  And, we knew we wanted BIG.  We looked at canvases, but my signature project budget was running low.  We thought about painting it on the wall, but I was worried about a) screwing up and b) having to spend that much time in the house that last week.  So, inspired by the amazing artwork in Mandi’s entryway, we went with plywood.

I picked up this piece (4’ X 4’, thin…maybe 1/4”, pre-cut) at Lowe’s for about $14.  I went through the entire stack before settling.  I liked the movement of the grain.

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Then, I took Lara a Diet Coke and she came up with a sketch/design.

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I separated the design in my Silhouette Studio software, and cut the script-y font out of vinyl using my CAMEO.  I applied the vinyl to the board and painted 2 coats using regular old cheap acrylic craft paint.  Then I peeled off the vinyl.

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You’ll notice that I jacked up the colors.  Oops.  It still turned out awesome, right?

Once that was dry, I cut the print font out of vinyl with my CAMEO and applied that to the board.  The white paint needed 3 coats, but that may be due to the fact that it had been in the basement for like 5 years.

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It needed just a little bit more *something*, so I went with 2 coats of a gloss poly,

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sanding between coats (and taking awesome cell phone pics in my garage in the dark).

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The total cost for this was right around $20.

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Photo by Nathan Sweet Photography

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And, because I love you, I’m sharing the Silhouette Studio file for your cutting pleasure.  Open-mouthed smile

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The scale is HUGE/sized for our 4’ X 4’ board but it can all be cut on 12” vinyl in your CAMEO.

Painted Pillow + Pom Poms

Say that 5 times fast.

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The nursery in the DIY Blogger House was inspired by this fabric

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by Patty Young.  (She is DELIGHTFUL.  I took a class from her last year at The Creative Connection and it was for sure one of the highlights of my trip.)  It’s Moorish Tile in white from her Andalucia collection for Michael Miller.

I picked up a bunch of awesome fabrics from Fabric.com.  (I’m not affiliated with them in anyway, just letting you know where I got my stuff.)  They have an awesome feature on their site where you can add fabrics to an inspiration board to see them all together before you make your purchase.  I built on the colors in the Moorish Tile fabric and came up with this:

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I didn’t end up using all of the fabrics on the board, but it was my online version of stacking a million bolts in my cart before I make a final decision at my local fabric store.  Winking smile

I made pillows out of the Michael Miller Ta Dot Lagoon and the Premier Prints Zig Zag Chartreuse, but I wanted something unique for the other pillow.  I decided to enlarge part of the design in the Moorish Tile pattern and paint a pillow.

Because I’m not that coordinated, I cut a freezer paper stencil.

Because I’m lazy, I used my CAMEO.

I showed you last week how to trace a design using your Silhouette.  That’s where I started.  I traced the image of the fabric, but then I had to make a couple of modifications.  My trace of the design looked like this:

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That’s absolutely fine, but I wanted it cleaner and with less stuff around the edges.  I wanted to focus on the center part.  So, I made the trace bigger (click and drag on the corner) and rotated it the direction I wanted it to be (the green dot at the top of the design allows you to rotate).  Then I right clicked and selected “Release Compound Path”.

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This makes the image a bunch of separate cuts and lets you delete the floater pieces that you don’t want.  I deleted all the floaters and was left with this:

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Getting closer!  I opened my Eraser menu after that (over on the left, under the add text button) and erased the parts of the design that I didn’t want.

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At this point I would recommend selecting the entire design and right clicking and then selecting “Group”.  This way your whole image sticks together and stays the same size.

Now I just needed to fill in the missing pieces.  I used the “Draw Freehand” option to do that.  It’s right above the add text button.  You can see it highlighted in the image above, but it’s tiny.

Draw in one of the missing lines.  It doesn’t have to be great.  Mine started out like this:

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If you double click on the line you just drew, it will bring up the point editing menu.

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It will allow you to maneuver the end points of the line you drew over onto the lines in the design as well as modify the curves.  Just play with it a little!  And, if you screw up, use the undo function and try again.  Once you’ve got it how you like it, select the whole design and right click and select “Group” again.

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Repeat for the other 3 sides.

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Nice, right?  I had a 14” pillow form, so I wanted this design as close to 12 X 12 as possible.  I stretched it all the way to the edges of the cut area.

To cut freezer paper with your Silhouette, put the shiny side up and reverse your image (if necessary…it wasn’t really necessary on this).  Choose the normal paper settings and then slow it down just a little.

I ironed the design to some white cotton duck that I had on hand and then filled it in with craft paint mixed with a textile medium (so it doesn’t get crispy or crack).  The paint colors I used were Granny Smith from Martha Stewart Crafts and Ocean Breeze from Craft Smart.  They were picked strictly for how well they matched the Moorish Tile.

And the finishing touch?  Some pom pom trim from our friends over at Pick Your Plum.

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I kind of love it.

I bought the 2 bottles of craft paint for this project and our designer Brian provided me with the pillow form ($1.99 from IKEA) but I had everything else on hand.  I think this is a great inexpensive way to add a custom one-of-a-kind pillow to your space.

“Vintage” Sign Tutorial

Do you love the look of old metal signs?

I do.

Do you love the price of old metal signs?

I do not.

Plus, what are the odds that it’ll be just the right size and color?  Not good, friends…not good.

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So, when I had the idea to put one on Macy’s pallet headboard, I knew I’d have to DIY it.

My first stop was the ducting section at Lowe’s.

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They sell metal sheets elsewhere in the store (near the plexi glass), but they’re about 2-3 times as much.  Is it “nicer” metal?  Probably, but we don’t need nice for this project. Open-mouthed smile

The sheet measured 24” X 36”, but I wanted a slightly different size.  I cut about 2.5” off one of the long sides so my piece was 21.5” X 36”. You can score with a razor blade/utility knife and then snap the metal along the line, but it takes some SERIOUS patience and massive amounts of scoring.  I went the quick route and used tin snips (WEAR GLOVES) and then used a file to smooth the edge (WEAR GLOVES).

I liked the look of a metal border, so I taped off the edges and then I applied some yellow paint.  I used Jonquil from the new Martha Stewart Crafts by Plaid line.  That paint works on pretty much any surface, including metal.  You don’t need a great coat, because you’re going to sand it and beat it up.  Make sure it’s mostly covered, though.  Peel off the tape and sand.  I used an electric sander with 220 grit.  If you’re doing it by hand, you could use rougher paper (lower grit #).  Here’s a shot after I had sanded:

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I put the tape back on and applied some vinyl, cut with my Silhouette CAMEO™, in the center in the shape of a vintage Chevrolet logo.

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I traced the center part manually in the Silhouette Studio® Designer Edition software and then used the font “Hood Ornament” to add the lettering.  It’s not quite the same font that Chevy actually used, but only true car dorks would know that.

Once the vinyl was applied, I put on a coat of Martha Stewart Crafts by Plaid paint in carrot.

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After I peeled off the tape and vinyl:

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And then I sanded some more.  Once I was happy with it, I mounted it to the headboard with a screw in each corner.

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I will probably go back and put a clear coat on it, but it’s cold today and I’m a wuss.  Open-mouthed smile

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Mother’s Day Sign with Martha

So, you realize there are only 16 days left until Mother’s Day, right?

Coming off the awesome insanity that was SNAP! = Mother’s Day totally sneaking up on me

Fortunately, I had all this Martha (yes, THAT Martha) goodness to inspire me:

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Available at Michael’s and now also at JoAnn’s

If you haven’t already, you MUST check out the Martha Stewart Crafts by Plaid paints.  You can use them on virtually any surface (glass, metal, wood, terracotta, etc) and the colors/finishes are FAB.  And don’t even get me started on the tools!  The tops that screw directly onto the paint bottles make me WAY happier than they should.

So, what’d I make?  A sophisticated beachy sign/piece of art with my favorite mom saying:

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I started out with a board from the hardware store (cheap…$7 or so) that I had BC cut down a bit and 3 colors of paint.

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The one on the left is called Sea Lavender (I don’t know).  The one in the middle is Beach Glass.  And, the one on the right is Sterling.

I did a very thin coat (watered it down…is that called a wash?) of the Sea Lavender over the whole board.

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Then I picked out one of the stencils, a damask-y pattern from the Flourish set

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and used some stencil adhesive spray and the foam pouncer tops

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and I did some stenciling.

I applied the Sterling first

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and then layered on the Sea Glass.

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Once it was dry, I gave it a light sanding.  I wanted it to look old and faded.

The last step was to add the lettering.  I cut the phrase out of vinyl and removed where I wanted the paint to be and then applied it to my board.

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I used the Sea Glass with the foam pouncer top to fill in the vinyl stencil as well.

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Are you making a Mother’s Day gift for someone that has mothered you?

Will you tell me what it is?  (This isn’t actually for my mom…she reads my blog!)

 

Find my post disclosure here.

 

· Twitter: http://twitter.com/plaidcrafts (@plaidcrafts)

· Facebook: http://facebook.com/InspiredByPlaid

· Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/plaidcrafts

How To Paint a Mailbox

(Or at least how to make it polka dotted)

I promised the how to on the paint job from the mailbox I used in yesterday’s post, so, without further ado…

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The first thing you’ll want to do is remove the flag from the mailbox.  Mine had a nice little pin to pull out and the flag came right off.

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Next you need dots.  Lots and lots of dots.  I used vinyl and cut them with my Silhouette CAMEO™ and my Silhouette Studio® Designer Edition software, but you could easily trace and cut them by hand or even use a large punch.  Because I bought an oversized mailbox, I wanted my circles big…1.5”.  I made one and then used Object > Replicate > Fill page in my software to fill my vinyl.  A 9” by 24” piece gave me enough 1.5 dots for my whole mailbox.

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I drew a pencil line down the top of my mailbox and found the center.  I placed my first dot there.  I then spaced the dots 2 1/4” apart (from edge to edge) along the top of the box.

To make the next row, I drew a line 2 1/2” from the bottom edge of the dots and placed the bottom of the next row right up next to that line.

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I centered a row of dots down the front and back of the mailbox with the same spacing, and then filled in the ends the same way.

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Once all the dots were in place, I had a kid run her finger around all the edges to make sure that the vinyl was sealed tightly.  Then, I headed for the garage with a can of Valspar Gloss Exotic Sea.  (Random side note:  I’m enjoying the new Valspar spray paint cans immensely.  The big old trigger button makes the painting much more comfortable.)

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My favorite “duh” spray painting tip is to always start with your item upside down.  Get all the bottom edges painted nicely first.  I gave the whole mailbox a couple of coats and then peeled off the vinyl.  I used the hook tool from Silhouette, but again…not necessary.

Put the flag back on and you’re good to go (chains and bird perches optional)!  I’m totally wishing my mailbox wasn’t brick right about now.

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Check back tomorrow for a seriously awesome deal on the Silhouette CAMEO™ and the Silhouette Studio® Designer Edition software.

Basement Bathroom Makeover, courtesy of Lowe’s

The Lowe’s project/challenge this month was a bathroom.  I was stumped.  My house is newer, only 8 years old, so all of our bathrooms are in pretty good shape.  Our basement bathroom has been finished even less than that…maybe 5.5 years.  So, I picked a bathroom based on the process of elimination.

Kid bathroom?  Dr Seuss-y and I love it.  Don’t want to change that one yet.


Master bathroom?  Has a wall that doesn’t go all the way to the ceiling, which means that any painting would have involved also painting my entire master bedroom.  Last time I did that by myself it took 5 whole days.  And, if I picked a color that didn’t work with my existing bedding…  You see the size of project this could have turned into, right?

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Powder room?  Like one square yard.  You can’t get in there to photograph (we bloggers worry about these things) and I just redid the mirror in the last couple of months.  Plus, there’s not really space for anything other than the toilet and the pedestal sink.

So, the basement bathroom it was, in spite of the fact that there’s no natural light (back to that thing where we bloggers worry about our pictures Winking smile).

Truthfully, I NEVER use this bathroom.  As in, I have never ever ever bathed/showered down there (in 5.5 years) and maybe use the toilet portion once a month.  My kids have get to clean toilets when they talk back, so I can’t even think of the last time I was down there to clean it.  Once I got down there, I realized that this should have been my obvious choice from the get go.

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The towel bar had been ripped off by a kid doing chin ups.  The wall patches hadn’t been painted.  The toilet paper holder was broken and no longer able to actually hold toilet paper.  The kick place on the cabinet had fallen off.  And don’t even get me started on that wall color.  When I showed a friend the before picture, she called it “cat turd brown”.  Let’s also not talk about what happened when someone washed the formerly white rug with the towels:

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I was not a fan of the light fixture either…too pointy or something.

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So, I headed to Lowe’s for some inspiration.

I don’t have a way before picture of the towel rack situation, but you’ll just have to imagine that it was pulled completely off the wall based on the super human girth strength of one or more of my children. Because it had been securely drywall anchored in place (after the first time it came down), A LOT of the wall came out with it.  Instead of replacing a huge chunk of drywall, I decided to come up with another option for towel hanging.  I found this coat rack in the closet/garage/organization section at Lowe’s and thought it would be perfect:

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I picket up a new toilet paper holder and a light fixture and then headed back to get some molding to frame the mirror.  I also picked up 398472 paint samples.

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(That fabric is a laminated cotton from Riley Blake that I’ll be using for the new shower curtain.  That tutorial will be over on the Riley Blake blog in March.)

I went with a color called Modest Silver from Valspar and it is PERFECT.

When I went back to get the paint, I got some Liquid Nails (to fix the kick plate), painter’s tape, garbage bags (to wrap the toilet so I could paint behind it), white silicone (to adhere the frame to the mirror), spackle (I like the kind that goes on pink and turns white as it dries) and assorted cleaning supplies (because I really have no idea when that tub was last cleaned).

The other thing I want to mention about this makeover is that I did it entirely by myself…no husband help at all.  I’m not telling you this to mock him (he he he Open-mouthed smile), just so that you’ll know that YOU CAN DO THIS BY YOURSELF!

Want to see some after pictures?

(Keep in mind the shower curtain isn’t finished yet, so the fabric is just sort of draped over the rod.)

Kick plate glued back in place:

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Toilet paper holder replaced:

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Paint applied (and Cheetos eaten):

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Light fixture swapped:

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Coat rack turned towel rack installed:

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Mirror framed:

I gave everything a good scrubbing, too, and voila!  A much more pleasant bathroom!

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Don’t forget to pick up a FREE Subscription to Lowe’s Creative Ideas Magazine:

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You can also find Lowe’s Creative Ideas on Facebook.  (They’ve moved, so if you “liked” them before, you should “like” them again!)

And, now there’s a Lowe’s Creative Ideas blog.  Go have a look around.  You might recognize a face or two.

Disclosure:  Lowe’s provided me with a gift card for supplies for my bathroom makeover.

Playroom Organization + $100 Lowe’s Gift Card Giveaway

You all remember the great playroom purge a few weeks back?

We’ve had some great shelving in there since we finished our basement 5 or 6 years ago…

Super old crappy picture alert:

but the fabric bins were just not working out for us.  I had little kids when I bought them, and only one boy old enough to play with toys.  Since that time I’ve discovered something:  Those cloth bins do not hold up to little boys…at least not mine.  We had an incident with scissors where some of the handles were snipped  Several others were missing bottoms.  Pretty much all of them were bent in weird places.  And, there was no way to label them.

So, here’s my industrial boy friendly organization solution:

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PAINT BUCKETS!

I found these buckets at Lowe’s in the paint department.  They’re $6.57 each, so not a whole lot more expensive than the cloth bins.  They fit perfectly in my shelving (Pottery Barn Kids) and would also fit in ClosetMaid or IKEA stuff as well…anything where the holes are 12” X 12” or larger.

I also wanted my buckets labeled, and I wanted them labeled in a way that could be changed, because in a year or two we’ll be out of the Little People phase and have 5 buckets of Legos.  I thought about vinyl, but I wanted it to be easier to change than that.  My solution?

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Chalkboard paint.

I traced an oval onto some contact paper and then cut it out, leaving the edges in tact.

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Here’s my oval template, but really…it’s just an oval.  Find something and trace it. Open-mouthed smile

I applied the contact paper to the buckets as a stencil.  It’s a little bit tricky because of the slope of the bucket, but go slowly and make sure to seal the edges tightly.

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DO NOT SKIP THIS NEXT STEP:

Prime the bucket with primer for metal.  If you don’t, the paint will peel right off.

Apply 2 or 3 thin coats of chalkboard paint.  I like to alternate between vertical and horizontal coats to minimize brush lines.

Carefully remove your stencil and then label your buckets as desired.

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Easy and customizable!

Random questions I always get asked when I post pictures of my playroom:

What color is your paint?

It’s called Apple 2 and I got it at Lowe’s.  It’s pretty much my favorite light green ever.  I used Apple 1 in another room in the house, even.

Are those rain gutters?

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Yes. Yes they are.  I put them up in 2006 when we finished the basement and they’ve held up beautifully.  I saw the idea originally in Family Fun (see here).  They’re a great way to have the books visible and accessible to my kids and they made great use of an awkward spot behind the door.

And now for the good stuff:

LOWE’S IS GIVING ONE LUCKY CRAP I’VE MADE READER A $100 GIFT CARD!

To enter:

Leave a comment ON THIS POST (on the blog, not on Facebook or in response to your email subscription) saying which room in your home needs some Lowe’s organization help.

Optional bonus entry:

Like Lowe’s Creative Ideas on Facebook.  Leave a separate comment saying you did.

Giveaway is open to US residents age 18 and over only and closes Friday, January 27th at noon MST.  Winner will be chosen at random using a WordPress Plugin (And The Winner Is…) and notified by email.  Winner has 24 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen…I need the winner’s info before the end of the month!

And while you’re waiting to see if you won, head on over for your FREE Subscription to Lowe’s Creative Ideas Magazine:

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Disclosure:  Lowe’s provided me with a gift card to organize my playroom.  The paint and rain gutter projects happened many, many years before I started working with them…I’m a Lowe’s fan from way back.

Spider Web Plate – Martha Stewart Glitter Paint

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A couple of weeks ago, I was asked if I’d be interested in checking out the new Martha Stewart Crafts Decorative Paint Line, brought to you exclusively by Plaid Crafts.  And, because I’m smarter than I look, I said YES.

And shortly after that a box containing all of this (crappy cell phone picture alert)

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showed up at my door.

Delightful, right???

You can find the entire line exclusively at Michael’s stores in the US and Canada starting NOW!

So, why do we need another line of craft paints?  Because this is the big daddy of all craft paint lines!  It works on all crafting surfaces including wood, metal, glass, ceramic, terra-cotta and fabric.  It is indoor/outdoor safe and dishwasher-safe on glass.  And, there are 160 paint colors in five finishes (Satin, High Gloss, Glitter, Pearl, Metallic).  All come in 2 oz. bottles and are non-toxic!

And the tools?  AMAZING.  The attachments all screw directly on to your paint bottle and come with a separate bottle for cleaning.  That spongy roller thing?  Genius.  Let’s get on with my project…

Disclaimer: Because I adore Martha’s glitter (totally have the variety pack), I went straight for the glitter paints. The glitter paint is not “paint” like you’re thinking. It’s kind of clear with glitter suspended in it.  I found this paint is best used with the Fine Top Tips attachments or as an accent as opposed to being brushed on your entire project.

Supplies:

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Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Glitter Acrylic Paint (I used Obsidian)
Martha Stewart Crafts Fine Top Tips (pictured below)

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The tips come in 3 different sizes.  The large size is the one recommended for the glitter paint.  They appear pretty close to the same size, so look carefully before you put one on.

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They screw directly onto your paint bottle…fabulous, right?

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Mark a point on your plate for the center of the web.  I wanted mine off center.

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Take your squeeze bottle and draw a line from that point to the edge of your plate.

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Do the same thing 9 more times or so.

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Now fill in the cross webs (that’s totally a technical term).

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And a couple more rows of those…

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Now set it aside and let it dry.  It will darken up as it dries.

I cut off the ring part of a spider ring and stuck that on the plate as well.

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You’ll be seeing more of Martha’s paints ‘round these parts for sure.  Maybe even next week.  Winking smile

Full post disclosure here.

Guest Post: Neighbor Jami & Her Nursery Details

Jami’s back today to show us the rest of her nursery details!

This chandelier is another DI score…$2 whole dollars! I added some cream spray paint and these amazing magnetic pink crystals I found on clearance at Hobby Lobby and, voila! A dainty little chandelier!

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It is screaming for some little lamp shades. I have been visiting Hobby Lobby weekly and buying them out of lampshades similar to these self adhesive, cover–it-yourself lampshades. Apparently they only stock 2 at a time?

This lamp is another DI find:

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The lamp post was cute, so I spray painted it cream but the shade that came with it was pretty beat up, so I bought a “cover-it-yourself” lamp shade from Hobby Lobby and came up with this.

And of course, the name art.

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Char actually did most of the work on this. (Char interruption: That is not true. Jami was the mastermind, I was just the man power.) I LOVE the way it turned out. Here is a better picture, minus the frilly iron decor above it.

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The room is small and there wasn’t really room for a traditional changing table.  My fabulous neighbor Decorator Wendy came up with this solution:

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Handy to have a laundry basket underneath for all those newborn blowouts, right?

And then I hung the diapers and wipes bins on the wall above it.

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Who wants to tell the cat her days of hanging out in here are numbered?

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-Jami

Most of the curtains are done, I just need to finish the valance portion.  Look forward to that project next week!

-Char

Guest Post: Neighbor Jami & Her Nursery Furniture

Neighbor Jami is back today telling us about the paint technique she used on her nursery furniture!

As far as Lucy’s furniture went, I had none…at least none I wanted to use. My existing crib was way too bulky and masculine for a dainty little girl’s room, and I had given all my other baby stuff away.


So I put the word out via Facebook that I was in need of a crib and would be willing to take one off someone’s hands if they were needing to get rid of one. Within 2 hours I had landed one from my pal Mindy.

Next, I bought a solid wood dresser at the Bountiful DI for $25.00. Have I mentioned I love the DI? I do.

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I painted these both using a spray paint by Valspar in “Pistachio”. After a few coats and letting them completely dry I sanded the edges and then rubbed “Distress Ink” in the color of “vintage photo” on the sanded areas. (Distress Ink is basically a rubber stamp pad you can find at any craft store.) I then finished by spray painting a clear coat in a satin finish.

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My Rocking chair:

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My camera stinks so you can’t fully appreciate the color. It is called, “Crystal Aqua” by Valspar. A cushion is in the process as we speak. I also lightly sanded the edges and glazed the edges the same way as mentioned before.
My cute and talented neighbor and friend Decorator Wendy gave me these cute little boxes she purchased from Pottery Barn, to use next to my changing table. James painted these using the same “Aqua-Crystal” paint by Valspar that was used on the rocking chair. Then I cut out these labels in white vinyl using my silhouette.

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-Jami

Hopefully the next installment will feature Char actually having sewed some bedding. If not, we might have to break up!
-Char


And, one more thing.  Apparently Valspar has changed the name of the spray paint color in question.  It is not longer called “Pistachio”.  It’s something like “Leaf Green”, but the paint guys assured Jami it’s the exact same color.  I’ll updated with the official name after my next trip to Lowe’s!


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