Saturday, July 11, 2020

let's make a jar lid wreath

Happy Saturday! Welcome to my Let's Make series {posted a day early} where I've resumed blogging to share easy projects while we're all spending so much time at home. As you may have noticed, in my home we consume a lot of Bonne Maman preserves. (This is not a sponsored post but imagine!?) Not only are the preserves so yummy and very much like homemade but the jars are perfect for storing things, the labels are easily removed, and the lids are gingham! Because of this sweet "total package" I tend to keep each emptied jar and lid and while I've been using the containers as vases, the lids have started stacking up. It was time to tinker!


I decided to make a wreath. I first tried overlapping the lids and hot-gluing them together but the glue didn't hold and things got messy. Still, next, I tried hot-gluing lids to an embroidery hoop which served as a round base – didn't work. I then tried fashioning a web of tape to the back of the wreath shape – didn't work. 


I decided to try super glue aka Loctite Instant Adhesive QuickTite. It was my first time using the stuff and as a messy crafter, I was nervous about gluing my fingers together. While I did get it all over my fingertips (which washed away in a couple of days) it did indeed bond the lids together. 

You will need:
6-12 jar lids
Loctite Instant Adhesive QuickTite
Painter's tape


Rather than overlapping all lids, I made a daisy shape and it worked, so I glued another = two daisies.


I placed one daisy over the other and rotated it slightly. When it was positioned how I wanted it, I taped the two daisies in place with painter's tape – knowing I wanted to flip it all over for gluing so that any gluey spots would be hidden. I used painter's tape so that it would be easy to remove.


{I'm not one for perfection with my crafting and that's why I refer to it as tinkering}


I added glue to spots where lids connected, pressed gently, and rotated to glue the next spot.


Once all the gluing was done, I removed the tape from the front. It worked! The little metal wreath was complete, shown hanging from a trip of fabric.


The gingham makes it charming for the summertime but also for holiday decorating. But let's not get ahead of ourselves!

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse


Find me on Instagram at or Facebook 

Sunday, July 5, 2020

let's make faux milk glass

Happy July! Welcome to my Let's Make Sunday Series where I've resumed blogging to share easy projects while we're all spending so much time at home. It's been way too long since we tinkered with jars so for today's make, they're back!

This project originally appeared in my first book, my baby girl, Tinkered Treasures on page 70 as "painted jars" but because the result resembles milk glass, I decided just now to change the name for this post. Brazen, I know! While milk glass is typically white, depending on what paint you have on hand, you can make your own rules.

You will need:
Jar with lid
Paint (interior house, or craft)

Optional:
Pretty paper, scissors, glue
Trimming



As always begin with a glass jar that is clean and dry. The object of the game is to cover the interior of the jar with a thin coat of paint and let it dry, so you don't want to pour in too much, although you can always pour excess back out.



Return lid to jar and roll around to cover inside with paint until no glass is exposed.



Leave jar open and allow the paint inside to dry. 



Cut out a motif from a favorite paper and affix to the outside of the jar using a bit of glue.



Add trimming and secure with glue, if you like, or leave plain. The jars are best used to hold dry objects; I generally tuck a cupcake wrapper inside to serve as a liner.



Now that I've rethought this project as milk glass, I want to make some using white paint or a jadeite shade of mixed white and green! Turquoise would be fun, too.

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

If you haven't already, find me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/elyse.press.major/ or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ElyseMajorTinkeredTreasures

*Looking for copies of my books? Please consider first checking your local independent bookstore or try Barnes & Noble before buying from a big retailer like Amazon. Shop small, buy local.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

let's make coastal accents with seashell pasta

Happy Summer! Welcome to my Let's Make Sunday Series where I'm sharing easy peasy projects. I live in the Ocean State and love spending time not only at the beaches but wandering the local stores. Aside from t-shirt shops (I have way too many whale and anchor-motif long-sleeves) my faves are places that sell either beautiful coastal decor or on the other end of the spectrum – kitschy souvenir shops – the junkier the better! If your summer vaca plans look a bit different this year, you can still make yourself some seaside accessories and here's how:



One of these things is not like the other. Can you guess which one? It's the can – covered in sea shell pasta and spray painted white!

You will need:
A base (tin can, flat frame, foam wreath, etc.)
Seashell pasta
School glue
White spray paint

Attach shells with glue, let dry, and then bring outside to give a few coats of white spray paint. Here's a step-by-step from the Camp Tinker archives: click here.



Here's a mirror from IKEA given the seashell pasta treatment.



This project was meant to be in my second book Seaside Tinkered Treasures but didn't make the trek to the UK in one piece despite two shipping attempts! Use the same application of shell pasta and glue and white spray paint on a styrofoam wreath form.


People mistake this for real shells most every time! Use to hold pens, flowers, plastic cutlery... what a fun idea to decorate for the Fourth of July!

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

*Looking for copies of my books? Please consider first checking your local independent bookstore or try Barnes & Noble before buying from a big retailer like Amazon. Shop small, buy local.



Sunday, June 21, 2020

let's make cottage style god's eyes

Happy Summer! Welcome to my Let's Make Sunday Series where I've resumed blogging since March to share easy projects. Many of us will be having a home-based summer and need to find ways to make the everyday special, so my plan is to post grown-up twists on summer camp faves. As always, the makes presented will be simple and fun, using things you are likely to already have or are not difficult to find. 

Welcome to Camp Tinker! Today we're making that staple of summertime arts and crafts: the God's Eye or Ojo de Dios. To give it cottage style or a shabby spin, we're using strips of cotton fabric instead of yarn or twine resulting in a rustic home accent.



You will need:
2 sticks or twigs
Scissors
Scraps of fabric



I foraged around outside and found a nice thin stick which I snapped into two equal pieces.



Prep
Next, I snipped the edge of a length of fabric and tore a strip about a half inch wide. You will need many of these strips – which you can prep by tearing all at once – or rip along as you go. Tie each fabric end to the next and knot resulting in a single long strip. Place the sticks into an equal cross. Tie the fabric strip into a knot at the center of one of the sticks



Working clockwise from the center knot, wrap the fabric around the stick, rotate and do the same to the next stick. Once you begin to get the hang of it, it will be like turning a steering wheel, wrapping the fabric around and under as you go.



I hope these images will help but if they don't – there are many tutorials to be found with a simple Google search. They will most likely use yarn but the method is the same.

I didn't want my finished piece to be too large, so I snapped all four branch ends. Once completed, I knotted the final strip to another piece hidden in the back. Tie a final fabric strip to one of the sticks and knot into a loop for hanging. 



The resulting woven pattern is very pretty. I used a few different fabrics, mostly pinks and whites with rose motifs, but the possibilities are endless.

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well, campers!


xo
elyse


Sunday, June 14, 2020

let's make a desk set from wallpaper

Hello! Welcome to my Let's Make Sunday Series where I'm sharing easy projects to make from things you are likely to already have at home. I recently developed a post for the Laura Ashley USA blog using their Peonies Dark Blush wallpaper for some of all-time favorite tinkering projects: a pencil cup, decorated clothespins, a book cover, even a desk blotter.


Rather than my recreating the post here, let's go on a field trip! 
http://blog.lauraashleyusa.com/pretty-organized-wallpaper-desk-supplies/

No wallpaper? Use your favorite paper for any of these projects {but it sure is pretty!}.

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

PS
Find me on Instagram at @elyse.press.major

Sunday, June 7, 2020

let's make postcards

Hello! Welcome to my Let's Make Sunday Series where I'm sharing easy projects to make from things you are likely to already have at home. During this time, it's especially nice to reach out to people in various ways so I thought it would be fun to make postcards.


This project starts humbly using thin cardboard boxes from food and drink packaging.


You will need:
Empty cardboard package
Glue
Paper
Ruler
Scissors
Tape

Most postcards seem to measure at 4x6 inches so I hunted through the recycling bin and found boxes from graham crackers and seltzer that were graphically pleasing on their own. I flattened the boxes, opened them up at the seams, and then measured and cut into 4x6" rectangles.


Using an existing postcard as my guide, I flipped each card to the brown cardboard side and drew a line to set aside space for postage and the recipient's address. If you like the graphics on the front, your postcard is ready to write and send.


I decided to cover the packaging side with white paper to conceal the graphics, creating a blank canvas on which to decorate with a collage of paper scraps and stickers.


When you make things with paper, even the scrappy mess is pretty!


I added a few stickers to my collage, too. Be sure that any paper flaps are secured with glue or even clear tape so that your masterpiece doesn't arrive torn.


You can even buy post card stamps online.


This project appears in my second book Seaside Tinkered Treasures (CICO Books) as Cracker Box Postcards on page 80.

Surprise someone with a postcard. I'm sure they'll be glad you did. 

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

*Looking for copies of my books? Please consider first checking your local independent bookstore or try Barnes & Noble before buying from a big retailer like Amazon. Shop small, buy local.




Sunday, May 31, 2020

let's make prayer boxes

Hello! Welcome to the latest in my Let's Make Sunday Series where I'm sharing easy projects to make from things you are likely to already have at home. I'm calling today's project "prayer boxes" because that is how these objects are commonly referred but to me they can be used for anything – from keeping inspiring messages to holding small supplies.


You will need:
An empty mint or tea tin
Glue
Paper
Pencil
Scissors


Begin by gathering up favorite paper scraps and printing out an inspiring word or two.


Place tin face-down and trace around the lid lightly with pencil.


If you wish to also cover the sides of the lid with the top cover sheet, leave a small margin from your traced template and make little snips around the corners so that the paper can be glued down to fit.


Cutting the inserts to fit can be tricky. You might want to use a piece of heavier paper to work out the measurements and then use it as a template.

{ It doesn't need to perfect, it's handmade }


Top the decorated tin with a little embellishment if you wish. Over years of tinkering, I've amassed all kinds of bits and bobs, many from the wonderful swaps in which I participated during my early days of blogging. Start your own "whimsy jar" with random buttons and beads, ribbon, broken jewelry, and more.


If you do want to use it as a prayer or wish box, include a small pencil and blank pieces of paper. Your tin is now ready to hold prayers, wishes, or just paper clips. Whatever keeps you inspired!

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

PS
Find me on Instagram at @elyse.press.major


Sunday, May 24, 2020

let's make labeled containers

Hello! Welcome to the latest in my Let's Make Sunday Series where I'm sharing easy projects to make from things you are likely to already have at home. As you probably know by now, I'm a big fan of Bonne Maman preserves – especially strawberry or raspberry {try a tablespoon in a s'more!}. Their jars are as wonderful as their contents – with a squat shape that makes them nice as juice glasses and small vases – and labels that slip off easily with a quick warm soak in suds. This week, let's label 'em!



You will need:
Glue stick
Jar
Paper + printer
Scissors
Word processing program, letter stamps, typewriter




Start by finding a font that you like. I gravitate toward simple packaging with typewriter-style fonts and created this sheet using PicMonkey. Considering how I might use the jars prompted my word choices. 



Next, I cut the words into strips.



I trimmed the strips a bit for each jar and used a swipe of glue stick to affix.



Super cute and full of possibilities!

Happy tinkering + please stay safe at home + well!

xo
elyse

PS

I am honored to have a project featured on the Laura Ashley USA blog! I hope you'll visit and say hello!
Click: On a Roll