Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Artist: Alexa Meade

Today I came across a really cool artist:
Her name is Alexa Meade.pho
She paints "Living Paintings".
Click her name to link to her page and check out her portfolio, 
really amazing things.
Here are a few examples of her work,
as well as a few great videos I found on Youtube of her explaining
a little bit about what she does. 

<3 Holly

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Downton Abbey... Paper Dolls!!!

So who doesn't LOVE Downton Abbey?
(Click here for a link to Downton Abbey on PBS) 
Very sad the season is over and we will have to wait for
the next one.
I guess I'll just have to be satisfied to watch the first season on netflicks all the way through, then re-watch the second season,
and HOPE that by then we will be closer to the third.
I'm working on making some Downton Abbey 
inspired crafts, but until then;
there are the most amazing paper dolls put up on Vulture.com
They are illustrated by Kyle Hilton
(Click on his page to find more paper dolls he has created

Here are my two favorites, go check out all the rest by clicking on the Vulture link, or by clicking the pictures.

Thank You,
<3 Holly


Friday, February 24, 2012

Longing for Summer 2....

Thinking of Summer again!
Here are some more things that remind me of summer...
(Click on Images to take you to original picture locations, and for tutorials for some select few) 

Perfect Summer Color Palette

Perfect Summer Hair So Romantic

 Watermelon Pie (need to make this for sure!)

 Paper Lanterns

 Making Friendship Bracelets (Reminds me of summers past)

 Lemonade Stands

(From This Old House: Click on the photo to head over for a 
"How-to" on building your own stand!

Favorite Local Beach 
(Mine is Nantasket in Hull, MA, this is a great vintage lithograph)

Build a Summer Teepee in the Backyard

Playing Hopscotch outdoors
(Here is a great idea to bring it indoors for rainy days 
& year round)

Going Bare Foot
(perhaps decorated with some "Bare Feet Sandals", absolutely ethereal)

 ...Well there you have just a few more things
 that remind me of summer, 
goodness I can't wait for it to finally get here!
<3 Holly

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Painting on Water!

Here is an amazing video I found of an artist using an old Turkish 
painting technique called "Ebru".
It does not say who the artist is, but this is amazing.
Isn't it cool how something old can be new to us?
I'm going to research this old art form, and possibly try it out!
Check it out. 

<3 Holly


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Longing for summer...

I know I'm not alone in the desire for summer to be here again.
So I started to put together some things that reminded me of Summer.
Here are some projects to make for summer, 
things to do in summer,
& things that just bring back memories of summers past!
(I have an extended board on Pinterest with more things of summer. I think I'll be doing a few of these "Things of Summer" posts)
(Click on Images for original locations and links to tutorials)

Fancy Outdoor Movie Theater
Pink Lemonade
Homemade Bubble Mania
Homemade Sidewalk Chalk
(Some people also use silicone ice cube trays with fun shapes to pour the chalk mixture in)
The Perfect Summer Dress
 D.I.Y Tiki Torches
Porch Oasis
(My very own porch garden from last summer)

Painting Outside 
(Me painting on my front porch in the sun)
Outdoor Sheet Tent for Storytelling
well now I REALLY want summer to be here.
I'm definitely in that magical place in my mind!
But for now dreaming about it will have to do.
I'll be on the look out of more things for summer.
more to come....
<3 Holly

Monday, February 13, 2012

Paper Gift Box Tutorial

Here is a great little project:
Paper Gift Boxes!
You can make them with just about any kind of paper you have around the house,
which can save you lots of money, and it adds an extra special personal touch to any gift.
The ones I show here I made by reusing a paper grocery bag. The thick quality of the paper bag
is perfect for making a nice sturdy little box.

You can use them to hold birthday presents,
 as boxes for wedding favors (I added me and my husband's monogram on this one),
or bridal/ baby shower favors (paint in your theme colors, and glue a cute bow on),

and just in time for Valentine's Day, to hold a special gift for YOUR valentine! 
(add a hand made Valentine to make it even more special)

 :Things you need:
:Things you need:
*Paper bag (more than one if you'd like to make a few decent sized boxes)
*White school glue (Or tacky glue)
*Paper clips or Clothespins (any kind of clip that can help you hold your paper together as you glue)
*Thin cardboard or card stock 
(I used the card stock found in between a pack of T-shirts, but a beer box or cereal box could work well too)
*Paint brush
*Craft Paint (optional for decoration, you could also decoupage your box with paper)

:Step One: Cutting out your Squares
*Start with your paper bag and cut down one side, then cut the flat bottom part of the bag off, so you end up with a long piece of paper.

*To make a box you will need to cut out two squares. The square that you will use for the top of your box needs to be slightly smaller than the square for the bottom.
You can make your square as large as you'll paper bag will allow 
(although if it is too big you might run into sturdiness issues)
For the top of my box I cut out a square that was 12" x 12"
For the bottom I cut out a square that was 11 1/2" x 11 1/2"
This gave be a box that was approximately  4" to 4 1/4" on each side.
(Like I said you can change the measurement of the squares as you'd like. But they have to be a square, and the bottom has to be slightly smaller than the square for the top. I subtracted an 1/2"
because the paper from the bag is thick. If you use a thinner paper, such as printer paper or magazine paper, you may want to only make it a 1/4" to an 1/8" smaller. Experiment what works best for different types of paper)

 :Step Two: Folding Your Squares

(You are going to do all these steps for both your squares, so it doesn't matter which one you start with)
*Take one of your squares and fold it in half so that you make a triangle, make sure your points line up.
 *Open the fold and repeat with the opposite points.
 *You might have an uneven cut like mine.
 *But that's OK, you can just trim it with scissors like I did above

 *When you open your paper up the  folds should look like an  X .
Taken the corner of the paper and fold the points into the middle of your X.
 *It will kind of look like your making an envelope.
 *With all the corners folded in it should look like the picture above.
Again, open up all your folds.
 *After making the envelope shape, the folds should have made a square in the middle of your paper. Take your corners and fold the points to the lines of the square, like I did above
 *This is what you should end up with after all the folding.
*Now fold over all your ends (with the points tucked inside). Your paper should look like a square with a picture frame around it
 *Next fold one side over to the middle, then the other (not overlapping, well a smidgen is OK)
*You'll get a rectangle, open it up and do it to the other side.
 *Open it up and it should look like the above picture.
 *You now have to push the corners inwards. 
*We are going to fold the corners to the side. (Two corners to one side, and two corners opposite the first side)
*Before I start gluing, I take the measurement of the smaller inside box, like this. It is what I will use to measure and cut out the piece of thin cardboard or card stock that I'll glue the the top and bottom of my box to make it strong, and resist crushing a little bit better.

:Step Three: Start Gluing 

Time to get the glue, paintbrush, and clothespins!

*I start by opening up my fold one last final time, and putting a little glue on the corner squares, like above pic, to help secure the box. (I blew up the picture to make it easier to see)
*Then I glue the inside of the crease that opens to the outside of the box. (You with me?)
*Now glue the inside triangles like this. Remember you are going to end up with two triangles on one side.
*Clip on your clothespins, to keep your triangles in place while it dries.
*Repeat on the opposite side.
*Cut out your cardboard piece, with the measurement you took earlier.
(I usually end up having to trim a little off of my square so it fits nicely)
*Put some glue on the flat part of the inside and push down your cardboard piece. Sit and let dry.
(while your waiting for one half to dry, repeat all of the folding and gluing steps for your second square.)

Then when your done with the second square
VIOLA! You have a paper box! 
(make sure the bottom half fits nicely into the top half. You don't want it too loose or too snug)

I painted mine with simple designs, and some craft paint. 
But some other great ideas to decorate them with are 
to use stamps, or decoupage on some paper,
You can use markers, 
or just leave it plain if you like with a ribbon.

I have lots of fun making these, I hope you will too!

<3 Holly Clark
If you have any questions, please e-mail me!