Monday, October 20, 2014

DIY Spooky Plant Pick

DIY Spooky Plant Pick
 
I love Halloween, so any excuse to create another craft project is good by me! I partnered up with Mod Podge to make a Halloween project with a few of their supplies. These fun plant decorations can are made with just a few materials and can help spookify your favorite houseplants. Plus they're glow-in-the-dark!

Here's what you'll need:
DIY Halloween Plant Decoration
  • Mod Melts in Green
  • Mod Podge Silicone Mat
  • Mod Podge Glow in the Dark
  • Hot glue gun
  • Cardstock in yellow and black
  • Single ply crepe paper (or tissue paper) in orange
  • Stapler
  • Double sided tape or gluestick
  • Striped paper straw
  • Scissors
DIY Halloween Plant Decoration
Punch (or trace and cut) 2 1/2" diameter circles from the yellow and black cardstock. Cut notches out of the black circle to make an irregular, spiky edge. Glue the two circles together.
DIY Halloween Plant Decoration

Cut a 3.5" x 18" piece of crepe. Accordion fold and staple in the center. Add double-sided tape to the edges and fan out.

DIY Halloween Plant Decoration

Glue the paper circles to the fan. Hot glue the straw to the back of the fan.

DIY Halloween Plant Decoration

Now for the fun part! Heat up the Mod Melt in the hot glue gun. Write "eek" in script directly onto the silicone mat. Nothing sticks to this mat so it'll be easy to pop off the words once they're cool! It might take a little practice (it did for me!) but it'll get easier once you get the hang of it.

Once the word is cool, carefully pull it up from the mat. To get a nice, thick coat of glow-in-the-dark goodness, brush the glow Mod Podge over the letters, or do like I did and dip the whole thing into the jar. Let dry on the mat and then glue to the center of the circles.
DIY Halloween Plant Decoration DIY Halloween Plant Decoration

Add the pick to a spooky-looking plant for a nice Halloween gift! Wouldn't these make the cutest party favors? I used a Christmas cactus, but there are all kinds of other creepy-looking plants that would be great with this pick: venus fly traps, spiky succulents, spider plants, something cabbage-y (an ode to Little Shop of Horrors). The plant container is another opportunity to bring in the Halloween theme. I added black washi tape stripes to a plain white metal bucket, but the opportunities are endless!

DIY Halloween Plant Decoration

Disclosure: I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Mod Podge and Blueprint Social. I was compensated for this post, but all ideas and opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that keep Vitamini Handmade going! 

If you're looking for more craft ideas from Plaid check out these projects: DIY Faux Sugar Skulls with Collage Clay by Mod Podge, 3 DIY Cell Phone Cases with Decoden by Mod Podge, Plaid Blog - Introducing Mod Podge Modeling Clay, Plaid Decoden Pinterest Board


Follow Plaid on Social Media: Pinterest | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ 


Friday, October 17, 2014

DIY Paper Napkin Pumpkins

Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins
Decorative paper napkins are one of those seasonal things that I can't resist. They're festive and inexpensive and good to have on hand for impromptu parties. They often come in really great patterns! I bought a few great Halloween napkins this year and thought they'd be so cute decoupaged onto pumpkins. After a little bit of experimenting, I found a good method and had some seriously cute pumpkins on my hands! I used real mini pumpkins but the technique would work just as well on faux pumpkins and you could bring them out every year! 

Here's what you'll need:

Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins
  • Decorative Halloween paper napkins
  • Mini pumpkins
  • Matte Modpodge
  • Brush
  • Scissors
  • White craft paint - depending on your napkin colors
Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins

Start by separating the napkin layers so the patterned top sheet is separate from the blank white layers underneath. I tried this technique out in a couple different ways: vertical strips of napkin, horizontal strips, and then a more random mix of shapes. The random shapes worked out the best and looked best with the pattern. Another tip: if the background color of your napkin is orange, great! No need to paint your pumpkin. If it's a light colored napkin (like the spider print), it's best to paint the pumpkin white first.

Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins

Ok, back to the napkin! Cut shapes of the pattern and add a few small cuts around the edges. This will help the napkin conform to the curved surface of the pumpkin and will minimize wrinkles.

Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins

Brush a light layer of modpodge onto a small area of the pumpkin and stick the napkin on. Brush over the napkin with more modpodge. Continue covering the surface of the pumpkin with pieces of the napkin, fitting the shapes together and patching small areas with solid colored pieces. Let dry. Enjoy!

Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins Paper Napkin Decoupaged Pumpkins

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Vintage Trailer Caravan Art Prints & Stamps

New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Art Print

I've been busy over here working on new products and I'm so excited that I finally get to share! First up are these new 11x14 Vintage Trailer Caravan prints in two colorways! I'm excited to be able to offer a larger format print than my usual 8x10s. They're high-quality art prints, digitally printed on matte stock with archival inks. I was going to say they'd look great in a kids room or nursery, but come to think of it, they'd be perfect in a kitchen, bathroom, living room, laundry room...hmm, I think that's everywhere!

New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Art Print New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Art Print

Available in mustard and blue or teal and coral. Both are up and listed in my online shop and on Etsy.

New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Rubber Stamp

I also have three new rubber stamp designs! Chose your favorite trailer style: canned ham, caravan, or Shasta style. Perfect for stamping up note cards and letters, or stamping your own wrapping paper. You can find them in my shop or on Etsy.

New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Rubber Stamp New: Vintage Trailer Caravan Rubber Stamp

Thursday, October 9, 2014

New Vintage Style Vornado Fan

via Amazon

Retro enthusiasts will be happy to hear this: Vornado has reissued a reproduction of their iconic fan, the Vornado VFAN Vintage Circulator. Happy dance!

fan_complete_4

If you're a regular reader of the blog you may remember this table fan makeover project I did a while back, inspired by the original Vornado. I'm still a big fan (ha!) of that project, but boy, it would be so nice to have one of these.

via Amazon
I love the Mid Century styling of this air circulation diagram! I read it was available in red, green, and a beautiful chrome finish, but I only see the red and green listed on Amazon. At $130, it's not inexpensive, but I imagine this fan would last a lifetime. Considering the originals and previous repros are still out in the world (and highly sought after) it would probably be a good investment piece. And it just looks so dang cool! Maybe I'll ask Santa for one of these come Christmastime...

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

DIY Gothic Rose Hair Clip

DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

The country is in a tizzy over pumpkin spice everything right now. Call me a weirdo, but I'm not really into it. I've never even had a pumpkin spice latte... Uh oh, I hope I don't lose followers for that honest confession... All joking aside, I just realized that I do have an obsession (albeit, completely different) that pops up when October rolls around: skulls! Every Halloween season I manage to make something with a skull. An embroidered felt skull headpiece (one of my first blog projects), a Halloween planter complete with skull prop, mini shrine, skull garland, coffin candy boxes with skull pattern, and now this fancy paper rose with skull center. I guess I'll have to call the skull my Halloween mascot!

This pretty paper rose hair clip is relatively simple to make, and if you've made paper flowers before, you may have all of the materials on-hand! I love working with paper clay, but it can be substituted with polymer clay if you'd like. The crepe colors can be customized to match your Halloween costume, though I think red and black is a classic combination.

Here's what you'll need:
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip
  • Single-sided crepe in red and black
  • Paper clay skull (made with La Doll clay. Check out my Skull Garland DIY project for instructions)
  • Glitter. I used my favorite, Martha Stewart Smoky Quartz
  • Scrap cardboard from a cereal box
  • Hot glue gun
  • ModPodge
  • Brush
  • Black craft paint
  • Hair clip
  • Scissors
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip
Cut out the flower petals. The grain will run vertically on all petals. The flower I made used:
  • 8, 2.5" wide x 3" tall petals in black
  • 6, 2" wide x 2.5" tall, red
  • 6, 2" wide x 2" tall, red 
  • 5, 1" wide x 1.5" tall, red 
It's nice to have a few spares on hand, so cut a few more than you'll need. The easiest way to cut these it to cut a long strip of crepe the height of the petal, fold it like an accordion, then cut multiples all at once. Cut a circle from the cardboard, about 2" in diameter.

DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Dilute the black paint with a little bit of water to get the consistency of cream. Brush the paint on the end of the red petals. The paint will bleed into the grain of the paper and make a nice, uneven edge. Let dry.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Cut a slight heart shape out of the top of each petal. Cup the center (gently stretch outward) of each petal, and stretch the tops backwards. Gather the bases. Here's a side view of what the petals should look like.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Starting with the largest red petals, glue them onto the cardboard round, slightly overlapping each. Continue adding petals of the same size until the circle is completed, then move on to the next smallest petals, and the next. Make sure to leave open space in the center of the flower.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Flip the flower over and glue the black petals to the back of the cardboard, overlapping each slightly.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Add a piece of black crepe to the back to cover any exposed cardboard. Attach the clip with hot glue. DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Brush a light layer of modpodge to the edges of the black petals. Sprinkle with glitter and shake off the excess. Repeat with the skull.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip
Glue the skull to the center of the flower with hot glue.
DIY Gothic Paper Rose Hair Clip

Sport your new headpiece! This would be a nice compliment to a Dia de los Muertos costume, or a classy, last minute piece to wear to work on Halloween!
I hope you like it!




Friday, October 3, 2014

My Pound Puppy

My Dachshund Mix Puppy, Baci

I haven't officially shared the newest member of the Vitamini team with you! So without further adieu, let me introduce you to Baci, my sweet dachshund pup!

My dachshund mix puppy, Baci

I adopted her from the local SPCA last month where she was with her 7 brothers and sisters. She was the first and only one I looked at, but I knew immediately that she was mine. She threw up in my hand as I was driving her home from the shelter, so I guess you can say we were bonded from the start! It was a quick and dirty welcome into the life of a pet owner. :) 

My Dachshund Mix Puppy, Baci

Here's the photo of her from the SPCA website. Awww! She's 4 months old as of yesterday. She's smart, stubborn, sweet, silly, and makes me laugh every day. In the past month we've gone though a lot: her spay surgery, two (!) bee stings and consequent allergic reactions, crate training, house breaking, learning to walk with a leash, learning to play nicely with other dogs. It's been a lot of work on my end, but I'm more than cool with it. I'm so happy to finally have the dog I've waited to get since I graduated from college (10 years ago, now, yikes!).

Untitled

If you're curious about her name, Baci means kisses in Italian. If you met her in person you'd see how fitting her name is. She's very loving and will lick your entire face if you let her! If you've spent any time in Italy you may know there's a delicious Italian chocolate called Baci.

My dachshund mix puppy, Baci

A few interesting facts about her:
  • She sleeps on her back
  • She gets hiccups at least twice a day
  • Grass, leaves, and bark (ie: anything on the ground) are her favorite snacks
  • Ice cubes are her favorite toy
  • She watches tv
My dachshund mix puppy, Baci

Follow me on Instagram if you'd like to see more updates. I'm doing my best not to flood my feed with puppy pictures but I can't make any promises...

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Design Process: Merry & Bright Holiday Cards

Evolution of a Greeting Card Design

I haven't shared one of these "evolution of a design" posts in a while and I thought it would be fun to go behind the scenes on one of my brand new holiday cards, Merry & Bright. A lot of behind the scenes work goes into my designs, and while my techniques can vary (papercut designs, pencil sketches, inked finished drawings, or digital designs), my overall process is pretty consistent across the board.

Evolution of a Greeting Card Design

Everything always starts in my sketchbook. Sometimes I'll sketch out ideas multiple times before I'm ready to proceed with a design. Other times, only a couple quick sketches is all I need as a launching  point. For this holiday card, I made a few super-quick sketches in purple pencil (definitely not my usual tool of choice) in the sketchbook and I was ready to go. I knew I wanted to translate these to papercuts and I'll usually work out little details on the actual paper.

Evolution of a Greeting Card Design

I sketched each ornament and the words "merry & bright" onto the paper and got to cutting with my xacto. The xacto Z series blades are my favorite to work with. Make sure to use a new blade every time you start a new papercut project!

Evolution of a Greeting Card Design

Next, I scanned each of the cut pieces into Photoshop where I cleaned up edges and made sure the text was legible. Then everything goes into Illustrator where I live trace each piece and arrange and scale it onto the size of the card. Sometimes this step takes quite a bit of time! It's like a puzzle, trying to find a good spot for each element so that it compliments the overall design. After I get an arrangement I like, I'll start separating out the color accents. Since I intended this card to be a two color screen print, I had to choose where the color would go, select those elements, and separate them. With a screen print, each color is applied in a separate layer, so this adds a bit of complexity to the design setup in the computer.

I'll separate everything out in illustrator, do a test print on paper to make sure I like the sizes and proportions, and print it out onto a transparency in full black and expose it onto a screen (that I stretched and coated with photo emulsion before-hand). After I wash out the screen, I'll decide on ink colors and get to screen printing the design.

Ta-da! Here are the finished cards. I decided to go with red & pink and teal & gold colorways.
Evolution of a Greeting Card Design Merry & Bright, hand screen printed holiday card by Vitamini

Both are available for purchase in my shop, along with my other brand new holiday card, Season's Greetings, featuring retro candlesticks.

Season's Greetings, hand screen printed holiday card by Vitamini

I hope you enjoyed seeing this little behind-the-scenes glimpse at my process!
Pin It button on image hover