|Posted on September 2, 2017 at 10:30 AM||comments (0)|
Did you find that August just flew by? I can't believe it's already SEPTEMBER!! Boy, do I have to scurry!!
I've finally got my act together and will be posting my new workshops later today. I've been working hard on making samples and sometimes I tend to forget why I'm making them. One of my workshops will be on Halloween decorations. It was so popular last year that I will be repeating it. The most popular project were the rosettes/pinwheels wall decorations and the bunting rosettes/pinwheels (I call them rosettes, others call them pinwheels).
As I was making my rosette samples, I wondered if there was another way I can use these decorations. I know that the concept can easily be transformed for any holiday or occasion - just fold away and glue, right? But what else besides wall decorations, bunting or garlands can I make?
Why not a Christmas or holiday tree! This idea was inspired by those little trees made of squares of paper. They were all over the web a year or so ago.
This one is from our lady Martha. But I could never seem myself cutting up all those itsy bitsy pieces of paper. I don't have that long an attentions span!! Could I do this with rosettes and would it be easier?? A good question.
Et voilà ! Here is what I did. It's a prototype and still has a few kinks. So I wouldn't have to make tons of rosettes, I simply added a small piece of 1/2-inch foam poster board between each rosette. Because I get bored easily I was happy enough to make each rosette while watching Escape to the Chateau, a Channel 4 British show now on CBC.
What do you think?
|Posted on July 23, 2017 at 9:35 AM||comments (0)|
In my last post I talked about how to use maps to create stuff you could possibly make and sell (or give away as gifts): items like these gorgeous map paper shoes made by Jennifer Collier. Gorgeous or what!! And she does this for a living!
In this post I'll show you more paper examples of what you reinterpret in your own way:
I love this chair and will probably copy the idea for myself using a similar one!!
If you have a few chairs you no longer like or use, you can decoupage these with maps for yourself or to sell. If selling, the more chairs the better as you may find that your chairs will be in demand by decorators!
No chairs? Often on my daily walks I come across discarded chairs as well as other furniture! So head out for a stroll and lug home a chair or two. Or ask friends and neighbours if they have some they're planning to throw out. Don't be shy!! I view these as potential money earners (unless you need them for your own home and you save money!!). This idea also works for any small pieces of furniture - tables, dressers, etc.
Dishes, Plates, Trays
Forage through your cupboards, closets, basement, or attic and pull out all those old glass dishes, plates and trays that you've never used and turn them into cash! If you don't have any, head for your nearest charity shop or go to local church bazaar sales and pick these up for pennies!
Look at the following examples:
Shown above are two plates decoupaged with maps. Note you will need to buy decoupage glue but this can be a worthwhile investment. For instructions for decoupaging similar plates, click here.
Our lady Martha has great instructions for decoupaging glass trays with maps. Click here for her video.
I like this post because it has Martha working with Ben Busko who makes and sells decoupaged trays with maps and other materials. Check out his website here.
If he can do it, so can you!
No Maps? No Problem!
If you don't have any maps, what other kind of paper resources do you have? Old books, used envelopes, magazines, etc. Almost anything you can make with maps, you can make with almost any kind of paper.
Remember Jennifer Collier's London map shoes at the start of this blog? Well, she's also made shoes out of book pages ...
and also with envelopes ...
Jennifer doesn't stick to just shoes. I'm just using her shoes here as examples of things to make with paper. She makes other objects using paper as well. Go visit her site and be inspired.
One last item ...
and I'm done with paper (and map) ideas. If working with glue or cutting up paper is not your thing, but you are a sewer and have always wanted to create your own pillow covers, etc. head over to Spoonflower to find out how you can have your very own material printed.
The above is an example I found on Etsy (no longer available) using a map. You can recreate your own drawings and designs on paper. To find out more about printing on fabric, click here.
Liked any of these ideas? Remember that all the above are someone else's work and be respectful when choosing to use an idea. The object here is not to copy exactly what you find but to take an idea and create your own, in your own way.
|Posted on July 18, 2017 at 9:25 AM||comments (0)|
When I came upon my horde of maps, I thought that I could just blog about what you can do with maps, right? But then I realized that it didn't matter what kind of paper, you could use whatever kind you had to create the same things. So if you don't have maps, do you have magazines, old music sheets, newspapers, calendars, junk mail, leftover wallpaper or gift wrap and what about old telephone books, or just old books? I can't think of any more kinds of paper but what I'm trying to say is that you can use whatever paper you have to create things to make and sell (or give away as gifts).
That's what the ice cream cone covers symbolize - use whatever kind of paper you have and you free your imagination and creativity.
Let's Get Started
By the way, you don't have to have a lot to get going. The above examples is what I made from ONE map AND still had bits left over. With these bits I can make mini cake bunting or garlands. In my Magazine Recycling Workshop, I hand out a magazine to each participant and each one leaves with several completed project and with loads more magazine pages left over to create more stuff at home. Enough to keep them busy for quite a while!
Remember - if others can make and sell these goods, you can too. But you have to be patient, you have to be professional and you have to be willing to do the work. And remember also, anything you can make from a map you can make from all kinds of paper.
For the items you want to repurpose from only paper (you can also use paper with other materials but we'll talk about that later), you have to have the paper (of course), and make sure that it doesn't emit an odour. Some paper if stored in attics, garages, basements or storage units can acquire a pong that is hard to get rid of - don't use these, send them out for recycling instead!
NOTE: Make sure you have the tools you need on hand. You'll only need, scissors (or exacto knife and blades), ruler, pencil (and pencil sharpener), eraser (for getting rid of pencil marks), and glue - be sure it's the best glue you can afford. After all you don't want your creations to fall apart. You may want to use Elmer's glue which is somewhat eco-friendly but it does contain some plastic. And don't forget your work space - the kitchen table!!
PAPER CRAFTING IDEAS
There is nothing new under the sun, they say, but having said that, don't copy things exactly as you see them. For some products that's not easy, after all an envelope is an envelope is an envelope. BUT can add your own special twist. For example you can specialize in making envelopes or card in different categories: Weddings, Kid's Birthdays, Christmas or other holidays and package them in a cool way that can be your personal signature. So here we go.
Did you know that you don't even have to download a fancy template to make envelopes? Nope - just take apart any envelope you have and use that as your template. Easy, no? You can make these from maps (see above) or ....
from magazines (calendars, books, newspapers, junk mail, etc., etc.). You get the idea!
If you are serious about using paper as your means to riches, always look for ways to make your product unique and special. People are constantly looking for something new and different, so make your product stand out from everyone else's.
Take a look at what Debbie Hughes over at Lime Doodle Design does with a map to create wrapping for a gift It's the little extra - the wee paper airplane - that makes this so appealing. Maps make great wrapping for gifts as they are large. If you have a map you don't want to cut up, take it to a print shop and have it copied. It may cost a bit but well worth it as you can reuse it over and over again.
If you have the patience and talent, paper roses are amazing sellers. Not many people have these qualities to make them but those that do, can make plenty. I once met a woman in London, UK, who had a 'flower' shop and it was all just paper roses but what roses. Her least expensive roses were sold for over $50. I bought 3 and gave them away as gifts!
Tabitha, the owner and editor at United With Love, shares her easy tutorial for making roses. For her rose tutorial, click here.
Paper wreaths are also something most people don't have the time, patience, or talent to make, so you can make this your own niche (or one of your niches - don't limit yourself!!)
You can find a tutorial for making a paper map or music sheet (you can also use book pages) at the Gunny Sack. Click here.
Now It's Your Turn
Don't limit yourself to what you see here. Think of what you might enjoy making. If you make it fun, it's not really work, is it?
Go do some research and see if you can find that one thing that tickles your fancy and inspires you. You can go online or check out craft books and the magazines at your local library.
By the way if you don't have any paper at all, libraries usually discard their magazines regularly. Just call and ask them when they will be doing so and ask if you can have them. I often pick up foreign newspapers for free at the library as well.
You don't have to tell anyone what you're up to (although you can act mysterious about what you are doing!!). The time to reveal all will be when you have mastered making your own special product be it a tag, a card, a rose - whatever.
Practice, practice, practice until you have a professional (and unique) looking product. Remember, all it takes is time and if that's all you have, you're well on your way.
|Posted on November 21, 2016 at 9:30 AM||comments (0)|
Have you got all your gifts bought (or made), wrapped, and tucked away somewhere safe from prying eyes yet? Well, I don't. This year, at least for the grown-ups, I'll be making most, if not all, of my gifts. Since I have to wait for some of them to grow, wrapping up has to wait. It's been my experience that one of the joys of getting a gift is the gift wrap and so, one of the things I've learned about gift wrapping is that it's often the outside of the gift that creates the excitement - who cares what's inside! Well, maybe not.
My favourite wrapping is, of course, something that I've recycled and often it's the brown postal wrap that I get when friends send me gifts. I usually smooth out the paper and roll it around those cardboard paper towel inserts until I need to use. it.
Anyway, this year I will be wrapping all my gifts in my recycled brown paper wrap. Not only is this gift wrap easy on your wallet but it saves you have to run around the malls or shops to find that PERFECT wrap. If you don't have a horde of your own brown paper (like I do) t's readily available at your local post office. My friend Sean calls it the LBD of gift wrap because, just like that little black dress, brown paper wrap can easily be dressed up for any occasion. The ways to transform this seemingly ho-hum wrap are, to use an old cliché, endless.
Here are a few ideas I spotted for decorating plain brown paper wrapping:
DIY LINO STAMPS
Here's an idea from Ideas Magazine (November 2016 edition) - make your own lino stamps using photos and then dress up that old kraft wrapping paper with the image. Now, I'm not attempting this one as if I did, my fingers would be cut off in pieces - I'm not too handy with Xacto knives but if your fingers are agile enough, go for it.
The online version of this magazine is now gone unfortunately, but I did find instructions for making your own lino stamps here.
THE PERFECT MATCHING BOW!
No need to run out and buy fancy bows for your plain Jane wrapper - just use the same paper to make the bows. Blogger Amy from My Life From Home shares her gran's instructions for making a bow to match your gift wrap. For gran's instructions, click here.
NEED A RIDE?
The folks over at Anthropology know a good thing when they see it and so 'borrowed' this idea of a toy car or truck with a mini tree on top. It appeared everywhere on Instagram and Pinterest last year and it really is cute. Anthropology used this wrap idea for flogging soap but it's easy enough to 'borrow' for other gifts for both kids and adults (hint, hint).
If, like me, drawing is not your strong suit, the guys over at Junior Card Designer have a good tutorial, originally designed for young children, for drawing a car. If you have a car lover in the family, this site will keep them busy for quite a while For a little car tutorial, click here.
You know you've made it when Anthropology 'borrows' your idea!
CARS NOT YOUR THING? HIT THE BEACH!
Actually, journalist and blogger, Heather Young, at Growing Spaces intended this idea for summer gifting but it's one that is easy enough to adapt for Christmas (if you can draw!) by drawing what might be in the parcel.
I think the picnic hamper would be a cute idea for any food gift wrapper - just add a bit of holly berries and leaves, maybe. Click here for Heather's instructions.
MY CANADIAN WRAP AND TAG
Couldn't leave this post without one of my own ideas. I made a pompom from twine that I also used to wrap around the gift. The moose was copied from an old book on forest animals of the north.
A FINAL NOTE
All the these ideas can be made by you and any little ones in your life. Why not invite friends (of all ages) over to create any one or all of the above ideas. And there are loads more online.