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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Antonia's Birthday Gift

Our sweet friend, Antonia, celebrated her fifth birthday with a princess birthday party.  Since she obviously loves princesses, and her bedroom is green and turquoise, I created a sign for her room.

I started with a scrap piece of plywood.  I painted it a lime green.

I created a stencil, on my Silhouette, using a tiara image, from the Silhouette store.  The stencil was created simply by cutting the image on the Silhouette vinyl.  It works very well.
I painted the tiara gold.

I was ready to add her name. I relied on a stencil created on my Silhouette.  This font is Waterfall.

I painted it blue.
I painted the tiara's heart pink.

I distressed the sign with my mouse sander.

I drilled holes on the top to create a hanger.

I wanted to add bling to the sign.  I used, "Glossy Acrylic" to give the heart a three dimensional, shiny appearance.  It took HOURS to dry but looked so nice when it finally did.
I added all kinds of self stick "diamonds" to the tiara. I outlined the heart with them.

I added some more here...

...and there...

It's blinging!
And the princess sign is complete.  I just wish I would have painted a couple of more coats on the gold to make the tiara more "golden".  From what I hear, Antonia likes it just the way it is.  I really do too.
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RAKJ Crochet Patterns Winner!

We would like to thank Kristi of RAKJ Patterns for sponsoring our giveaway this week!  Jill has a ton of her patterns and loves all of them.  Kristi does a fantastic job writing crochet patterns and helping out her clients.   We really appreciate her generosity in giving away 5 crochet patterns!  Thank you, Kristi, for making Great Things!

If you're not our winner, make sure to head over to RAKJ Patterns shop for tons of great crochet patterns.  Kristi has lots of great Buy More Save More deals! She is frequently running specials and giveaways.  If you haven't liked her shop on Facebook, you are missing out!  You can find her page here.

Now for our winner of 5 crochet patterns...
#6 said. . .
6. Kendall said...
I shared some love with RAKJ.

Congratulations to Kendall!  Please email us at oursevendwarfs@gmail.com to claim your prize.

Monday is another Great Things Day!  Make sure to come back and check out what we are highlighting and giveaway! 

Jill is anxious to share some of the patterns she is working on from RAKJ patterns.  They are all super cute!  Be on the lookout for those in the common weeks.

Have a great week!

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Friday, April 29, 2011

Abe's Birthday Present

Our friend, Abe, is turning 3.  I wanted to create a birthday gift for him.  I decided to make him a personalized sign.

I started with a 12x22" piece of scrap wainscoting.  I painted it white and let it dry completely.  Then, I painted it red and let it dry completely.  Then, I painted it white again.  I did this to give it dimension when I distressed the sign, at the end of the project.

While the sign was drying, I went to my Silhouette and designed the sign.  Since Abe's room is decorated in a "Lighthouse" theme with primary colors, I decided to find a lighthouse image in Silhouette's online store.  I used the Arial font for Abe's name.  I cut out the design, using vinyl, so I could create a stencil.

After making a stencil, and positioning it on the board, I started painting.  I realize that green is not a primary color, but I liked the combination.

This is the sign after the painting has been done and the stencil removed.

I used my mouse sander to distress it.  I love how there are places you can see bare wood, places that you can see the bottom layer of white, and places that the red pops through.  Distressing makes the sign to me.

I drilled holes at the top, weaved ribbon through the holes, and tied knots to keep the ribbon in place. I trimmed and burned the ends of the ribbon to keep it from fraying. 
The sign is done.  I hope Abe likes it!
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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Etched Casserole Dishes Tutorial

Are you ready for another gift I made for my friend's wedding shower?  Here's a sneak peak.

Ever since I saw the etched glass on the Silhouette site, I have wanted to do it.  What better excuse than for wedding gifts?  I wanted to make my friend, Laura some personalized dishes.  The next time she goes to someone's home or to a potluck, no one can claim her dish, as it will have her initial or name on it!

If you don't have a Silhouette, don't quit reading! I will share ways you can do this without the Silhouette and without vinyl.

Here are the supplies you will need:
  • Contact paper or vinyl
  • Exacto Knife or Silhouette (or cricut)
  • Printed word, letter or shape OR Design what you want on the Silhouette software
  • Glass to etch (this can work on just about any surface) -I used two Pyrex dishes
  • Foam Paint brush (one time use)
  • Plastic gloves to protect your skin and Safety goggles would be good to protect your eyes as the Armour Etch is heavy duty stuff.
  • Armour Etch-(see picture below) I bought mine at Hobby Lobby with my 40%off coupon, but you can get it at any craft store.  This is an expensive bottle, but you will get a ton of uses out of this.  I didn't use a fourth of it and I did four large dishes.
Now, if you are using the Silhouette, design your shape, letter or words.  Before you cut it, you will want to transform it to be backwards (180 degree turn).  Then cut it on vinyl.   This will let you etch the bottom of a dish.  You don't need to do the turn if you are doing the outside of a dish.  I did the bottom and wanted it to be read through the dish.

If you aren't using a cutter, you can print out any shape, letter or word on a normal piece of paper.  Make sure your object is backwards for the bottom of your dish. Then trace it onto your contact paper (white or clear would probably work best).  Use your exacto knife and cut out the object. 

Then take your contact paper or vinyl and adhere it to the bottom of your dish.  Make sure that it is firmly adhered and that there aren't bubbles near the interior as it will distort the shape.  I practiced on my own dishes first.  I didn't take the time to firmly adhere and watch for bubbles.  My name didn't go on perfectly as the creme leaked under the vinyl.  Learn from my mistake and take the extra care to begin with.  Once you've done this there isn't any turning back.  It's permanent!

Below is the "S" I did for a square dish. 
The next one I did her new last name "Starling."  Make sure to put on the inner parts of your letters or they will look funny.  Notice that her "a" and "g" have inner parts that could be overlooked if you don't pay attention to this detail.
Now following the directions on the Armour Etch, generously lather the etching creme onto the letters or shape. (This would be a good time to use your plastic gloves and protective glasses too). Brush up and down and from side to side.  Then I also dabbed it really well to make sure there was a thick coating.  If you notice, on the bottle of the Armour Etch it says that it won't work on Pyrex.  It will.  You just need to let it sit longer.  I think it said to leave the etching creme on for 5 minutes.  I did 15 to 20 minutes, which worked great.

Once your have given the etching creme enough time to work properly.  Put your gloves back on (and glasses) and rinse all the etching creme off.  I rinsed and then took off my vinyl (or contact paper) and then rinsed again.  You can even wash the bottom now with some soap.  I wouldn't scrub it, but a light washing is fine.  Let it sit overnight to settle in.

There you have it.  Personalized dishes that make a great gift!  It is dishwasher safe too, after all, it's permanent!

Here are the her final dishes.
If you are wondering what the dishes are laying on, you'll have to be patient.  That will be my next wedding gift tutorial to share with you.

If you try etching glass, I would love to see your finished item!  I hope this tutorial was helpful.  Let me know if you have any questions!

Happy Crafting!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Subway Art-A Personalized Sign

Teacher's Appreciation Week is coming!  Here's an idea for a gift.

My daughter has two very wonderful teachers.  One of them has been teaching for nearly fifty years. She has seven children, and believes in all things wonderful. For her birthday, I asked one of her daughters to help me find words to create a subway art for her. 
I love having the opportunity to so easily personalize a gift!

If you'd like to see a tutorial on how to make subway art, here's one I've done before:  http://www.oursevendwarfs.com/2010/11/making-subway-art-tutorial-2.html


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A Few Wedding Gifts

I promised to share with you some of the wedding gifts I made for my best friend's shower.  This is just 3 of them.  I have more to show you with tutorials and I am making some for the wedding this weekend!

The first one I made was a Menu Frame.  I love the scrapbook paper that I found for the background.  In case you missed how to make this Menu Frame, you can find the tutorial here.

I tried a new coaster for her (I have over 300 to use up).  This time I used some nice scrapbook paper and cut out a fancy S using the Silhouette.  You can easily print out a letter and cut it with an exacto knife.  If you want to learn how to make inexpensive coasters out of tiles, here is the tutorial.

I also gave her the Couple Mugs.  Here is the tutorial on how to make these.

These were all a hit with the ladies at the shower.  The other gifts were as well.  I can't wait to share each one with you!

Happy Crafting!

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Monday, April 25, 2011

A Subway Art Horoscope Sign

For my daughter's teacher's birthday, I told her I'd make her a piece of subway art.  I thought she'd want something with her children's names, adjectives describing her, etc.  Instead she asked for a Pisces piece.  She wanted "positive" Pisces adjectives.  So, I did a little research and this is what I came up with.

If you'd like to make something similar, here's a link to a tutorial: http://www.oursevendwarfs.com/2010/11/making-subway-art-tutorial-2.html
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Great Things-RAKJ Crochet Patterns & Giveaway

It's Great Things Monday and we are very excited to tell you about RAKJ Crochet Patterns! Kristi has an amazing store filled with adorable crochet patterns.  Here are a few favorites:

This one is on Jill's to do list for sweet little Anna!

Isn't Kristi one talented lady!  She crochets, makes patterns and much more, all while caring for four children (ages 13, 10 and almost 2 year old twins).  She has her hands full!  We are amazed at her talent and time management!

If you want to learn to crochet, head to her shop right now!  Kristi created a video to teach you all the basics of crocheting.  A book is great, but pictures and video are even better!  Plus, it is $5.49!
Kristi is awesome about helping you with her patterns as well.  Jill is in the middle of making her Triple Stitch blanket for a friend having a baby.  She wasn't able to find the exact hook or yarn and Kristi quickly responded with some other options.  That is an amazing plus to great pattern writing!

Shhhhhhhhh!  Let us share a little secret! Kristi rocks some awesome deals and giveaways on her Facebook page.  (This has gotten Jill in trouble many times as she has over 35 of Kristi's patterns.  Hopefully, Jill can work up a few to share with you this week). 

Back to the secret, today (Monday April 25) is a big day for Kristi as she is having a big 2000 celebration!  There will be freebies, giveaways and specials from 10am to 9pm (CST).  That's in addition to our great giveaway!  You won't want to miss it!  Head on over and like her page so you don't miss out on anything!  Please tell her we sent you.

In addition to all the great deals RAKJ patterns has to offer, Kristi is giving 5 free crochet patterns to one of our lucky followers!  Here is how you enter to win:

*Leave a separate comment below for each entry*

{Mandatory Entry} 1. Like us on Facebook.  We have a ton of great things to share with you!
2.  Browse RAKJ Patterns on Etsy and tell us what your top picks would be.
3. Share some love to RAKJ Patterns Facebook pageTell her we sent you!  Let's help her get well over 2000 fans!
4.  Follow us via Google Friend Connect.  (See sidebar)
5.  Subscribe to our blog by email (see sidebar and note that you must be verified to be a valid entry).

That is 5 chances to win 5 free patterns!  (One of those 5 can be the video tutorial too!) Remember, you don't have to do all 5 entries, but it sure would make us happy and increase your chances of winning.  Make sure you leave a separate comment for each entry! The giveaway closes at 11:59 pm (EST) on Saturday, April 30. We'll announce the winner on Sunday, May 1.

Good luck to you all! 

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