Monday, November 10, 2014

Belated Fall Wreath

Every time I enter my house I am reminded of all the things I need to do. All I have to do is look around, and the mental chore list grows. It's not exactly that I neglect my house, but lets just say we've grown comfortable together. But every time I am able to complete one of these projects that have been nagging at me, instead of the pang of guilt I feel at seeing a job undone, I let out a mental huzzah! 

I have been huzzah-ing for a couple days now, ever since I removed my Christmas wreath from the door (hanging since last year -- possibly even the year before) and hung up my brand-spanking-new fall wreath. Did I buy this fall wreath? Of course not. I cobbled that baby together with bubble gum and dreams... Well, almost.
Does brown packing paper count as bubble gum or dreams?

Actually, I used a coat hanger, some brown packing paper, ribbon (which became totally obscured by the time I was finished), silk leaves, and scrap fabric.

You could use actual leaves, but they are more brittle and\
less colorful. Or you could make leaves out of construction

I started by shaping my wire coat hanger into a circle and wrapping it with a long strip of brown paper to give it some bulk. If you don't want to use paper, you could always cut a doughnut shape out of a pizza box and work with a real crafter's material: cardboard. But I used a wire coat hanger and brown packing paper - the next best thing to cardboard. Note: a lighter weight hanger is easier to shape than the real sturdy ones.

Ain't she purdy?

And of course, as with any project, one must use the correct adhesive. For a project like this, I prefer hot glue, even though my glue gun has definitely seen better days. A crappy glue gun is better than no glue gun... but hey, if you are looking to get me something nice for Christmas, perhaps you could splurge on the $5 glue gun? 

My hanger was even a festive red color.

Once I had the paper wrapped around the wreath to my satisfaction, I wrapped it in fall colored ribbon. This turned out to be a waste of ribbon, because I promptly covered every inch of my wreath in colorful silk leaves, but hey, I know it's there. To tie it all together (pun intended), I wrapped the leaf-covered wreath with a leaf-print fabric scrap and tied a bit around the top like a ribbon. This was after a few failed attempts to turn my fabric into a pretty bow.

The lap makes a great craft table... until one burns oneself
with hot glue.

Have I seen prettier fall wreaths? Definitely. Have I seen worse? Yeah, probably. Do I like mine anyhow? You bet! And it pops really well against the white curtain I recently stitched together for my door -- and no, I didn't blog about it. Every once in a while I do something crafty that I don't brag about online, lol.

In three and a half years, maybe I will take this down and
make an Easter wreath...

Monday, November 3, 2014

Let There Be Light!

When my husband and I bought our house four years ago, we were incredibly lucky that the nice, elderly couple who sold it to us gave us a great price on a house that was just the right size for our little family. Our house had many good selling points, such as the brand-new doors and windows and recent additions to the insulation. It also had floral wallpaper in almost every room dating from the early nineties and some very dated light fixtures, including the non-working ceiling fan in my kitchen.
Also floral.

We have been intending to update the light fixtures since we moved in, but thus far have succeeded in updating only one... well, make that two, now. A week or so ago I did some shopping in my attic (you never know what you will find in the attic), and came across another dated light fixture:

This is what it looked like, on its best day.

Even though I am far from there, I have been attempting to do a Mediterranean thing in my kitchen. I have a (dollar store) painting of a Tuscan villa on the wall, a faux wrought iron clock and mirror, and bright happy colors. So I thought maybe I could alter the above pictured plain Jane light to look like it was also sporting some wrought iron.


I took the metal fixtures off and spray painted them with both a chocolate brown and a black spray paint, attempting to give the look some depth. For the globe, I turned it upside down (like a bowl) and Mod Podged pieces of colored tissue paper to the inside. I layered some white paper in on top of the orange and green, but you can't really see the white when the light is turned on.

Hanging in my kitchen.

My ever-so-crafty father-in-law agreed to do the wiring for me. It only took about half an hour, and would have been quicker had my wiring not been a bit of a mess. 

During the course of this project, we discovered that the duct tape which had always been stuck to my kitchen ceiling was covering a bit of a hole. So my next project? I'm going to make a cardboard medallion to go around the base of the light, camouflaging the poor condition of my kitchen ceiling. I haven't completely figured out HOW I'm going to do it yet, so your suggestions are welcome :)

Keep crafting!