Thursday, May 17, 2012

Supplies and Stash

Home made washi tape!

You might remember in my last blog how I mentioned signing up for an online creative journalling class, well this week I got the class materials list. The class is given by a lady in America and most of the class supplies are things that are readily available over seas, this however is no qualm for a crafty gal like myself after all "necessity is the mother of all invention".

The one item that had  troubled me was washi tape. I have being drooling over these little beauties for some time now and while I have heard that they are available in South Africa (although I have yet to come across them personally) the price for them is quite high, something like R50 per roll.While I do not mind spending money on drool-licious products, R50 for a roll of tape is just too much for anybody, no matter how crafty you are. So, now I have to find a way to improvise and get as close to the actual product as possible. I have seen some online tutorials that seem a bit messy and/or fussy and the result does not turn out quite how I like it. I had an epiphany this morning while writing to a friend of mine and it seemed quite a plausible idea.

I scoured my house for anything tissue or tissue-like and came up with a few bits that I had lying about. I had some tissue paper from a box of boots that the shoes were wrapped in, some origami cut-offs and a fancy paper napkin that I bought ages ago because I liked the print. First I tried the tissue paper. I laid it out as neat and wrinkle-free as I could get it and taped down some double sided tape, cut around the tape ( leaving about a centimeter of paper to make a pull tab) and cut around it as close to the double sided tape as I could and "Hey presto", instant washi tape that looks amazing. Second project was the napkin. I had to do this a few times over because I had to go through all the layers or white napkin under it but ended up with some very funky washi tape and the origami paper looked good too but a bit too bulky for my liking as I think the thinner the paper, the more authentic your washi tape. I also tried some magazine wording and distressed it with some ink. The final result is really pretty and as close enough to the real thing as I would have liked.

The tiger print is the napkin and the red/pink is the tissue paper

I am totally in my element with the whole washi making experience and cannot wait to make some more. This project is cheap, quick, mess free and the results are great. Best of all, you get to choose the print you like. While I suppose you could use just about any material you like,  I think the lighter the paper the better. Just think about all the washi tape you could make with the tissue paper in gift bags, used wrapping paper, I suppose even aluminum foil could work, the possibilities are endless. I would not however suggest using newspaper as the print might come off. If your tissue paper is a little wrinkled then just smooth it out against the tape, a little wrinkling adds character and gives it that 'home-made' feel because as my art teacher always said, " If you want perfect then buy it from a shop".

I know that I am probably not the first person to think of this but I do think it is a pretty cool idea and a frugal way to make use of paper that would have probably been binned so till next time ... Ciao!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Shopping sprees and savings

Winter is definitely upon us in the Southern hemisphere. I am delighted as I have always been a very Wintry type person. I love piling on tons of clothes, making mugs of soup or hot chocolate  and snuggling up in my room with  some cross stitching, crochet pattern or even just a good book. I would have done well as a bear because hibernating is like second nature to me, not to mention bulking up for the Winter ...pass the oreos please!

Don't get me wrong, I love a warm Summer day as much as the next person but my philosophy has always been that it is easier to keep warm in Winter than it is to keep cool in Summer. I am literally a walking hot water bottle 365 days of the year and if has to be below zero for me to start shivering, which means I swelter in Summer. Winter also gives me an excuse to stay inside and craft which is were my passion lies

Shopping splurge

Anywhoo, enough about the weather and more onto crafting, I went on a shopping excursion recently and blew a very big part of my budget on crafting supplies. I should have left most of my money at home (or at least some as I am almost broke for the next two weeks) when I visited the Scrapbook factory shop. I was there for an hour but could have stayed 3 more and would still not have seen everything. It has still not registered yet that I have blown such a large amount on my supplies because each item was a) so reasonably priced, b) on special or c) items I will get a lot of use out of like ink stamps and paper punches.

Online creative journalling class

I have however sort of balanced my financial splurge out by joining an free online class via Creative passions. It is a free class about creative journalling. I am so excited that I could pee... almost. You have to register with them and then enroll in a class and then there are 4 lessons  which you will receive via email. I have never done this type of thing before but am intrigued to say the least. I will keep you posted on my progress.

crochet cuteness

I came across an awesome free pdf. pattern for a My little Pony doll, which I am delighted to say  thrilled me to no end. It was pure nostalgia at its best for me. You can find the free download here. The pattern is really easy to follow and I cannot wait to make the whole set. I even woke up this morning with ponies on my mind and though about doing a really tiny pony with crochet cotton and a tiny hook.

Here is rainbow Dash. So easy to make and cute to look at.

Teeny Tinies

I was super chuffed this week when my dolls house bureau (see last post for tutorial) was featured on a website that I joined a while ago. Icklebits is an online community dedicated to the love of miniatures, it has over 900 free tutorials and almost 500 articles. The owner of the site is Donna and she is really sweet and helpful and I love the way the site is very interactive and even has a points system. I have not been working on an actual room in the house but have plans for a ice cream shop diorama and also. I have been expanding my dolls house office but the piece that I am most proud of was my little tray that I made. I have seen so many websites that show you how to make a simple tray out of a cabochon backing but have not been able to come across one in my travels. I was so down the other day that I got out my tools and made my own tray, which in my opinion is even better than the ones I have seen, if I don't say so myself. Here is the before and after.

These are actually really small and the handle was made using a one hole punch.
Today seems like one of those where I have plans to get everything done and lists for lists and yet I still cannot hit the "Go" button but I suppose there comes a time when you procrastinate no more and that time is now for me so I will love ya and leave ya and hopefully by my next post I will have tons to share with you, so for now.... Ciao.