So back about 6 months ago, I was super excited to purchase and hopefully learn to play the ukulele. I bought one, 32cef64cloved it, but wasn’t so great about practicing. Then a few weeks back, I joined Ukulele Underground and I found this.

Plans to build your own ukulele stand, this one already sized perfectly for a tenor uke, which is what I have.

All I needed was a piece of wood for the base, a 1″ thick wooden dowel at least 22″ long, some felt, some screws, and some metal hooks sold at Walmart to act as the brackets.

I was super tight on money but really wanted to do this, so I improvised a bit. The wooden plaque I bought from Michael’s, with a 50% off coupon for $1.90. The felt I already had on hand, thanks to getting sent the wrong item when I ordered fabric ages ago. Wood stain and E6000 I had on hand. The dowel was the most expensive piece at about $4.50 for a 48″ length, and the screws were about a dollar for a package of 8. The hooks/brackets I made myself out of polymer clay, then cast them in resin which I dyed a deep red color with some mica powder.

Not counting the cost of materials I already had on hand, I spent about $8 building this.

I just added this little guy to my shop, and oh how I love him!

horse6

Raleigh the Racehorse stands about 3″ tall on his wooden base, and the plaque is 4″ wide. He’s made out of reddish brown polymer clay (Sculpey III and Premo!) to give him a rich bay coat. He’s relaxing on a bed of straw, with his lucky horseshoe and a big bucket of water nearby.

horse3

He would make a great display piece in a horse lover’s home, and he’s absolutely one of a kind! He is not for playing with- he could be broken- so not for young children.

Each individual piece has been bonded with E6000 clear glue and the wood is finished with a pecan stain.

Keep an eye out for other cute minis in the future!

I know I haven’t posted in almost a month (wow! That long already?) but I have some new makes to share, and some updated older makes. A few days ago I decided to make mini sculptures of the dogs after buying some wooden plaques I saw at Michael’s. The dogs aren’t fancy- I joked as I was making them that they were milk dud dogs- but I think they turned out super cute. The color is more true in the back view photo- the front view got kind of washed out with the flash.

doggies1

doggies2

Then I decided to give the same mounting treatment to the polymer clay fish I made about a year ago. They looked pretty good on the plaque but I decided to add some “coral” in different colors to the plaque as well.

fishies

I made the coral the same way I made the kibble in the dogs’ bowl. I roll out a small portion of clay, then sliced into tiny cubes. Then I mixed the pieces with some liquid Sculpey, stirred it up just enough to coat it all, and gentle formed it into shape with light pressure. I’m not sure these pieces will be especially tough, but for looks only, they look great!

I also finally mounted my skull I made a few weeks ago onto its own plaque. I really with I had a glass dome to go over it though.

skull1

skull2

These plaques are really inexpensive- I got the round ones for a dollar, and the larger 5″ x 7″ rectangular one was only a little more. All I had to do was lightly sand the edges and apply a few coats of wood stain to them.

Anyway, I’m really happy with these pieces and looking forward to my next project!

Good evening friends! I haven’t posted for a little while so thought I’d pop in and show you a few new makes. After I made the triangle scarf I showed you last time in the Red Heart Super Saver yarn, I decided to make another one, this time using some pesky boucle yarn I had in my stash that I’ve been eager to see gone. Boucle yarn is not something I like working with, and honestly, its a pain in the butt. If you make a mistake, its very difficult to pull out your stitches and chances are the yarn will just break instead and you’re left with a mess. But after its crocheted or knitted up, it makes a very nice fabric that feels pretty nice to the touch. Anyway, here’s the boucle yarn triangle scarf.

scarf

I don’t feel like I’m tooting my own horn to say this turned out beautifully and is really eye catching! I think I will keep it for myself and hope I get to actually wear it often enough to justify keeping it.

My Halloween costume this year involves snakes, so obviously I needed a pair of snake earrings. I decided to tackle this out of polymer clay and made myself a pair using Premo clay in a mixture of a medium green and their opal clay because I wanted to give them some pizzazz.  The opal clay, though soft enough for me to indent with my fingernail, proved really hard to mix and after running it through my pasta machine about ten times, I ended up working in a few lines of Sculpey Liquid into it as well but it never really reached that nice soft warm stage. It was malleable enough though for me to make my snakes.

snakes

As you can see, they are really basic, and if you know anything about snakes, you’ll see they are coiled backwards- a necessary cheat to make them hang evenly from the center. You can see they have a bit of glitz to them as well, from the opal clay. I gave them tiny black eyes with itsy bitsy bits of black clay, and one of my dotter tools. I haven’t added ear wires to them yet as I am waiting on a package of niobium ear wires to arrive first. Since they seem to work so well for me, I order ten more pairs to convert more of my earrings over to them.

I’m not doing a lot of crafting I can share lately because I’m trying really hard to get the big project (a Christmas gift) I’m working on done on time!

ladybug musicI’ve been working on some new stuff and I have some things I did a while ago that I kept forgetting to share with you. As some of you might know, I play on pool league once a week and it can be tough to tell your stick bag apart from everyone else’s when they are all basically the same. I made this little charm for my back to mark it as mine and I also made another one for my ukulele case while I was at it. They’re just simple clay shapes stamped with rubber stamps. The ladybug one I painted before baking using dust from colored chalk pastels, and the other I painted with acrylic paints after baking. They were both super easy to make and there’s so many different things you could do with this idea.

I finally finished my triangle scarf that I have been waiting over a week to get the yarn to finish it. It figures I’d pick the one stash yarn I can’t buy anywhere around here when I needed more to finish! But it finally arrived yesterday and I was able to finish it this morning. I went crazy on the fringe though, but I really wanted to use up all of the yarn in that second skein and I did.

trianglescraft

I think it turned out really pretty and its very wearable. Now if it will just get chilly enough so I can wear it!

I started this two days ago and I expect it will be finished before the week is over. When its done, it will say EAT SLEEP BUILD REPEAT and of course there is the little Lego guy head in there. When it’s done I will frame it and put it up in Mattie’s Nerd Cave on the wall and then he can have some themed decorations.

crossstitch

I really wish I could decorate my craft room, but the main wall is cement, being part of the garage, and nothing will penetrate it so I can’t hang anything unless I use stickies.

The last week or so has been crazy busy here, not just with the website issues (I’m still working to restore images to the blog for the 2013 posts) but with creating all sorts of new items for the shop. A lot of the new arrivals are perfect for Halloween! Here’s just a few of them.

Skull earrings handmade from polymer clay. I have these in pink, blue, green, purple, and black. The colors are all pastels.
Skull earrings handmade from polymer clay. I have these in pink, blue, green, purple, and black. The colors are all pastels. $9.99
Red and teal handmade polymer clay bow earrings. I can make these in other colors as well.
Red and teal handmade polymer clay bow earrings. I can make these in other colors as well. $5.99
Handmade polymer clay rainbow cake earrings.
Handmade polymer clay rainbow cake earrings. $9.99
Handmade polymer clay and glass beaded necklace with square mirror.
Handmade polymer clay and glass beaded necklace with square mirror. $17.49
Halloween cats earring and necklace set with seashell and resin cats and acrylic and glass beads.
Halloween cats earring and necklace set with seashell and resin cats and acrylic and glass beads. $15.49

Good afternoon friends! I love Halloween. Its absolutely my favorite holiday of the year? Christmas? Who needs it? Give me fun costumes and spooky decorations any day! And since its almost October, why not get started with some spooky crafting? Bring on the Halloween skulls!

Wednesday night I started out with making some little polymer clay skull earrings. I didn’t worry about them being perfectly accurate but I did want them to be recognizable. They turned out to be so easy to make I decided to make a larger one today for display around the house.

This is what I started out with. Lots of white clay, and a few tools. I didn't use anything fancy, just those things pictured plus a one inch ball of aluminum foil.
This is what I started out with. Lots of white clay, and a few tools. I didn’t use anything fancy, just those things pictured plus a one inch ball of aluminum foil.
This was my almost finish and before baking picture. As you can see, it looks pretty boring and you can see a hint of the foil in the eye sockets.
This was my almost finish and before baking picture. As you can see, it looks pretty boring and you can see a hint of the foil in the eye sockets.

The basic skull shape is a ball that’s been pressed a bit to make the lower end someone narrower then the top. Make a pair of eye socket indentions, and then use a few small strips of clay to add the cheekbone ridges. A little more clay is adding to the lower front to make the lower jaw project a bit, and then add some clay to the upper back of the skull to add fullness to the braincase. I also added indentions into the sides at the joint of the jaws.

Teeth were simply scratched deeply into the surface, working out from the horizontal line, so lines were etched away from the split between the jaws. This keeps the horizontal scoring from being filled in by tiny bit of clay being drug down into it when drawing the teeth.

Then things got fun! After he baked and cooled a bit, I got out my yellow and brown acrylic paint and mixed them together to get a medium yellow-brown. I applied it everywhere with a heavy hand, and then quickly wiped it off before it could dry. Then I used only dark brown and dabbed it over the areas I wanted to have more definition and wiped it off. This is the end result.

skulls1 skulls2 skulls3 skulls4

 

 

 

 

modelI had so much fun making these and I hope you’ll try them too! They really can’t be easier! I did have a little help for basic shaping from a small clear plastic puzzle skull, which helped me quite a bit with the details of the larger skull. Sorry this final photo isn’t as clear- I snapped it with my phone without great lighting and its a little grainy.

The last two days I’ve been playing with my polymer clay and I’ve made a few things. On Friday, I made a fish. Yes, a fish. I just kind of started squishing the clay around and let it form into whatever came to mind and this was it. I added a little detail post-bake by rubbing dark blue acrylic paint into the scratches where I drew a few scale shapes, gills, and nostrils, and wiped away the excess, leaving just enough of a stain on the other surfaces to give the idea of a slightly mottled color.

fishy

 

Unfortunately, I busted off one of his tail fins when I put him in the oven and didn’t realize it until after he came out so I had to glue it on later after I had glazed him and baked him again. Still, I think he’s adorable, and he’s not sitting on our TV stand, just under the edge of the TV.

Saturday I used two of the tiny mirrors I bought and made these little garden looking glass earrings. I made the flower arrangements opposite of each other, and they turned out pretty well. I think the one on the right below turned out a bit better but they look good and I wore them last night.

mirror1

 

I know I could never wear these to Jami’s house because her little dog would lose her mind going after the light reflections these cast in good lighting.

mirror2

 

I was worried they’d be too heavy (I still haven’t tried out any of the Souffle clays that are supposed to be lighter weight for jewelry making) but they’re very wearable and I feel like i could make others to add to my shop.

 

When I first bought my polymer clay, I watched a ton of videos, mostly on making miniature food. I was totally fascinated by it. There are people out there that make the most realistic looking polymer clay minis that it seems strange that you can’t actually eat them. SugarCharmShop on YouTube is one of them. Check out this amazing mini ham tutorial! Her work is impressive whether its this ham, or a plain old donut!

bubblegumicecream1

Anyway, the day before yesterday I started making miniatures- ice cream cone earrings. Each set was a little better than the last, and except for one pair going from mint chocolate chip to a beautiful gunmetal grey in the oven, they turned out fantastic. The pair that turned colors didn’t burn, it just got dark- the cone stayed the same tan color it went in as.

At right is my pair of blue bubblegum ice cream earrings, and below are my pistachio ones- they are both in shop as well for purchase. I tried a few different things with texturing the cones as well, but what I was doing first seemed to work the best.

pistacchioicecream1

I decided to give the light colored ice cream scoops eyes, and then after baking them, applied a coat of acrylic paint which I think wiped off of the outer surfaces. Using a color a few shades darker gets it worked into the low spots and gives more definition to the piece.

Today I finished up the last few pairs of ice cream cones, and I realized I have a wire stipling tool in my kit that I didn’t realize I had. Using the stipling tool made me able to make the ice cream cone drips look somewhat foamy and more natural.

butteredtoast

After the ice cream cones, I decided I’d try making toast. The toast turned out so easy and I might actually do a tutorial on how to make them. Its pretty much forming a nice organic square shape, indenting the sides near the top, stipling the heck out of the open surfaces, and then brushing on some chalk pastels onto the top (more on the top because that part of the bread is always browner) and sides, and then to the open surfaces in a toaster-eque pattern.

I ended up making a second set, this time with butter with a little help from Tracy at Art Resurrected and they turned out super cute. Both are in my shop. Just click on Jewelry.

Anyway, I need to work on my knitting and stop playing with clay for a bit. That’s the plan anyway. We’ll see what actually happens!

 

 

What do we have here? Some fantastic (and so easy to make!) Christmas tree or even gift tags you can make this season. Tracy from Art Resurrected shares this great tutorial on the Amazing Mold Putty blog on how to make these great tags.

tags

The idea behind them is so simple, and I’m sure anyone could make these, even without a lot of the tools she uses in her tutorial. All you really need is polymer clay, some ribbon, paint, and a few basic tools for working with the clay. Check out the full tutorial here!