Dyeing & Stamping Wood Clothespins

I’d like to preface this post by saying it was half craft FAIL and half craft win! It’s okay though, because now you can learn from my mistakes. You’ll see what I mean shortly. πŸ™‚

I started out with two different sized wooden clothespins – the small ones from Walmart in the office supply section, and the large ones from the dollar bins at AC Moore. That would be why I have it classified as a “Dollar Store Craft;” the rest of the supplies you will likely have on hand!

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For the large ones, I simply soaked them in some really strong coffee. I did end up putting a glass bowl on top of them to push them down, so they were completely covered. I left them soak for about 2 hours.

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For the small ones, which I wanted to be multi-colored, I followed tutorials found online at random craft blogs. I used regular food coloring with a dash of vinegar. I’m not sure what the vinegar does, but the website looked legit so I figured there must be a reason. lol. To help the colors adhere better maybe?

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I filled up mason jars with hot water and added about a 1/4 cup vinegar to each one, and about 20-25 drops of food coloring. I also did a batch of the small ones in the coffee. I let them all soak for about 2 hours.

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Then lay them out on a paper towel to dry. Be careful to protect your counters because the food coloring tends to stain.

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I let all of these guys dry for about 3 days to make sure the large ones were dry all the way through.

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Here’s where the “FAIL” part comes in. The various tutorials and instructions said to remove the metal springs before dyeing. However I was feeling lazy and decided to skip that part. And now I see why you SHOULD! They rusted pretty bad and then the rust seeped into the wood, creating a lot of dark streaking. They look pretty yucky. I am sure I’ll find a use for them but I did not think they were nice enough to stamp and sell in my Etsy shop as I had planned! 😦  Other than that little snafu, the actual dyeing seemed to work great! I shall try it again some day!

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For the large clothespins, I wanted to make some stand-up photo holders.

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I found it was easiest to apply the ink to the stamp, and then lay down the stamp on the table and press down the clothespin onto the rubber face of the stamp.

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I did them by sections, above and below the spring, since the stamp wasn’t tall enough to cover the whole thing. πŸ™‚

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I did the same thing with the small clothespins – the ones that were coffee stained. For some reason those did not rust liked the colored ones. Maybe it was the vinegar that did it??? Hmmm….

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And here are the final products that I photographed to go in my Etsy store. I love the results!

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They were easy and fun and would make a great product for craft shows. Thanks for stoppin by and happy crafting!

Dollar Store Spoons Turned Primitive Kitchen Decor

I have done some posts in the past using this same technique on dollar store spoons, but this was the first time I did a large batch and did a variety of colors with the intent to sell them in groups.

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They were easy and fun, but a bit time consuming. I started with a bunch of spoons from various dollar stores, all of which were 4 or 5 to a pack.

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Instead of just sticking with black, I spray painted them in all different colors including this fun beachy blue-green. πŸ™‚

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Here are the exact brands/colors I used just incase anyone was wondering. I would highly recommend NOT using the American Accents Midnight Blue (the navy one) because it took a million coats to get it close to the cap color, and they just did not come out well. After distressing them, parts of the spoon had an “electric blue” look, and not really the Americana blue I was going for.

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Let them dry thoroughly for a good couple days before sanding them. Sanding tacking paint is NOT fun!

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Now time to “distress.” I used sanding block which are easier for all the little nooks and crannies. I would recommend a medium to coarse sanding block for a quicker sanding. All I had on hand was the fine grit, which worked well, just took a little longer. There is no way to mess up sanding, so just go for it! Imperfections don’t matter since you’re going for the primitive look anyway!

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Once they were all sanded, I wanted to grubby them up, for a primitive, country look. I used this antiquing medium (the brand Folk Art) found in the paint section of the craft store. You also could use regular brown paint or stain, as you’re going to be rubbing it on and then rubbing it off again, to stain the exposed wood left from sanding.

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Here’s my solution to keeping my table clean…I use rolled out brown kraft paper, also found at the dollar store, as a work station. It’s quick, easy, disposable! Great for the messy crafter, like me!

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Simply rub a generous amount of antiquing gel all over the spoon, and then wipe off the excess. It will soak down into the unfinished edges left from sanding, to create an old, worn look. Paper towels or old rags work great. I used a soft car drying cloth (also found at the dollar store; can ya tell I love that place?!?!).

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The difference is more noticeable on some colors than others. Obviously the lighter colors are going to show more on the light colors. Here are some examples of the difference – before and after using the antiquing gel.

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And here is the “set” I plan to sell in my Etsy store. Tan, red, grayish-brown, minty green, yellow, and black. I love the end result and the color combo. Kinda glad the blue didn’t work out!

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There are many ways to display these spoons. Throw them in an old can or mason jar…

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Or add some pip berries, tin stars, or other fun accessories.

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My friend Lisa over at Booth #555 did an awesome batch of spoons with a similar technique if you’d like to check them out! http://www.booth555.com/2012/11/primitive-kitchen-themed-wooden-spoons.html. Here is an example of Lisa’s kitchen themed spoons!

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If you give these a try, email me a pic and I’ll be sure to post it here! I love seeing different interpretations on the same project! Happy 4th of July and hope everyone has a great weekend! πŸ™‚

“I Love You Because…” Dry Erase Frame

Control your gag reflex because you’re about to experience a super sappy craft, fit for Valentine’s Day. It’s also a great “everyday craft” in my opinion. It’s the “I love you because…” dry erase frame! It’s kinda dorky but I think it’s really cute and wanted one for my new house. After all, my boy does a lot for me and I am so very grateful to have him. πŸ™‚ It’s soooooo easy and could easily be a “Dollar Store Craft” if you are to purchase your frames at the dollar store! Buy cheap wood frames and spray paint perhaps?

This craft can be done in a variety of ways. For my version, all you need is a frame, paper of your choice (plain white, brown kraft paper, scrapbook paper, etc.) and a printer.

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Just print out “I love you because” on your paper.

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I used the paper frame insert to trace for the correct size.

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Cut it out, insert in frame, and DONE!

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Thanks to Pinterest and the interwebs, you can find a huge variety of variations on this project. Making a chalk board instead of dry erase, using scrapbooking letter stickers instead of printing, etc. So many options! πŸ™‚

Β It’s just a cute, fun thing to have on the counter. You could make one as a gift, for your kids, or even mass produce them to sell at a craft booth with a little dry erase marker tied on. I love SUPER EASY projects like this! Happy crafting and hope everyone has a great weekend! πŸ™‚

Dry Erase Paint Chip Calendar

Yes I stole paint chips, and no I don’t feel bad about it! We ARE planning on painting our bathroom at some point so I was…umm…getting ideas for that. Hehe. I’ve been wanting to do a paint chip dry erase board for ages and thought it would be handy to have on the counter with all kinds of summer plans starting to pop up!

First I went over to one of my favorite websites http://www.design-seeds.com to get some color palette ideas. I found many I liked and ended up going with an overall muted theme. This is a fun site to get color ideas for all of your projects…

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This could easily become a “Dollar Store Craft” if you got a frame and dry erase markers at your local dollar store. I actually looked there first and couldn’t find a frame I liked, so I got this one from Wally World. I like the white frame with the white stripes on the paint chips. An 11 x 14 is the perfect size to fit 7 average sized paint chips, side by side.

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Take out mat and lay the paint chips down facing the glass. I put a small piece of tape on the backs to hold them together, so minimize shifting under the glass.

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I cut a small strip of burlap for the top where I will write the month. You could use anything here – plain paper or a fun scrapbooking paper would work great too.

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The white lines aren’t perfectly straight, but oh well. I’m too lazy to take it apart and line them up. πŸ™‚

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Here she is, all finished! I am looking for the perfect place to hang it. A paper towel or napkin wipes the dry erase marker right off. I will likely use this to organize dinner ideas for the week too.

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The burlap strip I used along the top of the calendar was left over from a bunch of burlap I bought to cover one of my walls at the co-op. The wall was gross and covered in scoffs and nail holes, and I just don’t have time to paint it right now. I opted for an easier and cuter option…covering it in a giant sheet burlap! I bought 8 yards at Joann’s and hung it up using a stapler (I was going to use a staple gun but couldn’t find one, but a normal stapler worked fine on the soft drywall). I then nailed up some grapevine swags along the top to sort of distract from the uneven edges and also give it a country look. I love the results.

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I did a major over-haul on my booth and moved stuff around to give it a fresh look. I also brought in a bunch of new pieces. Here are some updated pics. πŸ™‚

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Happy Memorial Day and thank you to all those who have served and continue to serve! You are all true HEROES and we thank you!

The Redneck Wine Glass

I have been wanting to do this project forever! It’s the one and only “Redneck Wine Glass”! I’ve seen them everywhere from Etsy to Bass Pro Shops to our very own Finger Lakes Wineries, and they sell anywhere from $10-$20 a piece! This leaves a lot of room for profit if you decide to make them yourself! I have always thought they’d be a great item to sell at my co-op considering we are kinda out in the country. πŸ™‚ I love how they came out and am so excited to share them with you!!!

Start out with mason jars and clear candle sticks. I got all of these at The Dollar Tree, but I am sure you could get them even cheaper if you did some thrifting!

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My glue of choice was E-6000, as many other tutorials had suggested. I have seen mixed feedback on using E-6000 for this particular project. Some people say that it does not hold. Others have never had a problem, even after multiple (hand) washings. My glasses seem quite sturdy and I could not pull them apart, even with great force. On the tags I made, I recommended hand washing to prevent breakage (many reports of them falling apart were only after they went through a dish washer!)

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The E-6000 dries crystal clear. Use a good amount of glue to ensure a good seal!

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I let mine sit like this, undisturbed for 4 days. Those who had problems with them falling apart mentioned they had only let them dry for 24 hours. I’d definitely recommend letting them dry for at least 48-36 hours or more before handling them!

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Next, for the tags, I used this brown kraft paper I got at the craft store. It’s a thin card stock and was perfect for these tags!

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I made up some a little blurb for the tags: “The Official Redneck Wine Glass ~ Hey y’all – You don’t have to be a hillbilly to enjoy this one of a kind glass, but you do have to have a sense of humor! Fill β€˜er up with your favorite wine, beer, or moonshine, kick up your heels, and GIT-R-DONE! Care instructions: Hand wash in warm soapy water & air dry.” This text is a combo of tags I found online with my own twist. πŸ™‚ Feel free to use this wording if you are thinking of making your own tags!

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I used Microsoft Powerpoint to lay out the text, saved the file as a PDF, and kept making test prints to get the size right. I kept shrinking the font size til the blurb fit perfectly into my tag hole-punch! This tag punch is a large one – 3.5″ tall by 2″ wide.

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To add some color, I traced the lids onto some scrapbook paper to make little lid covers. I used gingham and stars – but you could customize your glasses for any occasion by using different lid designs and themes! πŸ™‚

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And here they are! I tied a small strip of burlap on the stem of the glass (you could use raffia or torn homespun too) and then tied on my little tags with some twine.

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Woohoo! I looooove them! I only made 6 for now but am totally making more! I’ll let ya know if they do well at the co-op! Hope everyone has a Happy St. Patty’s Day!

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Dollar Store Salt Shakers + Vintage Buttons = Button Flower Bouquets

It’s me again! I am on a crafting BINGE! I don’t know what’s gotten into me! Maybe because it’s been sunny and “Spring” feeling these last few days? I don’t know, but I’m going with it! πŸ™‚

I have a fun “dollar store craft” for you! I made these cute little vintage button bouquets using Dollar Tree salt shakers (you can also find some at the thrift store for super cheap, like the ones here on the left) and some buttons and wire that I had on hand. So easy and a perfect Spring craft!

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I also used twine for a bow accent, and shredded paper (also found at Dollar Tree) to stuff inside the shakers and help hold wire stems in place. I suggest using a pair of pliers that have a cutting edge on them, so you don’t jack up your scissors while cutting the wire.

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To make the stems, you are going to twist the two sides of the wire together. Fold the wire piece over and cut it roughly the length you want the stem to be – keeping in mind it will be a tad shorter after twisting it together.

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Layer your buttons to make fun, colorful little “flowers.” Slide the ends of the wire through your button flower and start twisting them together tightly, to create a sturdy stem. Cut off the excess wire.

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Stuff a small amount of shredded paper down in the salt shaker to help hold the stems in place. You could use more buttons, beads, floral foam, or nothing at all…whatever you want!

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Make as many flowers as you’d like! They are fun to make!

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My first bouquet is a red and brown theme

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And my second bouquet was a blue and black theme

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I photographed them for Etsy but decided at the last-minute to bring them to the co-op. They are currently in my booth at The Carriage Place. I can’t wait to make more!

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Last night I photographed a ton of new stuff I am putting in my Etsy store, and I wanted to let all my fellow crafters, that have booths or small shops, know that I am going to be selling these word blocks in groups of 6 at a wholesale price. I ordered way too many of them, so they’ll be in my shop this week at some point. They would be a great little item to resell, if you’re into country/prim decor like me!

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I also wanted to share a few great thrift store finds from today! A great enamelware tin pan, an apothecary style jar (these sell like hot cakes in my booth!) some wooden plaques for future craft projects, vintage tin molds, and a small wooden platter with a glass cloche. I am going to paint the wooden base – probably black with a yellow prim star in the middle.

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I was also sooooooooo excited to find some unique Scrabble tiles from a “Deluxe” edition of the game; 100 tiles for only $4! Best of all, they are maroon colored! I love that they are different from the regular Scrabble tiles, yet are a great color for country crafting!

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And lastly, I had to share this find…..these brown kraft boxes were only $1 for a bag of 6!!! If you have an A.C. Moore’s, go grab some before they are discontinued!!! I was “that person” who depleted their inventory. Hehe. I am going to stamp them eventually. Love the variety of shapes!

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That’s all for today! Have a great weekend and Happy Crafting!!!

2012 Craft Show Photos

Well, another show has come and gone. The show was a huge success and a lot of projects I’ve shared here sold out, including the melted snowmen ornaments, both the big and little homespun candy canes, the large spray painted jingle bells, the pins, and the night lights with silicone bulbs! It was a ton of fun and I thought I’d share some pics! πŸ™‚

I also wanted to stop say thank you to all of my new followers who have commented and “pinned” some of my ideas here. It’s such an honor to have so many people who enjoy reading my posts. It all started as a little crafty area to document my projects, but it has blossomed into something bigger than I could have imagined. Thank you!!! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Have and awesome weekend and Happy Crafting!

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