Photo Transfer Canvas

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I recently had the opportunity to take some classes with Jen Starr. This was the one I was most excited about — transferring a photo onto canvas. The background was painted with acrylic paint and stenciled and stamped … then we transferred the photo (in my case, the lighthouse) and then added the metal around the edge. The rest, I finished at home, finally!

I won’t tell you how to transfer the photo because that was Jen’s class, but I can share some of the work I did to the piece.

First, I should tell you that touring this lighthouse was a bit of a life-altering experience. During the 96 steps to the top, I realized that my lifestyle changes made in diet and exercise are working. I also pushed myself to deal with my fear of heights. And, I had a paranormal experience. Much more on all of this to come, but because the place was so special, I wanted it to hang in my living room.

If you look closely, you will see that I forgot one of Jen’s instructions in doing the transfer, so I am missing a couple of pieces, but I feel it adds to the paranormal quality of the art, don’t you think?

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Jen also stressed in her class that the elements added have meaning and not just be random pieces of art. I took that to heart and nearly every piece included is done for a specific reason.

The metal quote (from Tim Holtz) is there to represent the paranormal experience. The keys tell of my courage and determination to “own” the lighthouse and climb all of those steps despite the full-blown panic attack I was having from my fear of heights. (The anchor and metal corner piece are decorative … hint: I painted the metal corner embellishment with Distress Paint to cover the brass.)

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Suel Choix (inked wooden letters) is the name of the lighthouse. It’s name, in French, means “only choice.” The story goes that some French sailors were caught in a storm and this bay was their only choice for survival — hence the little French sailor from Prima. The lighthouse was once the center of the fishing community in this part of Michigan, so I included the fisherman from Prima as well.

The arrow signifies movement and direction, which I took in climbing the stairs. The compass is for the journey we took to get there — we had to use GPS because it was so far off the main road — and the admit one is for the tickets we had to purchase to see the lighthouse. The wooden saying, a moment to remember, also painted, is so I will always remember that if I set my mind to it, I can do anything!

By the way, the chimney and roof are actually in front of the tower. When I cut out the picture and saw how it looked like it was painted onto the tower, I thought it led a ghostly quality to the canvas.

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Art Journaling Class

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I have decided to take a monthly art journal class taught by my friend, Linda Neff, at her Green Door Studio. Since I have a tendency to be a hermit, I thought it would be a fun way to make me go out and be social each month. Besides, my husband is now on a golf league, so I figure I should have something to do, too, right?

This was the first page I created in the class … I’m using a different journal this time — Strathmore Mixed Media 5.5 x 8.5. I wanted to try a different kind of paper than in my Dylusions journal because I have had some issues with the pages sticking. I also wanted to try to work with a spiral bound book so I can get my book completely flat while working. I cannot say I like one better than the other … they are both great for different reasons.

This technique uses acrylic paint and alcohol. I fell in love with it. I have since tried it with chalk paint, Distress Paint and Dylusions Paint … I must say it is a favorite. More details to come … for now, this is how I used the technique on a few projects …

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This is with Distress Paint and Chalk Paint …

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This one is with Distress Paint and Dylusions Paint. Details on this one to come …

In the meantime, Art Journaling is the fourth Thursday in Brighton … give the studio a call and join us!

Be Amazing with Etchall

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This project has been working in my mind for some time … it started life as a medicine cabinet someone removed from a house and sold at an antique show. I wanted to put a positive saying on it so that whenever you look in the mirror, you will get a bit of a pat on the back.

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I cleaned it up and started its transformation.

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I used my Cricut to cut out the words “Be Amazing” on etchall etchmask stencil combo pack. Once I cut out the yellow vinyl, I placed the white transfer paper on top and then pulled it off the mat.

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I then positioned it on the mirror and carefully removed the transfer paper. Then I used a craft pick to remove the letters, followed by a brayer to make sure everything was stuck down tightly.

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etchall etching creme is extremely simple to use … about the only way you can mess it up is if you drip onto a surface you did not want etched. I always think I’ll be careful and then I drop a tool or something and mess it up, so I was careful to tape off and mask any glass areas I did not want etched.

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Then, I placed the etchall in a thick, even coat across my vinyl and set the timer for 15 minutes. NOTE: Those air bubbles would not be a good thing if they were by my design. Normally, I would have taken the spatula and worked them out. But since they were on a part of the mirror I was not etching, I didn’t worry about them.

When the timer went off, I used the spatula to scrape all of the etchall into my plastic container and then poured it back into the bottle. It is reusable, so you don’t need to worry about ever getting too much!

Then, I took a wet paper towel to remove any residue and ripped off all of the vinyl and tape.

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One more pass with a wet paper towel and it is amazing!

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I then taped off the mirror again and painted the frame with three colors of Distress Paint. When dry, I covered it with a coat of white chalk paint and then sprayed it with rubbing alcohol while still wet. I let it sit for a few minutes and then used a baby wipe to remove the color. In some places, it went down to the original white finish. In other places, the Distress Paint shows through. And some places are just pretty white.

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I had planned to do more, but it looked so perfect the way it was, I decided to leave it. I had intended this project to go in a craft show, but I love it so much, it might stay in my house. After all, we all could use a bit of encouragement now and then!

Are you ready to try your hand at making a custom mirror with etchall? Visit etchall.com to purchase yours, today … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get creating today!

This post is sponsored by etchall.

Texture Paste Resist Canvas

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When Tammy Tutterow posted the Transparent Texture Paste Resist on Fabric technique on the Ranger Blog, I knew I had to try it. I’ve included the link here, so you can follow her instructions and see the beautiful project she created.

But, I also wanted to show you my take on her technique.

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Use Archival Ink and a stencil to create the background on a canvas. Use washi tape to hold the stencil in place while working.

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Use another stencil and apply Transparent Glossy Texture Paste.

 

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Once dry, spray with Dylusions ink. Randomly blot and dry until you get the result you want.

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Add ribbon with Scor-Tape (or similar). Adhere charm, wires and flowers with Art Glitter Designer Dries Clear Adhesive.

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Use the Crop-A-Dile to create holes in the top and add to hang.

Upcycled Lamp

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This adorable lamp began life as a bottle of avocado oil from Costco. When the bottle was finished, I noticed it was colored. Most “colored” glass today is actually a film put on the glass. To test it, look through the opening to the bottom of the vessel. It will usually be clear because manufacturers do not waste time coloring the bottom. When I tested this one, it was green. Since colored glass is rare, I washed the bottle and set it aside for a future etchall project.

When Barbara Bosler, the owner of etchall, asked me to create a lamp using the new Lighten Up Kit, I remembered that green bottle and thought it would be perfect as the lamp base. Here’s how I did it …

etchall_lamp_by_Candy_Spiegel-1Cut the butterfly image using the Cricut and etchall etchmask.

Carefully peel the etchmask off the backing and adhere it to the bottle. Remove any air bubbles and be sure the image is pressed tight on all sides.

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Spread a thick, even layer of etchall etching cream over the cut out image. Wait 15 minutes. Scrape up the etchall cream and return it to the jar to use again. Wipe off any remaining etchall cream, remove the vinyl and then wash the bottle with soap and water.

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I love how etchall works on colored glass. Now it is time to decorate.

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I cut three images from Prima’s new Tales of You and Me collection. I wanted the girl to blend in with the etched butterflies, so I fussy cut around her hat. I then inked the edges and used a Xyron machine to adhere them to the bottle.

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Wrap the bottom of the bottle in twine and add flowers.

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Now, onto the shade …

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Trace the template that comes with the Lighten Up Kit onto a 12×12 sheet of paper. Cut just inside the line.

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Remove the lid from the top and adhere the paper onto the shade.

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Use Elizabeth Craft Designs Clear Tape, Scor-Tape, Red Line Tape or something similar to adhere lace to the edge of the lid, and the top and bottom of the shade.

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Adhere a knob to the top of the lid. Once dry, turn on the light by pushing the button under the shade and then place it on the jar (It will light up after placed on the jar).

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This light also looks amazing when the light is off …

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You can make your own lamp with any jar using this new kit … Visit etchall.com to purchase yours, today … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get etching today!

This post is sponsored by etchall, but the designs, instructions and opinions are my own.

For the Birds

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Spring is just around the corner and the songbirds are starting to return. Welcome them to your yard with these unique feeders made from thrift-store finds.

I started by collecting some glass pieces at my local Salvation Army and Goodwill stores. I even found the little mice figurine there (I sprayed it with a UV protector so it will not fade in the sun.)

Next, I got to work etching with etchall.

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I used a Cricut to cut out the etchall etchmask and used the etchmask transfer sheets to transfer the images to the plates.

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Then, I used a pick to pull out the pieces where the etchall will go.

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I used painter’s tape to mark off the rest of the plate and then applied etchall. (It gets brown with use.) Apply a thick, even coat for the best etching. Let it sit for 15 minutes, scrape the excess back into the jar (it is reusable!) and then rinse it off and remove the tape and etchmask.

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I used silicone to adhere my pieces of glass together. I let each piece sit for an hour before adhering the next piece.

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I tucked the little mice in one of the pieces.

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Here are the two finished pieces … perfect for the garden.

etchall_birds_candy_spiegel-2 And here is each piece with birdseed … they hold about a cup of seed each. But you could also use it as a bird bath.etchall_birds_candy_spiegel-1

My chickens tried them out and loved them. However, chickens weigh too much to leave these where they can try to roost on them. These are meant for the little songbirds in my yard. I cannot wait for spring to officially arrive so I can put them outside!etchall_birds_candy_spiegel-3Are you ready to make one for the birds in your yard? Visit etchall.com to purchase yours, today … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get etching today!

NOTE: I received compensation for this post.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow Banner

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Since things were so busy before the holidays and I had so many plans for the new year, I decided to make my holiday banner a winter banner, so I could leave it up on my tree all season. Of course, I still have the holiday stuff up, so this photo shows the banner with all of it’s holiday attire, but I assure you, the ornaments and Christmas cards will soon be packed away…

snow_banner_Candy_Spiegel3I started with a 6×6 paper pad from Michael’s and cut out tags using dies from Elizabeth Craft Designs to make the banner. I added a few cut outs from the paper pad, as well.

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Then, I embellished with silver glitter paper using dies from Impression Obsession and a deer punch. I used the Sizzix Precision Base Plate to get the thin metal dies to cut through the glitter paper.

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Then I added ribbon and buttons and strung it up with a bit of twine … since the tree is in my hallway where the lighting is poor, the photos on the tree never look great, but you get the idea!

A Handmade Christmas

christmas2016_candy_spiegelWhen my kids were little, I started a tradition of making them something special that was just from me. When I married my husband, I extended the tradition to include him. This year, I added my son’s fiance to my list.

Over the years, I have made my children personalized ornaments, albums, mirrors, calendars, posters, mugs, frames and more — all featuring photos I have taken. This year, I wanted to do something a little different. Since I am learning how to sew, I decided to make them each something from fabric.

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For my son, I cut up a sweater I found at Goodwill featuring embroidered hula girls. It is so him. But, since it was a girl’s sweater, I added it to a pillow for his couch. He loved the fabric I chose and didn’t notice the imperfections in the sewing!

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I figured my daughter has not gotten a new pillow since long before she moved out of our house four years ago (I was right, by the way). So I bought her a new pillow and made her a super-soft flannel pillowcase to go with it. It was a tough project … I waited in line for 2 hours to get the fabric on sale on Black Friday — only to discover that it would not work for the pillow. So, I went back to the store and started over. The pillowcase was supposed to take an hour to sew … it took me six hours, including a few times of ripping out the seams and starting over. The good news is she loved it and I now know how to do a French seam!

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My future daughter-in-law received a sewing machine for Christmas, so I made her a mason jar pin cushion to go with it and filled the jar with a variety of twines, ribbons, fibers and lace. Although this is a fabric project, I actually used paper-crafting supplies to make it. Check back on Thursday for a tutorial of this project.

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But, it would not be Christmas without at least one paper-crafting gift … so I made my husband a calendar on a clip board. This is a brand-new system from Doodlebug. They come in a rainbow of colors, but I kept this one simple in black and white for him. (He had been wanting a clipboard to provide a smooth surface to write on on his desk. I thought this would be perfect.) I included all of the holidays, birthdays and anniversaries he needed to know, along with some of the crops I will be attending, hunting seasons and gun shows in the area.

It was a wonderful Christmas with my kids and their significant others. We had tons of presents, plenty of Mexican food and lots of laughs.

Seasoning the Holidays

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Spice up the holidays a bit by turning vintage, clear, glass salt and pepper shakers into holiday decor. These little jars are perfect for displaying holiday photos or cards. Or, make a bunch and use them as place cards at the table. Here’s how I made them …

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First, punch out a circle or oval shape using etchmask. Stick the etchmask to the jar, smooth out all the bubbles and make sure the edges are stuck down tight.

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Place the shaker in a plastic container and fill the container with water to the point you want the glass etched. Remove the shaker and mark the water on the outside of the container. (This is how you know how much etchall dip ‘n etch liquid to use).

Dump the water and dry everything off, then pour the etchall dip ‘n etch liquid in the container to the mark you made. Now place the shaker in the container again. NOTE: It will float, so be ready with something heavy to place on top or place some pennies in the shaker, like I did here. Wait 15 minutes.

Remove the shaker, wash it off and remove the etchmask. Pour the etchall dip ‘n etch back into the bottle (it is reusable) and wash our your container to use next time.

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I love the soft etched glass … the trees really pop in the area that was covered by the etchmask. Although the photo does not show it well, it reminds me of looking into a diorama and you feel like the inside is much bigger than it really is.

Back to the tutorial … adhere the tree to the bottom of the shaker (I used silicone). Add faux snow to cover the base of the tree.

I also went around the unetched areas with little dots of Liquid Pearls.

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Trim a cork down to fit inside the lid of the shaker and adhere it. (I used Art Glitter Designer Dries Clear adhesive).

I coated the small shakers with glitter and the larger ones with Indigo Blue Mega Flake.

etchall_etched_glass_photo_Candy_Spiegel4Once dry, carefully insert a memo pin from Tim Holtz into the center hole.

Add a bit of twine or ribbon and you are ready to go! I really wish you could see these in person … nearly everyone who came by my booth at a recent craft show commented on these. They really are spectacular because of the etching!

etchall_etched_glass_photo_Candy_Spiegel5If you are ready to try your own, etchall is ready to help … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get etching today!

NOTE: I received compensation for this post.

Let the Light Shine!

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Today is a beautiful fall day, but my heart is ready for Christmas. I am not ready for the cold outside, but I am all set for a little faux snow, like I put on this lantern.

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The lantern began as a plain, black lantern I found at a big box store for less than $20. I love that it has a battery-operated candle that screws to the base and can be turned on and off from the base. It was the perfect blank slate to transform!

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I started by removing the glass panels so they could be etched. Then I added a bit of Distress Paint to the filigree on the top of the lantern and to the latch that holds the front door closed.

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Then, I coated the ledges with Art Glitter Vintage Glass Glitter.

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I cleaned each of the glass pieces with water and a paper towel (do not use Windex) and then added stickers from Elizabeth Craft Designs. (I should have taped the backside of the glass pieces as well — since the etchall got a bit messy and some of the pieces were etched on the wrong side. You cannot easily see the mistakes in the finished lantern, but I thought I should pass along my lesson learned!)

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Next, I coated each piece with etchall. (it gets brown as you use it, but it still works well) and let it sit for 15 minutes. Then, I scraped off the excess and put it back in the jar and rinsed off each panel.

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I love the soft, frosty feeling the etched glass provides.

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And it still allows the light to shine through!

Are you ready to make one of your own?

etchall is ready to help … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get etching today!

NOTE: I received compensation for this post.