Feather Trees… For any holiday! 

I was recently on a vacation and stopped into a vineyard tasting room. They had a little tree, and that tree had decorations on it. One of the decorations was a super cute little tree made out of feathers.

I was thissss close to buying it, but bought an awesome reindeer wine bottle holder instead.


Anyhoo. This little feather tree… So cute! And I knew I could make a handful of them for the price of buying one.

So I waited and when I got home, well maybe a few weeks after returning home, I made two🙂

Cute right??

All you need to make these trees are:

  1. Cardboard cone form
  2. Feathers
  3. Hot glue gun

I separated the feathers into small, medium, and large size piles, then followed these steps:

  1. Place a row of small feathers around the bottom of the come, adhering then with the glue.
  2. Using the large feathers, add multiple rows of feathers in circles around the cone.
  3. As you get to about halfway up the cone, switch over to making circles with the medium sized feathers.
  4. When about a quarter of the cone is left, switch to the small feathers.
  5. Look over the tree and fill in any gaps with the remaining feathers.
  6. Stand back and admire your cute feather tree!

And there are some really cool feathers out there that you could use to make these. I see a lot of white feather trees, but I really liked these brown tones.  It would also be fun to add embellishments to these little guys.

They look really good hanging out with some wines from my favorite winery:

So simple, so easy. I might just make more!

What color tree would you make?

I don’t always love my crafts…

In fact… Sometimes I want to throw them away.

I had a fun idea to make a “techie” key rack for my guy. I had this great idea in my head to use pieces from computers and whatever else I could find.

I started with a broken card holder:

Then I took apart an old, non-functional laptop. Everyone has one of those, right?  I kind of just wanted to take the thing outside and smash it, but since I actually wanted to use pieces, I suppressed the urge.

After the thing had been sitting on my dining room table for over two week, unfinished, I decided I just didn’t like it and was going to toss it. It wasn’t turning out like I had envisioned.

I sent my guy this picture with a text that said; “I kind of hate this and it’s getting trashed.”


He responded with a resounding; “NOOOOO!

Well…er, ok then, I don’t like it, but he apparently really does, so I’ll finish it.

And finish it I did. All I had left was to wrap the headphone jack “hooks” with wire anyway. So a little super glue later. It was completed:  Bleh. I’m still not a fan, but he really likes the geekiness of it and uses it everyday.  So ookkkk.

I know we’re all been here… What have you made that gets tossed?

Gardening is a Craft, right?

I have a large pot herb garden that I use for fresh herbs as long as I can. It typically contains 5-6 different herbs and sits right outside my door, so I can easily grab them while cooking.

This year I found cinnamon basil. OH MY! This stuff is crazy good.

I’m a fan of flavored waters, so I’ve muddled this in my water. I also have used it in caprese salads and sauces. Really anywhere you’d typically use basil, you can use this one.

This might now be my new favorite herb. I highly recommended looking for some and trying it out!

Just call me “Stomper”

Remember that post about my new crafting table? There was a mid-stream project going on in some of the photos. Well it’s done now!

I was making a bunch-of-grapes costume.🍇

This costume was my inspiration. Only I was determined not to spend a penny on making mine!  Me on the cheap?  What’s new right…? Ha!

I raided my fabric bins for shades of purple, green, white, and brown and came up with this great assortment: …an old sweater, scarf, airline blanket, and some other stuff from past and failed projects.

Win!

Then I made some puffs. To do this I made a half circle pattern out of some cardboard, folded my fabric and cut out full circles. Then I stuffed them with the remains of pillows killed by the dog.  She went the a phase when she was a pup and I lost many a good pillow!

GUILTY!!

 I didn’t do a final count, but I think it was around 35 puffs. Next I pinned them to an old California Raisins costume I made years ago.  #flashback  ...oh yeah. We rocked it!

Annddd back to present day reuse. I moved the puffs around until it looked good.  Here’s a in flight version:


Next I made some cartoon glove hands out of white felt.

 Lastly I made some leaves for the collar. I ended up with the one big leaf to cover the residue from the Raisin’s shirt and tie. Then made the smaller 3d leaves to add some pop. 

 I actually like my bunch of grapes better than the bought version. I think the shades of… purple… do it for me.

Vanity Redo

I have 80’s builders basics for the cabinets in my house. Eh. Doesn’t do much for me. I’ve wanted to do SOMETHING since I’ve moved in… 7ish years ago.  Finally did!

Looked like this:  

Now looks like this:  

It took a decent amount of time and a little bit of money. Overall, I think it’s a marked improvement. I have two other bathrooms with the same vanity. Maybe I’ll do them too..

What’s been one of your favorite no or low cost home improvements?

Crafting Table 101

You would think with how much creative crap I do, I’d have a designated crafting area. Nope. That’s what my dining room table is for apparently.

Well. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! I’m taking back my dining room table and moving the crafting to a designated area. Now I just need a table…

I found this cool one for $50:
I love the metal base and the top is already a mess. With a little cleaning up, it would be great. Only it’s not quite the size I want and I’m not paying $50 for it. My offer of $30 was denied, I tried. So moving on.

I don’t have a photo of my next favorite option, but it was a super awesome drafting table a friend told me about.  One leg was a saw horse, the other a cube of shelves and a cabinet. It even included a drawer. But with a 60% off price tag of and still over $400, I would be afraid to use it!

Next!

I wandered around my local Habitat for Humanity Restore store and found a door:
Nothing fancy, but the right color and closest to the size I wanted out of anything I’d seen so far. There was even a hole in it, for the door knob, to put cords. And it was 50% off of $15. CASH ME OUT, PLEASE!

I had a bookcase and filing cabinet already which I could lay the door on, so that worked out well.

Just a few additional touches was all I needed:
A removable yardstick. Mounted here, I could measure on the edge, or remove to measure elsewhere.


Wall bumpers. I nailed some scrap wood to the edges against the wall and attached some foam padding. This way, the wall wouldn’t get damaged and I could pass fabric between the table and wall, in the event of a larger cut.


I also edged the entire table/door with white tape to tie it in with the rest of the blond and white furniture in the room.

LOVE IT! And for less than $15, I have a dedicated crafting table that I not afraid to use!

P.S. Don’t worry, the puffs on the table will likely be a future post.🙂

Acrylic Paintings, Part 4 of 4: Passing it On

I’ve done enough painting classes and self guided paintings by this point that I decided I wanted to attempt teaching my own class.

I rounded up some willing friends and put some thought into what “stock photo” I would lead them though. Well, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t decide on something that I felt like all my “students” would enjoy.  I’m sure they would have done anything I came up with just to support me, because my friends are that cool, but I’d didn’t want to subject them to it.

So going back to Part 3 for a moment. The photo painting was a really good idea. Let me just bask in that for a moment… ☀️Ahhh… ☀️ I got some pretty cool feedback from my friends.  So I figured, “why the hell not”. Let’s do that!

I bought enough supplies for a small class and asked my “students” to send me a photo they wanted to paint. I printed their photos:

A few hours before the class, it dawned on me that since everyone was painting something different, I was going to have to spend time with each person to explain the color blending and painting order for their specific photos, which meant a lot of down time. No good 😕

So I quickly made cheatsheets which included all the colors they’d need, how to make the most common blended colors for their photo, and the order to paint on the canvas.  (Since acrylic paints dry quickly, the right order means one thing can dry, the sky in the example below, before adding the tree on top)

 *I did get feedback that “some”, “little”, “pinch”, etc, were not the best measures to use. Got it. So I’m planning to refer to coin sizes for the next class.

My students mixed paints and blended directly on the canvas using some acrylic painting “magic”.  I guided from a distance, sharing some tips with the group along the way, and stepped in for specific questions when they got stuck.  And sometimes all it took to get “unstuck” was for me to hold their panting at a distance. 
Once the canvas was done and the paint was dry, we attached the photos. I’m completely proud of their work and they now have a painting that means something more to them than the “stock photo”. Well done, friends!

 I even had time to make another photo-painting myself during the class.

The photo:

Completed canvas:

Finished product like this:

Even went one step further to frame it since it’s a gift:  

I’d love to hear your feedback on this class since I plan to do more of them in the future.

But that’s for another post at another time!