Friday, January 23, 2009

Dollar Craft - Coasters Tutorial

Remember the inspiration pile from a few days back? This is project #1 from that pile. I now have some neat coasters that I can put in the craft lab for myself and visitors. This turned out to be a quick project that can be made with just a few dollars and some simple supplies.

The stuff you will need:

1. Set of cork-backed coasters ($1)
2. Permanent glue stick ($1)
3. Transparent shelf liner (like contact paper) ($1)
4. Scraps of scrapbook paper - I used a heavyweight paper that I had on hand
5. Scissors, kitchen cutting board and a razor blade or exacto knife for cutting

Step 1:
Lay the coaster out on your paper to decide how you want the design to be placed on the final piece. Outline the coaster leaving about 1/8" around it for gluing and cutting.

Step 2:
Spread the glue on the face of the coaster and then lay it down to stick it to the back of the paper. Turn it over and smooth the paper out using a cloth to avoid scratching the surface. Then turn it face down again on your cutting board surface and cut the extra edge of the paper off as close as you can to the coaster using your razor blade.

Step 3:
Now it's time to put the transparent shelf liner on the top of your coaster to make the surface wipeable. Cut the liner a bit larger than the coaster and peel back one corner. Stick the open corner down over a corner of the coaster and slowly peel back the backing. Smooth the surface again using a cloth. Then turn it over and cut the extra liner off just as you cut the paper in step 2.

Voila! Cute, functional and totally easy to customize! Make a set for yourself and one for a friend...

Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 18, 2009

New Loot

Don't tell, I was supposed to be out picking up groceries. It isn't my fault that the Dollar Tree just happens to be next door. I've been reading this blog lately thinking of all of the wonderful inspirations I've gotten at Dollar stores in the past and just had to stop by. I only went in to pick up an Ipod cover so I could make this for my new Christmas present but instantly got sucked in grabbing these goodies and bubbling over with ideas the whole time. Just wait to see what's in store!

Anyway, the groceries came home with me too. I just had to powershop to get the job done quickly. Besides, I was able to try out my new "Tidy Totes".
I thought they might make excellent produce bags, which they did for the excellent price of 25 cents per bag. They are so much better than the opaque ones I had been using before. Now the clerks don't have to paw through the bag to see what's inside.

I couldn't help but stop by the magazine section and pick up the latest Sew Simple. There are some interesting picks this month.

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Saturday With Dad

This is Soll-E. He is Cam's latest robot design (as he puts it) inspired by "Wall-E", in my opinion, the most darling and meaningful movie of 2008.

Here is it's completion after a hard day working with dad in the craft lab. It turned out to be a terrific way to use the bits and pieces of recycling I keep just for this purpose. It was also a mini lesson in electronics as the middle of Soll-E's thread-spool head has a red lightbulb eye that can turn on and off at the flip of a switch. Yay for repurposing the LED light salvaged from a cheap and annoying Halloween toy necklace that Cam won last year.

It just proves that the box, container or lid is always more fun than the product that came in it (although I do like yogurt a lot). Recycling is cool. I think the people aboard the Axiom could definitely learn from this and I'm quite sure that Wall-E would be proud...

Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 16, 2009

Winter Mint

What is a mama of three tiny men to do on a frigid day that registers -21 degrees on the outside thermometer? Why, browse through this month's Martha Stewart magazine and make the latest "...of the month" recipe, of course.

This recipe created the most wonderful chocolate cake from scratch that I've tried to date (and I've tried a lot!) and whipped up really fast. Keep this one in your file for the cake at the very least. Top it with minty buttercream or use any of your fav's. It's a keeper and especially wonderful on a day like today.

Of course, waiting was the hardest part...
Posted by Picasa