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Thursday, September 24, 2009


This project would be great for a children's party. Cut out and glue the lolly costumes before the party and let each child decorate their own. If you are not having a Halloween party, change the pattern to match the party theme. Maybe a clown face, train, flower, etc.
If your child is having a Halloween party at school, you could make one of these covers for each child and personalize them by writing each child's name on the back or front with fabric paint.
The lolly costumes are inexpensive and are a quick and easy project.

What you need:
1. Felt
2. Fabric paint ( I wanted black glitter paint to decorate the edges of my pieces. I could not find black glitter paint so I substituted with glitter glue )
3. Paper ( I used plain copy paper )
4. Scissors
5. Ink pen
6. Pin backs
7. Fabric glue
8. Lollipops
To begin, lay your lollipop on the piece of paper. Make a mark at the top and sides of the lollipop. This will give you a guide for the size needed. If you are using a round lollipop, you will need to allow extra room for the lolly to fit inside the costume. In that case, allow at least 1/2" to 1" extra space when you mark around the lolly.

Draw the shape you want, using the guides you marked. I made my ghost a little smaller than my original guide because I decided to use a smaller lollipop.

Cut your shapes out. Mark one side of your pattern with a 1 and the other side with a 2. You will need to trace the back and front ( 1 & 2 ) of each shape onto the backside of the felt. Tracing the front and back of your pattern will allow you to have both sides on the right side of the felt once the project is complete.

Having said that, I must be honest, I cannot see a difference between the "front" and "back" of felt. I figure the side that has the manufactures sticker on it is the back.

Trace your pattern onto the felt. Cut around your pattern. To make these neat and clean, cut slightly inside your pen mark. Personally, for a project like this, I don't worry too much about neatness.

***** This next step is optional *****
Before gluing the front and back together, glue on the pin back. If you want to make sure the pin back will stay on the costume, sew it on. It will only take a few stitches and it will be easy if done before gluing the front and back together. Including the pin back makes the lolly costumes useful after the lollipop is gone.

Glue the front and back together with the fabric glue, making sure you glue the wrong sides together.

Now the fun begins!! Decorate your lollipop costume with fabric paint. Make them all the same or all different.

This poor thing!!! Not only is he a ghost ( which can't be good ) but right after I painted on his eyes, I dropped him. Of course, he landed upside down and his eyes splatted. Hmmmm, is splatted a real word??? Anyway, I had to repair his eyes which caused them to be extremely large in the end.

If you make these costumes in the shape of flowers, it would be cute to fill a flower pot with Styrofoam and stick the lollipop handles into the flowerpot.

The ghosts and pumpkins could be displayed in the same way by substituting the flower pot for a plastic black cauldron.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Years ago, I decided to make my daughter a wooden keepsake box. I wanted to woodburn a rose on the top of the box. My standard woodburner was doing a very poor job. I think the wood I selected for the keepsake box was too dense (or something ) for my little burner. My dad, who owns a tool store, solved the problem by purchasing an industrial woodburner for me. It was an amazing burner, it got twice as hot as a standard woodburner. It did an awesome job on the keepsake box but...it burned way too hot for other projects. I was forced to retire my super hot woodburner after I completed the keepsake box, but I am sure I will find a use for it again one day.
In the meantime, I have only used my regular woodburner for all my projects and recently, sadly, my standard woodburner burned it's last wood.
So...I thought I would use the purchase of a new woodburner as a tutorial.
This is a very satisfying craft because you are able to see your results immediately.
I purchased the woodburner at my local Michael's. It was $12.99. It came with a holder and 4 points. I also purchased, at Michael's, a pre-made wood box for $2.99.
To finish my project, I bought Minwax Wood Finish at my local hardware store for $4.89. I selected a Cherry finish but of course there are many finishes to choose from - some lighter and some darker.

****Please Note****
1. Be extremely careful, the woodburner heats to 950 degrees (510 degrees C).
2. Never, ever leave the woodburner unattended.
3. Always, always use the woodburner stand.
4. Remember, you are burning wood. There is smoke - a lot of smoke. Wear a mask if you are sensitive to smoke.
The 4 points with the burner were:
1. Shading point ( I didn't use this point for shading in this project )
2. Flow point
3. Universal point
4. Cone point

To duplicate this project:
Put the Shading point on your woodburner and turn the burner on. Once heated, press the Shading point down on the box along the bottom edge, pointy side upwards. Next, press the same Shading point along the top edge of the box, pointy side down.
( I forgot to take a picture of this first step but you can see the top and bottom edges in the picture below )

Turn the woodburner off and cool completely - please, do not burn yourself!!!! While the burner is cooling, select a stencil for the box top. I used an ivy stencil. ( I should not show you this stencil!!! I am embarrassed by the 50 layers of green stencil paint on it - uggg I should have washed it after each use ).

Please do not limit yourself to a stencil. You can freehand anything you want. You can also trace something onto the box. If you do use a stencil and you want it to look less stencily - just connect the lines where they are broken on the stencil.

The box top with the ivy stencil penciled on it - pictured below.

Do not press hard with the pencil while tracing or drawing. Woodburning is not precise like drawing on a smooth piece of paper, the burner may slip some and veer slightly off your penciled lines. Therefore, you will need to erase any visible pencil marks.If you press hard on the pencil, it will leave a permanent indention on the wood where you erase the pencil lines.

Remove the Shading point and attach the Flow point to the cooled woodburner, turn the burner on. Burn over all of your pencil lines. If you want to, you can add to or change your traced pattern, while you are woodburning. I added curly tendrils to my project.

Turn the woodburner off and cool completely. Remove the Flow point and attach the Cone point, turn the burner back on. Select areas on your project that seem a little plain and use the Cone point to add three little dots, in a triangle pattern, on those areas. Do this by placing the Cone point straight down on the wood and press slightly, it will make perfect little circles.

To decorate the top edge, use the same Cone point to make 3 dots and then a line - continue around the box. If you do not feel comfortable doing this without a guide, draw it on the box with your pencil first.

Turn the box on it's side and repeat the 3 dot triangle around the outside top edge.

At this point, trace, stencil or freehand a pattern around the outside center of the box. Of course this is optional.

I wrote "Secret Garden" with a pencil using my own handwriting.

While the Cone point is still on the woodburner, turn the box upside down and sign it.

Turn the woodburner off and cool completely. Remove the Cone point and attach the Universal point, turn the burner on. Use the Universal point to burn the pattern (if any) along the outside center of the box.

Lastly, if you choose, stain your box. I think the stain gives the box a finished look.

A few final tips:
*You can dye your piece to make it colorful. In this case, I could have dyed the ivy leaves green. There are colored wood dyes on the market but you can also use regular clothing dye.*

*You can add a layer or 2 of clear satin or glossy finish.*

*You can embellish your piece by gluing on gems, charms, etc.*

*You can line the inside of the box if you want to.*

*You can personalize your project. If you are making it for a gift, woodburn the recipients name on it.*

*You can glue 4 wooden balls (with a flat top) or cabinet pulls to the bottom of your box to give your box a lift.*

Friday, September 18, 2009


In my spare time (you know, between my new job, Etsy, Zibbet, Blog, Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, etc, etc - LOL) I decided to take a metal clay class at the College of Southern Maryland.

It was such an AWESOME experience!!!!

The class was taught by a wonderful instructor - Barbara Diane Hance. She was informative, patient and knowledgeable.

It was a 2 day class. On our first day, we were taught all about the different types of metal clay. We also learned about textures and other techniques.
We were given a metal clay tool kit and a package of clay - pictured below.

We made a pendant first. We were provided with the instructors supply of many, many textures, cutters, CZ beads and everything else we would need to apply our imagination.

I LOVE writing, so I selected a texture sheet with writing on it. As you can see in the picture below, you can not tell the texture is writing - LOL, what was I thinking????
I chose a large and small heart cutter and pressed the CZ in the center.
Barb taught us several bail techniques and I chose the bail that is made by rolling a long thin rope and wrapping it around a straw. I placed my bail off center cause it matches my personality!!
I am pleased with my very first metal clay project!!!

Next, we made earrings. I selected the same small heart cutter.

Barb took our pieces home and fired them in her kiln.
During our second class, our pieces were returned to us, ready to complete our projects. We cleaned the pieces with a wire brush first (ouch!!! I didn't like this part) and then Barb tumbled them in her tumbler.
We were given the option to patina or not, using a liver of sulfur mix.
I applied the patina to my earrings but not my pendant.
Next, we put our earrings together. We selected the beads we wanted and were provided with earring findings and silver wire.
We were taught wire wrapping. This is a technique I usually avoid because I use my fingers to wrap and end up with sore fingers. But...our awesome instructor taught us how to wire wrap using 2 pair of chain nose pliers!! WooHoo, you will see more wire wrapping in my pieces now!!

We had clay left over after we made the pendant and earrings. Barb told us we could make something with the left over clay and she would teach us how to fire the pieces using a torch. I made 3 initials - J for me, C for my daughter and D for my friend. I made them by rolling the clay into a long rope and shaping the rope into the letters. Then I rolled the rope initials flat. I rolled one of the files from my metal clay tool kit over my letters to make the texture on them.

Barb taught us how to torch fire during our second class. She fired one of my letters and I fired the other 2. Once fired, these pieces were placed in the tumbler. Now all I have to do is add a jump ring and chain to each one.
I am really, really sad that I can't attend Barb's advanced metal clay class :(
I am burdened with a conflict of schedules.
But...I will attend her next advanced class and am looking forward to it!!!
Now...I have a real treat for you!!!! I emailed Barb and asked permission to provide a link to her website on this post. I also asked for and received permission to share pictures of some of her AMAZING pieces.
Here is her website - Adornments By Diane.
Please visit her site to learn more about metal clay, classes and see many more of her lovely pieces!!!
I am awed by Barb's metal clay skills!!
Like this lovely, lacy seahorse.
This beautiful leaf design would make a wonderful gift for any lady but especially someone with an autumn birthday.
This is a gorgeous necklace!!! Have you ever seen a cuter toggle????
This fish is absolutely beautiful!!!!
And...Barb makes other pieces as well. Like this stunning paperweight.

Visit Barb's site now to see the rest of her unbelievably beautiful items.
If you live in Southern Maryland, I suggest you attend one of her classes if you are interested in metal clay or any of the other crafts she teaches. She's a wonderful instructor!!!
I have to mention Barb also makes custom pieces, just email her with your design!!!

Monday, September 7, 2009


MooBeeTees is an adorable Etsy shop that caters to little ones.
When you visit this shop, you will find the cutest OOAK appliqued tees you've ever seen!!!!

MooBeeTees Bio:

MooBeeTees is an Australian crafter whose shop is a place where you can find tees (and all sorts of other items!) that you won't find in any stores. All of the designs come from her imagination - with help from her children - who knows what you will find! MooBeeTees believes in having fun with crafting and using her imagination to make little people smile!

The "Your A Star" tees pictured above are personalized!!! They are sweet and unique. I can imagine how special your little one will feel wearing one.

MooBeeTees also offers a Limited Edition Signature Tee. What child wouldn't absolutely love this imaginative, super cute tee???? (Such an adorable model too !!).

Do you need a creative, fun and colorful way to teach your child to count? This Number Bunting
is the perfect counting aid. Plus, it does double duty as a wonderful wall hanging for your child's room!

This cute Bones Tee is the perfect gift for your special little boy. We all know how much little boys love doggies :)

You will also find many, super sweet, hair ties at MooBeeTees.
Now...something special for YOU! This Personalized Bunting will add the perfect, professional touch to your craft show display!!!
It will also be a fabulous decoration for any holiday or special occasion celebration.
You have just seen a small sample of the treasures that await you at MooBeeTees.
I hope you will visit this awesome shop today :)

Sunday, September 6, 2009


The winner of the necklace giveaway is MooBeeTees !!!
We are working out the details for her feature and Etsy mini.

In the meantime, please check out her shop, it's ADORABLE!!!!

Thank you all for following, entering the giveaway and leaving the awesome comments.
You are the BEST!!!!!


Some of the items in my Etsy store. Stop by!!! http://www.baremoose.etsy.com