Our Crafts Category

Nov. 2012 5

Chanel Shoes

Since I missed last week’s post, I’ll (hopefully) be putting up two this week.

I have this pair of Nine West camel colored pumps that are hands down my favorite shoes. They fit perfect, they are comfy, I just love them. Maybe I loved them a little too hard because by the end of this summer they were looking down right rough. I had a plan in my head that I was going to turn these plain camel shoes into cheetah print. But painting on a pattern I could cover up just the worn spots, while not painting the whole shoe, in theory extending the life of my shoes. I have done painted shoes in the past. I loved the way they turned out. However, the first time I wore them out they cracked instantly. I was determined to come up with another way.

My Nine West Pumps

So I went ahead and painted on all these spots. It was a long processes that required first priming the surface, then adding a dark brown, then adding a black. And the result? I hated it! They were so not cute on any level. I had to come up with a plane B.

While scrolling through Pinterest one day, I found the perfect muse shoe: this pair of Chanel flats that look like they have individually laid black and white pearls. I haven’t been able to find a price on them, but average Chanel flats are between $400-$700, so either way, way out of my price range.

Chanel Inspiration Shoes

I went to the craft store and bought white pearly puffy and black shinny puffy paint. Yes, puffy paint. The stuff you used to make terrible t-shirts with back in the early 90’s. I figured that since the puffy paint was fairly plastic it would flex with the shoe as I wore it instead of cracking like normal paint. Also, I needed something that would hold its shape, at least a little, so it would look like pearls.

So I marked of my toe cap, the heel, and a stripe down the back as my black sections. Then I marked off the instep and heel as two separate ‘contour’ sections for the white. And then, I just got to work. I was done in 10 minutes!

Just kidding…it took about a week to do all the dots. It is a long process, but it is mindless enough to do in front of the TV. I have to say, I completely love my shoes. I’m actually wearing them right now as I’m writing this post on my lunch break. I can’t wait to redo another pair of shoes using this method. I think next time I might do a pattern of some sorts. The possibilities are endless!

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Feb. 2012 23

Feather Belt

I saw this adorable on Anthro’s website and thought it would be a great fast project. I’ve had this bag of feathers that have been sitting in my craft bin for ever. It’s the perfect use of left over supplies. I wish I would have had spotted feathers like in the original, but I like the mixture I used.


You’ll need:

-Elastic, enough for around your waist (I used 1″ wide)

-Scrap fabric


-Closure (hook and eye)


1. Cut 4 strips of fabric 4.5″ by 2″

2. Sew together pieces, with a 90 degree point at the end. Trim excess and turn inside out.

3. Now you’ll tuck the ends of the elastic into the open ends of the fabric tabs. You’ll want to pin each tab in place. Check the sizing. You want just the tips to touch.

4. Zigzag stitch the end closed. Top stitch around the tab. This just keeps the tab flat.

5. Sew on the closures. It’s better to do it at this stage, before you put the feathers.

6. Now all you have to do is glue on the feathers! I used ivory, brown, rust, and black feathers. I finished it off with a jade bead shaped like a bear.

Since Vlad is at work, I took the photos on my dress form.

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Jan. 2012 6

Paint-along: Owl Clock

A while back I showed you a sketch for what would become my first paint-along project. I’ve had this done and sitting above my fireplace for a while now, but I just haven’t gotten around to putting together a post. As a note, you don’t have to make this into a clock. Make it a cute painting with what ever colors you want. It will look great in any house. Or print out the owls small and make little personal paintings as gifts to friends.  This is a beginner level painting for sure, just about anyone can do it. I promise! It only seems long because I explained the steps as I went.

First a word about my painting style. For the most part, I blend on canvas. There are only 2 parts of this tutorial that require this technique, but it’s easy to follow along. Secondly, I almost exclusively paint with craft paint. I know it is a little taboo not to use “real acrylics” but craft paint is way cheaper and I’m used to it now. I typically buy what ever is on sale, but just don’t buy the ‘gloss’ ones. And lastly, I buy cheap paint brushes. I tend to buy the multipacks that come with a variety of sizes. I recommend getting a basic one (like this one that I own) and a thin line brush set (like this) to start out with. And for this painting, you’ll need a large brush, around 2″.


So here’s what you’ll need:

-16×20 canvas, primed

-Clock kit

- Balsa wood: 1 square (or round piece) ½” thick. And 1 long piece cut to length to fit just inside the canvas stretchers

- Scissors

- Large Brush (about 2″ wide)

- Detail/thin line brush

- Small brushes

-Angle Brush (optional)

Paint Colors:


-Dark Brown



-Light Blue

-Light Purple

-Skintone/light peach





The Background:

1. Take your large brush and dip it a little bit of water. Then dip it lightly into the light blue paint.

2. You are going to take long strokes, the length of the canvas, with the blue paint. By adding the water, you are giving it a more translucent and layered look. Streaks of lighter and darker blues are good. But for the first coat, it should be pretty light over all. Let dry (use a hairdryer to speed this up)

First Coat

Second Coat

3. Now you are going to do the same exact thing, just a second coat. Let dry completely.

4. Tracing the birds: (the following is PC based, sorry Mac people)

4.1 Right click on the images below

4.2 Click “Save Images As”

4.3 Navigate to where you want your images to be saved, in this case the desktop, and save the image

4.4 Now, right click the file icon, select “Open With” and then select Paint

4.5 In paint, go to “File” then “Page Set up”

4.6 In the bottom right corner check “fit to 1 by 2”. This will expand the image to a larger size.

4.7 Print. Cut and take the image together so it is one complete Owl.

4.8 For this step you can use normal pencil, but charcoal works amazingly better. Cut the owl out close to the outline. Cover the back with charcoal.

4.9 Place the owls on the drawing where you’d like them. Tape with painters tape or with scotch tape.

4.10 Trace with a pencil. This will transfer the image to the canvas.

5. Now for the branches. I added a little bit of cream to the brown to make a slightly lighter shade of brown. This way, it won’t blend in too much with the owl. Using the Medium brush, free hand the branch so that it goes across the page and under the owl’s feet. Add some smaller branches if you want. While the light brown is still wet, add some dark brown to the lower side of the branches. Blend on canvas.

Light brown

Add dark brown


6. Now it is simple “color by number” so to speak. Here’s a break down of what goes where. You’ll want to mostly use the small brushes and maybe the angle brush for filling in the spots. You’ll probably need multiple coats of each, which can be time consuming. Make sure in between coats, you let the paint dry, otherwise you’ll just smug off the old paint.

7. Now comes time for the outlining. I know it seems scary but there are two tricks to this that will make your life way easier. First, use a long skinny brush and long slow strokes. This will make a nice smooth line. Secondly, add just a little water to the paint to thin it out. Thick clumpy paint will hinder you in making a nice line.


Sign your painting! It’s your work of art



To add the clock:

- Cut a hole in the center of the owl’s tummy large enough that the shaft of the clock and get through.

- Hold your long piece of balsa behind the canvas. Using a marker, go through the hold in the tummy and mark the balsa wood

- Glue your ½” piece of balsa to the long piece on the opposite side of the board from where you just marked (so you can still see the mark)

- Now you are going to drill through all of your balsa wood, at that hole location. You’ll want to use a bit that is large enough that you can slide the clock shaft through easily.

- Mount your balsa wood to the back of the canvas, I used hot glue and it worked just fine.

- Install clock according to kit directions.



Done!!! How beautiful!

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Aug. 2011 3

Guest Post: Table Coasters

My friends over at Factory Direct Crafts have given me a break this week and prepared a tutorial for you. They are super cute…check it out!

Guest post by Jennifer Richards

How to Create Homemade Table Coasters

I have always enjoyed creating decorations and crafts to use around the house. Instead of decorations, I’ve decided to make some drink coasters which are very useful during the summer months. These are a great way to keep your table in great condition while enjoying a nice cold glass of lemonade or ice tea. I found this great tutorial, which explains how to create your own homemade coasters on the Factory Direct Craft blog. This guide is great if you would like to create these coasters yourself.

For this project you will need blank ceramic tiles, lightweight fabric, hard coat modge podge, foam paintbrush, clear glaze spray, pinking shears, felt, scissors, and craft glue. I was able to find great deals on craft supplies necessary for this project at their store.
1. Cut your fabric into squares that are one half inch smaller than the tiles. Once you have these ready, trim the edges.

2. A thin layer of Modge Podge should be spread on the top tile and then place the fabric square so it rests smoothly on the tile. It should be centered so you can see the tile all around the piece of fabric.

3. Next, apply a small coat of Modge Podge over the tile and allow it to dry.
Tile Coasters5 Tile Coasters
4. You should then spray two coats of glazy to seal the coaster. Only apply the second coat once the first is dried.
5. The final step is to cut a small felt square. This square should be smaller than your tile and glue them to the bottom of each coaster. This helps prevent your table from being scratched.