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--Ms. Molly

Monday, November 24, 2014

Glittery Canvas Ornaments

Christmas is a perfect time to use and overuse glitter!  The inspiration for this ornament came from Beth Quinn.  I saw an ornament she made on Pinterest that had the same sentiment and lots of glitter.  Our ornaments are quite different (hers is fancier for sure), but I believe in giving credit where it's due, so to see Beth's 2010 blog post with her ornament, click HERE.  Thank you for the inspiration, Beth!
I made my little glittery ornament, which is far prettier in person, using a tiny 2" x 2" canvas from Michael's.  First I covered it in gesso.
Then I added a snowflake to the corner and trimmed off the excess.
I covered the whole thing in gel medium.
Then, with my finger,
I dappled on modeling cream all over the canvas, leaving some areas raised, and creating basically a lumpy surface.  I used a shimmering champagne color that's more cream than the yellow it looks like in my photos.
Then, probably because my hands were so messy, I quit taking photos.  My next step was adding lots of big, course glitter.  I used Twinklets Diamond Dust.  I added a layer of Modge Podge (the classic clear glossy kind) on top.  Then I printed and cut out the words "She Loves Christmas" individually.  I adhered the words with Modge Podge, then added just a little bit of ultra fine iridescent silvery white glitter. I coated the whole thing again with Modge Podge.  In between most of these steps, I used my heat tool to speed up the drying process. 
Here's the finished look, up close:
The snowflake just barely shows through all the glitter and modeling paste.
On the back I added the date with my date stamp.  I spread a layer of Modge Podge, attached a piece of ribbon for the hanger, and added just a bit more glitter.  Lastly, I covered the back with one final coating of Modge Podge.
I'm probably going to make several versions of these ornaments, and maybe some beachy ones too.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Advent Ornaments / Sour Cream Containers Tutorial

It's Christmas time! Well, maybe not quite yet, but we had our family Thanksgiving today, so I feel like the Christmas season is here.  And, if the stores are any indication, the Christmas season started before Halloween.  I absolutely love Christmas crafting and decorating, and what better way to start both than with a set of advent ornaments?  You still have time to make these super-easy "sour cream" container advent ornaments before December.  Here's my finished set:
I made these with paper scraps from my stash of Christmas papers and CTMH's stamp set "Magical Days," a set of numbers 1-25 perfect for Christmas advents.  You can order your set HERE, which is a link to the set on my online store, http://mollyrawls.ctmh.com
Here are some of the ornaments close-up:

Each has a little treat--candy or a little cash hidden inside.
This container is actually a pretty old paper crafting pattern that I've seen around for years.  I've already done a blog entry with the tutorial, which is HERE, but I've taken some new pictures, so I'll repeat it.  I call it a sour cream container because that's what it looks like.
Start with a 4" x 6" piece of paper.  These are great for using up scraps!
Add adhesive to the back of the short end of the paper:
I like to use Scor-Tape two-sided tape, because it holds really well, but you could use anything that works best for you.
Roll the paper into a tube and adhere the short ends together.
It looks basically like a toilet paper tube.
Crease one end flat and adhere it shut.
This is important:  Once one end is shut, that's the time to insert your filler: candy, money, a small toy, or whatever fits.  After you close the other end, you have to rip it to open it.
After the container is full, fold the open end in the opposite direction that the other end and adhere it shut.
So one of the flat ends will run vertically, and the other horizontally.
You could be done here, but....
I take it another step and crimp both ends a little.  If you have a paper crimper gathering dust, get it out--finally a reason to use it!
Just a few turns on both ends gives a really finished look.
Here it is all ready for decorating:
 I liked using lots of all different Christmas scraps, but I think a basket full of matching containers would be gorgeous.
  Since mine are going to be ornaments, I punched a hole and added ribbon:
I used scraps of ribbon and some pretty cheap ribbons too, because I know to get to the goodies inside, the container will be torn and tossed away.
One last look at some of mine:  
These came together pretty quickly--you still have time!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Halloween Decorations and Felt Skull & Voodoo Doll Ornaments

Halloween is over, but I didn't want to share my decorations before our costume party, so I'm blogging them post-Halloween.  We had a successful get-together with good friends, some great food, and lots of drinks.  Here are some pics:
This happy couple greeted guests at the front door:
I had the pumpkin, the plant was an unfortunate mum I hadn't taken care of, the leaves fell off our tree, and my sister gave us the fabric.  I made the "bride" a veil and shawl with fabric and purchased the "groom" a vest at Good Will.  I already had the chalk board, but I just learned about chalk pens--I love them!  Tom and I made the felt top hat.
Tom and I as the the Voodoo couple:
I don't know how the rest of my friends feel about their pics on my blog, so I won't post theirs, but there were some great creative costumes.  Who knew a bunch of Parrotheads could wear costumes other than Hawaiian shirts and grass skirts?
Here are a couple of the cute food ideas people had:
pumpkin cheese balls

vampire teeth
 I forgot to take pictures of my decorations pre-party, but some made it through ok.  Besides these, we had tables and banners in our garage, and white sheets covering most of our front room furniture.  The candles were all lit, and I had little battery LED candles under some of the other decorations to make them glow.
 This grouping was on my buffet.  I find that anything in a glass container makes a great decoration: skeleton for a spooky Halloween, pumpkins for fall, ornaments for Christmas, shells for the summer, etc.  It's an easy way to decorate.  I replaced some of my candles with black candles and added a dollar store crow.
My dining room table had a long gauzy runner with a vintage fabric piece over it.  I bought the candles at Wal-Mart and my sister had the black & orange vintage candlesticks.  The skulls are cheap, I had the voodoo doll from New Orleans, and the bones were left over from the ones I sewed on Tom's hat.  The center bowl was just a potpourri dish I got for a dollar at Good Will.  I tried to use every black decoration I could find.  Even if they weren't "Halloween themed," they looked Gothic when lined up with the themed decorations.
The mirror over the mantle stays out from Halloween through Christmas and looks great with both themes. I draped more vintage fabric from my sister, and lined up all the black, orange and silver items I had around.  The skull is from Michaels.  The branches around the dollar store crow were on clearance from Kohl's.
I bought a "Bag O' Bones" for under $10 at the Halloween store and put them in a pile in the fireplace.  (Not my idea--I saw it on Pinterest.)  The candles are actually beachy themed, but you can't tell it when they're in the fireplace.  This was one of the spots I had some little LED candles for a spooky glow.
Here's the whole fireplace/mantle look:

The chalkboard actually sat outside the front door.  (See the picture above.)
I couldn't find a lot of black candles, so I also used purple.  The jar of skulls is another example of my anything-under-glass-is-a-decoration theory.
The table just inside the front door had red velvet material with a black fringe shawl or something from my sister over it.  I already had the old books, candle, and pumpkin, and I just bought the skull and another dollar store crow.  I really had at least 85% of all my decorations.  The main things I bought were skulls/skeletons/bones, crows, and candles.
I bought this little Halloween tree with Kohl's cash.  It's only about 18" high.  I've been making a lot of felt ornaments, so I made three skulls and three Voodoo dolls to decorate the tree (and added another crow).
The felt ornaments were mostly inspired from similar things on Pinterest.  Here's a closer look at each of them:


Sorry these are too late for any ideas for this year, but feel free to pin them for next year! :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Alpine Valley

Why, yes, we did head to Wisconsin with our Parrothead gang again this August for a Jimmy Buffett concert and tailgate.  Thanks for asking.

And, yes, we had a great time!  Cheers & Fins Up!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Introducing My Grandson! ...and Baby Shower Crafts

It's been over two months since I posted!  But now I'm back with BIG news: My grandson, Finn, was born!
Isn't he adorable?!
Jess had an absolutely wonderful baby shower in September.  Lots of creative minds made it over-the-top.  Here are a few of the ideas.  I got permission to post them and put them on Pinterest, but because I didn't make them, I have no idea if they were based on other crafters' ideas or patterns.  I'm just passing them on, and hopefully the crafting world will forgive my lack of credit to the originals.
Disclaimer over, here are the pics, and be warned, this is a looooooong post.  The theme was fish and water (for Finn--get it?) Every table had an incredible centerpiece.
This one is a "diaper bouquet" with blue Sixlet and rubber duck candies in the vase.  The diapers are rolled to look like flowers and affixed to "stems."

Here's a "candy soda."  The candies are attached to a Styrofoam ball, and the soda glass is filled with rubber duck candies.

Here's a bouquet of blue suckers.  There were balloons tied to this and many of the centerpieces.  The doilies were from the dollar store, topped with mats cut with a Cricut.

This bundle represents the bundle the stork carries the baby in.  It's full of diapers and tied up with a receiving blanket.

Blue taffy skewers -- lots and lots of taffy.
This great diaper wreath greeted guests as they arrived:
It's made with a wreath base, diapers, ribbon, rattle, spoons, & a brush.
And on to the snacks.  No one should have left hungry or empty handed.  There were wraps and dip and lots of creative food: 

All of the guests were given "fish bowls"--little jars with blue & white "rocks" (jelly beans) and a Swedish Fish.

One of Jess's favorite foods is a white cheddar popcorn.  We filled these popcorn containers for each guest.  The handmade label says "She's ready to Pop!"  There were also baby stat sheets for each guest to guess when Finn would be born and his height, weight, etc.

There was also blue punch with little sharks swimming in it. 
And look at the cake table:
The cake was so cute!
A little Finn cake, complete with fins and cake balls with fins.  (This cake appealed to me as a Parrothead too.)

Awesome dipped pretzels:

I found out later these were hand painted.  Yikes.
This cute box of "babies" decorated the table: 
The babies are diapers wrapped in baby washcloths with a baby sock for a hat and decorated with ribbon, eyes, and safety pins.  They're nestled in a receiving blanket inside a box from Michael's.
This diaper cake was crazy!
It should have been a gift itself!
F is for Finn.  :)
This was made with a frame, scrapbook paper (CTMH), and painted wood pieces.
And last but not least on the cake table were these characters:
Sparkles and Elmo, Neal's and Jess's favorite toys.  Elmo is well-chewed.
And even more decorations:
A sand pail filled with fun baby stuff, a jar of daisies representing Neal & Jess's wedding theme, and a personalized piggy bank.
Now a little bit about the activities.  There were letters for guests to paint for decorating Finn's room.
I like how the fonts were all different.

And patterns to iron on all sizes and colors of onesies. 

Here are some of the finished onesies.  They turned out great!
And there were some gifts too.
This is Jess's opening a huge basket of 40 gifts for 40 weeks while her sister-in-law Tara tries to write down everything.
And here are Jess and Neal when he came to help load up all their new baby stuff. 
All for this little guy!
(having a happy stretch here)