Friday, March 29, 2024

Easy Printed Image Transfer

 When I came across these packages of 4" winter signs at a discount store, I bought several packages. I've done quite a few projects where I cut 2x4 boards into 4" squares. So, I knew these blocks would make future projects easy.

After having these for awhile, I finally decided to recreate a project that I did in 2016. You can see that post HERE.

In this new version, I painted the blocks with 2 coats of Dixie Belle Paint Company's chalk mineral color, Buttercream. I left the ski graphics on the other side of the blocks in case I want to use them in the winter. Once dry, I stained the side with Dixie Belle's Voodoo Stain using the color, Tobacco Road. 

I used a damp rag to add a little of the stain to the front of the blocks to give them an aged look.

I found 3 bird images on The Graphics Fairy that I wanted to use. I resized them to fit the blocks, then printed them using my laser printer. If you use an ink jet printer, the ink will bleed. If you don't have a laser printer, you can print your image with an ink jet printer, then take it to an office supply store to make copies. They typically use laser printers, but check to make sure first.

If your image has writing on it, make sure to mirror the image or your finished product will have backward writing.

I covered the blocks with Dixie Belle's Satin Clear Coat, then laid my bird images printed side down onto the wet blocks. 

In the original post, I cut closely around the bird, then coated the paper with clear coat. But in this version, I cut the images in squares approximately the size of the blocks. I also coated the block with the clear coat instead of the paper.

I waited overnight to make sure the image was transferred, then placed a wet paper towel over the paper. I let it sit for about 30 minutes to make sure that the paper was fully saturated. Then I started rubbing the paper away. I added a little water whenever it felt as though the paper was getting dry.

When dry, if the image started to appear cloudy, I added more water, then rubbed the excess paper off.

I gave each finished block a coat of Dixie Belle's Satin Clear Coat.

I love how these turned out!

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Friday, March 22, 2024

Oyster Shell Cross DIY

 On a recent beach trip, I saw a lot of art created using oyster shells. So, with Easter coming, I used the inspiration to create some crosses.

I could have asked some restaurants at the beach for their discarded oyster shells, but didn't want to drive home with the stinky shells. So, I ordered some from Amazon that were already scrubbed & sanitized.

The first thing I did was to give the inside of the shells a coat of white paint. This will keep the dark spot where the oyster was attached to the shell from showing through the design.

If you know me, you know I'm a hoarder of patterned napkins. I love using them in decoupage projects. So, I picked a pretty patterned napkin & separated the layers until I was left with a single layer. If you don't separate the layers, the napkin won't adhere properly.

I cut the napkin a little larger than the size of the shells. If you cut it the exact size, it will end up too small once pressed down into the curved shell. I cut the napkin about a half inch larger than the shells all the way around.

I added a coat of Dixie Belle Paint Company's Clear Coat to use as my decoupage medium. You could also use ModPodge. I covered the inside of the shells with the clear coat, & while wet, I added the napkin. I started pressing the napkin down from the center of the shells working my way out to the edges. I did not rub back & forth! This could tear the napkin. So, I gently pressed the napkin down with my finger.

Once the clear coat was dry, I wet my finger & rubbed along the edges of the shells to remove the excess paper.

I added more Clear Coat over the napkin to seal it. Once the clear coat was dry, I used my finger to add Dixie Belle's Gold Gilding Wax to the edges of the shells.

I also added the gilding wax to the edges of a wooden canvas that I had painted with Dixie Belle's paint color, Farmhouse Green.

Once everything was dry, I glued the shells onto the canvas using E6000. E6000 will hold things in place forever, but it takes awhile to set up. So, I let the canvas lay flat overnight.

I intended this project to be for Easter, but with the napkin I chose, it can stay out all year.

I never seem to be able to stop with just one project. And, since I had more shells, I made a couple more.

For one, I used a napkin that reminds me more of Easter since it features bunnies.

I added the bunny shells to a canvas that I painted with the color, Daisy.

I also created one where I reversed the paint & paper. I covered the wooden canvas with a black & white check napkin. I painted the shells with the color Peony, added gold to the edges, then added the shells to the decoupaged canvas.

I have plenty more shells. Just waiting for more inspiration to hit to see what I do with them!

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Saturday, January 20, 2024

Vintage Napkin Holder Turned Valentine Art

I bought this old, handmade napkin holder at my local thrift store for $1. I knew it would get some type of makeover, I just wasn't sure what kind of makeover. Like so many "project pieces", it got stuck away until the time hit me to do something with it. And, when I finally pulled it out to do something with, the plan was to just keep it a napkin holder. But with Valentine's Day coming I went in another direction.

When I peeled off the paper that lined the bottom of the box, it revealed what the last person that bought it paid for it.
I was worried that once I painted it, the ink & the knots in the wood would bleed through the paint. So I gave it 3 coats of Dixie Belle Paint Company's BOSS. BOSS blocks odors & bleed through. 
To add texture to the outside of the box, I did a raised stencil. To do this, I placed a Stick N Style stencil from Re*design with Prima on the side of the box. These stencils have an adhesive back so they stay in place nicely.
I used a hotel key card to spread Dixie Belle's Mud over the stencil. I made sure to get a good layer covering all of the stencil, then scraped most of it off.
Even though the stencil is very thin, the mud is higher than the base & leaves a nice texture.
The Mud is porous & can take paint differently than the rest of the surface being painted. So, I covered the box with Dixie Belle's Spray Wax to make it an even playing field.
I painted the entire box with 2 coats of the color, Cotton. 

I wanted a wash of a bright, pretty color, & turned to the VooDoo Gel Stain color, Temptress. This is a water based stain which makes it easy to use & easy to clean up... no need for gloves with this stain.

I poured a little of the stain into a container then added a tiny bit of water to thin it out. I used a brush to cover the surface with the stain.
Then I used a damp rag to wipe most of the stain away & just have a wash of the color. It rested nicely in the recessed areas of the raised stencil to reveal the pattern.
I also washed the stain on the inside of the box.
There was a hole in the middle of the box that I covered with a pink paper doily. But, the hole showed through the paper.
To hide the hole, I painted a wooden heart with the color, Soft Pink.
So it wasn't so plain, I placed the same stencil on the heart once the paint was dry. I used a makeup sponge to dab on Stick With Me, a glue used to add Dixie Shine. Dixie Shine is like using gold leaf, but without the mess or waste.
Since I was doing a Valentine project, I chose to use the color, red. Dixie Shine also comes in gold, silver, & copper.
You need to wait at least 15 minutes after adding the glue before applying the shine. Dixie Shine comes in a roll & I just cut off a small piece to use. I placed the Shine on the heart facing up & rubbed over it with my finger.
I peeled up the Shine & used the areas left on the paper to cover any missed or sticky areas.
I love the texture that it made using the makeup sponge to apply the glue.
I glued the wooden heart to the center of the doily.
I wrapped a pink bottle brush tree, that I bought at Christmas, with a tiny Valentine banner.
I glued the tree into the box, then glued in a cute little vintage style Valentine.
Although it looks like the Valentine is an old card, it's actually a reproduction from Hobby Lobby of a card & is metal & has a stand.

This box has come a long way from holding napkins.

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